Wednesday, January 28, 2009

The Fallacy of Pricing

So Obama wants to allow individual states to set their own rules on emissions requirements, forcing auto-manufacturers to either make everyone's cars more expensive by making all their cars meet the most stringent standards, or make everyone's cars more expensive by putting out special versions of each car for each state.

I have a much better idea. If CA wants to be more restrictive than other states, stop selling them cars.


It's high time we did away with this foolishness and just called a spade a spade. These states don't want to "save the environment", the people pushing this legislation want cars to go away. They think that somehow they can wave a magic wand and light rail and busses will be come the transportation mode of choice for everyone. Or better yet. Walk.

Frankly, I've had it with these flat earth environmentalists. If they want to live in a cave, so be it. I, for one, would rather be able to afford a car and the gas it takes to drive into work.

Spending Plan (formerly Bailout)

I'd like to take a quick moment to commend the Republicans in the House of Representatives for standing their ground and voting against the Spending Package being touted as a Stimulus Package. Not a single one of them voted for this farce of a bill.

This package is 88% earmarks and pork. There is very very little money in there that will actually help the American Citizen make their way through this economic downturn. It is more of the same. Further, we can't afford it.

If the Government really cared about stimulating the economy, they'd deign to let us keep more of what we earned and allow us to use that money to pay each other for things we need, or as a business, to pay our employees.

Instead, more of the same idiocy.

Thank you Republicans, for standing your ground. Keep it up.

Saturday, January 24, 2009

A Salute to Jim Brossard

I received an email today with an attached video much the same as the one I've embedded above. This happened a year or two ago, but I just became aware of it myself.

A few things struck me about Mr. Brossard and his actions, as well as a few thoughts on immigration in general. Normal "vandalism" by lefties usually involves cloak and dagger, quiet kinds of stuff. The person who smeared yellow paint on Bush Senior's statue the day of the inauguration comes to mind (wrong Bush by the way guys....good one). Here, we have a Veteran who heard of the U.S. Flag being dishonored. Flying the US Flag below the flag of another nation in our Country is not only disrespectful, it is illegal. Mr. Brossard decided to do something about it.

So what happens when Mr. Brossard arrives on the scene. He sees people standing in front of the bar, and a camera crew collecting B-roll footage to be used as background footage for the anchors at the station. Does he slink off to make sure no one sees him perform the duty he feels obligated to execute? No! Mr. Brossard not only strides forcefully over and removes the American Flag from the pole, but he then turns around and announces to the camera why he is doing that. He follows up by announcing his full name, and gives instructions to the owner as to how to retrieve their flag. Now that, my friends, is honor. He knows there may be consequences for what he did, in fact, he just committed an outright (and documented) act of theft in broad daylight, yet he still makes absolutely sure that there is no doubt about who is doing and why they are doing so.

The flying of the flag the way it was flown, and the owner's unwillingness to comment on it, or even fix the problem, is indicative of an ongoing problem we have in this country with immigrants. This country was founded by immigrants, and continues to receive many excellent men and women who come here because they feel that the United States is a great country, full of opportunity and the hope of a better life made possible through hard work. Those men and women are the people whom you see enthusiastically singing the Star Spangled Banner, who feel a great and deep love for this country and the values that it stands for.

Then you have the folks marching in support of illegal immigrants. A particular protest in Tucson,AZ comes to mind. A couple of years ago, a large number of students (who wanted to get out of their High School and Middle School classes that day) and other marchers took to the streets to protest immigration reform efforts. The first week they marched, there was hardly a US Flag in attendance. Instead, they all carried Mexican flags. Where is their love of country? Where is their pride at being in the United States? You'll notice from the bottom part of the attached image what happened when some publicity liberals got a hold of them the following week. ;)

Liberals have made it very hard to have a discussion on immigration. If you are against illegal immigrants, you are immediately painted as being a bigot, or being against any immigration at all. However, I believe it is very important that those who would come and live in the US integrate with United States culture and values. That's not to say that celebrating holidays from their native country is out, but they should want to speak English and have an urge to integrate themselves into America.

Enough about that. Once again, a salute to Mr. Brossard! Were that we had more like him.

Friday, January 23, 2009

I Had to Do It

Obama Win Causes Obsessive Supporters To Realize How Empty Their Lives Are

Way too irresistible. Far far far too irresistible.

Yes! Let's close Guantanamo....

Al Qaeda Chief Was Released by U.S. From Gitmo

To be fair, this still isn't fully confirmed. However, I think this well illustrates the Liberal way of thinking - to wit: We don't care what it really means, we could give a crap about the consequences, and we haven't really (and don't plan to) thought it through, but by God, we're gonna do it anyways.

Considering the high number of saints from Gitmo that were released end up fighting and killing our troops again, or even better, leading groups of militants, we should just close the prison on down and let them loose.

Or, you could be like loud-mouth Murtha and see $$$ out of the whole thing, and the safety of your constituents be damned.

Wonderful, keep electing these people, they're doing a great job so far.

Monday, January 19, 2009

The Definition of Insanity

Weis: No Probation for Gang Member Caught With Guns
Jody Weis says the city has had a handgun ban since 1982 but people are still walking around with weapons. He thinks greater deterrence is required.
Let's ban them again! Yes! Or....maybe we can cut the thumbs off of anyone caught with a gun! Yeah!

They're already illegal you bloody moron! What more can you possibly do except make the sentences for having them longer???

I truly don't understand these people. Obviously, logic plays no part in their daily lives (and unfortunately, their daily legislative activities) but really - are people that stupid that they don't see what is going on?


Sunday, January 18, 2009

The Fair and Balanced Media

Newsbusters posts an excellent slam on the Associated Press and the Main Stream Media for its hypocrisy on Inauguration spending.

Obama's Coronation will cost $160mil (or more). Bush's 2005 Inauguration was $40mil. The MSM at the time questioned the cost and suggested the money should be spent on other things.

This time? “For inaugural balls, go for glitz, forget economy...” crows the AP.

Gotta love it.

Barriers to Entry

One thing that irks me about these bailouts is their stifling effect on competition.

What our lawmakers have forgotten about this country is that you are supposed to have the ability for new entries in a market to come up with a superior idea and challenge the existing operators.

So here we are bailing out automakers. But not *all* the automakers, just the ones that haven't been competitive and have run their companies like @#$! for the last 30 years. The same day that Chrysler gets $1.5bil from the Government, another article talks about the challenges that two new electric car companies are going through trying to get started up.

When you're not getting sweetheart deals from Congress, it's kind of hard to operate in this country.

Friday, January 16, 2009

Consent of the Governed

I think, sometimes, we truly forget what the numbers are with regards to the "authorities" and those they govern. While the idea of "taking on the government" is a daunting one, we must at all times remember the scale of the game theory we are working through.

I was reading this article today on Fox News. Essentially, Washington D.C. is expecting two million (or more) people to descend on the city for the messiah's inauguration. They are fielding 40,000 some-odd "authorities" to keep the peace. Police, National Guard, active U.S. military (is that even legal?)m as well as the typical Federal folks. There will, of course, be plainclothes officers out in the crowd. The article notes, by the way, that 40,000 is more people than we currently have deployed in Afghanistan.

So, assuming for a moment that there are really 40,000 out there, and that two million citizens show up for the coronation...I mean inauguration, we're actually talking about one authority figure trying to control, at the very least, 50 people. Naturally, this assumes that the authorities aren't operating in pairs or in small units. Even with a firearm, and assuming the crowd is unarmed, you just can't control 50 people at once if they don't want to be controlled.

Now, I'm not saying anything is going to happen. I genuinely hope nothing happens. But in the context of the 3%, and changing the scale of the area of operations to the entire United States, just how hard would it be to govern those that do not want to be governed?

Sure, you could swarm a particular area, but that would just allow other patriots in other areas to operate more brazenly.

Just a little food for thought for your weekend.

Thursday, January 15, 2009

Hot Off the Presses

Senate Releases $350 Billion in Bailout Funds to Obama

Spectacular. Your useful idiots in Washington at work.

Not only did they (narrowly) allow this farce to continue, they ensured that a little under 1/3rd of the money ($100bil) will go right down the toilet - mortgage help. It's important that we punish those who were responsible while helping those who can't afford their new homes. It's almost enough to make me want to stop paying my mortgage quite frankly.

But it's ok!

Sen. Claire McCaskill, D-Mo., a staunch Obama ally, said the letter and a personal call from her friend helped.

She's giving the incoming administration "the benefit of the doubt," for now, because, "If they don't do what they say they are going to do, then they know that will be a boat load of political capital out the window."

Oh yeah, they're going to be worried about spending political capital with a government stuffed full of their cronies egging them on. Good grief.

The article also mentions a proposed $850bil stimulus package, I'll go over that later if I'm still conscious after banging my head against a wall for an hour or two.

We just gave the alcoholic another bottle of booze.


Obama Climate Czarina Was Member of Socialist Group's Environmental Commission

While the Socialist web site has quickly removed evidence of her membership, I have it on good authority that she was on there.

Do you really want a person overseeing our environmental policies who believes that industrialized countries should restrict their growth and production to save the environment? We need innovation and growth right now, not oppressive environmental policies that are designed to fix a Climate Change problem that doesn't exist.

What a Waste

BofA to Receive $15B in New TARP Money

You have a business that is in trouble. You receive Federal Funds to bail you out. So you then use those funds to try and buy out another hurting business because you can. Then you realize you don't have enough money to actually accomplish the acquisition.

What do you do? Well! Ask for more of course.

This is utter nonsense. If there is any further evidence you need to see to prove that the TARP is an epic failure, I don't know what else to show you. Your tax money (actually, foreign nations' capital) is being squandered left and right. If there is any further evidence that we do not need to grant the Government another $350bil to use to attempt to bail out their crook crony friends - this is it.

Please contact your Congressfolks - tell them to refuse to give the Fed one more dime.
If you'd like to suggest an alternative to this idiocy, Karl Denninger at The Market Ticker has a wonderful set of steps to allow the market to correct itself and put us back on the path to prosperity. Copy the steps from the lower part of this page (and may as well read through it while you're at it) and send them to your representatives today.

Don't stand by and allow the entire economy collapse under the weight of this debt. Do something today.

Heck, I'll post the steps right here. Copy them and fax them to your Representatives immediately:
1. Refuse to authorize the remaining $350 billion in the EESA/TARP. That bill was an act of outright theft, it could not have worked in its original form, it definitely didn't work in its modified form, and there is no defense for continuing the charade.

2. Force, either by demand or if ignored by regulation, the full disclosure of all Federal Reserve "assets", from where they came, the prices paid, and the terms, and demand that all "in extremis" programs end ninety days hence. If the Fed doesn't like this de-authorize The Federal Reserve Act and replace them. I am well-aware that this will cause the collapse of a significant number of banks. We will deal with that momentarily.

3. Withdraw all debt-based support from the general economy. It is necessary that the over-encumbered go under. We have a means of dealing with this - it is called bankruptcy. Do it and get it over with. There is no alternative and stretching this out just makes it worse. If you have cancer the longer you wait the worse it is, and if you wait too long it spreads and you die. We are very close to having the economy die; there is no time for more delay.

4. Repeal the "Bankruptcy Reform" act. That was a monstrous travesty demanded by the banking lobby to enslave Americans they knew couldn't pay! Revoke that - now - so Americans can use bankruptcy - the process for those who are over-encumbered in the general public - as well.

5. Dedicate the other $350 billion that was formerly in the second half of the TARP to capitalizing new banks. We need a banking system, but we don't need the existing banks. Provide the seed capital for new banks. At a 10% reserve ratio this will provide three and one half trillion dollars of lending capacity, all unencumbered. There are competing ideas for the bank's structure; "co-ops" (much like a credit union, perhaps hundreds of new banks) sound interesting as does just setting up ten new large banks.

6. Demand that all banks return to a 10% reserve ratio here and now. No ifs, ands or buts. Period. No more sweep accounts, no more games, no more "variable reserves" set by Ben in his "sole judgment", nothing of the kind. This strictly limits bank leverage to 10:1 - as it should. Write into the law that violations of this reserve ratio are bank fraud, a felony, and that each and every officer of said bank is personally responsible for violations. Any existing bank unable or unwilling is closed immediately by the FDIC.

7. Make all bank examinations public. We back the banks with FDIC deposit insurance, we have a right to know what they're doing, how healthy they are, and what they're holding. If you want to see the cockroaches scurry shine a bright light in the room. We need lots of bright light.

8. Force all credit-default swaps and other instruments - all of them - onto a regulated exchange. Strictly limit leverage to no more than 10:1, just as is done for banks. No exceptions, with mark-to-market being required daily. We have computers; this can easily be done and must. At the same time, end all "dark pools" and other similar gimmicks. If you want to trade it you must publish your bids and offers, print the last trade price, and do it where everyone can see it. Again - only the threat of discovery through full public transparency works to keep the crooks at bay.

9. Bring all financial firms, including insurance companies, hedge funds and others, under the 10:1 leverage limits. All firms that want to do business in the United States must comply - period. No exceptions for "special" asset classes are permitted. This instantly ends the game of "infinite earnings via infinite leverage" in the Treasury Bill market, which is currently distorting that marketplace beyond all reason.

10. End all off-balance-sheet games. All assets and liabilities must be carried, valued at the market, and disclosed on-balance sheet. No exceptions. Period.

The alternative is to just allow them to run up multi-trillion dollar (yes, I just said MULTI) deficits and send us spiraling out of control.

Quick reference - the Fed ran up an $800BIL deficit JUST IN THE LAST QUARTER.

We can't keep this up folks. We just can't.

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

Kitties and Rabbits and Mice....oh my!

Australian Cat-Removal Plan Backfires as Rabbits Move In

So let me get this straight. You have cats, rats, and bunnies. The cats are killing the native birds. So you get rid of the cats. Oops, the bunnies are now killing the birds. I know! Lets poison the bunnies and rats! What could possibly go wrong?!?

Remember folks, the Law of Unintended Consequences is wily and, for the most part, unexpected for people that honestly think they can screw around with complex systems such as mother nature.

But don't worry, these are the same folks that are assuring you that CO2 is causing Global Change! Yeah that's it. Or maybe Al Gore just needs another Nobel Peace Prize.

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

The Beginning of the End

I've asked in prior posts: Where is your line in the sand? At what point do you say "this far and no farther"?

David Codrea of the War On Guns, alerted by Jeff Knox of The Firearms Coalition really stirred a hornet's nest over on his National Examiner Blog today.

H.R. 45 was introduced on the first day. The effective result - the registration of all long guns with detachable magazines, and handguns by requiring a permitting system whereby all gun owners must take training and pay for a permit to prove their worthiness to exercise their inherent right to self defense. Further, there are national safe storage requirements, additional record keeping requirements, and, short of "occasional" gifting of firearms amongst family members, the Government steps in and regulates all transfers of firearms by requiring background checks.

Please go read David's writeup at the Examiner link above, it is excellent and will bring you up to speed.

So obviously, I read that post this morning, and the rage filled me (I think I spilled some coffee). I figured I'd post a comment on that site, adding to the sounds of who were giving the bill a richly deserved blasting.

Lo and behold, here comes Mr. Fudd himself! A poster styling himself The Rifleman immediately started defending the bill on the basis that it did not actually ban guns, and it's ok to license guns just like we do cars.

My response to him, and to this bill follows (I regret that I mistyped David at one point in my original response on the Examiner site - if you are reading it there under the handle Triptyx, please replace that one instance of "David" with "The Rifleman"):

The Rifleman. Every confiscation effort *ever* has begun with "common sense" regulations - like this registration scheme. This is unconstitutional (licensing a right guaranteed by the constitution), it's stupid (criminals will not register, they will not get their thumb print taken, and they will not use a gun registered to themself in the commission of a crime), and it's absolutely pointless.

What happens next year when they increase the exam requirement to yearly, and institute a fee of $500 to take it?

How about the year after that when they refuse to allow half of authorized exam proctors to re-up their authorization?

What about when they suddenly decide you don't "need" a handgun any more, and show up at the door of every registrant to take them with a SWAT team?

Hunters such as you, The Rifleman, that refuse to see that just because a restriction doesn't affect your bolt-action hunting rifle or shotgun now, doesn't mean they won't call it a sniper rifle and demand it be turned in next year, are the one of the key factors in the erosion of our rights.

This is not about "safety", it is not about "security", it is not about stopping crime, it is the first step to full blown confiscation. Plain and simple. If you refuse to see that, if you refuse to step up and stand united with other gun owners against laws that will do nothing to improve safety, or reduce crime, and cost billions of dollars of your tax money for no real gain, you'll pay the price later when they come for *you*.

This *is* the line. It shall not be crossed.

The Rifleman posted again later and said:
After making my post, I talked to a colleague of mine and predicted exactly the kind of wild attacks that appeared here today. I wonder how many of you were this concerned with warrantless surveillance on Americans. I suspect, very strongly, that the majority of you were in support of it. Hypocrites.

And there is more prattling on about how you can't yell fire in a theater, etc. At no point does he actually address any one of many well thought out and reasoned responses to his original posting. Naturally "Karen" then chimes in that seeing the responses to the article, she thinks maybe we *should* ban guns. Wow Karen, you don't see that every day. (end sarcasm)

That's ok though. We know that The Rifleman and Karen are either liberal plants, or a person whom we will not convince anyways.

Here is what the myriad of responses on that article should tell anyone who is supporting, lobbying, or voting for this bill:
You, the sponsors, supporters and enablers of this bill, are hereby placed on notice that there exist a large number of people in this nation that will not tolerate this. They will do what Americans have done since (and before) the founding of this country. They will dig in their heels and refuse to heed your decree. They know all too well that the Government that registers arms rapidly becomes the Government that confiscates those arms. Shortly after that, they become the Government that exterminates large percentages of its people.

You will either have to arrest or kill us. You will have to go door to door to make sure everyone registers, and you still won't get even 30% participation. And all the while, criminals will still be out there killing indiscriminately. Your bill is worthless garbage. It isn't worth the paper it is written on, nor the air that will be expended by all of you pompous, vapid windbags as you ramrod it through Congress. This bill is doomed to fail. Yes, you might get it passed into law, but you will very likely be signing death warrants for some number of the Police Officers that will enforce the law. You will be creating even more criminals to stuff in your overcrowded jails - the same ones you're having to release people from right now since you can't even bloody well afford to keep them there. You will be marginalizing a class of people for whom self sufficiency and a sense of honor is treasured. Attempting to remove that treasured heritage will result in bloodshed.

This bill itself might just finally finish tearing the fabric of this country irrevocably. You are pusillanimous tyrants, fit only to wallow in your own excrement and gorge from the trough of public funds. You are liars, and, worst of all, are without honor.

This far, and no farther. We will not register. We will not prostrate ourselves upon the floor and beg permission to exercise those rights which are granted to us merely by living in this world. We do not recognize your usurpation of the Constitution in this matter, and never will. You may kill some of us, others you may throw in jail, but you will not succeed.

Progress of this bill can be monitored at

The Results of Liberalism

California Dreamin' Over? Record Number of Residents Moving

No surprise here. What do you expect when the state has some of the highest costs of living and taxes in the nation? When you insist that the bureaucracy pay for everything, when the state's role is to nanny its citizens, and one should be punished for being prosperous.

Don't believe me? Number two is New York.

You can not just tax things and expect your revenues to go up. Those taxes are always passed down to the consumer, and when the consumer is already being squeezed by high property taxes and job loss, the consumer finds ways to avoid taxes and go elsewhere. The same happens when the company you are taxing realizes they can operate elsewhere at a huge savings to their bottom line (and ultimately to their customer in the form of price breaks).

Unfortunately, we may be about to implement this kind of economics on the entire nation as the Democrats gleefully take up a perceived mandate to expand an already wasteful and bloated government.

We can only hope for a sudden breakout of sanity. Somehow that might be too much change to expect from our Overlords.

Monday, January 12, 2009

Your Liability

I've added you can call it that, widget to my side nav. It shows the National Debt. Look at that number for a moment. $10 Trillion, with a T, dollars.

At the moment, that's 34 someodd thousand dollars for EVERY person in the US. And, if you'll notice, it's ticking ever upwards.

This is the amount your Government has already committed to our servitude towards foreign (and some domestic) investors.

Do you have $34 thousand to give to the Nation to bail us out of this commitment? I know I certainly don't. I've been taxed more than well enough to be doing all I can to keep myself in home and food (and a few frills).

How much longer do you want to permit your Government to run up debts in your name? At what point do you think the primary source of our money to operate on a day to day basis with will tell us just what to do with ourselves (regardless of whether it's anatomically correct or not)?

Most importantly, and I wish I had the answer to this with all my heart - how *can* we stop this from getting worse?

Saturday, January 10, 2009

Putting the Cart Before the Horse

States Look to Prisons for Ways to Save Money, Including Letting Some Inmates Go

As the years have gone by in our now shabby and failing republic, the laws have multiplied fruitfully. The penalties have steadily risen and mandatory jail sentences have been imposed for some of the smallest and least offensive crimes. And the result, the highest number of people incarcerated per capita in the world. Even Russia comes in more than 30% lower.

What happens when you jail someone? They cease to be a productive member of society - often, for the rest of their lives. "Stamping license plates in prison for three years" as a "prior experience" item on your Resume somehow doesn't really get you the job.

There are a number of serious crimes for which prison is, indeed, the only recourse. Serious assaults, murder, etc. But then there are other crimes, such as having a semi-automatic rifle that malfunctions, or minor drug related offenses in which the possessor was simply caught due to a broken tail light. With the number of laws now on the books, we are, in reality, a nation of criminals (at least, as defined by our loving overlords).

With the current economic crisis, states now are realizing that they can't continue to pay to keep all these people in prison. So they're going to let them loose. Assuming the people they let loose are no threat to society, I have absolutely no problem with that.

What gets me though, is this: How many of these states, as a result of this issue, will review their statutes with an eye towards reforming overly draconian laws designed to make criminals out of law abiding citizens?

Somehow, I doubt even one will.


Tiny Town's Request for $375M Slice of Stimulus Sparks Uproar

Well, at least *some* of them can feel shame.

Friday, January 9, 2009

Drowning in Debt (Part 2)

I haven't found a better article to describe what is going on, and what we are really seeing.

This Comstock article is a must read. I know for those of you who aren't financially minded it may be dry, but it is very important that you understand this subject intimately, because it directly affects your ability to continue to live above the poverty line. This information also will directly impact your liberty, as your Government continues to play Russian Roulette with a revolver that has 5 loaded cylinders.

The Government and the MSM are not giving you the straight facts on what is really going on with the economy, but this sums it up pretty handily.

Mishandling of this crisis will be catastrophic.

To put the article above into perspective, and to vet the messenger, here is an excerpt from an article titled: How We Got Into This Mess written at Comstock in March, 2008. It's fairly prophetic (em. mine - GGM):

Superficially, it would seem as if the Fed can come to the rescue again. The problem with the Fed continuing to rescue the economy and stock market is that the total U.S. debt (both public and private) has increased substantially over the past 5 years to $49 trillion and the public sector debt is less than $8 trillion. The debt that has been generated by the private sector has grown to such a level that the Fed no longer has control. In fact, the main thing the Fed is accomplishing with these rate reductions and other "liquidity" measures is to drive down the US dollar. Soon they will realize that this is all they are accomplishing.

It is our contention that this latest "bull market" over the past five (2002-2007) years should have never taken place without a more significant recession (that would have reduced debt and encouraged savings) and a more severe stock market "wash-out". This would have gone far to correct the severe imbalances caused by the financial mania of the late 1990s, but unfortunately that did not happen. Right now the Fed is trying the same thing that seemed to work in 2001 & 2002. Actually, all they did was postpone what should have happened in 2003 to the present period. However, now they are attempting to manipulate the credit markets, stock market, and housing market by lowering rates, reducing regulatory restrictions (FRE & FNM), and encouraging special auctions to generate more "liquidity". They can throw as much liquidity as they have (about $900 billion-half committed-- unless they decide to print more) at the various problems as they sprout up, but it is futile.

The capitalistic system typically undergoes mild recessions that correct imbalances built up during the expansion. When these recessions are not allowed to occur, the imbalances just get worse and eventually results in a much deeper recession, or even depression. After the country goes through an incredible spending spree financed with debt, there has to be a period of cleansing. And if this indulgence is accompanied by almost everyone moving into homes they cannot afford or buying second and third homes based on unlimited credit, causing an incredible housing bubble that has to be corrected, it makes the problem much worse. There is nothing the Fed can do to stop housing prices from continuing to decline and commercial real estate will be the next shoe to fall.

The period of cleansing is called a recession, but if the government and Fed continue to interfere and maybe postpone it again, the recession might turn into a depression. Let's hope the Fed and the Administration realize what is inevitable soon, or it could really get nasty!!!

The excerpt above was posted in March. Six months before things went sideways. Now think about the article written on Wednesday that I posted above very carefully and understand the message it contains. We have a serious problem, and it goes far beyond the potential of a serious depression. The possibility now exists for the entire country to collapse if this situation continues to be grossly mishandled.

So Mr. Obama, what is your next move? The answer is not to throw more money at the problem.

Preparedness - It's Not Just for "Nuts"

Powerful Solar Storm Could Shut Down U.S. for Months

When I talk to people about having a small cache of non-perishable food on hand, as well as a reasonable amount of ammo for my main battle rifle, and water filtering abilities, they usually look at me as a "survival nut". Now, I certainly don't have the degree or depth of gear that I know true survivalists have, but I do have enough to hopefully ensure survivability in a grid down situation for at least three or four weeks.

To me, preparedness isn't about nuclear war, or Chinese invasion, or what have you (though those possibilities always exist), it's about making sure that I'm not screwed if things go sideways for a bit. Even a nasty ice storm could knock out power for a week or two, and having enough victuals to go through that in relative comfort isn't a bad thing.

While I'm sure at least some of the article I've linked above is likely a little over the top, sensationalist, or worst case kind of stuff, being prepared for a grid-out situation, including food, water, warmth, and defensive capabilities, isn't a bad thing. You just never know what might happen, and being able to provide for yourself and your family in the event of a serious breakdown in local infrastructure is just plain smart.

So if you don't have provisions for at least a few weeks, why not? It's not all that hard or expensive to at least stock up on some non-perishable food at the very least. Knowing how to cache water in the event of a disruption in service is a good thing as well. Do some reading now as to the various methods to provide for yourself and be prepared.

Thursday, January 8, 2009

Gun Rights Examiner Goes National

David Codrea at War on Guns recently received his own blog at the Cleveland Examiner. The hope was that the blog would attract enough traffic to maybe get it even more visibility.

Well, David's hopes were realized. He has now stepped up into the brand new (and shiny) Gun Rights Examiner national blog. Please make a point of going to that actual site every day and reading it (or at least go and skim). We need to keep the traffic flowing in and the support levels high in order to keep that very important national voice.

Click Here to take a look, and don't forget to bookmark it!

Daniel White has taken over the Cleveland Gun Rights Examiner. Please stop by there and show your support as well.

Denninger on Obama

A great breakdown of Obama's economic speech today over at the Market Ticker. Click Here to read it.

Drowning in Debt

You hear the term "drowning in debt" used a lot in regards to American consumers. The credit card is king. Just listen to the radio or watch TV for a short time and you'll be inundated with credit help offers. "Erase your debt!", "Consolidate those cards!", every few minutes another company offers you their services to make that debt prison you're in go away.

It's not just credit cards - it's 6 or even 7 year car loans, it's mortgages, it's losing your job. What many don't grasp, however, is that this statement is also true of our government. You see, as a nation, our Gov has been spending far more than it makes for some time now. That money has to come from somewhere, and in order to avoid large amounts of crippling inflation, that money in large part comes from foreign nations, such as China.

That money funds all those Federal entitlement programs, the military, the national road infrastructure, everything really. Unfortunately, we have had a group running this country for some time now that hasn't really paid much attention to making sure that the innies meet or exceed the outies - that is, income is less than or equal to spending.

So the country is entering a debt prison. At the moment, that number stands at somewhere around $10.6 trillion (with a T). Our gross domestic product, the measurement of all spending and production in the country (which includes, by the way, spending by the government) is around $13 trillion. That number, however, is just what was produced - not the amount that came into the government. While there are other sources of income, Federal Income tax for 2006 was only $2 trillion. That's an awful big spread.

Why is this important? The current ability for our government to pay for its programs, its military, again, everything is hinged on continuing to receive money from foreign investment. And now this:

U.S. debt is losing its appeal in China

Sure, there are other sources of income, but this may be the start of a trend. You do not continue to fund a company, or in this case a nation, past the point that they can not pay it back. You also can not give money to someone if you need it to keep yourself solvent and alive.

How long will it be before foreign nations decide they'd rather see the money they've already invested come back before they give us any more? What will this do to you and your job? What are you doing to minimize your risk? Further, what happens when your nation's economy hits the tank and you need the money you'd otherwise be investing in US Treasuries to keep your own people fed and happy? Those funds dry right up.

A great writeup from Denninger is available here. Definitely required reading. The red line he references now links to the link I've provided above.

For a nice thought exercise, check out the list and valuation of foreign holders of treasury bonds - essentially our nation's credit card debt. How many on that list are unfriendly to our freedom and policies? What do you think might happen if we become unable to repay them?

Current Quote

"I would rather be exposed to the inconveniences attending too much liberty than to those attending too small a degree of it." – Thomas Jefferson