Monday, December 24, 2012

SAR #12358

The problem isn't the safety net, it's the whole economy. Laura Clawson

Easy Does It: Gun control works. Check with Australia, Canada, Scotland... each of which experienced mass gun deaths and each of which passed laws strongly restricting guns, and the result has been... no mass outpourings of grief after some nut kills a bunch of children. And don't give me that Second Amendment protect-yourself-from-the-government bullshit: Haven't you seen what the professional army can do and what it is equipped with? So let's just outlaw the assault-type weapons and their high-volume clips. Let's start the slow but necessary march to sanity. Let's put it to a vote.

The Millennium Redux: The world didn't end then, it won't end January 1st, either. No cliff, not even a steep slope, just another cobbled together make-do that will let them pretend to be heroes while solving nothing.

In These Times: At Christmas, think about 'goodwill toward men' this way: In Chicago there are these two guys who both work for McDonalds, one makes $8.75 million a year, the other $8.25 an hour – minimum wage in Illinois). And only 17% of fast food workers are teens – these are adults, struggling to get by. Recovery? Well, in the last two years the number of restaurant jobs – for which read minimum wage – grew twice as fast as other areas of the economy. And 26.9% of them still qualify for food stamps. But not that guy out in suburban Chicago at MackyD's headquarters.

Double, Then Nothing: The West Antarctic Ice Sheet has warmed 2.4ºC (4.3ºF) in the last half-century – twice as fast as previously thought. Sort of the poster buoy for global warming.

Chain Of Fooling Us: Ignore the hand-waving and footnoted hoohah; chained CPI indexing for cost-of-living adjustments to Social Security and many other federal social network programs is not a way to better measure the effects of inflation, it is just a way to understate inflation and chip away at simple decency.

Got Milk? What's wrong with an agricultural system that cannot produce milk at a price people can afford? Almost everything.

The Odds: With 90% of all new mortgages backed by the US taxpayer for the benefit of the same banks that committed fraud and forgery for years, has anybody got a plan for how this ends? Are investors going to line up to earn bupkis on MBS? Are the banks willing to let go of the golden goose? I didn't think so.

Datapoint: One in three US households have a smart meter. Many have nothing to measure.

Starting Over: On whose backs should we balance the federal budget? Higher taxes? Spending cuts? Deficit reduction? Balanced budget? Why, when the record shows that periods of budget balance and budget surpluses to pay down the debt are followed – quickly – by severe recessions/depressions? Income leads to spending which creates demand, which in turn spurs investment and more jobs and more spending and that's what we need to do. It's called 'stimulus spending'. Think about that & get back to me.

Investment Strategy: Over 55% of the energy generated in the US is wasted.

Right, To Work: After 10 years without any trouble, a dental assistant was fired because her boss' wife found her to be too sexy. And the husband, wisely, agreed. So she was fired and has no recourse because Iowa is a right-to-work state, which means employment is essentially 'at will' and her boss didn't have much.

The Parting Shot:


Happy Holly Days.


Gegner said...

Happy 'Holly Days' right back at you CK and thanks for another year of keen insight and thoughtful commentary!

rjs said...

Easy Does It: Australia, Canada, & Scotland were not batshit crazy to begin with...

mistah charley, ph.d. said...

A Merry Christmas, Happy Solstice, Joyful Kwanzaa and/or other holiday of your choosing to you and all your readers, CKM.

Re milk - as the nutrition researcher Colin Campbell (who was raised on a dairy farm) has said, "Milk is the perfect food - for baby cows." There are a number of reasons to think that humans would be better off minimizing their consumption. See the info from the Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine at

Charles Kingsley Michaelson, III said...

Agreed, mistah charley. I, too, am a refugee from a dairy farm - back in the good old days some 50 years ago. Haven't used more than a couple of quarts of the stuff in the last 30 years. Certainly the propaganda behind the Got Milk etc. advertizing has been effective, but I don't see the difference between paying farmers 'support payments' and the government paying Walmart workers an extra $5 an hour just to bring them up to a survival level... .ckm

Anonymous said...

Investment Strategy: Over 55% of the energy generated in the US is wasted.

One of the ways it is wasted is by heating domestic use water in 40 gallon tanks. When my 40 gallon hot water tank rusted out (fill up those landfills!), I installed an in line, on demand electric hot water heater. I've saved 50% on my hot water heating bills. No more heating water that is never used.

This is a very simple way to save lots of energy. But folks prefer complex, sexy and very expensive solutions like solar water heaters.

Good to see posters are also up on the GOT MILK scam. I would never drink Industrial Milk. This is not food; it is corporate fodder.

Anonymous said...

Dear ckm, happy holidays :)

- Lobo

Anonymous said...

"And don't give me that Second Amendment protect-yourself-from-the-government bullshit: Haven't you seen what the professional army can do and what it is equipped with?"

Watch your "professional army" fade away into MASS DESERTIONS once they're ordered to open fire on their own families & friends ..heck ..they might even turn those fancy guns on THEIR OWN SUPERIORS when the time comes.

Now THAT'S some Hope & Change we can believe in!

M S said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
HS said...

There are 310 million of us and 10 million in the military and paramilitary. No army in the history of the species has over come odds that long, regardless of technological superiority (which is dubious at best, anyway). The Germans fell for a similar fallacy when they invaded the Soviet Union.

The framers of the Constitution understood very well that humans are self serving sacks of excrement and any government is susceptible to corruption. This is precisely why they created the 2nd amendment. They didn't grant us that right for hunting, or to supplement gov't forces, it is to prevent the gov't from having a monopoly on force. Now that we are rapidly approaching the complete corruption of the federal gov't, that right is more important than ever--which is precisely why it's under assault.

You're a pretty reasonable guy, don't all of the inconsistencies in the "official" Sandy Hook story bother you? The relevant facts stopped when the shooter killed himself, yet the story kept changing dramatically over the next 3 days. ( )