Friday, November 30, 2012

Being Alone

I don't mean being single.  I mean spending time with only your own thoughts.

Most of the deer hunting season has ended here in Wisconsin, so I've just spend several hundred hours sitting.  Sitting alone with my thoughts.

Many people cannot stand stand hunting for deer because it is too boring, they say.  My uncle usually has a book with him to alleviate the boredom. Deer hunting from a stand is incredibly boring.  Hour after hour of...sitting...and looking at the same unchanging surroundings for hour on end.

The exiting parts of hunting are as exiting as anything, but mostly its boring.  Boring to the point where I judge how the leaves fall from the trees: the ones that rock back and forth are too predictably uninteresting, the ones that spin fall too fast to leisurely watch, the ones that rock to one side then spin to the other then drift back, etc are the best ones to watch.  Did you know that you can hear a leaf fall to the ground from a dozen yards away?  Or that you can watch some leaves fall and, hours later, remember which of the thousands of leaves on the ground you watched fall?

But I am rarely bored by my hours of sitting.  Occasionally I look forward to the end of that hunt, but that is because it is too cold or I've been thinking of something that I want to do and I want to do it right away.

Spending time alone with your thoughts can be a good thing.  You have nothing to do but think, and you are stuck with yourself.

There's always something to think about, there's always something to plan, and in nature there are always things to wonder about.

Make the Rich Pay "Their Fair Share"

It seems that libertarians and conservatives agree that the republicans need to let the democrats tax the rich in order not to get blamed for our economy.

from Reason:
There is no chance of a "balanced approach" on debt when you have no leverage. If these Republicans, unprepared for political warfare at this level, lose a game of fiscal cliff chicken, they will take the blame for across-the-board tax hikes. Obama won't be held culpable for holding the economy hostage over some piddling revenue from the rich. He won't be blamed for the ensuing recession. The media will be too busy investigating obstructionism and applauding the president's gleaming new tax plan.
from Ann Coulter:
Unless Republicans and Democrats reach an agreement, the Bush tax cuts expire at the end of the year. By pushing to extend the tax cuts for everyone except "the rich," Democrats get to look like champions of middle class tax cuts and Republicans can be portrayed as caring only about the rich.

And when the economy tanks, the Non-Fox Media will blame Republicans.

The economy will tank because, as you will recall, Obama is still president. Government rules, regulations, restrictions, forms and inspections are about to drown the productive sector. Obamacare is descending on job creators like a fly swatter on a gnat. Obama has already managed to produce the only "recovery" that is worse than the preceding recession since the Great Depression. And he says, "You ain't seen nothing yet."

The coming economic collapse is written in the stars, but if Republicans "obstruct" the Democrats by blocking tax hikes on top income earners, they're going to take 100 percent of the blame for the Obama economy.

You think not? The Non-Fox Media managed to persuade a majority of voters that the last four years of jobless misery was George W. Bush's fault, having nothing whatsoever to do with Obama.
That was also my point here.

The republicans lost the election so lets give the democrats what they want, let them "own" the economy.

Besides, the democrats have "balked on spending cuts. Balked on entitlement reform. What's left? A value added tax? A carbon tax? What's left after the rich pay their 'fair share'?"

I expect the republicans to fight this and get blamed for our economy just like the author at Reason and Ann Coulter predict. 

Don't expect anything good to come from this economy.

Cream of the Crop

I've been reading a few things in about men only wanting a certain percentage of women and women only wanting a certain percentage of men.

Consecutive comments to this post:
TMG

I also suspect that many of these women have very inflated perceptions of their own value and the kind of man they “deserve.” Unfortunately, there’s only so many guitar-playing hedge fund managers and hunky ex-con bikers with tattoos and a trust fund to go around.

Koop

Plenty of men would love to be married, but not to a “modern” woman. If they could only find a woman who held herself to a higher moral standard, and could be trusted over the long haul. But as we are constantly reminded, that society went away with our great-grandparents.
It is true that I'd like a women who looks like a model and women want guys who are independently wealthy, etc.

Our society is not in a good position if we all want something that does not exist in numbers sufficient to meet our needs.

Economics is the study of scarce resources, which have alternative uses.

I find it interesting how women think about these issues in the social sciences, like psychology, and more men use economics to ponder these issues.

Lots of behavior can be determined by knowledge of our sexual market value.  Many have written about it before, and I won't repeat it here.

Dr. Helen's post reflects the price fluctuations in the sexual marketplace.  Fewer chaste, thin, women leads to fewer men wanting to marry.

Our societal trend-line has not been looking good for decades.  Captain Capitalism may be right: "Enjoy the decline."

Its not all bad news for us guys.  Apparently the rest of the world is not yet in our societal decline. "Game as you know it is really a Western invention for use on women who no longer use biology or the pursuit of happiness to select mates. World game is nothing more than being a good man who isn’t a pushover."

Feminism, or women's suffrage, or western culture seems to have screwed up our society rather well.

Thursday, November 29, 2012

More Government = Less Prosperity, British Example

Millionaires and their wealth are not just fleeing Hollande’s France, with its new 90 percent top rate tax. They’ve also been escaping Britain’s 50 percent tax too. As The Telegraph’s Robert Winnett reported earlier today, “almost two-thirds of the country’s million-pound earners disappeared from Britain after the introduction of the 50p top rate of tax.”
In the 2009-10 tax year, more than 16,000 people declared an annual income of more than £1 million to HM Revenue and Customs. This number fell to just 6,000 after Gordon Brown introduced the new 50p top rate of income tax shortly before the last general election.
Since George Osborne announced a reduction of the top rate to 45 percent in his April budget “the number of people declaring annual incomes of more than £1 million has risen to 10,000.” This is a figure still significantly below earlier levels, and it will be a huge challenge for Britain to recover its lost wealth. As Conservative MP Harriet Baldwin puts it, “Labour’s ideological tax hike led to a tax cull of millionaires,” costing the UK around £7 billion in lost tax revenue.

-The Telegraph

h/t: Cogitans Iuvenis

Fat People

Yes it is a problem that many Americans are fat.  Fat is unsightly and bad for health.  But if we went back in time to any other country in any other time and said, "Our biggest health problem is that our poor people eat too much and get fat."  They'd laugh at us.

Our biggest health problem is not that our poor starve, or cannot find certain foods.  We've had no potato famine.  Our problem is that food is too cheap and too available (compared to anywhere else at any other time).

Its really quite an amazing accomplishment.  Sometimes we forget how truly wealthy we are compared to the rest of world history.

That being said, the obese are still gross.

Quote of the Day, 11/29/2012

Lots of people don't like how much our President plays golf.  Every minute he spends playing golf is a minute he is not spending doing his job.

I'll buy your next round Mr. President.

-Me

Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Who says, "women can't have it all"?

One of the best posts on gender relations that I have seen can be found at The Woman and the Dragon.

Going Galt is not a terrible idea.
We told you we just wanted equality, an equal opportunity to live our own lives the way we saw fit without interference.  You believed it and lent a helping hand in tearing society to pieces.

Suckers.

We don’t just want equality, we want complete domination.  

We could start anywhere, but let’s start with the Supreme Court; we won’t stop fighting you until women fill every seat.

We don’t just want to serve in the military.  We want you to call us combat soldiers, even though we suck at it and will further endanger your lives in the event of an actual war.  We want to humiliate men in the military until every last one of them goes home with his tail between his legs.

We don’t want a fair shot at climbing the corporate ladder.  We demand to fill exactly 50% of CEO positions even if we aren’t competent or even willing to do so.  No, that doesn’t make any sense, but we aren’t interested in making sense.  We are interested in total compliance by you.

We want to slut around while we’re hot enough to attract alphas.  The other 80% of men who aren’t gettin’ any in their twenties – look at me when I’m talking to you! – you have a job to do.  You need to be busting your butt to climb that career ladder because someday we’ll be 36 and need you to fertilize our two remaining good eggs and pay for a nice house for us to raise *our* (not *your*) children in.

...

Shoe Prices Are Going Up...

...but don't blame the retailers or manufacturers.

from Protectionism is a Rip-Off:
The Obama administration, without warning, announced that it opposes prolonging a suspension of tariff walls on the materials that go into making these specialty products. To put it plainly, there is going to be a new tax on imports on your shoes. And it begins on Jan. 1, 2013.

...

Why would the Obama administration do this? I have no inside knowledge. But if this action fits most such actions, it comes down to a political payoff for some industrial competitor somewhere. It has nothing to do with saving jobs. It is saving some friends of the government at the expense of everyone else. Another possibility is that this action helps give more work and power to the U.S. Customs agency and its public-sector union.

...

I’m particularly intrigued by these kinds of actions because they suggest the real way that government undertakes its dirty work. Mostly, it is out of public view. It consists of petty bureaucrats working with various industry groups to rig the system in favor of whoever has the political power and muscle to pull it off. The public debates and the elections have very little at all to do with it. In fact, there is no debate about most of what government does.

It’s not so much that it takes place in secret. Most all information is publicly available. The problem is that no one but the most affected have the incentive to watch what is happening in any particular sector on a day-by-day basis. That’s why, if you really want to know what government is doing to business, you have to ask an industry expert. Only they get the communique. Only they have a strong incentive to act.

People think of protectionist policy as a benefit to domestic businesses. This is not true. This is a clear case in which most of the harm of the protectionist policy is done to American business. The reason is that economic production takes place over many stages of production, and these are ever more spread throughout the world. A tax on imports ends up affecting domestic manufacturers and sellers, imposing artificially high costs of doing business.
 ...

The cause of free trade has always been about the common man. It is about the right of average people to trade with whomever they want. Protectionism, in contrast, is another way for powerful people to extract money from our pockets and reward their political friends with legal favors. In other words, it’s a rip-off.

You and I might be reminded of this in the dead of winter 2013, when that pair of hiking boots we had our eyes on suddenly soars in price and, instead of buying, we decide to stay home in our slippers and contemplate the fate of liberty in our time.

More Government = Less Prosperity, Spanish Evidence

Spain offers residency to anyone buying a home worth more than 130,000 pounds in bid to save its housing market

A declining economy and no one buying houses? Who would have guessed that such a thing would occur with socialists in charge?

h/t: Free Northerner

Spain plans to offer foreigners residency permits if they buy houses worth more than 160,000 euros - approximately £128,500 - to try and reduce the country's bloated stock of unsold homes. 
Spain currently has more than 700,000 unsold houses following the collapse of its real estate market in 2008.


Read more: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2235318/Spain-offers-residency-buying-home-worth-130-000-bid-save-housing-market.html#ixzz2DXIaOmbe
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A Radical Way To Improve Our Elections

Often we heard about the problems with voting in this country.  We hear that too much money is spent on elections and that the electorate is too ignorant of the issues.  We see that most people only vote in presidential elections and do not vote in local elections or "mid term" elections.

What if we had a radical new way of voting?

What if we could get people to vote in their local elections?

What if we got the voters to care about their local issues?

What if we had a system that did not require millions of dollars to win campaigns?

What if we remembered federalism and gave more power to the states?

Here's a radical plan to do all of that:

1. "The Senate of the United States shall be composed of two Senators from each State, chosen by the Legislature thereof for six Years; and each Senator shall have one Vote." -U.S. Constitution

2.  "Each State shall appoint, in such Manner as the Legislature thereof may direct, a Number of Electors, equal to the whole Number of Senators and Representatives to which the State may be entitled in the Congress: but no Senator or Representative, or Person holding an Office of Trust or Profit under the United States, shall be appointed an Elector. The Electors shall meet in their respective States, and vote by Ballot for two Persons, of whom one at least shall not be an Inhabitant of the same State with themselves. And they shall make a List of all the Persons voted for, and of the Number of Votes for each; which List they shall sign and certify, and transmit sealed to the Seat of the Government of the United States, directed to the President of the Senate. The President of the Senate shall, in the Presence of the Senate and House of Representatives, open all the Certificates, and the Votes shall then be counted. The Person having the greatest Number of Votes shall be the President, if such Number be a Majority of the whole Number of Electors appointed; and if there be more than one who have such Majority, and have an equal Number of Votes, then the House of Representatives shall immediately chuse by Ballot one of them for President; and if no Person have a Majority, then from the five highest on the List the said House shall in like Manner chuse the President."  -U.S. Constitution

Do you see where we went wrong?

17th Amendment:
The Senate of the United States shall be composed of two Senators from each State, elected by the people thereof, for six years; and each Senator shall have one vote. The electors in each State shall have the qualifications requisite for electors of the most numerous branch of the State legislatures.
We went from voting for our state representatives who were themselves responsible for electing our states' senators to a system where we vote directly for our senators.

We went from being a republic to a more democratic republic.

Had we maintained only an indirect vote for senators and more clearly defined the line between voting for presidential electors and voting for the president directly, we would need to spend more time, and money, in our local races in order to elect our senators and president. Governor's races would be the only statewide elections.  And much political spending would be done at the local rather than statewide and national level.

I say: repeal the 17th amendment.

Old White Guys

We've heard a lot about how the republicans need to become more attractive to win the votes of minorities.

They claim that they have more Hispanic congressmen than the democrats do.  They claim that their convention was filled with accomplished minorities.  They claim that the catholic hispanics and baptist blacks have the same social ideas as do the republicans.

And yet minorities vote overwhelmingly for the democrats.

The republicans seem to all be old white guys, despite all of their efforts to contact minorities.  The republicans need to do a better job of appealing the those minorities we hear.  They should take a softer stand on many issues we're told.

And yet I remember in 2004 that stem cell research was an issue.  George Bush was perceived to be against stem cell research that might (it hasn't) save people with terrible illnesses.  His actual policy was to limit the government funding for it.  So of course, the democrats and media claimed that he wanted to ban all stem cell research.  "How could he be so heartless," they wondered.

His actual policy included government funding and yet we were all told, and believed, that he was opposed to stem cell research.

That is what the media did eight years ago.  Republicans now want to moderate on the issues when the democrats and media will get most of the public to believe that whatever the republicans want to do is heartless, awful, and they hate minorities... regardless of the truth.

Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Less Government = More Prosperity, Local Government Example



from reason tv

My First Mean Spirited Comment!

In my previous post I got my first mean spirited comment!

Hooray! I feel loved now!

Although, I'm suspicious of its timing right after I left a comment at the Private Man lamenting my lack of haters.

My Favorite Books of Non-Fiction

1. Bell of Africa by W.D.M. Bell

"The greatest elephant book by perhaps the greatest elephant hunter."

How can the greatest elephant book be anything other than the greatest book ever?

2. Elephant Hunting in East Equatorial Africa by Arthur Neumann

Another book written by one of the great elephant hunters.  It compares surprisingly well to Bell of Africa.

The book as about a few years spent in what is now Kenya and surrounding countries ivory hunting.  Read about hiring porters, settling porter disputes, traveling through the African bush on foot...  Mr. (and I don't use that lightly) Neumann was even gored by an elephant and spent a month recovering way, way out in the bush.

A fascinating sort of story-ized journal of several ivory hunting adventures deep into the African bush.

3. Dragon Hunter by Charles Gallenkamp

The story of Roy Chapman Andrews' Asian expedition.  The book is about Roy and his exploration of Mongolia.  He did this in a time when no one visited, Mongolia for any reason.  He did it a handful of years after the invention of the car, with primitive cars, long before anyone else thought that exploration in cars was possible.

A member of his team was the first to discover a dinosaur egg.  But their exploration discovered all sorts of plants and animals new to science.

You've seen Indiana Jones?  Roy Chapman Andrews was one of the inspirations.  He worked for the American Museum of Natural History and was an explorer/ adventurer/ archeologist/ scientist who was one of the greatest explorers of all time.

4. Heart of Asia: True Tales of the Far East by Roy Chapman Andrews

Need an idea for an adventure movie?  Pick a chapter at random and you'll have an excellent story of action and adventure based on a true story.

5. Bang by RooshV

Need improvement in your interactions with girls?  Buy Bang and do what it says.

6. Bourbon for Breakfast by Jeffery Tucker

Marvelous.

Who would have thought that economics could be so fun, personal, and relateable?

Not only is each chapter unique and interesting but the links to other books and movies and fashion and...make this book wonderful for marveling at our world and finding wonderful new books and ideas.

Rethink long held ideas, such as intellectual property (copyrights, trademarks, etc.) being a good idea.

On that note read it, and Its a Jetsen's World, for free here.

7. Its a Jetsen's World by Jeffery Tucker

More of the same great stuff as Bourbon for Breakfast.  With more subjects covered and more great suggestions for other works.

I cannot stress enough how good these two books are.

8. The Wild Wheel by Garet Garrett

An amazing account of the thoughts and creations of the Ford Motor Company from when Ford was running it.  Read about the ways Ford innovated.  Read about the reasons for creating an assembly line.  Read about Ford's methods of business.  Read about how he got started.  Read about how he finished.

A book worth reading weather you are interested in: how to build a company, history, the biography of Henry Ford, economics, and why government interference is a terrible thing.

A superb book that was brought to my attention by Its a Jetsen's World.

If you want to read about the causes of the great depression, then read Garrett's The Bubble that Broke the World.

If you liked Atlas Shrugged and want to read its precursor then read Garrett's The Driver.

9. Genghis Khan and the Making of the Modern World by Jack Weatherford

Genghis Khan was one of the most impressive men in world history.  This account of his life is very informative and interesting.  Read about how he began is life, read about the ancient Mongols way of life, and read about how his empire was created.

10. Eat the Rick by P.J. O'Rourke

I could have picked any of P.J.'s books because they are all interesting, and mildly amusing, accounts of All the Trouble in the World.  His books cover economics, world travel, revolutions, wars, domestic life, living as a bachelor, and cars.

Any of his books are well worth a read, but start with Eat the Rich and see how he compares the various economic systems of the world.

Quote of the Day, 11/27/2012

You got to listen to your dreams, that’s how you find your dream girl.

-Jet Black

Monday, November 26, 2012

Mellon vs. Geitner

If you're not reading the posts at Laissez Faire books yet, you should start now.

From Mellon vs. Geitner:
Left to its own devices, the economy’s healing powers are extraordinary. For instance, the depression of 1920 was a doozy. Unemployment jumped that year from 4 percent to nearly 12 percent, and GNP declined 17 percent.

Had the likes of Tim Geithner taken over as Treasury Secretary, who knows for how long the pain would have dragged on. But it was not a career bureaucrat that took the job but instead a 66 year old industrialist, Andrew Mellon.

By the summer of 1921, recovery was already underway. The following year, unemployment was back down to 6.7 percent and it was only 2.4 percent by 1923. By 1926, Treasury Secretary Mellon was able to say, “We are now at a very high tide of prosperity.”

Instead of bailouts, Mellow agitated for lower taxes and immediately went to work on peeling away America’s bloated post WWI debt. Mellon had built industrial dynasties in oil, steel, shipbuilding, construction, and banking. To take the Treasury job he resigned directorships at 60 companies.

His first day, as Mellon biographer David Cannadine relates, Mellon arrived for work at 8am, an hour before the staff. “Such a thing had never happened in the memory of any of the Treasury’s night watchmen.”

Mellon knew that if tax rates were lowered on businesses and individuals that money would be reinvested in the economy, creating jobs and promoting economic recovery. But he didn’t immediately get all he wanted. The farm bloc stood in the way of most of his tax agenda, but taxes were reduced and over time Mellon succeeded.

At the same time, Mellon was able to whittle down the federal debt that stood at $24 billion when he took office. By 1929 he had reduced it to $16 billion, saving the government millions a year in interest payments. He believed the domestic debt would be extinguished by 1942. A goal the Great Depression postponed.

How I Found Livingstone

"Dr. Livingstone, I presume?" misquote from Sir Stanley.

I've been reading How I Found Livingstone by Sir Henry Morton Stanley.  (Currently free for Kindles on Amazon.com)  Its a book by one of the world's greatest explorers, in Stanley, and about his travels through Africa.

Its quite interesting with the accounts of traveling trough various places, the need for cloth and beads as money, the wars of the native Africans, etc.  Apparently most of the native Africans could find their own food but could not make cloth or beads.

It is amazing how many porters were engaged simply to walk across Africa.  They needed to haul lots of cloth, lots of food, and white travelers often traveled with pots and pans and silverware of good quality.  All those things must have added greatly to the difficulty of traveling.

But the writing is not so good.  The subjects of each paragraph are often totally different from the last paragraph.  The book seems more to be the steady account of information for newspaper reporting that it was (it was financed by the New York Herald) rather than a singularly written story like we usually expect.

In all its rather interesting, but if you want to read about African exploring of more than one hundred years ago, then I suggest Elephant Hunting in East Equatorial Africa by Arthur Newmann.  If you want to learn some more about the Africans of that time, then I suggest that you read my favorite book, Bell of Africa by W.D.M. Bell.  Bell of Africa is about elephant hunting.  But it also details many observations of the Africans.

How I found Livingstone is an interesting book, but it suffers from being of a similar nature to my two favorite books of non-fiction, mentioned in the previous paragraph, and is not as well written, nor does this book include elephant hunting.

An okay book, not a great one.

Feet

Recently I posted my comments on watching the news.

Then I discovered a new search term leading visitors to my blog.

"Give The People What They Want!" I said.

Then I discovered that a few people found this blog while searching for "martha maccallum feet".

You've heard of foot fetishists?  I'm more of a foot aversionist.  So don't expect a follow up post.


Walmart Workers Revolt!

from reason.com:
As American consumers officially kicked off their holiday shopping today, anti-Walmart activists staged what was originally billed as a day of mass employee revolt at the world's largest retailer, a time for store associates to walk off the job "in protest of Walmart’s continuous acts of retaliation against those of us who speak out for better pay, affordable healthcare, improved working conditions, fair schedules, more hours, and most of all, respect."

OUR Walmart, which organized the protest, claims today's action was a wild success. Based on the swarm of media attention, they're right.

But there was one thing largely missing that, one might argue, every employee walkout kind of needs: employees.

According to the Bentonville-based company, roughly 50 people who are actually on Walmart's payroll joined today's "walkout" nationwide. The protest organizers say "hundreds" participated. Even if 1,000 took part, that's still less than 1/10 of 1% of Walmart's 1.4 million associates.


50! 


HA! HA! HA! HA!

This is the stupidest story since the Hostess strikers ended the company and thought that somebody else would buy a company that could not afford to operate, and then give the employees (who are known for working hard striking) more money and making the business even less prosperous than it was when it when bankrupt.

Saturday, November 24, 2012

Stevie's Spanking

How about some groovy guitar playing that you young guys haven't yet heard?



Government During A Crisis

A summary by Wendy McElroy:
1. A crisis interrupts the flow of necessities. The government assures people that it can supply their needs. After all, that’s what government is for.
2. It fails.
3. People provide for themselves. The private sector demonstrates that it can do what the public sector cannot. This not only slaps authority in the face, but also constitutes an argument against the need for government.
4. To mask their own incompetence and to deflect public anger, government blames shortages and other hardships on those who “hoard” or otherwise disregard government rules.
5. Government re-establishes its own necessity in the public mind by becoming the authority capable of cracking down on anti-social criminals. Government also establishes an air of competence because cracking down is something it does well.

Friday, November 23, 2012

Beer!

As a college graduate I can tell you two things that non-college graduates cannot:

1. College is a waste of time, money, and effort
2. College student's don't know anything about alcohol

While in that waste of time I tried all the different beers that I could find.  My rankings are as follows:

1. Samuel Adams Imperial Stout

2. Samuel Adams Brown Ale

3. Samuel Adams Boston Lager

4. All other Samuel Adams brews

5. Guinness

6. Old Rasputin

7. Guinness Extra Stout

8. Labatt's Maximum Ice (not available in U.S.)

9. Lienenkugel's Creamy Dark

10. Killian's Irish Red

11. Molson's Canadien

...skip a few...

15. Old Style

...skip a few more...

Last. Any Michelob


Don't forget this blog's official song:



In closing Samuel Adams is best.

Period.

Extra Period..


 

A Question

If I need a permit for concealed carry, then why don't I also need a permit to practice free speech?

Thursday, November 22, 2012

Future Huffington Post Comments

I haven't debated fellow commenters at the Huffington Post for a while, becasue deer (& deer 2) are more interesting, and will be for a while yet.

One great benefit of our election being over is that the potential articles I can comment on in the future will not all put me in a position of defending someone who favored socialized healthcare and gun control. #Romney stinks

Hooray for that.

Happy thanksgiving, etc.

Happy Thanksgiving

from Basic Instructions:

Quote of the Day, 11/22/2012

The free market did not cause the financial crisis; political meddling with interest rates and credit allocation caused it. Without a proper diagnosis, the medicine can be worse than the disease. In this destructive cycle, the popular response to a financial crisis caused by too much government and central bank influence is “Give us more government and crazier central banks!”

-Dan Amoss

Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Compromise

68% Want Both Tax Hikes and Spending Cuts in Budget Deal

Of course they do.  That sounds fair.  Both sides have to give something.

Let's debate what you will have for lunch.  You want 100% food and I want you to have 100% poison. 

A fair compromise would be 50% food and 50% poison.  Fair is good right? 

I'll even be more generous, you can have 95% food and only 5% poison.  You'll get 95% of what you want!

That's way more than fair right? And, of course, you'll be happy with your victory.

Taxing the rich more is the same as poisoning our food.  Taxing the people who create jobs, create new businesses, and spend money in our economy.  Punishing those people will not improve the lives of anyone, and even a 100% income tax on the rich would not even begin to cover our annual deficit.

 In order to balance the budget we need to cut spending!

Double-Dip History

I keep hearing about our economy double-dipping into a second recession.

When did the first one end?

Why is unemployment still around 8% if our economic recession has already ended?

A more interesting double is our redoing the policies that prolonged the Great Depression.

***

At the start of the great depression:

Herbert Hoover created huge public works to encourage employment (see: Hoover Dam) and increased taxes.

The media claimed:

Hoover is a laissez faire capitalist who did nothing to reduce the people's suffering.  We need to elect someone who will at least do something that will reduce the peoples' suffering.  We need to elect someone who will do the opposite of what Hoover did.  We need someone who will raise taxes on the rich and start lots of government funded make-work programs.

And then:

FDR raised taxes and massively interfered with the economy.  That was totally different from exactly the same as what Hoover did, so of course, the Great Depression ended quickly dragged on for years.

***

At the start of our current depression:

George W. Bush bailed out banks and other large companies to save the economy.

The media claimed:

W is a laissez faire capitalist who did nothing to reduce the people's suffering.  We need to elect someone who will at least do something that will reduce the peoples' suffering.  We need to elect someone who will do the opposite of what W did.  We need someone who will raise taxes on the rich and start lots of government funded make-work programs.

And then:

Obama massively interfered with the economy (see: Obamacare, Cash for Clunkers, etc) and threatens to raise taxes on the rich.  So of course, our depression ended quickly drags on.

***

Sound familiar?

Update: Carnivore pointed out that our real current unemployment numbers are the same as they were during the great depression.

The Case of the Missing Millionaires

by Burton Folsum
The Wall Street Journal reported a strange mystery in May, 2009: about one-third of the 3,000 millionaires in Maryland had disappeared. Tax returns in 2008 and 2009 proved it. The number of tax returns from millionaires in Maryland dropped from about 3,000 in 2008 to 2,000 in 2009. The recession no doubt contributed somewhat to this vanishing act, but there is more to it. Governor Martin O’Malley had supported a hike in Maryland’s progressive income tax in 2008 because these rich guys were “willing and able” to pay it.

They may have been able, but they certainly weren’t willing. The soak-the-rich crowd always assumes a static model of taxation: if a state makes, say, $10 billion in income taxes from millionaires and if you raise the rate on them three percent, the assumption is that you will take in another $300 million, because that amount is three percent of $10 billion. The reality is that when federal and state tax rates go over about 25-30 percent, the rich folks simply shift their money into non-taxable investments–municipal bonds, collectibles, foreign banks, and so on. That’s what has happened in Maryland–people with large incomes are shifting their wealth into tax-exempt investments.

We first saw this disappearing act at the federal level after the first large tax hike in U.S. history during World War I. In 1916, with the highest tax rate set at 15 percent, the U.S. had 1,296 tax returns from people with incomes over $300,000 (over $5,000,000 in today’s dollars). By 1921, with the top marginal rate jacked up to 73 percent, the number of tax filers with incomes over $300,000 had plummeted to 246, an 80 percent drop. I discuss this remarkable mystery in my book The Myth of the Robber Barons.
If politicians want to solve the case of the missing millionaires, the solution is to cut tax rates. (A flat tax is also an excellent idea). When politicians have cut the highest tax rates down to about 25 percent, as happened in the 1920s and 1980s, we not only saw the millionaires reappear, but they spawned many other millionaires as they used their money to invest in the economy, and our country prospered. At the same time, the federal government actually received more tax revenue under the lower tax rates than when trying to pretend that the rich were “willing and able” to give huge percentages of their incomes to a government trying to “soak the rich” with high taxes. Lower tax rates lead to more prosperity for the public and more funds for the operation of government — if politicians would only learn that lesson.
(His book is good, but a bit simple.)

If our government has any hope of balancing the budget and eliminating our debt (don't make me laugh), then it will need to do more than "have the successful pay a bit more."

The rich will just leave so long as they are demonized and taxed.

If you're looking for signs of success in our economy, then you'll need to wait until our federal spending starts getting cut.

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Our Constitution… has failed.

A Day in the Beast's Belly by Jeffery Tucker
The Thomas Jefferson Building of the Library of Congress is the least governmentlike building among all the tax-funded monstrosities in the nation’s capital. It was completed in 1897, at the tail end of the greatest period of economic growth in the history of humanity in what was then the world’s most prosperous country, just before civilization was taken down by World War I.

This building is the archetype of Gilded Age culture and confidence. A future of universal peace, prosperity, and learning seemed guaranteed. The captains of industry would replace the kings and dukes of old. The new world would feature a new kind of elite, not government, but business. They would serve society through enterprise. Their leadership in culture and the arts resulted from proven merit. War would be no more. Trade and business would rule the future. All of these themes are apparent in the decor and architecture.
...
In so many ways, this building is a relic of a type of government that we almost can’t imagine today. No expense was spared in construction. Classical themes are everywhere. The slogans on the walls try to capture ancient wisdom and are written with affected Latin lettering and feature characters from Greco-Roman mythology.

There is a beautiful innocence about the whole place. You can discern from this building alone why so many people once believed that government could be part of society, a guardian of the peace and prosperity of the nation. Government in those days seemed to wish us all well, favoring our well-being and prosperity and otherwise leaving us alone. There was no income tax, no central bank, no regulatory agencies, no national police, no passports, and no bureaus. The president was a caretaker, not a demigod.
In a few minutes, we were to meet the last living representative of this point of view, Ron Paul of Texas. In his long career in Congress, he voted against everything, as well he should have. His ideal is pre-WWI. Government should be a night watchman, nothing more. Taxes need to go. The central bank needs to be unplugged. We should get rid of “foreign policy” as that phrase is used today and replace it with global trade managed by private enterprise. He never wavered in his conviction that this is the ideal.

Of course, the Washington, D.C., of today has nothing to do with that ideal.
Ron Paul gave his farewell speech today.  No longer does anyone in our government believe in what our founders did when our nation was created. 

We'll not again see a Guilded Age.

Our Founder's Debate

America's founders had a debate after creating our Constitution.  Should they include a Bill of Rights or shouldn't they?

The argument for the Bill of Rights is that those ten things must be explicitly stated as rights for Americans.

The argument against the Bill of Rights is that those rights should go without saying.  By explicitly stating those rights many would assume that those are all of the rights unless others are added.

Quote of the Year, 2012

I don't know and have no opinion.

-Jet Black

Monday, November 19, 2012

Hey, Obama Voters...

...I didn't vote for Romney despite my intense dislike of Obama.

You say you use "facts and stats" to back up the policies that you support.  I suggest that we try a simple experiment.

Pick a number.  Pick a number that you think would be a good rate of unemployment after eight years of Obama as president.

In 2016 Obama will have been president for eight years.  What would be a good unemployment number after eight years?

Pick that number, remember it, then in 2016 let's see if your "facts and stats" line up with reality.

Note that a 6.5% unemployment rate was awful under President Bush.  Every year since Obama was elected has had a higher rate of unemployment that that.

I suggest that you could claim an unemployment rate of 5-6% in 2016 as some sort of accomplishment for Obama.  (Even though that would be eight years of an unemployment rate that you would have called horrendous with a republican as president.)

Pick your number and look at where we are in four years, if we are no better off...then stop voting for democrats.

One last point: Don't complain about republican obstructionism.  For the foreseeable future our politicians will be about half and half democrat and republican, deal with it.  In any case were there not obstructing democrats in congress when George Bush was president?

Opening Weekend of Deer Season

It was my most important two days of the year this past weekend.  Opening day of the firearm deer season in Wisconsin.

It was a weird year.

For the first time since the sixties or seventies neither my grandpa nor I was at his spot on opening weekend.  He hunted the same property since '46, on a friend's land.  But his step children have pushed us to lesser spots this year.

To put this into perspective, the last time I cried (in 2000), I shed three tears the day after my grandpa died and I spent the afternoon watching Regan's funeral on tv.  (I'm no particular fan of Regan, fyi.)  And my eyes nearly moistened when I saw the big hunting box that was built next to My Favorite Tree and Grandpa's ground blind.

So, instead of hunting my favorite tree I sat elsewhere, for the first time on opening weekend.

Did I get one?  Of course!

Like dad says, "We don't need luck; we've got Tim."

This poor buck hobbled, by on 2.5 good legs.  I felt bad for the deer so I ended his pain.

I've heard that if a buck gets an injured leg, then the next year his antler on the other side will be odd.  That is true in this case.

A good buck nonetheless and with a 17.75" tip-to-tip spread!



Quote of the Day, 11/19/2012

There is a sure-fire way to predict the consequences of a government social program adopted to achieve worthy ends. Find out what the well-meaning, public-interested persons who advocated its adoption expected it to accomplish. Then reverse those expectations. You will have an accurate prediction of actual results.

-Milton Friedman

Sunday, November 18, 2012

Give The People What They Want!

It seems that after I posted Watching The News a new search term has been leading in directing web surfers to my blog.

"Give the people what they want," I always say.

(If by "always" you mean when it happens to be exactly what I want anyway.)

More pictures of Martha McCallum's beautiful legs:

 
 

Saturday, November 17, 2012

Stuff!

One of my reasons for creating this blog was to have add a website where you can find expert information on deer hunting and muskie fishing.  I hoped to do for deer and muskies what Roosh has done for girls.

Its still a work in progress and their are gaps in the information, the quality of my writing is improving, and the arrangement of this website needs work.

But there are now three links below the blog's header for my posts on: Deer Hunting, Muskie Fishing, and Books.  They are arranged in ways that, I think, make learning about these subjects easier.

Check them out and let me know if you have any suggestions, or have questions, or would like to see a post on a particular hunting or fishing subject.

Friday, November 16, 2012

Qote of the Day, 11/16/2012

After a year or two of political theater and propaganda, you must be exhausted. But whether we like it or not, politics are an important part of the investing equation. And after this week, it is clearer than ever that the economy will continue getting mauled in a self-reinforcing cycle of more government leading to market failures leading to even more government.

-Dan Amoss

A Break From the Huffington Post

I've been skipping commenting at the Huffington Post because I have spent 19 of the last 21 days deer hunting and living with minimal connection to the internet.

Two Mondays after Thanksgiving I'll try commenting again.

Volkswagens

The Ford Motor Company was named after it founder Henry Ford.

Dodge was named after its founders the Dodge brothers.

Rolls-Royce was named after businessman Rolls and engine builder Royce.

Mercedes Benz was named after Mr. Mercedes and Mr. Benz.

Ferrari was named after Enzo Ferrari.

Toyota was named after Toyota-san.

Honda was named after Honda-san.

And Volkswagen should be named after?

So, the problem with Hitlermobiles is that their parts fall off.  I've heard from my cousin's boyfriend, who runs an auto parts store, that the '99-'05 Hitlermobiles, in particular, are known for their parts just falling off.  My sister's and aunts Hitlermobiles have this problem, among others.

Bottom line: don't buy a Hitlermoblie, they are made more to be trendy rather than reliable means of transportation.  If you want to buy a stylish car, then buy an Alfa Romeo, which will be much more stylish and much less reliable.

Ha! Ha! Ha! Ha! Ha!

Hostess announces it's going out of business; strike continues

On Friday, Hostess announced it would go out of business because not enough workers crossed the picket lines to help keep 33 plants going nationwide. 

More than 120 bakers at the Sacramento plant have been on strike since last Friday.
When KCRA 3 broke the news to strikers on Arden Way, many said they think the company is bluffing, and won't believe it until operations seize altogether.

Union representatives told KCRA 3 that workers are willing to lose their jobs to fight for a fair contract.

Employees said they are fighting cuts in pay that could equal more than 30 percent.

Strikers said they hope another company will buy out Hostess and give them the contract they are asking for.

Hostess said it couldn't  financially survive a nationwide strike.

Hostess asked a bankruptcy judge for permission to liquidate the entire company.

More than 18,000 workers nationwide will be out of a job.

One striker who didn't want to give his name said he lost his job when Hostess took away his pension.

Union officials told KCRA 3 they would work with employees to find them other jobs.

Update: Ha! Ha! Ha!

NBC's Savannah Guthrie read a statement on "Today" from the bakers' union that said: “Despite Greg Rayburn’s insulting and disingenuous statements of the last several months, the truth is that Hostess workers and the union have absolutely no responsibility for the failure of this company. That responsibility rests squarely on the shoulders of the company’s decision makers.”

Crush the Sprinkler Guild

from Jeffery Tucker's Bourbon for Breakfast (Chapter 6)

I suspected as much! What the lady at Home Depot called the “sprinkler
repair cult” is an emerging guild seeking privileges and regulations
from the government. That means a supply restriction, high prices, or
another do-it-yourself project. But there is a way around it.

I first began to smell a rat when the automatic irrigation system on my
front yard needed work but I had unusual struggles in trying to find a repair
guy.

The first place I called informed me that they could accept no more clients.
Clients? I just wanted a new sprinkler thing, for goodness sake. I don’t
want to be a client; I want to be a customer. Is there no one who can put on
a new sprayer or stick a screwdriver in there or whatever it needs?

Nope, all full.

The next call was not returned.

The next call ended with the person on the line fearfully saying that
they do landscaping but will have nothing to do with sprinklers or “automated
irrigation systems.” Umm, ok.

The next call seemed more promising. The secretary said they had an
opening on the schedule in three weeks. Three weeks? In that period of
time, my yard will be the color of a brown paper bag.

The next call failed. And the next one. And the next. Finally I was back
to the off-putting secretary. I made the appointment but the guy never came.
Fortunately, in the meantime, a good rain came, and then at regular intervals
for the whole season, and I was spared having to deal with this strangely
maddening situation.

Why all the fuss? We aren’t talking brain surgery here. These are sprinklers,
little spray nozzles connected to tubes connected to a water supply.

Why was everyone so touchy about the subject?

Why did all the power seem to be in their hands, and none in mine?

Must I crawl and beg?

Above all, I wonder why, with most all lawns in new subdivisions sporting
these little things, why oh why are the people who repair them in such
sort supply?

Little did I know that I had stumbled onto the real existence of a most
peculiar thing in our otherwise highly competitive economy: a guild.

It had all the earmarks. If you want your nails buffed, there are thousand
people in town who stand ready. If you want someone to make you
dinner, you can take your pick among a thousand restaurants. If you want to
buy a beer, you can barely go a block without bumping into a merchant who
is glad to sell you one. None of that is true with sprinkler repair.

What does a guild do? It attempts to restrict service. And why? To keep
the price as high as possible. And how? By admitting only specialists, or
supposed specialists, to the ranks of service providers, usually through the
creation of some strange but largely artificial system of exams or payments
or whatever.

Guilds don’t last in a free market. No one can blame producers for trying
to pull it off. But they must always deal with defectors. Even the prospects
of defectors can cause people who might not otherwise defect, to turn
and attempt to beat others to the punch.

There is just no keeping a producer clique together for long when profits
are at stake.

There is also the problem that temporarily successful guilds face: high
profits attract new entrants into the field. They must either join the guild or
go their own way. This creates an economically unviable situation in a market
setting that is always driving toward a market-clearing rate of return.

Further evidence of the existence of a sprinkler guild came from the
checkout lady at the Home Depot. I was buying a sprinkler head and she
said in passing that they didn’t used to carry these things, and the decision
of the manufacturer to supply them in retail got some people mighty upset.
She spoke of the sprinkler repair people as a cult that should be smashed!

Now, does this guild really exist or is it an informal arrangement among
a handful of local suppliers? As best I can tell, here is the guild’s website
(http://www.irrigation.org/default.aspx). The Irrigation Association is
active in:
  • Providing a voice for the industry on public policy issues related to
    standards, conservation and water-use on local, national and international
    levels
  • Acting as a source of technical and public policy information within
    the industry
  • Raising awareness of the benefits of professional irrigation services
  • Offering professional training and certification
  • Uniting irrigation professionals, including irrigation equipment manufacturers,
    distributors and dealers, irrigation system designers,
    contractors, educators, researchers, and technicians from the public
    and private sectors.
Catch that? Certification. Unity. Standards! Public policy. These are all
dangerous words, that come down to the same result: high prices and bad
service.

Why should anyone become certified? “Prestige and credibility
among peers and customers”; “professional advancement opportunities”;
“Enhances the professional image of the industry—your industry.”

I thought I needed a sprinkler repairman but these people want me
to hire a Certified Landscape Irrigation Manager, a CLIM. How do you
become a CLIM? Well you have to send in $400 plus a résumé that includes
an “overview summary of how you plan to meet program criteria:

Two examples of project development to include:

• System design objective
• System budget estimate
• Water source development
• System design drawings: hydraulic, electrical, detail drawings, pump
station

Project specifications:

• General specification
• Installation specification
• Material specification
• Pump station

Two system audits or evaluations to include:

AUDIT

• System performance (uniformity)
• Base schedule
• Recommendations for improvement

EVALUATION

• System performance (uniformity)
• Hydraulic analysis
• Electrical analysis
• Grounding
• Water source
• Product performance
• Recommendations for improvement
Two construction and/or construction management projects:
• Site visit reports
• Drawing of record
• Final irrigation schedule
• Punch lists

Of course they are working with government, federal, state, and local.
They want restrictions of every sort. They want their own Turf and Landscape
Irrigation Best Management Practices or BMP to be the law of the
land. You can read more about this here.

How hip-deep are these people in government? It’s hard to say. But I’m
guessing that local developers, landscapers, builders, and others are intimidated
by all these and are reluctant to challenge their monopoly.

So thank goodness for hardware stores! They are working to bust up
this vicious little guild, to the benefit of the consumer and everyone else.
It means having to stick your fingers in mud and read instruction manuals
and the like but sometimes the defense of liberty requires that you get your
hands a little dirty.

Thursday, November 15, 2012

Oklahoma Doctors vs. Obamacae

from an article at reason:
Three years ago, Dr. Keith Smith, co-founder and managing partner of the Surgery Center of Oklahoma, took an initiative that would only be considered radical in the health care industry: He posted online a list of prices for 112 common surgical procedures. The 51-year-old Smith, a self-described libertarian, and his business partner, Dr. Steve Lantier, founded the Surgery Center 15 years ago, after they became disillusioned with the way patients were treated at St. Anthony Hospital in Oklahoma City, where the two men worked as anesthesiologists. In 1997, Smith and Lantier bought the shell of a former surgical center with the aim of creating a for-profit facility that could deliver first-rate care at a fraction of what traditional hospitals charge.

The major cause of exploding U.S. heath care costs is the third-party payer system, a text-book concept in which A buys goods or services from B that are paid for by C. Because private insurance companies or the government generally pick up most of the tab for medical services, patients don’t have the normal incentive to seek out value.

The Surgery Center’s consumer-driven model could become increasingly common as Americans look for alternatives to the traditional health care market—an unintended consequence of Obamacare. Patients may have no choice but to look outside the traditional health care industry in the face of higher costs and reduced access to doctors and hospitals.

The Surgery Center demonstrates that it’s possible to offer high quality care at low prices. "It's always been interesting to me,” says Dr. Jason Sigmon, “that in any other industry, tons of attention is devoted to making systems more efficient, but in health care that's just completely lost." Sigmon, an ear, nose, and throat surgeon, regularly performs procedures at both the Surgery Center and at Oklahoma City's Integris Baptist Medical Center, which is the epitome of a traditional hospital. It's run by a not-for-profit called Integris Health, which is the largest health care provider in Oklahoma serving over 700,000 patients a year.

Sigmon says he can perform twice as many surgeries in a single day at the Surgery Center than at Integris. At the latter institution, he spends half his time waiting around while the staff struggles with the basic logistics of moving patients from preoperative care into the operating room. When the patient arrives, Sigmon will sometimes wait even longer for the equipment he needs.

Except for the clerical staff, every employee at the Surgery Center is directly involved in patient care. For example, both human resources and building maintenance are the responsibility of the head nurse. "One reason our prices are so low," says Smith, "is that we don't have administrators running around in their four or five thousand dollar suits." 

Because bills charged by Integris are paid primarily by insurance companies or the government, the hospital gets away with gouging for its services. Reason obtained a bill for a procedure that Dr. Sigmon performed at Integris in October 2010 called a “complex bilateral sinus procedure,” which helps patients with chronic nasal infections. The bill, which is strictly for the hospital itself and doesn't include Sigmon's or the anesthesiologist's fees, totaled $33,505. When Sigmon performs the same procedure at the Surgery Center, the all-inclusive price is $5,885.
The Integris bill for the same nasal procedure went to Blue Cross of Oklahoma, so the patient had no compelling reason to question its outrageous markups. They included a $360 charge for a steroid called dexamethasone, which can be purchased wholesale for just 75 cents. Or the three charges totaling $630 for a painkiller called fentanyl citrate, which all together cost the hospital about $1.50. ...
The only reason we don't move all healthcare towards this successful example is an irrational fear of free markets.

Perhaps it is not irrational.  If you pay attention to democrats, the media, or the uninformed you too will probably begin to fear the market.  

Update: Monopolies only exist as the government or with the help of the government. 

Frank J for President!

Frank J Flemming, of imao.us, is going to run for president in 2016. I would like to be his Treasury Secretary.

I have several qualifications for the position:
  • I can add and subtract
  • I know that deficits = bad, surpluses = good
  • I know that debt = bad, no debt = good
  • I will propose that anyone who suggests an income tax be declared a traitor and executed on the spot
  • I have paid my taxes (unlike a current Treasury Secretary that I could mention)
  • I have a business degree
  • I have same first name as the current TS so we'd save money changing only the last names on the TS's cards and office door (I assume I'll get an office)
2017 Budget Proposal #1

Highlights:

Revenue:

Reduce all income taxes to 10% (with 0 exceptions or credits)

Maintain Social Insurance: $819 billion

Eliminate "other"

Expenditures:

Defense: $500 billion
Interest: $227 billion

Total expenditures so far: $727 billion

Social Insurance less Defense and Interest spending: $92 billion

Then the democrats can spend $92 billion plus all revenue from 10% income tax on anything.  We will remove all "mandatory" spending.  The democrats can spend all of total revenue, less $727 billion, on absolutely anything. (If they want to spend $1 trillion on abortions, or art, or education, or helping the poor, or whatever, then that will be okay.)

The benefits of my plan for the Republicans are: 1. a balanced budget 2. reduced income taxes and income tax complexity.

The benefits of my plan for the Democrats are: they can do whatever they want with the majority of the budget.
2017 Budget Proposal #2 

Highlights:
If we kept all revenue collections in tact, totaling $2.3 trillion in 2011, eliminated all spending except defense and interest on our debt, $927 billion, we could give each of the poorest 100,000,000 Americans a yearly check for $13,730 and still have a balanced budget.

According to the "2012 HHS Poverty Guidelines" the poverty line for one person in the United States is: $11,170.

According to the census bureau in September of 2011 there were 42.1 million Americans living beneath the poverty line.

If we kept all revenue collections in tact, totaling $2.3 trillion in 2011, eliminated all spending except defense and interest on our debt, $927 billion, we could give every American who lives below the poverty line, 42.1 million, a check for $29,783.  That is nearly triple the poverty line.
For 2018 I propose we study ways to eliminate all income tax and find other evenue sources, such as tariffs, which not many people would oppose.

Frank J for President 2016!

What Do You Offer?

Often we hear about women who can't cook, don't clean, dress themselves poorly, and follow celebrities' lives rather than read.  We then ask what good would those women be in a long -term relationship.  And rightly so.  Such a women would be useless in running a house and raising children.

But what about what you offer?

Many guys seem to come to the manosphere with the intent of finding a wife.  What do you guys offer a relationship?  Do you have a high paying job?  Can you cook? Are you fashionable? Can you fix things around the house? Can you fix your car? Do you know how to maintain a house's landscaping?

Just something to think about.

Hunting Seasons

Whit any subject you can ask: who, what, when, where, why, and how.  Let's look at the "when" for hunting whitetailed deer.

I going to say that there are five deer hunting seasons.  In Wisconsin there are several seasons (early archery, firearm, muzzleloader, youth-hunt, etc.), but I mean seasons as the deer see it.

The main thing to understand about deer hunting seasons is the rut.  The rut is when the does are in heat (ready to mate).  They are only in heat for a few days.  This is so the fawns are born in the spring and then have all spring, summer, and fall to grow big before the next winter.

So you may read in books and magazines about: the pre-rut, the rut, and the post-rut.  Here in Wisconsin the early archery and youth hunt occur before the pre-rut really begins.  During this time you will likely see only does and small bucks.  They will be traveling between their bedding areas and their feeding areas.  If your goal is big bucks, then you will be hunting the pre-pre-rut with only a hope of getting lucky.  During this time you will hunt more for the enjoyment of being out rather than actually expecting to shoot a big buck.  But big bucks are shot very early, and I shot my biggest buck with a bow on the first day of one year's early archery season.

During the pre-rut you will begin to see more deer activity.  The bucks will be on the lookout for hot does.  They will be rubbing trees with their antlers. And making scrapes.

Sideways picture of a buck rub

The purpose of a rub is to work out aggression for the bucks.  Rubs often show up in lines (multiple rubs on a line of trees).  These are not as hunt-able as scrapes, but they do show that bucks are in the area.  Rubs are usually on trees in sizes between your finger and wrist.  The one pictured above is one of the biggest I have ever seen.  Note the lines in the bark below where lots of the bark was worn off, this is from the points of the deer's antlers.  They will be between your knee and waist height (a deer needs to lower his head to rub a tree).  You will be able to see evidence of rubbing on a deers antlers between the base of the antlers and the first point.  The antlers will usually be worn smooth at this place.

Scrapes are patches of ground that have all grass and leaves "scraped" away by a deer's front hooves.  Scrapes will be located under thin branches that are about your chest, or head, height.  The bucks break a small branch over the scrape and rub the broken branch with their heads and leave their scent.   The plan is that there will be a bunch of scrapes made on, or near, trails and when a doe is in heat she will urinate in the scrape.  Then the bucks will walk over the scrape occasionally and smell for a hot doe.

During this pre-rut the bucks will be looking for hot does.  You will begin to see the bigger bucks because they spend more time looking for does and less time hiding or as nocturnal animals.  The bucks will chase the does but the does will always run away.

This is when scents and calls will be most effective.  The bucks will be looking, listening, and smelling for any kind of sign that there is a hot doe around.  You may also see bucks fighting during the pre-rut.

During the few days of the rut the biggest bucks will be out and about and the bucks and does will be moving around much more.  During the peak of the rut the bucks and does will be running around very early.  They will be running literally at full speed, much of the time.  Often you will see multiple bucks chasing one hot doe.  The peak night is often the most exciting time to be out.

If you are only able to hunt for a few days of the year then you want to hit the peak of the rut, several days before, and a few days after.  Take your vacation days from the pre-rut through the rut.  If you can figure out when they happen, and each geographic location will have its rut at a different time.  The rut occurs in the first week of November in central Wisconsin, and, I think, in December in Texas.  The timing depends on the timing for the following winter when the fawns should be six months old, or older.

After the rut comes the post-rut.  The post-rut is similar to the pre-rut.  During both times the bucks will be looking for any sign of a hot doe that they can find.  While the rut is happening calls and scents will not compare to the actual does, but before and after the rut calls and scents can help get a buck's attention.

During the post-post-rut you will once again just be hoping to get lucky.  Once all of the does are out of heat for the season, the deer's priority will be to eat a lot before the winter.  This is the time when baiting is most effective, especially if where you hunt has snowy winters and food is hard to find.

I don't hunt much past the post-rut.  By that time I will have hunted a lot for the year already, the big bucks will not be seen much, and in Wisconsin it gets cold in December.

Wednesday, November 14, 2012

The Republican's Hispanic Issue

Hispanics usually come to America with a strong Catholic faith.  They are pro-life, opposed to gay marriage, want strong families.  They support traditional gender roles.  They work hard.  They work hard, even in jobs we supposedly won't take.  They are also probably opposed to having their wealth confiscated when they become successful.

This describes the republican party's platform beautifully.  And apparently, the republicans have more Hispanic politicians than do the democrats.

And yet more than 70% of Hispanics voted for democrats.  Is that because they all support amnesty of illegal immigrants?  Or is it because all the media portrays republicans as people who hate minorities, don't care about the poor and are all-around awful?

I suspect it is the latter.  Why would strong Catholics vote for a party that is "pro-choice", pro-gay marriage, and doesn't support traditional family roles unless they think the alternative is people who are worse?

Rather than changing their party platform, I think that the republicans should focus on getting their message out to Hispanics better if they want to win their votes in the future.

Giving Credit Where Its Due.

Last week I congratulated the democrats on their win. 

I don't want to take credit for a line that isn't mine; so I'd like to say that the interesting part of my post was from a line by H.L. Mencken.  Which I read recently at reason.com.

I apologize for not pointing that out earlier.

Recarving Rushmore

I recently read Recarving Rushmore by Ivan Eland.

This books ranks our presidents on peace, prosperity, and liberty.  The author says that most presidential rankings rank the presidents on things like charisma which are not really useful for determining what was best for the country.

If nothing else, you can read this book and learn more about the actual things that all past presidents have done.  It is good to see what the actual policies of all the presidents were.  I always questioned what I learned about history in school.  It always seemed like the teachers and books were telling be who was good and who was bad, and my thinking was that I was unsure that they were correct.

His final rankings are interesting.  He doesn't rank Washington, Lincoln, FDR, or Reagan among our "excellent" presidents.  Our "excellent" presidents, it seems, were: John Tyler, Grover Cleveland, Martin Van Buren, and Rutherford B. Hayes.  I've heard that Ron Paul is a fan of Grover Cleveland so he was no surprise.  Before reading this book, I had not heard much about the other three.

According to Ivan Eland we had four "excellent" presidents, six "good" presidents (including Carter), four average presidents (including Clinton), ten "poor" presidents, and sixteen "bad" presidents (including Regan and Lincoln).

I was surprised at many of the rankings in this books, for example: FDR being better than Regan.  I think that this book does a good job of explaining into which category each president belongs (good, bad, etc) but does a less stellar job in the actual ranking.

I am willing to accept that Carter was a good president and Regan was bad on peace, prosperity and liberty (he ran budget deficits constantly).  The arguments made here are certainly interesting even if you don't agree with all of them.

Overall this is a very interesting book about our presidents.  It is the source I turn to in order to see learn about one of our past presidents.  Even if I remain skeptical that Regan was worse than FDR; the book is quite worth a read.

Monday, November 12, 2012

John Galt Day

Good news everyone!  Since we've re-elected our socialist-in-chief, we here at Spootville (that means me) will be continuing to NOT participate in any commerce or blogging on the anniversary of his "you didn't build that" speech.

"If you were successful, somebody along the line gave you some help…. If you’ve got a business, you didn’t build that. Somebody else made that happen." - President Obama

What if on August 13th,, the "anniversary" of "You Didn’t Do That" Day, business owners of America showed the statists just who John Galt is and declared "John Galt Day", close their business for the day, keep the kids home from school? Starve the Beast of its taxes; the ultimate government groin kick. 

Next day, announce that come September, it will be TWO days. Use FaceBook, Twitter, talk radio, blogs to spread the word, invite others to join. You don’t have to be a major chain or Big Box store to send a crystal clear message. Imagine independent truckers pulling over, shutting down for the day. Mom & Pop stores of all sorts and types lock up andtake the family on a picnic. Notify the MSM: Welcome to the John Galt Day Flash Dance! 
It doesn’t have to be All In, All At Once (and probably wouldn’t). It would more likely start like one of those cool flash mob dances all over the Internet. Watch! I dare you not to smile! And as Milton Friedman once told Walter Williams: Whenever you talk about Freedom, smile!

Sure, the Big Boys will probably take a pass. Best Buy, Bass Pro, Macy’s, Old Navy, Target, Wally World – they’ll be all "biz-as-usual". So what? Every individual can declare his/her own personal John Galt Day. Isn’t everyone basically "in business" for themselves? Aren’t you? Isn’t "the individual the smallest minority"? (Ayn Rand). So, as a "minority business owner, I’m closed in honor of John Galt Day!" 

Think about it:

*"Gone Galt" signs hanging in business windows everywhere!
*Voice Mail message: "Hello, you’ve reached Exceptional Services. We are closed in honor of John Galt Day. We’ll be back tomorrow. Thanks for your business. For more information, read Atlas Shrugged."


Simple. No massive organizing. No herding cats. No moving parts. Literally: a spontaneously combusted Just Do It. A current event silver bullet at Big Government. A gold nugget of Freedom for everyone to see. Or, if you prefer, a bitch-slap response to a Presidential insult.

Call your neighbors! Text your friends! Ask your favorite business places to take the day. Get the local Chamber of Commerce behind it! Show your appreciation giving them your business!
John Galt Day. August 13, 2012. 

Just do it – for Freedom! (And it will feel really, really good!)
 -Brian Wilson

It sounds like a plan to me.

Join me.  

Meet WI's New Senator

Last Tuesday Wisconsin elected a new senator.  Many of you outside of Wisconsin may not have heard about Tammy Baldwin before.  So let me introduce you to her greatest accomplishments so far.

Senator-Elect Tammy Baldwin's (D-WI) Top Ten Accomplishments:
  1. She's a lesbian
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Wait, my mistake, those are Ellen DeGeneres' top ten accomplishments.  I'm sorry about that.  I can't imagine how I could have confused her with Tammy Baldwin.

Let me try again.

Senator-Elect Tammy Baldwin's (D-WI) Top Ten Accomplishments:
  1. She's a lesbian
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I'm really sorry about that mix-up.  You wouldn't think that I would confuse a comedian and a politician would you?

With great accomplishments like those you can really see how she defeated a very, very popular ex-governor who was only notable for things like having Wisconsin's welfare reform be the model for the welfare reform touted to be one of Bill Clinton's greatest presidential accomplishments.

Yes with a list of accomplishments like those I can really see why people wanted to vote for her.  Did you know that she's in favor of gay marriage and is pro-choice?  I learned those two facts and many others about her during the senatorial campaign.  Its a pity that I cannot remember any of the other facts about her, or her opinions on any other issues.  I wonder why I cannot remember.

I'm sure you will all join me in support of our newest senator.   I'm sure that she will continue to have a legislative record of moderation and agreement on the issues with both parties.