Friday, June 24, 2011

Just Let the Tax Cuts Expire

According to the CBO that's about all it would take to fix our deficit problem. If only Congress would just do nothing. Details here.

Instead on the right they want to follow the policy of Latin America, Haiti, and Africa. Slashing government expenditures and regulation will attract business and lead us to recovery. Here Congresswoman Renee Elmers pushes these policies in questions to Tim Geithner.

Thursday, June 23, 2011

Me at the Arab Festival

I went to the Arab Festival in Dearborn just to see if I could have interesting discussions with either Christians or Muslims. I came across a group of Christians kind of yelling at the crowd, so I spoke with one from their group. It was pretty interesting. You can hear that one here. I also spoke with a young Muslim. An OK discussion. You can hear that one here.

As a Christian shouts at the crowd you can kind of hear some people telling them to shut up. These are mostly teenagers, if not all teenagers. I think it's tempting to be really angry with these Christians for being so obnoxious. On the other hand a part of me sympathizes with them. What they do is probably not easy for them, but they do it because of their convictions. Sure, they're totally misguided. It's true that they are making the festival kind of miserable for the Muslims there. So to be ticked at them is fair. But seeing them I can't help but think back to my old Christian days where I'd be compelled to do the uncomfortable thing and witness. I'd do it because it was right, even though it was very hard and kind of embarrassing.

The Christian I spoke with was mostly pretty nice, except right at the end as I'm leaving he gets more belligerent and angry. Starts telling me I'm going to hell and all that. You can't really hear it because I'm walking away. But prior to that I felt very friendly towards him, but with that it was suddenly very hostile. Too bad.

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Response to Paul Bogdanor's Top 200 Chomsky Lies

So there's this guy by the name of Paul Bogdanor that apparently has as his mission to discredit Noam Chomsky. I have no real problem with that in principle. If you think somebody harms the world by misleading people and you think discrediting them would help prevent others from being led astray I suppose that's fine.

As an admirer of Chomsky I'm frequently pointed to Bogdanor's work in refutation of Chomsky. Bogdanor is published. In fact he contributed to an anti-Chomsky book by David Horowitz. Whatever one may think of Horowitz, you have to admit he's at least a fairly prominent pundit. So one might on the surface not expect Bogdanor to be a complete hack. Or would you? I guess I'm trying to say that there are degrees of lunacy. Arch neocons like Horowitz of course are not well reasoned people, but while I think Horowitz is way off base he is frequently in the media, has published some widely read books, etc. So it's not like he's completely bonkers.

So I'm told to go look at Bogdanor's Top 200 Chomsky Lies. And so I have. Wow. It's really bad. This is not really worth responding to.

But on the other hand I am regularly pointed to this by Chomsky's critics. Perhaps it would be useful to take some time and address it. Maybe just some of it. To give a sense of how bad it is. That way I can at least have something to point to to explain why considering Bogdanor is not worthwhile.

So here I'm going to respond to the first 10 lies and then maybe in the future I'll respond to more. Or maybe I won't.

OK, so the first thing that needs to be kept in mind when addressing Chomsky's 200 supposed lies is this. What is a lie? If someone disagrees with me, does that mean they are lying? Obviously not. What if they rely on a source and that source turns out to be wrong. Is that a lie? I think it's pretty obvious that it is not.

What if someone makes an error? Does that mean they lied? What if they won't admit their error? That's not a lie. It could be a character defect. It could be worthy of criticism. But it's not a lie. says that a lie is "a false statement made with deliberate intent to deceive." It seems to me that merely knowing what a lie is would shrink Paul's list down to about nothing. But I haven't yet read them all, so we'll see. Here are his "lies" with Chomsky's words in blue, Bogdanor's in red, and mine in black. Bogdanor presents these in a countdown fashion, starting with 10 and ending with 1. I'm going to start with 1 just because it is so outrageous and must be emphasized. I'll take the remainder in the order they come from Bogdanor.

And these first 10 "lies" are under a section "10 Chomsky Lies About Communist Mass Murderers – General"

1. The Lie: “Of course, no one supposed that Mao literally murdered tens of millions of people, or that he ‘intended’ that any die at all.”20

The Truth: Mao spoke of sacrificing 300 million people, or half of China’s population. He warned that the policies he later adopted would kill 50 million people. Grain exported by the communists was sufficient to feed the numbers who starved to death, which they privately estimated at 30 million.21

This one is repeated constantly in discussion forums and blog comment sections as an example of Chomsky apologetics for Communist atrocities. In isolation it does sort of look like that. Bogdanor doesn't actually say that this is what Chomsky is doing. He presents it as if Chomsky thinks Mao wasn't expecting people to die from his policies. So we get a double whammy here. It's presented in a way that leads someone to have a mistaken understanding of Chomsky's views regarding Mao and secondly it's further mischaracterized by Bogdanor.

The solution as is typical is to just read what Chomsky said in context, which you can do here. But I'll summarize Chomsky's point.

Mao instituted polices that lead to famines in China. These killed tens of millions of people. Did Mao set out to starve people? No. What he did was he instituted polices that he knew would lead to massive death. But for him that was worth it. If he could have done it without killing so many he probably would have. But this does not absolve him. He is still guilty and justly condemned for this action.

In the same way Clinton bombed a pharmaceutical plant in the Sudan. Did he do it because he wanted to see poor Africans die? Obviously not. But this is the only source for life saving drugs for many poor Africans. Clinton would know that large scale death would result. But he thought it was worth it. The fact that he would have probably preferred to avoid killing many thousands of poor Africans does not absolve him. He engaged in actions that lead to that predictable result. Just as we rightly condemn Mao for tens of millions of starved Chinese peasants we should apply the same principles to our own side. Or if anything we should be even more condemnatory towards our side since these are the ones we can control and are responsible for.

For Chomsky the emphasis is on the fact that Mao cannot be absolved. Bogdanor turns it into a quote that makes it appear that Chomsky is in fact attempting to absolve Mao. He further critiques it as if Chomsky is unaware that massive death was the predictable consequence of Mao's policies. I'd be tempted to call Bogdanor a liar, but in truth I expect he's just lazy.

10. The Lie: “in comparison to the conditions imposed by US tyranny and violence, East Europe under Russian rule was practically a paradise.”

The Truth: The communists murdered 4 million people in the Ukraine; 753,000 in Poland; 360,000 in Romania; 300,000 in Belarus; 200,000 in Hungary; 100,000 in East Germany; 100,000 in Lithuania; 70,000-100,000 in Yugoslavia; 30,000-40,000 in Bulgaria; 20,000 in Czechoslovakia; and 5,000 in Albania. Other atrocities included the murder of over 500,000 POWs in Soviet captivity and the mass rape of at least 2 million women by the Red Army.

The source is available here. The context is a speech a speech in Congress by Vaclav Havel who contrasted the Soviet Union and the US as one being a nightmare the other a defender of freedom, to great applause. Chomsky is not one to deny that the Soviet Union was a hideous and murderous regime. His point is that the US is a very murderous regime as well, and likewise a nightmare for many that suffer under its boot. The cartoonish presentation from Havel and self congratulation of those in Washington is kind of hard to take.

He asks us to consider Southeast Asia, Central America, and the West Bank. The West Bank is regarded as the world's largest open air prison by many respectable people. Malnourishment is severe. Unemployment is around 40%. Occasionally bombs are falling. The Soviet Union cannot claim a bombing campaign against any country that is on the scale perpetuated against Southeast Asia for their crime of preferring the wrong government. And in Haiti, with 70% unemployment where the lucky employed at the time Chomsky wrote this were making 38 cents per day, had a Haitian went to sleep and woke up in Poland, with high employment levels, state provided health services, and a functioning education system, they'd have probably thought they'd died and woke up in Paradise.

That's not to say that the Soviet Union was not responsible for massive atrocities. But in some places where US tyranny and violence is imposed, things are actually worse. I'd say that assessment, rather than being a lie, would more accurately be described as the truth. But if you don't agree that's fine. Reasonable people might not reach the same judgments on matters like this. So in other words one could decide that Chomsky is wrong, but you couldn't say that he lied.

9. The Lie: “Western norms require that we compare Eastern and Western Europe to demonstrate our virtue and their vileness, a childish absurdity… Elementary rationality would lead someone interested in alternative social and economic paths to compare societies that were more or less alike before the Cold War began, say Russia or Brazil… Such comparisons, if honestly undertaken, would elicit some self-reflection among decent people…”

The Truth: In Russia, Lenin’s food confiscations inflicted famine on over 33 million people, including 7 million children, and left 4-5 million dead; Stalin’s assault on the peasants killed another 8.5 million, half of them children.4 Brazil experienced nothing of the kind.

What is the relevance of listing various Soviet crimes? The point is that saying "Our culture is so much better because Britain is a better place to live than the Ukraine" is silly because Britain has been different for centuries. Russia and Brazil started at similar places prior to the Cold War. Since then Brazil has been subjected to US domination and Russia has been subjected to Soviet domination. In some ways perhaps Brazil is better, but in other ways (economically, with regards to access to health services) Russia is better. Honest comparison require that we consider countries that started from similar places. How is this a lie?

8. The Lie: “Internal [Soviet] crimes abated [after 1945]; though remaining very serious they were scarcely at the level of typical American satellites, a commonplace in the Third World, where the norms of Western propriety do not hold.”

The Truth: In 1947, the Soviets withheld food from famine victims, causing up to 1.5 million deaths.6 During 1945-53, there were over 300,000 officially recorded deaths in the Gulag; by 1953, the slave population exceeded 5.2 million.7 No American satellite – whether in Europe or in Latin America – was guilty of anything even remotely comparable.

Take a look at what Chomsky offers
in the context of this quote. Some evidence, this time in the form of testimony from a Guatemalan refugee, that in fact his assessment as we approach the 90's was true. Reasonable people might disagree. Chomsky if he were so inclined might offer additional evidence to support his claim. Bogdanor might offer counter evidence. All good. It's not a lie in any case.

7 The Lie: “In the Soviet sphere of influence, torture appears to have been on the decline since the death of Stalin… Since it has declined in the Soviet sphere since the death of Stalin, it would appear that this cancerous growth is largely a Free World phenomenon.”8

The Truth: Until the late 1980s, the Soviets ran 1,000 concentration camps where at least 2 million inmates endured constant violence. Torture was systematic in Soviet satellites in the Third World.9

Chomsky cites an Amnesty International report to justify his claim. Regurgitating the findings of respectable investigative human rights agencies is not lying.

6. The Lie: “Imagine the reaction if the Soviet police were to deal with refuseniks in any way comparable to the Israeli [anti-riot] practices that briefly reached the television screens.”10

The Truth: The Soviet police held 10,000 dissidents in psychiatric prisons and concentration camps. An estimated 50,000 were sent to uranium mines to die of radiation poisoning.11 Such practices elicited no reaction because the Soviets did not allow them to reach the television screens.

How is it a lie to imagine how people would react to certain violent images? Who is denying that the Soviets did in fact murder these thousands and more? Who is denying that they prevented such images from being broadcast? Nobody. But we should consider how we might have reacted if the images in fact had been broadcast. It's bizarre that Bogdanor regards this as a lie.

5.The Lie: “[Regarding] China’s actions in Tibet… it is a bit too simple to say that ‘China did indeed take over a country that did not want to be taken over.’ This is by no means the general view of Western scholarship.”12

The Truth: The Chinese invasion provoked massive popular uprisings. Mao welcomed the Tibetan resistance because it could be crushed by force. State terror and man-made famine had killed up to 500,000 Tibetans by the mid-1960s.13

Once again Chomsky goes on to source that claim and otherwise discuss the complexities of regarding it as expansionist. If Chomsky has been misled by his sources (Ginsburgs and Mathos) this cannot be called a lie.

4 The Lie: “It’s clear, I believe, that the emphasis on the use of terror and violence in China was considerably less than in the Soviet Union and that the success was considerably greater in achieving a just society.”14

The Truth: China’s communists officially stated that they had executed 800,000 in the first few years of their dictatorship; unofficially, they admitted to the massacre of 2 million in just one year. Concentration camps held an estimated 8 million, with 280,000 killed annually. The communists publicly declared that they had persecuted 20-30 million as class enemies in their first decade and that there were 100 million victims of the Cultural Revolution.15

What happened in China was really bad, but a reasonable person might have regarded what happened in the Soviet Union at that point as worse, especially given that Chomsky wrote this in 1971. Strange that this is regarded as a lie.

3-The Lie: “There are many things to object to in any society. But take China, modern China; one also finds many things that are really quite admirable… [In China] a good deal of the collectivization and communization was really based on mass participation and took place after a level of understanding had been reached in the peasantry that led to this next step.”16

The Truth: The communists reduced 550 million peasants to slavery. They forced at least 90
million to work on furnace-building projects alone. When famine resulted, they cut the food ration and used mass terror to stop the peasants eating their own harvest. Victims, including children, were tortured, buried alive, strangled or mutilated.17

I think to pretend that any one society fits neatly into a category of "pure evil" is really kind of infantile. You really aren't going to be able to find any society about which something positive can't be said. If pointing that out makes someone a liar then stating truths is lying. Nobody is disputing that the communists reduced 550 million peasants to slavery and engaged in a myriad of other horrors. Despite that there are obviously going to be SOME positive things that can be said about Chinese society at that time.

Chomsky wrote this in 1971, praising some of the structures that had been developed by that time. Note the reference to "modern" China. What has happened in China since then? Only the most massive reduction in poverty that has ever happened in human history. GDP/person in inflation adjusted dollars was $700 in China in 1971. By 2009 it had increased 10 fold. If you can't say something good about that society you are blind. This does not undo the past and present horrors, which are real and are acknowledged by Chomsky. But you can still draw lessons from their society.

2-The Lie: “Also relevant is the history of collectivization in China, which, as compared with the Soviet Union, shows a much higher reliance on persuasion and mutual aid than on force and terror, and appears to have been more successful.”18

The Truth: Its culmination was the Great Leap Forward, the worst man-made catastrophe in history, in which 30 million died.19

I think it's worth looking at the full quote here. After the word "successful" we get this: "See Thomas P. Bernstein, "Leadership and Mass Mobilization in the Soviet and Chinese Collectivization Campaigns of 1929-30 and 1955-56: A Comparison," China Quarterly, No. 31 (July-September 1967), pp. 1-47, for some interesting and suggestive comments and analysis."

So what is Chomsky saying? Collectivization in China was more successful than in the Soviet Union and likewise China was more reliant on persuasion and mutual aid. Does this mean that Chinese policies didn't induce massive famines or massive purges as well? No. Does Bogdanor present any reason for concluding that Chomsky's assessment is wrong? Once again no. He cites his source, which presumably would back his claim. If his source is wrong or if he's misused it, go out and prove it. To just respond to every non-nefarious observation about China with "But so many in China died" is beside the point.

I frankly don't see a single lie here. Bogdanor would think Chomsky is wrong on some of these points. I wouldn't agree with him. But how are these lies?

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

A Book Recommendation

I just read Hubris, by Michael Isikoff and David Corn. It details the history of the selling of the war in Iraq, the subsequent efforts to search for WMD in Iraq, and the Wilson/Plame affair. It was really a page turner for me as it brought to mind so many of the arguments that I found compelling at the time related to WMD intelligence and how the back story showed that the presentation was misleading.

Apparently prior to 9-11 lots of people within the Bush administration, including Paul Wolfowitz and Richard Perle, were absolutely enamored with this book by a gal named Laurie Mylroie, which details a kind of bizarre (and now totally discredited) conspiracy theory related to Saddam Hussein and his involvement in violence throughout the world. Supposedly Saddam is the center of Islamic terrorism. Wolfowitz seems to have had the book virtually memorized. He'd buy copies and hand them out to his staffers. With this as a back drop and in the wake of 9-11 Saddam was on the agenda and the White House wanted intelligence showing links to Al Qaeda, evidence of weapons programs, etc. The links were a foregone conclusion, largely due to Mylroie. All that remained was filling it in with the evidence.

But the evidence wasn't there. What to do? Do what was done in the 80's when you need a scary picture but the CIA won't give it to you. Create another Team B. The same people involved in creating Team B are in the Bush administration. The analysts aren't seeing how Iraq and Al Qaeda are linked, how Saddam is responsible for other terrorism throughout the world (as conspiracy theorist Laurie Mylroie can see). So once again Rumsfeld and company wanted to get their fingers on the raw intelligence so they could draw their own conclusions. This is what they did. Dismissing the CIA's findings they concocted their own complex relationship theories. What do you know? Saddam is really scary and should be overthrown violently.

The CIA and FBI were resistive. We don't really know that Atta met an Iraqi official in Prague. We don't really know about other supposed meetings either. But for people like Wolfowitz it was possible that they had met. After all the FBI can't account for Atta's whereabouts for one day in April. Maybe during that time he hopped a quick flight to Prague and then returned. I mean, it's possible. This was the kind of thinking that was driving the intelligence presentation. You can't rule it out, right? So that means we should assume it happened.

The picture that emerges is not one of the White House actually pressuring CIA analysts or others to give faulty data. It's more that they really believed Saddam was the locus of world wide terror. When they'd hear things from the CIA that fit that presentation it just resonated for them. When they heard things that contradicted it somehow it just didn't register.

Take the aluminum tubes. We were told that these were to be used as part of Saddam's nuclear program. In the opinion of the technical experts this wasn't true. They weren't sized properly for centrifuges. They couldn't withstand the forces required in a centrifuge. But a few elements within the CIA believed the technical experts were wrong. The White House just didn't hear the dissents.

Take the mobile biological weapons vans. Claims that Saddam had these were based on testimony from a guy referred to as "Curveball". He had been interviewed by German intelligence. He was believed by the Germans to be completely unreliable. He was likewise widely believed within the CIA to be a fraud and a drunk. The CIA repeatedly corrected the record. Somehow claims of these vans continued to be asserted by top White House officials, to the exasperation of the intelligence community. They ultimately ended up in Collin Powell's speech before the UN. Curveball would later admit that he lied and also claim that he watched in shock as his allegations were used to justify the war.

Ahmed Chalabi, who was judged to be unreliable by the CIA prior to the war, produced one supposed informant after another (including Curveball) that would make frightening claims about what Saddam was up to. One after the other would prove themselves unreliable, whether by failing lie detector tests or in other ways. Meanwhile the CIA would interview their own sources that would repeatedly assert that there was no WMD program in Iraq. These sources passed their lie detector tests. Somehow the White House and many others just couldn't hear them. That didn't fit the Mylroie paradigm.

Then of course we have the transparent fraud that was the Nigerian uranium procurement forgeries. I had said earlier that the the IAEA was able to discover their fraudulent nature after spending a few hours with Google. Likewise Joe Wilson traveled to Niger pro bono on behalf of the CIA and reported that there was no way this deal could have occurred. Still Bush would cite it in his State of the Union address, and Cheney would go on meet the press and say the IAEA was wrong and we believe Saddam has reconstituted his nuclear program.

One thing I take away from this book is this. They really believed this stuff. I don't think they were lying. What I think is that when people have an incentive to reach a certain conclusion, that's just a big part of things.

I was prompted to read it after watching this movie about Wilson and Plame called "Fair Game." The movie depicts Libby and Rove as extremely nefarious people that in a petty move set out to destroy Plame's career simply to get back at Wilson for his criticisms. I didn't quite understand this presentation because my understanding was that the leaker was Richard Armitage, Deputy Secretary of State under Collin Powell, and that the disclosure was not underhanded. Wilson and Plame's suffering was real, but it wasn't due to a sinister plan from Rove and Libby. It was just an unfortunate mistake on the part of Armitage, who happened to be an opponent of the war in Iraq and would have no reason to discredit Wilson. He just was a bit of a gossip and spoke when he shouldn't have. I also didn't quite understand why Libby was even prosecuted given that the leaker was Armitage. I also tended to think the Libby prosecution wasn't really right and Bush's pardon was the right choice. But on the other hand I know not to trust Bush and his neocon pals, so I suspected there was more to it than I knew. I thought this book might explain some of these details, and it did. In fact the presentation in the movie seems pretty close, though it is missing some details.

With regards to Plame, it is true that Robert Novak exposed Plame based on information from Richard Armitage. Novak was able to get Rove to confirm the claim, and he published on that basis. But what I didn't know is that prior to Novak's column Rove and Libby were leaking this information to other sources in a concerted effort to destroy Wilson. Libby leaked it to Judith Miller (now rewarded for her outrageously false journalism that helped lead us to war in Iraq as a paid contributor to Fox News and Newsmax) as well as others, and Rove leaked it to Matt Cooper of Time and others. This was possibly a crime. When the prosecuting attorney questioned Rove and Libby it became clear that Libby had concocted a fake story to absolve himself of any responsibility. It seemed likely that Rove did as well. It turned out it was easier to prove that Libby had lied to the grand jury than it was to prove that Rove had done the same, so he was indicted and convicted. The prosecuting attorney didn't charge anybody for the crime of leaking Plame's identity because under the law it would only be a crime if the leakers knew Plame was a covert operative at the time, and that would have been very difficult to show. Seems to me Libby and Rove should have just admitted to being the source of the leak right away and they would have had no problem. In the end it looks like both of them are just ass holes. Lies to grand juries are also a big deal and Libby should of course serve his time, like normal people do when they are likewise convicted of crimes as serious as that. Bush decided that he wouldn't though. No surprise. Justice is for the weak.

Wednesday, June 8, 2011

Revelations Regarding Haiti Pending

Thanks to Wikileaks a series of articles detailing Washington's actions towards Haiti is pending. This is via The Nation. One interesting nugget is that when Haiti passed a minimum wage increase, going from 26 cents an hour to 61 cents an hour, contractors for American corporations Hanes and Levi-Strauss were furious. The Obama administration responded aggressively and successfully. You get 5 cents and no more. So now it's 31 cents an hour.

The legislation would have cost Hanes a whole $1.6 million/year. That's just too much. They'd have to close up shop. So I suppose Obama's efforts are about being merciful. Meanwhile the CEO of Hanes, Richard Noll, made $10 million last year.

Tuesday, June 7, 2011

Quote Of The Day

I have a six-year-old son. His name is Jin-Gyu. He lives off me, yet is quite capable of making a living. I pay for his lodging, food, education and health care. But millions of children of his age already have jobs. Daniel Defoe, in the 18th century, thought that children could earn a living from the age of four. Moreover, working might do Jin-Gyu's character a world of good. Right now he lives in an economic bubble with no sense of the value of money. He has zero appreciation of the efforts his mother and I make on his behalf, subsidizing this idle existence and cocooning him from harsh reality. He is over-protected and needs to be exposed to competition, so that he can become a more productive person. Thinking about it, the more competition he is exposed to and the sooner this is done, the better it will be for his future development. It will whip him into a mentality that is ready for hard work. I should make him quit school and get a job. Perhaps I could move to a country where child labour is still tolerated, if not legal, to give him more choice in employment.

Ha-Joon Chang - Bad Samaritans: The Myth of Free Trade and the Secret History of Capitalism

Friday, June 3, 2011

Bob Dutko and I Talk Israel and the 1967 Borders

Download here or listen below.

It was a bit of a spur of the moment call, so I didn't spend a lot of time thinking about what I wanted to say and how it would go. So if I could do it again I'd do it a little differently. He wants to argue about whether or not he really thinks the Arab states or the Palestinians would honor a peace agreement. That's a bit speculative, so it kind of devolves to "No they wouldn't, yes they would, etc". If I could do it again I'd say regardless of whether they would honor it the fact remains that our support of them harms us. 9-11 is a consequence. The wars are a consequence and corresponding deficits. The $3 billion annual support harms us. So where is Bob's allegiance and concern? Does he want what's best for the US or Israel.

But again, I'm happy to have called in because I figure his listeners are still getting some fresh perspective.

Useful Graphic on Unemployment

You can view it from 1948 to today by month here.

Wednesday, June 1, 2011

The Fiscally Responsible

New Jersey Governor Chris Christie is very fiscally responsible. To balance the state budget he's been slashing public school funding, working to cut compensation to teachers, police, and firefighters. The usual stuff.

Cost cutting is for the poor only of course. He went to his son's baseball game the other day and arrived in a new $12.5 million helicopter. Normal people would walk the 100 yard distance from the helicopter to the stands. But walking is for the rabble. Christie had a limo waiting near the landing to drive him. He sat in the stands flanked by his security detail. When he left he got back in his limo for the 100 yard drive to the helicopter and off he went.

The fiscally irresponsible might be someone like Governor Jerry Brown in California. He also has a state budget crisis to deal with, but he's less prone to solving it on the backs of the poor. He had to get from Sacramento to Los Angeles for his first trip as Governor. So he drove himself to the airport and bought a coach ticket with Southwest. He didn't feel like paying the extra $16 for "business select" seating. He sat in the back with the rabble. Not only did he do it without an entourage. He didn't have a single companion.

Maybe the thinking is that Christie's extravagant expenditures will trickle down.