It Takes A Village

Governments don’t build towns. People do. Nowhere is that more evident than our small towns where it’s pretty obvious that it’s local entrepreneurs that keep the wheels of progress rolling in the right direction.Continue reading

An Open Letter To The Residents Of Ferguson, Missouri

I ask you to recall two powerful quotes from Martin Luther King, Jr.

The ultimate measure of a man is not where he stands in moments of comfort and convenience, but where he stands at times of challenge and controversy.

The ultimate tragedy is not the oppression and cruelty by the bad people but the silence over that by the good people.

My thoughts, prayers and support are with the good people of Ferguson who chose to take the hard and high road after last night’s grand jury announcement. The media may have been focused on your counterparts, but you are the ones with the real power to bring about positive change in your community.

Please don’t let the opportunity pass.

The New & Improved HTTP 503 Error Page

Ed Henry:

People are still getting the same error messages they got three weeks ago.

Jay Carney:

Not so. I think you’re confusing error messages with the queueing message, which is quite a different thing entirely.

So one is telling you the system is too busy to handle your request and the other one is telling you the system is too busy to handle your request. Got it!

Do We Really Default On Our Debt If We Don’t Raise The Debt Ceiling?

I’m not a financial genius, but as best as I can tell… we don’t.

During the last 12 months, the interest on the debt averages out to about $35B per month, or $1.2B per day.
It looks like the government takes in an average of $9B per day, but it spends $17B per day.

Sounds to me like we just need to start living within our means and stop spending money on stupid stuff.


Interest Expense on the Debt Outstanding
Smacking Into the Debt Ceiling: the Day-by-Day Consequences

America’s New Majority

By Josh a.k.a Jodaph@Shift Think (Shift Think on Facebook)

For many of us, last night’s election results may appear to be an unmitigated disaster. Forget all the house seats that may have been gained and forget any other local issues that may have been won, because in the end America voted to retain a man with no record who has ties to domestic terrorists, signed the illegal NDAA, and can’t even balance a checkbook.

Many of us from all walks of life and differing political backgrounds voted for a man who cherishes hard work and individual liberty, but also weren’t surprised when he received only 1% of the vote. It could have been different if Ron Paul were the Republican nominee, but sadly that is not the case.

America sent a clear message last night: Hard work, common sense, and individual liberty are no longer listed among its core principles. Those of us who cherish these principles are now in the minority and must face this reality, no matter how difficult the pill is to swallow.

Today we will no doubt face legions of people who will gloat because they see elections as a game to be won and their detractors as enemies to be vanquished. We will continue to be blamed for the current problems of the nation and we will continue to face those who would strip away our possessions to satisfy their vision of noble goals. We will continue to be demonized for working hard, for not relying on others to care for us, and for supporting others who think similarly.

But remember this: We are the people who work hard every day, who face countless challenges every day, and who always come out on top. We have never faced an enemy we couldn’t defeat and no mountain so insurmountable that we couldn’t scale it. We have never resolved to call on the government to rescue us from any situation. It is these traits — the very ones we are scorned for — that will ensure our ultimate victory over such vehement apathy and willful ignorance.

At some point in the future the walls will come crashing down and our economic system will collapse. Last night marks its inevitability, whether it be four years down the road or 20 years down the road. The country’s financial crisis is out of our hands and as terrible a thing it is to accept, accept it we must. We must acknowledge that common sense no longer prevails and that ours is a shrinking island in the sea of irrationality.

But mark my words — when those walls come crashing down, those who voted on pure emotion last night will hold out for hope that the government will rescue them. This is what they expect, and this is all they know. The cold, hard economic reality is that the government will be unable to provide for all its citizens, a truth that has been demonstrated time and time again, and many people will die as they simultaneously beg the government to rescue them with one hand and point a blaming finger at us with the other.

Meanwhile, we will do what we’ve always done: Survive. We will overcome whatever obstacles are presented to us, no matter who sits in an oval office 2,000 miles away, and we will continue to provide for our families even as the construct of society melts around us.

Clearly, this message is intended for those who are self-reliant, sturdy, and capable. But it should also serve as a warning to all those who cannot accept the consequences of their own actions and expect others, like the government, to rescue them whenever anything goes wrong. It is a warning to those who embrace weakness and vilify strength. At some point in the future, you will have to lay down in the bed you’ve made, and nothing you or anybody else can do will be able to change that fact.

We may feel like pebbles caught in a torrential current heading for a waterfall, and we probably are. But maybe we should take a deep breath, sit back, relax, and watch the circus unfold before us. Take care of our families. Keep working hard. Be prepared. Focus on our own lives, and don’t worry so much about all the inmates who have taken over the asylum. After they’ve run their course, caused as much destruction as they possibly can, and utterly destroyed themselves, we’ll rise again with stoic vigilance. Ours is not a mindset that willingly reverts to the peon mindset of the 16th century, no matter how often and how forcefully our leaders expect us to.

So today, as you hear the joyful cries of the doomed New Majority, do not engage in arguments with them. Do not be quick to anger. Do not try to tell them why they are wrong and why their vision lacks humility or common sense. Such plying will fall on deaf ears.

Instead, take heart in the fact that although today may be their day, eventually they will self-destruct. Their time will end, and they’ll come to us for aid as they watch their loved ones die. In that moment, I have no doubts that we will show them more grace than they offered us.

America has changed. But we don’t have to. We just have to learn this new game and wait for our moment.

Stay strong.

The trouble with Socialism is that you eventually run out of other people’s money.

Llew Gardner, This Week, February 5 1976:

There are those nasty critics, of course, who suggest that you don’t really want to bring [the Labour Party] down at the moment. Life is a bit too difficult in the country, and that… leave them to sort the mess out then come in with the attack later … say next year.

Margaret Thatcher, Prime Minister of the United Kingdom, 1979-1990:

I would much prefer to bring them down as soon as possible. I think they’ve made the biggest financial mess that any government’s ever made in this country for a very long time, and Socialist governments traditionally do make a financial mess. They always run out of other people’s money. It’s quite characteristic of them. They then start to nationalise everything, and people just do not like more and more nationalization, and they’re now trying to control everything by other means. They’re progressively reducing the choice available to ordinary people.

The Way Forward

Republicans need to weed out candidates who talk like morons […].

No whimpering. No whining. […] Do conservatism but do it better.

— Charles Krauthammer The Way Forward

I think he’s right about what’s wrong. I think he makes some good suggestions about how to fix it. I’m just not convinced it’s enough or that it would work.

It’s like a parent who’s been letting their kids eat candy for breakfast and tries to take it away when their teeth start to rot without being prepared to deal with the ensuing tantrums.