Links for August 22, 2011: Obama on Medical Marijuana: “Herp derp, uh duuur.”; Krugman and Schiff on the Economic Benefits of Fake Space Alien Attacks; The FDA Protects Us From Cow Pee; others….

  1. Vodpod videos no longer available.

    Well, you know, a lot of states are making decisions about medical marijuana. As a controlled substance, the issue then is, you know, is it being prescribed by a doctor, as opposed to, you know — well — I’ll — I’ll — I’ll — I’ll leave it at that.

    There you have it, folks. That’s why medical marijuana is illegal at the federal level. Straight from the mouth of the President of the United States of America. I was debating a drug war supporter a few weeks ago who offered this rationale: “Actually, I’m not attempting to convince anyone. The laws that you don’t like are already in place. It’s you that needs to convince others. Not me.” Perhaps this is also the President’s position.

  2. Vodpod videos no longer available.

    This has been going on for years, not weeks. Remember 2008? But hey. At least Ron Paul was invited to the debate this time, unlike some other Gary Johnsons I know.

  3. Of course, Krugman is just using space invasion as an example.

    Absolutely. This is a great example of how foolish stimulus and war prosperity myths can be! Peter Schiff responds directly here: New York Times Breaking News: Superhero Paul Krugman Saves World from Imaginary Alien

  4. Over a year ago, Peter Schiff invented a scenario of a fake war to demonstrate how foolish the war prosperity myth is.

  5. A promising young student lays the myth of war prosperity bare. The conventional wisdom is that World War II brought us out of the Great Depression. They call it war prosperity. Forget the indicators. I find it hard to believe that anyone who actually lived during this time would call this “prosperity”. If this is war prosperity, then thanks, but no thanks. Sure, GDP and other indicators may have gone up, but what does this really mean when government controls every facet of the economy with the end goal of destroying things in faraway places? Prosperity did not return until the war ended and the government quit strangling the economy.

  6. Shameless strawman from SchittReport. Peter Schiff’s suggestion to reduce taxes on the rich is up against Bill Maher’s argument for raising them, but Schiff’s argument is labelled completely incorrectly in the headline as: “‘Cut taxes for the rich = Job Creator’ Spin.” Schiff’s argument does not depend on jobs actually being created in the future as a result of the tax cuts. Schiff proposes it more as a “thank you” to entrepreneurs and businessmen for not only employing people heretofore, but also for organizing capital so as to provide every modern convenience known to man. Schiff is simply arguing that entrepreneurs and businessmen should keep the money they earn. Even if not a single job were created, it would still be the right thing to do. Maher, via SchittReport, “responds”:

    Is it really that radical to suggest slightly slimming the tax break on corporate jets? It seems like a reasonable idea given that, A) People who buy corporate jets are filthy rich, and, B) I don’t need a B!!!

    Well, confiscating more money from the rich, or anyone else for that matter, through increased taxes is always the wrong thing to do, given that, A) their money and jets are not yours, and, B) I don’t need a ‘B’! ha ha ha!!

    Of course, my reasoning here does not apply to those rich people who became that by currying favor to the government and having the market twisted in their favor, but it takes more than as simple assessment of “cushiness” to discover who those people are.

  7. Employment data did not factor in my decision to attend law school. I simply felt that I had a human right to enter the government’s court room to defend myself and my fellow citizens from the government’s aggression. … Whoops! I didn’t just say that! I said: “Wait a minute! I’ve been duped! Give me money!”

  8. The FDA: Protecting us from cow pee since 1906.

    Research looks promising. Let’s hope the FDA doesn’t shelve it for a decade and a half while onerous research pends. Speaking of which, check out this comment in the comment thread (in response to a previous, rather conspiracy-theory-minded commenter):

    Actually …, the reason none of these cures are on the market is all thanks to your love child Capitalism. Here is how it works, Getting medication approved costs money – a lot of it (like hundreds of millions of dollars lots).Capsicain, for example, is not a new chemical or substance; it has existed in its present form for many years.Because it has existed publicly for so long it cannot be patented.Since no company can claim sole rights to it via patent license they don’t stand to make a lot of money selling it (since competitors have the option of creating the drug also)If no company picks it up there is no one to pay for the research to get FDA approval and therefore no way it can ever come to market. You have two options.

    1) You remove the FDA and let them sell the drugs without proving they work or guaranteeing safety / liability. Obviously this is not a good idea since the FDA is the only thing making sure the Orange Juice your drink isn’t actually cow pee.


    2) Get rid of the greedy capitalistic mindset that is encouraging Big Business to let thousands of people die in the name of their bottom line.

    So you see, this has nothing to do with population control. It has to do with Capitalist Greed.

    …Did I just make you a socialist?

    There you have it. We need the FDA to kill tens of thousands of people by withholding medication from them so that farmers will label “cow pee” as orange juice and sell it as orange juice.

    If the commenter can not tell the difference between orange juice and urine, that is his affair. Fortunately for him, he probably would not have to, even in the absence of the FDA. He might have a look at how the organic certification industry works. For-profit companies like Quality Assurance International and non-profit organizations like Oregon Tilth. They may apply either government standards, as the must in the case of organic foods, or they may apply the standards of industry working groups, as in the case of organic textiles.

    Cow pee? Seriously? Who knows? It might even be good for you. Have you tried Gau Jal? The consumers should decide, not the government. … Ooooh. Did I just make you a capitalist?

  9. Robert Higgs blames FDA delays in allowing the release of a single beta blocker, alprinolol, for 10,000 deaths a year over the course of ten years, observing that this is greater than the number of American deaths resulting from the Korean War and the Vietnam War combined. Higgs notes also the tyrannical nature of FDA drug advertising regulations.

    The head of FDA drug surveillance stated: “We used to say that if a company made certain changes we would probably not take any action. Now we won’t. Now, even if they make the changes, they might end up in court. We want to say to these companies that you don’t know when or how we’ll strike. We want to eliminate predictability.”

    This statement evidently originated in the May 27, 1991 issue of Advertising Age. Why, again, do we need these people? Something about cow pee?

  10. The struggle to defend medicare, one of the most enduring legacies of the post-war Canadian welfare state, entered a new and more ominous phase since the 2005 Supreme Court ruling in the Chaouilli case. In a narrow 4 to 3 judgement, the Court upheld the right of Dr. Chaouilli`s patient, George Zeliotis, to pay privately for a hip replacement for which he lacked timely access through the public system. Subsequently, the Quebec Liberal government introduced legislation allowing patients to pay privately for three common surgical procedures (hip and knee replacements and cataract removal) if the public system is unable to provide them within a prescribed time. This represents a small but siginificant step toward parallel for-profit care competing with an increasingly stretched public system still reeling from 20 years of neo-liberal austerity.

    I thought I posted this before, but I had trouble finding it. It is a great insight into the mind of those who favor socialized medicine: Money, austerity, and preparation should not help an ill person. We should all suffer and suffer alike.

  11. Workers World columnist Kathy Durkin decries the “fierce anti-union assault” that Verizon has perpetrated in which it “viciously fought union drives”. She describes the “war on unions”:

    Verizon, a private corporation, is getting help from its class allies in state and city administrations, as it tries to do the same thing. Clearly, the state is a tool of the super-rich corporate owners; it’s not a neutral body. It’s anti-union. The courts and the police are antagonistic to the working class and will suppress their struggles to protect the interests of business owners and their property — unless a monumental workers’ struggle pushes them back. … Verizon quickly got court injunctions in New Jersey, New York, Pennsylvania and Delaware to undermine the picket lines and restrict strike activity. The New York injunction restricts pickets to six to 50 people in front of Verizon facilities or worksites. Mass picketing must be at least 25 feet from an entrance. New York City billionaire Mayor Michael Bloomberg helped Verizon by assigning police to intimidate strikers and ensure that truckloads of management strikebreakers, many from out of state, get into their facilities.

    Remember what we all learned in school about how the government has saved workers from the evil bourgeois? NLRB? OSHA? Not enough for the unions. They will have us believe that those who do not give them everything they want all of the time are “viciously fighting” them and waging “war” on them. I don’t necessarily agree with the state’s intervention here, but gimme a break.

    I stand in solidarity with the scabs. If any scab wants to work with permission of the employer, I fully support that decision.

Posted from Diigo. The rest of my favorite links are here.

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