Thursday, June 30, 2011

The Deficit Is Worse Than We Think

I've pointed this out to a few people over the last few years, as soon as the Fed finally raises interest rates beyond their supernaturally low current levels, the amount of money we will have to pay to MAINTAIN THE INTEREST PAYMENTS on the national debt will balloon out of control. These current talks about raising the debt ceiling another trillion and cutting some discretionary spending are going to look ridiculous in hindsight.

Only drastic changes can fix drastic problems.

1. The rise in interest expense will cause more Federal revenue to go into paying debt interest, cancelling out any small gains made from cost cutting.
2. The economy is not going to grow by 4% annually as predicted by the White House, leaving us another 4 Trillion in debt over the next ten years even if we don't allocate an extra dollar.
3. The long run costs of Obamacare are going to be much higher than anyone anticipated, further adding to the debt.

We must bring the troops home, war is killing this country. We must end the Federal Reserve and let Congress dictate financial policies; buying our own debt with money we print is insane. We must raise retirement ages and cut back on the amount of Social Security, medicare and medicaid a citizen can collect. We must do these things now, before we turn into a failed state and leave my children living in a 3rd world country.

Greece, home of Democracy, now with more Anarchy

Looks like the vote to destroy their entitlements retirement at 35 country has gone over well with the people. Must not have a 2nd Amendment over there if everyone is going melee instead of FPS.

Why does the MSM use such odd analogies for measurements?

Why, in stories such as this, do we equate liquids (concrete) to olympic swimming pools and solids such as steel, to the number of Eiffel towers?
These aren't units of measure that help explain anything better than the cubic feet and tons that were used in the article. If people don't get cubic feet, so be it, but I don't think telling them it would fill up a football field to a depth of 10 feet really gets the point across any better.
Chalk it up to my scientific background, but that sort of thing in articles annoys me.

Best way to sum up the article? This bridge is really long and makes getting to an island 20 minutes faster.
There, no crazy analogies needed.

Fuckitol from the makers of Dangitamin

http://www.thefunnybox.com/2006/10/04/fuckitol-de-stress-pill/

heh.

Balanced Budget Amendment Being Put on Schedule

A balanced budget amendment is getting put on the legislative schedule in both the Senate and the House. I'm not overly optimistic, but it makes me glad to hear its even being considered. I still think the states should pass it and force it on the .gov.

Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Top 5 Places Not to be if things go bad with the Global Economy

1. Israel
2. Southern California
3. England
4. New York City
5. Washington, DC
"To sum up, those areas that have lived highest on the hog in the dollar paradigm will most likely be the worst places to live when the dollar collapses."
More here

“You can ignore reality,but you can’t ignore the consequences of ignoring reality.” -Ayn Rand

I don't think my neighborhood would fair too well either, but central Ohio will likely do better than NYC or DC and a damn site better than the deserts of the US Southwest. At least here we have rain and land to farm.

The question is whether free peoples will choose to remain free, or to submit.

Interesting read about how Iceland basically just shrugged off any chance of joining the EU b/c the Government and its people have voted, again, not to repay money lost by PRIVATE BANKS to foreign citizens.

Let me repeat: The EU is declaring financial war on Iceland b/c the Icelandic .gov won't repay money that PRIVATE BANKS lost to non-Icelandic citizens.

They are going to be denied entry into the EU, banks and brokers are downgrading their bonds and they will be made a pariah on the international stage b/c they aren't willing to jump on the same band wagon as other 1st world governments who all says "banks are too big to fail".

Man I wish my country had balls like this.

On a side note, if Iceland has to live with itself, at least the average Icelandic lady looks like this

Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Alan Greenspan says we're screwed, S&P says we're boned, Obama says things are looking up!

Greenspan says we are likely headed for another recession (this one ended at some point?) if a major economic bump in the road such as a Greek default, hits us anytime soon.

S&P says they are again warning the .gov that a downturn in their credit rating is in store if they don't stop playing games and fix something quickly

Obama and his financial gurus would have you believe things are getting better

Some folks who are big in the markets are calling for drastic changes soon to avoid Greek-style riots in the streets here in the good 'ol US of A. That's never good.

All I know is that between gas for my car and cereal for breakfast, I have no 'extra' funds for what life throws at me like I used to. Here's hoping a major appliance doesn't croak any time soon.

Friday, June 24, 2011

Random Pic of the week

Random thought from tha Intarwebz

lxa374 on Apr 6, 5:33 PM said:
"If we raise the debt ceilng, a loaf of bread would eventually cost $2000 thanks to inflation. Why dont we just slash Social InSecurity in 1/2, Military spending in 1/2 (bring troops home), pass tort reform and slash medicaid in 1/2? that will basically get us out of debt. That and impose tariffs on Chinese made crap (that I use)."

Not sure this approach would work, since it might leave a lot of people seniors starving in the streets, but I like the general gist; we look at where we actually spend money and cut there, instead of tryign to get blood from a stone by cutting spending in the small areas of discretionary spending. Entitlements and Defense are the only things worth cutting to fix this mess.

Thursday, June 23, 2011

Bees by mail

My best friend and his wife are beekeepers, and this video shows them "hiving" their latest delivery of bees (by mail no less).
Pretty interesting if you've never seen it done.

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Scary thoughts from Ol' Remus

I usually take his writings with a grain of salt (or three) but Ol' Remus has some thoughts on what to expect under martial law in the US of A., makes an interesting thought exercise at the very least, especially if you've ever read the "The Day the Dollar Died" series by Shenandoah. or payed attention to what happened in NOLA after Katrina for that matter.....

Monday, June 20, 2011

One wonders what the portent of this is....

So China actually announces that Billions have been stolen by businessmen fleeing state owned companies to the US. Knowing that this could be embarrassing to themselves, I doubt they announced it just to be nice.

Either they are A: inventing reasons to crack down domestically on the autonomy offered to companies currently, in an effort to sidestep any criticisms of the economy in China (hey, whatever is happening isn't the Govt's fault, its all b/c these crooks, so we're going to crack down on them and HARD) or B: Looking for a way to stage a platform of grievances from which to declare economic war with the US (those shady Americans knew what was going on but allowed all that money into their country illegally, and WE WANT IT BACK) or C: All of the above. Another possibility is D: Something else, that I haven't even thought of, but is still bad for the US of A.

Don't expect this to go away, at least not domestically in China, the govt there will beat this horse whenever they feel it is in their best interest (the ruling cabal, not China). Combine this with China divesting itself of American debt in areas that it can quickly liquidate, and it looks like the Chinese are preparing for something. Keep your eyes peeled and if you aren't already out of the stock market, now's your chance.

Saturday, June 18, 2011

Weed your garden after a good rain

Its that time of year again, and you should be watching out in the garden for those pesky weeds. They steal nutrients and water from your actual plants and if they touch, can pass diseases. Wait until after a good soaking thunderstorm and you should be able to easily pull those weeds, roots and all, right from the garden bed. Then they don't grow back and the wet ground pulls apart easily. This leaves more soil in the ground and doesn't disturb the roots of what you want to grow.
It might be a little muddy, but I promise that the dirt will come off your hands with a little soap and warm water.  :)

Friday, June 17, 2011

Michelle Obama doesn't like Jelly

So my mother-in-law comes home from working a shift at the church food pantry and she says that they can no longer get .gov assistance in receiving jelly to pass out with the peanut butter and loaves of bread. Apparently Michelle O' feels that Jelly is nothing but hollow calories.
Great, so the poor kids should eat nothing at all if they can't eat "healthy"? Somehow this is the opposite of "let them eat cake" and it rings just as false in my ears.
I was raised on PB&J, hell I ate two of them for dinner one night this week, and I'm not obese, I don't have diabetes and I don't have unhealthy eating habits. I would wager in fact that Michelle has the same BMI that I do.
Maybe the Nanny-In-Chief can just stick to campaigning for bigger nutrition labels on food and stop branding staple food items as 'trash'.
I will be buying jelly for the food pantry from now on, instead of my normal cans of tuna fish.

Thursday, June 16, 2011

Oh my, that is pretty

Well, I found what I want for Christmas. Ruger just released a new 22 pistol in a "gun fighter" frame with polished wooden grips, fiber optic sights and a ten shot cylinder (compared to 6 for most Ruger 22 revolvers and 8 on a few other manufacturers). Titled the "Single-Ten", referring to its single action and ten round capacity, its just plain "purdy"; the satin finish just looks nice. And the fiber optic sights on a cowboy frame give it just a touch of steampunk...has a very Firefly vibe to it. I have no purpose for owning it, but I'll happily use it to dispatch groundhogs in the backyard if the need arises.

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

The .Gov has gone nuts - Now they don't want us to poison mice!

So, I knew they were banning 100w light bulbs soon, I didn't realize they are also going to ban rat poison. Well, at least the effective kinds. 
The press release from the EPA says they will be banning the strongest types (i.e. most effective) and consumers will only be able to buy poisons with less toxicity that are sold in child and pet proof containers. If a pet can't get in it, whats the likelihood a rat will be able to? And if its less toxic, how much will the mice have to eat?
Plus, though they quote thousands of children exposed to rat poison, I can find no numbers online of the number of deaths attributed to pest poisons. Every child's death is tragic, but if this is affecting a very small number of people, shouldn't we regulate this a different way, maybe a public media campaign? Some PSA's on TV and radio would probably help stop a lot of those cases of child exposure. Maybe put some big warnings on the packaging ala cigarettes?

Now we're stuck with rat poison that isn't really poisonous. 

Good luck to all you folks in AZ fighting mice with the Hanta virus. As SayUncle says, its for your own good
I have kept away from New Jersey b/c I didn't want to live in a Nanny State, now all 50 of them are. Great.
Guess I'll be adding rat poison in with all the preps in the basement....

Sunday, June 12, 2011

US Government to have technical default on debt?

While I applaud the Redumblicans attempt to bring the national debt into the debate in DC, even a technical default (letting interest payments slide a couple of days) would have us lose our AAA debt rating, and would require the Fed Reserve to raise interest rates, something that would be horrible during a recession.

Hopefully we can discuss options in DC without a gun to the head of ol' Uncle Sam.

Saturday, June 11, 2011

Frightening thoughts about world resource usage

From Hugh Pickens, via Slashdot
"Pulitzer prize winning writer Thomas Friedman writes that in few years we may be looking back at the first decade of the 21st century — when food prices spiked, energy prices soared, world population surged, tornados plowed through cities, floods and droughts set records, populations were displaced and governments were threatened by the confluence of it all — and ask ourselves: What were we thinking?'We're currently caught in two loops,' writes Friedman. 'One is that more population growth and more global warming together are pushing up food prices; rising food prices cause political instability in the Middle East, which leads to higher oil prices, which leads to higher food prices, which leads to more instability.' According to the Global Footprint Network we are currently growing at a rate that is using up the Earth's resources far faster than they can be sustainably replenished, so we are eating into the future. Right now, global growth is using about 1.5 Earths. 'Having only one planet makes this a rather significant problem,' says Paul Gilding. 'We either allow collapse to overtake us or develop a new sustainable economic model. We will choose the latter. We may be slow, but we're not stupid.'"

Lets hope we do choose a more sustainable model. I hate to go all socialist all of the sudden, but it occurs to me that certain resources, such as oil, are the bedrock of the global economy and might need to be state controlled. The Libertarian in me hates that idea, however, the father of two who enjoys eating and being warm in the winter is largely OK with it really.

Friday, June 10, 2011

And now for something completely different....

This video rocks, check it out at the Feral Irishman

Bikes are free to ride where they want. Bike lanes are nice, but not necessary. In my neighborhood they start and then peter out so randomly I tend to ignore them. They tend to be in the straightaways, and then at intersections or busy throughways where they would be the most useful, they don't exist.

My wife's cousins in Germany, however, have bike and pedestrian only "roads" between villages that are completely separate and sometimes faster than the paved roads and highways. I've been over there twice and each time I was able to ride my bicycle I had rented between the two villages and the small city where her cousins lived without ever using the car roads. Now thats what I call bike lanes.

Thursday, June 9, 2011

Just the facts ma'am. UN Global Small ArmsTreaty is an attempted gun ban.

From Forbes' Larry Bell
"In fact law-abiding citizens in America used guns in self-defense 2.5 million times during 1993 (about 6,850 times per day), and actually shot and killed 2 1/2 times as many criminals as police did (1,527 to 606). Those civilian self-defense shootings resulted in less than 1/5th as many incidents as police where an innocent person was mistakenly identified as a criminal (2% versus 11%).
Just how effectively have gun bans worked to make citizens safer in other countries? Take the number of home break-ins while residents are present as an indication. In Canada and Britain, both with tough gun-control laws, nearly half of all burglaries occur when residents are present. But in the U.S. where many households are armed, only about 13% happen when someone is home.
Recognizing clear statistical benefit evidence, 41 states now allow competent, law-abiding adults to carry permitted or permit-exempt concealed handguns. As a result, crime rates in those states have typically fallen at least 10% in the year following enactment."

No comments from me needed, this sort of stuff speaks for itself.

Wednesday, June 8, 2011

Default Looms One Way or the Other

This article from the Utah Herald is frightening but I can find nothing wrong with the columnists logic.

$61.6 Trillion in unfunded mandated spending. plus $14 trillion in national debt. We are currently "borrowing" money from the .gov employee retirement system (I have grave doubts that money was even parked there to begin with) and Congress and the Vice president are holed up somewhere trying to decide on what band-aid measure to apply so that redumblicans and dumbocrats can raise the debt ceiling and look like they got their way.


This country isn't falling off a cliff, but it sure is sliding downhill fast. Hope you brought your walking shoes, this is going to be a long journey before things get better.

Tuesday, June 7, 2011

Mexican Drug War

So the mexican marines capture a large weapons cache supposedly belonging to the narco group, Los Zetas. The number of weapons captured is impressive, even if it is just a small amount in the big picture, but what the heck are the Narco's doing with 2000lbs of fireworks? I love fireworks more than the average joe, but even so it would take me at least a long weekend to run through a ton of them. Maybe with a couple of my brothers in town I could do it one day, maybe.
I wonder if the mexican gov will auction off the fireworks?  hhmmmmm

Monday, June 6, 2011

Enjoy the fall of Rome - RUM PUNCH

Well, the economy is spiraling towards...well..something bad, the .gov is still printing money like crazy, the EU is falling apart, and China is divesting their Trillion dollars in US Debt as quickly as they can without causing a panic. The Redumblicans can't find a candidate to run against Obama worth a damn, and all in all, things are most definitely NOT looking up.
Well......not much I can do about it.

Best to enjoy these times with a nice adult beverage on the back porch. 

RUM PUNCH
Splash of lemon juice
2 Cups Bacardi light rum
2 liters ginger ale
1 qt. pineapple juice
1 qt. orange juice
Ice cubes
Pour into punch bowl. Stir well. To serve: pour over one ice cube in each glass.

Friday, June 3, 2011

Good deal on a good meal. Yum.

Preparedness Pantry/Emergency Essentials (beprepared.com) is having a product giveaway for their new Mexican Food Combo. Emergency Essentials is one of my favorite places to shop online, Give it a look, whether you win or not, its not a bad combo to have around, I'm going to buy one, either way. One question; I wonder how well tortilla's freeze?

Mexican Food Combo:
1 Can of spiced "taco" TVP
1 Can of white rice
1 Can of dehydrated re-fried beans
1 Can of freeze dried super sweet corn
1 Can of black beans
1 Can of dehydrated chopped onions

Mix in some salsa and sour cream with some flour tortilla's, splash a little lime juice in the rice, and you've got my favorite Chipotle burrito (although I always use black beans and leave out the re-fried). I'm going to see if I can figure out how to take this recipe backpacking......

Wednesday, June 1, 2011

Penn and Teller on the 2nd Amendment and my ramblings

Anyone who knows me for more than a few days will invariably find out that I am a strict Constructionist. Meaning I like our system of government and the framing document that supports it. It also means I fully support any amendments to the original, especially the one that repealed prohibition.  :)
I don't like how far our government has strayed from the Constitution, especially since the framers put in a wonderful mechanism for modifying it. Want a Dept of Education, no problem, get an amendment passed. Want a balanced budget requirement for Congress with some teeth? No problem, amendment. Want to do anything not spelled out in the document? Amend that puppy. Its a simple system and since we need a majority of states to ratify an amendment, not one that lends itself to abuse. Nothing is stopping us from having the government we have today codified in our Constitution, so why don't we take the extra steps to make it official? legislative laziness? Fear the amendments would never pass muster? Lack of anyone in DC caring about the Constitution? I don't know. I do know I get tired of people who complain about parts of our Constitution.

That being said, I know a lot of people personally and many more online who simply despise firearms (and those who own them in many cases). Since this is a right given to the people expressly in the 2nd Amendment and one that really isn't that big a deal, I don't for the life of me understand how we let people get away with railing against it. We wouldn't condone people setting up a "Repeal the 16th Amendment and put Blacks in as 2nd class citizens" Foundation. I know it'd be tough to get 503c status from the IRS at least, much less donors. Yet, groups that want to take away this Constitutionally granted, explicit right can indeed set up PAC's, charities, accept tax deductible donations and publicly rail against something, that if it were "civil rights" related would tie the ACLU in knots as they ran for their lawyers to stop you, or label you a hate group. Yet, really, when you consider life and liberty, what section of the constitution better addresses those "civil rights" needs then the Bill of Rights; all of them (well, maybe not the 10th, that's more about State's rights). The 1st allows us to say what we want, where we want, be it political or religious gatherings. The 4th prevents the government from just snooping around our house when its not warranted, so on and so forth. I think the 2nd, while a big deal to some hoplophobes out there, is actually pretty tame and is a reflection of the fact that our country had just fought a war to overcome a tyrannical government. Anyone who tells me that need could never arise again, obviously has their eyes shut and their ears plugged. Tyranny exists all over the world, the idea that it couldn't visit the US of A again is naive. A gun alone will never do anything, its just a tool after all, much like a hammer, rake or saw. But take away those tools, and you are powerless to do anything, be it build a chair, or defend you country or home. Yet, people all over this country stand up every day and say we need to take away guns for this reason and that. I'll be the first to admit there are guns in the hands of some bad guys out there, but that is no reason to take away my 2nd amendment rights b/c of what SOMEONE ELSE did. Punish them, not me.The justice system is delineated pretty well in the Constitution as well.

I just don't get it. I like Penn & Teller's thoughts on the 2nd, so I thought I would share.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1GNu7ldL1LM&feature=player_embedded