Tag Archives: money printing

2 Cents Worth On Life Its Ownself

We will scan the headlines and the back pages today for your edification….

Per the Democrat Elijah Cummings the IRS scandal is all over because a conservative Republican was responsible for all the targeting and the case is solved and over.   He did back off that a bit, but only a bit.  But his original assertion and that of fellow Democrats that everything was contained to those low- level folks in Cincinnati runs into one pretty big contrary fact.  If it is really true that everything was done by those peons in Ohio and actually just the one guy–then riddle me this Batman–why did Lois Lerner feel the need to plead the Fifth during her Congressional testimony?   If that Democratic narrative is true then all the higher level people should have absolutely nothing to fear or hide.

The Nazis in Germany are rightfully vilified for their actions during the War.  One can reasonably wonder though why some of the same moral outrage isn’t directed at their allies during the War.   For example when Germany invaded Russia in June 1941, the Finns quickly joined into the fray as allies with the Germans and attacked toward Leningrad.  They understandably wanted payback for the unpr0voked attack of the Russians in the fall of 1939 into their country.  Indeed the Finnish forces helped complete the encirclement of that city which lasted for over two years and cause the death there of more civilians through starvation than all the losses of both Britain and the US during the entire War.  Likewise many aren’t even aware of the armies supplied to support the German crusade against the Soviets from Hungary, Bulgaria, Romania and the hundreds of thousands of Russians who all gladly joined the Germans to fight against the Commies.  It is always best to know some true history or you will be intellectually trapped into knowing only “headline” history or the headings in the Chapters of your World History book.   That will give you a distorted picture of your world today.

Noticed the report just this last week that in spite of that pathetic photo in Al Gore’s book and movie that there are more Polar  Bears today than in the last 40 years.

The peach crop was pretty meager this year. Don’t know why but the crop does vary from year to year even when the weather and other conditions remain pretty constant.  But the ones we did pick were juicy and delicious as ever.  Let my 10-year old grandsons help me pick them this year.

Always interesting to note that your Federal government can do things that people in the private world would go to jail for doing.  I mean the Fed is literally cornering the market on the US Treasuries buying up 75% of all the new issues for the last couple of years.  At the same time is it manipulating the interest rates for all banks and mortgage companies.  Can you imagine the outcry if JP Morgan was buying up 75% of all US Treasuries?   The Fed is also in clear violation of the Sherman Anti-Trust Act because it is definitely restricting trade in financial markets.

Recall last year when several Democrats floated the idea of simply printing a trillion dollar platinum coin and using it to pay down the national debt.  As predicted here earlier you will see at some point as the debt ceiling debate heats up again that the Fed should simply legally  forgive a trillion or two of the US Treasuries held by the Fed.  Again that would magically reduce the national debt.   We would all have the free lunch and Democrats love those free lunches.  I can’t find any statutory injunction that would prevent such an action.  Forgiveness of debt and a release by a lender is well-established law and could be done.   The Lender doesn’t have to offer any reason for the forgiveness.   Of course that could mean the Fed would have less money to pay over to the Treasury Department and Lord only knows what the domestic and international markets would think of such an action.  It wouldn’t be favorable.  It would be like pulling back the curtain on the Wizard of Oz.

The IRS scandal has caused so many pundits and commentators to make comparisons to the Nixon era and his alleged abuse of government.  He was a tough politician in the same mold as Roosevelt and LBJ, no different.   Some of the comments are so far from the truth it makes me cringe.  I didn’t care for Nixon on many issues such as he embrace of pretty big government but darn these people can’t get any of their facts correct.  Most of them weren’t even around during Watergate and darn sure haven’t done any real research of the facts.  They are simply spewing out the headline story from the era.  I have personally read the Watergate tapes.  Please don’t form any opinions of Watergate until you have read them yourself.  Also I watched every minute of those hearings into Watergate.  The tapes do NOT reveal Nixon ever proposing or demanding anything remotely criminal.  Read them for yourself.  The secret Oval Office taping  went all the way back to Roosevelt and LBJ.  Indeed the system used by Nixon was merely a continuation of that utilized by LBJ.  Yes, Nixon and his cohorts discussed lots of things mostly of a purely political nature to minimize the p0litical damage from the break in.   But unsavory conversation is not criminal.   Nixon was understandably ticked off that the break in had occurred; he was doing well and on his way to re-election and the whole thing was a terrible distraction from what he wanted to concentrate on doing.  This is not an apologia for Nixon but I abhor historical distortion.  You need to know facts to reach your own determination of culpability or moral turpitude.

Which modern American party adheres most closely to the following tenets of K. Marx? 1 Abolition of property in land….2. a heavy progressive or graduated income tax.  3. Abolition of all right of inheritance.   5. centralization of credit in the hands of the state.  6.  centralization of the means of communication and transport in the hands of the state.  http://www.olcranky.wordpress.com

 

 

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2 Cents Worth On Life Its Ownself

Well, you’ve paid the price of admission so we might as well let you in on the thoughts of the day concerning the news of the day…..

You can’t listen or watch any news source without hearing almost daily items about the problem of identity thief and the grief it can cause.  The breaches of security run the gamut from Facebook to the IRS.   Here is a novel idea–how about we go back to a cash society for the payment and settlement of debts?   It wasn’t that many decades ago that cash was the norm for receiving your wages.  The average worker whether in an office, mine or factory floor would get an envelope filled with the cash for their earnings for the week, bi-monthly payment or whatever.   Almost all purchases of any goods or services were paid for with cash on the barrel head.   You say it would be inconvenient for utility bills or other payments.  But the banks and other financial entities would quickly have “ATMs” virtually everywhere for buying money orders very cheaply for payments through the mail.   When you pay cash you don’t have to show ID or anything else.  Yeah, yeah, I know the Gen Xers wouldn’t know how to do it but it would sure solve the identity thief problem overnight.  There is a side benefit also; the Feds wouldn’t be able to track every move you made and every expenditure; your privacy would be much broader.  Think about it.

If you want a preview of a possible outcome to the current discussion about changing our immigration policy watch what happens in Italy over the next couple of months.  They have very restrictive immigration policies in place now and there is a movement by the left leaning parties there to open up citizenship to more immigrants.  Most of the arguments you hear in the US are the same as those being debated in Italy both pro and con.   The north of Italy will be opposed the most and the southern and more impoverished portion will be all for it because they get most of the central government welfare benefits paid for by the northern regions.  Keep an eye on this for your own illumination.

Those of you who stayed awake in your science class know that Polaris, the North Star, is our traditional guide to finding direction since it is a constant in the sky.  You learned that it is not  quite true north but close enough for most practical navigation purposes just like magnetic north is close enough.  But the wobble of the Earth is changing and over the next couple of centuries Polaris will move slightly and it will be just about dead on true north.  Mother Nature is helping us even if we don’t deserve it and even though She could care less.

Well, golly, we are shocked, shocked to learn that the Federal Reserve in its most recent minutes said that it kinda, sorta, sometime, maybe, would have to quit buying all those Treasury notes to fund the US deficits.   Since they are buying almost 80% of all that debt it will mean higher interest rates an even more debt.  That is if Congress and the Lefties don’t ever get the fiscal house in order.   The market is reacting as expected and moving down rather dramatically.  It will hurt lots of investors in the short-term but the sooner we let the real market of millions of people making millions of decisions every day about what to do with their money we will  have a robust economy again.    The Federal government is the worst “business” executive you can imagine when it comes to allocating resources.  Even the manipulators of the Dark Side realize they can’t do this forever.   The Fed has been pulling a curtain to hide the true effects of constant deficit spending for several years now but finally even they realize it is just a curtain and the reality is what is going on behind it.  Like quantum physics, we might not be able to see the action behind the curtain but we can sure see and evaluate the effects of those actions.

The next time you are wowed about some new building, dam, bridge or stadium we have constructed in recent days and wonder how they figured out how to build it you should also be awed by the ability of the ancients to construct great edifices.  The Roman aqueducts are an example.  They brought the badly needed water to Rome.  Often the decline in elevation would only be a couple of feet per mile or even less.  You know that water only moves down hill and so did they.  But if there was anywhere that the trough in the aqueduct where it leveled out or was only ever so slightly uphill the whole project would be worthless and the water wouldn’t move.  They didn’t have GPS or laser surveying equipment to measure heights or elevations.  They used plumb bobs, staffs and measuring chains to do all that work and got it right over a distance of miles and miles.  Now that is a truly incredible feat.   How many of our modern-day civil engineers could do the same work with that equipment?

For those who might think having women in real combat roles in the modern military you should take a bit and read Jake Tapper’s “Outpost” about the fighting in Afghanistan.  There are many other examples of what combat is truly like in the literary world.  But that is one that depicts the most modern version of combat.  Just read it and see what those men had to do to defend themselves, attack the enemy and to aid each other when wounded.  Read and reflect on the reality of those situations.  Women simply aren’t  strong enough to carry (literally) the weight, run fast enough and move ammo and other vital supplies in the quickness of time required by combat.  Yes, maybe a few can but you don’t build and army around the exceptions you build it with what is best at hand.

“My way of joking is to tell the truth.  It’s the funniest joke in the world.” Bernard Shaw.  http://www.olcranky.wordpress.com

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2 Cents Worth On Life Its Ownself

Let’s take a quick turn around the old attic of the mind and clear some cobwebs and peek into those dark corners of memory and reflections on the world of today.

How long did it take you to do that special Halloween decoration the little lady wanted for the front of the house?  Why is they always seem to think you can do these creations in a few minutes and that you  will have fun doing it?   My miserable looking scarecrow took a total of five hours and two trips to Home Depot and one to the drug store and no, I did not have fun.    But it makes them happy and she lied and said how good it looked.   Just think you are only a couple more weeks away from starting on the Thanksgiving lay out and then on to Christmas decorations.

Would you want BO or Biden in a foxhole with you when the bullets were flying?   BO would never fire his weapon and want to negotiate and let the bad guys know how much he loves them in spite of the incoming fire.  Biden, my Lord those shiny teeth would be a dead give away to the enemy, drawing fire like the bees to the hive.   Give me Clint any day.

The Federal Reserve now controls about 20% of our GDP and is buying about 75% of all the new debt issued by the Treasury with freshly printed dollars.   If you read the international news you may have noticed that Bernancke not only has critics at home but the international finance community last week had some pretty harsh criticism of his printing mania and machine.   Some may think he is the smartest guy in the room but do they really believe he is the smartest guy in the world?

In spite of last year’s agreement to increase the national debt limit to a depressing and eye-popping 16.3 trillion we are already within less than two hundred billion of reaching that limit.  It might well happen before year end.  One more headache in addition to the fiscal cliff we are approaching.   The debt limit has been lost somehow in the current political debate.  That is too bad for all of us because we need to know the intentions of the politicos regarding our unsustainable debt.

One must wonder if Alsace and Lorraine in eastern France are still happy to be part of the French nation.  They have floated back and forth over the centuries between German and French control.   Some in the area still speak
German more than French.  Would you rather be living in the German economy or the French?  Well, sometimes you get leadership and nationhood  remorse.   But they can dine well, that is if they can afford it.

A123 battery filed for Chapter 11 this week.  That is another crony renewable outfit that has bit the dust after taking hundreds of millions in grant money from the current administration.  They have all kinds of excuses for why things haven’t worked out.  The bottom line those is success or no.  Does the administration have even one real success story for its renewable energy program of government “investment” and government central planning?  Remember that A123 and Solyndra were celebrated by BO as huge success stories at one time but the congratulations were premature.   Maybe you have noted that people are much more careful and thoughtful when they have their own money at risk rather than playing with other people’s’ money–in this case our money.  The investment was made not by us though but by politicians.    Would you have allowed your 401 or IRA money to have been invested in such ventures?  If the answer is no then why would you tolerate the government doing it?

Democrats often criticize Republicans for spending on defense items.  They reference Reagan’s large increase in defense spending and his SDI program (strategic defense initiative, Star Wars) and that he didn’t fully pay for it.   Well, those decisions of Reagan directly resulted in us finally winning the Cold War and the consequential “peace dividend”.  Clinton benefited from that peace dividend  to the tune of hundreds of billions of dollars in savings and in fact we still are.   The Democrats were vicious in their attacks on Reagan at the time.  Thank God he stood firm.

You will hear regularly that big oil has so many special tax breaks and tax loopholes working in their favor.  What they are talking about is the depletion allowance for oil and gas wells.  It is not really a mystery or hard to understand why they get to take that deduction from income.  If you had a landscaping company and bought a truck for your business you would get to depreciate the value of the truck over a period of years because the value of the truck would decline with age.  It is the same for an oil and gas well.  As you pump the oil or gas out the amount remaining is diminished.  No well last forever, each one has a finite limit.  Just like you with your truck that get to take a deduction for that depletion of the well as it ages.  It is an ordinary business expense like any other.  It is ok if you don’t like the oil companies for whatever reason but don’t argue they get “special” breaks any different from any other company like Apple or Google for all their hardware purchases they depreciate.

The British Meteorological Office recently reported that world temperatures have remained the same for the last 15 years.  There is a very thoughtful and comprehensive article in The Mail from last week you can look up.  You should regardless of your position on global warming.   It is rather long but worth the read.  It doesn’t take a position really but does rely more on actual data for the article rather than so much interpretation.  It also noted as was mentioned here that while the Arctic ice field is reduced at the moment the Antarctic ice fields are at record highs.

Is there any tool more useful and used more than the common pocket knife?  When I was a kid virtually every man carried a small pocket knife.  Not many do today but guess they are carry a Leatherman in the glove box of the car.

“These are the times that try men’s souls.  The summer soldier and the sunshine patriot will, in this crisis, shrink from the service of their country; but he that stands it now deserves the love and thanks of man and woman.”  Thomas Paine, patriot pamphleteer, 1776  http://www.oldcranky.wordpress.com

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2 Cents Worth On Life Its Ownself

If you can stop crying maybe you can see the humor in some of the political manoeuvering of the WH these days.   What are you going to believe? –your own eyes or what the Administration tells you is true?

As long as the current left-leaning Federal Reserve cooperates with the Administration; it will be able to continue running trillion plus deficits.  If it ever stopped buying the Treasury bills and notes to fund the ever-growing debt the Administration would face real difficulties running so far in the red.  Who else around the world would buy those Treasuries to fund the Federal budget?  At least who would do so at today’s ridiculously low rates? 

Reminds me of the fellow who wanted to make a small loan from the local bank and the banker wanted to see his balance sheet and income and expense statement to determine if he would be able to repay the borrowed money.  Even though his balance sheet was in the red and his income showed he couldn’t even pay his current expenses much less service the new loand he told the banker not to worry.  The fellow told the banker that he had his right pocket write a note to his left pocket and that those notes would serve as great collateral.

Heard an interview with another guy who is propsoing that we go to a cashless society because it would save money and be fairer to everyone and especially the poor.  Well, it might save the cost of fabricating and distributing the currency but not sure how much we would like that.  He argues that criminals and drug dealers and other such menances to society are the only ones who benefit from cash.  Well, another example of big government thinking.  The main thing he totally overlooks is the right to privacy.  The examples of such intrusion into your private life are as big and broad as your own imagination.   Take a 70 year-old fellow going to the drug store to buy viagra or hemorhoid salve or he wants to buy a lottery ticket.  Why should that transaction become a permenant electronic record?  Don’t even try to tell me that such records would be protected and safe from hackers or any government agency that decided it wanted to investigate him.  Such a system of credit or debit card use goes to the very heart of our privacy.  There are no firewalls strong enough to keep your secrets.  Yes, you are entitled to some secrets in your life that are your business and no one else’s.  How you spend your hard earned money is no one else’s business.   Leave us alone for God’s sake in our own affairs.  With all the minicams and surveillance systems and forced GPS monitors there is little enough privacy as it is.

When we have really bad leadership at the national level and we’re headed in the wrong direction I draw encouragement from the history of the Roman Empire.  It had its many ups and downs over the course of centuries.  Sometimes really bad guys worked their way to the top with bribery, buying votes or even assasination but then things would settle again and decent folks would emerge.  Caligula, Nero and others of that stripe were followed by Marcus Aurelleus even though it took a long time.  The people of all levels of society kept the dream alive through all the terrible times to remember their heritage of basic democracy and the rule of the  Senate.  It wasn’t one man, one vote democracy but it was one nevertheless for its age.  Even those who didn’t have a vote still influenced the votes of those who did.  The Senate was after its fashion responsive to the people.  Even after Rome was sacked by the Vandals in 465 AD (which most standard history texts mark as the fall of Rome)  the Empire came back in a few more iterations of itself for over a hundred years.   If most of our people keep as their Pole Stars freedom, liberty and sovereignity of the people over government we have a chance to endure yet for a while.

What do we owe Winston Churchill?  He was our “cousin” since his mom was American.  After the fall of Dunkirk in 1940 and the surrender of France there was no opposition to Hitler on the Continent and he was at peace with Stalin indeed they were still allies; they had just finished their mutual military operation against Poland.  All seemed quite hopeless and in fact there were many in Great Britain that believed they should sue for peace with Hitle from the man on the street to members of the War Cabinet itself.  Even if Hitle didn’t try to invade there was no realistic possibility that they saw to ever defeat him and the land of Avon would be pounded mercilessly by the Luffwaffe.  Churchill beat  back and/or ignored such calls for peace and used all his oratorical skills to rally the people to resist which they did for another long 18 months before the US joined the fray.  The time called for bold and heroic clarion calls to the ramparts.  The people were scared, they had seen what had happened on the Continent and the British army had just been hammered at Dunkirk.  He delievered.  It is hard to imagine the course of history if Great Britain had not held out until we joined.  Remember the anti-war faction was very strong in the US then and there is no way we would have taken on Hitler by ourselves.   A peace with Great Britain would have allowed all the German troops to muster for the assault on the Soviet Union and minimal forces to garrison the West.   If Churchill had heeded the faint of heart and capitulated it is not hard to imagine that the Nazis would have endured for generations.   Why did BO return the bust of such an icon of heroism to Great Britain?  

The latest possible Fed move reported is that it will print more money to buy Government bonds but then borrow that money at short term with low rates.  This supposedly will assure those concerned about money printing leading to inflation.  I am not making this up, Lord I wish I were.  But not to worry those mad scientists in there no how to take care of you; you just aren’t smart enough like Geithner, the tax cheat or fumbler, to understand the wisdom of all this.

“God give me strength to face a fact though it slay me.”  Thomas Huxley, of the famous Huxley family and biologist.   www.olcranky.wordpress.com

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