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Saturday, June 14, 2014

Farewell to my 85 Chevy Celebrity

I've been driving it since high school. Much as I have come to love it, it's time to move on. 

Monday, June 9, 2014

Wichita Mountains June 2014

Click to enlarge

Elk Mountain

View from peak of Elk Mountain

Friday, June 6, 2014

Friday, May 30, 2014

Tuesday, May 20, 2014

The 7 Derpy Sins of Team Blue

1. The minimum wage helps workers & the economy.

No, it makes labor more expensive and discourages hiring.

2. There are only so many pieces of the pie. If the rich get richer, the poor must get poorer.

Wealth is not a zero-sum game. When people trade freely, both sides get something they want more.

3. Money is wealth.

Money has no intrinsic value. You can't eat it, live in it, or wear it. It's only use is to trade. Wealth has many forms, including goods, services, and knowledge.

4. Government spending stimulates the economy.

 No, it redirects scarce resources to less efficient activities. If those activities were truly wise, people would freely invest in them. If the only way to fund something is with money taken by force (taxes), then it probably isn't a good idea.

5. We are the government.

No, society is not government. Government is a relatively small part of society. Those who form it have their own goals and wants which often conflict with others outside government.

6. A low tax policy means trickle-down economics.

Money trickles up and down. People who want high taxes want the the trickling to be to and from the government.

7. High tax rates are good for the economy.

No, they discourage production, saving, and investment.

Monday, May 19, 2014

The Derponomicon: Part 27

Well, here it is. The last response. His topic was the following quote from Augustine of Hippo:

Justice being taken away, then, what are kingdoms but great robberies? For what are robberies themselves, but little kingdoms? The band itself is made up of men; it is ruled by the authority of a prince, it is knit together by the pact of the confederacy; the booty is divided by the law agreed on. If, by the admittance of abandoned men, this evil increases to such a degree that it holds places, fixes abodes, takes possession of cities, and subdues peoples, it assumes the more plainly the name of a kingdom, because the reality is now manifestly conferred on it, not by the removal of covetousness, but by the addition of impunity. Indeed, that was an apt and true reply which was given to Alexander the Great by a pirate who had been seized. For when that king had asked the man what he meant by keeping hostile possession of the sea, he answered with bold pride, “What thou meanest by seizing the whole earth; but because I do it with a petty ship, I am called a robber, whilst thou who dost it with a great fleet art styled emperor.”

As far at the Augustine of Hippo quote, it is most certainly in reference to a mideval kingdom system of government. Equating a mideval kingdoms system of government to the modern day US government is once again, like comparing apples and hippos. In modern day US, tax dollars pay for roads, bridges, air traffic safety, clean air, clean water, inspected food, the military, satellites, the infrastructure of plumbing/electric/utilities/etc. we all enjoy, and about a zillion other things. In a kingdom, the people were lucky to get a water source. You literally cannot exist in modern society without taking advantage of what society (I.e. The government) provides. When you step on a sidewalk, or use electricity, or drive on a street in a car that isn't exploding, etc. You are taking advantage of what the government provided to you.

Ignorance of history, conflation of society with govt, and an argument from ignorance.

Thank goodness that's the last of it. 

The Derponomicon: Part 26

A response to my favorite Sowell quote:

"The first lesson of economics is scarcity: there is never enough of anything to fully satisfy all those who want it. The first lesson of politics is to disregard the first lesson of economics."

-Thomas Sowell

On the Thomas Sowell quote, As I have mentioned before, he is a favorite of the white supremacist crowd, which really says a lot about who he speaks to. Of course the lesson of economics is a finite amount of everything, otherwise no one would need to buy it. But that general statement isn't new casserole true. The first lesson of economics is laziness. People will pay for anything that requires the least amount of work. When people are given the choice between growing their own food for free in their backyard, or buying food at a restaurant or a prepared meal, what will most people choose? When given the choice between paying for produce and meat and making food yourself, and ordering a pizza, what will most people choose? MOST aspects of our economy are built on taking advantage of people's laziness. People are willing to pay for any product or service that will make their life easier. So generally speaking there is pretty much an unlimited amount of goods and services that Americans are willing to buy if they can afford it, from a service that cleans up dog shit in your yard, to custom hats for your baby. So in America that rule doesn't really apply. What does however have a finite amount to go around is wealth, and the more wealth we hand up to the top percentages, who know how to manipulate and hide it, in the most literal way takes from everyone else. There are only so many slices of the pie to go around, and when the richest people get the most pieces of pie, that leaves nothing but a slice and some crumbs for everyone else to fight over.

More baseless smears, more deflection, more yammering that the economy is a zero-sum game. The denial of scarcity is the cherry on top.