Saturday, March 2, 2013

Robbing Peter to pay Paul. Krugman.

Paul Krugman says that our national debt is not a problem.
Go here for his explanation.  (For those with little time for such, his explanation is "Those who rob Peter to pay Paul Krugman will always have the support of Paul Krugman, especially when Peter is still wearing diapers.")

Here's a handy chart, showing our Fed debt per capita as compared to other countries.

Here are some videos of what's happening in Greece - which doesn't even take the silver or bronze medal in this race.
If you think it can't happen here, you're sadly mistaken.
And this one:
Start saving your metal. The Mormons always put away one year's worth of food. I'm stockpiling Jim Beam and Purina dachshund chow.
 I betcha Krugman's getting nervous too.

Friday, March 1, 2013

Where will you find enough angels? - Milton Friedman

I often find myself surfing the net, reading magazines, listening to the radio, and (when drunk) watching television, and wondering about people.
Yeah, people.
I wonder about all the people who think that our government should "do something".  Take charge.  Regulate.  Otherwise, the big corporations will have their way with us.  Businessmen are only in it for the money, you know....
There are actually people, living, breathing humans, people who can feed themselves with a knife and fork, yet believe that governments should own all of the oil companies.  They believe that our government should set all wages and set price margins.  It really is astounding.

Here's a crusty old exchange between Phil Donahue and Milton Friedman.  I've probably watched the YouTube a dozen times, but this guy blessed us with a transcript.

Enjoy.  And just for grins, I followed it with Wikipedia's links to every Federal-level political scandal going all the way back to the founding of the republic.  Politicians and bureaucrats don't become economic eunuchs when they go in and out Obama's door from business to government.  They're just like you and just like me - providing for themselves and their families first, and then their supporters.  Any other considerations are waaaaaay down the line.  

Phil Donahue: When you see around the globe, the mal-distribution of wealth, a desperate plight of millions of people in underdeveloped countries. When you see so few “haves” and so many “have-nots.” When you see the greed and the concentration of power. Did you ever have a moment of doubt about capitalism and whether greed is a good idea to run on?
Milton Friedman: Well first of all tell me is there some society you know that doesn’t run on Greed? You think Russia doesn’t run on greed? You think China doesn’t run on greed? What is greed? Of course none of us are greedy, it’s only the other fellow who is greedy. The world runs on individuals pursuing their separate interests.
The great achievements of civilization have not come from government bureaus. Einstein didn’t construct his theory under order from a bureaucrat. Henry Ford didn’t revolutionize the automobile industry that way.
In the only cases in which the masses have escaped from the kind of grinding poverty you’re talking about – the only cases in recorded history – are where they have had capitalism and largely free trade.
If you want to know where the masses are worst off, it’s exactly in the kinds of societies that depart from that. So that the record of history is absolutely crystal clear that there is no alternative way so far discovered of improving the lot of the ordinary people that can hold a candle to the productive activities that are unleashed by a free enterprise system.
Donahue: But it seems to reward not virtue as much as ability to manipulate the system…
Friedman: And what does reward virtue? You think the Communist commissar rewarded virtue? You think a Hitler rewarded virtue? You think – excuse me – if you’ll pardon me – do you think American Presidents reward virtue ?
Do they choose their appointees on the basis of the virtue of the people appointed or on the basis of their political clout ?
Is it really true that political self-interest is nobler somehow than economic self-interest ? You know, I think you’re taking a lot of things for granted. Just tell me where in the world you find these angels who are going to organize society for us ? Well, I don’t even trust you to do that. 

  • 1 Scope and organization of political scandals
  • 2 Federal government scandals

  • Thursday, February 28, 2013

    Facebook Fodder For Libertarians

    For everyone who wants to put liberty-oriented conversation starters on Facebook every day of their lives, here are a few resources:

    All American Blogger has a selection of 99 Great Libertarian Quotes.  Here's a sampling.

    1. A government which robs Peter to pay Paul, can always count on the support of Paul. – George Bernard Shaw
    2. America needs fewer laws, not more prisons. – James Bovard
    3. War is just one more big government program. – Joseph Sobran
    4. Remember, democracy never lasts long. It soon wastes, exhausts, and murders itself. There never was a democracy yet that did not commit suicide. – John Adams (1814)
    5. They that can give up essential liberty to obtain a little temporary safety, deserve neither liberty nor safety. – Benjamin Franklin
    6. One of the greatest delusions in the world is the hope that the evils in this world are to be cured by legislation. – Thomas B. Reed (1886)
    7. If you are not free to choose wrongly and irresponsibly, you are not free at all. – Jacob Hornberger (1995)
    8. Giving money and power to government is like giving whiskey and car keys to teenage boys. – P.J. O’Rourke
    9. The more corrupt the state, the more it legislates. – Tacitus
    10. Government is not reason; it is not eloquence; it is force. Like fire, it is a dangerous servant and a fearful master. – George Washington
    The other 89 are just as good.  

    Artist Dan McCall creates some of the greatest posters, prints, t-shirts, and blog illustrations on the Net.  
    Go here for generic Free Stuff like this.

    Or free desktop wallpaper like this:

    And then there's his art and print gallery.  There's probably something in here for everybody.  That doesn't mean everybody will like this one.....

    Dan also puts some of his work-in-progress on Facebook.  He's a great guy.  Friend him.  

    And then there's Reddit.  
    Reddit is a place where, no matter how much of an individual you think you are, you can find a few hundred people just  
    Here's a link to Libertarian Reddit.  Browse the top articles.  Facebook 'em.  Tweet 'em.  Email 'em.  

    I hope you have fun with this stuff.  
    Try to remember this one important rule:  "Polite People Never Change Anything".  

    Tuesday, February 26, 2013

    You might be a Libertarian....Part Deux

    I posted some of this back in 2010.  Here it is again with quite a few updates.  Enjoy!!

    If you've ever waited at a stoplight and wondered how much more efficient it would be if stoplights were privatized, you might be a Libertarian. 

    If you've ever wondered who told Papa Smurf that he could boss around all the other Smurfs, you might just be a Libertarian.

    If you know how to pronounce the name "Ludwig Von Mises", you might be a Libertarian. 

    If one of your buddies once "reluctantly called the Fire Department", he might be a Libertarian.

    If your dogs know to run out of the room when someone on CNN says the word "stimulus", you might be a Libertarian.

    If you think the funniest three words in the English language are "Small Government Republican", you might be a Libertarian.

    If you've ever gone camping on Halloween, under a full moon, next to a cemetery, and waited til midnight to build a campfire so you and your buddies can sit around it and read Obama's Jobs Bill, you might be a Libertarian.

    If you can't see a Broken Window without thinking of a dead French economist, you might be a Libertarian.

    If you can explain why Ben Bernanke should be prosecuted as a counterfeiter, you're a Libertarian.

    If you've ever stood behind a podium and boasted that "Our candidate broke 5 percent !", you might be a Libertarian. 

    If the audience started applauding madly, they were all Libertarians. 

    If you've ever had a dream where you were locked in a room with Alexander Hamilton, a rabid dog, one gun, and two bullets, and in your dream you shot Alexander Hamilton might be a Libertarian. 

    If you win a celebrity lunch with someone named "Hayek" but are secretly disappointed that it is Selma and not Friederich, you're a Libertarian.

    If your top three baby names under consideration are Cato, Dagny, and Atlas, you might be a Libertarian. 

    If you've ever wondered why we're spending money to have our navy defend Japan and Taiwan from China, using money that we're borrowing from....China, you just might be a Libertarian.

    If you root for certain sports teams because they don't play in publicly funded stadiums, you might be a Libertarian.

    If you know how many ounces of silver any of your friends own, you might be a Libertarian.

    If you've ever been to a Tea Party rally, a NORML meeting, a Gay Rights parade, a Peace Run, and helped staff a gun show all in the same month?  You're probably me.  And you're a Libertarian. 

    If you've ever paid twice as much for a black leather jacket instead of a similar brown one, because black is what Nick Gillespie wears, you might be a Libertarian.

    If you didn't have to hit the link in the previous joke, you're a Libertarian.

    If you think that Barry Goldwater was too soft on Communism, you might be a Libertarian. 
    If you think that Karl Marx's quote "From each according to his ability, to each according to his needs" is a great way to encourage people to hide their abilities and publicize their needs, well, you might be a Libertarian.  (I don't know where I first heard that.  Will give attribution if someone will tell me.)

    If you've ever Googled the words "John Stossel DVD Boxed Set", you might be a Libertarian. 

    If you think the phrase "Don't Ask, Don't Tell" should apply to almost everything, because after all it's nobody else's damn business as long as nobody else gets hurt, you might be a Libertarian.

    If you've ever broken up with someone because she wouldn't say "Federal Reserve Note" instead of "Dollar", you might be a Libertarian. 

    If you've ever spent an entire damn day going through damn job applications looking for a decent damn employee, and wondered why the damn public schools can't produce graduates who can write or spell, but the Catholic and other parochial schools don't have that damn problem???  You might be a pissed off Libertarian who wishes he didn't have to pay the damn schools to produce more damn illiterates.  Dammit.

    If you've ever carried a pistol because policemen are just too damn heavy, you might be a Libertarian. 

    If you not only believe that marijuana should be legalized, but that morphine sulfate should be available in five pound bags at the supermarket for a couple of bucks, like sugar... but probably in a different aisle, to avoid confusion, well, if you go that far with it, you're probably a Libertarian. 

    If you've ever gone into a singles bar thinking that The Nolan Chart would be a good conversation starter, you just might be a Libertarian. 

    If you've ever officiated at a wedding, and began the ceremony by making fun of the marriage "license" concept, you might be a Libertarian.

    If you followed that with a refusal to say "by the power vested in me by the state of Texas", you might be a Libertarian.

    If everyone in the wedding party and congregations laughed like hell, they were all Libertarians.

    If you own one of the rare Milton Friedman action figures, you might be a Libertarian.

    And last, but not least, if you understood everything I just wrote, you might be a Libertarian. 

    Go here to join the party ! !