How much war is enough?
Unprejudiced: In an attempt to ensure a fair trial for the 15 year old terrorist, prosecutors dismissed the only juror who thought Guantanamo should be closed. The remaining jurors all think the war in Afghanistan is just peachy, that the US never uses torture, and when it does it only uses it on the worst of the worst, like impressionable teenagers.
Two Thoughts: Obama is warning that if the GOP retakes Congress this fall they will seek to destroy Social Security. 1. What makes him think they are not seeking to destroy it now? 2. To prevent this horrible fate, will he be true to form and help the GOP destroy it now, just to take away their future options?
Tippy Toeing: Greenland's ice will entirely disappear if global temperatures rise more than 2ºC. That much of an increase will locked into the atmosphere within a decade or two and the irreversible melting will eventually raise sea levels over 20 feet. Don't worry, no need to panic –odds are you won't be around. Just your kids.
Now It Can Be Told: Afghan reports claim an oilfield with an estimated 1.8 billion barrels of crude oil has been discovered in “the north of the country”. 'Claim' and 'estimated' being the operative words.
Simpleton Math: A nationally syndicated columnist/investment advisor, in debunking the idea of increasing amount of earned income subject to social security, claimed that increasing the limit from the current $106,800 to $300,000 would result in “high income professionals paying at a 50% tax rate.” Balderdash. Using this year's tax charts and including a 15% self-employment tax , those earning $300,000 in taxable income would pay $76,820 in taxes. That is 36%, not 50%. To come close to the scary 50% level requires an income in the millions. Ah, the level of honesty in the don't-tax-the-rich camp.
Warrior Spirit: National Security Advisor James Jones is worried that the American voter is growing tired of spending tens of billions of dollars for years and years to kill people at random in Afghanistan. What's not to like?
Warm & Fuzzy: It has been decades since the seeds of the current difficulties were planted during the Reagan years, and it will take a long time – perhaps a decade to crawl out from under the debris caused by deregulation, free markets, and globalization. With luck we may average 2% GDP growth over the next decade – during which unemployment will continue to increase. I'm open to bets on the over/under of the country making it that long.
Waiting Game: At least 1 out of every 4 houses on the market has already taken a 10% cut in price from the original asking price. Doesn't do much to move the houses, because when “buyers are unqualified to buy, it doesn't matter how low interest rates are or how discounted a home is.”
Animal Spirits: Insofar as economics is the study of how people interact in the marketplace, it is at best an observational social study, not a science. The pretense that it is a science of any sort is just that, a pretense. One look at the mess we are in today should be sufficient to disabuse all but the most gullible of the belief that economics is a science or that the 'science' of economics can help get us out of this mess.
Nine out of 10 Doctors: Why is it that we accept 'experts' opinions in nearly all aspects of our lives – at most we seek just a second opinion from lawyers, mechanics and doctors . Yet we continue to ignore the 97% of climate scientists who agree that global climate change is real, is man-made, and is a grave danger to all our futures. Why?