The Unz Review: An Alternative Media Selection
A Collection of Interesting, Important, and Controversial Perspectives Largely Excluded from the American Mainstream Media
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Government waste

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Tens of millions of lost jobs, the largest trade deficits in history, the sharpest GDP decline in modern American history--and yet business applications are booming. The figures are staggering: Nationwide, business applications are up over 82% from the same time last year, with every single state recording double-(or triple-)digit percentage increases. Seems a little strange,... Read More
The news articles on all the putative political fallout president Trump is putatively receiving for revealing how utterly inconsequential the federal government is to the well being of middle America are pulling fast ones on their readers. Here's an example from my favorite polling outfit, Reuters-Ipsos: Yikes, that's a 14-point gap in blame for Trump... Read More
As the #TrumpShutdown continues into 2019, one thing is clear: a border wall would be an absolute waste of taxpayer money. — Kamala Harris (@KamalaHarris) December 31, 2018 What the partial shutdown is making clear is just how superfluous so much of the federal government is. Most people have no idea what exactly is shut... Read More
As we enter day six of the three-week long funeral, remembrance, visitation, and worship of the deified John McCain, I find my spirits lifted by revisiting Trump's plausibly deniable shiv from a little over a year ago: As I wrote at the time: That the cancer was progressive and that McCain's prognosis was terminal was... Read More
Ann Coulter picked up the previous post on twatter. In her wake followed a flotilla of what Vox Day derisively refers to as "midwits". Some of the 'criticism' was cringe-inducingly terrible: But some of it was reasonable enough: Yes, following the link would've revealed that it applied to less than one-quarter of all responses, but... Read More
The following graph shows the percentages of people, by selected demographic characteristics, who agree that some members of the FBI and DOJ are trying to delegitimatize president Trump through politically-motivated investigations (that's putting it mildly to say the least). The data comes from a Reuters Ipsos poll that was conducted the first week of February.... Read More
I've a couple of other posts queued up and don't have anything novel to add at the moment, but diverting attention away from a scandal bigger than Watergate isn't something that can be done with a clear conscience. Collusion between the FBI and a presidential campaign to violate the constitutional protections of the oppositional presidential... Read More
Agnostic on the political-industrial alignment: Since its inception, the GSS has queried respondents about federal government spending on "the military, armaments, and defense" with three possible responses--"too little", "too much", or "about right". The following graphs show the percentage of liberals and conservatives, by decade, who gave other than a goldilocks answer:   The differences... Read More
The 2016 iteration of the GSS asked respondents about who should be the primary provider for the sick, the old, and of education, along with five possible responses--the government, private businesses, non-profits, religious organizations, or family and friends. The following graphs show the percentages, by selected demographic characteristics*, who said the government should be the... Read More
Given the amount of attention it receives, costs it imposes, and passion it engenders, I'm surprised by this Reuters-Ipsos polling result. In a sample of 5,199 Americans, (admittedly vague) responses to the question "How satisfied are you with your health coverage?" breakdown thus: Only 1-in-8 express some degree of dissatisfaction. The demographic differences are modest.... Read More
After mulling it over, I think we need a third party presidency for budget deficit reduction to become a sustained, acted upon priority. Pew has tracked public prioritization of reducing the nation's federal budget deficit for nearly twenty years, and from someone whose default position is one of starving the beast, looking at how partisan... Read More
Rand Paul is spitting into the wind. Unfortunately so from my perspective, but it's what he's doing all the same. Pew recently released the results of a survey in which respondents were asked whether they would increase, decrease, or maintain current spending levels across 19 different expenditure categories if they were writing up the federal... Read More
As an addendum to Half Sigma's paean to Japan, a reason I'm a favorably inclined comes from the WVS. The fifth and most recent wave includes a question querying respondents on how they feel about their respective countries providing foreign aid. Specifics aren't given, and the amount is simply .1% of each respective country's "national income"... Read More
Tonight, a multi-state lottery game with a jackpot payout of $640 million took in $1.5 billion, most of it flowing into state coffers (retail cuts are generally 5% on the sale and nothing on the payout, except the big winner). I'm being genuine when I say I'm surprised by how much I've heard people talking... Read More
Instead of just speaking to the walls as I work out while listening to the news, I'll mix it up by soiling this blog a bit by griping about a few examples of the media's sins of omission. In my personal life I'm hesitant to moan about this kind of thing not so much for... Read More
From an NPR book review earlier this week:A story about the daughter of a black woman and a Jewish father who abandons them is at the heart of American identity? You really can't make this stuff up. It's so blatantly preposterous that it is beyond parody. A whopping 0.2% of married white men have a... Read More
From the WSJ's What's News section: Houses were being built with reckless abandon a few short years ago, and times were good then. Clearly, we need the relentless construction to resume. Never mind that 2009 was yet another record year for home foreclosure filings: This will lead to the adjustments needed in the larger economy... Read More
It is not unusual for companies to subject their employees to random drug testing, and most require it ahead of receiving worker's compensation benefits for injuries sustained on the job, so why not subject welfare recipients to the same? The idea is getting a legislative push in multiple states:Want government assistance? Just say no to... Read More
Other than being located on the continent of Africa, what do Benin, Botswana, Burkina Faso, Burundi, Cameroon, Cape Verde, Central African Republic, Chad, Republic of the Congo, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Djibouti, Equatorial Guinea, Eritrea, Ethiopia, Gabon, Gambia, Ghana, Guinea-Bissau, Guinea, Cote d'Ivoire, Kenya, Lesotho, Liberia, Madagascar, Malawi, Mali, Mauritania, Mauritius, Mozambique, Namibia, Niger,... Read More