Doctor Cleveland's picture

    Inflation and the Dragon

    One of the hardest things for many people to grasp during the Great Recession has been the idea that inflation is too low. We generally talk about inflation as pure economic evil, something that could never possibly be too low. But it is.

    If you say inflation is too low, some people will bring up the high inflation of the 1970s or, more hysterically, the hyper-inflation in Weimar Germany during the rise of the Nazis as proof that Inflation Is Bad. But that doesn't really make sense. Inflation is bad when it gets too high, but that doesn't make a modest amount of inflation bad. The sun is bad in Death Valley when it's 130 degrees, but that doesn't make sunshine a universal menace. 15% inflation would be a very bad thing, but that doesn't mean 1.5% inflation is a good thing. 130 degrees Fahrenheit is murderous, but so 13 degrees is also a killer. A lot of our public debate about inflation is like trying to treat a case of frostbite while people keep shouting that heat is a terrible thing and then angrily tell you a long story about forest fires.

    William K. Wolfrum's picture

    Breaking: Edward Snowden leaks Naughty or Nice list

    Rostov-on-Don, RUSSIA -- Leaker extraordinaire Edward Snowden unleashed his biggest coup to date, leaking Santa Claus' Naughty or Nice list on Christmas Eve.

    "I just want us to have a discussion, is all," said Snowden. "Let's talk. I want to talk. We should talk." Claus, a shadowy figure known mostly by song, has long fought off civil liberties activists who say more transparency is needed in regard to the famed list.

    "A debate, perhaps?" said Snowden. "A little tea time conversation, maybe?" I really wanna talk about this."

    William K. Wolfrum's picture

    Unemployed guy who doesn't care about his social media reputation says anything he wants

    God celebrates the DNC folding over a non-issue. DES MOINES -- "Gay people are made of orange peels and frog legs," shouted William K. Wolfrum.

    "Black people poop pumpkin pie!" Wolfrum added.

    Wolfrum, who is unemployed, said he was practicing his First Amendment rights to say anything he likes.

    Ramona's picture

    On the Day When Turkeys Refuse to Give Thanks

    Happy Thanksgiving, everyone.  Over the river and through the woods to grandson's house we go.  I wrote this last night, so if there's confusion about the time line, that's why.  Any Vegetarians in the crowd might want to skip this one.

     

    Ramona's picture

    Walmart, the Benevolent Provides Bins for Low-Wage Employees Food Drive

     

    Everybody knows the Walton family, the people who put the "Wal" in "Walmart", is the richest family in America.  They're so rich you would have to pile up more than 40% of the wealth in the entire United States to even be on the same level.  If each member of the family lived to be a thousand years old, they couldn't even begin to spend all of their fortune.  So asking them to pay their employees a living wage and a few measly benefits is like asking them to give up, say, 1/10,000th of their fortune.  (Don't quote me on that; I don't know that for absolute

    Michael Wolraich's picture

    Russia Offers Asylum to Russian Dissidents

    On Thursday, Russian officials announced that Russia had offered asylum to dissidents suffering persecution from the Russian government.

    The group includes Alexei Navalny, an anti-corruption blogger sentenced to five years in a corrective labor colony; Mikhail Khodorkovsky, a former Russian oligarch imprisoned since 2005; members of punk rock protest band Pussy Riot, imprisoned since 2012; Russia's gay population; and the Chechen Republic. Russia also offered posthumous asylum to Alexander Litvinenko, a former KGB agent assassinated by Russian agents after receiving asylum in Britain.

    Ramona's picture

    FRIDAY FOLLIES: Bachmann's Adios, Hitler Tea Kettle, Michigan Dreaming, and Scandalous Cheerios

     

    Michele Bachmann to leave Washington to spend more time with her "family".  Prompts the resurrection of FRIDAY FOLLIES.  (What?  Every Friday?  Uh. . .we'll see how it goes.)

    Michael Maiello's picture

    I Wrote A Book! (Almost!)

    As we head into the long weekend, you Daggers are probably wondering what you're going to read.  Might I suggest a short and cheap solution to your entertainment needs?  It's got more action than My Dinner With Andre.  More laughs than The Deer Hunter.  More insight than the entire oeuvre of David Brooks.  It is:

    William K. Wolfrum's picture

    Child, 9, murders more than 100,000 in video game

    DULUTH - In a scene of overwhelming carnage, Bobby Jenkins, 9, brutally murdered more than 100,000 people, zombies, and other entities yesterday.

    The slaughter began at 3:30 p.m. yesterday, when Sally Jenkins, mother of Bobby, allowed her son to play the video game "Slaughter Everything." After doing some bills, Sally Jenkins stumbled across the murder scene and immediately sent young Bobby to his room.

    "It was really unsettling," said Sally Jenkins. "He was just going crazy, slaughtering everybody."

    William K. Wolfrum's picture

    Satire killed in suicide bomb attack

     

    NEW YORK — The writing style of satire was blown up in a suicide attack at its home in the upper West side of Manhattan. Snark and Snide Disregard were also injured in the attack and are currently in intensive care.

    Satire, which gained prominence via writers like Jonathan Swift and Voltaire, has struggled to find its footing recently in the Internet-driven world, as more and more satire is associated with mindless attacks, sophomoric humor and the oft-imitated “Breaking” news story. Satire reached a low point recently when the magazine “The New Yorker” hired Andy Borowitz, who then proceeded to write the exact same story 175 consecutive times.

    Ramona's picture

    Hulabaloo at the Soo

     

    Let me just say right off that when it comes to Homeland and border security, I'm all for it.

    When it comes to appreciating how essential shipping is to the Great Lakes, I'm right at the head of the line.

    When it comes to being in awe of the engineering feat that is the Soo Locks I am so in awe I can't stand it.
     

    William K. Wolfrum's picture

    U.S. bans drone program, entire planet follows lead

     

    WASHINGTON - President Barack Obama banned the controversial drone program here today, and reaction to the move was swift, as every other country on the planet immediately announced they would do the same, even France, which has a well-earned reputation of being a pain in the ass on these types of matters.

    Ramona's picture

    National Grammar Day: Well, La Di Da (or is it “Dah”?)

    So I think I told you I’m working on a book.  I’ve changed the title again, so now I’m calling it “Living to Tell About It”.   (The sub-title may or may not be “How to tell your story when it gets to be That Time,” but don’t hold me to it.)

    William K. Wolfrum's picture

    I love you, Bushmaster .223. You truly make me a man

     

    I never thought this could happen to me …

    My life was an ordinary one. My wife had left me two years earlier, taking the kids. My job with the cable company was unsatisfying but it paid the bills. I went to the bar three or four times a week. I played poker once a week with some guys I really didn’t even like. I was a nobody.

    Then I saw her.

    I was at Walmart to pick up something to eat and maybe a puzzle. I had some time on my hands – ok, I always had time on my hands – and I wandered about the store. That’s where she called to me.

    William K. Wolfrum's picture

    Scientists discover human body will stop a bullet in a "legitimate" shooting

    TEXAS – Scientists at the University of Texas-El Paso have discovered that the human body will deflect bullets in a “legitimate” shooting.

    “We have seen that, when the human body is stressed out and about to be legitimately shot, the bullet will not harm them,” said Dr. Phil Gingrey. “The obvious conclusion is that people who do have a bullet enter their body actually want to be shot.”

    William K. Wolfrum's picture

    Why we women can’t have it all and should lower our expectations especially when it comes to men

    We women have had a rough few decades. The modern woman has to worry about pleasing their man or finding a man. We have to worry about children. We have to worry about our jobs and vaginas. But it didn’t used to always be this way. Since the great feminist uprising came and washed away our self-respect and dignity, we women lived a far simpler existence. We indeed had it all.

    William K. Wolfrum's picture

    Fiscal Cliff will bring smallpox, forced incest & insects of above-average size

    My friends, America was born some 450 years ago in 1776 and has the documentation to prove it. Now, America has an expiration date – Dec. 31, 2012.

    William K. Wolfrum's picture

    Paul Ryan announces large charitable donation to ‘The Human Fund’

    WASHINGTON — Stung by criticism over using a soup kitchen for a staged photo op that showed him washing dishes that were already clean, Vice-Presidential candidate Paul Ryan has announced he will be making a large donation to the

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