Class War!

The Herbert Hoover Legacy ProjectTitle: New Deal or Raw Deal?: How FDR’s Economic Legacy Has Damaged America

Author: Burton Folsom, Jr.

Rank: 23

Blurb: “In this shocking and groundbreaking new book, economic historian Burton W. Folsom exposes the idyllic legend of Franklin D. Roosevelt as a myth of epic proportions. With questionable moral character and a vendetta against the business elite, Roosevelt created New Deal programs marked by inconsistent planning, wasteful spending, and opportunity for political gain — ultimately elevating public opinion of his administration but falling flat in achieving the economic revitalization that America so desperately needed from the Great Depression.”

Review: “A must read for anyone who wants to understand how America came to revere socialism over a free market.”

Customers Also Bought: “Atlas Shrugged”, by Ayn Rand

Footnote: Unemployment, 1933: 24.9%; 1937: 14.3%; 1981: 7.5%; 1993: 7.3%; 2001: 4.2%; 2009: 7.6%.

New Deal or Raw Deal? [Amazon]

Buy or Die [Stinque@Amazon kickback link]


$200 million bridges to Nowhere (for 50 people in Bumfuck Alaska) is wasteful.

Hoover Dam? Not so much.

What really makes me laugh is these assholes don’t understand that the US would have gone under a revolution if it were for the New Deal. Where the revolution would have gone is beyond me.

Another laughing point is do these idiots not realize that infrastructure doesn’t just materialize out of nowhere? Someone’s gotta pay to build it and maintain it. As for private funds? Good luck with that. I have some privately “inspected” salmonella “free” peanut butter for you if you truly believe that.,_Jr.
“Folsom shows robber barons as constructive visionaries who benefited consumers and were integral to the development of industry. In his book The Myth of the Robber Barons”

Can’t wait for his book about Walmart, Labor’s GREATEST Friend.

“Government exists to do the things we can’t do by ourselves, like build bridges and roads and to maintain the same,” Retired Prof and Old Hippie, Bill (“Just call me Bill”) Sensiba. I’m sure it’s not original to him, but it was the first time I’d heard it.

@nojo: I know it’s not exactly your neck of the woods, but have you heard of Evergreen College? Do you know anyone who went there? I ask b/c Evergreen used to be my undergrad’s sister school. My tiny state college in South Jersey was started in the late 60s or early 70s by some hippies from Brown and Yale, etc, who said, “Poor kids in South Jersey deserve a good liberal arts education, too.” When the school began, students received written assessments instead of grades (they now get grades b/c the written assessments put them at a disadvantage when it came to applying to grad school). When the school installed its first African-American president (also a woman!), the Klan marched on the school. I was fortunate to go there before the old guard retired, and I was treated to some awesome lectures and seminars from most likely disappointed yet still fiery crusaders for justice, peace and equality. Students used to bitch about the fact that we didn’t have a football team, and the Wise Ones would respond, “Do you have any idea how much it costs a school to maintain a football program? You have no idea how much your tuition would skyrocket if we had one. It’s no accident we don’t have a team. And every semester we make conscious decisions about which books you should buy because books are expensive, and not everyone can afford them. Furthermore, did you ever notice that we end the spring semester a couple of weeks earlier than the other local schools? That’s no accident either, because we’re down at the shore and we want you guys to get a jump on the summer jobs in NJ.” Good people. Great education. Wonderful place.

This is the standard method for “conservatives”. Take an idea we all agree on – the New Deal helped lift the Great Depression – and question it anew. We thought the abortion controversy was solved once the Supreme Court spoke, but no – the conservatives want to drag us backwards. We thought we knew the definition of fascism, but no – the Doughy Pantload would have you believe liberals are the real fascists. Similarly the fact-challenged Amity Shlaes – even NPR gives her a forum.

@JNOV: I know I’m given to rants on this topic (among others) but that, to me, speaks of the real America: egalitarian, pragmatic and utopian. However tattered our city on a hill might have become recently that’s still the nation we all know and love. Lucky you to have gone there.

I believe it is true that Sport costs colleges a lot of money. I’m sure you all can enlighten me about that. I know it adds lustre because throwing balls is an essential part of learning and is useful to fill vast tracts of tv time not occupied by Chris Mathews but I would like to point out that theatre departments cost almost nothing in comparison and are big money-makers for colleges everywhere. In fact it’s a real racket with students being taught audition technique (as if such a thing exists) by people who’ve never held a professional job. But still the colleges make money from it. Throw in a musical theatre course and you’re golden.

@Benedick: JNOV’s college devotes a lot of money to the arts and has a vibrant theatrical community (some of the theatrics come from students and faculty not even remotely related to the theatre program! Heh.). It also books concerts with amazing artists that are open to the public, and the ticket prices are nominal (cuz poor South Jersey folks deserve good theatre/concert experiences, too).

Good point.

In Canada City, we don’t have sports scholarship programs except for one school that is in the NCAA. We have student athletics and intercollegiate sports, but not on the scale of the US America.

My school is more noted for producing theatre majors than sports types which is fine with me.

Gar! I just lost my comment. ANYWAY…there are some nefarious changes afoot at JNOV’s college. When the school was started, they decided to do away with the Publish or Perish requirement for tenure, and instead they heavily relied on student surveys to determine if the profs were good educators. Now they are trying to install the PoP requirement, and some of the old guard are putting up a helluva fight. They think they should devote their time to their students and to honing their teaching skills rather than to spend time they’d rather spend with students doing research. That’s not that they don’t do research — they do, but they think that when your job is at risk due to PoP, your mindset as an educator is different, and your priorities change.

JNOV had a professor who taught a huge class (at her school, that meant about 100 people), and he gave his students his home telephone number. He said to call at anytime, even at 3 AM the night before an exam, if we had any questions.

Another problem is that the school is falling victim to the rankings published by folks like US News and World Report. They are being more strict on admissions to increase their exclusivity standing, and they are also thinking about becoming a univeristy to increase the student population (preferably attracting out-of-state students and more $) and to create marketable/patent worthy stuff. The old guard is having none of that and wants the school to remain a college. But the old guard is old, and the old guard is tired. I have no idea what the last 8 years have done to them, and I have no idea what will become of JNOV’s school.

@Benedick: The state university where I used to work made much of the $75 million received from an alum to go towards building a new stadium, but failed to mention the increases in student “fees” that were increased annually to support the vanity project. And the money the sports programs make largely goes back into the sports programs. My favorite Onion article ever was “University of Florida to Phase Out Academic Programs by 2010.” Large universities have become little more than life support systems for professional sports teams. My small women’s college had a well-known theatre department that brought in a lot of much-needed revenue.

Speaking of theatre, y’all, I saw Benedick’s play last night and it blew me away. Our man is brilliant, as you might have guessed.

@JNOV: Evergreen’s up in Washington — about three hours north of my Ancestral Home — so all I know about it are a couple of famous alumni: Matt Groening and Lynda Barry.

@Benedick: The Party Line is that intercollegiate sport indirectly supports their colleges by raising awareness among donors — a trickle-down effect.

In the University of Oregon’s case, there may be some truth to that, if only because a couple of major donors are intimately associated with a high-profile sweatshop-footwear marketer. Phil Knight is footing the bill for a new basketball pavilion, but the Knight family has also funded a major expansion of the campus library, and built new digs for the law school.

Even when it (purportedly) works, however, such largesse has its consequences. A few years ago, the UO president made some disparaging remarks about said sweatshops, and found himself begging for Phil’s mercy. No truth to the rumor that the campus fight song is being changed to “Just Do It”.

@nojo: “Weird Al” Yankovic – or was that Reed?

@nabisco: I’ve successfully blocked out Weird Al since “Another One Rides the Bus”, so I can’t say. Evergreen was a cartoonist haven in the Seventies; that’s pretty much all I know about it.

@nabisco: Weird Al is a Cal Poly guy — although he never graduated.

@nojo: I have blanked out Weird Al for pretty much his entire career. Call it a lifestyle choice.

@blogenfreude: Given the household I grew up in, I’ve probably heard Myron Floren more than Weird Al.

@Mistress Cynica: I am SO jealous – I can’t wait until it comes to Chicago.

Hmmmm…that undercoverother person seems to have fucked up her use of the third person at one point.

Weird Al used to scare me as did that Russian guy with the same name as a brand of vodka. I did like Father Guido Sarducci, though. And don’t get me started on my hate for ventriloquist dummies and marionettes. I’m not afraid of clowns, but I understand how some people can have that fear. Howdy Doody was the devil. And that ventriloquist on Comedy Central with that suicide bomber dummy? Hate him.

I have hit the wall, y’all, and teh crazee cloaking device is malfunctioning.

@JNOV: In Russia, punchlines laugh at you!

@Dodgerblue: Damn Swedes in the family tree. We were too distant from the Wop side for me to get any decent music.

i have one thing to say and i’m off to bed on this, the other side of the world:

BENEDICK, BRAVO! standing O! hugs and kisses!!!!

that is all.

@nojo: @Signal to Noise: @blogenfreude: I have a buddy who went to Reed, and was pretty sure that he took mocking pride in the fact that they were co-alums.

@JNOV: speaking of suicide bombers, I watched “Paradise Now” last night. Wow. Be careful baked (altho Tel Aviv looked beautiful).

@nabisco: Wikipedia agrees with Signal. And don’t you ever insult my state by insinuating Weird Al has anything to do with it.

@nabisco: I so want to see that, but I suspect it’s very heavy, so I’ve been waiting until I’m in the proper mental state to view it.

For whatever it’s worth, I graduated from Evergreen. Word on the street is that Groening’s drawings for the Cooper Point Journal (aka CPJ, aka Seepage, the approximately weekly school paper) are still on file, but are only available for in-person inspection. I actually hosted a radio show for about a year on KAOS, the 200 watt Evergreen radio station, called Geek Talk. The Internet was very exciting at that time.

@IanJ: Hey *we* had a radio station called KAOS at the University of Denver. Big radio guy voice: “One hundred thousand microwatts strong . . . ”

@ baked – Are you and Romie the night shift, or are we?

@redmanlaw: The radio station at the University of Oregon — home of the Fighting Ducks! — is KWAX.

Alas, the station plays classical music, and we were firmly instructed to pronounce each letter separately, lest the hoi polloi snigger inappropriately.

@IanJ: Oh, wow! That’s worth so much that it’s priceless! Has Evergreen stayed true to its hippie origins?

@JNOV: I dunno, it’s been more than a decade since I was there. I found Evergreen to be a split-personality college: part of it was overrun by hippies (the dirty, blond-dreadlock, trust-fund hippies, I mean) who were all about protesting whatever the latest questionable outrage was, and the other part was a comparatively normal-but-alternative state college. So I’m not sure how to answer your question.

I got written evals in my years there, and as far as I know, they still don’t do grades. I was not a great match to the educational style, and only a few years after I graduated did I realize that I would have learned a hell of a lot more at somewhere more structured. You have to be really self-motivated to make the most of Evergreen, and I’d guess that only about 5% of students actually use Evergreen’s flexibility really well.

That said, it’s a fantastic college if you want to slack off for 4-10 years and pop out the other end of the grinder with some curlicued paper proclaiming “U R smrt.”

@redmanlaw: Huh. Was it a pirate station? Or was this a while ago? I dunno when KAOS was licensed, but the FCC thinks that KAOS belongs to Evergreen now, at least.


What did you study while you were there and–more importantly–did you have fun doing it? Those are the important questions.

I worked my ass off at a large state-run, sausage-mill university, and I realized when I was job hunting after graduation that I should’ve studied whatever I wanted, slacked off and gotten high and laid more since none of the potential employers cared or even asked about my major or GPA.

I did have fun doing it, but I came away wishing that I’d been more rigorous in my studies. I didn’t particularly slack off in the sense of blowing off classes or failing to turn in papers, but I totally slacked off in my choice of subjects. The biggest thing I did right there was to study computer science, which keeps me in hookers and blow to this day.

@IanJ: Wikipedia concurs with the FCC — the dude who filed for the license in the early ’70s was a Get Smart fan.

@Original Andrew: I skipped AP classes in high school to slack off my senior year, then in college spent a lot more effort at the student newspaper than on homework. Decades on, I stand by my choices.

Besides, managing editors don’t give a shit about grades — it’s all about clippings.

@Original Andrew: I think this is what “the old college try” means: “I should’ve studied whatever I wanted, slacked off and gotten high and laid more.”

@Dodgerblue: I should have gotten laid more. I had no choice, I didn’t know how. Slacking off and getting high, that I was good at. “Studying?” What is this “studying” you speak of?

/TJ: Hey, I just grew a pair and unfriended someone on FB. We went to HS together, but the more I read her and her friends’ comments, the more I realized she is a racist and runs with a like-minded crowd. Guess she didn’t realize/forgot I’m tri-racial, or maybe I was one of her “cool” brown friends. Whatevs. I hope she got a big FU message from FB when I unfriended her.

ADD: I guess my balls aren’t as big as they should be. If they were, I would have sent her a personalized FU via email before I unfriended her racist ass.

@Prommie: I studied for the philosophy and math classes I liked, but other than that, not mucho.

@JNOV: My kids tell me that “unfriending” is a drastic measure. I’m not sure why.


You are so lucky that you studied something useful. I got my BA in Physiological Psychology—how the brain and body produce behavior through internal biology and external sensory perception–since I was under the delusion at the time that I wanted to go to grad school.

I’d have gotten my degree in Spanish or Film Studies–something fun–if I had it all to do over again.

@Dodgerblue: Exactly what I did.

@JNOV: I unfriended someone who was a racist European shithead who was in the Fuck Islam group.

@IanJ: Hmmmm. I was a “Non-traditional Student” in college, and I tended to spend more time in profs’ offices than with classmates, so I have no idea if the majority were pseudohippies or not. I do have one good friend from college even though he’s about eight years my junior. He used to get me high, and then we’d do ridiculous things like running across the Parkway in the middle of the night and almost getting caught by the cops.

I did take advantage of the ever-present opportunities to have carnal knowledge of the sweet young things I went to school with. I have no shame and no regrets. And I worked my ass off in college, but I enjoyed it. I always knew I was going to some sort of grad school, so I started off taking classes I thought I’d need if I were going to med school because of my experience as a Hospital Corpsman and because I really do like working with sick people. When I realized that there was no way in hell I would ever learn basic chemistry let alone organic chem, I started talking classes that interested me with my eye on going to law school. After I took a civil liberties class, I started seriously thinking about law school, but I was also interested in demography after spending a summer at The Population Study Center at Penn. Then I took a realistic look at my age, at my situation as a single parent and at the time it would take for me to get my doctorate in demography versus the time it would take for me to get my JD. Law school won. Sometimes I wish it hadn’t.

@Dodgerblue: It really, really is. She was bitching about having to work today, and someone commented that now that the administration has changed, Washington is no longer the father of the US but is now a [I forgot the adjective] slave trader. I read that and decided to read her pages a little more closely. I noticed she had bitched about smelling some Muslim’s incense at work (huh?), and she was part of the Fry Mumia FB group. I don’t know if Mumia is guilty or not, but I do believe he didn’t receive a fair trial. And of course I’m against capital punishment, so this chick had to go. It’s not so much that we disagree about politics — I have many vociferous FB friends who are conservatives. But something about this chick just made me not want to be associated with her at all. Intuition? I dunno.

@redmanlaw: Good man.

It’s intertubes equivalent of telling them to fuck off. As a friend of mine once remarked, “There is no polite way to say fuck off.”

School? I was probably one of the least motivated engineer students ever. Part of it was living outside my parents’ orbit for the first time in my life where I enjoyed living aka partied too much.. Part of was adjusting to life where I actually had to work to get results–fun fact, I never sweated a drop in high school and graduated in the top 10%. University was a different matter entirely.

Took me 5+ years to get what is supposed to be a 4 year degree. Pretty much the shame of the family especially my uber serious engineer father who wanted me to become a professor.

Most of my U friends were slackers so it is one reason why Animal House resonates with me although my school banned frats and sororities. We were Delta in all but name. Strangely though, we became successful (some more than others) except the guy who graduated in the top 10 of my year who has gone from Eng to Banker to Lawyer to ??? Graduating from the ass end isn’t the best, but if you smarten up (like most of us had to in a hurry after graduation) you have an advantage over better smarter students only because of learned coping and other survival skills such as proving by action/ability that you aren’t as big a fuck up as your transcript said you were.

You guys have provided interesting perspective. I don’t regret my college years, and I don’t think I wasted them. I had a good time, learned a pretty damn marketable skill set, and learned a lot about dealing with other people.

I still wish I’d done some kind of ME or EE degree, but mostly because I know I’m capable of it, and I dislike it when my EE friend leaves me in the dust with math or engineering. I want the result, not the years of hard work. ;)

@ManchuCandidate: Hustle and drive make up for a lot. There are plenty of folks smarter than I, but no one is going to outwork me. As those of you who wasted your youth playing pickup basketball will recognize, this is the Slow White Guy mentality — there are lots of better players, but my team is winning, and you’re sitting against the wall, buddy.

True. At work I don’t sit on my ass and take things for granted. Nor do I assume I am the smartest guy in the room. I admit that I don’t know things or I might be, gasp, wrong.

Thing I learned about school is that the knowledge and skills they teach are important in life, but understanding how the real world works is just as important.

@JNOV: Unfortunately, FB no longer informs someone you’ve unfriended them. They simply stop seeing your updates, and won’t know unless they look at their list and you’re gone.

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