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>29 January 2004
Fun little quiz of the day
Ahh Good ole TJ. My favorite founding father, I think..
>28 January 2004
Semi-National Man of Mystery!
create your own visited states map
or write about it on the open travel guide
Neat little site that lets you highlight the states that you've visited. I think I see a pattern, there..
>24 January 2004
Voice or Exit?
Via Lynne Kiesling via Adam Smith Institute, comes a great article. The point to it goes somehting like this:
Those who want to increase governemnt handouts advocate for voice. Everyone gets a piece from the government, and your share is determined by your voice. If you don't like what you get, you can use your voice to influence the agencies that determine your share.
Market folks advocate for exit. If you don't like what you get, you can exit. The risk that you will exit will prompt service providers to be more sensitive to your needs.
Personally, i'm a firm believer of choice.
>23 January 2004
Thanks to a link from Volokh Conspiracy, I too can now generate a George Dubya c - o - n - spiracy.
You know you're riiiiight
Ever had someone just explain in a clear and eloquent way, something that you have thought but never been able to lucidly clarify?
Well, Chris Sciabarra just id just that for me. He lays out why exactly it is that the current governmental structure bothers me so much.
In short, because we have created a system that puts "All against all". In that, he means that everyone is encouraged to form groups whereby any discerning characteristic, be it age, gender, orientation, race, handedness, or whatever is used to try to extract resources and power from everyone else.
When everyone wins their 'piece', it creates a forced splitting of everyone into their own self created discinctions, thereby not allowing society to naturally integrate into a whole.
>22 January 2004
Random Words for the day
Here's where I jot down the first ten mentally colorful words that come to mind..
Mt. Snow, the CPC, and Al Sharpton.
Last weekend I went up to Mount Snow, Vermont with Todd, JennieJen, Matt B. and Rachel F. It was a blast! I tried snowboarding, and sorta got the hang of it, but not before some crazy spills, falls, and general ass-breaking comedy. (well, i'm sure it was funny to anyone who watched, if not to me, personally)
I'm gonna hafta do that again sometime soon!
Then, school started this week. I have all three of my 'class' classes on Wednesday. After my first "full" wednesday, I am sure that this semester is going to kick my ass. But a good kind of kicking my ass, ya know?
I'm pretty sure that i'm gonna quit job #2 soon, so that I can have that half thursday and all of friday to do schoolwork and group projects and crap. I might even quit job #1 towards the end of the semester when the 'going gets rough'.
I'll be researching the Intro 101-A NYC lead paint bill, which I have studied a bit at work the last month or so. This will be for the CPC, and it'll be cool to meet the folks over there and see what I can dig up about poor governmental policy leading to really dire consequences. It really is the people that think that they are helping out that cause the most damage.
And oh, Iowa. I thank thee immensely for getting rid of Gephart. I try not to dislike people because of their political stances, but this guy was way over the top with his 'liberalness'.
Secretly, it's all for Sharpton.. you'll see. Well.. maybe not but hey.
>15 January 2004
Jesus. Have you ever read something that made you sad, mad and exasperated all at the same time??
(Sung to the brady bunch themesong)
Here's the story.. of a TSA agent..
Who threw the husband of a 7 month pregnant gal..
into the slammer right after he yelled at them..
for touching her breasts..
they let him out with "only" a misdemeanor..
And then I read it and get really pissed off.
Noone thinks that their civil liberties are in danger..
until they're gone!
This PC world
Zero tolerance becomes the social norm..
It's quite insane
Our biggest threat
wears not a turban but a suit and tie to work..
>12 January 2004
Music for the Masses
Most Recent Music Addiction: Hot Hot Heat - Make up the Breakdown
Saddest Recent Musical News: Miracle of 86 may be fini (say it aint so!)
Most Recent Promise to Self: Gonna make that Tele/Vox sing this year cause I need to get better and really do the music thing.
Cant Get This Song Outta My Head: Hey Ya. Apparently neither can anyone else..
Latest "Must Listen to Soon" Promise to Self: Velvet Underground. I have a shamefully inadequate knowledge about the good, old shit.
>08 January 2004
>07 January 2004
Is that a Market Failure in your pants, or are you just happy to see me?
I was just doing some thought about claims that markets fail to serve the poor. They do fail in a certain manner of speaking, but in reality they don't.
Let me explain..
Where markets stop producing is where the costs of regulation raise the minimum cost above where the poor can afford a good or service. Sometimes this regulation is good and arguably is worth the social costs that must be used to subsidize the shortage, and sometimes the regulation is stupid and does not.
For example, the housing market. There is no reason that builders cound't come in and say - build tiny wooden shacks that even the poorest of poor could afford. The question is to what level do we feel that the minimium quality of housing is? Whatever those 'minimums' that are dictated, will drive the cost of housing above some price point that a certain number of people are certain to fall below.
Whether or not the certain codes and regulations regarding building are necessary is not the point - what is the point is that we must stop thinking that markets fail and start thinking about the costs of the regulatory decisions that we make.
Markets work. Whereever there is a dollar to be made, someone will come up with a way to make it. That much is proven.
What must start to happen is that whenever policy dictates that say, metal pipes must be used instead of plastic for plumbing or any number of other things in various building codes are enacted, that they carry a cost.
We as a society or at least as a regional, local or municipal societal unit must be willing to absorb the cost of providing those who can not afford goods and services up to the minimum quality level that we dictate.
>06 January 2004
Cause I'm Back in Black
Or, at the very least back in jeans and a tee-shirt in the Big City. Jut wanted to post a link to something that I've referenced on more than one occasion - the amount of spending (By the Federal CBO no less) of total govt. spending, which shows that at 2002, Medicare, Medicaid and Social Security came in at 8.3 % of GDP while total Governmental spending was 11.6 % of GDP.
So you do some math.. and 8.3 into 11.6, and....
Presto! Medicare/Medicaid/S.S add up to about 71% of total govt. spending. Yes. 71%.
So next time you argue that 'We spend way too much money on Defense or Welfare or (Insert your favorite whipping boy program here), remember that it's a mere pittance compared to the 'big boys' of govt. spending.