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Steve Landsburg is a glibertarian econ guy at my university. A lot of my friends know him quite well, because he was originally a mathematician, but after failing to find employment in math, he switched to economics where he has become fairly well-known. (I won’t comment here on what that tells you about the relative competitiveness of the two fields or more broadly on whether courses and degrees in economics should exist at all.) He seems to have landed in a bit of hot water:

He (Landsburg) says that Limbaugh has been accused of disrespecting Fluke but says Fluke’s position on this issue doesn’t deserve respect.

“Her position– which is what’s at issue here—deserves [no respect] whatsoever,” Landsburg writes in his blog. “It deserves to only be ridiculed, mocked and jeered. To treat it with respect would be a travesty.”

He went on to say in the post that he doesn’t agree with Limbaugh using the word “slut” to describe Fluke. Landsburg suggested that “prostitute” was a better word and said there was nothing wrong with demanding to be paid for sex. He also suggests that “extortionist” is a better word to describe Fluke.

This rhetoric prompted university president Joel Seligman to respond.

In a statement released Wednesday, Seligman said:

“I am outraged that any professor would demean a student in this fashion. To openly ridicule, mock, or jeer a student in this way is about the most offensive thing a professor can do. We are here to educate, to nurture, to inspire, not to engage in character assassination.”

Update. Clawback points out that Landsburg is well-known as a contrarian Slatester and Freakaonomics wannabe, not as a research economist, in fairness to the field of economics.






104 replies
  1. 1
    Scott says:

    The university might oughtta also ask themselves whether they want to employ someone whose arguments are so spectacularly stupid.

    Hell, there are way too many universities who keep stupid Republican bloggers on the payroll, and it doesn’t do anything to make them look like somewhere smart students should attend…

  2. 2
    DougJarvus Green-Ellis says:

    @Scott:

    He has tenure and I definitely support academic freedom. I would not like to see him suffer any serious professional repercussions for this. But I think the president does probably have to speak out in a situation where a professor is referring to students as “prostitutes” and such. So all in all, I think the response is appropriate, but I wouldn’t go any further with it than Seligman has.

  3. 3
    c u n d gulag says:

    I’d bet anything that this f*cking pig never even read her testimony.

    He got what he wanted to use from Rush, FOX Noise, and rightie blogs.

    This guy has no business educating impressionable young minds.

  4. 4
    SFAW says:

    Landsburg’s response to (U of R Pres) Seligman’s statement brought even more stupid to the game, in case one didn’t think it were possible.

    Landsburg is his own infinite supply of stupid, so it makes sense he’d gravitate to conservatards, with their infinite demand for it.

    But where does a rational market set the pricing for “stupid” as a commodity? And is that not a self-contradictory concept in the first place?

  5. 5
    SFAW says:

    This guy has no business educating impressionable young minds.

    Hey, it’s only URochester, it’s not like it’s a real school.

    [Just kidding, Doug, but you deserve it with the Green-Ellis thing, after last month’s shellacking.]

  6. 6
    gwangung says:

    He has tenure and I definitely support academic freedom. I would not like to see him suffer any serious professional repercussions for this.

    All the jeering and public ridicule the market can bear.

  7. 7
    Steve says:

    The irony is that he is presenting himself as a policeman of rational discourse (“she’s making a bad argument, she deserves to be ridiculed”), but on the merits her argument is a whole lot better than his, with the added advantage that it’s based on actual facts. On the other hand, Joel Seligman once gave me a C+, so fuck him.

  8. 8
    Sly says:

    Lemieux at LGM had a fairly concise takedown of Landsburg yesterday. Landsburg’s arguments are really, really stupid.

    Personally, if I were the university president, I’d be more concerned that a professor of economics at my university does not understand the basic elements of an insurance system.

  9. 9

    Landsburg seems too proud of himself for immolating Limbaugh’s “straw slut” to have actually read anything about her actual argument. Total bubble-boy.

  10. 10
    Jess says:

    Wonder what he has to say about insurance companies covering Viagra…the silence is deafening.

    Another point that should be raised in response to those who are “outraged” to be (supposedly) subsidizing others’ birth control, is the fact that it is cheaper for insurance companies to pay for birth control than unwanted pregnancies–if we consumers are (in theory) being spared those costs of unplanned pregnancies, would people like Landsburg be willing to forgo their share of the discount as a matter of principle?

    Have others been asking this question? I haven’t come across it yet.

  11. 11
    Jess says:

    Wonder what he has to say about insurance companies covering V-pills…the silence is deafening.

    Another point that should be raised in response to those who are “outraged” to be (supposedly) subsidizing others’ birth control, is the fact that it is cheaper for insurance companies to pay for birth control than unwanted pregnancies—if we consumers are (in theory) being spared those costs of unplanned pregnancies, would people like Landsburg be willing to forgo their share of the discount as a matter of principle?

    Have others been asking this question? I haven’t come across it yet.

  12. 12
    mathguy says:

    Landsburg saying something completely stupid? There’s a stretch. His Slate humor columns always make for great reading (wait…you’re telling me that he’s serious when he writes that stuff??). That he fled mathematics for econ is somehow not surprising.I’m guessing, based on his economics writing, he wasn’t a very good mathematician.

  13. 13
    DougJarvus Green-Ellis says:

    @Steve:

    He’s an excellent college president, FWIW.

  14. 14
    Merp says:

    He’s an economist with tenure?

    He’s complaining that a woman is demanding money in order to have sex, and that she’s doing so by insisting that a private insurance plan she paid for with cash cover contraception. He’s complaining that we all subsidize her activity in the form of higher insurance costs.

    The reason it’s so insane that he’s an economist is that this argument makes no economic sense on two levels.

    1. Insurance costs go down if contraception is included, because then the company doesn’t have to care for prenatal care, delivery, neonatal care, etc. A tenured professor of economics should be able to judge that less money is less money than more money.

    2. The complaint that we all “subsidize her sexual activity” in the form of insurance payments also works for literally every other activity on the face of the planet. We subsidize people with heart disease for eating fatty foods. We subsidize runners for breaking their ankles. We subsidize the arthritic for typing, the near- and farsighted for reading books/computer screens. On and on and on. Any activity which contributes at some point to health care costs that are partially mitigated by insurance falls prey to his argument, in exactly the same way that Ms. Fluke’s contraception does. And that’s the whole point of insurance. That’s what insurance is.

    Now he might have beef with the entire concept of insurance. It’s possible, I guess. But if he doesn’t, then I don’t get how the balls a tenured professor of economics doesn’t get what he’s saying about the nature of insurance.

  15. 15
    Belafon (formerly anonevent) says:

    Maybe it says something about the quality of Math departments versus the quality of Econ departments.

  16. 16
    BGinCHI says:

    At first I thought this was going to refer to that dude who played the tall, white detective who spoke really slow on “Barney Miller.”

    What was his name? Steve Landesberg?

    And I thought: NO! He seemed like such a liberal, urbane Jew who would never go right wing or, heaven forfend, teach in an Econ Dept.

  17. 17
    DougJarvus Green-Ellis says:

    @Merp:

    Merp, the whole field is a joke. That’s just how things are.

  18. 18
    Jon Rockoford says:

    I’m glad Landsburg is getting his comeuppance over his defense of Limbaugh’s indefensible position.

    Now I wish someone with the keys to a prominent blog would take on the execrable Paul Theroux, who’s defending Limbaugh in the Daily Beast (link).

    I find that prominent pundits (both mainstream and bloggers) will take on academics and other pundits but seem to avoid taking apart assholes who have built a reputation as contrarian cultural commentators. Theroux specifically is a piece of work: a snob, a xenophobe and a misanthrope, whose hasty generalizations and rantings about other cultures border on racism. Yet his pseudo-travel books garner kudos and few dare criticize him.

  19. 19
    MattF says:

    Here’s a response to Landsburg that is both careful and impolite:

    http://noahpinionblog.blogspot.....-lose.html

    Landsburg also has a Krugman Problem, needless to say.

  20. 20
    JoyceH says:

    He (Landsburg) says that Limbaugh has been accused of disrespecting Fluke

    Limbaugh is not ‘accused of disrespecting Fluke’, he is accused of SLANDERING her. He spent three days saying things about her, over and over again, that are simply NOT TRUE.

    The issue with Limbaugh is not the way he said it – it’s what he said. He lied. Again and again and again – he simply flat out lied.

  21. 21
    PTirebiter says:

    Stand by for the outrage parade over the liberal indoctrination factories smothering anyone that oppose them.

  22. 22
    SFAW says:

    And I thought: NO! He seemed like such a liberal, urbane Jew who would never go right wing or, heaven forfend, teach in an Econ Dept.

    Plus, unfortunately, the only place he’d currently be teaching Econ is at the College of Saint Peter, a/k/a Pearly Gates University.

  23. 23
    BGinCHI says:

    @DougJarvus Green-Ellis: Can we borrow him to be our Provost for about 20 years?

    Thanks.

  24. 24
    clawback says:

    I don’t disagree with your indictment of the state of economics, but Landsburg is “fairly well-known” only for the extremist right-wing posts on his blog, not for any work in economics.

  25. 25
    Jess says:

    @Sly: Yep, here we go:

    As he remarkably fails to realize, if covering contraception is cheaper for the insurer, there’s no additional expense for anyone. There’s no subsidy, direct or indirect.

    And so, as a matter of principle, is he willing to pay more for insurance to cover the cost of unplanned pregnancies?

  26. 26
    DougJarvus Green-Ellis says:

    @clawback:

    Fair enough.

  27. 27
    SFAW says:

    I don’t disagree with your indictment of the state of economics, but Landsburg is “fairly well-known” only for the extremist right-wing posts on his blog, not for any work in economics.

    Maybe Rushbo can nominate Landsburg for the Nobel Peace Prize in Economics, Blog Division.

  28. 28
    Spaghetti Lee says:

    Another stupid libertarian fucknut sending out his mating call to other libertarian fucknuts about how oppreeeessed they all are. I think it was someone at alicublog who summed it up: “A support group for asperger’s patients disguised as a libertarian party.”

  29. 29
    BGinCHI says:

    @SFAW: I hear they have a great cafeteria.

    Yeah, just looked him up. Died in 2010. Loved his character on that show.

  30. 30
    Gex says:

    Some really ugly misogyny popping out. I guess the same muscles that keep the racism coded also held that stuff in check too.

    Last year was the year that Scott Adams defended men who rape and basically said it’s unfair society controls their sexuality.

    It’s funny. Growing up in the 70’s I knew that as a brown female gay atheist I was many people’s idea of what the problem is. And that gets internalized and I’ve spent a lot of time being unhappy about who I am.

    This last decade, the Republicans have done me a favor of being glad I am all of those things. Particularly the gay one, as all their shit boils down to momma and sex issues.

  31. 31
    dww44 says:

    @BGinCHI: I loved that guy in Barney Miller. Wonder what happened to him.

  32. 32
    Marcellus Shale, Public Dick says:

    all that will happen is that the right will act like someone is taking away someone’s first amendment rights, by criticizing, even ridiculing what they said.

    we are one degree of separation away from removing rush limbaugh from the “discussion” the right wants to have.

    this is why got bucks liberals need to bust out limbaugh by buying the ads. put the audience in the position of having to tune him out on their own, and put limbaugh in the position of having to dance to the music that is playing, or go off the air entirely.

  33. 33
    Raven says:

    @dww44: Besides dying?

  34. 34
    David Koch says:

    You have to admit, this didn’t all just happen. It had to be coordinated by Obama and DHS.

    Obama is the shadowy, spine-chilling Keyser Söze of our time.

    Always operating at night, he wipes out his enemies (bin Laden, Breitbart) when they least expect it.

    Rush was just another victim of yet another Obama trap.

    But that’s his power. The greatest trick Obama ever pulled was convincing the world he wasn’t treacherous.

  35. 35
    BGinCHI says:

    @David Koch: I blame the white half of him for that.

  36. 36
    Sly says:

    @Jess:

    And so, as a matter of principle, is he willing to pay more for insurance to cover the cost of unplanned pregnancies?

    What principle? Limiting the social autonomy of women?

  37. 37
    BGinCHI says:

    Did anyone think this was possible?

    http://livewire.talkingpointsm.....-task-over

    I for one had no idea Gregory was capable of committing an act of journalism. Maybe the network finally got its androids working.

    “Look, you ran in part talking about health care, the president’s healthcare plan,” Gregory finally said. “This was the state of the Virginia mandating women have an additional procedure, a mandated health procedure. I thought that’s exactly what conservatives opposed?”

  38. 38
    FlipYrWhig says:

    Isn’t his argument pretty much like complaining that when you buy car insurance, your money is paying for someone else to drive, and the right word for a paid driver is “chauffeur”?

    Like Merp pointed out, it seems like his real gripe is with the whole concept of insurance — or, for that matter, the whole existence of pesky “other people.”

  39. 39
    SFAW says:

    It had to be coordinated by Obama and DHS.

    I’m confused: I thought the DHS was only playing two-dimensional chess. Isn’t there an inherent conflict with the eleven-dimensional chess that Obama plays? I mean, that’s like a nine-dimension gap that has to be made up, and I’m not sure the DHS could bridge that, even with their full-body scanners or a really, really strong rope.

    Or at least, that’s what the voices tell me.

  40. 40
    dww44 says:

    @Raven: Ooops! didn’t read all the way thru the comments before posting. My bad.

  41. 41
    dmsilev says:

    @BGinCHI: Under the ‘stopped clock is right twice a day’ clause, I suppose it’s possible for Gregory to commit an act of journalism.

    I wouldn’t bet money on it though.

  42. 42
    SFAW says:

    I blame the white half of him for that.

    Who? Frank Gorshin?

  43. 43
    SFAW says:

    Under the ‘stopped clock is right twice a day’ clause, I suppose it’s possible for Gregory to commit an act of journalism.

    I’m surprised at you! A stopped clock being “right” is a passive occurrence (almost said “act”, oy vey). “Committing an act of journamalism” is active, not passive.

    EDIT: Which is to say, I doubt Fluffy is “active” when it comes to that stuff.

  44. 44
    Yutsano says:

    This is decent news. Suddenly the Senate doesn’t look so bad.

  45. 45
    DonBoy says:

    Oh man. Landsburg wrote a book in 1997 called “Fair Play”, in which he took the stance that appealing to the sense of fairness of his 9-year-old daughter can solve all hard ethical problems (generally by showing that conservatives are right). I’d love to know how that daughter, who would now be 24, feels about all this.

    (http://www.amazon.com/Fair-Pla.....0684827557)

  46. 46
    Raven says:

    @dww44: no harm no foul

  47. 47
    suzanne says:

    @Merp:

    The complaint that we all “subsidize her sexual activity” in the form of insurance payments also works for literally every other activity on the face of the planet.

    Word.
    You broke your leg in a car wreck and want it set? Tough shit; you CHOSE to get in that car, knowing risks exist. You want skin cancer treatment even though you used to tan? Too bad, so sad! You made a choice, now live with the consequences. You chose that high-calorie diet and sedentary lifestyle, so enjoy those heart attacks. And don’t even get me started on those athletes. TBIs for all!

    Or we could just understand that the nature of a life well lived is to learn things and try things and engage in behaviors, all of which entail some degree of risk, and that comprehensive health care involves keeping us as healthy as possible for as long as possible so that we can each make our own choices about what our lives should be. Love how the GOP thinks that autonomy is a male privilege.

  48. 48
    David Koch says:

    @SFAW: That’s how Obama Söze gets people who should know better to let down their guard.

    Then, Pooooof! In a puff of smoke, he’s gone.

  49. 49
    Sly says:

    @DonBoy:
    You mean to tell me that a libertarian thinks that all ethical dilemmas can be handled by the moral compass of a preadolescent child?

    I am shocked.

  50. 50
    BGinCHI says:

    @SFAW: Get out of my head!

  51. 51
    BGinCHI says:

    When metaphors become reality:

    http://livewire.talkingpointsm.....s-into-bus

    I was really hoping he’d get back into congress. Anyone know whether he has a chance?

  52. 52
    gogol's wife says:

    @BGinCHI:

    Yes, I knew he had died but I was still picturing him as the person hammering out that blog, which made me very sad.

  53. 53

    @suzanne: Not to mention that the idea itself missed the fucking point of her position, which was that the religious objection of Georgetown was prohibiting contraceptive coverage in teh insurance students (are required to, if they can’t demonstrate other coverage) purchase for themselves.

    You’re both obviously correct that the argument works also for all kinds of other things. But I want to see more pushback in the form of pointing out that there is no subsidy of any kind requested, or argued for, in her testimony. I think that’s pretty important.

  54. 54
    scav says:

    @Sly:

    You mean to tell me that a libertarian thinks that all ethical dilemmas can be handled by the moral compass of a preadolescent child?

    Although apparently the moral compasses of sexually mature females are not to be allowed out unaccompanied.

  55. 55
    beckya57 says:

    Scott Lemieux at LGM absolutely destroyed this guy in a recent post. Sorry, don’t know how to embed.

  56. 56
    BGinCHI says:

    @beckya57: Wow. Even French-Canadian hockey players are smarter than that dipshit.

  57. 57
    Yutsano says:

    @BGinCHI: Okay I LOLed.

  58. 58
    trollhattan says:

    After the Wingularity and its aftermath, I’m emerging from my galt gulch bunker and reinventing insurance.

    I’ll become a bazillionaire and king of the hill.

  59. 59

    I didn’t bother to click through because … well, fuck it, I’ve got other things to do this afternoon besides get my blood pressure up. But I take it from Landsburg’s statement that he has swallowed while Gasbaugh’s false framing that Fluke was wanting taxpayers to buy her birth control? Do I have that correct?

    That seems to be the position that all of the nay-sayers are taking: that Fluke wants taxpayer-provided contraception. And that’s just a flat-out lie, as liberals keep saying.

    We need to keep saying it, and saying it loud, louder, loudest. It’s what frustrates me so much about our fucking debate in this country: Gasbaugh says something wrong and stupid and furor erupts and no one ever listens when we point out that the ENTIRE PREMISE was based on a lie. This happens ALL the fucking time and it’s driving me nuts.

    NO ONE WAS ASKING FOR TAXPAYER FUNDED BIRTH CONTROL. End of fucking discussion now offa my lawn you fucking moron.

    /rant

  60. 60
    Crusty Dem says:

    @Sly:

    I find this interesting because when my daughter was 8 I was considering writing a book (seriously) about how her only window to the world was “fairness”, a normal, natural, yet completely non-objective and non-rational measure of how things “should be”. I had imagined chapters on the constructs underlying what makes something “fair”, how it related to fields of economics and justice, and how to use the perception of fairness to achieve resolution to intractable problems. Amusing that this twit would argue exactly the opposite..

  61. 61
    Yutsano says:

    @Southern Beale: This is, however direct evidence that Libertarians are just Republicans who want to be Kool Kidz. Otherwise they should just observe the free market is exercising its will and Rush is getting fisted by the Almighty Invisible Hand.

    And no I’m not apologizing for that metaphor. :)

  62. 62

    @beckya57:

    Scott Lemieux at LGM absolutely destroyed this guy in a recent post.

    Oh you are correct he did, I read it earlier today. So here it is.

  63. 63

    @Yutsano:

    This is, however direct evidence that Libertarians are just Republicans who want to be Kool Kidz.

    Yes, of course. I’d say 95% of them are just Republicans who are embarrassed to admit it. These days, most of them spout the same “values” BS that used to be anathema to real Libertarians, too. I mean jeezus, fucking Ron Paul is “pro-life” and it’s hilarious to see his little cult try to deny it.

  64. 64
    Nancy says:

    I think it says much more about his quality as a human being than it does about his quality as an economist.

  65. 65
    PTirebiter says:

    @Sly: I tend to agree. Getting into the weeds with these throwbacks is a losing proposition. If they could be persuaded by logic, reason or compassion they would’t be who they are.
    I think it’s past time to draw a line In the sand; Unless they say it is, any legal choices my wife or my daughters make regarding their lives is none of your g- ddamn business. Read It. Learn It. Live It. And they need federal laws that will take it out of the hands of fundamentalists where ever they may be.

  66. 66
    g says:

    Since Landsburg commits the intellectual crime of not even reading what he’s commenting on, he deserves all the shit he can get.

  67. 67
    David M says:

    Landsburg is also not posting polite comments pointing out that Fluke and the students are the ones paying for the insurance, not others. So not only are his arguments crap, he’s censoring comments on his blog pointing out that he’s lying about the basic facts of the case.

  68. 68
    Redshift says:

    @SFAW: It’s like string theory — there are two visible dimensions that DHS works with, and nine “hidden” Obama dimensions that make the whole nefarious system work.

  69. 69
    Pseudo Irishman says:

    I actually had Landsburg in intro to microeconomics back in the day. I found him to be a good prof in that he made us explicitly state assumptions and think through the ramifications of them to sometimes surprising conclusions.

    Of course none of this excuses his callous comments (doubly so since it appears that didn’t read Fluke’s testimony). However, my read on the man is that he’s clueless in the sense that he’s disconnected from the real world and the emotional content thereof. I don’t think he has actual malicious intent — though again he does have a responsibility for what he said and deserves blow-back for it.

    Oh, and DougJ — have a garbage plate at Nick Tahou’s for me when you get a chance.

  70. 70
    BGinCHI says:

    OT, but I think we need a B-J NCAA tournament pool/bracket.

    Can one of the FPers get on this?

    I know college sports is bad and exploitative, but like a juicy burger sometimes one just has to favor enjoyment.

  71. 71
    Pseudo Irishman says:

    @SFAW:

    Sigh. As a UR grad in political science, I get this all the time. Everyone would always ask me if I went to RIT. It’s kind of like calling Cole a Panthers fan, only if WVU and Pitt were really, really bad at football.

  72. 72
    Sly says:

    @PTirebiter:

    I tend to agree. Getting into the weeds with these throwbacks is a losing proposition.

    Not always. It depends on the venue. Boies and Olsen certainly got into the weeds with the bigots on Prop 8 and completely tore them a new asshole, mostly because they’re both good lawyers and the venue was a court of law.

    Landsburg is trying to dress up misogyny with sub-moronic libertarian pablum. You don’t need to be an expert litigator to effectively pierce that veil.

  73. 73
    BGinCHI says:

    @Pseudo Irishman: RIT was my safe school.

    /Max Fischer

  74. 74
    PeakVT says:

    Quiggin had this to say about Landsburg back in 2004:

    I’ve never been a great fan of Steven Landsburg’s ‘Everyday Economics’ columns in Slate[1]. While he occasionally has something interesting to say, a lot of his columns are what Orwell called ‘silly-clever’, such as this piece defending looting. Economists are often prone to this kind of thing, and it doesn’t do the profession any good in my view, but it’s usually not worth refuting.

    Like most conservatives, he’s gotten crazier since then.

  75. 75
    Will Reks says:

    In other news:

    http://livewire.talkingpointsm.....s-into-bus

    Both the headline and a certain sentence in the story made me cringe.

  76. 76
    Amanda in the South Bay says:

    From my experience, its pretty common for math people to switch over to econ, since econ has gotten extremely mathematical over the past few decades, and econ departments are always looking for people who have advanced math skills.

  77. 77
    marcopolo says:

    Hah! Another UR grad here in Political Science & English but before this jerk’s time. As an alumni, it really pains me to read the mediocre thinking this fellow engages in; the UR Econ dept. has always tacked hard to the right (ala U Chicago) but at least back in my day I was under the impression the department’s faculty had brains and used them. Good for the student’s who protested his class. I hope they pointed out that from the content of his blog post he seems not to have actually engaged the actual comments that Sandra Fluke made in the hearing.

  78. 78
    PTirebiter says:

    @Sly:
    Knock yourself out. I was speaking strictly to the issue of women’s autonomy. As we’ve all seen by now, the Hyde amendment was a useless attempt at accommoding a viewpoint that cannot be accommodated. There is simply no argument for their faith based dogma, indulging them is counter productive.

  79. 79
    Pseudo Irishman says:

    @marcopolo:

    I was stunned (and pleased) to hear that 30 students at UR protested anything. Bonus points for coming up with a rather inventive way of doing it that was disruptive and highly visible but non confrontational.

  80. 80
    LT says:

    Landsburg:

    “That’s how I read her testimony anyways.”

    Brilliant.

  81. 81
    David Koch says:

    @Will Reks:

    I’m Shocked!

    I’m Shocked!

    Grayson runs a red ligh – whocouldhaveknown?

  82. 82
    LT says:

    @David M:

    Landsburg is also not posting polite comments pointing out that Fluke and the students are the ones paying for the insurance, not others. So not only are his arguments crap, he’s censoring comments on his blog pointing out that he’s lying about the basic facts of the case.

    yep. My two comments didn’t make it.

  83. 83
    BGinCHI says:

    @David Koch: Where were you when his brake lines were cut?

  84. 84
    JGabriel says:

    Saw this Landsburg story at the Times (I think?) the other day, and wondered if you were going to comment on it, Doug. Glad to get your take on it.

    .

  85. 85
    Odie Hugh Manatee says:

    @dmsilev:

    @BGinCHI:Under the ‘stopped clock is right twice a day’ ‘Tunch can catch a bird once in his life’ clause, I suppose it’s possible for Gregory to commit an act of journalism.
     
    I wouldn’t bet money on it though.

    Fix’t. ;p

  86. 86
    David Koch says:

    @BGinCHI:

    Where were you was Obama’s Chicago gangstas when his brake lines were cut?

    /fixed

  87. 87
    priscianusjr says:

    @Merp:

    He’s complaining that a woman is demanding money in order to have sex

    Although your two points are well taken, you seem to have no problem with the starting point of his argument, namely, that this “woman is demanding money in order to have sex.” But that premise itself is totally bogus, because there is no quantitative correlation between a woman’s use of contraception and having sex. The cost would be the same whether she was (a) a nymphomaniac, (b) having a “normal” amount of sex (whatever that might be), (c) having sex very rarely, or (d) being totally celibate, because the pill may be used for various other health reasons. Furthermore, (e) she didn’t even talk about sexual activity, she talked about a friend of hers who needed birth control pills to halt the growth of ovarian cysts.

  88. 88
    BGinCHI says:

    @David Koch: I was right here typing, my friend. See you at the landfill.

  89. 89
    LT says:

    Laqndsburg moved the goalposts, as Limbaugh and I think all of his shadowlickers did, completely out of the city. Limbaugh explicitly said this was about Fluke wanting “taxpayers” to pay for her contraception. Limbaugh, Landsburg, and followers now say it’s about how requiring insurers to provide contraceptive coverage will increase insurance costs.

    If they could at least admit that one lie you could carry on the conversation. They can’t, and thereby prove they were lying in the first place.

  90. 90
    LT says:

    @priscianusjr:

    @Merp:

    He’s complaining that a woman is demanding money in order to have sex

    __
    Although your to have no problem with his more basic point that this “woman is demanding money in order to have sex.” But that point is itself totally bogus, because there is no direct correlation between a woman’s use of contraception and having sex.

    That’s missing the point completely. SHE IS NOT DEMANDING MONEY. PERIOD. Christ.

  91. 91
    SFAW says:

    Sigh. As a UR grad in political science, I get this all the time. Everyone would always ask me if I went to RIT.

    You realize I was just bustin’ Doug’s stones, right? I got nothing against UR. RIT, on the other hand …

    My condolences on the “mistaken identity” (so to speak) things that happen to you. It’s kinda like if people mistook Tom Levenson for being at Hahvahd College, but without the high price tag.

  92. 92
    Uncle Cosmo says:

    “Glibertarian economist,” or more correctly, “intellectual fraud & pilonidal cyst on the body politic.”

  93. 93
    Shalimar says:

    @Yutsano: You don’t have to apologize, I suspect Rush enjoys getting fisted as long as it is by little boys with small hands.

  94. 94
    LT says:

    I regret my use of all caps in my previous comment. I feel dirty.

  95. 95
    David Koch says:

    @BGinCHI: If Grayson had any brains he’d move to a cave to hide out from Obama’s hellfire missiles.

  96. 96
    BGinCHI says:

    @David Koch: What do you mean? He already lives in FL.

  97. 97
    uptown says:

    @Sly:

    Well, he doesn’t seem to have a degree in Economics (PhD in mathematics from the University of Chicago), so it really shouldn’t be surprising that he doesn’t know squat about the basics of economics.

  98. 98
    Jimbo316 says:

    @Jess: Actually, quite a number of commentators have mentioned this but, of course, no right-winger will mention this since they are utterly uninterested in controlling the costs of health care other than rationing customers by price.

  99. 99
    Gex says:

    @dmsilev: Even he can see the hypocrisy of Mandate = Bad, Mandate = Good. As both issues are about ACA it’s hard for them to keep those things far enough apart that someone who hasn’t had major head injuries might notice.

  100. 100
    Gex says:

    @LT: The bullshit is layered very deep, the noise machine has to churn and churn overtime this election season. You simply can’t debunk every layer in order to reveal them to their followers. They can’t listen that long, nor will the remember how you refuted lie #3 by the time you debunk lie #11.

  101. 101
    burnspbesq says:

    This has nothing to do with Landsburg’s chops (or lack thereof) as an economist. Nor does it have anything to do with the moronic things Doug professes to believe about economics as a discipline.

    It’s simply a matter of truth vs. lie. Landsburg’s republishing, uncritically, despicable lies about a person who did nothing to deserve this treatment. His actions have brought U of R into disrepute. And they have nothing to do with any legitimate issue of academic freedom.

    Counsel for the university should be taking a hard look at whether this behavior constitutes “cause” under Landsburg’s employment agreement, and if it does, he should be gone.

  102. 102
    Peregrinus says:

    @burnspbesq:

    I’m in the area, having graduated from UR almost a year ago now – as much as I’d find it schadenfreudelicious, there is no way Landsburg gets fired over this. He’s too popular an author and professor, and his reputation and classes have attracted quite a few students . . . I was saying earlier that UR’s economics department in some ways considers itself to be a synthesis of Milton Friedman and the Austrian School.

    (Mind you, I’ll defend DougJ on the basis that if you hang around or hear from enough people who take or teach economics at UR, you too would consider it a completely unnecessary discipline . . .)

  103. 103
    Carl Nyberg says:

    I so hope Sandra Fluke sues everyone who says she is a prostitute.

    It’s defamation in Illinois and in most states, I expect.

    Just defending a suit like this is easily $100,000 in legal bills. And she’s got a good case. My guess is that insurers would happily settle these suits for $100,000 just to avoid the legal expenses. And they’d probably sweeten the pot by $75-250,000 more to avoid the judgment.

    Sandra Fluke may have a career in philanthropy ahead of her.

  104. 104
    Nancy Irving says:

    If women who want their health insurance plans to cover birth control are demanding they be “paid to have sex,” is an asthmatic who wants his inhaler covered demanding he be “paid to breathe”?

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