Category Archives: capitalism

Things that infuriate me #1

I don’t know if this will actually be a series or not, though it looks promising as there are tons of things that make me angry, but as of right now, there is nothing that is making me madder than the government forcing gas companies to add up to 10% ethanol in all gasoline.

About 3 weeks ago, I started noticing that every few tanks I was getting significantly less mpg than normal. I reset my odometer every fill up, cause I like to know what kind of mileage I’m getting. Anyway, on a normal tank of 12 gallons I was getting about 350 miles before I was extremely low on fuel. However, I started noticing that every now and then, I’d end up with about 290-310 before I was forced to fill up fearing that my car was going to run out of gas. I wasn’t sure what to blame on this. Initially, I thought maybe there was a problem with my car… maybe I bought gas at a discount station, but then one day, I actually noticed the small sign above at the filling station at which I was buying gas. All of the sudden, it clicked.

I have a 96 Acura Integra, manual transmission, GSR (the fast kind). The manual says that you should put 91 grade unleaded in for best performance. Since 91 doesn’t really exist anymore, I tend to go every other tank with Plus Grade (89) and Premium Grade (93) which I figure balances out to a cool 91. The car has run fine doing this, except occasionally if I get Plus Grade at Kroger or another discount place, I will hear some pinging in the engine during acceleration.

But this Ethanol stuff is NOT MADE FOR MY CAR. Newer cars are built to handle the low quality fuel, but higher performance vehicles, especially older ones like mine, are definitely not. Ethanol is 85 Grade. And depending upon how much of it is added to the fuel at any given station (up to 10%) my gas mileage, as well as my engine quality, drop proportionally. Ethanol only gets 30% of the mileage of regular fuel, I found out in a news story the other day, so it makes sense as to why my MPG have been lower. I initially tried avoiding stations that put ethanol in their fuel, but I discovered, the government is requiring it. Thank you government. I am holding you responsible when my car breaks down because of the crappy gas you are forcing me to buy.

Note: I do not mind paying a little bit more to get, you know, real gasoline. I would gladly do it. And I imagine, refineries and stations would gladly produce it for my consumption, if , you know, the government wasn’t so freakin obsessed with trying to force the market to move to alternative fuels when they aren’t cost feasible yet. Not to mention, their tinkering with things has shot the price of corn through the roof, so, pretty much everything you buy at the grocery store is significantly more expensive than it was just 2 years ago. I used to buy eggs for 79 cents. They are 1.79 now. Someone please shoot me. Its just going to get worse.

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Quotes from von Mises

If it were really possible to substitute credit expansion (cheap money) for the accumulation of capital goods by saving, there would not be any poverty in the world.

-Ludwig von Mises

Ludwig von Mises quotes

Maybe it won’t be a Thursday thing; just a thing I do on occasion. Without further ado:

The factory owners did not have the power to compel anybody to take a factory job. They could only hire people who were ready to work for the wages offered to them…. Their only refuge was the factory. It saved them, in the strict sense of the term, from death by starvation.

-Ludwig von Mises

“For God’s Sake, Please Stop the Aid…”

I’ve got a post brewing about why Jesus doesn’t care about poverty… at least not in the way we seem to care about poverty. But it needs some time.

So for now, check out why our government MUST stop sending aid to Africa and other nations. This interview with a Kenyan Economist might surprise you.

The Left’s Obsession With Inequality

The American Enterprise Institute weighs in…..

Whew…

When I turned on the radio today after training at Keller Williams and heard that the Dow Jones was down over 500 points… I’m not gonna lie, I was a little nervous.

The last time we had a drop like that, it was right after the markets opened back up post 9/11. Not a good sign.

But my anxiety has halted a bit, we’ll see what happens tomorrow. It may be time to pick up some bargain stocks. The market has been hauling tail for the last several months without any correction. Normally these corrections take place slowly, 50 points here 30 points there, and you’re down 4 or 5 percent. This one just happened all at once, and according to Jim Cramer (yeah, the guy who is crazy on CNBC) some of the safety nets we’ve had in place to prevent this kinda thing failed us today.  But the market will be back soon enough. We’re still well over the record high for the Dow during the Dot Com Boom, and until we’re down for the year, I wouldn’t worry to much.

How I Went From Card Carrying Republican to Libertarian to Christian Anarchist in 2 Short Years: Part 2

MTSU brought a new environment. First off, I was in a house instead of a dorm. I had the privacy of the upstairs, I had my first taste of alcohol (besides a warm beer that I tasted once), and I had a lot of spare time. I was only taking twelve hours of school and two of those classes were 3 hours in one sitting. Basically, I had a LOT of spare time. And for the first three months, I didn’t have a job. That meant plenty of time to think about everything under the sun. My philosophy of life had changed a little bit, but I was really just trying to reform it.

I’d been looking into Libertarianism and really liked what I saw. I’d always been distrustful of government and the Libertarian Party was about as skeptical of Government as any party (outside of anarchists, though Libertarians aren’t too far from that). I agreed with nearly every premise of the party, but I did have some issue with their position on the Iraq war (they are against it) and their position on drugs (they want to legalize most drugs). I eventually came to see their side on the war on drugs, but I didn’t quite agree witht he position on Iraq. I felt though, that my problems with the Republicans were resolved by Libertarianism.

I went back home for the summer and met a girl named Claire. She was from the Mississippi Gulf Coast and was a friend of my friend Daniel Wade. We talked for the summer which eventually led to a week long trip to Panama City Florida. After the trip, we both went back to our respective colleges, she to Searcy and me to Murfreesboro. We continued talking (and we were both still interested in each other). I ended up taking a job at Ezell Harding christian school so that I’d have the weekends free to see Claire. I never made it over to Searcy, but I did meet my fiancee at that job. Funny how things work out. But back to the story… a couple of weeks after our trip, Hurricane Katrina hit, and with the wind from the Gulf came winds of change in my theology.

In my life, I’d grown up with a pretty solid definition of who God was and how he worked. All of the sudden, this God that was always in control had let horrible things happen to so many people right here in my country. Its terrible that this Hurricane caused this shift of thought in me, and not the Tsunami in East Asia, but this is just how things happened.  I was near the end of my faith. It was if all the small questions that had been building inside since my last semester at Lipscomb came to a boil… and I didn’t know what to do.

So I emailed Brandon Scott Thomas and asked him for help. He invited me to lunch to share his story, and things started turning around from there…