Comments and observations on social and political trends and events.

Tuesday, July 24, 2012

You Didn't Build That: Two Analyses

I like how Maverick Philosopher dissects Obama's remarks on "you didn't build that." Maverick Philosopher: Who Built the Internet? Obama's Straw Man Fallacy

Ari Armstrong's analysis also touches on the motivation behind Obama's argument.

Sunday, July 22, 2012

King Barack I vs. the American Gospel of Success By Robert Tracinski

I like this analysis byRobert Tracinski. It covers a lot of ground and I agree with the points he makes.

King Barack I vs. the American Gospel of Success

Over the years I've met several business owners who have created their enterprises from nothing. One is a college friend of my wife who spent years scrimping and saving, working insane hours without knowing whether or not her business was going to succeed or not. Finally over. Here's the business to take off and eventually was bought out by a much larger organization. Our friend was asked to stay on and help continue managing the business the sheep built. But for years we saw very little of her because she was working 18 hour days six and seven days a week.

I also recall meeting a fellow while working on account where he and some of his coworkers bought the plant that was being sold by the parent company. They scraped together enough money by mortgaging their homes to buy the plant. There were no guarantees either business was going to survive. And if the businesses had failed the guys who bought the plant I mentioned above could have easily lost their homes.

Why tell the stories to uphold liberal friends of mine live in the area and indicate how much these people put on the line and how many hours they work I get to look of disbelief as if they are saying, “How could that possibly be?” In fact when one friend almost comes out and says it's not possible anybody could work harder than him. I'm not saying he doesn't work hard but I also know he engages in a lot of activities such as biking, tennis, hiking etc. that our friend I mentioned above had to completely abandon in order to build her business. I don't begrudge her the money she made. But I do sense resentment from our friends.

Obama talks about how people who have succeeded in creating and building their business are basically not smarter than the rest of us or haven't worked harder than the rest of us (although I would dispute that). He conveniently ignores one point that distinguishes people who have succeeded in creating their own businesses: they have taken risks that other people have not taken or are not willing to take.

He also conveniently forgets to mention the fact that the same people who created businesses from nothing did so from a vision of what they wanted to create.

If polled I would assume that the majority of business owners would agree with Obama's general point that it would not have been possible for them to create their business without the foundation of the infrastructure provided by local and federal taxes. To me this is the equivalent of saying we all need soil in order to grow crops. But it still takes someone with initiative, vision, and willingness to take risks to plant their seeds in the soil and spend the time and effort and sweat it takes for the seeds to grow. All this without a guarantee that their seeds will actually sprout.

Think Tough Gun Laws Keep Europeans Safe? Think Again by John Lott

This article by John Lott from 2010 talks about the five worst mass shootings in history. It is interesting to note that three of the five occurred in Germany, which according to Lott has the strictest gun control regulations in all of Europe.

Think Tough Gun Laws Keep Europeans Safe? Think Again... | Fox News

Saturday, July 14, 2012

Interesting advice for Romney

While I don't agree with Bruce Gabrielle's claim that the Romney campaign is "on the ropes" I like his advice.

Monday, July 2, 2012

Obamacare: Crony Corporatism At Its Worst

I wondered why it would take such a 2000+-page monstrosity of a bill to "cure" the ills of our healthcare system. Wouldn't it be easier to come up with something that does not disrupt what 90% of the Americans have for health insurance and deal directly with those people who do not have it? I'm thinking of something similar to what used to be called food stamps. Maybe they would be called med stamps! Or do what they do in Switzerland: provide a direct subsidy to people who cannot afford health insurance or if the cost of the insurance exceeds a certain percent of their income. One possible explanation is that Obamacare gives our wise government bureaucrats complete control over a large sector of our economy. I'm sure there's some of that motivating the drive to develop such a complicated mess of legislation.

I also figured it had to be the result of the unholy alliance we have between government and big business. (This relationship is often referred to as crony capitalism, however I prefer the term crony corporatism.) The post below by Dan Mitchell of the Cato Institute confirms this suspicion by providing some background on the birth (or should we say failed abortion?) of Obama care. Be sure to check out the link that Mitchell provides in his post to an article that appeared in the Washington Examiner.

Sunday, July 1, 2012

Thoughts on the Supreme Court Decision on Obamacare

I do not plan to provide lengthy commentary on last week’s Supreme ruling on the constitutionality of the healthcare act. Many other folks with whom I agree have spoken on the subject. However I will make a prediction: five years from now our situation with healthcare will be no better, if not worse, than it is today. And that will spur further calls for even more government intervention into the healthcare sector to "fix" the problems. This despite the fact that government has been involved in healthcare for at least 100 years in a series of actions, each of which has caused even further disruptions.
The first link from the Ludwig von Mises Institute provides an extensive list of links to various articles and studies on the effect of government's role on healthcare and how will we have now is not anywhere close to a free market in healthcare.

The first link in the list is an article by Murray Rothbard summarizes the history of the government’s intervention in healthcare since around 1910.

The Heritage Foundation collection of pictures and charts captures the key features of Obamacare. Http://

Robert Bidinotto identifies the collectivist premises that support the Supreme Court ruling and provides a link to his analysis of why conservatives continually lose the moral battle in these battles against the left. I strongly recommend reading both the article on his blog as well as the link to his article on “Up From Conservatism.

Meanwhile neo-neocon provides some interesting thoughts.

And finally for a counter to the moral argument Obamacare proponents unleash on anyone who dares to oppose their “noble” cause check out Dr. Paul Hsieh’s article.

The only way Americans can protect their long-term access to quality medical care is by demanding that the government respect their freedom and individual rights. Any system of “universal” health care necessarily requires a bureaucracy to control who can receive what services and when — if only to control costs. The medical rationing in Canada and the UK are typical results. In these countries, far from being a “right,” health care becomes just another privilege to be dispensed at the discretion of the bureaucrats.