The Morning Grumpy – August 15th

15 Aug

Welcome to the silent scream edition of the morning grumpy. Here’s the latest links, news, music and other shit you need to get your day started…

1. Local food truck favorite Lloyd Tacos, is in the running for “America’s Favorite Food Truck“, a contest by Food Network. If they win, they get $10,000 and a chance to compete in the show “The Great Food Truck Race“. Show Lloyd some love, they’re currently in 4th place and Buffalo should turn out the vote for an awesome little truck. You can cast 10 votes per day, show up and vote each day. It’ll only take a minute of your time. Click here and click often!

2. Warren Buffett (you know, the guy who underwrites Bob McCarthy’s paycheck) begs Congress to stop coddling the rich.

We mega-rich should not continue to get extraordinary tax breaks while most Americans struggle to make ends meet. My friends and I have been coddled long enough by a billionaire-friendly Congress. It’s time for our government to get serious about shared sacrifice.

3. Song for Monday, Part 1: “Come To The City” by War On Drugs

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4. Even though Michele Bachmann won the Iowa Straw Poll this Saturday, the new leader in the clubhouse for the GOP Presidential nomination is Texas Governor Rick Perry. Here’s ten things he doesn’t want you to know about him.

You might also be interested in the blistering takedown of Perry’s economic record that Rachel Maddow put together a month ago.

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5. My new favorite YouTube Series, Henry’s Kitchen.

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6. A fantastic takedown of the “businesses need certainty” canard as a reason why corporations are sitting on trillions of dollars in cash and not spending or lending to get the economy up and on its feet.

The problem is that the “certainty” language reveals what the real game is, which is certainty in top executive pay at the expense of the health of the enterprise, and ultimately, the economy as a whole. Cutting costs is as easy way to produce profits, since the certainty of a good return on your “investment” is high.

Indeed, the bigger problem they face is that they have played their cost-focused business paradigm out. You can’t grow an economy on cost cutting unless you have offsetting factors in play, such as an export led growth strategy, or an ever rising fiscal deficit, or a falling household saving rate that has not yet reached zero, or some basis for an investment spending boom. But if you go down the list, and check off each item for the US, you will see they have exhausted the possibilities.

7. Song for Monday, Part 2: “I Don’t Want To Go To Chelsea” by Elvis Costello

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8. The editorial board at The Economist has some harsh words for America.

The poisonous politics of the past few weeks have created new sorts of uncertainty. Now that the tea-partiers have used default successfully as a political weapon, it will surely be used again. The refusal to compromise, rapidly becoming a point of honour for both parties, is wreaking damage elsewhere, partially shutting down the Federal Aviation Administration (see article) and postponing trade bills. At best, the politicians will have slowed a sputtering expansion; at worst they will have killed off the recovery and inflicted lasting harm on the world’s most impressive prosperity machine.

Have a day!

10 Responses to “The Morning Grumpy – August 15th”

  1. Leo Wilson August 15, 2011 at 7:24 am #

    #2 – Warren Buffet and Bill Gates Sr. are part of a cadre of billionaires who pledge to donate their fortunes to charity, both while alive and when they die. While that’s admirable and bolsters certain charities they select, it effectively gets around taxation in any form, including estate/inheretance taxes. No politician will control their wealth to the benefit the American public or to service the national debt.

  2. Rob August 15, 2011 at 9:06 am #

    “It [charitable giving) effectively gets around taxation in any form.”

    Buffett stated in a Forbes article that he paid 19% of his income for 2006 ($48.1 million) in federal taxes. So, he DOES pay taxes, and urges that his marginal rate be increased.

  3. Bbill August 15, 2011 at 9:14 am #

    Buffett makes such a clear and compelling statement of the obvious that any teabagger rebuttal attempts are sure to be very weak. But entertaining.

  4. Derek J. Punaro August 15, 2011 at 9:27 am #

    Re: 5 – My Drunk Kitchen is far funnier. http://hartoandco.com/my-drunk-kitchen/

  5. Ethan August 15, 2011 at 2:01 pm #

    1) Elvis needs to lighten up; Chelsea’s not so bad.  
    2) you should post that same email anonymizer here for folks who want to vote for lloyd but not feed the food networks data beast.  ah, well:

    http://www.mailinator.com

  6. Leo Wilson August 15, 2011 at 3:45 pm #

    2006 was a long time ago. The giving pledge started since. http://www.givingpledge.org .

  7. Leo Wilson August 15, 2011 at 3:47 pm #

    As I said, it’s admirable and will bolster charities of their selection. What it won’t do is one damned thing for public revenues.

  8. Gabe August 16, 2011 at 7:59 am #

    “My drunk kitchen”….she’s a real cutie, and I especially like these words of wisdom she gives:

    “That’s what Americans do, when we make a mistake, we do the same thing again and hope something different happens.”

    Though, this drunk, white trash canuck cook is even funnier:

  9. Rob August 16, 2011 at 8:42 am #

    It says right in the article that he paid $7 million in federal income taxes last year (2010). If the top marginal rate was substantially increased, as he recommends, that amount would be larger, regardless of the size of his charitable deduction.

  10. Rob August 16, 2011 at 9:07 am #

    But if your only point is that charitable giving reduces income taxes, OK. I still think it’s significant that he pays substantial income taxes and thinks that he and other super-wealthy people should pay more.

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