h/t SENSE OF EVENTS
...a lot of my product is possible because of "the contribution of society," as long as we remember what that means. It means that a lot of fine people worked hard at developing good ideas about things and implementing those ideas by building institutions that endured after they departed. I owe these people my eternal gratitude. Gratitude, not cash.
The reason is very simple. They all made their contributions in return for compensation, which they were paid by others. They may have wanted more in return than they actually got (don't we all?) but they regarded what they got as sufficient to offset all the trouble they went through to make their wonderful contributions to our way of life. We know this because we know that they did decide to actually take that trouble and make those contributions.* Why should you lose 90% of what you produce in order to compensate them for what they did? They have already been paid! (Not to mention the fact that the great majority of them are now dead.) This would mean paying them twice.
By the way, doesn't this mean that I should be paid twice too? I contributed something too. It may not have been much, but I am still alive and can actually be compensated. Come to think of it, doesn't it also mean that I get my 90% back? But then where is all this money going to come from, now that we are paying everyone twice what they produce?
Actually, I should say that Simon would be proposing to pay everyone twice, if the money were really going to the actual contributors, the heroes who make this wonderful life possible. But of course it isn't. Simon wants the state to get it. Why on Earth should it get any of this money? Insofar as the state makes any contribution to my product, this contribution was the work of individuals who have been compensated** and at any rate would never see any of Simon's vast pile of loot.
So this argument is rotten for two reasons: 1) the real contributors have already been compensated, and 2) the alleged compensation would actually go to the wrong people anyway. Like I say, worst argument yet.
That business owners are successful IS proof that they are some combination of harder working, smarter, better at sacrifice, better at future time consideration, and/or better at dealing with stress than the vast majority of people.
Obama's assertion that there are "lots" of people who have these capabilities in spades - that such qualities are a dime a dozen - is as evil as it is inaccurate. But it sure makes those who are lesser in these area feel good about themselves. Watch the video of his now infamous statements and you'll hear what is probably the worst thing about the whole incident, worse than the predident's words themselves - the shouts of "Yeah!" from the public employees and layabouts in the audience. That should send a chill through anyone with even a passing familiarity of the history of the 20th century.
Posted by: no mo uro ||
There actually is a "Chicago Way" angle to 0Bama's assertion. I've done several business trips to Chicago and the first thing you notice is the awesome architecture.
The SECOND thing you notice is that EVERY public construction project Had Mayor Daley's face and name plastered EVERYWHERE, like he was a Pharaoh of Egypt. An alient would be forgiven to believe that all that building was solely financed and performed by him, rather than by the taxes he took from businesses and individuals. Given that background, wouldn't YOU believe that anything worthwhile being built HAS to be by government?
I love the gaul. Obama is basically saying government takes your money by force and with it a d you should be thankful because the output is occasionally useful. Its not as if they built those roads for nothing.
and those roads were paid for by gas tax money and income/property tax money and developer impact fees for increased traffic/wear and tear. Not Obama's own pocket. What a socialist "it takes a village" A-hole
Posted by: Frank G ||
To continue the thought from my first comment, I'm sick of the meme that these folks have bought into - the idea that folks with successful businesses didn't get that way any other way than stealing or cheating. It's a conceit, a way of letting themselves off the hook for their own failures and a cowardly way of not being honest about their own deficiencies.
It's the only way these miserable creatures can avoid having to deal full face-on with their own warts and bruises. Pathetic.
It would be the same as me saying that the only reason I didn't start for the Lakers or Celtics was because the other players conspired or cheated me out of it. The fact that I'm only 6' 2" and can't jump had nothing to do with it, oh no......
Posted by: no mo uro ||
>folks with successful businesses didn't get that way any other way than stealing or cheating
It's projection. Hence they are so pro state stealing.
And I think to myself, if I'm willing to give something up as somebody who's been extraordinarily blessed, and give up some of the tax breaks that I enjoy, I actually think that's going to make economic sense.
War On Terror: As the regime of Bashar Assad disintegrates, the security of his chemical arsenal is in jeopardy. The No. 2 general in Saddam Hussein's air force says they were the WMDs we didn't find in Iraq.
King Abdullah of neighboring Jordan warned that a disintegrating Syria on the verge of civil war puts Syria's stockpile of chemical weapons at risk of falling into the hands of al-Qaida.
"One of the worst-case scenarios as we are obviously trying to look for a political solution would be if some of those chemical stockpiles were to fall into unfriendly hands," he said.
The irony here is that the chemical weapons stockpile of Syrian thug Assad may in large part be the legacy of weapons moved from Hussein's Iraq into Syria before Operation Iraqi Freedom.
If so, this may be the reason not much was found in the way of WMD by victorious U.S. forces in 2003.
In 2006, former Iraqi general Georges Sada, second in command of the Iraqi Air Force who served under Saddam Hussein before he defected, wrote a comprehensive book, "Saddam's Secrets."
It details how the Iraqi Revolutionary Guard moved weapons of mass destruction into Syria in advance of the U.S.-led action to eliminate Hussein's WMD threat.
As Sada told the New York Sun, two Iraqi Airways Boeings were converted to cargo planes by removing the seats, and special Republican Guard units loaded the planes with chemical weapons materials.
There were 56 flights disguised as a relief effort after a 2002 Syrian dam collapse.
There were also truck convoys into Syria. Sada's comments came more than a month after Israel's top general during Operation Iraqi Freedom, Moshe Yaalon, told the Sun that Saddam "transferred the chemical agents from Iraq to Syria."
Both Israeli and U.S. intelligence observed large truck convoys leaving Iraq and entering Syria in the weeks and months before Operation Iraqi Freedom, John Shaw, former deputy undersecretary of defense for international technology security, told a private conference of former weapons inspectors and intelligence experts held in Arlington, Va., in 2006.
According to Shaw, ex-Russian intelligence chief Yevgeni Primakov, a KGB general with long-standing ties to Saddam, went to Iraq in December 2002 and stayed until just before the U.S.-led invasion in March 2003.
Anticipating the invasion, his job was to supervise the removal of such weapons and erase as much evidence of Russian involvement as possible.
The Russian-assisted "cleanup" operation was entrusted to a combination of GRU and Spetsnaz troops and Russian military and civilian personnel in Iraq "under the command of two experienced ex-Soviet generals, Colonel-General Vladislav Achalov and Colonel-General Igor Maltsev, both retired and posing as civilian commercial consultants."
Washington Times reporter Bill Gertz reported on Oct. 30, 2004, that Achalov and Maltsev had been photographed receiving medals from Iraqi Defense Minister Sultan Hashim Ahmad in a Baghdad building bombed by U.S. cruise missiles during the first U.S. air raids in early March 2003. Apparently they did their job well.
An article in the fall 2005 Middle East Quarterly reports that in an appearance on Israel's Channel 2 on Dec. 23, 2002, Israel's prime minister, Ariel Sharon, stated: "Chemical and biological weapons which Saddam is endeavoring to conceal have been moved from Iraq to Syria." According to the article, about three weeks later, Israel's foreign minister repeated the accusation.
Syria has long had its own chemical weapons program, but the extent it may have been aided by weapons and materials transferred by Iraq before the war has only been the source of conjecture.
We may soon find out what happened to much of Saddam's WMD.
Indeed, Slineter Big Foot3417. And we here at Rantburg have been discussing it since the 2003 invasion of Iraq was preceded by long caravans of tractor-trailer trucks made their way from Baghdad and other points to, eventually, the Bekaa Valley. It wasn't a secret to anyone who chose to see and remember.
The United Nations Special Commission (UNSCOM) LIED! The Marsh Arabs LIVE! Those 1000 acre remote, desert facilities were tomatoe blight research centers! LIED I tell you, lied! The evil Bushitler started the war.... FOR NO REASON!!!
According to media reports, Russia pays $2 million per year in leasing fees for its base at Tartus. In comparison, in 2009 Moscow provided a $2 billion aid package to Kyrgyzstan to encourage the country's leaders to shut down the U.S air base at Manas (though the Kyrgyz government ultimately permitted the base to reopen). This would have been enough to cover the fees in Damascus for a millennium. Moreover, even with its low costs and with a military budget that doubled in the decade from 2001--2011, Russia's Defense Ministry has allowed its Tartus facility--the only Russian military base outside the former USSR--to fall apart. While Russian officials have in the past announced plans to modernize and expand the country's presence at Tartus, it is difficult to know whether the plans were serious even before Syria's protests spiraled into civil war. Whatever Moscow's original intent, however, upgrading the base now seems like a remote prospect. The base has minimal military value--it can host high-profile visits by a few ships and allow them to spend a little more time in the Mediterranean Sea but probably could not sustain any extended or large-scale military operation.
Some commentators look at the limited benefits that Tartus offers to Russia's military and draw the erroneous conclusion that Russia has little at stake in Syria. This is superficial and foolish. Rather than looking to Russia's access to Tartus as irrelevant or, conversely, seeing it as the driving force behind Moscow's policy, those striving to understand Russian objectives in Syria would do well to consider using a little nuance and common sense.
First, national interests are subjective rather than objective. Second, symbolism can be an important national interest. Credibility and the perception of strength are almost as important as real power and often can spare nations the expense of exercising their power, something especially desirable to those who may in fact have little of it to employ.
It's not so much that Tartus is Russia's only military base outside the former Soviet region but that the Middle East is the only region outside the former USSR where Russia continues to enjoy visible influence. If Russia were to abandon Syria, or to suffer a political defeat, officials may fear losing influence in the Middle East peace process and in international discussions of Iran's nuclear program. Without visibility on those two issues, Russia's international profile would be much reduced.
This analysis only touches on the problem for the Russians. Tartus is their base on the other side of the Dardanelles. It is strategically essential for them to be able to control (or at least affect) the Dardanelles. They will never give it up. This is an issue that goes back to pre-world war one. The Russians *will* *not* give up on this base.
People opposed to the current regime in Syria need to accept that the Russians will not give up their access to their base at Tartus. Someone in the Free Syrian Army should write up a draft "Guantanamo" lease for Tartus and float it to the Russians.
I predict that having done so, Russian resistance to changes in domestic affairs in Syria would quickly end.