Freeriding on the aspersion of others

The central pillar of this blog is the sarcastic and systematic dismemberment of ignorant and flawed opinion.  Everything else — which in this case means beer, motorsports, and math — serves the same basic function as a guy wire: it keeps the structure stable, but doesn’t provide any support.  Well, I don’t have any haterade of my own today, so I’ll link to a couple of folks who do.

First we have Austin Frakt, who by now must be heartily sick of repeatedly correcting the rest of the internet’s misconceptions of the employer tax credit on health insurance:

I’ve seem some comments that suggest that folks don’t get why employers offer health insurance today. After all, they argue, (1) it costs employers something to offer the benefit and (2) there is no penalty for not doing so. Actually, this is wrong on both counts.

RTWT: it’s short and to the point.

By contrast, Megan McArdle has penned a gloriously long and meticulously detailed rhetorical curbstomp of a bright-eyed and bushy-tailed idealistic urban planner who (temporarily, we presume) works as an intern for the Washington City Paper:

It begins:

I confess, the supercilious tone of the post makes me smile a bit–how could I possibly be so simplistic and reductive when she’s already complained about it? But when I was a senior in college, I was also lucky enough to know everything, and I remember how impatient this made me with the reactionary geriatrics who couldn’t see the obvious.  So I do retain a smidgen of sympathy for her plight.<

But I can’t say the same for her argument.  It seems a bit odd to complain that I have reduced a discussion about gentrification in DC to the specifics of gentrification in DC, rather than exploring the full symphony of themes, dilemmas and opportunities presented by “neighborhood change”.

After a sweeping tour of the epic failure of urban planning in New York City, ticking off one after another the failure of policy after urban-planning policy, she closes with:

None of this is new, of course; it’s a bog standard debate in most urban centers.   The problem can also be readily observed in situ by going to the many cities which have enacted inclusionary zoning and similar measures in response to gentrification, yet still seem to be gentrifying.  If Ms. Baca wants me to “change my attitude” about this area of city planning, she is going to need to offer a little more than a lecture.  I’m going to need some actual evidence–and so far, she’s utterly failed to provide it.

Book yourself a fair few minutes of time and, again, RTWT.


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anarchocapitalist agitprop

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