Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Who's in favor of free ice cream?

The majority of New Jersey residents are opposed to oil & gas drilling off the coast of New Jersey.

While certainly not suprising in light of the Gulf disaster, the fact is, it's an extremely rare event.

The big # that stands out to me is that 80% of those polled favor wind power for our energy production. However, we all want things we can't have.

There is absolutely no way we can even come close to meeting our energy needs. We've been trying to break our oil dependency for decades, but the fact is, fossil fuels are the cheapest, most effiicient - and pretty green compared to the alternatives (do we really want to clear cut forests to plaster the land w/ solar panels?)

If simply voting for free ice cream out of thin air could make it happen, our problems would be solved. We'd all be in favor of purchasing wind/solar energy if it came even close to making economic (and physical) sense.

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

NJ Voters reject school budgets

In spite of recent polls that show declining support for Governor Christie & his budgets, apparently voters throughout the state agree with him that our schools have other options besides hiking taxes.

For the first time since 1976, voters in a majority of school districts turned out to reject the proposed budgets - or as the AC Press put it "angry taxpayers outnumbered concerned parents".

Notice that the believe in fiscal discipline (and understand that you can't spend more than you have) makes you "angry", but caving to union demands to continue their history of generous raises & benefits makes you "concerned". Thankfully, voters weren't bullied by the press into spending our state further into oblivion.

As homeschooling parents who take an active role in educating our children, I would think that qualifies as "concerned" regardless of how much of our earnings we believe the local school district should take from us.

Wednesday, March 31, 2010

The census commercials really burn me up.

The purpose of the census is NOT to decide where the government should send various goods and services. The census is to determine which how many representatives each state gets (Article 1 Section 2 of the US Constitution). When the constitution was written and the census implemented, the federal government didn't provide ANY services except for defense & foreign relations.

The notion of using the census to allocate resources is how the Soviet Union ran things into the ground. The government doesn't tell grocers how much food to put on their shelves and that gets there fine. Same with cars, gasoline, clothing, etc.

In fact - the services that are provided by the government (or government backed monopolies like the Postal Service) are far less efficient in their services than the free market.

It is disgraceful that our nations leaders view themselves as the anointed to determine who gets what. That is what the census ads portray - and it goes beyond just ads. The 2010 Census web site displays the same ignorance.

Saturday, March 13, 2010

Best. Law. Evar. (or "Why I want to move to Wyoming)

Wyoming has become the fourth state (joining Tennessee, Utah & Montana) to nullify federal regulations on firearms manufactured, bought and used within its borders.

However, Wyoming has gone even a step farther:
According to a law signed into effect yesterday by Democratic Gov. Dave Freudenthal, any agent of the U.S. who "enforces or attempts to enforce" federal gun rules on a "personal firearm" in Wyoming faces a felony conviction and a penalty of up to two years in prison and up to $2,000 in fines.
That's right. Wyoming plans to fine feds who attempt to interfere with Wyomans' (Wyomingans?) right to keep and bear arms.

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Hooray for Central Falls, RI

It seems that the town doesn't have the patience for poor education.

In spite of the fact that the average income for teachers in that district is more than 3 times the average of Central Falls residents ($70-78K vs $22K), apparently working an extra 25 minutes per day to tutor students in the woefully underperforming school was to much for them.

When the teacher's union rejected this burdensome demand, the town fired them all.

Friday, February 12, 2010

Lobbyists & influence

It seems that everyone (I imagine with the exception of the lobbyists themselves) laments the influence of lobbyists & money in our government.

The Democrats and President Obama railed against lobbying & special interests during the 2008 campaign cycle, however, 2009 was a record year for lobbyist spending.

It should come as no surprise to those who favor a limited government that a year which saw the largest attempted power grab (control of banks & automakers, the health care debate) would also see a huge jump in lobbying activity.

The surest way to reduce the effect of money on Washington (and state governments) would be to strip just about all regulatory authority. The biggest commodity that politicians have these days is the club of government regulation. Absent that power, they would have nothing to sell, and the dreaded lobbyists would have no influence to purchase.

NOTE: I don't perceive lobbying in and of itself as particularly evil, citizens are constitutionally guaranteed the right to air their views and policy positions, however the vast majority of lobbying today seems to be requests for particular government favors for their group.

The real issue is that the government should not be in the position to grant favors to one group over another.

Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Stossel's new blog

Apparently, the search engines haven't caught up to the fact that John Stossel is no longer with ABC, but is now with Fox Business.

Since part of the listing criteria for a given search term is based on links containing that term, I'll help him out.

Here is John Stossel's blog.

Monday, January 4, 2010

Socialist countries have greedy thieves, too

Jonah Goldberg's defense of capitalism is a much needed read.

Much (actually all) of the blame for our current economic woes are laid at the feet of "capitalism" - never mind that we haven't had anything close to a completely free market in over a century.

Capitalism's detractors also neglect to notice that Europe is in the midst of economic troubles of their own - and those that are seeing improvement are doing so by embracing (however begrudgingly) capitalism.

As Goldberg points out, greed, theft, dishonesty are all human failings - not of any particular economic system.

If a company habitually cheats its customers and/or shareholders, customers & shareholders will leave in droves for their competition. When a government (which is just as human as any corporation) cheats its citizens, there is nowhere to turn from its oppression.