While other states seek to reduce the burden of government on their citizens, Oregon continues to crank up the pressure. Know somebody unemployed? The good news is, after new corporate and personal taxes get cranked up next year, they aren't going to be lonely.
What to do when you're a business man in this state? The obvious thing is to look elsewhere. And if you have friends in government, just letting the "powers that be" that you're looking at leaving will energize their cronies to do something about it.
Take Governor Kulongoski, for example. The state's private investment conditions are so harsh that Oregon ranks 47th in job creation among the states. Now a leader would take a look at the state's high unemployment numbers, the low number of jobs being created and the comparative tax and fee rates among the states, as well as its malicious land-use regulations, and point out that Oregon is not an attractive place within which to do business. Sometimes, this is known as creating a level playing field.
But level playing fields are for dopes and suckers in Oregon.
Far better to have a crony in the Governor's Office.
Enter our latest in a series of crony governors, Governor Kulongoski. His lackey, Business Oregon Director Tim McCabe offers this on the Governor's decision to give Novellus Corporation taxpayer dough:
"We continue to focus our economic development efforts on helping existing Oregon companies grow and prosper, said Business Oregon Director Tim McCabe. "The recent predictions of an end to Oregon's advanced manufacturing leadership are obviously false given Novellus' decision to increase its investment and expand its manufacturing operations here in Tualatin."
Well, it's obviously false--except for the part where the State of Oregon had to pony up some cash to get that "false" thingy dealt with.
"The state will forgive repayment of the award based on new jobs created and maintained at the Tualatin site through mid-2012."
The only thing lacking in the announcement made by the Oregon Business Development Department is the size of the economic incentive. Earlier, the Oregon Business Development Department gave a guitar manufacturer a 2.6-million dollar bond and $52-thousand dollar loan to create 15 jobs. Or is it eleven. No matter. Really. Who cares what your government is doing?
Just as long as those at the top retain control over those of us on the bottom.
Reduced for us, quite forcefully, by Montana Senator Max Baucus.
When asked whether or not the members of the Senate would be able to confirm that they had read and understood the content of the bill they were facing, Senator Baucus said:
"I certainly agree with the basic underlying imports that we should know what we're voting on here. I must say to my good friend that presumes a certain level of--of perception on my part and understanding in delving into the minds of the Senator, that not only do they read, but take the time to understand? What does understand mean? Understand the first, second levels of questions? I think it is impossible to certify that any Senator fully understood. They had read, but not fully understand for a variety of reasons."
The greatest irony lies in the title of one of the President's cronies. His title? FCC Chief Diversity Officer. New office. New Chief. New agenda.
But this new Chief has been joined by another new appointement; the Distinguished Scholar in Residence.
If you've never heard of these guys, I'm not surprised. You may have heard about efforts to re-instate the Fairness Doctrine. Mebbe, mebbe not. And then there were the rumours about introducing Local Origination rules. Again, mebbe or not.
The battle over diversity is becoming more clearly defined. Either you agree with the views of the Left or you will be put out of business. All in the name of diversity.
For Diversity Chief Mark Lloyd, "Lloyd said his writing shows 'that my focus, my long-standing interest, is not Limbaugh, Beck, or [Lou] Dobbs, it is not the right-wing haters.' He continued, 'My focus has long been the health of the American republic and what I see as the central role of communications policy in that republic.'"
As a right-wing hater, it's obvious to me that my focus on the health of the American republic is mis-placed, and I must recant. Now, all the rest of you right-wing haters must also recant. We, our views, have no place in the post-Change!™ post-Hope!™ America that is quickly evolving around us. Our opposition to the Left is an obvious attack on their diversity. Which is the only diversity that will be allowed, in the future.
Having an almost pure ignorance of how markets work, Chief Lloyd finds problem with the failure of freely, independently operated radio stations choosing to air conservative content on their investments rather than the diversity pure progressive talk.
"More importantly, even in markets where progressive talk is considered a success by the industry standards of ratings and revenue, licensees will often broadcast conservative talk on three or four stations compared to one station for progressive progressive talk. For example, in Portland, OR, where progressive talk on KPOJ AM 620 competes effectively with conservative talk on KEX AM 1190, station owners also broadcast conservative talk on KXL AM 750 and KPAM AM 860. Although there is a clear demand and proven success of progressive talk in this market, station owners still elect to stack the airwaves with one-sided broadcasting." (The Structural Imbalance of Political Talk Radio, The Center for American Progress and Free Press, June 21, 2007, p. 7 .pdf)
Or course, it's easier to require diversity, especially the kind of diversity that matches the agenda of the Left, and to see it bloom independently and freely. The kinds of ideas that bloom freely and independently have to survive the "marketplace" of ideas. How much easier to simply mandate diversity.
Of course, if rules to impose diversity aren't enough, there's the plan of Scholar Benjamin, who writes, "But the larger question involves a host of proposals that would raise broadcasters’ costs or reduce their potential income. Should we welcome new regulations on broadcasters that will make broadcasting unprofitable?
"My contrarian take is that the answer will often be 'yes.'” (Roasting the Pig to Burn Down the House: A Modest Proposal, Stuart Minor Benjamin, January 27, 2009, p. 6, .pdf.)
"Stuart Benjamin is a tenured professor at one of the nation's finest law schools and the author of the standard textbook on telecommunications law, "said a spokesperson for FCC Chairman Julius Genachowski. "He is joining the Commission as the first Distinguished Scholar in Residence in keeping with Chairman Genachowski's overall approach of hiring extraordinarily talented people with wide-ranging viewpoints to enrich internal discussion within the agency. "
Cool beans! Increase the cost on the boys and girls who give you local television and radio until they can no longer afford to operate! That's exactly like Capitalism!
"There he (Lloyd) was in 2008, participating in a conference on "media reform," telling us what a wonderful leader Venezuela's Hugo Chavez, was, and wincing at an unpleasantness the dictator had to deal with, the uppity owners of media, people who had some objections in mind.
"He spoke of Chavez's "incredible revolution, a democratic revolution," and of the "property owners and the folks who then controlled the media in Venezuela" who "rebelled" and who "worked to oust him." Still, said Lloyd, Chavez "came back with another revolution, and then ... began to take very seriously the media in his country."
Thank God for America's good luck in finding these two guys to run our media and control its content. Otherwise, how could we be assured that we'd all be celebrating diversity in lock-step?
If you're a fan of Climaquiddick, you've probably heard of the phenomenon known as "hide the decline."
What climate "scientists" did was simply remove data that failed to support their theory.
This is also known in the real world, as science fraud.
In the realm of the day-to-day, you and I both know that Oregon is in crisis. Unemployment keeps going up, more and more businesses are under greater financial stress. And yet, miraculously, Oregon's Unemployment Rate is going down!
UPDATE: The state's economist for the Oregon Employment Department just released the latest job description for the state. He used two of the graphs shown here to make his point that the "unemployment rate remained virtually unchanged in November." Which graph did he choose to hide? Complete presser here. (.pdf)
Show us whether or not someone violated the rules and laws of Oregon.
Of course, when you ask that question of the Attorney General's office, that request comes with a price tag.
In this case, it's $548.00. Oh, and that's just an estimate. The price tag could go higher. (And probably will.)
There is an explicit ethical dilemma for the Attorney General. Both he and staff have probably violated the laws and ethics rules of Oregon. And rather than taking the bull by the horns, they have attempted to bull their way past some serious concerns.
For some reason, Clatsop county has become a battleground between what is right and what is Left.
Voters in the State of Oregon have about a month to figure out whether or not to support the referendum of Personal and Corporate tax increases passed by the Democrat majority in our last session of the Oregon Legislature.
We can rely upon the usual suspects to support increased taxation. Who could these usual suspects be?
Well, don't be surprised if the unions that represent government employees support the tax increases. As the chart points out, while we in the private sector have taken a beating, public sector jobs have increased, and are planned to further increase during the next year. I remember the last big turn-down in business activity in Oregon, and surprisingly unmentioned in the current debate--ad campaigns by public employee unions--is this fact.
The last time the state had a budget problem, we actually cut the size of government expenditures. Can you guess what party the governor belonged to?
We could have cut the budgets of our state government to bring spending into line with revenue. The legislature refused to do so. Instead, it offers us a chance to increase the taxes paid into Salem coffers in order to fund public employees.
We've seen a huge increase in unemployment in Oregon. We've seen hundreds of millions of dollars spent on Pixie Dust production. What Democrats are good for is spending other people's money.
Revenue restraint? Not so much. They have unions they must take care of. And union members are people, too.
"Communist Physics" is the title of a post by Simon over at Classical Values.
Let me excerpt from his post:
"Conserve momentum comrades? I don't think so. The time has come to liberate it from those who have captured it in the name of greed and personal profit."
To which I wrote the following reply.
"The beauty of the falling acorn of carbon dioxide is that it is an invisible, odourless gas.
"You and I, without the advantage of advanced test equipment, have no way of knowing whether or not the particular gas is increasing, decreasing or remaining the same.
"And even if we take advantage of advanced test equipment, we still have no way of knowing whether or not increasing CO2 levels are actually beneficial or not.
"The assumption on the Left is that the increase in CO2 is driven by human activity. They then throw in the assumption that human activity is bad. Therefore, increases in CO2, driven by human activity, is bad.
"Of course, this is a faulty syllogism. It requires us to make a conclusion on the "goodness" or "badness" of human activity. And it does so without evaluating either the accuracy of whether or not this is a valid assumption, but it does so in a way that completely fails to test the validity of the assumption.
"The model of the unseen falling acorn--simplicity in the face of increasing complexity--has a few advantages in political debate. As complexity increases, uncertainty also increases. Is it linear, logarithmic or exponential? Or, are there different orders of variability possible between endogenous and exogenous variables? And how well-defined are endogenous variables like "human activity is bad"?
"As complexity increases, it seems that the increasing uncertainty is handled with catch phrasing, such as "settled science." Complexity dissappears. It helps, again, that the falling acorn is neither seen, felt, smelt or touched. (Touched as a discrete element.)
"I have been working on formulating an equation that reflects the role of prejudice in determining held beliefs that includes a high value for prejudicially held beliefs. For example, what value does examining the question of "is that stop light truly red" when one is arriving at an intersection.
"Most of what we rely upon for moving through our days is based upon a large set of prejudicially held beliefs that simply make living possible. The tap on the left is hot. A plugged in soldering iron is hot, even if it isn't smoking.
"The reality of the human condition is, of course, that acorns are indeed falling every moment of every day. It isn't really news. Why else do we populate certain acorns with emotional appeals? When has a polar bear ever helped you? Following Katrina, how many new storms were predicted?
"Are polar bears attractive in some way? Are Category 5 storms destructive? Do we hold these beliefs prejudicially? Of course we do. We don't re-examine the beauty of the beast, nor do we challenge the ferocity of the storm.
"But these are diversions.
"The simple truth is, there is a certain subject body of folks who have called themselves scientists who have relied upon emotional appeals in order to assert the validity of their "science." I have heard critics concerned more about the leading role scientists have in society being diminished as a result of Climaquiddick.
"I disagree. I think it's more important that folks become used to the idea that even among experts a high degree of uncertainty exists, and that as systems increase complexity, the uncertainty of the theories, views and ideas of those who are inquiring into these fields face greater probablity of not knowing what is in fact going on, rather than greater probablity of in fact knowing what is going on.