2 Cents Worth On Life Its Ownself

Just as it is harvest time throughout the land it is time to glean the jewels of wisdom or folly from the sage for the ages.  Our prices can’t be beat.  A nod to Blackie and away we go.

Do you sometimes feel like the economy resembles a spinning top that is slowing down and the more it slows the greater the wobbles become?  The swings and gyrations seem more extreme with the markets reacting to “news” of the day even when it doesn’t really appear that significant upon reflection.

As you watch the legal challenge to the Obamacare law in Virginia you should first recall that the Constitution is a contract between the people and the government.  To require an action on the part of anyone and everyone for doing nothing other than existing is a leap into a great unknown.  The mandate that you must have health insurance is a step beyond the bounds of the document.  If one believes that is authorized under the “general welfare” clause of Art. One, Sec. Eight, then there is no limit to what the Federal government can require and the other protections of the Bill of Rights are without meaning or force.  Now the Federal argument is that it is a tax despite the Congressional record and statements of the guy in the White House that it was not a tax.  Umm, politics as usual it seems, gotcha!

It seems we should first determine whether or not we really care what kind of government, if any, the Afghans have.  Perhaps some permanent bases scattered around the country to monitor the activity of terrorists groups would be sufficient for our security needs.  I would posit that the majority of Americans don’t care one way or the other what the Afghans do within their borders.  Sadly, that probably would mean a return to a barbaric Taliban rule but the people there are ultimately responsible for their government as are all people around the world.

I hate it that politicians of all stripes condescend to the American people about Social Security.  I see the Dems have “pledged” to not allow any change in benefits.  How stupid do they think we are?  Maybe we don’t want to know the answer to that.  Anyway, there has to be a change or there won’t be enough money there to go around and what good will “full” benefits do anyone?  We have to raise the retirement age a couple of years.  Most Americans can do basic math and we are not so  weak to cringe before the truth of those facts.  Come on, guys, get with it and do the fix.  The age of those to be affected can be low, like in their 40’s so that they have years to adjust to the changes.  The older folks and already retired won’t have any change.

Where is Bob Hope when we need him?  I would relish those barbs he could sling out glibly on the political issues of the day.  He would have so much fodder for his monologue, the hard part would be choosing the best target.

Do the State and Federal budgets exist to support government for the citizens or for the support and maintenance of the public employee unions?  That is the questions asked by McGurn of the WSJ and it is a good one.  Note the vote coming up for a state income tax in Washington State.  The unions are the ones funding the initiative.  When we see that the cost of the average federal employee including benefits if over 100k a year it sure makes one wonder.  Heck, why try to get an MBA when you can get your kids to land a government job and live off the largesse of the land without ever having to work very hard and no chance of being fired.

Does any modern writer have greater command of the English language than John Fowles?  If you doubt that then read “The French Lieutenant’s Woman”.

The French have always been considered the most rational and sophisticated of people, yet they protest the retirement age being raised to the astonishing age of 62!   Such actions would lead one to believe they have more faith in the Easter Bunny than they do math. 

Is the Fed helping or hurting our economy?  Devaluing the dollar will certainly hurt us all in the long run as the costs of everything you buy will go up.  They’ve already printed an extra trillion plus in the last 24 months and are ready to embark on another round of as yet unknown proportions.  I do wish it was more independent of Washington regardless of the party in charge at any moment and for that it needs more non-political appointees on its board of governors and the FOMC–people not dependent on political favor for their station or status or remuneration.

It doesn ‘t get much better than standing at the top of a mountain on your skis on a crisp, clear winter morn looking out over the mountain range and seeing the peaks jagged against the horizon and a gentle long slope in front of you.  Then it gets better with a mom and the kids crisscrossing the run right before you.   That can be fun and inspiration at its best.

On the camp out there is nothing more useful than  the Dutch oven.  You can boil coffee in it, bake biscuits, fry bacon, cook a pot roast or do up a mess of beans.  Well, there is toilet paper too, it comes in handy on occasion.

“Where men cannot freely convey their thoughts to one another, no other liberty is secure”  W. Hocking.  Reminds one of the current trial of the Dutch politician for expressing his views on Muslim immigration.

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Filed under business, Economics, government, Politics

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