Tidbits Political Quotations
To Accompany the May 11, 2016 edition of Tidbits
Bob Jensen at
Trinity University

It's hard to beat a person who never gives up.

Babe Ruth, Historic Home Run Hitter
And he wasn't even thinking about Jihads in those days but I am thinking Jihads these days

Only those who will risk going too far can possibly find out how far one can go.
T.S. Eliot

Be brave enough to start a conversation that matters.
Margaret Wheatley,

We must be willing to get rid of the life we've planned, so as to have the life that is waiting for us.
Joseph Campbell

If everyone is thinking alike, then somebody isn't thinking.
George S. Patton

If you don't know where you're going, you might not get there.
Yogi Berra

Happiness is like a butterfly: the more you chase it, the more it will elude you, but if you turn your attention to other things, it will come and sit softly on your shoulder.
Henry David Thoreau

During the speech on April 30, Bloomberg voiced his perception that college students are overly sensitive and shouldn't need safe spaces to deal with difficult situations.
Michael Bloomberg in a University of Michigan Commencement Address ---- http://www.businessinsider.com/michael-bloomberg-booed-during-speech-2016-5

President Obama Strikes Hopeful Tone in Howard University Commencement Speech ---

The Legacy of Joan Robinson ---

Target Corp. has publically announced that Men may now use the Women’s restroom (and vice versa), no questions asked ---
Signs on Target Store Restrooms
Jensen Comment
The problem is not a gender neutral bathroom where one user can lock the door to the entire room. The problem arises with rooms that have multiple stalls. It's a special problem if cameras can be held across the top or under the separation bottom of a stall from an adjoining stall.
A lot of bottom lines are at stake, including Target's bottom line from boycotting customers who now refuse to shop at Target.


Target Stocks Sink by $2.5 Billion in 10 Days as over 1 Million Americans pledge to Boycott them ---
Jensen Comment
Assuming Target now will quickly move to totally separate stalls from floor to ceiling it remains to be seen whether this alone will appease boycotters. Chances are that Target will have to eventually spend millions on major rennovations that create gender-neutral private bathrooms complete with sinks and the elimination of stalls in a single room..

What this shows the accountancy profession (yet again in a big way) is that so much of value rides on intangibles and contingencies that accountants have never been able to measure or account for in a meaningful way.

Obama Admin Deported Less Than One Percent of Visa Overstays Nearly half a million individuals overstayed visas in 2015, fewer than 2,500 deported . . .
Immigration and Customs Enforcement has received substantially more taxpayer money in recent years despite the plummeting rate of deportations. At least 43 percent fewer aliens were removed from the United States from 2012 to 2015, according to DHS statistics.-

Free Speech, 'The Antioch Review' and an Antitransgender Article ---

India has published its income tax data for the first time since 2000—and the numbers are shocking. Only about 12.5 million Indians—or 1% of the total population—paid tax on their earnings in fiscal 2013. Although 28.7 million filed tax returns that year, 16.2 million got away without paying any tax, data shows.
Jensen Comment
Tax avoiders are commonly self-employed who cheat on taxes. Most employees in the organized sectors fall below the threshhold for paying taxes. Some employees like those in agriculture are entirely exempted from taxation. Like in the USA there's an enormous underground (cash-only) economy that's allowed to flourish. In the USA this economy is especially used by undocumented workers but is certainly exploited by otthers as well, including highly paid professionals ---

It is mathematically impossible for every country to simultaneously devalue their currencies vs. every other currency. Yet, the Bank of Japan, the ECB, and the Fed all want to do just that.
Mike Shedlock

I've often stated that nations (other than those in the Euro currency zone) cannot go bankrupt since in desperation they can simply print money. Exhibit A is Zimbabwe where a chicken egg eventually became worth more than a million Zimbabwe dollars. However, Venezuela has proven me wrong by not having enough resources to even print new money ---
Bob Jensen ---

Foundation Press Publishes Election Law Stories (36th Book in the Law Stories Series) ---

We cannot change the cards we are dealt, just how we play the hand.
Randy Pausch --- http://www.trinity.edu/rjensen/Assess.htm#Randy
Unless your wife is marking your cards ---
Pelosi’s Husband Invested in Solar Firm Weeks Before Lucrative Expansion

Obama didn’t hold back at the White House Correspondents Dinner. Here were some of his best jokes.---

The Bernie Sanders "Movement" Doesn't Exist ---

Bernie Sanders Blames Losses on Poor People Not Voting—But Poor People Weren't Voting for Him Anyway ---
Ed Krayewski --- https://reason.com/blog/2016/04/24/bernie-sanders-blames-losses-on-poor-peo

Obama Likely Won Re-Election Through Election Fraud ---
Rachel Alexander --- http://townhall.com/columnists/rachelalexander/2012/11/11/obama_likely_won_reelection_through_election_fraud
And with a lot of help from the IRS
But then George W. Bush probably got a boost from election fraud in Florida

‘Progressives rule higher education,” write political scientists Jon Shields and Joshua Dunn Sr. in “Passing on the Right,” a new book on the dearth of conservative professors. “Their rule is not absolute. But conservatives are scarcer in academia than in just about any other major profession.”Profs. Shields and Dunn aren’t exaggerating. In the humanities and social sciences, they note, surveys show that the percentage of self-described Marxist professors is around 18%, or nearly double that of self-described Republicans.
Jason L. Riley,

The Clintons and their family foundation have at least five shell companies registered to the address 1209 North Orange Street in Wilmington, Delaware — which is also home to some 280,000 other companies who use the location to take advantage of the state's low taxes, limited disclosure requirements, and other business incentives.

Needed: Some Will Rogers' Sanity ---

"If you ever injected truth into politics you have no politics"

"One of the evils of democracy is you have to put up with the man you elect whether you want him or not. That's why we call it democracy."

"Both gangs have been bad sports, so see if at least one can't redeem themselves by offering no alibis, but cooperate with the winner, for no matter which one it is, the poor fellow is going to need it."

"When Congress makes a joke, it's a law, and when they make a law, it's a joke."

"You can't hardly find a law school in the country that don't, through some inherent weakness, turn out a senator or congressman from time to time ... if their rating is real low, even a president."

"The more you observe politics, the more you've got to admit that each party is worse than the other."

Continued in article

Another Hate Crime Hoax on Campus (five black students admit to hoax) ---

Still Another Hate Crime  Hoax
SUNY Albany Expels 2, Suspends 1 Over False Report ---

The Most Corrupt USA Politicians in History ---

Funds managed by activists are poor performers (something campus activists fail to mention)
Hedge funds that are managed by activist investors have underperformed the S&P 500 for years, according to a Fundstrat report. These funds have posted a cumulative return of 113% since 2005 compared with the 115% of the S&P 500

MarketWatch --- http://www.marketwatch.com/story/why-activist-investors-in-the-boardroom-is-not-cause-for-celebration-2016-04-27

Suppose you have a well-behaved, law-abiding son whose friends are not so well-behaved and law-abiding. They do drugs, shoplift and play hooky. Your son does none of those things. As a responsible parent, your advice to your son would be that it is better to be alone than in the wrong company and that people judge you based upon the people with whom you associate. Your son might respond by saying, "I have rights. If I'm not doing something wrong, I shouldn't be judged based on what my friends do!" Your response should be, "You're right, but unfortunately, the world doesn't work that way."
Walter E. Williams

Whistleblower Speaks Out About Food Stamp Fraud ---

Moocher Hall of Fame --- https://danieljmitchell.wordpress.com/the-moocher-hall-of-fame/

Well, the rifleman’s stalking the sick and the lame
Preacherman seeks the same, who’ll get there first is uncertain
Nightsticks and water cannons, tear gas, padlocks
Molotov cocktails and rocks behind every curtain
False-hearted judges dying in the webs that they spin
Only a matter of time ’til night comes steppin’ in

Bob Dylan

Election Gaming "Fraud" in Primary Elections in the USA:  Making Sure Your General Election Opponent is a Real Loser

Table of Contents

Funding Losers

 Communications Juggernauts in Crossover Voting Frauds

Funding Opponent Scandals

Top Republicans are working hard to help Bernie Sanders ---
This is possibly one of the reasons Sanders is beating Clinton in Red States like Wyoming.

Is Donald Trump a Democratic secret agent?
Anthony Zurcher --- http://www.bbc.com/news/world-us-canada-35066940 

Historically, the ocean has been a bit too powerful to harness wave energy successfully. Oscilla Power has come up with a new approach designed to withstand the forces of the ocean and generate electricity cleanly, meaningfully, and endlessly ---

Trump part of conspiracy to ensure Clinton presidency ---
Jeb Bush --- http://www.washingtontimes.com/news/2015/dec/8/jeb-bush-suggests-donald-trump-part-of-conspiracy-/
Jensen Question
Is such a conspiracy necessary given the slate of losers running as GOP candidates for President in 2016?

The Black Panther: Newspaper of the Black Panther Party ---  https://libcom.org/history/black-panther-newspaper-black-panther-party

"How university students infantilise themselves," by an infantile Jonathan Zimmerman, AEON, April 15, 2016 ---

. . .

Asking administrators to solve every problem infantilises students, even as it contributes to the top-heavy bloat of our universities. Our students need to grow up, in the most political way, by wresting control of the educational process from an administrative bureaucracy that wields way too much authority already.

Jensen Comment
This is tantamount to letting the inmates run the asylum. Such a university controlled by students would soon become an anarchy that achieves little other than chaos. A good analogy is the Venezuelan prisons that are now run by prisoners who carry their own guns, share cells with prostitutes, get high on cheap drugs, and come and go from prison as they please. No wonder Venezuela is the most crime-ridden nation in the Western hemisphere.

The first rules of business on a student-controlled democratic campus are no more homework and no more grades. The second rule of business is nude cocktail lounges in all the dorms. Free booze becomes a budget priority.

More seriously power would shift to gangs like it has in Venezuelan prisons ---
Complete democracy is unworkable  Gangs gel into power structures. Power structures clash with other power structures. Eventually a powerful dictator like Castro emerges to restore order. Free beer might survive as a way of placating the masses. Castro provides for beer in ration cards available to all Cubans. This prevents rioting in the streets.

"The Five Dumbest Things in the U.S. Energy Bill," MIT's Technology Review, April 22, 2016 ---

Jensen Comment
The only "dumb thing" I disagree with is the argument that there is no need for more funded research on net metering. Yes I understand that most existing research is positive and that consumers love the combination of government subsidies to invest in solar panels and the personal benefits of net metering using such subsidies. But there are still many unanswered questions, including the tradeoffs of net metering pricing on top of elimination of taxpayer subsidies. There are also unanswered questions regarding impacts of net metering on grid capacity needs from alternative sources ---

As distributed energy generation is becoming increasingly common, the debate on how a utility’s customers should be compensated for the excess energy they sell back to the grid is intensifying.  And net metering, the practice of compensating for such energy at the retail rate for electricity, is becoming the subject of intense political disagreement.  Utilities argue that net metering fails to compensate them for grid construction and distribution costs and that it gives rise to regressive cost shifting among its customers.  Conversely, solar energy proponents argue that the compensation should be higher than the retail rate to account for other benefits that distributed generation systems provide, such as the resulting climate change and other environmental benefits, as well as the savings resulting from not needing to build new installations to provide additional capacity.  This ongoing debate is leading to significant changes to net metering policies in many states. 

This Article provides a thorough analysis of the benefits and the costs of distributed generation and highlights the analytical flaws and missing elements in the competing positions and in all the existing policies.  We propose an alternative approach that properly recognizes the respective contributions to the electric grid of utilities on the one hand and of distributed generators on the other.  We show, however, that this policy is second-best as a result of certain constraints on how electricity can currently be priced.  For the longer run, when these constraints might no longer be present, we discuss the need to consider net metering as part of a more comprehensive energy reform that would ensure the efficient integration of all distributed energy resources into the electricity grid. These reforms are needed to secure our Nation’s clean energy future.

Also see QA:  Bill Gates ---

"History of a Climate Con:  Al Gore had a revelation: Energy taxes would be a loser for Obama," by Holman W. Jenkins, Jr., The Wall Street Journal, April 12, 2016 ---

How’s this for an irony? As state attorneys general gin up a fake securities-fraud case against oil companies over climate change, starting with Exxon Mobil Corp.

the Securities and Exchange Commission has launched a real securities-fraud investigation of the nation’s biggest solar power company. SunEdison allegedly exaggerating its amount of cash on hand to resist an impending bankruptcy.

A little history is in order to appreciate the cynical nadir of climate politics in the U.S. You wouldn’t know it from media coverage, but the closest the U.S. Congress came to passing a serious (if still ineffectual) cap-and-trade program was during the George W. Bush administration in early 2007. Then, within days of Barack Obama’s election in 2008, Al Gore announced a revelation: the “climate crisis” no longer required such unpleasant, de facto energy taxes. The problem could be solved with painless handouts to green entrepreneurs.

Hooray! Everybody loves a handout. The activist duo Michael Shellenberger and Ted Nordhaus noted that the shift in Mr. Gore’s thinking was “highly significant.” “He knows that cap-and-trade, and most any new regulation, would raise energy prices—a political nonstarter during a recession.”

A proposed oil tax swiftly disappeared from the Obama transition website. With control of all three branches of government in hand, the imminent climate threat to humanity suddenly appeared not so urgent after all—passing a “signature” health-care law did.

Democrats, it turned out, were in favor of climate root canal only when Republicans were in charge.

OK, this is old hat, but what should be striking is how thoroughly the climate lobby has played along. Its main function today has become stringing up apostates as a distraction from Democratic unwillingness to propose policies costly enough that they would actually influence the rate of increase of atmospheric greenhouse gases.

Take the Exxon prosecution, promoted by the attorneys general of New York and California and a host of their Democratic brethren. Though the case is never meant to be adjudicated in a courtroom, suppose it were and suppose a jury somehow found for the plaintiffs. How would Exxon pay a securities-fraud judgment? By selling oil and gas.

Attacking Exxon is not climate policy making; it’s a distraction. Its purpose is to foster an atmosphere conducive to the Gore-Obama green pork-barrel strategy.

Or take Sheldon Whitehouse, the U.S. senator who has gained notoriety lately by urging the Justice Department to launch a RICO investigation of climate skeptics. He doesn’t urge his Rhode Island constituents to adopt the life-style sacrifices that would actually reduce fossil-fuel consumption. Mr. Whitehouse’s devotion to understanding climate science at all is so microscopic that, in his latest letter of complaint to the Journal, the only science he cites is a Gallup poll.

Or take Paul Krugman’s columns in the New York Times insisting that if you don’t vote Democratic this fall, the planet is doomed. The colossal unmentionable is that climate activism today exists to promote the Democratic agenda, whatever it may be this week. One thing it isn’t, though, is advocacy of, or even mention of, policies that might actually alter the course of climate change.

The president’s power-plant rules, even if climate models are accurate, would affect global temperature a century hence by 0.03 degrees Celsius. His fuel mileage rules, though costly to Detroit and a life-support for Tesla, would have even less effect.

The renewable subsidies that SunEdison exploited so recklessly that it may soon be in chapter 11 are good for killing birds. The non-binding Paris agreement Mr. Obama signed in December explicitly stipulates that India and China, the two fast-growing emitters, will keep on emitting as if no agreement had been signed.

We could go on—not that, under any circumstances, a serious whack at global greenhouse emissions was ever in the cards.

Continued in article

"Climate Crowd Ignores a Scientific Fraud:  A defective radiation-risk standard holds back our most important low-carbon energy source," by Holman W. Jenkins, Jr., The Wall Street Journal, April 15, 2016 ---

Green activists, some masquerading as attorneys general of New York and California, want to prosecute Exxon XOM -0.54 % as a climate heretic. Its sin? Saying impeccably true things about climate science: The range of uncertainty is high. Climate models are not the climate, and show themselves to be unreliable guides to future warming. There is a cost-benefit test that policy must pass, and it doesn’t.

The AG case is a spinoff of “investigative” journalism by the Los Angeles Times and Inside Climate News, which we now learn was directly underwritten by climate activists at the Rockefeller Brothers Fund and Rockefeller Family Fund.

“It’s about helping the larger public understand the urgencies of finding climate solutions. It’s not really about Exxon,” explained a Rockefeller official about a January meeting to coordinate the legal and journalistic attack.

The journalists involved in this travesty, we’re sorry to say, are of the dumber sort—confused about what science is. But their clottedness comes at a poignant moment.

Honest greens have always said nuclear power is indispensable for achieving big carbon reduction. James Hansen, the former NASA scientist who has been chaining himself to fences since the first Bush administration, was in Illinois last week lobbying against closure of a nuclear plant. Ditto activist Michael Shellenberger. We might also include Bill McKibben, the Bernie Sanders of the climate movement and shouter of Exxon accusations, who told journalist William Tucker four years ago, “If I came out in favor of nuclear, it would split this movement in half.”

Nuclear (unlike solar) is one low-carbon energy technology that has zero chance without strong government support, yet is left out of renewables mandates. It’s the one non-carbon energy source that has actually been shrinking, losing ground to coal and natural gas.

What keeps nuclear costs high? Why do so many opponents misread the Fukushima meltdown, where 18,000 deaths were due to the earthquake and tsunami, none to radiation exposure, and none are expected from radiation exposure? Why has the U.S. experience of spiraling nuclear construction costs not been matched in South Korea, where normal learning has reduced the cost of construction?

The answer increasingly appears to be a real scientific fraud. In a series of peer-reviewed articles, toxicologist Edward Calabrese of the University of Massachusetts Amherst shows how a cabal of radiation geneticists in the 1940s doctored their results, and even a Nobel Prize acceptance speech, to exaggerate the health risk from low-level radiation exposure. At the time, Hermann Muller, their leader, was militating against above-ground atomic-bomb testing. “I think he got his beliefs and his science confused, and he couldn’t admit that the science was unresolved,” Mr. Calabrese told a UMass publication.

Data developed to show high-dose effect on fruit flies, Muller claimed, showed a proportional low-dose effect. Thus was born LNT—the “linear no-threshold” model of radiation risk that has become the world’s go-to standard for nuclear safety, source of repeated (and unfulfilled) forecasts of thousands of cancer deaths from Chernobyl or Fukushima. LNT is why nuclear plants shoulder huge costs not to protect against accidents, but to protect against trivial emissions. Coal-plants, which don’t have to meet U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission rules, actually put out thorium and uranium far in excess of what nuclear plants are allowed to emit.

We detailed some of the health evidence in a December piece about efforts to wake up the NRC. The New York Times wrote a similar piece last September looking at Japan’s foolish evacuation of thousands of Fukushima residents against a nonexistent radiation threat.

Dr. Carol Marcus, of the UCLA medical school, and two other nuclear-medicine specialists last year petitioned the NRC to re-evaluate its standards. Now the Environmental Protection Agency and several green groups have filed defenses of LNT, which since the 1950s has been adopted not only as Washington’s unscientific model of radiation risk, but as the EPA’s unscientific model of chemical risk. It shouldn’t be overlooked that, for these green groups and the EPA, nuclear is also anathema because it competes with solar and wind.

OK, science seldom fares well in high-stakes political controversies, but it’s bizarre to watch green campaigners attack anybody who questions their thinly based climate predictions, then attack anybody who questions the thinly based science that keeps down our best carbon-free energy choice.

An environmental reporter with an ounce of independence would actually be doing his or her green friends a favor. Pushing the greenies to confront their nuclear contradictions is probably the best possible way right now of making progress on the climate conundrum.

The American Middle Class Is Losing Ground," Pew Research Center, December 9, 2015 ---

. . .

The biggest winners since 1971 are people 65 and older. This age group was the only one that had a smaller share in the lower-income tier in 2015 than in 1971. Not coincidentally, the poverty rate among people 65 and older fell from 24.6% in 1970 to 10% in 2014.13 Evidence shows that rising Social Security benefits have played a key role in improving the economic status of older adults.14 The youngest adults, ages 18 to 29, are among the notable losers with a significant rise in their share in the lower-income tiers.

The economic status of adults with a bachelor’s degree changed little from 1971 to 2015, meaning that similar shares of these adults were lower-, middle- or upper-income in those two years. Those without a bachelor’s degree tumbled down the income tiers, however. Among the various demographic groups examined, adults with no more than a high school diploma lost the most ground economically.

Winners also include married adults, especially couples where both work. On the flip side, being unmarried is associated with an economic loss. This coincides with a period in which marriage overall is on the decline but is increasingly linked to higher educational attainment.

Gains for women edged out gains for men, a reflection of their streaming into the labor force in greater numbers in the past four decades, their educational attainment rising faster than among men, and the narrowing of the gender wage gap.15

Among racial and ethnic groups, blacks and whites came out winners, but Hispanics slipped down the ladder. Although blacks advanced in income status, they are still more likely to be lower income and less likely to be upper income than whites or adults overall. For Hispanics, the overall loss in income status reflects the rising share of lower-earning immigrants in the adult population, from 29% in 1970 to 49% in 2015. Considered separately, both U.S.-born and foreign-born Hispanics edged up the economic tiers.

Continued in article

"Schumer’s Self-Detonating Confirmation Demand," by Joseph A. Grundfest, The Wall Street Journal, April 24, 2016 ---

Are senators sometimes too smart for their own good?

President Obama has nominated Lisa Fairfax, a Democrat, and Hester Peirce, a Republican, to fill two vacancies on the Securities and Exchange Commission. New York Sen. Charles Schumer demands that the nominees promise—in writing—that if the SEC ever considers a rule requiring publicly traded corporations to disclose political contributions, the nominees will support it.

The nominees haven’t done so, and on April 7 Mr. Schumer lambasted them for “fence-sitting” and for feeding him a bunch of “gobbledy gook.” So spurned, Sen. Schumer, joined by fellow Banking Committee Democrats Elizabeth Warren, Robert Menendez and Jeff Merkley, announced that they will oppose the nominees. The confirmation process has now ground to a halt.

Are these senators striking a powerful blow for disclosure of campaign-finance reform, or are they merely shooting themselves in the foot? There’s every reason to believe that these senators will end up limping out of the hearing room.

The law is clear that when it comes to adopting a rule, SEC commissioners must be open to persuasion based on public comment. If a commissioner has an “unalterably closed mind”—as the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit put it in a 1980 decision—then she can’t participate.

What better evidence is there of an unalterably closed mind than a nominee’s written promise to support a senator’s policy no matter what? Any nominee who agrees to such a demand effectively disqualifies herself from participating in the rule-making that the senator so ardently desires. By demanding the promise, Mr. Schumer and his colleagues destroy her ability to deliver on the promise. It also transforms the nomination process into a scene from the theater of the absurd: “I promise to support a policy position that I won’t be able to vote on because I am making this promise.”

Continued in article

Jensen Comment
We can only imagine how the Senate may extend this confirmation power to abuse of the separation of powers doctrine in the USA system of division of power between Congress, the President, and the Supreme Court. For example, the Senate dictate how a Supreme Court nominee votes on the most controversial cases. Eventually the Supreme Court would not longer be needed for such cases since the Senate really pre-determines the vote.

Michael Lewis --- https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Michael_Lewis
Especially note his impressive list of books exposing frauds and deceptions

"The Book That Will Save Banking From Itself," by Michael Lewis, Bloomberg, May 5, 2016 ---

Women ranked a favorable social status for their partner more highly in 2008 than in 1939. Interestingly, men rated a woman’s desire for home and children and good cooking and housekeeping more highly over time — perhaps because these qualities were no longer taken for granted in a wife.
"What men and women wanted in a spouse in 1939 — and how different it is today," by Ana Swanson, The Washington Post, April 19, 2016 ---

Jensen Comment
This falls into my "How to Mislead With Statistics" Department. The reason is that marriage in 1939 is not the same as marriage in 2008 --- largely due to the important impact birth control had upon living relationships between males and females. For example, it's now common for "significant other relationships" to lead to marriage relationships only when the couple elects to start having children. Thus, it's really not surprising that a woman's "desire for home and children" increased in importance as a marriage condition in 2008 relative to 1939. In other words a couple in a long-term unmarried relationship has less incentive for marriage in 2008 until they plan to have children.

My point is that comparing a "marriage" in 2008 with a "marriage" in 1939 is a lot like comparing apples and lemons. They are not the same.

"GM Cancels Plan to Build Small Cadillac at Orion Plant in Michigan:  Auto maker scraps additional $245 million investment, as vehicle to be built in Kansas instead," by John D. Stholl, The Wall Street Journal, April 11, 2016 ---

Jensen Comment
I mention this because Kansas Governor Sam Brownback received a lot of criticism in the liberal press because his sizeable 2013 tax cuts did not appear to have the desired impact on economic growth in Kansas ---

What many biased analysts opposed to trickle down economics neglect to disclose is that tax cut impacts have lag time, sometimes very long lag time, in bringing home economic growth. The classic example is when the President Reagan tax cuts took so long that it was President Bill Clinton who managed to balance the Federal budget due in large measure to the Reagan tax cuts.

"JFK's Legacy: Proving the Laffer Curve," by Kevin Glass, Townhall, November 22, 2013 ---

While the mainstream media's hagiography of John F. Kennedy continues on the 50th anniversary of his tragic death, it's important to remember his full legacy - not just the parts that the mainstream media likes to promote.

President Kennedy proved the existence of the Laffer curve. When he came into office, Americans at the top end of the income ladder faced marginal tax rates in excess of 90%. Kennedy proposed tax cuts across the board - including marginal income tax rates, corporate rates, capital gains rates. And after JFK's tax cuts passed, tax revenue increased. As Diana Furchtgott-Roth, director of Economics21, writes:

Kennedy was one of the first presidents to articulate a supply-side theory. On Nov. 20, 1962, at a news conference, he said “It is a paradoxical truth that tax rates are too high and tax revenues are too low and the soundest way to raise the revenues in the long run is to cut the rates now ... Cutting taxes now is not to incur a budget deficit, but to achieve the more prosperous, expanding economy which can bring a budget surplus.”

Kennedy’s tax cuts were not passed by Congress until after his death on Feb. 26, 1964, in the Revenue Act of 1964. The bill reduced the top marginal rate from over 90% to 70%. Tax revenues increased from $94 billion in 1961 to $153 billion in 1968, and the new rates led to a greater percentage of tax revenue coming from those making over $50,000 a year. Tax receipts from those making over $50,000 rose 57%, whereas receipts from those making under $50,000 rose 11%.

Continued in article

Jensen Comment
One instance of most anything does not prove much in economics. Even two instances hardly constitutes proof even though President Clinton managed to balance the budget largely due to lagged effects of the Reagan tax cuts. The problem with tax cuts, stimulus spending, Quantitative Easing, or most any other factor intended to increase the GDP and employment is that circumstances change greatly over time. Economies have too many complex and interacting variables to attribute much of anything to a single factor.

Certainly the Laffer Curve has not convinced all economists that it's a Swiss Army Knife for a faltering economy ---

However, nearly all nations (including the Scandinavian countries, Canada, all of Europe, and Iran) significantly decreased the top tax rates between 1979 and 2002 largely in belief of the Laffer Curve.

After at Ten Year Court Fight Google just scored a major victory against US authors ---

A ten-year long case against Google has finally seen its end.

Today, the US Supreme Court announced it had declined to hear Authors Guild v Google, a pivotal case that pitted book authors’ rights against the tech giant’s desire to build a massive digital library. In doing so the court quietly sided with Google, agreeing with previous rulings that its massive book scanning project is legal.

In 2005, the Authors Guild, an advocacy group for authors’ rights, sued Google for its book scanning initiative, then called the Google Books Library Project. The digital giant had scanned 20 million books and released them online without permission from their authors, with the goal of making books more findable and searchable. At the time, Google also ran ads on the scanned pages (they’ve since stopped); the guild argued that Google was infringing on writers’ copyright and depriving them of potential income.

Though Google removed its ads, the case continued, changing dramatically from a dispute about monetary compensation to one about how to treat creative work in a time of mass digitization. Ten years later, in 2015, a court of appeals ruled again against the authors, saying that the book scanning project was protected under “fair use”—by digitizing, Google Books had transformed the books, and therefore was not in violation of copyright:

Google’s making of a digital copy to provide a search function is a transformative use, which augments public knowledge by making available information about Plaintiffs’ books without providing the public with a substantial substitute for matter protected by the Plaintiffs’ copyright interests in the original works or derivatives of them.

Current US law protects works based on pre-existing works, if they add something or make something new out of the original. But an amicus brief filed in February by big-name writers like Margaret Atwood, J.M. Coetzee, and Malcolm Gladwell argued thatthe internet was not anticipated when fair use was defined in 1976. Today, derivative works, no matter how transformative, may spread to millions in an instant, all while trading heavily on someone’s creative ideas without compensation.

Continued in article

Bob Jensen's threads on the DMCA are at

From the CFO Journal's Morning Ledger on April 20, 2016

VW nears deal on diesel-car crisis
Volkswagen AG
is preparing to offer a buyback to U.S. owners of some diesel-powered vehicles and payments to others, ahead of a Thursday court deadline to address cars it has long known violate air pollution rules. But VW is no longer alone in this particular problem. Mitsubishi Motors Corp. said employees improperly manipulated fuel-economy data on at least 625,000 vehicles, the latest self-inflicted wound for a company with a history of scandal.

“Our ambition is to become something of a model for financial management rather than a cause for occasional scandal,” Cardinal Pell explained. He announced that the Vatican would hand over management of its billions of euros to external banking specialists and be subject to regular reports by an auditor general.
New York Times --- http://www.nytimes.com/2014/07/15/opinion/the-pope-and-the-vatican-bank.html?_r=0

"Vatican suspends PwC audit of its accounts:  The Vatican has suspended PwC’s audit into its finances only a few months after appointing the firm," by Jessica Fino, Economia, April 22, 2016 ---

The Big Four firm was chosen in December to perform the Vatican’s first external audit in a bid to make its finances more transparent.

It followed a series of scandals, including the discovery of €1bn hidden off the Vatican’s books.

However, the secretariat of state of the Vatican sent letters to all departments last week announcing the suspension.

The National Catholic Register, which first reported the news, said, “There was a shock to the system in terms of how rigorous the audit would be; the international standards feel a bit intrusive.”

Cardinal George Pell, prefect of the Vatican secretariat for the economy, said in a statement on Thursday he was “a bit surprised” by the decision of the secretariat of state, but added he expects the audit to “resume shortly” after “discussions and clarification” of some issues.

The suspension of the audit suggests there is conflict between the Italian bureaucrats and the supporters of financial reform.

A person familiar with the issue told the Guardian those who opposed PwC’s audit were concerned that the Vatican could be exposing itself too much and whether they could trust the firm to keep the information confidential.

Cardinal Pell, who announced the discovery of hundreds of millions of euros "tucked away" in various accounts in December 2014, was appointed by Pope Francis to clean up the Vatican’s finances shortly after the Pontiff sacked the entire board of its financial watchdog.

A PwC spokesperson said the firm does not comment on client work.

The Vatican Bank Scandal Nobody is Talking About (especially not the accountants)  ---

Only in the USA (a nation that houses 80% of the world's lawyers, or so I once read somewhere that I cannot recall)
"The (Many) Reasons People Have Sued Starbucks," by Ryan Bort, Newsweek, May 6, 2016 ---

You may have heard by now that last week someone filed a lawsuit against Starbucks for, essentially, putting ice in their iced drinks. Yes, Stacy Pincus of Chicago is suing the coffee chain for $5 million, claiming that it is not delivering the advertised number of fluid ounces of beverage to their paying customers. Starbucks lists a Venti iced drink as containing 24 fluid ounces. When ice is taken into account, however, thirsty customer like Pincus are only able to down around 14 fluid ounces of 'Bucks, while the rest of the cup is occupied by worthless frozen water.

"Starbucks' advertising practices are clearly meant to mislead consumers when combined with the standard practice of filling a cold drink cup with far less liquid than the cup can hold," says the lawsuit. "If Starbucks truly intended to provide the amount of fluid ounces in its Cold Drinks that it advertises, there would be simple ways to do so."

Starbucks responded by calling the lawsuit frivolous. "Our customers understand and expect that ice is an essential component of any 'iced' beverage," said a company spokesperson. "If a customer is not satisfied with their beverage preparation, we will gladly remake it."

This is of course only one of many, many lawsuits that have been filed against Starbucks since the coffee giant rose to prominence in the '90s. Some, like this one, are ridiculous, filed by consumers looking for a handout from a too-big-to-fail corporation that dispenses million-dollar settlements around like grande drips. But upon looking into the full list of suits brought against the company, it's clear that most are indicative of the pitfalls inherent in operating a corporation so large, with so many employees, not all of whom are model citizens. There are discrimination suits, sexual harassment suits and suits that result from freak accidents that enterprising lawyers are able to attribute to company negligence.

Taken together, the cases paint an interesting picture of the kinds of issues, ranging from the mundane to the exotic, that corporations face in an imperfect (and often quite litigious) country. Let's take a look:


Discrimination is the bread and butter of litigation against a corporate entity, and you bet there have been plenty of charges levied against Starbucks. In 2013, a group of 12 deaf people sued the company after a Manhattan location not only refused them service, but mocked them and called the police in an effort to get them kicked out of the store…which isn't even the only example of the chain discriminating against the hearing impaired. In 2015, a former barista sued Starbucks after saying she wasn't provided with sign language interpreters and other "reasonable accommodations" while she was employed.

Starbucks has also been sued for ageism, dwarf discrimination, tip discrimination, discrimination against a guy with half an arm, dyslexia discrimination, refusing to let someone with a prosthetic leg use the bathroom and telling a gay Brazilian porn star to "become a man."

Hidden Camera in the Bathroom

While taking his daughter to the bathroom in a Starbucks in a Norfolk, Virginia, mall, William Yockey discovered an activated camera hidden under the sink and pointed at the toilet. "I turned and looked, a little out of disbelief, and sure enough there was a small digital camcorder underneath the sink pointed directly at the toilet," said Yockey, who sued the chain for invasion of privacy, negligence and intentional infliction of emotional distress, among other charges. He was offered a free beverage when he mentioned the camera to the store's manager, though.

Crushed Penis

Back in 1999, a Toronto man crushed his penis in a Starbucks bathroom, and deemed the accident the result of an improperly installed toilet seat. While turning to reach the toilet paper on the back of the toilet, Edward Skwarek pinched…himself…between the porcelain and the seat, which was loosely affixed. It's hard to imagine exactly what this would have looked like, but the damage that resulted is so severe it's hard to believe. From Norwalk, Connecticut newspaper The Hour:

Continued in article

Jensen Comment
The least Starbucks should have done is offer Mr Yockey a free donut with his beverage.

Scholars doing research on lawsuits should always use care in following through to final settlements since the final settlements almost always fall short of the amount initially sought in the lawsuit, as was the case in the infamous hot coffee spill lawsuit against McDonald's.

I recall that McDonald's was sued because it did not make it clear that a hamburger weighing 0.25 lbs going into a cooker is likely to weigh less when it is hot and ready to eat. Alas, students should also take this into account when comparing the amount to be learned with the amount that was learned after the course ended.

If the Toronto man was pinched in Maine he's advised to phone:
1-800-CallJoe or so it's repeated aud museum in television advertisements in New England. The Law Offices of Joe Bornstein in Portland, Maine claims that it's able to set everything straight.


The Best—and Worst—States to Avoid Income Taxes ---

Jensen Comment
This is one of the best short comparison articles to date. It has an informative graphic.

However, one cannot compare states regarding taxation without factoring all state taxation, especially sales and property taxes. However, those "other" taxes can get really complicated when making state comparisons. The best example is property taxation where states vary greatly in terms of exemptions and property appraisals. For example, California hits high income people heavily on income tax but people who have owned their homes for many years get a tremendous property tax break due to the highly controversial Proposition 13 ---

Suppose two homeowners (named C and T) own a $5 million dollar houses with one house being near San Francisco and the other being near Austin, Texas. Suppose that both homeowners purchased their houses in  1970 for $45,000. Homeowner C in California may get hit hard with state income tax but pays a negligible property tax on a $5 million dollar home. Taxpayer T in Texas pays zero state income tax but gets clobbered in property taxes each year on a $5 million dollar house.

States also vary in terms of value appraisals of property. Since moving to Sugar Hill in New Hampshire 10 years ago, there's been one township-wide property reappraisal. A few property values do get individually changed based upon very infrequent sales of neighboring property in this very tiny village having one downtown store. When I lived in Bexar County in Texas for 24 years it seemed that our property was value-adjusted each and every one of those 24 years. Sales in just our subdivision (Marymount) in Bexar County were more frequent each and every year than in 10 years of sales of property in Sugar Hill, New Hampshire. My point is that when property values are trending upward, which is often the case in growing cities and towns, homeowners may find that property taxes are more onerous than state income taxes. Furthermore constant increases in property taxes become barriers to sales where buyers refuse to buy land and homes unless the taxing district approves revaluing the property downward to purchase prices.

Our minister bought a former bed and breakfast (he needed a big house for 10 children) that was repossessed by the bank. The bank sold it for less than half of the tax appraisal value. He made a mistake, however, by assuming that the property tax would be adjusted to his much lower purchase price. The Village of Sugar Hill concluded that he got a bargain purchase. The policy of the Village is not to lower property taxes due to "bargain purchases." The minister actually took his case to Superior Court where he lost. Such cases always seem to lose in our Superior Court that seldom gives a homeowner a break.

In my own case I find that my two neighbors in Sugar Hill having the same mountain views and more valuable homes (in terms of current estimated sales values) pay less property tax than me. They owned their homes for over 20 years, and I owned my home for 10 years. They paid less for their homes over 20 years ago than I paid for my home 10 years ago at the height of the real estate bubble. Since I paid more I'm hit with higher property taxes every year than the two residents who paid less for their homes over 20 years ago. Such a thing that happens in Sugar Hill would probably never happen in Bexar County, Texas. Sugar Hill in New Hampshire has something like Proposition 13 without actually having a Proposition 13. A real estate appraiser whom I approached to re-value my home so I could make a more equitable case for paying less property tax than my neighbors said that paying for such an appraisal to lower my taxes was a waste of my money and his time.

My point is that comparing states on only income taxation is probably misleading. However, articles that attempt to factor in other taxes face an enormous problem in that those other taxes vary greatly in almost each and every taxpayer circumstance. For example, Proposition 13 does not give a whole lot of relief to home owners who have owned their California homes for less than 10 years. It gives enormous relief to home owners who lived in the same California house for over 50 years. Then how to you compare property taxation in California versus Texas versus New Hampshire? The answer is that you can't except on a case-by-case basis.

One thing is certain. I certainly enjoy not having to pay a sales tax in New Hampshire, especially on big-ticket items like cars and tractors. It's also nice not to have sales tax added to our almost daily orders from Amazon.

5 facts about the national debt: What you should know ---


Jensen Comment
 One additional fact you should know is that the booked national debt is a drop in the bucket compared to unbooked entitlement obligations such as Medicare, Medicaid, disability benefits, and pension that now exceed $100 trillion in promised payments for the

IRS Admits It Encourages Illegals To Steal Social Security Numbers To Get Tax Refunds ---
ensen Comment
 And some naive people still believe the IRS did not illegally use its power to help Obama win the 2012 presidential election.


"Free Speech 1, Kamala Harris 0," The Wall Street Journal, April 21, 2016 ---

A federal judge blocks an attempt to disclose conservative donors.

Kamala Harris has been a hero of the left’s campaign to use donor disclosure as a tool of political intimidation. Since 2013 the California Attorney General has been demanding that nonprofits provide unredacted donor names if they want to solicit donations in the state. On Thursday a federal court declared her disclosure requirement an unconstitutional burden on First Amendment rights.

Federal Judge Manuel Real granted a permanent injunction against Ms. Harris in a lawsuit brought by the Americans For Prosperity Foundation. The group, which is affiliated with free-market supporters Charles and David Koch, has argued that as a 501(c)(3) nonprofit, it should not be forced to supply the Attorney General with the organization’s IRS Form 990 Schedule B, which contains its donor names.

In his 12-page decision, Judge Real notes that while Attorney General Harris argued that she needed donor disclosure to identify lawbreaking like “self-dealing” or “improper loans,” that was a stretch. “[O]ver the course of trial, the Attorney General was hard pressed to find a single witness who could corroborate the necessity of Schedule B forms in conjunction with their office’s investigations,” the judge wrote.

Ms. Harris claimed the donor disclosure was only for internal purposes and not for public use or to precipitate any targeting of the donors, but the judge didn’t buy that either. Americans for Prosperity discovered 1,400 publicly available Schedule Bs on the Attorney General’s website. “[T]he Attorney General has systematically failed to maintain the confidentiality of Schedule B forms,” the court wrote, a fact that should be considered “of serious concern.”

The First Amendment says “Congress shall make no law . . . abridging the freedom of speech,” and Ms. Harris’s play for donor disclosure would have impermissibly burdened that freedom. During the trial, the judge heard evidence that donors and supporters of Americans for Prosperity have faced harassment and retaliation when their relationship to the group is made public.

The judge is an LBJ appointee who can recall when disclosure was used as a political weapon in the Jim Crow South. “[A]lthough the Attorney General correctly points out that such abuses are not as violent or pervasive as those encountered in NAACP v. Alabama or other cases from that era,” he wrote, “this Court is not prepared to wait until an AFP opponent carries out one of the numerous death threats made against its members.” Amen.

A Non-Invasive Sleeping Aid That's Too Heavy to Remove from the Bedroom
The SEC's 340-page concept release on disclosures ---

The Dark Side of Disclosure: Evidence of Government Expropriation from Worldwide Firms
SSRN, May 4, 2016
World Bank Policy Research Working Paper No. 7254


Tingting Liu, Terry College of Business, University of Georgia

Barkat Ullah, Rhode Island College

Zuobao Wei, University of Texas at El Paso

Lixin Colin Xu, World Bank - Development Research Group (DECRG)


This paper studies the effects of voluntary accounting information disclosure through auditing on firm access to finance, exposure to corruption, and sales growth. Relying on a data set of more than 70,000 firms in 121 countries, the analysis finds that disclosure can be a double-edged sword. On the one hand, audited firms exhibit a slightly lower level of financial constraints than unaudited firms. On the other hand, audited firms face a significantly higher level of corruption obstacles. The net effects of voluntary information disclosure on firm growth are negative, which can largely be explained by the fact that most of the countries in the sample are developing countries where institutions are weak. The beneficial effect of disclosure increases as a country?s property rights protection improves. The qualitative results are robust to considerations of the endogeneity of auditing and to alternative measures of corruption and financial constraints. The findings reveal the dark side of voluntary information disclosure: exposing firms to government expropriation where institutions are weak.

Jensen Comment
Usually professors praise accounting transparency and disclosures with recognition that there are costs of discovery and risks of information overload. However, in my case I overlooked the risk that the added disclosures contribute to fraud and corruption, especially in nations rampant with such dark sides of government behavior. In other words there are sometimes protections in accounting opaqueness and secrecy.

Bob Jensen's Fraud Updates are at


What ABC, NBC, and CBS Won't Disclose
"Women’s Soccer Plays a Phony Pay Game:  Complaints about an alleged pay gap are a public-relations ploy to get a sweetened union contract," by Allysia Finly, The Wall Street Journal, April 25, 2016 ---

. . .

But data released last week by the U.S. Soccer Federation show that the top women’s players make nearly as much as the highest-paid men’s players. Since 2008, six national-team men and six women have earned more than $1 million from the Federation. And according to ESPN, 14 of the 25 highest-earning national-team players over the past four years have been women, whose compensation averaged $695,269. That’s 2.2% below the average for men. Women also receive benefits that men don’t, including maternity leave and severance pay if they get cut from the team. Women get paid if they’re sidelined with an injury; men don’t.

Women on the U.S. national soccer teams aren’t paid less than men. They’re paid differently because the collective-bargaining agreements they have negotiated emphasize income- and job-security. Women players earn annual salaries of $72,000; the men get paid by how many games they play. The men’s roster is more fluid, and the head coach can call players to camp for one game.

Nearly 50 men’s players appeared in games for the U.S. national squad last year, but only three played more than 13 games. The women’s team fields about half as many players.

Players on the women’s team receive smaller bonuses than the men: Women are awarded $1,350 for each win, while the men get $5,000 for each game they’re on the national roster and are paid $6,250-$17,625 for each victory, depending on their opponent’s ranking.

Another significant disparity: The U.S. women’s team received $2 million from the Fédération Internationale de Football Association (FIFA) for winning the World Cup last year, while the men’s team landed $9 million merely for advancing to the round of 16.

How could that be? Simple: Men’s soccer is much more popular than women’s soccer world-wide. Historically, men’s soccer has also been a bigger draw in the U.S. Between 2011 and 2015, men played in 53 home games with attendance averaging 35,536. During that period, women played 50 games in the U.S., drawing an average attendance of 16,559. In 2014, when the men’s team was in the World Cup competition, their revenues were roughly four times that of the women’s team. Last year, when the women’s team was competing for the World Cup, their revenues ($23.5 million) beat the men’s team’s ($21 million) for the first time.

Most men’s soccer players earn more from their club teams than women do from the embryonic National Women’s Soccer League, which the Federation launched in 2012 to provide female players who don’t make the national team with a venue to showcase their talent. But the Federation isn’t responsible for how professional soccer leagues pay their players.

The players on the women’s team might not have a persuasive legal case about unequal pay, but that hasn’t stopped them from going public with their complaints. Maybe they’re hoping Hillary Clinton will work the refs.

Why we need the FASB to reduce the risk that Washington lobbyists will set accounting rules

"Schumer’s Self-Detonating Confirmation Demand," by Joseph A. Grundfest, The Wall Street Journal, April 24, 2016 ---

Are senators sometimes too smart for their own good?

President Obama has nominated Lisa Fairfax, a Democrat, and Hester Peirce, a Republican, to fill two vacancies on the Securities and Exchange Commission. New York Sen. Charles Schumer demands that the nominees promise—in writing—that if the SEC ever considers a rule requiring publicly traded corporations to disclose political contributions, the nominees will support it.

The nominees haven’t done so, and on April 7 Mr. Schumer lambasted them for “fence-sitting” and for feeding him a bunch of “gobbledy gook.” So spurned, Sen. Schumer, joined by fellow Banking Committee Democrats Elizabeth Warren, Robert Menendez and Jeff Merkley, announced that they will oppose the nominees. The confirmation process has now ground to a halt.

Are these senators striking a powerful blow for disclosure of campaign-finance reform, or are they merely shooting themselves in the foot? There’s every reason to believe that these senators will end up limping out of the hearing room.

The law is clear that when it comes to adopting a rule, SEC commissioners must be open to persuasion based on public comment. If a commissioner has an “unalterably closed mind”—as the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit put it in a 1980 decision—then she can’t participate.

What better evidence is there of an unalterably closed mind than a nominee’s written promise to support a senator’s policy no matter what? Any nominee who agrees to such a demand effectively disqualifies herself from participating in the rule-making that the senator so ardently desires. By demanding the promise, Mr. Schumer and his colleagues destroy her ability to deliver on the promise. It also transforms the nomination process into a scene from the theater of the absurd: “I promise to support a policy position that I won’t be able to vote on because I am making this promise.”

Continued in article

Jensen Comment
We can only imagine how the Senate may extend this confirmation power to abuse of the separation of powers doctrine in the USA system of division of power between Congress, the President, and the Supreme Court. For example, the Senate dictate how a Supreme Court nominee votes on the most controversial cases. Eventually the Supreme Court would not longer be needed for such cases since the Senate really pre-determines the vote.

From an accounting perspective, we might encounter a situation where the SEC has no say in the issue of convergence of US GAAP and IFRS.

The Treasury Inspector General for Tax Administration (TIGTA) today publicly released its audit report of the Internal Revenue Service’s (IRS) methods of addressing taxpayers who take business tax deductions for activities not engaged in for profit. TIGTA found that the IRS can improve its methods for identifying high-income taxpayers who may be offsetting their income with “hobby losses” from unprofitable business activity.
TIGTA: IRS Mischaracterizes 88% Of Hobbies As For-Profit Businesses, Allowing Billions In Improper Loss Deductions







Finding and Using Health Statistics --- http://www.nlm.nih.gov/nichsr/usestats/index.htm

Bob Jensen's threads on economic statistics and databases ---

Medicare Fraud is Rampant ---

Insurers have begun to propose big premium increases for Obamacare coverage next year under the 2010 health law, as some struggle to make money in a market where their costs have soared.
Louise Radnofsky and Anna Wilde Mathews

The doctor shortage in the US will soon hit crisis levels ---

States Where Doctors Earn the Most (and Least) ---
Or try ---

01 - Alaska
02 - South Dakota
03 - Iowa
04 - Nebraska
05 - Iowa

. . .

46 - Maine
47 - Maryland
48 - Michigan
49 - Delaware
50 - West Virginia

Jensen Comment
I think this ranking is probably more misleading than helpful. Physicians, especially the most successful physicians, typically are in private business where they have their own billings and staff. They may own their own office buildings or rent office space from others such as medical clinics. The point here is that they are on not on salary.

ER physicians are often in partnerships where hospitals contract with the partnerships to cover the ER services. Billings may vary with demand for those ER services. Partners in turn share the profits.

Like other salary rankings such as ranking of professor compensation by university, the rankings are meaningless unless other things are factored in such as the cost of housing. For example, we can hardly compare the salaries at Stanford University (read that Silicon Valley) with the salaries at Dartmouth or the University of New Hampshire where housing is expensive within the State of New Hampshire but hardly comparable with Silicon Valley housing costs. Also other things must be factored in such as housing subsidies and fringe benefits.

Having said this it did surprise me that states not having large cities (like the top five states ranked above) came out higher than states having large cities like California, New York, Texas, and Ohio.