Patterico's Pontifications


Attack Bush, Get a High Grade

Filed under: Education — Patterico @ 11:15 am

A letter in this morning’s L.A. Times gives you some idea of what today’s students are up against:

As a professor of international relations, I would give the Dec. 13 article, “Dollar’s Fall a Mixed Bag in U.S.,” about the impact of the U.S. greenback’s devaluation only a C-minus.

A B-grade essay would prominently mention that OPEC sells oil worldwide in U.S. dollars, meaning that a fall in the dollar’s value against the euro, pound or yen also means a fall in OPEC’s buying power in those countries.

An A essay would demonstrate how hundreds of billions in U.S. federal budget and trade deficits signal to OPEC that its dollar-linked oil is going to buy even less in Europe and Japan as dollars flood international currency markets.

An A-plus essay would relate how the Bush tax cut, by exacerbating those deficits and the fall of the dollar, compelled OPEC to raise prices, thereby swallowing up most of the fiscal benefits of the tax cut by gas price increases.

In the end, the Bush tax cut went to Saudi Arabia, which now has us over a barrel.

Larry Martinez
Assoc. Prof., Political Science
Cal State Long Beach

There you have it, right from the horse’s mouth. To get the A+, you have to pan the Bush tax cut.

But I’m sure he doesn’t grade real student papers that way. Right?

Ali Responds Further to the Fools

Filed under: Morons — Patterico @ 10:25 am

Ali responds to Juan Cole and Martini Republic liar Joseph Mailander in this post, which answers the questions Mailander had put to Iraq the Model.

RELATED THOUGHT: I agree with Mickey Kaus:

. . . I think the ITM bloggers’ backers made a mistake in not aggressively exposing them to the left rather than to the naturally sympathetic right.

Me, too. The brothers are so ordinary, soft-spoken, and humble — yet so inspiring at the same time — that I can’t imagine any rational leftist not being impressed.

(Here I am not referring to Cole or Mailander.)

Although maybe leftists don’t want to hear from them. I hear that Kevin Drum was invited to Roger Simon’s and didn’t go. I have no idea why, but I think it’s a real shame. I would have loved to read his reaction.

P.S. It’s also a shame because it means there was room for me!

Protein Wisdom Diaries

Filed under: Humor — Patterico @ 9:16 am

Santa didn’t come to Jeff Goldstein’s house when he was a little boy. But he didn’t get mad. He got even.

Being Positive at the L.A. Times

Filed under: Dog Trainer — Patterico @ 9:14 am

Ken Reich, former L.A. Times reporter, says the paper should be more positive. Even — occasionally — with the Bush Administration:

The big newspapers have to seize their opportunities to be positive, even occasionally on the Bush Administration, when it does something right. Don’t tell me, it never does anything right. We are hurting ourselves, more than George W. Bush by being so negative.

He says that he argued for more positive stories when he worked at the paper, and ran into resistance.

It’s really too bad that the L.A. Times “insider” blog is no more. I would like to hear the inside scoop on such discussions nowadays.

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