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Archive for September 20th, 2011

An Apology

Iwould like to apologize for the anti-Semitic image that appeared briefly here this morning.

I was looking for something to accompany the post on corporate welfare and found a picture of a rich guy, surrounded by money and reaching out his hand for more. When I looked at it a few hours later I noticed that the rich guy was wearing a yarmulka. As soon as I saw this I removed it and replaced it with another image.

While I have been accused of anti-Semitism because I have criticized the state of Israel for its treatment of the Palestinians, it isn’t true. I have nothing against any particular ethnic or religious group. Well, maybe the Scientologists.

I will try to look more carefully at anything I post in the future.

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“No one knows exactly how much public money has flowed to chains. These subsidies take different forms—property tax exemptions, sales tax rebates, job tax credits—and most states do not keep a central record of every municipal and county development incentive. But Good Jobs First, a nonprofit research group that tracks these deals, estimates that large retailers have received at least several billion dollars over the past 15 years. Its executive director, Greg LeRoy, says the giveaways have continued through the recession, despite budget shortfalls and a glut of vacant retail space.”

More: http://www.newrules.org/retail/news/dont-subsidize-big-boxes-local-shops-expense

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War and Waste

“Ten years into the war on terror, the U.S. has largely succeeded in its attempts to destabilize Al Qaeda and eliminate its leaders. But the cost has been enormous, and our decisions about how to finance it have profoundly damaged the U.S. economy.

Many of these costs were unnecessary. We chose to fight in Iraq and Afghanistan with a small, all-volunteer force, and we supplemented the military presence with a heavy reliance on civilian contractors. These decisions not only placed enormous strain on the troops but dramatically pushed up costs. Recent congressional investigations have shown that roughly 1 of every 4 dollars spent on wartime contracting was wasted or misspent.

To date, the United States has spent more than $2.5 trillion on the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, the Pentagon spending spree that accompanied it and a battery of new homeland security measures instituted after Sept. 11.”

http://articles.latimes.com/2011/sep/18/opinion/la-oe–bilmes-war-cost-20110918

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