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Thursday, February 28, 2013

[OTP - March] Scott wants money for spring training teams

While working at the Detroit Tigers’ spring facility in Lakeland, Gov. Rick Scott announced today he will ask the Florida Legislature to set aside $5 million a year for projects specifically aimed at improving the Major League Baseball training facilities in the state.

“It’s my job as governor to make sure Florida remains the number one destination for spring training and that is why we will work to provide $5 million annually to only be used for spring training facilities,” Scott said in a statement that was released while Scott was participating in one of his “work days” with the Tigers at Joker Marchant Stadium in Lakeland.

Tripon Posted: February 28, 2013 at 02:05 PM | 2909 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
  Tags: baseball, florida, ot, politics, spring training

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   1. John Northey Posted: February 28, 2013 at 05:20 PM (#4377897)
Oy vey. At least it isn't my tax money, I'm Canadian.
   2. akrasian Posted: February 28, 2013 at 05:41 PM (#4377921)
For what it's worth, spring training does serve as a huge tourist attraction - not to mention having the teams there for spring training mean they have facilities they are using year round. Unlike most subsidization of sports facilities, this quite possibly will pay for itself, especially since Arizona has been getting more and more spring training facilities.
   3. valuearbitrageur Posted: February 28, 2013 at 05:42 PM (#4377924)
Just another tax and spend liberal...wait, he's a what?

If the Republican Party wants to know how it lost it's way, this guy should be exhibit A. Todays Republicans are just like Democrats, only meaner and dumber.

And 15 teams in Cactus league leaves how many for Grapefruit league? I thought so. So how can you remain the leading spring training destination when you already relinquished the lead and are losing teams regularly? If it wasn't for local and state government subsidy wars, the Cactus league would have 30 teams. Fewer rainouts, cheaper facilities and far less travel means teams get more time to work with their players at a lower cost.


   4. Robert in Manhattan Beach Posted: February 28, 2013 at 05:45 PM (#4377929)
It's got to be pretty sobering to lose business to freaking Arizona.
   5. valuearbitrageur Posted: February 28, 2013 at 05:56 PM (#4377940)
For what it's worth, spring training does serve as a huge tourist attraction - not to mention having the teams there for spring training mean they have facilities they are using year round. Unlike most subsidization of sports facilities, this quite possibly will pay for itself, especially since Arizona has been getting more and more spring training facilities.


Nope. Those facilities are barely used the rest of the year, and tourists come to Florida and Arizona whether there is spring training or not, ever heard of things called Golf, or beaches, or resorts?

The economic studies teams have paid for to try to justify spring training facilities are amazing for the blatancy of their bias. The Cubs study claimed hundreds of millions in benefits per year, simply adding up the gross price of every hotel room and rental car rented, every plane trip purchased and every restaurant meal eaten by a spring training visitor.

Oh, so without spring training hotels are going to shut down that month? Rental cars gathering dust? Restaurants closing early?

Or maybe hotels are still going to be full, just at lower rates, with golfer, hikers, conventioneer (who would otherwise have their conventions moved elsewhere due to the impact of spring training), sun worshippers, etc, and the same rental cars will be rented and restaurants full. But the fraudulant economic impact salesmen don't want to report that the Cubs couldn't have gotten tourists to spend even $10M a year extra, because the subsidy they are getting is more than that.

   6. You Know Nothing JT Snow (YR) Posted: February 28, 2013 at 06:47 PM (#4377977)
Wait, Rick Scott wants to spend taxpayer money on baseball players? He's going to make sure they get drug tested first though, right?

What, the player's union won't allow that? Is Rick Scott going to back down from a (sissy voice) UNION?

Wotta tool. Even by Florida standards this guy is a dope.
   7. Pat Rapper's Delight Posted: February 28, 2013 at 10:05 PM (#4378076)
Did anyone else read the headline as "Marge Schott wants money for spring training teams" and do quite the double-take?
   8. cardsfanboy Posted: February 28, 2013 at 10:25 PM (#4378084)
Did anyone else read the headline as "Marge Schott wants money for spring training teams" and do quite the double-take?


Isn't that an insult to Marge Schott?
   9. RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: February 28, 2013 at 10:56 PM (#4378094)
For what it's worth, spring training does serve as a huge tourist attraction - not to mention having the teams there for spring training mean they have facilities they are using year round. Unlike most subsidization of sports facilities, this quite possibly will pay for itself, especially since Arizona has been getting more and more spring training facilities.


LOL.
   10. Tripon Posted: February 28, 2013 at 11:15 PM (#4378101)
Which HBO series features the most nudity? Boardwalk Empire or Game of Thrones?
   11. Lassus Posted: February 28, 2013 at 11:41 PM (#4378105)
Which HBO series features the most nudity? Boardwalk Empire or Game of Thrones?

Don't tell me you haven't seen this yet.
   12. Mike Fast Posted: February 28, 2013 at 11:44 PM (#4378109)
Did anyone else read the headline as "Marge Schott wants money for spring training teams" and do quite the double-take?


raises hand
   13. akrasian Posted: March 01, 2013 at 12:26 AM (#4378125)
Nope. Those facilities are barely used the rest of the year, and tourists come to Florida and Arizona whether there is spring training or not, ever heard of things called Golf, or beaches, or resorts?

The economic studies teams have paid for to try to justify spring training facilities are amazing for the blatancy of their bias. The Cubs study claimed hundreds of millions in benefits per year, simply adding up the gross price of every hotel room and rental car rented, every plane trip purchased and every restaurant meal eaten by a spring training visitor.

Oh, so without spring training hotels are going to shut down that month? Rental cars gathering dust? Restaurants closing early?

Or maybe hotels are still going to be full, just at lower rates, with golfer, hikers, conventioneer (who would otherwise have their conventions moved elsewhere due to the impact of spring training), sun worshippers, etc, and the same rental cars will be rented and restaurants full. But the fraudulant economic impact salesmen don't want to report that the Cubs couldn't have gotten tourists to spend even $10M a year extra, because the subsidy they are getting is more than that.


Well, here in Arizona there is a definite spike in tourism during spring training, during a period when tourism would otherwise be winding down a bit. Of course not every visitor is here for spring training - but a number are, spending money. A large number of fans come to Arizona specifically to follow their teams for a week or so at a time. And since it's not actually the busy season here, they are not crowding out other tourists. I would assume the same is for Florida.

And it's just not true that the facilities are barely used the rest of the year. Teams have their year round facilities at them, with lots of minor leaguers there, with coaches, trainers, rehabbing major leaguers, extended spring training, rookie ball, and fall minor league camps, among other things. Business that Arizona would gladly take from Florida.

Is it a goldmine by Florida standards? Probably not. Is it worth $5 million per year to protect it, rather than to just give up on it? Quite probably. Especially when you factor in such additional factors as millionaire ball players settling in the state to be close to their spring training sites.

I don't think you understand how many tourists actually come to watch their favorite team, and you pretty clearly don't understand how spring training sites are a year round center for a team.
   14. RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: March 01, 2013 at 12:41 AM (#4378132)
Is it worth $5 million per year to protect it,


$5 million is not the total amount in subsidy. It is the additional annual subsidy Scott is suggesting, in addition to up to $20 million per project for the five projects, plus a match in local government dollars not to mention the past money Florida has used to subsidize spring training.
   15. You Know Nothing JT Snow (YR) Posted: March 01, 2013 at 12:49 AM (#4378133)
According to Scott Florida doesn't have enough money to keep spraying for mosquitoes, but there's cash a-plenty for billionaire vanity games. Unbelievable. For those of y'all you don't follow what this duncecap is doing down there, here's a quick read.

Excerpt:

Scott vetoed a record $615 million worth of spending for, among other things: homeless veterans, meals for seniors, whooping-cough vaccines for low-income mothers, an independent living center for the developmentally disabled, and, of course, public radio.


Medical care for the poors? Tough it out! Welfare for his plutocrat cronies? Dig in boys!

Some one should ask this prick how he feels about the league's revenue sharing schemes, just to see the blank look in his eyes while he tries to figure out an appropriate answer.
   16. RollingWave Posted: March 01, 2013 at 01:10 AM (#4378141)
Well I'm glad that the house is proving that it's so useless that it can't even pass something that avoids something both party wants to avoid.

At least the cuts include defense spending I guess.

I mean, as silly as Taiwan's politics can be sometimes, we're at least arguing over real policy choices, like if we should de-nuclearize (power plant). of course some local pols look like idiots lately after they slam some local government sponsonrship for the Life of Pi (which was shot in Taiwan for the most part. as a effort to get the move industry revived. ) a few months ago . etc... sheeseh.
   17. Obo Posted: March 01, 2013 at 01:38 AM (#4378145)
Did anyone else read the headline as "Marge Schott wants money for spring training teams" and do quite the double-take?

Yep, me too.
   18. valuearbitrageur Posted: March 01, 2013 at 01:24 PM (#4378362)
I don't think you understand how many tourists actually come to watch their favorite team, and you pretty clearly don't understand how spring training sites are a year round center for a team.


I understand the Diamindbacks/Rockies first weekend was half empty, because I was there.

I understand that their shiny new facility is barely used year round, because my office is one block away, and my home is 10 blocks away, and I frequently cut through their parking lots to eat lunch at the Pavilions Mall.

And I understand how much BS the Cactus League spreads about their economic impact, because I've been to their web site and noticed they won't source their astounding claims.

Again, the teams would never have built that stadium on their own dime, cause it vastly exceeds their need. Especially for rehabbing a few athletes.

Again, if Arizona banned subsidies fir the Cactus League, they'd still come here because of costs and benefits. If Florida paid to move every team we'd still have tourists and wed have more March conventions with more hotels freed up. That spike you think you see also marks the start of good weather, while its still crappy up north.
   19. valuearbitrageur Posted: March 01, 2013 at 01:27 PM (#4378365)
of course some local pols look like idiots lately after they slam some local government sponsonrship for the Life of Pi (which was shot in Taiwan for the most part. as a effort to get the move industry revived. ) a few months ago . etc... sheeseh.


Did the local government think Hollywood is going to do anything other than take their money and run? I mean how many scripts like the life of Pi are there?

I loved the Life of Pi. It gave me zero desire to visit Taiwan or any other locale.
   20. Shooty Is Disappointed With His Midstream Urine Posted: March 01, 2013 at 01:29 PM (#4378366)
I read it as Mike Scott. I'm not sure what that says about me.
   21. Lassus Posted: March 01, 2013 at 01:37 PM (#4378377)
I read it as Mike Scott. I'm not sure what that says about me.

Likewise.


So, regarding politics, I have a question for the conservative elements and camp here. Are the conservatives in the capital and on the hill upset at the sequester because they are being BLAMED for it? Because the American people are being told it's terrible when it is what the conservatives are saying is what needs to happen?

I'm not being snarky, I'm finding it weird if both halves are annoyed, I'm legitimately curious. I thought this was what the small-government conservatives wanted? Or?
   22. cardsfanboy Posted: March 01, 2013 at 01:50 PM (#4378390)
I'm not being snarky, I'm finding it weird if both halves are annoyed, I'm legitimately curious. I thought this was what the small-government conservatives wanted? Or?


Not a conservative, but conservatives want smaller government, intelligently instituted. Mind you they do not want smaller government when it comes to the military, for some reason that is perfectly ok to make as massive as possible, and ignore any reasonable spending controls(except when it comes to the troops, in that case, they believe in ####### the troops and their benefits) Basically massive out of control spending for the Military (and Nasa for some factions) is ok for conservatives, just not elsewhere.

The sequester is not intelligently istituted, it's just cuts, whether they make sense or not.

   23. Jim Wisinski Posted: March 01, 2013 at 02:19 PM (#4378411)
Rick Scott has had a bit of an interesting time the last few month. He has said he wants to participate in the Medicaid expansion recently and after the 2012 election he announced that Florida needs to expand early voting due to the massive lines experienced at some polling places; he failed to mention though that he's the one who reduced early voting in the first place. I think he's probably trying to tack to the center in some areas because just being the tea party hero isn't going to win him re-election in 2014 and his tenure so far has given opponents plenty of ammo against him. Also, it's rumored that Charlie Crist may run for governor again and that's a race I strongly doubt Scott can win.
   24. Steve Treder Posted: March 01, 2013 at 03:04 PM (#4378440)
Rick Scott has had a bit of an interesting time the last few month. He has said he wants to participate in the Medicaid expansion recently and after the 2012 election he announced that Florida needs to expand early voting due to the massive lines experienced at some polling places; he failed to mention though that he's the one who reduced early voting in the first place. I think he's probably trying to tack to the center in some areas because just being the tea party hero isn't going to win him re-election in 2014 and his tenure so far has given opponents plenty of ammo against him. Also, it's rumored that Charlie Crist may run for governor again and that's a race I strongly doubt Scott can win.

Scott's situation vividly illustrates the dilemma the GOP has gotten itself into: the Tea Party faction is strong enough to win and hold lots of (conveniently gerrymandered) seats in the U.S. House, and also lots of red-state statehouses and governorships. But in a large, diverse state like Florida, they're seemingly not strong enough to require the Republican governor to maintain full compliance with The Cause.

And the GOP is completely disempowered in the nation's largest state. There was a front-page article in this morning's San Jose Mercury examining the bereft status of the California GOP: literally at its weakest ebb in the entire 163-year history of the state, with Democratic supermajorities in both state legislative bodies, completely without any serious candidates to run for governor, and with essentially zero funds and statewide organization. They're prostrate, because the Tea Party holds no meaningful credibility with the statewide electorate.
   25. A big pile of nonsense (gef the talking mongoose) Posted: March 01, 2013 at 03:13 PM (#4378448)
That California scenario is remarkable. Right now I'm halfway through Greg Mitchell's Campaign of the Century, on Upton Sinclair's EPIC campaign in '34, & ... night & day.
   26. Tripon Posted: March 01, 2013 at 03:46 PM (#4378476)
One unintended consequence of Ray putting me on ignore is that whenever I make a new thread, he doesn't see it. That's probably the reason why he hasn't commented recently in these threads.
   27. Good cripple hitter Posted: March 01, 2013 at 03:50 PM (#4378480)
Ignore doesn't work that way. It ignores comments, not articles posted by someone.
   28. Tripon Posted: March 01, 2013 at 03:54 PM (#4378484)
Huh, okay.
   29. Ron J2 Posted: March 01, 2013 at 04:00 PM (#4378488)
#7 Happened to me too.
   30. Steve Treder Posted: March 01, 2013 at 05:13 PM (#4378557)
Interesting ... the Limbaugh brand is apparently in decline. Or, is it more the case that politically-oriented talk radio is more broadly in decline (another victim of the internet, perhaps?), and talk radio is evolving into all-sports-all-the-time?

Clear Channel's Premiere Radio Networks, Limbaugh's syndicator, had a difficult first quarter due to weak ad sales. They wouldn't offer additional information about this (and they don't have to because Clear Channel is a private company). But, given how much damage Limbaugh is causing to the broader industry, it's not much of a stretch to deduce that his home base is also experiencing some effect.

Last September, I attended the Radio Show, an industry event produced by the Radio Advertising Bureau and the National Association of Broadcasters. In every session that I attended, managing the negative impact of Limbaugh was addressed at some point - even in the sessions in which I didn't expect it to come up. Overall, I left with the impression that the industry is deeply aware that a problem exists and is in the process of adapting.

Cumulus CEO Lew Dickey signaled the toxicity of Limbaugh's business model as well as industry adaptation in a recent interview with Bloomberg TV, saying: "We're sort of seeing a shift in spoken-word radio from political-based talk over to sports." Sports radio is popular with advertisers, Dickey explained, and "people may be a bit tired of all the partisan bickering."
   31. RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: March 01, 2013 at 05:35 PM (#4378594)

So, regarding politics, I have a question for the conservative elements and camp here. Are the conservatives in the capital and on the hill upset at the sequester because they are being BLAMED for it? Because the American people are being told it's terrible when it is what the conservatives are saying is what needs to happen?


To be fair, the Dems are in a similar bind. They are scare-mongering about how disastrous the cuts are going to be to the economy (and rightfully so to an extent), but also trying to say they are deficit hawks. You can't really be a deficit hawk and put all the cuts on the military any more than you can be a deficit hawk and put all the cuts on discretionary spending and the mythical "waste and fraud."
   32. Steve Treder Posted: March 01, 2013 at 05:55 PM (#4378607)
To be fair, the Dems are in a similar bind. They are scare-mongering about how disastrous the cuts are going to be to the economy (and rightfully so to an extent), but also trying to say they are deficit hawks. You can't really be a deficit hawk and put all the cuts on the military any more than you can be a deficit hawk and put all the cuts on discretionary spending and the mythical "waste and fraud."

But it's reasonable to take a position that (a) acknowledges the economic fact that the sequester itself is a highly inefficacious tool with which to address the deficit (as, for instance, Ben Bernanke says), (b) understands the difference between long-term and short-term issues, effects, and priorities, and (c) asserts that the best program of deficit reduction incorporates tax increases as well as spending cuts. Can't one take such a position and still be a deficit hawk?
   33. Pops Freshenmeyer Posted: March 01, 2013 at 05:56 PM (#4378608)
Interesting ... the Limbaugh brand is apparently in decline. Or, is it more the case that politically-oriented talk radio is more broadly in decline (another victim of the internet, perhaps?), and talk radio is evolving into all-sports-all-the-time?

The article focuses on the actions of advertisers concerned about their brand. It doesn't address whether audiences are tuning out political talk. Are viewer/listener numbers down?
   34. valuearbitrageur Posted: March 01, 2013 at 06:04 PM (#4378615)
acknowledges the economic fact that the sequester itself is a highly inefficacious tool with which to address the deficit (as, for instance, Ben Bernanke says), (b) understands the difference between long-term and short-term issues, effects, and priorities, and (c) asserts that the best program of deficit reduction incorporates tax increases as well as spending cuts. Can't one take such a position and still be a deficit hawk?


LOL, as if negotiated cuts to government spending are somehow better than forced cuts. That assumes there is a type of government spending that s actually good for the economy.

Federal spending should just go directly back pre Bush levels of GDP immediately, somehow we always had tons of money to spend on the military in those budgets. Do it now before the massive debt accumulated by inefficient stimulus spending permanently damages the economy.
   35. Steve Treder Posted: March 01, 2013 at 06:09 PM (#4378617)
That assumes there is a type of government spending that s actually good for the economy.

Yes, it does, being as how it's something that, you know, economists believe.
   36. tfbg9 Posted: March 01, 2013 at 06:22 PM (#4378631)
Yes, it does, being as how it's something that, you know, economists believe.


All of them? I didn't know that.

Oh...you meant like...most of them?

I wasn't aware science was done by consensus. And calling economics a science is a bit of stretch in any case.

   37. Johnny Sycophant-Laden Fora Posted: March 01, 2013 at 06:22 PM (#4378632)
Interesting ... the Limbaugh brand is apparently in decline. Or, is it more the case that politically-oriented talk radio is more broadly in decline (another victim of the internet, perhaps?), and talk radio is evolving into all-sports-all-the-time?


The demographics of his audience is terrible from an ad agency's POV- much worse than, oh, Howard Stern's audience. The ironic part is that Limbaugh should be on satellite- his audience would pay to hear him- Stern is on satellite but shouldn't be- it's not that his audience won't pay to hear him (obviously they will)- but why should they?- advertisers are more than willing to pay to reach them
   38. valuearbitrageur Posted: March 01, 2013 at 06:23 PM (#4378633)
That assumes there is a type of government spending that s actually good for the economy.

Yes, it does, being as how it's something that, you know, economists believe.


It's something that economists who want to be government economists, or policy advisors, must believe to qualify for those positions.

Did Nobel Prize winner Milton Friedman believe that?

So now the bridge to nowhere Is a wise investment? I guess so, because Krugman has said we can stimulate the economy by paying people to dig holes in the desert, and then fill them back in, producing nothing. So at least we get a bridge in the first scenario.

   39. Tripon Posted: March 01, 2013 at 06:25 PM (#4378635)
The problem with Sirius/XM/satellite, is that once you go satellite and a pay system, you're out of sight, out of mind. I didn't even realize that Stern still had a show.
   40. Johnny Sycophant-Laden Fora Posted: March 01, 2013 at 06:28 PM (#4378639)
The sequester is not intelligently instituted, it's just cuts, whether they make sense or not.


and if you tell a Bureaucrat that your are cutting his budget 10% most will not look to cut "fat," they won't even consider that- their first goal will be to see how badly they can hurt/inconvenience someone else- in order to get "their" budget restored

I was listening last weekend on the radio, and some winger was complaining that Obama was going to make sure that people get inconvenienced, that a news crew will be on hand to observe people waiting in line as their flight is delayed or they get turned away from a national park...

guess what, Obama is not gonna have to do anything, the Whitehouse is not going to have to orchestrate anything- the Bureaucrats will do it as naturally as you or I breath air.
   41. Yeaarrgghhhh Posted: March 01, 2013 at 06:47 PM (#4378645)
No one can argue with a straight face that no government spending is good for the economy.
   42. Steve Treder Posted: March 01, 2013 at 07:03 PM (#4378655)
No one can argue with a straight face that no government spending is good for the economy.

No one who expects to be taken seriously, anyway.
   43. Tripon Posted: March 01, 2013 at 07:08 PM (#4378661)
In a face palm, the state board of equalization decided to raise the gas tax despite record high gas prices. This is just dumb. We're heading to $5.00 gas, this is just going to get us there faster.
   44. SteveF Posted: March 01, 2013 at 08:52 PM (#4378693)
It's not a tax hike. It's an adjustment mandated by law to achieve revenue neutrality.

Not every increase in taxes is a tax increase.
   45. Steve Treder Posted: March 01, 2013 at 09:20 PM (#4378701)
As if there weren't enough ways in which the Republican Party is way dysfunctional:

Here's an interesting item from Mike Allen's Playbook this morning, from what he characterizes as a Republican congressman speaking on background to the Business Roundtable yesterday:

“By the way, this notion that Republicans are all eager to reform entitlements -- folks, Democrats have it all wrong. Republicans would love to avoid the issue, politically. … I love this poll: Tea party folks in Ohio, ‘Do you think your Social Security benefits should be reduced given the record debt and deficits?’ 85 percent ‘no.’ … [T]his is not an issue that anybody wants to take on, politically. It is the third rail of American politics, still. Is it easier? Yeah, probably than it was a couple of decades ago. But not much.”

I've always kind of wondered about this. This isn't the first poll to give us such findings. It's pretty well established that even most conservatives don't want to touch Social Security. So all these Republicans baying about entitlements...they're not talking to their constituents, if these polls are correct, so to whom are they talking? I suppose first, establishment Washington, which hungers for entitlement cuts more than any other single item. And second, the right-wing political class, operatives and people at think tanks, who want the welfare state to wither away.

The vast chasm between these two groups and regular Republicans is something that Republican lawmakers can't easily bridge. Maybe they can't bridge it at all. There is after all no position on entitlements that can satisfy both groups.

   46. RollingWave Posted: March 01, 2013 at 09:21 PM (#4378703)
Did the local government think Hollywood is going to do anything other than take their money and run? I mean how many scripts like the life of Pi are there?

I loved the Life of Pi. It gave me zero desire to visit Taiwan or any other locale.
I don't think that was ever the point, the point was that Taiwan's own movie industry have gone to hell despite pretty solid all around talent, we make better #### then the garbage Hong Kong keeps chucking out while we also don't try make make everything a properganda film ala China. there's every reason why we should eventually dominante the Chinese market.. which is like you know.. 1/4 of the world's population. except that we're not, our movie industry essentially died in the 90s and only revived a little bit lately.

Pi was key because it was directed by An Lee, who's obviously going to be the only big Hollywood director we're ever going to convince to take the risk to make a movie in Taiwan for obvious reasons.

Tourism is a seperate issue, but Taiwan doubled their per year visiter in the last 4 year, again taking a essentially dead industry and making in something again.
   47. Rickey! trades in sheep and threats Posted: March 01, 2013 at 09:46 PM (#4378715)
Not a conservative, but conservatives want smaller government, intelligently instituted.


The sequester was a punt, in the hopes that something magical might happen and rational heads would prevail on the next set of downs. It didn't.

The GOP wants to replace the sequester with spending cuts more targeted and "intelligently instituted," against programs they don't like, because they can then turn around and rally to make those permanent and sop their base with "we slashed spending, but only this much because of Obama, bugga bugga bugga bugga."

The Dems want to replace the sequester with targeted spending cuts against programs they don't like, and new revenue, because they can then rally to that in 2014. The GOP thought/wished it got a "that's it on revenues" from the debt ceiling hostage standoff, but the Dems won't play that game.

All in all, you're going to see continued divestment from government sectors, and economic slowdown as a result. The primary upside of this is that DOD is on the chopping block as well, so at least the nation's biggest welfare program is in the targeting sights as they go forward.
   48. Rickey! trades in sheep and threats Posted: March 01, 2013 at 09:52 PM (#4378718)
Did Nobel Prize winner Milton Friedman believe (in government investment?)


Sometimes. You might be confusing Friedman with the more radical nut-job Austrians.

So now the bridge to nowhere Is a wise investment?


This is an incredibly dishonest bait and switch argument.
   49. Tripon Posted: March 01, 2013 at 10:11 PM (#4378727)
44. SteveF Posted: March 01, 2013 at 08:52 PM (#4378693)
It's not a tax hike. It's an adjustment mandated by law to achieve revenue neutrality.

Not every increase in taxes is a tax increase.


Neutrality to what? Adjustment to what? California have driven less miles and is consuming less gas than they have in half a decade, so the natural response is to raise the gas tax? In a state, (In fact, the only state, even supposedly Republican and libertarian states like Alaska, Texas, and Arkansas have excise taxes on oil extraction) that still doesn't impose an excise tax on oil extraction.

These are taxes per gallon, so if you want to increase revenue, the state needs to figure out how to make people consume more gallons of gas, not less. Adding to the price isn't going to help it.
   50. Fancy Pants Handles lap changes with class Posted: March 01, 2013 at 10:15 PM (#4378728)
We're heading to $5.00 gas, this is just going to get us there faster.

Meh, still half as much as it costs here.
   51. Tripon Posted: March 01, 2013 at 10:19 PM (#4378729)
Yeah, but that's because the U.S. doesn't use a Value Added Tax.
   52. Fancy Pants Handles lap changes with class Posted: March 01, 2013 at 10:30 PM (#4378737)
Yeah, but that's because the U.S. doesn't use a Value Added Tax.

Vat barely makes a dent. VAT is a tiny, pitiful amount compared to the fuel duty.
   53. Rickey! trades in sheep and threats Posted: March 01, 2013 at 11:13 PM (#4378765)
We're heading to $5.00 gas, this is just going to get us there faster.


You say that like it's a bad thing. Pricing carbon into the model, reducing demand via market pricing, reducing fossil fuel demand in general. All of these are good things.
   54. Tripon Posted: March 01, 2013 at 11:33 PM (#4378769)
You say that like it's a bad thing. Pricing carbon into the model, reducing demand via market pricing, reducing fossil fuel demand in general. All of these are good things.


Except the politicians who just raised the tax aren't looking it in this manner, they just see, "Oh, revenues down because of the increased cost of gas, raise the tax rate."

There is no thinking beyond this, getting the 'right' answer doesn't mean #### with terrible cognitive skills being displayed here.
   55. Tripon Posted: March 01, 2013 at 11:43 PM (#4378775)
You say that like it's a bad thing. Pricing carbon into the model, reducing demand via market pricing, reducing fossil fuel demand in general. All of these are good things.


Except the politicians who just raised the tax aren't looking it in this manner, they just see, "Oh, revenues down because of the increased cost of gas, raise the tax rate."

There is no thinking beyond this, getting the 'right' answer doesn't mean #### with terrible cognitive skills being displayed here.
   56. Steve Treder Posted: March 02, 2013 at 12:09 AM (#4378781)
Except the politicians who just raised the tax aren't looking it in this manner, they just see, "Oh, revenues down because of the increased cost of gas, raise the tax rate."

Please support with evidence.
   57. Tripon Posted: March 02, 2013 at 12:20 AM (#4378786)

Please support with evidence.

Californians could end up paying the highest gasoline taxes in the nation when a 3.5-cents-per-gallon increase kicks in this summer.

The state Board of Equalization voted Thursday to increase the excise tax from 36 cents to 39.5 cents per gallon on non-diesel fuel beginning with the new fiscal year July 1, partly to offset tax losses because Californians are using less gas.

The change is expected to provide more than $500 million in revenue for the fiscal year, based on consumption figures. The diesel fuel tax will remain unchanged at 10 cents per gallon.

The excise tax is the largest of the state taxes on gasoline. It was increased in 2010 under a change in gasoline tax laws to help close a nearly $20 billion state budget deficit.
   58. Steve Treder Posted: March 02, 2013 at 12:26 AM (#4378789)
Um, that's not evidence that "the politicians who just raised the tax aren't looking it in this manner, they just see, 'Oh, revenues down because of the increased cost of gas, raise the tax rate.'"
   59. Tripon Posted: March 02, 2013 at 12:29 AM (#4378790)
By reducing the sales tax on gas from 8.25 percent to 2.25 percent and roughly doubling the excise tax, the state was able to provide more money to balance its budget without raising the overall gas tax rate.

Each year, the equalization board must reset the excise tax by March 1 to ensure that the state will receive the same amount of gas tax revenue as it would have received under the old system.

"The Legislature mandated that we equalize the sales and excise taxes to avoid a net increase in taxes," equalization board Chairman Jerome E. Horton said in a board statement on Friday. "We could protest the legislation and not make the rate adjustment, however we would be violating law and arguably exposing taxpayers to even higher taxes in the future."
   60. Steve Treder Posted: March 02, 2013 at 12:37 AM (#4378798)
Remaining unconvinced how this:

"The Legislature mandated that we equalize the sales and excise taxes to avoid a net increase in taxes," equalization board Chairman Jerome E. Horton said in a board statement on Friday. "We could protest the legislation and not make the rate adjustment, however we would be violating law and arguably exposing taxpayers to even higher taxes in the future."


equates:

"the politicians who just raised the tax aren't looking it in this manner, they just see, 'Oh, revenues down because of the increased cost of gas, raise the tax rate.'"
   61. Dr. Vaux Posted: March 02, 2013 at 12:46 AM (#4378813)
It's easy for people who can afford to live walking distance from their jobs to say that gas should cost more.

Most people in the United States have to drive a lot. They do not have a choice in the matter.
   62. Tripon Posted: March 02, 2013 at 01:00 AM (#4378832)
Steve, I think we just have to disagree then.
   63. Steve Treder Posted: March 02, 2013 at 01:09 AM (#4378840)
Fair enough.
   64. SteveF Posted: March 02, 2013 at 02:14 AM (#4378926)
Neutrality to what? Adjustment to what? California have driven less miles and is consuming less gas than they have in half a decade, so the natural response is to raise the gas tax?


Just to be clear, I was making a joke of what the board's response was to people calling this a tax increase. Calling this anything but a tax increase is evidence of insanity.
   65. Jack Carter, calling Beleaguered Castle Posted: March 02, 2013 at 09:06 AM (#4379072)
Any consensus on how much the information explosion particularly through the internet has helped limit the GOP and the right, nationally?

Facts have not been their friend, and the 'net does help spread the truth (along with a whole lot of horseshite).
   66. Fancy Pants Handles lap changes with class Posted: March 02, 2013 at 09:42 AM (#4379090)
Any consensus on how much the information explosion particularly through the internet has helped limit the GOP and the right, nationally?

Facts have not been their friend, and the 'net does help spread the truth (along with a whole lot of horseshite).

I am open to being persuaded otherwise, but I don't think it has mattered much. People can still live in their private echo chamber on the web, if they want to. Arguably easier than before. The GOP's problem, is that their core message is just incredibly unpopular outside of their base, especially regarding social issues. On top of that, the last time they were in power, they led the country into an unnecessary clusterfuck of a war, and drove the economy into a ditch. And with no major Dem screw-ups, I don't see how they fare any better under an old media model.

You can make an interesting case for the internet being responsible for the shift in social values. But as a truth tool, I am just not really seeing the importance.
   67. Steve Treder Posted: March 02, 2013 at 01:06 PM (#4379170)
#66: Agreed, but it would seem that the demographics of social media/internet usage work against the GOP/right going forward. Their base is on the wrong side of the aging curve, and as the internet/social media assumes an ever-greater role in general communication, it would follow that the GOP/right message amplification becomes increasingly marginalized.

Or maybe not. One of the lessons of the internet/new media era so far is that it's complicated. But it is the case that the Democratic party owns Silicon Valley. Just owns it. And allowing virtually an entire generation of techies to play for the other team simply cannot be good for political party.
   68. spike Posted: March 02, 2013 at 02:40 PM (#4379193)
People can still live in their private echo chamber on the web, if they want to

Absolutely, but teh kidz hang out at Fark and Reddit and the like which seem to be pretty solidly liberal places, for the most part. While this certainly doesn't preclude young people from becoming or staying conservative, they certainly get exposed to liberal thought a lot more than conservative. What kid wants to hang out at Free Republic?
   69. Tripon Posted: March 02, 2013 at 03:10 PM (#4379206)
Eh, I think its more that younger conservatives viewpoints hedge more fiscal libertarians than social conservatives.
   70. Mefisto Posted: March 02, 2013 at 03:38 PM (#4379215)
It's easy for people who can afford to live walking distance from their jobs to say that gas should cost more.

Most people in the United States have to drive a lot. They do not have a choice in the matter.


Poor people are the ones who will pay the biggest costs for climate change. If we really wanted to help them, we'd raise gas taxes a LOT and use the money to develop subsidized public transportation. That would relive the poor of the not-insignificant burden of owning two cars (and maybe even one).
   71. Steve Treder Posted: March 02, 2013 at 03:53 PM (#4379218)
If we really wanted to help them, we'd raise gas taxes a LOT and use the money to develop subsidized public transportation.

Now that's just commie talk.
   72. cardsfanboy Posted: March 02, 2013 at 03:55 PM (#4379220)
Poor people are the ones who will pay the biggest costs for climate change. If we really wanted to help them, we'd raise gas taxes a LOT and use the money to develop subsidized public transportation. That would relive the poor of the not-insignificant burden of owning two cars (and maybe even one).


Who wants to help poor people? After all, they are poor because they choose to be poor. Why should we consider anything to the benefit of people who choose to be lazy. You need to follow the capitalist way, and only consider options that will help improve those who are well off, after all if they get extra benefits, their happiness, profits and comfort will trickle down to the rest.
   73. Dr. Vaux Posted: March 02, 2013 at 04:24 PM (#4379232)
The satire is appreciated, but public transit is not being built to a nearly sufficient extent, and more importantly to the issue at hand, isn't going to be, no matter how expensive gasoline is. It's been built in the places where there's support for it, and there isn't support for it anywhere else. And even in places that have comparatively extensive systems, there are gaps that make huge numbers of people have to drive. Look at the D.C. area. If you want to go from, say, Beltsville to Wheaton, which are you going to do? Ride around for well over an hour in a U-shape through the city and back up the other side--and do the same thing on the way back--or make a 40-minute drive there and back? The cost difference would have to be enormous for most people to decide to do the former. And if you've got more than one person going, the cost difference is already prohibitive. Not everyone is single, and the metro is not cheap. It cost me over $8 yesterday to go from New Carrolton to Capitol South and back. The reason I did it instead of driving was that there's no way to park down there, not because of the cost. That's a separate issue. I was with my girlfriend, so it cost her $8, too. We'd have been crazy not to drive if we could have parked at our destination. And at suburban destinations, you can, so with more than one person on the trip, it's always cheaper to drive. If gas prices increased to equal or exceed public transit prices, poor families wouldn't be able to travel together at all. They wouldn't start taking the metro instead of driving.
   74. BDC Posted: March 02, 2013 at 04:46 PM (#4379241)
I live in the largest city in the US with no public transit at all (Arlington TX) and the population keeps rising with no public transit planned for any time in the future. Part of this is just intransigence and anti-communitarian sentiment, but partly it's because the city, never having had public transit, has grown in ways that make it difficult to install any. The typical home here is on a half-acre surrounded by a quarter-section of similar homes – or alternatively, in a vast apartment complex surrounded by parking lots. I live in the center of the city and could walk a mjile to the nearest supermarket; much of the walk would be across the parking lot of that supermarket, which is pretty much the only thing at that intersection, aside from a restaurant-supply superstore and a megachurch. A mile from there is another intersection with a couple of other megathings, and a mile from there … you get the picture. Bus lines (let alone rail) make sense only when there are concentrations of things that people want to get to. Without a revitalized city center (which has been happening very slowly for decades, and hasn't achieved much density of anything to speak of), there's nowhere for transit lines to serve effectively. This is a big problem in lots of ways; cities like this are designed to be unlivable without cars.
   75. BDC Posted: March 02, 2013 at 04:55 PM (#4379242)
And speaking of cars, I recently had an experience that would almost have turned me libertarian. Someone who shall be nameless borrowed my car and rolled through a right-turn-on-red, getting an automated red-light-camera ticket. $75 fine. At first I freaked out, assuming that it would also be points on my license, higher insurance rates, trouble renewing my license … but come to find that the camera-issued tickets are civil proceedings, not criminal moving violations. IOW, it doesn't matter who drove; it's exceedingly hard to fight (you'd have to invite the city to take you to court, and they'd only have to show preponderance of evidence), and since it's "only" money, there's no point in doing that; you'd pay more to fight it than to pay it.

Almost have turned me libertarian, except that the ticket isn't really written by the city. It's issued by a private company in Tempe AZ, with a fulfillment center in Cincinnati, Ohio that handles the checks people write. IOW some bright young entrepreneur gets the idea to start a company that will issue traffic tickets that are basically like printing money, and flies the city fathers to Key Biscayne or somewhere for a weekend of PowerPoints and piña coladas where they learn that every other city is getting them, and they buy in. Red-light cameras are now illegal in Texas, but existing contracts with these companies will be honored till they expire – in our case, 30 years from now. If there was ever an example of something that looks like getting screwed by Big Government but is actually the result of the free market bending people over the hoods of their vehicles, this is it.
   76. cardsfanboy Posted: March 02, 2013 at 05:01 PM (#4379246)
About those tickets, the simple fact of the matter is that your car did violate the "law" and there is nothing wrong with making you pay for it, your friend should reimburse you of course, but from the point of view of the city, that doesn't matter.

I was very adamantly against these type of tactics until I learned that it wasn't points on your license, after that I just oppose them out of principle, but can't really argue against them. Personally I think the bigger crime is how easy it is to remove points off of your license by just paying a bigger fine and having it changed to a non-moving violation. If there is anything that needs to be fixed, it's that. I know way too many people who drive recklessly and just don't give a ####, because it's only money and it's worth the 100 times of driving dangerous, for that one time they get caught.
   77. RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: March 02, 2013 at 05:42 PM (#4379254)


But it's reasonable to take a position that (a) acknowledges the economic fact that the sequester itself is a highly inefficacious tool with which to address the deficit (as, for instance, Ben Bernanke says), (b) understands the difference between long-term and short-term issues, effects, and priorities, and (c) asserts that the best program of deficit reduction incorporates tax increases as well as spending cuts. Can't one take such a position and still be a deficit hawk?


I agree. Isn't it also somewhat reasonable for conservatives to take a similar position that the sequester is an inefficacious tool to address the deficit?
   78. Tripon Posted: March 02, 2013 at 05:45 PM (#4379256)
Eh, I swing the other way. (pun not intended.) I got a ticket for a moving violation that I couldn't take traffic school for. (Crossing guard was on the other side of a long street, and I forgot to check if she hit the sidewalk yet.) And its $300 ticket, a point on your license and you can't take traffic school for it.

What is the point of traffic school if you're prohibited from taking it for some traffic offenses? Shouldn't the state encourage its citizens to take it if they actually believe traffic school helps its citizens become better and more cautious drivers? (And yes, I understand the reality of traffic school is that most people use it to just rid of the points, and don't bother paying attention to the actual information.) Maybe its just the cynic in me that questions why the law is written in such a way.
   79. Mefisto Posted: March 02, 2013 at 05:58 PM (#4379264)
public transit is not being built to a nearly sufficient extent, and more importantly to the issue at hand, isn't going to be, no matter how expensive gasoline is.


This is an unlikely argument. First of all, the price of gasoline is going to go up; that's not in doubt. As it goes up, alternatives will have to be found. If cities like Arlington, TX make life unlivable for people, then people won't live there. Second, encouraging the continued use of fossil fuels is suicidal. Price increases are the simplest way to adapt.
   80. tfbg9 Posted: March 02, 2013 at 06:03 PM (#4379266)
Second, encouraging the continued use of fossil fuels is suicidal


Bullsh1t. North America alone has enough coal and shale oil for 500 years. It can be burned cleanly and safely. Lets get to work.
People need jobs.

Igoring our energy resources is what's suicidal.
   81. Spahn Insane Posted: March 02, 2013 at 07:06 PM (#4379295)
Did anyone else read the headline as "Marge Schott wants money for spring training teams" and do quite the double-take?

raises hand


I read it and assumed Luke Scott. Those birther pamphlets don't pay for themselves, after all.
   82. The Yankee Clapper Posted: March 02, 2013 at 07:45 PM (#4379310)
IOW some bright young entrepreneur gets the idea to start a company that will issue traffic tickets that are basically like printing money, and flies the city fathers to Key Biscayne or somewhere for a weekend of PowerPoints and piña coladas where they learn that every other city is getting them, and they buy in. Red-light cameras are now illegal in Texas, but existing contracts with these companies will be honored till they expire – in our case, 30 years from now. If there was ever an example of something that looks like getting screwed by Big Government but is actually the result of the free market bending people over the hoods of their vehicles, this is it.

These companies typically get a percentage of the ticket revenue, so they have every incentive to gin up as many tickets as possible. A number of jurisdictions have shortened the yellow light times to garner more revenue, even though there are more accidents. However, this is hardly a free market situation - just a private company partnering on government over-regulation.
   83. The kids disappeared, now Der-K has too much candy Posted: March 02, 2013 at 08:04 PM (#4379316)
gas taxes are too low, have been for some time, and it's been getting worse (rates are generally per gallon, not as a percentage of the cost of gas, nor is are they indexed to general inflation). low gas taxes have been (aiui) insufficient to cover the costs of externalities and (what they're really used for) maintain infrastructure - the latter will get worse as mpgs rise and increasing gas taxes stays politically unpopular. we've been subsidizing spread out, inefficient cities (and non-city areas) for too long.

   84. cardsfanboy Posted: March 02, 2013 at 08:30 PM (#4379323)
gas taxes are too low, have been for some time, and it's been getting worse (rates are generally per gallon, not as a percentage of the cost of gas, nor is are they indexed to general inflation). low gas taxes have been (aiui) insufficient to cover the costs of externalities and (what they're really used for) maintain infrastructure - the latter will get worse as mpgs rise and increasing gas taxes stays politically unpopular. we've been subsidizing spread out, inefficient cities (and non-city areas) for too long.


You know, as a liberal, I'm all for more taxes, but I think that before we consider any gas tax, we should start with a tax on all stock trades, and get the "sugar" tax for Soda's that they have been talking about for years. Luxury taxes are so much better than taxing necessary things, gas taxes can have a trickle affect on everything else. Not sure it's the best way to generate any type of revenue.

These companies typically get a percentage of the ticket revenue, so they have every incentive to gin up as many tickets as possible. A number of jurisdictions have shortened the yellow light times to garner more revenue, even though there are more accidents. However, this is hardly a free market situation - just a private company partnering on government over-regulation.


The bolded part is what bothers me. I know it's happened a few places in St Louis, and it's ridiculous. Yes I'm for getting people to actually treat a yellow light properly, but at the same time, there is no reason to intentionally screw over people.


North America alone has enough coal and shale oil for 500 years. It can be burned cleanly and safely. Lets get to work.
People need jobs.


first off the bolded part is a joke, I hope. And second off, right now we should be encouraging the manufacture of more refinery's, as the increase in gas prices right now, is mostly the fault of lack of refinery's.
   85. Mefisto Posted: March 02, 2013 at 09:31 PM (#4379338)
I think that before we consider any gas tax, we should start with a tax on all stock trades, and get the "sugar" tax for Soda's that they have been talking about for years.


Raising gas taxes isn't so much a revenue matter as it is trying to price gasoline correctly to account for externalities. I'd have no problem lowering income taxes for the bottom 90% in order to make a gas tax hike revenue neutral.
   86. Jack Carter, calling Beleaguered Castle Posted: March 02, 2013 at 10:45 PM (#4379368)
#66: Agreed, but it would seem that the demographics of social media/internet usage work against the GOP/right going forward.


I'd venture that we started to see the effect of that in this last election. I also think that the GOP, being the party currently doing more of the deceiving, suffers most from the truthtelling capacity of the 'net. While as someone mentioned the net does make it easier to stay in ones bubble, what with their being more affirming voices of ones position, I think it also makes it easier to persuade swing voters of the truth, which over the last few years has benefited Dems more than Republicans.

Still, the number of people who believe crazy shite is dismaying. Wonder what the percentage of computer ownership/internet access is by party?

Not every increase in taxes is a tax increase.


I will prefer to call the next increase in top marginal rates to be called "tax restoration", something that puts us on the road to more historically sensible top rates.

You know, as a liberal, I'm all for more taxes, but I think that before we consider any gas tax, we should start with a tax on all stock trades, and get the "sugar" tax for Soda's that they have been talking about for years. Luxury taxes are so much better than taxing necessary things, gas taxes can have a trickle affect on everything else. Not sure it's the best way to generate any type of revenue.


Makes sense. Tax discretionary stuff, especially stuff that ends up costing the rest of us before you start taxing things that poor people have to buy.

Re 85, so many of the poor don't pay income taxes that reducing their income tax rates won't help them.
   87. greenback calls it soccer Posted: March 02, 2013 at 11:26 PM (#4379388)
The Internet has made it much more difficult to distinguish the legitimate from the illegitimate sources of facts, which is how you find TPers on Facebook in December 2012, mixing and matching excerpts from the Constitution, 'proving' that the presidential election still could end up in the House of Representatives.

For comparison, you'll still find people on baseball message boards claiming BABIP is all defense, even though it should've been obvious from Voros's first study over ten years ago that that didn't make any sense. Or alternatively somebody will post that you can't trade a guy on the disabled list, and don't get me started on the predictive power of historical platoon splits for RH batters...
   88. Mefisto Posted: March 02, 2013 at 11:35 PM (#4379393)
Re 85, so many of the poor don't pay income taxes that reducing their income tax rates won't help them.


Then we can increase the EITC. Besides, people who are really poor already ride the bus. Improving bus (and other) service will improve their lives a lot.
   89. Jack Carter, calling Beleaguered Castle Posted: March 03, 2013 at 12:51 AM (#4379437)
The Internet has made it much more difficult to distinguish the legitimate from the illegitimate sources of facts, which is how you find TPers on Facebook in December 2012, mixing and matching excerpts from the Constitution, 'proving' that the presidential election still could end up in the House of Representatives.


I don't doubt TPers can make up and believe any damned fool thing they want to. Dumb people have always been able to believe anything at all in the face of credible evidence. I'm thinking more of those in the middle, who can be swayed by facts. I'm also not claiming that this is going to usher in some informational golden age. People in general aren't bright enough to make significant and immediate use of facts. Rather, I think we may be seeing a slow push towards enlightenment, along the lines of how the production of the first books nudged us in that direction.

Besides, people who are really poor already ride the bus.
I commend you, then, to the millions of poor who don't live in the few cities with good public transportation and who drive beaters of necessity.
   90. Ben Broussard Ramjet Posted: March 03, 2013 at 05:32 AM (#4379627)
Bullsh1t. North America alone has enough coal and shale oil for 500 years. It can be burned cleanly and safely.


Untrue. While carbon sequestration technology has some promise, it very obviously won't work if the fossil fuels being burned are distributed across hundreds of millions of vehicles. Also, rates of fatalities for coal and oil, including extraction, are far higher than for competing technologies, so I have absolutely no idea where you get the 'safer' part.

Deaths per TWh of electricity produced for different fuel sources. The headlines: Coal: 161. Oil: 36. Gas: 4. Nuclear: 0.04. See this link from 2011.

Admittedly, many of those deaths aren't from North America, but I like to think they still count just the same. Data from World Health Organization and the european study Externe.

Shale gas is the most promising 'conventional' fuel, not only because it's far safer, but because burning natural gas for electricity is cleaner than coal by a large distance in terms of emissions. (Unless, of course, one is still ignoring scientific evidence about this problem, but I doubt there can be many serious people left who do this.) But it's only ever a stop-gap, just a very fortuitous one. And, as mentioned above, distributing the fossil fuel burning across hundreds of millions of combustion engines is the exact worst way to make it clean.

The future, as has been evident for a while now, is almost certainly massive solar investment in unpopulated areas, couple with ultra-high-voltage connections to the populated ones. Doable, too.
   91. The kids disappeared, now Der-K has too much candy Posted: March 03, 2013 at 09:58 AM (#4379663)
85 - I agree in theory, but not in practice. This will grow as a policy issue in the near to mid future.
I am also more than okay with tweaking tax policy in other areas to lessen the impact of this hike on the poor.
   92. Misirlou was a Buddhist prodigy Posted: March 03, 2013 at 10:13 AM (#4379667)
You know, as a liberal, I'm all for more taxes, but I think that before we consider any gas tax, we should start with a tax on all stock trades, and get the "sugar" tax for Soda's


first off the bolded part is a joke, I hope. And second off, right now we should be encouraging the manufacture of more refinery's, as the increase in gas prices right now, is mostly the fault of lack of refinery's.


Can we at least agree to eliminate the growing trend today to use apostrophes in plurals? I've long ago given up the fight against the misuse of words like disinterested and orientate, but surely we can't allow this latest trend to become the norm.
   93. Greg K Posted: March 03, 2013 at 10:45 AM (#4379679)
Can we at least agree to eliminate the growing trend today to use apostrophes in plurals? I've long ago given up the fight against the misuse of words like disinterested and orientate, but surely we can't allow this latest trend to become the norm.

What's the standard for possessive when the word ends with an S? Charles' or Charles's?

I've always done the former, but I've now been told to scour my thesis for them to throw on the double S. And don't even get me started on these zany things the British call "inverted commas". Whatever happened to trusty old quotation marks?
   94. Mefisto Posted: March 03, 2013 at 11:24 AM (#4379684)
I commend you, then, to the millions of poor who don't live in the few cities with good public transportation and who drive beaters of necessity.


Ignoring the lame snark, I doubt you'd find many people more supportive than I am of soaking the rich with taxes and using them to improve life for everyone else. Your snark confuses to separate and distinct issues: (1) what we should tax; and (2) the overall distribution of taxes. I support various forms of carbon taxes because those are essential to limit climate change. I also support ways to ameliorate the impact of those taxes on the poor and middle class.
   95. The kids disappeared, now Der-K has too much candy Posted: March 03, 2013 at 12:12 PM (#4379694)
I support various forms of carbon taxes because those are essential to limit climate change.

yeah, but it's worth noting that the error bars on those estimates are HUGE.
   96. Jack Carter, calling Beleaguered Castle Posted: March 03, 2013 at 12:23 PM (#4379698)
@94: your strangely located hostility and the assumption of snark baffles me.

But, increasing the gas tax with no realistic way of quickly (and "immediately" would be far better than "quickly" for people who live literally from paycheck to paycheck) mitigating its painful effects on the poor, who do indeed drive, still makes no sense to me.
   97. The kids disappeared, now Der-K has too much candy Posted: March 03, 2013 at 12:39 PM (#4379705)
jack, this is a rare case of a tax policy change which is supported by wonks on both sides of the aisle. even here, i've heard support from both kinds of libs in past discussions.
there are many, many ways of offering relief to the poor - why use such an inefficient one?
   98. Mefisto Posted: March 03, 2013 at 01:24 PM (#4379728)
But, increasing the gas tax with no realistic way of quickly (and "immediately" would be far better than "quickly" for people who live literally from paycheck to paycheck) mitigating its painful effects on the poor, who do indeed drive, still makes no sense to me.


I've already said that I favor methods which would be revenue neutral for the poor. They'd be no worse off, by definition.
   99. A big pile of nonsense (gef the talking mongoose) Posted: March 03, 2013 at 01:44 PM (#4379739)
Can we at least agree to eliminate the growing trend today to use apostrophes in plurals? I've long ago given up the fight against the misuse of words like disinterested and orientate, but surely we can't allow this latest trend to become the norm.


It's simply code for "I'm quasi-illiterate; pay no attention to what I'm typing," so in that sense its use should be encouraged; it comes in pretty handy in cutting through the chaff.

What's the standard for possessive when the word ends with an S? Charles' or Charles's?


Depends of the style you're following. AP (which I've used professionally for going on three decades now) says no "s." I'm sure MLA & Chicago (neither of which I've had reason to follow since the '80s) dictate otherwise. AP, of course, is predicated on saving space wherever possible. Whether that'll change as more & more coverage shifts from print to online, I have no idea.
   100. Greg Pope thinks the Cubs are reeking havoc Posted: March 03, 2013 at 01:52 PM (#4379743)
What's the standard for possessive when the word ends with an S? Charles' or Charles's?

I've always done the former...


Sorry, it's the latter. Singular plural, you add apostrophe S. I don't think there are any exceptions. I've heard people throw around the "Jesus exception" which is specifically in the case of Jesus where you do "Jesus'". I have no idea why that would be a special case.
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