June 30, 2011

The Strange Case of Ben Stein
— rdbrewer

Yesterday, Ben Stein was on O'Reilly talking with Laura Ingraham. He was raving about the necessity of raising taxes on the wealthy. He said that they were not paying enough, that they can "afford more," and that there would be no effect on the economy. His certainty was disturbing, as well as his strident manner. He was completely unwilling to enter into anything resembling a discussion about the merits of his position.

Recall that Stein wrote a bizarre defense of Dominique Strauss-Khan last May:

1.) If he is such a womanizer and violent guy with women, why didn't he ever get charged until now?

. . .

2.) In life, events tend to follow patterns. People who commit crimes tend to be criminals, for example. Can anyone tell me any economists who have been convicted of violent sex crimes?

. . .

3.) The prosecutors say that Mr. Strauss-Kahn "forced" the complainant to have oral and other sex with him. How? Did he have a gun? Did he have a knife? He's a short fat old man.

And so on. Note the tone and the aggressive manner. Recall that last October he savagely attacked Joe Miller, calling him a "dangerous, stupid clown." On what basis could you possibly think Joe Miller is either dangerous or stupid? Miller is a small-government, anti-establishment conservative and, by any measure, a level-headed and intelligent man. Stein's attack was nothing more than pure emotion driven by... what? territoriality? Small government types are a threat to establishment types. But where does he come by the urgency and vitriol?

I saw him in a fairly recent interview aggressively shooting down something that resembled a minor attack on the super wealthy. Not that I have a problem with the wealthy, either, by the way. The point is about his odd tone. In response to some minor jab, he was quick and very firm. He said, to paraphrase: "Oh, all that money they have, they give it all to charity. They give all of it to charity." This was communicated with a tone of finality, of "that's the end of that argument," and "no one could possibly ever disagree with me," and "next, please." He made it clear he was completely closed-off to a response. His tone had the same belligerence mentioned above--that caused by an attempt to maximize rhetorical gain rather than discuss issues.

He said something interesting in his interview with Laura Ingraham; he mentioned his rich friends. From the interview embedded above:

Everyone knows that's the third rail of politics in America but we do know that if we tax rich people more, we will raise more money. Look, I live in a neighborhood . . . everyone except -- everyone except me is rich and so do you and you know very well that if you raise their taxes, if you put a surcharge of 10 percent or 15 percent on their taxes they would still be rich. They would still be able to have families. They would still be able to send their children to . . . .

He seems to draw a distinction between himself and the super rich while arguing that there is "no objective evidence" taxing the super-rich less stimulates the economy and job production and that it is a matter of simple math that they have to pay more in taxes. The problem is, 1) the rich don't have enough money to fix things, even if you took all of their money, and 2) even the super rich employ fewer people, buy fewer companies, widgets, and invest less when taxes are high. And one does not have to be an economist waving around a study labeled "Objective Evidence Taxing the Rich Less Stimulates the Economy" to make such a claim. It's just a given. Also, 3) when it comes to actually raising taxes, somehow the definition of "rich" always seems to change. So Democrats will, of course, use arguments like his as cover--as part of a bait and switch campaign--and then move toward pushing for increased income taxes on everyone over, say, 250k. So Ben Stein's appeal isn't helping at all; it's hurting. It's emotional, and it's naive.

Well, at least he wasn't always that way! In fact, just last year Stein was ranting about raising taxes during a recession:

He had that dogmatic tone then too, but when I like the point he's making, it's a-okay.

Ben Stein has a bad case of wealthy liberal elite cocktail party disease, Potomac fever for rich people. It's worse even than Peggy Noonan's. He's been spending too much time socializing with his ultra-wealthy liberal friends. And he wants to continue hanging out. His aggressive defense of his establishment buddies buys him tickets to the next cocktail party. Those parties must be something very special indeed.

The problem is, everything he says now is beginning to resemble everything they say. He used to be such a dependable conservative voice. I can't believe Stein is a crank now.

But he gets to go to the next party and collect attaboys.


Posted by: rdbrewer at 12:50 PM | Comments (312)
Post contains 859 words, total size 6 kb.

1 Taxes. Taxes. Taxes. Taxes.

Posted by: Clueless at June 30, 2011 12:54 PM (piMMO)

2 Alzheimer's.

Posted by: Alice's Clone Army at June 30, 2011 12:55 PM (wDzxx)

3 What the hell is Beck up to? He's scaring me.

His own network? His own planet? His own psychiatric ward?

Posted by: Clueless at June 30, 2011 12:55 PM (piMMO)

4 He was raving about the necessity of raising taxes on the wealthy.

He has been doing that for a long time, and he has NEVER been a conservative.

Posted by: Vic at June 30, 2011 12:55 PM (M9Ie6)

5 I blame Alzheimer's. 

No, I don't think he actually has it, but it lets me fondly remember the man of just a couple years ago who was one of the best defenders of Conservatism in America.

Posted by: AllenG (Dedicated Tenther) at June 30, 2011 12:55 PM (8y9MW)

6 Beck's big move is to be a guest blogger at AoS.

Posted by: Cherry π at June 30, 2011 12:57 PM (OhYCU)

7 If he could afford to let Jimmy Kimmel give away all that money of his in that big, black safe, he's must be rich.

Posted by: ashowalt at June 30, 2011 12:57 PM (ZaQ7q)

8 Stein has a lot of money.  I think that he must have done something wrong to get some of it because he comes off sounding guilty as hell.  He is a smart guy and he surely knows that you can't even come close to cutting any substantial amount out of either the deficit or the debt by taxing the rich.  Some estimates are as low as $80 billion.  Yesterday wasn't the first time he has made this argument.
Also, he looked like he was going to cry when Laura asked him about cutting government spending.  He really didn't want to go there.  It was certainly an odd encounter.

Posted by: Hussein the Plumber at June 30, 2011 12:58 PM (jx2j9)

9 Miller? .... Miller? ..... Miller?

Posted by: Ben Stein at June 30, 2011 12:58 PM (so1xa)

10 The DC cocktail party circuit is like the Pet Sematary - you don't get back what you put in. 

/Ben, you're but a shadow of your former self.  How sad.

Posted by: Kratos (Ghost of Sparta) at June 30, 2011 12:58 PM (c0A3e)

11 .01% annual wealth tax.  For the Justice!

Posted by: toby928 at June 30, 2011 12:59 PM (GTbGH)

12 5 I blame Alzheimer's. 
Posted by: AllenG (Dedicated Tenther) at June 30, 2011 05:55 PM

How come I get blamed for every wacko statement?

Posted by: Al Zeimer at June 30, 2011 12:59 PM (so1xa)

13 RD,

The Iowahawk link is broken.  I think this is the one you're looking for:

http://iowahawk.typepad.com/iowahawk/2011/03/index.html

Posted by: Rex Harrison's Hat at June 30, 2011 01:00 PM (4136b)

14 Statism is a disease.

The idea that the Federal government deserves more money is in itself a repulsive idea. That the Fed should be involved in redistributing wealth is sickening.

I never really liked Stein. I hope he chokes on his class warfare.

Posted by: weft cut-loop at June 30, 2011 01:00 PM (qaU+h)

15 Beck's online program is only $5./month and he's excited to explore different stuff now. He's pretty creative and I think it's going to be good.

Posted by: mare at June 30, 2011 01:01 PM (A98Xu)

16 Ben Stein is a hack and always has been.  For years he argued vehemently that there was no housing bubble and real estate prices would never ever drop. The few people that ever took him seriously stopped a long time ago.

Posted by: Brian in New Orleans at June 30, 2011 01:02 PM (6an88)

17 Hell he was a speech writer for the most liberal Republican President since the original progressive, Teddy Roosevelt and the second one wasn't much better.

Posted by: Vic at June 30, 2011 01:02 PM (M9Ie6)

18 I tend to agree with Vic, he's never struck me as particularly Conservative, just a reasonably reliable Republican who has vaguely conservative stances most of the time, but probably doesn't actually care so long as he's being fed and paid enough attention to.

Posted by: Fake Ace at June 30, 2011 01:02 PM (lT0LC)

19
Win Tax Ben Stein's Money

Posted by: Dr. Varno at June 30, 2011 01:03 PM (QMtmy)

20 Leave me alone while I enjoy my beautiful wife and doggie at my Beverly Hills home and the one in Malibu and the one in Palm Springs.

Posted by: Ben Stein at June 30, 2011 01:03 PM (Xm1aB)

21 Not to sound like Charles Johnson, but Stein has been a crank ever since he made an entire movie extolling the merits of teaching creationism in science classes.

Posted by: Rod Rescueman at June 30, 2011 01:03 PM (HwE/1)

22 I've been a Ben Stein fan for years, but he seems to have gone off the reservation, and increasingly goes just batshit when interviewed. 

He's lost his goddam mind.

Posted by: tangonine at June 30, 2011 01:03 PM (x3YFz)

23

I recall that he had a  creationism advocacy movie a couple of years back. Neither here nor there, I suppose.

A few other possible processes. (1) Early-stage dementia. (2) He's never had the supposed business/economic chops anyway; instead he's always acted to occupy some niche franchise of public perception. (3) Drugs.

Posted by: Wm T Sherman at June 30, 2011 01:03 PM (w41GQ)

24 Ben Stein has always been an annoying buffoon.  When he's been right, it's by accident.

Posted by: sandy burger at June 30, 2011 01:03 PM (XyoGP)

25 I think you mean Kahn, not Khan.... He's no relation of mine.

Posted by: Jordan at June 30, 2011 01:03 PM (4z6KA)

26 (3) Drugs.

He ODed on Clear Eyes? 

Posted by: Kratos (Ghost of Sparta) at June 30, 2011 01:04 PM (c0A3e)

27 A "smart" guy who thinks that giving more money to a bloated, inefficient, wasteful government is a good idea is ridiculous. He really must be going through something. Antidepressants? Booze? Don't know.

Posted by: mare at June 30, 2011 01:04 PM (A98Xu)

28 When that pussy Stein has trouble buying diapers and milk for his children because the checking account is overdrawn to pay the light bill, then the little no-callouses thimble-fucker can start lecturing me about how harmless taxes are.

These elite eggheads are too busy sniffing each others' asses in a circle in some Manhattan apartment to realize that the common man isn't looking to them for anything. Not advice, not help, not a damn thing.
Shut the fuck up and go read your fuckin New Yorker magazine on the balcony you candy-ass.



Posted by: sifty at June 30, 2011 01:04 PM (gYuf3)

29 He is angling for an MFM gig.

Posted by: t-bird at June 30, 2011 01:04 PM (FcR7P)

30 Oh, the Iowahawk link is correct but it's been pasted twice into the href.

http://bit.ly/kGnyJe

But the video of Whittle is just as apropos.

Posted by: Rex Harrison's Hat at June 30, 2011 01:04 PM (4136b)

31 Oh. and your link is fucked.  Cleveland Clinic "we grow bone?" 

seriously.  I tried that line on the wife this morning and it didn't work.

Police yer webs and such.

Posted by: tangonine at June 30, 2011 01:05 PM (x3YFz)

32

He is always making this same ridiculous assertion, and he makes it because he is an Academic and a (Republican) Progressive.

Posted by: garrett at June 30, 2011 01:05 PM (XOK/H)

33 I once liked Ben as he seemed to have a feel for a lot of conservative concepts.  Unfortunately, I think he must have severe personal problems that have clouded his judgment to such an extent that he is completely irrational and not worth listening to for any reason.
"Everybody in my neighborhood is rich except poor me" is a cry for help in my book.

Posted by: Hrothgar at June 30, 2011 01:05 PM (yrGif)

34 It is a  good question. 

I use to love Stein's columns in American Spectator, now he is fucking crazy.

I am sort of worried that something is going on with his personal life that is screwing up his logic.

Like he lost a lot of shit with Bernie?  He is a Joo and might have be an investor.

It is sad.  It is almost like he is on crack.

He still loves the troops.  I'll pray he gets right.

Posted by: Sweede at June 30, 2011 01:05 PM (AfrXc)

35 Or maybe he thinks that "the rich" can recover what they lose from that hypothetical 10 or 15% surcharge by going on Win Ben Stein's Money.

Posted by: Kratos (Ghost of Sparta) at June 30, 2011 01:06 PM (c0A3e)

36 What about that little inconvenient truth that no matter how high marginal rates have been in the past up to 90%, there has never been taxes collected more than 20% of GDP (Hauser's Law) so how are we actually going to get more money? Do we just keep forgetting that when we decide to raise taxes? That somehow we will be able to remove more money from the economy than we ever have in the history of income tax? Ben is a smart guy. This is just becoming a punish the rich for being successful screed.

Let me start the meme.

Some say Tax here. Tax now.

WE CAN'T... TAX OUR WAY OUT OF THIS.

Posted by: MikeTheMoose at June 30, 2011 01:06 PM (0q2P7)

37
Ben Stein should stick with playing whack-a-mole and leave the bullshitting to Obama.

Bueller.....Bueller....Bueller?

Posted by: Fish the Impaler at June 30, 2011 01:06 PM (Lt/Za)

38

I used to really respect Ben Stein.  When he got involved with that film that advocated teaching creationism in science classes, a red flag went up.  I wasn't aware of his defense of Strauss-Khan, but if its true it sounds like he's gone overe the edge now.

Too bad for him.

Posted by: Cicero at June 30, 2011 01:06 PM (QKKT0)

39 OT...

Schumer: "Now is the time to ask. Are Republicans slowing down the economy on purpose for political gains in 2012"

MSNBC: "I think Schumer is right"

Posted by: Cherry π at June 30, 2011 01:06 PM (OhYCU)

40 15:

Ace's program is free and doesn't come with a heaping dose of

Teh Crezy.

Posted by: sifty at June 30, 2011 01:06 PM (gYuf3)

41 He used to be such a dependable conservative voice. I can't believe Stein is a crank now.

Actually, he's always been this way. I remember him raving like a lunatic on Phil Donahue's show 25 years ago. I remember it because even though I was just a kid not interested in politics, it was in complete opposition to his mild-mannered, monotonic TV and movie persona.

He's also always been back-and-forth about his positions. He's part of the ruling class, which isn't really conservative or liberal. His main thing is having power over others, which is why he defended DSK. The fact that a mere maid could bring down someone as powerful as DSK is abhorrent to Stein.

He fears losing his own power over the unwashed masses.

Posted by: Llarry at June 30, 2011 01:07 PM (SI/pw)

42

Beck's online program is only $5./month and he's excited to explore different stuff now. He's pretty creative and I think it's going to be good.

 

This reads like a bleg.

Posted by: garrett at June 30, 2011 01:07 PM (XOK/H)

43 His columns in  American Spectator (dead tree version, anyway) always mention his health problems of one type or another.

Posted by: Skookumchuk at June 30, 2011 01:07 PM (btzPD)

44 Uh Ben, we need to have a little talk.

Posted by: American Spectator at June 30, 2011 01:07 PM (Xm1aB)

45 The one thing Stein has done which I've tried my best to copy, is stocking up on incandescent bulbs. 

They'll have to pry them out of my cold, dead hands.

Posted by: Jane D'oh at June 30, 2011 01:07 PM (UOM48)

46 Ben Stein has gone nuts on this progressive tax issue, before.  It seems to be neurological.

Posted by: progressoverpeace at June 30, 2011 01:08 PM (G/MYk)

47

Posted by: Ben Stein at June 30, 2011 06:03 PM (Xm1aB)

Don't forget my little Watergate "apartment" I use only when I am dealing with my friends inside the Beltway

Posted by: Benny Stein at June 30, 2011 01:08 PM (yrGif)

48 He's also always been back-and-forth about his positions. He's part of the ruling class, which isn't really conservative or liberal. His main thing is having power over others, which is why he defended DSK. The fact that a mere maid could bring down someone as powerful as DSK is abhorrent to Stein.

True, if you can't rape the help, what good are they for?

Posted by: Elite Cocktail Partygoer at June 30, 2011 01:08 PM (HwE/1)

49 Thanks for the heads-up, Rex Harrison's Hat.

Posted by: rdbrewer at June 30, 2011 01:09 PM (g1Q6b)

50 hmmm... I love CFL bulbs myself.  When they finally burn out after 5-6 years, I throw them in yards of liberals.

Posted by: Cherry π at June 30, 2011 01:09 PM (OhYCU)

51 34 It is a  good question. 

I use to love Stein's columns in American Spectator, now he is fucking crazy.

I am sort of worried that something is going on with his personal life that is screwing up his logic.

Like he lost a lot of shit with Bernie?  He is a Joo and might have be an investor.

It is sad.  It is almost like he is on crack.

He still loves the troops.  I'll pray he gets right.

Posted by: Sweede at June 30, 2011 06:05 PM (AfrXc)

I'm with you.  I'm asking myself where this guy lost his mind?  He's not stupid, so at what point, and why, did he decide to go bananas?  It's actually quite disconcerting.  and yes, I used "disconcerting" in a sentence without sarcasm.  The world has come to that.

Posted by: tangonine at June 30, 2011 01:09 PM (x3YFz)

52 40 15:

Ace's program is free and doesn't come with a heaping dose of

Teh Crezy.

Posted by: sifty at June 30, 2011 06:06 PM (gYuf3)

speaking of which....where's c------?

Posted by: Jane D'oh at June 30, 2011 01:09 PM (UOM48)

53

he worked on nixon's economic team.

enough said

Posted by: Ben at June 30, 2011 01:09 PM (DKV43)

54 Jane:  Not to sound too much like Insty, but I got a whole bunch from Amazon - a couple hundred.  Nobody else seems to have them in bulk packs - Home Depot, Costco, nobody.

Posted by: Skookumchuk at June 30, 2011 01:09 PM (btzPD)

55 Ben is solid pro-life and solid pro-troops. Everything else is wifey, dogs, houses in Beverly Hills, Malibu, Palm Springs, health problems, bad airline service, etc. He's irrelevant.

Posted by: Dave at June 30, 2011 01:10 PM (Xm1aB)

56 Have Newt and Ben Stein been sharing a spoon?

Posted by: Cicero at June 30, 2011 01:10 PM (QKKT0)

57 Ben Stein is a hack and always has been.  For years he argued vehemently that there was no housing bubble and real estate prices would never ever drop. The few people that ever took him seriously stopped a long time ago.

Fox has some talent from the financial community, and I would not count Stein amongst the top 10. I really enjoy their Saturday morning shows. Wayne Rogers is great as is Jonathan Hoenig (I love that he named his company Capitalist Pig). There are a couple of loonies on there for balance but these guys tend to keep them in check. Of course, my favorite is Cavuto. I'm a serious fangoil.

Posted by: Clueless at June 30, 2011 01:10 PM (piMMO)

58 He also endorsed that asshat Al Franken.  Hard to figure.  Maybe he wants a better table at Morton's (I had dinner with him there years ago).

Posted by: observer at June 30, 2011 01:11 PM (Beb1i)

59 When Zsa Zsa Stein signs a big fat multi-million dollar chunk of his cash over to TurboTim Git-ner, maybe the Give-a-Shitometer will tremble.

Posted by: sifty at June 30, 2011 01:11 PM (gYuf3)

60 Yeah, it's a shame. Ben Stein likes his life, such as it is: gooing to parties and having fun with rich liberals in Hollywood. By this time next year he will be a full-on liberal Obama supporter. Mark my words.  I guess it was just too good to be true. Ben, it was good knowing you.

Posted by: RickS at June 30, 2011 01:11 PM (Kogrf)

61 54 Jane:  Not to sound too much like Insty, but I got a whole bunch from Amazon - a couple hundred.  Nobody else seems to have them in bulk packs - Home Depot, Costco, nobody.

Posted by: Skookumchuk at June 30, 2011 06:09 PM (btzPD)

I'm literally out of storage space for them now.  Can you imagine putting those ugly CFLs in a dining room chandelier?

Posted by: Jane D'oh at June 30, 2011 01:11 PM (UOM48)

62

In life, events tend to follow patterns. People who commit crimes tend to be criminals, for example. Can anyone tell me any economists who have been convicted of violent sex crimes?

 

How bout a doctor who raped babies? Doctor Earl Bradly of De.

Asshat.

Posted by: kdny at June 30, 2011 01:12 PM (C4bBq)

63

Stein's lunacy comes from his insular existence. 

He's the embodiement of what is wrong with Academia.

Posted by: garrett at June 30, 2011 01:12 PM (XOK/H)

64 "Expelled" was when I realised that Stein was not honest. As to why he lies, that doesn't matter much to me. I just know that he does. And now so do you.

Posted by: zimriel at June 30, 2011 01:12 PM (5eXw4)

65 50:

CFL's will go through a Prius window if thrown hard enough.

Posted by: sifty at June 30, 2011 01:12 PM (gYuf3)

66 19
Win Tax Ben Stein's Money
Posted by: Dr. Varno at June 30, 2011 06:03 PM (QMtmy)

... aaaaannnnnnnddddd we're done here1 Next thread!

Posted by: No Whining at June 30, 2011 01:12 PM (7GfKM)

67 What the fuck happened to him?  I don't remember him being this brain damaged. 

Posted by: EC at June 30, 2011 01:13 PM (f4TZ2)

68 Well his dad helped Nixon run the country into debt and he never got into Bethesda Country Club, these facts we know.

Stein has whined about it for years. Hope his stupid dog and son are OK and the next trip he gets driven to works out and he gets good room service.

He a spoiled rotten dickhead, but he loves the troops. 

Posted by: Sweede at June 30, 2011 01:13 PM (AfrXc)

69 Posted by: sifty at June 30, 2011 06:11 PM (gYuf3)
But even in his league, he plays teh class warfare card because HE isn't rich enough to be taxed at the  rate the truly rich deserve.

Posted by: Hrothgar at June 30, 2011 01:13 PM (yrGif)

70 So? Mark Levin ad-hominem-ly attacked just about every conservative talking head on the face of the planet. Yet nobody got wee-weed up on his erratic behavior.

Posted by: Bob Sponge at June 30, 2011 01:13 PM (38pKX)

71 I recall that he had a  creationism advocacy movie a couple of years back. Neither here nor there, I suppose.

I don't think he'd make the creationism argument so strongly now.

Posted by: rdbrewer at June 30, 2011 01:13 PM (g1Q6b)

72 55 Ben is solid pro-life and solid pro-troops.

Everything else is wifey, dogs, houses in Beverly Hills, Malibu, Palm Springs, health problems, bad airline service, etc.

He's irrelevant.

Posted by: Dave at June 30, 2011 06:10 PM (Xm1aB)

Unfortunately, I think you're right.

What's sad is he could have been a solid voice for the Republic, for capitalism, for individual freedom.  But, nope.  Dude went batshit crazy.

Guess it's just us now lol

Posted by: tangonine at June 30, 2011 01:13 PM (x3YFz)

73 Tax Ben Stein's Money Ha ha!

Posted by: Nelson Muntz at June 30, 2011 01:13 PM (4Kl5M)

74 We will not clean Ben Stein's room.

Posted by: Hotel Maids Union at June 30, 2011 01:13 PM (Xm1aB)

75

Heh. Mark Levin has clearly been spending too much time hanging out with World of Warcraft types. He was read a news item as "...for the same reason women put rogue on their faces."

 

Posted by: Anachronda at June 30, 2011 01:13 PM (NmR1a)

76 This happens to alot of republicans/conservatives in the DC crowd. We need new blood to say the least! OMG violent rhetoric!

Posted by: Dan at June 30, 2011 01:14 PM (mXBxH)

77 Jane:  No way.  And my wife hates them even more than I do.  I've got more coming, too...  but the three way bulbs are impossible to buy in any quantity.

Posted by: Skookumchuk at June 30, 2011 01:14 PM (btzPD)

78 he worked on nixon's economic team.

enough said

Indeed.  I'll just leave this here.

"Probably more new regulation was imposed on the economy during the Nixon administration than in any other presidency since the New Deal." -Herbert Stein.

Posted by: Rod Rescueman at June 30, 2011 01:14 PM (HwE/1)

79 The guy always struck me as a bit odd, and I took his so-called conservatism more as a little-boy "fuck you look at me" contrarian position to his more wealthy friends out of envy

Posted by: beedubya at June 30, 2011 01:15 PM (AnTyA)

80 I used to like Peggy Noonan, and back in the day she was quite easy on the eyes, but when she drank the Obama Kool-aid, she lost me.  Her attempt to upchuck the drink last year or so didn't work.  It's like a pot brownie -- if you wait too long, barfing won't work.  I cannot give any credence to anyone who supported Obama (from the right) and now apologizes.  I appreciate the apology, but you sold your soul to the devil and you are not getting it back.

Posted by: SFGoth at June 30, 2011 01:15 PM (dZ756)

81 I never understood the appeal of Stein. I just never cared what he said one way or another. But, yeah, his tone has always been a bit knowitall-ish. Clearly, he doesn't, so I can ignore him with more vigor.

Posted by: AnonymousDrivel at June 30, 2011 01:15 PM (r4t7/)

82 I count Ben and Peggy among my closest friends.

Posted by: Kathleen Parker at June 30, 2011 01:16 PM (Xm1aB)

83 Ben will always be welcome at my hacienda.

Posted by: Chris Buckley at June 30, 2011 01:18 PM (QKKT0)

84 58 He also endorsed that asshat Al Franken.  Hard to figure.  Maybe he wants a better table at Morton's (I had dinner with him there years ago).

Posted by: observer at June 30, 2011 06:11 PM (Beb1i)

That fact, in and of itself, moves him into the permanent category of "Douchebag"

You can never recover from that.  Fucked.  Forever.

Hell, I've been stupid in my lifetime, but i was never that stupid.

Posted by: tangonine at June 30, 2011 01:18 PM (x3YFz)

85

How does this get him into liberal parties?

He said he also believed the theory of evolution leads to racism and ultimately genocide, an idea common among creationist thinkers. If it were up to him, he said, the film would be called “From Darwin to Hitler.”

I guess there's another explanation, but I don't really care what it is.

Posted by: Mama AJ at June 30, 2011 01:18 PM (XdlcF)

86 Stein has been on this kick for a few years. I think his line was, "The rich are rich, that's why they're called 'the rich'" or some such nonsense.
I suspect the Hollywood guiltarhosis, where if you make a bazillion dollars for saying something simple like, for example, "Bueller. Bueller. Bueller," you start feeling like you're somehow cheating.
He should be reminded that charity is always open for gifts, both from himself, and from all his rich friends, and is often a more efficient way of distributing one's wealth than taxes.
Oh, and I also find it amusing that he separates himself from his "rich" friends.

Posted by: Bill at June 30, 2011 01:19 PM (95dvk)

87 What does the left have on Stein?


Posted by: jukin at June 30, 2011 01:19 PM (vkkNZ)

88

He really took a beating for that movie he did in 2008 defending intelligent design.

http://www.imdb.com/title/tt1091617/

Posted by: CozMark at June 30, 2011 01:19 PM (HK4Kc)

89 Not suprising coming from someone who could make a movie as stupid as Expelled.

Posted by: sigh at June 30, 2011 01:19 PM (+mQW9)

90 sifty, sweet. A twofer.

Posted by: Cherry π at June 30, 2011 01:19 PM (OhYCU)

91 I think rdbrewer got it right. DC Cocktail disease. A real shame.

Posted by: Corona at June 30, 2011 01:19 PM (fh2Y7)

92 Remember reading his living in Hollywood pieces in the old American Spectator ( the huge size- good times). To say he was eccentric was being kind. #16. I remember that- very bullish on the housing bubble to the very end. Lot of people buy into this soak the rich, they'll still do business, garbage- the late Mark Haines was the same way.

Posted by: jjshaka at June 30, 2011 01:20 PM (idYra)

93 EVERYONE should pay taxes because everyone benefits and should have a stake in the country.

Posted by: goddessoftheclassroom at June 30, 2011 01:20 PM (3Iwaq)

94 ".......collect some attaboys.."

Sorry, I stopped giving them out, some time back.

Posted by: Mohammed Atta at June 30, 2011 01:20 PM (FVhEi)

95 Someone got a problem with Creationism?

Posted by: God Almighty at June 30, 2011 01:20 PM (Xm1aB)

96

We interrupt this thread for a public service announcement...

 

I FOUND A JOB!   YAY ME!   FINALLY!

 

And it pays almost twice as much as the job I was laid off from.

 

*happy dance*  *happy dance*  *happy dance*

Posted by: Steph at June 30, 2011 01:20 PM (VfTQp)

97 I heard him described as an actor/economist. He is just more comfortable in the actor made these days, I guess.

Posted by: S2 at June 30, 2011 01:21 PM (3rwFl)

98 It's amazing to me how many people quit maturing after high school. Just going by this article Mr. Stein still wants to hang with the cool kids and will do and say anything, whether he contradicts himself or not, just to hang with them. Keep in mind I have, did, like Mr Stein and his arguments. Hell, I even went to see his movie about evolution; BTW good movie and anybody who wants to here the intelligent design stance should go see. All I can say now is WTF and who can we(conservatives) trust.

Posted by: Midnight Clad at June 30, 2011 01:21 PM (Qbs3S)

99 Ben's father was Chairman of the Council  of Economic Advisers under Nixon.  Ben only got taken on as a speechwriter during the last days of the Nixon admin because of Daddy

Herbert Stein was one of those sorta neo-con 'govt spending is okay, but not too much' middle-road dudes who could tailor their message for either Rs or Dems

Ben has always had some serious personal and health problems, and I think the strain and age have worn him down a lot

Posted by: SantaRosaStan, who didn't invest in Krone at June 30, 2011 01:21 PM (UqKQV)

100 Funny, all those rich corporations with money out the wazoo just keep moving offshore to save on taxes...

Posted by: Stein is Alzheimerish at June 30, 2011 01:21 PM (wOaLi)

101 Stein argued in this clip that the massively high tax rates of the 1950's had no impact on our economic growth.

This is a deeply dishonest statement that leftists use all the time. Investment guru Charles Payne has proven time and again that the highest tax rates of the 1950s applied to only a tiny handful of people.

The economic model of today bears almost no resemblance to the 1950s. The vast majority of jobs--over 70 percent--are created by small business owners who technically make over $250,000 a year but who will be massacred if we adopt the tax rates the Democrats want.

Stein is either a liar or an idiot.

Posted by: Llarry at June 30, 2011 01:21 PM (SI/pw)

102 Someone got a problem with Creationism?

Just a few of us.

Posted by: The Dinosaurs at June 30, 2011 01:21 PM (HwE/1)

103 Does anyone remember his column about how he loved to sit in his pool in CA and who cool he was?  Or the column about how cool it was to be in Idaho on the lake with his cool boat?  Or how nice "insert speaking group here" the little people he met in bum fuck "insert state here" were? Or his fucking dog?

He is an elitist  asshole.  Shit he grew up the son of one of the most powerful economist in the world, did he mention they had a condo at the Watergate?

Yes he does every fucking month.

We put up with him for years because he loves the troops.

Hope he gets off the crack or Kool Aid.

Posted by: Sweede at June 30, 2011 01:22 PM (AfrXc)

104 Is he really trying to say he lives in the equivalent of a double-wide among a bunch of mansions?  Are we really supposed to believe all his neighbors are rich...but he's not?  And yet, he lives in their neighborhood? 

Also, I vote for syphilis, rather than Alzheimer's.

Posted by: Laura Castellano at June 30, 2011 01:22 PM (fuw6p)

105 I think about Ben Stein the same way I think about Andrew Sullivan: Thank God he's their embarrassment now, not ours.

Posted by: Cerebral Paul Z. at June 30, 2011 01:22 PM (XpM53)

106 Congrats, Steph! Strippers and blow for the house! Steph's buyin'!

Posted by: Empire of Jeff at June 30, 2011 01:22 PM (lbo6/)

107

Oh, the link for my quote. At Reason.com.

Shut up and sing, indeed.

Posted by: Mama AJ at June 30, 2011 01:23 PM (XdlcF)

108 95

We interrupt this thread for a public service announcement...

 

I FOUND A JOB!   YAY ME!   FINALLY!

 

And it pays almost twice as much as the job I was laid off from.

 

*happy dance*  *happy dance*  *happy dance*

Posted by: Steph at June 30, 2011 06:20 PM (VfTQp)

congratulations, Steph!  Get out there and make that $$!  Happy for you


Posted by: tangonine at June 30, 2011 01:23 PM (x3YFz)

109 Did someone say blow and strippers?

Posted by: Barry Obama at June 30, 2011 01:23 PM (Xm1aB)

110 .....and he apparently got frakked big time in the L.A. real estate bubble of the early 80s.  Bought at the peak, listened to fools, lost all his $$$$, etc

that can frak you up, man

Posted by: SantaRosaStan, not with a bang but a whimper at June 30, 2011 01:23 PM (UqKQV)

111 Since when is the amount one can afford the guideline for how much tax is due?

It is as if one says "how much are my taxes?" and the government replies "how much do you have?".

NO.  WRONG ANSWER.

Posted by: crosspatch at June 30, 2011 01:23 PM (AdYoA)

112 He's a Nixonian Republican (the people who brought you the DEA, war on drugs, and the EPA). Do I need to say more?

Posted by: kbiel at June 30, 2011 01:23 PM (LdAWK)

113 102 Someone got a problem with Creationism?

Just a few of us.

Posted by: The Dinosaurs at June 30, 2011 06:21 PM (HwE/1)

shut up. you're dead.

Posted by: The Asteroid at June 30, 2011 01:24 PM (x3YFz)

114 95

We interrupt this thread for a public service announcement...

 

I FOUND A JOB!   YAY ME!   FINALLY!

 

And it pays almost twice as much as the job I was laid off from.

 

*happy dance*  *happy dance*  *happy dance*

Posted by: Steph at June 30, 2011 06:20 PM (VfTQp)


Yay!

Posted by: Jane D'oh at June 30, 2011 01:24 PM (UOM48)

115 Congratulations, Steph. 

Posted by: Kratos (Ghost of Sparta) at June 30, 2011 01:25 PM (c0A3e)

116 I FOUND A JOB!   YAY ME!   FINALLY!

And it pays almost twice as much as the job I was laid off from.

Couldn't you have waited until 2013?

Posted by: John Galt at June 30, 2011 01:25 PM (HwE/1)

117 95
I FOUND A JOB!   YAY ME!   FINALLY!
And it pays almost twice as much as the job I was laid off from.
*happy dance*  *happy dance*  *happy dance*
Posted by: Steph at June 30, 2011 06:20 PM (VfTQp)

So, let's see ... that's 2 jobs created ...

Congratulations and good luck!

Posted by: No Whining at June 30, 2011 01:25 PM (7GfKM)

118

I really was beginning to get worried, but this job is perfect.   It's in the same industry and I got it because people knew of my reputation.   Plus, they are direct competition to my old company, and my old company were asshats.

So, that makes it all the more sweet.

I think I'll get drunk!

Posted by: Steph at June 30, 2011 01:26 PM (VfTQp)

119 He was using that same tone of condescending certainty in the Spring of '08 when he was talking about how ridiculously cheap Merrill and Lehman and BofA and assorted other financial stocks were.

The only thing he has ever done as an economist to distinguish himself is to appear on TV. If you get on TV and say stupid shit in an entertaining way, you can keep appearing on TV and stupid people will think you're smart.

Posted by: Ted Kennedy's Gristle Encased Head at June 30, 2011 01:26 PM (+lsX1)

120 What do dinosaurs have to do with creationism?  Did I miss a verse? On the 8th day...

Posted by: Cherry π at June 30, 2011 01:26 PM (OhYCU)

121

When do you start?

The job, not the getting drunk. Cuz by the time I hit post...

Posted by: Mama AJ at June 30, 2011 01:26 PM (XdlcF)

122 Good job, Steph.


Posted by: sifty at June 30, 2011 01:27 PM (gYuf3)

123 Stein argued in this clip that the massively high tax rates of the 1950's had no impact on our economic growth.

This is a deeply dishonest statement that leftists use all the time. Investment guru Charles Payne has proven time and again that the highest tax rates of the 1950s applied to only a tiny handful of people.

The economic model of today bears almost no resemblance to the 1950s. The vast majority of jobs--over 70 percent--are created by small business owners who technically make over $250,000 a year but who will be massacred if we adopt the tax rates the Democrats want.

Stein is either a liar or an idiot.

Posted by: Llarry at June 30, 2011 06:21 PM (SI/pw)

And in the 1950s, we were the only industrial powerhouse around.  After WWII, there was no one else left, really, and everyone needed to be totally repaired.

Posted by: progressoverpeace at June 30, 2011 01:27 PM (G/MYk)

124 I've observed this about Obama as well: Stein has always been around people who are significantly richer than he is.  If you go through Obama's history, it's abundantly true and Obama developed a pretty strong level of resentment because of it. I think this is true of Stein also. He has a bit of a cocktail-party circuit of his own, a little bit of Hollywood and a little bit of Wall Street and I don't think I'm going out on a limb guessing that they all out-earn Stein with his credit report commercials and Fox Business gig.

I think it's more than a little bit of resentment on his part.  He clearly doesn't see himself as super-rich.  I think he also has developed this argument style over the years on any issue.

Posted by: AmishDude at June 30, 2011 01:27 PM (T0NGe)

125 118

I really was beginning to get worried, but this job is perfect.   It's in the same industry and I got it because people knew of my reputation.   Plus, they are direct competition to my old company, and my old company were asshats.

So, that makes it all the more sweet.

I think I'll get drunk!

Posted by: Steph at June 30, 2011 06:26 PM (VfTQp)


brb, sendin' IRS note to audit this chick next year

Posted by: Dick Bama at June 30, 2011 01:28 PM (UOM48)

126

And it pays almost twice as much as the job I was laid off from.

 *happy dance*  *happy dance*  *happy dance*

Posted by: Steph at June 30, 2011 06:20 PM (VfTQp)

Well done, Steph...well done!!!

Posted by: Tami at June 30, 2011 01:28 PM (X6akg)

127 Strippers and blow for the house! Steph's buyin'!

Posted by: Empire of Jeff at June 30, 2011 06:22 PM (lbo6/)

Maybe we should check to make sure it isn't a stripper job first.

Posted by: Cicero at June 30, 2011 01:28 PM (QKKT0)

128 112 He's a Nixonian Republican (the people who brought you the DEA, war on drugs, and the EPA). Do I need to say more?
///
Yes, like Nixon instituted wage & price controls and wanted to create national health insurance.  Oh, and Nixon crapped out on Linebacker II.

Posted by: SFGoth at June 30, 2011 01:28 PM (dZ756)

129 Posted by: Steph at June 30, 2011 06:20 PM (VfTQp)

Congrats, Steph!

Posted by: progressoverpeace at June 30, 2011 01:28 PM (G/MYk)

130

When do you start?

The job, not the getting drunk. Cuz by the time I hit post...

Posted by: Mama AJ at June 30, 2011 06:26 PM (XdlcF)

Not until the 11th, but they're sending me the employment contract in the mail, and I'll be getting the ole piss test next week.   Gotta study up for that, you know.

Posted by: Steph at June 30, 2011 01:29 PM (VfTQp)

131 118

I really was beginning to get worried, but this job is perfect.   It's in the same industry and I got it because people knew of my reputation.   Plus, they are direct competition to my old company, and my old company were asshats.

So, that makes it all the more sweet.

I think I'll get drunk!

Posted by: Steph at June 30, 2011 06:26 PM (VfTQp)

I'm happy for you, and I understand your enthusiasm, but every time I've said those words it ended with a chick with a tattoo or a fight, or both.


Good luck!

Posted by: The Asteroid at June 30, 2011 01:29 PM (x3YFz)

132 Well done, Steph.

Posted by: AmishDude at June 30, 2011 01:29 PM (T0NGe)

133 It's probably been asserted, but I'm guessing Mr. Stein sent a twitter pic of little ben to someone he shouldn't have. and this is the ramification of being easily blackmailed. Or, not.

Posted by: shivas Irons at June 30, 2011 01:29 PM (qu2SW)

134 I FOUND A JOB!   YAY ME!   FINALLY!

You're welcome.

Posted by: Barack, focusing like a laser on job creation at June 30, 2011 01:30 PM (+lsX1)

135

Congratulations Steph! Very good news.

Posted by: Stateless Infidel at June 30, 2011 01:31 PM (GKQDR)

136

 Gotta study up for that, you know.

I really need to turn off the mental image feature of my brain before reading this blog.

Posted by: Mama AJ at June 30, 2011 01:31 PM (XdlcF)

137 3.) The prosecutors say that Mr. Strauss-Kahn "forced" the complainant to have oral and other sex with him. How? Did he have a gun? Did he have a knife? He's a short fat old man.


Umm....Stein's statement here is kinda disturbing and weird. 

Posted by: Jane D'oh at June 30, 2011 01:31 PM (UOM48)

138 Way to go, Steph!

Posted by: Laura Castellano at June 30, 2011 01:31 PM (fuw6p)

139 brb, updating the "jobs created or saved" figures

Posted by: Baracky O' at June 30, 2011 01:32 PM (HwE/1)

140

Thanks everybody.    Wow, what a relief.    I feel so fortunate considering how this economy looks like it may be taking another dump.

Oh, and it's not a stripper job.   Tits ain't big enough. 

Posted by: Steph at June 30, 2011 01:32 PM (VfTQp)

141 I wasn't aware of his defense of Strauss-Khan, but if its true it sounds like he's gone overe the edge now.

Too bad for him.

Posted by: Cicero at June 30, 2011 06:06 PM

Have you been listening, your excellency?

Posted by: Capt Ben Stein, USS Reliant at June 30, 2011 01:32 PM (so1xa)

142 Remember when Stein ridiculed Peter Schiff over Merrill Lynch? I do.

Posted by: lowandslow at June 30, 2011 01:32 PM (hk0dE)

143

You are hereby warned that any effort to solicit customers of the Asshat Co. or otherwise exploit confidential information to which you were exposed during your tenure as an Asshat employee will be treated as a violation of state law and of the terms of your employment here at Asshat.

Posted by: The Asshat Group at June 30, 2011 01:32 PM (QKKT0)

144 Barky: "How did we let a conservative get a job?"

Posted by: Cherry π at June 30, 2011 01:32 PM (OhYCU)

145 Why doesn't he just ask his super-rich buddies to pay more voluntarily?

Posted by: rdbrewer at June 30, 2011 01:32 PM (g1Q6b)

146 Short, fat old men can no longer be accused of rape?

Hasn't Ben Stein seen Last Tango in Paris?



Posted by: sifty at June 30, 2011 01:33 PM (gYuf3)

147 137 3.) The prosecutors say that Mr. Strauss-Kahn "forced" the complainant to have oral and other sex with him. How? Did he have a gun? Did he have a knife? He's a short fat old man.


Umm....Stein's statement here is kinda disturbing and weird.
///
Yeah, well, one day I'll be a short fat old man and I damn well intend to be able to force a lass to have oral and other sex with me, esp. the other kind.

How's that for disturbing and weird?  (note, not that I will, but I'll be able to)

Posted by: SFGoth at June 30, 2011 01:33 PM (dZ756)

148 Tits ain't big enough

will. not. get. banned....

Posted by: Cherry π at June 30, 2011 01:33 PM (OhYCU)

149

I'll be getting the ole piss test next week.   Gotta study up for that, you know.

Posted by: Steph at June 30, 2011 06:29 PM (VfTQp)

Lotta water before hand, mix in a spoon of salt if you can handle it, a b-complex vitamin to color up the urine, and maybe some creatine pills a few days beforehand. The amount of effort depends on how much you need to clean out.


And congrats.

Posted by: mugiwara at June 30, 2011 01:34 PM (KI/Ch)

150 BTW, I've always thought Ben Stein was a great guy, but he's burning-up the goodwill at an astounding rate right now.

Posted by: rdbrewer at June 30, 2011 01:34 PM (g1Q6b)

151 Fox just said Jay "Opie" Carney called MSNBC to complain about Halperin's dick comment.

I'll bet Dicky "Thin-Skinned" O'Barky was fit to be tied.

Posted by: Jane D'oh at June 30, 2011 01:34 PM (UOM48)

152 I think Stein's ultra-wealthy liberal friend's cocktail parties have Orion slave girls.

Posted by: Stateless Infidel at June 30, 2011 01:34 PM (GKQDR)

153 I'm still trying to figure out how "progressive" income taxation doesn't violate equal protection.

Posted by: Ken at June 30, 2011 01:34 PM (fFh95)

154 113 - Oh, God, I'm dying laughing here.  That is the funny.

Posted by: Dave in Fla at June 30, 2011 01:35 PM (cSkZ5)

155

You are hereby warned that any effort to solicit customers of the Asshat Co. or otherwise exploit confidential information to which you were exposed during your tenure as an Asshat employee will be treated as a violation of state law and of the terms of your employment here at Asshat.

Posted by: The Asshat Group at June 30, 2011 06:32 PM (QKKT0)

Too bad for you Asshat Group.   The terms of my non-compete are null and void.    Suck it.

Posted by: Steph at June 30, 2011 01:35 PM (VfTQp)

156 That advert of him sittin' on a park bench surrounded by squirrels is perfect.No wonder AmSpec is tits up. Sorry Stacy.

Posted by: the Charlie Daniels of the torque wrench at June 30, 2011 01:35 PM (le5qc)

157 152:

Naw.

Fleur de Lis.

Posted by: sifty at June 30, 2011 01:36 PM (gYuf3)

158 2Alzheimer's.

Posted by: Alice's Clone Army at June 30, 2011 05:55 PM (wDzxx)

Sorry to say this, but Alice nailed it.  We just buried my father in-law after a 3 year bout with altzheimer's.  He was as sharp as ever, but it turned him into a raging asshole.  He burned through a lifetime of good karma in 3 years.  Toward the end, when he wasn't sleeping, he was trying to beat up anything he could see.  If Ben has started any aggressive incidents in the past few months, he needs to get checked out.

Posted by: HoundOfDoom at June 30, 2011 01:36 PM (KhioZ)

159 151 Fox just said Jay "Opie" Carney called MSNBC to complain about Halperin's dick comment.

I'll bet Dicky "Thin-Skinned" O'Barky was fit to be tied.
Posted by: Jane D'oh at June 30, 2011 06:34 PM

He's a fuckin' stutterin' prick if ya ask me!

Posted by: Tommy DeVito at June 30, 2011 01:36 PM (so1xa)

160

Lotta water before hand, mix in a spoon of salt if you can handle it, a b-complex vitamin to color up the urine, and maybe some creatine pills a few days beforehand. The amount of effort depends on how much you need to clean out.


And congrats.

Posted by: mugiwara at June 30, 2011 06:34 PM (KI/Ch)

Good advice ... but I wouldn't go through the hassle.  Just send a jpg image of your piss with a note from your mom saying it's clean.  Worked for me.

Posted by: King Barry The Magnaniminimous at June 30, 2011 01:36 PM (G/MYk)

161 The disturbing part about Ben Stein is you KNOW he's a smart guy... so when he says stupid shit you just furrow your brow and shake your head, wondering what in the crap is he thinking?

But he's been so wrong so much so recently that I just dismiss him now.  It's sad.  I'd have thought better of the guy.  But you can't be that stupid and get away with it..

Sorry, Ben.  You're expelled.

Posted by: The Asteroid at June 30, 2011 01:36 PM (x3YFz)

162 I think it's more than a little bit of resentment on his part.  He clearly doesn't see himself as super-rich.

I used to be a music journalist in L.A. I went to tons of parties and got to know some extremely wealthy people. Some of the houses I went to were beyond belief.

Never once was I jealous. Their wealth had nothing to do with my choice to pursue a writing career. I was extremely lucky in that my brother let me live rent free in one of his houses, so I was able to interview musicians until there weren't any more worth talking to or about.

Still a struggling writer all these years later, and I still can't bring myself to resent the rich. Sure, it's a little gross to see $10 million spent to wed Kim Kardashian's giant ass to a basketball player, since we all know that they'll split up in three years, but think of all the people who can feed their kids because of Kim's giant ass.

The rich do far more good than harm, even when they're not trying. 

Posted by: Llarry at June 30, 2011 01:37 PM (SI/pw)

163 Oh, I've socked myself.

Posted by: tangonine at June 30, 2011 01:38 PM (x3YFz)

164 In "Ferris Bueller's Day Off" Ben Stein's boring lecture was all about the Laffer curve.

Posted by: Mindy at June 30, 2011 01:38 PM (FCHcJ)

165 tangonine should check his socks.

Posted by: Rod Rescueman at June 30, 2011 01:39 PM (HwE/1)

166 Ben Stein has a bad case of wealthy liberal elite cocktail party disease, Potomac fever for rich people. It's worse even than Peggy Noonan's.
Birdbrain flu.

Posted by: andycanuck at June 30, 2011 01:39 PM (vtqbC)

167
Hasn't Ben Stein seen Last Tango in Paris?

Get the butta.

Posted by: Clueless at June 30, 2011 01:40 PM (piMMO)

168 165 tangonine should check his socks.

Posted by: Rod Rescueman at June 30, 2011 06:39 PM (HwE/1)

yeah.  I'm not the sharpest tool in the bowling alley.

Posted by: tangonine at June 30, 2011 01:40 PM (x3YFz)

169

think of all the people who can feed their kids because of Kim's giant ass

Ya know, I really wasn't planning on drinking tonight, but it's starting to sound better and better.

Posted by: Mama AJ at June 30, 2011 01:40 PM (XdlcF)

170 NBC news, right now, China's new high speed rail. Why is America on the slow track? 2 reports. On now!

Posted by: Stateless Infidel at June 30, 2011 01:40 PM (GKQDR)

171 I'm still trying to figure out how "progressive" income taxation doesn't violate equal protection.

Because of the 16th amendment wording and liberal courts.

I have often wondered why "sin taxes" don't violate equal protection.

Posted by: Vic at June 30, 2011 01:40 PM (M9Ie6)

172 156, C.Daniels of the Torque Wrench:  Is AmSpec really TU?

Posted by: Skookumchuk at June 30, 2011 01:41 PM (btzPD)

173 Rocky Mountain potted fever?

Posted by: andycanuck at June 30, 2011 01:42 PM (vtqbC)

174 NBC news, right now, China's new high speed rail. Why is America on the slow track? 2 reports. On now!

When you can just fly to any city in China from any city in China for less than $500, then I'll be impressed.

Posted by: Southwest Airlines at June 30, 2011 01:43 PM (HwE/1)

175 Ya know, I really wasn't planning on drinking tonight, but it's starting to sound better and better.

Let's raise our glasses to Kim Kardashian's giant, 100-percent real, super-wealthy, involuntarily altruistic ass.

Prosit!

Posted by: Llarry at June 30, 2011 01:43 PM (SI/pw)

176 Sounds to me like Stein is just being a contrarian.

Posted by: Trimegistus at June 30, 2011 01:43 PM (Dq8iG)

177 Should have been a heads-up to everyone that he's a long-time PETA member.

Posted by: RNB at June 30, 2011 01:43 PM (WkjqG)

178 Dear sweet Lord.  Michelle at a fundraiser in Boston today:

First lady Michelle Obama today spoke in very frank and personal terms to a Massachusetts audience as she described her conversion to a political wife, as well as the toll President Obama’s job takes on him each day.

“I see the worry creasing his face. I hear the passion and determination in his voice. ‘You won’t believe what these folks are going through;’ he told me that last night. ‘Michelle, it is not right. We’ve got to fix this. We have to do more,’” she said during a visit to Boston for a fund-raiser on behalf of the Democratic National Committee.

“Barack always reminds me that we are playing a long game,” she added, replicating her husband’s call for patience amid the country’s slow emergence from a recession. “He reminds me, as I said to you, too, that change is slow. He reminds me that change doesn’t happen all at once, but that if we keep showing up, if we keep fighting the good fight, doing what we know is right, then eventually we will get there, because the truth is we always have in this country. We always have.”

Like her husband did a day earlier during a White House news conference, the first lady evoked the image of their two daughters, Malia and Sasha, as she tried to stir Democratic supporters.

“The truth is that no matter what happens, my girls will be OK. My girls will have plenty of advantages and opportunities in their lives. And that’s probably true for many of your kids as well,” she told a largely female audience of about 125 people gathered at the Chestnut Hill home of philanthropists and Democratic activists Elaine and Gerald Schuster.


Posted by: Jane D'oh at June 30, 2011 01:44 PM (UOM48)

179 NBC news, right now, China's new high speed rail. Why is America on the slow track? 2 reports. On now!

Let me know if they tell of how almost nobody can afford to take the damned thing. That's what the last report I saw had to say about it.

Posted by: Clueless at June 30, 2011 01:44 PM (piMMO)

180

“I see the worry creasing his face. I hear the passion and determination in his voice."

In spite of all that passion, he'll never break 90.

Posted by: Cicero at June 30, 2011 01:47 PM (QKKT0)

181

“I see the worry creasing his face. I hear the passion and determination in his voice. ‘You won’t believe what these folks are going through;’ he told me that last night. ‘Michelle, it is not right. We’ve got to fix this. We have to do more,’” she said during a visit to Boston for a fund-raiser on behalf of the Democratic National Committee.

Posted by: Jane D'oh at June 30, 2011 06:44 PM (UOM4

The only thing that man is worried about is getting re-elected, and I plan to do everything I possibly can to worry his ass right out of a job.

Posted by: Steph at June 30, 2011 01:48 PM (VfTQp)

182 ‘You won’t believe what these folks are going through;’ he told me that last night. ‘Michelle, it is not right. We’ve got to fix this. We have to do more,’”

No Dick, really, please.  You've done enough.  Just.Stop.

Posted by: Jane D'oh at June 30, 2011 01:48 PM (UOM48)

183

Posted by: Clueless at June 30, 2011 06:44 PM (piMMO)

Nah, of course they didn't.

But it did say high-speed rail, while costing billions of dollars could create hundreds of thousands of jobs!!!

Too bad about that squandered $5 Trillion over the last few years. Hey, I wonder how many jobs 10 nuclear power plants would have created? Bad idea, all that cheap energy...

Posted by: Stateless Infidel at June 30, 2011 01:48 PM (GKQDR)

184 Stein didn't even try to support his argument. He just said that taxes had been higher at this time or that time or under president whosis. A decent argument would take into account GDP growth, inflation, debt, dollar strength etc.; not just "taxes were higher once upon a time." It is obvious rdbrewer is right on here. I've seen Stein play the same music on the Sunday financial shows for quite a while now. He doesn't have much of a career anymore so his only celebrity rush is to hang out at parties.

Posted by: er at June 30, 2011 01:49 PM (mexsR)

185 Supposedly only two high speed rail lines make money:  Shinkansen Tokyo-Osaka and TGV Paris-Lyon.  But who knows how they calculate "making money?"  Maybe operating costs only?

Posted by: Skookumchuk at June 30, 2011 01:49 PM (btzPD)

186 Cleveland Clinic "we grow bone?" 

You mean the The Des Moines Institute? We're familiar with it.

Posted by: Not Drinking Nearly Enough at June 30, 2011 01:51 PM (JEvSn)

187 New name is "Ben Johnson."

Posted by: V5 at June 30, 2011 01:55 PM (jaTaa)

188 Ben Stein : More vocal talent than Yoko, funnier than Bill Maher.

Posted by: Rubber Neeple Salesman at June 30, 2011 01:55 PM (yOSrQ)

189 OT but so sweet:

A second boat destined to take part in the Gaza blockade-running effort has had its propeller cut off as it sat at a dock in Turkey.

The "activists" who were going to sail to Gaza will now have to sit it out. They're calling the sabotage of their stupid little boats "Israeli underwater terrorist attacks." Waaaaaaaaaaaaaa!

The Israelis also managed to either bug the room where the "activist" leaders met in secret, or--even more impressive--infiltrate the group, because the IDF has released the "activist" plans to throw bags of sulfur on any commando who storms the boats.

The IDF commandos need to be armed with machine guns and grenades this time. If sulfur is thrown, the boats need to be sunk.

Posted by: Llarry at June 30, 2011 01:56 PM (SI/pw)

190 I've always like Stein but I don't think he was the same after the Times canned him for that trumped up ethics charge for appearing in commercials for that credit report place.  The New York Times waving an ethics flag, now that's crap.

Posted by: scr_north at June 30, 2011 01:57 PM (dDBiX)

191 Cocaine is a Hell of a drug.

Posted by: Merovign, Dark Lord of the Sith at June 30, 2011 01:57 PM (bxiXv)

192 Maybe I'll just skip the rest of the school year.

Posted by: Ferris Bueller at June 30, 2011 01:57 PM (XRCmy)

193 95

We interrupt this thread for a public service announcement...

I FOUND A JOB!   YAY ME!   FINALLY!

And it pays almost twice as much as the job I was laid off from.

*happy dance*  *happy dance*  *happy dance*

Posted by: Steph at June 30, 2011 06:20 PM (VfTQp)

Congratulations, and good for you!

Posted by: museisluse at June 30, 2011 01:58 PM (Y3n3D)

194 Wow, thanks for the positive comments about Joe Miller!  They are much appreciated by his supporters....

Posted by: 8starsnorth at June 30, 2011 01:58 PM (MTbIn)

195 New name is "Ben Johnson."

Ben Sullivan is funnier.  They try to impress the same people.  Charles only cares about his sycophantic worshipers.

Posted by: Rod Rescueman at June 30, 2011 01:58 PM (HwE/1)

196 Brian Williams on NBC news just called Canadians 'well-behaved'. I don't think I've ever heard that adjective used to desribe a country's citizens before. "Oh, those Palestinians, they're so well-behaved!"

Posted by: Stateless Infidel at June 30, 2011 02:00 PM (GKQDR)

197 I'm actually watching the Beck thing now. Kinda fascinating business model. Adam Corolla is doing the same thing with his web radio show.

I'm skeptical and I think he'll be much less influential with many fewer viewers, but who knows. Dude is a force of personality.

Great thing about cable tv is you get a piece of every person's monthly bill, even if they don't watch. Tens of millions of liberals pay a monthly fee to FNC as part of their cable bill. MSNBC gets a slice of every right-wingers cable bill.

With GBTV, Beck will only get money from people who subscribe to his site.

Posted by: Clubber Lang at June 30, 2011 02:01 PM (QcFbt)

198 Save us from the Casey Anthony trial!  Please!  Fry the bitch and be done, and hopefully no more Anthony's will breed.

Now Mr. Anthony's whore is spilling her guts.  No words.

Posted by: Jane D'oh at June 30, 2011 02:03 PM (UOM48)

199

We interrupt this thread for a public service announcement...

 I FOUND A JOB!   YAY ME!   FINALLY!

 nd it pays almost twice as much as the job I was laid off from.

 *happy dance*  *happy dance*  *happy dance*

Posted by: Steph at June 30, 2011 06:20 PM (VfTQp

Oh, fuck yeah! That's a beautiful thing. Congrats!!!

Posted by: beedubya at June 30, 2011 02:05 PM (AnTyA)

200 Anthony's will breed.

Jeebus, I'm getting sloppy with the punctuation.  Sorry.  Heroin is a hell of a drug.

Posted by: Jane D'oh at June 30, 2011 02:05 PM (UOM48)

201 Now Mr. Anthony's whore is spilling her guts.  No words.

She didn't make for the most credible witness.

Posted by: Clueless at June 30, 2011 02:05 PM (piMMO)

202 Save us from the Casey Anthony trial!  Please!  Fry the bitch and be done, and hopefully no more Anthony's will breed.

Now Mr. Anthony's whore is spilling her guts.  No words.

Posted by: Jane D'oh at June 30, 2011 07:03 PM (UOM4

I am so sick of that shit.   Everyone knows she did it, and that crap claim her lawyers came up with about being sexually abused by her father as if it would be some kind of justification for murdering that baby girl is pure horseshit.

I hope she fries.

Posted by: Steph at June 30, 2011 02:05 PM (VfTQp)

203

 "Israeli underwater terrorist attacks."

Obama will soon switch from blaming Bush to blaming those.

Or claim he's been busy with bin Laden, Greece and fighting off the IUTAs.

Uh huh.

Posted by: Mama AJ at June 30, 2011 02:06 PM (XdlcF)

204 Congrats Steph!

Time to celebrate. At the stroke of 9:00 eastern, we'll all raise our glasses to you.

Posted by: Clueless at June 30, 2011 02:07 PM (piMMO)

205 New name is "Ben Johnson."
Ben Sullivan is funnier.  They try to impress the same people.  Charles only cares about his sycophantic worshipers.
Stupid on steroids.

Posted by: andycanuck at June 30, 2011 02:08 PM (vtqbC)

206

They'll have to pry them out of my cold, dead hands. - Posted by: Jane D'oh at June 30, 2011 06:07 PM (UOM4

That'll be next winter when we can no longer afford heating.

Posted by: chuck in st paul at June 30, 2011 02:08 PM (EhYdw)

207 Thanks everyone for the congrats on the job.   I don't know what I would have done without this place while I've been out of work.   You have kept me sane, or at least kept be from going bugshit nuts.

Posted by: Steph at June 30, 2011 02:08 PM (VfTQp)

208 Mmm. Fries.

Posted by: homer simpson at June 30, 2011 02:09 PM (vtqbC)

209 @210  be...me, yeah I've already started drinking.

Posted by: Steph at June 30, 2011 02:09 PM (VfTQp)

210

Oh, and it's not a stripper job.   Tits ain't big enough. 

Posted by: Steph at June 30, 2011 06:32 PM (VfTQp)


Not a damn thing wrong with little ones...as long as they're real. I always though the tall, thin, dark-haired one on Baywatch was the hot one.


Pam Anderson.......meh

Posted by: beedubya at June 30, 2011 02:10 PM (AnTyA)

211 It's readily apparent that Stein's 'conservative' days were his moonbat days. Now he's returned to what serves as normal for him.

Posted by: chuck in st paul at June 30, 2011 02:12 PM (EhYdw)

212

I am so sick of that shit.   Everyone knows she did it, and that crap claim her lawyers came up with about being sexually abused by her father as if it would be some kind of justification for murdering that baby girl is pure horseshit.

I hope she fries.


She did it. No doubt. I've been home sick the last few days and hate to admit it, but I've watched a bit of it. Today, it was pieced together that she disposed of that baby in the exact same manner that her family had disposed of dead pets. As the pieces were coming together I wanted to vomit.

The fact that the defense tried to have her declared incompetent to stand trial, just Saturday, was a hint at desperation. I do not think she'll get the death penalty, but she may get life in prison without the possibility of parole. Frankly, I wish they'd offer her a plea of something like life with the possibility of parole in 25 years. In exchange, that bitch would have to stand up there and admit exactly what the fuck she did to that child. In 25 years, they can tell her to shove the "possibility" of parole up her ass.

Posted by: Clueless at June 30, 2011 02:12 PM (piMMO)

213 Oh, and it's not a stripper job.   Tits ain't big enough.

Fluffer??

Posted by: beedubya at June 30, 2011 02:13 PM (AnTyA)

214 Posted by: beedubya at June 30, 2011 07:10 PM (AnTyA)

Agreed. It is the shape that is important, not size. In fact there might be some natural ratio that describes the perfect breast. Think of the two curves; the first from top to nipple and the second from bottom to nipple.

Or is this too much analysis?

Maybe CAC can help?

Posted by: CharlieBrown'sDildo (NJConservative) at June 30, 2011 02:13 PM (LH6ir)

215 why do those ......s keep showing up?

Posted by: Clueless at June 30, 2011 02:13 PM (piMMO)

216 Rampant speculation, but I'd bet Stein, while reasonably wealthy, may have gotten dinged by the IRS for unpaid taxes. Money has a funny way of disappearing suddenly, more so when you aren't truly rich, and I wouldn't be surprised if his personal finance management wasn't half as clever as we all assume. Envy or jealousy might explain his reversal, especially if he's still rubbing elbows with establishment politicos or celebrities.

Posted by: Walter Freeman at June 30, 2011 02:13 PM (UsjBj)

217 In exchange, that bitch would have to stand up there and admit exactly what the fuck she did to that child. In 25 years, they can tell her to shove the "possibility" of parole up her ass.

Posted by: Clueless at June 30, 2011 07:12 PM (piMMO)

She has no soul.   You can see that in her eyes.    There's nothing there, but cold darkness.   It's written all over her face what hateful creature she is.   I hope she gets her ass kicked every day she's in prison.    Wipe that smirk ass look off her face.

Posted by: Steph at June 30, 2011 02:15 PM (VfTQp)

218 #199, Well when I called my boss "clean and articulate" I meant to include "well behaved", too. You know, for a black man.

Posted by: Sheriff Joe at June 30, 2011 02:16 PM (7EV/g)

219 192OT but so sweet:

A second boat destined to take part in the Gaza blockade-running effort has had its propeller cut off as it sat at a dock in Turkey.

The "activists" who were going to sail to Gaza will now have to sit it out. They're calling the sabotage of their stupid little boats "Israeli underwater terrorist attacks." Waaaaaaaaaaaaaa! 

Posted by: Llarry at June 30, 2011 06:56 PM (SI/pw)

You didn't think we had only one Mossad shark, did you?

Posted by: Mr. Big of the Mossad at June 30, 2011 02:17 PM (KhioZ)

220 She has no soul.   You can see that in her eyes.    There's nothing there, but cold darkness.   It's written all over her face what hateful creature she is.   I hope she gets her ass kicked every day she's in prison.    Wipe that smirk ass look off her face.

There is one thing. One little thing that convinced me beyond a shadow of a doubt that she did it. Nothing would change my mind now.

After her daughter went missing, she got a tattoo.

The words "beautiful life".

Posted by: Clueless at June 30, 2011 02:18 PM (piMMO)

221 I hope she fries too.

Fries right into the erectric chair.

Posted by: stock oriental character at June 30, 2011 02:19 PM (g1Q6b)

222 Agreed. It is the shape that is important, not size. In fact there might be some natural ratio that describes the perfect breast. Think of the two curves; the first from top to nipple and the second from bottom to nipple.

fap...fap...fap

Or is this too much analysis?

Huh? You were saying something?

Posted by: beedubya at June 30, 2011 02:19 PM (AnTyA)

223 Good on you Steph.  Your joy is contagious.  Bottoms up!

Posted by: observer at June 30, 2011 02:19 PM (Beb1i)

224 225I hope she fries too.

Fries right into the erectric chair.

Posted by: stock oriental character at June 30, 2011 07:19 PM (g1Q6b)

OK, but I'm gonna have to charge you extra for those fries.

 

Posted by: The Florida Executioner at June 30, 2011 02:21 PM (KhioZ)

225

178 Dear sweet Lord.  Michelle at a fundraiser in Boston today:

“I see the worry creasing his face. I hear the passion and determination in his voice. ‘You won’t believe what these folks are going through;’ he told me that last night. ‘Michelle, it is not right. We’ve got to fix this. We have to do more,’” she said during a visit to Boston for a fund-raiser on behalf of the Democratic National Committee."

Echoes of Nixon's "Checkers" speech.

These guys are truly shameless. ?This also reminds me of Obama's little talk with his daughter about plugging up the big Gulf oil spill. Then you find out he didn't even so much as talk to BP for a month and a half, stood in the way of efforts to protect the coast, did absolutely nothing as far as the actual plugging, and then strongarmed BP into paying up - even though they were not legally obliged to do so, but were already doing anyway - which resulted in payments to the effected being delayed. Stands to reason, his little story was mostly fiction, and that Michelle's is complete fiction.

Posted by: Optimizer at June 30, 2011 02:22 PM (F56VB)

226 Hey! What about that Nigerian fellow traveling all over the country without being tagged by TSA.

If only he had been wearing a diaper.

Posted by: Clueless at June 30, 2011 02:23 PM (piMMO)

227 This seems to be the fate of 99% of conservatives, once they're on the cocktail circuit with the in-crowd for a while.

Posted by: Jingo at June 30, 2011 02:24 PM (JlBmQ)

228 Congrats Steph.  Good to know your hard won skills will still be useful and put to work in a better environment.

Posted by: Hrothgar at June 30, 2011 02:24 PM (yrGif)

229 Hey! What about that Nigerian fellow traveling all over the country without being tagged by TSA.

If only he had been wearing a diaper. a 95 year old woman with terminal leukemia

Posted by: Clueless at June 30, 2011 07:23 PM (piMMO)


FIFY

Posted by: beedubya at June 30, 2011 02:25 PM (AnTyA)

230 Ben's a smart guy, but I've never understood this type of logic. For every economic action, there is a reaction. If I were a small business owner and taxes reach the level where I (who assumes all the risk of being in business) has to give more to the govenment than I take home for myself; it's over. If I have enough to retire, I'm done. What's the incentive? Result..A few more jobless claims......And I go through life with my hands behind my head.

Posted by: Craig at June 30, 2011 02:26 PM (KkjvI)

231 I'm one of those Republicans who is not rich, may never be rich, but love the rich so much I don't want them to pay a penny more. But it's mostly because I'm clinging to God and guns. /sarcasm In actuality, I agree with the point you make that taking money out of the private sector reduces money-making activity and that it is particularly pronounced when taken from those in positions of creating jobs - ie the well-to-do. That said, there are plenty of wealthy people who do not create jobs (eg actors and sports stars). I don't have sympathy or animus for any wealthy person whether or not they create jobs. Keeping a low tax rate is a basic matter of economics. I am of the opinion that we need to pay for what we spend. Right now Republicans are trying their hardest to enact budget cuts but there will still be a deficit. That will necessitate tax increases to bridge the gap. Coming from a humble background, I know that people of lower incomes will be substantially hurt by higher taxes. The wealthy absolutely can 'afford' higher taxes. For some wealthy, it means fewer mansions, jets, and cars. For others it does mean hiring fewer employees. And plenty will forgo hiring fewer employees so that they can maintain their luxurious lifestyle. If push comes to shove (ie we're spending more than we receive in taxes), tax the wealthy, as the best able to afford it. Not out of animus or social justice, but as a basic matter of economics. Of course, if we insist upon our current level of spending we better accept less economic growth.

Posted by: Crispian at June 30, 2011 02:26 PM (ULTcD)

232

If push comes to shove (ie we're spending more than we receive in taxes), tax the wealthy, as the best able to afford it. Not out of animus or social justice, but as a basic matter of economics. Of course, if we insist upon our current level of spending we better accept less economic growth.

Are you lost?

Posted by: Cicero at June 30, 2011 02:29 PM (QKKT0)

233 Stupid on steroids.
Posted by: andycanuck at June 30, 2011 07:08 PM (vtqbC)

Me or CJ?  And if me, why?

Posted by: Rod Rescueman at June 30, 2011 02:29 PM (HwE/1)

234 Posted by: Crispian at June 30, 2011 07:26 PM (ULTcD)

Looks like you must have spent quite a bit of time and effort typing that.

You could have instead just wrote "I'm a fucking idiot".

...you're welcome

Posted by: beedubya at June 30, 2011 02:29 PM (AnTyA)

235 This all kind of follows my argument on strong form anti-credentialism. That the process of acquiring traditional credentials for office is a corrupting experience  due to the people you must continually interact with. Over time, the time needed to become a pedigreed Presidential candidate, you can be assumed to have adopted the opinion of the opposition, unless their is compelling evidence to the contrary.

Posted by: MikeTheMoose at June 30, 2011 02:29 PM (0q2P7)

236 "Voodoo economics"

Posted by: Rae4palin at June 30, 2011 02:33 PM (G4RRM)

237

The rich already pay most of all taxes in the nation. Waht's a little more and a little more and a little more? Why not just remove all wealth and give all wealth to the state?

Posted by: Juji Fruit at June 30, 2011 02:34 PM (0fzsA)

238

That said, there are plenty of wealthy people who do not create jobs (eg actors and sports stars).

This is stupid beyond words. Unless a rich person lives like a pauper, he buys homes, cars, planes, boats, restaurant meals, expensive vacations, theatre ticket subscriptions, and costly electronics and appliances. He hires gardeners, maids, chefs, mechanics, accountants, and lawyers. A rich person's money spreads into the economy and creates jobs whether or not he's an industrialist.

Posted by: Cicero at June 30, 2011 02:36 PM (QKKT0)

239 Why is Ben Stein even considered an important person? I never really understood that.

Posted by: Juji Fruit at June 30, 2011 02:36 PM (0fzsA)

240
Dear sweet Lord. Michelle at a fundraiser in Boston today:


I didn't think she could play that shit twice, but sure enough -- I might have to restart the suicide watch.

Posted by: arhooley at June 30, 2011 02:37 PM (Rzm7M)

241 @236 Cicero,

No.

@238 beedubya,

No, not much time or effort (pretend you're shocked). It may appear that way because of the big ugly block of text. Sorry for that, I had javascript disabled and thus it didn't format as seen when I typed it. So basically, just read up to before "sarcasm" and then you don't need to sound so stupid with your name calling. Thanks.

Posted by: Crispian at June 30, 2011 02:37 PM (ULTcD)

242 This is stupid beyond words.

Do they keep all there money in a coffee can? Someone's investing it. Someone is making jobs with it.

Posted by: MikeTheMoose at June 30, 2011 02:37 PM (0q2P7)

243 Posted by: Optimizer at June 30, 2011 07:22 PM (F56VB)

Oh, I think that was a dumb thing to say.  She's feeding the meme that he simply isn't ready to be president, that it's effected him physically.  I know they want him to be seen as "caring" but I think that he's gone beyond that.  I think that the American people are willing to believe that he cares, but still think he's incompetent.

Posted by: AmishDude at June 30, 2011 02:39 PM (T0NGe)

244 This is stupid beyond words. Unless a rich person lives like a pauper, he buys homes, cars, planes, boats, restaurant meals, expensive vacations, theatre ticket subscriptions, and costly electronics and appliances. He hires gardeners, maids, chefs, mechanics, accountants, and lawyers. A rich person's money spreads into the economy and creates jobs whether or not he's an industrialist.

That's why, when folks were pissing and moaning about the money that was spent on Chelsea Clinton's wedding, I wanted to tell them to shut the f*** up. Same with the royal wedding. How many caterers and florists and hat-makers and hoteliers made money off the deal? How much money did they pump into the economy?

They provided jobs to an awful lot of people with those events.

Posted by: Clueless at June 30, 2011 02:39 PM (piMMO)

245 Stein was lecturing everyone in 2008 about how the sub prime mortgage issue was not going to be a crisis.  His judgment sucks.  He is all over the map anymore, I think he has mental problems.  Government will only spend any new revenues it gets and then some.  It is a dead end.

Posted by: Ken Royall at June 30, 2011 02:40 PM (9zzk+)

246
  So why is it that in this land of opportunity when one  succeeds beyond their wildest dream they suddenly become vilified, and face the threat of losing their hard earned wealth?

 How did this happen?

Posted by: irongrampa at June 30, 2011 02:41 PM (ud5dN)

247 244
Dear sweet Lord. Michelle at a fundraiser in Boston today:

My husband just called me on his way to Atlanta for the night.  He always asks me wth is going on in the wild, wild world of Obama.  I told him about Michelle's latest fundraiser in Boston, and how she dragged out the same old "Barry's tired" shit.

He said, "Can you remember a time, ever, of Laura Bush saying that kind of bullshit?"

And the bit about Jay Carney calling MSNBC to complain about Halperin....good grief, the WH would have had to have a "czar" just to deal with the unbelievable crap thrown W's way on a daily basis.

Posted by: Jane D'oh at June 30, 2011 02:42 PM (UOM48)

248 on Chelsea Clinton's wedding, I wanted to tell them to shut the f*** up. Same with the royal wedding

Clinton wedding = private cash = OK you made you spend it.

Royal Wedding = public cash = taxes = We spend it, sometimes years before you have the possibility to make it so we can take it. = Bad

Posted by: MikeTheMoose at June 30, 2011 02:42 PM (0q2P7)

249

Posted by: irongrampa at June 30, 2011 07:41 PM (ud5dN)

It started with Roosevelt.

Teddy that is

Posted by: Sean Bannion at June 30, 2011 02:43 PM (U6tA2)

250 I stopped paying attention to Stein when he endorsed Intelligent Design in American Spectator.

Posted by: richard mcenroe at June 30, 2011 02:43 PM (Iqx1J)

251 Cicero,

"This is stupid beyond words."

Yay for civility.

"Unless a rich person lives like a pauper, he buys homes, cars, planes, boats, restaurant meals, expensive vacations, theatre ticket subscriptions, and costly electronics and appliances."

Yeah, I considered saying "doesn't directly create jobs" since EVERYONE spends money and has this effect. But as noted in my own comment, taking money out of the private sector does hurt economic growth.

"He hires gardeners, maids, chefs, mechanics, accountants, and lawyers. A rich person's money spreads into the economy and creates jobs whether or not he's an industrialist."

And personal assistants, agents, etc. But if one is not an industrialist, an increase in the marginal tax rate will most likely not notably effect that kind of employment.

As I said, I agree with rdbrewer. But if we can't eliminate the deficit...oh nevermind, just tell me I'm stupid and hurl epithets. Wait...is this Ben Stein I'm talking to? The certainty is overwhelming.

Posted by: Crispian at June 30, 2011 02:44 PM (ULTcD)

252 That's why, when folks were pissing and moaning about the money that was spent on Chelsea Clinton's wedding, I wanted to tell them to shut the f*** up. Same with the royal wedding. How many caterers and florists and hat-makers and hoteliers made money off the deal? How much money did they pump into the economy?

They provided jobs to an awful lot of people with those events.

Posted by: Clueless at June 30, 2011 07:39 PM (piMMO)

This...

...but...I think some were just being provocative and throwing it back in the faces of the fucking hypocrite

Posted by: beedubya at June 30, 2011 02:44 PM (AnTyA)

253 Ben Stein -- the genius economist -- kept insisting there was no housing bubble until housing completely crashed. He's a dunce.

Posted by: kathleen at June 30, 2011 02:45 PM (1WdB/)

254 I'm not going to say anything bad about Ben Stein. He's been fighting the good fight for too long. But he's always been rather contrarian regarding economic matters, and that's only gotten worse over time.

Moreover, if you read his monthly columns, they have over the past decade gone from being a must-read delight to a journey into depression. Not his depression, but mine, after I read them. His parents' passing changed him. Since then, he seems to be struggling, unsuccessfully, to stay happy.

I don't think it is fair to accuse him of the usual Beltway syndrome of wanting to be invited to the right parties. Rather, he's just gotten to the point where he puts personal relationships ahead of personal principles.

All I'm saying is that rather than wishing him into the cornfield, we should say, "Ain't that a shame," and look upon him as an honored former colleague who simply succumbed to the riptides of life in L. A.

Posted by: Otis Criblecoblis at June 30, 2011 02:46 PM (fjoLg)

255 I used to read Ben when the old American Spectator was a broadsheet, and I liked him well enough, but there was something kind of weird about his columns even then-- what was his son's name? Tommy? That he kept just sticking in at odd moments.

I suspect being liked by The Kool Kids is behind this.

Posted by: backhoe at June 30, 2011 02:47 PM (0bk6W)

256 Oh, and I should add that it's not okay that he's put relationships ahead of principles, but it's understandable for a person fighting serious depression to cling to the things in his life that bring him joy and a respite from feelings of alienation.

Posted by: Otis Criblecoblis at June 30, 2011 02:49 PM (fjoLg)

257 Ben Stein's opinion is prominent for the same reason Kim Kardashian's butt is.
They're both vaguely connected to someone and after time the fame takes on a life of its own for no other reason than regular exposure.

He's a pouty faced whine bag.

>>I think I'll get drunk!

Posted by: Steph at June 30, 2011 06:26 PM (VfTQp) 

The importance of a good plan can't be overstated. Congrats.

Good news is rare and uplifting these days.


Posted by: ontherocks at June 30, 2011 02:49 PM (HBqDo)

258 256 Yeah, I considered saying "doesn't directly create jobs" since EVERYONE spends money and has this effect. But as noted in my own comment, taking money out of the private sector does hurt economic growth.
________

Unless he sticks it under his pillow, his money has an effect even if he doesn't spend it. If it's sitting in the bank, the banker's loaning it out because he wants to make money off it, too.

Posted by: Anachronda at June 30, 2011 02:50 PM (NmR1a)

259 And if you read his columns, he constantly claims that he is not rich, that he is simply middle class. I think he believes this because he has to work constantly to maintain a lifestyle that certainly sounds rich to me: three residences in CA plus a suite at the Watergate, for goodness' sake.

I suspect that some time down the road it will come out that he has Alzheimer's. Recall that Charlton Heston started doing some pretty stupid things, becoming a tool of the hard Left, during his last years in the public eye.

Posted by: Otis Criblecoblis at June 30, 2011 02:52 PM (fjoLg)

260 @264

Yes.

I was making a point that we should eliminate the deficit. IF not by cutting spending, then by raising taxes.

Posted by: Crispian at June 30, 2011 02:53 PM (ULTcD)

261 I was making a point that we should eliminate the deficit. IF not by cutting spending, then by raising taxes.

Posted by: Crispian at June 30, 2011 07:53 PM (ULTcD)

The only way to cut the deficit is to cut spending.   Raises taxes never does anything but increase spending by the leeches in DC.

Posted by: Steph at June 30, 2011 02:54 PM (VfTQp)

262 For anyone who wants to read Stein when he was great, read "The New War Between Men And Women," if it's available on the Net. It was in TAS in 1985 or so.

Posted by: Otis Criblecoblis at June 30, 2011 02:54 PM (fjoLg)

263 I will not rest until Steph is employed. Whaat?

Posted by: Your President at June 30, 2011 02:55 PM (j84s0)

264 Whittling away at MSNBC. Pretty soon the only people left will be the undercover right-wing cameraman. Then things should get interesting!

Posted by: Zombie OlberDouche at June 30, 2011 02:58 PM (3GLzu)

265 I will not rest until Steph is employed.

Whaat?

Posted by: Your President at June 30, 2011 07:55 PM (j84s0)

Uh, yeah, thanks for nothing buttfuck.    All that you give a shit about is that you can take part of my earnings to give to some shithead sitting on the sofa not looking for work.

Posted by: Steph at June 30, 2011 02:58 PM (VfTQp)

266 I was making a point that we should eliminate the deficit. IF not by cutting spending, then by raising taxes.

BLAM BLAM BLAM BLAM BLAM

..still moving?...no?...just in case

BLAM BLAM BLAM BLAM

Posted by: beedubya at June 30, 2011 03:00 PM (AnTyA)

267 The only way to cut the deficit is to cut spending.   Raises taxes never does anything but increase spending by the leeches in DC.

Well, yes and no.  Raising taxes can raise revenue to a point.  Beyond that point, the higher taxes do more harm than good.

In one sense, Stein and the Dems are correct.  Some tax rates are too low right now.  It's just not the same tax brackets they're talking about.

Posted by: Rod Rescueman at June 30, 2011 03:01 PM (HwE/1)

268 The only way to cut the deficit is to cut spending.   Raises taxes never does anything but increase spending by the leeches in DC.

You're almost there. Raising taxes in a macro mature economy actually decreases tax revenue

Posted by: beedubya at June 30, 2011 03:03 PM (AnTyA)

269 In one sense, Stein and the Dems are correct.  Some tax rates are too low right now.  It's just not the same tax brackets they're talking about.

Posted by: Rod Rescueman at June 30, 2011 08:01 PM (HwE/1)

Everyone should pay taxes, but thinking that raising taxes on anyone will reduce the deficit is laughable.   The more those asswipes take in the more they will spend.   Not one dime will go to reducing the deficit.   Now, they may say they are cutting something, but always look at what the other hand is doing.

Posted by: Steph at June 30, 2011 03:03 PM (VfTQp)

270 beedubya,

You're not too bright.

Posted by: Crispian at June 30, 2011 03:03 PM (ULTcD)

271
Ben Stein has a bad case of wealthy liberal elite cocktail party disease

I'm with comment #2: early onset Alzheimer's, with nice dash of dementia for good measure.

Posted by: I R A Darth Aggie at June 30, 2011 03:04 PM (1hM1d)

272 I used to have a partner who said "I'm used to handling the big money" What he meant was, he was used to spending the big money. They want more money to spend. they will NEVER use a tax increase to pay down the deficit. They will always find some POS purpose to throw money at and then complain about the rich, and why they need more money.

Posted by: Milo at June 30, 2011 03:05 PM (3GLzu)

273
 Steph, don't know you except through your postings, but congrats on getting your job. Not an easy task lately.

  Early nite for me, there's bass to be annoyed tomorrow. Good night, good people, stay safe.

Posted by: irongrampa at June 30, 2011 03:06 PM (ud5dN)

274 Everyone should pay taxes, but thinking that raising taxes on anyone will reduce the deficit is laughable.

You're correct that no amount of tax increases will wipe out the deficit so long as spending continues to grow at current rates (actually, as long as it continues to grow, period).  But deep cuts in spending, plus modest increases in revenues (especially from the half currently getting a free ride) is not an irresponsible thing for which to advocate.

Posted by: Rod Rescueman at June 30, 2011 03:09 PM (HwE/1)

275 Right now Republicans are trying their hardest to enact budget cuts but there will still be a deficit. That will necessitate tax increases to bridge the gap.

Tax increases never actually bridge the gap, though. They always result in lower revenues for the government.

The only way we're going to get out of this is by massively reforming the business climate of the U.S. Did you know, for example, that the major American oil companies pay more in taxes in the U.S. than they make in profits here? They make all their money overseas.

That's insane, and we need to change it. We need to make the U.S. the best place on the planet to start businesses and make money. Raising taxes will do exactly the opposite. 

Posted by: Llarry at June 30, 2011 03:13 PM (SI/pw)

276 Tax increases never actually bridge the gap, though. They always result in lower revenues for the government.

This is one of those times when absolute terms like "always" and "never" aren't terribly useful.  Revenues did increase during Clinton's Presidency, though this had much more to do with economic growth than the increases themselves.  Point still stands, revenues did increase.

Posted by: Rod Rescueman at June 30, 2011 03:16 PM (HwE/1)

277 Ben Steins acting career - “ If something can’t last forever, it will eventually stop.”

He’s just trying to keep it going. Just sucking up.

Sorry, I could not read all the comments.

Mike T.

Posted by: Mike in FL at June 30, 2011 03:28 PM (motsG)

278 Ben Stein has never been a Conservative.  He's NeoCon, at best--albeit a great mensch, and a righteous one.

Remember that his father was a Gummint guy; Ben's returning to his roots, and Gummint must be preserved in his mind.

Posted by: dad29 at June 30, 2011 03:28 PM (Xrozh)

279 The Statue of Liberty ist kaput.

Posted by: Ben Stein at June 30, 2011 03:28 PM (GTbGH)

280

Stien is a douche on this topic, NOTHING absolutley prevents him from cutting a check made payable to the US TREASURY for any amount he wants. Does he do it now or does he want others to be compelled to do so ? WHAT A LOAD OF CACA.

Posted by: Coldwarrior57 at June 30, 2011 03:28 PM (nYTrG)

281 "He had that dogmatic tone then too, but when I like the point he's making, it's a-okay"

Nice.  Me too been noticing Stein going a little wacky ...http://spectator.org/archives/2011/06/24/moving-about-the-country/1 ... and he's no stranger to being wrong, eh?

8-18-2007 (assuming wiki accuracy)

Ben Stein: ...subprime is tiny. Subprime is a tiny, tiny blip.

Peter Schiff: It's not tiny. And again, it's not just subprime. It's the entire mortgage market.

Ben Stein: You're simply wrong about that... Defaults for the whole mortgage market are tiny.

"You're simply wrong about that."  Priceless.



Posted by: Rich at June 30, 2011 03:29 PM (yyLIB)

282 Cliff notes version:

Laura Ingraham: Even if we confiscated all the wealth from the wealthy it wouldn't make a difference.

Ben Stein: WE MUST RAISE TAXES ON THE WEALTHY OR WE WILL ALL DIE

Laura Ingraham: But--

Ben Stein: LALALALACAN'THEARYOULALALALALA


There, saved you some time.

Posted by: R. Waher at June 30, 2011 03:40 PM (7bCRf)

283

Ben Stein has something in common with another conservative who went nuts - Douglas Kmiec.  Both were former professors at Pepperdine Law School....guess that turns them into closet Marxists or something.

Posted by: Fa Cube Itches at June 30, 2011 03:41 PM (xy9wk)

284 I think he has a brain tumor.

Posted by: steevy at June 30, 2011 03:43 PM (CMbte)

285 Anti Spam Suggestion: Place a reasonable max, like two or three, on links in any one comment, and automatically (temp) ban any IP violating the restriction. Also combine with a white list of regular morons who'd like privs to link more when needed.

Posted by: Walter Freeman at June 30, 2011 03:47 PM (UsjBj)

286

Stien is a douche on this topic, NOTHING absolutley prevents him from cutting a check made payable to the US TREASURY for any amount he wants. Does he do it now or does he want others to be compelled to do so ? WHAT A LOAD OF CACA.

Posted by: Coldwarrior57 at June 30, 2011 08:28 PM (nYTrG)

He doesn't want to pay more himself. He wants his neighbors who sneer at him because he has to work to pay more taxes.


Posted by: Oldcat at June 30, 2011 03:49 PM (z1N6a)

287 Don't overlook that Ben Stein could have had a minor stroke.  I know lots of folks have personality changes after that. Or massive amounts of drinking.  Speaking of which... [sip]

Posted by: theCork at June 30, 2011 03:50 PM (dFTd6)

288 Perhaps Mr. Stein has an severe case of Little Green Footballs?

Posted by: Rally at June 30, 2011 04:07 PM (CYvXN)

289 Dang, quite a chorus of "Creationism, Creationism, Creationism." I saw Expelled in the theatre and don't remember Creationism being a part of it. I'd think I would have noticed it because I'm not a Creationist myself, but then again, that was many bottles of Val-U-Rite ago.

Posted by: The Chap in the Deerstalker Cap at June 30, 2011 04:10 PM (kiDGo)

290

I saw that Laura ingraham thing on reruns this morning, and I thought i was still asleep and dreaming.

Something is up with him, I notice he does'nt write in American Spectator anymore and has'nt for quite awhile now.

is he hanging with Krauthammer too much? Krauthammer can still be relied upon to be conservative sounding at least 75% of the time at least

Posted by: martha at June 30, 2011 04:14 PM (kFsTd)

291 This is one of those times when absolute terms like "always" and "never" aren't terribly useful.  Revenues did increase during Clinton's Presidency, though this had much more to do with economic growth than the increases themselves.  Point still stands, revenues did increase.

Posted by: Rod Rescueman at June 30, 2011 08:16 PM (HwE/1)


Clinton's tax rate increases did marginally increase revenues, but that was due to the tech bubble.Revenues did not really take off until the GOP takeover and the capital gains reductions

Posted by: beedubya at June 30, 2011 04:18 PM (AnTyA)

292 In life, events tend to follow patterns. People who commit crimes tend to be criminals, for example. Can anyone tell me any economists who have been convicted of violent sex crimes?

How about a vegetarian painter who killed millions? A chicken farmer who killed millions? A high school teacher who killed millions? An assistant librarian who killed millions? Oh wait...all of those happened?

Posted by: Fa Cube Itches at June 30, 2011 04:24 PM (xy9wk)

293 @162: "The rich do far more good than harm, even when they're not trying."

Hear, hear, my good man! 

Posted by: The Kennedys, The Bushes, and George Soros at June 30, 2011 04:35 PM (xy9wk)

294 Revenues did increase during Clinton's Presidency, though this had much more to do with economic growth than the increases themselves.  Point still stands, revenues did increase.

What I should've said is that tax increases in and of themselves, absent an economic boom, don't result in long-term government surpluses.

Posted by: Llarry at June 30, 2011 04:49 PM (SI/pw)

295 Ben, I can pay more taxes.  They should tax us more

Posted by: One of Ben's Friends at June 30, 2011 05:02 PM (g1Q6b)

296 I wonder who he's been hanging around with.

Posted by: rdbrewer at June 30, 2011 05:02 PM (g1Q6b)

297 Sorry, Ben Stein is a lunatic. has issues. and has had for some time.

Posted by: Luke Crisco, Toilet Hobo at June 30, 2011 05:10 PM (+kznc)

298 Stein isn't rich?  This is either a) bullshit, or b) an indicator that he's pissed away his wealth, or c) that his books about investing and making money are good for kindling.

Posted by: Burn the Witch at June 30, 2011 05:16 PM (/t9t1)

299 Stupid on steroids.
Posted by: andycanuck at June 30, 2011 07:08 PM (vtqbC)
Me or CJ?  And if me, why?

No. It was a "Ben Johnson" Jamaican-Canadian stripped-Olympic champion steroid-user joke, Rod, not aimed at you but at Ben Stein. Sorry for the confusion. (Carl Lewis was the American he beat if that rings a bell with you more.)

Posted by: andycanuck at June 30, 2011 05:50 PM (vtqbC)

300 Ben Stein feels guilty for doing those Free Credit Report ads. Only a complete asshole would do those ads. Also, I am okay with some tax increases on the rich....after all of the spending cuts have been done. Then we can talk about rich people helping out some more, and it better be in a very civil, asking for help, kind of tone. (Dennis Miller suggested that.) "We know you already give a lot, but we're in tough times and hope you can give some more." as opposed to "You are fat cat scum and should pay up."

Posted by: sexypig at June 30, 2011 05:51 PM (d2faP)

301 andycanuck,

Gotcha, and thanks for replying.  When someone called him "Ben Johnson", I assumed it was a Charles Johnson reference, given Stein's leftward drift.

Posted by: Rod Rescueman at June 30, 2011 05:58 PM (QxGmu)

302 IIRC Ben lost a half a million or more when Lehman Bros went "tits up".  

If so, he's probably bitter and wants to take down those who didn't get stung.

(For years he's been my least favorte columnist at American Spectator, always bragging about the people who recognize him, always bitching about airline service, always behaving like an abominably weak parent to his spoiled kid (who is grown and probably  cooking in a meth lad as I write).

Posted by: Jim Sonweed at June 30, 2011 06:51 PM (FVhEi)

303 I have to agree with a number of other commenters, he looked like he was on crack or coke.

Posted by: bobroberts at June 30, 2011 07:16 PM (9ky2P)

304 As a rich person. I know that nobody likes me. I have no friends.  I accept that I will need to pay more taxes.

Posted by: Rich Republican at June 30, 2011 07:19 PM (t4YF+)

305 However according to late breaking news, he may have been correct about Strauss-Kahn. Otherwise his stances lately are just infuriating. Accuser a flake, it seems.

Posted by: Gary at June 30, 2011 11:41 PM (1HnVJ)

306 Genital mutilation, ripped pantyhose, Strauss-Kahn semen, the victim's unwavering testimony, time for investigators to track her every move, her unsavory boyfriend, "consensual" sex?

She wasn't motivated by a sexual drive. But the sex happened.

No, the sex didn't play out for the victim's benefit, so whatever consent happened, the terms of agreement were broken.


Posted by: maverick muse at July 01, 2011 01:57 AM (lpWVn)

307 I don't think that Stein's political views have altered. He is proud of his elitism. If a study were made of every Stein position on politics, we'd likely find that he is what he is, has been and will be. There are selective social conservative points that he'll assume as his own celebrity cause along the way, being the "compassionate" sort of elitist, meaning "relevant moral authority" in whatever dogmatic matter..."Expelled" Creationism, for instance. Geez, he made a decent profit on the venture and a following, to boot. So long as its dinner conversation, he'll play a conservative advocate. But when it comes down to brass tacks, he's Yale Keynesian all the way. Anything else, "stupid"?  pff

Posted by: maverick muse at July 01, 2011 03:12 AM (lpWVn)

308 Apparently the hosts of these beltway cocktail parties aren't aware that using lead crystal is a bad idea.

Posted by: db at July 01, 2011 04:46 AM (7XeOt)

309 Congratulations Steph.

Posted by: Dave at July 01, 2011 05:16 AM (Xm1aB)

310 I stopped reading Stein years ago. Whenever he mentioned his son it gave depressed me becuase he clearly didn't seem to realize what a lousy job he was doing with the kid.

Posted by: daisy at July 01, 2011 05:40 AM (+JrTK)

311 Stein's creep factor is off the charts.  Creepy charlatan.

Posted by: stacy at July 01, 2011 05:42 AM (YA6+6)

312 NEW version Meizitang botanical slimming product is made from selected naturalslimming botanical formula for beauty-making and the active extracts from jobstears and Lotus Leaf. It is produced in SFDA approved GMP factory.

Posted by: meizitang at July 05, 2011 02:09 AM (9y4aU)

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