Monthly Archives: March 2012

An Open Letter To Occupy Raleigh

I want to be very clear; I openly mock the Occupy movement.

There isn’t one single characteristic about #OWS that distinguishes it from any other leftist movement.  Listening to the rhetoric coming from Occupy you would not be able to identify whether or not your are listening to:

  1. A Greenpeace protest to save seals in Greenland.
  2. A university protest to bring attention to the wages of house keepers on campus.
  3. NAACP protests concerned about the treatment of an individual.
  4. A communist party meeting discussing the evils of profits.

There is nothing that distinguishes you from anything that we’ve already seen.

It’s anger unleashed on the world with no discernible focus.  There is no clear indication that you have a point.

You are open to mockery.

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The Liberal Left: Open And Tolerant

The wrap is that the far right wing-nut is intolerant and hateful.  The message is that the conservative is unwilling to embrace ideas that might be different, or strange or new.

The right.  The republican.  The conservative is the one unwilling to listen to opposing ideas, to embrace an open mind, to allow differences of thought.

That’s the narrative.  The left, the liberal left, is open to thoughts and ideas that are different.

It’s not true.  It’s the liberal that’s intolerant.

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Health Care Programs: Missing The Real Cost

This past week the CBO announced that Obama care, when costed out over a 10 year period that was different than the 10 year period when it was voted on, will cost more than originally stated.  For many, this comes as no surprise.  The fact that government programs cost more than originally stated isn’t anything new, in fact, it’s been going on for decades:

Only 1 of the programs above managed to come even close to half of the real cost; Medicare Catastrophic coverage.  And THAT program was eliminated before it took effect.

The CBO is estimating the last year of the measurable ten to cost nearly $265 billion.  If we average the misses from the above program we can expect that last year to really cost $1.8 trillion alone.

New Trends In Hiring

Incentives drive behavior.  I firmly believe this.  Because I believe this I would look to see the number of additional Facebook accounts increase:

SEATTLE — When Justin Bassett interviewed for a new job, he expected the usual questions about experience and references. So he was astonished when the interviewer asked for something else: his Facebook username and password.

Since the rise of social networking, it has become common for managers to review publically available Facebook profiles, Twitter accounts and other sites to learn more about job candidates. But many users, especially on Facebook, have their profiles set to private, making them available only to selected people or certain networks.

Companies that don’t ask for passwords have taken other steps — such as asking applicants to friend human resource managers or to log in to a company computer during an interview. Once employed, some workers have been required to sign non-disparagement agreements that ban them from talking negatively about an employer on social media.

Not sure how I’d handle this if I was out of work for an extended period of time or if my current employer asked me to for the same information.  However, now that I see this growing trend, I may just create a duplicate Facebook account that I keep for just such occasions.


Morals And Ethics: How We Make Our Laws



Are we a nation of moral and ethical people?

Is there a difference in laws that prohibit poor behavior and laws that require good behavior, between laws that say you CAN’T do this and laws that say you MUST do this?

Just wondering.


Health Care: United States Style

We’ve all heard it before.  The United States spends more in health care and receives less in return than any nation in the world.

Or some such nonsense.

But only in America are surgeries performed on minor wrist fractures within 24 hours that allows elite individuals to return to work:

Just 24 hours after suffering a fracture of his scaphoid bone, Kendall Marshall, point guard for the University of North Carolina Tar Heels, was recovering from surgery and contemplating playing again.

I suspect that Mr. Marshall, and all of North Carolina, feels that this expenditure is a feature and not a bug of the medical care distribution system in the United States.  Further:

Andrew, a hand surgeon with Raleigh Orthopaedic Clinic,  said Marshall’s method of treatment – surgery and the insertion of a self-tightening screw to fix the break – is a common course for athletes.

“As you tighten the screw, it compresses the fracture site together and gives it better stability,” he said.

Marshall’s wrist will be stable enough to play, Andrew said. Most patients wear a cast to immobilize the thumb. A hand therapist could make a soft plastic cast for Marshall, who could replace it with heavy tape to play.

We have it within our ability to call upon such amazing technology as this.  And yet we complain that we have access to such amazing technology as this.

There is no where in the world, in the history of the world, that has a better medical outcome than the United States.

Higher Taxes: Less Revenue


In the latest example of the Laffer Curve we see that 0% of $60 billion is less than [some number > 0]% of $60 billion.

See, Apple doesn’t think that having to pay the world’s highest corporate income tax is in the best interests of the company.  Or the shareholders.  So it’s not going to pay the tax.

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President Obama: High Gas Prices

Gas prices are rising.  And the President’s numbers on how he’s handling the crisis are falling.  America doesn’t think that Obama knows what to do, much less is willing to do anything about it.

And now that the President is looking at an election just 8 months from now, his views and policies on the subject are fluid.  Whereas before he was FOR rising prices:

The drop in oil prices, I do think, makes the conversation about energy more difficult, not less necessary. More than ever, I think, a wholesale investment in transforming our economy — from retrofitting buildings so that they’re energy-efficient to changing our transportation patterns and thinking about how to rebuild our electricity grid — those are all things that we’re going to need now more than ever. But with people not paying $4 a gallon for gas, it means it drops on their priority list. And that makes the politics of it tougher than it might have been six months ago.

Predictably the President feels he’s better situated to affect the transition from fossil fuels to renewable fuels from the White House.  So, he sees a short term lie pivot as justifiable to the larger picture.  In fact, you can see the same attitude from the administration’s energy secretary.  Before prices were going up, he was FOR those prices going up.  Now that it could jeopardize his job, he’s way in favor of those prices falling.

But is he?

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Health Care Mandate: Where Does It End

Very soon the Obama administration is going to argue before the Supreme Court that the United States Government is able to mandate the purchase of a private good.  In this case, health insurance.  The reason, as defined by the administration, is that by not purchasing insurance, millions of Americans will transfer untold billions in health care costs to others.

The idea is that to provide basic health services to everyone, the government is able to mandate insurance because it relates to “citizen’s health.”

When faced with arguments like this in the past by supporters of the health care bill and the individual mandate, I’ve asked where the government would draw the line.  Further, I’ve asked for specifics on what the nature of a blueberry mandate and the health care mandate would be.

No answer.  However, I am happy to see that I am not alone in my musings.

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I am going to watch “Game Changer” now.

More to come after.