Monday, May 18, 2015

I've always like a good trilogy....

"I've always liked a good trilogy" will become my standard rebut to the established, "with Hillary we get Bill too!"
Assuming of course, and why not assume, that Jeb Bush is going to secure the GOP nomination.
Its not that I like Jeb Bush when I say that, but what I hope it does is imply that three is greater than two. If the logic we are using to support Hillary is that we also get the experience of a former President, and what could be better than that? I'd say the experience of two former Presidents is better.
George H. W. Bush is perhaps the most under appreciated President in history, certainly in our time, while Bill Clinton is perhaps the most over rated.
Throw in W. and you got the winning hand -- If it all boils down to the considerations and ties to experience.
I still don't get why Hillary is the only one running from the Democrats up to this point. Bernie Sander is an independent running as a Democrat, therefore I have to set his candidacy aside for the moment.
Jay Stevens, a biased pundit of the left said, "There’ll be no surprises from her, no possibility of greatness, no hope of transformative change."
He also said, "Oh, and the Electoral College map makes a Democratic win in 2016 almost inevitable."
Considering all the really smart ideas and people on the left, especially with all the behavior scientists and economist pontificating why people behave and do, I find it so ironic that there is no one else within the party stepping up.
The food pyramid was changed because Cass Sunstein and his cohorts figured people needed a simpler reminder about eating healthy, you'd think they advocate choice as a more rationale method of nominating a Presidential candidate.
What I am implying there is power corrupts and absolute power corrupts absolutely. The Democrats are just ceding power to a woman and family tainted, nay, doused in corruption allegations?
We truly are in a bad place if this be the case.
I'm sure the smart people on the left know this isn't a good idea, but up to this point it is the reality, which perhaps suggests that absolute power is already being wielded. Have all the would be contenders been "advised" as to what is good for them?

Sunday, May 17, 2015

Where The Wealth Is, Part 3

In predicting that the left may suggest a flat tax on capital soon, in order to booster their anti-1% cred, deflect criticism from Hillary's wealth, and in fact be well intended, what I failed to point out is that it would be detrimental and worsen certain aspects of the economic balance of our society.
It won't work, or happen, as simply as I stated, for the very reason that a 90% income tax on the rich isn't going to work either. Which by the way is the liberal answer to the conservative flat tax.
The reason being is the wealthy have choices now. Unlike fifty or sixty years ago when very much the entire world was in crumples and the United States dominated all, a 90% tax rate on the rich was doable. Where else would they go?
Try doing that today and see what happens! The Cayman Islands couldn't berth all the yachts headed their way.
Consider what businesses are doing today. The corporate taxes here are some of the highest in the world and to escape them companies are finding partners to merge with that share only a slither of a common cause. They're looking in Ireland, Canada and anywhere else where they can find a willing partner and a friendly tax regime. They're are then moving headquarters outside the United States in order to save money on taxes at record numbers.
Outsourcing 2.0.
A flat capital tax would do the same thing, to certain degrees, and that is not only a challenge for the United States and its own income inequality, but its a challenge for the entire world.
What we need to do, and why the GOP needs to get in the game, is have a discussion about how to use the existing tax system to extricate wealth and capital from the 1% in a way that is beneficial to us all and doesn't drive them(the wealth holders) away.
I'm loathe to suggest that the government just tax and spend. Argh!
Let's face it, a flat tax isn't going to happen and a flat capital tax has more of an opportunity, if nothing else, to get another Democrat elected President. Romney lost because of his wealth, Obama didn't have a lot of great ideas on addressing the disparity, he just hammered the idea of Romney being in the 1%.
Take a look at this article in Fortune Magazine,
What you'll find is the 1% is investing in alternatives to big oil. What you'll learn is that the UN figures the world needs $1 trillion a year in investments to "decarbonize" the global economy.
Where are we going to get that money? Well, the 1% is already doing it on their own, to preserve their wealth status. But even so, their commitments aren't enough.
I've wrote it before and it bears repeating, the GOP is a hindrance in this country when it comes to the tremendous opportunity that green technology presents for American business. Couple that with their defiance on wealth disparity and we could very well miss out on more than we could ever imagine to change the energy game in this world.
However, billionaires are plowing ahead, the GOP be damned
That's an opinion too, of course, but its worth conveying that this Democrat President, the one that beat Romney and who is driving a multi-pronged agenda to establish his party dominance for years to come, just allowed the Department of Energy, "to provide support and access to federal clean-tech R&D to a broad range of private investors and philanthropists. The aim of the program, called the Clean Energy Investment Initiative, is to help wealthy investors mobilize $2 billion in new clean-tech investments." -Fortune Magazine.

Friday, May 15, 2015

Where The Wealth Is, Part 2

Fortune Magazine, Yahoo Finance, and Bill Gates' Blog are three spots where I came across references to wealth, inequality, and the 1% since I last wrote on May 6th. Which is to confirm what I already have said, that this isn't an issue that is going away.
Glenn Beck may at some point catch up, but the contrast to these intelligent opinions is striking. Especially Bill Gates, who contributed ideas, not mocking attacks.
I'm not smart enough to come up with great new ideas, but I have my opinions. One opinion I have is that this issue is going to steam roller the Republican Party unless they start cramming.
The Democrats have a less than idea candidate to champion wealth related positions in Hillary Clinton, but its been my experience that for the left its the ideas and causes, not the character and personal failings that swing their levers.
So I don't think there will be a Romney-esque label placed on Mrs. Clinton that will succeed in distracting attention away from the validity of the ideas and statistics related to wealth disparity.
Here is one idea that I believe is going to up end conservative voters and leave them behind: the flat tax.
The flat tax is an idea that conservatives have dreamt about for years. Its been highly regarded and also disregarded, some think of it as a panacea for what ails the tax code and the bloated IRS. Others, like me, have come to believe that it would never overcome the vested interests, like the attorneys and accountants.
Plus the current tax code on income, although complex and unwieldy at times, is already regressive and somewhat fair. The complexity comes from the government valuing assorted behaviors from the people, and using the tax code accordingly to promote those behaviors.
The greatest deficiency of the flat tax idea however is that it targets the wrong thing, and this is where the progressives may find an election winning cause.
Income isn't where the money is at, its capital. What may come is an idea from the left, from the Democrats, to levy a flat tax on capital.
If you need a quick cramming on the distinction here, read the blog by Gates via the link I provided above. Its not difficult to understand. Taxing income, or labor, necessarily includes people who are already squeezed in this economy. Taxing capital is a whole different animal and captures wealth that escapes an income tax. The 1%, as it is, derives much of its wealth from capital, not income. They don't hold jobs, they employ capital.
In short, income taxes, a flat income tax specifically, doesn't change the equation we are a part of. The equation where the cliche that the rich are getting richer and the poor are getting poorer is valid and true.
Now the conservative arguments about class envy or class warfare are going to rise, but in the end they will be muted as more and more people come to understand the particulars of this topic.
Wealth distribution is out of whack, America is not as egalitarian as we think, upward mobility isn't as achievable as it once was in this country and statistically, historically, we as a society are as stratified into have and have not's as at any point in the past. The past being in all recorded modern human history. Understand there were times that were very, very stratified between the have and have not's, like 1800's.
The world wars wiped the wealth away from the 1% in the last century, a reset occurred. Since then they've come roaring back and are on course to truly dominate human kind like never before. This isn't a question of punishing the wealthy, but preserving opportunity for all.
Or we can wait, or hope, for a global calamity to do the job. That's not an approach I would champion.

Wednesday, May 6, 2015

Where the Wealth Is, Part 1

One of the oldest lines of advice that has stuck with me, not really advice but admonishment, was by the late and great Robert Anton Wilson. He wrote, "it only takes twenty years for a liberal to become a conservative without changing a single idea."
Often times I wondered what would you become in twenty years if you were conservative to begin with?
I tuned into talk radio the other day, Glenn Beck as it were, and caught the tail end of one of his mocking sessions. I must admit two things when it comes to Glenn Beck. Of course I do think he is nuts and I infrequently listen to him. But when I catch him, along with his cohorts, mocking someone, I am usually amused and entertained.
Simpleton stuff for the most part, like what Huffington Post does to conservatives.
The other day, when I tuned in, he was mocking someone because the person said something to the affect that a certain Scandinavian country had a more equal distribution of wealth than the United States.
The specifics really aren't that important, but the admonishment by beck was that the average income here in the States is higher than over there in Europe. That's what Glenn was selling, and he probably is right.
However that does not prove the opinion on wealth distribution wrong.
Wealth and Income are two distinct measurements. While it is true that income averages are greater here, it is also true that in certain countries wealth distribution is more equal than here in the States.
Again I'm not trying to be specific, or even attempting to carry the argument that was started by the unidentified speaker.
During the Presidential election cycle we all were exposed to a new issue and a new vernacular: Wealth distribution and the 1%.
If the Conservatives, like Mr. Beck and his followers, have any desire to influence in the arena of ideas, specifically now I'm talking about wealth and income disparities and what is a good public policy a society should adopt in regards to these imbalances, they ought to take the time to understand the distinction between the two measurements.
Mocking is entertaining, but the people with a better understanding of the points being made by economist are going to have more influence in elections.
Additionally, and we've seen this in Health Care, if the Conservatives are going to take the approach that the whole "1%" theme is over blown and inconsequential then they may be eliminating themselves from the entire debate. Which could happen to our collective detriment.
Wealth, Income, and Capital distribution is a real concern, and one in which we all have to discuss. We will not be served well if the GOP decides again to let the Democrats carry the conversation alone, and only after decisions are made to get serious about it.
We can't afford that.
At some point though, and many Democrats think it is eminent, conservatives are going to be so far behind the curve that they will become inconsequential themselves and winning national elections a thing of the past.
Twenty years later, a conservative may very well have missed a lot of new ideas. They risk becoming the Amish of the political community.
I consider myself rather conservative, but I'm open to new ideas and learning what people are passionate about, what learned people have been studying.
The idea that because one party or side of the political spectrum is for something, therefore I must be inherently against it is anathema to me.
Below is a hugely influential book by a French economist on Wealth, Income, and Capital. It was published after our last presidential election, but unless Mr. Beck and his cohorts catch up
with the conversation, his side risks losing a lot more than an election.…" width="1" height="1" border="0" alt="" style="border:none !important; margin:0px !important;" />

Wednesday, March 25, 2015

This Is Better?

Words are fools
Who follow blindly, once they get a lead.
But thoughts are kingfishers that haunt the pools
of quiet; seldom-seen...
- Siegried Sassoon
I remember an era, like it was yesterday, when the world was on fire and discontent with our leadership in the making of this world was under continuous scrutiny.
No one liked us we were told, and we've turned our allies into enemies.
Indeed, John Kerry, at one time a candidate for President, identified the strained relationships of George W. Bush with Gerhard Schroeder, of Germany, and Jacques Chirac, of France, as proof positive that the world was against us.
Hillary Clinton aped this rhetoric when she ran for office in 2007.
John, Hillary, and their party were adamant that change in the White House had to occur to restore to our country the valued friendship of our allies, which could only increase our esteem and ability to get things accomplished. To be the global leader that we once were.
Am I the only one who remembers this?
At the risk of running long, I'll bring full scrutiny to bear on the whole notion of how we stood in the world, and why it matters now.
Gerhard Schroeder was Germany Chancellor from 1998-2005, and era over lapping the entire first term of George W. Bush. Mr. Schroeder was widely recognized as an abrasive and arrogant man who had difficulty getting along with many world leaders, not just the U.S. President at the time.
Despite all the liberal protestations, and their convenient disregard of the personal aspect of U.S. - German relations, Mr. Schroeder was drummed out of office by the decidedly pro-American Angela Merkel. Seems the Germans didn't have such a problem with America as some would have you believe at the time.
France was headed by Jacques Chirac from 1995-2007 and many have described his personality as the same as Gerhard Schroeder. In fact Chirac was defeated in 2007 by, again, a decidedly pro-American Nicolas Sarkozy.
Makes you wonder if this discontent the world had with us then was in actuality, or just something John Kerry, Hillary Clinton, and their party would only have had you believe.
John Kerry is now the Secretary of State, having succeeded Hillary Clinton in that post, and his party has ruled the roost for over six years now. Which is to say that plenty of time has past so that a clean break from the prior administration's miscalculations should find us in a world of love and respect for the mighty red, white, and blue.
But that isn't the case.
Seemingly not a week goes by without another report of discontent from our erstwhile allies in regards to an action or policy emanating from Pennsylvania Avenue.
Israel is noteworthy for what is almost a mortal break from our past relationship.
Germany has serious issue with how we've spied on them, among other international concerns.
Throw France & Britain into that same lot.
Egypt was once an ally and although it was not an ideal relationship it worked. Now President Abdel Fattah el-Sisi makes routine comments questioning Obama's commitment to our commitments.
Of course Russia is a huge problem, but at least Bush tried to find peace and harmony with them. Today Putin mocks our President, something he never did when John & Hillary were just Senators.
I could go on, and I will.
There are no better relations with China, they continue to steal our technology and patents. As well as snub our diplomats and President.
North Korea is still a sixty, going on seventy year old problem.
John Kerry had the answers in his debates with Bush, not so much when he can apply those grand ideas himself as Secretary of State.
Iraq has proven Bush right as to what will happen if we withdrew from there.
Lastly Iran. If capitulation is the answer, as some identify an imminent agreement as, then we could of just capitulated thirty-five years ago and saved us all the interim costs and disagreements.
Another Presidential election cycle is just developing, and along with it some fresh, and some tired old accusations will be bantered about.
I can't help but keep in mind how disastrously wrong the judgement of some were and how disastrously those players have cost us our position in the world.

Wednesday, March 11, 2015

Random Links and Thoughts

Has anyone seen this link?
Evidently, from the story that provided me that link, he STILL hasn't asked any questions!
I suppose that is his right, and I'm admittedly not as smart as he is, but you would think basic intellectual curiosity would get the better of you during the course of nine years hearing cases that are non trivial.
I've said its statistically improbable for a President not to do something right in four or eight years, well its obviously not impossible for a Supreme Court Justice to not ask a question in at least that many years.
Dylan once said he'll be a mute, but not a perfect mute. Thomas is making a good run at it....
Nuance anyone? Read on.
I don't want to waste much time with Hillary. My over arching opinion is that she will not be the next president, and that much of this ballyhoo from her supporters were just the thing I was hearing about ten years ago from them. Anyone remember an unknown named Barrack Hussein Obama?
Besides that, anyone who does support Hillary is highly unlikely to ever, and I mean ever, dropped their support of her. That sentiment was verbalized on local radio today by the host of a talk program, a host that supports her by the way.
He could of just said, "Don't they all do it anyways?" Of course he might of, I wasn't listening very long. Comments like the above always strike me as somewhat unconvincing. Makes me wonder why we complain about the other side then, which WAS usually the case. Ya know, "I was really peeved when so and so Republican did it, but now that Hillary did it, I'm o.k. with that, and don't they all do it anyways?"
How about the letter that 47 GOP Senators signed that went to Iran!
Geez, like every two bit dictator in the world doesn't already know that the U.S. President is a lame duck the moment he, or she, is sworn in office. Destined to leave, and with all decisions to be revisited. House of Cards, on Netflix, even has the Russian President flatly stating this as reason not to take President Underwood serious.
Talk about nuance though, when the GOP pulls a stunt like this, to undermine the President, the Huffington Post calls it sabotage.
John Kerry calls it, "irresponsible."
What the Democrats did during the entire duration of the Iraq war? Well that was something else altogether, of course.
To me, it sounds a little like "they all do it." Which in this case is probably the most factual and applicable use of that phrase.
That's it, but remember, thank you and God bless America. But not the Christian God, because we are not a Christian nation.
Thanks G.M. I liked that article, I really did, thanks for sharing it.
Its just that I didn't buy into the premise that there is a threatening political current to officially make this country Christian. But if there were, yes, I'd have to agree that that isn't what the founding fathers intended.

Sunday, March 1, 2015

Net Neutrality

The easiest thing to do is criticize.
In fact, criticizing has been scientifically shown to lend to the critic a perception of smarts. Studies have shown that people will say the critic is smarter than the non-critic, even if the opinions come from the same person!
In other words, if I criticize something I'm perceived smarter, but if I praise that same thing I criticized earlier, I'm perceived not as smart. Studies have been performed, this is a known quality of human behavior.
And don't think the politicians and talking heads of the Right and Left don't know this. That's why they criticize, and why people admire them so much.
Knowing this behavior has very powerful benefits, especially when applied to an unsuspecting audience.
Knowing this, as I do, I've ground myself by adopting a counter weight, that is I also come to understand that it is statistically improbable, if not impossible, for someone to be wrong all the time.
So, for example, if I find myself believing everyday someone is wrong in elected office, I make an effort to take another look at the issue(s). Because maybe I'm the one who is wrong, whose humanity is being exploited.
Believe it or not, but I don't mind being wrong. That's being human too, being wrong. Its the not learning that bothers me.
Dylan said, "He not busy being born is busy dying."
With that being said, sometime politicians are wrong, a lot. Joe DiMaggio defied probability and hit in 56 straight games, so really, anything is possible.
I'm also loathe to lend my esteem, as little as I have, to some politician whom I do not know, and especially when I already perceive him or her as somewhat less than honest.
Now as to the FCC ruling on Net Neutrality, et. al.
The first thing I'm going to do is extract the President from this discussion. Two reasons. One, anytime I think that I could defend him, I'm reminded that despite my counterweight of statistical probabilities, the very real actions of the IRS targeting conservative groups, the lying about ObamaCare, and the dragging out of the facts in so many instances warns me to keep my distance, and save my esteem for someone or something else.
The second reason I'm removing the President from this issue, for the benefit of my arguments, is that Net Neutrality precedes him. It really does, its been an argument made by learned individuals and consumers advocates for more than a decade.
So I really don't see the need for him to muddy the waters, although it is honestly acknowledged that without him the decision may not of been made. He appointed members and pushed for the decision. Sometimes history has a momentum that Presidents get wrapped up in.
I'm not a pro-government advocate, I'm not looking for government to fix every ill in society. Sometimes the free markets need to work things out.
Sometimes though, the actions of government get overblown by people like me. We get all worked up about how our freedoms are being taking away with a ruling or a law. How "its a power grab" to our detriment. I'm not making that assumption this time.
Of course I could be wrong, we could all be screwed. But there are very smart people who supported this ruling, people like Timothy Wu of Columbia University who has written books on communications, telecommunications, and the internet. Who fancies himself as somewhat an expert on these matters, and as a consumer advocate.
Again, this decision could be wrong. The FCC, and congress, and of course Presidents have been wrong in the past. But sometimes criticism just sounds smart, because as humans we think that way.
No one pays for long distance phone calls anymore, there was a decision that led to that market adjustment, and criticism was rampant then about it too.
Why don't we relax on this, if we are all consumers, we all just might benefit by it, and if it doesn't work out then changes could be made.
That's happened before too, changing a change that initially didn't work out for the best. Timothy Wu can tell you about those times. The FCC hasn't always been right, but presumably they are on the consumer's side.

Sunday, February 22, 2015

Patriotism, Love of Country, and Nuance

I let a few days pass before commenting on this flap over what Rudy Giuliani said about President Obama's love of country, or Patriotism. When you wait a while, after news hits, often times better news comes along. News that can take the issue in any number of directions.
I recently posted that one of my perceptions of the differences between Republicans and Democrats is nuance. The two sides are really similar, the differences are just nuanced.
Take Patriotism, love country. Presumably all we who comment about national issues share a sense of Patriotism. I'd even go as far as to say that people who run for high office share a sense of Patriotism too.
Some may say I'm treading on thin ice here, making an ass out of u and me. If the comments of some of these erstwhile high office holders are correct, then I'm wrong. My apologies.
Its much like what the Democrats used to say about Bush, "He doesn't care."
How do we know these things anyways? Who can get into the head of another person, especially into the head of someone you don't know intimately and ascertain their disposition accurately?
I know I can't. Hell, I can't even figure out what it is I care about deeply often times.
Its been reported that Giuliani has received death threats!

Wednesday, February 18, 2015

Nuance and Unemployment

Pull me aside and ask me to explain the difference between Democrats and Republicans and I'd quickly say nuance.
Countless times, on countless issues, I entertained a partisan of either side defending his or her champion on such or such a topic then effortlessly pivoting to damn the champion of the other side for a having nuanced difference on said same position.
It continues to fascinate me, and so when I stumbled across this article with the word 'nuanced' in the headline I had to read it.
I agree with her. Notice inside the article that she said its "the smart way to...combat this."
Frankly, and this fact underlies a beef I have with Democrats, this idea that the idle hands of the youth in the Middle East is a root cause of terrorism, that to combat this discontent employment is critical, is not at all a novel notion.
Experts have been warning for years of the growing problem of unemployment, or under employment, of the young Muslims in that part of the world. Decades even.
There is a difference that couldn't be any less nuanced. Here and there.
At the risk of running long here, why shouldn't Democrats, i.e. the Obama Administration be equally concerned, or as the President of the United States, more concerned that this could happen here?
If he is, he'd have a hard time impressing me. We haven't seen much of a successful jobs program here have we? Yet we have seen a flooding of immigration, largely low skilled or no skilled workers at that.
Some smart people say the unemployment rate is really closer to 20%. Does anyone think that all these inflows are going to help drop that number? Or rather make it worse.
Obama is infamous for citing just about everything as a priority of his administration, well I got to think that if the Middle East has a violence problem linked to joblessness and his spokesperson is talking about a jobs program there, then he ought to prioritize jobs here as well.
I have no doubt that idle hands in America can incite terror here just as well as over there.
Quadruple the number of Syrian refugees flowing over here, as reported, suggests that the problems in the Middle East may escalate here quicker than we fear.
I use the term 'escalate' because we all are smart enough to realize that the problems are here already, right Ms. Harf?

Wednesday, February 11, 2015

Climate Change

Been thinking about 'climate change' and 'global warming' or what is now in vogue, 'AGW' or Anthropogenic Global Warming. What ever the name, skeptics abound.
Days ago Drudge Report headlined PAPER: 'GLOBAL WARMING' BIGGEST SCIENCE SCANDAL EVER... with the link,…/The-fiddling-with-temperature-…
Ok, lets take a look.
This report, more opinion piece, was presented by Christopher Booker, a British writer with a long history of published skepticism on AGW.
What is being said is that temperature data has been adjusted upwards to toe the global warming line.
That's fine, the man is entitled to his opinion, and he has facts to support it. Candidly, at one point in my life I probably shared his opinions. To a certain extent, I'm sure. Its said that a healthy mind is one that is open to change. I like to think I have a healthy brain, point in fact -- I have changed my position on AGW.
I'm not a skeptic.
Now with that being said, if the scientific community does an about face and declares that global warming is indeed a complete hoax, I'd have to seriously consider what they have to say.
So far, and in spite of these latest revelations presented in the link I provided, no one has come forth with a change of heart from the realm of professional scientists.
To be fair, I have found professionals who are skeptics. This one guy I looked into, Mr. Anthony Watts, runs a blog dedicated to his skepticism: .
He said, ‘In the business and trading world, people go to jail for such manipulations of data.’ This in regards to the above mentioned revelations in Mr. Booker's piece.
Not only has this guy voiced his opinion, but if his Wikipedia page is correct, he has even compelled scientists to review data he has had a problem with in the past. Yet still the scientific community continues to support AGW.
That's impressive for a guy without a degree in climate science, and I'm not trying to take anything away from him. But the reviews of the data, and in some cases he was vindicated -- there were errors, hasn't changed the minds of the professionals either.
I've said, I don't even know enough to know what I don't know, and that especially holds true for the weather. But I do know enough to rate scientists ahead of non scientists. To trust the scrutiny of peer review over the cacophony of comment sections.
To me, this is more an issue of jobs and economy, than trying to pinpoint what 'climate change' means empirically. Is it really colder? You decide.
Its a fact that the Chinese aren't dickering over climate change, they are aggressively pursuing green technology. State sponsored endeavors, of course. While in this country some reports state that the Senate has just now neared a filibuster proof pro-environmental coalition. It hasn't been tested yet, so its not certain that anything meaningful will be accomplished.
The implications of China leading the world in this sector should be alarming to us, to the U.S. They are not hung up on weather station data, that is for sure.

Wednesday, February 4, 2015

Jobs, Measles, and Scrutiny

I've been thinking about some disparate items in general lately, and generally finding a way to tie them together.
Measles. Fifteen years ago the federal government had said they were very much eradicated here in the United States. Now they are back, and depending on who you listen to, or read, the reason being ranges from religious enclaves of people not immunized to Obama's open border policy.
Both are probably right and both reasons are avoidable excuses.
I'm not about to continuing my recent bashing of religious here, instead I turn my attention to scrutinizing the inscrutable, i.e. the leadership of the Democrats, and where they are taking us.
At first, my lines to follow were to be a simple review of the last fifteen years of Democrat pronouncements, actions, and wisdom. But the realization that to do that would take up more time than I wish to spend my life on, so I'll just point out a few to make my point.
Bush was bad, always and forever. His economics weren't good enough and his wars were wrong, we were told.
The reality that his economic numbers have mostly been better than Obama's is never no mind. Used to be, as one example, I'd hear how the "real" unemployment rate was much higher than stated during W's years. Now its not even a mumble from the same people. Although we all know the truth. The truth, as taught by Democrat leadership whenever a GOPer lives in the White House, is a lesson well learned by me.
The wars were bad, or at least one. A difference with a distinction that I never fully grasped. If we send the military to battle, then it only makes sense to me to consolidate our gains on the battlefield. Sadly, and I offer no defense of Bush, this wasn't done.
More egregious, Democrat leadership nary lifted a finger to assist in consolidating our victories. In fact, from many a view point, what they done can quite easily be described as snatching defeat from the jaws as victory. Their gain was the White House.
Well, we see the on going results of this defeat with ISIS on a daily basis.
The above examples are enough to compel me to question the wisdom and wiles of Democrat leadership at every point.
Measles. Some say the illegals are bringing it in. Probably right. Others would point out that we all need to be inoculated for our common good. I can't disagree.
We all should know that inoculations aren't 100% effective. Not everyone takes immunization completely. It's not perfect.
However, as a society we commonly eradicated this disease years ago, what sense is it to open our borders to this plague, and others like bed bugs?
If the health of our collective community is of such concern that the views of potential presidential candidates on inoculation is of such import, then isn't it fair to say that we should be scrutinizing each and every soul that enters this cleaned land for diseases we already eradicated?
Who's fault is that, if this isn't happening?
Where is the wisdom?
Which leads me to my conclusion. As I've already demonstrated, the judgment of the Democrat leadership is quite open to fault and a scrutiny that is each and everyday evidently absent.
One of the current gems they would have me accept is the inevitable nomination and subsequent victory of Hillary Clinton.
Does she get to answer questions on inoculations? She's tweeted in support of them recently, but that hasn't always been her position. Same with Obama, for that matter. Seems to me that if she is in support of inoculations and an open border, she's at odds with good policy.
The broader question is, before we anoint her ruler, does she get scrutinized?
Over a hundred years ago Lord Acton made his famous quip about corruption and power, a notion I might add that finds no disagreement.
However, and no matter how I try to delicately point it out, what is being presented with the on going celebration of Mrs. Clinton, flies exactly in the face of the advice of a century ago. She's given power this easily?
What should we expect then?
After recent history, I can't just accept the wisdom of the Democrats without scrutiny.

Wednesday, January 21, 2015

I am a Christian Environmentalist

Today I'm exploring more into why, or rather how, I am at odds with many whom I shouldn't be. I am Christian environmentalist, American Catholic. Which for me there is no conflict, but evidently I am a rare bird, perhaps soon to be a victim of the coming Sixth Extinction.
Look that up, "Sixth Extinction," its scarier than "climate change" or "global warming."
Read this article I've linked to and explain to me how what Pope Francis is saying is so bad:
Some Americans continue to view the Pope through their red colored glasses, red being the symbolism for American Conservatism. And I don't get it.
One obvious characteristic of the American political psyche today is that if a Democrat says one thing, then a Republican must say the exact opposite. Vice versa of course, it cuts both ways. Never mind who cast the first stone, it is what it is. In all my years as a political animal, this is perhaps the one truth that is left standing.
This is generally speaking, "loyal opposition."
When I stare at the reality that is American Conservatives denying, and or otherwise at odds with environmental proclamations of doom or catastrophe I almost immediately think of what would our politics be like on this if Al Gore had never wrote his book "An Inconvenient Truth."
Before that book, Republicans, and conservatives for that matter were not at odds with environmentalism. At least not to the degree in which they are now. I don't wish to imply that Republicans want dirty water or air, that is a ridiculous, but the truth is where many see concern for environmental health, others see political conspiracy or a faith that it can't happened as prophesized.
That is ridiculous.
There is an over weighted influence of Baptist, or Protestant fundamentalism, in GOP circles that manifest itself in regards to science in a way that is not helpful. Opposition to certain aspects of environmentalism has religious undertones. The end result is inaction, and even worse, lack of global leadership.
Consider that America could profit handsomely, and the world would be a better place for it, if we(the U.S.) were united in promoting goods and services that were oriented toward a better environment.
In fact, much of the business community sees the opportunity, but our politicians, well some of them, do not.
The circle of influence in the GOP that retards this progress has an over weighted say in world events therefore. Think of it this way, a minority of Americans are at odds with science, which influences disproportionately the leadership of this country, which again disproportionately affects the role of this country in the world, and the fate of this planet.
We could be leading, but we are divided, because of a confluence of loyal opposition and religious overtones. Neither will prevent catastrophe.
What came first, the GOP at odds with science and environmentalism thus attracting biblical purists, or fundamental protestants and Baptists influencing the GOP?
Either way, its enough for me and I don't subscribe. I am a Christian Environmentalist.
And when did Catholics start becoming protestants in this country?
I am a Catholic American, and I'm not at odds with the Pope.
Below is a link to more worry and concern, from a scientist. Man is destroying our climate, and its not God's will. That is a truth I can believe.

Sunday, January 11, 2015

American Christianity

Just reading this recent story on Pope Francis got me to thinking how mixed up Catholics are today.
I am a Catholic.
It seems that, and this is just criticism from Catholics that I know, either Pope Francis is not adhering to the bible enough or he is too biblical.
Both at the same time!
If he is quoting scripture to direct Catholics to be more kind and generous to the poor, then he is a communist? To which I say, "when Pope Francis decides to run for the U.S. Presidency, I'll take this into consideration" or "do you realize he's not an American Politician?"
The distinction is worth pointing out for a third time. American Catholics, you do realize that Pope Francis is not necessarily to be judged and interpreted through the American political prism? He's sounds like a leftist perhaps because Catholic Christianity is the original bleeding heart liberal movement.
Now that aside, if he doesn't quote the Bible, or heaven forbid, actually speaks of controversial American political positions (i.e. homosexuality) in a manner that is conciliatory or inclusive, he is criticized for not sticking to the bible!
To which I'd point out that Catholics aren't Baptist.
No, we aren't. We aren't Protestant Fundamentalist either.
Somewhere along the way, very recently in fact, thinking within many Catholics began to reflect Baptist teachings, or Fundamentalism.
Evolution, Big Bang Theory, and a slew of other modern scientific advances have been held as contrary to biblical teaching by Catholics despite either Papal opinion that states there is no conflict with Catholic teachings, as is in the case of Evolution; or with Catholic fingerprints on the development of the idea, as with the Big Bang Theory, which was put forth by a Catholic priest.
Don't take my word for it. Look it up.
Here is a great book, published just in 2014, "Would You Baptize an Extraterrestrial?" That elaborates on science and the church.
Google Papal opinion on evolution.
Fact is Fundamentalism, as in strict interpretation of the Bible is a relatively modern development, almost entirely American, and not at all Catholic.
Look it up.