Well, the Holidays are done and the extra pounds need work and the time off is a memory, back to the grind and does the daily news ever make it a grind….
Ever wonder where the expression about being a scapegoat originated? Well, learn it here. In Leviticus when God was giving His statutes to Moses and Aaron about the sacrifices to be made to Him and their purpose for the people of Israel there was an example of goats to be sacrificed. One goat was selected for a sin offering and used for that end. However another goat, the scapegoat, was selected as an atonement sacrifice for the sins of others. That goat did nothing wrong whatsoever but was killed and placed on the altar for what others did wrong. That expression has become part of our vernacular and is used when some poor soul is picked out to take the fall or blame for the wrongdoing of others. The politicians in Washington are particularly adept at finding scapegoats for their own shortcomings. Shakespeare and the Bible are the two greatest sources of our adages and Shakespeare liberally used those from the Bible.
Some pundits and others are complaining loudly about the possibility that AIG might sue the government over the bailout takeover of that company and its management under government control. We wrote here months ago that such a suit might be likely. You might want to recall that the takeover of the company was a complete violation of the 5th Amendment and there never was even a token acknowledgement of following established corporate law. The shareholders never had a voice in what was to happen to their investment. It was simply confiscated by the Feds. Full, disclosure, I had litigation with AIG several years ago and don’t even like the company or its management but I do have a regard for the rule of law as opposed to rule by edict of the anointed ones. AIG could have filed a Chapter 11 and reorganized itself and paid all its debts and retained value for its shareholders but it and the shareholders were denied that opportunity by the Feds. Many thoughtful legal scholars agree they have a solid case to make. Here’s hoping they do sue and win big time. They didn’t go begging the Feds to give them money and AIG had assets of substantial value as events have proved. Are we a country of laws or dictators?
We also wrote some time back about the crazy notion of the Trillion dollar platinum coin to be minted by the Treasury and used to “pay” a trillion dollars of debt to the Federal Reserve. Viola, we reduce the national debt by a trillion dollars. You may have now noticed that several Democratic Congressmen are actually promoting such a proposal to avoid the argument over raising the debt limit beyond its already staggering 16.4 trillion dollars so even more spending and debt can occur. Remember that the demand for US notes is manipulated and phoney at this time due to the fact that the Federal Reserve is currently buying 75% of all the new debt issued by the Treasury. Others in the Democratic Party are beginning to push the idea of simply writing off some of the Treasuries owed to the Federal Reserve. Either idea is horrific. It will cause an immediate and steep decline in the stability and confidence in the US dollar. Even Joe Six Pack at that point would begin to question exactly what is the dollar worth if legitimate debt could be wiped out with a minted coin deemed by the Treasury to be worth one trillion. The international community would be apoplectic and demand hugely higher rates to lend us money or worse what if they decided to pull the same trick and pay their obligations to the US and US companies with minted coins they deem worth a designated amount? Its like someone who has maxed out their credit card and then just manufacture their own credit card in their basement and expect all their creditors to accept their self-created credit card as having real value. How did all these people escape from the institution at the same time?
Would the appointment of Chuck Hagel as Secretary of Defense make Israel more or less likely to strike Iran on its own?
In spite of what Democratic spokesmen may scream the full faith and credit of the US would not be jeopardized if the debt ceiling was not raised. The phrase refers specifically to the Treasury notes issued by the Feds. That is the “credit” of the US; by the way that credit and credit worthiness belongs to us, the people, no the politicians. It is our credit being used. All the other payments made by the Feds is just statutes and those could be met too. The Feds will still be collecting billions of dollars ever month to pay bills and specifically the interest and principal on the Treasury notes. The employees at Commerce, EPA or HUD or those zillion other departments and agencies are not guaranteed a job, although it is true you can’t hardly fire them even for incompetence. So what if Planned Parenthood and gobs of other organizations don’t get their monthly dole from the Feds? The money is there for defense and the three big social programs–Social Security, Medicare and Medicaid. If the debt is raised there should be cuts real cuts for each dollar it is raised. And we don’t mean those “baseline” projected growth cuts but an actual reduction in budgetary expenditures year over year.
Our tides are affected by both the Moon and the Sun. The Moon moves the oceans and seas by about a foot and the Sun by about half that. Even though the Sun is enormous it is 93 million miles away whereas the Moon is literally right on our doorstep figuratively speaking. The full Moon and the new Moon produce the high tides and the half Moon creates those small neap tides.
Sherman famously said that War is Hell but a worse Hell is subjugation to a central dictatorial authority. http://www.olcranky.wordpress.com