Must Reads For The Week 2/24/18

Posted February 26, 2018 by austrianaddict
Categories: Must Reads For The Week

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FLORIDA SCHOOL SHOOTING AFTERMATH

FBI Tipster Transcript Leaked: Cruz Will “Get Into A School And Shoot the Place Up”: Full Text, at zerohedge.com. No investigative action was taken from the agency that tells us, “if you see something say something”.

“There Was A Mistake Made” – FBI’s No. 2 Refuses To Provide Details On How Cruz Tips Were Fumbled, at zerohedge.com. This is an example of Government failure.

Officer’s Hesitation To Stop Shooting Fits A Pattern Of Police Cowardice, at the federalist.com. Armed school resource officer didn’t try to enter school to stop shooter. Government failure? Excerpt from the article: “It’s a lot easier to police good people than bad ones. That’s why police …….want to take law-abiding citizens’ guns instead of to go after criminal…..Scaring dopey teens and banning AR-15s is easy. Following up on truly dangerous people, building a case about their mental health, getting the evidence a judge needs to act, that’s hard work. So is going into a building where shots are being fired. Cops aren’t heroes for doing “easy”. They are heroes – and most of them are – for doing the hard stuff.”

“Shocked And Outraged”: Four Broward Deputies Waited Outside School As Children Were Massacred, at zerohedge.com. Government failure anyone? Four officers from the Broward County Sheriff department failed to enter the building when they arrived on the scene. And people are blaming the NRA?

Guns And Schools: Can The Market Do Better? by Jeff Deist, at mises.org. Why do people look to Government first when they want “solutions” to “problems”. Government doesn’t provide the incentives to come up with a solution, a trade-off or the tolerable best that can be accepted. Individuals in Government aren’t incentivized to “solve” problems. They need the problem to exist for the simple fact that they can use it for their political benefit. People need to understand that these problems could be dealt with best by allowing each school system to implement their ideas for making their schools safe? Excerpt from the article: There are no top-down political solutions available from Washington. Gun control doesn’t actually prevent crime, but it does provide the political class and media with another diversionary bitter cultural debate. Americans are deeply divided on guns, just as they are deeply divided on abortion and climate change and scores of other issues. And why should we expect otherwise, in a far-flung country of 320 million people with wildly diverse geographies, economies, and cultures? ….. Contrary to popular belief, the Second Amendment neither “federalized” gun laws nor created a right to private ownership of firearms. It simply enshrined the notion that “the people” need to be armed to defend themselves potentially against the state itself.

Security Works At Disney – But Can’t Work At A Public School? by Ryan McMaken, at mises.org. Excerpt from the article: “Those places (private sector) that actually value the safety and quality-of-experience for the people present have a much different attitude about security than public schools do. And, no doubt, part of the reason that public schools and their supporters can continue to get away with their dismissive attitude toward real security is because no matter how many shooting take place on school property, the schools are never held legally accountable. It’s much easier for the counties and the school boards to shrug and say “there’s not enough money.

6 Reasons Your Right-Wing Friend Isn’t Budging On Gun Control, at thefederalist.com. Excerpt from the article: “Second Amendment advocates truly view owning a firearm as an intrinsic right and a must to preserve liberty. It has nothing to do with hunting. It has nothing to do with hobbies……..So many gun control advocates are begging for a conversation on this issue, and it’s unfortunate they don’t see the Second Amendment advocates as willing to engage. I find it hard to have an honest and vulnerable conversation about a deeply held right when the starting point is often challenging my motives while coming from a place of ignorance on firearms. If you’re really looking to win over your gun-loving friend, try reading up on firearms, dumping anti-NRA talking points, and assume he or she is equally committed to preventing these evil acts.

GOVERNMENT IS FORCE

Pennsylvania Supreme Court Pulls Stunning Coup In Map Drawing Stunt, by Kyle Sammin, at thefederalist.com. The Pennsylvania Supreme Court usurped the power of the legislature with this ruling concerning the drawing of congressional districts. Courts are not legislative bodies.

CalPERS Is Near Insolvency; t Needs A Bailout Soon” – Former Board Member Makes Stunning Admission, at zerohedge.com. California’s public pension program isn’t going to be able to fulfill its promises to retired workers. This is another example of Government having no incentive to fight the public unions when it comes to increasing benefits. Years of caving to unions has brought California’s pension program to the brink of insolvency. At some point someone will have to give something up. Do you want to bet it will be the tax payer?

In An Unexpected Twist, Judge In Flynn Case Asks Mueller For “Exculpatory Evidence“, at zerohedge.com.  Another example of government abuse of power. The special counsel is supposed to turn over all of its evidence to attorneys for the  defendant. Even evidence that doesn’t help the prosecutions case. They didn’t turn it over before Flynn plead guilty. This is an example of tyrants using the power of government to get the outcome they want.

Scandal, Corruption, And Law Breaking – And So What, by Victor Davis Hanson, at nationalreview.com. The breakdown of the rule of law starts with Government. This is an example of individuals in government operating illegally. People don’t respond well to being told to follow the law when the people telling them are breaking the law. This never ends well.

CARTOONS from theburningplatform.com

Political Cartoons by Lisa Benson

Political Cartoons by Michael Ramirez

Political Cartoons by Michael Ramirez

 

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Must Reads For The Week 2/17/18

Posted February 19, 2018 by austrianaddict
Categories: Must Reads For The Week

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OPEC Future In Doubt As US Production, Fig Count Surge, at zerohedge.com. America’s shale revolution has changed the world oil market. OPEC wants to cut production to “balance the market”. What “balancing the market” means to OPEC is increased prices. Unfortunately for OPEC American shale is balancing the market. When the price of oil rises, because of OPEC’s production cuts, it now becomes profitable for frackers to produce more oil which ultimately lowers the price.

Inconvenient Energy Fact Of The Day, by Mark J. Perry, at carpediemblog. Solar and wind are going to provide a small percentage of of the worlds energy for the foreseeable future. So why are we wasting tax dollars to subsidize these non productive energy sources? It makes no sense outside of the political arena.

The Boston Globe Editorial Board Unloads On The ‘Pipeline Absolutism’ Of Environmentalists, by Mark J. Perry, at carpediemblog.com. Once again environmentalists activities are increasing the cost of energy. Excerpt from the article: “Why is LNG coming 4,500 miles for Boston from the Russian Arctic when the US is the world’s No.1 natural gas producer? The simple answer to the question is a lack of natural gas pipelines in New England due to the “pipeline absolutism” of anti-fossil fuel environmentalists who have blocked all new pipeline expansions…

SpaceX CEO Elon Musk Updates Mars Colonization Plans, by Jason Davis, at planetary.org. I’m going to throw a wrench in the spokes of Elon’s plan. How will this colony be supplied with food, water, oxygen, and other supplies to sustain life on Mars? Since there are no Walmarts on Mars, these life sustaining supplies will have to be continually transported from Earth to Mars. Is this logistical nightmare even possible? And what would the cost be (probably to tax payers) if it was possible?

Why Don’t Schools Use The Most Effective Teaching Methods? By Joy Pullmann, at thefederalist.com. The simple answer is because our educational system is essentially a monopoly. Excerpt from the article: “ …and monopolies create very powerful special interests whose sole purpose is to protect those interests. And they undermine the public’s interests using the public’s money. In short, to get U.S. public schools to actively care about better instruction, what we need is some massive trust-busting.”

Loan Shark Nation: Forcing Our Kids To Choose Between Student Loans and Everything Else, at zerohedge.com. The result of Government taking over the student loan business is the cost of college has increased dramatically. Forcing our kids into debt serfdom.

How To Kill 300,000 Americans With Opioids, by Trey Goff, at mises.org. This is a great article explaining the unintended consequences of government intervention.

FBI Admits “Protocols Were Not Followed” Before Florida Massacre, at zerohedge.com. This isn’t the first time the FBI missed the warning signs of mass shooters and terrorists. But here are few points. 1) It is easier to connect the dots after the fact than it is before the fact. 2) I didn’t think we are allowed to profile, are we? 3) I think we all agree it is a good idea to keep guns out of the hands of people with mental problems.

CIA Argues The Public Can’t See Classified Information It Has Already Leaked To Favored Reporters, at zerohedge.com. Our “public servants” are really self servants.

The Media Stopped Reporting The Russia Collusion Story Because They Helped Create It, by Lee Smith, at thefederalist.com. Excerpt from the article: “But the first vehicles of the Russiagate campaign were not bloggers or recent J-school grads lacking wisdom or guidance to wave off a piece of patent nonsense. They were journalists at the top of their profession—editors-in-chief, columnists, specialists in precisely the subjects that the dossier alleges to treat: foreign policy and national security. They didn’t get fooled. They volunteered their reputations to perpetrate a hoax on the American public.

 

CARTOONS

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Political Cartoons by Chip Bok

Political Cartoons by Gary McCoy

Must Reads For The Week 2/10/18

Posted February 11, 2018 by austrianaddict
Categories: Econ. 101

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THE FED AND THE STOCK MARKET

Is The 9-Year Dead Cat Bounce Finally Ending? By Charles Hugh Smith, at oftwominds.com. The Feds double edged sword of artificially low interest rates and money printing have created bubbles in the financial markets. No one knows what is and is not a bubble activity. We just know printed money went into the financial markets. As Jim Grant has said, “It is money in search of mischief”. In other words, artificially low interest rates and printed money misallocates scarce resources to activities that would not exist under free market interest rates and stable money.

When the Fed raises interest rates and takes money out of the system by unwinding its balance sheet, the bubble activities will be revealed. Could this be what is happening to the stock market now. The Fed’s QE Unwind Accelerates Sharply, at zerohedge.com. The Fed created the financial bubble in the first lace and is now trying to figure out how to gradually let the air out, instead of popping it. They hope a stronger economy can help release the air slowly over time.

Former Fed Chairman Alan Greenspan Warns: “We Have A Stock Market Bubble, at zerohedge.com. No kidding! You helped cause it by lowering interest rates and printing money.

The worlds Central Banks Holding Steady, But Promise More Rate Hikes, at mises.org. I scratch my head when I hear central banks talk about price inflation without mentioning that their policies are the cause of inflation. Prices will go up and down because of supply and demand. But this is not inflation. Money printing is the definition of inflation.

DEBT

Pentagon Auditor Can’t Account For $800 Million In Spending, at zerohedge.com. No shock here. There is waste, theft and fraud everywhere tax payer money is spent.

Credit Card, Student and Auto Debt All Hit Record Highs In December, at zerohedge.com. Borrowing money means you bring your future consumption into the present. How much more do you have to produce in order to be able to pay off the interest and inflated cost of present consumption and to also be able to consume when the future becomes the present?

Republican Fiscal Hawks Revolt Against Budget Deal, Suspension Of Debt Ceiling, at zerohedge.com. How can the Republicans in Congress say they are for small government when they pass a budget that increases the yearly budget debt by $400 billion? Only fiscally responsible Republicans stood against this budget. With the Fed saying they are going to increase interest rates, the $20 plus trillion national could increase exponentially.

Student-Loan Crisis Worsens; Looming Defaults Strain Govt Bailout Program, at zerohedge.com. Since the Government took over student loans it has become a bubble activity. The rise in the cost of college tuition is being caused by borrowed money being used to pay for college. When students get out of college and have more debt than income there will be defaults. These defaults will eventually be paid by you and me the tax payer. What a scam!

The Cure, at ericpetersautos.com. Excerpt from the article: “Imagine how different cars would be if people had to pay for them – as opposed to financing them. Debt – which is what financing is – allows people to buy more car than they can afford. It hides the actual cost of the car. It enables the government to impose costs in the forms of mandates which would otherwise be unaffordable – and so, objectionable. People would complain in the one language the government understands. They would not comply – because they could not buy.”

OTHER STUFF

We Say Peoplekind”: Trudeau Mansplains To woman That “Mankind” Is Not an Appropriate Term, at zerohedge.com. This is the the idiocy of political correctness. Everyone with a brain knows what mankind means.

Lawmakers Want To Ban Tide-Pods From Looking So Delicious…. Seriously, at zerohedge.com. Who in their right mind would think eating laundry pods is a good idea? What kind of ego does it take to think it is your job to protect these idiots from themselves?

The Greatest Public Health Mistake Of The 20th Century, at mercola.com. We have been told for decades to stay out of the sun or wear sunscreen when you have to be out in it. But staying out of the sun causes a vitamin D deficiency. The study says that vitamin D may prevent 30 deaths for each death caused by skin cancer. Thomas Sowell is right again when he said, “There are no solutions in life. There are only trade offs.” We were sold a bill of goods on a bad trade off.

The Fragile Generation, at zerohedge.com. Excerpt from the article: “Bad policy and paranoid parenting are making kids too safe to succeed…..This generation of kids must be protected like none other. They can’t use tools, they can’t play on grass, and they certainly can’t be expected to work through a spat with a friend.”

 

Must Reads For The Week 2/3/18

Posted February 4, 2018 by austrianaddict
Categories: Must Reads For The Week

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Patients Are “Dying In Corridors” Of Britian’s Socialised Health System, by George Pickering, at mises.org. Why do people continue to believe that economic central planning doesn’t produce the results the planners planned? The only way to “fix” a health care system is to turn over the decision-making to the individuals involved in the economic exchange (the consumer and the producer). All attempts by central planners to “fix” the problems brought about by the previous “fixes” are treating the symptom, not the problem. Central planning is the disease. Individual decision-making is the cure.

Will Unfinished Train Overpasses Become California’s Stonehenge?, by Victor Davis Hanson, at victorhanson.com. Another example of central planners plans not turning out as planned. In 2008 planners convinced voters that high-speed rail was an affordable way to cure their crowded freeway system. California may not have enough money to finish the project. Even if the project gets finished there will never be enough riders to cover the initial cost of building it, let alone the day-to-day cost of running the railroad.

Six Years After Bankruptcy, Stockton Is Preparing To Start Handing Out Free Money, at zerohedge.com. Another example of central planners arrogance. Excerpt from the article: “The pervasive poverty in his city has led Stockton Mayor Michael Tubbs to announce….the city would soon begin an interesting social experiment. Starting later this year, a random sample of 300,000 Stockton residents will receive $500 every month with no strings attached. This program is set to become the US’s largest experiment with a policy that has become a favorite topic of Mark Zuckerberg and his Silicon Valley peers: Universal Basic Income.” One question: Where is the money coming from? We know Stockton doesn’t produce anything that can be exchanged for enough money to cover the cost of their budget and this social experiment. The money either has to be taxed away from other individuals, or it has to be borrowed (which means it has to be paid back by future tax payers). This is like taking a bucket of water from the deep end of the pool and dumping it into the shallow end, while spilling half the water on the way to the shallow end.

Republicans’ Latest Family Leave Scheme Shows Why We Can’t Be Free, by Robert Tracinski, at thefederalist.com. A majority of Republicans in office aren’t for free markets and smaller government. Family leave is another example of central planning brought to you by the “free market” party. Big government politicians have to be purged from the Republican party through primary election process.

Great Moments In Government Regulation: Meijer Charged By Wisconsin Price Police Of Hurting Consumers By Charging Too Little, by Mark J. Perry, at carpediemblog. Excerpt from the article: “When Meijer opened its first two stores in the Badger State, the greeting Meijer received was far from “Wisconsin nice.” Rivals filed complaints accusing it of pricing 37 items…..below cost…..Wisconsin’s Department of Agriculture, Trade and Consumer Protection sent the superstore a letter explaining the requirements of the state’s Unfair Sales Act.” How can lower prices hurt consumers? The simple fact is lower prices hurt Meijer’s competitors. The quote about “rivals” filing complaints with Wisconson’s Department of Agriculture tells us that consumers are not being thought about. This is an example of government central planners setting price floors. Allow prices to be set by individuals freely exchanging in the market. Central planners can’t possibly know where Meijer’s prices should be set. If Meijer is wrong it will bear the cost of its mistake.

Chart Of The Day (Century?): Price Changes 1997 to 2017, by Mark J. Perry, at carpediemblog.  Intervention by Government central planners increases the prices of goods and services. The freer individuals are to make decisions in a market the lower the prices. Of course we know money printing and artificially low interest rates, courtesy of the Federal Reserve, are the ultimate intervention in the market.

 

EXCERPT FROM THE ARTICLE: ” 1) Blue lines = prices subject to free market forces. Red Lines = prices subject to regulatory capture by government. Food and drink is debatable either way. Conclusion: remind me why socialism is so great again. 2) Almost all of the items above the line are protected industries while those below the line are subject to generally robust competition…3) This is one of the most important charts about the economy this century. 4) Imagine that, prices are cheaper with more competition and less government. 5) What areas are government most intrusive? Education and healthcare or manufacturing? ”

Connecticut’s Towns Are Crying For Help: But Will Hartford Listen? at zerohedge.com. Because central planners have no incentive but to cave to the demands of public sector unions over the years, the government of the State of Connecticut has a serious debt problem. If Connecticut was forced to respond to signals sent by market prices over the years, they wouldn’t be in this mess. These losses wouldn’t have been able to pile up year after year. Market prices send signals to stop unproductive activities. But of course Government can negate market forces for only so long. Paying labor more than it produces is an unproductive activity. Of course Governments think that they can ignore market forces. But ultimately you can’t hide the cost of consuming more than you produce for an extended period of time. Ultimately someone will have to give something up.

Plastic Straws Bill In California Makes Them Illegal Unless Requested, by Josh Hafner, at usatoday.com. This can’t possibly be true can it? Of course we can never underestimate the length which central planners will go to control the decisions of the masses.

Ratings For Grammy Awards Drop 24%, nytimes.com. Politics ruins everything. People want to watch the Grammy awards to be entertained. They don’t want to be preached to by a bunch of people who don’t understand that the very system they denigrate allows them to be as prosperous as they are.

CARTOONS  from theburningplatform.

Political Cartoons by Michael Ramirez

Political Cartoons by Michael Ramirez

Political Cartoons by Steve Breen

Political Cartoons by Lisa Benson

 

Must Reads For The Week 1/27/18

Posted January 28, 2018 by austrianaddict
Categories: Must Reads For The Week

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Trump Slaps Tariffs On Imported Solar Panels And Washing Machines, at npr.org. Trump is wrong on this issue. On the one hand he has taken the foot off the brakes on the economy by rolling back government regulations and taxes. On the other hand he is increasing taxes (tariffs) on certain imports which is like putting his other foot on the emergency brake.

US Rig Count Soars Most In 10 Months As Production Hits Record High, at zerohedge.com. American fracking has forced oil to trade in a narrower range. Huge upside swings in prices have been negated because oil can be supplied by fracking in the US at a lower price then it could before the fracking boom.  Which leads to this story. “Leave Us Alone” – Saudi Oil Minister Slams Shale Hype, at zerohedge.com. OPEC has lost its ability to increase the price of oil by decreasing their supply of oil. OPEC thought they had it made when the price of oil went to $125+ in early 2012. But the high price allowed fracking to be profitable at this price. Now look what has happened. OPEC cut its own throat.

“It Just Gets Worse And Worse”: A Record 32% Of Used Car Trade-Ins Are Underwater, at zerohedge.com. Is trading in a car which has negative equity, and financing the balance owed in the new loan on the new car a good idea? The person would be paying interest on the new car as well as the old car which of course they no longer own.

STUDY: Sandwiches Cause ‘Global Warming’ , by Rob Bushway, at climatedepot.com. These researchers are studying the carbon footprint of the production of the contents and packaging of sandwiches. My question is; won’t the contents still be produced even if sandwiches were outlawed? People will still eat. It just won’t be in the form of a sandwich. But let’s get to the main point. CO2 is not a pollutant. It is plant food. CO2 is used by plants in the process of photosynthesis. Oxygen is the waste product of photosynthesis. Which, by the way, humans need to live.

Embarrassment For NBC News After Lester Holt Apparently Falls For North Korean Propaganda, at foxnews.com. Are they really embarrassed? Remember NYT reporter Walter Duranty reporting how great communism was while millions were killed by Stalin. Communism fits the media’s vision of the world, which is central planning by our bettors.

Facebook Says ‘Insignificant’ Overlap Between Russia Ads, Trump, at bloomberg.com. Facebook says it can’t substantiate or disprove collusion. Since the charge is Trump colluded with the Russians. The burden of proof is on the side that brings the charges. Collusion has to be proven. When you use the term ‘disprove’ you are trying to leave doubt in people’s minds. Until there is proof, collusion didn’t happen.

Starbucks Will Spend $250 Million On Worker Benefits, at zerohedge.com. Here is what Starbucks CEO Kevin Johnson said, “Investing in our partners has long been our strategy…Due to the recent changes in U.S. tax law, we are able to accelerate some significant partner investments.” Taxes and regulations have a negative affect on business activity.

THE RESULTS OF ILLINOIS SOCIALIST POLICIES

The Incredible Shrinking Illinois: High Taxes And Low Economic Freedom Have led To State Crisis, at zerohedge.com. People ultimately vote with their feet when they think government regulations and taxes become too oppressive. The population of Illinois is shrinking to the point where it could possibly lose a house seat.

Illinois Unveils Another Shocker: Sell A Record $107 Billion In Debt To Fund Insolvent Pensions, at zerohedge.com. You don’t solve a debt problem by taking on more debt. With people leaving Illinois (as we see in the above article) how will the new debt be pay back with fewer tax payers? Especially if you can’t pay off present debt with the existing tax base?

COLLEGES ARE PROGRESSIVE INDOCTRINATION CAMPS

Students Hold ‘Bleed-In’ To Demand Free Menstrual Products, By Daniel Weldon, at camppusreform.org. How ignorant are you about how the world works if you think that something is free. Nothing is free. Everything has to be produced before it can be consumed. Do these people think that menstrual products magically grow on the feminine hygiene tree.

Judge Forces University of Iowa To Recognize Christian Student Group On Same Terms As Muslim Group, by Greg Piper, at collegefis.com. U of Iowa derecognized a Christian student group because of its requirement that its leaders must abide by sexual moral conduct rules. A Muslim student group has similar requirements for its members but the U of Iowa didn’t seem to care about these requirements. A judge has ordered the U of Iowa to treat all organizations the same. She said, “…groups are permitted to organize around their missions and beliefs.” I guess Christian ideas don’t fit well with the ideology of the progressive left. Can we all agree colleges and universities are indoctrination camps for the progressive left.

College Pays $55k To Settle Lawsuit With Arrested Students, by Adam Sabes, at campusreform.org. Campus police at Kellogg Community College arrested two students for passing out the Constitution of the United States. The two students sued and won. They will receive $55k in damages.

SOCIALISM IN VENEZUELA. HOW IS IT WORKING OUT?

In Venezuela, “We Loot Or We Die OF Hunger”, at zerohedge.com. Government economic planning destroys a countries standard of living. When you have to loot to eat you have hit bottom. Government planning, especially Government money printing, destroys wealth, it doesn’t create wealth. This won’t end well.

“It’s Not Politics, It’s Survival” – Bitcoin, Local Currencies Are Taking Over In Venezuela, at zerohedge.com. Excerpt from the article: “..in Venezuela, the collapse of the Bolivar has forced locals to turn to alternatives like bitcoin and local community-issued currencies with fixed exchange rates.” This shows that money is a market phenomenon. When a government debases its currency, the market (individuals making decisions), will reveal what will be used as the new medium of exchange (money). The idea of a medium of exchange (money) didn’t come from government, it evolved through the market process.

CARTOONS  from theburningplatform.com

Political Cartoons by Henry Payne

Political Cartoons by Henry Payne

Political Cartoons by Steve Kelley

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Must Reads For The Week 1/20/18

Posted January 22, 2018 by austrianaddict
Categories: Must Reads For The Week

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GOVERNMENT SHUT DOWN = POLITICAL THEATER

Do Taxpayers Want To Pay For Those Shut Down Government Services?, by Ryan McMaken, at mises.org. A Government “shut down” is important to bureaucrats, politicians and of course the media. Why? Because Government is the end all and be all for these people. No one else cares. Because of their bias toward big government, the news media creates stories to make a government shut down look worse than it is. This is all political theater. Excerpt from the article: “….. If the taxpayers were uniformly appalled and outraged at the thought of a government shutdown, it seems unlikely that the federal government would need to go out of its way to make a big show of what government services were being shut down. This is a time-honored strategy, of course, and even has a name: the Washington Monument Syndrome. For decades, the bureaucrats in the National Park Service have gleefully closed the parks whenever government shutdowns have occurred, …..The Park Service knows that the closure of parks plays a helpful role in angering American tourists and taxpayers who find themselves traveling a thousand miles to only end up at a closed National Park…..The National Parks are an extreme case, though, and the federal government knows it. The question remains as to whether or not taxpayers care much about all the other government “services” that may be closed or scaled back. Just how badly do the taxpayers want to make sure that their tax dollars keep going to fund NSA spying on Americans, or the study of wildlife mating habits, or the planting of trees in the front yards of millionaires?”

What The ‘Dreamer’ Fight Is Really About, by Victor Davis Hanson, at victorhanson.com. In this government shut down game of chicken between the R’s and D’s, the Democrats are betting all their chips on the DACA program. This article does a great job of explaining both sides of this issue.

THE GOVERNMENT DOESN’T REALLY SHUTDOWN.

What Closes During A Government Shutdown? Military, Social Security, National Parks, TSA? at cbsnews.com. Essential operations of government and essential personal don’t get shut down. The rest is non-essential. These two articles list what is and is not shutting down. What Won’t Get Done During A Government Shutdown, at nbcwashington.com.

OTHER STUFF

Glenn Greenwald Reminds Jeff Flake Who’s More Like Stalin Than Trump, at thelibertarianrepublic.com. Here is an excerpt from the article: “Comparing the president to a former dictator after not shooting down a bill (Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act aka FISA)that grants him broad surveillance powers doesn’t make a great deal of sense. If the president is a dictator, there is no reason to trust him with oversight into civilians’ private lives.

Inconvenient Energy Fact” It Takes 79 solar Workers To Produce same Amount Of electric Power As One Coal Worker, by Mark J. Perry, at carpediemblog. The economically ignorant would think subsidizing the solar industry creates more jobs in the solar industry. And they would be correct on the surface. But what a free market does in a world of scarcity is produce the most output with the least imput. And jobs are a part of this imput. Non productive jobs don’t last in the free market. Non productive jobs only last in government or in a market that is hampered by tax payer subsidies, taxes and regulations. Since solar is propped up by tax payer subsidies, non productive jobs are allowed to continue. Subsidizing the solar industry makes the recipients of the tax dollars wealthier but it makes the over all economy less wealthy.

The American Sedan Is Dying, Long Live The SUV, at bloomberg.com. Evil consumers have made their decision. And auto makers will bow to the consumer. Lower gas prices, thanks to the American fracking industry, has made the trade-off for fuel economy not as important as it was when gas was four dollars a gallon. This is an example of how markets work to coordinate the decisions of millions of consumers and producers.

Are Crude Oil Prices Becoming Immune To Geopolitics? by Omar Lopez-Arce, at mises.org. Production cuts by OPEC countries have had no effect on world oil prices. Other factors are setting the price of oil. 1)World demand for oil is increasing at a slower rate. 2)The American fracking boom has increased supply and OPEC can’t control American fracking. 3)The US has pulled out of the Paris Climate Agreement. This means American gas and oil companies only have to worry about EPA regulations. And the EPA under Scott Pruitt has cut many of these Obama era regulations.

CALIFORNIA PROGRESSIVE POLICIES CREATED THE HOMELESS PROBLEM AND WILL MAKE IT WORSE.

California’s Homeless Problem Revealed In One “Incredible” Video, at zerohedge.com. A cyclist takes a video as he rides a bike trail along the Santa Ana river in Anaheim California. It shows a tent city for homeless people that stretches for miles. He says it reeks of trash and feces, and is also unsafe. This is a jaw dropping video. Why doesn’t fake news organizations report on this? Is it because the biased media doesn’t want to see that decades of illegal immigration is finally raising its ugly head?

San Francisco’s Human Poop Map Shows City Is In Deep Doo-Doo, by Kira Davis, at redstate.com. Is San Francisco turning into a toilet? Once again the homeless are defecating and urinating everywhere. This is not a healthy situation. Will declaring yourself a “Sanctuary State” make this problem better or worse?

On a side note: The flush toilet has to be one of the greatest inventions of all time.

Oakland Supermarket Clerk Fired For Trying To Stop Shoplifter, at theburingplatform.com. Crime in this area is going up. It is the stores policy for workers to not physically engage customers.  Excerpt from the article” “The store clerk said….. he was just tired of seeing the shoplifting happening over and over again. Other employees said they’ve seen an increase in shoplifting, eve since customers have been asked to bring in their own bags. They fill up their bags and leave without paying at the register.” This is an example of laws having unintended consequences. California banned free plastic grocery bags in 2016. Stores must charge ten cents for a paper or plastic bag. So stores started to allow people to bring in their own bags. More shoplifting was the result. There are no solutions in life, only trade offs.

“New California” Conservative Movement Declares Independence As First Step Towards 51st State, at zerohedge.com. Here is another example of the unintended consequence of decades of California’s progressive policies. A group called New California, wants to split California into two states. One state would be the coastal counties from Northern San Francisco to Los Angeles. The 51st state would we the rest of the rural counties. I think this is a great idea.