14 May 2011

Have you flown recently in a commercial airliner?  If so, who did you see the most in the airport?It was not the passengers on your flight.  It was not the airline ticketing and baggage check personnel.  It was not the vendors and shop keepers who are all over airports these days.It was members of Homeland Security, the smiling TSA (Transportation Security Administration) agents.  They are everywhere.  They check your ID...

13 May 2011

As frustration builds with many (should I say, most?) voters, the call for a third party gets stronger.  With hypocrisy, corruption, and empty headed thinking abounding with both Republican and Democratic parties, the idea of a third party absent these qualities seems alluring. Is this real or simply a mirage?The odds against a third party winning a US national election are staggering.  Individual State requirements work to ...

08 May 2011

Gasoline prices are rising. There seems to be no end to the almost daily increases. At week end, the average US price of a gallon of regular gasoline was almost $4.00. For many, this is an ugly slap in the face. For others, it is another sign of the vanishing American dream.There are some important lessons, however, wrapped up in this situation.First, most of us do not have a clue how the price of gasoline is established...

26 Apr 2011

Traveling in the UK for a few days does not make one an expert.  However, if you are listening, you might hear something vaguely familiar.    Guess what the British media is reporting this week.First, it seems the government has budget difficulties and must reduce its deficit.  Unbelievable!  How could a modern government allow its finances to get so out of balance?  The answer is not clear but the remedy is straight forward. ...

23 Apr 2011

Just so you know - Jack is reporting from a vacation in Scotland. - SKThings are not always what they appear to be.  Here in Scotland there is scant news of the American crisis around the deficit.  It turns out that the UK has its own budget and debt difficulties.  The one advantage of being in Scotland is to pause and think about the American political crisis without all the Washington or media 7/24 spin.Upon reflection...

20 Apr 2011

Today is day 1 of a Scotland visit.  It will be somewhat like the typical tourist trip.  I will be driving a rental car, and constantly on the look out for William Wallace and Nessie.  I doubt I will see or hear either.  Still I expect a fine time.  I have met no one who has said anything less than wonderful about Scotland.Today my wife was unsuccessful in being served Chardonnay.  It seems the Edinburgh Scots may not like thi...

15 Apr 2011

The country is doing battle these days with the twin deficit and debt dragons.  This is a necessary war, not one of choice.  Our country has wandered so far off course that it is hard to understand what possessed our previous leaders to acquiesce.  Do you think they believed there would be a free lunch.In the past, large deficits were associated with great wars and war efforts.  This time there is a war component but by far th...

11 Apr 2011

Every night it is an honored practice.  Common Sense finishes its day's work, paddles out, and join the sun as it goes to rest.  This timeless task keeps the sanity of humans in check.  The night follows, common sense rests, and the next day rises with the sun and is prepared to tackle the intractable problems of the day.This is a lonely job.  One never can be sure the sun will rise the next day.  So far, it always has.  Somet...

07 Apr 2011

With the announcement of Republican Representative Paul Ryan’s budget proposal, what has previously been an undeclared war is now officially a war between the wealthy and everyone else.  Unbelievably the middle class is just standing by.  Maybe they don’t realize they are part of everyone else.This is a strange war.  It is strange because the wealthy Republican have targeted the poor (no surprise) while pushing for further t...

04 Apr 2011

The Cato Institute is now advertising a “let’s get serious” message aimed towards Congressional efforts to reduce the deficit.  This is commendable.  Cato’s view is that both Republican efforts at $60 billion reductions for 2011 and the Democrat’s at a much lower number are clearly not meaningful and totally insincere.In the ad Cato lists some $1.4 trillion in cuts which would reduce the current $1.6 trillion deficit significa...