27 June 2009

Economic Discussion

I posted this in a discussion I was having in macroeconomics. Just thought I'd put it here too.

Many people have expressed a lack of understanding on how we came to be in this economic mess in the first place. I did some reading and here is some of the factors that caused the meltdown. First there was the Community Reinvestment Act of 1977. This created an "affirmative obligation" that banks had to give more loans to poor people and minorities. In 1989 Congress changed the Home Mortgage Disclosure Act and made banks record racial and other personal data on mortgage applications.Then in 1995 the Clinton Treasury Dept. began tracking loans by neighborhoods, income groups, and races. They used this data to rate the performance of banks. These ratings were used to determine if bank mergers, acquistions, or new bank branches would be approved. So the government encouraged banks to give more loans to poor and minorities. Groups like ACORN and other community activists began extorting banks and pressured them into making more bad loans. With all of this going on banks were forced to abandon traditional underwriting standards. Otherwise the government would not allow the banks to expand. This government interference created the subprime mortgage market. Then in 1992 the Dept. of Housing and Urban Development created government corporations Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac to buy up bundles of these sub-prime loans.This diversified the risk and made more money available for banks to make more risky loans.Then Congress passed something called the Housing Enterprises Financial Safety and Soundness Act. As with most legislation the title did not match the bill. This essentially mandated that companies had to buy 45% of all loans from people of low to moderate incomes. In 1995 the treasury dept. established the Community Development Financial Institutions Fund and provided banks with tax money to encourage even more high risk subprime loans. Fannie and Freddie were not regulated or forced to adhere to standard business and oversight practices. When people called for them to open up their books and comply with ethical and financially sound regulations top congressional allies of Fannie and Freddie, including Barney Frank Chris Dodd, Chuck Schumer, and others resisted all efforts of reform. Meanwhile Fannie and Freddie executives cooked the books and awarded themselves millions in bonues. Government interference and social engineering created the derivatives market. Deriviatives are contracts. One bank would sell the risk associated with a mortgage to another company in exchange for payments based on the loan's value. It was kind of like buying insurance. People were gambling. They were betting on which mortgages would be foreclosed and which would not. This practice spread and multiplied the risk of bad mortgages to other parts of the economy. The last factor that played a huge role in the economic crisis was the Fed. From Jan. '01 to June '03 the Fed slashed interest rates from 6.5% to 1%. So the Fed imposed an easy money policy that artificially manipulated the housing market, interfered with normal market conditions, and destabilized the economy. When everything began to crash the government started spending money like crazy. First it was TARP at the end of '08. This program alone might exceed $1 Trillion. or 7% of our GDP. $350 billion of that TARP money is currently unaccounted for. The Fed also began bailing out companies like Bear Stearns and AIG, and of course Fannie and Freddie got $200 billion. The Fed all together gave out $7 trillion. Then of course there is the so called stimulus package which has also been a staggering waste of money. Thus far it has been a slush fund wrought with corruption and fraud. All of this spending has slowed economic recovery and will cause a lot of pain in the future. This thing is not over yet. So all in all there are a lot of culprits responsible for this economic meltdown. Its origins are further back than people realize. This storm has been coming for a long time and there are no clear skies in sight. So cheer up the worst is yet to come! ;-)

W. Epler

26 June 2009

Here's their websites

"Never have so few stolen so much from so many to achieve so little"
An epitaph from Vodkapundit

Bono Mack http://bono.house.gov...
Castle http://www.castle.hou...
Kirk http://www.house.gov/...
Lance http://lance.house.go...
LoBiondo http://www.house.gov/...
McHugh http://mchugh.house.g...
Reichert http://reichert.house...
Smith http://chrissmith.hou...

Raise Hell. Tell these scumbags what's up!

I'm As MAD AS HELL!!

"Remember these names come 2010, 2012...if there is a country left.
Bono Mack (CA) 202-225-5330 - Castle (DE) 202-225-4165 - Kirk (IL) 202-225-4835- Lance (NJ) 202-225-5361 - Lobiondo (NJ) 202-225-6572 - McHugh (NY) 202-225-4611 -Reichart (WA) 202-225-7761 - Chris Smith (NJ) 202-225-3765"

Call these dirtbags and tell them to rot in Hell for selling out their country and their constituents. Yes, that's right I am pissed off. With the House narrowly passing this abomination call cap and trade (read: punish and tax) it is on to the Senate. Start blasting the Senate NOW! Tell them that unless they want to suffer the consequences that those voting for the bill in the House will suffer soon, then they better shut this thing down NOW.

This cap and trade scam is part of a bigger game. The ultimate objective is nationalization of the oil and energy companies. Once prices get out of control, and they will, the government will step in and take over the companies "for our own good". The Dems will cry foul when gas prices soar and blame the evil oil companies. Once again we watch as the government creates a crisis in order to further its power. The iron boot of tyranny is pressing further on our throats. When will America wake up! The Dems are over-reaching. The Constitution is completely in tatters right now. Our government has become the very thing the Founding Fathers feared it would become.

STOP CAP AND TRADE SCAM!!

Right now the House is debating the cap and trade scam laegislation that will destroy our economy and do nothing for the planet. Even Greenpeace opposes it because they admit it will do nothing to stop "global warming". Well global warming is a scam too, but at least they admit it will do nothing about it. So the Dems are seeking to destroy our economy for no reason. Warren Buffet opposes it too. Since the Dems think he is so smart they should listen to him. This legislation will cause energy and gas prices to skyrocket. It will put companies out of business and kill millions of jobs. This bill will be a disaster. It is basically a 2 trillion dollar tax hike disguised as some kind of environmental bill. The cap and trade system is a scam and will be subject to the same corruption and waste that everything in government is riddled with. Call every single congressman you can and tell them to oppose this bill!
Vern Buchanan (FL-13): 202-225-5015
Joseph Cao (LA-02): 202-225-6636
Vern Ehlers (MI-03): 202-225-3831
Rodney Frelinghuysen (NJ-11): 202-225-5034
Jim Gerlach (PA-06): 202-225-4315
Tim Johnson (IL-15): 202-225-2371
Mark Kirk (IL-10): 202-225-4835
Chris Smith (NJ-04): 202-225-3765

Find your Congresman here and call now. Tell him to vote no on H.R. 2454, also called Waxman-Markey.

Obamacare

Obama's nightmare socialized healthcare plan will cost us trillions. It will lead to poor quality and rationed healthcare and destroy medical innovation in our country which is the leading medical innovator in the world. Obama says he wants to control costs. How? Why by denying certain people care. For example:

"President Obama suggested at a town hall event Wednesday night that one way to shave medical costs is to stop expensive and ultimately futile procedures performed on people who are about to die and don't stand to gain from the extra care."
-- Peter Nicholas, Los Angeles Times

Yeah, sorry grandma and grandpa. Your too old to get that life saving operation. This has already happened in Canada and Britain where certain life saving procedures or medications are denied to people on the basis of "cost effectiveness". That's right the government gets to determine how much money your life is worth. The United States is on its way to the scrap heaped of history. It is not just Obama's fault, but for some reason he feels the need to accelerate our demise.

Micheal Jackson Died

I am sorry that I do not really care about this story. I am not a fan. He lived a tormented life. He was rather bizzare and allegations of pedophilia followed him everywhere. Clearly something made him snap. His death was sudden and somewhat unexpected. But am I really surprised? No. I know his fans will mourn him for a long time.

25 June 2009

The Myth of Global Warming

I spend more time reading that writing. So here is another website.
http://www.ourcivilisation.com/aginatur/moregw.htm

Vegetarians Are Evil?

Just found this website. Kind of funny, but true too.
http://www.vegetariansareevil.com/index.html

21 June 2009

Fascism

Fascism was not always a dirty word. Fascism used to be very popular in Europe and even in the United States. Judging from Obama’s relatively high approval ratings it has become apparent that fascism is once again a popular method of governance. First of all let me define for you the proper meaning of fascism. Fascism is an economic system. It is socialism with “capitalist veneer”[1]. It was considered to be the middle way between Capitalism and Marxism. Simply put it is government control of privately owned companies. The government controls monetary systems and sets prices and wages. Sound familiar? Obama is a fascist in the economic sense. Social sciences often repeat the same mistakes multiple times within the same generation. History often repeats. When will we ever learn from our mistakes?
It is exactly what is at issue with nationalized healthcare. Obama has said one thing and done another pretty much since he crawled into office. When he says he doesn’t want to nationalize healthcare, you better believe he is planning on doing that very thing. This is not about helping the poor or uninsured. This is about government control. Once government controls your healthcare it will control a huge segment of the economy. Healthcare will become politicized. Some faceless bureaucrat will stand between you and your doctor. Millions of Americans will lose their private coverage and be forced onto a low quality and rationed public option. Obama says he wants to lower costs, but he will not address two issues that are responsible for much of our high healthcare prices: illegal immigration and frivolous lawsuits. Illegal immigrants and trial lawyers represent a large segment of his coalition. He would never do anything to anger his constituents and donors. We know socialized medicine has been a disaster almost everywhere it has been tried. If you don’t believe me then do your homework. The socialized healthcare disaster stories are too numerous to mention here. Just read some headlines: http://www.angelfire.com/pa/sergeman/issues/healthcare/socialized.html . Why do we expect different results here?
The Obama-maniacs will claim that the “free-market” system here in the US has failed and that the system is “unsustainable”. We have not had a free-market system here in the US for over 60 years. It is one of the most heavily regulated industries in the country. The problem here is too much government intervention. The government has already destroyed the healthcare system in the United States. Now we are proposing to hand it over to the very people who screwed it up in the first place? Just like the government to never let a good crisis go to waste. The government loves to create a problem and then claim to be the only ones who can fix it if we would just give them a little more power. Nationalizing healthcare will be the greatest transfer of power from the people to the government in our nation’s history since the invention of the federal income tax.
Wake up people! Obama is not the “messiah”. He is not bringing “hope and change”. Obama is a politician. He cares only about power and rewarding his friends who help him accumulate power. A socialist nationalized healthcare plan is just another step down the road towards egalitarian fascism. A government strong enough to control your healthcare is a government that can kill you.

[1] Concise Encyclopedia of Economics http://www.econlib.org/library/Enc/Fascism.html

Support the People of Iran

Since we lack true leadership from our "fearless leader" Obama, we should show all the support we can for the people of Iran. The Iranian people are Persian, not Arab. They have a proud and noble heritage of self-governance, cultural, and scientific accomplishment. The Iranian people want to be free. There are numerous blogs coming out of Iran. I stumbled across this one while doing some research. With growing democracies bordering Iran to the east and west I think the time is near that we will see the corrupt and evil regime of the Ayatollah fall. There is a thriving intellectual movement in Iran that is advocating freedom and secular government. The American people should support it.

17 June 2009

Janet Contreras from Arizona:

Because I could not have said it better myself, here is an open letter from Janet in Arizona. Her letter was read on radio and TV by Glenn Beck and Beck interviewed her on radio today.

I'm a home grown American citizen, 53, registered Democrat all my life. Before the last presidential election I registered as a Republican because I no longer felt the Democratic Party represents my views or works to pursue issues important to me. Now I no longer feel the Republican Party represents my views or works to pursue issues important to me. The fact is I no longer feel any political party or representative in Washington represents my views or works to pursue the issues important to me. There must be someone. Please tell me who you are. Please stand up and tell me that you are there and that you're willing to fight for our Constitution as it was written. Please stand up now. You might ask yourself what my views and issues are that I would horribly feel so disenfranchised by both major political parties. What kind of nut job am I? Will you please tell me?
Well, these are briefly my views and issues for which I seek representation:
One, illegal immigration. I want you to stop coddling illegal immigrants and secure our borders. Close the underground tunnels. Stop the violence and the trafficking in drugs and people. No amnesty, not again. Been there, done that, no resolution. P.S., I'm not a racist. This isn't to be confused with legal immigration.
Two: the TARP bill, I want it repealed and I want no further funding supplied to it. We told you “no”, but you did it anyway. I want the remaining unfunded 95% repealed. Freeze, repeal.
Three: Czars, I want the circumvention of our checks and balances stopped immediately. Fire the czars. No more czars. Government officials answer to the process, not to the president. Stop trampling on our Constitution and honor it.
Four, cap and trade. The debate on global warming is not over. There is more to say.
Five, universal healthcare. I will not be rushed into another expensive decision. Don't you dare try to pass this in the middle of the night and then go on break? Slow down!
Six, growing government control. I want states rights and sovereignty fully restored. I want less government in my life, not more. Shrink it down. Mind your own business. You have enough to take care of with your real obligations. Why don't you start there?
Seven, ACORN. I do not want ACORN and its affiliates in charge of our 2010 census. I want them investigated. I also do not want mandatory escrow fees contributed to them every time on every real estate deal that closes. Stop the funding to ACORN and its affiliates pending impartial audits and investigations. I do not trust them with taking the census over with our taxpayer money. I don't trust them with our taxpayer money. Face up to the allegations against them and get it resolved before taxpayers get any more involved with them. If it walks like a duck and talks like a duck, hello. Stop protecting your political buddies. You work for us, the people. Investigate.
Eight, redistribution of wealth. No, no, no. I work for my money. It is mine. I have always worked for people with more money than I have because they gave me jobs. That is the only redistribution of wealth that I will support. I never got a job from a poor person. Why do you want me to hate my employers? Why ‑‑ what do you have against shareholders making a profit?
Nine, charitable contributions. Although I never got a job from a poor person, I have helped many in need. Charity belongs in our local communities, where we know our needs best and can use our local talent and our local resources. Butt out, please. We want to do it ourselves.
Ten, corporate bailouts. Knock it off. Sink or swim like the rest of us. If there are hard times ahead, we'll be better off just getting into it and letting the strong survive. Quick and painful. Have you ever ripped off a Band-Aid? We will pull together. Great things happen in America under great hardship. Give us the chance to innovate. We cannot disappoint you more than you have disappointed us.
Eleven, transparency and accountability. How about it? No, really, how about it? Let's have it. Let's say we give the buzzwords a rest and have some straight honest talk. Please try ‑‑ please stop manipulating and trying to appease me with clever wording. I am not the idiot you obviously take me for. Stop sneaking around and meeting in back rooms making deals with your friends. It will only be a prelude to your criminal investigation. Stop hiding things from me.
Twelve, unprecedented quick spending. Stop it now.
Take a breath. Listen to the people. Let's just slow down and get some input from some nonpoliticians on the subject. Stop making everything an emergency. Stop speed reading our bills into law. I am not an activist. I am not a community organizer. Nor am I a terrorist, a militant or a violent person. I am a parent and a grandparent. I work. I'm busy. I'm busy. I am busy, and I am tired. I thought we elected competent people to take care of the business of government so that we could work, raise our families, pay our bills, have a little recreation, complain about taxes, endure our hardships, pursue our personal goals, cut our lawn, wash our cars on the weekends and be responsible contributing members of society and teach our children to be the same all while living in the home of the free and land of the brave.
I entrusted you with upholding the Constitution. I believed in the checks and balances to keep from getting far off course. What happened? You are very far off course. Do you really think I find humor in the hiring of a speed reader to unintelligently ramble all through a bill that you signed into law without knowing what it contained? I do not. It is a mockery of the responsibility I have entrusted to you. It is a slap in the face. I am not laughing at your arrogance. Why is it that I feel as if you would not trust me to make a single decision about my own life and how I would live it but you should expect that I should trust you with the debt that you have laid on all of us and our children? We did not want the TARP bill. We said no. We would repeal it if we could. I am sure that we still cannot. There is such urgency and recklessness in all of the recent spending.
From my perspective, it seems that all of you have gone insane. I also know that I am far from alone in these feelings. Do you honestly feel that your current pursuits have merit to patriotic Americans? We want it to stop. We want to put the brakes on everything that is being rushed by us and forced upon us. We want our voice back. You have forced us to put our lives on hold to straighten out the mess that you are making. We will have to give up our vacations, our time spent with our children, any relaxation time we may have had and money we cannot afford to spend on you to bring our concerns to Washington. Our president often knows all the right buzzword is unsustainable. Well, no kidding. How many tens of thousands of dollars did the focus group cost to come up with that word? We don't want your overpriced words. Stop treating us like we're morons.
We want all of you to stop focusing on your reelection and do the job we want done, not the job you want done or the job your party wants done. You work for us and at this rate I guarantee you not for long because we are coming. We will be heard and we will be represented. You think we're so busy with our lives that we will never come for you? We are the formerly silent majority, all of us who quietly work , pay taxes, obey the law, vote, save money, keep our noses to the grindstone and we are now looking up at you. You have awakened us, the patriotic spirit so strong and so powerful that it had been sleeping too long. You have pushed us too far. Our numbers are great. They may surprise you. For every one of us who will be there, there will be hundreds more that could not come. Unlike you, we have their trust. We will represent them honestly, rest assured. They will be at the polls on voting day to usher you out of office. We have cancelled vacations. We will use our last few dollars saved. We will find the representation among us and a grassroots campaign will flourish. We didn't ask for this fight. But the gloves are coming off. We do not come in violence, but we are angry. You will represent us or you will be replaced with someone who will. There are candidates among us when he will rise like a Phoenix from the ashes that you have made of our constitution.
Democrat, Republican, independent, libertarian. Understand this. We don't care. Political parties are meaningless to us. Patriotic Americans are willing to do right by us and our Constitution and that is all that matters to us now. We are going to fire all of you who abuse power and seek more. It is not your power. It is ours and we want it back. We entrusted you with it and you abused it. You are dishonorable. You are dishonest. As Americans we are ashamed of you. You have brought shame to us. If you are not representing the wants and needs of your constituency loudly and consistently, in spite of the objections of your party, you will be fired. Did you hear? We no longer care about your political parties. You need to be loyal to us, not to them. Because we will get you fired and they will not save you. If you do or can represent me, my issues, my views, please stand up. Make your identity known. You need to make some noise about it. Speak up. I need to know who you are. If you do not speak up, you will be herded out with the rest of the sheep and we will replace the whole damn congress if need be one by one. We are coming. Are we coming for you? Who do you represent? What do you represent? Listen. Because we are coming. We the people are coming.

16 June 2009

Open Letter from Lou Pritchett

Dear President Obama:

You are the thirteenth President under whom I have lived and unlike any of the others, you truly scare me.
You scare me because after months of exposure, I know nothing about you.
You scare me because I do not know how you paid for your expensive Ivy League education and your upscale lifestyle and housing with no visible signs of support.
You scare me because you did not spend the formative years of youth growing up in America, and culturally you are not an American.
You scare me because you have never run a company or met a payroll.
You scare me because you have never had military experience, thus don't understand it at its core.
You scare me because you lack humility and "class," always blaming others.
You scare me because for over half your life you have aligned yourself with radical extremists who hate America and you refuse to publicly denounce these radicals who wish to see America fail.
You scare me because you are a cheerleader for the "blame America" crowd and deliver this message abroad.
You scare me because you want to change America to a European style country where the government sector dominates instead of the private sector.
You scare me because you want to replace our health care system with a government controlled one.
You scare me because you prefer "wind mills" to responsibly capitalizing on our own vast oil, coal and shale reserves.
You scare me because you want to kill the American capitalist goose that lays the golden egg which provides the highest standard of living in the world.
You scare me because you have begun to use "extortion" tactics against certain banks and corporations.
You scare me because your own political party shrinks from challenging you on your wild and irresponsible spending proposals.
You scare me because you will not openly listen to or even consider opposing points of view from intelligent people.
You scare me because you falsely believe that you are both omnipotent and omniscient.
You scare me because the media gives you a free pass on everything you do.
You scare me because you demonize and want to silence the Limbaughs, Hannitys, O'Reillys and Becks who offer opposing, conservative points of view.
You scare me because you prefer controlling over governing.
Finally, you scare me because if you serve a second term I will probably not feel safe in writing a similar letter in 8 years.

Lou Pritchett

Lou Pritchett worked for Proctor and Gamble for 36 years until his retirement in 1989. He is also the author of the 1995 Business Book, Stop Paddling & Start Rocking the Boat

13 June 2009

How do we stop the unstoppable force of government?

I have been thinking about how best to stop this madness. How I can make a difference. I feel like I am constantly trying to wake people up, but they remain lethargic and apathetic. I believe most people are entirely ignorant. Not only do they not know anything about the Constitution, they do not want to know. Most people do not even know who the Founding Fathers were and they certainly do not know what they stood for. Enough Americans today do not want to be free. They want a "big brother" to take care of them. God help us, what is it going to take to wake them up? Like Socrates we must be the "gadfly" that pesters the lumbering beasts. Like Socrates we will be persecuted and misunderstood. I do not think all is lost if we can just educate people and wake enough of them up to the dangers we face. Patience and persistence are key.

12 June 2009

This speech really needs to be given again.

From: http://reagan2020.us/speeches/A_Time_for_Choosing.asp
A Time for Choosing
Given as a stump speech, at speaking engagements, and on a memorable night in 1964 in support of Barry Goldwater's presidential campaign. This version is from that broadcast.
1964
I am going to talk of controversial things. I make no apology for this.
It's time we asked ourselves if we still know the freedoms intended for us by the Founding Fathers. James Madison said, "We base all our experiments on the capacity of mankind for self government."
This idea -- that government was beholden to the people, that it had no other source of power -- is still the newest, most unique idea in all the long history of man's relation to man. This is the issue of this election: Whether we believe in our capacity for self-government or whether we abandon the American Revolution and confess that a little intellectual elite in a far-distant capital can plan our lives for us better than we can plan them ourselves.
You and I are told we must choose between a left or right, but I suggest there is no such thing as a left or right. There is only an up or down. Up to man's age-old dream--the maximum of individual freedom consistent with order -- or down to the ant heap of totalitarianism. Regardless of their sincerity, their humanitarian motives, those who would sacrifice freedom for security have embarked on this downward path. Plutarch warned, "The real destroyer of the liberties of the people is he who spreads among them bounties, donations and benefits."
The Founding Fathers knew a government can't control the economy without controlling people. And they knew when a government sets out to do that, it must use force and coercion to achieve its purpose. So we have come to a time for choosing.
Public servants say, always with the best of intentions, "What greater service we could render if only we had a little more money and a little more power." But the truth is that outside of its legitimate function, government does nothing as well or as economically as the private sector.
Yet any time you and I question the schemes of the do-gooders, we're denounced as being opposed to their humanitarian goals. It seems impossible to legitimately debate their solutions with the assumption that all of us share the desire to help the less fortunate. They tell us we're always "against," never "for" anything.
We are for a provision that destitution should not follow unemployment by reason of old age, and to that end we have accepted Social Security as a step toward meeting the problem. However, we are against those entrusted with this program when they practice deception regarding its fiscal shortcomings, when they charge that any criticism of the program means that we want to end payments....
We are for aiding our allies by sharing our material blessings with nations which share our fundamental beliefs, but we are against doling out money government to government, creating bureaucracy, if not socialism, all over the world.
We need true tax reform that will at least make a start toward restoring for our children the American Dream that wealth is denied to no one, that each individual has the right to fly as high as his strength and ability will take him.... But we cannot have such reform while our tax policy is engineered by people who view the tax as a means of achieving changes in our social structure....
Have we the courage and the will to face up to the immorality and discrimination of the progressive tax, and demand a return to traditional proportionate taxation? . . . Today in our country the tax collector's share is 37 cents of every dollar earned. Freedom has never been so fragile, so close to slipping from our grasp.
Are you willing to spend time studying the issues, making yourself aware, and then conveying that information to family and friends? Will you resist the temptation to get a government handout for your community? Realize that the doctor's fight against socialized medicine is your fight. We can't socialize the doctors without socializing the patients. Recognize that government invasion of public power is eventually an assault upon your own business. If some among you fear taking a stand because you are afraid of reprisals from customers, clients, or even government, recognize that you are just feeding the crocodile hoping he'll eat you last.
If all of this seems like a great deal of trouble, think what's at stake. We are faced with the most evil enemy mankind has known in his long climb from the swamp to the stars. There can be no security anywhere in the free world if there is no fiscal and economic stability within the United States. Those who ask us to trade our freedom for the soup kitchen of the welfare state are architects of a policy of accommodation.
They say the world has become too complex for simple answers. They are wrong. There are no easy answers, but there are simple answers. We must have the courage to do what we know is morally right. Winston Churchill said that "the destiny of man is not measured by material computation. When great forces are on the move in the world, we learn we are spirits--not animals." And he said, "There is something going on in time and space, and beyond time and space, which, whether we like it or not, spells duty."
You and I have a rendezvous with destiny. We will preserve for our children this, the last best hope of man on earth, or we will sentence them to take the first step into a thousand years of darkness. If we fail, at least let our children and our children's children say of us we justified our brief moment here. We did all that could be done.

11 June 2009

I'm Back

I'm bored. So I am blogging again. Things are getting bad. They will get worse. Time to vent. If anyone remembers me from a few years ago, I think you will find me a bit different.