Monthly Archives: April 2023
Letter on tucker Carlson to Wall Street Journal
In “Carlson Is Out at Fox News After Dominion Disclosures” (April 25 Journal) the punchline comes near the end of the story where it states that Democrats and Republicans criticized Carlson for airing previously unaired footage of the January 6 “attack on the U.S. Capital.”
With other journalists turning up dead or in exile as well, it’s looking like the sort of government my father warned me about in the Cold War days is here. In a free country, citizens are allowed to sift through as much information as possible. We shouldn’t have that job done for us.
It’s unfortunate that Mr. Carlson made disparaging remarks about fellow Fox employees that led to his departure because he was a rare voice for skepticism of the status quo that is sorely needed today.
Found outside the former Women’s Museum in Denmark
The Great Pacific Garbage Patch
The grass is starting to get tall and hide the junk in the road ditches. We’ve already scoured ours for trash and returnable cans and bottles. I think Earth Day is in April. I remember a big hubbub being made about it in 1970 when we were all freaked out about global cooling.
Mostly, people organized around cleaning up litter. Some people liked to protest the modern world… without a rational alternative such as selling (or burying) their car and buying a horse to get around. Earth Day gave us a chance to grieve the destruction of the oceans as well. My kids will remind me of how many times they’ve heard this story.
I was a child in Southern California and surfing was the thing. Big rainstorms occasionally broke the desert monotony. Sewage treatment plants overflowed and the ocean became like our road ditch, a place for waste.
There were some mighty fine brown waves out there. Dirk and I knew about as much about biology as Ketanji Brown Jackson. We paddled out. Finally, exhausted, we sat in the parking lot soaking wet as a cop pulled up. I forgot to mention the quarantine signs. Well, he wrote us both a ticket for disobeying the quarantine.
That night I woke up with a problem of my own. Waste was being eliminated from both ends and I alarmed my poor mom as I screamed with each cramp. We had moved to Newport recently as an attempt for Mom to get a change after the divorce. We hadn’t acquired a family doctor yet so she found one in the Yellow Pages. He came to our house! He gave me a shot that calmed me down.
At my court date I told the judge that my illness had been enough punishment. He sorta bought it, reducing my fine from $45 to $15.
The Great Pacific Garbage Patch is a swirling layer of mostly plastic between California and Hawaii, get this, 620,000 square miles in area. Plastic bottles, fishing nets, and probably a few rubber duckies form a base for neopelagic life. It’s a purely chaotic version of the Kevin Costner movie, “Waterworld.”
My final year of high school finally brought love of school with Mr. Hurst and Biology class. We made collections; plants, insects, and sea life. The sea life, we found at low tide along rocky shorelines. The Garbage Patch supports a replica of our shorelines with sea anemones, crabs, hydroids, oysters, and mussels; 46 different species colonized on 1.8 trillion pieces of plastic. Before plastic, the open ocean was a lifeless wasteland, sorta.
In the 1970s we were convinced that we would be starving in the ’80s. In the early 2000s 97% of scientists warned we would be cooked by now. India is about to pass China as the most populous nation. I look at my lettuce and can’t imagine enough California farmland exists to continue to feed us. Maybe Biden, Putin, and Zelenski have a plan to reduce demand for food. We should capitalize on the Garbage Patch. There’s 620,000 square miles of untapped life out there.
Eighty percent of the Garbage Patch is discarded on land. So we can do our part by littering! Our litter is like soil is to land-based crops. Do your part to feed the world. Throw that bottle in the street on its way to the storm drain. We are saved.
My wife is a great artist
The World’s Reserve Currency
When we own something that is becoming less valuable like spoiled food, we give it to the dog and eat good food instead.
As mentioned before, rareness is what creates value. We have a cardinal who pecks on our windows and sits on door handles to look in at us. We call him Redd. It would be a real tragedy if Redd was harmed. I’m not sure if he is the same one, but a few years ago we had one like this. He had a wife who was in the junipers making warning sounds and I found that there was a cat near her. That was the last we saw of Redd and his wife until this past winter after we were without cats for a year or so. Redd as cat food would be sadder compared to a sparrow in the same role.
The U.S. dollar is now the sparrow of currencies. There are lots of them.
The $4.8 trillion President Biden has borrowed for us pales in comparison to the $7.5 trillion in debt left us by former President Trump. Some of you out there might want to get off your Trumpian high horse. Senator Charles Grassley pointed out to me that all this unconstitutional government power was approved by the courts over the years. The courts using case law have incrementally destroyed any limits the Constitution put on government power. It’s like the telephone game. Each piece of legislation that stretches constitutional limits paves the way to further lawlessness.
On the world stage, the destruction of the dollar has led to our once trusted money, being shunned and replaced with Chinese yuan.
As we’ve seen a meteoric rise in stock prices through recent years, some are coming to realize those stock valuations are relative to the weak dollars used to purchase them; not strong companies. Improving economic conditions as measured by expensive stocks are an illusion; an illusion created to bolster popularity of incumbent politicians. Trump’s claims of a strong economy were based on a flood of cheap dollars.
We have to recognize the upside of the degraded dollar. To U.S. politicians, diplomacy has been threats and bullying based on sanctions through our dollar as the world’s reserve currency. Without that power at their disposal those politicians will have to negotiate in a friendly manner looking for mutual benefits for all parties rather than pushing other countries around. Honest money may ensure peace.
On the negative side, China will take a cue from past U.S. relations and push us around instead. U.S. politicians will call China naughty and pass laws to act as band aids in response. Either way, inflation has destroyed the savings of countless retirees and put an improved lifestyle out of the reach of many middle class families. There are huge reasons why we are warned about the dangers of debt in the Bible.
Thanks to shyster politicians buying votes from gullible and ignorant voters, we will be answering to China. It won’t take an invasion. Our huge military is helpless to stop it, and its gargantuan budget is part of the problem.
In a WSJ interview hedge fund manager Paul Singer is quoted regarding money printing for bailouts: “The result is to destroy market discipline and and encourage bankers to behave recklessly.”
In the Wall Street Journal these bailouts are constantly referred to in a positive light. They cause stock prices to rise. The short term thinking comes from a willingness to abandon principle based on the Golden Rule. Writers at the Wall Street Journal know that the money printing and bailouts are a way to trickle-up wealth from the general population into the pockets of these reckless bankers.
Fractional reserve banking is another aspect of the banking business seldom discussed. Banks only have to keep 10% of deposits on hand. That is, if all depositors wish to withdraw their money from the bank at the same time there would only be enough for each of them to withdraw 10% of their money. The system gambles on a stable environment where each of us acts independently and randomly.
In these days of (I hate to use this overused term but oh well) identity politics where individuals have become mere pieces of demographic classifications, a bank run seems a little more possible. The fact that we are individuals is what makes us strong as a society. Each of us making decisions as part of a chaotic crowd softens blows like a diversified savings portfolio prevents losing it all.
Fractional reserve banking makes the economy more volatile. In the same way that the Fed creates money out of thin air, the fact that banks can pretend there is more money out there keeps interest rates low. Lower rates stimulate borrowing where it might not have occurred and investing in riskier ventures; like when home sales are strong because of low rates.
Of course if the bank is serving its purpose, to keep your savings safe while providing capital for projects that need cash, all those savings won’t be at the bank all the time. The money won’t be available at the spur of the moment for everyone. So it is really important that no panics occur. What is the best way to prevent such a thing?
I remember one of the primary reasons we were happy to quit farming: marketing. If it weren’t for government reports on crop yields or supply, prices would gently fluctuate as world news and local conditions impacted prices. Spring brought uncertainty. Fall brought supply bottlenecks. Hot, dry summers came gradually, influencing prices as storm clouds delivered or not.
On the other hand, government reports were hotly anticipated. Analysts were interviewed on the radio about next week’s report. Then when the report came out prices would soar or drop in limit moves, making or breaking a summer’s work in minutes. That would be described as a panic.
Stability in markets comes from freedom. It comes from millions of individuals doing what they think is best for themselves. Volatility comes from government, whether it is commodity markets or any other good or service we use. To have changes come from any central authority bypasses the will of the diverse millions.
The value of the dollar and the stability of that value has been destroyed by the rampant growth in the money supply. That supply of money was used to fuel the huge spending bills used to ameliorate the COVID crisis, the inflation crisis (even though inflation is the direct result of that action itself), the climate crisis, and the war in Ukraine.
While Russia, China, India, Brazil, and many other nations, making up the majority of world trade, are moving away from the unstable and untrustworthy dollar as the international currency of choice, we are being distracted by Trump’s payment to a porn star. Wow. We should look at the ramifications of this more closely.