Wednesday, November 12, 2008

More bailouts, political violence, and Barney Frank

Hello everyone! I apologize to my regular readers for the lack of posts recently. It has been an extremely busy week with school, work, and other prior commitments.

With that said I would like to touch on a few issues. Obama and the Democrats are supporting partially bailing out the auto industry. Where does the bailing out stop?? In my opinion (and many economists) we should be letting these companies fail. As hard as it is for people to hear that, it's the truth. The markets will work themselves out, but these bailouts are just going to prolong it as well as the obvious incentive problem they create. It is redefining government's job (for the worse) to 'keep the economy afloat.' The very thing that caused this problem (the government) is trying to be the solution. It is like saying the solution for pollution is...more pollution! It really is an incredible theory they have.

Ron Paul had an extremely optimistic message on his Texas Straight Talk blog a few days back. I was surprised, because here I am (as well as many others) in the dumps about so many issues and the direction our government and country is headed, and here's a guy who has been through this for three decades yet still holds out hope for our country and the emerging generation that is really catching on to the message of liberty! I have a whole new respect for the good doctor because of it (well, I'm honestly not sure if I can respect him any more than I already do!).

A girl got beat up at Augsburg College here in the Twin Cities for wearing a McCain/Palin button on election day. She was called a racist and attacked by a group of four women when walking back to her dorm, alone. It really is quite a tragedy that something like this would happen. To think hitting someone is going to make them change their mind about what political party they support? If anything she is going to be encouraged to work even harder for the Republican Party in the future. Sadly, as I have seen myself, campuses located near the Twin Cities seem to have a problem with crime. Last year someone from St. Thomas was going for a run and got attacked in broad daylight. The culprit ran off with his ipod. That was obviously a horrible thing to have happen, but when violence is politically motivated, it's a whole 'nother ball game.

It looks like it will be mid-December before we know who will be representing Minnesotans in the Senate. Apparently there is a substantial amount of legal 'stuff' to figure out beforehand. There needs to be a number of people present for each vote to be counted. The actual counter, plus representatives from Coleman's campaign and Franken's campaign (and I'm assuming Barkley's but I never heard if that was for sure or not). Any disputed ballots will hold up the recount, so hopefully they are all pretty clear-cut. For some reason I am really turned off by immediate run-off elections such as the one in Georgia. I think it is mainly because I do not want to be limited to two choices, and also because the election is over. We should be capable of counting the ballots and deciding who has the majority. Luckily for Republicans, this should help them out in Minnesota as Barkley is believed to have pulled more 'Liberal-leaning' voters than 'Conservative-leaning voters.' To simplify it: Franken would likely win in an immediate run-off election.

I found something in the Wall Street Journal that, quite frankly, embarasses me. Representative Barney Frank (D-MA), is leading the charge against enforcement of rules issued by the Federal Reserve and the Treasury Department that will fine banks heavily who do not abide by the rules banning them from processing payments connected to most gambling websites. Barney Frank, the man whose political views make me cringe for so many reasons, is leading the charge on an issue I totally agree with. Can you see why I would be embarrased? I wish the Republican Party would be leading the charge, but sadly, when it comes to online gambling it is the Democrat's who will tip the scales in the favor of online gamblers. I also find it ironic that Frank and others (mostly Democrats I'm guessing) who want to delay the enforcement of the rules are basing their argument on the fact that the economy is so bad right now that companies can't afford to implemant the systems needed to abide by the laws.

Though they obviously have their differences, I'm going to go ahead with the analogy. Tobacco and alcohol, two harmful drugs, are legal in the United States. Marijuana is not. There is a push to make online gambling illegal. Yet online betting on horse racing, fantasy sports, and interstate lotteries are legal. Hopefully the Republicans take a hint from Ron Paul (though they seem to fail to do that day in and day out) and other Americans concerned about their rights and change their position on this issue sometime in the future.

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