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June 1, 2012

austerity doctrine

Here's a paragraph that jumped out at me in this morning's Krugman:
So the austerity drive in Britain isn’t really about debt and deficits at all; it’s about using deficit panic as an excuse to dismantle social programs. And this is, of course, exactly the same thing that has been happening in America.

The column today concerns the proponents of austerity, and their wacky hijinks.  And that passage may have struck me because I recently finished Naomi Klein's Shock Doctrine, which outlines a similar conceit — Neo-liberal, Chicago School of Economics crusaders swooping into Second and Third World countries, using a natural disaster, hyperinflation or any old disaster as an excuse to impose the economic "reforms" they favor.  These reforms include privatizing state assets and eliminating wage and price controls, the same "shrink the state" nasty hoodoo that you can see everywhere from Cameron's United Kingdom to David Koch's Wisconsin.

I'm not sure what course of action this issue requires, and Krugman doesn't go so far as to recommend one, but I would suggest that when people like me suggest that the Republicans are gunning for your Social Security, that is demonstrably and dogmatically true, and I defy them to prove otherwise.

Posted by mrbrent at 9:35 AM

May 30, 2012

god that took forever

Sorry for that six-day unplanned vacation.  Usually when that happens it's because I forgot to renew my domain name registration, and then see the site is down and then scramble to look for the password, etc.  Not this time!

No, this time I actually planned for this, and changed DN registrars in a timely fashion, whereupon the old DN registrar decided that there's no time like right now to be total dicks about cooperating with a DN transfer.

But situation is resolved, and I'm so happy it's over that I'm not even going to slag the old company, the French one named after India's greatest advocate of non-violence.  I'm just happy to have them out muh hair.

And the reward for reading this far is this, yet another bit of branded content for The Awl concerning nothing but pants.  So if you're concerned with the history of pants and/or Lyndon Johnson, this is your big day.

Posted by mrbrent at 11:53 AM