What the Right is right about

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Re: What the Right is right about

#61  Postby Jeffersonian-marxist » May 05, 2013 4:48 am

I disagree that the Right is right about any of the policies mentioned in the OP. It's not that those positions displease me aesthetically or morally, but that the justification for those policies comes from a tragically flawed academic discipline. The fact that modern economic theory stipulates that societal welfare is maximized when a market becomes more competitive (or when price and marginal cost come together) is no reason to believe such is the case.
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Re: What the Right is right about

#62  Postby Loren Michael » May 05, 2013 5:01 am

FACT-MAN-2 wrote:
Loren Michael wrote:
FACT-MAN-2 wrote:
UtilityMonster wrote:On economic issues, I am curious what right wing parties are right about. I'm pressed for time so I won't write out holistic defenses of these policies, but will instead take up defenses for whichever ones you disagree with. Here are a few:

1. The Right has historically been the ideology defensive of free trade. They are absolutely correct that free trade is good for all parties involved.
2. The Right in the U.S. has been openly commenting on the need to cut entitlement programs. They are correct that, in order to be fiscally solvent in future, we will have to cut entitlement programs. However they are wrong that:
a. Those programs need to or should be cut now.
b. About what programs need to be cut and how to cut them.
c. That this should be done without any revenue increases.
3. The Right has typically been more cognizant of the existence of market efficiencies and the good that markets can do.
a. Admittedly, they see market efficiencies were none exist far too often.
4. In the US, they correctly support charter schools and attempts at decentralizing education, reducing the power/influence of teachers' unions, and creating competition between schools to improve children's educational outcomes.

I am sure I could think of more, but I've started actually having difficulty thinking of more at this point, so I'll stop here.

While I only listed a few issues (let me know if you agree/disagree, whether you think there are other issues they are right about) with a number of caveats, I do think these are important issues, principally.


(1) The American electorate rejected Republican mantras in the 2012 election, utterly and completely.

(2) And here you are repeating some of them, as though they had not been rejected and have some merit after all.

(3) Well, they have no merit that's worth speaking of and should be cast into the dustbin of history.

(4) And you might go back and recheck the outcome of the 2012 election in America.


(1), (2) and (4) are irrelevant. The correctness or worthiness of an idea doesn't change with the whims of the electorate.

(3) is what this thread is discussing. Things like free trade haven't been shown to have "no merit". At best, we could say "it's a little complicated". Deregulation, as I've shown you repeatedly in the past, is often useful at making goods more available to a broader section of the public, is often useful at increasing competition.

EDIT: Regarding "And there's the point: The GOP wants to disband the EPA" and everything after: This thread isn't about how the right is right about everything, and this thread isn't about what they're wrong about. It's in the title: What the Right is right about.

You missed the good part, to wit, "And you think such persons have the capacity to proffer "right ideas" or to suggest changes or reforms or whatever that make a hill of beans worth of sense?

Please show us a Republican proposal to deregulate something with the goals in mind that you cite.


Now you're conflating party with ideology.

Alex Tabarrok, who's one of the scholars at GMU which includes the right-wing Koch-funded Mercatus Center has many good ideas related to deregulation.

The nutty Von Mises Institute says the same thing.

Here's the lefty ThinkProgress site saying basically the same thing. I can fairly easily look to many right-wing economics blogs and find stuff about occupational licensing and how that should be deregulated. It's a bit more challenging to find that on the left.
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Re: What the Right is right about

#63  Postby Loren Michael » May 05, 2013 5:03 am

Jeffersonian-marxist wrote:I disagree that the Right is right about any of the policies mentioned in the OP. It's not that those positions displease me aesthetically or morally, but that the justification for those policies comes from a tragically flawed academic discipline. The fact that modern economic theory stipulates that societal welfare is maximized when a market becomes more competitive (or when price and marginal cost come together) is no reason to believe such is the case.


...to believe what is the case? That societal welfare tends to benefit from competition?
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Re: What the Right is right about

#64  Postby Ihavenofingerprints » May 05, 2013 5:42 am

UtilityMonster wrote:
2. The Right in the U.S. has been openly commenting on the need to cut entitlement programs. They are correct that, in order to be fiscally solvent in future, we will have to cut entitlement programs. However they are wrong that:
a. Those programs need to or should be cut now.
b. About what programs need to be cut and how to cut them.
c. That this should be done without any revenue increases.


This is something I think they are right about as well. But the problem (as you outline) is that they come to weird conclusions on how this should be done. Mainly because a lot of them don't truly believe in these programs in the first place.

I would generally vote for the greens but something they don't understand is that we only have "X" amount of money to give out. We need to use this as efficiently as possible, and make sure our priorities are set out. They correctly point out that welfare spending gets cut even though rich people are getting tax exemptions for stupid things. But I don't know if that really justifies their cause.
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Re: What the Right is right about

#65  Postby FACT-MAN-2 » May 06, 2013 1:29 am

Here we are in the year 2013, a time when the world is facing some rather severe situations on more fronts that we'd care to count and a hundred years past the time when the world could afford to run laissez faire capitalist economies owing to the rather massive negative impacts they have on our biosphere and human health ... and we find a thread like this, in which an endless argument is going on over many nitpicking details or even some grander schemes that don't amount to a hill of beans in the larger picture we face, truly amazing.

We can get men to the noon and back but we can't figure out how to do economics worth a fiddler's shit. Just can't do it. We can map the human genome but we can't figure out how to do econnomics. Just can't. We can send a large telescope into space and it can take pictures of the farthest reaches and send them back to us, but we can't figure out how to do econnomics. Just can't.

It appears to me we have all the wrong people working on how to do economics. Their endless bickering is tiring and it is boring and it's leading exactly nowhere. Ya'll are lost in the minutai, wandering in the irrelevant arcana of King Dollar and don't appear to have a navigational clue about how to find your way home.

Economics, an argument that's gone on for a hundred years and discovered nothing.

All the wrong people.
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Re: What the Right is right about

#66  Postby Sonoran Lion » May 06, 2013 2:13 am

UtilityMonster wrote:
Sonoran Lion wrote:I would like to see you expand on number 4 on your list. That is a topic I have not been made familiar with and I would be appreciative of your response or some sources you think would be a good place to start.


Ah, an inquisitive mind! I'd be delighted to delve deeper into the issue with you.
[/quote]

Thank you for the reply. I will post a response when I have more time to do so. I have that book by Lessig on my reading list but I have not come across a copy as of yet.
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Re: What the Right is right about

#67  Postby Loren Michael » May 06, 2013 4:10 am

FACT-MAN-2 wrote:Here we are in the year 2013, a time when the world is facing some rather severe situations on more fronts that we'd care to count and a hundred years past the time when the world could afford to run laissez faire capitalist economies owing to the rather massive negative impacts they have on our biosphere and human health ... and we find a thread like this, in which an endless argument is going on over many nitpicking details or even some grander schemes that don't amount to a hill of beans in the larger picture we face, truly amazing.

We can get men to the noon and back but we can't figure out how to do economics worth a fiddler's shit. Just can't do it. We can map the human genome but we can't figure out how to do econnomics. Just can't. We can send a large telescope into space and it can take pictures of the farthest reaches and send them back to us, but we can't figure out how to do econnomics. Just can't.


FACT-MAN-2 wrote:Economics is largely so much numbo jumbo to me.


I think you've conflated your own abilities and knowledge (or lack thereof) with everyone else's.
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Re: What the Right is right about

#68  Postby GT2211 » May 06, 2013 5:07 am

I do not agree with point 4. In particular I do think merit pay is generally over-used and a poor fit for the teaching profession and I think a lot of the evidence on charter school performance does not show a lot of promise.
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Re: What the Right is right about

#69  Postby Loren Michael » May 06, 2013 5:20 am

GT2211 wrote:I do not agree with point 4. In particular I do think merit pay is generally over-used and a poor fit for the teaching profession and I think a lot of the evidence on charter school performance does not show a lot of promise.


I think that there should be a lot more flexibility in parents' abilities to send their children to different schools. I'm not sure that charter schools are the optimal solution, but I do think that people having the flexibility to send their children to different public schools (or private schools) is something worth having.

I don't think merit pay has any particular effect on peoples' abilities, but I think it's useful as a means to retain good teachers. As it is, my understanding is that the system rewards seniority, which is occasionally a marker for competence, occasionally not.

Also, my perhaps mistaken understanding is that KIPP has been shown to do some good relative to a good deal of alternatives, but that it's not necessarily easy to actually scale that sort of thing.
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Re: What the Right is right about

#70  Postby FACT-MAN-2 » May 06, 2013 5:48 am

GT2211 wrote:I do not agree with point 4. In particular I do think merit pay is generally over-used and a poor fit for the teaching profession and I think a lot of the evidence on charter school performance does not show a lot of promise.

I'd agree, and I find a good deal of misinformation in this thread about teachers and the teaching profession.

For example, tenure has been made out to be a lifelong appointment with no evauations or performance gradings along the way. This is not true in my experience.

I worked for nearly 20 years as an Instructor at a public community college which enjoyed a unionized faculty. Tenure at this institution was a 5-year contract. To win such a contract one had to endure a two year probationary period and a one-year "phase in" period AND win the approval of all faculty in your department plus the Chairperson of that department ... AND successfully pass a comprehensive teaching evaluation conducted by peers and written up in a 20-page report. This evaluation was repeated every five years and a contract renewal would not be offered if the report didn't rate the teacher at least 85 per cent effective and knowledgeable in the subjects they delivered.

An Instructor had to hand in anonymously prepared evaluation sheets completed by their students at the end of each year. These data were compiled and evaluated to identify whether consistent teaching issues were present, and if they were, that became part of one's overall five-year evaluation and pushed its grading down.

Because this institution did a good job recruiting new Instructors, most new hires made it through this gauntlet, most but not all. Some won a 5-year contract but then failed to get it renewed after getting low marks on their evaluation and were let go.

Any school district that agrees to lifelong tenure with no periodic perfornmance evaluations, which, if not passed, leads to dismissal, ought to have its head examined. I don't think many do.

Most people who choose teaching as a profession do so because they want to and because they think they can become good teachers. And guess what, most do. Nearly all do. Issues arise with some teachers from time-to-time, divorce, health problems, accidents, a child death in their family, depression, drug or alcohol abuse, and so on. If these issues persist and degrade a teacher's performance and effectiveness, this will be identified and dealt with in periodic evaluations, even to include dismissal where rehabilitation is not evidenced.

I'm appalled at the way teaching and teachers have been maligned in this thread by a bunch of armchair "experts" who plainly don't have a clue.
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Re: What the Right is right about

#71  Postby Scot Dutchy » May 06, 2013 9:33 am

Loren Michael wrote:
GT2211 wrote:I do not agree with point 4. In particular I do think merit pay is generally over-used and a poor fit for the teaching profession and I think a lot of the evidence on charter school performance does not show a lot of promise.


I think that there should be a lot more flexibility in parents' abilities to send their children to different schools. I'm not sure that charter schools are the optimal solution, but I do think that people having the flexibility to send their children to different public schools (or private schools) is something worth having.

I don't think merit pay has any particular effect on peoples' abilities, but I think it's useful as a means to retain good teachers. As it is, my understanding is that the system rewards seniority, which is occasionally a marker for competence, occasionally not.

Also, my perhaps mistaken understanding is that KIPP has been shown to do some good relative to a good deal of alternatives, but that it's not necessarily easy to actually scale that sort of thing.


I think in America just aim for a good education for EVERYONE would be a good start.
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Re: What the Right is right about

#72  Postby Loren Michael » May 06, 2013 10:17 am

Scot Dutchy wrote:
Loren Michael wrote:
GT2211 wrote:I do not agree with point 4. In particular I do think merit pay is generally over-used and a poor fit for the teaching profession and I think a lot of the evidence on charter school performance does not show a lot of promise.


I think that there should be a lot more flexibility in parents' abilities to send their children to different schools. I'm not sure that charter schools are the optimal solution, but I do think that people having the flexibility to send their children to different public schools (or private schools) is something worth having.

I don't think merit pay has any particular effect on peoples' abilities, but I think it's useful as a means to retain good teachers. As it is, my understanding is that the system rewards seniority, which is occasionally a marker for competence, occasionally not.

Also, my perhaps mistaken understanding is that KIPP has been shown to do some good relative to a good deal of alternatives, but that it's not necessarily easy to actually scale that sort of thing.


I think in America just aim for a good education for EVERYONE would be a good start.


I agree! As I see it, there's two parts there though: "good education" and "everyone". I don't see America's problem as there not being access for essentially everyone to some kind of "education". The problem as I see it is that there are a large number of kids from that everyone-group who fall through the cracks in a porous system. Some of that is problems at school (school quality issues of some sort) and some of that is problems at home.
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Re: What the Right is right about

#73  Postby Scot Dutchy » May 06, 2013 10:21 am

THe problem in my view is that the right could not care about quality. The only want it for their kids.

The social and education problems do not concern them.
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Re: What the Right is right about

#74  Postby Loren Michael » May 06, 2013 10:43 am

Scot Dutchy wrote:THe problem in my view is that the right could not care about quality. The only want it for their kids.

The social and education problems do not concern them.


That tends to be my view as well, but if a shitty ideology/party/whatever comes up with a decent idea that works independent of that ideology/party/whatever, it's worth giving said idea a try.
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Re: What the Right is right about

#75  Postby Scot Dutchy » May 06, 2013 10:46 am

Loren Michael wrote:
Scot Dutchy wrote:THe problem in my view is that the right could not care about quality. The only want it for their kids.

The social and education problems do not concern them.


That tends to be my view as well, but if a shitty ideology/party/whatever comes up with a decent idea that works independent of that ideology/party/whatever, it's worth giving said idea a try.


Anything is worth a try but considering the state of American society in some areas it going to require an earth shattering try to turn things around.
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Re: What the Right is right about

#76  Postby FACT-MAN-2 » May 06, 2013 4:23 pm

Scot Dutchy wrote:
Loren Michael wrote:
GT2211 wrote:I do not agree with point 4. In particular I do think merit pay is generally over-used and a poor fit for the teaching profession and I think a lot of the evidence on charter school performance does not show a lot of promise.


I think that there should be a lot more flexibility in parents' abilities to send their children to different schools. I'm not sure that charter schools are the optimal solution, but I do think that people having the flexibility to send their children to different public schools (or private schools) is something worth having.

I don't think merit pay has any particular effect on peoples' abilities, but I think it's useful as a means to retain good teachers. As it is, my understanding is that the system rewards seniority, which is occasionally a marker for competence, occasionally not.

Also, my perhaps mistaken understanding is that KIPP has been shown to do some good relative to a good deal of alternatives, but that it's not necessarily easy to actually scale that sort of thing.


I think in America just aim for a good education for EVERYONE would be a good start.

In the 70's California passed Proposition 13, which severely limited property taxes.

In turn, that starved the public school system for funding.

Within a decade California had fallen from first in the nation in public school education to nearly last, down there with Mississippi and Louisiana.

Public education in California has never recovered.

Proposition 13 was created and pushed by Republicans.

In education, you get what you pay for.
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Re: What the Right is right about

#77  Postby Scot Dutchy » May 06, 2013 5:04 pm

What would that make Californian schools when compared to the rest of the world?

California's GDP is bigger than many a country.
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Re: What the Right is right about

#78  Postby FACT-MAN-2 » May 06, 2013 8:08 pm

Scot Dutchy wrote:What would that make Californian schools when compared to the rest of the world?

I dunno, might be kinda hard to figure this out, although certainly most Euro and Scandinavian counties, UK, Australia and New Zealand and Japan most likely outrank Mississippi and hence California.

There's a pretty comprehensive report (258 pages) on this at

http://www.rand.org/content/dam/rand/pu ... _MG186.pdf

Scot Dutchy wrote:
California's GDP is bigger than many a country.

Yes, it's ranked somewhere around 8th or 9th in the world, at least it was pre-recession/depression.
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