Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Soros, Economic Fallacies, and Education

Democratic super supporter, George Soros, has announced that he wants to take back the field of economics from the free-marketers who have dominated the field in the past. To do this he is putting up $50 Million of his own money (which for him is chump change).

This week Soros is gathering some of the leading practitioners of the market-skeptic school, who were marginalized during the era of "free-market fundamentalism," among them Nobelists Joseph Stiglitz, George Akerlof, Michael Spence, and Sir James Mirrlees. He's also creating an "Institute for New Economic Thinking" to make research grants, convene symposiums, and establish a journal, all in an effort to take back the economics profession from the champions of free-market zealotry who have dominated it for decades, and to correct the failures of decades of market deregulation. Soros hopes matching funds will bring the total endowment up to $200 million. "Economics has failed not only to predict and explain what happened but has also failed to protect society," says Robert Johnson, a former managing director at Soros Fund Management, who will direct the new institute. "That's what the crisis revealed. The paradigm has failed. There is no guidance." From the Newsweek article: Converting the Preachers

My Perspective:

I am continually amazed at the idiocy of the left. Robert Johnson has demonstrated in this single statement that he either has no concept of economics, or has an agenda that is not in line with the reality of economics, so it is economics that must be changed. Just look at what he said: "Economics has failed not only to predict and explain what happened but has also failed to protect society...That's what the crisis revealed. The paradigm has failed. There is no guidance."

This could not be further from the truth. Anyone who has studied economics seriously would have been able to predict all of the current problems we are now facing. Conservatives, libertarians, and free-market believing economists have long said that not only are the many massive government programs unsustainable, but the predicted that government intervention in the market would lead to distortions, a more volatile business cycle, and a worse economy than there otherwise would have been. It is straying from free market principles that got us into this mess in the first place. I have said it time and time again, we do not live in a free society, and we have not had free markets for a long time. Over the last 100 years, regulations, special interests and socialist programs have been burdening down the "free market" system and now it is on the verge of collapse. It has been a long battle, but the marxists are about to win, and if we buy into the left's lies, like those of Johnson, we will see our economy and our freedoms disappear over night.

We must educate ourselves and others about economics. See, the problem is that not many people study economics enough to know what a truly free market is and what the function of liberty is. Don't let the president and his cronies lie any longer. When they talk about our "free market system" and the failure of the markets (implying free markets) they are misusing the term. Our free market didn't fail, our free market just simply did not exist. They have been operating under a semi-free market, burdened by their socialist policies, yet when their idea of economics fails, they say it was the free market, not their policies that caused it. This is ludicrous! And what is even more aggravating is that too many people buy into it. Our government has been spending so much time and money not educating us that now many in the country, especially the younger generations don't know how to think or reason. Our government run schools tell us what to think, and not how to think. Instead of teaching logic at early ages and then allowing competing views into the classroom, which can be debated by reasonable youngsters who have been taught how to think, the schools only allow what they have decided is right into the schools, and that is not education, it's indoctrination. This of course goes both ways, I am not saying that it's only democrats or republicans doing this, but it is happening and if you are honest with yourself you will be able to see or remember examples from your own education.

True Cost: War on Drugs in money and lives.

This is a bit of an addendum to my previous post. These two charts show that not only is drug use not a very large problem in the United States, but the prohibition of such things as drugs or alcohol lead to increases in violence and a de facto decrease in the standard of living and culture.

It is rather startling when one considers the amount of money we waste to curtail the use of drugs (mainly marijuana, which is the safest of all drugs, including alcohol and tobacco) and in the process we increase crime rates. Shouldn't we instead look for a policy that allows people to make their own decisions as long as they do not infringe on anyone else's liberties. We could save over $16 Billion a year and also tax the drugs once they are legalized to add to our revenue. Instead we put our country's wealth into a system of policies that acts like a sieve. We are paying for our own destruction.

currently (Oct. 28, 2009 at 4:37 PM), according to the War on Drugs Clock, we are spending $16,572,169,584 on the drug war and that number increases by about $600 a second
Check out the War on Drugs Clock Here.

Is The Government Really Protecting Us?

Annual Causes of Death in the United States

I find looking at this information very interesting. There are many topics that one could discuss based on these facts alone, but I would like to focus on one in particular: something I shall call the "Death Trade Deficit."

According to these numbers 17,000 people die every year in the United States due to illicit drug use. Of course this must be further clarified:
"In 2006, a total of 38,396 persons died of drug-induced causes in the United States (Tables 21 and 22). This category includes not only deaths from dependent and nondependent use of legal or illegal drugs, but also poisoning from medically prescribed and other drugs. It excludes unintentional injuries, homicides, and other causes indirectlyrelated to drug use, as well as newborn deaths due to the mother’s drug use."
Heron MP, Hoyert DL, Murphy SL, Xu JQ, Kochanek KD, Tejada-Vera B. Deaths: Final data for 2006. National vital statistics reports; vol 57 no 14. Hyattsville, MD: National Center for Health Statistics. 2009, p, 11.

So, even this number is a drastic over-representation of the dangers of illegal drugs such as cocaine and heroin. I would also like to point out that tobacco and alcohol are the number 1 and 3 killers respectively, yet they are not only legal, but celebrated by those who seek to keep other drugs illegal. The most intriguing thing about the United States Drug Policy is its willingness to look the other way when legal American products are causing so much more death and pain. This leads me to my next point and the Death Trade Deficit between Columbia and the United States.

Columbia is known for its production and distribution of cocaine or "Columbian bam-bam." This drug is demonized and the Columbian drug lords are seen as America Killers. Of course cocaine is not a good thing to put in your body, but neither is fast food, tobacco, alcohol, and others (and they are the top 3 killers mind you). However Cocaine is nowhere near as deadly as those things that we as Americans embrace. In fact, more people die in Columbia from our drug lords (RJ Renyolds and the like) than Americans from the Pablo's of the world.

"At 46 million people, Colombia is one of the largest countries in Latin America to enact a comprehensive tobacco control law. About 25,000 people in Colombia die each year due to tobacco-related illness." Source.

Compare the numbers and you will see that even the inflated number of 17,000 who die each year in the United States from all illict drugs (that means not just the cocaine that is imported to the states) is still 8,000 less than the 25,000 people who die every year in Columbia from our largest drug export: Tobacco. This means that the Columbians really have more reason to be mad at us then we have to be angry at them. They are running a trade deficit when it comes to death. We export at least 25,000 deaths to Columbia (this of course assumes that they are only using American made tobacco products, but I am also assuming that we are only using Columbian cocaine) so that means that the Columbians are importing more death then they are exporting.

This is just one more point that makes the War on Drugs look even more ridiculous. Not to mention how many more deaths the War on Drugs causes because of the nature of an illegal or black market. American officials use violent force, coercion, and untold amounts of money to get rid of this "scourge." Yet, drugs are the least of our worries statistically, and thousands die every year because of the ramifications of our policies both in increased crime due to the black market and in direct confrontation with police and DEA forces.

As a side note, I would like to also point out the last item on the list above. In its thousands of years in existence and use, there has never been a documented case of death caused by Marijuana alone. Sadly, the same cannot be said of Tobacco, Alcohol or even Aspirin.

(1996): "Each year, use of NSAIDs (Non-Steroidal Anti-Inflammatory Drugs) accounts for an estimated 7,600 deaths and 76,000 hospitalizations in the United States." (NSAIDs include aspirin, ibuprofen, naproxen, diclofenac, ketoprofen, and tiaprofenic acid.)

Robyn Tamblyn, PhD; Laeora Berkson, MD, MHPE, FRCPC; W. Dale Jauphinee, MD, FRCPC; David Gayton, MD, PhD, FRCPC; Roland Grad, MD, MSc; Allen Huang, MD, FRCPC; Lisa Isaac, PhD; Peter McLeod, MD, FRCPC; and Linda Snell, MD, MHPE, FRCPC, "Unnecessary Prescribing of NSAIDs and the Management of NSAID-Related Gastropathy in Medical Practice," Annals of Internal Medicine (Washington, DC: American College of Physicians, 1997), September 15, 1997, 127:429-438, from the web at, last accessed Feb. 14, 2001, citing Fries, JF, "Assessing and understanding patient risk," Scandinavian Journal of Rheumatology Supplement, 1992;92:21-4

These are all points that should be at the forefront of the debate. Is America really doing its citizens and the world a service by punishing people for using a substance that causes no documented physical harm (other than those attributed to the act of smoking in general). It is a great injustice that adults are not treated as such. In a free society, people should be able to choose for themselves what they want to put inside their bodies. This also means they can choose what not to put in their bodies. Most people don't use illicit drugs and if they were legalized that would not change much because people have already made the decision. Ask yourself this question: If heroin or cocaine were legalized tomorrow, would you use them? For probably about 99% of those responding to this question, the answer would be no (only 1.5% of Americans have ever used heroin (2005)). Why? because legality is a small part of the equation. Everyone does illegal things whether it's speeding or not reporting that 20 dollars you made in the (illegal) office fantasy football bet. Yet, most of these law breakers have decided to not use illegal drugs, not because they are illegal, but because they don't desire them.

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Nanny State = Tyranny

"The Obama administration plans to order companies that received the most money from the Wall Street bailout to cut pay to top executives, a government source told Fox Business Network.

Under the plan, the seven companies that received the most government aid will have to cut annual salaries by about 90 percent from last year for the 25 highest-paid executives."

The entire article can be located Here.

My Perspective:

This is always the case with government. When you allow the government to come in and help you by providing money or a service (which is money in a different form) for you, you essentially allow the government to usurp liberties from you as well. The case of the mandatory pay cuts is just one example, and it actually does make logical sense. Unfortunately this is a dangerous road that is covered with good intentions but leads straight to tyranny.

Here is the logic:
When the government aides you in some way they are acting as a provider. As in the case of a family, the provider makes the rules and those who wish to benefit from the provider must obey the rules. This is why a family is essentially a dictatorship. Although I believe in liberty and individualism, they are both incongruous with a family structure. Why? because the parents are the providers. The children can't do much on their own, and definitely can't live on their own, so they are bound to the parents and are essentially at their command. This is why a parent can order their child to do chores, go to bed, eat healthy, etc. It is because the parents have a vested interest in their money and will set rules on how it is to be spent.

I'm sure we all remember being young and asking for a few dollars to go get something at the corner store. What usually happened? Well, your mom or dad would either agree or not agree to the request. If they did agree to give you money, they usually set some rules like no junk food, only 1 soda a day, or you have to buy your sister something. The rules are seemingly endless.

Well in the case of the Nanny State, this example applies directly. It should be rather obvious because it's in the name "Nanny" but most people don't realize the ramifications of those statist policies. Much like the Wall Street CEOs are finding out now, once you sell your soul to the devil, he owns you.

Do you think Universal Healthcare will be any different? Right now our government tries to tell us what to do in matters it should have no say. We can't smoke, can't eat trans fats, tax tobacco, sugary drinks, limit the number of fast food restaurants in a certain location...I mean the list is really endless. And if you think that is bad, Universal Healthcare will make it worse because it will legitimize those actions.

As of now, the government holds no legitimate claim to what we do with our own bodies. As long as our lifestyles do not infringe on others liberties, the government truly has no legitimate claim to order us otherwise. But, if we allow the government to supply us with healthcare, that will essentially be state ownership of you. Since almost everything you do in life can effect your health or well being -- and of course the government will define what is the right well being (just like parents do) -- the government will have a legitimate claim to control any part of your life that they deem influential to you health. And how do they justify telling you what to do? They do it by you allowing them to, by forfeiting your liberties for the ease of government healthcare (never mind that it will make health care worse).

see the difference is that without government intervention in healthcare like now (and that's only partially true) they have no legitimate claim to you. You cannot make a logical argument for government control of you. But once you give them the duty of providing for you, you give them the basis for which to make that logical argument. Just like a child is the subject of its parents, you will be the subject of your government. And just like a family, which as we all know "is a dictatorship, not a democracy," you will be told what to do by a stand in for mommy, the Nanny State.

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Quote of the Day: Madison

I would like to start a quote of the day. I hope I keep up with this and I would like to focus on the views of our founding fathers and other great thinkers.

"As long as the reason of man continues fallible, and he is at liberty to exercise it, different opinions will be formed." - James Madison

My Perspective:

This simple statement shows the function of liberty in a society. It is true that some people in a free society will make bad decisions and may use illogical reasoning to justify their act. But as long as we are truly free to exercise ourselves and free to watch others and see what works, we will come to newer and better conclusions without the need for an oppressive and authoritarian government.

Maher: still arrogant, still wrong.

My Perspective:

Bill Maher finally gets one thing right, but misses the actual point he is trying to argue. He is the biggest hypocrite and most arrogant ass ever given a TV show. I can't believe he can say the things he does, like the debate is not over, this isn't settled science, and then follow that up with..."like global warming."

Here are just some of his quotes:

"Western medicine likes to cut off debate"
"The science is not settled"
"This is not settled science like global warming, and that's what they're trying to say. that it's as crazy as fighting global warming or evolution."

He just got done railing against the establishment and western medicine and how they have been wrong in the past when people just accepted what they and the government said as fact. Now he thinks we should look into it and he doesn't want to be criticized for it, because after all this is a free country and science is about debate...but wait, that isn't his reasoning. His reasoning is not that medicine and governments can be wrong, so we should be allowed to voice criticism and have debate even on issues most people agree on (of which global warming is not one). He just wants to be right and allowed to speak his mind. Anything he thinks is not settled should be debated, because he probably doesn't agree with the establishment, but if he thinks it is settled than no need for more debate because Bill Maher is so smart, if he agrees with the consensus then there is no way it can be wrong.

If he was really trying to make a logically coherent argument based around freedom, he would concede that he was wrong to shout down debate over climate change. He should go on his show and declare:

"You know, I've been getting a lot of heat about this whole vaccination thing. I really don't think that we should just blindly put things into our body, and I do believe we should have a choice in the matter. Furthermore, I think we need to talk about this openly and for as long as it takes until my mind and the minds of others are set at ease. It is obvious that this is not settled if so many people are crying out against it. Even if they are wrong, they have a right to speak and they should not be shouted down. I would like to also take this time to extend my apologies to those who deny anthropogenic climate change. After this experience I understand what it is like to try to get answers when everyone just looks at you like you are an idiot and gives you the silent treatment. It not only makes it difficult to have an honest discussion, but it makes many people feel like they don't matter when it really is the people who matter most. Not some medical association or some government body, even if it's one I agree with. So even though I still think that we are causing the climate crisis, I will be open to hosting debate on the issue. I mean hey, If my side is so right, then it should be an easy debate to win right?"

That's what a real man would do. That is what someone who believes in liberty, free speech, and the power of the people would do. But as of now, Bill Maher is just to full of himself to see the logical conclusion of his argument. This man thinks that he has disproved religion and solved the political problems of the world all while have an abject sense of humor. I hope he comes around, but one thing that I would love to do is debate him. However, I don't know if he would give me the chance.

How do these people get in the White House?

My Perspective:

The free market is "nonsense?" Obviously this man (Ron Bloom, Obama's manufacturing Czar) has no idea of what he is talking about. He says "free market" and then goes on to describe socialism. George Orwell would be proud. I can't believe that so many people in our government are so inept. I really don't believe that all of them or even most of them have some big hidden agenda. I think most just have no idea what they are talking about.

My favorite part is when Mr. Bloom says that the whole point of the free market is to game it or beat it. This quote just shows that this Bloom has no concept of economics. "...Or at least find someone that will pay you a lot of money, because they're convinced that there is a free lunch."

What? No we aren't. Anyone who believes in a free market will tell you that there is no free lunch. This man is an idiot. I think he just heard a bunch of phrases while at college (I'm assuming he went to college) and lumped them all together so he sounded like he knew what he was talking about. I feel like he is just reading random phrases out of an Econ 101 textbook. I don't even think Bloom had a economically coherent thought in that entire clip.

A free lunch is exactly what Bloom and his big government friends are trying to create, and as everyone knows, even Bloom, there is no such thing as a free lunch. And that point is never truer than in a free market. Government is the only way to get a "free lunch," and even then it only appears to be free. Government robs peter to pay paul, but paul doesn't know peter or care because he got something he didn't have to work for. That is as close to a free lunch as anyone will find on this earth. Oh, and if you've ever noticed anything about free lunches, they always taste bad.

Free markets reward hard work and virtue and that is not nonsense.

U.S. Sovereignty? what's that?

My Perspective:
This is beyond scary. This is the biggest issue facing our country at this point. We must focus on this issue and stop our president from signing away our sovereignty. Climate Change is a lie, and the tool the elite of the world will use to create the most oppressive government the world has ever seen. This will be the end of our country as we know it.

If you lump together all of the proposed policies of this new administration, the outcome is beyond dangerous:
Climate change, Universal Healthcare, Stimulus plans, Trillions in debt, Tax hikes, VAT, Weak foreign policy, ban on drilling, and more...

Any of these policies alone would cripple our economy even further. yet, all of them together will not only destroy our economy and republic, but our liberty as well. This is something that must be stopped and we must be vigilant.

Liberty: the only unanswerable argument

Just thought, with the recent news about the changes in Federal drug enforcement policy, that this would be a nice little article on the reason why our new policy still has a long way to go.

Look at the article from the Mises Institute here.

Here is a great quote from the article:
"The only unanswerable argument is the argument from the standpoint of liberty and freedom from government intrusion into one's personal is neither the job of government nor the business of any individual to prohibit, regulate, restrict, or otherwise control what a man desires to eat, drink, smoke, inject, absorb, snort, sniff, inhale, swallow, or otherwise ingest into his body.
Whether drugs are used for medical or recreational use is of no consequence. And neither does it matter whether drug use will increase or decrease. A government with the power to outlaw harmful substances or immoral practices is a government with the power to ban any substance or practice. There should be no such thing as a controlled substance."

Ahhhh, liberty...

Friday, October 16, 2009

Government Healthcare and the Tort Lawyers

My Perspective:

I have a hard time accepting that the government has my best interests in mind when it writes into bills restrictions on how much money my doctor can spend on me, or how many tests the doctor can give me before he faces government penalties. It seems as though the government is pitting the interests of the doctors against the interests of the patients.

Now understanding that, I am very worried about the effect this will have on our doctors because of tort cases. For example, Since my doctor would only be allowed to give me 5 tests to figure out my illness (5 chances) before he faces penalties for doing too much for just little ol' me according to the government (that's a scary statement), he has an interest in giving me as few tests as possible. What does this mean? Well, the less you test, the greater your chances are that you will receive a bad diagnosis. And what happens when people are misdiagnosed because of the doctor not doing all he could? They get sued by tort lawyers.

Since this bill puts a ceiling on the amount of tests that can be given to each person, yet offers no tort reforms or restrictions, doctors are going to be stuck between a rock (the government) and a hard place (the threat of tort lawsuits).

Doctors cannot afford this risk, and since they can't they will not put up with it, and we cannot afford the ramifications of that.

Chomsky thinks the right are Nazis

Noam Chomsky thinks that the right leaning people in this country are akin, albeit loosely, to Nazis. This in interesting because as I seem to recall Nazi stood for National Socialism. It is obvious that the right is definitely against socialism, and that point cannot be refuted. So I ask myself, how does Chomsky draw that conclusion? Well the only answer is obvious bias, and projecting. It is the left in this country that wants Socialism, and the only way to obtain socialism in a free society is to force it on people. Thus, we have fascism. It is clear that fascism was exactly what Hitler used, yet fascism relies on a people who depend upon the government. Why? because it is the only way for fascism to hold power over its people. In a free society, fascism cannot exist, and if fascism really was the desired outcome of the right, then why would they promote policies that support less government, and more liberty.

"The memory that comes to my mind — I don’t want to press the analogy too hard, but I think it’s worth thinking about — is late Weimar Germany. There were people with real grievances, and the Nazis gave them an answer. ‘It’s the fault of the Jews and the Bolsheviks and we’ve got to protect ourselves from them, and that will take care of them.’ And you know what happened…"

So Chomsky likens the religious right's condemnation on homosexual practices and the like to be their attempt at a blame game. But here is where the analogy is not just poor, but completely backwards. The problems facing Germany in the 20's and 30's were financial problems, not moral problems. Hitler blamed the Jews (who are constantly criticized for controlling the world financially) and the Bolsheviks. Yet, if you look at today, who is blaming who for the financial crisis? The rich and successful are being derided in the media and in government and have become the poster children for the dangers of capitalism, when in reality it was government intervention in the markets that caused the financial problems in the first place. Maybe we should rewrite that quote from, "It's the fault of the Jews and the Bolsheviks..." to "It's the fault of the bankers and the businessmen and we've got to protect ourselves from them (read big government), and that will take care of them." "and you know what happened..." yes, Noam, I do. But do you?

oh and as an aside: Chomsky is wrong when he states that we have seen our wages stagnate or decline. The standard of living in America has gone up over the past 100 years and is still going up. If we measure our wages in Time spent per number of items bought, we would see amazing increases in our wages. Refer to and it's piece on Living Large. I also believe I posted it on here a while back, so search the archives.

Thursday, October 15, 2009

The truth about Obamacare

My Perspective:
What truth. Sure "Death Panels" are not explicitly written into the bill,
because no one would vote for that. Unfortunately if 2 separate entities
have the same traits then they are the same even if one has a
euphemistically worse title.

It's simple logic really. The transitive property. if A = B and B = C, then A = C. Simple as that

Who didn't see this coming?

A Follow up to yesterday's post...

My Perspective:

Now, CEO John Mackey is coming under intense fire from union workers and liberals alike. Since Mackey has obviously come up with some fantastic ideas to fix health care in his Wall Street Journal column, the left is now seeking to silence him. How? oh just the usual tactics the left always uses. He is being labeled a racist and a bigot, and the protesters are quick to jump to conclusions about his values and personal beliefs. Funny thing is, not only do they get everything wrong (as you can see in this video), But his ideas about health care and individual empowerment -- read no more group think and group politics, AKA the left loses its power -- have worked well for him and his employees who seem to have it better than most unions. They vote every 3 years on what is in their health care package among other things, and how many union reps or presidents only take 1 dollar a year for salary...because Mackey does.

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

A great story about the benefits of a capitalist system and much much more...

Watch the interview of Whole Food's CEO and co-founder, John Mackey here, the full interview is at the bottom of the page.

My Perspective:

John Mackey is a very smart and very experienced businessman. I believe that his story is the true story of business and capitalism. It is not easy, and businessmen take many risks and hit bottom multiple times before they succeed. They risk the most and do it all the time, and if it wasn't for them taking such massive risks no one would have anything but what they could make themselves. I don't even care about health food and that kind of store, but I may start shopping there now because I like Mackey's business sense. Who knows, maybe I will start eating better.

I'd also like to point out that when Mackey speaks about why more people shop at his store who have a college degree. He says because they are more educated, which I agree is part of the reason, but I think a bigger factor is that since a college degree increases earning potential, people that hold them can afford to shop at Whole Foods more frequently since it is usually a little more expensive than other stores. However, it does offer better quality food most of the time.

Again it's all about choice.

Check out 36:00 into the interview. It is amazing! probably one of the most correct description of what capitalism is and what it runs on in simplistic terms. The true purpose of business comes out and guess's not about making money. Mackey says it well: "Of course a business needs to make money. I need to breath in order to live, or eat in order to live, but that's not why I exist, and it's not why I created Whole Foods Market to make as much money as possible."

and Mackey on the true purpose of business and capitalism:

"Business has the potential to have a deeper purpose. That is key to this...We need to begin to move people away that business is bad because it tries to make money. we need to articulate that every business is creating value for customers in goods and services, it's providing jobs for people, it's providing taxes...and all those are good things that business doesn't get credit for and capitalism doesn't get credit for, we need to articulate that."

The truth about Canada's health care

My Perspective:
We have the best health care in the world. Grant it, not everyone can take advantage of that system to it's fullest extent because they lack the funds, but at least there is a way to increase your accessibility to the more expensive care: Increase the money you are willing to spend. It isn't every day that you have a life threatening illness that needs to be fixed at great cost to you. We spend our money on other things such as new cars and houses that we accept will keep us in debt for 15-30 years. Shouldn't we treat our bodies the same way? If someone needs an operation, and the only way to pay for it is to go into debt, then don't you think it is worth the debt. You can't enjoy your house without your body, or your car, and your body is the only thing that can pay back that debt. Much like buying a house, it is a retirement plan, a way to obtain and store wealth. We go to great lengths as a society to do that, so shouldn't we do the same with the most necessary thing we need to obtain wealth: our bodies.

It seems to me that many people take their bodies and their health for granted. We should all take a look at our priorities and decide, which is really more necessary, a new car, a big house, or a healthy body?

Monday, October 12, 2009

The Economics of Climate Change

My Perspective:

This is a short video on how Climate Change is not driven by CO2. Rather, it is driven by the sun and we have no effect on how hot or cold our planet is. besides the warm times have been the best times for humanity and nature on Earth. The only thing we can do is prepare for the cold that will inevitable come at differing intervals that we cannot change. Shouldn't we use science to help us figure out the cycles of our climate so we can be prepared as a free informed people, and use our own discretion for how we want to behave to prepare for such an event as a cooling trend, instead of having a more powerful and oppressive government come in and force us to curtail our economic behavior and private decisions? And being better informed will help drive innovation--and the success of the economy, which is all of us and our livelihoods--to bring people the things that they need to deal with nature as it exists naturally instead of having government step in and stall our economy by making us act in a way that does not conform to reality?

Just thing about it.

Thursday, October 8, 2009

Why must we apologize?

Why should America apologize to the nations of the world for being America. Sure we have done some bad things, some stupid things, and even some illegal or dare I say evil things. We are not perfect, that is for sure, but do we really need to beg the world to forgive us like Obama has done since his election? America has done far more good than bad in the world, and I would argue has spared the world from prolonged suffering at the cost of the blood of our sons and daughters.

Obama apologized to Germany, France, England, Russia, Venezuela, Cuba, and pretty much every other nation. Lets just take a look at what these countries have done and why they are so much better than us, and why do we need to seek their approval?

Germany...Need I say more? This country has a shorter history than ours, and in that condensed amount of time has managed to send the world into chaos not once but twice. Under the Nazi's, Germany exterminated millions of Jews, killed Christians, homosexuals, and anyone else they thought didn't fit the mold that they in their arrogance created. Yet we look to them for approval? (Did I mention America stopped them?)

France: For centuries the world feared the French, and rightly so. France was the most powerful nation state in the world from the 16th century through the 19th. They marched all over Europe from the time of Louis the XIV till Napoleon. This was no kind country, but a country that wanted all power unto itself. They did not fight to free people but to oppress them and rule them. The French had the most feared military of its day and it took almost every other nation in Europe to keep it from taking power over the entire continent. But that's okay right? I mean they were bad, but not anymore. Plus they are French, so much more classy than us Americans. We need their support and their forgiveness for being better than they are I guess.

England: Well, I guess we will always be second best to our mother country. I mean they have Socialized medicine, and we don't! Oh no! They have a sweet monarchy and we don't. And they have a pretty bad ass accent and well, we sound like bumbling idiots. So I guess we should try to just be like them in every instance. I mean England never did anything bad right? So what if they colonized the world and became the biggest empire the world has ever seen. It doesn't matter that they were the bullies of the world. I mean, it's probably our fault that they had to be dragged into a war with the United States. Americans are just so blood thirsty, we skipped every possible step and went right for the firearms right?

Russia: Sadly coming in a not so distant 3rd to, the empire formally known as, Britain for the largest empire ever (23.7 million km2 as opposed to Britain's 33.67 million km2). This country has gone through many changes over the years, but it's the most recent century that gives me pause. Why would we want to gain the acceptance of a nation that has a history of brutally enslaving its own people. I don't want to be too harsh here, but more people died as a result of communism in the 20th century than all the American wars combined (including who we killed too).

As for Venezuela and Cuba: refer to Russia, add some hispanics, decrease portion size, mix, and repeat. Not to mention that Cuba and its beloved son Che Guevara are responsible for massive murders all under the guise of liberation! Venezuela on the other hand is a newer cat on the scene. Chavez has only recently took power by stealing an election and changing the constitution so he can be El Presidente for life, but wait, there is more to come.

These nations have histories full of ups and downs, good and bad. We don't hate them because of what they did years ago or under the rule of a evil dictator. The Germans are still good people, the French may be snobs but we can get along. The Russians are a bit rough around the edges, but we enjoy the good that they have brought about (mainly their vodka). And even our first sworn enemy, the British, are not so bad after all. My point is, they have their bad side and so does America, but one main thing stands out. If you look at America and what it has done for the world and compare it too other nations, it's no contest.

America has dished out far more good than evil, and we don't even ask to be paid back. We don't want a pat on the back or even an 'ata boy. All we want is to simply be. So Obama, stop accepting gifts from America haters, and don't travel to other nations and lament how horrible we are, because we aren't horrible. You may think so—and if that's the case, what are you doing as our president? – but we don't agree. Let us just be unapologetically American and the world will see our greatness and then they can decide to love us or hate us. If they want to hate us, then fine, we don't need their approval because we know that we stand on the side of liberty and justice, and if another nation declares that they hate us, then we know they also hate our values. Now, do we really want their approval?

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

Defending "Sweat Shops?"

An episode of "Penn and Teller: Bullshit" on Walmart covers some very interesting and intriguing issues. Watch this clip, and if you have time watch the whole episode.

Clip Here

My Perspective:

Companies that outsource their work to third world countries, like walmart does for some of its products, are not exploiting the people of those nations. In fact, those companies are raising the standard of living in those nations.

If you look at the basics of economics, wages are set by what the workers are willing to accept as compensation for their time and labor. If the compensation is not as good as or better than other alternatives, then those workers will seek work elsewhere. Just think of your own experiences. If you were a high school graduate looking for a job and you had opportunities to work at Mcdonald's for 7.15 an hour or being a cashier at Walmart for 10.25 an hour you would obviously pick the Walmart job—unless the work was something you refused to do or was not worth the extra money.

The case is the same in foreigners who work in “sweat shops.” In countries like India or Vietnam, the average wage a worker can receive from a domestic job is usually far less than the wages they can receive from working in a so called “sweat shop.” It seems inhuman to let people work for such a numerically small amount, but when compared to the standard of living of the workers country, they are almost always benefiting from the jobs our companies provide. If that wasn't true, then those workers would simply not apply to work in those locations. Either they leave a worse job for the job at the “sweat shop” or the could not find a job at all except at the “sweat shop.” Either way, they made a free choice to start working and continue working for an American company.

If we were to disallow American companies to outsource their labor to these countries then not only would it hurt the American consumer, but worse, it would also destroy the livelihood of thousands in the third world. These corporations are responsible for raising the base line of human existence in these countries, just as capitalism always does.

It's a simple yet easily missed utility of the free market that a free person would not choose to work a job that would make their situation worse than it already is. American companies must offer those workers a wage and working conditions that are acceptable by the workers they are trying to attract, otherwise they would not have anyone to run their overseas operations. The reason why they can do this is because Americans expect much more than what they are offering, but just because their wages and conditions don't appeal to us, it doesn't hold true that no one would agree to them. Since the same work would cost far more to be completed in America, companies outsource the labor to areas where the expectations are far less and the standard of living is drastically lower. This is smart business and it saves us money and gives the employees a better life.

Affordable Government?

"After political crusades for "affordable housing" ended up ruining the housing market and much of the economy with it, many of the same politicians are now carrying on a crusade for "affordable health care." But what you can afford has absolutely nothing to do with the cost of producing anything. Refusing to pay those costs means that you are just not going to continue getting the same quantity and quality-- regardless of what any politician says or how well he says it...

What is most frightening about the political left is that they seem to have no sense of the tragedy of the human condition. All problems seem to them to be due to other people not being as wise or as noble as they are.

Oliver Wendell Holmes said, "Think things, not words." In words, many see a need for "social justice" to override "the dictates of the market." In reality, what is called "the market" consists of human beings making their own choices at their own cost. What is called "social justice" is government imposition of the notions of third parties, who pay no price for being wrong.

Fidel Castro, Hugo Chavez, Muammar Qaddafi and Vladimir Putin have all praised Barack Obama. When enemies of freedom and democracy praise your president, what are you to think? When you add to this Barack Obama's many previous years of associations and alliances with people who hate America-- Jeremiah Wright, Bill Ayers, Father Pfleger, etc.-- at what point do you stop denying the obvious and start to connect the dots?" ~ Thomas Sowell

My perspective:

The market is justice. The market is a collection of free people making decisions that are best for them according to their wants and desires. When a third party comes in to dictate what decisions can be made, even if their motives are noble (which they rarely are), then that act is itself immoral and not just. As long as the decision is personal and does not imposes on anyone else's freedom without their consent, then there is no reason for a third party, especially government, to come in and distort the market by limiting our freedom to choose.

Affordable Housing is a perfect example of how the markets fail when they are distorted, and how government involvement leads to disaster. The question should not be, should we have affordable healthcare, that answer is easy. Yes we should, and yes we can. We just need to free the market from the chains the government currently has binding it. The question we should ask is can government provide affordable healthcare at all? judging by the large deficits government always runs, I would think that the answer is no, government cannot provide affordable healthcare, and should not try, for it will ruin that market too and put us in the same situation with our healthcare as we are now in with our housing.

Tuesday, October 6, 2009

My Perspective:
When will we stand up to our government and tell them enough is enough? They tell us no smoking, no fatty foods, no sugary soda, we must wear seat belts. They take away our freedoms, and the ability to do whatever we want to our own bodies in the privacy of our own home. The Nanny state tells us that drugs are bad for us so we are forbidden from taking them unless they are the ones prescribed by a doctor, yet they won't allow medical marijuana while at the same time pumping people full of opiates. Can we really accept this kind of control? It shouldn't matter if its prescribed or not, free citizens should be able to put anything inside their bodies' as long as it doesn't hurt anyone else, and we should be allowed to put anything inside our homes too.
The incandescent light bulb was one of the single greatest inventions of all time. It provided the ability for humans to be productive at all hours of the day. It gave us more time and more wealth that without the light bulb would have been unattainable. We should not be told by the government that we must comply or face fines. This is not the Soviet Union!

This reminds me of a scene from the "Hunt for Red October." In the scene capt. Vasili Borodin discusses his dreams of life in America with Captain Ramius:

Watch the Clip Here:

Capt. Vasili Borodin: I will live in Montana. And I will marry a round American woman and raise rabbits, and she will cook them for me. And I will have a pickup truck... maybe even a "recreational vehicle." And drive from state to state. Do they let you do that?
Captain Ramius: I suppose.
Capt. Vasili Borodin: No papers?
Captain Ramius: No papers, state to state.
Capt. Vasili Borodin: Well then, in winter I will live in... Arizona.

What happened? This used to be the dream of every immigrant and defector who came to America. They just wanted to have the freedom to follow their own dreams and pursue happiness. Now we are turning into a state that forces its citizens to live in fear that they will be fined because they are using the wrong light bulb? What has America come to? Where is America?

Obama's Priorities


STEPHANOPOULOS: How about the funding for ACORN?

OBAMA: You know, if — frankly, it’s not really something I’ve followed closely. I didn’t even know that ACORN was getting a whole lot of federal money.

STEPHANOPOULOS: Both the Senate and the House have voted to cut it off.

OBAMA: You know, what I know is, is that what I saw on that video was certainly inappropriate and deserves to be investigated.

STEPHANOPOULOS: So you’re not committing to — to cut off the federal funding?

OBAMA: George, this is not the biggest issue facing the country. It’s not something I’m paying a lot of attention to.

My Perspective:

So Obama does not think that the ACORN matter is worth his attention. It is not the "biggest issue facing the country," so he can't spare a few moments to talk about it or even get briefed on it? Well then President Obama, may I ask you, what is the biggest issue facing the country right now? It certainly isn't the Afgan war, since you haven't devoted any time to solving the issues we face there. Maybe you didn't know we had so many people over there fighting a war. Maybe it's the healthcare "crisis," since you seem to be spending a whole lot of time on TV talking about it. But what could possibly pull you and your wife away for a day. What is so important that you need to "sacrifice" your time in order to help? what could be more important than the ACORN scandals and of course your connections with the organization (oops did I let that slip?). So what is it? oh that's right....The OLYMPICS!! ARE YOU SERIOUS!? You have the gaul to evade sensitive questions by saying that ACORN isn't the biggest issue facing America, and then hop on a plane and lobby the world to bring the Olympic Games to your home city? This is outrageous!

It is obvious that President Obama does not have his priorities in order. He doesn't think ACORN is important because if they are then that means he has to talk about them and his connections and he can't do that. Oh what a tangled web he weaves...

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