Saturday, February 9, 2019

Meet Dr. Economics. She’s Not a Real Doctor…

Good morning everyone and welcome to the school of continuous learning. Today we’ll be studying sophomore level economics and by the end of the lesson you too will know how to eliminate poverty, inequity and global warming! And how to get enough money to make that happen. (Spoiler alert!)

“The Federal Reserve can extend credit to power these projects and investments and new public banks can be created to extend credit. There is also space for the government to take an equity stake in projects to get a return on investment.” Green New Deal Resolution

When we’re done with the tutorial you should be able to prove the hypothesis that “while there are limitations on human intelligence there are no such limits on human stupidity.”

Let’s start with the New Green Deal’s plan to eliminate poverty: all you need to do is give everyone everything they need or want by way of a guaranteed basic income and universal health care  “for those unable or unwilling to work,” and federal job guarantees for those who prefer to pretend to work and get a paystub showing what they made before 70% of it is recycled to the Federal Treasury.

That sure sounds good, but won’t that cost like a bazillion dollars?  How will we pay for it? Let’s have Dr. Ocasio-Cortez take it from here: “you just pay for it.” That’s a little something known as an economic “externality.” 1 Or something.

But Doctor, isn’t this going to be a socialist system that will require massive government takeovers of, well, everything? Absolutely not, not just no, but hell no:

Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D., N.Y.) said Thursday that her proposed Green New Deal would not be financed through a "massive government takeover."

"I think one way that the right does try to mischaracterize what we're doing as though it's like some kind of massive government takeover," Ocasio-Cortez said on MSNBC's "MTP Daily." "Obviously it's not that because what we're trying to do is release the investments from the federal government to mobilize those resources across the country."

Which would have been fine, reasonable deniability and all, had she not already let the cat out of the bag earlier in the day when she told NPR Morning Edition host Steve Inskeep that it meant exactly that. And not just yes, but hell yes!

Is anyone else getting flashbacks to NPR’s “Ask Dr. Science! segments?

Image result for ask dr scienceYou know, the one where a citizen calls in and asks a science question that is then answered by the “expert” except the answer is always wrong and frequently nothing more than a meandering non sequitur on the way to a joke? The tag line is always “He knows more than you do.” and the skit always closes with the disclaimer: “I’m not a real doctor, but I do have a degree in…science!”

Doctor Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez’s deserves her own tag line. Her answers are always like that too: wrong, non-sequiturs - only not funny.

1 Excerpt from AOC’s interview on Morning Edition:

INSKEEP: As you know, Congresswoman, one reason that people who are politically conservative are skeptical of efforts to combat climate change is that it sounds to them like it requires massive government intervention, which they just don't like. Are you prepared to put on the table that, yes, actually, they're right, what this requires is massive government intervention?

OCASIO-CORTEZ: It does. It does. Yeah. I have no problem saying that. Why? Because we have tried their approach for 40 years. For 40 years, we tried to let the private sector take care of it. They said, we got this, we can do this, the forces of the market are going to force us to innovate. Except for the fact that there's a little thing in economics called externalities, and what that means is that a corporation can dump pollution in the river and they don't have to pay for it, and taxpayers have to pay for cleaning up our air, cleaning up our water and saving the planet.

And that my friends is a fine example of a non sequitur so don’t say you didn’t learn something today: Rep Ocasio-Cortez does not just suffer from the Millennial vocal fry, she also has the brain fry to go along with it.