Category Archives: Business and Commerce
From: Patrice Lewis
Here’s the article on Market Watch. To quote: “To be sure, as McClellan acknowledged: “Every pattern analog I have ever studied breaks correlation eventually, and often at the point when I am most counting on it to continue working. So there is no guarantee that the market has to continue following through with every step of the 1929 pattern. But between now and May 2014, there is plenty of reason for caution.”
As the adage goes, “Those who do not learn from history are doomed to repeat it.”
I don’t pretend to understand the stock market, much less economics in general. But I do know there are endless precedents in history which should give us fair warning that things are not as stable and cheery as our government would have us believe. That’s why we prep.
Preppers often are students of history. They’re read about the decline and fall of the Roman Empire. They know about the fall of Greece. They’ve studied the Black Plague. They’re aware of the French Revolution. They’ve studied the American Revolution. They know the Great Depression inside and out.
And above all, they know that history has an annoying habit of repeating itself.
The history of humanity is one of struggle, strife, bloodshed, famine, competition for resources, and other discouragements. It’s a cycle. It’s happened again and again. But most people tend to think that anything that hasn’t happened since the time they were born hasn’t happened before, but of course that’s patently untrue.
In the last hundred years, most Americans have not had to deal with these difficulties on our soil. We’ve fought wars, but those have been overseas. We’ve competed for resources, but we’ve always won. Our innovation as a nation has meant we’ve been blessed with untold material comfort and food safety.
But this doesn’t mean we’ll never have to handle challenges. When we refuse to learn from history, or think history cannot repeat itself, or think we are immune to historical precedent, in our arrogance we are therefore doomed to repeat it.
People often deny that history could ever repeat itself. “This time,” they assure us, “it’s different” – without ever being able to specify what “it” is and why it would be different this time.
We like to think we live in unique times. To some extent, we do. At no other time in history has our knowledge of technology and medical skills been higher. But human nature never changes, and it’s our human flaws as well as unforeseen environmental or natural disasters that can bring even a mighty civilization to its knees.
Besides being a fascinating study, history offers a useful guide for how to handle current or future events. Being prepared to handle crises (both personally and as a nation) such as hunger, loss of resources, and other catastrophes is never a bad thing.
But rather astonishingly, some people DO look upon this thoughtful regard for history as just that – a bad thing. History has shown that governments of even the freest nations eventually turn rogue, grow cancerously large, become increasingly paranoid and suspicious, begin to steal liberties from citizens, and eventually become tyrannical, oppressive, and mistrustful of anyone who seeks to recapture individual independence and freedom.
We are currently in that state.
Our nation has come to view those who prefer to NOT depend on the government as everything from lovable crackpots to domestic terrorists. This is shortsighted in the extreme, but that’s the nature of government and its useful idiots.
That is why I urge people to study history in conjunction with preparedness. Take a look at prior civilizations and note the nature of the calamities most likely to affect us, and think what you yourself can do to mitigate the possibilities.
Naturally, preparing in no way guarantees we can avoid calamities; it simply means we try our best to minimize the impact.
“You may still be inclined to dismiss this,” notes the Market Watch article. “But there were many more were laughing last November when this scary chart began circulating. Not as many are laughing now.”
Found at 90 miles: http://ninetymilesfromtyranny.blogspot.com/
Americans know deep inside that things are very dire indeed and getting worse by the second. Overwhelmingly, they no longer believe the economic numbers from the government. Lies – all lies and propaganda. Instead of the bread lines of the last Great Depression, we have EBT Cards, providing the hungry with food. For those who have now been unemployed for years in The Greatest Depression, it doesn’t cut it. Starvation and hunger are still the ever present resident for many. Large numbers of Americans have lost their homes. More than people want to concede live in their cars or on the streets. As the numbers grow, America pretends it just isn’t so, but nevertheless, we have entered a new age of want and need brought to us by Progressives and their neglect, corruption and lack of giving a damn. Welcome to the new age and it is about to get very, very real in the good ole’ USofA. Obamacare was the final trigger coupled with massive printing of money and redistribution of wealth, via Cloward and Piven. The kill shot will be Amnesty.
The IMF goes blunt on the global stage and no one notices:
Much of the Western world will require defaults, a savings tax and higher inflation to clear the way for recovery as debt levels reach a 200-year high, according to a new report by the International Monetary Fund.
The IMF working paper said debt burdens in developed nations have become extreme by any historical measure and will require a wave of haircuts, either negotiated 1930s-style write-offs or the standard mix of measures used by the IMF in its “toolkit” for emerging market blow-ups.
“The size of the problem suggests that restructurings will be needed, for example, in the periphery of Europe, far beyond anything discussed in public to this point,” said the paper, by Harvard professors Carmen Reinhart and Kenneth Rogoff.
The paper said policy elites in the West are still clinging to the illusion that rich countries are different from poorer regions and can therefore chip away at their debts with a blend of austerity cuts, growth, and tinkering (“forbearance”).
But the paper says this mantra borders on “collective amnesia” of European and US history, and is built on “overly optimistic” assumptions that risk doing far more damage to credibility in the end. It is causing the crisis to drag on, blocking a lasting solution. “This denial has led to policies that in some cases risk exacerbating the final costs,” it said.
While use of debt pooling in the eurozone can reduce the need for restructuring or defaults, it comes at the cost of higher burdens for northern taxpayers. This could drag the EMU core states into a recession and aggravate their own debt and ageing crises. The clear implication of the IMF paper is that Germany and the creditor core would do better to bite the bullet on big write-offs immediately rather than buying time with creeping debt mutualisation.
The paper says the Western debt burden is now so big that rich states will need same tonic of debt haircuts, higher inflation and financial repression – defined as an “opaque tax on savers” – as used in countless IMF rescues for emerging markets.
“The magnitude of the overall debt problem facing advanced economies today is difficult to overstate. The current central government debt in advanced economies is approaching a two-century high-water mark,” they said.
Read that very, very carefully. So much for Keynesian economic theory. There is no saving what we have wrought. We can no longer turn back or fix this monstrosity created by the greed of those we entrusted with the leadership of our governments. Waking up to the system is a bitch.
Pension funds will be raided, savings accounts levied, property seized… You only thought you owned that land, in reality, those with the greatest force in the end will take the land unless they are somehow defeated. But the price will be in blood and be high indeed. Interest rates will soar, as will food, gas and utilities as the spiral plays out. Because controls were put on a system that should not have been rigged, it will by necessity collapse. It is not self-healing, but it is self-rectifying. Look for defaults worldwide and the fall of the dollar. It is now not a question of if, but when. Prepare to have your systems blown.
You cannot expect things to get better when you have so many Progressive irons in the communist fire:
- Obamacare Rate Shock
- Higher Taxes
- Higher Interest Rates Mean Larger Debt Payments
- Government Benefit Cuts
- Wealth Confiscation
Tell me you don’t feel it in your bones – this is the transformation of America that Obama promised. We are in the midst of The Greatest Depression and none dare call it what it is. Up is down, black is white. We are told all is fine, the economy is recovering… we are doing better and are stronger than ever. In reality, we are destitute, our military prowess has been gutted and our national wealth has been redistributed, while the Marxists stomp on and jeer at our Constitution. 2014 is the year we fight and we better join forces and take back the Republican Party and get true conservatives elected – the Tea Party has roared to life and millions are preparing for the battle of a lifetime. An American Depression: Extreme Haircut Edition is unfolding in the once land of the free, home of the brave and our leaders are singing: “Let them eat cake!” Just say no to Weimar cake and French-style servitude.
From Trevor Loudon: http://www.trevorloudon.com/
Only 37? Surely you jest.
37 Reasons Why “The Economic Recovery Of 2013″ Is A Giant Lie If you assume that the labor force participation rate in the U.S. is at the long-term average, the unemployment rate in the United States would actually be 11.5 percent instead of 7 percent.
There has been absolutely no employment recovery. The percentage of Americans that are actually working has stayed between 58 and 59 percent for 51 months in a row. But most Americans don’t understand these things and they just take whatever the mainstream media tells them as the truth.
From AD: http://americandigest.org/
From RBA: http://redbloodedamerica.tumblr.com/
By David Catron on 9.23.13
Some actual facts to wash off the media muck thrown at you over the weekend.
If you began last Friday by scanning the web for interesting news items, you were hit by a tsunami of stories suggesting that the Obama administration wishes the Supreme Court to intervene in its legal battle with Hobby Lobby over that company’s refusal to comply with the HHS contraception mandate. Most of the major “news”outlets began their coverage with a rented AP report titled, “US Wants Supreme Court to Take Up Hobby Lobby Case,” and followed up with tendentious opinion pieces insinuating that the administration took this step to thwart a dark plot by Hobby Lobby to deny its employees birth control coverage.
In reality, the Obama administration “wants” the Supreme Court involved in this case just about as much as you want a root canal. It was forced to file an appeal with the high court because, last June, Hobby Lobby dealt the government’s lawyers a resounding defeat in a federal appeals court. To understand how, one must first understand what this lawsuit is really about. It does not concern, as the Los Angeles Times suggests, whether a corporation can have religious beliefs. The case isn’t even about contraception — Hobby Lobby’s employee insurance plans cover birth control. Hobby Lobby v. Sebelius is about religious liberty.
The First Amendment of the Constitution begins thus: “Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof…” The Hobby Lobby case has arrived on the steps of the Supreme Court because the 10th Circuit Court of Appeals agreed with the company’s owners that the HHS contraception mandate restricts the free exercise of their religion. Rejecting the administration’s arguments to the contrary, the majority wrote, “[W]e cannot see why an individual operating for-profit retains Free Exercise protections but an individual who incorporates… does not.”
Read the entire article at: The American Spectator – http://spectator.org/archives/2013/09/23/the-truth-about-hobby-lobby-an
I remember when a fast food chicken sandwich restaurant became, out of nowhere, a hotly contested battle ground in the gay marriage debate. Everything was fine, everything was normal, everybody was eating chicken, until suddenly liberal activist organizations were encouraging gay men have heated make out sessions at their local Chick-fil-A, and Christians were countering with a Bible in one hand and waffle fries in the other. Boycotts, rallies, Appreciation Days, demonstrations, fundraisers — it was war. Personally, I have plenty of opinions on the topic of gay marriage, but on the topic of Chick-fil-A all I ever cared about was their chicken.
Millions of people cried out, “We must win Chick-fil-A to our side!”
And I courageously stood and shouted, “Can I get a number one with a Diet Coke?”
I didn’t think political discourse could get any more absurd than the Gays vs. Chicken War of 2012, but that was before the CEO of Starbucks said the word “gun” and the whole world exploded.
If you missed the “controversy,” it all started when Starbucks announced a few months ago that the guns policy in its stores would follow local laws and ordinances. If you live in a state where open carry is allowed, you can open carry in your local Starbucks. If you don’t, then you can’t. Simple. Sensible. Neutral. Cool, let’s all move on with our lives, right? Nope. Sorry, this is America and we’re bored, so we’re going to turn this thing into a crisis just for the hell of it. Some gun rights activists and gun owners (note, I said “some”) responded by marching into their neighborhood Starbucks toting ARs, AKs, and shotguns. They gathered in large groups, all packing heat as openly and visibly as possible, and took pictures to post on Twitter and Facebook. They wanted to “prove a point,” they claimed. But nobody understood the point they were trying to make, and I’m not sure they did, either.
I received several emails from people proud to show me photos of their “demonstration.” Invariably, it was an image of some guy flashing his holstered firearm in the middle of the store, while a lady in the background looks on with an expression of concern and befuddlement. My response was always the same: the store let you carry that inside, why are you punishing them for it? Yes, perhaps other patrons shouldn’t be worried just because half of the people in the store are armed to the teeth, but they will be worried. And you know it. So your act of “appreciation” is to hurt the business you claim to appreciate by abusing the thing you appreciate them for? I’m confused. And befuddled. Actually, I guess I can relate to that woman in the photo.
This is like if I permit you to wear shoes in my house, so you, rejoicing my leniency, celebrate by jumping into a mud puddle, stomping on my carpet and putting your feet up on my coffee table. Congratulations, I’ve just amended my shoe policy, and it’s all your fault.
I love gun rights, I’m a humongous Second Amendment advocate, and I have consistently and passionately used whatever little voice I have to advocate for the rights of gun owners, but this — this is not activism. This is a disservice to the gun rights movement. Responsible gun owners don’t parade around coffee shops with their shotguns just so they can post a photo of it on social media. Responsible gun owners aren’t impressed with themselves; they see the gun as a tool — not a toy, not a fashion accessory, not a “point,” not an excuse to cause a scene — and they carry that tool with a sense of maturity and discipline. I live in Kentucky. People open carry here all of the time. It doesn’t bother me in the slightest and I would fight tooth and nail against any politician who would try to abridge that right. But carting a bunch of firearms into a Starbucks just to prove you can? Come on. There are real battles to be fought, but they don’t involve mocha lattes and overpriced frappucinos.
Starbucks had a reasonable and neutral gun policy, but a select group of attention seekers wanted to force the company to choose a side. Starbucks, for some reason, has to be “pro-” or “anti-.” So a few days ago the CEO issued a statement ASKING his customers to refrain from bringing guns into his stores. He said people with guns will not be kicked out, and they will not be denied service, but he would like everyone to voluntarily respect the rule. Of course this announcement of a voluntary business policy was greeted with accusations of “discrimination,” and cries of “rights” being violated.
I don’t even like Starbucks; I know auto parts shops that have better complimentary cups of Joe. I’m also aware that the corporation has some left-leaning tendencies and, stereotypically, attracts a more liberal clientele. But I’m not going to act like they’ve done something wrong here just because I’m “supposed” to be on the other “side.” There doesn’t need to be a side. The gun rights fight doesn’t belong in a Starbucks due to the fact that, frankly,YOU DON’T HAVE GUN RIGHTS IN A STARBUCKS. Do you know why? Because it’s a private establishment and they can make whatever rules they like. They decided that it doesn’t particularly help their business to have customers in their stores, drinking coffee with a rifle propped up against the table, so they changed their rules accordingly. They have the right to do that, you have the right to go elsewhere. You don’t have the right to make your own rules for their private business.
Indeed, the only “rights” at stake here are the rights of private business and private property. I wish more than a few people in this country actually gave a damn about those types of rights. They aren’t as sexy or as flashy, but they are necessary. In fact, none of your other rights mean anything if you don’t possess the basic entitlement to govern your own businesses and set the rules on your own property. I’ve seen folks on the internet declare their intention to open carry inside a Starbucks regardless of the rules. Again, these are not activists. The gun rights movement should not embrace them. People who believe in liberty, believe in liberty it in all of its forms. They wouldn’t set their Second Amendment rights against another’s private property rights. They understand that our rights are in harmony, not in competition. In other words, the issue over at Starbucks isn’t gun rights vs. property rights, it’s just anti-property rights vs. pro-property rights. Gun rights have nothing to do with the situation.
Here’s how this works. A business owner comes to the marketplace and says: “Hey everyone. I’ve got this business I started. We make coffee, it tastes like you’re licking the pavement on a hot day, it’s fantastic. Anyway, here are the prices, and here are the rules, and here are our hours of operation, and if this all seems attractive to you, please come on in and let’s do business. Otherwise, you’re free to get your black tar coffee elsewhere.”
Now, we don’t get to counter with our own rules, and our own prices, and our own hours of operation. We don’t get to say, “you close at 9 but I feel like coming at 10,” anymore than we can say, “you don’t want guns in your store but I’m bringing one anyway.” We can go with their program, or we can go somewhere else. That’s it. End of discussion. We can impact the prices and the rules within the context of the free marketplace, but we don’t get to claim joint ownership of the enterprise and then complain that our rights are violated because we disagree with how they choose to do business. People who still choose to bring their weapons into Starbucks are choosing to undermine private property rights. They’re just as bad as the gun grabbers in DC, and perhaps even more hypocritical.
As a secondary concern, I’m really getting quite sick of this new American pastime where we troll business owners and force them to “have a position” on the divisive issues of the day, then promptly punish them no matter what they say. Some businesses choose to wade into ideological waters, but many are pushed into it. It’s ridiculous. Why can’t coffee and chicken be apolitical? Why does everything have to be a controversy?
Am I only supposed to do business with people who share my ideology?
What’s next? Are we going to demand that the guy who owns Radio Shack publicly endorse a side in the euthanasia debate? Then, if he’s against it, we can stick it to him by staging assisted suicides in the store, right next to the cell phone chargers. Hey, next time you stop to buy a drink from a little kid’s lemonade stand, insist that the child explain his views on campaign finance reform. Then, if he says the wrong thing, dump the lemonade on his head and stage demonstrations outside of his mom’s house until they’re forced to move out of the neighborhood.
This “controversy” is another example of the media presenting a distraction to the public, telling them “the sides” and sitting back while millions of Americans fall in line and react exactly how they were told they should. Of course plenty of “conservative” talk radio hosts jumped on this Starbucks Outrage Bandwagon because it’s easy and it will get the phones ringing. I tried to present a more nuanced and objective perspective and now I’ve got listeners emailing accusing me of being a “liberal” and a “traitor.”
Welcome to America. Now get in your preassigned box and toe the line. Don’t worry about thinking for yourself, we’ll do that for you.
**UPDATE: Many people have commented or emailed to challenge the consistency of my private property stance. They asked whether I’ve spoken out about the Christian business owners who have been persecuted and, in some cases, actually prosecuted for holding a Biblical view of marriage and sexuality. For the record, I’ve been all over this issue. I wrote about it recently, you can find it here: http://themattwalshblog.com/2013/08/16/youre-an-inbred-white-trash-hick-and-i-say-that-because-i-value-tolerance/
We have an Orwellian “Fairness Ordinance” here in Lexington, KY, that has led to a Christian businessman being charged with a “human rights” violation for declining to produce t-shirts advertising a gay rights parade. I’ve been one of the loudest voices against this particular unconstitutional atrocity, and many like it. You may disagree with me (a lot of people do) but I’m not inconsistent. Thanks for reading.
OTTAWA – The energy infrastructure giant behind the Keystone XL pipeline says U.S. President Barack Obama has his facts wrong on the project.
Calgary-based TransCanada is rejecting comments Obama made to the New York Times over the weekend, with the president raising doubts over the project’s employment potential.
On Sunday, TransCanada spokesman Shawn Howard said, “We have and can factually rebut each point the President has made.”
From Blazing Cat Fur: http://blazingcatfur.blogspot.com/
From January 1952 to Today-
Jerome Cavanagh (D) Roman Gribbs (D) Coleman Young (D) Dennis Archer (D) Kwame Kilpatrick (D – Crook) Kenneth Cockrel, Jr. (D) Dave Bing (D)
Take a bow, Democrats.
USA Today reported:
The city of Detroit filed for Chapter 9 bankruptcy protection in federal court Thursday, laying the groundwork for a historic effort to bail out a city that is sinking under billions of dollars in debt and decades of mismanagement, population flight and loss of tax revenue.
The bankruptcy filing makes Detroit the largest city in U.S. history to do so.
The filing begins a 30- to 90-day period that will determine whether the city is eligible for Chapter 9 protection and define how many claimants might compete for the limited settlement resources that Detroit has to offer. The bankruptcy petition would seek protection from creditors and unions who are renegotiating $18.5 billion in debt and other liabilities.
Detroit Emergency Manager Kevyn Orr, who in June released a plan to restructure the city’s debt and obligations that would leave many creditors with much less than they are owed, has warned consistently that if negotiations hit an impasse, he would move quickly to seek bankruptcy protection.
Thank you, Democrats. You own this.
From The Daley Gator: http://thedaleygator.wordpress.com/
Jessica Kennedy and Laura Kray, working out at UCLA Berkeley, are concerned about the underrepresentation of women in business schools and across corporate boardrooms in the US. This is a “problem” that must be “fixed”. Women don’t particularly want to be in biz school or stuck in a boardroom? Men would much rather be there? Too bad.
We need equality, folks! And the only acceptable definition of that term is girl-drones and boy-drones doing the EXACT SAME SHIT AT ALL TIMES EVERYWHERE. Your personal interests or inclinations are irrelevant. You will be assimilated.
Ok, all snarkiness aside, there IS a gender disparity in business, both schools and practice, and whether that is a problem that needs fixing or not, it’s always interesting to explore the reasons behind such disparities. So here is the hypothesis Jessica and Laura were testing:
Women don’t like business because they associate business with immorality and that’s unacceptable to their superior lady ethics.
Only when jobs involved making ethical compromises did women report less interest in the jobs than men. Women’s moral reservations mediated these effects. In Study 3, we found that women implicitly associated business with immorality more than men did.
Let’s start with the basic assumptions underlying the whole study:
Business = immoral
Men = business
Men = immoral
Or, in the alternate:
Women = moral
Woman ≠ business
Business ≠ moral
Either way, we begin with the assumption that WOMEN ARE MORE MORAL than men, and that this morality shows up in their reluctance to dirty their pretty little hands with the ickiness of business decision-making.
Well, the Decalog, Bushido, Mosiac, Buddist and Koranic codes were all written by women, no? Most of our laws and statutes governing morality and ethics were written by women, no? Most of the books and tracts and declarations and treatises on ethics and morality over the long history of our culture were written by women, no?
Oh, oops. No. No they weren’t. Which is not to say the ladies haven’t written some smoking books over the years. Hello, Jane Austen!
But women in general have not concerned themselves overly much with morality and ethics at the universal level. At the personal level? Oh hell yeah. Check out any junior high, anywhere, in any city, any country, anywhere on the planet.
Ladies be calling each other out on morals all the time! But codifying those morals into laws that apply equally to everyone, everywhere? Yeah, not so much.
But okay, let’s accept, just for shits and giggles, that women ARE more moral than men. According to Jessica and Laura, when women are confronted with tough decisions, like whether or not to make a cancer drug that contains a cheaper ingredient that will A) save a lot of people because it’s affordable and accessible; and, B) kill a few people because a cheaper ingredient was used, the ladies are incredibly reluctant to make the decision.
You see, at the end of the day, someone is going to have to make that decision, and when the chips fall, someone will also have to own that decision. A truly brilliant business leader will have the power to make decisions, and always have some starry-eyed lackey to blame afterwards.
Oh, boo hoo! That’s so unfair.
Welcome to life, cupcake. You don’t get what you deserve. You get what you negotiate.
Here’s another issue that sets the Moral Lady head aspinning: child labor. What if that shitty cancer drug is being made in a factory staffed largely by children? Another decision the ladies DO NOT WANT TO MAKE.
Now, having grown up on a farm where we produced virtually all of our own food, I have a very different take on the issue of child labor. You see, the way food works is that you mix some cow shit and dirt together and plant seeds and then water the little sproutlings and rip out all the bad little sproutlings that aren’t supposed to be there and the sproutlings grow into food and ripen under the sun and then ALL THE FOOD IS READY AT ONCE.
Seriously. It’s true. You have days and days and days with NO TOMATOES and then all the fucking tomatoes turn red on the same day and holy shit, what are we gonna do with all these tomatoes?
Pick them, cook them, puree them, can them.
There was no way my mom and dad could do all that by themselves, so we all pitched in. Yep, we were child laborers. All four of us. And not just us! Every kid in the county! That’s farm life, and although my parents were shitty and violent and stupid, the farming aspect of my childhood was absolutely wonderful. My fondest memories are of churning butter and baking bread and harvesting potatoes and there is nothing quite like the enormous satisfaction of knowing that you are living off the fruits of your own labor. Popping the lid off a jar of tomatoes YOU planted, YOU watered, YOU harvested, YOU cooked, YOU canned – there is nothing quite like it.
There is also nothing quite like a jar that wasn’t perfectly clean when you sealed it. The bacteria grows and grows and grows and then WHAM – the whole fucking jar explodes! Tomato grenade!
Child labor is, and has been, a fact of life for almost all of human history. Our own culture and economy evolved on the backs of child labor. Textile mills and coal pits and tanneries and chimney sweeps. We built our city with the help of kids.
The idea that childhood is a special time of life and that children should be protected from the adult world of production and labor is very, very new. And it doesn’t apply in most of the still developing world. Mr. JB and I spent our first year of married life in a rapidly developing city in China, and we have seen modern child labor up close.
Is it pretty? Not always. Lots of little shops and restaurants are family-owned businesses, and there is no question that the kids help out. While China has a technical “one-child” policy, the reality is that only people with bank accounts and tax returns can effectively be policed vis-à-vis that policy. The truly poor and the truly rich (who can pay the fines) very often have more than one child.
And those children work. Especially since only one of them, in the case of poor folks, can go to school. Is it fair? Nope. But it’s life. And that one kid who makes it through school and college and into the emerging middle class workforce takes the whole family along with him or her. The whole family rises, just as the whole family succeeded in North America, when they all worked together.
It’s the height of hypocrisy for the rich Western world to deny the developing world the same advantages they had while building their own economy. Our economy wouldn’t exist without the tremendous wealth and opportunity provided by agricultural sector. An abundance of FOOD is what made the Western world possible. It is the basis of all our success and it would not have happened without the labor of children.
Let’s go back to the idea that women are more concerned with making moral decisions in the business world. As you can see from Jessica and Laura’s work, women have no problem making decisions. They just don’t like making TOUGH decisions.
So, you’re an executive at a pharmaceutical company and you have a choice to make: produce a low-cost, accessible cancer drug that uses a cheaper ingredient that might actually kill some patients, OR produce a higher cost, less accessible drug that uses a more expensive ingredient, but that is UNLIKELY to kill any patients.
Except for all the patients who couldn’t afford the drug in the first place.
The executive has more than just one set of constraints. His first job is to ensure that the company (and by extension, all the workers) continue to exist. He needs to take care of his people. His second job is to make sure he is earning some PROFITS. That is HOW the company will survive. His third job is to produce a product that is safe, effective and sellable. And he needs to do all that with a pack of competitors snapping at his heels, ready to knock him off the top of the pile and take the lead market position.
It’s a tough call.
And that is where codified morals and ethics and laws come into play. If the FDA has approved the cheaper ingredient, then the executive would be foolish not to use it. If he doesn’t, someone else will. And that cheaper, more accessible drug will kick his more “ethical” drug onto the dirtpile of failed enterprise.
He will be out of a job and so will all his workers.
Sooner or later, someone will notice that, oh shit, that cheaper ingredient is actually KILLLING people, and the FDA will rescind its approval. Now EVERYONE has to use the more expensive ingredient. The playing field is levelled.
That’s how it works.
But knowing the rules of the game doesn’t make the game any easier to play. There is a distinct possibility that the executive will be held responsible for choosing the cheaper ingredient when he KNEW it could be lethal for some patients. He might have to face some music for that decision, and that’s where the ladies quaver.
Laura and Jessica aren’t terribly interested in the consequences of valuing morality and ethics more highly than good business decisions that keep people in their jobs and our whole society moving forward. Not surprising for some ivory tower eggheads who have probably never done a real day’s work in their lives. They would like to see some ethics training put into place, so that lady executives, when confronting the above situation, can actually refuse to use the cheaper ingredient.
And in doing so, run the risk that they destroy the whole business. Good plan.
But at least you won’t have to own your decision.
One promising conclusion from this research is that if more women do enter the business world, standards of ethics may evolve. “We need to see more women at the top,” Kray says. “I think that will change the culture of corporate America.”
Oh, you got that right. It will tie the hands of corporate North America. Boardrooms stuffed with chicken-shit ladies too afraid to make tough decisions and take responsibility for rational actions carried out in a context that has mechanisms to ensure, over time, that better and better decisions are made.
But hey, let’s not let the world’s most successful society and economy, the one that has delivered untold riches to the entire planet, keep on trucking. Let’s make everything pleasant and kind and fair and maybe put some special troughs out in the parking lot to feed our unicorns their sparkle dust.
Just be careful not to step in a big steaming pile of unicorn shit on your way to the corner office ladies.
Your superior moral decisions already stink. No need to make it worse.
Lots of love,
JB at Judgy Bitch: http://judgybitch.com/
As originally posted on: FSK’s Guide to Reality
September 13, 2007
I’ve been reading a bit about the philosophy of agorism, and it seems attractive to me.
The philosophy can be summarized in one sentence: “I want to do useful work, get paid, and not have to report it for taxation, confiscation, and regulation.”
Let’s start with a specific example. Suppose you don’t like the US government’s policy of aggressive wars in Iraq and other countries. You can vote, but voting is ineffective due to various corruptions in the system. The income tax means that the government confiscates 50%-95% or more of everything I produce. Productive work supports the government, even if I disapprove of its activities. I am unable to do any useful economic activity without supporting things I find objectionable.
The government’s policy is completely ridiculous. Citizens may not perform work without reporting it for taxation, confiscation, and regulation. I object to that requirement.
The fundamental goal of an agorist revolution is the creation of wealth that the red market can’t confiscate. This is the only type of revolution that has a legitimate chance of succeeding, because the participants would be profiting and undermining the government at the same time. The red market derives its power by leeching wealth. Creating unconfiscatable wealth undermines the red market’s power.
Currently, the only type of grey market work available is low-paid unskilled labor. The agorist wants to create a grey market for highly-skilled, high-paid labor.
The agorist says that all governments are inherently illegitimate. A government is merely a group of people conspiring to take away my property and my rights. Government employees benefit handsomely from this arrangement, because the salaries and pensions they receive are higher than they would get in the private sector. The people who control large corporations benefit from this arrangement, because their market position is frequently endorsed by the government and its regulations. Wealthy campaign donors love the government-granted perks they get. The Federal Reserve’s policy of inflation benefits the financial industry at the expense of everyone else. Government is merely a group of people conspiring to confiscate the wealth of the productive part of society.
The agorist says that all the functions of government could be more effectively performed by the free market. You can have a private justice system. You can have a private police force. Everyone knows that government is up for sale, manipulated by the wealthy. Why not do away with the pretense completely? Let’s privatize everything.
Why should the government have a monopoly on violence and justice?
For example, instead of paying a 50% income tax, maybe I can pay 2%, or even a fixed fee, to a private police force who will insure my property is protected. The police force would utilize a private justice system, to make sure that they don’t use force needlessly. If two people have a conflict and are subscribing to different police forces, then the incentive is for the businesses to resolve the dispute peacefully rather than violently. If a private police force was misbehaving, then it would be perfectly acceptable for people to start seeking alternate vendors. Some people might pay for protection by several police forces simultaneously, to prevent monopolies from forming.
Suppose there’s no intrinsic legitimacy given to the government. It’s perfectly legitimate to use force to defend yourself, if someone attempts to confiscate your property. Imagine what would happen if tax collectors were met with armed resistance from everyone? What would happen if everyone ceased voluntary compliance with the taxation system?
Right now, the vast majority of people are compliant with the taxation system. That means that red market workers can afford to expend vast resources tracking down violators. It needs to make sure that violators are caught so that the penalty for tax avoidance makes the risk unattractive. However, with taxation rates of 50%-95% or more, tax avoidance starts to be attractive, if it can be done with relatively low risk. I’m not just counting direct noticeable taxes. There are hidden taxes and regulations, which also cost money.
What’s the real risk of getting caught? It’s hard to say. You only hear about the people who got caught. The people who get away with it don’t come forward and admit it, do they? There’s no source of reliable statistics, so you can’t quantify the risk.
How would you make the transition to an agorist economy? There is a problem, because people aren’t going to want to give up their government-granted perks. They are going to resist change as much as they can. People are reluctant to avoid paying taxes and following government rules. However, if there’s a profit to be made, people might be convinced.
The key is to develop a system that allows people to perform productive economic activity without reporting it for taxation and confiscation. The Internet is a useful tool for this, because it would allow people to share information efficiently. It wouldn’t be too hard to write software that would facilitate an agorist economy.
The standard financial system is designed to frustrate attempts to perform economic activity without reporting it for confiscation. Transactions larger than $10,000 must be reported to the government. Repeated small transactions are also reportable. Besides, who wants to trade with worthless paper money? An alternate financial system would need to be developed. This way, transactions can be performed without reporting them to the government. People could still settle transactions with paper money or silver or gold, if they really wanted to. I think the Social Credit Monetary System is the best solution.
Whatever system is developed would need to be as decentralized as possible. As much as possible, information should NOT be stored on a centralized server. A centralized server represents an attack point. As much as possible, communications should be encrypted.
Actually, some information needs to be public. A database listing who trusted whom would need to be public and shared to be useful. On the other hand, maybe a trust database should be private, because it would represent a list of people for red market agents to harass. All transaction records should be private. Ideally, transaction records should be destroyed when completed, so red market agents can’t confiscate them.
There would be an important check that ensures people follow the rules. Just like in the BitTorrent economy, any user who misbehaves would be banned and denied a valuable resource. New users would be admitted only if another user vouched for their trustworthiness. The distributed nature would make it hard to shut it down, even if spies did infiltrate it.
Suppose there was an effective system for facilitating productive work without reporting it for taxation. With such high confiscatory taxation rates, there would be a huge incentive for people to work under such a system. The goal would be to avoid government detection as much as possible. As more productive people started working in this grey market economy, the power of government would decrease.
If the system was sufficiently distributed, there would be low risk even if you got caught. Red market agents might find out about some of your transactions, but not all of them. You could pay back taxes and fines on some of the transactions, and still come out ahead overall.
An agorist grey-market economy would also benefit because it could avoid compliance with all government regulations. It would not need to spend productive effort on regulation compliance. Its only wasted effort would be that spent avoiding detection by red market enforcers.
Ideally, an agorist economy could offer lower prices and higher wages, compared to the white market or pink market. The ability to avoid taxation and regulation should cut expenses by 50% to 95% or more.
Some pink market practitioners have their salaries artificially raised by the red market. For example, doctors need to waste a lot of money on education and spend years training. The supply of doctors is restricted by the red market. A license is required to practice medicine. A grey market doctor would not need the licensing requirement. He would only need to spend a year or two learning what is really needed to help his patients. An agorist doctor would not earn as much as a pink market doctor, but he would save the hassle of years of medical school and a residency. An agorist doctor would not have to deal with HMOs, Medicare, and insurance companies. The free market would help people decide which doctors are good and which are no good; people will share information about their experiences. Currently, the supply of doctors is artificially restricted, so there’s no mechanism for incompetent doctors to be removed from the market. The agorist doctor won’t get busted for “practicing medicine without a license” if his customers don’t turn him in to the red market. Besides, patients can always go to a pink market hospital if they have a problem their agorist doctor can’t handle. Eventually, the agorist hospitals would be better than the pink market hospitals.
Switching to a grey market agorist economy might be necessary for survival. A hyperinflationary crash of the dollar could happen at any time. A substantial amount of untaxed economic activity would facilitate such a collapse.
It probably is not possible for a person to satisfy all their needs in the grey market. However, the larger percentage of their economic activity that they can hide, the more they will benefit. If someone operated both a white-market business and a grey-market business, that would facilitate concealing their grey-market activities. On the other hand, you might be better off not having any official business at all. The IRS frequently cracks down on small business owners; registering yourself as a business owner might just be making yourself a target.
The red market derives its power solely by leeching off the productive members of society. Without them to push around, its power would rapidly collapse.
An agorist revolution has a legitimate chance of succeeding. The agorist market participants would be profiting from their activity. They would be undermining the government and making a profit at the same time. They would profit more than white market participants, because they would be unencumbered by taxes, inflation, and regulations. In that sense, once an agorist movement gets started, it would be self-sustaining. With a leaderless organization structure, it could not be easily shut down by infiltration or force. The agorist needs tools for effective operation, plus a certain number of participants.
An agorist revolution would probably be a peaceful one. Agorist market participants can hide their activity. They would appear to be normal, productive, nonviolent citizens. Agorist market participants would tend to resolve their differences peacefully, both to avoid the attention of red market enforcers, and because non-initiation of violence is part of the philosophy. By the time the agorist economy is large enough to be noticed by red market enforcers, it would have viable systems for competing and replacing government institutions. The agorist market would step in smoothly as the government loses power. The violence would come from red market participants, trying to crack down to preserve their position. However, a large number of red market workers might simultaneously be employed by agorist protection agencies. Typically, corporations infiltrate government by subverting Congress and the President. An agorist movement would infiltrate government by subverting the low-level line workers.
An agorist revolution, once started, would be self-sustaining. The participants would be profiting from their actions.
A lot of websites I read are philosophizing and speculating. I am ready to start writing tools and start using them. I would like to be a participant in an agorist economy, if only I knew other people to trade with! My primary skill is writing software. That’s the skill I’d be offering in trade. Initially, I’ll just write the code I think is needed and release it into the public domain.
Summarizing, I want to do productive work, get paid for it, and not have to report it for taxation and confiscation.
Posted by Leslie Eastman Monday, March 4, 2013 at 8:30am
Back in the early 2000′s, the Enron scandal lead to California’s rolling blackouts.
As a result, as an environmental health and safety specialist, I began including information on handing power outages into company safety manuals.
Now, thanks to “Green Energy”, it looks like I am going to have to revamp those sections. Wayne Lusvardi of Cal Watchdog has the details:
At a special meeting of California energy companies and regulators held Feb. 26, Todd Strauss of Pacific Gas & Electric saw the possibility of state power blackouts emerging in 2013 to 2015. The reason is that it has suddenly dawned on state power regulators that green power has resulted in a precarious lack of system flexibility in the state’s power grid.
Said Steve Berberich, the head of the California Independent System Operator, “The problem is we have a system now that needs flexibility, not capacity.”
The blackouts during the the California electricity crisis of 2000-01 were caused by a lack of sufficient energy capacity. But now, what experts at Feb. 26 meeting agreed is that any future state energy crisis likely will come from lack of system flexibility. The diminishing flexibility is a result of the state’s 2011 mandate, signed by Gov. Jerry Brown, that 33 percent of all energy must be from green power sources by 2020.
Lusvardi discusses what a loss of system flexibility means to California’s energy grid:
What flexibility means is the need for more power plants with the capability to ramp power up or down quickly to respond to vacillations in green power when the wind doesn’t blow or the sun doesn’t shine. Coal power plants cannot typically respond fast enough to provide backup power. So this means that greater reliance on natural gas-fired power plants.
The future problem for California is that it does not have the right mix of types of power plants and new environmental regulations are forcing either closure or expensive upgrades to its coastal power plants that rely on ocean water for cooling steam generators.
And since the green-backed politicos in this state frown upon “brown energy”, solutions that enhance flexibility are unlikely to be implemented.
However, this is not the only area in which “green energy” has failed to perform. In his 5-part series on “California in Crisis“, Washington Examiner Senior Editorial Writer Conn Carrol notes that the green industry has been a jobs bust.
But all these new green energy programs must at least be creating thousands of new green jobs,…
From Legal Insurrection: http://legalinsurrection.com/
National Black Chamber of Commerce CEO: Obama policies are “borderline Communist”
By: John Hayward
2/27/2013 10:19 AM
Alford attributes Obama’s early appeal to charisma and, frankly, a good deal of racial solidarity, with voters from various minority groups seeing Obama as an avatar of their own hopes and dreams. He sees that appeal as naive after watching Obama campaign incessantly for years, while allowing the national economy to lie fallow, or imposing his agenda at a steep cost to our general prosperity.
“He’s spending, spending, spending,” said Alford. ”That’s the problem. He wants to tax, tax, tax… yet the irony of it is, he dogs successful people, he says they’re bad, rich is evil. But yet he’s courting the rich on his knees, to come and give him some money, so he can use it for whatever reason, I don’t know. He’s turned out… I don’t know what he’s planning for us.”
Alford compared Obama’s overwhelming support from the black community to the unconditional support a troubled family member might receive from parents and siblings… support which enables continued bad behavior. ”We gotta wake up, slap ourselves and wake up,” he said. ”This is America, and everybody is involved in this. If our children are hurting, it’s our responsibility to find someone who understands that pain – ‘feels it,’ like Bill Clinton would say. This guy doesn’t feel it. In fact, he issues a lot of that pain, with a smile.”
He understands that phrases like “borderline Communist” are heavily freighted, but stands by his use of the term. ”It’s so anti-capitalistic, this distribution of wealth,” Alford explained. ”That, to me, that says it all. He wants to re-distribute wealth, take money that was honestly earned by people who struggled, and suffered, and paid the price to win that money… he wants to take it from them, and give it to people who don’t have to do a thing. It’s the will of the State to oversee everyone.” Just for good measure, he went on to compare the Obama-friendly American media to Soviet propaganda.
While certainly contentious – one cannot deploy worlds like “communist” without setting off some fireworks – it is useful to consider the current conflict in terms of capitalism versus its adversaries. Obama-style government presents itself as a modification of capitalism – it’s more fair, equitable, compassionate, smarter, etc. but he would dispute Alford’s accusation that he has turned against it. But how much can the pure, practical expression of liberty be “modified” before it’s not really capitalism any more? And what are the proper terms for the ideologies historically aligned against it?
Alford concluded by deriding the supposedly agonizing 2.3 percent sequestration spending cuts as “peanuts,” noting that private-sector CEOs would be delighted if the worst thing they had to confront was such a tiny budget cut. Of course, that’s not the worst thing our unsustainable federal government must confront; they’re only acting like it is. And if they choke on the peanuts, they’ll never be able to handle the main course of fiscal restraint.
The Obama administration’s Equal Employment Opportunity Commission says it should be a federal crime to refuse to hire ex-convicts – and threatens to sue businesses that don’t employ criminals.
In April the EEOC unveiled its “Enforcement Guidance on the Consideration of Arrest and Conviction Records,” which declares that “criminal record exclusions have a disparate impact based on race and national origin.”
The impetus for this “guidance” is that black men are nearly seven times more likely than white men to serve time in prison, and therefore refusals to hire convicts disproportionally impact blacks, according to a Wall Street Journal opinion piece by James Bovard, a libertarian author and lecturer whose books include “Freedom in Chains: The Rise of the State and the Demise of the Citizen.”
Most businesses perform background checks on potential employees, but the EEOC frowns on these checks and “creates legal tripwires that could spark federal lawsuits,” Bovard observes.
An EEOC commissioner who opposed the new policy, Constance Baker, said in April that the new guidelines will scare businesses from conducting background checks.
Reason: If a check does disclose a criminal offense, the EEOC expects a firm to do an “individual assessment” that will have to prove that the company has a “business necessity” not to hire the ex-convict. If the firm does not do the intricate assessment, it could be found guilty of “race discrimination” if it hires a law-abiding applicant over one with convictions.
Bovard points out that the “biggest bombshell” in the new guidelines is that businesses complying with state or local laws requiring background checks can still be sued by the EEOC.
That came to light when the EEOC took action against G4S Secure Solutions, which provides guards for nuclear power plants and other sensitive sites, for refusing to hire a twice-convicted thief as a security guard – even though Pennsylvania state law forbids hiring people with felony convictions as security officers.
Bovard quotes Todd McCracken of the National Small Business Association: “State and federal courts will allow potentially devastating tort lawsuits against businesses that hire felons who commit crimes at the workplace or in customers’ homes. Yet the EEOC is threatening to launch lawsuits if they do not hire those same felons.”
Bovard concludes: “Americans can treat ex-offenders humanely without giving them legal advantages over similar individuals without criminal records.”
From The Daley Gator: http://thedaleygator.wordpress.com/
WASHINGTON (BHN) – President Obama’s State of the Union speech is being credited with causing a large number of suicides across the country last night.
Authorities believe many Americans were anxiously looking forward to the President’s plans for reversing the nation’s almost-inevitable economic collapse, only to hear his strategy is the same as his first term’s – spending huge amounts of borrowed money on worthless “green” and temporary infrastructure projects.
In addition, proposed tax increases on business owners combined with raising the minimum wage and the implementation of Obamacare virtually guarantee depressed corporate growth and continued high unemployment for the foreseeable future – apparently too much for some to bear.
Most of the deceased were business owners.
From Big Hairy News: http://peacemoonbeam.typepad.com/bighairynews/
THE ECONOMY IS SO BAD:
I got a pre-declined credit card in the mail.
I ordered a burger at McDonald’s and the kid behind the counter
asked,”Can you afford fries with that?”
CEO’s are now playing miniature golf.
If the bank returns your check marked “Insufficient Funds,” you call
them and ask if they meant you or them.
Hot Wheels and Matchbox stocks are trading higher than GM.
McDonald’s is selling the 1/4 ouncer.
Parents in Beverly Hills fired their nannies and learned their
A truckload of Americans was caught sneaking into Mexico .
Dick Cheney took his stockbroker hunting.
Motel Six won’t leave the light on anymore.
The Mafia is laying off judges.
Exxon-Mobil laid off 25 Congressmen.
Congress says they are looking into this Bernard Madof scandal. Oh
Great! The guy who made $50 Billion disappear is being investigated by
the people who made $1.5 Trillion disappear!
I was so depressed last night thinking about the economy,
wars, jobs, my savings, Social Security, retirement funds, etc., I
called the Suicide Lifeline. I got a call center in Pakistan and when I
told them I was suicidal, they got all excited, and asked if I could
drive a truck.
Found this at Tea Party Community: https://www.teapartycommunity.com/
Obama Wants More Snow
A winter storm of epic proportions has pounded the northeast. The president’s solution: make it colder. That’s the message he sent during his second inaugural speech, and it’s what we’re going to hear in the State of the Union address on Tuesday.
Not that the president’s climate change proposals will actually work. Closing down a few coal-powered plants is not going to alter global temperatures. But it will please the environmental lobby and bring in contributions in advance of the 2014 congressional elections, which is more or less the point.
If the White House could alter the climate, the 2013 supersnow would argue for making it warmer, not colder. The storm has killed at least four, shut down commerce in four states, and wrought havoc on air travel nationwide.
The recent cold spell in the eastern U.S. has been accompanied by record cold in China, Europe, and other regions. Obviously, the earth’s climate is not getting dramatically warmer, as climate alarmists claim. While it is generally acknowledged that global temperatures have risen since 1850, more recent temperature readings have been less clear-cut, and future readings are unpredictable. In the centuries-long period before 1850 known as the Little Ice Age, global temperatures were the coldest in millennia.
The next century may well revert to that pattern of cooling — a prospect not to be desired. On balance, periods of climate cooling result in devastating crop failures, higher death rates, and lower standards of living. Warming, on the other hand, produces bumper crop yields, economic growth, improved health, and greater prosperity — especially for the world’s poor.
President Obama has never shown much concern for the world’s poor. Unlike President Bush, whose Millennium Project brought a measure of reform to developing nations, Obama has been willing to meet “without preconditions” with any corrupt tyrant, anytime and anywhere. The result has been no improvement in living standards or human rights among the world’s poorest citizens. Obama is more interested in rewarding green energy investors who just happen to be major contributors to the Democratic Party than he is in relieving suffering among the poor.
The president’s climate change policies certainly don’t do much for anyone, poor or not. After the failure of Solyndra and many other government-funded green energy companies, one would have thought that Obama had learned his lesson. But his second inaugural proposal was to double down on green energy — that is to say, continue shoveling out tens of billions of dollars to wealthy investors in exchange for campaign contributions. Even with continuing trillion-dollar deficits, Obama insists that government does “not have a spending problem.” A trillion dollars is nothing to this president as long as he can wring a billion dollars of contributions out of it.
The fact that all of this spending comes at the expense of ordinary Americans seems not to matter. At a point in the economic cycle when the economy should be expanding by more than 4%, estimates of GDP growth for 2013 are coming in at 2% or less. That lack of growth, and the lack of job-creation that accompanies it, has devastated working Americans. Proposed EPA regulations of existing coal-powered plants will, if implemented, result in a tax on all Americans, but one that disproportionately affects the poor and middle class. The same thing can be said for Obama’s radical plans to raise CAFE standards on passenger vehicles. Likewise for EPA regulation of oil and gas drilling and all the other misguided climate-related policies coming out of this administration. Ordinary citizens are paying a tax equal to 25% of their income — the effect of compounding wage losses of 3% annually over eight years of the Obama administration — just to fund the president’s green energy pay-to-play schemes.
The effect on the world’s poor is even greater. It is, in fact, a matter of life and death. Obama’s continuing support for corn ethanol mandates has raised global grain prices beyond what the world’s poorest citizens can afford. Quite literally, Obama has caused billions of poor people to go to bed hungry each night and millions to starve. Ironically, America’s first African-American president would rather collect cash contributions from the green energy lobby than save the life of a child starving in east Africa.
Global hunger is already a crisis, but if Obama really could lower global temperatures, as he claims to be able to do, hunger would become a catastrophe, and not just in east Africa. Fortunately, nothing any politician can do will change the course of the earth’s climate. Unfortunately, Obama doesn’t see this, or he doesn’t want to see it. And his actions are going to cause great harm, especially to the poor the world over.
What is truly disturbing is this president’s callousness toward the poor. One stroke of the pen could eliminate corn ethanol mandates, end biofuel boondoggles, and block EPA regulation of fossil fuels. As a result, the U.S. economy — and the global economy with it — would flourish, creating new wealth that would spread not just among America’s people, but among human beings everywhere.
Real reform of this kind would lower food and fuel costs globally, thereby relieving suffering for the world’s poor. Obama’s proposal to double down on green energy, on the other hand, will drive food and fuel costs even higher. Tens of millions of desperate human beings will die as a result of the president’s policies, and billions will suffer the agony of unending hunger. Does the president even care? Not as long as donations keep rolling in.
Jeffrey Folks is the author of many books on American culture, including Heartland of the Imagination (2011).
From American Thinker
Nothing to see here folks, totally sustainable.
(CNSNews.com) – According to projections from the Congressional Budget Office (CBO), entitlements and ObamaCare spending will comprise 53 percent of all federal spending over the coming decade, totaling $24.9 trillion.
In its updated Budget and Economic Outlook report released on Tuesday, the CBO projects that Social Security will account for $11.149 trillion in spending from 2014 to 2023 while federal health care entitlements, including Medicare, Medicaid, and ObamaCare, will spend $13.85 trillion. (That total includes TRICARE, CHIP, and “other” spending listed by the CBO under healthcare.)
ObamaCare’s insurance subsidies, exchange costs, and other spending are expected to cost the government $949 billion over the next 10 years. Medicare is expected cost $8.1 trillion while Medicaid is expected to cost $4.4 trillion.
Combined, these two entitlement categories (Social Security and all health care programs) will comprise 52.9 percent of the projected $47.2 trillion in total federal outlays from 2014 to 2023.
From Weasel Zippers: http://weaselzippers.us/
Prepare to be infuriated!
After a long legal battle Morningland Dairy in Missouri was raided by the government and their property destroyed this week.
On January 25, 2013, Morningland Dairy in Missouri was raided and over 36 tons of personal property was confiscated by the Missouri State Milk Board. In operation for over 30 years, Morningland Dairy has never received one complaint from a customer or any illness reported as a result of consuming their product.
Will your business be next?
From the video: Moriningland Dairy, a family business that has been in operation for over 30 years without a single complaint or report of any illness has ceased today. The over two year battle they’ve had with the Missouri Milk Board ended today with a raid and confiscation of over 250 thousand dollars of inventory seized by the state. As a result of the legal stipulations put on Morningland Dairy which are impossible to comply with they will no longer be able to produce their product.
The real crime they are being persecuted for is producing cheese with raw milk. Whether the state wants to admit it or not that is what their real charge is and that in itself is criminal.
This should be the shot heard ’round the rural world. What has been done to this family is a travesty of justice. Their livelihood has been destroyed. These are good people who ran an honest business. How much more tyranny will we tolerate before we tell the state, Enough!
Truth Farmer has more.
And, here’s another video of the raid.
More… Here are the contact numbers for the Missouri State Milk Board Staff.
From The Daley Gator: http://thedaleygator.wordpress.com/
By Alan Caruba
The Milledgeville area plant closing will cost more than 200 jobs. (The Telegraph)
A Georgia utilities company is closing 15 coal, oil and gas plants thanks to the latest Obama EPA regulations.
Georgia Power said on Monday it plans to seek approval from Georgia regulators to retire 15 coal-, oil- and natural gas-fired power plants in the state totaling 2,061 megawatts (MW) due primarily to the high cost of meeting stricter federal environmental regulations.
Over the past few years, U.S. generating companies have announced plans to shut about 40,000 MW of older coal-fired power plants as low natural gas prices have made it uneconomic for the generators to spend millions to upgrade the plants’ emissions systems to meet the latest federal and state environmental rules.
In a press release, Georgia Power, the biggest unit of U.S. power company Southern Co, said it wanted to shut units 3 and 4 at Plant Branch in Putnam County; units 1-5 at Plant Yates in Coweta County; units 1 and 2 at Plant McManus in Glynn County; units 1-4 at Plant Kraft in Chatham County; and units 2 and 3 at Boulevard in Chatham County.
The company said it plans to file its updated Integrated Resource Plan (IRP) with Georgia’s utility regulators on Jan. 31.
Units 3-4 at Branch, units 1-5 at Yates and units 1-3 at Kraft are coal-fired units. Kraft Unit 4 and Boulevard 2 and 3 are fired by natural gas and oil. McManus units 1-2 are oil-fired.
The company said it expects to ask to retire the units, other than Kraft 1-4, by the April 16, 2015, effective date of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) Mercury and Air Toxics (MATS) rule.
From The Daley Gator: http://thedaleygator.wordpress.com/
From Theo: http://www.theospark.net/
Victory is ours.
(WaPo) — At a news conference at the George W. Romney Building steps away from the state Capitol, Michigan Gov. Rick Snyder (R) announced that he’d signed the contentious right-to-work measures that have sparked protests in the state.
Before dozens of reporters assembled inside a conference room on the building’s second floor, Snyder defended his move as one that would lead to ”more jobs coming to Michigan.”
The two bills bar unions from making contracts that require employees to pay labor dues. One bill dealt with public sector unions, exempting firefighters and police officers. The other covered the private sector.
“I view this as simply trying to get this issue behind us,” Snyder said of his decision to sign the measures the day they were passed. “And I recognize that people are going to be upset. There’ll be a continuation. But hopefully what’s really going to transpire over time is you’re going to see workers making a choice and you’ll see unions being held more accountable and responsive.”
Outside the building, while the news conference was underway, some few dozen protesters were still chanting in the frigid evening air. A few yelled out, “F*** Snyder!” Some held signs reading, “Right to work? For less!” and “I’ve got a bone to pick with a dirty rat named Rick.”
From Weasel Zippers: http://weaselzippers.us/