Biden plagiarizes Leonard Read

Reason Biden invokes ‘I Pencil’ without attribution

In an attempt to explain supply chain complexity, President Biden borrows from Leonard Read’s classic 

I Pencil 

while clearly not understanding it at all. The whole point of I Pencil is that through price signals, markets self-organize supply chains and automatically compensate for scarcity and interruptions.  Biden used the reference to justify massive interference in those markets with controlled sourcing. 

My 8 year old grandson understands I Pencil and no doubt would make a better President. 

38 thoughts on “Biden plagiarizes Leonard Read

  1. RE: “Biden used the reference to justify massive interference in those markets with controlled sourcing.”

    That’s the way I read the story, as well. We see the same thing with the administration’s messaging on inflation: It is not government’s fault, but the government will make sure everyone has enough money to pay the higher prices.

    There is no evidence that the president understands the nature of the problem.

    Like

  2. What is your point? A global pandemic (yes there is one) affects all suppliers. Restarts are affected as surges reappear. Sudden demands from less affected people raises prices. Shipping costs are higher globally.

    Your solution?

    Liked by 2 people

      1. Sounds good. How will the market increase computer chip supplies? You don’t build a factory in weeks. Those supply chains took years and China, among others, is still struggling with COVID.

        Biden fossil fuel policies have barely gotten started. We had a surplus before the pandemic. What happened in 2020 to fuel?

        Liked by 2 people

        1. The market will respond to a scarcity of chips with an increase in the price those who need them are willing to pay. Those who make them, seeing higher profits, will find a way, as they are the ones who know how.

          All government needs to do is to stay out of the way,

          BTW, Tiwan is a major producer, and at least for now is not part of China.

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          1. I believe the prices of chips, and other parts are rising dramatically. So where are the new factories?

            The problem is not a small town with one hardware store and the advent of a second one when the first charges too much.

            Massive corporations control markets, government or no government. Add in international trade, COVID and exploding consumer demand, the prices will rise.

            As far a fuel, we have the stuff in place already, no Biden policy is closing them. Adding misery is the Gulf where hurricanes literally shut everything down for a few weeks.

            “The Biden administration is preparing to sell off more than 80 million acres of the Gulf of Mexico to oil and gas drilling companies in the largest federal offshore drilling auction in U.S”.

            Newsweek.

            Some restriction, eh?

            Liked by 2 people

    1. RE: “A global pandemic (yes there is one) affects all suppliers. Restarts are affected as surges reappear. Sudden demands from less affected people raises prices.”

      The administration has made all those excuses, but other explanations make more sense:

      Government-induced labor shortages caused by lockdown policies and over-generous unemployment compensation.

      Government regulation, such as California requiring all trucks serving its ports to be less than three years old, or shuting down sources of supply for oil.

      Past deficit spending that increased the money supply, and future deficit spending that is expected to do the same.

      The solution is to reverse all such specific causes of inflation, not to simply accept them as consequences of the pandemic.

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      1. All those were started or were in force under the last administration.

        Biden has loosened the shipping rules. Policies were planned to alleviate daycare, pre-school, etc. so people could go back to work. But that bill is stuck.

        Liked by 2 people

        1. RE: “All those were started or were in force under the last administration.”

          That’s false. But you asked for solutions, so I gave you three the the current administration isn’t addressing.

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          1. “ On March 18, 2020, President Trump signed into law the Families First Coronavirus Response Act (FFCRA), which provided additional flexibility for state unemployment insurance agencies and additional administrative funding to respond to the COVID-19 pandemic. The Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act was signed into law on March 27. It expands states’ ability to provide unemployment insurance for many workers impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic, including for workers who are not ordinarily eligible for unemployment benefits.”

            https://www.dol.gov/coronavirus/unemployment-insurance

            Add in checks to everyone whether needed or not. Remember Trump wanted to “go big”.

            Lockdowns were started in 2020.

            Shipping regulations were in force in 2020..

            Deficit spending skyrocketed after the tax “reforms bill. Biden is trying to pay for the programs with tax hikes. Programs that will also loosen up the labor market.

            Now the government add-ons to unemployment have stopped. Vaccine or testing mandates are going to loosen up the work force. (Unless courts say no.)

            Where was I wrong? Oh, the shipping regs weren’t started in 2020, but the were in effect. Sorry.

            Bottom line, we are addressing all your concerns.

            Liked by 2 people

          2. RE: “Where was I wrong?”

            Here are the three causes of inflation I offered, which you said were “started or in force under the last adminstration”:

            • Government-induced labor shortages caused by lockdown policies and over-generous unemployment compensation.

            You are correct here, but Biden policies (vaccine mandates and BBB welfare benefits) are new initiatives that will cause inflation.

            • Government regulation, such as California requiring all trucks serving its ports to be less than three years old, or shuting down sources of supply for oil.

            I don’t know when California imposed its rules against trucks less than three years old, but Biden’s policies on sources of supply for oil have made the nation a net importer of oil again. This is already causing inflation.

            • Past deficit spending that increased the money supply, and future deficit spending that is expected to do the same.

            It is true that deficit spending under the last administration had the effect of growing the money supply, but it will continue under the Biden administration and even increase. Biden says the new spending he wants will be “paid for” but no one believes that.

            Something else you should think about: It is impossible to grow the labor force through tax-based government spending; also, it is impossible to reduce inflation by growing the labor force unless the new workers produce more goods, which they cannot do with tax-subsidized wages.

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          3. “Biden’s policies on sources of supply for oil have made the nation a net importer of oil again. This is already causing inflation.”

            “The Biden administration is preparing to sell off more than 80 million acres of the Gulf of Mexico to oil and gas drilling companies in the largest federal offshore drilling auction in U.S ”

            Plus few, if any, of the policies regarding new drilling on public lands, etc. have any effect on supplies. The whole world shut down production and distribution during 2020 and the early surges this year. Now demand is huge and the supply lines are not keeping up. They will, but it has nothing to do with Biden.

            Liked by 1 person

          4. Another display of the hypocrites on the right.

            …”but it will continue under the Biden administration and even increase.”

            Not bitching in 2020 when it was the Trump plan. Now it is the end of our economy as we know it.

            Please stop the idiocy.

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          5. What was reasonable pre-vaccine is not reasonable now.

            Those measures Trump took to prop up the economy during the initial COVID surge were not intended to be permanent, much less expanded upon.

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          6. Those benefits will only help if they can be provided more efficiently by government than by the private sector.

            If they make sense, they can be negotiated directly at far less cost than by government program.

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          7. Undeveloped leases and unused drilling permits are such because they are not commercially viable.

            Perhaps as prices rise they will become exploitable, but those that will pay at current prices don’t remain unused for long.

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          8. Because the government sells them in lots.

            To get a deposit that will pay at $60 a barrel, you might have to accept others that will not pay at less than $80 to $100.

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          9. He interrupted lease sales temporarily. But no closing of operating wells as far as I can tell. But he also continued some sales and, again, opened up the Gulf.

            The reality is that presidents take heat for economic impacts they have little or no control over. His policies may affect the future but I don’t see how the current issue is anything more than a worldwide problem of supply and sudden upturn of demand.

            Liked by 2 people

          10. RE: “Daycare, pre-school, parental leave are all programs allowing the workforce to return to work.”

            None will benefit the economy, for the same reason that breaking windows doesn’t benefit the economy. Specifically:

            If these programs are paid for with tax money, they offset the loss of spending that collecting the taxes creates.
            If they are paid for with deficit spending, the quantity of money will increase without any increase in the quantity of goods (inflation).

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  3. The bad part of this is Biden assuming the hoi polloi are just stupid so he tries to talk to the public like we are grade schoolers while he has no clue. What a putz. Is Brandon around for comment?

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    1. “… talk to the public like we are grade schoolers while he has no clue.”

      Funny, that is how I felt about the last president. His non-scripted speeches and interviews rambled all over the place. And he did keep the speaking and vocabulary at grade school level. But, the education level of many Americans is low, so reaching everybody requires that they understand what is being said. Trump did that.

      Now you say that is bad because Biden may also do the same?

      Liked by 2 people

      1. So you are in agreement with Biden that the masses are uneducated fools that need to be led around and have everything expained at a 3rd grade level from the liberal elites? How quaint. The American people are by and large a LOT smarter than you give them credit for.

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        1. I think Americans are lagging in education.
          Is that why large percentages don’t know the three branches? Or that the VP can’t decide elections?

          Now, there is a difference between smart and educated. Not to say that there aren’t educated folks that have little sense or smarts or that there are poorly educated folks that do very, very well.

          But do you have a problem with keeping speeches so that everyone can grasp the concepts?

          Trump did it. And he has a solid quarter of eligible voters who adore him, give or take.

          Liked by 2 people

  4. I read your post and the article it linked to. It provides a great example into how broken and hypocritical “conservative” thinking is.

    First there is the nasty and stupid partisanship of a word like “plagiarized” where it clearly does not apply. Words have meaning and citing a fact from a source you have read is NOT “plagiarism.” Such DISHONESTY is now a hallmark of “conservative” “thought.” We see it all the time from the mother lode of “alternative facts.”

    In this case, the example of the complex sourcing of a pencil was a good lead in to the complexities of the sourcing of far more important products. current market disruptions, and supply issues. Is there something wrong with the President trying to educate his listeners?

    And just what is this “massive interference” that you bemoan? “Buy American” is a value that our government has pursued for generations and when it comes to products as crucial as chips there are very real national security reasons to develop – even subsidize – domestic capabilities rather than being totally dependent on the greed of adversarial nations or the continued good will of friendly ones.

    And then there is the HYPOCRISY! So typical! If memory serves “Buy American” was a cornerstone of Trump policy and it was pursued with the “massive interference” of stupid and destructive tariffs. I do not remember any Trump idolators getting hot and bothered over THAT “massive interference” or the “massive interference” in the market for soybeans that followed.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. There are thousands of products Biden(or his speechwriters) could have chosen to illustrate the complexity of supply chains. Biden used Read’s specific example WITHOUT ATTRIBUTION so yes, it was plagiarism.

      You should remember that I criticized Trump’s protectionism when it was happening.

      You can make a case for giving preference to domestic producers for specific strategic products, but not for blanket But American in general.

      The whole point of ‘I Pencil’ is the spontaneous order that markets provide when the government keeps its thumb off the scale. Apparently that entirely escapes the left.

      Like

      1. “Biden used Read’s specific example WITHOUT ATTRIBUTION so yes, it was plagiarism.”

        Pure unadulterated bullshit. You prove again and again what a spiteful and hypocritical hater you are. Read’s little book from more than 60 years ago is part of our cultural heritage – the body of knowledge and ideas that educated people draw on to communicate.

        Your criticism of Trump’s protectionism was mild to the point of non-existence. You justified it again and again as a negotiating tool wielded by a master negotiator. LOL!

        Mr. Trump beat the “Buy American” drum far louder and more often than President Biden and he looked for many ways for the government to achieve that end. No “massive interference” whining from any of you people. Hypocrites one and all.

        Liked by 2 people

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