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Archive for December, 2012

From the Holiday News Desert

Amidst the annual recaps, the Mountain Xpress declared its top online story to be a letter from Tim Peck. Peck merely declared what should be obvious: In a truly free market, buyers and sellers profit. Predictably, attacks flew against crony capitalism mistakenly identified as the free market, the perps intending to equate the two systems, for a presumed internet audience of bird-brained parrots. The scheme worked.

One commentator claimed the market cannot be free until all truth is known about how manufacturers are treating labor and the environment. It is as if a big enough government with enough laws and tools of Inquisition will make everybody honestly compliant, and only government is big enough to discover and correct moral shortcomings. The following scenarios exist only in Never-Neverland:

  1. A little girl overhears her dad complaining about the boss exploiting child labor in Thailand. She tells her friends, and they tell their liberal parents, who decide to boycott the industry.
  2. The slimy leader of a big business slips carbon tetrachloride into the streams at midnight and hides all the evidence whenever the OSHA and EPA folks pull into the parking lot.

Until government’s great iron fist is empowered and fueled (Think laws and taxes.), directed of course by democratic community conscience (Think useful idiots.), people won’t know if they want to buy floor mops or diamond rings. After all, one does not spend money to acquire things; one spends to strengthen the economy and create jobs.

This post is painfully run-on. I’ve been at this for more than a decade. I repeat myself, and nothing changes. To be more explicit would be to insult everybody’s intelligence and pass myself off as overly smug about my mediocrity. My New Year’s resolution is to spend more time writing music and less time pretending evil can be exorcised with catechism.

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My Predictions for the New Year

Well into the fourth year of the Great Recovery, I foresee:

Cinnabon has created the Minibon and Cinnabon Bites. They will be among other innovators in developing quarter-inch-cube desserts. Theirs will be the Cini-Nano. Starbucks will sell individual croutons, specially-designed by a foreign chef, for $5.00. Venti drinks will be outlawed unless made by unions, and they will be replaced by the due. Even so, people will manage to eat enough to out-blob nutritionists’ anorexic expectations for ideal body mass index.

This will cause government to double its eminent domain acquisitions of private land for the public good. Greater awareness will cause people to advocate for the voiceless animals. Not only will more people need to take their animals everywhere they go, those who don’t will be looked at as weird. Those who do will gain standing by projecting the most complex of analytical capabilities on little Fufu. For just a few tens of millions of dollars, streetscapes will be modified with alcoves for canine interaction. Scratching posts and messes for getting into will be imperative for little kitties. Birds, too, will need space to land and nest. Aquatic parks will be needed for those who need to carry their fishies everywhere they go. This is not a call for back-to-nature, but advocacy for habitat planned by those in elective office who know so much more than Mother Nature.

Roads will of necessity fall into disrepair. Funds will go toward traffic calming rather than paving. Half the trucks are already broken down when they’re needed, so that will only get worse. Conscious people will call their inability to pay for Valvoline’s $80 oil changes an intentional reduction of their carbon footprint. Similarly, landlords will decide that 55 degrees Fahrenheit is no longer cool enough, and help their tenants be green by setting the thermostats at 42 degrees Fahrenheit. Detroit will be more of a model city, and people will intentionally break windows for economic multipliers to abound. Casinos, unions, and other enterprises run by the same folks will be the exception.

The average Joe dropping out of high school will be expert in vector calculus, and fluent in five languages, but that will not qualify him for bagging groceries in the Twenty-First Century. Schools will therefore have to beef up essential skills curricula for diversity awareness, anger management, and gun personification. With over half the population in public housing with free food, those wanting to buy big-screen TV’s and games will need to work no fewer than six fulltime jobs, while attending college fulltime. To keep a job, employees will still have to give 110% while multitasking with continual improvement, constantly innovating new strategies and forward-thinking power verbs. The average number of a person’s employers who cannot make payroll will increase from two or three to five or six.

Manufacturing jobs will continue to dwindle. Markets will increase for people who will measure the people taking measurements, but the math they use will be based on a new religion of demand-side law of attraction with cosmic energies; i.e., 4 = 5.00000000000 if you believe hard enough. More bureaucrats will be needed to document the documentation of paperwork. Francisco d’Anconia’s question about when watchers will be hired to watch the government watchers will be answered. Yes-men and useful idiots will be in even higher demand, as people trying to make money won’t want anybody finking on them.

Political speech will become even more meaningless. Rather than talking about a “fiscal cliff,” “recession,” or “unfunded liabilities,” politicians will gain traction with concepts like “hey, man,” “like yeah,” and “uh.” New ways to avoid dealing with financial realities will be invented. These may include cotton dipped in ether and novacane. The masses will go wild when they see their rock-star politicians. It will not be enough that people cannot have food or shelter without the government, leadership will start providing diapers, cribs, and multi-flavored pacifiers for adults.

We’ll all be paying dearly for healthcare (a.k.a. insurance). Premiums will consume half of one’s unsubsidized belongings, but nobody will be able to afford to see an eye doctor, dentist, or surgeon. That will cause doctors to go back to school for free to study law, as everybody will be entitled to at least two government-subsidized, nonprofit lawyers.

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Hooray for Hobby Lobby

Hobby Lobby is opting to buck Obamacare out of deference to the Supreme Law of the Land. If only the rest of us could find the courage to do so. My boss today faulted weaklings, too afraid to take a stance, for most of the ills that have recently befallen the nation. As an experienced weakling with an amazing trail of destruction, I believe he is correct.

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More Recovery

Asheville’s 38th Annual Home, Lawn, and Garden Show is offering discounted booth space. Could it be the recovery is so grand retailers have no need to advertise – or is it something else?

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Hear, Hear

I like the idea floated about yesterday of selling government lands to stave off the Fiscal Cliff.

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Pet Peaves that Won’t Go Away

1. Abandoning office. I never appreciated when people in elective office ran for higher office, slapping their supporters in the face with only a partial term. A new trend is for organizations to fill vacancies by head-hunting amongst those serving in elective office. It looks like a plot by the other guys to water down the opposition in legislative bodies.

2. Corporate gifting. It is redistribution by the private sector. If I want to save the rain forest, logic dictates I will do more by donating to South American horticulturists specializing in preserving native species, than by buying ice cream. Those who argue vehemently that corporations are not people are those who think corporations should be good citizens.

3. Soaking the rich. Raising taxes on the wealthiest to spare the middle class will work so long as laws are passed to prevent the wealthy from passing the costs of taxation on to consumers or voting with their feet. Fiscal Cliff discussions on who should shoulder national debt need to add consideration of Randian directives to require people to stay in their jobs, price freezes, and prohibitions on corporate relocation.

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Blobbing around

The Hendersonville Times-News published a headline about a middle-school student winning a BOGO contest. Silly I envisioned a Junior League competition wherein kids tried to come up with the most innovative marketing strategy. Wrong! The victor merely won a drawing. How equal.

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The Extortion of SOPs

Frank Howington has been trying for what seems like forever to develop land for infill affordable/workforce housing in the Kenilworth neighborhood of Asheville. Unfortunately, the parcel is figuratively in somebody’s backyard, so neighbors won’t allow construction that would obsturb viewsheds and imperil children playing in the blind corners of hairpin turns. Since the previous greenwashes were of no avail, Howington is now proposing to donate 3.36 acres of his “land in the community” for a greenway. Will this prevention of type-2 diabetes and childhood obesity be sufficient to offset all the silt chucking, profit hoarding, and whatever else it is that developers do? Stay-tuned.

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Center

Remember in the old days when one went to see the school nurse if he* threw up in class? Today’s youth are so much more precocious they need federally-funded health centers.

Typically, a school-based clinic provides a combination of primary care, mental health care, substance abuse counseling, case management, dental health, nutrition education, health education and health promotion activities with parental consent.

Senator Kay Hagan celebrated and embraced the expenditure of more than $1.7 million from the federal government’s continuing resolutions, which have nothing to do with the Fiscal Cliff, for centers in North Carolina. Just hearing the word “center,” and knowing big government is going to construct another one for anything, is enough to vibrate one’s synergy.

*Please accept my old-fashioned shorthand for the PC he, she, it, he that thinks he’s a she, he that thinks she’s a he, he that thinks it’s a what, she that wants to be a he, he that wants to be an it, it that can’t be a what but wants to be, . . . .

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Zzzzzz

Oh, please tell me there is something more to life than typing passwords and waiting for slow downloads.

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