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Reflections on the Weekend: Deadbeats, Sea Monsters, and Bozo the Clown

August 8, 2011 3 comments

Look at how happy that guy is about the free stuff

So, what have we all learned this weekend?  I’ll start with me.  I learned that it’s easy to scare my children with stories of sea monsters that couldn’t possibly live in the lake we were sitting on while fishing.  The Boy: “Dad, you’re kidding right?”   Me: “Well, when you lose both arms due to a Croctopus attack, you’ll have your answer.”  What else?  Well, we learned that S & P dropped our AAA credit rating to AA+.  If you’ve been reading this blog, you already know what the credit rating is and why it matters (and if you haven’t, then you probably have bumper nutz hanging from your truck and need to be sterilized).  In response to America’s credit rating having dropped FOR THE FIRST TIME IN HISTORY, the market is tanking and our Prez gave another speech in which he assured us that popularity doesn’t matter as long as you believe in yourself (or something like that).

As usual we ask: Does it matter?  Well, yes.  It does matter…sort of.  It matters because it has angered the markets, and it may affect interest rates at some point, somewhere.  However, as Barry rightfully said in his speech, America will always be a AAA nation…in comparison to all the other deadbeat nations out there.  In a world filled with debt and communists, we’re still the safest investment.

However.  The important point was made by S & P when it said it will continue to view America as a credit risk until it figures out what to do with its long-term debt problems.  And as I’ve said here before, there isn’t any politician who wants to deal with the long-term debt problems because that would mean doing something about medicare, medicaid, and social security.  And everyday Americans don’t want them to do anything about it.  Why?  Because everyone loves free stuff (even if it’s only kinda’ free).  And politicians like to get re-elected, so….what’s the moral of the story?  Continuing to give people stuff they didn’t pay for only works on “The Bozo Show.”  In every other circumstance, it eventually results in a nation of (happy) deadbeats.

Can We Give L.A. Back?

September 17, 2010 Leave a comment

It is truly difficult to imagine a more incompentent set of government officials than those running the city of Los Angeles…and that’s saying something now days.  L.A. received $111 million in stimulus funds to create jobs.  Well, how’d they do?  Jobs created or saved: 55.   No, that’s not a type.  55 jobs, at an approximate cost of $2 million apiece!  Holy crap!

So, why did it take $111 million of tax-payer money to save/create 55 jobs you ask:

The audit says the numbers were disappointing due to bureaucratic red tape, absence of competitive bidding for projects in private sectors, inappropriate tracking of stimulus money and a laxity in bringing out timely job reports. 

In other words, the problem was government. 

‘While it doesn’t appear that any of the ARRA funds were misspent, the City needs to do a better job expediting the process and creating jobs….’

Only in an absurdly liberal and backward city like L.A. could spending $2 million of taxpayer money per job not equate to funds being misspent.  Apparently the only way to misspend taxpayer money in L.A. would be doing someting like wall-papering government offices with it, or simply giving it back to the tax-payers.

L.A. is a joke, and an embarrassment to America.  Not only can it only figure out how to save/create 55 jobs with $111 million of taxpayer money, it also built a $578 million public school.  L.A. is liberalism on steroids.  Its local unemployment rate is over 12%, but yet it continues to tax the crap out of its residents (well, those that pay taxes anyway).  In other words, L.A. is a microcosm of America under Obama.  Government can’t create jobs, it can only destroy them.  Government can’t  produce wealth, it can only steal it. 

The question is: how long will it take America to realize that liberalism is literally destroying this country?  Hopefully soon.

It’s our money dill-hole.

September 7, 2010 3 comments

 

Is this surprising?

Remember Peter Orszag?  You know…the director of the Obama White House Office of Management and Budget that skipped town after realizing that he was about as useful in fixing the economy as my six year old daughter?  Well, he’s now one of the New York Times‘ esteemed Contributing Columnists.  In his first Op-Ed, he argues that Congress should extend all of the Bush tax cuts for two years, and then dump them all permanently.  In doing so, he presents the liberal position that has been thrown about for so long that it’s simply met with a shrug.  In short: at some point, we need to raise taxes because the government needs to buy stuff…because, as we all know, buying stuff is fun; especially when it’s someone else’s money.  I continue to find this logic absurd and worthy of endless ridicule.

I have to give Orszag credit on one issue that the “progressives” fail to acknowledge: ending the Bush tax cuts for anyone, even those evil rich people who have stolen all of their money from the rest of us without creating any jobs (that’s sarcasm for those of you who are new to this blog) would actually hurt an already crappy economy.  It’s his next points that cause me great consternation.

Many conservatives are even worse: they’d make the tax cuts permanent for the likes of Warren Buffett, even though he’d prefer they didn’t. Making all the tax cuts permanent would expand the deficit by more than $3 trillion over the next decade.

Ah Warren Buffett…how I disdain you.  You of statements like (and I’m paraphasing here), “it’s not fair that my secretary pays more in taxes than I do.”  Look Warren, I know you like to look at the man in the mirror every morning and wax poetic about how gracious that person is, but you’re the one drinking fifty year old scotch out of a golden goblet.  In other words, if your secretary is paying more taxes then you, then stop paying your lawyers and accountants to find ways to shelter your money…or stop paying your secretary so much.   Plus, if you really want to pay more in taxes, feel free to write the IRS a check…I’m certain it won’t be sent back.

But I digress.  My point is this: the only way tax cuts could increase the deficit is if the government DOESN’T CUT ITS OWN SPENDING.  See, the government isn’t entitled to whatever amount of revenue it wants so that it can do rad stuff like give grants to scientists to prove cats hate showering with naked people or to prove global warming exists by cherry picking climate stats.

Orczag continues,

Let’s look at the facts. The projected deficit for 2015 is 4 percent to 5 percent of G.D.P., depending on whose assumptions you use. A sustainable level is more like 3 percent or lower. So we need deficit reduction of 1 percent to 2 percent of G.D.P., or about $200 billion to $400 billion a year by 2015. These figures are uncertain, but they’re the best we have (and they may well turn out to be too optimistic).

These are only “facts” if you’re Nostradamus.  In other words, you need to know what the budget will be in 2015.  Since there is no budget for 2015, you’re simply assuming it will be more or less the same as it is now.  Why not assume that the government will decrease its spending in 2015? 

The federal government, and those employed by it, decided long ago that they were entitled to whatever amount of taxes they decided were appropriate and that they found to be politically palatable.  It began with FDR and his New Deal and Social Security and continued largely unabated through Johnson’s Great Society.  Each time the American people were told the government needs more money for the betterment of society; except society never asked for it.  So now we have Social Security, Medicare and Medicaid…and Obamacare.  Liberal entitlement programs forced down America’s collective throat that amount to little more than theft.

Orszag asserts that Social Security needs reform…no kidding.  Will it get the reform it needs?  Well, being that the reform it needs is to, at the very least, allow Americans the opportunity to opt out of it and invest their money themselves, it’s  not likely.  How about Medicare and Medicaid?  Orszag asserts that Obamacare has resulted in substantial savings to both programs.  Considering the net effect of Obamacare will be to increase government spending, simply moving money from column A to column B and calling it savings seems a bit dubious, yes?

Simply put, our government has marched us slowly towards more and more taxes in the name of social progress.  Now we’re told we can’t “afford” to keep more of our own money.  Well, to that I say: I’m pretty sure we can.  Plus, Warren’s willing to pay more.

Infrastructure? Again? Who Came Up With That Idea?

September 7, 2010 3 comments

[somewhere in White House]

Barry:  Why does everyone hate me?  Don’t they realize I’m working really hard?

Biden (eating animal crackers):  Yeah, it’s been a recovery summer baby!

Barry:  I just don’t know Joe.  The people seem to be forgetting how totally bad-ass I am. 

Biden:  Hey, B.O., watch me bite the head off of this horse.  Boo-Yah!

Barry:  I don’t know…maybe I need a vacation to clear my head. 

Biden (fiddling with jack in the box and muttering to himself): why can’t i get this box to open?

Barry:  Joe?  Hello?

Biden (looks up from the box, startled):  Wait, what?  Roads!  Everyone loves roads!  And high-speed rail!  Yeah, infrastruture baby, infrastructure!

Barry:  But we’ve done that already, and honestly, it didn’t really work.  Won’t the people get angry?

Biden:  Come on baby, no one even remembers the first stimulus.  In fact, we’ve spent so much friggin’ money, no one can even distinguish between the bailout, and the stimulus, and the budget.  Just say that we can put people to work on building roads and stuff.  And be sure to say “stimulus” a lot.  Oh, and don’t wear that bike helmet again.

Barry:  I knew it!  Michelle told me it was the type of helmet that everyone wears in Paris, and that the American people would love it.  -Sigh- 

Biden:  Nope.  You looked like a total LAME-O.

Barry:  Well you don’t need to yell.  So, do you think Congress will get on board with the building roads stuff?

Biden (sharpening his crayons):  Sure.  Just give ’em the old “republicans drove the economy into the ditch and more roads will help fill in the ditch or somethin'” speech.  That always works.  Also, tell ’em you’ll speak at their campaigns.  Who could say no to that?

Barry:  Big J, I think you’re right.  The people need to remember that I’m totally bad ass, and that I’m really really smart too.  I mean, I used to organize communities.

Biden (making shadow puppets):  You’re the smartest guy I know B.A., and that’s sayin’ something.  Well, I’m tired.  I think I’ll take a nap. 

Barry:  Thanks Joe.  You’re a big help.

Biden (rummaging through his vice-presidential lunch box):  Crap…who ate my fruit roll-up?!

I Can’t Think Up A Witty Title.

September 3, 2010 1 comment

Well, it’s September.  I haven’t posted in a while because there’s been nothing going on.  August was hot.  Congress wasn’t in session.  The Tigers’ season has been over for a while now.  And I’ve been waiting for football to start.

But NOW, we’re officially into football and election season.  WOO-HOO!  While I could talk about football forever, this is not a football blog, and I’m not starting one now.  This is primarily a political blog, and it’s a political time of year.  And I can’t remember an election cycle that has been potentially more important than this one.  Let’s review:

The economy still sucks.  In fact, it’s worse then it was the last time I posted.  Unemployment is up to 9.6%; we’ve lost another 54,000 jobs; and Christina Romer, one of Barry’s chief economic “experts” who is leaving the administration, has recently let all of us know that they’ve had absolutely no idea what they’ve been doing re: the economy.

She had no idea how bad the economic collapse would be. She still doesn’t understand exactly why it was so bad. The response to the collapse was inadequate. And she doesn’t have much of an idea about how to fix things.

That’s disheartening…and also completely obvious.  Labor Secretary Hilda Solis has taken to authoring op-eds in the USA Today to try and convince America that the Democrat’s handling of the economy doesn’t resemble a monkey with a rubic’s cube. 

The Recovery Act saved millions of American jobs — keeping health care providers in hospitals, teachers in classrooms, and police and firefighters on the beat. But the benefits weren’t just in the public sector. During the past eight months, the economy has averaged 95,000 new private sector jobs.

While I’d love to see her support for that last sentence, it doesn’t really matter.  Unemployment will continue to go up until new jobs exceed 120,000/month (population increase).  More importantly, there is no doubt that the economy is slowly getting worse.  

The “summer of recovery” is followed by the “autumn of reality.”  Let’s face it: if the Dems had any idea what to do about the economy, they would have done it by now.

B.O. has recently begun getting rid of the “drove it into a ditch” meme, and replaced it with “it’s taken us 10 years to get into this mess, so it’s unreasonable to think we could get out of the mess in 18 months” nonsense.  Did it take us 10 years to get into this?  I don’t know.  I suppose one could reasonably argue it took one year, or even thirty-three years (the Community Reinvestment Act, which gave birth to the housing boom and bust, was enacted in 1977).  I also don’t care how long it took us to get here.  What I do care about is what is the current Administration doing about it?  Well, it’s been 18 months and the answer is: spent a lot of money for nothing.  Things haven’t improved, and the Dems are out of ideas.

So what should be done?  Well, first and foremost, vote against the Dems in November.  I know, I know…you don’t like the republicans either!  O.k.  Then go vote for the Green Party and pat yourself on the back for being “principled.”  After that you can have your juice box and sandwich with the crusts cut off and take a nap.  For the rest of us adults, we’ll choose a candidate with a chance of winning. 

Simply put, there is job-creating capital out there waiting to be invested.  It’s not being invested because no one has any idea what’s coming from this administration.  For example, if you were a business owner with money, would you be spending it to reinvest or hire new employees if you thought your taxes were going to go up in January?  Of course not.  Doing something as simple as throwing the Dems out of the House would improve the fragile psyche of the economy.

But simply voting Republican isn’t enough.  Pressure needs to be applied to those we vote for to do things like extending the Bush tax cuts for everyone.  Other taxes need to be cut…payroll and capital gains, for example.  Enact legislation which gives people the option to opt out of the slush fund that is Social Security.  Limit Medicare to those that need it; not simply those that are old enough to get it.  Significantly amend Obamacare and gut Fannie and Freddie. 

Until we get the economy back on-track, nothing else matters.  And there’s a lot going on that needs to be addressed beyond the economy…like why we’re ignoring Iran’s getting all nuclear and stuff.

It’s September…the kids are back in school, I get to drink new seasonal beer, and I get to watch football.  More important, however, is the election coming up.  We need to vote the Dems out…and then get ready for 2012, when we can vote out the guy who looks silly riding his bike.  And don’t worry…I’ll be posting a lot more than I did in August in an effort to get you through these tough times.

First time unemployment up…again.

August 19, 2010 Leave a comment
Barry (while riding his unicorn):
‘But here’s what I can tell you: After 18 months, I have never been more confident that our nation is headed in the right direction.’

New U.S. claims for unemployment benefits unexpectedly climbed to a nine-month high last week, yet another setback to the frail economic recovery.

Sigh.  I’ve come to the rather grim conclusion that the economy won’t improve until we rid ourselves of this charlatan.  Why?  Contrary to B.O.’s assertions, it isn’t because of how deep the ditch was.  It’s because no one with a business has any confidence in any of his decisions on the economy.  The same goes for Nancy Pelosi, Tim Geithner, Harry Reid, etc. 

We’re not headed in the right direction.  In fact, I’m not sure we’re headed in any direction.  What is the president/Congress doing to create jobs?  Can anyone tell me?  So far, we’ve had several different deficit-driving stimulus packages, which only propped up state governments, or hired more government employees, or paid some pension funds.  None of that did anything to improve the economy, and anyone with an eighth grade education knew that it wouldn’t before it was attempted. 

What else?  We’ve passed healthcare legislation which the government admits won’t control costs, and is directly responsible for current premiums going up.  The new financial regulation law will significantly increase the size of the federal government, and impact just about every financial transaction that anybody takes part in.  Oh, and it does nothing to deal with HUD, Fannie Mae, or Freddie Mac, all of which caused the housing bubble and started the domino effect of economic collapse.

Our economy isn’t in a malaise.  It isn’t stuck.  And there are no green shoots.  It’s simply waiting.  Waiting for the anti-business, anti-private property, pro-big government liberals to lose their control over the direction of this country.  Unfortunately, while it waits, more small businesses shut their doors, more big businesses downsize, and more people lose their jobs. 

Paul Ryan is Why I’m a Republican, and Why You Should Be Too.

August 10, 2010 4 comments

I’ve been hearing a lot of self-described conservatives say things like “I’m not a Republican…don’t put a label on me…I think for myself” lately.  My response to those statements falls somewhere between “congratulations…here’s your medal for being an individual…now it’s nap time” and “you’re right, they’re not perfect,” depending on how well I know the person who’s saying it.  Look, people can identify themselves however they want in life, but when it comes time to vote in November, there are only two choices: the party of Paul Ryan or the party of Paul Krugman; and there’s a HUGE difference between the two.

Mr. Ryan hails from Wisconsin, is a member of the House of Representatives, and is a Republican.  And contrary to  the mindless rhetoric from the Democrats, he has a plan.  More specifically, he has a plan to get us out of debt and improve the economy.  And he does it by lowering taxes.  His “Roadmap,” as he call it, has been met with great disdain from the left because of its radical ideas; namely, cutting government spending.  Now, I understand that nowadays, actually cutting back on federal spending is the equivalent of riding a unicorn with the president, but there was once a day when the federal government didn’t employ the entire state of California.  The Roadmap cuts spending, decreases taxes for both individuals and businesses (which will create jobs), and simplifies the tax code to some extent.  Is Mr. Ryan your typical modern-day Republican?  Maybe not.  But you will never find a Paul Ryan in the Democrat party.

Paul Krugman.  I’ve written about him before.  While he identifies himself as an economist, he’s actually just a liberal shill in a tweed sport coat.  He believes spending cuts are stupid, or evil, or something.  He believes, like all liberals, that “tax cuts must be paid for.”  Of course, such a position constitutes lunacy when one considers the fact that those “tax cuts” are not expenditures, but simply less theft.  Like many liberals, Krugman believes increased government spending will create jobs by “stimulating” the economy.  Of course, he never identifies how much spending is necessary, since it’s never actually worked.  His convenient answer to continued failure is “we should have spent more.”

In response Krugman’s recent rambling and nonsensical criticism to his “Roadmap,” Ryan stated,

‘At the core of this is a big ideological fight between those who believe in the Founding principles and the sense of limited government—the American idea—and those who believe in the progressivist welfare state.’

‘The Roadmap is designed to maintain a limited government in the 21st century, and it is the antithesis of the progressivist vision which [Krugman] subscribes to. That’s fine. I understand it violates his vision for a progressivist society.’

In these statements, Ryan has admirably described the foundational difference between conservatives and liberals.  Liberals seek control by way of taxation, government spending, and entitlements.  Conservatives believe in self-reliance, small government, and opportunity.

The point of all of this is that it matters what Ryan believes vs. what Krugman believes.  It matters because, regardless of your feelings on “Republicans” vs. “Democrats,” the simple fact remains: Ryan, and those like him, will never be Democrats, and Krugman and his followers will never be Republicans.  For those that want a better shot at more opportunity, fewer taxes, sustained job growth, and smaller government, then vote Republican in November.  The only alternative is a vote for liberals like Krugman.

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