Friday, September 30, 2011

Understanding Sarah

If I were running Governor Palin's campaign, the first thing I would do would be to exclude her from debates.

The "debates" are occasions placed upon candidates that offer themselves as either being neutral, or unpredictable. When Governor Palin announces, she will be drawing in millions of two-hundred dollar contributions on the day the announcement is made. Can she hit ten million contributors in a day?

Two-hundred at a million would be two-hundred million dollars. In a day. Two-hundred, at a five times that would be a billion dollars.

Are there a million Americans willing to give two hundred dollars for a renewed course for America?

I will grant you, that the amount of money we need to spend to elect a President seems to be a huge amount. In a nation, which has a GDP of some 11-trillion dollars, And a national debt of some 15-trillion dollars.

But, I would exclude her from the current debates. Governor Palin will gain exposure from the MSM, as well as from the intertubes and cable networks, on her own time. When you control a billion dollars, there's a lot of exposure that one can create for oneself.

First of all, Governor Palin will, or, would be, the first candidate to gain a billion dollars in contributions. That in itself is newsworthy.

Second, Governor Palin then can create for herself, her own dais. A conversation with Newt Gingrich on Speed Channel. A conversation with Herman Cain on BET. A conversation with Romney on MSNBC. All, produced by her people. Even if she has to produce her "conversations" on QVC, she's going to own the space, and own the media.

Why would you want to undergo the kind of minimization that the current candidates are exposing themselves to, simply to gain exposure? Sarah Palin is one of the most exposed politicians in the United States!

She has already told you that she is not going to campaign in the ways most of us expect her to campaign. A billion dollars lets her choose her own playing field, and any candidate that chooses to ignore the playing field she creates risks becoming second tier, by definition.

Are there a million Americans willing to give her $200.00?

Yes.

Don't be surprised when Governor Palin outlines the way the debate to the White House is defined.

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

The Left's Miserable Application For Re-Entry Into the European Union

A gentleman of about my age, or more, recently commented on a recent post on education.

I have either the advantage, or the dis-advantage, of having my sons later in life. The question was asked, "Could it be that most teachers are good, but are expending much of their energy shielding themselves from counterproductive directives (not to mention counterproductive course content they have to teach)?"

There was a condition in this comment, that the possible lack of time spent on positive teaching was being wasted through the time available, due to administrative constraints. And the answer is yes, increased administration means additional time spent validating that additional constraint; either through the increased administration's efforts to improve the task of education through increased administration, or, through the externally imposed rules and regulations concomitant with such an increased administration, whether necessary or not. One of the rules of bureaucracy is defined as, first defend you job.

It is not, in my experience, the role of the new administrator to immediately turn toward those who gave him his position, in order to criticise those who had created his new position.

Which is one of the reasons why I've been, and continue to be, a terrible employee.

I've lived through departments that have increased the number of administrators. The necessary goal of any department has been to deliver the requirements of the enterprise, as efficiently and with the lowest cost possible. Whenever you add an additional level of administration, two things occur; one, simple answers become no longer simple, and two, questioning the value of the additional layer of administration is tantamount to questioning the whole enterprise. In answer to the commentated questions, both of those objections are true, they create inefficiencies, but completely miss the point. Which is, again, contained in the referenced comment, to wit:

"The teachers I know personally are upstanding people who are constantly being pestered by administration goals that frustrate rather than facilitate students learning how to think and to become good at the basic educational tools.

"They are constantly having to shield their educational and moral values from the prying eye and stomping foot of administrators."

The efforts of administration are rarely about increased efficiencies. In my experience, there are other reasons for increasing the number of administrators available for any enterprise, but the most important is, to provide a layer between the head of an enterprise from the success or failure of that enterprise.


Education is one of the greatest failures of America in modern times; and the levels of administration are epic. Let's begin with the simple K-5 or -6 grade school. How difficult should it be to teach a child how to read, to write and to perform basic tasks of arithmetic? Unless the child has severe difficulties, being able to count to an hundred should be a simple task. Recognizing ones native alphabet should also fall into the realm of simple task. Framing a simple sentence in speech, or through writing, should again, be a simple task. If we, as a nation, could simply realize this simple goal with every child, education would leap forward. But we do not, either as a local school district, or as a nation, require that every child who passes through five or six years of education, meet these simple goals. Give a man or woman these skills, and all else follows.

But that system that has created hundreds upon thousands of administrators is still searching for the solution the problem of simple math, reading, writing and speech. Every possible excuse has been given, but no possible solutions have been offered. And with every unspoken solution, comes another cadre of administrators and experts who will expound upon the problems facing our nation's teachers, in the face of inadequate resources and low levels of pay. Never is the problem of education relegated to those who are responsible for their children's education, the parents. And, systemically, it can't address the basic problem, for billions of dollars are dedicated to a problem that is simply addressable by asking the question of a child's performance, or lack of performance, to the person or persons directly responsible for a child's performance; the parent(s). Instead, in the practice of the countries that have never recognized the rights of the individual, the Europeans, we have adopted the visions and policies of the Europeans as being more open to diversity, shielding the individual from the failures of the individual, and never asking for the individual, or the parents of the individual, to be responsible for the success or failure of the child.

Increased administration is the curse of the European mind. Never, in any land in Europe, has the individual ever had the type or quality of individual liberty that we've had in this country. Looking toward Europe for answers is looking backward. Examples abound. Take wind power. Holland has had this for years. Hardly a new, innovative process. Rail works for countries whose living standards are so low, that independent travel isn't possible. Backward engineering to construct a Europe within the states of the United States in counter-intuitive on many levels, but we find ourselves arguing with an elitist class that has determined that being more like Europeans is better than being Americans. But nothing in the data would support such an hypothesis. Europeans have never, and probably never will, ever respect the liberty of the individual. Europeans will never allow that the individual is responsible for his own, or for his family's, success. Europeans will never have the strength to stand up to tyranny, since the history of Europe has always been one of negotiating with tyranny.

What is the value of Liberty? It is the highest of all human values. There is no replacement for your individual liberty. There has been no other nation on the face of this earth that has ever experienced human liberty. Rejoice in Liberty.

And reject the Leftist notions that adopting European styles of politics is a move forward. Would you rather have the conditions for your life imposed upon you, or discovered by you?

Innovation, true innovation, cannot be imposed. Even with government subsidies. But, liberty and freedom will allow you to go places we've never traveled before. I don't want to be a member of a Greater European Union.

The curriculum being taught in our schools today never mention the values of liberty and independence. Go to a local school and ask to see their U.S. History text. If they give you a copy, you won't see these values mentioned, or, if mentioned, championed. The values of Liberty and Independence are not promoted, not explained, not mentioned. But the Left, and the motor of Leftist politics, the Teachers' Union wouldn't teach it, even if included. You see, individual liberty is selfish, somehow, in their Morlock logic, taking care of yourself is less efficient that having someone take care of you. There is no need for an additional administrator. And without sufficient oversight, you might end up doing something that doesn't match their values.

And the imposition of correct values is, and has been, the sole force behind European politics since we started writing about European politics. So, I'd suggest we wonder who it was that suggest we avoid foreign entanglements.

Could have been a bright fellow.

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Natural Curiousity

Either here, or at comments sections on others' blogs, I've mentioned that I've hired two young men, recently.

Twenty-three and twenty-one years of age, these two young men come to me with certain challenges; taking what is worthwhile of what they've been taught, and discarding that which they have been taught that has no value. It is not totally surprising that these young men have limited skills. It is not surprising to me at all, that they lack the ability to respond quickly to intellectual puzzles presented. They weren't taught this, they weren't asked to do this. After six weeks, I'm beginning to make in-roads into their tiny, little minds.

The title of this post is "Natural Curiosity." There is a reason why I preamble with those words. Who teaches, and what they teach, are important. We've been told for decades that teachers are underpaid. Schools are under-appreciated. Our children are being denied excellence due to a certain penury. Unless we open our wallets and checkbooks, our children will suffer under a pogrom of anti-intellectualism and selfishness. That is, our unwillingness to pay teachers the salaries that our "Leaders of Industry" receive, we will continue to employ teachers whose sense of value is so low, that they are not capable of teaching well. They will babysit. They will not teach, and even if they attempt to teach, their skills are so low, that what they attempt to teach is not worthy of the little peaches of our eyes.

Hooey is not a new word.

Having had to pitch, and have been pitched upon, hooey, one begins to learn about the nature and substance of hooey.

Discernment is a particular word.


1: the quality of being able to grasp and comprehend what is obscure : skill in discerning
2: an act of perceiving or discerning something (Here.)

How does a bird fly? What can improve the flight of an arrow?

How do you discern, or perhaps, discriminate between certain ideas that attempt to express how birds fly, or how one could improve the flight of an arrow? 

This is not an unintended digression; it is the point of this post.

When I rely upon the writings of my dead old guys, I do so knowing that I don't have to go over ground already covered. The problem is, that dead old guys aren't being taught anymore. Teachers aren't required to know anything about my dead old guys. There is no test that teacher must needs undergo to pronounce them able, or capable, of teaching, other than have passed the necessary curriculum needed to gain ones teaching degree. And, after the reception of such degree, is there ever again a day or reckoning. Teaching, as a dead-ended job, is the prefect place to put people with delusions of intelligence, without them having to ever produce a single form, or example, of intelligence.

How did we end up in this condition?

Teachers' unions. 

Teachers' unions have nothing at all "in their best interests" that ally themselves with the best interests of your children. They are, antithetical. Your teachers. Your young, innocent, blithely ignorant, young children are being put into the hands of selfish, disinterested thugs. Has child abuse increased against children from teachers? A few priests, and the outraged attempt to sue the Vatican into poverty. Yet, how many child-abuse suits have been aimed against Teachers' Unions?

But this indictment against teachers is, again, not the purpose of this post. Are teachers bullies? Yes. Are teachers selfish and lazy? Yes. Are teachers abusive? Definitely. Are all teacher bullies,selfish and lazy, and/or abusive? No.

But the standard of some, or at least one, teacher being neither a bully, selfish, lazy, or abusive would hardly be a standard adopted by any parent/teacher association for any local school that exists. That is to say, rhetorically, that if only one out of twenty-five teachers is neither a bully, selfish, lazy or abusive, that that is the type of statistical significance that a school district would need to achieve in  order to justify its hiring practises, that, the suggestion that those hiring practises might be set too low should, in my world, suggest that that district's hiring practises be reviewed, and thence abandoned. 

What is the impact of teachers who are bullies, selfish, lazy and abusive?

Briefly, how do you predicate bullying, selfishness, laziness and abusiveness?

My teacher bullies me. My teacher is selfish. My teacher is lazy. My teacher is abusive.

How many of these predicates must be experienced by students, over years, before their apprehension of teaching is reduced to these simple predicates? And, I would submit, the effect of these predicates is more difficult for males, than for females. Sure, to my own benefit, over the years. The "guy" bullshit meter is differently tuned than the "gal" bullshit meter. Men and women are different. The goals of a woman are different from the goals of a man. Anyone who disagrees is probably homosexual. (Is this a form of Godwin?)

I believe that conformance is a more feminine trait, than is individualism. Individualism is a male characteristic. Not that conformance or individualism is a necessary trait of either being a female or male. But let us ask the natural question; if conformance is a female characteristic, and individualism is a male characteristic, how does the curriculum of our schools search for maximizing the performance of either females or males?

I have these two, young men I'm training. And what I'm finding is a certain reluctance to act independently of direction. I've had some great direction given me, from time to time. But I haven't had to re-make myself to be worthy of direction. I have a sense of curiosity that has led me to attempt to do that which I hadn't been trained, in order to achieve results that exceeded the results that were sufficient for my success. When you're young and hungry, simply being as good as anyone else had never been my goal. Which is why I hated working those union jobs during my college days. I always did more than sufficient. I attempted to achieve that which was asked. 

Natural curiosity is a human characteristic. Just like the sins of avarice, lust, gluttony, envy, et.al., are human characteristics. Being a female with the characteristics of a female isn't a "sin" of being female. Being curious as a male isn't a "sin" of being male. But the characteristics of being either female or male end up being confronted by an organized workforce, with aims that tend to protect that workforce, from issues ranging from bullying, selfishness, laziness and abusiveness.

Never, do you hear of a child's natural curiosity. You do hear of how a child's natural curiosity creates an up-roar; questioning homosexuality, questioning the orthodoxy of global warming, questioning the value of socialism. Advocating for gun ownership. Simply owning a gun. 
How are any of these ideas simply, wrong? 

When the prism of decision is given to a group whose aims are more about self-preservation, than the good of our children. Check your children's curriculum. How often is "liberty" given the weight that it deserves? How more often is the word "equality" used? Liberty and equality are different concepts. (Being equal before the law is not the same idea as one being equal to another. And a law that enforces one of these, is not the same as a law the enforces the other of these.)

Natural curiosity is a wonderful thing. Are you "worth" more than me for an hour's worth of work? Am I worth an hour's worth of your work, at the same wage? Do we do different types of work? Are you due the same wage I'm able to command, when I'm doing my work, or, are you due the same wage I command, doing your work? And, if you're doing my work, at my value, does it mean a thing if you're a male or female? 

Can a woman do my work? Yes. I think about Dixie a lot. 

Dixie was one of those women that you never thought of as either a man or woman; she was a power unto herself. You dug listening to her. You wanted to please her. Today, I honor her by teaching my young proteges in a manner that I think she would want. But she never wanted to improve me; she relied upon my wanting to improve myself. The more I demonstrated that I understood her, the more questions she would take the time to answer. And here's the thing; I never met Dixie. 

She worked for a rep agency that represented the company I worked for. But I learned more from her about the company I repped, than I learned from the company I repped. (That I ended up running that company is a different subject.)

You never lie. You never make up. If you don't know, you don't know. And you tell the people who you work with the truth. Family comes first, friends come second. Work comes third. Never any doubts, you work to achieve something, and hopefully, you find a place through work that allows you to combine all these things. Men and women can work together, successfully. The differences between men and women should be honored, not excoriated. Attempting to ignore, or ridicule, our differences is the path to denying the truths of our lives. 

When young men, boys, really, find themselves confronted by the machine that is the Teachers' Labor Union, they are on their way to escape. First, most of the values of the teachers' union aren't the values that any sane person would want to adopt. And yet, hour after hour, day after day, year after year, we subject our young to the insane expectations of a union that wants more for its members than for its client class. 
Secondly, by the time boys reach the age of maturity, let's say the age of thirteen, the natural state of human nature is being developed; these are the survival skills embedded by years of natural selection. You don't take a tiger, raised from birth, into a gaggle of school children without restraint, simply because that tiger has been culturally modified by years of human contact. 
From Wm. Blake:

Tyger! Tyger! burning bright
In the forests of the night,
What immortal hand or eye
Could frame thy fearful symmetry?

In what distant deeps or skies
Burnt the fire of thine eyes?
On what wings dare he aspire?
What the hand dare sieze the fire?


And what shoulder, & what art.
Could twist the sinews of thy heart?
And when thy heart began to beat,
What dread hand? & what dread feet?


What the hammer? what the chain?
In what furnace was thy brain?
What the anvil? what dread grasp
Dare its deadly terrors clasp?


When the stars threw down their spears,
And watered heaven with their tears,
Did he smile his work to see?
Did he who made the Lamb make thee?


Tyger! Tyger! burning bright
In the forests of the night,
What immortal hand or eye
Dare frame thy fearful symmetry? 

Nature lends itself to a natural curiosity. Not a natural conformity. Things have to make sense to the underlying framework of human nature. We see tears, when others see absolutely nothing. But that's different, isn't it, from failing to see tears when no tears exist? You can have your sight of tears imposed upon you, but really, if there are not tears, at what point do you leave the discussion?

Stories are important. Stories that convey meaning are more important. Being curious is one way of telling a story, in fact, most good stories are based upon being curious, than the other way around. Stories that expunge the value of doubt or question are simply didactic. Most of the stories that I am presented with, are didacticisms. Rhetorically, one of those arguments that one would find reading Hylas and Philonious.

As much as argumentation attempts to advance itself, we're always thrown back onto previous argumentation, a certain ontology recapitulates phylogeny. Boys are boys, and girls are girls. Boys play with mechanics. Girls play with dolls. Not that either is unimportant, but when you attempt to reduce the natural role that curiousity plays with boys, in deference to the doll-playing conducted by girls, at a certain point you need to see that boys don't really play dolls, they do things. They make things that work. They do things that do things. Without regard for how the thing being done, feels. Our improvement is not in how we feel about how we do things, but in how we do things better.

I am making inroads with these two young men.

I'm overcoming decades of teaching that asks us not to ask direct questions, nor to ask what it is that motivates one. These questions could lead us to find out horrible things; such as success, cunning, caring, learning, insight, success, differentiation, experimentation, risk, gambling, intuitiveness, and the simplest of these, learning how to successfully serve others at a cost.

The best of a generation, Generation X, has been lost. We've produced a generation of slackers and losers. I've hired two. I will make them learn. I will impose myself, and my view of the world, upon them.

And I will make them successful.

Because I honor their sense of curiosity.

Friday, September 23, 2011

Perry and Illegals' Education

The sinner in illegal immigrant is the employer who hires the illegal immigrant.

My family has been in American agriculture for more than three hundred years. From Connecticut, to Louisiana, to Kansas and Oklahoma, to Idaho.My father's family has been involved in agriculture in America, for an hundred, forty years. From Schleswig-Holstein, to Minnesota, to Cape Horn, Astoria and then, during the Nez Pierce Uprising, to Moscow, Idaho. My DAR/Wasp lineage met my Northern European lineage at music school, in the 1940's.  Me? Zygote in 1953.

One of my grandmas was a fundamentalist. Old-tyme Baptist fundamentalist. She adopted the Bible, from beginning to end. My other grandma was a bit more difficult to discern. There is an idea that that Gramma was Jewish. Thankfully, neither my Baptist Gramma, or my "Lutheran" Gramma, or, my post-Gramma experience in more churches than you; from Christian to Presbyterian to Catholic, ever gave me cause to give less fealty to the idea that all men are created equally, or, that one whom one employs should ever be treated as less than one would treat a family member.

Slavery was a real issue for the Jews. Slavery is not cool. The cruelest moments of slavery were the moments when a man had to suborn his own reason in order to remain in good stead with his Master. The Jewish heroes were recognitions of a single man's facing tyranny, and standing up to it. The early Christian models of hero were built around the hero, the martyr who stood up to the tyrant. This standing up to tyranny has been consistent, from Moses, to Ruth, to Ezekiel, to Christ, to Peter. And all the Saints. You should not be a slave. I will not be a slave. And after the Enlightenment, it was, I think, thought that slavery would never again be possible.

Illegal immigration is an attempt at finding a chink in how we treat each other.

Since I was brought up believing that those who put their labour into your stead, and that meant we must understand that that commitment to us required a con-commitment to them, that we could not treat the men and women who worked for us any differently than those who were our family, who contributed to our family's success. Being an employer is not different to me, than adoption. I was moved forward on this path from early employers, some who accepted by resignation, and the rare cases where I was dismissed. I think it's more important to talk about the cases where I was dismissed, rather than the cases of resignation. My resignations came as opportunities occurred. And happily, the understanding that I wished to improve myself through my resignations, were echoed by those two occurrences where I found myself dismissed.

One quits a job to take on a new opportunity.

One is fired, because of failure. I've been fired twice.

The first time was the result of my attempting to organize a labour contract with my employer. The second was when I burned up a diesel motor on the new tractor. To be fair, both employers re-hired me. Their hearts weren't stone. And I've learned more from my mistakes than I've probably learned from my successes.

In the last years of the Seventies, my mom had a job under the Manpower Training Act. She had been working for Howard Vollum at Tek, and made the move over to the "JOBS" program when Vollum took over as CEO for the local Jobs Program. David Judd was the administrator. It was a great opportunity for both of us, and I took advantage of it.

I was a Sophomore in High School in 1970. But when mom got involved in JOBS, I was put into a place that allowed me to test my sense of ethics and morality with the exigencies of poor folks trying to find a way to pay for their existence. And never did I feel that the Chicano population I found my self around were trying to game the system. Illegal Mexicans working in Oregon didn't ask, and wouldn't have asked, for a hand-out. Within poverty comes a certain honesty; hard work draws wages. And wages were better in Oregon than they were in Mexico. It would take me another twenty years to find out that within poverty, comes communication; if there's a way to game the system, that information will be shared at lightening speed.

During the Fall of 1970 to the Spring of 1971, I spent time working with the Poor People's Council. The one concrete example I have of my work with this group is the change in the law, in Oregon, governing hitchhiking. It used to be the law, prior to my involvement, that hitch-hiking on a freeway in Oregon was against the law. When you're poor, hitch-hiking is the only dependable method of getting from place-to-place. Yes. I'm responsible for the panhandlers on Oregon's on-ramps. Previously, a tramp couldn't claim legitimacy. But after the law was changed, standing on an on-ramp to a freeway was legal. And for those of us who used our thumbs to travel, we gained new, economic freedom. Hitching wasn't a shake-down. It was a way to reduce the cost of travel for economic gain.

During that period, my mom and I, under the auspices of the JOBS program, got involved in the Poor People's Movement and the Chicano Movement. And the things I saw were more than informative; they required me to ask certain questions about the system that made things happen. When I was involved in the Poor People's Council, or the Chicano Movement, the issues weren't about a radicalization of politics; it was a recognition of the way people were treated. My starting point wasn't about whether or not illegal immigrants should be allowed to work. I had an uncle who offered me a job working as an coyote. Out of Salinas, my uncle was not only involved in moving illegals, he was also involved in cock-fighting. Big family, great divergence.

Illegals were an important part of agriculture.

As incomes improved, teens, the traditional workforce for agriculture, didn't find the need to work. And rather than let market forces retire farmers from no longer profitable sources of income, law enforcement turned their eyes away from the illegal activities, such as my uncle's, and actually enabled the importation of illegal workers. Under law, unprofitable farmers and orchardists should have found themselves transforming their land from farms and orchards to some other endeavour. But cheap labour was found. And the conditions that that cheap labour found themselves was simply, deplorable. When you are illegal, you find yourself without civil rights. Complain and you're deported.

Combined with what I saw of the living conditions these migrant workers found, it was a form of voluntary slavery. And that was okay with me. Until you saw the children. Why would a migrant worker give up his children?

Dirt floors. No doors. No septic system. Standing filth. This was in 1970. Children, picking alongside their mothers and fathers. Again, no problem. But, where is the treatment of these employees meeting the standard of how you would treat your own family? Would you want to keep education from your own children?

No. You wouldn't.

God wouldn't want us to act this way.

I don't believe I was a "Progressive." I believe I was religious. I believe I was acting morally and ethically. One doesn't make the child the object of the failings of the parent. And the Mexicans, the Chicanos, the poor I met weren't that much different than I. They wanted an opportunity to work, and to improve themselves. I disagreed with the terms farmers and ranchers felt they could offer their illegals. Again, not the men and women. But these men and women brought along their children. The conditions their children met weren't voluntary, and they had no voice. And we treated them like shit. No child should be treated like shit.

No child is shit.

That Governor Rick Perry perceives this, and acts, is a credit to the Governor. I'm not saying I'm a fan of his, but I understand in ways that the media will never examine, the humanity of his decisions.

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Georgia Execution

I don't believe in the Death Penalty. I know that the Death Penalty is ethically correct, and that the State has the right to demand the life of a person, after due process. I don't believe in the Death Penalty as an advocate of efficient government. It is far cheaper to house a convict for forty, fifty or sixty years, rather than to pay for the appeal process following a conviction for murder.

Troy Davis was executed tonight.

He killed a cop.

Again, I have no problem with the ethics that find that an enemy of the state, who has behaved against the state, in this case, killing a police officer, being killed by that state. States should always be aware of those who would commit crimes against it, and be prepared to defend the state against those who would attack it, or attack its members.

Why don't we have these executions on television?

This is not an inquiry from some kind of Caligula freak. My motive here is not to simply display the horrid, freakish nature of an execution. My point is more politically incorrect than that; it is to suggest that we televise abortions.

Death is horrible, and it stalks each of us. It is the essence of fear. Death.

I'm watching MSNBC writhe under the effects of the execution of Troy Davis, cop killer. The first step in Troy Davis' execution was putting him to sleep. Lack of consciousness. Then, when lack of consciousness was established, the lethal drugs were administered. I don't want to watch it. But, I think that if we, us, you and I were able to watch the execution of a convicted enemy of the state, we would be less likely to ask for that punishment.

But, in order to show executions, I think we must show abortions. According to Answers.com, there are thirty-seven hundred each day. In the U.S. alone. 115,000 in the World.

What crime did those 115,000 children commit?

No cops were killed. No synagogues were blown up. No drunks crashed into a car-full of innocent travelers.

Still, it's easier to kill the unborn, without regard to their future.

There is one fair player in all of this, the Catholic Church. While the Church may not always have the logical consistency one would hope and pray for, the sanctity of life is one of the essential beliefs in an ordered society that would be embodied within a constitution, or lex supra legis, that would protect those who hadn't adequate resources to defend themselves. Ordering the defense of those who lack the ability to defend themselves is one of the cornerstones of a functioning society. Putting the defense of those who are enemies of the state against the unborn seems to me, to be at least objectionable. (One of the reasons why we adopted a Constitutional Republic was the recognition, some 200 years ago, that defense of ones liberty wasn't always consistent with the changing winds of public opinion. We seem to have lost that interpretation, haven't we?)

Is the Death Penalty "un-Constitutional?"

No. Just as wars against our enemies aren't "un-Constitutional." What faddle. Our enemies are our enemies. Must we need kill everyone who is our enemy? No. There are Prisoner of War camps for our enemies. Hopefully, better equipped than Andersonville. Must we have "humane" camps for our enemies? No. Our enemies, from the simple act of being our enemies, requite themselves to that eventuality that we may execute them at our leisure. It seems absurd to me that anyone could argue against this exposition, and at the same time, advocate for the death of a fetus. Godwin's Law forbids me to draw equivalency.

You and I, we have no idea about God's plan for us. I will assert that Andersonville was an example of a certain lack of compassion. American compassion for Americans. I'm not totally sold that we took better care, at the time, as the Northern Invaders. What I will tell you is, my friend, Heinz Pfaeffle, who was saved by his mentor, Erwin Rommel in Nazi Germany, that when he was interned by American forces, he was pleased, and graced, by the Americans. Simply take a look at the care we give those interned at Guantanamo. If you were an international terrorist, what would you want?

I am not outraged by the execution of Troy Davis. I am consoled. I believe that our young need to be alarmed by the reality of our world. You cannot kill, without remonstrance. I just wish we had a strongly held belief in the innocence of life, that would gain as much air-time, as will the execution of Troy Davis.

Imagine, the public television of each abortion. 154 per hour. More than two per minute.

Busy T.V. schedule, no?

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Understanding Obama

One of the places I visit on a daily basis is The Money Illusion. Follow this link, and make sure you click on his links.

An eye-opener.

Monday, September 19, 2011

Learning From Failure


Those of you who have followed this blog, there’s an awareness that I’ve recently left my comfort zone, in order to expand my business. This, under the tawdry gaze of our Leftist masters.

See, I think that the next downturn, which will happen before the end of the 2nd quarter of next year, will provide me with an opportunity to purchase assets held by one of the companies that I compete against, now. I have competed against him for some few years now, and while he has more employees, I have a bigger client base and provide a better service. What he has is assets that I don’t need. (But, if I’m going to bring some people into my business, either to retire or to hand on my business to someone who would like to take over the business, being a solo act won’t afford my heirs or successors enough wiggle room to allow me to travel the “scene” in Eastern Europe.) So, if I’m going to grow, it’s cheaper to purchase what he has, than to purchase the opportunities that he represents. Some of his assets have real value. It isn’t just the assets, it’s the clients. If I can pick up his client base and replace the values that he has advocated for with the values I advocate for, I can pick up a significant sector of market share, without having to dilute what I do for my current clients. This is why I’ve decided to expand my business. If I can grow my current revenue to the point where the acquisition is not going to create stress on my cash-flow, it makes sense to plan for the acquisition, donnit?

Unnerstan, I’ve lost it all before.

Business, unlike poker, has more variables. When you’ve been dealt a hand, you have several options. Unlike poker, when you’re building a business, there are no rules. You can draw up to 15 cards and still be in play. Failure is not an impediment to success. It is the road to success.

The Road to Success is littered with the Road of Failure.

I’m not a real old guy, but my sons have reminded me that in fifteen years, I’m going to be in my seventies. “Shock.” Coming from a live fast, die young and have pretty looking corpse, I’m comfortable with the inevitable effects of living past ones idea of what ones life would be. I’ve become more cautious. I don’t drink and drive. I think about dating, but I am genuinely concerned that dating, at my age, will lead to a ruin. Better to run off to Eastern Europe, than engage in anything that requires dealing with establishing a relationship that involves flirting around the edges with emotion. Emotions are tough enough when you’re young. Attempting to disregard everything about emotions that you’ve found you’ve failed at, is too risky for me. If I lose at business, that’s me. If I lose at love, that’s me and someone else. My sons are grown. My losses won’t affect anything more than their opinion of me. The words “idiot” and “moron” come to mind. I don’t mind being either of those things, if I can keep from hurting someone. My cash? My risk.
Examining my bona fides is understood. I’d do it, too.

My biggest account has over five-hundred employees. I’m not a major player in terms of large-scale companies, but those of you who know me, know that I live in a basically rural market, yet, the largest companies in this market rely upon me for their market consultancy. Braggadocio? Well, yeah. If I wasn’t good, I’d be working harder and blogging less. But the key with this post isn’t that I’m a madman doing well, it’s that I’m not a madman, yet, thinking again about putting “it all” at risk, again. We’ll check in again at the end of 2nd Quarter, 2012. I’m sure I’m all about the alibi. But, at my age, being a failure isn’t an unknown. It’s a known, and making sure that I’m able to outlast a competitor, and survive my own failure is more likely for me, an old guy, than was likely for me, when a young guy.

 I watch CNBC prolly 25 to 30 hours a week. I bring this up to explain my take on the “market” and the Market. The “market” is, in my thinking, what takes place on Wall Street. The Market is what takes place in the macro-economic world of markets, each seeking to find their own places of equilibrium. The Market, in terms of U.S. production, is represented by the expression “C + I + G + X – M = GDP. And the comedy of U.S. domestic fiscal and monetary policy is sublime. We’re not defending the dollar, we’re not defending certainty, and we’re not defending investments. While Greece and Europe tick-tock in the background, and we’re saying “it can’t happen here” while debt to GDP ratios are spinning out of control. But I spend 25 to 30 hours a week with CNBC, while the vast majority of Americans are watching nothing close to information that would allow them to understand the path that we’re currently following.

I bring this up, only to allow myself to gain the sainted absolution of Laoco├Ân.
The Tea Party guys are taking a shellacking from the Left because the Tea Party guys don’t care about the poor, kids, education, science, the Elderly, the Environment, product safety, second-hand smoke, auto safety, bullying, gender-equity, support for the Arts, diversity, reform, fur, safety in the workplace, a Woman’s Right to Choose, exploitation, cell-phone use, music, poetry, literature, language, discrimination, well-being, creativity, technology, equality, pasteurized milk, chemicals, the Patriarch, the Matriarch, Gaia, clinical psychology, social work, caring, empathy, role-playing, despondency, alienation, inequality, negativity, homosexuals, bi- or tri-sexuals, Corporatism, anarchism, whole foods, soda drinks, plastic bags and more, to be decided and enunciated at some point in the future.

Being a Tea Party guy is somewhat less difficult; there is a role for government, but it isn’t all inclusive. We nibble around the edges, but basically, the role of government is to leave us alone. Protect us. Make sure we’re not polluting. That garbage is picked-up and that we have adequate highways. Tea Party guys don’t ask too much.

And, the chance to fail.

 Liberty is really cool.
The freedom to win or lose is one of the characteristics of “what it means to be an American.”  There is no race card.

There is no under-privileged. There is only, opportunity.

Hang out around teachers. The adults to whom you put your children into their care.

Did you know that teachers are being taught and told, not to tell their students whether or not they are failing?

Had a nice evening tonight. With one of my accounts.

Talked about some people we know.

It’s like Lake Woebegone. Everyone you know, everyone you deal with, is above average. The statistical observation that should be apparent is, half the people you deal with are below average. (Given random distribution.) But we treat everyone as if they were all above average. How likely is it that you’ll meet someone in the 90 to 100 I.Q. range, as compared to meeting someone in the 100 to 110 I.Q. range? Given the first sd, I’d say it’s just as likely, innit? Yet, everyone wants to be treated as if they’re fukin Albert Einstein.  Is that reasonably likely? Is it predictable?

The problem that this account and I talked about is, how do you hire anyone? Hiring a young person is now, timelessly, an unfruitful pursuit. It takes a set of skills to hire a young person that we, old guys, typically, didn’t learn. I believe that any employer that hires young people must just have a greater acceptance that the youts have little or no concern for independence and confidence in themselves.

So, I’ll share a bit.

I hired a typical slacker. Gave him a copy of Freud’s “Civilization and Its Discontents.” Then, I gave him Frankl’s “Man’s Search for Meaning.” Then I gave him Gerber’s “The E-Myth.”

We then went through certain micro-economic fundaments; like the organization of a business, what affects supply, what affects demand, what the role of price is, and the differences between the stuff you hear on T.V., and the reality of what a business owner faces when he wakes up in the morning. That is, what is his nut?
I don’t mind dumb people. But smart people do have a certain cache of responsibility, don’t they? If you’re going to tell people what they should have an awareness of, like wolves in the woods, or thin ice, wouldn’t you expect those same people to tell you the truth about over-extension of credit?

I think it’s time we get over worrying about the Tea Party folks. The Tea Party is just about thin ice and wolves in the woods. They’re not saying, don’t go out on the ice, or, don’t go out to the woods. There are Ice People and Woods People who do well in the ice or the woods. Why should we stop them?

If I choose to go out over thin ice, after I’ve been warned, who is responsible?
I do enjoy teaching. I do enjoy spending time pointing out the obvious to the young who have been taught to ignore the obvious. There are those to whom the recommendation to avoid the woods or ice is a heartfelt plea. That is a mark of a certain human characteristic; compassion.

Learning from failure. When you enter the woods, or find yourself on the ice, it’s understandable that you didn’t mean to find yourself there. When you’re misled, you have a tort. When you go out on the ice, knowing the potential consequences, you have an entrepreneur. But, if you’ve been in the woods, or out on the ice, before, it’s a choice. We take risks. Sometimes we fail. But the rewards of success are greater than the costs of failure. We learn about who we are. We gain. Gain is not bad. It is a social good.

Would somebody explain this to our President?

Friday, September 16, 2011

Worth Reading

By Walt Harrington.

In Response to a Comment

Should corporations pay any tax?

No.

But I don't believe in the "rents" theory. Fans of rents will disagree, since they find ownership itself an externality. Ownership is not, but we must let those who hold a view chance to give exposition. That it is, a priori not an externality is an indifference to those who hold the view. But adherents to revisionist theories often, I've found, able to disregard the status quo without the slightest blush.

Mebbe you haven't spent enough time here, but the whole "rents" argument is about penalizing people with wealth. If you're poor, you don't pay rents taxes. If you're rich, it is incumbent upon you to pay more. Something about Progressivism; "rents" makes no more sense than taxing an inheritance. Just as in the case of ownership of any asset, those that rise in value have no greater burden upon the task of enabling social justice, as do those holding which experience in a reduction of value. Taxes that are endured as a result of our income has been established as a prerogative of our nation. But, taxes have already been paid against the value of a man's estate. Taxing on the basis of either rents or inheritance is just a simple taking by a tax authority.

My take is, once you've paid your tax on your earnings, the remainder is yours.

Progressivism isn't about fairness. It's about what is your property, and a social justification to take that property. The whole and parcel of Progressiveness is to find ways to take from people who earn and save, in order to give to a certain class of people who have done neither.

In a democracy, especially in a gerrymandered democracy, it is easy to find pockets of discontent, in order to take anti-social ideas and convert them into political talking points. The Democrats have for years used divisive talking points in order to advance their pro-disadvantaged politics into play. Why else do we spend time or money teaching "diversity"? None of us has ever been anti-diversity, but the label that can be attached to one who disagrees with the outcomes proposed by the diversity crowd; and while those proposed outcomes are pointless, and at base, utterly meaningless, the label of anti-diversity puts the defender for such a position in a state of argumentative peril; being called a name either requires disputation or the non chalance of the sophisticate.

Few of us are sophisticated. Sophistication isn't a trait that we wish to adopt.

Far different for the Ivy Leaguer. The Ivy League imbrues one with knowledge and the inside track of what is hip, and that which is not. While talking about Monckton pears, one can let slip how uber important diversity is.

The Left knows there no argument there. It's a silly club, with rituals peppered with words of significance.

So, no. Corporations shouldn't pay taxes. It's kinda like any new, proposed tax.

Have you heard proposals for a "soda tax"? The idea being that we can attach a particular tax to a particular item, soda being a "cause of obesity," and thereby reduce the demand for soda pop, and while fat boys will still drink it, those who are sensitive to incremental price increases for products that create some type of social harm, will discontinue their consumption of these "harmful" products, in order to escape the taxation of these items.

In the real world, such "well intentioned beliefs" are simply that; well intentioned beliefs. Or, are sold as such.

The Left actually has some smart people amongst them...they know, as well as I do, that the language of these takings is as phony as you or I see them as.

Simply type "taxes that attempt to dissuade consumers." The first thing that popped up on my browser was "The Case for the Obesity Tax."

Democrats want more money to spend. They know that incremental taxes are hard to discern among the clutter of fees and costs we pay to purchase, maintain, live, and enjoy our lives. They've relied upon the magic of incremental taxation and fees for decades.

Where we, in Oregon, have held firm has been our opposition to a sales tax. Why?

It is, in my belief, a product of our referendum process.

Oregon law requires that our referenda address only a single topic or law. To change Oregon tax law, from our current form of taxation, to a more modern and fair form of taxation, would require that those reforms take place in several different referendums. That means, we must pass at least three referendums. Without searching, I think that this was attempted some thirty years ago. But, if a single referendum fails to pass, they all fail. Oregon's referendum law needs to be changed in order for us to effect the types of changes that would be necessary for us to truly reform our tax laws.

Why a sales tax?

Because, currently, low- or no-income folks have no problem with increasing tax rates. The get the bennies, and we pay the freight. Everyone should feel the burden of government taxation.

After all, freedom isn't free. That Oregon is broken is evidenced every day. But an undeveloped piece of land and build a commercial site, say for office space, let alone for manufacturing. What are the building regulations in Houston? There are none. You buy a piece of land, you build. You open the business you want. Where would you rather build?

Thursday, September 15, 2011

You've Gotta Watch This!

If you're a fan of inane babble, go here.

Six hours left.

More Bad News for Unemployment

State Labor Commissioner Brad Avakian has announced that he is increasing the minimum wage to $8.80 beginning January 1, 2012.

Democrats talk about "social justice." They do not take responsibility when their policies result in fewer people being hired. So, expect employment to take another hit in January.

“Oregonians recognize the rising cost of living facing every one of us, and our strong minimum wage law is essential insurance that Oregon workers and their families can maintain their purchasing power and continue to contribute to our local economies,” said Avakian. “At the same time, although five out of six Oregon employers don’t offer minimum wage jobs, I know that it’s important to continue my dialogue with the businesses, many of them small operations, that do.  Understanding their challenges will benefit our entire economy.” (Brad Avakian.)


That is, if they are able to keep their jobs.

Kinda hard to earn minimum wage without one.

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Ending Crony Capitalism

Someone brighter than I, perhaps it was Governor Palin (you do the search), suggested that we move the corporate tax rate to zero.

Think about it.

Ending the corporate tax rate would kill thousands of lobbyist jobs. If you don't need a tax exclusion, why pay for a lobbyist?

I think Governor Palin is brilliant.

You?

Forgive Me

Work, who needs it?

I owe you a couple of responses, and am working toward providing those. But this came across my desk, and I felt compelled to share.

Rational people, who were warned that a one degree rise in temperature could occur in one hundred years, would find themselves able to spend, let's say, a decade, in figuring out whether or not such a claim had merit. The Global Warming Alarmists decided to stuff this down our throats, under the guise of "settled science."

Oh, and we need another Stimulus Bill, otherwise, we can't create more jobs.

It's settled science.

Monday, September 12, 2011

"All That For A Flag?"

Learning About Herman

Herman Cain.

The more I listen, the more I like.

He took some flak some months ago over his comments on Islam, and terror. I stepped back, since I've always been attracted to men or women who have actually created wealth. But Mr. Cain never resorted to the Cleavon Little line. That is to say, Mr. Cain never relied upon a stereotype to define himself. After the recent memorials to the victims of the attacks of 9/11, Mr. Cain's stated distaste for those who define themselves as Muslims first has greater resonance. When I first heard his comments, I distanced myself.

"Cain’s apparent rationale for refusing to even consider a Muslim nominee for any position in his administration is as simple as it is abhorrent: he believes all Muslims would try to “force their Sharia law onto the rest of us.” This type of bigotry has been promoted by conservative figures like Frank Gaffney and Brigitte Gabriel for years. Now, it appears to be seeping into the presidential race via Herman Cain."

Let's examine the article cited, further.

"Earlier this week, Cain gave an interview to Christianity Today in which he declared that, 'based upon the little knowledge that I have of the Muslim religion, you know, they have an objective to convert all infidels or kill them.'”

Upon reflection, after the events of 9/11, how is it that Mr. Cain can be called the name "as the Islamophobia candidate: Herman Cain?"

Easy, if you don't have a sense of what is occurring around you. Is the Islamic world around you seeking to find accommodation? Rilly? No, it is not. In fact, the Islamic world, given the current situation in Turkey, is more dangerous today than it was a year ago. The stalwart tenants of American foreign policy are no longer in place; a strong military and a clear foreign policy. This, after just three years of an Obama Presidency.

It's almost as if we've returned to the Jamie Gorelick years.

We tend to ignore. We tend to hide our heads in the sand.

This is not the enlightenment that the Obamists offered. The antithesis of enlightenment is ignoring the events that are occurring around you. Sure, we do it a lot. It doesn't make it the stuff of which policies are determined. Policies are determined by plenty of bright young men and women who have the time and inclination to examine the efforts of those who operate on the international scene. From colleges and universities, to the military and the folks who work at State. The sad thing is, I don't know if there are any bright young men and women working in these agencies who have the intellectual curiosity to ask the releveant questions.

So, the Pizza Guy.

If you're building a company, what is your first impulse? Chances are, you've never built a company. Chances are, you're not the key person in your company. Chances are, you're a nebbish. Nebbish isn't bad. It just isn't you're being a mensch. Herman Cain is not a nebbish. He is a mensch.

There are times when we want a certain luster to be worn by our Presidents. Thankfully, our recent Presidential elections have made this consideration moot. The lackluster performance of our current Commander in Chief have been illustrative of a certain reality of American politics; even the weakest of us can survive the weakest of presidents.

So, let's think about a Presidency occupied by one Herman Cain.

Former chairman and DEO of Godfather's Pizza. Former deputy chairman and chairman of the board of directors to the Federal Reserve Bank of Kansas City. A mathematician in ballistics for the U.S. Navy. A minister at Antioch Baptist Church North in Atlanta, Georgia.

This is a distinguished career. He is a true hero of the working man, rising to his level of authority based upon his own work, his own effort. He is a true, American icon.

He received his B.A. in math from Morehouse. Do you know what that means? Do you know the difference between a B.S. and a B.A.?

He did more than was required.

He received his M.S. in CS from Perdue.

He served on the boards of Nabisco, Whirlpool and Reader's Digest.

On his 9-9-9 Plan.

I'll admit that I was skeptical when I first heard his enunciation of the 9-9-9- Plan. But imagine, not having to spend thousands of dollars each year filling out your tax return. Or, hours upon hours. How much did you spend?

The income tax rate will be nine percent.

Businesses will pay nine percent.

A national sales tax of nine percent. No deductions. If you make one-hundred thousand dollars, you will pay nine-thousand dollars in income tax. You buy one-hundred thousand dollars in purchases each year, you will pay an additional nine-thousand dollars in a national sales tax. If you own a business, nine percent of your net income will be paid in taxes.

If you make thirty-thousand dollars a year, your tax load will be $2,700.00 a year. Right now, you're paying $2250.00 a year on Social Security taxes. Plus, whatever other taxes you need to pay. Chances are, your actual rate will go down. A true tax break for the middle-class.

And, on reflection, I think that revenues to government will actually increase. And one of the biggest threats to America, crony capitalism, will be decreased. Imagine crony capitalists like GE and Jeffry Immelt finding out that their lobbying won't have any effect on their competitiveness? Ending crony capitalism is one of the fundamentals of a "level playing field" that we begin to form governments upon. Any government that can bestow favours upon its friends is not a government of the people, for the people or by the people. That's not what we signed up for. It's not what we need to expect.

Make of this, what you will. I don't need a perfect candidate. I do wish, hope and pine for, an honest, ethical, sincere candidate. Given his range and depth of experience, I do believe that Mr. Cain's bona fides are as great, and greater, than any of his current or future competitors. Is being a lawyer a greater or lesser credential than being a mathematician? Is being former Chairman of the Kansas City Fed a greater or lesser credential than being a Congressman? Is building, training and maintaining a private corporation a greater of lesser credential than being a full-time, professional politician?

If you're a Democrat, or a Leftist, the answers are clear; a lawyer defeats a mathematician; a Congressman, no matter how mundane should defeat a chairman of one of our federal reserve banks; and building, training and maintaining a private corporation is no match for winning successive terms in the national legislature.

That is, someone who can sound good should never be defeated by someone who can do good.

Herman Cain.

The more I listen, the more I like.

Saturday, September 10, 2011

In Commemoration of the Attacks on the United States of America

I offer you this:

911Song Gaines

This gift to you was produced by Scott Gaines, of Lewisville, Texas.

We will never forget. And He will always be there for us.

Friday, September 9, 2011

I Can't Wait To Join A Union

I understand the President wants us to all become union members.

I want to be this guy's Brother.



Update: Eric at Classical Values points out how badly I've misinterpreted the entire event. It's a naming catastrophe, such as this.

Thursday, September 8, 2011

Hiring People

Last month, I hired two young men.

I've known these two young men for at least twenty-one years.

I took this flyer because I believe there are some acquisition opportunities ahead, and I'll need staff in order to take advantage of these upcoming opportunities.

The nice thing is, I have a hedge. I'm not going to make a move on these acquisitions until late second quarter, or early third quarter of next year. The hedge is, if I'm wrong, I won't attempt the acquisition. If I'm right, then hiring these two young men will provide the trunk of a tree for a growth in my business that will allow me to increase my market share and, give my revenue stream a big boost.

I quit hiring years ago.

I hired bright, attractive new hires. The problem was, when I let them loose in my client community, my client community made them offers of employment that I couldn't match. Bad for me, good for them.

I got tired of training up my clients' next manager/assistant manager.

Again, I've known both these young men for at least 21 years. We sat down, with my eldest--who inherits the whole biz on my demise--and I outlined my five-year plan. Asked if they wanted to take the ride. And I hired both of them part-time.

You'll hear "conservatives" talk about how "regulation" is killing them. It's true. The rules and regulations for any business are arcane, confusing, vague and frankly opposed to the simple proposition that "you work for me." Imagine a world where the employees you hire can shut you down for something as simple as asking them to come to a meeting, where you explain how leftist policies are ruining your business. Did you know that's against the law?

Imagine a company, where you ask the aspirants to success to come to a training session, if they want to improve their earnings or productivity. And that their attendance is voluntary. Then find out that the Bureau of Labor and Industry will come in and shut you down if you hadn't paid them for their attendance. Free training to the employees. Voluntary attendance by the employees.

Yet, if one employee bites you back, you could lose your business.

What kind of mind-set turns free education into a grievance?

I like Standard Batteries. They're a Christian company, and maybe you've seen some of their ads. I tried to find an ad to embed, but it was too difficult. Sorry.

But how is Christianity a negative value? How is it  that we've become so afraid to exert influence on either our customers or employees, that advocacy of belief has become criminalized?

Leftists want to dominate the public space. Conservatives come from a different direction; they want the freedom to come to their own conclusions. Just look at the debate that occurs on a different level, the debate over "Climate Change." How many of us are afraid to ask simple questions? How many of us have taken a beating over simply asking questions? Vilification is brutal. Being vilified is painful. How many of us have the strength to ignore attempts at vilification, to adhere to a path of honesty and truth?

I'll tell you, even I have conceded to the path of least resistance. I used to blog under another pseudonym, but, when called out, left that space and spent time off the net, until I arrived here. I'm still not blogging at the level I was blogging, yet some of this can be explained by my time spent doing those productive things that pay the bills. Good blogging takes time. Just ask any of the guys who've laid over into the blogging ditch. If nobody reads, or if "enough" people don't read, why bother?

I have found a space for my writing. And my business allows me to reach a large portion of my local market. There are things that are real and palpable about what I do that has a real, serious effect on a large portion of my local market. It's why, when I was vilified, and threatened with posts that I had made, of a greater vilification, I succumbed. (Yet, here I am.)

The blogosphere is huge. I have regained a certain anonymity. A comfortable anonymity. Just as had been enjoyed by my favourite blogger, Poor Richard. Imagine Ben hiring two young men.

While I'm not attempting to place myself in a class with Franklin, I would assert that anyone with a printing press has the potential to be another Franklin. And, given my experience--successful experience--in the field that I choose to work, that giving a couple of young men a chance to work with me, for me to teach, and for us to work together to drive greater success both for ourselves and our clients, that this opportunity should be based upon the willingness I have to teach and train, rather on the rights of these new, young hires to be shielded from any depredations that I might impose as a condition of their hire. If the minimum wage was repealed, these two men would be employed full-time. As is, I can only afford to hire them part-time, at a weekly rate of fifteen hours.

Teh "System" has determined that employees have rights that supersede the rights of employers. I guess that's because employers are such ridiculous bastards. All we do is train, enable success, and pay wages. Jesus, what bastards we are.

Yet, that is the viewpoint of those who "regulate" business. We don't offer any value. We exploit.

Fuck yeah.

And the dumb fuck who doesn't cut it gets fired. And the viewpoint of those who regulate business is, "you can't do that." WTF?

I watched the President offer his "plan" for moving the unemployment problem tonight. I think he said "pass this plan" more than ten times. Why? Is there something that our President said, that offered me an olive branch? I can't afford to hire more employees. I can't have more than five employees (full-time) without entering a regulatory zone that I either can't afford, or choose not to accept. Why? Regulations. Chances are, you don't own a company or corporation. Chances are, you don't have the authority or responsibility for hiring or firing. If you don't, keep your job.

Owning, or managing, a company or corporation is a wonderful thing. Owning or managing a company or corporation twenty years ago, was even better. Owning or managing a company or corporation forty years ago was even better. Why?

There was a time when providing a good of service to our customers was the highest calling. I remember when IBM was just a fledgling concern. Did you know that Business Services used to have an office in Portland? These were the true mad men of business. They saw the potential of the digitization of services, as it applied to making certain business activities more profitable? Were these guys "computer salesmen?"

No. These were the guys who brought innovation to the market. They took the risks. Innovators understand risks.

Whenever you hear a politician talk about innovation, remember, they don't have any skin in the game. We, in the private sector do.

Obama is the first Trillionaire in the History of the World. Tonight? He offers another program that will cost us a cool, half a trillion dollars. The coolest thing about this big Daddy is, it isn't even his money.

Should you hire anyone today? Not based upon the latest plan coming out of the White House. Me? I'm counting on some investments that are in the pipe, and an outcome that depends upon a double-dip.

Last month, I hired two young men.

It's my money, my risk. But, I think I'm going to be able to take one of my competitors out.  Not today. Sometime next year. After the acquisition, people will be found to be unemployed. If they had taken care of their business, I wouldn't be able to acquire them. It's their choice to do business as usual today.

There are sharks in the waters. There are wolves in the woods.

We cannot all be winners. But, remember, it's my money in play, not yours, and not tax dollars.If I fail, and I've failed before, I don't believe that you owe me a thing. I take a risk, I win or lose. If you're a Leftist, you don't take risks. You don't innovate. You simply do what you do, and expect the rest of us to pick up your check.

Fuck you.

Learn to earn, or learn to create. But don't try to hand me your failure. Man up.

This message provided to you by a cranky old guy, who doesn't owe a dime to anyone.

Wednesday, September 7, 2011

There were two gentlemen who led me into disputation, early in life. Their names are Arthur M. Okun and Arthur F. Burns. Or, the Two Arts. (Disclosure: my oldest son's middle name is Arthur.)

The importance of Professor Okun is, that he was one of the earlier economists to take a greater, modern and statistical approach to the study of economics. There are several conditions that P. Okun introduced that still effect the difference between fiscal and monetary policy.

Professor Okun came up with a statement about employment. It was a fairly simple statement, since econometrics is a school of endeavour that relies upon simple statements about economic activity. How "scientists" can come up with statements like, "propensity of belief" being a proof of a theoretical remains, to this day, beyond my ken.

Let's look at Okun's theory of employment.

Okun simply conjectured that employment had an effect on output.

Okun suggested that, as employment increases, output increased. Let's do that again. Some variables are exogenous. Some variables are endogenous.

As exogenous variables either increase, or decrease, their effects, (that is, the effects of those exogenous changes) will either affect employment, or not. At the same time, if exogenous variables didn't affect output, then, some autonomous force--neither fiscal or monetary policy--were having an effect upon whether or not economic output increased or decreased.

When you learn about math, one of the things you learn about is subtraction. Normally, when you take a subtraction question, you're asked about two numbers, and the difference between those two numbers. Like, "4 - 2 = 2."

It is somewhat easy to follow the logic of such an expression. (A mathematical expression.)

You have four. You subtract two. The difference between that which you started with, and that which was taken from you leads you to what was left with you. In this case, two.

Okun's Law follows much the same approach. In economics, we refer (as short-hand) to the economic output of a nation--GDP--with the letter y. We do this because when you spend a lot of time in front of a chalk board in front of a lot of first- or second-year college students, it's simply easier to do a two-stroke than a multiple stroke on the chalk board. (And lots of first and second year students are just as lazy as the rest of us. Let's all try to get along, okay?)

So, y is GDP. Or, domestic annual output. Or, national product. Or, national income. Or, some other metric, that takes into account all of the variables or our, or some other, national economy.

Y is something else. Sure, it looks a lot like y, but I guarantee you Y is not y. Y is a theoretical of what actural y is. With Y, you are making a statement about what y may be. Let's look at Y. Y is the "perfect" level of GDP. (Imagine, having a pre-cogniscent ability to predict perfect GDP.) What Arthur Okun said was, that the relationship of y was a statement of Y, and its relationship to employment. That is, the change of y had a relationship to the change of those who weren't employed (u).

This is pretty good stuff.

Today, most statements of econometric theses attempt to control, and explain, statements that include up to 32 different variables, or more. Given small weighting, some of these models may, indeed, express some notional expression of variability that more elegant models may miss. But bet my money on the truly elegant models, please.

Okun's model is fairly blunt:

http://upload.wikimedia.org/math/f/8/8/f889ae354327c495481082b743371648.png
is constant national economic output, at full employment.
http://upload.wikimedia.org/math/9/0/1/901ded9ea97c68133f2b7e0347dc8f1e.pngis the "natural rate of unemployment."
"u" is the actual rate of unemployment, and
"c" is the external constant, that relates to the lag in employment and unemployment. It is external, since, to simplify examination, no changes in the endogenous variables will result in changes of y.

A lot of critics of economics tend to view this as one of the rules of economic behaviours that follow from Keynesian economics. I believe that Okun's rule is simply an earlier statement of the Laffer Curve. Arthur Okun realised that the rate of employment was more worthy of concern than any policy that claimed to increase national levels of employment. We are better off, as a national economy, when more of us are employed than when few of us are employed. Incremental changes in employment have short-term effects.

It isn't hard, at this point, to direct our attention to the efforts of the "other" Arthur.

Federal Reserve Chairman Arthur Burns also advocated policies that attempted to affect the employment rate. While questions existed around what would be the value of http://upload.wikimedia.org/math/9/0/1/901ded9ea97c68133f2b7e0347dc8f1e.png(the natural rate of unemployment) in an economy at full employment, Burns posited that that natural rate would be around four percent.

There are loads of articles and books written about Chairman Burns' proposition. The point I wish to make is, that those periods where we were at or around four to six percent rates of unemployment were periods where large, interventionist policies weren't necessary. Market adjustments in employment occur and equilibrium may have a lag. But normal lags are usually short in duration.

As we look forward with anticipation to tomorrow night's revelation from our current President, it's natural to assume that the reason why our current policies are failing to make a dent in our nation income crisis will be revealed. I don't think so.

I happen to believe that our current President is self-enamored. As would be any recent graduate of law from Harvard. I just happen to believe that our President has never had to come to grips with the fact that beyond his degree, comes a record. A record of performance.

Our President has a record.

What you choose to make of this statement is up to you.

Thursday, September 1, 2011

Sarah

Just checking in.

I do not want Sarah to run.

I am looking forward to a Perry/Bachmann ticket.

I do want Sarah as our new Secretary for Energy.

Guiliani as AG. Or, Homeland Security. (Tie.)

Ron Paul at Treasury. (Mebbe.)(Think about it.)(Not the Fed.)(Treasury.)

Mitt Romney at Commerce.

Huntsman at Education.

Newt at Labor. (Or, Housing and Urban Development.)

Santorum at Housing and Urban Development.

Herman Cain at Agriculture.

McCotter at State.


Roemer at Justice.


Bolton at Defense.


Daniels at Interior.


Trump at Transportation.


Huckabee at Veterans' Affairs.


DeMint at Housing and Urban Development.


Any guy who drives a truck at Transportation. (You think Trump actually wants to serve?)


United Trade Representative? Kudlow.


United States Ambassador to the United Nations? Dick Cheney.


Council of Economic Advisors? Mankiw


OMB? Becker.