Wednesday, March 25, 2009

Our financial difficulties, in a nutshell

Created by incompetent and sometimes corrupt government policies. 

The severity of this recession was avoidable. 

Our problems were not caused by the free market. 

I throw up in my mouth a little every time someone says they were.  Our problems were not caused by dangerous chaos (horrors!) in the free market; were not caused by unfairness inside the free market (there is nothing fairer); were not caused by the free market's susceptibility to manipulation by greedy operators.

Re: greedy operators and manipulation

Milton Friedman, on the Phil Donahue Show, argued that manipulation by a few in a distant capitol is at least as dangerous as manipulation by many inside a market:
"The world runs on individuals pursuing their separate interests. [...]  Do you think American Presidents reward virtue?  Do they choose their appointees on the basis of the virtue of the people appointed or on the basis of their political clout?   Is it really true that political self interest is nobler somehow than economic self interest? And just tell me where in the world you find these angels who are going to organize society for us?  I don't even trust you to do that!"
Our government, because it is a government (and thus inevitably seeks more power), disagrees.  Our government - via acting upon Utopian fantasies about eliminating chaos, unfairness, and manipulation - has crashed credit markets, thus hindering our ability to create wealth,  thus creating human misery (which additional wealth would have prevented).  Our government is proving itself more chaotic, unfair, and dangerously manipulative than the free market.  Now our government is doubling down, via
  1. strapping the equivalent of a railroad engine (oppressive regulation) onto private enterprise's back, 
  2. throwing private enterprise into a deep hole (coming inflation), and 
  3. forsaking private enterprise in favor of Barack's healing us via government fiat  
Private enterprise is unwanted, forgotten, discounted and/or damned, and left for dead in a deep  hole with a railroad engine strapped to it's back.  Private enterprise will, on it's own, without help, inch by inch ... tentatively begin to claw and climb its way up from the depths.  

May God be with it.  It's our best hope.  We've got to take our government back and help private enterprise get out of the hole.


Mention of inches always reminds of Al Pacino's speech.  Note the guitarist playing in the corner of the locker room.  He's accompanied, at crucial moments, by a violinist.   This is considered a great speech.  I say it's equally great musicianship and equally great engineering of locker room acoustics (no one respects the lonely architects and engineers who operate under obscenely restricted financial demands!).  

Locker room language warning:

Notable:  if you pause the action at 4:19, you get a glimpse of Lawrence Taylor's game face - which is what a game face actually looks like; and which, if you are a former NFL QB (or, possibly, a victim of a violent crime), might trigger post traumatic stress.  LT's game face is communicating:
I've made up my mind, and ain't nobody changing my mind: I'm comin' after your ass, I am bringin' some hurt, and I don't give a @#$% who knows it, cause caint nobody stop it from happenin'.
It's all there at 4:19.

Game faces are not created as strategic attempts to frighten. Rather, game faces manifest from deep inside. They are self revelations which occur naturally and can be frightening as hell.  And often should be.  We humans have evolutionary and even spiritual knowledge of what game faces are communicating.

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