Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Cash for reliable clunkers

It has come to my attention that the government is possibly overpaying for junkers. That is, they are inflating the price for perfectly fine automobiles in an effort to boost consumer car sales and to benefit a greener environment.

While I applaud the effort, again this is policy with good intentions and little substance. Let me explain. Upwards of $4500 was given via tax credits, as an incentive to trade in old, gas clunkers for newer and fuel efficient vehicles. However, for the dealers to qualify for the reimbursement they had to destroy the vehicle and send proof to the gov. By now we have all heard of the friend of a friend that traded in a $1000 car for the $4500 tax credit and financed little to nothing on their newer car. That's great. I think we all support a great deal. But at the governments expense? Surely there are individuals, (think you at 16), that could have used these beaters as means of transportation? Surely there are families and single mothers who would love to not have to use public transportation. A reliable vehicle frees many of us to look for work, take trips, be in charge of our own destiny.

But now those beaters are in a scrap yard. Now the old reliable gas guzzler is unable to serve its purpose. Now the used parts dealers are in flux as to where to go for parts.

All the while our country continues to mount debt in the quest for egalitarianism.
Such decisions, such as cash for clunkers, reinforces the ideals of a puppet master government.

Saturday, February 28, 2009

Non Profit nation

Today I was having a conversation with a close friend. A friend that is lefty liberal, educated and well read. We discussed as many are doing right now, the impact of the upcoming stimulus package; the spending, tax cuts and work that will be created. While a Keynesian approach is warranted during certain economic crisis, it is crucial to identify the results within the package and estimate at best the return of investment.

I explained that business owners, families and consumers often tackle the roi decision many times throughout the day. Should the small business owner increase capital expenditures to gain market share? Should the consumer shop at Wal-Mart or the locally owned grocery store? Should the family buy brand name shoes for the kids when they could potentially grow out of them soon? And of course there are many other examples to identify.

But the same question remains. What is the potential benefit of spending time, money, investment and human capital? It is disturbing to see the disturbing trends of bloated operational costs, zero top line revenue,and waste among these non-profits organizations.

During our conversation, I brought up the point of effective compassion and the lives transformed by empowerment via philantrophy that works and does not form dependancy. For example, on average, less than $.20 per dollar, reaches the recipients the organization is formed for. The majority of funds is used on high range salaries and other operatonal costs that block funding for those who need it the most. With that said, it is alarming the extent in which the aggregate population gives adulation for supporting not for profit deeds. The government is a not for profit agency that has shown its wasteful tendencies. Yet we look to this failed instituion as a source of remedy and making the earth, like Buckley said, eshtalogical.

Why is America afraid of profit? Why do we scorn and attempt to take property of those who have attained such success? Because the country has fallen entrapped to the ideals of victimology and the pressures to promote class warfare.

Profit was the motive behind the majority of inventions and innovations that we enjoy in life. Steve Jobs didn't push the first ipod so you could ignore people at the gym. No, he did it to get rich. To attain wealth. Fiber optic cable was not laid in miles and miles of ocean for the world to consume and connect to the internet for the sake of the greater good.

Why is there a lack of green jobs? If there was an overwhelming demand for green jobs that the government wants to create, there would have been entrpreneurs that started these "job hotspots" years ago. Theres no market my hippie friend, for that which is fake and not sustainable.

To see this pattern of mediocrity and class stucture, should strike some as depressing. If only someone had the cure for depression, they could make some money.

It is the principality.

Thursday, February 5, 2009

Thank you Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young

Divorce is imminent. And all attempts at reconciliation have, thus far, failed. Pending a timely act of God, its over. I know the majority of us who enter into a marriage deny the statisitcs and overwhelming data suggesting divorce, animosity and horrible marriages. However, this blogger has failed become an outlier.

This blog entry is not to point, cast judgement or give details of my upcoming seperation.

No, this entry is about feelings of despair, hopelessness and the jam "Carry On" by Crosby Stills, Nash and Young.

I left work today brooding about my failed marriage and the onslaught of fears and doubts in myself for allowing such an outcome. I am sure there are others out there who have, at least once, felt similar emotions during a rough stretch of their own life journey.

Then it came on.

Rejoice, Rejoice you have no choice, but to carry on.

Tears dried-- hope arrived.

Monday, January 19, 2009

MLK and the Obama Confusion

On the presupice of such a historic occasion, I am often reminded of the individuals that make up our diverse electorate. One could make the argument that in fact Obama was voted in because of his "blackness" or lack thereof (read previous posts). Many continue on to discuss the impact Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. made on the public perception of African-Americans and the progress his work did to in effect elect Obama. The excitement of watching people pursue answers to complex questions and to reach beyond the accepted norms we live in is what this blogger has pursued; independant thought, intelligent conversation among Americans, and using more than 5% of your brain capacity.

Unfortunately, their arguments are misguided. Today I heard, again, the now famous qoute, "Rosa sat so MLK could walk so Obama could run so our kids can fly." Throughout this election I was reminded that that a black president would help other blacks succeed. I was told that this was what Dr. King had fought for. I was told that I am not black because I did not vote for Obama. I was told that he is the answer to take black americans to the next level.

What a feel good message. And if Americans of all races can accept the simple minded answers to alleviate poverty, fix the economic crisis, and eliminate crime. So be it.

But I don't think that is going to happen. Like other feel good messages, there will be a reality check. I think such a misguided qoute minimizes the works of the above individuals. Furthermore, it eliminates the personal responsibility.

Rosa Parks sat for injustice, Dr. King marched for equality, and President Obama, ran a hell of a campaign. He united the masses behind his message and his attitude for a better America. Linking race as a qualifier is as much discrimination as its dysfunctional polar.

Dr. Kings march continued after the Civil Rights Act of 1963. He marched against Vietnam, when he was assasinated, he was marching for sanitation workers in Memphis. The point is that his work was focused on equailty and that which is universally right.

Please understand, that focusing on President Obama's race and the historical accomplishment, will only devalue the published, j.d., editor of the Harvard Law Review, and accomplished human being he has become and will continue to be.