Hopefully some clarity on health care, anti-socialized medicine hypocrites, and interesting stuff about banking…

September 9, 2009

A headline to an online article about President Obama’s health care speech tonight quoted him as admitting he might have left too much “ambiguity” in his proposals for the overhaul of the health care system – you think?

Hopefully he will clear that up tonight in his nationwide address, which I understand will not be covered live by FOX News – why does that not surprise me? If that is true, how can that network claim to be a credible reporter of the news? It’s a speech by the president of the United States about a vital topic. News outlets – fair and balanced? – are not supposed to decide whether to cover something based on political point of view.

I think I don’t have much time to blog today because I expect to go back out on the road (still have to get mobile with this thing) at any time.

There’s an interesting article in the Huffington Post today about how the Fed has complete mind control of the whole economic system and why that has caused the great economic gurus to have missed so much, such as the over leveraging of the whole nation’s – world’s – economy over the past decades and the coming of the current what is being called, I notice, the Great Recession.

Also I am reading a book called ” Lords of Finance: The Bankers Who Broke the World”, by Liaquat Ahamed. I have not had a lot of time and have not made a lot of progress on it yet, but I already feel that I know a vast amount more about economics and banking than I ever did before and even about World War I, although I think the main thrust of the book is what led up to the Great Depression of the 30s that is usually said to have begun with the great stock market crash of 1929, but really had its beginnings a lot earlier.

One highly interesting thing I have learned from it so far is this thing about returning to the gold standard. Seems we were on it and things were quite stable – that’s good – but it was hard to expand the availability of capital when it was needed because there is only so much gold and it’s a hassle shipping bullion back and forth and across the ocean – and that was really done.

Financing World War I – a war that history seems to indicate made no sense at all , if any wars do – played a major part in ruining the economic system. And today the cost of war certainly has its effect.

At any rate, I hope a radio has been put in my truck and I will be able to catch some or all of Obama’s address on health care.

My current attitude on health care is just please make it so everyone can cover themselves in some way (with help from Uncle Sam or not), and I do believe it is a personal responsibility to do for yourself what you can. But everyone’s situation is different. It is in the best interests of society that folks are covered. A healthy society is a more productive society. We need a healthy society just as much as we need good roads. How we pay for all of that is always a good question. Even some federal interstates in the Midwest and back east are toll roads, out here in the west, not so much.

And this sticks in my craw – some people who detest the idea of government-run health care and hate (and I do mean hate) Obama, think nothing of partaking in Medicare and its related programs – which of course are all part of government-run health care, as is military health coverage. Go figure!

I mean if you detest anything socialized so much, why did you not accumulate your own fund – self insure so to speak?

I am the God of Hell Fire and I bring you FIRE!

June 25, 2008


By Tony Walther

And now for the third time I feel compelled to write something about that summer thunderstorm over the weekend that didn’t amount to much, not much except for the fact that it seems that all of the local area and the state is lit up in flame.

A pall of smoke and ashes has hung over us here in the Northern Sacramento Valley since Sunday.

The fires so far are primarily in the mountains that nearly surround us (east and west and north).

Air quality is not good. I think the air conditioner helps filter out some of the bad air (although I need to buy a new filter pad). But I had a passing thought (fear), because someone told me that at least one of the fires was near some major electric transmissions lines. A power outage could really spell disaster. No cooling on a hot summer day. Lost food in the fridge (and food is like gold now). And horrors of all horrors, no internet, no computer, no blogging.

There are literally hundreds of fires in the local area. Most or all them were caused by lighting strikes over the weekend. I was sitting here writing my blog as the thunderstorm started, but about the time I concluded writing it, the storm seemed to have finished. Not quite so, it rained and there was lighting and thunder throughout the day, along with a small amount of hail where I live.

So, of course, I wrote a followup, an update, if you will, and used it as an excuse to mention something about the possibility of global warming and society’s reaction to it.

Today, I write another update to let you know that things are still smokey here. Don’t have my paper yet, but last I heard there was a prediction for at least a chance of more thunderstorms and definitely hot weather (in the 100s this weekend). I had also said in my first blog on the subject that we were having unseasonably low temperatures – we seem to be back to seasonably high temps.

I guess the reason we have had such an outbreak of fires is that the normal rainy season (fall, winter, early spring) did not really deliver enough this past year. That would have been a surprise to me back in December when I briefly went back to my trucking job and was slogging through the snow, dragging those heavy iron chains around and struggling to wrap them around my wheels. And when it snows in the mountains around here, it generally rains in the valley.

So far, thank goodness, the fires around here locally don’t seem to have resulted in many casualties or lost homes (and I hope I don’t have to update that with bad news).

The ranks of firefighters here in Northern California are thin, the media reports tell me. So, if you’re in that line of work, you might apply. We could bring in the military (National Guard, regular Army), but then again, I guess they’re all tied up with other projects. And yes, while I did intend sarcasm in that last sentence, I did not mean to offend the troops themselves, for they will do their duty as directed, as they continue to demonstrate.

Don’t need to wait for the paper, just checked the weather on the internet and the forecast for today is 98, but it’s expected to be up to 104 by Friday. They don’t seem to be calling for thunderstorms now, just some clouds, here in the valley. But then again, last weekend’s thunder and lightning and rain and hail episode wasn’t in the forecast either.

And to be clear, thunderstorms around here in the mountains in the summer are not so uncommon, but they are uncommon here in the valley. And they have those dry lighting strikes too up in the mountains and, in fact, that seems to have been the culprit for many of the fires. Lightning to torch them, but no rain , or not enough, to put them out or to have prevented them in the first place.

So, even with all of our technology and all of those computer models and so on, the weather remains hard to accurately predict, and at best, it seems, the forecasters can only go a day or so ahead of time.

There’s not much we can do about it either, except prepare, and prepare for what?

We are at the mercy of God, Mother Nature, the Supreme Being, George W.

Column’s headline courtesy of lyrics by Arthur Brown (1967).