“Reagan, Greenspan, Wanniski, and Laffer took the federal budget deficit from under a trillion dollars in 1980 to almost three trillion by 1988, and back then a dollar could buy far more than it buys today. They and George HW Bush ran up more debt in eight years than every president in history, from George Washington to Jimmy Carter, combined. Surely this would both starve the beast and force the Democrats to make the politically suicidal move of becoming deficit hawks. And that’s just how it turned out. Bill Clinton, who had run on an FDR-like platform of a “new covenant” with the American people that would strengthen the institutions of the New Deal, strengthen labor, and institute a national health care system, found himself in a box. A few weeks before his inauguration, Alan Greenspan and Robert Rubin sat him down and told him the facts of life: he was going to have to raise taxes and cut the size of government. Clinton took their advice to heart, raised taxes, balanced the budget, and cut numerous programs, declaring an “end to welfare as we know it” and, in his second inaugural address, an “end to the era of big government.” He was the anti-Santa Claus, and the result was an explosion of Republican wins across the country as Republican politicians campaigned on a platform of supply-side tax cuts and pork-rich spending increases.”—Thom Hartmann (via azspot) (via soupsoup)
“There’s a difference between the statements ‘America has the best health-care system in the world’ and ‘With enough money, you can purchase the best health care in the world in America.’ … People should ask themselves a very simple question: Do they think they are likelier to lose their job and fall into the health-care situation of the uninsured? Or are they likelier to become an influential politician and enjoy the health-care options available to the most powerful people in the world?
If you’re a United States senator, America may have the best health-care in the world. But if you’re an ordinary person with the same vulnerability to bad luck that we all have, you’re better off being in Canada, or France, or Japan, or somewhere that doesn’t take your insurance away when Wall Street causes the economy to crash.”—Ezra Klein (via savingpaper) (via brooklynmutt) (via newsweek)
“I don’t know what it means to be a New Yorker anymore. I guess if you work for a giant corporation and you’ve lived here for more than six weeks, you’re a New Yorker now. I think I used to know what it meant to be a New Yorker. I guess if you don’t eat at Cosi sandwich shop you’re a real New Yorker. If you don’t go to Hopstop.com to find your way around the city, you’re a real New Yorker. If you make too much noise on the sidewalk at night and bother people living in overpriced apartments, you’re a real New Yorker. If you get mugged, and then immediately go eat a slice with the money hidden in your sock that they did not steal from you, you’re a real New Yorker. If you cross the street wherever and whenever you want, you’re a New Yorker. And if you walk fast, you’re a New Yorker. Nobody walks fast in this city anymore. Everyone walks slow, and then goes to Equinox.”—
If you were born in New York City you are a New Yorker. Everyone else is just an import. That’s it. It doesn’t matter where you work, eat, hang-out, etc. These kind of “you’re not X if you do Y” equations don’t work for New York City, as the lack of homogeneity is integral to its greatness.
But if you really need the equation, try this one: If you rode the subway to the 7th grade, you’re a MOTHA FUCKIN NEW YOWKA.
Petra and I are having a wonderful V-Day weekend. Last night we had a yummy dinner at Alto. We out-classed ourselves by bringing our own wine, a 1983 bottle that was given to us as an engagement gift. All around, perfect night, beating the V-day prix fix zoo that tonight would bring.
Today we kicked off with bagels and after fully digesting, an 8 miles run, Petra’s longest ever and my longest since October.
Were going to spend the rest of the weekend finishing our Save-the-Dates for our wedding.