Friday, March 27, 2009

Insanity reigns. Digging the deficit hole....

From The USA Today's Editorial: Huge Deficits Unsustainable.

"President Obama cannot keep from mentioning (every chance he gets) that he “inherited a trillion dollar deficit” – and then has the audacity to propose increasing the deficit four times over.

Now, that’s insane!"

Thursday, March 26, 2009

I may be wrong about Comm-1:

If the practical understanding and use of language is limited to texting, then I am wrong about the state of public education, we don't need no stinkin' reassessment, and we have reached our zenith.

Wednesday, March 25, 2009

Local Cop emulates a classic Barney bit....

Lancaster's latest Barney Fife episode:

Monday, my brother was riding his motorcycle through the street that goes from 188 to Main Street beside Kroger East and the Hospital parking garage. As usual, and as ALL motorcyclists do when they can (Everyone who rides any kind of two-wheel vehicle avoids speed bumps when they can.), he avoided the speed bumps, coasting around them at less than 10mph. He does not believe that he swerved far enough to be considered outside of the lane -- those speed bumps - as most speed bumps - do not extend to the edgelines of the lane, and most of that road has no edge lines.

As he passed through the Kroger parking lot, he thought he heard someone yelling, but because he was wearing a helmet, he couldn't tell where it was coming from. He proceded through the light and into the Dairy Queen parking lot.

As he exited the DQ lot, a cruiser lit him up. The officer then proceded to read him the riot act about avoiding speed bumps.

I looked, and nowhere in the ORC can I find anything about avoiding speed bumps. And that, according to what the officer told him, was the sole reason for the officer pulling my brother over. (My brother has no points, is an AMA member AND volunteer trainer and otherwise model citizen -- unlike me.)

It must be this cop's pet peeve. But I have never heard of a cyclist being warned or ticketed for avoiding a speed bump. Next he'll be ticketing stray cats for jaywalking.

Unfortunately, even though our police are supposed to be "public servants", from the taxpaying public's standpoint there is very little defence against these overreactions and overreaching authority. And the proper response, which is laughing at them, will get you a ticket.

A classic Barney bit.

This brings another question: What are the percentages of "Barneys" to good, intelligent cops?

I have a good friend who teaches English at a local college where there is a sizable program in Law Enforcement. All students are required to test out of or take an introductory (Less than college Freshman level) course in Communication (Reading and writing and basic English). "Comm 1", as it is called, is taught at about a high school sophomore level. In "Comm 1", the Law Enforcement program's students tend to show less than adequate communication skills. My friend expresses concern that many of these future LEOs are not qualified to work in fast food, let alone in a job where they are responsible for any decision making that in any way affects other people.

Back to our "Barney": We would hope that any "weeding out" process by various agencies can catch most of these guys. But unfortunately, that is not happening. The placement figures for graduates of the local college's LEO program is over 80%.

Fills you with confidence, don't it....

Friday, March 20, 2009

Amateur time, again....

Open mouth, insert foot. The Prez confesses to being mentally handicapped. Excellent post from Wheat Among Tares.

The First Lady says she was teased for talking white.

Well, I'll do 'em one or two better: I bowl like I'm "retarded", AND I was born a small Black child.

There, now we all have foot-N-mouth. The difference is that I'm more likely to be castigated for stupid remarks. Well, forgiveness is "divine".

Friday, March 6, 2009

The Big Black Bailout Hole....

Update: This is in reaction to the assumption that by not supporting "The Bailout", we are setting ourselves up for a total manufacturing failure here in the U.S.

Please explain to me how banks failing would affect manufacturing. Keep in mind that manufacturing of products that depend on "buzz" or "marketing" are already at a standstill, as there is no "credit" to be had.

If there is an actual need for something, and there is a way to pay for it (credit is already gone, ask any LLC or PLLC - or any corporation for that matter - operating on a P&L statement line), then things will get made because of actual demand, not an artificial demand - the artificial products that most companies market and depend on people (falsely) needing.

(Guess what? You don't need a new car. Or expensive designer clothes. You need food and water and a place to live.)

We are extending and deepening the damage. The dollar will devalue and businesses that trade in artificials such as derivitive investments will fail anyway, no matter how much worthless, unbacked pieces of paper or electronic blips we throw at them and they absorb. The later they fail, the more they take with them.

My guess is that this has already gone from a two year recession into a 4-5 year depression. Continuing the policies that are being dictated by AIG and Goldman Sachs will turn this into a 7-10 year depression.

To rehash, those businesses operating off of bank loans based on either a P&L statement or inventory will have a tough time of it. Those companies making goods that are needed and those with cash reserves accumulated through good business sense AND making a needed product, will have a much better chance of surviving. Those selling "services" will have a tough time of it, even with reserves.

On the "stimulus package": so far it is a play to pass partisan government programs. Both Emanuel and Clinton have been quoted using the same basic language: "never waste a good crisis". We're getting the bailout just like we got the "Patriot Act". Both were reactionary, the difference is that the P-act can be repealed, but the cost for the bailout is with us always, or at least until the death of the dollar.

Again, our government policy is being dictated by AIG and Goldman Sachs. We are being led down a big black hole BY the big black hole.


Our government is an accurate reflection of the majority of citizens. And those of you who take this post seriously are in the minority.

Simply, there is too much debt and not enough savings.

The big difference between Right Now and the last twenty years or so is this:

In Good Times, people believe what is called "marketing", and a large percentage of them rush out to buy that which is "marketed". In Bad Times, they take a second look at the "marketing" and ask themselves "Is this something I really need?" The worse the times, the less "things" people really need and as economic realities set in the less subjective need becomes.

The idea that people acting sensibly is bad for the economy is the normal BS from the same people who came up with the "derivative investment". (If the majority of our purchased goods were manufactured in the U.S., then it would be different.) We are all learning that acting like it is Bad Times whether the economy is strong or weak is GOOD. If we all act like it is Bad Times all the time in relation to our personal finances, then we all have a better chance to experience financial Good Times all the time.

On lay-offs:

If your company makes a product that looks old, but isn't, and has much less intrinsic value than you charge for it, and really isn't a "one-of-a-kind work of art", is this not bound to happen - and sooner, rather than later? It amazes me that these companies survive for the amount of time that Longaberger has. What surprises me even more is that they expect to thrive when in reality they should die a quick death.

Outside of the short-term "buzz" marketing that succeeds only in Good Times, any company that produces product that nobody really needs cannot stay in the market.

We forget that NEED always trumps a faux created "demand". Don't confuse real demand or NEED, with "marketing". Marketing without good product to back it leaves you dying or dead. If you don't provide something that people NEED to make their lives easier, then you better get out now and get into a business grounded in the reality of need.

Monday, March 2, 2009

Anti-Bailout Tea Parties are a good thing....

One of President Clinton's staff was famously (either mythically or really) quoted, saying: "Yeah, power corrupts, and absolute power is pretty cool...".

The problem facing dissenters is not whether they are "right", or "good" or even focused on a real problem. In a "free" country (so far) the only questions with dissent are legal ones: Are the dissenters harming other citizens in their act of dissent and does government deside that dissent is so politically dangerous to the status quo of society that it must be stomped down?

Who decides legitimacy? Unfortunately, it is the people in control of the government, and very often they are at odds with the concerns/best interests of those citizens in dissent. The penalty for not being "legitimate" can vary. Since we are talking The United States and not Russia, dissenters are more likely to be "investigated" than jailed or killed (so far). But there will probably come a time when that will change.

So legality can't really be allowed to be the issue. Truth is the issue.

Who decides when those in power have gone too far, and when to take true dissent past the point of legality? In this country and at this moment the Democratic Congress is saddling the people with as many big-government programs as can possibly be crammed into what's left of Obama's "political capital".

I'm not certain how much power the 0-man actually has over this Congress. But the cool thing for him, is that he can always blame socialist extremes on the far-left wing of the Democratic Party. It really takes the short-term heat of of him.

This is another argument for a line-item veto, even if it does increase executive powers. It sure would put a lot more pressure on the President to be right about everyhing, or lose the public relations battle.

For those of us who have long been in true opposition to big government and all of the supposedly "legitimate" doings that come with the abomination, we consider the Obama administration as simply the continued growth of the Bush administration, keeping a growing federal government growing ever larger and more incompassing, decreasing state's rights, and as a result, stifling individual freedom and liberty.

These anti-bailout, anti-tax tea parties are a good thing. They keep the problem fresh in the public's mind, as well as draw Uncle's attention and give cover for those who are really serious about change.

We need a national sales/flat-tax combination, and we need to do away with the IRS. If our government keeps screwing us, there will be some sort of revolt, whether for good or bad.

My point is not to continue to rail against Obama, but to make the point that dissent is still "legal", and the definition of legitimacy has two meanings (legality and truth), in this example neither of them pitted against one another, UNTIL government moves on dissenters.

As of right now we are all permitted to put whatever "premium" on whatever opinion we want to -- or this is not a free country. And "credibility" seems to be very subjective. Just look at the views regarding Keynesian economics (voodoo, if there ever was). The real problem is when government starts stifling expression to "preserve society".

True, these particular Republican Tea Partiers are fakers. But there are real Tea Partiers who may yet play their hand, if things go the way I think they will. With the burdans of social programs growing on the taxpayer, there will come a time when there will be a real Tea Party, and then the 0-man will really have the opportunity to act in a disturbingly Lincolnesque way....

Hope and change, baby. Hope and change.