Leave the kids alone

David Vance takes issue with the suggestion that the Assembly can help children and families. He might well be right, but some more detail on why and how he feels Government has a negative impact on families would have been interesting….

  • interested

    Horrible, horrible, horrible, horrible as it is to admit;

    he’s right.

  • Frank Sinistra
  • Maude Flanders

    Won‘t somebody please think of the children?

  • Dread Cthulhu

    interested: “No doubt they believe they do more for a child than its parents do. Maybe even taking credit for its conception. ”

    Got it in one — groups like this have to justify their budgets and will talk up almost anything, if they think that serves to preserve or enlarge their budget.

  • StarHound

    David Vance has had a brief rant, he has not actually made any arguments.

  • Prince Eoghan

    My only surprise is that he didn’t call a jihad to nuke the self-serving liberal do-gooders. Waco Dave and his fellow level-headed crew love humanity so.

    He detests Catholics in government, so anyone offering praise to the assembly will be a target for his ire. Typically par for the course and other assorted ‘banned’ clichés for him. I’ve noticed over on his fascist site the tumble weed is beginning to blow through, guess that’s what happens when you ban and sicken any decent contributors or opposing voices.

  • interested

    Yes it could do with a much deeper explanation of his views – that doesn’t mean they are incorrect simply because he hasn’t expanded on them.

    As for the other rant Prince E went on – again doesn’t mean that someone can’t make a valid point. You dont work for one of these organisations per chance???

  • Animus

    Early years work is increasingly being promoted, and recognised as important to future development. NIPPA is probably saving money by doing what Government should be, for less money. Do you expect 3 year olds to represent themselves to government? Although given the quality of debate amongst some of our politicians and political commentators, would anyone know the difference.

    I guess if something doesn’t have a tangible benefit for Vance, it’s just not worth anything. I’ve heard better anti-quango arguments down the pub by raving drunks. Poor argument, badly executed. C-

  • Frank Sinistra

    Can somebody explain, as Vance hasn’t, how exactly does investment in early years projects ‘get in the WAY of families’.

    This has been presented above as an attack on the Assembly but I’ve read the link and it is a direct attack on NIPPA with no substance and nothing to do with goernment.

    So what’s the problem with pre-school projects, training and standards? Please god don’t tell me there is a market forces in pre-school argument going on here.

    (I really can’t see the value of linking that blog as it is merely a rant without substance)

  • I wonder could I ask Mr Slugger to remove the 4.45pm – it was an impersonation of me, again. Mmm..wonder who could be doing that then?

    I appreciate that some bigots here choose to claim that I hate “taigs” as they so charmingly put it. That says MUCH more about their poisonous little mindsets than I could. Needless to say it is terrorists in Government to which I object and the misrepresentation by some of my opinions is something I am well used to here.

    Prince Eoghan,

    Squarespace, who host ATW, have informed me it is one their busiest sites 😉 I can do without vicious little trolls of course but our band of readers just keeps growing…

    As for the matter at hand, I am merely pointing out that NIPPA is a self-serving shakedown institution, so typical of Northern Ireland. I happen to believe that it is PARENTS who carry responsibility for their kids early years and that State intervention, urged on by the likes of Nippa, is harmful insofar as it seeks to substitute its values above that of the parents, and it further absolves parents from doing what is needful for their kids. Further, Government cannot be as economically efficient as a parent.

    Now this relates to a rather broader issue which I advocate, namely LESS Government in general. It was Ronald Reagan who said “The most frightening words in the English language are “I’m from the Government and I’m here to help”. The Gipper was right and I think perhaps some here may agree with me. I think the Republic of Ireland has a less interventionist approach in this regard (Though check out my “Irish Water” thread for an example of how central and local government has failed the good people of Galway)and whilst I know that too many here in NI drool at Government doing everything, I feel it is best when it does as little as possible.

  • Good to see David stirring up things with robust conservatism and winding up the the people who need to be wound up.

  • Frank Sinistra

    David,

    This is where you lose me, NIPPA is primarily involved in providing pre-school facilities, training, accredition and low rate insurance/resources for those facilities. I don’t see how parents can provide that alone (at all) or how it is anything other than an assistance to families and the development of children.

    Their opinions on policy seem a very minor element of their work and to be honest those working in the field seem more than entitled or qualified to input on early years strategy.

  • Dread Cthulhu

    FS: “This is where you lose me, NIPPA is primarily involved in providing pre-school facilities, training, accredition and low rate insurance/resources for those facilities. I don’t see how parents can provide that alone (at all) or how it is anything other than an assistance to families and the development of children. ”

    One illustration would be the Black Panthers Hot Breakfast program in Oakland. Private citizens came to together, through a pooling of interests and resources, created a program for the betterment of their children. As lamented by several members, the worst mistake they ever made was turning it over to the city to fund and run — what could have been a shining example of self-reliance and community became just another dependency-inducing project. Instead of pride and a sense of achievement, all the children were shown was how to be dependent upon the state and its agencies.

    FS: “Their opinions on policy seem a very minor element of their work and to be honest those working in the field seem more than entitled or qualified to input on early years strategy. ”

    How doth the child learn? The child imitates, parroting the words it hears most frequents, apeing the behaviors it see most often.

  • Animus

    David
    Organisations like NIPPA make it possible for parents to be economically active whilst saving Government money. Perhaps if you took a better look at what the organisation does rather than ranting about government intervention, you could see that. Unfortunately, many parents can’t do what everything need to do, through incompetence, work commitments or other responsibilities. I would prefer my taxes to support such initiatives rather than taking children into care or paying for the consequences of social exclusion.

    Maybe all the parents you know are fabulous, but many aren’t, and cannot juggle their commitments. I am always disheartened to know that those who are doing well begrudge those who have difficulty making things work. You’d think they’d be grateful, but no, just resentful and uppity. In what ways do you consider NIPPA’s values to be in contradiction to what parents want for their children? And isn’t there a great deal to be said for providing a unifying argument for the needs of children? Many parents would agree with NIPPA’s work even if they don’t have the time or skills to promote them.

    Are you against organisations like Childline and Women’s Aid for being nanny-state do-gooders as well? Perhaps we should live and let live – that way we can ignore social ills that cost money. What is the cost of unaddressed social problems? Early pregnancy, anti-social behaviour, benefit dependence, crime, etc.

  • Dread Cthulhu

    Animus: “Maybe all the parents you know are fabulous, but many aren’t, and cannot juggle their commitments.”

    Pregnancy is pretty a voluntary event in this day and age, animus, with “contraception” happening after the fact, if not prior. Why should the state and those responsible folk who can manage their own affairs be on the hook to pony up dosh for the irresponsible? How can folks learn from their errors if they never suffer any consequence?

    The more “help” you ladle on, the less responsible people have to be. It is a misplacement of economic incentives, as a minimum — rather than rewarding responsible behavior, it bails out failures.

  • GreenProd

    Dread Cthulhu:
    Pregnancy is pretty a voluntary event in this day and age, animus, with “contraception” happening after the fact, if not prior. Why should the state and those responsible folk who can manage their own affairs be on the hook to pony up dosh for the irresponsible? How can folks learn from their errors if they never suffer any consequence?

    I think it’s the rest of us that suffer the consequences. If you doubt it, have a look through a local newspaper or watch a local news broadcast.

  • Dread Cthulhu

    GreenProd: “I think it’s the rest of us that suffer the consequences. If you doubt it, have a look through a local newspaper or watch a local news broadcast. ”

    As an end result of *HOW* much of this socialistic tripe? N.I.’s gov’t is *WHAT* percentage of the local GDP?

    Hell, the UK *REWARDS* burglars and trespassers who get injured as a result of their actions. Why should someone be “compensated” for breaking the law?

  • Frank Sinistra

    The arguments against NIPPA don’t seem based in any semblance of fact. They aren’t promoting single parent families, nanny statism or socialism.

    It’s an organisation aimed at providing quality affordable child programmes where they don’t exist. That includes rural, deprived urban and under resourced areas.

    This idea of ‘consequences’ and mixing pre-school child facilities with crime talk is utterly ridiculous.

    Providing quality pre-school child facilities, cheaply with trained staff is a benefit to all.

    The arguments against seem to be something to do with poor people are having too many children or having children without being married. Now that just seems like heartless reactionary right wing clap-trap that hasn’t looked at what this organisation actually does provide.

    Hey but fuck them all cut my taxes. Sickening.

  • Animus

    We pony up all the time, and I would prefer to pay for preventative programmes rather than the criminal justice system etc. Government is always saying they want people to get back to work, but affordable childcare is a significant issue.

    Northern Ireland is over-reliant on the public sector, but I would have thought that was more to do with the legacy of conflict rather than ‘socialistic tripe.’

    Do you think 15 year olds who get pregnant are making an informed choice? And are children typically good parents? (I should say mothers, teenage fathers don’t tend to stick around long.) Those of you who turn a blind eye end up paying one way or another, even through economic inactivity and a sustained high spend on the public sector.

  • Dread Cthulhu

    animus: “We pony up all the time, and I would prefer to pay for preventative programmes rather than the criminal justice system etc. Government is always saying they want people to get back to work, but affordable childcare is a significant issue. ”

    Ah, but parenthood has been reduced down to a lifestyle choice in this day and age — why should anyone’s personal lives be subsidized?

    animus: “Northern Ireland is over-reliant on the public sector, but I would have thought that was more to do with the legacy of conflict rather than ‘socialistic tripe.’ ”

    Assumptions are dangerous things. Even without the troubles, N.I. would be in near the same mess, with heavy industry and shipbuilding still be far more economical elsewhere.

    animus: “Do you think 15 year olds who get pregnant are making an informed choice?”

    Yes, albeit one with an unformed vision and a lack of consideration of long-term ramifications… There is a difference between foolishness and ignorance. They see that they can get an allowance and a council flat, so they want play mommy. The state has undermined the familial unit by through its misplacement of economic incentives. Are you suggesting these teens do not grasp the connection between sex and pregnancy?

    animus: “Those of you who turn a blind eye end up paying one way or another, even through economic inactivity and a sustained high spend on the public sector. ”

    Prolonging the disease — continued public sector spending down this sinkhole and incentivizing idleness — is no cure.

  • GreenProd

    Dread Cthulhu
    Hell, the UK *REWARDS* burglars and trespassers who get injured as a result of their actions. Why should someone be “compensated” for breaking the law?

    They shouldn’t. I’m not a bleeding heart. I just retired after thirty years as a police office in a major N.American city. I think by the time most of these people reach the justice system they are lost. I’m arguing for appropriate intervention before that happens. Decent programs by ran by caring people can and do make up for poor parenting. Or course the programs should have built in accoutibility.

  • Animus

    Yes, albeit one with an unformed vision and a lack of consideration of long-term ramifications… There is a difference between foolishness and ignorance.

    I’d say that’s an uninformed choice. Having kids at the expense of the state doesn’t really pay, especially since you’ve just said the state will pay anyway. Research has shown that many of the millie mummies have had bad times themselves and just want someone to love, without considering the full ramifications. I think they are ignorant as well as foolish, but I don’t want to condemn people merely because they are stupid.

    I don’t agree that the state has undermined the familial unit through financial incentives either. The money one gets through being unmarried, with a child, on benefits doesn’t really counter the other benefits that come from stability and paid work. My health and well-being are worth a great deal to me; I wouldn’t trade it in for a divorce and sitting around with my kid during the day. I expect many of us feel the same way, even while begrudging scroungers.

    Parenthood as a lifestyle choice – interesting turn of phrase. I’m hoping my parenthood is also a pension plan. If government wants people to work instead of look after kids or relatives, there have to be ways to make that happen, whether that is childcare, respite care or other services. Otherwise, they (and we) need to take in on the chin and the tax bill that we will pay people not to work, or lose out on GDP by people forced out of work with caring responsibilities.

    You’re assuming that the troubles aren’t the cause of over-reliance on the public sector, but more businesses might have located here if it wasn’t a perceived risk after the shipbuilding industry went into decline. There are so many factors at work that your assumption is just as provable as mine.

  • Dread Cthulhu

    GreenProd: “I think by the time most of these people reach the justice system they are lost. I’m arguing for appropriate intervention before that happens. Decent programs by ran by caring people can and do make up for poor parenting. Or course the programs should have built in accoutibility. ”

    But they don’t. To use an American example, were that the case, Johnson’s “Great Society” would not have made have made it out of the seventies, let alone to the nineties.

    As for state subsidized anti-crime programs, here is an American example… I hope you did not do your service in Los Angeles.

    http://www.laweekly.com/news/news/did-city-hall-fund-a-gun-runner/16534/

    So much for oversight, neh?

  • Animus

    What I meant in that second sentence was that the state will pay if you don’t work, regardless of whether or not you have children.

  • GreenProd

    Dread Cthulhu:
    Your posted link does not address the argument. I’m talking about kids before they get into the system.

  • Dread Cthulhu

    animus: “I’d say that’s an uninformed choice.”

    You’d be wrong, unless you honestly believe they do not understand the connection between sex and pregnancy.

    animus: “Having kids at the expense of the state doesn’t really pay, especially since you’ve just said the state will pay anyway.”

    *sigh*

    You really do have it wrapped around the axel, don’t you.

    They have the kids because they see the state will pay. Were the state not granting the illusion of independence, what with a council flat and welfare, there would not be nearly the same numbers.

    animus: “Research has shown that many of the millie mummies have had bad times themselves and just want someone to love, without considering the full ramifications.”

    That they choose to gloss over the downside does not mean they’re ignorant of it. Choosing to ignore information is not the same as not having it.

    animus: “I don’t agree that the state has undermined the familial unit through financial incentives either. The money one gets through being unmarried, with a child, on benefits doesn’t really counter the other benefits that come from stability and paid work.”

    If they didn’t have that out, they wouldn’t behave in the same fashion. We are agreed that these children are using short-term thinking and ignoring downside consequences. They see the short-term carrot and behave accordingly. Remove the carrot and behavior will change.

    animus: “Parenthood as a lifestyle choice – interesting turn of phrase.”

    Hey, you’re the abortion advocate — just putting things in terms you’d understand.

    animus: “You’re assuming that the troubles aren’t the cause of over-reliance on the public sector, but more businesses might have located here if it wasn’t a perceived risk after the shipbuilding industry went into decline. There are so many factors at work that your assumption is just as provable as mine.”

    That’s a big might, animus, and you’re wrong, especially in light of other places that had similar industrial implosions without the Troubles. Any industry relying on the local skill sets would be heavy industry and, like it or no, y’all can’t compete with China. Bangladesh and the like on the basis of cost. What “troubles” impacted Gary, Indiana, Flint, Michigan or any number of Western bastions of heavy industry, now long gone to rust?

  • Dread Cthulhu

    Greenprod: “Your posted link does not address the argument. I’m talking about kids before they get into the system. ”

    And I am talking about the quality of the programs, which exist primarily to perpetuate themselves and the utter lack of oversight almost all of these programs receive.

    Likewise, if that is the best rebuttal you can muster to the whole of my post, you might consider retiring from the field gracefully. Like I said, if there was any oversight, Johnson’s “Great Society” would have been eliminated no later than the Carter administration. No one watches over these programs, state or federal, pre or post incarceration.

  • Animus

    Young people seem to have a great deal of misinformation when it comes to sex – they don’t know how to use contraception properly. Many places refuse to give the morning after pill. Some girls still think that they can’t get pregnant the first time they have sex or they use that reliable method of contraception, the pull out method. Continuing to teach children that abstinence is the only way keeps them ignorant and leads to unwanted pregnancy.

    In areas of the US where there is low welfare provision, there is still a high rate of teenage pregnancy to low income women. So you are totally incorrect in assuming that the removal of benefits would change behaviour. The US has a higher rate of teen pregnancy than the UK. Clearly it’s not about money – it’s about making good decisions, and understanding the consequences of those decisions.

    I’m an advocate of having the option of abortion; I’m not calling for the enforcement of abortion on people who are likely to be unsuitable parents.

  • Dread Cthulhu

    animus: “Young people seem to have a great deal of misinformation when it comes to sex – they don’t know how to use contraception properly.”

    That’s akin to dehydrating next to the full water-cooler — the information is readily available — if they choose not to use it, whose fault is that?

    animus: “So you are totally incorrect in assuming that the removal of benefits would change behaviour.”

    That is a relatively recent change, less than a generation, save for the most ambitious / ignorant of these children. Likewise, were they eliminated, rather than simply reduced, there would be a change in behavior over time. You can’t make an omelet without breaking some eggs.

    Likewise, why should responsible folk be taxed for the benefit of the irresponsible?

    animus: “Clearly it’s not about money – it’s about making good decisions, and understanding the consequences of those decisions. ”

    Underwriting bad decisions is not helping the process. In essence, you are rewarding poor decisions and breaking up the family every time one of these wannabes is given a council flat and allotment to go play mommy. Then, the cycle repeats itself, ad nauseum, for as long as the misplaced economic incentive is in place.

  • willis

    DV

    “And whilst I know that too many here in NI drool at Government doing everything, I feel it is best when it does as little as possible.”

    Good quote

    I’m sure Lord Halifax felt the same way in 1940.

  • willowfield

    Vance says NIPPA “achieve[s] nothing of value other than paying salary to those who would otherwise be gainfully unemployed”.

    What are his grounds for saying that pre-school playgroups have no value?

    Does/did he shelter his children at home?

  • Sean

    willowfield did he sheler his kids at home? no probably not i think the term is indoctrinate

  • Willis,

    Given my support for the war on terror, my opposition to terrorists in government, the Lord Halifax reference is just silly.

    WF,

    When my kids were young, they went to a local pre-school play group. We paid for it and it was very good. Nippa had no involvement. Ween yourself over Statism.

    Sean,

    Congrats on producing a comment that is illiterate in every fashion.

  • willis

    DV

    “Given my support for the war on terror, my opposition to terrorists in government, the Lord Halifax reference is just silly.”

    It might be better to answer the point than have a flounce.

    I’m sure the principled opposition of “A Tangled Web” has Al-Quida quaking. It is truly the Skibbereen Eagle of 2007.

    The 1940 reference is not silly. Total war required a level of interference in the lives of people in Britain that they had never experienced before and felt profoundly uncomfortable about.

    I’m sure you are aware of this Churchill quote.

    “There is no finer investment for any community than putting milk into babies.”

    If that is not interference in the family what is?

  • the Emerald Pimpernel

    Thanks DV anything you don’t like I know has to be good

  • Dread Cthulhu

    willis: “The 1940 reference is not silly. Total war required a level of interference in the lives of people in Britain that they had never experienced before and felt profoundly uncomfortable about. ”

    So, in essence, you are equating the then seemingly imminent invasion of Britain and the need to shift to a total war footing with peace-time nanny-statism?

    Nice sense of perspective you have there, willis.

  • There are all sorts of questions worth asking about early years support – how can it be made to work best, where does the line between valuable support and damaging interference lie, what should the balance between education and play be, etc., etc. There is mixed evidence on the efficacy of Sure Start schemes; also a worrying tendency for Sure Start schemes to move away from seeking to improve children’s lives and instead regulate mothers’ lives.

    But by attacking NIPPA in such a brazen and unfair way, David hits the wrong target with much too heavy a shot. It’s right to take a critical attitude to any group asking for state money; it’s grossly unfair to accuse NIPPA of being self-serving, let alone damaging. State spending in early years’ education tends to pay for itself in increased economic output, and NIPPA are hardly the most extreme interventionist group around.

  • willis

    DC

    In essence all these debates about the power of the state and the power of individuals are about perspective.

    Britain accepted a very high level of state interference because of a great external threat. Useful reforms like the 1944 Education Act happened sooner rather than later.

    My point is that a leader as iconic for the right as Churchill saw the need for sensible support for families and children.

    Alternatively Bush who is now regarded as one of the worst leaders America has ever had is managing to reduce social provision in the face of an external threat.

  • Dread Cthulhu

    willis: “Britain accepted a very high level of state interference because of a great external threat. Useful reforms like the 1944 Education Act happened sooner rather than later. ”

    An invasion threat from a totalitarian regieme will do that. However, despite your best efforts, you are still comparing apples and watermelons.

    willis: “My point is that a leader as iconic for the right as Churchill saw the need for sensible support for families and children. ”

    The problem is is that what is occurring is not “sensible support.” ‘splain to me how breaking up the family, giving wannabe mommies a council flat and an allotment at age 15 is “sensible support.”

    willis: “Alternatively Bush who is now regarded as one of the worst leaders America has ever had is managing to reduce social provision in the face of an external threat. ”

    willis, your ignorance is profound. Bush has overseen one the of largest expansion of entitlement in US history, including increased billions for schools and billions more for a drug benefit for seniors that, after some teething pains, is actually working. I think you will find that the greatest reduction of social benefit was under Clinton, not Bush, when Bubba and Congress ended “welfare as we knew it.” The general wheeze is that Bush has not increased spending on domestic matters fast enough, and only from the limousine liberal / Mercedes Maoist crowd, like Kennedy.

    You are entitled to your own informed opinion… but do go get some information first.

  • willis

    DC

    “limousine liberal / Mercedes Maoist”

    And there was me taking you seriously!

  • Dread Cthulhu

    willis: “And there was me taking you seriously! ”

    Willis, it is increasingly apparent you have no useful response, preferring to embrace your stale stereotype of the United States and hide behind a dab of hyperbole on my part than address the substance of the post.

    As for teh substance of the post, are you suggesting Teddy Kennedy *isn’t* a “tax and spend” liberal with with delusions that life is somehow suppposed to be fair? Mayhap “Mercedes Maoist” is an overstatement, but it certainly gets the hypocritical “do as I say, not as I do” aspect of Teddy’s message out in the clear.

    Your posts, on the other hand, seek to obfuscate, claiming far grander pedigrees than they merit.

  • Prince Eoghan

    Dread

    That’s the second time I have witnessed you running to the defence of Waco Dave, is there something we should know?

    Can’t believe that so many have taken the view that he is serious about this subject. The clue is the lack of substance in the piece. He is sore because there is Catholics in government, thus anyone expressing support for the assembly is a target for him.

    Simple really, to a simple soul like me :¬)

  • Dread Cthulhu

    Prince Eoghan: “That’s the second time I have witnessed you running to the defence of Waco Dave, is there something we should know? ”

    Just because Mr. Vance is acerbic, shoots from the lip and is generally disagreeable, it doesn’t make him infallibly and utterly wrong.

    Likewise, I am not “running to his defense.” When I agree with you, which, admittedly, in not an everyday occurence, does that mean I am “running to your defense?” I think you will find this thread has been mainly parallel conversations, with me talking to animus and DV to the board at large. It was not until willis put forth the inane analogy with WW II that I shifted my attention to his post — not in defense of David Vance.

    My politics are mine own and I find your insinuation that they are otherwise insulting. *YOU* may slavishly be attached to a single party’s line, but I am more independent in my thinking.

    Prince Eoghan: “Can’t believe that so many have taken the view that he is serious about this subject. The clue is the lack of substance in the piece. He is sore because there is Catholics in government, thus anyone expressing support for the assembly is a target for him. ”

    And when his say such, I correct him, pointing out that it is the electorate that has put put them in government. Now, if he’s already being the thread pinata, I don’t pile on, but where I think he is wrong, I say it, if I feel it adds to the thread, just as where I think you or Mick or anyone else is wrong, and I think my post adds to a thread.

  • Prince Eoghan

    >>My politics are mine own and I find your insinuation that they are otherwise insulting. *YOU* may slavishly be attached to a single party’s line, but I am more independent in my thinking.<< I resemble that remark! and profuse apologies! To be honest Dread I was only teasing, but thanks for inserting the thought into my mind of Waco being a pinata. Now where did I put my stick.

  • willis

    DC

    Sigh!

    Here we go down the straw man route.

    I have said nothing about the USA per se. If you believe that you have evidence from a credible source that Bush has instigated an improvement in social provision please send a link.

    Ted Kennedy is a tax and spend liberal, and I suspect proud of it.

    “‘splain to me how breaking up the family, giving wannabe mommies a council flat and an allotment at age 15 is “sensible support.”

    It isn’t and I never said it was.

    “Your posts, on the other hand, seek to obfuscate, claiming far grander pedigrees than they merit.”

    Eh? I think you will find a big non-sequiter in the midst of that tangled web of a sentence.

    Look, I don’t think we are going to agree on much, and I think that your scatter gun approach adds more heat than light.

    Clearly you are in favour of spending on education and drugs for pensioners so I suppose that is something.

  • Dread Cthulhu

    willis: “I have said nothing about the USA per se.”

    Um, pardon me?

    You said, “Alternatively Bush who is now regarded as one of the worst leaders America has ever had is managing to reduce social provision in the face of an external threat. ”

    You were inaccurate on several different levels, ranging for Bush’s position in the ranking of Presidents — he’s no Jimmy Carter. He is, however, in LBJ territory — a mediocre President handed a rotten situation.

    Social provisions are not being reduced, and I have the %^@#%^# tax bill to prove it. Social spending is up, just not as much as some would like.

    willis: “you have evidence from a credible source that Bush has instigated an improvement in social provision please send a link. ”

    Its called Medicare, Part D. You can look it up yourself. It’s not perfect, but it is a major step forward / backward, depending on your perspective (social progessive v. nanny-state). In any event, it is a major expansion of the nanny-state, albeit one that acknowledges the changes in medical treatment between the sixties and the present.

    willis: “Look, I don’t think we are going to agree on much, and I think that your scatter gun approach adds more heat than light. ”

    As opposed to your inchoate analogies?

  • willowfield

    DAVID VANCE

    When my kids were young, they went to a local pre-school play group. We paid for it and it was very good. Nippa had no involvement.

    So, if you sent your kids to a pre-school play group and thought it was “very good”, you must accept that play groups “achieve” things.

    Yet you say that NIPPA – which provides play groups – “achieve[s] nothing of value other than paying salary to those who would otherwise be gainfully unemployed”.

    How do you make this leap? What is it about NIPPA play groups that they do not achieve anything at all, whereas other play groups do? Do you have any evidence for your assertion, or is it just based on prejudice because NIPPA receives public funds?

  • willis

    I looked it up

    Seems like not everyone is as impressed as you.

    http://www.thenation.com/doc/20060130/lieberman

  • the Emerald Pimpernel

    You were inaccurate on several different levels, ranging for Bush’s position in the ranking of Presidents—he’s no Jimmy Carter. He is, however, in LBJ territory—a mediocre President handed a rotten situation.

    LOL He was in over his head when he was still in the kiddie pool and if it wasn’t for the extremely strong growth in the global economy, you economy would be on par with Guatemala’s

  • Dread Cthulhu

    willis: “Seems like not everyone is as impressed as you. ”

    I do believe I mentioned that some felt the expansion had been inadequate. Additionally, I do seem to recall there were some teething pains — a fairly normal event, when one tries to modify a plan with literally millions of beneficiaries.

    Now, additionally, looking at the date of your “article” (really an editorial published in a partisan site), was written during the earliest stages of the process. The date of the program start being 1/1/06 and the publication date being 1/30/06, likely by someone not an end-user, strike me as pre-mature critism. The program was not perfect, likely is not perfect and, in all liklihood will never be perfect, but find me a state-sponsored program that is?

    According to folks I know, folks who actually are on Part D, the program works — they get their meds — and the prefer having the program to not having it. I would point out that one year in, as of January 30, 2007, nearly 24 million individuals were receiving prescription drug coverage through Medicare Part D, according to CMS. If the Washington Post is to be believed, some 80% are satisfied with the program (Success of Drug Plan Challenges Democrats; Medicare Benefit’s Cost Beat Estimates, By Lori Montgomery and Christopher Lee, Washington Post, November 26, 2006 )

  • Dread Cthulhu

    EP: “LOL He was in over his head when he was still in the kiddie pool and if it wasn’t for the extremely strong growth in the global economy, you economy would be on par with Guatemala’s ”

    And who is powering this strong growth, EP? Japan?

    Bush isn’t going to be the top of *ANYONE’S* list, but he’s not a Carter or a Buchannen. The LBJ comparison is apt — unpopular President, unpopular war, good economy.

  • willis

    Tell you what

    I’ll even do your link for you.

    http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2006/11/25/AR2006112500919.html

    Sometimes us liberals have to all the heavy lifting.

  • willis

    Well this survey puts Bush well below Carter, LBJ and Nixon.

    http://www.quinnipiac.edu/x1295.xml?ReleaseID=919

  • the Emerald Pimpernel

    Who’s driving the strong global economy?

    Why China And India of course!

    You are just lucky that right now most of the cash from global trade filters through your country and a little of it stays behind.

    Its too bad you let bush spend your future in Iraq

    Ah yes the war in Iraq the war that keeps on giving, giving debts for generations to come