Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Huffington Post Comments, 10/30/2012

In the past I've gotten 30 responses to one comment that I left at the Huffington Post.  I usually only need to leave about a half dozen in order get all of the responses that I post here.

Yesterday I left 8-10 comments and, for the first time ever, did not receive a single response.  And because of the way all of the posts get rearranged I don't even know if my comments were posted.  My comments are almost always held in moderation for a few hours before being posted.  I wonder if a moderator was not a fan of my work.

One thing that I noticed was that I went from having 9 "fans" to 11 today.  Interesting.

I shall try again.

Update: After posting a few more comments I got zero responses, but two more "fans." I'll try again on Monday; there are still deer to be shot until then.

Quote of the Day, 10/31/2012

Go where the challenge is greatest.

-Borgakh the Steel Heart

Watching The News

I stayed with my grandma most of last week.  (She lives near where I deer hunt.)  Grandma likes to watch the news.   She's even, occasionally, one of MSNBC's 12 viewers, despite being born a republican.

I hadn't watched TV since November of last year.  Here are some things that I (re) learned:

1. You don't miss anything by not watching the news

2. Watching TV adds nothing to your life, find some other way of entertaining yourself

3. Sean Hannity is a nitwit (and I probably agree with him 80-90% of the time)

4. Bill O'Reilly's views are probably the views that a majority of Americans have on the issues

5. Bill is very arrogant and he even makes people who I would never agree with seem like better people by comparison

6. Piers Morgan is boring, I hope the average Brit looks better than he does, the average American looks worse than the average Fox News host, so he's not representing England well

7. "Just because they're better looking doesn't mean that they're less professional."  -Ann Coulter on Fox News Channel show hosts

8. Ann Coulter is still fun to watch debate lefties like Piers Morgan, she always seems to be amused.  (I might buy her new book: Mugged.)

9. CNN is liberally biased (visit my blog for shocking news)

10. Those of us on the right are no longer annoyed when someone on the left calls us a racist

11.  You may watch a liberal news show (all but Fox) and think that you can look at the stories while mentally removing the liberal bias, but you won't notice the stories that they don't tell you about

12. Why isn't the terrorist attack in Libya the leading story every night?  (See #9 & #11)

13.  If I had any voice in the media I'd spend a good part of every day wondering why we haven't had any budget signed into law during the last 3 years

14.  Have you seen Martha McCallum's legs?  wow.

Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Fix Our Debt

Thanks to a commenter on this post at Captain Capitalism I've found a link to a website that directs you attempt and reduce our debt.

Budget Simulator

Its not ideal.  There are places where my options were cut or expand some program and I wanted to cut, eliminate, kill, destroy, obliterate, the whole program.  In other words, I wanted the option to make many government programs D-E-D, dead.  Including some that were not even mentioned.  NEA anyone?

Good Politicians (Maybe)

I expect all politicians to disappoint.  I think that all members of congress and the president should resign because of incompetence after not having signed a budget, let alone a balanced budget, into law during any of the last three years.

Congress' approval rating has been awful for years, and yet most of them keep getting re-elected.  Apparently no one like the congress as a whole but everyone likes their own congressman.

I'm about to link to a Sunday talk show transcript in which Senator Ron Johnson (R-WI) was included.

Before I saw this transcript I was going to write a post on the three politicians who I thought might be good guys.  I expect to be disappointed by all of them, but Senator Ron Johnson (R-WI), Governor Scott Walker (R-WI, and Governor Bobby Jindal (R-LA) all seem to be good politicians.

Scott Walker has taken on the public unions and balanced the budget.  Bobby Jindal has made Louisiana much better off than it was before he became governor.  But let's look at a recent appearance of Ron Johnson on this Sunday talk show transcript (found thanks to Althouse):
WALLACE: Senator Johnson, let's turn to Wisconsin, which hasn't gone for a Republican since Ronald Reagan back in 1984. How much do you think Romney will be helped by the big organization that Governor Scott Walker had to build to hold off the recall vote last June?

SEN. RON JOHNSON, R-WIS.: Well, it was definitely helpful. We've got a very strong ground game here and, the most recent Rasmussen poll was dead even, 49-49. But among voters who already made up their mind or those that are for sure are going to vote, Governor Romney, you know, garnered 51 percent of those votes versus President Obama, 41 and 48.
So, it was interesting, Chris, as I drive around the victory centers, particularly yesterday, this issue of Benghazi is really bubbling up. People are demanding answers from this administration. I think it's going to have a big impact here in the state of Wisconsin.

WALLACE: All right. We're going to get later to Benghazi a little later in our discussion.


WALLACE: Senator Johnson, Mitt Romney disavowed Richard Mourdock's comments and, Richard Mourdock has tried to walk them back. But it does bring up the bigger question. Why should a woman who believes of freedom of choice when it comes to abortion, why should she vote for Mitt Romney, who said he'd like to see Roe vs. Wade overturned and who favors cutting off all federal funding for Planned Parenthood?
JOHNSON: Well, Chris, first of all, I have heard one person talk about the abortion issue during the entire campaign. What people in Wisconsin, what is moving the needle here is they recognize Mitt Romney is an individual, who when faced with the legislature that's controlled 85 percent by Democrats who is actually able to work with the Democrats, you take a look at his record versus President Obama, who has been totally unable to work with divided government in Washington --
WALLACE: Sir, if I may, on the question of abortion, though --
JOHNSON: It's just --
WALLACE: Go ahead.
JOHNSON: I mean, Chris, it's not even an issue. It's not an issue here in Wisconsin. It doesn't even -- it doesn't even move the radar at all.
What people are concerned about, like I said -- yesterday, it was unbelievable how many people came up to me, demanding answers on Benghazi. I had a father, a Marine, a young Marine, saying, listen I want to know who the commander-in-chief is and what orders he gave and what didn't he give. And that's really the question on the table I think for the last 10 days, is what happened in Benghazi and, abortion doesn't even show up.
WALLACE: All right. I promise we're going to get to Benghazi in a moment.

WALLACE: Senator Johnson, you have a minute for the final word.

JOHNSON: Chris, the American people have the right to know. And that is what they are demanding here in Wisconsin.

Let's face it. What was the president doing, during those seven hours? Did he give that directive? Or didn't he? Did Leon Panetta directly defy him? I mean, what happened?
Who sent out? Who sent Ambassador Rice out five days later when they knew it was a terrorist attack that was preplanned, sent her on Sunday talk shows to say in fact it was a spontaneous reaction to, of course, the video. This administration purposefully misled the American people for weeks. This president misled the American people for weeks.
And, I think the American people have the right to know.

It was either misleading or is incompetent. I think we are finding out it was probably both, misleading and incompetence on the part of this administration. The American people have the right to know.

That is the best showing on a TV show that I can remember from any politician ever.

I may decide to put up some posts arguing for more credit to the three politicians that I mentioned earlier.  They are still politicians and they will disappoint us, I doubt that they are libertarians, but they sure seem a heck of a lot better than any others that we will see in the near future.


Vote for Obama in 2012!

Maybe we could get one of these three as president sooner.


whitetail deer

For You Romney Supporters...

I'd like to make a bet with you Romney supporters.  I detest gambling and hate the idea of losing money and getting nothing in return.  But I am not opposed to gambling when I know that I will win.

Here's my bet:

I think that having a balanced budget is the first thing any company or politician or person should do.  Before anything else their numbers should add up, and the income should be more than the expenses.

I hope that Romney is elected.  I hope that he will do what he says he will do (for the most part).  But, I have so little faith that he will even do something as basic as signing a balanced budget into law.

If Romney signs at least one balanced budget into law, then I will vote for him in 2016.  If he does not, I will not.

  • Romney is elected president in November 2012
  • Romney is still president in November 2016

President Romney will not sign a a balanced budget into law in any of his (potentially first) four years in office.

In order to bias this bet in your favor, I'll ignore all "off budget" spending.  We'll only look at "on budget" spending.

A "balanced budget," for the terms of this bet shall mean that the budget for a given year has more incomes than expenditures.   A "balanced budget" shall not be a budget that is on a path to being balanced or will be balanced in the future.

Monday, October 29, 2012

My Plan

I just re-read What is Your Project.  Just after that I read Rise of the $5 Pizza.

This nationwide return to value has been missed by most media outlets. In a July cover story illustrated by a muscular Uncle Sam with pasties attached to his nipples, the British magazine The Economist posited a “Comeback Kid” American economy but used as its prime example Ethan Allen, an upscale furniture maker based in Connecticut. Now it’s true that in the first quarter of 2012 Ethan Allen saw 8 percent growth in net sales over 2011. And furniture is a perpetually overpriced industry that strongly encourages its customers to take on debt. (In many store windows you see prices listed in monthly installments.) Yet even here the real growth is, literally, in the cheap seats. Wisconsin’s Ashley Furniture Industries sells loveseats for about a third of what Ethan Allen charges and pulls in about six times as much money. If Ashley’s too rich for your blood, 15 percent of Americans shop in consignment stores and another in 18 percent favor thrift stores, according to America’s Research Group, a consumer behavior research firm.
(Note: I once went to apply for a job at an Ashley furniture store.  I walked in the door and got a lecture from a sales guy, about what they sell, how they sell it, what they do and what they don't. I turned around and walked out.)

After reflecting on Free Northerner's Status Update, I've decided that I quite like the idea of buying a house.  And then I'll build my own cabinets and furniture.  I just inherited my grandpa's woodworking tools, and I know how they all work and I like using them.

My aunt just bought a house after moving back to Wisconsin after her husband died.  Dad has pointed out that the work done in her house was not done by a professional.  "There is not a straight line in the place."

I need more woodworking practice, but I'll build all of my stuff.  Then I'll replace whatever I've done that is worst.  I'll continue to replace the worst pieces and eventually I should have quite a nice furnished house.  Perhaps some money from the old stuff that I can sell.

Instead of thinking, "I need a desk.  I'll build a flat surface with supports and drawers."  I'll think, "This whole room is my office.  How can build a desk surface and storage into the whole room?"

A study with dark wood everywhere and floor to ceiling bookshelves would be excellent.  But the focus of the room will be a pair of elephant tusks.

Or maybe I should just hunt the elephants and sell the tusks to the Chinese.

If I had infinite time, then I'd also buy a late sixties Alfa Romeo GTV and a late seventies Chevy truck.

Being able to take each car fully apart to each individual part, with no worries about repairs, because I will have rebuilt them, and know what to do.  No worries about finding a good mechanic, because that would be me.  Minimal electronics and other such junk wouldn't make work on them difficult because they were built before all of the heated seats, GPSs, and computers became standard.  Just mechanical parts that work, or don't.  Parts that can be fixed, or replaced.

And none of these huge plain lumps that we call cars today.

So that's part of my long term plan.  I don't know if I'll get to all of that, but we'll see.

Quote of the Day, 10//29/2012

Actually, in America, shouldn’t we be giving out engagement guns?

-Frank J

Friday, October 26, 2012

What A Bunch of Balooney

Could she be wrong about everything that she has said?

Hanna Rosin: The End of Men

(Except where she said that girls get more degrees  Girls do get more sociology, and similar, degrees.)

Some of her errors:

1. A college degree means more money - Pshaw

2. Girls get more college degrees - Only in degrees like English and women's studies

3. The Current education system favors girls - maybe, but our education system hasn't changed in 100+ years, the only differences have been who gets taught and how much

"Kids: Smarter Than Adults"

from an article written by Jeffery Tucker at Laissez Faire Books:
It’s happened yet again: I found another movie presumably made for kids that easily beats many of this season’s predictable box-office yawners. The movie this time is The Pirates! Band of Misfits. It is the story of a socially complex group of failed pirates — people doing their best to make a life for themselves outside official channels — and their captain’s search for fame in the “Pirate of the Year” pageant.

This supposed kids movie is packed with subtleties, ironic humor, more struggles, and passing references to pop culture. It deals with big and important themes like friendship, betrayal, fame, and the love of money. It deftly handles politics, with an evil Queen Victoria and her loot.

It asks fundamental questions such as is it really stealing if you take it away from the government? It touches on hard questions of vocation and personality, and the difficulties of balancing the love for one’s work and the need for material provision.

The humor even deals with a some sophisticated understanding of probability theory, such as when the captain says concerning the pageant: “Every time I’ve entered, I’ve failed to win. So I must have a really good chance this time!”

Kids seem understand the captain’s fallacy. Do adults?
 Read the rest.

Jeffery Tucker makes economics more fun and relevant than any other person that I've come across.

Quote of the Day, 9/26/2012

I've got you outnumbered one to one.

-Yosemite Sam

Thursday, October 25, 2012

Economic Moral History

Thousands of years ago people lived by hunting and gathering.  They survived off of what they could find.  Then, at some point, some guy discovered farming.

Many people then lived by growing most of their food rather than scrounging for it.

At some point, a group of people decided to live in the same general area.  When they did this many of them traded with each other.  (Many probably stole and murdered too, but they were not productive and were/ are more of a pest than useful.)

The reason for trade is simple.  Two people each have something that the other wants.  Trading made specialization possible.  Specialization is good because if you spend all day, every day, making clothes, then you'll probably be a better clothing maker than someone who only makes clothes occasionally.  So one guy makes clothing, one farms, one hunts, one makes spears, etc.

A problem arises when two people want to trade but they don't have what the other wants.  Say person A has shoes and wants some bread, person B has bread and wants a spear.  In this case no trade could be made.  Another trading problem is what happens when one of the trade items is more valuable than the other?  How many loaves of bread for a pair of shoes?  If they decided that ten loaves of bread are what it takes to trade for a pair of shoes then that is not helpful.  Who wants ten loaves of bread at once?

The solution to these two problems is a medium of exchange.

If the traders have a medium of exchange then trade will be much easier.  Shells, gold, and rice were all once used as mediums of exchange.  But all have their drawbacks.  "Money" is now our medium of exchange.

With money person A can buy one loaf of bread for $1 from person B, and person B did not need to take shoes in exchange.  Unlike bread, money would not go bad with age.  Money can be used now, or later.  And one trader does not need to have the trade items that the other trader wants in order to make a trade.


In the past the people who were wealthiest were the people who forced others to work for them.  These were the kings and emperors who lived off of what others had created.  Sometimes the people doing the created were forced to work or threatened with death (slaves), and sometimes a group of people paid some of what they had to their king for protection from outsiders and each other.  The kings got paid to keep law and order.

When we read stories in the Bible about the wealthy not being good people it is those kings and barons, etc that the Bible was talking about.  2000 years ago the only people who were rich were the people who were responsible for protecting their citizens or had slaves or peasants that worked for them.

Often times today those of us who are to the left politically point to Bible verses that say that the wealthy are not as morally righteous as the poor.  This is not true for many of the wealthy today.

Many of the wealthy today got that way through voluntary exchange.  Voluntary exchange is not evil, it is good.  The wealthy today got rich because they are good at trading, for a profit.

Trading for a profit is not an evil either; it is good.  When you trade your carrot for your friend's apple you have both profited.  You valued that apple more than your carrot and your friend valued your carrot for his apple.  If this is not true, then why did you trade?  Was this trade evil?  Was it morally wrong?

The people who get wealthy, honestly, today do so through good trades where their profits accumulate.  They make wise trades and hold onto their profits.

If we look at the people who were wealthy 2000 years ago, they were the people who collected taxes, kept the peace, provided law and order, and protected their citizens from outsiders.  Do they remind you of any organization today?

Many of the ancient rich cared little for the people who did the work that created wealth.  They were only interested in how much wealth that they could extract from those peasants, citizens or slaves.  Do they remind you of any organization today?

The Bible was right to call most of the rich in that time poor morally.  The Bible was right to point out the moral superiority of the poor.  The poor, then, lived off of their own work, not the work of others.  They lived by creating goods providing goods and providing services to their fellow man.  Do they remind you of anyone today?

Ask yourself this: 

Did Bill Gates become wealthy by protecting peasants from each other and outsiders? Did he become wealthy by providing a judicial system? 

Or did he become wealthy by creating goods or providing services and trading them for a profit?

Did Henry Ford, Andrew Carnegie, and Cornelius Vanderbilt become wealthy by taxing their peasants?

Or did they become rich by trading cars, steel, and train rides for a profit?

Who sounds more like the wealthy in the Bible: Henry Ford or our congress?

Who sounds more like the poor in the Bible: Vanderbilt or government bureaucrats?


Not only are those who earn their wealth honestly today more morally righteous, but they have also improved the lives of everyone...unlike our governments.

In all of the world's history the common man lived at barely above a subsistence level.  All of the inventions that we use everyday, the things that make our lives immeasurably better than the lives of our ancestors.

Electricity, cars, television, aspirin, airplanes, incandescent light bulbs, etc. were all mostly invented once the people who survived off of the work of others left those creators alone.

It was in free America (and a little in England before it) that all of the things that we use today came into being.

Bill Gates, Henry Ford, and many others got wealthy buy creating and providing their goods and services to the public.  Who benefited more?  Do you value having a computer, and smartphone, more than the few dollars it took to acquire them?  If not, then why did you acquire them? 

Bill Gates, Michael Dell, Steve Jobs and others became wealthy by providing these things for you.  Were they oppressing peasants?  Did they own slaves?  Even in the sweatshops are their employees forced to work for them?  Or are the sweatshop jobs those employees' best option?  Are those sweatshop employees better off with a paying job or no job at all?


There are many who have become wealthy today the same way that the wealthy did when the Bible was written.  There are many who live off of the work of others.  These people do through the government.

Who is more likely to be a better person: a wealthy restaurant owner (who provides goods, services, and jobs) or someone who gets a subsidy from the government (and provides the public with nothing)?


The people who acquire their wealth honestly, not through theft or through the government, should be admired and praised.  Asking them to provide things for you is the same as an ancient king demanding that his slaves provide him with his wants and needs.

Whose side are you on?

The side that honestly creates wealth by working hard?

Or the side that demands a percentage from the creators?

Are you more like the ancient king or his slaves?

Quote of the Day, 10/25/2012

Michael Briggs

His actual results have been outstanding, and our economy is doing much better, thank you. Our nation is moving back in the direction it needs to move. Obama/Biden '12! 


So what you are saying is:

7.8% unemployment = outstanding results?

Underemployment is still big news = outstanding results?

53% of recent college graduates are unemployed = outstanding results?

US credit rating downgraded = outstanding results?

Record budget deficits = outstanding results?

$15 trillion federal debt = outstanding results?

By "His actual results have been outstanding, and our economy is doing much better, thank you." do you mean "His results have been awful, and our economy is still stagnant, but don't worry he plans to tax the rich."?

-Huffington Post Comments, 10/15/2012

Wednesday, October 24, 2012

A Comment On My Fight Global Warming Post!

Why would I want to donate to have you kill an Elephant??? How the heck is that environmentally friendly and ridding the world of any of our energy consumption problems?

-Sharone Tal

It would reduce, by one, the number of things that are contributing to global warming!

Elephants turn oxygen into global warming causing carbon dioxide!

Elephants kill thousands of plants! Plants are our heroes in the fight against global warming!

Death to the plant murderers!



Donate today!

#8)  Eat more zucchini!

Scent Proof Hunting Clothing

One of the things that is very helpful while deer hunting is not smelling, and alerting deer by the smell of your presence.

Many hunters wear their camouflage outside of hunting situations.  This is a mistake.  When you wear your hunting clothing it may collect the smells from wherever it is worn.  I recently walked buy a guy in his hunting coat in a grocery store.  He reeked of smoke.  That smoke smell will alert deer that there is something unnatural around.  You may get away with it while hunting only small bucks and young does but big bucks will not want to be near you.

Don't wear your hunting clothing outside of the woods.  Avoid wearing it while filling up with gas, in particular.

I've owned three different articles of clothing that were made by companies advertising thier products' containment of smell.

I have a coat and pants, which are a few years old and out of date, from Scent Lok.  The coat is the best hunting coat that I have ever worn and the pants are the best camouflage pants that I have ever worn.  They seem to have been well made; I have has zero issues with them being worn.  And they were very well designed.  The pants, for example, have pockets alongside the knee, but rather than having the pockets opening face up while you are standing the opening is perfectly designed to be accessible while you sit.  The coat has excellent pockets as well, and great materials were used in both.

I have also worn a pair of Scent Shield boots.  They were very badly made and very badly designed.  The zipper that was meant to keep the boots tight always, always, got stuck in the materiel behind it.  Never have I struggled with a zipper half as much as I struggled with that zipper.  When they were on, the top wrap that was meant to keep the top tight was held together with snaps.  The snaps were on the inside and rubbed against each other while I walked, so they were always undone and always clicking.  Those boots just got junked when I busted the zipper when I tried to reconnect the sliding part with the locking part.

The coat, pants, and boots are all around four years old.  I don't know how much they've improved, and I don't know which is better at containing scent.  But I liked the Scent Lok stuff and the Scent Shield stuff was junk.

You Are A Libertarian (Probably)

A recent Reason-Rupe poll shows us that a majority of Americans favor republicans on economic issues and democrats on social issues.

Often we hear that that is what most Americans are: conservative on the economic issues and liberal on the social issues.  If one person finds the social issues more important then they will probably vote for democrats.  And if a person finds economic issues to be more important, then they will vote for republicans.

But you don't need to pick a side that agrees with you only half of the time. There is a political party that fits our preferences.  Even though most of you may not have heard of it.

The Libertarian party favors low taxes and no government subsidies and it also opposes laws against gay marriage and drugs.

Bye the way, liberal on the social issues and conservative on the economic issues means supporting more freedom in all cases.  In that way, not only does it probably match your own positions, it is also the only logically consistent political party.

More freedom. Less government. Always.
The Libertarian Party Platform


As Libertarians, we seek a world of liberty; a world in which all individuals are sovereign over their own lives and no one is forced to sacrifice his or her values for the benefit of others. 

We believe that respect for individual rights is the essential precondition for a free and prosperous world, that force and fraud must be banished from human relationships, and that only through freedom can peace and prosperity be realized.

Consequently, we defend each person's right to engage in any activity that is peaceful and honest, and welcome the diversity that freedom brings. The world we seek to build is one where individuals are free to follow their own dreams in their own ways, without interference from government or any authoritarian power.

In the following pages we have set forth our basic principles and enumerated various policy stands derived from those principles.

These specific policies are not our goal, however. Our goal is nothing more nor less than a world set free in our lifetime, and it is to this end that we take these stands.

They won't be winning any elections in the near future, but if the average American's opinions are important, then they should.

Tuesday, October 23, 2012

Help Fight Against Global Warming!

We all know that global warming is going to end life on this planet as we know it!

We need to do all that we can to end this terrible man caused impending disaster!

Global warming is caused by adding carbon dioxide (co2) to the air!

Hey! Wait a there reading're turning oxygen to carbon dioxide right now!  Stop it! Or the earth will die!

Since we know that adding carbon dioxide to the air causes global warming, what we need to do is reduce our carbon dioxide emissions!

Many people who claim to want to help fight global warming do not do enough to actually help! 

Help! Do your Part!
Ten Ways To Fight Global Warming!

1. Buy a Prius!

2. Buy local!

3. Don't eat meat!

4. Stop using electricity!

5. Buy fluorescent light bulbs!

6. Put solar panels on your roof!

7. Move closer to work!

8. Eat more zucchini!

9. Stop logging!

10. Don't reproduce!
I have come up with a new way to fight the man made evil of global warming!  We need to reduce the number of carbon dioxide emitters!  The biggest ones first!

Elephants are the biggest land animals!  That means that they have the biggest carbon dioxide emitting lungs!  And they destroy the wonderful beings that help the fight against global warming!

Wild elephants damage crops
Balehonnur, April , DHNS

Two wild elephants which had entered the farm land in Saragodu village in Huyigere Gram Panchayat limits damaged crops worth lakhs of rupees.

The farm land belonging to S V Mahesh, Padmanabha Bhat, S T Jagannath Gowda have been damaged by the two wild elephants.

The wild elephants which entered the village in search of food damaged pipes installed for irrigating ginger. The ginger which was grown in field has also been damaged. Later, it entered estates and destroyed banana plantations, silver, teak and arecanut trees. The loss has been estimated at Rs 2 lakh. The farmers are worried over the wild elephant menace which is on rise in the region. “We have submitted memorandum to forest department urging to check wild elephant menace. However, the forest department has failed to solve the problem,” alleged farmers.

A person was trampled to death by a wild elephant recently at Gabgal Birgur. The villagers are finding it difficult to move alone in the region fearing wild elephant attack. The farmers must be given suitable compensation for the loss incurred due to wild elephant menace, they urged.
Assessment of crop raiding situation by elephants(Loxodonta africana cyclotis) in farms around Kakumconservation area, Ghana

During the period under review 35 farms belonging to 20
farmers from seven villages, Aboabo, Antwikwaa,
Brahabebome, Kruwa, Nyamebekyere, Pemsan and
Ahomaho experienced a total of 50 raids by elephants
from KCA.

The raids covered a total land area of about 24,925.8
m2 (2.49 ha) (Table 1) at an average rate of 2.9 (1.05
S.E) farms per month and the maximum raids occurred in
August, 2007 (Figure 2). About three sightings were
made between 19.00 - 04.00 h with a peak at about
22.00 h. The raids took the form of consuming and
destroying in the process; but there were some
destruction without consumption. Destructions were
mainly by trampling, uprooting and plucking of fruits
(Table 2). Farming around the KCA occurred all year
round and the raiding targeted both mature and immature
crops including cassava, plantain, banana, orange and
maize (Table 3.).

For only $33,000 we can rid the world of one of those awful global warmers!

Zindele Safaris hunting client Juan Fernades de Mesa.

Donate to me today and I'll do the dirty work so you don't have to!

Presidential Debates

I don't understand the people who claim that one guy won a debate.

Obama didn't show up for the first one, but no one's mind was changed by either of the other two. 

And yet you can go on a conservative website and see that Romney just won the last debate.

Or go on a liberal website and see that Obama won the last one.

Debate 1: Obama did not show up

VP debate: Biden looked like a jerk

Debate 2: tie

Debate 3: tie (Although I didn't watch it, I watched the twitter comments)

My final debate score: Obama/ Biden: 0 vs. Romney/ Ryan: 1

Estonia's Economic Success

Why Estonia Is Beating the Eurozone

The Estonian case shows that a policy that removes bubble activities lays the foundation for healthy economic growth.
Any attempt to alter tighter fiscal and monetary policies brings back false, nonproductive activities and leads to an economic impoverishment.
It is not possible to generate something out of nothing.
Any attempt to do so results in an economic disaster.
Who'd have thought that a responsible economic policy could produce good results?

Quote of the Day, 10/23/2012

Even in the case of physical goods, no one has a right to a certain market value. If I steal your car, your property rights are violated. If a manufacturer designs a slew of new cars that make yours far less valued in the market, your rights are not violated, because you never had a right to a given resale value.

Many people argue that the real need for IP law arises when we’re talking about companies making multibillion dollar investments in R&D, not merely five-figure gardens. What incentive is there to pursue such costly innovations with no promise of reward for the effort? There are several problems with this analysis. First, even with current IP laws, there is no guarantee of profit. How many billions of R&D dollars are spent on projects that end up yielding no return? Consumers are fickle, and IP doesn’t guarantee they’ll like your product, no matter how much you spend on research.

-Issac Morehouse

Monday, October 22, 2012

Huffington Post Reply

A few days ago egdot replied to one of my comments at the Huffington Post.  We've already looked at how egdot's comment compares to the typical liberal's comment, as described by Dilbert Blog commenter Hankfu.

How is ACA supposed to help balance the budget?

With it the government will be paying for more peoples' healthcare, and many more bureaucrats will be hired, whose salaries need to be paid.

So you should just leave these people without healthcare? Which bureaucrats? It's still a private insurance system by and large - not a government takeover. And even if it were - at least you'll be creating jobs which will increase demand which will stimulate the economy.  Healthcare costs money. You will never get away from that. Not insuring people is immoral as well as costly too.  Conservatives don't get it - even in the face of all the evidence from countries where they do cover all their people and have strong economies - Germany, Australia, France...Sweden, Norway, Denmark..
I said that I would describe why his/her comment is wrong.

1) more government always means people are worse off

2) socialized healthcare has not worked well in the places that it has been tried

3) egdot has called me "immoral" for not wanting to insure everyone.  I will point out why his position is immoral.  And even more so.

What egdot seems to support is the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (ACA, Obamacare).  ACA is clearly the socializing of America's Healthcare.  At least in part.

Calling something "socialist" is not an insult.  It is merely describing what it is.  It is no different from calling a "car" a "car."  If you are going to describe something to someone, one way to make the explanation simple is to use words that both parties know the meanings of.

Which is easier to understand: 1) I just bought one of those large metal things with four wheels, a motor, some seats, etc., or 2) I just bought a car?

It is the same thing with calling something socialist or anarchist or conservative or liberal.  Which is easier to understand: 1) My political beliefs are that the government always makes things worse, but some laws are necessary, like no injuring others, and a case can be made for paying for the people who are unable to provide for themselves, or 2) I'm a libertarian?

If a word, or term, has a negative feeling about it, then that is probably becasue the things that have been described by that word, or term, has often been bad.  But that does not make the use of that word, or term, any less accurate.

Definition of socialism: "Any of various theories or systems of social organization in which the means of producing and distributing goods is owned collectively or by a centralized government that often plans and controls the economy."

Let's look at ACA:
Key Features of the Law
Thanks to we can see what the "Key Features of the Law" are.  This law contains these rules about: insurance costs, pre-existing conditions, which healthcare services must be provided to you "at no cost," etc.  How are all of these rules not "planning
and controlling this segment of the economy"?

To sum up: ACA is socialist because with it the government is planning and controlling what you, doctors, and insurance companies may, or may not, do and how much of it we can, and cannot, do.  ACA also includes new Medicare rules and regulations.  And Medicare is a "systems of social organization in which the means of producing and distributing goods is owned collectively or by a centralized government."

So, ACA is socialist, but that's not necessarily a bad thing.


1) more government always means people are worse off

By "more government" I mean more rules and regulations from the government.  We should all agree that ACA is "more rules and regulations from the government."

When the government has controlled all or most of a country millions of people have died as a result.

According to "The Black Book of Communism" the death tolls from the various countries that have tried communism are:
These deaths have been the result of these communist countries':
To this we can add, at least, the Nazi's 25 million deaths.  The Nazis being, of course, the "National Socialist" party.

Perhaps this is why socialism currently has a negative connotation to many people?

Sure, not all socialist or communist countries have resulted in the deaths of millions.  In many places it has only meant that people have lived in extreme poverty. 

India was socialist from its independence in 1947 at least until 1991.  This meant poor economic growth and tens of millions in poverty.
The low annual growth rate of the economy of India before 1980, which stagnated around 3.5% from 1950s to 1980s, while per capita income averaged 1.3%.[18] At the same time, Pakistan grew by 5%, Indonesia by 9%, Thailand by 9%, South Korea by 10% and in Taiwan by 12%.[19]
And since 1991 and more economic freedoms (less socialism):
The Indian economy is the world's tenth-largest by nominal GDP and third-largest by purchasing power parity (PPP).[7] Following market-based economic reforms in 1991, India became one of the fastest-growing major economies; it is considered a newly industrialised country.
The reduction in socialism in China has also resulted in great gains in the quality of the Chinese.

A picture speaks a thousand words (Shanghai, China 20 years ago/ Shanghai now):


The same is also true in Vietnam: "Less Government = More Prosperity, Vietnamese Example."

And there are many other examples from around the world where less government equals more prosperity.

But many of you on the left claim that many countries in Europe are socialist and not awful places to live.  This is true.  But I doubt that you are thinking of Portugal, Ireland, Italy, Greece, and Spain at present, or are you?

No, many of you on the left like to point to the Scandinavian countries, and Sweden in particular, as examples of places where socialism is not awful.

Some facts about Sweden
(The Politically Incorrect Guide to Socialism by Kevin Williamson, reviewed by me here):
  • Poverty rate for Swedish Americans: 6.7% (page 101)
  • Poverty rate in Sweden: 6.7% (page 102)
  • 60% of Somali immigrants to Minneapolis, MN have a job (page 105)
  • 30% of Somali immigrants to Sweden have a job (page 105)
  • Average income in Sweden: $36,600 (page 106)
  • Average income in America $56,900 (page 106)
  • In 1970 Sweden had the fourth-highest average income in the world (page 106)
  • In 2000 Sweden had the fourteenth-highest average income in the world (page 106)
  • 1 in 5 working age Swedes call in sick on any given Monday (page 107)
  • 20% "of working age Swedes receive some sort of unemployment benefit" (page 108)
  • IKEA was designed as "do it yourself" to "minimize state-imposed labor costs" (page 110)
So Sweden, that great model of more government, is poorer than the poorest state in America (page 106).

In summary:  Countries are socialist kill tens of millions, force tens of millions to live in poverty, and the lives of those people improve dramatically when the government reduces its involvement in its peoples' lives (see the economic history of: China, India, and Vietnam).

Since adding more government has worked out so well for those other countries (and our public education), why would you want to add more government to any part of our economy, including healthcare?

If you still think that more government will improve our lives, then perhaps we should have an economic experiment to see if that is true? 
I propose an experiment in order to see weather more government improves peoples' lives.  I suggest that we divide several countries into halves with more government and into halves with less government.  Then we will wait several decades and see which halves performed "better."...
2) socialized healthcare has not worked well in the places that it has been tried

In my previous point I showed that when whole countries are socialized the results are disastrous.  

Now let's look at only the issue of healthcare.

The countries that you, egdot, listed for examples of success were: "Germany, Australia, France...Sweden, Norway, Denmark.."

You also said that these countries "have strong economies". 

France's lowest unemployment rate since 1999 was 7.4%.  Its unemployment rate has been over 9% for 9 of those 12 years.  

Is that what you mean by having a "strong" economy?

Denmark is still struggling to recover from the current economic slowdown.

The German "labor market is, slowly but surely, losing steam and all forward-looking indicators also don't bode well," said ING economist Carsten Brzeski.

Norway is doing well, largely thanks to its selling of oil.  How can some other country repeat the selling of oil to lessen the bad effects of our current economy?

Australia's economy is doing well.  Largely thanks to its natural resources.  And that can be reproduced elsewhere right?

Estonia's economy is doing better than its neighbors.  Wait! They did it by reducing the size of their government, not by adding more rules and regulations.

But, let's assume that you meant instead of having a "strong" economy you actually meant that these are places with socialized healthcare and they are not awful places to live.  This is true.  (Except, maybe, for France.)

I noticed that you neglected to mention the healthcare of Great Britain or Canada.  Is this because you know that waiting times, the quality of care, and the healthcare tourism of English people are bad indicators of its healthcare system?  Or could it be that more Canadians are going to private healthcare providers rather than their public options?

(BTW, America's healthcare system was heavily regulated by the government before ACA, see doctor's licensees, not being allowed to buy insurance across state lines, insurance being required to cover things that the insured may, or may not want, etc.)

You said that there is evidence that several countries have good economies and cover all of there citizens' healthcare.  Would you care to show that evidence?

When we try to compare the differences in healthcare results we often look at the infant mortality numbers and life expectancy numbers.  A problem with this is that different countries measure these things differently.  For example the life expectancy in America includes the deaths at birth in our life expectancy numbers, other countries do not.  This skews the numbers in their favor.

We also have more technology in our hospitals than other countries, is the added cost bad?

From US health care: A reality check on cross-country comparisons
The combination of higher delivery costs because of greater NICU use and the unique way the United States counts live briths could lead one to erroneously conclude that the United States is highly inefficient compared to other industrialized nations.
  Another quote:
Teenage mothers are more likely to have preterm, low-birth-weight babies. The mortality rate for infants born to US teenage mothers is 1.5 to 3.5 times as high as the rate for infants born to mothers ages twenty-five to twenty-nine.[12] The US rate of births for teenage mothers is very high—2.8 times that of Canada and 7.0 times that of Sweden and Japan. If the United States had the same birth weights as Canada, its infant mortality rate—adjusting for this variable alone—would be slightly lower than Canada’s (5.4 versus 5.5 per one thousand births).[13]
Turning to gestational age, MacDorman and  Mathews calculate that if the United States had the same distribution of gestational ages as Sweden, its recorded infant mortality rate would drop by 33 percent,  tying it with France as the fifth lowest rate out of twenty-one developed countries.[14] Moreover, in the United States, mortality rates for infants born to unwed mothers were about twice as high as for infants born to married women.[15]
Overall, these lifestyle and socioeconomic factors may reflect poorly on some aspects of society in the United States in comparison to other countries. It is inappropriate, however, to conclude that the root cause is the US health care system rather than societal factors in a dynamic heterogeneous society. Infant mortality is a particularly misleading metric by which to grade country-specific health system performance and to make international comparisons.
A quote on life expectancy:
As a result of the problems with infant mortality (as well as mortality due to violence and accidents), the difference between US life expectancy and that of other countries is reduced at later ages. This is demonstrated in empirical studies of the production of health, including in the OECD report itself and also in the raw data. For example, in 2000, female life expectancy at birth was 79.3 years in the United States, 80.3 in the United Kingdom and 81.2 in Germany. Female life expectancy at sixty-five was 19.0 years in the United States, 19.0 years in the United Kingdom and 19.6 years in Germany.[17] The differences decline from 1.0 and 1.9 to 0.0 and 0.6.
 This paper's conclusion:
The OECD report raises important questions on how to determine the efficiency of health care in producing positive health outcomes and how to compare and contrast efficiency of systems among different countries. The OECD staff concludes that health care is highly productive in improving health outcomes and that efficiency varies greatly across countries. It provides country-specific estimates of that efficiency.

Unfortunately, major problems in OECD’s analysis render their conclusions—especially the country-specific conclusions—unreliable. Many external factors that influence health outcomes are either omitted or poorly measured. The net effect is to underweight the role that non-health care factors play in determining health. And since the United States scores relatively poorly on most of these external measures, omitting them or not adequately controlling for them increases the apparent relative inefficiency of the US health care system and probably biases the estimated productivity of health care as well. The OECD report controls to a limited extent for some lifestyle differences by gross measures (for example, consumption of alcohol, tobacco, fruits, and vegetables). It adjusts one health measure—PYLL—for violence and accidents, but does not use that measure for country-specific efficiency numbers. As explained above, we believe that these controls and adjustments are inadequate.

It is overreaching to interpret country-specific variation in health outcomes as a measure of health care system productivity. In reality, the country-specific estimates reflect all differences in country-level influences, whatever their source and measurement issues. As econometrician William Greene stated in a similar context, there are considerable differences among countries that masquerade as inefficiency. More carefully calibrated research is necessary to identify these differences.[25]
There are problems comparing the healthcare systems based on just raw numbers.  The countries measurements and lifestyles are incomparable.  There is not a good way to measure health objectivity; there are too many variables.

Here are some thoughts:

"Close to 25 percent of U.S. doctors are foreign-born."  Doctors come here to work.  Doctors, and everyone else, will move to where they get higher pay, better living conditions, and better jobs.

How Does The Quality Of Care Compare In Five Countries?

This study shows mixed results for comparing the quality of care between countries (here is a bigger version).

One note from this study (England has socialized healthcare, fyi):
On these indicators, the range in performance was usually small. On most survival rates, the countries are within 10 percent of each other. One pattern that does stand out is that England is consistently at the low end of the distribution for cancer survival. This is consistent with previous comparisons of cancer survival between the United Kingdom and other European countries.10
 art of the Summary:
The comparisons on this initial set of quality indicators show that each country performs well in some areas and poorly in others compared with other countries. Each country could improve the quality of care. 

Australia performed well on many of the indicators. In particular, cancer survival rates were generally high (excepting childhood leukemia); breast cancer screening rates were high; asthma mortality was relatively low; and influenza and polio vaccination rates were high. However, the incidence of pertussis was much higher than elsewhere, suggesting an opportunity for improvement.
 American Heathcare in the summary:
In the United States, breast cancer survival rates were higher than in the other countries. Cervical cancer screening rates were very high. One area for concern is that asthma mortality rates were increasing in the United States but decreasing in the other countries. Transplant survival rates were also relatively low in the United States.
 Overall, mixed results between the various countries.

Other than in England and Canada(which you did not mention), I have failed to show that healthcare is worse when socialized. 

If you would show"the evidence from countries where they do cover all their people and have strong economies", I would like to see it.  But, please remember that the plain data is questionable between different countries thanks to differing lifestyles and differing measurements.

If we are interested in how well ACA's predecessor in Massachusetts has worked, then let's consider these five lessons:
Lesson 1: The Massachusetts plan does not control costs.

When Massachusetts launched its reform program in 2006, it already had the highest medical costs in the nation. Today, the burden is still rising far faster than wages or inflation, from those already lofty levels. A report from that state attorney general in March -- remember, this is a Democratic administration -- asked rhetorically "Can we expect the existing health-care market in Massachusetts to successfully contain health-care costs?" The report concluded, "To date, the answer is an unequivocal 'no.'"

Costs are rising relentlessly for both families and for the state government. The median annual premium for family plans jumped 10% from 2007 to 2009 to $14,300 -- again, that's a substantial rise on top of an already enormous number. For small businesses, the increase was 12%. In 2006, the state spent around $1 billion on Medicaid, subsidies for medium-to-lower earners, and other health-care programs. Today, the figure is $1.75 billion. The federal government absorbed half of the increase.

Hence reform's proponents boast that expenses have risen only $354 million or around 6% a year. But the real increase is double that, including the federal share. And it's highly possible that given the current budget pressures, the U.S. will reduce the contribution that has encouraged the state to spend so lavishly.

Lesson 2: Community rating, guaranteed issue and mandated benefits swell costs.

How did costs in Massachusetts get so big to begin with? A major reason is the adoption of guaranteed issue and community rating in the mid-1990s. The new federal bill would expand those rules to the entire nation. Under guaranteed issue, insurers must accept all enrollees regardless of their medical condition; under community rating, they must charge all customers similar premiums, even if their costs are far different. The result is that prices rise steeply for young, healthy customers, who must pay far more than their actual costs. It also give them a strong incentive to drop insurance; then they can "game the system" by signing up any time they need surgery or get diabetes.

Hence the pool of insured people gets older and sicker as the healthy drop out. That's what happened in Massachusetts, and it contributed to soaring premiums. The 2006 reform plan was supposed to solve the problem by requiring that everyone buy coverage or pay a fine of around $1,000. It worked, but only in part: Of the 600,000 uninsured in 2005, around 450,000 are now covered. But a large share of 150,000 who still lack coverage are young residents who choose to pay the fine instead of high premiums. Insurers are also getting socked by people who sign up for insurance to get expensive care mandated under state law, including hospitalization for childbirth or hip replacements, and then depart once the procedure is completed.

In the federal bill, the fines for going uninsured are even lower than in Massachusetts -- and anyone who can't find an inexpensive plan is exempted from all penalties. Hence the "adverse selection" problem could prove far worse.

Lesson 3: Huge subsidies for low-to-medium earners could prove extremely expensive.

One of the most fascinating features of the Massachusetts plan is that it introduced a system of subsidized policies, sold through an insurance "exchange" that's extremely similar to the one in the new federal plan. Under Commonwealth Care, the state subsidizes plans -- offered by private carriers -- for residents who earn up to $66,150 who are not covered by employers. The aid is extremely generous. At $44,000, families pay around $1,000 a year in premiums. At the $66,150 maximum, they contribute around $3,000.

The problem is that the actual annual cost of these plans is around $10,000, so the subsides are enormous -- that's 90% for families earning $44,000. And while the costs keep going up, the share paid by the enrollee barely budges. Says Michael Tanner, an economist at the conservative Cato Institute: "It's a situation where the entire escalation in costs is paid by the government, not the people receiving the care."

The federal plan also subsidizes care provided through state-run exchanges. The patients' contributions are bigger than in the Mass. plan: A family earning $66,000 would pay $6,300 a year. But the federal plan offers subsidies far higher along the income scale, aiding families of four making up to $88,200. And surprisingly, the federal plans would probably prove a lot more costly than the ones in Massachusetts, where the state prides itself on restraining what they pay by squeezing providers, who then shift the added costs to private customers.

The big problem arises if far more people sign up for these exchange-offered plans than anticipated. That's been the case in Massachusetts. And as we'll see in a moment, it could still get a lot worse there. A potential disaster threatens the federal plan if employers staring dropping coverage, since a flood of newcomers would rush into the state-funded pools.

Lesson 4: The exchanges reward people for working less and earning less.

Data is lacking on how damaging these perverse incentives are in practice. But it's clear in Massachusetts that low-to-medium earning families often suffer financially if they get a raise, work overtime, move to a higher paying job -- or if a spouse rejoins the workforce. For example, a family earning $33,000 pays no premium at all under Commonwealth Care. But if their pay goes to $46,000, they're obligated to contribute about $2,400. That's an effective tax rate of 18.5% on that $13,000 raise. A pay increase of $44,000 to $46,000 is mostly erased by higher premiums alone.

The federal bill is plagued by the same weakness. For example, a $55,000 earner contributes $4,400 a year towards insurance. At $65,000, the bill is $6300; so the family is paying a "tax" of $1,900 or 19% on that $10,000 raise. After payroll taxes, those Americans would face a marginal rate of around 35%, a number that's heretofore been the territory strictly for high-earners.

Lesson 5: The generous plans and added mandates give employers an incentive to drop health insurance.

In charting the future of health-care costs, the biggest danger by far is that companies will drop their coverage. It's also the one that's the most difficult to handicap, both for Massachusetts and the entire nation. The problem is simple: If employers stop paying for health care, employees will flood into the government-subsidized programs, enormously raising the cost to already fragile budgets.

Surprisingly, health reform in Massachusetts has actually increased the number of workers covered by employers. Over 100,000 more employees are covered by corporate plans today than when the program debuted in 2006. The main reason is that the plan imposed a $1,000 fine on employees who refused their employers' plans. Then, families were paying around $3,600 a year towards their company policies. Many decided that, when faced with a fine, the better choice was paying the extra $2,600 for full coverage. The plan was shrewdly calibrated by the administration of then-governor Mitt Romney to tilt the market towards company-provided care.

The Massachusetts plan also bans any employee from getting coverage from Commonwealth Care if his or her company offers coverage. Hence it would appear that corporate coverage is solidly entrenched. But that's by no means certain, either in Massachusetts or under the Obama plan. The reason is the fast escalation in costs, for both companies and employees. From 2007 to 2009, the employee contribution for family policies rose a steep 17%, or $624 a year, to $4,200.

Employees can only move into Commonwealth Care if their employers drop their plans. The danger is that the incentives are tilting in that direction as the costs of coverage for employer, and the price of premiums to employees, keep climbing. The point is rapidly approaching where both will pocket big savings if employers drop their plans and workers buy their policies through the heavily subsidized exchanges.

In Massachusetts, the state government is pushing toward that tilt point by adding heavy mandates to a list of more than 40 already on the books. In 2009, it required insurers to cover prescription drugs. An expensive autism mandate is now being debated in the state legislature. The list of mandates under the federal plan is bound to mirror the ones in Massachusetts, and once again, the added expense severely weakens companies' incentive for providing coverage.

Cracks are already starting to appear. Part-time workers can get coverage under Commonwealth Care for a fraction of what they'd pay as full-timers. So they "game the system" by working ten or fifteen hours a week for two or three companies. Or they find that it pays to switch from full- to part-time work. PHI, an organization that represents home health-care workers, states that one-fourth of the home care agencies in Massachusetts are reducing workers' hours so they're eligible for state-subsidized care.

The federal plan will encounter the same problem -- perhaps a more acute one since its penalties are lower and its subsidies go much higher on the income scale.

Starting in 2017, the states will have the option of allowing companies that drop their plans to shift workers into the subsidized, state-run exchanges. That choice doesn't exist now in Massachusetts. It's not that employers are likely to dump their plans en masse. What's far more probable is a progressive erosion that relentlessly and systematically raises government spending.

The incentives are there, both in the federal plan, and its prototype in the Bay State. And when the incentives are that big -- and when subsidies inevitably get bigger, not smaller -- no amount of regulatory tinkering can stop America's employers and employees from taking the government's money, and saving their own.
3) egdot has called me "immoral" for not wanting to insure everyone.  I will point out why his position is immoral.  And even more so.

You have called me "immoral" for not wanting to insure everyone. You have even said, "So you should just leave these people without healthcare?" when I have said nothing of the sort.

Morality is an objective, not subjective idea.  I may very well be immoral in your vision of morality.  But you are immoral in mine.  Neither is right or wrong.  But which preferred healthcare system is more likely to be "better" for the currently uninsured?

You claim that if I don't "help" (by subsidizing healthcare insurance) someone who is hurt, that I am "immoral."

I claim that your preferred policy of taking from one American to give to another is theft.

From Walter Williams' column Bogus Rights:
Do people have a right to medical treatment whether or not they can pay? What about a right to food or decent housing? Would a U.S. Supreme Court justice hold that these are rights just like those enumerated in our Bill of Rights? In order to have any hope of coherently answering these questions, we have to decide what is a right. The way our Constitution's framers used the term, a right is something that exists simultaneously among people and imposes no obligation on another. For example, the right to free speech, or freedom to travel, is something we all simultaneously possess. My right to free speech or freedom to travel imposes no obligation upon another except that of non-interference. In other words, my exercising my right to speech or travel requires absolutely nothing from you and in no way diminishes any of your rights.
Three-fifths to two-thirds of the federal budget consists of taking property from one American and giving it to another. Were a private person to do the same thing, we'd call it theft. When government does it, we euphemistically call it income redistribution, but that's exactly what thieves do -- redistribute income. Income redistribution not only betrays the founders' vision, it's a sin in the eyes of God. I'm guessing that when God gave Moses the Eighth Commandment, "Thou shalt not steal," I'm sure he didn't mean "thou shalt not steal unless there was a majority vote in Congress."
From Bryan Fischer's column Obama's Platform: breaking the 8th and 10th commandments":
President Obama's entire re-election campaign platform can be summed up in two words: greed and theft.

Despite God's command against lusting for the possessions of others — "You shall not covet...anything that is your neighbor's" (Exodus 20:17) — the president seems animated by a twitching, trembling greed for the wealth of others.

And he is determined to use the coercive power of government to take it from them by force, despite God's clear command, "You shall not steal" (Exodus 20:15).

The president's approach to public policy is predicated on one premise alone: the involuntary transfer of wealth. But taking money from one citizen by force and giving it to another is robbery, and doing it under color of law does not make it right.

Even doing it with the consent of Congress does not make it right. Paraphrasing Walter Williams, God did not say "Thou shalt not steal — unless you can get a majority vote in Congress."

As Frederic Bastiat observed 160 years ago, when government engages in the involuntary transfer of wealth, that's nothing more than legalized plunder. There is nothing noble or laudatory about it. It is contemptible, evil and profoundly wrong.
If I steal your wallet, then that is wrong. If I steal your wallet and give it to a poor person then that is also wrong.

You claim that it is immoral to not help an injured person.

I claim that forcing one American to pay for another is theft.  And, therefore, socializing healthcare, or anything else, is theft.  Theft is causing harm to another person.

I would argue that not helping an injured person is not as bad as harming someone in the first place.

Brookfield, WI Shooting

Apparently there was a shooting recently, about a half hour's drive from where I live.  The guy killed his wife and a few others.

Apparently he was almost arrested earlier

When I said that if I resisted arrest for not paying my fine, for not having a front license plate on my car, I wasn't kidding about possibly being killed as a result.
Whoever intentionally does all of the following is guilty of a Class I felony: Refuses to comply with an officer's lawful attempt to take him or her into custody and retreats or remains in a building or place and, through action or threat, attempts to prevent the officer from taking him or her into custody and (while inside) remains or becomes armed with a dangerous weapon or threatens to use a dangerous weapon regardless of whether he or she has a dangerous weapon.
 Don't you feel safe with our nice police around?

Light Posting Ahead

This is the week the deer are most active where I hunt.  

Five days a week spent up a tree isn't too many, is it?

You Will Be Betrayed

If you are not reading Jeffery Tucker, then you really should.

From yesterday's article at Laissez Faire Books:

You Will Be Betrayed

My neighborhood is filling up with political yard signs. Vote for this guy! Vote for that guy!

I can’t understand why people are willing to give up precious real estate on their front lawns, make friends mad at them, and put their own credibility on the line to back some politico who will certainly betray them in a matter of weeks. The con men who people cheer in politics have done little or nothing to deserve this kind of public support.

My neighborhood forbids commercial advertising on the front lawn, but the code makes an exception for politicians running for office. If anything, it should be the opposite. Commerce serves me every day. I feel genuine gratitude for these companies who give me great products and services, always keep their promises, and never force anything on me.

Every day we all vote in the consumer marketplace. We buy or decline to buy. We do this by choice. Our choice makes a difference. How we use money determines which companies rise and which ones fall. Unless government jumps in to put companies on life support, consumers themselves can vote any company into non-existence simply by failing to buy its products and services. Ludwig von Mises described this as market democracy. It is the only kind of democracy that really works.

Let me give an example. I love this juice from Bolthouse Farms, a company in Bakersfield, Calif. They have these drinks made of fruits that are absolutely delicious. The one I drank today is pomegranate. But there are many other flavors, like wild berry, strawberry banana, carrot, and even chocolate. I get a great drink and don’t have to grow pomegranates, cut them open, pick out the seeds, and walk around with red-stained hands all day.

If someone would let me post a Bolthouse Farms sign on my front yard, I’d be all about it!

Read the rest here.