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Thursday, May 30, 2013

Willful ignorance, economic edition

Check out the willful ignorance, the solid and obstinate refusal to reason soundly and to learn from thousands of years of human cultural and economic experience, on display here -- First quarter GDP revised slightly lower; austerity bites --
WASHINGTON (Reuters) - A drop in government spending dragged more on the U.S. economy than initially thought in the first three months of the year, a sign of increasing pain from Washington's austerity drive.

Another report on Thursday showed the number of new jobless claims rose last week, and together the data reinforced the view that the U.S. economy may be entering yet another soft patch.

Gross domestic product, a measure of the country's total economic output, expanded at a 2.4 percent annual rate during the first quarter, down a tenth of a point from an initial estimate, the Commerce Department said on Thursday. Analysts had forecast a 2.5 percent gain.

That is much faster than the prior quarter's pace, but likely still too weak to fuel faster improvements in the labor market.

"We are dramatically under-spending in Washington," said Michael Strauss, a market strategist at Commonfund in Wilton, Connecticut.
Prosperity -- a "growing economy" as politicians like to put it -- can never come via consuming wealth, but only from generating wealth; specifically, by consistently generating more wealth than is consumed.

Prosperity just is the state of having/keeping over time more wealth than one consumes -- this is as true for a "big society", such as a nation-state, as for a "small society", such as a family. Just as a family, or a social club, that over time consumes more wealth than it generates or "brings in" is bankrupting itself and heading for poverty, so to with a nation.

It's impossible to spend your way to prosperity; you get there only by working and generating wealth ... or by stealing the wealth that someone else has created.

Let us say that you, Gentle Reader, go to one of the gambling meccas or simply buy a lottery ticket. And, let us say that you win. Big! Now, certainly, you are better off financially (at least, until you catch "lottery winner's disease" and end up in the long run more poor than before your big win). But -- and this is the important point -- your new personal wealth is not the result of the creation of new total wealth within society, but rather merely of the redistribution of existing wealth within society. While you may be better off, our society as a whole is worse off; for, not only was no new wealth created in the process of transferring others' wealth to you, but some amount of wealth was consumed -- destroyed -- in the process.

Yet, the government statistics from which such asinine "economic analysis" as above is drawn will count both the mere transference of others' wealth to you and also the destruction of wealth involved in that transferance as "economic growth".

Or, let us say, Gentle Reader, that you -- OK, not *you*, but those fellows over there -- get your income, your on-going consumable wealth, via a government check, whether as an official employee of some level of government or as a recipient of the forced "charity" of welfare.

Again, no new net wealth within society was created in the process of getting that income to you. Rather, all that happened is that some of the wealth that others had created was taken from them, at the threat of violence and death, and given to you. And, just as in the voluntary gambling/lottery scenario above, this involuntary transference of others' wealth to you not only did not result in a net increase of the total wealth of society, but rather a net decrease: wealth is not simply being shuffled arount, it is being destroyed.

Nevertheless, as you need to live, and as to live you need to consume weath, you -- whether you are a government employee or a welfare recipient -- are going to spend most of (if not more than) that income. You're going to spend the money the governmant took from someone else to give to you ... and the government statistics will count that as "economic growth", despite that what happened is exactly the opposite of economic growth.

Now, Gentle Reader, what do you think will be, and must be, the long-term result of and to an "economy" based upon consuming others' wealth?

Continue reading ...

Sunday, May 12, 2013

Not Whether, But Which

Douglas Wilson: Not Whether But Which, As I Keep Saying
Not whether, but which. It is not whether we will have an established state religion, but rather which established state religion we will have. It is not whether our culture will serve a god, but rather which god it will serve. It is not whether we will impose morality with a law, but rather which morality we will impose with a law. It is not whether our culture will rest upon a blood sacrifice, but rather which blood sacrifice it will be. It is not whether we will discipline in terms of our public morality, but rather which group will be disciplined. Not whether, but which.

A number of months ago, I pointed that the refusal to continue disciplining homosexuals in the military was tantamount to a decision to discipline those members of the military who (visibly) believed that such behavior was a sin. And so, when a report recently surfaced that said that the Pentagon was contemplated making the sharing of your faith an offense worthy of court-martial, this means I must now go on the record to confess that I was not being clairvoyant. You don't have to be a weatherman, Dylan said, to tell which way the wind is blowing. Not whether, but which. It is not whether you will discipline over issues of sexual identity, it is which sexual identity you will discipline.

The pretence of neutrality that secularlism was able to keep up for several centuries is now officially in tatters. Their game is now to make the open play for power, in the hope that Christians will continue vainly to play the old game, and will be the very last to adapt to the new realities. So far, things are right on schedule.

Continue reading ...

Thursday, May 9, 2013

For atheism is not just about God

Shadow to Light: Misanthropic atheism -- "Look, now are finally getting to the point where I can see the fundamental flaws of atheism. For atheism is not just about God, but about ourselves."

Exactly! Atheism *starts* with the denial that God is -- this is definitional -- but it *ends* with the denial that we ourselves are.

Continue reading ...

Tuesday, May 7, 2013

Puppy Love

Michael Egnor has a post concerning an aspect of the "slippery slope" that, even now, even before it has been fully imposed on us, is following straight upon the heels of "gay" "marriage" -- Puppy Love -- Just as we tradionalists and/or Judeo-Christians were mock for pointing out -- the very same "arguments" used to justify stretching real marriage beyond all recognition, in the name of "gay" "rights", can, and will, also be used to justify even worse outrages. The ultime goal of the leftists is to *destroy* marriage ... and family, for family, and familial obligation and love always stands in the way of The Supreme State.

I made a comment there that I wish to share with Gentle Reader:
I have mixed thoughts on this -- that is, on the execution of that unfortunate young man, so long ago [a young man, little more than a boy as we moderns count these things, who was executed in colonial New England for beastiality].

On the one hand, not everything that is a gross (in multiple senses of the word) sin -- fully meriting death -- is necessarily something *we humans* should be executing people for doing. Most of this can be, and ought to be, left in God's hands.

Furthermore, not *every sin* that the Old Covenant commands the Israelites to execute people for committing is one that we, under the Covenant of Grace, ought to execute people for doing.

On the other hand, the fact that we, as a society, *don't* execute those who commit beastiality -- and, in fact, under the "liberal" corruption of Grace, we, as a society, do our best to pretend that nothing noteworthy is being done (until, of course, the leftists demand we celebrate it) -- goes far to explain why the "beastlovers" are emboldened, and why they will soon be demanding access to our children.

The same applies to, for instance, "out and proud" homosexuals -- it goes far to explain why such are emboldened, and why they are currently demanding, and getting, access to our children.

Continue reading ...

Monday, May 6, 2013

A one-liner from Bob Parks

Bob Parks: The B_and_R Monday Skim

He links to this -- Abortion Rights Community Has Become the NRA of the Left
and comments -- "Guns don’t kill people, abortionists do"

Mr Parks also links to this --MSNBC Claims Birther Bombshell; Natural-Born Citizen Issue Not Settled (I'm not at a computer/network which allows me to view it)

Of course the issue is settled ... just not in the way the "liberals" (including all the establishment "conservatives") have been pretending lo these many years -- That man is not, and logically cannot be, a natural born US citizen. THEREFORE, he is not legally the US president.

Continue reading ...