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Archive for December, 2012

Unprecedebted Sellout?

Monday December 31st, 2012   •   Posted by K. Lloyd Billingsley at 7:30am PST   •   10 Comments

On December 26, one day after Christmas, Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner broke a blockbuster story. On New Year’s Eve, December 31, 2012, the United States will reach its $16.4 trillion borrowing limit and will have to undertake “extraordinary measures” to avoid default. The debt ceiling had been troubling Steven Mufson of the Washington Post…
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U.S. Markets Already Over the Fiscal Cliff

Sunday December 30th, 2012   •   Posted by Craig Eyermann at 9:05am PST   •   2 Comments

On Sunday, December 30 2012, President Barack Obama claimed that financial markets would be negatively affected by the failure of the U.S. Congress and his administration to reach a rushed, last-minute deal to extend President Bush’s 2001 and 2003 tax cuts for the middle class: Low income tax rates first put in place under…
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More Hidden Millions

Thursday December 27th, 2012   •   Posted by K. Lloyd Billingsley at 8:15am PST   •   3 Comments

While California was closing parks and state employees giving themselves unauthorized vacation buyouts, the state Parks Department was concealing nearly $54 million for more than a decade. A Democratic legislator denounced this “deceit and thievery” and wondered how much more money state employees had stashed away. In the Parks Department, it’s at least $3.9…
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Fiscal Cliff Sock Puppets

Wednesday December 26th, 2012   •   Posted by Craig Eyermann at 7:54am PST   •   3 Comments

With so many Americans shifting their focus away from Washington D.C. to the holiday season, it would be very easy to have missed the following interview from CNBC with a member of the U.S. Senate on the state of the fiscal cliff negotiations in the nation’s capitol (via The Blaze) Click here for the…
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Golden State Gravy Train

Monday December 24th, 2012   •   Posted by K. Lloyd Billingsley at 8:30am PST   •   4 Comments

The November election made California the highest-tax state in the nation by raising the state income tax to 13.3 percent, an increase of 29.13 percent. Governor Jerry Brown claimed the increase would boost revenues by some $6 billion and solve the Golden State’s budgetary woes. But according to state Controller John Chiang, total state…
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Pop Quiz

Friday December 21st, 2012   •   Posted by Burt Abrams at 1:15pm PST   •   6 Comments

I’ve been asking a number of friends (mostly Democrats) if they could guess the amount of gross public debt that exists for each U.S. taxpayer. No one has come close. Now with final exams in progress in universities, I reckoned a pop quiz was in order for the readership. So here it is (no peeking at the…
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Blowing in the Wind: Taxpayers’ Dollars

Friday December 21st, 2012   •   Posted by Burt Abrams at 1:09pm PST   •   2 Comments

The infant-industry argument claims that tariff protection is needed so that fledgling industries can grow up and fend for themselves. History taught us that these industries rarely, if ever, grow up. Today, due to the rules of the World Trade Organization, tariff protection is no longer a viable policy tool. So what’s an infant industry to do? Seek subsidies, of course. The year 2012 marked…
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Fed Otter Ban a Bust

Friday December 21st, 2012   •   Posted by K. Lloyd Billingsley at 12:18pm PST   •   2 Comments

For 25 years the federal government has been trying to ban sea otters (Enhydra lutris nereis) from vast reaches of the Pacific Ocean off California. Now the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service says the plan was “harmful” and “futile.” The translocation program, therefore, “should be considered a failure.” Otter advocate Steve Shimek told the…
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Taxpayers Lose Billions on GM Bailout

Thursday December 20th, 2012   •   Posted by Craig Eyermann at 5:15am PST   •   5 Comments

The U.S. Treasury just concluded the sale of 200 million shares of GM stock back to the company for $27.50 per share. The federal government had acquired the stock for roughly $54 per share back in 2009 when it intervened in GM’s impending bankruptcy. The federal government then has just lost 5.3 billion dollars…
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UC Logo Symbolizes Waste and Failure

Wednesday December 19th, 2012   •   Posted by K. Lloyd Billingsley at 9:46am PST   •   6 Comments

University of California bosses have suspended the new logo that had drawn so much ridicule, and deservedly so. Indeed, the slick new design packs all the gravitas of a state lottery badge. On the other hand, the new logo does symbolize what the University of California has become, a bloated, wasteful state institution. As…
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