A Nation At War

The reelection of Barack Obama by a thin popular margin, albeit a wide electoral margin, underscores a nation divided and unfortunately I don’t see much common ground anymore. The GOP controls the House, the Democrats control the Senate and WH, but the GOP governs 29 states, and controls the legislatures in 27 of those states, so each party have fairly strong battle positions, and the battle has commenced, starting with Michigan. There the GOP legislature passed a right to work which has the unions apoplectic and threatening, and engaging in actual violence. This comes on the heels of a hotly contested battle in WI earlier this year where GOP Governor Scott Walker successfully defeated a union uprising over collective bargaining. Arguably public unions have done more harm than good, of course many liberals including the entire MSNBC network and Mr. Obama will contest that assertion, but if anyone wants to really see the results of public unions they need look no further than Detroit, MI, and San Bernardino, CA, where 71% of the city’s budget goes towards public union pay and pensions which led the city to filing bankruptcy earlier this year. In Detroit, it’s reported that nearly 35% of the population receive food stamps and astonishingly nearly 46% aren’t even the work force, and this is an indictment on both parties. While the MI is traditionally a blue state having voted for Democrat Presidents since 1992, they recently voted in a Republican Governor, who helped initiate the right to work bill, and Republican Legislature and have been governed by a Republican 10 out of the last 16 years. So it seems that regardless of the party, public unions have successfully negotiated more than their fair share of their respective states treasuries for quite some time now, and the results are not good. Compounding this problem is the fact that union officials and their membership seem oblivious to this fact, and are evidently  unyielding, so the battle will go on and Mr. Obama is apparently willing to allow it rather than demonstrate leadership which come as no surprise.

If we are to ever right our countries financial ship, public unions will have to play a huge role, and as evidenced by WI and now MI, and the subsequent reaction from the WH, they have no intention of being responsible. The liberal media is also firmly in their corner, and the union leadership is prepared to “draw blood”, so this will be a very interesting four years and as far as I am concerned – I am up for the battle. These next four years could be Civil War II, that is unless Mr. Obama decides to lead. However, I am not holding out any hope on that.

UPDATE: How did I miss this?

 “This is just the first round of a battle that’s going to divide this state. We’re going to have a civil war,” – Jimmy Hoffa

 

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56 thoughts on “A Nation At War

  1. bardolf2 December 12, 2012 / 12:25 pm

    You seem to want to join the others who have been taken off the blog. It can be done. //Moderator

    • Cluster December 12, 2012 / 12:42 pm

      You’re hilarious. But thanks for validating my article and clearly demonstrating how polarized we are. Instead of moving, I think I will stay here and fight you – sound good?

      • James0601 December 12, 2012 / 1:05 pm

        Still banned. //Moderator

      • neocon01 December 12, 2012 / 6:33 pm

        cluster

        . Instead of moving, I think I will stay here and fight you – sound good?

        Im WITH ya!!

      • Retired Spook December 12, 2012 / 9:05 pm

        cluster: Instead of moving, I think I will stay here and fight you – sound good?

        Im WITH ya!!

        Neo, I had an another interesting conversation with my favorite Liberal at the Y this morning. He’s been kind of smug and condescending since the election, and I asked him how he felt about the union violence in Detroit. He said his biggest concern was violence from the right (not ACTUAL violence from the Left, mind you) — that he’d heard that the Tea Party was gearing up for a revolution. He said “you’re not part of that radical movement, are you?” I told him I was not only part of it but very active in it. I asked him what part of the Tea Party agenda he found to be most radical; adherence to the Constitution, living within our means, or passing on a secure and prosperous future to our kids and grandkids. He was at a complete loss for words, and of course, what does a Liberal do when they’re at a complete loss for words? Change the subject, of course — back to the revolution. He wanted to know if I could see myself inflicting harm on another human being (his words, honest to God). I asked him if he could see himself inflicting harm on someone who threatened the future and well-being of his children and grandchildren. Back to that complete loss for words thing again. Too funny. I love jerkin’ his chain.

  2. Retired Spook December 12, 2012 / 12:55 pm

    The reelection of Barack Obama by a thin popular margin, albeit a wide electoral margin,

    Actually, if you look at the underlying numbers, it’s the other way around. The last raw vote numbers I saw reflected a popular vote victory of nearly 5 million votes, which is certainly not a “thin margin”, while a shift of about 400,000 votes in 4 swing states would have shifted the electoral college to Romney. Can you imagine the violence on the Left if Obama had won the popular vote by 4 million votes and Romney had won the electoral vote? And personally, I am at the point where I welcome violence from the Left. I just hope the MSM covers it.

    • Cluster December 12, 2012 / 1:16 pm

      Sheesh, I hate it when you inject accurate critical analysis into my threads – lol. However, out of approx. 120 million popular votes, 5 million is not that significant. At least in my opinion.

    • Retired Spook December 12, 2012 / 1:41 pm

      spook, tell me again how many times you’ve been right on your predictions of doom on the economy, and social unrest?

      Sasan, you’ve been coming here under at least a half dozen different names almost as long as I have, and I’d venture to say that, over the years, I’ve been right about things I’ve predicted more times than you’ve posted something interesting and thought-provoking.

      • neocon01 December 12, 2012 / 3:29 pm

        I have been posting many many threats from the left in the last year from Union thugs, to black panthers, former administration tzars, OWS muslims, and tv commentators.
        I have been accused of being a racist for pointing out a HUGE increase in flash mobs, murders, shootings, beatings, violence in general. These are posted all over the internet including drudge, and the blaze (becks blog) daily.
        We have a dangerous racial powder keg in this country which the fuze has been lit by the donk party and the POS him self. It will not get better until we get a new administration.
        They in my opinion are hard core communists which has the MO of fostering violence to bring about fundamental change.

        I PRAY we do not have any sort of civil upheava,l but fear we could slip into a civil war which the communists (in the white hut) would impose martial law and destroy any liberties we may have left.

      • Amazona December 12, 2012 / 3:31 pm

        Lordy, is poor pathetic little Sasan back again? What is he this time? Petroleum engineer? Norwegian born resident of Paris in a posh condo with a view of the Eiffel Tower? Race car driver? Astronaut? Married to his imaginary British “girlfriend”?

        Our unibrowed Persian, America-hating, fantasy-life little troll seems quite obsessed with using this blog as his personal litter box. I have never seen anything from him that was not just an infantile temper tantrum, cluttered with his imaginary personas and imaginary degrees and imaginary jobs and imaginary gilrfriends, etc.

        Not quite sure how bad the economy has to be to qualify as “doom” but it sure seems pretty close to me. And I’d consider the quote I posted earlier from National Review as pretty indicative of social unrest—maybe to an Iranian, some riots,some attacks on peaceful opponents and some threats of blood in the streets is just another day, ho hum, but to me it spells “social unrest”.

        So I’d say you are already right,Spook, even without a further degeneration into even MORE economic doom and social unrest.

      • neocon01 December 12, 2012 / 4:38 pm

        Jimmy Hoffa Warns Of “Civil War” As Michigan Governor Signs “Right-To-Work” Into Law

        I seem remember another hoffa who USED to use similar inflammatory language and threats………….

      • neocon01 December 12, 2012 / 4:53 pm

        donk stupidity to a new level………..

        SHEILA JACKSON LEE: ENTITLEMENTS ARE ‘EARNED’…

        really??? good grief who elects these Fn morons?….Oh never mind!

      • neocon01 December 12, 2012 / 5:02 pm

        Young Penn. Mother Tells Teens to ‘Get a Job’ When They Ask for a Cigarette — And They Kill Her

      • neocon01 December 13, 2012 / 6:42 pm

        Belafonte to Obama: Imprison Opposition ‘Like a Third World Dictator’…

        Note to BAD calypso “singer” bellafarte, you seem to have somolia and the US mixed up.
        There is a one way ticket BACK waiting for you azz a hola…….

      • Amazona December 14, 2012 / 12:01 am

        The Rabidly Radical Left tried to hide its true beliefs, but the election of Obama and his getting away with packing his administration with so many overt RRL types seems to have emboldened the Belafonte America-hating white-hating types so they are now blurting out, in public, the true nature of the Left.

        We should thank them. When we expressed concern about the tendencies of radical Leftism we were told we were paranoid, were conspiracy theorists, etc. Then the RRL started talking, and gee, it turns out we were right all along.

        A great example is the Death Panel kerfluffle. The RRL shrieked that there would be no such thing, that no life or death decisions would be made,etc. Then Dick Cheney got a new heart, and the haters came right out and said he not only should not have gotten one because of his age,but because of his politics. Yes, they admitted their belief that he should have been left to die because he is a conservative,

        All we have to do is sit back and let them explain and define themselves.

      • neocon01 December 14, 2012 / 10:05 am

        All we have to do is sit back and let them explain and define themselves.

        They have…….

        1. mein kampf
        2. mao’s lil red book.
        3. rules for radicals.
        4. dreams from my (communist) “father”. (baby daddy)

      • Amazona December 13, 2012 / 11:55 pm

        I’m wrong, if “James” is Sasan. On one occasion, over the span of a few posts, “James” did engage in actual political discourse,and at the time I praised his honesty and willingness to state his true political beliefs.

        However, if memory serves, this was a very brief interlude and then he fell back into his favorite pastime of just attacking people and hurling insults and trying to be a blog speed bump.

        And if “James” really IS Sasan, he is truly a sad and pathetic little Gollum of a creature while also being profoundly offensive.

    • M. Noonan December 12, 2012 / 11:15 pm

      Still not the 9 million or so he won by in 2008…in spite of it all, the nation is still shifting towards us…if we can just figure out how to shift them further…which, of course, I already know the answer…Bobby Jindal!

  3. Count d'Haricots (@Count_dHaricots) December 12, 2012 / 2:46 pm

    Not to pick fly-shit out of the pepper, but 71% of a city’s budget for payroll and related expenditures from non-capital funds isn’t out of order. The proviso being that those expenditures are safety related, in San Bernardino 48% of the current non-capital expenditure is Police; 24% Fire. Police and Fire are Public Sector unions.

    Because of the State’s mismanagement and federal incompetence, San Bernardino’s revenues have fallen by 34% in the past 5 years. While the city’s liability in the State’s pension programs far exceeds the actual valuation of participants in San Bernardino and environs.

    Moreover, Motor Vehicle in Lieu brought San Bernardino $10,981,000 in 2003; and only $725,000 in 2011-12 (thanks to Grey Davis and Arnold). Property tax plummeted after 2008 and with it Utility taxes and sales taxes. The population, crime, welfare, and public service demands have grown during this time.

      • Count d'Haricots (@Count_dHaricots) December 12, 2012 / 7:22 pm

        Cluster,

        The primary reason for the increase in employee retirement costs are unfunded mandates. As stated earlier, revenue to the city decreased while the CALPRS investment pool (fully funded up to 2008) saw a return on investment of 1%. No investment pool can sustain with that return. As a result, according to the plan, San Bernardino is are required to fund current liabilities, because the unfunded liabilities are amortized over the remaining years of the plan the contribution amount of the contribution has to increase while revenues to the city have decreased.

        the city’s current investment pool liability is just under $1.0 Billion, the current market value of that investment is $680.0 Million; therefore the plan requires that the shortfall of $300.0 Billion. You and I both know the entirety of CALPRS isn’t going to spontaneously retire but amortizing the liability is the only thing San Bernardino can do legally.

        Participation rose, although San Bernardino has reduced employee staff every year since 2003, and now has less employees than at any time in more than a generation, all the while the city has grown and urbanization of once unincorporated areas has brought crime and infrastructure issues to the city.

        San Bernardino has made some stupid decisions in my opinion, but the cumulative effect of their stupidity is no match for an economy and investments over which the city has no control.

        I don’t know what your WSJ article says, I’m not a subscriber, but I do review the financial records in San Bernardino.

      • Cluster December 12, 2012 / 10:55 pm

        Count,

        I can’t imagine that San Bernardino is the only municipality in this situation, but one of the few that filed BK. it seems to me that the public unions need to come back to the table and renegotiate in good faith, so their neighbors and friends in the city aren’t stuck paying their lavish pensions.

      • Count d'Haricots (@Count_dHaricots) December 13, 2012 / 8:17 pm

        I agree, retirement costs are killing the governments.

        But it’s not just the Unions; CALPERS is all California employees except teachers (CALSTRS). I have a retirement $ coming from both and have never belonged to a Union in California.

        There was a time when government employees made lousy salaries but got kick-ass benefits. Salaries are now comparable but the Benefits are still Cadillac for Government types.

        Btw, WSJ is incorrect; the estimate for San Bernardino in 2014 is $22.6 Million according to their filed budget report, it was $6.2 Million in 2001, and $19.0 Million in 2012..

  4. Jeremiah December 12, 2012 / 6:14 pm

    Can anybody say why Obama is sending war planes to Egypt? Is not Israel our ally not their target? Would this be treason in the making?

    • neocon01 December 12, 2012 / 6:31 pm

      jer

      Would this be treason in the making?

      I HAS been TREASON for the last 4 years.

      • Jeremiah December 13, 2012 / 6:37 pm

        My next question would be then, is, there anyone with the intestinal fortitude to take the necessary steps for indicting, and the proper sentencing for this crime that Mr. Obama has committed?

        Treason does not constitute a going to the slammer, but a far greater punishment. It is a serious crime, and needs to be dealt with appropriately. And anyone involved with his conspiring against America needs to go with him.

    • Amazona December 13, 2012 / 11:42 pm

      From the “Lectric Law Library:

      “The Constitution of the United States, Art. III, defines treason against the United States to consist only in levying war against them, or in adhering to their enemies, giving them aid or comfort. This offence is punished with death. By the same article of the Constitution, no person shall be convicted of treason, unless on the testimony of two witnesses to the same overt act, or on confession in open court.”

      The word is more loosely defined as betrayal, but there is no specific crime of betraying an ally. It is merely a moral failing.

      We might, possibly, be guilty of a violation of a treaty, but this falls far short of “treason” and is is not a crime.

      I think we need to be careful of how we use words. A strong emotional reaction against a moral outrage is one thing, but to call it something it is not, and call for a punishment that is reserved for something else, is not wise.

      • neocon01 December 14, 2012 / 1:25 pm

        Ama

        I wonder if it were proven that al Ubama was ineligible to hold the office, knew it yet took the oath in spite of this then proceeded to turn the country upside down could be accused of treason?

        the same for the DNC for as some suggest stole the election?

      • Amazona December 14, 2012 / 1:51 pm

        neo, I have thought about this and I think no, this would not rise to the definition of “treason”, either for Obama or for the DNC. It would not qualify as an overt intent to overthrow the government or providing aid and comfort to the enemy, as I am sure in any legal action an “enemy” would have to be the opponent in a declared war or at least an entity that was overtly trying to overthrow the government.

        I do think it would be a criminal action, one of fraud.

        There was a time when I believed that most Americans, if they were to learn that the DNC had purposely perpetrated a fraud upon the American people and subverted our Constitution, would be outraged. Now, I doubt it. Now, for some reason, about half of the American public is indifferent to the Constitution, law, reason or truth. They are quite happy with the bread and circuses provided by the Left, and too lazy or indifferent to care about the actual structure of our country.

    • M. Noonan December 14, 2012 / 1:27 pm

      Because he’s stupid.

      • Amazona December 14, 2012 / 2:01 pm

        I think it is more complex than stupidity. I think we are seeing the strength of Obama’s deep-seated allegiance to Islam or at least to Muslims as a people if not to the religion itself.

        I have seen nothing to indicate a true belief in any religion. He has postured as a Christian but he walked past hundreds of black churches which are based upon the concept of Christ as Savior and the acceptance of this as the path to redemption and salvation till he found one which preaches such a distorted and bastardized version of Christianity that it is unrecognizable as anything we think of as Christian.

        And then he evidently used this conversion as a disguise, to gain cred with the predominantly religious black community, while seldom attending the church or participating in it.

        I think his only belief system is political, that of Marx and anticolonialism.

        But I have also come to think he has an underlying allegiance to the people of his adopted nations, to Islam as an enemy of the West if not as a religion, and this, when coupled with his antipathy to any nation he has defined as “colonialist” makes it very hard for him to pass up the opportunity to support radical Islam in other countries and to overlook or deny its danger to America.

        I don’t think it is “stupid” as much as it is an instinctive desire to side with an ancestral culture, kind of like third or fourth generation Irish donating to causes that support the IRA.

  5. Cluster December 13, 2012 / 8:33 am

    This is getting comical. Ezra Klein substituting for gender bender Rachel Maddow said the following:

    What Michigan Republicans approved today is a new rule that says you do not have to pay even if you are being represented. You get the perks of membership, the higher wages, the higher benefits without contributing anything. You can be a free rider.

    Free Rider. Got it? Now despite the fact that those who do not choose to join the union, do not get representation, and the union BY LAW is not required to provide that representation, I find it amazingly hypocritical for a liberal to deride anyone of being a “free rider”. This current brand of progressivism that has a strangle hold on the Democratic party is all about free riding. They chastise the rich for not paying their fair share despite the fact the rich pay more than their fair share, they promote and encourage food stamp usage, they welcome illegal immigrants and want to provide them with immediate benefits, they oppose any attempt to reform the tax code so that all Americans have some skin in the game, and they have no problem with piling on more debt to continue their gravy train of health care and welfare benefits.

    Free Riders? Since when has that been an issue of concern amongst progressives?

    • tiredoflibbs December 13, 2012 / 10:55 am

      So in this case “Moochers” are unacceptable to the left.

      • J. R. Babcock (@JRBabcock) December 13, 2012 / 11:23 am

        Sort of like their position on “choice”. The only choice they’re in favor of is killing unborn babies. School choice, the choice to not join a union, the choice to recognize marriage as a union of one man and one woman, not so much.

      • tiredoflibbs December 13, 2012 / 12:48 pm

        After all, Democrats or proggies, are the party of hypocrites.

        Look at taxation, for a party that mindlessly chants in unison “pay your fair share”, we have an administration and party that have many, many individuals who are not paying their taxes and are delinquent.

      • neocon01 December 13, 2012 / 6:33 pm

        So in this case “Moochers” are unacceptable to the left.

        and CHOICE is evil??

        Im confused 😦

      • Amazona December 13, 2012 / 11:51 pm

        J.R. is correct. The Left defines “choice” very narrowly, and seemingly only in terms of reproduction. The desire to kill inconvenient children is described as nothing more sinister than a simple “choice”, and Velma recently wallowed in one of her hysterical outbursts explaining that if someone does not pay for birth control he is depriving a woman of her “reproductive choice”.

        However, the word does not apply to choosing to pray in a school, or joining a union, or teaching any alternative to evolution of all life from a single primitive life form, or demanding a more stringent application of scientific principles to the questions of whether or not the Earths’ recent warming is dangerous or caused by man, carrying a concealed weapon, or any of the myriad issues about which the Left has decided choice is not only not necessary but should not be allowed.

    • M. Noonan December 14, 2012 / 1:29 pm

      Liberals believe that the only reason we’re all not sweating it away in the salt mines is because of unions…had unions not come along then we’d still be earning a dollar a 12 hour a day. For them, if we are not forced in to a union then we are getting a “free ride” because only the unions prevent us from going back to a dollar a 12 hour a day.

      Yes, I realize this is stupid. But, they’re liberals – what did you expect?

  6. Retired Spook December 13, 2012 / 9:55 am

    Bob Woodward has an interesting take on the fiscal cliff negotiations. The first reader comment is spot on:

    There may be a civil war in the democrat party but they keep it behind closed doors, the republicans can’t get to a camera quick enough to fight each other and the media cant get enough of it. The republicans should learn ethics from the tea party and tactics from the liberals.

  7. J. R. Babcock (@JRBabcock) December 13, 2012 / 10:20 am

    Talk about a great big steaming pile of too bad, so sad.

    Despite positive feedback at some agencies, job satisfaction across the government has hit its lowest point in almost a decade. Just 52.9 percent of employees at the sprawling Department of Homeland Security, for example, are satisfied with their jobs, making it the lowest-ranked large agency, followed by the Department of Veterans Affairs.

    The seventh annual “Best Places to Work in the Federal Government” rankings pose a challenge for the Obama administration as President Obama, who pledged to reinvigorate federal work and make government “cool again,” embarks on a second term.

    Even workers at layoff-battered private companies are more optimistic than government employees, who historically have had far more job security, the survey by the nonpartisan Partnership for Public Service found.

  8. dbschmidt December 13, 2012 / 7:35 pm

    Way off-topic here (maybe better suited for the previous post) however, I feel it is something that just needed wider exposure at this time of year;

    Getting an Abortion in December
    By T.S. Weidler

    http://www.americanthinker.com/2012/12/getting_an_abortion_in_december.html

    Worth the read including the affidavit of Norma McCorvey, aka. Jane Doe among the other included documentation. Now the Liberals can “make their arguments” while the rest of us have a Merry Christmas.

  9. Retired Spook December 14, 2012 / 10:41 am

    OT, but it appears one of the regional FED Presidents not only has a brain, but an understanding of basic economics.

    The Federal Reserve should not use the unemployment rate to guide markets about when it will eventually hike interest rates, said Richmond Federal Reserve Bank President Jeffrey Lacker on Friday.”A single indicator cannot provide a complete picture of labor market conditions,” Lacker said. Instead, the Fed should describe “in qualitative terms” the economic conditions under which the Fed would need to change monetary policy, he said. His comments were posted early Friday on the Richmond Fed’s web site at the end of a “blackout period” where Fed officials typically don’t comment on monetary policy close to formal meetings. The Richmond Fed president has dissented from all eight Fed policy statements this year. He repeated his view that more asset purchases by the central bank risks higher inflation and said the Fed should only buy Treasurys and not mortgage-backed securities.

    It’s a pretty simple concept. Economic growth is essential for unemployment to go down. ZIRP (zero interest rate policy) will not foster meaningful economic growth. It’s a self-defeating policy.

    • Retired Spook December 14, 2012 / 10:43 am

      Damn random placement gnomes!

    • M. Noonan December 14, 2012 / 1:34 pm

      Yep – what I’d like for us Republicans/conservatives/libertarians to do is stop using the official stats to determine how the economy is going. That is just playing the fake money/usury game which only favors the liberals. What do we care if GDP goes up or down? Or the official unemployment rate goes up or down? The true measure of our economic health is how much we produce; how much we export; how much we import…and not in dollar terms, but in terms of ounces, pounds, tons, etc.

      We should figure out a way to report, monthly, how much steel we produced and compare it to last month, a year ago, five years ago, 10 years ago…and see where we stand. Go on through wheat, copper, beef, etc, etc, etc. Then total up how many metric tonnes of this, that or the other thing we imported and exported – and then compare it to a month ago, a year ago, five years ago, 10 years ago. That will tell us the real tale of our economy…and I’ll bet that in almost every measurement we do, we’ll find economic decline…and armed with such data we can go to the American people and tell them, for real, what is happening and how we might fix it.

      • Count d'Haricots (@Count_dHaricots) December 14, 2012 / 2:08 pm

        Mark,
        All that is readily available, and if you had an economist on call to explain it all then you would be on to something. But GDP is a very good indicator of the economic health of a nation. Not the output so much but the perennial increases in GDP. Employment/unemployment is also a good indicator, if the information is considered in a dynamic way.

        However, the economy is about a lot more than producing “tonnes” of steel or steel wool or steel guitars. We don’t produce but about 10% of the pig iron China does, and China didn’t produce but 10% of what the US did in the nineteenth century. Our reduction in pig iron production and their increase is a tribute to our stronger economy producing technology, intellectual property and services China needs to continue producing pig iron, we don’t.

        We produce far fewer locomotive steam engines as each passing year flies by. There is a need for such things in third-world countries but we make far more exporting technology and service; we send technicians to repair their steam locomotives and our standard of living increases as we produce less physical products or commodities.

        What is a ton of intellectual property going for these days?

      • M. Noonan December 14, 2012 / 2:21 pm

        Count,

        My view is that intellectual property is economic feces – the Brits figured out how to mass produce steel in the 18th century and weren’t exactly eager to tell anyone how it was done…it was their intellectual property and it served them well to keep it an English secret because if you wanted lots of steel, you had to buy British. But, eventually, Krupp figured out how to do it and because he also figured out how to make it better and cheaper, within 50 years of him figuring it out Germans were producing more steel than the Brits. Its what you do with knowledge that matters, not that you have it – we can come up with the most brilliant invention, ever, but we we aren’t making the materials necessary to turn idea in to reality, then we’re just helping other people get rich.

        As for GDP numbers – they include government spending and so whenever the government has a vested interest in goosing the numbers (as ‘Bams did this year) then he just super-chargers government spending. Additionally, we’ve now legalized pot in several States so dope growing and sales will be included in our GDP numbers…but does growing dope and selling it actually improve our economy? I don’t care if we wind up being the most efficient grower of dope in the world, it still won’t help us in the global economy.

        Its a nice little dig to point out we don’t make steam locomotives – but locomotives are still being made and they aren’t being made in the United States. Bridges are being built – of Chinese structural steel. And so on. All the old fashioned, non-cool stuff we scorn is still being made and we’re not making it – we’re spending our last resources buying it from others. We’re bankrupt – we have to rebuild our wealth and that means getting back in to farming, mining and manufacturing. Now, get thee geeks to the task of figuring out ways to make steel cheaper and faster…but be sure it is being made here in the USA.

      • Count d'Haricots (@Count_dHaricots) December 14, 2012 / 3:00 pm

        Yep, all those Billions $ in Apple investments on this side of the pond is just scat, while the REAL money is in the Chinese sweatshops.

        I do love your entrepreneurial spirit though, its that kind of thinking that will have the US at the top of the Tallow Candle Market in no time.

      • M. Noonan December 14, 2012 / 3:03 pm

        Count,

        I believe a great deal of the Apple products are produced in China…in other words, we’re making them rich. Good job!

        …Not long ago, Apple boasted that its products were made in America. Today, few are. Almost all of the 70 million iPhones, 30 million iPads and 59 million other products Apple sold last year were manufactured overseas…

        Apple says they have to do it because Chinese factories are more flexible – that they can adjust to changing manufacturing demands faster than American factories. This is because Chinese factors are filled with near slaves who can be bossed about at will…so much for liberals caring about working people. But the thing is, the solution is not to employ slaves overseas, but to figure out a way to make our factories more flexible and efficient…to increase capital expenditures to the point where we are creating new manufacturing techniques which can blow out cheap labor overseas. But our whole economy is structured against that – our tax and regulatory environment makes it very difficult to even build a factory, let alone build one better than a slave labor factory. Additionally, our fake money/usury economy doesn’t reward making things but, instead, rewards shuffling money around in a game of Wall Street Roulette.

        But here’s our real problem – we’re now running out of wealth and in a last, desperate bid to stave off catastrophe we’re devaluing the dollar…printing up trillions of them so that we can keep the money game going and still, for a while, buy our crap from China. But after a while, our money will become utterly worthless and then we’d better have something worthwhile to trade…what have you got? Food? Steel? Oil? Or the idea for an I-phone ap? That idea for an I-phone ap plus five bucks will get you a cup of coffee…but not much from China.

      • Count d'Haricots (@Count_dHaricots) December 14, 2012 / 3:20 pm

        Right, Cupertino is a suburb of Shanghai in the Pudong district.

        Meanwhile China makes almost nothing from the manufacture of products from American Company Apple

        “Basic manufacturing, electronics assembly type manufacturing, simply isn’t a high value occupation any more. And the level of wages that can be paid in any particular occupation depend, inexorably, on the amount of value that occupation adds. So if electronics assembly adds little value then there simply cannot be high wages for those doing that work for it just isn’t a high value added occupation.”

        Yeah, American Owned Apple is nothing more than fiscal floaters circling the drain while China is raking in the Yuan with all that low-tech manufacturing so important to 21st Century economics. /sarc

      • M. Noonan December 14, 2012 / 3:25 pm

        Count,

        Its a nice try, but that man’s an idiot – materials make up 31% of the cost and the materials are not made in the United States…they are made in China or elsewhere. So, guess what? Yes, foreigners who make things are not making nearly nothing – they are making nearly all of the money. Manufacturing is not just putting the blasted thing together…it is mining and growing materials; turning the materials in to usable products and then assembling the consumer good.

        If all we do is think up the ideas, then we’re doomed – especially now that the Indians are coming up with “think upppers” every bit as good as ours…

      • Count d'Haricots (@Count_dHaricots) December 14, 2012 / 5:07 pm

        That man is an idiot????

        I give up; you’re right. You should invest in that plastics farm.

        You’ll forgive me if I don’t sell my Apple stock based the idea that the 24.7% cost of materials and manufacturing of an iPhone against a 60.9% US profit is a real loser.

    • Count d'Haricots (@Count_dHaricots) December 14, 2012 / 1:42 pm

      So sayth Milton, so let it be done!

      Lowering interest rates helps borrowers if they need to borrow; borrowers don’t borrow because money is cheap, they borrow because they can put the capital to use at greater rate than the cost of the capital, or because they have need.

      To peg interest rates to a lagging indicator is to assume that borrowers are cash addicts with no fiscal sense.

      Financing using other peoples’ money is sometimes prudent; a zero % loan to buy a car rather than paying cash allows me to keep the cash, earn interest and pay back at a time when the money is worth less than when I took out the loan; that’s business sense. But it’s only business sense if I need/want a car i would have bought anyway.

      This proposal assumes businesses are run by dimocrats.

      That’s the ticket! I’ll borrow and expand business and hire new people not because it’s a prudent investment or because there is greater need for my good/services but because money is cheap!

      My daughter uses this logic; buy while its on sale, not because we need this crap, or even want this crap, but because it’s 60% off.

  10. Amazona December 14, 2012 / 12:16 pm

    OT but possibly worth revisiting, given the RRL squeal about people who question the accidental-collision-of-lifeless-particles-resulting-in-eons-of-widely-divergent-life-forms speculation as being “ANTI-SCIENCE”—

    “Some physicists and university researchers say it’s possible to test the theory that our entire universe exists inside a computer simulation, like in the 1999 film “The Matrix.”

    In 2003, University of Oxford philosophy professor Nick Bostrom published a paper, “The Simulation Argument,” which argued that “we are almost certainly living in a computer simulation.” Now, a team at Cornell University says it has come up with a viable method for testing whether we’re all just a series of numbers in some ancient civilization’s computer game.

    Researchers at the University of Washington agree with the testing method, saying it can be done. A similar proposal was put forth by German physicists in November.

    So how, precisely, can we test whether we exist? Put simply, researchers are building their own simulated models, using a technique called lattice quantum chromodynamics. And while those models are currently able to produce models only slightly larger than the nucleus of an atom, University of Washington physics professor Martin Savage says the same principles used in creating those simulations can be applied on a larger scale.

    “This is the first testable signature of such an idea,” Savage said. “If you make the simulations big enough, something like our universe should emerge.”

    The testing method is far more complex. Consider the Cornell University explanation: “Using the historical development of lattice gauge theory technology as a guide, we assume that our universe is an early numerical simulation with unimproved Wilson fermion discretization and investigate potentially-observable consequences.”

    To translate, if energy signatures in our simulations match those in the universe at large, there’s a good chance we, too, exist within a simulation.

    Interestingly, one of Savage’s students takes the hypothesis further: If we stumble upon the nature of our existence, would we then look for ways to communicate with the civilization who created us?

    University of Washington student Zohreh Davoudi says whoever made our simulated universe might have made others, and maybe we should “simply” attempt to communicate with those. “The question is, ‘Can you communicate with those other universes if they are running on the same platform?'” she asked.”

    In other words, some anti-science physicists are exploring the possibility of PROVING Intelligent Design, and furthermore have stated they believe it might be true.

    University of Oxford philosophy professor Nick Bostrom
    a team at Cornell University
    Researchers at the University of Washington
    German physicists in November.

    Damned science-hating academics!

    Of course this would lead to all sorts of discussion, including whether or not the application of the concept of “computer simulation” is really just an effort to apply what we know now to a mystery far beyond our ability to comprehend, an effort to reduce this mystery to a comfort level using terms and concepts we are familiar with. In other words, an advanced version of what civilizations have been doing for centuries, coming up with theories based on contemporaneous knowledge to explain the mysteries of the universe, a modern version of “it’s turtles all the way down”.

    And the expected hysterical opposition to this avenue of research will further identify the “random accident” group as adherents to a belief system rather than proponents of scientific exploration.

    • dbschmidt December 14, 2012 / 2:03 pm

      All I can add is “Thank God” they didn’t base this computer simulation on a platform running Microsoft’s Operating System (including XP and Win7) because we would have GPF’ed by now. Oh! Smack–that could have been what the Mayans have been warning us about. We are all going to GPF on the 21st of Dec, 2012. Reboot, reboot now!

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