Friday, July 14, 2017
As I suspected, Trump's trumpeted "Repeal and Replace" legislation is nothing more than ObamaCare with fewer benefits.
Reducing benefits might lower premiums, but it does not actually lower costs. Reducing benefits has no effect on the price of the benefits continue to receive. It simply means that people receive fewer benefits.
Health care providers are notorious about shifting costs. Imagine a hospital that provides service A and B and that TrumpCare no longer provides coverage for service B. The hospital is likely to shift costs from service B to service A increasing the cost of service A.
Trumpcare increases the tax deduction for Health Savings Accounts. The health savings accounts do not restore the free market. The HSA is simply a tax credit for the upper middle class. It does absolutely nothing to help provide health care for the people who actually need care.
TrumpCare is nothing more than ObamaCare-lite.
What is likely to happen politically is that the party-line vote on TrumpCare will create a situation where the GOP now owns the failing ObamaCare system. The Democratic Party is likely to begin campaigning on Medicare for All (or whatever euphemism they come up with for national health care). Because the GOP sold its soul to pass TrumpCare, the Socialists will win and put the final nail into the American dream of a free society.
Sadly, there is verily little that anyone can do.
Those who try to stand up for actual free market reform will just be lumped in with the Trump bashers and their voices will be silenced.
Watching conservatives systematically destroy the opportunity for free market health care reform has been disenchanting. The conservative movement and the GOP have failed the American People.
Donald Trump's plan of curbing insurance premiums by reducing benefits might temporarily stabilize markets. The plan does not reduce prices. It simply reduces the care people receive. The plan does not provide a path toward a better future.
Monday, May 22, 2017
In recent years, progressives have been pushing a really exciting new idea called "The Tiny House." The ideal tiny house is built from reclaimed materials (like all of those used shipping containers that come from China and sit around empty in American shipping yards ... because Americans no longer make anything).
One can place 6 tiny houses on the footprint of a standard bourgeois American house. The problem is the design of many tiny houses have chassis's so that the owners can move them around.
Sorry, but the act of moving a tiny house from place to place consumes fossil fuels. Fossil fuels which release greenhouse gases that cause global warming. So, while the tiny house movement is progressing our society in the left direction, I do not see it as a long term sustainable solution.
The biggest problem with tiny houses ... and this is something that every progressive American should think about. Is that tiny houses are owned by individuals. Individual ownership of housing weakens our collective identity impedes the progress toward a utopian future.
I am thinking that, for our society to progress to a higher level, we need to look beyond tiny houses toward an even greener and more sustainable future.
I am thinking of starting an even greener movement than the tiny house movement.
I will call this new movement ...
... drum role please ...
A tiny apartment.
A tiny apartment is a living space for a family of four in a container that is a little smaller than a studio apartment.
Again, I think it is great that we are building our tiny houses from those shipping containers that come from China, but, unfortunately, these containers have the same unsustainable characteristics of bourgeois housing: The containers have six sides.
My new tiny apartment idea will have structures that are twenty units wide and eight units high stacked back to back. One tiny apartment complex could have 160 units. If each unit held a family of 4, we could stuff 640 people in just one of these tiny apartment buildings.
The beauty of stacking the tiny apartments side by side is that the tiny apartments can have communal walls.
To emphasize the progressive nature of the tiny apartment, I was thinking we could give these projects a progressive name like Tenement to emphasize that the people in the projects are tenants not owners.
I just realized that there is a design flaw.
As a dedicated progressive, I believe that people must be regulated. Stacking up rectangular shipping crates means that some of the people in the tenements will have a side windows. That is not tolerable. To create a communal paradise, people must be regulated.
If only we had more communal ownership and greater regulation; we could progress society to perfection!
Anyway I am busily working on plans for your children's future. It involves housing everyone in deeply stacked tiny apartments in buildings called tenements in planned societies called "The Projects."
It's going to be great, I tell you. It is going to be great.
Monday, May 15, 2017
Carbon Dioxide is a green house.
A green house gas that can lead to Global Warming!!!
In light of this discover, I say we slap an 8.6 billion dollar tax on the dieting industry
... and we should make fun of skinny people because they obviously are releasing more than their fair share of green house gases.
(Note, I've been trained by the media to feel outrage whenever I hear the words "carbon dioxide." I've been conditioned to demand more taxes when I hear the words "global warming." Actually the article is interesting. The article simple asks: where does the weight go when people diet and exercise?)
Friday, May 05, 2017
I am distraught because the bill actually is falling in line with classical "conservative" thought.
One can't use a charged term like "conservative" without defining it.
What is Conservatism?
That answer is obvious. Conservatism is the ideology of the Conservative Party.
The Conservative Party was created by King William IV in an effort to rebrand the Tory Party for electoral reforms of the 1830s. 180 years after the creation of the Conservative Party, Conservatives continue to call themselves "Tories."
The Tories, as you may recall from American History, were the people who fought against the US Founders during the Revolutionary War.
People who stand on the street corner are proudly declaring allegiance to an ideology that stretches back to the Revolutiony War. They are aligned with the people who fought against the US Founders!!!!!!!!
The goal of the Conservative Party was to conserve the social structure of the angient regime. The game is simple. One claims to support free markets to gain power, then one passes laws that favor the upper class to lower classes once in power.
Trump's health care reform law fits perfectly with Conservatism as King William IV first intended.
The Trump/Ryan Health Care Plan gives subsidies to rich insurance companies in the name of the working poor while stripping away the benefits and protections of Obama's plans.
The Trump/Ryan health plan is a massive give away to rich insurance companies at a cost to working Americans.
This fits perfectly within the 180 year tradition of Conservative Party ... in England.
Real free market health care reform is liberal. True free market health care reform would liberalize the health care market. It reduces barriers to entry and lower the cost of health care while enfranchising the people at large.
The problem we face today is that "conservatives" are dead set against the "liberal" reforms needed to restore a free market in health care.
Anyway, if you are upset with the Republican Health Care Plan, you should realize that the Ryan plan is Conservatism (as in Tory) in action. Ryan is simply proving that Conservatives that took control of the GOP are Conservatives in the strain of King William IV and that Barry Goldwater style of Conservatism was nothing more than a fancy of a few out of touch intellectuals.
The Ryan/Trump plan does not restore liberty. The Ryan/Trump Plan is Toryism in action.
Saturday, April 22, 2017
Iron is magnetic. Most landfills pass our waste stream under electromagnets and we capture and reclaim a huge portion of waste iron.
Currently the Trump Administration is seeking to impose tariffs and restrictions on imported steel claiming that that steel is a strategic commodity that we need to protect for national security.
I say that, because iron is so easily recycled, it is actually in our nation's strategic interest to import steel.
All of the steel things that we import help our nation build up a strategic reserve.
If there is an international crisis that suddenly requires a great deal of steel, we can easily recycle the huge steel reserve that we imported.
Let's say we had a conflict with China. All of the steel that China exported in times of peace is steel they no longer have and that we have in reserve.
As for iron and coal reserves in the ground, we are in a better strategic position if we leave our resources in the ground and let China overdevelop their reserves.
If we have a national crisis that suddenly requires a great deal of steel, our nation can easily ramp up steel and coal production. The huge amount of recyclable metal that we have in our nation plus the ability to ramp up undeveloped reserves puts us in a better position than a false market where we use tariffs to block steel imports and consume our natural iron reserves in times of peace.
Thursday, March 09, 2017
The goal of Conservatism is to conserve the top-down social structure of the ancient regime in an age of political change.
Conservatives of 1830s crafted a very simple strategy: Conservatives use free market rhetoric to gain power. Once in power, they pass legislation that gives the ruling elite an economic advantage over the people at large. This creates the illusion that the existing social order is somehow the natural social order.
The conservative play book has not changed in 180 years.
The Health Care proposal by Paul Ryan, Tom Price and Donal Trump is keeping with the age old methodology of Conservatism.
The GOP plan keeps those parts of the plan the feed economic centralization while reducing the taxes and subsidies the plan included to make PPACA appear progressive.
I agree with Paul Ryan. The GOP's health care plan fits the 180 year tradition of Conservatism.
The top-down health care reform pushed by Paul Ryan is conservatism in action.
Paul Ryan is using the exact same playbook the Tories used when King William IV rebranded the Tory Party as "Conservative."
(For those of you who don't know history. King William IV was the younger son of King George III. The Tories were the people the US Founders fought against during the American Revolution. Conservatism is an ideology crafted by the enemies of the United States.)
Conservatism is an inherently disingenuous ideology. One uses free market rhetoric to gain power, then passes top down legislation once in power.
The problem with the Conservative methodology is that people, like me, who believe in the American tradition of free and fair economics are systematically cut out of the process.
The millions of people who fell for Conservative rhetoric feel duped.
They feel duped, because they were duped.
There's a large number of people who've been calling themselves "conservative" because they like the ideals of freedom and they are caught by surprise that their conservatives leaders are essentially seeking to conserve the core structure of Obamacare.
I have no idea how to break the political impasse between those who believe conservative rhetoric and those who employ the methodology of conservatism.
The people who claim that Paul Ryan isn't conservative enough because his health care plan is essentially "Obamacare Lite" are wrong.
Paul Ryan's actions are 100% in keeping with the 180 year tradition that Conservatives have followed since the Tories chose to re-name their party the Conservative Party.
Conservatives who keep with the tradition of the Tory Party are the most conservative of all the conservatives.
Conservatives use free market rhetoric to get in power, and enact top-down legislation that gives the upper class an advantage over the people.
This is what King George III wanted. This is what King George's youngest son wanted. This is what the Tories wanted.
Paul Ryan is not only a conservative. He is pure bred conservative in the great tradition of the Tory Movement.
Sadly, the only way for America to restore its liberal traditions is for people to realize that "Conservatism" is as corrupt an ideology as "progressivism" and I fear that few people in the GOP are willing to make that connection.
Thursday, February 16, 2017
It is likely that Donald Trump will attempt to stimulate with a tax cut.
When Bush passed his tax cut, he gave everyone a refund check.
The problem with the refund check is that checks have to be financed with debt spending.
A better approach is simply to pass some spending cuts that take place this year and a tax cut that starts next year.
Smart investors will start making their investing decisions based on the tax cut that will come in the future.
We don't need to engage in the debt financing of refund checks.