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February 21, 2023 08:05 AM UTC

Tuesday Open Thread

  • 17 Comments
  • by: Colorado Pols

“We cannot attribute to fortune or virtue that which is achieved without either.”

–Niccolo Machiavelli

Comments

17 thoughts on “Tuesday Open Thread

    1. I think I have made up my mind on the mayor's race. Unless he does/says something to turn me off, I'm going with Mike Johnston.

      Still clueless about City Council-at-large though.

      1. I'm not from Denver and don't know anything about some of the candidates. The few I have encountered: Penfield Tate is awesome with a world of experience but not exactly a spring chicken; Serena Gonzales-Gutierrez was a thoughtful and effective state legislator and has deep Denver experience; Jeff Walker was on the RTD board, lots of experience in local issues. Guess I like experience!

    2. The poll results are a bit suspect, as it was commissioned by the Chamber of Commerce, and the top  poller was Kelly Brough, former head of the Chamber of Commerce.

      And the follow-up question on how to deal with homelessness is not being asked. Everyone wants homeless people off the streets – but where should they go?

      Safe parking places, shelters, jails, across the border to the next county, where?

      Candidates should be asked where they want homeless people to go after they are "swept" off the streets. Denver had a successful "permanent supportive housing" program in 2021, according to a Pew study, and confirmed by an Urban Institute evaluator. 

      The study also found

      But the study also shows that the work isn’t easy. It requires a skilled team, funding and political will—all longtime barriers to expanding permanent supportive housing in Denver and in other places.

      Colorado Coalition for the Homeless and Mental Health Center of Denver were partners in the effort, which still continues on a limited basis today.

      So what programs, if any, do these candidates support? And how do they propose to pay for them?

      1. Leslie Herod took second though, not your typical Chamber candidate unless she's changed or I'm mistaken, which certainly happens. I was most impressed, not in a great way, with the nearly 60% undecided with not that much time left in the campaign.

      2. You can get a brief sense of positions on the issues of homelessness in coverage at Denverite:

        Lots of proposals, enough to confuse basically every voter.  Lots of assumptions of how things COULD work.

        I'm pretty certain that this muddle won't win prizes for "best election plan" —

         

  1. Everything you Think you Know about Carter and Reagan is Wrong. Noah Smith.

    Very good, non-polemical article looking back at the economics of the 70s & 80s. The whole thing is educationa.

    If you, like me, grew up in the United States of America, you’ve probably heard a story of the late 1970s and early 1980s that goes something like this: “In the 70s, Carter’s liberal big-government policies resulted in runaway inflation. Reagan came in and defeated inflation, and produced an economic boom with deregulation and tax cuts. Reagan also embarked on a massive defense spending binge which, although it increased the deficit a lot, forced the USSR to bankrupt itself trying to keep up, and thus won the Cold War.”

    That might sound like a straw man, but the narratives we tell each other about the past often consist of exactly such straw men. And debunking those narratives might feel like shooting at easy targets, but it’s helpful for taking a closer look at history.

    Anyway, the above narrative is almost entirely wrong. Carter was a deregulator who didn’t increase deficits much, and appointed the Fed chair who beat inflation. Reagan didn’t do much deregulating, nor did he increase defense spending much as a share of GDP — and the USSR didn’t fall because of the arms race. Let’s go through these points one by one.

    1) Carter was the one who beat inflation.

    So Carter’s deficits were much smaller than Reagan’s in the 80s. That suggests that fiscal deficits were not really what was driving inflation in the 70s (since deficits rose and inflation fell under Reagan). Instead, it was monetary policy, which tightened thanks to Carter’s appointment of an inflation hawk. Reagan, of course, gets partial credit here for keeping Volcker on for a while (before eventually firing him). But Carter is the one who did the heavy lifting here, taking the risk of a recession in an election year — which might have been part of what did him in.

    2) Carter was the Great Deregulator, not Reagan.

    Reagan campaigned on promises of deregulation, and he appointed people to regulatory agencies who tended to use a light touch. But when it comes to actual deregulatory policies implemented, Carter did substantially more than Reagan. He deregulated airlines, energy, trucking, railways, telecommunications, finance, and more.

    Don’t take my word for it — take it from the libertarian Foundation for Economic Education!

    1. "In the 70s, Carter’s liberal big-government policies resulted in runaway inflation."

      Of course, that was one of the big fat lies that Reagan's campaign told. Ted Kennedy's challenge to Carter should dispel any claim that Carter was some flaming liberal.

      1. Inflation rates were substantially higher under Nixon/Ford in 1974 and 1975 than in the first few years under Carter. Not proud of this, but I remember Ford's campaign Whip Inflation Now (WIN), and he used to wear WIN buttons.

      2. We know that the 1970s inflation came from the oil shock.

        The other thing we know is that monetary policy, or any economic policy, but especially inflation policy, has a long lag time.

        Republicans did demonize Carter, just as they demonized Hillary Clinton, Hunter Biden. It is a scorched-earth electoral strategy.

      1. But keep in mind it is the anti-ATF that is now the majority of GOP in the House. My fear is there is a possibility it could pass. And with Manchin and Siema (sp?) in the Senate, there IS reason for concern.

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