Old programs never die. Sadly they don’t fade away either. Sometimes they change their name though, and such is the case with the Federal education program which subsidizes broadband for schools, E-Rate. After a bunch of bad press and general mismanagement it changed its name to ConnectED. (Get it?)
It is interesting to hear (some) people praise Mr. Bernanke for having “saved” the United States and the world from Great Depression II. This praise is misplaced to say the least.
I was taken with this article. As one who lives in a prosperous town which is tucked up right next to the Blue Ridge Mountains the world Kevin D. Williamson writes about in the National Review is not that far away. It’s still far, the Appalachian Mountains where I live have vineyards, orchards, and prosperous cattle farms on their flanks. One of the world’s great universities is just down the road. But the bleak, welfare dependent rural ghetto isn’t that far. An afternoon’s drive and I’d be in the heart of it.
More thoughts on the Pope and capitalism.
Capitalism (free markets and free prices) puts power in the hands of everyday people. Crony capitalism (a form of socialism) puts power in the hands of the privileged. The Pope appears to miss this very important point.
I was just at a conference in Downtown Manhattan and things are good there. My hotel (which thankfully I didn’t have to pay for) was modest but cost a sum far beyond what one might pay for a comparable room in another large city in the US. A beer pushed 11 bucks. Everything was more expensive because the money printed by the Fed practically spilled out onto the street around the part of town I was staying in.
The further one gets from the Federal Reserve spigot however, the more austere the world gets. Remember, each dollar printed by the Fed reaches the guys in New York and DC first – while prices are relatively cheap. By the time these debauched dollars reach the rest of the country prices are rising and the dollar buys less.
When Ron Paul called for ending the Fed, this is one of the chief reasons why.
I don’t know much about Pope Francis. Some of what I do know I disagree with. But boy is this guy a breath of fresh air from Ratzinger. And he appears to be a man of authenticity and value. I of course have no real idea, but this article offers some insight into the man and it appears that he is taking on some of the most entrenched cronyism there is at the Vatican.
The only people who have seen their real incomes increase under this president have been the top 5% of earners. Those with large investment portfolios have seen their assets grow – or perhaps more accurately, have watched them inflate – while most of America has seen its income reduced over the last 5 years. Adjusted for inflation the average household in America makes less than 2008. Quite a bit less.
The part time preparer is an important person in many (often less wealthy) communities. A trusted aunt or uncle, or perhaps the lady a couple of blocks down the road “who does taxes,” a pastor, the “non-professional” tax preparers help a large segment of the US population remain tax compliant. But for the past 2 years the IRS has been trying to eliminate these folks with licensing rules. Rules which just happen to benefit the big tax preparation companies.
My bet is that within 15 years the American car manufacturers will mess things up again, but for right now they are bailout plump. The city which grew up around the big 3 is in a nearly post-apocalyptic state however. Miles and miles and miles of rust spread out from the city center where GM and Chrysler executives look down from their offices.
That is when they aren’t touring the new manufacturing facilities in China.