Sunday, February 27, 2011

Stimulus & Jobs

The Congressional Budget Office reports that the unemployment rate might have been higher if not for the Stimulus enacted in 2009. A study by Goldman Sachs comes to the same conclusion. It's sad that the no-nothings in Congress who want to severely cut the budget don't understand. But, then they are not interested in facts, only folk wisdom and slogans.

Thursday, February 10, 2011

Eisenhower Wisdom on Military Spending

“Every gun that is made, every warship launched, every rocket fired signifies, in the final sense, a theft from those who hunger and are not fed, those who are cold and are not clothed. This world in arms is not spending money alone. It is spending the sweat of its laborers, the genius of its scientists, the hopes of its children. The cost of one modern heavy bomber is this: a modern brick school in more than 30 cities. It is two electric power plants, each serving a town of 60,000 population. It is two fine, fully equipped hospitals. It is some fifty miles of concrete pavement. We pay for a single fighter plane with a half million bushels of wheat. We pay for a single destroyer with new homes that could have housed more than 8,000 people. … Is there no other way the world may live?”

then President Dwight Eisenhower

Monday, February 7, 2011

Super Bowl and the Decline of Western Civilization

We have a society where business firms are willing to spend three million dollars for a 30-second spot on television. At the same time, local governments are hard pressed to provide police and fire protection and some say we can't afford health care for the uninsured. This is sick. I wonder what the equivalent was in the days leading up to the fall of the Roman Empire??

Afghanistan, Mexico, Drugs & US policy

The current issue of National Georgraphic asks how the growing of heroin poppies in Afghanistan might be controlled. It is not just an Afghan problem. They are the supply side, but we are the demand side. Until we get realistic about drugs and help addicts, rather than criminalize them and their suppliers, the profits in the business will attract desperate people. We are responible for the terrorism in Afghanistan and Mexico and other places, and no amount of police and military will stop it. Our expensive drug policies are not only a failure, but have harmed people around the world.