Archive for the ‘Economics’ Category
“Every man’s work shall be made manifest: for the day shall declare it, because it shall be revealed by fire; and the fire shall try every man’s work of what sort it is.” 1st Corinthians 3:13 An American revolution is in motion while the arrogant Obama administration denies and shamefully ignores all of the obvious signs. Obama regards all Americans as mere peasants “grubbin’ for taters on the King’s land”, his land, to which he intends to strip bare of any semblance of greatness rather than protect and nurture it to the benefit of all its citizens.
The Federal Reserve announced last Wednesday that it would be buying 600 billion dollars of US Bonds (the USA debt), which it once said they would never do. And to doing that that they will be printing and adding more money in circulation, causing the value of the dollar to considerable to decrease in value which can lead to hyperinflation. And since we no longer are on the gold standard, severe financial trouble could follow. And it appears the Chinese no longer want to buy our bonds because we now are a financial risk.
Following World War I, the Wiemar Republic (Germany) was in the same boat as us. They were off the gold standard and printed more money in 1922 to help pay war debts. The German mark quickly devalued. By November 1, 1923, a pound of bread cost 3 billion marks, a pound of meat cost 36 million marks and a glass of beer cost 4 billion
The National Inflation Association yesterday (http://inflation.us/foodpriceprojections.html), projects that at the average U.S. grocery store it will soon cost $11.43 for one ear of corn, $23.05 for a 24 oz loaf of wheat bread, $62.21 for a 32 oz package of Domino Granulated Sugar, $24.31 for a 32 fl oz container of soy milk, $77.71 for a 11.30 oz container of Folgers Classic Roast Coffee, $45.71 for a 64 fl oz container of Minute Maid Orange Juice, and $15.50 for a Hershey's Milk Chocolate 1.55 oz candy bar. NIA also projects that by the end of this decade, a plain white men's cotton t-shirt at Wal-Mart will cost $55.57.
Will we end up like the Wiemar Republic?
The federal government is spending $62 million on a tunnel to nowhere in Pittsburgh, Pa., $89,000 on a sidewalk that leads to a ditch in Boynton, Okla., and almost $200,000 to study voter perception of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (stimulus) from which these other projects are funded.
The world has been turned upside down: Socialism is on the rise in the U.S. and capitalism is on the rise in China. The former is a result of an uneducated electorate that fails to understand socialism’s history of producing poverty; the latter is a result of pragmatic leadership able to put aside communist ideology to embrace capitalism because it produces prosperity.
The latest outrage from 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue has our dithering president demanding that Republicans restore unemployment benefits.
By Jim Camp
Those of us born in an earlier era recall the Cold War that lasted from shortly after the end of World War II until the fall of the Soviet Union in 1991. It was the era of Mutually Assured Destruction with massed nuclear missiles pointed at one another. It was an era when Americans were rightfully concerned about Soviet espionage inside the U.S. and Soviet expansionist ambitions throughout the world.
The expression is “You had to be there to understand it.” The Cold War turned hot when North Korea invaded the south and was fought to a stalemate that exists to this day. I was around when it turned hot again in Vietnam during the 1970s, serving as a fighter pilot against which Soviet-made weapons were aimed.
I have since concluded that the Vietnam War contributed greatly to the end of the Cold War. Just as the race for space began with the Soviet launch of Sputnik, escalating our fears that the Russians had got the jump on us technologically, the Vietnam War convinced the Russians that the vast technological leaps the U.S. had made in the waging of war—particularly an air war—were such that they would always be at a disadvantage.
Beginning in the 1970’s both the U.S. and the Russians took steps to put the nuclear genii back in the bottle. Following the death of Joseph Stalin in 1953 and a succession of aged leaders of the Communist Party, the best remembered of whom was Nikita Krushchev, the wheels began to come off the Soviet wagon. When the Berlin Wall came down in 1989, it was only a matter of time before the Soviet system failed entirely.
The Department of Labor has released the latest unemployment figures, and it looks like the highest peaks have been during Democratic administrations of high spending and taxing. This almost breaks the unemployment record of the Great Depression under the FDR Democratic administration!
World Net Daily reports:
Unemployment was declared to be 9.9 percent in April, but the real unemployment rate – measured to include those who want work but have given up looking and those part-time employees who prefer full-time work – hit 17.1 percent, rivaling October's 17.4 percent, the highest since the Department of Labor began keeping these statistics in 1994.
Nearly half the unemployed, 46 percent, have now been out of work for 27 weeks or longer. . .
. . . A 21 percent unemployment rate nearly reaches peak jobless rates of the Great Depression, when unemployment reached 25 percent in 1933. . .
By Warner Todd Huston
My good friend, Ken Marrero over at Blue Collar Muse, did some interesting research into where the money from Tennessee's share of the so-called stimulus payoff ends up going. Ken notes that there is a lot of money floating around but little of it goes to stimulate the economy. In fact, it seems that the lion's share goes to government and its grasping needs as opposed to the economy.
According to Marrero, The Volunteer State stands to have a windfall of $3,779,708,000 thanks to the pork-laden bill passed by Congress and President Obama. The list of payouts is impressive, but it really does show that only a small amount of the total could be considered an economic stimulant.
The list of recipients is instructive:
$771,610,000 on Education
$171,678,000 on "General Purpose"
$1,100,000,000 for Medicaid
$10,200,000 for the Foster Care system
$71,988,000 to mass transit capital grants
$20,394,000 to "clean water" programs
$57,814,000 to drinking water programs
$97,467,000 to something called "weatherization"
$59,065,000 to the state energy program
$7,199,000 for immunization
$2,614,000 for elderly nutrition
$41,932,000 to child care
$19,699,000 to the shadowy idea of "community services"
$2,069,000 to the "temporary emergency food assistance program"
$2,064,000 for emergency food and shelter
$11,500,000 for vocational rehabilitation
$174,210,000 for K thru 12 education
$50,386,000 for school improvement
$236,163,000 goes to the individuals with disabilities act
… well, this is just a tiny slice of the list that Marrero gives us — he also goes into detail about the items above. What his work does show is that few of these projects are economic projects. Instead what they are is grist for the mill of big government. Little of this money seems to be going to the economy in the form of helping business, assisting people with loans, or creating solid, long-term jobs.
In summation, Marrero says:
"Our totals are quite interesting. Of our total $3,779,708,000 – $1,246,017 goes to various Education programs, $1,100,000,000 goes to Medicaid leaving just $1,433,691,000 to spend on everything else. Almost two thirds of the money is excluded from stimulating the Economy in just two general items. Of the monies left, $771,282,000 also fails to stimulate the Economy, $662,409,000 falls under the “Maybe” category and only $12,979,000 has the appearance of true Stimulus spending."
But Tennessee is no different than any other state in this regard. Obama and his minions in Congress did nothing to stimulate a flagging economy. This bill is meant for one thing and one thing only: to enlarge government and infuse the people's money into dubious programs of little worth as a way to self-perpetuate government.
This porkulus bill is more proof than ever that we now have a government of the government, by government, and for the government. And like cancer it grows to kill its host.
About the author
Warner Todd Huston is a Staff Writer for the New Media Alliance, Inc. (http://www.thenma.org/). The New Media Media Alliance is a non-profit (501c3) national coalition of writers, journalists and grass roots media outlets
By Alan Caruba
On “Jeopardy”, the popular quiz show, they have a category called “Stupid Answers” in which the answer is so obvious, posed in the question, that it is virtually impossible to get it wrong.
Unfortunately, we are afflicted by too many stupid answers to very real issues and needs, the most fundamental of which is energy. At the very heart of our society and economy is the dependence upon and need for uninterrupted and increased energy, primarily electricity.
The answers we have been hearing are the worst possible. Over and over again we are told that the U.S. must become more dependent on “alternative, clean” energy, meaning solar and wind energy. These represent about 1% of all the energy the nation consumes at present. Neither comes close to the energy produced by coal which represents over 50% of all the electricity we consume daily. Nuclear produces an additional 20%.
The utility that serves much of New Jersey, my home State, Public Service Electric & Gas recently ran an advertisement headlined “Caution: Blackouts Ahead…” The ad said that “The experts responsible for maintaining reliability on our electric grid flatly predict that we are risking catastrophic power outages in New Jersey if we don’t upgrade our system.”
In the great national debate about the nation’s infrastructure, perhaps no other issue is of more importance, other than the way electricity is produced, than the way it is delivered. Those power lines are the very heart of the way our nation functions. PSE&G is ready to spend $750 million to upgrade its part of the grid, estimated to begin suffering overloads in 2012. Opposing those upgrades is a phalanx of environmental organizations and a regulatory approval process that borders on the insane.
In the meantime, the cost of solar energy credits in New Jersey has jumped to as much as $675 a megawatt-hour for 2009. The credits are paid to solar developers for the energy they produce over a year. The purpose is to boost solar energy production despite the fact that it is the least efficient and most costly way of providing electricity.
Take away the credits and the utilities could spend that money on expanding existing coal-fired and nuclear plant production. This is the classic stupid answer to a real need.
Within the energy industry, all of this is well known. Last August, writing for a leading website devoted to the industry, EnergyPlus.Net, Joseph Welch, the CEO of ITC Holdings Corporation, wrote that “the probability of a second devastating blackout is very likely”, recalling one that five years ago left 50 million Americans in the northeast and Midwest without electricity in the largest blackout in North American history.
A partial, but stupid answer was provided by the 2005 Energy Act requiring reliability standards for the transmission grid, while at the same time dispensing federal largess to solar, wind, biofuel, thermal, and other forms of energy of dubious value. In the meantime, as Welch points out, the growing energy demand “is expected to increase 30% by 2030.
The Obama administration’s energy advisors, cabinet secretaries, and others, including the President, are all on record as opposing coal-fired electricity generation. Many of the nation’s governors remain opposed to coal-fired plants. And America is home to the greatest deposits of coal to be found anywhere in the world!
Yet another stupid answer is the idiotic notion that we can “conserve” our way to energy independence. The prospect of a ban on the sale of incandescent light bulbs as a means to conserve electricity is as idiotic as it gets. Fluorescent bulbs all contain mercury and will require a Hazmat team to clean up the mess if you break one.
As my friend, Michael J. Economides, an editor of EnergyTribune.com, pointed out in mid-2008, “Energy cannot be generated from nothing”, adding that “The next four decades are good for a dozen recessions if it’s business as usual, or for a constant downturn, if American politicos actually apply what they have been saying.”
The smart answers to America’s energy needs include opening oil drilling in the Alaska National Wildlife Reserve, on the nation’s vast continental offshore areas estimated to contain billions of barrels plus vast natural gas reserves. The smart answer is to begin yesterday to upgrade and expand our electrical grid system. The smart answer is to encourage the mining of our nation’s coal reserves. The smart answer is to build more coal-fired and nuclear plants.
Who opposes this? The Sierra Club, Friends of the Earth, and the Environmental Defense Fund, to name just three organizations dedicated to destroying the nation’s economy and its ability to provide energy to its people. Who opposes this? Ask the new Secretaries of Energy, the Interior, and the Director of the Environmental Protection Agency.
The next time one of these people, including the President of the United States of America, claims that global warming requires that we all freeze in the dark, impeachment proceedings should begin immediately.
Alan Caruba writes a daily blog at http://factsnotfantasy.blogspot.com. Every week, he posts a column on the website of The National Anxiety Center, www.anxietycenter.com.
Washington, D.C. – At least $8.6 billion of President Obama’s proposed $1.2 trillion stimulus plan is meant to fund dubious special interest policy initiatives of environmental activists and should immediately be jettisoned, says Deneen Borelli, full-time Fellow with the Project 21 national black leadership network.
"It's outrageous that taxpayer money is slated to be used to fund the agenda of environmental special interest groups. These special interest groups are using global warming alarmism to fund dubious projects while discouraging the use of fossil fuels," says Borelli. "If liberal lawmakers really cared about stimulating the economy, they would remove rules and regulations that block the development of more fossil fuels. This would provide good-paying jobs and lower energy costs for Americans. Instead, they appear only interested in using their combined force of money, power and influence to fleece taxpayers of their money and their freedom."
Among the green earmarks in the bill legislation cited by Borelli: