Author Archive: Marshall

Nixon, Wilson, One of Those…

Don Surber notes just how Nixonian Obama seems, and rightly so, among others. I’ve compared him in the past to Wilson, Johnson, Nixon and Carter.

Thing is, he’s not as politcally savvy as Johnson, even if he’s wrecking the economy and ensuring things get really bad down the road, while trying to do big things that buy votes.

He’s not as natively intelligent as Carter, misguided and wrong though Carter was most of the time. Carter suffered in part being at the point when something had to be done about the fallout from Johnson and Nixon’s economic damage (and longer term, FDR’s), and from being too intellectual and micromanagerial. As much contempt as I have for Carter, having come of age then, and for the foreign policy problems dating back in large part to him, he nominated Volcker and he go the needed deregulation process rolling. Further, I doubt Carter ever had a malicious bone in his body, which I can’t say for the guy who’s now making him look almost… good.

Nixon, though… misguided on the economy, in ways almost as big as Johnson, and perhaps more directly. I mean, price controls? From a Republican? From anyone? Come on! Master of dirty tricks. If not subtle and masterful enough, obviously. Yeah, Nixonian for sure.

But the intellectual heir to Wilson, not caring about the Constitution, since it’s sooo outdated. Progressive nanny stater. Tinpot wannabe because he’s smarter and knows better than us. But was Wilson into crony “capitalism” like the rest? Maybe that’s something he has on Obama, but probably doesn’t count for much.

No doubt Obama would prefer to be compared favorably to Lincoln or Roosevelt, but those are the breaks. You have to lead, and at least want to be President once you’re in office.

This is Brilliantly Funny

And yet sad, in that it sounds so realistic. The results of the 2008 election were always patently absurd, but then it helps to have a viable candidate on the other side. Not without reason did I once have an entire blog category devoted to McCain named Senator Control Freak, and how many people were unable to hold their noses in the face of a rorschachly blank slate and the thought “after all, how bad could it be?”

Fear the Media Meltdown

Not the nuclear one! Great and detailed sense and information on what is actually happening, what dosages mean, and the media and anti-nuke industry reaction have been. It’s not nothing, but it’s not Chernobyl and can’t be, nor is it Three Mile Island. But then, from what I understood, seemingly refuted by all the references to it, is that Three Mile Island wasn’t even “Three Mile Island.” In the sense of an “OMG we’re all gonna die and let’s no never again build plants” event that, hey look, the media and the anti-nuke industry again, wanted us to believe. Yes, I said “industry,” since any such reasonably organized and financed cadre of people for a cause, non-profit or not, amount to an industry, and will tenaciously cling to and attempt to expand upon their mission. Witness the MADD rush from drunk driving awareness to neo-prohibitionism.

I fear for the nuclear renaissance and the pending explosion (poor choice of word!) of new and vastly improved reactors, leading us away from our excess dependence on wood coal whale oil petroleum.

I Am Neither!

But these two quizzes aren’t designed to reflect that, except possibly when taken together.

You Are 36% Republican

You’re a bit Republican and probably more conservative than you realize.
If you’re still voting Democrat, maybe it’s time that you stop.
You Are 32% Democrat

You’re a bit Democrat, and probably more liberal than you realize.
If you’re still voting Republican, maybe it’s time that you stop.

How is this hard?

Saw the other day an article about the latest intentions by the USPS to review and possibly close thousands of unprofitable branches.

But we need the services they offer!

But it’s the central focus of the village!

Wail. Gnash.

How can it possibly be this hard? I mean, besides the whole “government bureaucracy” element making it nigh impossible to function, let alone efficiently.

We are closer than we’ve ever been before to a scenario in which a private company could readily take over or supplant the entire operations of the postal service, starting from elements already having been farmed out for the sake of cost and efficiency. In my mind, that makes a lesser leap easy.

Offer up the locations that are on the block. Either as such, or to some other place in the locality, to carry on the same basic functions as a contractor. Simple. Offer them preferentially to the employees who now operate them. Turn them into something between a kiosk and a service desk function of a local store or other business.

Private mail centers have been done! They were so compelling, UPS bought a chain, and FedEx added that aspect to a one-off chain. Stores that double as a post office have been done! My first apartment was in a village where mail went to a PO box in an antique store that doubled as a post office. Quaint. Probably still too subsidized or inefficient. An odd combo.

Let’s try it. We’re already so close.

A Modest Proposal?

In which I combine two topics, each worthy of their own, more expansive post(s), to make inroads into the economic and illegal immigrant problems.

First, my preference would be that the minimum wage laws be eliminated. If they are not unconstitutional, they should be. They are anti-life and anti-property, to phrase it redundantly. This idea is really more of a “if we can’t have a perfect world, let’s come as close as we can given where we are” thing.

Second, in that proverbial ideal world, open borders, free immigration, yada yada. Two hands, one mouth, all that stuff. In a less ideal but improved world, if you’re going to have restrictions and enforced borders, then do it. Or be creative with incentives.

So. If you’re not going to go all the way to eliminating the minimum wage, a logical step would be to free it up some. Lower it. Maybe drastically. Call it $3 an hour, for the sake of throwing out a low number. Instant employment rush. No, an adult supporting a family can’t live on it, but that’s not who low earners usually are, and they aren’t for long once they prove themselves. And no, wages in most places, for most things will not drop that far, because market pressure will keep them perhaps not much below where they are now.

But… That would just encourage illegals, and you’d get a flood of those who would work for that little and then it exacerbates that problem. If you concede it’s a problem.

So how about a two-tier minimum?

If you can prove you are legally eligible to work in this country, the low wage applies to you. You have maximum economic freedom to sell your labor.

If you can’t prove your status, being an illegal or ornery, you are not eliminated from working. You are merely in a pool of people for whom the minimum wage is higher. Call it $10 an hour, for the sake of throwing out a proportionately higher number. More might be better, since it would act as a filter on skilled labor immigration. Exemption for self-employment, so if you come here and are the person starting a business, you rock.

Hey, it’s a thought.