economy

My Healthcare Plan, Dammit

The newest Republican version of healthcare just passed the House and was instantly declared D.O.A. in the Senate.  Which is good; it’s not enough of a fix.  Then again, neither was the A.C.A. (otherwise known as Obamacare).

I’m not going to get into all the whithertos and whyfores right now; you can get that on every news channel.  (Besides, I’ve already written about it a couple of times.  Both are great articles; read them.)  Instead, I’m going to tell you (more…)

Keep Watching Venezuela

World news sources are covering the big day of riots in Venezuela.  Three were reported killed yesterday as protestors marched, demonstrated, rioted violently, and looted shops in what’s being called the “Mother Of All Protests” against the government of President Nicolas Maduro.  Opposition leaders in the nation’s parliament are calling for more days of protests unless Maduro steps down.

Meanwhile, CNN has announced that Serena Williams is pregnant. (more…)

Not Korea Or Syria, But Venezuela

Caracas is about five hundred miles south of Puerto Rico, and it’s home to one of the most troubled economies in the world.  And, while the United States has indeed played a part in letting this happen, as a whole it’s mostly the fault of the Venezuelan government.

Books could be written here, and some no doubt have been.  I’m going to keep this short, however, and in order to do that (more…)

Puerto Rico In Distress

Puerto Rico is facing a catastrophic financial crisis similar to that of Greece.  In a few minutes, the island government will default on a bond payment, which will generate an automatic sequence of events similar to a run on the banks.

This is all our fault.  And we’re not helping. (more…)

The Matrix Is Real.

This is your last chance.  After this, there is no turning back.  You take the blue pill — the story ends, you wake up in your bed and believe whatever you want to believe.  You take the red pill — you stay in Wonderland and I show you how deep the rabbit-hole goes.
-Morpheus, “The Matrix”

What is The Matrix?

A lot of people have no idea.

The original movie, “The Matrix”, was released seventeen years ago, in 1999.  Today’s college graduates were still in diapers, and many of them are completely ignorant not only of the story arc, the mythology, and the characters in the cinematic cycle, but also of the philosophical allusions and ramifications of the ideas presented therein.

They’re not alone; most of the film’s viewers don’t get it either.  To us, it’s a classic sci-fi (more…)

The State Of The Union Is Not Good — But It Could Be

Those of you who know me will know that I love sifting through the worst garbage to find treasures — diamonds in the rough.  Last night’s State of the Union address was less garbage than most are and certainly better than expected, and there were some true gems carefully concealed within the rhetoric.  The (more…)

Healthcare: In Order To Fix A Problem…

The first step toward a solution is to know what the problem is.

Healthcare in this country has been the subject of widespread and highly politicized debate in recent years.  Most of us agree that there’s something wrong, but we tend to disagree on what, exactly, that might be.  It’s little wonder that the solutions that we try are subject to controversy — and that controversy includes widespread civil disobedience, of a type and breadth not seen since the civil rights era of the 1960s and 70s.

The trouble is, we don’t know what precisely is wrong.  We haven’t diagnosed it.  So… (more…)

It’s Not The One Percent, Dammit!

There is more than one valid and effective solution to our problems. Unfortunately, the political parties in our strongly divided system are far more concerned with blaming one another than in getting anything done. This is hardly a purely American phenomenon, of course; that’s just a handy example.

The evident solution is NOT to discard parties and then recreate the process from the ground up. Instead, it’s to get (more…)

WALDEN (an excerpt), by Henry David Thoreau

Economy

When I wrote the following pages, or rather the bulk of them, I lived alone, in the woods, a mile from any neighbor, in a house which I had built myself, on the shore of Walden Pond, in Concord, Massachusetts, and earned my living by the labor of my hands only. I lived there two years and two months. At present I am a sojourner in civilized life again.

I should not obtrude my affairs so much on the notice of my readers if very particular inquiries had not been made by my townsmen concerning my mode of life, which some would call impertinent, though they do not appear to me at all impertinent, but, considering the circumstances, very natural and pertinent. Some have asked what I got to eat; if I did not feel lonesome; if I was not afraid; and the like. Others have been curious to learn what (more…)