Monday, November 08, 2010

Horns of the Burnout/Excitement Dilemma

When it comes to politics, I go through cycles of excitement and burnout, and usually it's an either/or proposition. Not now. This time, it's both.

I was wholly burned out up until I saw the results of the elections the following day. But, seeing Chard Reid get more than 7% in his US Congress race, and 9.45% here in Hamilton County really picked me up. Seeing our base on the federal races go from 1-2% to 4-8% in every single Indiana congressional district is positively uplifting.

But, I'm still burned out. I'm tired of politics. I'm very interested in re-broadening my horizons again. I've missed music, and want to buy a guitar and bass, and play in a band again. I want to play with my kids more.

I'm not at all excited about the Republicans winning office. Sure, I'll probably get gridlock, which is usually my best bet for limiting government. History tells me the Republicans won't cut anything, but slow the growth rate. Sorry, that's not the real deal. Watch what happens when they confront the debt ceiling. That will tell you whether the commitment is to maintaining the size and scope of government, or to sustainable government.

Add to this the remaining staggering idiocy. I was reading a leftward blog this morning and saw a post suggesting that... Hold on. I have to quote it, just to capture the sheer stupidity in its full essence:
Had we just devalued the dollar to about 70 percent of the current worth, and at the same time devalued all property, wages and prices by the same amount, we would be super competitive in the world, we could afford to produce and sell products worldwide instead of sending our jobs overseas, and people could afford to stay in their homes.
In context, that line is about class warfare. This is one person's suggestion that would presumably improve the lives of the lower and middle classes.

Inflation improves the lives of exactly one class of people- landlords. The rents go up in pace with inflation, while the landlord pays off the mortgages with less valuable dollars. Everybody else pays higher prices for everything: food, gasoline, rent, cars, everything. So, who can best afford to pay the difference when gas goes from $2.50/gallon to $3/gallon, as it did this week? Why did the price go up? Because the Federal Reserve bought a bunch more of our debt, thus weakening our dollar. This continues the trend of monetizing debt that began in August. It hasn't weakened by 70% yet, as the genius on Masson's Blog desires. That's probably only going to be good for 1 or 2 point increase in the inflation. I figure the guy who makes a quarter million a year can better afford to shell out an extra $5 at the pump each week, an extra $25 at the grocery store, etc. If I wanted to crush the poor, the BEST tool I could think of would be inflation.

So, with this kind of idiocy running rampant, I get torn on the consideration of forging on or giving up. Yes, libertarians have momentum, but stupidity that willfully ignorant seems impossible to overcome.

1 comment:

Todd S. said...

Hear, hear. I don't know how we're going to do it, because I've seen intelligent people make some remarkably stupid comments about economics. And then there's the survey that 62% of Tea Party members say that Social Security and Medicare are worth the cost. If we can only convince one-third of that group that those two programs need cut, what hope do we have of convincing the general electorate.

I try not to focus on these things, lest I despair.