Wednesday, April 20, 2016

Laughing About Laffer

One of my favorite things in the world is how I can see all the times people are wrong (since I would never be wrong, I obviously wouldn't see this trait in myself, duh). And one of my favorite ways that people are often wrong (no, it's not those shoes with that outfit, but that is also wrong) has to do with tax cutting our way to employment.

Cutting taxes on the wealthiest Americans creates jobs!!!

That's been a defining principle of most of American politics for the past 30+ years. 

Sadly it's just not factually correct.

Don't assume symmetry
or a midpoint of 50%
I mean, it is, it's just not true 100% of the times.

While the country has seen a small increase in the number of people employed in sectors like private jet maintenance, cronut acquisition specialists for Wall Street firms (I know, cronuts, like it's 2011 again) and shoe wrangling (this was limited to employment by the West/Kardashian family), these have been generally offset by layoffs in many other sectors.

Many other sectors.

Many many other sectors.

Hell, it's getting to the point where people don't seem to want pie charts served up with a combination of disdain and ennui*. Normally I would make some kind of infographic to illustrate the magnitude of this problem, but who has that kind of time?! Oh wait, I might.

Did you know that raising the minimum wage, regardless of whether you think it's deserved of those (add derisive hand wave here) people, is a more effective way of creating jobs?

Or am I implying causation where only correlation exists? [Answer: No. No, I am not.]

Did you know that when you pay low income people a slightly less low income, they do a thing with that money: they spend it. More money to spend in the hands of those (add derisive hand wave here) people means increased demand among the same. That demand may be for another private jet share, new curio cabinets to display one's Fabergé eggs or simply to be current on the water bill (the poors, so unimaginative--I'm told diapers, portable air conditioners and shoes for growing children are also popular, but Apple makes none of those).

These poors have rich traditions for how and where they spend this undeserved money (they only handle your food or care for your children, at least until the minute "Ryan" can make your Cobb salad with everything on the side** from Hyderabad). These emporiums, with colorful names like stripped mall, walled mart or the recent trend The Noun at the Thing That Sounds Like an Established Place*** (which is usually a fancy term for outlet mall).

When the stores at such places (some of them of the mom and/or pop variety) are overwhelmed by the poors and that money they never earned, they sometimes have to purchase more inventory (which is not actually created by magic elves) or, less likely, they hire a few more poors ripping off society with their $15 minimum wage and their knock-off Kate Spade tiaras. And that has a snowballing effect (traditional snowballs like those rolling down your favorite ski run, not the more recent thing that I'm sure I don't even know what it might be).

So not only does it give the lackabouts more jobs to get, it also gives them more than they deserve to earn for handling your food or caring for your children. It's win/win for them but certainly lose/lose for the rest of us. I just can't figure out how (aside from, you know, the 45 minute wait at the Cheesecake Factory by the Punchline at Miller's Grove).

* Portmanteau time: disui or enndain?.

** Cretin, the Cobb salad comes with everything effectively "on the side." Stop ordering it that way.

*** The Crossings at Old Dominion; the Ridge at Mountain Park; the Cliffs at Barton Creek; the Mountain at Dominion Creek; the Creek at Dominion Crossing; the Umlauts at Deadhorse Plains are but 3 too many to be actually funny.

Sunday, April 17, 2016

Always Whirling For Portland

I saw a commercial for Ted Wheeler this morning. It said "no slogans, just solutions" and I think that is awesome. Usually when I say stupid shit like that I'm "not being a productive part of the staff meeting" or "wasting the court's time" so it's great that someone is getting paid to do it.

Rebels Are Totes The Thing Now

First a line of printed day planners named after my blog, and now this...