Framing the Dialogue

Money Speaks

In The Year 2525

The year 2525 is probably the year when we “officially” find out from historians that conservatives were right and that Barney Frank and Democrat policies started the global financial meltdown and Obama’s policies like the Stimulus, Obamacare, and Dodd-Frank prolonged the agony.  That is because history is mostly written by liberal academics (I know that is redundant) and they have a slightly biased view of the world.

I am exagerating about the date 514 years from now, but consider that until recently most historical accounts of the Great Depression give FDR credit for ending it.  There have been books like The Forgotten Man which set the record straight, but few probably read this.  However nearly seventy years after the depression ended two UCLA economists place the blame where it belongs…on FDR.

Update 6 (and final) – A Rough Pitch

This will be the last installment of this series which morphed from the Pittsburgh Pirates’ arbitration results for pitcher Ross Ohlendorf, hence its inclusion in the Money Speaks category. Ohlendorf was the beneficiary of a significant salary increase through arbitration despite being oft injured and possessing a woeful pitching record in 2010. Arbiters determined and the Pirates accepted and paid Mr. Ohlendorf over $2 million dollars for his services in 2011. As the Pirates head home for their last home stand of the season this sticky note was attached to my morning paper.

The Incomplete Far Side

One of my first posts was a review of a compilation of the complete works of Gary Larson’s The Far Side.  It is perhaps the most viewed post of my web site.  Two days ago I received an email message from Mr. Larson’s company or agent who apparently surfs the web looking for unauthorized uses of Mr. Larson’s works.  I admit to having used a few cartoons as part of my review, but I do believe that their use was reasonable and part of my review though I have to admit to getting carried away.  Perhaps I was enjoying his work too much.  I was somewhat offended by the implication that I somehow was illegally using Larson’s work and true to my form substituted this image for the cartoons:

Update 5 – A Rough Pitch

The headline says it all…

Ohlendorf has rough return to major leagues

The $2 million dollar pitcher had to return to the line up sooner than expected due a colleague’s injury.  The Pirates didn’t do Ross Ohlendorf any favors by starting him against one of the better teams in the National League and the team the Pirates historically have struggle against. 

“Making his first start for the Pirates since early April, Ohlendorf allowed 14 baserunners in five innings. The Brewers roughed him up in the second and cruised to an 11-4 victory. Ohlendorf (0-1) gave up seven runs, 11 hits and two walks, with four strikeouts.”

Econ 1

The Great Vilsacko performs his money magic trick.

I am currently reading Return to Prosperity by Phd economist Arthur Laffer and I’ll review the book as usual after I finish it, but a recent statement by President Obama’s Agriculture Secretary had me referring to the “Econ 1” phrase Dr. Laffer uses frequently when describing politicians lack of knowledge that is taught in a basic economics class. Secretary Vilsack appeared on MSNBC’s Morning Joe to tout the benefits of the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (“SNAP” or Food Stamps as we used to call it). Vilsack called SNAP the “most direct stimulus you can get into the economy during these tough times.” I guess that he also considers the fact that America has vastly increased the number of people “stimulating” the economy as 1 in 7 people are in the program. Let that sink in…NEARLY 15 PERCENT OF OUR FELLOW AMERICANS GET FOOD FROM THE GOVERNMENT!

Update 4 – A Rough Pitch

The Pirates did the unthinkable in July and actually sat atop of the National League Central Division…for about a day. There was actually a buzz in Pittsburgh with our baseball team doing good things this late in the season. They promptly went on a 10 game losing streak. I had the pleasure of attended when they got blown out by the lowly San Diego Padres 13-2. Not a great game to watch, but it was really hot and humid too. The organization did, however, provide some entertainment as the group Train played a set and we were treated to Zambelli fireworks.

Diminishing Returns

Having a car that is nearly eight years old with almost 150,000 miles makes the annual inspection a likely costly adventure. My appointment was Monday so I dropped the car off Sunday night and anxiously awaited the news. I got the call in the early afternoon and Ed, our mechanic, started going through the list; A/C check, battery, tire rotation…little stuff really. Ed hesitated and I said “okay now for the bad news.” The bad news was repairs to the tune of $1,400 (a big part was brakes all around) and that my car would not be ready until the next evening. The real bad news is that Ed did some checking and told me that my vehicle is showing its age and miles. Some of the hidden stuff will probably need to be replaced next year and maybe I may not want to spend that kind of money. Essentially telling me that I’d be paying a lot more money for an old vehicle…or getting diminishing returns on my investment.

Update -Wimpy Washington Economics

Welcome back my friends to the show that never ends

We’re so glad you could attend

Come inside! Come inside!

Come inside, the show’s about to start

guaranteed to blow your head apart

Rest assured you’ll get your money’s worth

Guaranteed to blow your head apart

– – Emerson, Lake and Palmer (edited)

Wimpy Washington Economics

“Top Democrats and Republicans in Congress prepared new proposals to avert a government debt default and a potential global financial crisis.”

That’s the lead paragraph from a story in today’s paper.  What should scare you is when Democrats and Republicans agree on something the public generally gets screwed.  I believe that both sides realized that they set up this “battle” and now that the public is watching they are not sure how to get out from all of the rhetoric that they have been spreading.  What both sides agree on is that they both want desperately to get re-elected and regain power.  Even a little power is better than none and they are more than willing to squander our money, our children’s money, and our grandchildrens’ money to maintain their power.  Here are few facts as I see them: