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Atlas is Shrugging right before my eyes ....


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Showing 26-50 of 93 posts in this discussion
Posted on Feb 15, 2012, 8:28:19 PM PST
M. Daniel says:
Abramoff ripped the Indians off for millions, but he saved them billions by preventing competition which is why they hired him.

The movie wasn't that bad. Just much too brief to develop the story.

Galt-Rearden '12

In reply to an earlier post on Feb 15, 2012, 8:29:12 PM PST
J. Potter says:
In a word, cronyism. Rand was making the case that any market control leads to cronyism.

In reply to an earlier post on Feb 15, 2012, 8:32:16 PM PST
J. Potter says:
Well, an entity has to at least have a tribe as a proxy. But if you believe that one monopoly is wrong, is that wrong made better by allowing NIMBYism to further constrain capitalism? Or rather, encouraging NIMBYism?

In reply to an earlier post on Feb 15, 2012, 8:37:27 PM PST
Last edited by the author on Feb 15, 2012, 8:39:40 PM PST
nameinuse says:
It's never that simple, putting a casino in your backyard (or what have you) could reduce your property values making your potential profit lower which reduces your capital investment. Protecting real estate investments is a lot of what zoning regs are all about.

In reply to an earlier post on Feb 15, 2012, 8:38:46 PM PST
M. Daniel says:
J. Potter says:"But if you believe that one monopoly is wrong, is that wrong made better by allowing NIMBYism to further constrain capitalism?"

No, but is there any support for the bill? If not, it doesn't matter. Sometimes members will introduce legislation as a favor to a group; however, unless he pushes hard to get a bill passed, it is merely symbolic. It is a very long, difficult process to pass a bill.

In reply to an earlier post on Feb 15, 2012, 9:01:59 PM PST
Last edited by the author on Feb 15, 2012, 9:09:45 PM PST
J. Potter wrote: "TS, you'd be surprised, zoning varies widely from place to place. A few cities have no zoning whatsoever."

And how small are these zoningless communities?

"Can tribes put a casino wherever they want? Here, yes, if they own the land."

Well, then that's what happens when you don't have zoning ordinances but it is up to a community to set their community standards and if they want the county to be dry, it's dry and if they want to have porn palaces, then they can have porn palaces and if a community doesn't want to have casinos, then it's their right but somehow you're suggesting that because it's Indian land, a community no longer has rights to zone it's communities.

Get real, the casino land issue was for reservation land, not anywhere you could buy a plot of land. Sounds like people are taking advantage and you're good with this abuse of land use.

"Yeah, i get the impression the movie was very sanitized. Which is a shame. I stand by my assertion there's a great epic in there."

The first hour was very slow but the sets and acting was excellent. The plot is thick and was developed slowly and then the last half hour picked up pace and left you with a burning valley....."Nooooooooooo!"

Oh ka-r@p, now I have to wait for part II. The last half hour of the movie sucked you in like a maelstrom. Noooooooo, don't make the movie end. What about the engine? What about Atlantis? Will he get divorced? Who is the dark shadowy figure with the hat who knocks on side doors at night and gets people he doesn't know to go with him? Where's Atlantis? The movie ended with so many questions unanswered.

In reply to an earlier post on Feb 15, 2012, 9:11:47 PM PST
J. Potter says:
"And how small are these zoningless communities?"

The smallest one I know of is Houston, TX.

"Get real, the casino land issue was for reservation land, not anywhere you could buy a plot of land."

No doubt OK is special in that regard, I used to consult for casinos and they were on tribal lands in Michigan and California. Being former Indian Territory no doubt has some bearing. But yes, indeed, casinos have appeared in the strangest places.

"Sounds like people are taking advantage and you're good with this abuse of land use. "

They are abusing their land by wanting to improve on their property? You're not in favor of regulation, are you? ;-)

In reply to an earlier post on Feb 15, 2012, 9:47:00 PM PST
nameinuse says:
Well, Houston, there aren't any Indians in Texas are there really? I think the Republic of Texas had some sort of agreement that allowed the Alabama-Coushattas to remain but Mirabeau B. Lamar got rid of all of the Indians in Texas. In the 1980s the federal government added the Tiguas and the Kickapoos to official tribes in Texas but they weren't in the original deal. I think the Alabama-Coushattas did have a couple of casinos but they got closed down probably more than ten years ago. Gambling in general has been a hard sell in Texas, I think it has to do with the evangelicals. Like it took forever to get any kind of horseracing and the lottery only came to the state during Ann Richards' term. They got that through by saying it would fund education but I don't think it worked out the way they hoped along those lines.
Personally, I've never seen any evidence of Native Americans in Texas despite having lived there most of my life, I've read about them existing in Texas but they just aren't around really.

In reply to an earlier post on Feb 16, 2012, 12:34:51 AM PST
Last edited by the author on Feb 16, 2012, 7:04:16 AM PST
J. Potter wrote: "The smallest one I know of is Houston, TX."

And upon checking, it seems to also be the only one.

http://www.2mrealty.com/blog/houston-no-zoning-laws.html

"In fact, it is the only major city in the United States without one."

You're not in favor of regulation, are you? ;-)"

Oh, stop. If you're asking me if I favor zoning ordinances, of course I do. Not having zoning ordinances is like not having speed limits in a residential zone, not very smart. Just to be fair, no where have I posted that I'm against regulation of anything. I am against over regulation to the point of enterprise not being able to function and yes, there is a difference between over regulation and no regulation.

"They are abusing their land by wanting to improve on their property?"

There is something called fair use and putting a casino in a residential neighborhood is not fair use. Why do you insist on playing games as if civilization hasn't taken place? Doing so is not having a rational conversation and you know this. Fortunately, upon research, I find that in the case of Houston, building developers have CC&R's in place, with legal precedents that prevent willy-nilly land use. Improving property to the detriment of neighbors is neither being a good neighbor nor an improvement when it causes your neighbors harm. What is with Liberals here who claim to be for the people and the environment and then when a rational question is posed, show they have no concern for either?

I'm in California and yes, there was discussion regarding building casinos off the reservation as yes, Indian tribes did try to play fast and loose with the Gaming Proposition that was passed by saying purchased land was Indian land therefore was outside of state or local jurisdictions. The gaming propositions, as you know, are subject to voter approval. Here's an example of a gaming proposition to expand existing California casino gaming compact.

http://www.smartvoter.org/2008/02/05/ca/state/prop/94/

And when one goes a bit further into this matter, one easily finds that this has been a contentious debate among California voters. Note the hundreds of millions of dollars that went into each side of the issue.

http://ballotpedia.org/wiki/index.php/California_Tribal_Gaming_Compacts_%282008%29

Greed does this to people when they begin to think they're above law and everybody else. That's a sure fire method of creating enemies and there was local backlash on this matter.

Please, if we're going converse and just because I don't have all the facts at my finger tips, don't play me for stupid. Today, finding facts on matters is no more difficult than Google and a few well chosen search words. You post that you use to consult, then please keep conversation to a level of respect deserving of a professional. This need for people on the Left here to play coy or angry is taking it's toll and I find I'm having less and less tolerance for what I consider to be childish behavior.

I like conversing with people who have direct experience such as what you posted but hey, what do I need to post with an SA for? I never put up with this behavior in real life, why does anybody need to put up with it here?

In reply to an earlier post on Feb 16, 2012, 6:26:00 AM PST
Grim says:
Potter--
My favorite thing about Ayn Rand and her legacy: Objectivist Clubs around the world subsidize the printing and distribution of her dreadful books. They have so much faith in the capitalist marketplace that they artificially rig the sales and keep books in print that would otherwise have faded into well-deserved obscurity. Irony is the strongest force in the universe.

In reply to an earlier post on Feb 16, 2012, 7:21:32 AM PST
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In reply to an earlier post on Feb 16, 2012, 8:19:15 AM PST
JKW Retired says:
"particularly the fantasy that a pirate robin hood is out there, recollecting all your income taxes, and holding them for you in gold."

Pretty much proof that you haven't read the book.

In reply to an earlier post on Feb 16, 2012, 8:23:58 AM PST
Last edited by the author on Feb 16, 2012, 2:26:01 PM PST
J. Potter says:
Ragnar Danneskjold begs to differ:

". . . [Robin Hood] is not remembered as a champion of property, but as a champion of need, not as a defender of the robbed, but as a provider of the poor. He is held to be the first man who assumed a halo of virtue by practicing charity with wealth which he did not own, by giving away goods which he had not produced, by making others pay for the luxury of his pity. He is the man who became a symbol of the idea that need, not achievement, is the source of rights, that we don't have to produce, only to want, that the earned does not belong to us, but the unearned does. He became a justification for every mediocrity who, unable to make his own living, had demanded the power to dispose of the property of his betters, by proclaiming his willingness to devote his life to his inferiors at the price of robbing his superiors. It is this foulest of creatures - the double-parasite who lives on the sores of the poor and the blood of the rich - whom men have come to regard as the moral idea." ". . . Do you wonder why the world is collapsing around us? That is what I am fighting, Mr. Rearden. Until men learn that of all human symbols, Robin Hood is the most immoral and the most contemptible, there will be no justice on earth and no way for mankind to survive."

"Are you thinking death and taxes are our only certainty, Mr. Rearden? Well, there's nothing I can do about the first, but if I left the burden of the second, men might learn to see the connection between the two and what a longer, happier life they have the power to achieve. They might learn to hold, not death and taxes, but life and production as their two absolutes and as the basis of their moral code ... When robbery is done in open daylight by sanction of the law, as it is done today, then any act of honor or restitution has to be hidden underground."

That second is from the scene in which Ragnar meets Hank in the sticks, and drops a gold ingot at his feet as a first installment against a large account.

In reply to an earlier post on Feb 16, 2012, 10:12:42 AM PST
Last edited by the author on Feb 16, 2012, 10:32:03 AM PST
J. Potter says:
TS,

Thanks for the thoughts. This thread is not about being coy or angry, but about highlighting the difference between what a group claims, and what they practice. Both the left and the right claim to believe in positions far right-er and left-er than what they put into practice (with some exceptions of course).

What Sullivan is proposing isn't a zoning regulation. I'm not certain of all the fine points, but indian land is not subject to zoning in the same sense as it would be under other ownership. The people in the town involved are not unusual in opposing a casino; casino development is nearly always contested, one way or another. For instance, Four Winds in MI was held up for 5(?) years or more on environmental grounds.

As you have noted here, and should be plain for everyone to see, property interests can conflict. If everyone is allowed to build willy-nilly, then all cities would look like Houston. Nobody wants that, not even the people in Houston. For efficiency, safety, harmony, the individual must make concessions to the group; by doing so, the entire group (including the individual) benefits. The casino in question would be across the street from a technical school and a neighborhood, with no setback; it's a really stupid location, but probably all the tribe could get near a highway. If built, it will result in very unbalanced growth and a mess of a traffic pattern.

I am glad that you see it the way you do; but that runs absolutely counter to what I'm hearing from the right, and definitely counter to Rand!

"I swear, by my life and my love of it, that I will never live for the sake of another man, nor ask another man to live for mine." These people ask the tribe to curb their interests in favor of their own, clashin with Rand. Rand clashes with the golden rule. Which is better? Can they be reconciled? coexist at all?

And yes, the bill is pandering, "Here, I'm your representative, I'm doing something" ... something that will only drag out permitting, if even that. Rand would go into a tizzy.
_____________________

Tulsa was a test market for the movie. Is Part 2 being made? If it continues as a literal adaptation, it's going to get awkward.

In reply to an earlier post on Feb 16, 2012, 10:23:04 AM PST
Last edited by the author on Feb 16, 2012, 11:42:45 AM PST
J. Potter says:
John H.,

Have to agree with TS on this one. If they wasnt to support the printing of the books, even if the wider marketplace does not, it's their money.

I do however support the public funding of art, and also the gov't acting in a venture capital capacity ... with heavy strings attached. There are some risks that only a gov't can take.

TS,

Many companies contribute to *both* sides, buying their tickets to the game, hedging their bets. Time is money, money is influence in a capitalist society. Solyndra has shady aspects, particularly the inclusion of private capital on a preferred basis. Not that private capital would have joined otherwise; wanting all reward for little risk, they should not have been invited. But why highlight Solyndra and Tesla? We could go back as far as you like and find quid pro quo all the way.

I see a parallel between your note that unions support politicians who advance their interests, and clubs who support book that the market might not.

All entities advance their interests, their agendas. Why wouldn't they?

In reply to an earlier post on Feb 16, 2012, 10:41:28 AM PST
Last edited by the author on Feb 16, 2012, 10:51:12 AM PST
J. Potter wrote: "I see a parallel between your note that unions support politicians who advance their interests, and clubs who support book that the market might not."

There's no similarities. Unions use public monies taken at the point of a gun while the act of supporting a book using strictly private monies given from the heart. Union monies are legislatively forced monies, taken from the unwilling while private monies are offered up freely. Unions use legislation passed by union supported politicians to gain access to other people's money while supporting a book with personal monies harms nobody. There's a huge difference and nobody can tell me they don't see the difference. To draw a direct comparison meets the definition of intellectual dishonesty.

"But why highlight Solyndra and Tesla?"

Because they're current examples of politically supported "private" enterprises, supported with public monies with known contributions to the current administration. Public monies going to public figures should cause anybody to be upset. This is not the purpose of taxation. Anybody should be outraged by this behavior, irrespective of whom is receiving the monies and if one is not outraged, it's because their bias is showing.

"All entities advance their interests, their agendas. Why wouldn't they?"

Note how you don't make distinction between advancing interests with personal (private) money and advancing interests using taxpayer monies? What you're saying is, you're okay with a shell corporation being setup, investment money being given to the corporation and then this money coming back to an administration in the form of corporate and CEO donations made directly to a presidential campaign or in the form of Super PAC money. That's like saying you're okay with drug money being laundered through a shell corporation. I'm sure you know how easy it is to launder money in America but the line has to be drawn when a president is laundering tax payer money through corporate sponsorship. No matter how you try to spin this behavior, the behavior meets the definition of conflict of interest.

I'm not okay with any politician doing this and I see Progressives all in arms about this......up to the point when it's their man in Washington and then all of a sudden, the voices of protest go silent.

In reply to an earlier post on Feb 16, 2012, 11:16:32 AM PST
Grim says:
Potter:
On one hand, the Objectivists are radical capitalists who abandon their core principles and use subsidies to prop up a market failure that they agree with--wildly ironic. (Just paying to print the books isn't ironic, but then they subsidize the distribution and the retail purchase of the books, and that is funny. It would be like BP paying you $3.00 to buy a gallon of their gasoline.)

On the other hand, trade unionists are collectivists who are using collective action to further their collective aims--not ironic at all.

If those don't seem completely different to you, then I don't suppose we are going to have a particularly fruitful conversation.

In reply to an earlier post on Feb 16, 2012, 11:32:04 AM PST
"gov't interference in private business?"

Ohhh, nooooh, J.!!

Sounds like there are "Randian moochers" in the Obama regime......

Ohhh, nooooh!!

Posted on Feb 16, 2012, 11:32:38 AM PST
Last edited by the author on Feb 16, 2012, 2:25:12 PM PST
J. Potter says:
The next time a "tax man" shows up with a gun to collect your taxes, please take a photo. That was a Randian paragraph! Retail counters don't train guns on customers while collecting sales tax. Tag agencies aren't holding drivers in their sights. Even the IRS doesn't go door-to-door, collecting donations for The Man at gunpoint. We pay our taxes quite voluntarily in this country. If you refuse, there will eventually be penalties, and you might be taken into custody by a gun-toting civil servant. They're called police, and we're assured they're here for our protection. But even then, mr. policeman won't train his gun on you while you shell out cash. No, you'll head off to a day in court, and again be given an opportunity to pay. As with zoning laws, if your property interests conflict with the state's, a decision will have to be made. And the state will expect payment for the services provided to you. They don't even collect up front, as they trust you not to mooch.

If you don't like the state, move and go build your own roads, utilities, etc., educate your own children, and provide for your own defense.

Tax money is budgeted to compensate public employees. This is goverened by a representative process. Some employees are fortunate enough to be unionized. Would you rather deal with the government on a more equal footing, or go your own way and trust in the paternal graces of politicians?

You aren't paying your taxes out of the goodness of your heart? You believe unions hold their members prisoner?

"All entities advance their interests, their agendas. Why wouldn't they?"

No, I didn't make any distinctions as I was stating the obvious. All entities can be expected to use whatever resources at hand to advance their interests as they understand them. To get into a discussion about specific entities using specific resources to advance specific interests, is to have a a different discussion entirely, as many as you care to have! Your entire response to this is assumption.

I'm not being quiet about Solyndra, I've stated my criticism here and elsewhere. Al so noted it is unfortunately not unusal, bringing it up as though it were betrays bias.

Ever hear about Nixon and the milk subsidies? It's a funny one. At least in that case, someone went to jail.

In reply to an earlier post on Feb 16, 2012, 11:33:46 AM PST
John Hruschka wrote: "It would be like BP paying you $3.00 to buy a gallon of their gasoline.)"

If they want to sell me five dollar gas for two bucks, sign me up. :)

In reply to an earlier post on Feb 16, 2012, 11:35:47 AM PST
J. Potter says:
So long as it's composed of human beings, I am sure there are. To my knowledge, all administrations to date were staffed with human beings.

In reply to an earlier post on Feb 16, 2012, 11:38:37 AM PST
Stick to the point, J.

Posted on Feb 16, 2012, 11:41:43 AM PST
M. Hatter says:
Ayn Rand was a bumpkin!

In reply to an earlier post on Feb 16, 2012, 11:42:11 AM PST
J. Potter says:
John H.,

The whole thread is about Randians being hypocritical!

Similar to unions in a general sense that they use their resources to promote their agenda, collectively.

I'm sorry, the line "I see a parallel between your note that unions support politicians who advance their interests, and clubs who support book that the market might not." was directed at TS, should have made that clear.

In reply to an earlier post on Feb 16, 2012, 11:43:20 AM PST
Last edited by the author on Feb 16, 2012, 11:50:40 AM PST
J. Potter wrote: "We pay our taxes quite voluntarily in this country."

That's about as big of a lie as one person can spin. What I don't get, what benefit is there in spinning this type of whopper?

"If you don't like the state, move and go build your own roads, utilities, etc., educate your own children, and provide for your own defense."

I can see you've been assimilated. Wow have you been sucked in.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xtOkNZK-m4A
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Discussion in:  Politics forum
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Initial post:  Feb 15, 2012
Latest post:  Feb 22, 2012

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