November 27, 2007
November 26, 2007
It used to be that only the wealthy could have power. And even then, you had to be born into it. But, the human spirit changed all this. Democracy made power available to anybody willing to work for it. And then, the human spirit found a loophole. Handguns anybody near absolute power within a 30 yard circumference of where they are. You don't need to be a son of a king anymore, win the people's affections, or diligently earn your way. You just need to wait three days.
November 21, 2007
As you well know, I have publicly vilified Robin Hood on this blog on several occasions, pronouncing him as utter communistic propaganda. But today, I rethink my hypothesis. Why couldn't Robin Hood be used as libertarian propaganda for someone like Ron Paul instead? He is taking back money that was wrongly taxed from the populace. Robin Hood does not have to be seen only as a rich-bad, poor-good scenario. It merely sheds a positive light on limited government and lower taxation. So, I guess Robin Hood can be whatever you want. He'll always be Kevin Costner to me.
November 20, 2007
Michael Moore's film, "Bowling for Columbine" tried to theorize why there is so much gun violence in America as opposed to other gun-toting countries. The movie ends unconclusively, letting you think about it for yourself. So I have. Have you watched International Soccer matches lately? There are constant riots. It's unbelievable. People getting mauled and beaten over the outcome or even during a game. So, here's my conclusion. Americans have a higher rate of gun violence because we're smarter. We know that our odds of inflicting harm on someone are much higher if we use guns and not just whatever is lying around when we become inebriated at a sporting event. And at least our violence is based on revenge, drugs, money or women. But, soccer?
November 19, 2007
This is how the drinking fountains are set up at the health club I go to every morning. On some mornings, there will be a line three deep for the higher water fountain, while the shorter one remains empty. I am guilty of this as well. Why? Subconsciously, I think that the water in the higher fountain is better, cleaner, colder. Yet, intellectually I know that's absurd. Is it a spatial issue? Do I not like having someone so close to my back? If the nozzle was on the other side, would I prefer the shorter fountain? I suppose some people could have back problems. But that's not my excuse. Any other theories? Are we all just crazy?
November 16, 2007
(continuation) While the previous hypotheses' regarding the cause of America's wealth are all partially responsible, and while there are likely dozens of other reasons, the final one I want to discuss is "talent". For the last two-hundred years, we have been drawing the best and the brightest from all over the world. The best engineers, doctors, lawyers, athletes...they all come to America to work. Why? Because they are better rewarded for their efforts here than they could be anywhere else. So, while the benefits of socialized systems and a higher tax-rate can be very appealing, it is essential that we understand what caused our country to get to this position of wealth in the first place. And understand the possible consequences of imitating someone else.
November 15, 2007
(continuation) After World War II was won by the Allied forces, The United States became a lone global superpower along with the Soviet Union trailing behind. This lack of competition allowed the United States to become the leading producer/exporter of...just about everything. While that gap has narrowed significantly over the last 50 years, this has to be given credit for our current state of wealth. But, even before this event, we were a comparatively wealthy nation. So, there's one more big idea that we'll consider tomorrow to round up our week in thought.
November 14, 2007
(continuation) We stand on very fortunate ground here in the U.S. Throughout this country, we have different seasonal patterns and climates that allow us to produce an abundance of basic essentials that feed, clothe and shelter the world. Agriculture is the largest industry in this country, employing over 20 million people. While human intelligence has played a big role in the continual industrial revolution, a lot of our agriculture success and wealth must be credited to simply residing on such fertile ground. However, we are not the only country to have this climate, and yet, we are the wealthiest. So, while agriculture may take partial credit, let's keep looking.
November 13, 2007
(continuation) This is a popular argument. Having access to millions of laborers you don't have to pay, and only providing them with enough necessities to stay fit as laborers seems like a great way to make some money. And it was. Especially in early America where land was ample and labor was few. Slavery, even if legal today, would not be nearly as economically prosperous as it was 200 years ago because of the higher costs to house and guard these slaves today. But, the problem is that lots of countries had slaves. Some still do. Yet, we alone experienced unprecedented wealth. So, while slavery may take partial credit, let's keep looking.