Another Reichstag fire??

Unless the person who sent the bombs was just some nut, you have to ask yourself  — why?  Motivation is the key.  All of those targeted were of one political side.  Was the motive to actually kill them out of partisan hatred?

In my opinion these bombs were never meant to blow up.  They’re dummies.  They were sent as either a threat, or as a false flag.

A month after Hitler took power in 1933, the Reichstag fire gave him an excuse to declare, essentially, martial law, which was never lifted.  From that day forward he was an absolute dictator.  So who set the fire?  The Communists, as Hitler insisted?  Or was it Hitler himself?

Why would the Communists do it?  As a random act of terror?  Hardly.  Hitler had control of the German state.  He would use that power to crush them if he could.  The Reichstag fire was the only excuse he needed.

Just when the nightly news was beginning to focus, on a daily basis, on the immigrant caravan, this happens.  The scenes of that caravan were killing the Democrats, day after day.  The timing is awfully suspicious.

I hope Trump labels this act as completely un-American, which it is.


Politics in 3 seconds

Keep It Simple, Stupid.  KISS.  The first principle of politics.*

If you can’t simplify your message, it won’t sell.  New Deal, New Frontier, Great Society, and Make America Great Again all work because they’re simple.

If anything, in this new age of the cellphone, you need to make things even simpler.  It seems to me that our collective attention span has shortened.  The time you’ll be given by voters to explain a concept like “New Deal” has shortened with advancing communications technology.  .  A hundred years ago, on the radio, you might have five minutes.  50 years ago, with the television age, you had a minute.  Now, it’s 30 seconds or less.  To be really effective, you must make your point in ten seconds.  Tomorrow, maybe five.

Trump’s a natural political genius.  That’s one reason he’s President.  Lyin’ Ted, Lil’ Marco, Crooked Hillary  —  it doesn’t matter if he can prove any of it.  It’s a label, it’s simple, and it sticks.  As in, “Democrats produce mobs, Republicans produce jobs”.

This is one reason the Balanced Budget Amendment Task Force, which I worked with for five years, couldn’t close the deal.  If you’re a politician, like a state legislator, you can’t go back to your district and say you voted for a BBA.  No one knows what you’re talking about, and it takes too long to explain.

“Give the President the Line Item Veto.”   That’s simple.  That you can explain in ten to fifteen seconds.  That will sell.

Conveniently, the language of those 28 State Resolutions that the BBA Task Force allows them to be used as a vehicle for a Line Item Veto Amendment.

In pitching this to the last six state legislators we need, we must change our message.  We’re not campaigning for a Balanced Budget Amendment.  We’re for giving the President the line item veto.

I hope we get them, and I hope President Trump helps.  For a guy with his political skills, it will be an easy sell.

*Hat tip to Bill MConkey, forty years ago, my first mentor in politics.  Jay Hammond for Governor of Alaska, 1978.  One of Bill’s finest hours.  We won by 98 votes.

Out: affirmative action. In: Equal rights

It won’t be long now.  The Asian discrimination case against Harvard should wind up with the Supremes, and if the Kavanaugh majority doesn’t use it to start the demolition of affirmative action, I’ll be shocked.  As, I believe, Chief Justice Roberts once remarked, “If you want to stop racial discrimination, stop discriminating by race.”

As John Hinderaker puts it at Powerline, “Elizabeth Warren’s Lies Are Good for America”.

Her preposterous claim to Indian ancestry unmasks the utter lunacy of affirmative action.  All humans are descended from one woman, who we call Eve.  She was a black African who lived 200,000 years ago.  So I can claim black African ancestry?

Why do Nigerian-Americans and Kenyan-Americans get affirmative action?  Their ancestors weren’t black American slaves.  In the case of the Nigerians, their ancestors may have sold their Gullah brethren into slavery, for transport to America.

What the hell is an Hispanic?  Is it Ted Cruz or Yasiel Puig?  Why do some people from the Iberian Peninsula, Spaniards, get a preference, but their neighbors, the Portuguese, don’t?

If I’m 1/32nd Hispanic, do I qualify?  Why shouldn’t a full blooded black Gullah get preference over a half breed, a quadroon, or an octoroon?

It’s all nuts, and does clear harm to its beneficiaries.

And there are a lot of poor white boys out there who deserve an even break.

We’re all Indians now

If Pochahontas (D, MA)can claim Indian blood, so can we all, and I’m glad of it.  We all have something in common, and something we can all be proud of.  We share the same blood, the blood of the Native Americans we took North America from.  We’re related, at least in that.  So let’s try a little brotherhood.  If that’s too much, we can at least treat each other as cousins, which a lot of us are.

I’m an 11th generation American, which means the first American Pettyjohn (James, born in Hungar’s Parish, Virginia in 1635) is responsible for 1/024th of my DNA.  My mother, grandmother, great grandmother and so on, all the women Pettyjohns married, are responsible for the rest.

James married a Heath, his son married a Long, and his son married a Steel.  I’m a Brennan, a MacNamara, an Achenbach and so on. Ten separate blood lines, and I’m a cousin to them all.  I did the math and I’m confident I have millions of cousins in this country.

I hope there’s some Indian blood in there, because there isn’t anything more American than an American Indian.

When I met my Uncle Fritz up in Alaska he swore Pettyjohns had part Indian blood.  When he had a little money he had a big portrait of himself painted, all decked out like an Indian.  He had it hanging over his fireplace.  He said I could claim Indian blood in my application to law school.  I thought about it, but after a while I began to question some of the stories my Uncle Fritz used to tell me.

He told me a lot of great stories, which I loved to hear.  I think when he ran out of things to tell me he started to make things up.  That time I spent with Uncle Fritz turned my life around.


The internet tames inflation

We’ve had annual trillion dollar deficits for a decade now, and there’s no end in sight.  After almost a decade of printing money (quantitative easing), a national debt of over $22 trillion, a red hot economy with record low unemployment, and an insanely  inflationary fiscal policy, why don’t we have inflation?

According to the latest numbers, over the last six years inflation has averaged 2%.   It hit 2.95 in July, and is back down to 2.2.

Inflation occurs when there’s too much money chasing too few goods and services, driving up their price.  An antidote to inflation are productivity increases, which cause an increase in the supply of goods and services.

We’ve had such productivity increases since the rise of the internet.  Here’s a Microsoft introduction to the concept.  For some reason, traditional metrics of the economy don’t measure these productivity increases.

Perhaps it’s because they transcend the realm of business, and have made personal productivity increase dramatically.  Anyone who’s used Google maps to navigate a big city knows what I’m talking about.  I’ve saved countless hours of my time because of the internet, and none of that shows up in economic statistics.

There’s no inflation because of the internet.  And productivity increases from the internet are just getting started.

For what it’s worth, I took two Econ courses at Cal, and got a C in both.  In my defense, my professors were apologists or advocates of socialism.