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Wednesday, March 18, 2009

Your Money and the Government...

Along with my wife, I teach a money class ay my church. We (hopefully) help people grasp some basic principles:
  • Spend less than you make.
  • Have cash on hand for emergencies.
  • Save and invest for the future.
Simple principles. Really simple. But not always easy to do.

My frustration with our government (both the federal government and the government of the great state of California) is that somehow they do not understand these simple principles.

If you have a "budget crisis" in your home or in the government you have two options: spend less or make more. Why do our legislators always choose the option to make more (by taxing us) but not spending less?

Government prints more money to bail out companies who have proven that they are not worth saving based on their gross mismanagement on their business, thus weakening the value of the dollar and further weakening our economy. They ask AIG to give back their bonuses (which they should) but do not offer to give back the raises they received.

Something is rotten in Denmark, people. And the men and women who have been elected to office are doing nothing about it. My friend JVo once said, "You can't polish a turd... but you can paint it silver." Our elected officials have their spray cans out and are painting like crazy.

The answer for our government in this economy is the same for us:
  • Spend less than we make (ideally: live beneath or well beneath your means)
  • Pay off our credit debt.
  • Have liquidity in the form of an emergency fund.
  • Save an invest for the future.
That is the best way for individuals to "recession-proof" themselves. It works for governments, too.

Monday, March 16, 2009

Get out the Kleenex!

What an amazing and inspiring story.

HT: Jim Drake's Blog

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

Global Baloney?

This morning I read THIS POST on Randy's blog and it put me in a mind to make the following observations about our "global warming crisis":

I have often wondered at the sky-is-falling mentality of the "go-greeners" who warn of impending doom due to global worming: a warming of our planet's climate that leads to an eventual ice age. Heck, they even make movies about it ("The Day After Tomorrow" - one of the most blatant propaganda films disguised as a movie in recent memory).

However, I seem to remember learning of the age of dinosaurs as a young boy. A time when there were no carbon emissions and yet, magically, the world was much warmer - globally - than it is today.

I also remember learning as a young man about the ice ages our planet experienced in the not-so-distant past. Amazingly, there were no cars and factories around then, either.

How are we to explain these mystical inconsistencies with today's global-doom-and-gloom weather predictions. As you pointed out, we have only kept track of temperatures for the last 100 years or so. But there is evidence - lots of evidence - of major climactic differences in the fossil record.

Could it be that our weather tends to be cyclical? Could it be that the climate has a lot more to do with forces other than what man brings to bear (especially considering that there were vastly fewer people on earth a the time of the last global warming and ice age and they didn't drive SUV's).

Might it not be a little arrogant of us - given the known fossil record of the distant and not-so-distant past - to think that we have that much to do with climactic changes?

Do I think we need to be wise with our environment? Yep. Do we need to do due diligence in protecting our natural resources? Absolutely.

Do I think we should hamstring ourselves by worrying about going green (which has a far more political and social agenda rather than a scientific one) in everything we do to the detriment of our economy and way of life?

No way.

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Monday, March 09, 2009

This is genius...


Thursday, March 05, 2009

Rock On!

My youngest son had the quote of the day today.

He asked me, "Dad, how many girlfriends did you have before Mom?"

As I was thinking, he said, "Probably a lot because you were in a band."

I love that he still thinks I'm cool and that being in marching band in high school in his mind is equivalent with "being in a band" and being a chick magnet.

Rock on!