Economics and the mid-life crisis have much in common: Both dwell on foregone opportunities

C'est la vie; c'est la guerre; c'est la pomme de terre . . . . . . . . . . . . . email: jpalmer at uwo dot ca

. . . . . . . . . . .Richard Posner should be awarded the next Nobel Prize in Economics . . . . . . . . . . . .

Friday, November 04, 2005

Do as I Say (Not as I Do);
Profiles in Liberal Hypocrisy

There is an intriguing new book out, published last week, called Do As I Say (Not As I Do); Profiles in Liberal Hypocrisy. Here (courtesy of BenS) is a summary, excerpted from Judith Blinder's e-mail list:

"I don't own a single share of stock!" filmmaker Michael Moore proudly proclaimed.
He's right. He doesn't own a single share. He owns tens of thousands of shares – including nearly 2,000 shares of Boeing, nearly 1,000 of Sonoco, more than 4,000 of Best Foods, more than 3,000 of Eli Lilly, more than 8,000 of Bank One and more than 2,000 of Halliburton, the company most vilified by Moore in "Fahrenheit 9/11."
... Other examples:
House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi, who proclaims her support for unions, yet the luxury resort, the vineyard and the restaurants she partly owns are strictly non-union. While she advocates tough new laws enforcing environmental regulations on the private sector, the exclusive country club she partly owns failed to comply with existing environmental regulations for the past eight years – including a failure to protect endangered species.

Noam Chomsky has made a reputation for calling America a police state and branding the Pentagon "the most hideous institution on earth," yet his entire academic career, writes Schweizer, has been subsidized by the U.S. military.

Barbra Streisand is another proponent of environmentalism, yet she drives an SUV, lives in a mansion and has a $22,000 annual water bill. In the past, she has driven to appointments in Beverly Hills in a motor home because of her aversion to using public bathrooms.

Ralph Nader plays the role of the citizen avenger – the populist uninterested in wealth and materialism, pretending to live in a modest apartment. In fact, he lives in fancy homes registered in the names of his siblings.

... "Those who believe that the rich need to pay more in taxes proved especially adept at avoiding taxes themselves. Critics of capitalism and corporate enterprise frequently invested in the very companies they denounced. Those who espouse strict environmental regulations worked vigorously to sidestep them when it came to their own businesses and properties. Those who advocate steep inheritance taxes to promote fairer income distribution hid their investments in trusts or exotic overseas locales to reduce their own tax liability. Those who are strong proponents of affirmative action rarely practiced it themselves, and some had abysmal records when it came to hiring minorities. Those who proclaim themselves champions of civil liberties when it comes to criminal or terrorist cases went to extraordinary lengths to curtail the civil liberties of others when they felt threatened or just inconvenienced. Advocates of gun control had no problem making sure that an arsenal of weapons was available to protect them from dangerous criminals."

Much of this reminds me of the website, Skeleton Closet.
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