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December 19, 2011

DOOM: I want to do right but not right now


The death of Kim Jong-Il may mark the beginning of North Korea's slow climb out of abyssal misery...or it may mark the beginning of a chaotic meltdown of this dysfunctional "Hermit Kingdom". (This has been a bad year for crazy villains, hasn't it? Khadaffi, Osama bin Laden, and now Kim Jong-Il.)

Knock me over with a feather: the ability to delay gratification is a hallmark of responsibility and probity; the lack thereof is a good sign of irresponsibility. I've often thought that many people deep in credit-card debt ought to have to go about wearing a POOR IMPULSE CONTROL sandwich board.

Fitch to seven global banks: BAM!

A good primer on terminology and relationships in the securities trading business, if you’re interested in that sort of thing. It’s written in regular-person language, not finance-geek language.

You what chicks really like? Toilets.

Boy, and I though the poor orphan Oliver Twist had it bad. This is just inhuman! It’s like slavery times, only with the stink of mochachino and overpriced pastry in the air.

Poverty is more a behavioral problem than it is a lack of skills or economic opportunities. There is an almost-guaranteed path to not being poor for most people: graduate high school, get (and stay) married, and don’t have kids until after you’ve gotten married. (Though this advice is a “necessary but not sufficient” recipe, of course.) The degradation of marriage in the post Great Society era is one of the great evils of the age, and it can be laid almost entirely at the feet of Democrats. It’s striking to see how two former linchpins of civilized society -- marriage and religious faith -- have become rituals observed mainly by the well-off in the modern age.

The benighted isle of Albion has fallen far from the globe-spanning empire of more than a century ago, but perhaps the Brits have at last tried to arrest their downward descent. It may be too late...but maybe not.

Is modern capitalism sustainable? Well, if you understand “modern capitalism” to include a generous dollop of old-fashioned Socialism/Marxism, then no; it isn’t. The modern welfare state is driving everyone bankrupt. “Capitalism” is a reflection of reality, and by necessity always reflects the character of the people who engage in it: what we call the “economy” is just people doing what people do. The unprecedented explosion of credit (and hence of debt) in the modern age is not inevitably the result of untrammeled captialism so much as it is the unbridled lust of sovereign nations to hold a monopoly over the issue of currency. The move to a purely fiat global monetary system is the primary evil besetting the current capitalist age (so I say); that, and the traditional habit of sovereigns to debase that currency towards mainly political ends.

Portuguese socialists threaten ‘nuclear default’. This is the main problem with all of the promises, compacts, and “deals” during the EU crisis: the politicians can swear stout oaths to implement austerity and to force social change, but when all is said and done the people of these countries will either vouchsafe those promises or break them. And in Southern Europe, where the welfare state has passed from civilizational privilege to a feature of the landscape, the people show few signs of actually implementing those reforms being promised on their behalf.

I want you to try and parse the following sentence. You will receive ten points of extra credit if you can explain it in such a way that it a) makes economic sense, or b) even makes sense as an English language construction.

The only way to increase output in a demand-constrained economy is to do something that changes that relationship between output demanded and output, so that more output is demanded for any given level of output.

You know what’ll kill your household food budget? Stinky specialty cheese. What, you’re too good for Velveeta or Cheez-Wiz?

Fitch: Yeah, you know that big Euro “fix” that Merkel and Sarkozy have been talking up? It probably ain’t gonna happen...because it probably can’t happen.

Romney? A “creator”? Yeah...I dun’ theenk so, Lucy. I mean, I’m on board with the whole “Obama is a taker” thing, but Romney is a “creator” in the same sense that I am a ninja. (Which is to say: in my own mind and no where else.)

“Conservative” pundit David Frum is possessed by the astrally-projected spirit of Teh Krugman.

Communist Muppets and Capitalist self-loathing. The technical term for this kind of thing is oikophobia, or hatred of self. Bill Whittle did a masterful piece on this topic not long ago.

If we want American to be a “startup nation” again, we must reward risk-taking and entrepreneurship. In particular, we must reduce the smothering tax and regulatory burdens currently placed on businesses. We also need to produce citizens that are comfortable with the risks and hard work required to get a new business off the ground.

Even though our governments have been one long cavalcade of utter failure, we shouldn’t lose faith in government. Because they mean well, and in the happy land of fantasy that all of us good liberals inhabit, intentions matter more than actual results. Plus, you know who’s causing our politicians to be so useless? Big Business, that’s who. (That this credulous chump can even write the words “even more expert policymaking is needed” without bursting into flame should tell you the general level of clue you will find in this piece. Which is to say: none at all. As unintentional comedy, however, this essay succeeds fabulously.)

British poets refuse to compete for dirty Jew financier gold. Yet they have no such compunctions about taking money extorted from taxpayers and ladled out by the government. Let them revel in their own obscurity. They are the dingleberries on the asshair of the human race. T. S. Eliot would have mocked these stooges mercilessly via poetry that is light-years better than anything being produced in the hallowed halls of Academe today.

What's the Mandarin for "Tea Party"?

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posted by Monty at 09:04 AM

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