Dash-Diva

sandandglass:

Yet another reason not to believe anything that Fox News says. 

Here’s what the Congressional Budget Office report says:

“CBO estimates that the ACA will reduce the total number of hours worked, on net, by about 1.5 percent to 2.0 percent during the period from 2017 to 2024, almost entirely because workers will choose to supply less labor…” Page 117

“The estimated reduction stems almost entirely from a net decline in the amount of labor that workers choose to supply, rather than from a net drop in businesses’ demand for labor, so it will appear almost entirely as a reduction in labor force participation and in hours worked relative to what would have occurred otherwise rather than as an increase in unemployment (that is, more workers seeking but not finding jobs) or underemployment (such as part-time workers who would prefer to work more hours per week).” Page 117-118

“In CBO’s judgment, there is no compelling evidence that part-time employment has increased as a result of the ACA. On the one hand, there have been anecdotal reports of firms responding to the employer penalty by limiting workers’ hours, and the share of workers in parttime jobs has declined relatively slowly since the end of the recent recession. On the other hand, the share of workers in part-time jobs generally declines slowly after recessions, so whether that share would have declined more quickly during the past few years in the absence of the ACA is difficult to determine.” Page 125

 “On balance, CBO estimates that the ACA will boost overall demand for goods and services over the next few years because the people who will benefit from the expansion of Medicaid and from access to the exchange subsidies are predominantly in lower-income households and thus are likely to spend a considerable fraction of their additional resources on goods and services…” Page 125

 “The net increase in demand for goods and services will in turn boost demand for labor over the next few years, CBO estimates.” Page 125

And, as CBS News notes in this report:

The part of the CBO’s analysis that has drawn the most attention is the agency’s revised forecasts concerning the ACA’s impact on the labor market. Specifically one sentence: “The reduction in CBO’s projections of hours worked represents a decline in the number of full-time-equivalent workers of about 2.0 million in 2017, rising to about 2.5 million in 2024.”

Taken out of context, that sentence could be read to say the ACA will be responsible for a loss of 2.5 million jobs over the next decade. However, the report’s previous paragraph states, “The ACA will reduce the total number of hours worked, on net, by about 1.5 percent to 2.0 percent during the period from 2017 to 2024, almost entirely because workers will choose to supply less labor — given the new taxes and other incentives they will face and the financial benefits some will receive.” So the phrase “a decline in the number of full-time-equivalent workers” is just a restatement of this in terms of how many full-time workers it is equal to.

Cash

Cash

Get

Get

There used to be all sorts of criticisms of the old “culture industries” like Hollywood and the top 40, which entertained us with stories or songs that always ended on an upbeat note, no matter how false. But at least the culture industries went to the bother of entertaining us. Their replacements don’t even bother. They expect us to entertain each other, and pay a tax for it. Facebook or Google’s YouTube are not the culture industries so much as the vulture industries, taking an information surcharge from us while we amuse each other, and selling us to advertisers. Like do-it-yourself commercial TV.

These are all elements of what I call the “spectacle of disintegration”. The old spectacle of television and radio papered the world with images of what the lovely soul of the commodity was supposed to look like. We were at least still free to daydream while we sat idly watching.

But in the spectacle of disintegration, all that breaks apart. The big screen decays into so many little screens. Our leisure time is now to be spent producing information for the vulture industries of Google and co, in an unequal exchange of information. In exchange for the poll tax of personal data, we get to watch each other’s cat videos, while Google becomes some new version of the state, presiding over all our bitty lives, master of all our data, in aggregate.

Like any state, Google has its patriots. But there are also those who think this latest version of the spectacle offers some quirky avenues for having fun at its expense. Its time for a certain opacity, a certain glamour of obscurity. Not all the information we offer up has to be even remotely true.

wired:

Robert Xavier Burden used to paint nudes, but nearly a decade ago he shifted his eye from bare flesh to another sort of fetish. Now he spends thousands of hours creating massive, and massively nerdy, oil paintings of toys from his youth.

You might think his switch from naked human models to tiny action figures would make life a lot simpler for the San Francisco artist, but you’d be wrong.

“I’m hesitant to use the word ‘easy,’ just because of the fact that making these paintings is ludicrous, you know?” Burden told Wired during a recent interview here in his warehouse studio, which is packed with paintings that can reach more than 10 feet tall. “But I also don’t think that they work on a small scale. I think if it is about sort of recapturing a sense of childhood wonderment and awe, there is this idea that maybe these things should tower over you — that if you walk into a gallery, they should be a little bit overwhelming.”

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Remember kids, billboard vandalism is a fun and victimless crime.

(NOTE: We are not saying that vandalizing billboards is funny or great)