Ah, remember when…

…the federal debt was ONLY 2 trillion dollars? That was back in 1986 or so. This year alone, the U.S. Federal Government blew through an extra trillion or so of borrowed money. Hey, no worries. Back in the day that was a lot of money. Today? Chump change. Well, Ridley Scott and Mr. Grace made this commercial back in the mid-1980’s. Remember it?

I do. And even Dan Rather squeaked out a story about it, which must have been quite a stressing situation for him given his politics. Take a look.

Oh, well. Why worry? When the country goes bankrupt and your money is worthless, it’ll be a socialist paradise. Everyone will be equal at the bottom.

Published in: on August 1, 2010 at 10:42 pm  Leave a Comment  
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In Congress…

We hold these truths to be self evident…

Are you listening Madam Speaker? Mr. President? Or will you continue the way King George did?

Published in: on July 4, 2010 at 10:25 am  Leave a Comment  
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A nice guy.

You would be hard pressed to find a nicer guy than Congressman Joe Sestak (D Pennsylvania). Mr. Sestak is a mild-mannered, soft spoken fellow who engages people with a kindly smile and focused eyes. He served many years in the United States Navy and a couple of terms in Congress.

Nonetheless, I learned at a town hall meeting yesterday that Congressman Sestak has a tenuous grasp on the facts of American life. When I asked him how the government was going to pay for the new health care plan, he said that according to the Congressional Budget Office the cost was completely covered by the provisions in the bill. Incredible. When reminded that the CBO has been frequently in error with these predictions he continued the party line that this was fully paid for unlike so many of the previous entitlements created during other administrations.

I give Mr. Sestak credit for staying on message. He knows how to filibuster with long-winded answers that essentially dodge the facts, repeat a mantra, and serve to wear down any opposition. He failed yesterday. More than three quarters of the people present were in opposition not only to the health care plan but also many of the other programs he supports. When asked about how the government could simply take over the college loan business from private banks, Mr. Sestak casually mentioned how it would save money. Never did he address the issue of whether or not it was appropriate for the government to engage in this activity. One fell swoop, according to the good congressman, its finished. I was left wondering what else the government wolf had in mind to swallow.

And so it went. People respectfully confronted the issues only to be met with well intentioned but ill-reasoned responses. This is a sad commentary on the quality of elected officials in the United States. But its not all bad. The people are awake and on the march. If this level of interest is sustained through November, there is the possibility of a sea-change in the political make-up of the nation.

Published in: on April 4, 2010 at 1:26 pm  Leave a Comment  
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All those dollars…

and what to do with them? Imagine your China, sitting on a trillion or more US dollars. What would you do with them? Ponder no longer because the Chinese have made their move with a few of them. They’ve decided to take 1.8 billion of those greenbacks and buy Volvo automobile operations from Ford Motor Company. It sounds like a great deal considering that Ford paid $6.5 billion for Volvo way back in 1999, you know, before the US government socialized Ford’s competitors, GM and Chrysler. At any rate, things are looking up for the circulation of the US dollar.

It seems the Chinese have finally woken up to the hangover of having lent a bit too much cash to their drunken sailor pal, the United States Federal Government. Therefore, the move is on to get rid of those dollars so as not to be stuck holding the bag when their deadbeat finally balks and decides either 1) not to pay, or 2) to devalue the currency. Better buy what you can, while you can, or else you’ll be holding paper that has a more valuable use in the lavatory.

In the scheme of things, $1.8 billion sounds like chump change compared to the trillions floating around out there. But there’s more to this game than a single field with a few guys tramping the grass. The Chinese are buying hard assets everywhere from Cartegna to Canberra, Mongolia to Madagascar. They’re quite pleased to hand pieces of paper printed at the US Treasury for these assets because the paper will soon be declining in value and China has a billion people to feed, clothe, shelter, and tote around every day. What would you rather own: a) a promise from Barack Obama’s non-tax paying treasury secretary; b) a promise from the very recently but temporarily removed chairman of the House Ways and Means Committee; or c) a coal mine in Colombia that produces hundreds of thousands of tons of raw energy for your economy. Quick now! What’s it going to be?

The conversion will continue and accelerate. This is sad news for those saps taking the paper. Soon they’ll figure out they sold cheap as they try to return those bucks to Uncle Sam at an ever decreasing value to buy things like Hollywood Movies, which are hard to eat, ride in, or re-sell. Man are they going to be angry. They might also be perturbed that the ugly Americans on their soil were one thing, but the Chinese are something else entirely. Are the Chinese managers going to embrace all the new fangled global environmental regs? How about the unionization of the employees? How about the safety standards? Take a look at China’s factories, mines, and cities and you’ll see people don’t wear masks to celebrate Halloween every day of the year. Nor do they have sky-high cancer rates because of too many cigarettes, although that is a problem, too.

Yet, the biggest menace of all will come in the future as the Chinese leap frog ahead in technological innovation. They’re buying the Volvo assets that include factories and systems developed over 90 years. They’re getting it all for a song and getting it right now. They can build upon this huge step up and launch toward the future not only in automobiles but in the many other technologies that they’re buying. In the mean time, America and Europe fester in a limbo of socialistic delusion that if only we work less, we’ll have more. We’ll have more allright, more imports from China, more idiotic policies from a US Administration and Congress dominated by ingrates and fools, and more free time to learn Mandarin and Cantonese, which will come in handy in a couple of years when those nouveau riche tourists from behind the Great Wall arrive by the 747-load. Sorry, that won’t be a Boeing-built 747, it will be a Geely-built model 1.

Published in: on March 28, 2010 at 9:35 pm  Leave a Comment  
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