July 31, 2012

A jolt is need, a nudge may be all we get

Picture via Commentarama
The U.S. economy is still faltering while the federal government is barreling along towards a national debt default. What is needed to fix the problem is a major course correction. A jolt to the existing order is needed. Unfortunately in today's political climate, anything more than a nudge is probably impossible. Even if it was successful, it might result in a civil war. But there is a way to make a nudge work.

July 30, 2012

Devoid of Success - A summary of Obama's accomplishments

Last week Bill Whittle summed up some 'highlights' of the Obama administration. The video is a great reminder for undecided voters, which is why I'm supporting it on the heels of my critique of president copycat.

Devoid of ideas, Obama resorts to plagiarism - again

Lost in the "you didn't build that" hoopla is a salient point about Obama - his ideas aren't his own. From the dogma of his anti-American mentors to his copying of speeches for the purpose of campaigning, the president is devoid of original ideas.  He is, the copycat president, or he is simply resorting to plagiarism because he isn't the brilliant, eloquent wonder liberals have believed him to be - all evidence to the contrary.

July 28, 2012

Saturday Learning Series - Mises and the Austrian School (1)

A 'new' Saturday Learning Series lecture series, an introduction to Mises and the Austrian school of economics. This was actually a lecture from 2005, made available on Youtube via Liberty In Our Time and presented by Hans-Hermann Hoppe and Jörg Guido Hülsmann. 

It's the first of an 11 part series, and well worth the watch if you are interested in understanding the conservative view of economics.

ZoNation: Liberals just don't get it

From Zonation, this speaks for itself (Zo clearly doesn't need anyone speaking for him).

You've heard Obama...

And now a word from the Republican National Committee.

July 27, 2012

Very small scale capitalism

This blog doesn't cost much to maintain, but it does cost a little.  Mostly the input on my part is time, not dollars.  Nevertheless, some costs do exist.  

If you like this blog, you can help out: please tell a friend about it , and/or click on an ad by any one of our sponsors.

Don't think of it as proving president Obama right by helping me succeed, think of it as a mutually beneficial relationship where you get insight (or perhaps entertainment) by reading and in return you can share back (how's that for liberal verbiage?)  by clicking a link or by spreading the word.  That's very small scale capitalism at work.

Thank you.

Olympics aren't supposed to be political

1972 served as a wake-up call for the world that the Olympics were not immune from terrorism, and politics.  If ever there was an event that showcased national pride without the intrusion of politics either internal or international politics, the Olympics should be it.  And for most people, that is indeed the case.  With the Olympic games set to open within the next 60 minutes or so, it serves us all well to disregard the politics that surround the games - the back and forth between Mitt Romney and a few British politicians, the risk of potential terrorist disruptions - and enjoy the spectacle of athletes giving it their all in their chosen sport.

July 25, 2012

Wedding Day

I haven't been posting much of late, as I've been pretty busy, even though I'm on vacation. The reason - my fiancee and I are getting married tomorrow morning. We aren't going on a honeymoon right away, so I'll be back posting soon.

July 21, 2012

Saturday Learning Series - an important critique

Last week I included another lecture by Ben Polak, Yale professor, on the implications of game theory as it relates to auctions. It was the final lecture in that series. Today, I'm not going to start on a new series yet. Instead, I'm going to share How Stuff Works' critique of The Story of Broke. This is an important critique that should be shown in schools.

July 20, 2012

Aurora Colorado tragedy is just that

Some things are apolitical and should remain so. Things seldom remain apolitical though. It didn't take long for politicians and the media to start chiming in on the shootings today in Aurora, Colorado.

This, from ABC, disguised though it may be, is still a political point made i a story where the emphasis should be entirely on the loss of life and the devastation, pain and suffering that the unfortunate victims and their families have endured and will endure.
But, ultimately violent acts by people intent on doing as much damage as they can and with easy access to firearms is unavoidable.
(emphasis added)

That is indeed a political statement. The implicit message is that maybe easy access to firearms is the problem. It ignores the fact that millions of Americans with 2nd Amendment protection and access to firearms behave entirely responsibly and are both crime-free and accident-free. This is not an issue of easy access to firearms, it is an issue of a deranged individual, not the only one in the country, who would have even with restricted access to firearms, still have committed a heinous crime.

These types of tragedies are unavoidable, but thankfully, rare. This tragedy is just that, a tragedy. It is not a political fallout, and it is certainly not time to make something political out of this. Save that debate for later, if you must try to turn this into a political issue, but now is not the time.

UPDATE: Apparently there's another, more glaring instance of politicization that I was not aware happened. Mary Katherine Ham at Hot Air notes that on air personalities at ABC erroneously linked the shooter to the Tea Party. I`m sure they ghoulishly hoped the link was credible, or they would have have reported that as unverified.

Government contributes to a lack of success too, no?

How government can contribute to your business.
I was reading this post by Proof Positive this morning.  He's commenting on the ridiculous notion propounded by Elizabeth Warren and now president Obama, that government makes success possible and indeed is a major contributor to anyone's success.  Proof makes a great point about how the availability of public roads etc. does not guarantee success;
Got that? If you are rich, if you are successful, you didn't do it on your own, you got a lot of help from the public** who financed the infrastructure. But, have you ever driven by a strip mall, where one or more of the tenants, but not all of them had gone out of business? Or driven by two businesses side by side where one was open for business and the one right next door was shuttered and boarded up?

Didn't the same roads and bridges supply both businesses? Didn't the same schools educate those who worked in the strip mall? The same fire and police protect them all?
It inspired me to add a comment to his blog that I think is worth repeating as well;
Your double asterisk point is worthy of it's own post: Those who were successfully creating wealth, creating commerce and creating jobs by their own efforts, certainly were generating more taxable income than those who were not doing so.

Therefore they contributed more to those roads than others. Consequently they should be able to argue that others in society were benefiting more from private efforts to grow their business than those who were exerting themselves. Why? The rate return on investment when the investment is small, or zero, is astounding. The payback for the job creating business is substantially smaller.

Rather than being admonished, those businesses should be thanked for their disproportional contribution to those roads and bridges etc.
There is another important point to make.  If liberals insist that government is indeed a major contributor to the success of a business, then it must also be complicit in the failures of unsuccessful businesses, no?  If government is a partner, it is also a partner in the failures, and there seem to be a lot of those lately Mr. President. 

Wear that for a while.

July 19, 2012

Romney Strikes Back

I'm not the biggest fan of Mitt Romney, but he's the only horse conservatives have in the race for the presidency. After a successful early June and an equally abysmal period for president Obama, the tide shifted back towards Obama in the latter half of that month and early July. Ceaseless character attacks and false arguments by the president, along with a significant ad buy advantage have had their effect.

It's about time Mitt Romney strikes back.  Happily, that seems to be the case.

July 18, 2012

I'm richer than you - I must be the 1%

It's true.  For the first time EVAH*, Canadians are now richer than Americans. True, I'm not really feeling it myself personally despite reducing my debt ratio considerably over the last few years.  Nevertheless, relatively speaking, I'm probably better off compared to the average American than before Obama became president.
Americans might enjoy throwing politically-charged barbs at their neighbors to the north, Canadians now have at least one reason to be smug.

For the first time in recent history, the average Canadian is richer than the average American, according to a report cited in Toronto's Globe and Mail.

And not just by a little. Currently, the average Canadian household is more than $40,000 richer than the average American household. The net worth of the average Canadian household in 2011 was $363,202, compared to around $320,000 for Americans.
While Canada weathered the recession better than the United States, has a lower unemployment rate, a conservative government and Nobama, things aren't all peachy here either.  However, it goes to show you how poorly the Democrats have mismanaged the recession and botched the recovery.  They just wouldn't get out of the way and let the economy recover naturally.  Way to go guys.

It won't be long before the Occupy crowd decide to Occupy Canada as part of the 1%.

*Apparently EVAH in this case means recent history. 

July 17, 2012

Bill posters

I remember when I was a teenager in my second summer job, my boss was a British fellow, who had a terrific sense of humor. Last I'd heard he'd gone to Romania, but that was over 20 years ago. I've no idea where he is now.  

In any case, he mentioned one time a wall he'd seen back in England about Bill Stickers. Here we'd call them Bill Posters.

I saw this picture today and it reminded me of two things (1) him and (2) the reactionary nature of the Occupy crowd...

July 16, 2012

Updating my update

I posted earlier this morning that I'm on vacation now and that I'll have more time to post.  I got a new ISP last month too, so I'm all set.  But no sooner did I write that, when my hard drive on my laptop crashed.  I'm writing this on the kids' netbook and it is painfully slow. I'll still be posting ,but it won't be as breezy as I'd hoped.

Schedule update

I'm officially on vacation for this week and next - at least from my day job.  We're not going away or anything, though I do have some stuff planned.  I may actually have more time to blog, which is a bonus.  Well, for me it's a bonus.

Stay tuned for more frequent blogging over the next two weeks.

July 15, 2012

Obama wrong on the American Dream

Collectivist president claims nobody is successful on their own.  True, in our world of specialization, nobody does everything alone.  For example, Bill Gates in building Microsoft, had to buy pencils - Microsoft didn't invent and create their own pencils and pens, and office furniture.  But to claim that the Pilot pen company had a hand in Windows development is a stretch.  Did the workers at Microsoft contribute though?

Certainly.  But they were paid for their work.  The vision, the drive, the true energy was from the founder.  Let me give you a better example.

Via Fox News, here's what the president said:
“There are a lot of wealthy, successful Americans who agree with me because they want to give something back,” the president said. “If you’ve been successful, you didn’t get there on your own. ... If you’ve got a business you didn’t build that. Somebody else made that happen.”
Here's Anne Morrow Lindbergh on her husband Charles' success:
He's been made an American hero, I think. And partly that he did it alone and I think that's quite American, actually, to do things alone.
Seems like they disagree.  It's hard to argue that Charles Lindbergh had a lot of help in his Atlantic crossing.  It was just him and his plane.  President Obama, like Elizaebeth Warren, is wrong.

Still down on Roberts decision

Bill Whittle sums up his thoughts, and mine on the decision on the constitutionality of Obamacare.

When Wealthy Liberals Abandon America

(Soft) Money talks.
The Internet can be a wonderful thing.  It used to be that when a news story broke without a lot of context, it was difficult to get the right sort of background and context to be able to understand the implications of the story. In fact, if there was a somewhat related story days, weeks or years before, you'd have to remember it and link the two points together - a pretty rare feat for most of us.  But that is not necessary any longer with the availability of information via the Internet.  Case in point - socialite Denise Rich.  Wait, who?  It turns out she's an Obama donor and tied to less than upstanding goings-on.

July 14, 2012

Saturday Learning Series - Auctions

This is Yale professor Ben Polak's 24th lecture in a series on Game Theory.  Continuing on the idea of asymmetric, he takes a look at applying game theory to auctions.

July 11, 2012

Some more two word opinions

Two cents in two words.
I've been busy at work preparing for my upcoming vacation, and some other exciting personal stuff, so posting this week has been lagging.  But it's never too late for some quick two word opinions.

The Congress has voted, for the 33rd time to repeal some (or in this case for the second time, all) of Obamacare.  Keep going.

Victor Davis Hanson suggest Mitt Romney needs to get specific on his plans for taking the country forward. Too early.

Mitt Romney got booed during a speech for the NAACP when he talked about repealing Obamacare. Outreach, rebuffed.

President Obama claims that Venezuelan dictator Hugo Chavez is no threat to the United States.  Kidding, right?

The next 'big' liberal anti-banking scandal story to break will be over Britain's interest-rate fixing scandal. Not really.

Gallup has reported that Americans' confidence television news has reached an all-time low. Well, DUH!

That's enough of a quick hit for now.  I'll be back soon.  If you are planning to comment, see if you can do it in two words or less...

July 10, 2012

A presidential excess of excuses

The New Crossroads GPS on president Obama's excuses for the bad economy.  It's short, but to the point. It's not a game changing ad but it can help focus the debate if it is shown often enough in key swing states.

July 9, 2012

Obama's jobs deceptions

According to Bureau of Labor Statistics data, there are some interesting employment numbers when you start to dig through the data and try to see what's been happening in the economy.  The reason you have to dig, is because the president won't give you the straight goods when it comes to the employment situation in the Unites States.

There's enough spin to make a Chinese silk factory jealous.

July 8, 2012

Talking Points = Debbie Wasserman Schulz

Debbie Wasserman Schulz, a vapid parrot, gets called out for sticking to talking points on Fox by Martha MacCallum.  Yes, talking points need to get out there at times, but she really is robotic and unthinking in her repetition of her mantras.  MacCallum is trying to have a conversation about the state of the Florida race and that's hard to do when you are talking to a billboard.

Via Mediate:

Canadian Street Gangs

Some Sunday humor to help relieve the summer heat.

July 7, 2012

Saturday Learning Series - Asymmetry

Saturday Learning Series has been focusing on lecture series from Yale professor Ben Polak covering the various aspects of game theory. Continuing from last time, we now look at what happens when there is an asymmetry of information:

Scientific Hubris

I'm all for scientific advancement and discovery and learning.  I just don't believe that finding the Higgs Boson particle is like discovering God's toolkit.  It takes more than a bit of hubris to believe that we've just discovered the key to the entire universe. Sure, it's an great discovery, but it isn't everything. 

July 5, 2012

Obamacare IS Rockford's Answering Machine

Back in the 1970's, there was a private detective show called the Rockford Files.  Every episode started with a call to Jim Rockford's answering machine.  It was never good news:

"Jim, this is Janelle. I'm flying tonight so I can't make our date. But I've got to find a safe place for Daffy. He loves you, Jim. It's only two days and you'll see, Great Danes are no problem."
The continued existence of Obamacare ensures that the answering machine message is still coming, and it's going to be worse than Great Danes.

4th of July explosion as a metaphor

"Every picture tells a story, don't it?" Rod Stewart (and Ron Wood) said that back in 1971. It's true. On the 4th of July in San Diego, apparently a fireworks display meant to go on for 20 minutes exploded in about 15 seconds. Oops.  Not the desired outcome.

(HT Drudge

The irony of such a massive blowout happening in California, a state perilously teetering on bankruptcy, is not lost on some. The sudden, unexpected and explosive mistake serves as great metaphor for the state, if not the nation.

July 4, 2012

Happy Fourth of July America!!!

Happy 4th of July.  Some free advice for you; Remember what the day represents.

July 3, 2012

Anemic Obama recovery

Back in September of 2009, The Economist declared that the recession the country was in was over as of June of that year.  That being the case, how has the recovery been for you?  It has by standards of recent recoveries, not been so good for the United States.  After a steep decline you'd expect a steep recovery, would you not?  That hasn't been the case with the Obama-(mis)led recovery.

July 2, 2012

Still posting

It looks like I'm back in blogging business as of today.  The truth is, here in the Great White North, it was a holiday and I've been itching to get back to posting.  I didn't have a backlog of posts to put up because I've been too busy to do much more than read and stay current on events.

Career Ending Face Plant

U.S. Olympic gymnast Nastia Liukin's career in gymnastics is sadly ending without a trip to the 2012 Olympics in London as a result (in part) of this spill:

Not pretty.  After a wonderful career she has been outshone at the ripe old age of 23, by other exciting gymnasts who will represent the United States at the Olympics in 2012.  Liukin will not be remembered for this fall as much as her performances in 2008.

President Obama on the other hand, should have had a career ending face plant multiple times with scandal after scandal and failure after failure between 2008 and 2012.  I hope his presidential career ends on this kind of note this year, and then Americans across the country can provide the same sort of face plant to Obamacare that it so richly deserves.

Gay Anderson Cooper probably voting for Obama

In case you haven't heard, news personality Anderson Cooper (CNN) is gay.  He came out of the closet today. Does it matter?  A little bit, yes.

Obama fails at root cause analysis

In an article in the Washington Post where president Obama bemoans his lack of fundraising versus Republicans and versus his own efforts in 2008, there's a very telling passage.
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