Among the issues most commonly discussed are individuality, the rights of the individual, the limits of legitimate government, morality, history, economics, government policy, science, business, education, health care, energy, and man-made global warming evaluations. My posts are aimed at intelligent and rational individuals, whose comments are very welcome.

"No matter how vast your knowledge or how modest, it is your own mind that has to acquire it." Ayn Rand

"Observe that the 'haves' are those who have freedom, and that it is freedom that the 'have-nots' have not." Ayn Rand

"The virtue involved in helping those one loves is not 'selflessness' or 'sacrifice', but integrity." Ayn Rand

For "a human being, the question 'to be or not to be,' is the question 'to think or not to think.'" Ayn Rand

28 November 2009

Catastrophic Anthropogenic Global Warming Evidence Was Not Even Evidence

The primary evidence offered in the UN IPCC reports of 2001 and 2007 for the catastrophic effect of man's carbon dioxide emissions was that there was no natural force that could explain the rapid rise of temperatures in the late 20th Century, so it must have been due to the increasing concentrations of CO2 in the atmosphere.  This is a dangerous kind of argument to make in any case, since the science of the way in which CO2 itself might be making such a rapid temperature increase as was claimed was itself weak and because the list of understood natural effects on climate was known to be quite incomplete.  But, this was nonetheless the argument that convinced many scientists, most of the media, most politicians, and many of the People that catastrophic AGW was a very good reason for drastically changing the way we live, even if it meant a massive economic slowdown, a huge loss of jobs, unreliable and much more expensive energy, and maybe even cold buildings in winters and hot buildings in the summers.

The recent massive release of documents from the most respected of the pro-AGW climate research centers, that of the CRU of the University of East Anglia, showed that there was what can only be called a conspiracy among the small group of climate scientists who played the biggest role in promoting the idea of catastrophic AGW.  The major American and Canadian scientists were closely involved along with many of the major scientists in the United Kingdom and others of the European Union.  I have earlier discussed some of the problems already discovered with the Michael Mann land temperature proxy and some aspects of the Briffa land data series of proxy temperatures.  These two series of reconstructed temperatures from earlier times both produced hockey stick temperature records in which the warmth of the Medieval Warm Period (MWP) (900 to 1300 AD) was minimized to appear to be much less than that of the late 20th Century despite considerable evidence from other sources that the MWP was actually warmer than the recent period.  These series also tended to minimize the decrease in temperatures of the Little Ice Age (1300 to 1850) and moderate the temperature increase prior to 1940.  From about 1940 to 1976 there was cooling and then the land instrumental temperature record kept by the CRU and by the NASA GISS took off with very rapid temperature increases from 1976 to 1998.  This land instrumental record was doctored and affected by heat island effects to make global temperatures seem to rise at a faster rate in this period than they actually did.

It was long known that the catastrophic AGW scientists wanted to hide the warm temperatures of the Medieval Warm Period (MWP) due to statements one of the in-group made to a scientist he thought was one of them, but who had too much integrity and spoke publicly about the wish to minimize the historical evidence of the MWP.  The recent release of documents has brought forth many more issues of unscientific tampering with the temperature measurement record.  The most famous such issue of the moment is the "Hide the Decline" issue relating to a temperature proxy series by Briffa, one of the most cited and influential AGW scientists.  His proxy temperature data set from tree ring studies used the tree ring data set up to 1960 and then spliced in the instrumental temperature data set from then on.  The decline being hidden was not the decline in temperatures since about 1998, but was a substantial decline in temperatures inferred from the tree ring data over the period from 1960 to the end of the 20th Century, which left the temperatures in the latter part of the 20th Century, as inferred from the tree ring data, well below those of the 1930s!  The full Briffa tree ring data set is shown below in red, while the portion used as input for the UN IPCC reports is shown in black.

There are a number of interesting things to note here about this data.  We know that the late 20th Century was not so much colder than the 1930s as this implies.  Another is that the late 20th Century shows a dip in temperatures severe enough to imply that it was as cold as most of the latter part of the Little Ice Age.  Well, we know that is not true.  This data would also imply that early in the period of temperature decline into the Little Ice Age, it was still warmer than in a few decades of the late 20th Century, which would be consistent with the slightly earlier MWP having been warmer, a fact the AGW scientists wanted to suppress.   

But the bottom line here is that the tree ring proxy data appears clearly to be unreliable.  The correlation of the tree rings with known temperature data in the late 20th Century is clearly wrong, even though we know the instrumental land data to have been bumped upward artificially, we do know the temperatures really were warmer than those from the tree ring data.  There are many factors that affect tree ring growth in addition to temperature, including sunlight available to the tree, which may be shaded by other trees, soil quality, water supply, and disease or bug attacks.  Yet this data was a cornerstone piece of evidence for AGW, along with other discredited bristlecone data by Mann.

The trick used to hide this Briffa tree ring problem in the recent 20th Century, which anyone could see was both wrong and inconsistent with the AGW claims, was to terminate the use of the tree ring data set in 1960 and splice in the instrumental temperature record from that time on.  Thus, the AGWs could use a tree ring data set that rather flattened the whole temperature record from 1400 to 1960, which had a good low temperature at the end of that series, and could have the stretched out, tampered with land instrumental temperature record added on from that time on.   This created wonderful hockey stick data such as that used in the UN IPCC reports.  The data from the UN IPCC report of 2001 is shown below.

Whereas the Briffa tree ring temperature proxy data set showed a dip in temperatures after the 1930s that is as much as 0.5 degree Centigrade cooler, this UN IPCC data set shows a dip in the second half of the 20th Century which is a small fraction of that and it is followed by a steep rise to temperatures which have not been matched in the last thousand years.  WELL, this is all complete NONSENSE.  This is a huge scientific FRAUD.  Note the names cited for the temperature curves used in this UN IPCC figure.  They are Mann, Jones (head of CRU), and Briffa, all co-conspirators in the catastrophic AGW scandal.

I have earlier discussed other problems relating to the Briffa proxy temperature data sets revealed by Steve McIntyre relating to the Yamal tree ring data from Siberia.  Steve McIntyre had much earlier been able to obtain enough of Michael Mann's data to figure out how it had been used to generate false hockey stick temperature data.

Note that the instrumental land temperature record goes back to 1881, but these scientists preferred to use the tree ring data up to 1960, rather than splicing in the instrumental data back in 1881, or anytime earlier in the 20th Century.  The tree ring data interpretation gave them lots of room to get the results they wanted or maybe it just happened to give them the result they wanted.  If the instrumental record had offered as low a baseline or stick for their hockey stick, they would no doubt have spliced it in earlier at some advantageous time.  As I noted earlier, the recent release of CRU documents has also made the very sorry state of the documentation of the original data sets and the adjustments made on them over the years at CRU impossible to reconstruct.  The unscientific and sorry state of this data made it impossible for CRU to release this data to Freedom of Information Act requests without huge embarrassment.   Their own scientists could not reconstruct results scientists at CRU had published earlier.  The released documents clearly show scientists pulling their hair out and going stark raving mad trying to deal with the mess.  This being the case, destroying the data, as Jones threatened to do, would have appeared to be the best thing to do!

This conspiracy of scientists claiming catastrophic AGW turned climate science from a little funded scientific backwater into a field funded with literally billions of dollars.  It made the few scientists deep in the conspiracy very famous and made them heads of various research centers.  It was a very successful fraud for a surprisingly long time.  But, the fraud was doomed to be revealed.  Because this research had many public policy implications worldwide, it was certain to attract the attention of other scientists and even historians who knew something of the past.  More and more, these scientists, just as I did, saw that some very bad science was being done and rewarded heavily by governments looking for another crisis to justify their exercise of more power over the People and to do so worldwide.

Frankly, the claims were fairly obviously bogus and could be readily seen as such by anyone with a reasonable knowledge of history and with a scientifically trained mind.  This being the case, we should judge very harshly those scientists who have not spoken out against this fraud, as well as those government bureaucrats in agencies such as NASA, NOAA, EPA, and the State Department here in the US who have been involved with the assessment of AGW issues, and the politicians who have advocated taking drastic actions to curtail and tax the use of cheap and reliable fossil fuel energy without getting good scientific advice.  In fact, many of these people were very vociferous advocates that the science was decided and any doubters were foos and even traitors.

I am going to call out the two universities I studied at in particular for having disappointed me by not having a single scientist who argued against this AGW fraud publicly.  In fact, both Case Western Reserve University and Brown University promoted the AGW fraud as politically correct on campus and in the school newspapers and the alumni magazines.  Shame on you, Brown University and Case Western Reserve University!  As in so many other issues, you have both made your bias toward socialism obvious by favoring its appetite over reality.

I also believe that those major companies that jumped on the AGW and alternative energy subsidy bandwagon should be scolded severely.  Among these companies are GE, GM, Ford, Exxon Mobil, Shell Oil, and many others who have been claiming to be reducing CO2 emissions in order to save the Earth from a man-made greenhouse gas-induced warming catastrophe.  They had a civic duty to declare AGW nonsense and not to seek subsidies and other benefits from the AGW frenzy.

26 November 2009

U.S. Air Quality Improving

The EPA monitors six principal air pollutants for which there are national standards.  The amount of pollution from these air pollutants has dropped significantly in recent decades.  Not that one hears much about this in the mainstream media.  These pollutants include SO2 (sulfur dioxide), NOx (nitrogen oxides), particulate matter, CO (carbon monoxide), ozone, and lead.  Volatile organic compounds (VOCs) are also closely watched.

From 1970 to 2004, emissions of these pollutants declined greatly, especially lead, which dropped by 99%.  Back on 22 September 2004, the EPA announced that emissions of air pollutants had been cut in half since the Clean Air Act was passed in 1970.  Particulate matter was down 81%, VOCs were down 54%, CO was down 53%, SO2 was down 49%, and NOx was down 24%, despite the economy growing 176% during that period.

The declines continue.  SO2 emissions from US power plants fell another 24% for the first half of 2009 compared to the first half of 2008.  NOx emissions were down 5% in May and 11% in June compared to a year earlier.  The EPAs models predict a 70% emissions reduction for cars and trucks over the next 20 years according to the October 2009 issue of Environment & Climate News.

24 November 2009

OK, Let's Have Some Fun

For so long, Al Gore and other Anthropogenic Global Warming Alarmists have been trying to scare us all to death and back to the caves in penance for our awful planet destruction due to using fossil fuels.  They have tried to terrify our children.

So, let's have some relief and perhaps a bit of revenge.  Let us enjoy ourselves and rejoice in our deliverance, at least assuming that Obama can no longer get away with further destruction of the economy with his vow to use Chicago enforcement against the AGW doubters and worse yet the deniers, such as me.

Have some fun:

23 November 2009

CRU Data Files Undocumented and Baffle CRU Programmers

Go here and read about how mysterious the data files at CRU, upon which AGW theory rests, were to one HARRY who had to work on the data in the post 1995 period.  It is amazing how undocumented and crazily handled the critical data files for the climate modeling programs were.  It is clear no one can now make any sense out of them.  HARRY tried and tried and then gave up totally on the pre-1995 data.

Examples of HARRY's exasperation:
So.. we don't have the coefficients files (just .eps plots of something). But
what are all those monthly files? DON'T KNOW, UNDOCUMENTED. Wherever I look,
there are data files, no info about what they are other than their names. And
that's useless.. take the above example, the filenames in the _mon and _ann
directories are identical, but the contents are not. And the only difference
is that one directory is apparently 'monthly' and the other 'annual' - yet
both contain monthly files.
Edit: have just located a 'cld' directory in Mark New's disk, containing
over 2000 files. Most however are binary and undocumented..
The conclusion of a lot of investigation is that the synthetic cloud grids
for 1901-1995 have now been discarded. This means that the cloud data prior
to 1996 are static.

For 1901 to 1995 - stay with published data. No clear way to replicate
process as undocumented.

For 1996 to 2002:
This should approximate the correction needed.
These are very promising. The vast majority in both cases are within 0.5
degrees of the published data. However, there are still plenty of values
more than a degree out.
TMP has a comforting 95%+ within half a degree, though one still wonders
why it isn't 100% spot on..
..knowing how long it takes to debug this suite - the experiment
endeth here. The option (like all the anomdtb options) is totally
undocumented so we'll never know what we lost.

22. Right, time to stop pussyfooting around the niceties of Tim's labyrinthine software
suites - let's have a go at producing CRU TS 3.0! since failing to do that will be the
definitive failure of the entire project

And on and on go HARRY's struggles to reproduce the results of the UN IPCC reports and various peer-reviewed publications upon which they were based.  It proves a futile effort.  This is the data upon which Obama and the Democrat Congress and our EPA base their claim that we are are in danger of destroying the Earth due to our CO2 emissions.  Therefore, we have make drastic cutbacks in fossil fuel use.  Therefore, we must put coal workers out of work.  Therefore, we must destroy our electric power system since half of our electricity is produced from coal.  Therefore we must drive small and unsafe cars.  Therefore homes and businesses must pay twice as much for future electricity use, when it is available.  It will in fact be erratically supplied at best.  Many states already have restrictions on coal-fired power plant electricity.

I would not buy a used car from these fools who have relied upon the Mann and Briffa data and the computer models of CRU and the UN for their assessments of catastrophic man-made global warming.  It is clear that Obama and these Democrats are part of the basis for this fraud.  The Democrats and their environmentalist allies have long demanded that these frauds be funded and they have supplied them with federal government monies to perform much of this "research."  The American People should be disgusted with this combination of gullible and/or shyster socialists who were allies with some very dishonest "scientists" to put this huge fraud over on the American People, not to mention all the other peoples of the Earth.

The discovery or proof of this fraud should make all Americans very, very dubious about anything that Obama and the Democrat leadership says.  I believe they were more participants than duped, but whichever is more true, their judgment is completely discredited.  It is also completely discredited on the health care issues, job creation, and on union promotion issues as other examples.  It is nearly to the point that if the Democrats say anything, the American people should assume it is wrong.

Briffa: I tried hard to balance the needs of the science and the IPCC

Keith Briffa, whose land surface temperature records have played a vital role in the UN IPCC claim that natural events could not explain what was said to be the unique and hugely rapid increase in temperatures in the late 20th Century, wrote a most interesting e-mail to Professor Michael E. Mann, Director of the Earth System Science Center.  Mann was the creator of a surface temperature record of hockey stick data, which was shown to be invalid by Steve McIntyre some time ago.  Briffa created similar hockey stick data and some aspects of its creation have recently been shown to be wrong due to the improper handling of data from Siberia.  The entire case for catastrophic man-made global warming has been recently shown to hinge upon these the data sets produced by these two men.

In the e-mail, Keith Briffa says to Michael Mann:

I tried hard to balance the needs of the science and the IPCC , which were not always the same.

The AGW Fraud Continues to Become More Apparent

Dr. Tim Ball, a former climatology professor at the University of Winnipeg and a climatology consultant, has written an interesting summary of his assessment of the revelations from the release of e-mails and files from the Climate Research Unit at the University of East Anglia.  He concludes in no uncertain terms that the theory of catastrophic anthropogenic global warming was a massive fraud.  The data supplied by the CRU was central to all the conclusions of the UN IPCC reports and was manipulated unscientifically to appear to be science in support of the agenda of socialists, rabid environmentalists, and one-world government.

21 November 2009

EPA Energy Restrictions and Copenhagen

The Democrat Senate has put off carbon cap and trade legislation, according to Harry Reid, until the Spring.  This is too late for Obama to make a splash at Copenhagen.  So, he will have the EPA claim that CO2 is a pollutant and have the EPA put severe restrictions on the use of energy in the US.  This is the "operationally significant" energy use restriction Obama has been talking about.  He has made some kind of agreement with China, it appears to some, and he and China will announce some restrictions at Copenhagen.

Will we all have to prepare for rolling blackouts?  Or, will we be denied the use of our cars on Saturdays?  Or will we simply throw more people into the ranks of the unemployed as those businesses which Obama does not like are shutdown?  Don't you just love this change and the transformation of America, People?  It is coming.  If Obama, Pelosi, Reid and their cadres of comrades have their way, this will not be America for long.  After all, if CO2 is a pollutant, why should the sovereign rights of the individual be of any significance at all?

Of course, the socialists will push ahead with all of this despite the unraveling of the claimed scientific evidence for catastrophic man-made global warming.  This will only prove that the need for the mandate to control the People by controlling their energy use drove the so-called "science,", not the other way around.  How revealing!

20 November 2009

Probable Massive Exposure of Global Warming Alarmist Fraud

A 62 megabytes zipped file which unpacks to yield about 156 megabytes of e-mail correspondence and computer code from the University of East Anglia Climate Research Unit in East Anglia, the UK, whose data was the primary basis for the UN IPCC reports, including the last one of 2007, has been made public by a hacker or a whistleblower.  This information appears to be shedding a lot of light on a conspiracy to mislead other scientists and the public into believing in man-made catastrophic global warming.  The e-mail correspondence discusses withholding the original data from review by skeptics and destroying it if need be to do so, control over editors at major scientific journals so only global warming alarmists would be published, cabal control over manuscript reviewers, celebration of the death of a global warming skeptic, and how to skew data to make the warming of the late 20th Century look more alarming and to minimize the lack of warming in this century.

This data is being discussed at Climate Audit and Watts Up With That and many other websites.  I have long claimed the science of anthropogenic catastrophic global warming was bad.  The mystery was always how had such bad science managed to hijack so many scientific journals, public policy, and the media.  The answer appeared to be that it was always mostly about meeting the socialist and internationalist agendas for power and broad control of all of the People of this Earth.  This correspondence seems to make it clear that these "scientists" really did have an agenda they held more important than science.

There are at least two major effects to be expected from this.  First, it should prove much more difficult for the Democrat Congress to pass the carbon cap and trade legislation in the Senate and for the two houses to come to agreement on a final bill.  It should be harder for the EPA to move forward with its stupid claim that CO2 is a pollutant and invoke the Clean Air Act and Clean Water Act to restrict its emission.  Corollary to these, it should be much harder for the US to submit to any treaty or agreement at the upcoming Copenhagen meeting, though I expect Obama will try still to find every way he can to restrict fossil fuel use in America.  This will help tremendously in averting a disaster to our economy, many lost jobs, minimize the arguments for green energy subsidies, and the need to make major changes in our lifestyles.

The second major effect is that science itself will be given a very black eye, despite the heroic efforts of some scientists to combat this bad science and reveal it for the nonsense it was.  The People will be less likely to listen to scientists in the future and will not accept their authority so readily.  This is both good and bad.  I used to think it was principally bad, but now I am seeing this as much more of a mixed bag.  The scientific method is still as important as always and I want the People to understand that.  These scientists were evil because they subverted scientific thinking.  They are to be condemned because they claimed an unwarranted authority and argued from authority to browbeat the public into believing them and following them.  It is very important that the People understand that it is always dangerous to submit their minds to simply accepting the word of authorities.  There is no real option but to think and think very hard yourself, unless you wish always or more often than not, to be hoodwinked.

There is nothing really different about science than politics with respect to the unwary being hoodwinked if they do not use their own minds to critically evaluate for themselves the truth of everything they are told.  There is no substitute for thinking for yourself.  It may be more common for politicians to take advantage of those who do not think for themselves than it is for scientists to do so, but we should learn here that there are plenty of people in any profession who will argue from authority to scam the gullible.

19 November 2009

Obama Creates Jobs and Congressional Districts

Obama's website claims to document the number of jobs the Stimulus Bill has created or saved.  It reported that 640,329 jobs were created or saved and was helpful enough to break those jobs down by congressional district.  The Washington Examiner has now added up the numbers of as-yet known fictitious jobs saved or created and has reached a number of 76,779.

Just to refresh your memory, the $787 billion 2009 Stimulus Bill was said to have created or saved the 640,329 jobs at a cost of $1,229,056 in terms of the allocated money.  To adjust for the fact that the government has proven very slow in actually spending the money and will not spend much of it until after the actual recession is long gone, the government claimed to have created these jobs at a cost of $531,250 per job.  Now we can adjust this cost per job for the maximal number of jobs which may have been created, 563,550.  The cost per job is then $603,628 per job.  Wow, I am impressed.  The Obama government may be able to create one job with a sum of money that the private sector would create about 12 jobs with.  Of course as we discover that more of these created jobs are fictitious, the cost per job will go up and the private sector will look ever more efficient in creating jobs.  And we ought not forget that the biggest actual effect of the $787 billion Stimulus Bill was to discourage the private sector from hiring for fear that the heavy government deficit spending would decrease business profits over the longer run as it caused inflation, weakened the dollar, and was used by governments to cause mischief.

The Obama website has also shown us that this $18 million construct creates fictitious Congressional Districts.  It has created 440 such fictitious Congressional Districts.  In reality, there are 435 legitimate Congressional Districts.  Now as I recall, Obama campaigned at one point in 57 states and thought he had one more state to get to in order to have campaigned in all of the states.  That makes 58 states.  Now, of course, my readers all know there are 50 states, so Obama inflated the number of states by only a factor of 1.16.  The number of Congressional Districts has been Obama-inflated by 2.01, so Obama is gaining skills in inflationary power as he gains presidential experience!

Just to look at the case for Virginia, which has 11 Representatives and therefore has Congressional Districts numbering from 1 to 11, lists the following fictitious Virginia districts:

00, 12, 13, 17, 21, 25, 36, 51, 79, 98

This is actually a below average degree of Congressional District inflation!  But I really get a kick out of District 00 and the fact that District 98 implies that Virginia is much the most populous state in the Union!  This takes us right back to the earliest days of the Union, when the Commonwealth of Virginia was just that.

The 12th and 13th Congressional Districts of Virginia were lost after the 1860 Census, and the 17th and 21st Districts were lost after the 1840 Census!  Democrats always have been very good at getting the votes of the dead, so it should be no surprise that they are also able to resurrect dead Congressional Districts when it suits their purposes.  Interesting thought.  Does this mean that we have underestimated Obama's powers as the Messiah?  What if he is creating jobs in Virginia prior to 1860 and 1840?!!!!!  This would mean he was aiding the cause of slavery in Antebellum Virginia.

Remember that for Obama and socialists of his ilk, the truth is that which furthers the cause of socialism.  It has nothing whatever to do with reality.

17 November 2009

Medicare and the Public Option

Robert Romano, the Americans for Limited Government Senior Editor, has written a good article on Medicare and the Public Option and on taxes and health care rationing.  It is called Washington's Degenerate Elite.  It tells a story of complete fiscal irresponsibility and of upcoming drastic health care rationing necessitated by biting off more than the government can chew on top of already legislated massive revenue shortfalls.  Even so, Romano does not make a critical part of the problem clear because he allows the government to get away with one of its most irresponsible ruses.  Let's follow his argument and his tale of the numbers and I will point out where the situation gets still more awful and to use his term, still more degenerate.

The Medicare Board of Trustees says Medicare has $2.5 trillion of assets in 2009.  Under a worst case scenario, its assets reach a maximum in 2012 of $2.712 trillion.  The program starts operating at a deficit thereafter.  In 2019, assets will be down to $2.279 trillion after accumulated losses of $433 billion.  Every year after 2012, losses will average about $169 billion per year.  In 2028, Medicare assets will be zero.

Now this is bad, but it is actually much worse than this.  What are these assets?  Well, they are just IOUs written to the program by the government.  To make these IOUs good, the government has to increase taxes or greatly decrease its expenditures elsewhere.  Obama and the Democrat Congress have no intention of generally decreasing spending by enough elsewhere, so taxes will have to go up greatly.  The above paragraph makes it seem as though the increased taxes to continue to fund Medicare must go up when the Medicare assets are gone in 2028.  This is not at all the case.  They will have to go up in 2013 and thereafter in order to cover the average shortfall in Medicare taxes of $169 billion per year!  This is the same year that ObamaCare is supposed to start.  So, the degenerates Obama, Pelosi, and Reid plan to add a new huge spending program the same year that the Medicare program starts operating at a loss.  Brilliant!!!!  These wily, sly socialists are counting on few of the People recognizing this in 2009, which is another of many reasons why they wish to pass this legislation through the Senate this year.

Romano continues with the story.  The Public Option of Obama, Pelosi, and Reid will initially cover about 36 to 45 million people.  The number of covered people is expected to increase with time.  According to the Center for Medicare & Medicaid Services, the cost of the Public Option will be an additional $935 billion by 2019.  How do our degenerate socialists plan to pay for this?  Well, they plan to ration care under Medicare to the extent that they will reduce its costs by $427 billion by 2019.  Note that with no changes of law, we were going to have a deficit of $433 billion by 2019 in Medicare, so these cuts in Medicare, if made, would leave a net deficit of $6 billion in Medicare without the Public Option added expense.  With the Public Option added expense, new taxes are required and Obama and his socialist cadres propose new taxes of $574 billion to be collected by 2019.  This leaves a combined Public Option and Medicare deficit of $367 billion in 2019.  Actually, the deficit will be greater since tax increases do not bring in as much revenue as projected and government plans to cut expenses never reach their goals.

The situation gets worse with time.  The Public Option is initially funded by taxes that go up before the program starts, but which will actually be used to pay the government deficits already in place (Stimulus Bill and other expensive programs).  Consequently, when the Public Option starts spending money, it will also have to convert IOUs into spendable money, which in practice means that either the deficits will be larger at an earlier time than projected or taxes will have to go up still more.  But in the government's ruse, IOUs are gold in the bank and the Public Option debt is only $32 billion in 2017, $59 billion in 2018, and $108 billion in 2019.  By 2030, the deficit from this one program would be more than $1 trillion.  This is based on a number of people covered which many reviewers think is lower than will actually be the case.

The combined costs of Medicare, Medicaid, and the Public Option will soon be greater than $1 trillion per year.  The costs will be increasing every year, which will require severe cuts in health care coupled with severe increases in taxes.  The rich will not be able to bear the cost of these taxes, so Obama's pledge to not raise taxes on the middle class will be meaningless, though that has already become very clear in other contexts.

All of the projections on expenses above were made on older June estimates and on very favorable assumptions.  The Center for Medicare & Medicaid Services now says those June estimates are much too low.  The cost of health care will increase fast enough that the deficit in the Pelosi House Public Option plan will be $289 billion greater than the numbers discussed above by 2019.  How much greater will they be in the outlying years?  Based on past government health care programs, one has to assume they will be many times higher than the costs now projected.

As Romano points out, things get still worse.  PriceWaterhouseCooper says the cost of private insurance will be driven upward sharply by ObamaCare.  An insurance plan that now costs $4,700 will cost $9,917 by 2019 or 2.1 times more than now.  The cost increases for the young will be even larger factors.  Many individuals who are now privately insured will be driven onto the Public Option, raising its costs many times.  When the Public Option is the last resort, it will also be bankrupt!

This Public Option plan simply makes the already intractable problems with Medicare, Medicaid, and Social Security much worse.  It is utter insanity to add to this existing problem with the Public Option.

Of course, as I have said repeatedly, Obama made his insanity very clear when he long ago said that he intended to bankrupt the coal-fired electric power plants which produce half of American electricity.  Apparently, being merely insane is no reason for the American people not to pick a man to be President.  In fact, it almost seems that they thought it was a requirement of the job.  This man is so wrongheaded on so many things that it is not possible to believe that he perceives reality at all.  And he has much company in Pelosi, Reid, Dodd, Waxman, Markey, Baucus (perhaps slightly less insane than the others), Franks, Hoyer, and many others in the Democrat Congress leadership.  All of them are bonkers.  All of them are Looney Tunes.

Muslims and Gays in the Military

It has been pointed out that the military has no problem with Muslims in the military.  Indeed, it works hard to encourage them to join and stay in the military.  It is very politically incorrect to point out that one is unstable or strongly opposed to the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan.  On the other hand, if there are any gay or bisexual people in the military, the military leadership does not want to know about it.  If they do come to know about it, they want them out quickly.

Interesting.  At least a couple of Muslims in the military have killed a number of other serving members of the military in the name of Allah in what can only be called terrorist rampages.  Have there been any gay or bisexual terrorist rampages?  Inquiring minds want to know.

The Jarrett-Obama Gangster Government

Robert Romano, of Americans for Limited Government, has written an excellent article on Valeria Jarrett's role with Obama in providing us with Chicago-style gangster government.  Socialism provides government with arbitrary power, which is so easily turned to pure, vicious gangsterism.  See Hitler, Stalin, Mao, Castro, and Chavez for other examples.

Suppose an Injured Patient Lives in Canada

Suppose an injured patient lives in Canada.  The patient needs a CT scan to assess the damage and to schedule an operation, if necessary.  The time the patient will have to wait for the CT scan is either the next day or more than a month.  If an operation is needed, the further wait is a day or more than 3 months.

If the patient waits for 4 months rather than a couple of days to have the injury operated on, is the patient human or not?

By the logic of socialism, if the patient has to wait 4 months for medical help, it is human.  For those patients fortunate enough to receive medical treatment under the private enterprise system in Canada, the medical service is great.  As John Stossel notes, you just have to bark or meow.  Talking is not allowed.  Talkers are prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law if they go to a veterinarian for faster and higher tech treatment.

16 November 2009

Socialism Kills: The Human Cost of Delayed Economic Reform in India

This entry summarizes an interesting report by Swaminathan S. Anklesaria Aiyar, a research fellow at Cato Institute's Center for Global Liberty and Prosperity, who was the editor of the two biggest financial daily newspapers in India, the Economic Times and Financial Express.

India isolated itself from the rest of the world in trade terms and attempted to become economically self-sufficient for the first three decades after its independence in 1947.  During that period, India became more and more socialistic under the influence of the Soviet Union and was more and more managed and controlled by the government.  India's share of the international export market fell from 2.2% upon independence to 0.45% in 1985.  India, being very backward, did grow at at rate of 3.5% per year, but this was slow growth compared to other once backward Asian nations who were more export-oriented.  Since India's population was growing rapidly, it per capita growth in this period was only 1.49% per year per person.  The reforms which started in 1981 started freeing the economy and growth rates increased.  These reforms were undertaken more certainly after the balance of payments crisis in 1991.  In the relatively free period from 2000 to 2008, the growth rate was 6.78% and social indicators were much improved.

But what did a decade of economic development delay cost India?  As is always the case with socialism, the results are ugly.  One decade of delay in economic freedom killed 14.5 million children, kept 261 million Indians illiterate, and kept 109 million Indians unnecessarily in poverty. 

12 November 2009

Some Random Thoughts by Thomas Sowell

As those of you know who have read from this blog for some time, I greatly admire the work of  Dr. Thomas Sowell of the Hoover Institution at Stanford University.  He has a recent commentary called Random Thoughts, which concludes with the following thoughts:

One of the few advantages to the country in having Congress overwhelmingly in the hands of one party is that the lack of need to compromise lets the leaders of that party reveal themselves for what they are — in this case, people with unbounded arrogance and utter contempt for the right of ordinary people to live their lives as they see fit, much less the right to know as citizens what laws are going to be passed by their government. The question is whether voters will remember on election day in 2010.
Even if this country can survive intact and unharmed after the Obama administration — or, heaven help us, two terms of Obama — the gullibility that led to his being elected in the first place will still be there for some other slick demagogue to come along and get the power to put the American way of life, and even our physical safety, at risk again.

11 November 2009

The Socialist Brain of a Progressive Democrat

Public Transport Workers Striking Philadelphia

The average transport worker in the SEPTA transportation system of Philadelphia is earning $52,000 a year.  They pay 1% of their earnings for their health insurance plan.  They must pay about the same amount, however, in union dues to the union.  This payment is $530/year.  This is the 8th SEPTA strike, with an average strike duration of 34 days.  The Transport Workers Union is demanding an average annual pay increase of 2.7%.  It seems to me that these workers are already being paid very well given the skill level of these jobs.  They have already taken serious advantage of the government-run monopoly on transportation and of the local riders and taxpayers.

The Democrat Congress is considering making it mandatory for all policemen, firemen, and emergency public employees to become labor union members.  We will soon see strikes everywhere of critical government employees, if they do this.

Presidential Emergency Powers in Cap and Trade Bills

Both the Waxman-Markey House of Socialist Representatives carbon cap and trade bill and the Boxer Senate Environment and Public Works Committee carbon cap and trade bill have a common provision to give the President strongman emergency powers.  These powers kick in automatically when all greenhouse gases other than water vapor reach an equivalent CO2 atmospheric concentration of 450 ppm.  CO2 is presently 399 ppm, but other greenhouse gases are much more potent, such as methane and N2O.  They therefore count as large multiples of their ppm concentrations in equivalent CO2 concentrations.  The Pacific Northwest National Laboratory says that the 450 ppm CO2 equivalent will be reached in a few months.

The emergency power provision requires the President to use all statutory powers of federal agencies to reduce the greenhouse gas concentrations.  Given that the EPA is about to gain the power to make draconian cuts in these so-called pollutants under the Clean Air and Clean Water Acts by reinterpreting them as invited to do by the courts, the strongman Presidential emergency power will be huge.  Obama will be able to give Hugo Chavez a dance for complete and arbitrary power as he decrees which friends of socialism get to continue using power and which have to stop dead in their tracks.  Obama will have the power to shut down industries and stop traffic.  This power will give him total control of the private sector.

The ensuing unrest may be great.  It is for this reason that he wanted a paramilitary service organization of fanatical young Americans straight out of the Socialist Production Factories, our colleges and universities.  Remember, he wants them to be as well-funded as the military is now.  He will have to operate quickly to set them up, but then quick usurpation of power is his and Pelosi's specialty.

There are heavy consequences to be paid for Americans refusal to take the Constitution seriously.  We have lost the principle that that government is good and legitimate only to the degree that it preserves, defends, and protects the sovereign right of the individual to life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness.  The only way to keep government from usurping power is for the American People to strongly and tirelessly insist that their government operate constitutionally.  We have failed to do that and we have never failed so badly as we did in the 2008 elections, with the possible exception of the 1932 elections.

Government Size is Beyond Manageability

The size of government is far beyond a manageable size.  Government in the United States of America is too big and fails constantly.  Government at the local, state, and federal levels just keeps on growing and growing.  It does not have a going problem, it has a growing problem.

The present Obama and Pelosi socialist federal government is particularly eager to grow.  The House of Socialist Representatives just passed an awful bill designed to take over the medical services business in its entirety.  The scale of the new bureaucracies being set up, the extent of the new taxes, the cruel and unusual punishments set up for those who disobey its health insurance edicts, the willingness to risk losing a majority in the House, and the explicit acknowledgments that the bill has many, many problems even by its supporters, make it clear that this is the essential step in gaining complete government control of medicine and of each and every individual's body and health.

The U.S. GDP in 2008 was $14.26 trillion.  Tax Freedom Day in 2009 has been estimated to be 29 May, by the Tax Foundation.  This is 40.8% of the year, so the tax and deficit sum of all U.S. governments is about 5.83 trillion.  This includes about half of all medical spending now, so the complete takeover of the medical field by government will add about half of one-sixth of the economy to government.  So this addition to government will bring it to about $7.01 trillion.  So, we will have central planning management of about half of the U.S. economy.

The Soviet Union did the experiment of trying to manage all of the U.S.S.R. economy.  That central planning experiment broke down utterly and completely in 1990 when that economy was about $1.99 trillion.  Despite many years of practice in central management of the economy, they failed at a mere $2 trillion.  We Americans may be better than the Soviets, at least for now as we coast along on the remains of our Capitalist competence, but are we really three and one-half times better at central planning than the Soviets?

The fact that our governments have not collapsed is a function of two things.  One, they have been supported by a larger private sector, which after the medical takeover will no longer be larger.  In fact, the additional incursions into energy use and production planned by our Obama-led central planners will leave the private sector smaller than the government sector.  Two, as the government becomes larger, we more and more lose the mores and work ethic of the Capitalist private sector, which is critical not just for the revenues and expanding wealth it can produce, but for its encouragement of morality and virtues.

Overly large government not only sucks up our property and income, but it also sucks up our independent spirit, our competence, and our willingness to work.  When government devours the private sector, its days are numbered.  Government is the natural servant to the People, but the People have no substance without their separate and private identities.  We are losing that.  To lose the Capitalist, individualistic private sector is to lose everything that gives us Americans an advantage over the Soviets.  Soon, we will be the Soviets and we will not be able to maintain a government centrally planning $7 trillion or more of economic activities.

10 November 2009

Obama Calls Me a "Tea-bag, Anti-government" Person

When exhorting the numerous reluctant Democrats in the House of Socialist Representatives to vote for the unread Obama-Pelosi 1990-page socialized medicine bill, this tyrant and usurper called those of us who have protested against this socialist government and its many infringements of our sovereign, individual rights, those "tea-bag, anti-government people."

OK, I am opposed to this socialist government.  I am all in favor of a constitutional federal government, which is to say a government of highly limited powers.  I am not an anarchist.

As for tea-bag, that is his idea of being Presidential.  It is clearly meant to invoke the crude sexual put-down so popular among the socialists in which they call Tea Party Protesters, Tea-Baggers or say they are tea-bagging.  Well, such tea-bags as I have, I am just trying to protect from the hungry lips and devouring mouths of Obama and Pelosi.

After all, we the People have a sovereign right to defend and protect our bodies and our property from those who would force themselves upon us, even if they have all the power of government behind them.

Kelo Eminent Domain Taking Site Abandoned

Suzette Kelo and her neighbors once had homes on the site in New London, Connecticut, known as Fort Trumbull, until the city of New London used eminent domain to take their neighborhood for the benefit of Pfizer, which had a nearby research facility.  Suzette Kelo, with the help of the Institute for Justice, took the case to the Supreme Court.  They argued that eminent domain was for public use, not the private benefit of a company such as Pfizer.

Five of the Supreme Court justices thought that whatever the city of New London thought benefited that government, even if it was pleasing a private company, was adequately definable as public use.  The precedent was set for state and local, and presumably the federal, governments to take land and property for any purpose they had a whim to do so for.  Indeed, despite the unpopularity of this kind of eminent domain, more and more such takings have been occurring since the Supreme Court ruling in favor of this tyranny.

The land once occupied by the homes of Suzette Kelo and her neighbors is now a wasteland.  Pfizer, according to the Hartford Courant, is shutting down its New London research and development headquarters and transferring most of the 1,400 people who work there to Groton, Connecticut.  Pfizer is looking to sell or lease its New London facilities.  This move results from a recent merger with Wyeth and a decision to reduce their combined research budget by 35%.  There is no need for so much innovation now that ObamaCare is on the horizon, with its intolerance for research and innovation in medical procedures and in drug development.  Most of the rest of the developed world is already intolerant of innovation with their socialized medicine schemes.

The city of New London is left now without the tax base provided by the 1400 Pfizer workers and without Suzette Kelo's neighborhood.  The brilliant central planners have served the taxpayers up a much smaller tax base and lots of vacant, undeveloped land.  Pfizer had initially built the facility in New London after buying a 24 acre lot from the city for $10 and being given tax breaks on top of that.  Then Pfizer complained that the Fort Trumbull section of town near them was not as up-scale as Pfizer would like its neighborhood to be.  The New London Development Corporation, headed by a Pfizer executive's wife and with a Pfizer vice president on its board, moved to seize the Fort Trumbull area.  That Development Corp. wanted up-scale condos and a high-rise hotel built there.  That has not happened over these last several years, but Pfizer should be able to sell its 24 acres of land for much more than $10!  Pfizer sure did a great job of taking New London!

Sometimes those who do evil things to others in order to please evil people, come to feel the brunt of evil on their own heads.  It is rather delicious to see.  Though I am sure there are some New London residents who did not deserve to share in the consequences.

09 November 2009

Fines for Refusing to Document Acceptable Health Insurance to IRS

Apparently, the socialist Democrat Congress is terrified that many Americans are going to refuse to document having an acceptable health insurance plan to the IRS.  Let us take a look at the 1990 page HR 3962 just passed in the House of Socialist Representatives.

If you do not buy one of the very expensive acceptable government health insurance plans, you will be fined $1900.  If you do not pay this fine and you do not prove that you have acceptable insurance, you will be fined $25,000.  If you do not pay this fine, you will be subject to imprisonment for five years and a fine of $250,000.  These penalties are so severe that it appears clear that the socialists are very afraid that many Americans will refuse to go along with this unconstitutional law.  Many will feel they are obliged to stand up for our Constitution, even if they will be fined or sent to jail.  If many do this, this already unpopular plan will crumble.  So, the penalties have to be so severe that all of the Constitution and individual rights defenders will be cowed.  These penalties are indeed so severe that it opens a new chapter in American history.

It is as if King George III had said he was going to draw and quarter any American colonist who rebelled.  Our Socialist Democrats say they will send any rebel to the Gulag and confiscate everything he owns.  This is a strong and blatant statement that they care not a whit for the value of individual lives.  This attitude that many American individualists are expendable, is very close to that of Mao, who is so much admired by so many close to Obama.

Apparently, I will be in the Gulag or dead in 2013, unless the Senate refuses to go along with this draconian tyranny or unless it is repealed subsequent to the elections of 2010 and 2012.  The socialist Democrats must be thrown out of both the House and Senate and the presidency by 2013, or this blog will end and I will be in the Gulag or dead.  That is a bit of a tall order.  I hope the American People are still American enough to be up to it.

07 November 2009

Senator Boxer Notes the CO2 Emissions Benefit of Recession

The recession has led to less energy use, which has caught the approving attention of Senator Boxer (Democrat, CA).  Given her backing of carbon cap and trade legislation, perhaps we have an explanation here for the Democrats being so interested in taking over the health care industry and pushing fossil fuel energy restrictions and taxes, even as the highest unemployment rate in 26 years ravages the USA.  

The longer they fiddle while the private sector burns under higher government taxes, more regulations, higher health care costs, higher energy costs, increased labor union threats, loss of creditor standing, dictated management compensations, automotive design mandates, added financial system controls, and anti-business demagoguery, the less energy we use.  After all, there is a direct correlation between the amount of energy used and the growth of the economy.  This same correlation says that carbon cap and trade will decrease the growth of the economy and will mean there will be fewer jobs.  I guess we might as well get used to more than 10% unemployment.  It may be around as long as the Democrats control the presidency and Congress.  It is such a great way to reduce our energy use and we know how important that is to them.

Obama hides true costs of carbon cap and trade

The Competitive Enterprise Institute used the Freedom of Information Act to force the Treasury Department to release a number of memos about the real costs of carbon cap and trade legislation.  It proved difficult to get the Obama administration to give up these memos and reports and they were heavily censored.  Censoring of Defense Department documents I understand, but censoring Treasury Department documents is generally much less understandable.  It must be an elitist thing.  Those dumb taxpayer dolts have no need to know and they would not understand anyway.

Gary Jason gives a rundown on what was found and summarizes some previous estimates of the effect of carbon cap and trade on jobs and costs here.  He points out that the CRA think tank estimated that carbon cap-and-trade will cause the loss of 3.2 million jobs in America over 15 years.  The Obama Energy Department says that the cap-and-trade bill will increase electricity costs by 20% over 20 years.  I think this a terrible underestimate, but Obama did not want this out anyway.

The CEI released memos of the Treasury Department revealed that:
  • Judson Jaffe of the Office of Environment and Energy estimated the new taxes of the Obama plan will be between $100 and $200 billion a year, which is higher than Obama publicly estimated them to be.  The upper end tax cost is an increase of $1761 per family.
  • An Obama transition memo said that the Obama environmental plan will double the cost to the economy of environmental regulations.
  • One memo thought the carbon cap-and-trade cost would be $300 billion a year.
  • A memo said the Obama environmental policies will cost as much as corporate income taxes.
  • A memo says cap-and-trade will ruin energy-intensive industries, such as manufacturing.

Coal-Fired Electric Plants of China Give it Edge in World Clean Energy Market

Energy Secretary Steven Chu argues we should make ourselves more competitive in the growing green energy industries by taxing carbon with the carbon cap-and-trade Clean Energy Jobs and American Power Act of Kerry and Boxer in the Senate.  He claims China is investing heavily in wind and solar power manufacturing and will clean our clock if we do not pass cap-and-trade taxation.  Marlo Lewis points out that this is nonsense.

China does not tax carbon dioxide emissions.  It is producing wind and solar products for export, not internal use.  It is producing electricity now more cheaply with coal-fired power plants.

Meanwhile, in the U.S., the state of Massachusetts is one of the very foolish states already in a cap-and-trade program known as the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative.  Ten states of the Northeast and Mid-Atlantic have pledged to reduce carbon dioxide emissions from the power sector by 10% by 2018.  This puts them at a competitive disadvantage for power costs and power reliability with respect to many other sates, so they are desperate to get the federal government to make at least such draconian power cuts for the remaining states of the Union.  But, let us examine how this cap-and-trade effort is benefiting manufacturer's of green energy products.

Massachusetts gave Evergreen Solar $58.6 million to build a factory in Devens, MA.  A little more than a year after opening the plant, Evergreen announced it was moving its solar panel assembly operations to China, where the costs of production are lower.  It plans to keep wafer and solar cell production in Devens.  One of the lower costs in China is that of energy.  In the first 9 months of this year, Evergreen lost $167 million.  The market price of assembled solar panels has fallen 30% in the last year.  Apparently, even with heavy subsidies, solar power companies have a very difficult time competing with both other forms of energy production and lower cost of production overseas competitors.  The free market is not kind to solar power and even extensive subsidies and favorable mandates at taxpayer expense leave many of these companies unable to compete.  Massachusetts Gov. Patrick and Obama both are going to be disappointed by the number of American jobs actually produced by green energy.

When the free market says a company is uncompetitive, it is very poor public sector policy to spend taxpayer money on it or to force consumers to buy its high-priced products.

06 November 2009

Donna Edwards, Socialist Democrat, 4th Congressional District of Maryland

Donna Edwards is a thorough-going socialist who is in her first full term in the House as the Representative of the district I am unfortunately gerrymandered into.  She took over for a guy who stepped down not long after he was elected, who was having problems with the local Democrats because he had some economic and business sense.  Until recently, I could go to Edward's website and leave an e-mail comment on what I thought government policy should be.  No longer.  She takes no e-mails at all.  Instead, you can sign up to be surveyed and someone from her office will call you, if they ever feel like doing so.  When you sign up for the survey calls, you are also signing up for her newsletter.  In other words, it is her job to inform us and to tell us what to do.  It is not her job to listen to us and what we think.

At the moment, her website informs us that there are 47 million uninsured people who cannot afford health insurance.  That is well-known to be a false statement.  She cites many numbers for many things, so one would hope she has looked into the issue of the 47 million uninsured at least a wee bit.  If she has, then she is simply lying to her constituents.

By the way, one of the principal reasons why we need an universal health insurance system, according to her, is because one-quarter of all women will at some point in their life be the victim of domestic violence.  She says some private insurers will not cover such problems (whether injuries or counseling, she does not say) because they say this is a pre-existing condition.

I have been married for 36 years and I have never hit my wife, but because some guy has hit his wife, I am to be subjected to the tyranny of an universal, government mismanaged medical care system.  Donna Edwards probably calls this social justice.

Obama Administration Finally Reports October Unemployment

Not since the aftermath of Jimmy Carter's rampant inflation, which followed Nixon's price controls fiasco, have we seen such unemployment as that engineered by Obama and the Democrat Congress.  Yes, there was a major increase in unemployment under Bush and the Democrat Congress with considerable help from the Federal Reserve, but we would be recovering from that were it not for the remarkable ability of Obama and an energized socialist Democrat leadership in the House and Senate with their large majorities to create a horrible business climate.

Obama and henchmen would have us believe that our biggest problems are health care and man-made global warming.  And maybe that we have too few workers paying union dues and far too many workers in the private sector rather than the public sector.  Meanwhile, the private sector still employs most Americans, but it is employing fewer and fewer of them.  The official, but understated, unemployment rate at the end of October was an astounding 10.2%!  No wonder any hint of such a large increase was suppressed by the administration prior to the election on Tuesday.  This is the U.S.'s highest unemployment rate since April 1983, 26 years ago.  We have had job losses for 22 straight months.

Obama is conducting a string orchestra in a mad fiddling contest with the devil, the likes of which we have never heard or seen.  Nancy Pelosi is first fiddle and Harry Reid is second fiddle of the Congressional section, which is filled out with the fascist socialists of the Congress.  On the other side of the string orchestra are the Marxist and Maoist Commissars and Czars of his administration section.  They are all fiddling madly to celebrate and encourage the burning of the American private sector and that fable of a Constitution decreeing limited powers for government and that silly notion that individuals have sovereign rights.  They are laughing gleefully as they play the devil's tune.

Since December 2007, the U.S. has lost 7.3 million jobs, but we will all be delighted to know that Obama says he saved 640,000 jobs with the stimulus bill earlier this year.  Let's see, then $787 billion of stimulus created 640,000 jobs at $1.23 million per job.  It is good for people to have a work ethic and to want to work, but it sure is rich to charge taxpayers $1.23 million per job!  Or am I being unfair here?  After all, only about a quarter of the Stimulus Bill appropriations have been spent.  But, then why should we give the government any credit at all for taxpayer money spent just in time to buy as many votes as possible just before the 2010 elections?  Even in terms of the money spent, these would be very expensive jobs, at about $307,500 apiece.  The private sector would usually produce at least 6 or 7 new jobs with so much capital to invest and spend.  But Obama and the Marxists know so little about business and economics that they do not have enough sense not to shout about their "great job creation accomplishment."

So, we now have 15.7 million would-be workers unemployed.  Many of them have been unemployed for more than six months, a record 35.6% of them.  Before the recession, 63% of adults worked, but now only 58.5% work.  The Democrats have championed the little guy, those without a high school diploma, into 15.5% unemployment.  Unemployment for those with the high school diploma is a mere 11.2%.  15.7% of blacks are unemployed and 13.1% of Hispanics are also.  This is very effective support for these Democrat-favored minorities by the Democrats.  Somehow, being anti-business and anti-wealthy people, is not creating the jobs their supposed constituents need.  One should be arguing that being anti-business and anti-wealthy people is the equivalent of being anti-black and anti-Hispanic.  The private sector lost about 558,000 jobs, but the public sector lost no jobs.  The public sector and its employees is now being supported by many fewer people with private sector jobs and we should add the public sector to the enemies of blacks and Hispanics.

Those who have given up on finding jobs and those working part-time who wish to work or work more are now 17.5% of the available workforce.  The total hours worked fell another 0.2% in October and the average workweek is now a mere 33 hours. But, average hourly wages are up 2.4% in the last year, perhaps because job losses have been higher among the more poorly paid, who are usually the least productive workers and the first to be let go in hard times.  These workers are also the more likely to be intimidated or persuaded to join a labor union, which would further hurt a company's productivity.  Thus, it makes still more sense to let such workers go when unions are being favored by government.

There was some good news.  Productivity went up per employed worker at a 9.5% annual rate.  Unemployment decreased from 4.9% to 4.7% for those with college degrees.  Managers and professionals were being hired, so their unemployment rate fell from 5.2% to 4.7%.  The technology, education, and health care sectors were hiring.  Temporary workers were also hired.  But the situation was woeful still for construction, manufacturing, and service and retail.

Apparently, increasing taxes, deficits, government spending, regulations that serve no purpose, restricting international trade, taking over industries, dictating executive compensation, crippling oil and gas exploration and development, threatening the coal industry with extinction, and restricting fossil fuel energy use is not the way to produce jobs.  In fact, it is a very good way to kill jobs.  This is the Marxist, Maoist, fascist way.  The European socialist countries have had 10% unemployment rates very frequently.  Obama has imported these unemployment rates to the U.S.  The strange thing is, the Europeans have been turning away from some of their failed policies, even as Obama turns us toward them.  He is talking about increasing corporate tax rates and those on wealthier individuals, even as most European countries have been reducing those rates in recent years.  We and the Japanese now have the highest corporate tax rates in the advanced world.  It is hurting both of us badly.  But, lowering corporate tax rates just does not fit the Marxist rhetoric or the populist demagogue's style.

05 November 2009

The Copenhagen Treaty Tax on America

Obama had his socialist heart, if a socialist has a heart, set on going to Copenhagen and showing the world that he, Obama The Great World Leader and Unifier, had dragged the U.S. under the Copenhagen Treaty world governance umbrella to both drastically reduce its irresponsible use of energy and to pay the little-advanced countries of the world a penance fee for their development.  It is now fairly clear the U.S. Congress will not give him the carbon cap and trade bill, which was to be his demonstration that he was a Global Warming Alarmist and World Governance leader, in time for the December Copenhagen meeting.

As I have often discussed, there is no Global Warming Catastrophe.  There is no reason to be concerned about the increases in carbon dioxide concentrations in the atmosphere.  There is every reason not to ration our use of energy.  There is no reason to allow the U.S. government or a World Government to tax or restrict our use of energy.

The draft Copenhagen Treaty proposes that every advanced country be taxed on its GDP.  The tax is to be 0.7%.  Such a tax on the U.S. economy with a 2008 GDP of $14.26 trillion would be $99.82 billion.  Being able to pay so much American taxpayer money to the less developed countries of the world would have made Obama feel like a very big man.  A big shot, a VIP.  Not to mention such a virtuous man.  Of course, the American People would have to pick up the tab and pay the bill for his wining and dining the rest of the world and impressing them with his leadership.

Except, of course, they would mostly really be snickering about how they pulled one off on the USA and those naive American People.  It appears that we have escaped this bullet for now.  We will have to keep a close eye on the would-be shooters for some time, however.  They have made it very clear that they are back-shooters.  We always knew the back-shooters were the bad guys in the American West.  We had better keep our eyes open.

04 November 2009

October Unemployment Figures?

Where are the October unemployment numbers?  Were they withheld until after the Tuesday elections?

Gordon -- Obama and the Liberal Paradigm

John Steele Gordon has written an interesting commentary called Obama and the Liberal Paradigm The sheep are quite capable of looking out for themselves. Someone tell the Democrats.  He illustrates the Democrat failure to understand this with Valerie Jarrett's nonsense about "talking truth to power", even as she sits in the White House filling the emptiness in the brain of the President.  I do not endorse some of his version of the history, namely the accomplishments of FDR, in this, but his viewpoint is worth understanding and his description of the Democrat paradigm is essentially accurate.  That description of the Democrat paradigm formed in the late 1800s is:
The basic premise is that the population is divided into three groups. By far the largest group consists of ordinary people. They are good, God fearing and hard working. But they are also often ignorant of their true self-interest ("What's the matter with Kansas?") and thus easily misled. They are also politically weak and thus need to be protected from the second group, which is politically strong. [He later calls these the sheep.]
The second group, far smaller, are the affluent, successful businessmen, corporate executives and financiers. Capitalists in other words. They are the establishment and it is the establishment that, by definition, runs the country. They are, in the liberal paradigm, smart, ruthless and totally self-interested. They care only about personal gain.[He later calls these the wolves.]
And then there is the third group, those few, those happy few, that band of brothers, the educated and enlightened liberals, who understand what is really going on and want to help the members of the first group to live a better and more satisfying life. Unlike the establishment, which supposedly cares only for itself, liberals supposedly care for society as a whole and have no personal self-interest.  [He later calls these the shepherds.]
He then attempts to describe why this paradigm no longer applies with his version of history and the effect of government under FDR and 40 years of Democrat rule having sufficiently penned the wolves.  The situation now is:
Not only does the liberal paradigm not even come close to agreeing with the social and economic reality on the ground today, worse, it has largely congealed into a political religion, especially in the nearly 30 years since Ronald Reagan shifted the nation's political center of gravity, just as FDR had done 48 years earlier. Since liberals care about the sheep, all who disagree with liberalism must not, making them morally inferior if not downright immoral. Thus the nastiness in American politics is largely on the left. Whatever you think of Sarah Palin, her treatment in the liberal press was ugliness personified.
But in a world where a majority of Americans work at white-collar jobs, have high-school and college degrees, own their own homes, and hold financial securities in their own right, the so-called wolves are now a majority. If liberals don't begin to take that fact into account in formulating policy, the Obama administration will not only be an unsuccessful liberal administration, it may well be the last liberal administration.

Yesterday's election results would appear to indicate that the supposed sheep are beginning to become aware that they are actually wolves and very capable of taking care of themselves.  The shepherds may soon find themselves out of a job.  It is about time that Americans remembered that they have prospered mightily in a free enterprise environment, as educated and self-motivated workers whose work is generally in high demand, and as investors in stocks, bonds, and homes.  Almost all Americans are the Capitalists so hated by the socialist Democrat Party.

03 November 2009

Sowell - The "Costs" of Medical Care

Thomas Sowell has written another good commentary called The "Costs" of Medical Care.  Sowell notes:
There is a fundamental difference between reducing costs and simply shifting costs around, like a pea in a shell game at a carnival. Costs are not reduced simply because you pay less at a doctor's office and more in taxes-- or more in insurance premiums, or more in higher prices for other goods and services that you buy, because the government has put the costs on businesses that pass those costs on to you. 

Costs are not reduced simply because you don't pay them. It would undoubtedly be cheaper for me to do without the medications that keep me alive and more vigorous in my old age than people of a similar age were in generations past.  
Letting old people die would undoubtedly be cheaper than keeping them alive-- but that does not mean that the costs have gone down. It just means that we refuse to pay the costs. Instead, we pay the consequences. There is no free lunch.
Of course some of the voters understand this and can see through the sleigh of hand, but most people cannot.  We need to find a way to keep most people from falling prey to such deceptions. It would help if they were educated in real schools that would prepare them with a real knowledge of history, politics, and economics.  People need to be educated in the critical thinking skills that voters in a republic ought to have.  Our present government and socialist labor union run school systems have no incentive to give students these critical thinking skills.  They are happy with blank-minded politically correct and shell-game blind students.  We get exactly what they intend to give us.  The government schools do not fail in their goals, because they do produce the intended zombies that socialists want for followers of the messianic leader.

02 November 2009

A National Assessment of Educational Progress Study

The U.S. Department of Education has released a study of the fourth and eighth grade reading and math testing performed in 2007 compared to that of 2005.  They found that 15 states lowered standards in one or more of the tests, while 8 states raised their standard on one or more test.  Using the standards of 2007, 17 states required proficiency in fourth grade reading at a Basic Level, while 31 set their standards below the Basic Level.  The standardization of the requirements was performed according to the National Assessment of Educational Progress (NAEP).  State testing is required by the No Child Left Behind Act.  By law, all students are required to be proficient in reading and math by 2014.

However, the states do the testing.  It is clear that in their desire to achieve the results required, the government-run schools are lowering the standard requirement, rather than requiring the students to hurdle the bar.  The NAEP standard in Tennessee is 198, while it is 254 in Massachusetts.  Maine, Oklahoma, and Wyoming lowered their proficiency standard in both math and reading in both the fourth and eighth grades.  Maine at least maintained a standard at the Basic Level, but Oklahoma and Wyoming did not.

My state of Maryland is one of the majority of states with standards below the Basic Level.  Virginia, Ohio and the entire eastern Midwest, North Carolina, Georgia, Texas, Oklahoma, Kansas, and all of the western states, except a few on the Mississippi River and New Mexico, Nevada, and California are states with Below Basic standards.  Pennsylvania, New York, and all of New England are at the Basic Level.  So are South Carolina, Florida, and Hawaii.  The Mississippi bordering states with the Basic Level standards are Minnesota, Missouri, and Arkansas.

If you have a government monopoly advantage on any service, whether postal, education, transportation, garbage collection, health care, etc., the standards of service drop.