http://bit.ly/15X03RW
In the election of 1952 my father voted for Dwight Eisenhower. When I asked him why he explained that “FDR’s debt” was still burdening the economy — and that I and my children and my grandchildren would be paying it down for as long as we lived. I was only six years old and had no idea what a “debt” was, let alone FDR’s. But I had nightmares about it for weeks. Yet as the years went by my father stopped talking about “FDR’s debt,” and since I was old enough to know something about economics I never worried about it. My children have never once mentioned FDR’s debt. My four-year-old grandchild hasn’t uttered a single word about it. By the end of World War II, the national debt was 120 percent of the entire economy. But by the mid-1950s, it was half that. Why did it shrink? Not because the nation stopped spending. We had a Korean War, a Cold War, we rebuilt Germany and Japan, sent our GI’s to college and helped them buy homes, expanded education at all levels, and began constructing the largest public-works program in the nation’s history — the interstate highway system. “FDR’s debt” shrank in proportion to the national economy because the national economy grew so fast. I was reminded of this by the recent commotion over an error in a research paper by Carmen Reinhart and Kenneth Rogoff. The two Harvard economists had analyzed a huge amount of data from the United States and other advanced economies linking levels of public debt to economic growth. They concluded that growth turns negative (that is, economies tend to collapse into recession) when public debt rises above 90 percent of GDP. That finding, in turn, fueled austerics, who insisted that the budget deficit (and debt) had to be cut in order to revive economic growth. But Reinhart and Rogoff’s computations were wrong, and average GDP growth in very-high-debt nations is around 2.2 percent rather than a negative 0.1 percent. A few days ago, the two offered a defense in an oped in the New York Times , asserting “very small actual differences” between their critics’ results and their own. Regardless, Reinhart and Rogoff seem to be correct in one basic respect: Economic growth does seem to be lower in very-high-debt countries. But the entire debate over their paper’s flaws begs the central question of cause and effect. Is growth lower because of the high debt? That would still make the austeric’s case, even without the magic 90 percent tipping point. Or does cause-and-effect the other way around? Maybe slow growth makes debt burdens larger. There’s evidence to suggest this is the case. If so, government should be fueling growth through, say, spending more — at least in the short run. As we should have learned from what happened to “FDR’s debt,” growth is the key. ROBERT B. REICH, Chancellor’s Professor of Public Policy at the University of California at Berkeley, was Secretary of Labor in the Clinton administration. Time Magazine named him one of the ten most effective cabinet secretaries of the last century. He has written thirteen books, including the best sellers “Aftershock” and “The Work of Nations.” His latest is an e-book, “Beyond Outrage,” now available in paperback. He is also a founding editor of the American Prospect magazine and chairman of Common Cause. Follow Robert Reich on Twitter: http://www.twitter.com/RBReich Robert Reich

Advertisements
Ranger Up Presents: The Damn Few Episode 12: Gun Control
http://bit.ly/15WXiQI
http://rangerup.com presents The Damn Few Episode 12: Gun Control. Our first feature length episode! The song “Gunslinger” is used with written permission by…
Ranger Up Presents: The Damn Few Episode 12: Gun Control
http://bit.ly/15WXiQI
http://rangerup.com presents The Damn Few Episode 12: Gun Control. Our first feature length episode! The song “Gunslinger” is used with written permission by…

http://bit.ly/15Wbslb
The Jersey City Police Dept. has made a public announcement saying that they have disciplined various officers for their affiliation with an “Oath Keepers” group called the “Three-Percenters”. http://www.threepercenter.org Intellihub.com April 30, 2013 The police department has labeled these groups as “anti-government extremists”, because they claim a moral motivation that supersedes the demands of authority. This group is affiliated with the Oath Keepers and are known as the “Three-Percenters”. According to their website: ThreePercenter.ORG is a Three Percenter community website promoting the ideals of liberty, freedom and a constitutional government restrained by law. This site is run by freedom-loving Americans, however we can enjoy the company of those from other nations who share our cause. What is a Three Percenter? The Three Percent concept and idea was created by Mike Vanderboegh. Roughly three percent of the population fought for liberty at any given time during the American war for Independence. With a colonial population of 2,500,000 to 3,000,000 only about 250,000 men served during the war with never more than 90,000 men serving at any given time. Historians have estimated that approximately 40-45% of the colonists supported the rebellion while 15-20% of the population of the thirteen colonies remained loyal to the British Crown. The remaining 35-45% attempted to remain neutral. A note: Threepercenter.org does not directly represent Three Percenters everywhere, we do however share in the Three Percenter spirit and ideology (and identify ourselves as Three Percenters). We cherish and work to defend our 2nd Amendment rights along with all our rights and liberties. There are many members within various police departments and other government offices, and as expected their superiors are not happy about their involvement with such organizations. A local newspaper reported that: A clique of officers who calls themselves “Three-Percenters” in the Jersey City Police Department’s Emergency Services Unit sprouted about two years ago, officials have told The Jersey Journal. They were separating themselves from the others in the unit and we put a stop to it immediately,” Jersey City Police Deputy Chief Peter Nalbach said. In a brief telephone interview from Tennessee, Michael Graham said that he believes the officers have a right to have their own political beliefs — and in fact that there are many police, firefighters and veterans among the “three percenters.” “We don’t collect any money, or ask anyone for anything, but maybe we should because we could help out the police officers who were unnecessarily disciplined,” Graham said. Powered By WizardRSS.com | Full Text RSS Feed | Amazon Plugin WordPress | Android Forums | WordPress Tutorials Intellihub.com

Obama and US Military Divided Over Syria? http://bit.ly/15Wc2zj Has Syria crossed the “red line” that warrants a U.S. military invasion? Has it not? The political establishment in the United States seems at odds over itself. Obama’s government cannot speak with one voice on the issue, and the U.S. media is likewise spewing from both sides of its mouth in an attempt to reconcile U.S. foreign policy with that most stubborn of annoyances, truth. The New York Times reports : “The White House said on Thursday that American intelligence agencies now believed, with “varying degrees of confidence,” that the Syrian government had used chemical weapons…” Immediately afterwards, Obama’s Secretary of Defense, Chuck Hagel, gave a blunt rebuke: “Suspicions are one thing; evidence is another.” This disunity mirrored the recent disagreement that Chuck Hagel had with Obama’s Secretary of State, John Kerry, when both testified in front of Congress with nearly opposite versions of what was happening in Syria and how the U.S. should respond. Kerry was a cheerleader for intervention while Hagel — the military’s mouthpiece — advised caution. The U.S. government’s internal squabbling over whether the Syrian government used chemical weapons is really an argument on whether the U.S. should invade Syria, since Obama claimed that any use of chemical weapons was a “red line” that, if crossed, would invoke an American military response. Never mind that Obama’s “red line” rhetoric was stolen from the mouth of Bush Jr., who enjoyed saying all kinds of similarly stupid things to sound tough. But now Obama’s Bushism must be enforced, say the politicians, less the U.S. look weak by inaction. This seemingly childish argument is in fact very compelling among the U.S. political establishment, who view foreign policy only in terms of military power. If Syria is not frightened into submission by U.S. military threats, then Iran and other countries might follow suit and do as they please and U.S. “influence” would wane. Only a “firm response” can stop this domino effect from starting. This type of logic is the basis for the recent Syria chemical weapons accusations, which was conjured up by the U.S. “Intelligence” service (CIA) and its British and Israeli counterparts (the same people who “proved” that Iraq had Weapons of Mass Destruction, which later proved to be a fabricated lie). All three of these countries’ intelligence agencies simply announced that the Syrian government has used chemical weapons, provided zero evidence, and then let their respective nations’ media run with the story, which referred to the baseless accusations as “mounting evidence.” In the real world it appears that the U.S.-backed Syrian rebels are the ones responsible for having used chemical weapons against the Syrian government. It was the Syrian government who initially accused the U.S.-backed rebels of using chemical weapons, and asked the UN to investigate the attack. This triggered the Syrian rebels and later the Obama administration to accuse the Syrian government of the attack. A very revealing New York Times article quoted U.S.-backed Syrian rebels admitting that the chemical weapons attack took place in a Syrian government controlled territory and that 16 Syrian government soldiers died as a result of the attack, along with 10 civilians plus a hundred more injured. But the rebels later made the absurd claim that the Syrian government accidentally bombed its own military with the chemical weapons. Interestingly, the Russian government later accused the United States of trying to stall the UN investigation requested by the Syrian government, by insisting that the parameters of the investigation be expanded to such a degree that a never-ending discussion over jurisdiction and rules would eventually abort the investigation. Complicating the U.S.’ stumbling march to war against Syria is the fact that the only effective U.S.-backed rebel forces are Islamist extremists, the best…

Schizophrenic. Killer. My Cousin.
http://bit.ly/ZZ2RXj
THE THING THAT STRUCK ME when I first met my cousin Houston was his size. He wasn’t much taller than me, if at all, and was slight of frame. On the other side of the visitors’ glass, he looked surprisingly small, young for his 22 years. The much more remarkable thing about him turned out to be his vocabulary, vast and lovely, lyrical almost—until it came to an agitated or distracted halt. In any case, all things considered, he seemed altogether extremely unlike a person who had recently murdered someone . AUDIO: Click on the button below to hear Mac McClelland read this story—or, download our free podcast here . The symptoms displayed by Houston (in my family, a cousin of any degree is simply “a cousin”; technically, Houston is my third) in the year preceding this swift and horrific tragedy have since been classified as “a classic onset of schizophrenia.” At the time, it was just an alarming mystery. Houston had been attending Santa Rosa Junior College, living with his mom, playing guitar with his dad, when he became withdrawn and depressed. He slept all day; his band had broken up, and suddenly he had no friends. His dad, Mark, who had once struggled with depression and substance abuse but was now a pillar of the recovery community, and his mom, Marilyn, tried to help, took him to a psychiatrist. Houston didn’t have a drinking problem, but he mostly stopped drinking anyway. He didn’t smoke pot anymore, or even cigarettes. His psychiatrist indicated possible schizoaffective disorder in his notes, but put Houston on a changing regimen of antidepressants over the next eight months. It didn’t make any difference. Houston had started stealing his mom’s Adderall. He said it helped him feel better. He got fired from multiple jobs. Marilyn kicked him out, and he moved in with Mark. Read more about America’s mental health care crisis: Schizophrenic. Killer. My Cousin. TIMELINE: Deinstitutionalization And Its Consequences MAP: Which States Have Cut Treatment For the Mentally Ill the Most? WATCH: Haunting Photographs From Inside Abandoned Asylums “This was not my nephew,” my Aunt Annette, Mark’s sister, says of Houston’s behavior then. “He was always solicitous and loving and talkative with me. Now, he was anxious, quiet, said very strange things. He would say things that seemed not to come from him. I asked him how his therapy was going, and he said, ‘Terrible.'” Toward the end of Houston’s devolution, he started having violent outbursts, breaking furniture; he tossed his mom across a room. Desperate now, Mark and Marilyn called the psychiatrist repeatedly and asked what to do. He told them to call the police. “You can call the police,” the deputy director of Sonoma County’s National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI), David France, said when I asked him what options are available to a parent whose adult child appears to be having a mental breakdown. “The police can activate resources,” like an emergency psych bed in a regular hospital, or transport and admission to a psychiatric hospital in a county that, unlike Sonoma, has one. But only if the police decide your child is a danger to himself or others can they arrest him with the right to hold him for three days—what in California is called a 5150 , after the relevant section of state law. Otherwise you can be turned away for lack of space even if your loved one is willing to be admitted, or be left no good options if they’re not. Ninety-two percent of the patients in California’s state psych hospitals got there via the criminal-justice system. The photographs that accompany this story are part of photographer Jeremy Harris’ ongoing project “American Asylums: Moral Architecture of the 19th Century.” See a video interview with Jeremy here . But Mark didn’t want to call the police. For one, he didn’t think Houston was dangerous, just upset, despairing. Also, Mark read the news. The Santa Rosa cops had killed two mentally ill men they’d been called to intervene with in the last six years, one case resulting in a federal civil rights suit. This is not a problem unique to Santa Rosa—or to greater Sonoma County, which in 2009 paid a $ 1.75 million settlement to the family of a mentally ill 16-year-old whom sheriff’s deputies shot eight times. There’s no comprehensive data yet, but mental illness appears to be a factor in so many arrest-related deaths that the Justice Department has considered adding mental-health status to its national database of such deaths. Just last year, for example, the DOJ found the Portland, Oregon, police department had a “pattern or practice of using excessive force…against people with mental illness,” including eight shootings in 18 months and the beating to death of an unarmed man in 2006. Anyway, Mark didn’t think three days of lockdown in a mental facility would make his son less unstable. He was looking for a meaningful treatment plan, not to rustle Houston through emergency services. “All those kids get shot by the police,” he told Marilyn. “Just let me handle it.” So Mark didn’t call the police, and Houston didn’t get any additional help. Ten days before all the really bad things happened, Annette came out to visit from Ohio. “Honey,” she said to her nephew, “something’s going on with you, babe. Either something’s happened to you, or you’re not sharing something. I’m really, really worried that something’s going on.” She says he turned his head and looked at her eerily and said, “Maybe I’ll tell you about it sometime.” She says, “It didn’t even sound like him.” Continue Reading » Politics | Mother Jones
Schizophrenic. Killer. My Cousin.
http://bit.ly/ZZ2RXj
THE THING THAT STRUCK ME when I first met my cousin Houston was his size. He wasn’t much taller than me, if at all, and was slight of frame. On the other side of the visitors’ glass, he looked surprisingly small, young for his 22 years. The much more remarkable thing about him turned out to be his vocabulary, vast and lovely, lyrical almost—until it came to an agitated or distracted halt. In any case, all things considered, he seemed altogether extremely unlike a person who had recently murdered someone . AUDIO: Click on the button below to hear Mac McClelland read this story—or, download our free podcast here . The symptoms displayed by Houston (in my family, a cousin of any degree is simply “a cousin”; technically, Houston is my third) in the year preceding this swift and horrific tragedy have since been classified as “a classic onset of schizophrenia.” At the time, it was just an alarming mystery. Houston had been attending Santa Rosa Junior College, living with his mom, playing guitar with his dad, when he became withdrawn and depressed. He slept all day; his band had broken up, and suddenly he had no friends. His dad, Mark, who had once struggled with depression and substance abuse but was now a pillar of the recovery community, and his mom, Marilyn, tried to help, took him to a psychiatrist. Houston didn’t have a drinking problem, but he mostly stopped drinking anyway. He didn’t smoke pot anymore, or even cigarettes. His psychiatrist indicated possible schizoaffective disorder in his notes, but put Houston on a changing regimen of antidepressants over the next eight months. It didn’t make any difference. Houston had started stealing his mom’s Adderall. He said it helped him feel better. He got fired from multiple jobs. Marilyn kicked him out, and he moved in with Mark. Read more about America’s mental health care crisis: Schizophrenic. Killer. My Cousin. TIMELINE: Deinstitutionalization And Its Consequences MAP: Which States Have Cut Treatment For the Mentally Ill the Most? WATCH: Haunting Photographs From Inside Abandoned Asylums “This was not my nephew,” my Aunt Annette, Mark’s sister, says of Houston’s behavior then. “He was always solicitous and loving and talkative with me. Now, he was anxious, quiet, said very strange things. He would say things that seemed not to come from him. I asked him how his therapy was going, and he said, ‘Terrible.'” Toward the end of Houston’s devolution, he started having violent outbursts, breaking furniture; he tossed his mom across a room. Desperate now, Mark and Marilyn called the psychiatrist repeatedly and asked what to do. He told them to call the police. “You can call the police,” the deputy director of Sonoma County’s National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI), David France, said when I asked him what options are available to a parent whose adult child appears to be having a mental breakdown. “The police can activate resources,” like an emergency psych bed in a regular hospital, or transport and admission to a psychiatric hospital in a county that, unlike Sonoma, has one. But only if the police decide your child is a danger to himself or others can they arrest him with the right to hold him for three days—what in California is called a 5150 , after the relevant section of state law. Otherwise you can be turned away for lack of space even if your loved one is willing to be admitted, or be left no good options if they’re not. Ninety-two percent of the patients in California’s state psych hospitals got there via the criminal-justice system. The photographs that accompany this story are part of photographer Jeremy Harris’ ongoing project “American Asylums: Moral Architecture of the 19th Century.” See a video interview with Jeremy here . But Mark didn’t want to call the police. For one, he didn’t think Houston was dangerous, just upset, despairing. Also, Mark read the news. The Santa Rosa cops had killed two mentally ill men they’d been called to intervene with in the last six years, one case resulting in a federal civil rights suit. This is not a problem unique to Santa Rosa—or to greater Sonoma County, which in 2009 paid a $ 1.75 million settlement to the family of a mentally ill 16-year-old whom sheriff’s deputies shot eight times. There’s no comprehensive data yet, but mental illness appears to be a factor in so many arrest-related deaths that the Justice Department has considered adding mental-health status to its national database of such deaths. Just last year, for example, the DOJ found the Portland, Oregon, police department had a “pattern or practice of using excessive force…against people with mental illness,” including eight shootings in 18 months and the beating to death of an unarmed man in 2006. Anyway, Mark didn’t think three days of lockdown in a mental facility would make his son less unstable. He was looking for a meaningful treatment plan, not to rustle Houston through emergency services. “All those kids get shot by the police,” he told Marilyn. “Just let me handle it.” So Mark didn’t call the police, and Houston didn’t get any additional help. Ten days before all the really bad things happened, Annette came out to visit from Ohio. “Honey,” she said to her nephew, “something’s going on with you, babe. Either something’s happened to you, or you’re not sharing something. I’m really, really worried that something’s going on.” She says he turned his head and looked at her eerily and said, “Maybe I’ll tell you about it sometime.” She says, “It didn’t even sound like him.” Continue Reading » Politics | Mother Jones