Friday, April 27, 2012

Economics Gurus Disagree!

In the 20 April issue of the Lexington Herald-Leader appeared a column by John Garen, an economics professor at the University of Kentucky, having to do with Earth Day as impacted by economics and vice versa. One suspected that in an ultraliberal paper owned by McClatchy the prof would lay the usual guilt trip on people who eat too much, drive too much and do anything else too much (or at all), consequently killing the earth in almost real time.

Didn’t happen, not even by a prof on the as-usual-liberal university campus! Garen went to some pain to explain that the market-based approach to the financial status of the country posed no threat to the economy or the earth, though the manmade-global-warming-climate-change thing has already been totally identified as a monstrous hoax by actual scientists/climatologists, the latest being part of the brain-trust at NASA. Indeed, he proved that entrepreneurial forces made things affordable, easily understandable since competition drives prices down, while government ownership and over-regulation do the opposite.

Garen said that the wide-open spaces (air, water), for instance, are not susceptible to ownership, while defined land areas are. When government over-regulates industry at great expense to producers (cap/trade) on the phony premise that it is somehow either protecting or appropriately changing the climate (atmospheric temperature) it incorporates huge overcharges for everything that’s bought and sold, with little or no effect on the environment other than locally, i.e., regulating landfills, negating pollution of streams, etc., legitimate concerns of the citizenry.

Both Al Gore and President Obama – recipients of the Nobel Peace Prize account saving the earth from a danger that never existed – have been main movers and shakers in the climate hoax, either by design or by stupidity. Obama promised in 2008 that if elected he would make electricity costs “skyrocket.” He’s made good on that promise, at least in Kentucky, where those rates are going up exponentially, even though the costly over-regulation of steam plants has not one iota of effect on the climate. So…the president either has meant to bankrupt power companies for reasons of his own or he has acted stupidly (his description of Cambridge policemen).

To even things up, the Herald-Leader gave the world a column on 26 April by a retired UK economics professor, Marty Solomon, whose shtick was that the “oligarchs have plundered and now control our country,” which, translated, means that the evil one percent has finally risen to its apex – making the 99% into a serfdom. The oligarchs are the moneyed class, including all the government officials who do grunt-work legislatively and administratively, Obama being hand-in-glove with the Wall Streeters.

Former Goldman Sachs honchos Robert Rubin and Henry Paulsen were Treasury secretaries under Clinton and Bush 43, respectively, while that spot under Obama has been held by tax-cheat Tim Geithner, who came in from the cold of the New York Federal Reserve Bank. So…give Solomon a cigar for recognizing the obvious…collusion courtesy government and special interests.

Obama and Geithner have given the revered “middle class,” whatever that is, a genuine screwing with such as the Stimulus disaster of $787 billion thrown down the proverbial rat-hole, and the “friends of friends” piece-of-the- pie known as Solyndra, worth $535 million picked up by John Doe(s). Garen could have warned that making solar panels at a cost of six dollars and selling them for three dollars would certainly lead to bankruptcy…and did, notwithstanding all the bonuses for failure – $368,500 to 20 people who had a total base pay of only $2.49 million…hard times.

Solomon: “If it hadn’t been for WWII, we might be a communist nation today.” Naw, through the Great Depression of the 30s (average unemployment rate of 19.1% during 1932-40) and with the commies a legal and strong organization, not even the folks in the soup lines and unions went for communism. Maybe Solomon has forgotten that oligarchs such as John D. Rockefeller and Andrew Carnegie were big-time one-percenters in the 1800s, both born in the 1830s. Folks of their ilk didn’t kill the nation even when they pulled greater strings than those of today.

Is there greed in the land? Oh yeah! Would the greedy make much difference if they were taxed at 60%? Of course not! There’s nothing new in this class-warfare stuff! While a case can be made for the Social Security that came out of the 30s, the back-breaker started with the entitlements of the 60s, including Medicare although folks who gain from it paid into it, just as into SS, and for which a case can also be made. Corruption/fraud and the fear by doctors of lawsuits have made Medicare/Medicaid into economic killers.

Sixty-nine percent of the FY 2011 federal budget accrues to defense, healthcare and pensions, each of which can be reasonably trimmed/adjusted/reconfigured to save billions. The instituting of a permanent underclass accruing to the welfare enactments of the 60s (now comprising 13% of the budget) is and will remain the albatross around the nation’s neck, along with other enactments guaranteed to slide the U.S. down the same path as Olde Europe – socialism, pure and simple.

Perhaps that’s what Obama wants. Sadly, the nation might buy it, especially if the current Washington crowd stays in office. One has only to look at Greece and Spain (24.4% unemployment rate) to see the result.

Solomon: “Karl [Marx], where are you when we need you now?” Gimme a break! Oligarchs per se are not killing the nation, but stupid government is.

And so it goes.

Jim Clark

1 comment:

David said...

Good one, Jim. I posted a link of this article to Bl.Com.