Friday, June 29, 2012

It's all about the math

The Mattel Corporation came under fire in 1992 for releasing a talking Barbie doll that declared "Math Class is Tough!" Women's groups claimed it fed in to the stereotype that women are bad at math. Yet now in the year 2012, it looks like it's both women and men that are bad at math. Very, very bad.

When discussing Obama care and government benefits, some of my more left-leaning friends have stated that since they are paying in to social security and medicare, it isn't an entitlement. Here is one recent comment:

"It is annoying that people think SS and Medicare are handouts. We pay for those with every paycheck. Just makes me mad when people slam things as "entitlements" when I am buying them!" (name omitted to protect the guilty)

 This is where that tough old math comes in to play. Look what happens when you actually crunch the numbers...

"No matter how much you pay into the system, whether you earn the average wage over a lifetime ($43,100 in 2010 dollars) or if you're in a two-income household where one earns a high wage and the other earns an average wage, you get back substantially more than you pay in." (more)

This means that social security and medicare ARE entitlements since people feel "entitled" to draw more out than they paid in. Let's put it this way... if you go out to dinner with a large group of friends and everyone pitches in $10 and then orders the $35 lobster platter, there's going to be a big problem when it comes time to pay the check. 

A simple solution is to refund everyone's unused Social Security and Medicare taxes and totally disband those programs. Then let people do their own savings and pay directly for their retirement and healthcare needs. Sadly a radical plan like this will never fly. It relies on things in very short supply these days... the ability to add and subtract and individual responsibility. 

Thursday, June 28, 2012

Supreme Court ruling helps bring economy to a complete standstill

The Supreme Court has finally ruled on Obama care. In the good news category, they ruled that congress can not use the commerce cause to force you to buy insurance or any other products. The bad news is the Individual Mandate still stands as a tax. In 2009, President Obama emphatically declared that the penalty for not buying insurance was NOT a tax, thus proving once again he and his cohorts are lying sacks of crap. (In other news, the sky is blue, the sun rises in the east and water is wet.)

Another section of the ruling says that the feds can not force states to expand medicaide. It was the goal of the federal government to force states to expand those programs by installing penalties taking away existing federal funding for failing to comply. This is not allowed according to the Supremes.

As the talking heads and legal eagles pour over the full text of the ruling, the most important thing is how it effects individual business owners. What exactly is the impact? Well that's where things get tricky. Nobody really knows and that is a serious problem. The sluggish economy will now come to a complete standstill as small business owners try and figure out how this will effect their payrolls. 

Personally, I do know that despite wanting to hire someone for my small business, I wont. Not until I can calculate what this will cost me down to the penny. Without that knowledge, hiring could cause serious financial hardship to my family. If I am not hiring despite needing an extra hand, you can be assured that other business owners will be in the same situation. If the legal and political climate effecting your day to day operations is murky, the smartest decision is to make due with what you have and wait for clarity. This means economic paralysis. If you were hoping for a new job or a better paying job anytime soon, your odds just got much much worse.

Saturday, June 23, 2012

CO2 from bread targeted by EPA

Progressive elements of the U.S. government have been trying to implement additional controls and regulations over CO2 emissions for years. Control CO2 and you have control over many aspects of the economy as well as private life.

One of the primary targets of increasing CO2 regulation is the coal industry. By further lowering the emission standards as proposed, the president and his progressive buddies can finally achieve their goal of bankrupting the coal industry. Don't believe me? Obama said so himself.

"if somebody wants to build a coal-powered plant, they can; it's just that it will bankrupt them because they're going to be charged a huge sum for all that greenhouse gas that's being emitted." - Barak Obama (more)

As with most plans of elitist know-it-alls, there are unintended consequences to their grand designs. Not only could the progressive policies directed at CO2 emissions bankrupt big coal, it could destroy the baking industry. That's BAKING...not banking.

"...natural ethanol emissions from yeast may cost bakers as much as $80,000 per ton removed, which contrasts sharply with less than $1,000 per ton to scrub sulfur from a coal-fired power plant and $80 per ton to dispose of municipal garbage." (more)

Apparently the pointed-headed intellectuals are unaware that yeast, an important ingredient in any raised baked good, releases CO2 gasses as it grows and expands. Yeast is what makes cinnamon rolls, bread and donuts light and airy. According to the EPA it is also a bigger risk to the environment than land fills and sulphur-filled smoke from burning coal.

While this would be hilarious as some evil, well-thought out plot by low-carb and paleo dieters to eliminate bread, their most vile and hated nemesis, it's just another example of busy-bodies gone bad. If the government does go ahead with including bread in their war on CO2, I hope you really like tortillas and Matzo crackers.

Friday, June 22, 2012

About that pledge of allegiance...

You can't be on facebook for more than 10 minutes without seeing a post about how wonderful the world would be if we just went back to making kids recite the pledge of allegiance. Usually the person posting the pro-pledge material leans toward the conservative side. They consider themselves patriots and believe a love of god and freedom is instilled by pledge recitation. Too bad that is not at all what the pledge was designed to do.

"...the Pledge was designed by an avowed socialist to encourage greater regimentation of society."

Every time you refuse to recite the pledge, a puppy dies

That's right folks. The pledge of allegiance was written by Francis Bellamy, a radical socialist, as an exercise in slavish devotion to the state. It's about as american and patriotic as a matryoshka doll. The original pledge even included a very Nazi-like salute, though after the rise of the Nazi party in Germany, it was changed to the more well-known hand over the heart.

Rather creepy photo of the original pledge hand placement 

The really funny thing about the pledge is the most debated section, the 'Under God' phrase, was not even in the original version. It wasn't added in 1954. After that, all the fun court battles began.

So next time someone gets bent all out of shape because schools don't require the pledge, go ahead and give them a little history lesson. I doubt they would cling to this antiquated authoritarian exercise if they really knew its true socialist history.