RANT: erases from everyone’s conscience the distinction between justice and injustice


Frédéric Bastiat
The Law

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The Results of Legal Plunder

It is impossible to introduce into society a greater change and a greater evil than this: the conversion of the law into an instrument of plunder.

What are the consequences of such a perversion? It would require volumes to describe them all. Thus we must content ourselves with pointing out the most striking.

In the first place, it erases from everyone’s conscience the distinction between justice and injustice.

No society can exist unless the laws are respected to a certain degree. The safest way to make laws respected is to make them respectable. When law and morality contradict each other, the citizen has the cruel alternative of either losing his moral sense or losing his respect for the law. These two evils are of equal consequence, and it would be difficult for a person to choose between them.

The nature of law is to maintain justice. This is so much the case that, in the minds of the people, law and justice are one and the same thing. There is in all of us a strong disposition to believe that anything lawful is also legitimate. This belief is so widespread that many persons have erroneously held that things are “just” because law makes them so. Thus, in order to make plunder appear just and sacred to many consciences, it is only necessary for the law to decree and sanction it. Slavery, restrictions, and monopoly find defenders not only among those who profit from them but also among those who suffer from them.

*** end quote ***

Bottom line: Our current system is flawed by politicians who use the gooferment to enrich their friends, punish their enemies, and feather their own nests in the process.

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ADMINISTRIVIA: “Drive by commenting”

Just for the record, not that “drive by commenters” read anything, you’re just wasting your time leaving comments here with fake email addresses. I enjoy the comments. Lengthen this, prolong that, gain weight: ll amuse me. Lose weight: makes me sad. I really do enjoy the comments. It’s probably the one aspect of my life where I get “true feedback”. That being said, putting in a phony email address will get you comment marked as “spam” as soon as the “Thank you for your comment” message bounces. Some are dead giveaways by the website they seek to promote either with urls within the comment or in the identity section. Just wasting time and electrons.

So please comment. I don’t use the email address for anything but one message to confirm it’s validity. But I was thinking of a charity fund for FOWG bloggers making less that 250k!


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RANT: The Gooferment and HDTV!


I’m not sure I see the great value in the gooferment forcing HD on everyone. Like Bastiat taught, look for the hidden costs. In this case, a whole load of TVs are rendered obsolete before their useful life has end. Unless a box is added on whose cost is “defrayed” by a gooferment coupon. No inefficiency there! It induces meaningless consumerism, as folks, who may have better uses for their money, are induced / forced to upgrade. If HD was “such a great idea”, then folks would migrate to it without the force of gooferment guns pointed at their heads. Argh! A pox on all the politicians. See what you started. :-)

p.s., don’t forget about all the green costs as all those “old” TVs get tossed in landfills planet wide. Yeah, the gooferment is the ecology’s friend. With “friends” like that who needs enemies!

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GUNS: Obama is an anti-gun liberal


American Thinker: Democrats Should Fear the ‘Brady Effect’.
October 29, 2008
By Brad O’Leary

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As a U.S. Senator, Obama voted to ban most rifle ammunition commonly used for hunting and sport shooting. As a State Senator, he voted to uphold local gun bans and the criminal prosecution of citizens and homeowners who use a gun in self-defense. Also as a State Senator, he endorsed raising the federal excise tax on firearms and ammunition 500 percent. And Obama supports gun registration – which history has shown is the first step to gun confiscation.

If Obama’s legislative record on the Second Amendment isn’t clear enough, he infamously reminded voters in Pennsylvania earlier this year of his disdain for gun owners, calling them bitter xenophobes who use the Bill of Rights, which protects gun ownership, and religion as a crutch.

*** end quote ***

When politicians are anti-gun, you have to ask what do they have in store for the citizenry that requires them to be disarmed. If the Shoah / Holocaust has taught us anything, it is that Genocide follows Disarmament. It was so in pre-WW2 Germany, China, Cambodia, and countless places at different times.

The Dead Old White Guys knew that the Government, any government, was dangerous. Hope when folks think about voting, they remember the “gun rights” issue.

“A well-regulated militia being necessary to the security of a free state, the right of the people to keep and bear arms shall not be infringed.”

Seems simple enough to me? Take a minute and either view or download the video at http://www.jpfo.org/filegen-a-m/2a-today-download.htm (It’s free!)

Think for a moment about how you’ll feel when you, your family, and neighbors are herded by armed men into the railroad cars for the camps. Don’t say it can’t happen here. It did! Think back to the Japanese Internment. Think back to how Indians were treated. Mao said: “Power comes at the end of the barrel of a gun!” How many did he kill?

For me, the “gun issue” is a litmus test on politicians. It tells me whether I can trust them with the awesome power of the government.

I think once again, America is at a crossroads. The choices are obvious. Except to the sheeple who have been dumbed down by gooferment education.

“Cold dead hands”!

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RANT: Lincoln wasnt the worst, but close!



*** begin quote ***

Did that title get your attention? If so then the campaign to put secularist posters on the sides of British buses may achieve its intended result. But I think the posters miss the mark. The problem is not with God; the problem is with parochial ideas of God. That’s what Abraham Lincoln had to say in his Second Inaugural Address (reprinted below). It is also what I understand to be the true nature of here, now, and forever. God is no Judge; God is Understanding.

*** and ***

People love to find someone or something to blame. It’s called scapegoating, and we do it to God just as much as we do it to other people and things. But I stand with Lincoln. There are no simple answers as to who or what is to blame. There are no good guys or bad guys; there are only people who are seeking to meet their needs as best they know how. We can respect each other for that and, if we choose to do so, we can learn to understand the Understanding that what would make life more wonderful for us all.

*** end quote ***

I like the “Provisions” as thought-provoking.

Unfortunately, citing Lincoln, throws me into a tizzy.

I am from the school of thought that the Second American Revolution, aka what the winners call the “Civil War”, aka what the losers call the “Wr of Northern Aggression”, was about taxes. Not slavery.

The Industrial North wanted to prosper at the expense of the Agrarian South.

Lincoln was not the heroic figure portrayed by the media as “freeing the slaves”. He was a venial politician that was in the pockets of the railroads. He had no interest in slavery, except as it appealed to his base.

The world, for the most part, eliminated slavery peacefully.

He waged war on the civilian population, which up to that point was unheard of.

The vaunted Emancipation Proclamation freed slaves in the areas he didn’t control. What happened to the ones in areas he did control.

No, a poor example distracts me from the point of the Provision, i.e., our mistaken notion of God.

AND, Lincoln converted the “United States of America” into the empire of the USA. The States forever were lost in terms of a check on the power of the Federal Government.

In the pantheon of Presidents, Lincoln has to rank at the bottom, or close to it.

His competition for the bottom might be FDR for removing us from the Gold Standard, or Truman for Hiroshima / Nagasaki.

Upon reflection, Lincoln gets nudged out by Wilson. He campaigned on “Peace” and immediately got us into WW1. WW1’s “peace settlement” led to WW2. And, Wilson signed the Federal Reserve Act which created the exact thing that Andrew Jackson killed. An engine of debt and inflation.

Sigh, please give us more ineffective and merely corrupt politicians. The “idealists” kill us and Liberty.

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PRODUCTIVITY: Forcing change

I write a weekly ezine of news for my fellow Jaspers. In an effort to reduce the amount of time spent on it, I’ve been morphing to different strategies, tactics, processes, programs, and procedures. In an ill-measured trek, I’ve chopped it from a horrendous weekly effort of tens of hours to a hard to measure 90 minutes. One of the big strategy changes was, to instead of collecting text files on my notebook, I created a blog. Each day, when finding something, I’d put an entry on the blog. Slightly less time spent doing that. And, ensuring that I had the entire week’s collections was trivial. All I had to do was cut ‘n’ paste from the blog to the webpage. In changing platforms from LUGGABLE (a dell xps) to MCBA (Mac Book Air), I have now for the first week transitioned completely onto MCBA. Where I used to use Microsoft Word and Filezilla, I now use IWORKPAGES, NVU, and FILEZILLA on MCBA. It’s apparent to me now that I can just use NVU for everything. Next week will be even easier.

Just thought I’d share a lesson learned, just forcing yourself to a better place is often not as bad as it seems.

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MONEY: Potentially a raid on your 401K?


Democrats target your 401(k)

Posted: October 27, 2008 1:00 am Eastern

Roger Hedgecock is the longtime top-rated radio talk host in San Diego, Calif., on KOGO and, more recently, a nationally syndicated Saturday radio host heard already in 47 markets and on XM Satellite.

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Democrats plan to tap your private retirement plan to fund Barack Obama’s many promises to expand the power and size of the federal government.

Your pre-tax annual contribution to a 401(k) will be taxed under a plan considered by House Education and Labor Committee Chairman George Miller, D-Calif., and Rep. Jim McDermott, D-Wash., chairman of the House Ways and Means Subcommittee on Income Security and Family Support.

*** and ***

They would eliminate the annual tax deferral for 401(k) contributions, which reduces federal revenues by about $80 billion per year. Instead, they propose that the federal government pay every worker $600 per year (inflation adjusted each year) and require every worker to invest 5 percent of their after-tax pay into a new retirement account to be administered by the Social Security Administration. The money would be invested in a new class of government bond which would yield 3 percent per year, adjusted for inflation.

This plan was originally proposed by Theresa Ghilarducci, professor of economic policy analysis at the New School for Social Research in New York, and presented to Miller and McDermott last week at a House hearing.

These liberal Democrats thought the plan ingenious. They could take over the largest pool of private savings in the U.S., redirecting some $3 trillion to government spending.

*** end quote ***

This is scary stuff. Need to look for more details.

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LIBERTY: Marriage? Gooferment MYOB!

Op-Ed Contributor
Taking Marriage Private
Published: November 26, 2007

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WHY do people — gay or straight — need the state’s permission to marry? For most of Western history, they didn’t, because marriage was a private contract between two families. The parents’ agreement to the match, not the approval of church or state, was what confirmed its validity.

*** end quote ***

Why indeed do WE, the free sovereign individuals, need the Gooferment’s permission, pay them, and give them allegiance to their interference?

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POTUS08: O IS really a Marxist!

Obama Bombshell Redistribution of Wealth Audio Uncovered

Wow! Here’s a bombshell. It exposes that the man is a Marxist Socialist. Hearing his words, he, in Clintonesque stype, parses around it. Never letting anyone know what his codewords mean. Hold on to your wallet if he gets elected!

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TECH: BACKUP, Backup, backup. Fail at your own peril!


Back Up Your Computer to Save Time and Money

Saturday, 25th October 2008 (by J.D.)

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Here’s a public service message: Back up your computer regularly. This has more to do with your pocketbook than you might think.

Not only was I sick this week, but the hard drive on my laptop crashed. It’s gone. The Apple Geniuses (that’s what they call themselves!) cannot salvage it. I was able to pull the single most important document (the GRS spreadsheet) and a few posts-in-progress, but I lost a hell of a lot, including:

*** end quote ***

It never ceases to amaze me how pros get caught short.

And, as I have learned the hard way, back in my FBC days, you have to test the restoration.

My story was entertaining. Since it was a test! If it’d had been “for real”, the outcome might have been different. I was challenged to justify at the highest levels why the organization had to run a very expensive Thanksgiving Day test of our recovery capability. IT was a huge multimillion dollar effort. I was insistent. (That was in my younger days when I was full of “principle”.) We were under regulatory scrutiny and my plan was pulling them out of the mess that they were in. (Those were the days when folks listened to my advice as opposed to seeing my gray hair!) I refused to sign off and certify to the regulatory authority that we were in compliance with the agreement to “be recoverable”. The entire chain of command was saying it was a lock sure process. But, I insisted on a test. (In injineering skool, we waz taught about Mister Murphy and his law!) My Boss and his Boss gave me weak support, but under pressure had to admit that based on their reviews they saw no reason why a test was absolutely necessary. So, I was called up on the carpet. (It was a very lovely RED carpet.) To explain. (Get my arm twisted.) It was a subcommittee of the BoD. (I learned later that it was the Audit subcommittee.) My defense was simple: “The regulators will hold me and the Board of Directors personally liable if we cause a market meltdown by being unable to recover. Since I’m too young to be unemployed, I need a test to sign off. I’d suggest that you have more to lose financially that I do, so you might want a test too.” That simple logic carried the day.

The Head of the Largest Business unit, (a trading desk), was to go run the test. I was there as an observer. (Soon to be unemployed, if the grazillion dollars was wasted.) The Head Poobaah was one of the one’s who confidently predicted success and was upset that “his bonus was going to be reduced because of the expense of this test”. Rules of engagement were that WTC (where the data center was) is gone. A core cadre of people are in Sunguard Philly with all the back up stuff stored there and were to recover the business from that point. (It really was the simplest of the seven disaster scenarios.)

(Can you see where this is going?)

Bottom line: Test failed. AND, among the reasons for the failure, in addition to the usual media and process failures, was that the Poobaah’s trading desk had essential data store on their PCs on the trading desks that was NEVER baked up.

That incident taught me to have lots of “belts and suspenders”.

From time to time the Universe has reminded me of that lesson. Hopefully, you can learn it without the painful experience.

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RANT: Irena Sendler

>If this isn’t proof that it’s not “what you do”, but “who you know and who you
>do it for” I don’t know what is.
>See, it’s basically 2,500 helpless infants saved vs. a questionable analysis of
>a “disputed” fact – I would generally consider it NO CONTEST. But then it takes
>politicians and geniuses to pass out Nobel Awards.

You really have to shake your head and wonder. We allow the media to over use the terms “hero” and such. You have to really admire the GIANT set of stones some folks have. I hope all my challenges are little ones. It is amazing when I read the stories of the “Righteous among the Nations”, you have to wonder if these folks were NUTS! With death wish or something. I doubt that I’d have the stones to do such. Probably all I’d have is BB’s. Unless there is a size called AAs. One can only hope that this never happens again. Or, it does, not here. Sighm fjohn

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A Lady Named Irena

There recently was a death of a 98 year old lady named Irena.

During WWII, Irena got permission to work in the Warsaw Ghetto, as a Plumbing/Sewer specialist.

She had an ulterior motive…

She KNEW what the Nazi’s plans were for the Jews, (being German).

Irena smuggled infants out in the bottom of her tool box she carried, and she carried in the back of her truck a Burlap sack, (for larger kids).

She also had a dog in the back, which she trained to bark when the Nazi soldiers let her in and out of the ghetto.

The soldiers of course wanted nothing to do with the dog, and the barking covered the kids/infants noises.

During her time and course of doing this, she managed to smuggle out and save 2500 kids/infants.

She was caught, and the Nazi’s broke both her legs, and arms, and beat her severely.

Irena kept a record of the names of all the kids she smuggled out, and kept them in a glass jar, buried under a tree in her back yard.

After the war, she tried to locate any parents that may have survived it, and reunited the family.

Most, of course, had been gassed.

Those kids she helped got placed into foster family homes, or adopted.

Last year Irena was nominated for the Nobel Peace Prize….


Al Gore won, for doing a slide show on Global Warming!


snopes.com: Irena Sendler

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RANT: Media double standard? No, the media has NO standards.


What if ‘SNL’ mocked Michelle Obama?

Posted: October 23, 2008 7:17 pm Eastern

Pat Buchanan was twice a candidate for the Republican presidential nomination and the Reform Party’s candidate in 2000. He is also a founder and editor of The American Conservative. Now a political analyst for MSNBC and a syndicated columnist, he served three presidents in the White House, was a founding panelist of three national TV shows, and is the author of seven books.

*** begin quote ***

Can one imagine “Saturday Night Live” doing weekly send-ups of Michelle Obama and her “I’ve never been proud” of my country, this “just downright mean” America, using a black comedienne to mimic and mock her voice and accent?

“Saturday Night Live” would be facing hate-crime charges.

How do we know? When the New Yorker ran a cartoon of Michelle in an Angela-Davis afro with an AK-47 slung over her shoulder, New Yorker editors had to go on national television to swear they were not mocking Michelle, but the conservatives who have so caricatured Michelle and the Messiah.

Is there a media double standard? You betcha.

*** end quote ***

The Media was once the American People’s “guardian of the truth”. How far they have fallen. They are now nothing more than cheerleaders for Socialism! Why should we be surprised? The “education industry” has been taken over by Communists. The “business model” is Fascist anyway. It was intended to make cannon fodder and factory workers to led by “the elite”. It has succeeded beyond its designer’s wildest expectations.

Where there is no vision, the people perish?

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POLITICAL: Make work, and infrastructure, is just inflation spending!


Friday, October 17, 2008

Use public works to put the public to work

*** begin quote ***

Anyone who thinks we can balance the federal budget and dig ourselves out of the financial quagmire is just fooling themselves. We can’t, and Paul Krugman explains why today:

{Extraneous Deleted}

On the other hand, there’s a lot the federal government can do for the economy. It can provide extended benefits to the unemployed, which will both help distressed families cope and put money in the hands of people likely to spend it. It can provide emergency aid to state and local governments, so that they aren’t forced into steep spending cuts that both degrade public services and destroy jobs. It can buy up mortgages (but not at face value, as John McCain has proposed) and restructure the terms to help families stay in their homes.

And this is also a good time to engage in some serious infrastructure spending, which the country badly needs in any case. The usual argument against public works as economic stimulus is that they take too long: by the time you get around to repairing that bridge and upgrading that rail line, the slump is over and the stimulus isn’t needed. Well, that argument has no force now, since the chances that this slump will be over anytime soon are virtually nil. So let’s get those projects rolling.

*** and ***


*** end quote ***

Posted by Hank Kalet at 5:38 PM

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fjohn said…

Can’t you see the utter absurdity of the gooferment printing more money to spend on make work projects? They are counterfeiters! See that’s why they want you confused about what is money. (And have done a superb job of dumbing down the entire population!)

Forget the “dollar”. It’s meaningless. It’s not a store of value, unit of account, or useful intermediary.

Lets pretend that a gallon of gas is a unit of money. How can the gooferment just print gallons of gass? It can certainly print more receits for gallons of gas, but someone is going to get screwed when they can’t redeem their receit for the gallon it represents.

So too, regardless of what you think a dollar represents, somebody in this “printing press” money gets screwed.

Let’s have a guessing game?

Senior citizens on fixed income as prices rise! Very good.

Anyone who holds an “old dollar” as the new ones get printed. Excellent!

Any one who has to buy something. You get the prize!

Who wins? (If there are losers, there has to be winners!)

Politicians who get to spend these counterfiet dollars first.

Unions, especially gooferment ones, who have contracts tied to the minimum wage or inflation escaators.

Those who hold commodities and land. (The gooferment can’t print more of those.)

So, now maybe, just maybe, you will see this as the fraud, the theft, the cheating of the poor, that it really is.

How fortunate we have the gooferment to save us all.

{Shaking my head in disbelief. How can smart people be soooo blind!}


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RANT: LICENSE, lisence, … we don’t need no sinkin licenses!


Joe the Outlaw by Llewellyn H. Rockwell, Jr.

*** begin quote ***

But the New York Times did some digging and discovered – horror – that Joe is doing plumbing without a proper business license. How dare he call himself a plumber! A license is required by Toledo, not just one license for a partnership but for everyone who is called a plumber. Joe has not taken the training courses, is not a member of the union, and cannot legally call himself a plumber.

The press reports on this were explosive, with reporters speaking as if they had caught this guy red-handed and completely discredited him. But what about the complete absurdity of the idea that you have to have a license in order to have the right to fix someone else’s sink? This is Soviet like, but deeply entrenched in American professional life.

The idea of licensing is that it assures quality standards. But this is just a cover used by guilds since the Middle Ages. The real goal of licensing is to create a professional cartel. Fewer providers means higher wages for those with licenses. It is all about boosting income by restricting competition. This is of course a violation of human rights because it impinges on the fundamental freedom of association.

*** end quote ***

Lew got this online before I could, And, of course, did it much better than I could. But, this is what I first thought when the press ‘discovered’ the outlaw.

A more important scandal would have been if they could have found an unhappy customer of Joe’s. That would have been a scoop.

Since it’s a successful plumbing business, I’m reasonably sure they would find one. (Well, there’s always one.)

Funny, how the ‘bad’ plumbers always seem to have licenses?

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POLITICAL: Time to take on gooferment pensions?

Especially here in New Jersey, it appears to be time to take on the issue of “Government Pensions”. Pity the poor taxpayer, they may not have a pension, but the politicians and bureaucrat certainly have the best possible pensions at our collective expense.

First, the politicians and bureaucrats work the system to maximize the amount they steal. Pure and simple, it’s theft. We have trial going on of a NJ Political Powerbroker Legislator where he collected ‘no show’ jobs to pad his pension. Of course, the pension administrators say basically “nothing wrong with that!” What a fraud on the people.

Take note that gooferment pensions allow “retirement” after 20 or 30 years; as opposed to the 30-40 years one USED to find in private industry.

I have to laugh because: (1) Not only had NJ not made its proper contribution in many years. (Wonder why the Feds haven’t brought it before a Grand Jury? If a private business did this, the executives would be in jail. Guess the big gang in dc has a reciprocity agreement with the gang in Trenton?) (2) The Guv has decided to “raid” the pensions to “invest” in community banks. (This was humorous because whoever had the “fiduciary” duty to manage these funds was screwed. They should be worried only about protecting the pensioners; not making the Guv look good!)

There is no guaranty that these gooferment pensions won’t be “reformed” in the future.

The gooferment made the assertion that to compete for the talent in the marketplace they needed to offer pensions. Now that industry has left pensions for other programs, they don’t want to follow that trend.

We need to force the gooferment to convert pensions to 401k!


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RANT: “Poverty” versus “Poor”


*** begin quote ***

To Easton Ellsworth who has labored mightily to bring us Blog Action Day 2008 and poke and prod us to participate, and to all my blogging colleagues who have posted about poverty and about what can be and is being done about it, my admiration and my thanks.

*** end quote ***

I heard the clarion call all bloggers to much ado about nothing. And, I ignored it as “drivel” at best; socialism at worst.

Not that anyone cares, but here’s why!

Sigh, seems so obvious to me.

“Poverty” is a industry here in the USA. There are folks who are deriving a lot of earnings, moral superiority, and kudos that they don’t deserve. Like the United Way CEO that earns megabucks. Like all the paid gooferment employees, that earn a healthy chunk of change now and in their future retirement, for their “public service”.

Don’t make me barf!

First, poverty, the industry is despicable. To be truly poor is a terrible human condition. But, not having stuff, isn’t being poor. Go to Africa, where folks die of starvation. Or, disease from not having clean water. Where their gooferment really does kill them. Or, they have massive inflation of money.

That’s true poverty.

Any time any one talks about “poverty” here in the USA, I am instantly reminded of the TV interview of this shell of a fellow waiting on line in some African community to get an application for a green card. The interviewer asked the fellow why he wanted to come to the USA. He responded immediately “You have fat poor people.”

I think that sums it up. We need folks like him. I’d have given him a green card just for that service to our country.

See the “poverty industry” wants us to think that the bottom ten, twenty five, or fifty percent is “poor”.


They aren’t. Not by that fellow’s metric.

And, their situation is USUALLY either due to their own mistakes or the gooferment.

So, that’s why I think all the blogging would do a bit of good. The problem is defined wrong!

I happily contribute to Homefront New Jersey, where a very underpaid lady, make a nickel in to six pennies, as she helps single moms (mostly) move off welfare and onto their own two feet. That’s progress.

We should be striking at the heart of the problem but that is the misconceptions and gooferment welfare. Good luck doing that.


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POLITICAL: Last night’s “debate”

We are in for a rough road!

Anyone remember Clinton’s promise to lower taxes? Who’s more likely to lower taxes? Certainly not O.

Anyone remember that corporations do NOT pay taxes? They just pass them along.

O, flat out, lied about Infantacide! Reminded me of Clinton parsing the word ‘is’!

McC will give us nuke power; just like France and the Navy. That’ll take us a long way to energy independence.

Doesn’t anyone else feel that O is an empty suit. The guy doesn’t have ANY qualifications. Zero! Of all them, only Palin has ever actually run anything!

Didn’t anyone find it humorous that O refers to Biden’s foreign policy experience? Is the ticket upside down?

Finally, it all boils dow to who do you trust. O with his Chicago corruption machine, some strange bedfellows, and the usual democratic special interests (i.e., tort lawyers, teacher’s union, assorted left wing loons). Or the cranky old guy from the last generation.

Both are socialists. Both won’t be able to do much. But, whose ‘much’ do you want.

Batten down your “financial hatches”. I think we are going to have another Carter.


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JOBSEARCH: “Succeess Security”?


Jason Alba CEO of JibberJobber.com, Author

*** begin quote ***

Might this be the new way to say “job security?”

I was speaking at a library on Bainbridge Island (near Seattle) last night and tried out a new phrase to replace “job security.”

… because everyone says there is no such thing as “job security” anymore. But I still want to talk about some kind of security for my future. “career security” doesn’t seem to fit… what about:

income security?

*** end quote ***


I think it’s two different things to two different class of people. Consultants (Yeah I know an employee is a consultant with no choice where they go tomorrow!) and Employees. To consultants, it’s the ability to diversify revenue stream and enhance it. To employees, it’s the ability to keep the paycheck flowing in and develop the next stream of paychecks. (One of my Turkey-isms is that you are, or should be, looking for your next job while you keep the current one happy.)

So I think there will be some confusion between what “it” means to those different communities when looked through the two different lenses. (Yeah, I love Gartner’s simplistic four box view of the world!)

It corresponds with what I tell younger folks who might be open to a “pearl”. Success for your generation is: (1) ruthless financial discipline — no bad debt; (2) a life long interest in learning — education — a degree — they can’t take it away from you; (3) a white collar job in order to save big bux; (4) a blue collar skill for hard times — never saw a poor plumber; (5) one or more internet based businesses — your store is always open; (6) a free time hobby that generates income; and (7) a large will-maintained network of people who can “help” you.

So, imho, with apologies to Covey, it’s “The Seven Dimensions of Success”.

Yeah, everything I ever learned was from a self-help book! Isn’t that the definition of a book? “Help Yourself!”

I think the term you are looking for is “Success Security”?

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MONEY: Might your employer be at fault for your 401k loss?


October 11, 2008 Your 401k Plan – Breach of Fiduciary Duty? Posted by Karen DeCoster at October 11, 2008 06:24 AM

* begin quote *

Some friends and family have asked me to advise them on their choice of investments because they are down – an obvious point – in their 401k plans. A bit late, and there’s not much you can do anyways. But …prior to the meltdown, so few people were really willing to understand and believe that there was a financial storm in their future.

* and *

While snooping around, I immediately noticed something in this Wachovia plan that is epidemic nowadays. There is absolutely no option to invest in something that is low in risk. Typically, if you are predicting that the market will go South (as I have been for years), you’d look for a 100% US T-Bill option in your 401k, even if you only park it there in the short term. However, this person’s plan had absolutely no low-risk option whatsoever.

* end quote *

I know that everyone TRIES to keep liability at arm’s length from the business.

BUT, (there is always a big butt),

in this case, I think there may be a claim that has some merit against the employer and the fund company.

In my younger days, I would sneer at derision at “guaranteed return” offerings. I still do.

(Look at all those “safe” bond funds who have Lehman bonds in their portfolio, and tell me about safe! Money market funds as well. Icelandic banks. Inet banks. Yada, yada, yada!)

If a 401k has no “guaranteed” offering, I suspect that a claim could be made and imho would be paid off quietly.


Disclaimer: I’m not a lawyer, CPA, or even “thin, young, and handsome” any more. (Any More?)

Get me on the jury, present me with a good case, and I find for the “little guy” all the time.

Just my nickel’s work. (Two cents after inflation?)

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GLOBAL: Looking for an exemplar of what might happen here


October 11th, 2008 at 4:32 am

Studying Japan’s Dark Years to See How the U.S. Might Fare

*** begin quote ***

Japan in the 1990s saw billions of dollars worth of wealth disappear. A generation of “parasite singles” grew up, living with their parents well into their 30s. The suicide rate spiked, and university graduates spent years in part-time jobs. Japanese entrepreneurs had no or limited access to capital, stymieing innovation. Yet the standard of living for the average Japanese did not dramatically change — the pain of the crisis unfolded over many years and the government refrained from dire pronouncements.

Unemployment would peak at only 5.5 percent, an enviable rate for much of the world in good times. Deflation — or price declines as gloomy consumers and skeptical businesses put off purchasing — sickened the economy. Yet leading experts now agree its impact was not as severe as originally thought.

Japan saw repeated years of low or negative growth, but the final tally was something short of a decade-long recession — with the 10 years leading up to 2000 averaging out at almost 1 percent growth. Companies like Toyota would prosper in adverse times, forced to sharpen their competitive edge. Emerging in the 2000s as the leader in hybrid cars, Toyota found itself on stronger footing than its U.S. counterparts.

*** end quote ***

Well, our politicians are dumber than the average bear in the woods. So what is our five or ten year forecast?

On the plus side, they can’t hide the distress. Unlike the Japanese did.

On the minus side, the Japanese people are savers; we aren’t. (As a nation. Not me personally. Now that I’m in the retirement red zone, I’m trying to make up for lost time and all my relatives will have to fend for themselves. Unless one of my books goes platinum, they would be kept in the style that they’d like to become accustomed to! And Frau Reinke could make a frugal squirrel look like a spendthrift.)

On the minus side, more than half of the people work for the gooferment. That’s not a model that can sustain itself. Especially, if the gooferment raises taxes and “producers” decide to chuck it all and go on the dole.

Inflation is unavoidable. Where do they get all these billions they are printing? Certainly not from savings. “Re capital ization”, my tush. Capital only comes from savings. You know Robinson Crusoe forgoes eating a fish so he can eat while he makes a fish net. Savings. Real savings.

Unfortunately, the sheeple are going to get a real “eddykation in ecckkyynomicks”. It’s called the dismal science for a reason. It’s dismal. There are NO silver bullets in real life. You can’t have it all. And, no amount of printing press money is going to make it so.

Forecast: Runaway inflation. More gooferment spending. More pain in the country at below the Teddie Kennedy level. (Don’t you love how rich politicians — redundant repetition of terms –have the audacity to say “i feel your pain”!) Fixed income folk takes the brunt.

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