Week in review

Quote of the week

“Nullification is not an act of going to federal politicians or federal judges to repeal an unconstitutional law. It’s not about getting ‘permission’ to exercise our rights…it’s about exercising them whether the federal government wants us to or not. It’s taking action to make an unconstitutional act null and void right within your own state boundaries.” – Michael Boldin

Health Care and Detroit: Killed By Government

by Gary North

“When a city simply shuts down from the effects of government mismanagement, the media say nothing. Detroit has become the poster child of government regulation, welfare systems, and a population that has given up hope.

“The media say nothing because they are caught in a dilemma. If they say that the local government’s welfare programs are not really to blame, what does that leave? The unmentionable issue: 82% of the city is Black. So, that means blaming white employers, who discriminate, despite 40 years of Federal anti-discrimination laws. But the main non-employers today are the region’s auto companies, and two of the three are partially owned by the U.S. government. One – GM – is mainly owned by the retirement fund of the United Auto Workers. So, the media are not about to blame the auto companies – not now.

“That leaves that other politically incorrect issue: the rate of illegitimacy, which is in the 80% range. That social phenomenon represents a moral collapse, but the participants were all educated by the tax-funded schools.

“Who ya gonna blame?

“The media pundits cannot decide, so they simply ignore the collapse. ‘Detroit? Never heard of it.'” more…

Healthcare Is a Tax Plague

by Jeff Clark

“Perhaps most damaging to the government’s plans is if the bill leads some to ask the Ayn Rand/Atlas Shrugged questions: What if I just stop being productive? What if I stop working once my income approaches the threshold? What if I invest less so that I stay under the limits? [Your editor has already started asking these very questions and wonders why anyone with the means doesn’t prepare a potentially permanent residence outside of the U.S.—ed.]

“And last, here’s the time bomb that could trump the tax concerns: none of these taxes are indexed to inflation. Since the bill fails to index to inflation the exemption threshold for the Medicare taxes on both earned and unearned income, it’s almost certain many taxpayers will get to these tax levels a whole lot quicker than they think.” more…

Bond markets reflect Obamacare’s true cost

by Michael Barone

“Not many people noticed amid the Democrats’ struggle to jam their health care bill through the House, but in recent weeks U.S. Treasury bonds have lost their status as the world’s safest investment.

“The numbers are pretty clear. In February, Bloomberg News reports, Berkshire Hathaway sold two-year bonds with an interest rate lower than that on two-year Treasuries. A company run by a 79-year-old investor is a better credit risk, the markets are telling us, than the U.S. government.” more…

The 2010 Census: Will your answers stay private?

by James Bovard

“The more information the government collects on people, the more control it will have over them. The Constitution requires that the population be counted every 10 years to apportion seats in the House of Representatives. All the census really needs to know is how many people live at each address. Citizens should refuse to answer any census question except for the number of residents. A partial boycott of the census questionnaire is a tiny but important step to safeguard our remaining liberties. Citizens are not obliged to pave the data highway for Leviathan’s next intrusion into their lives.” more… [Disclaimer: I filled the thing out and entered “American” for my family members’ races. Perhaps that’s cowardly.]

Which Countries Will Compete For You

by Simon Black

“The theme is simple– ‘If you are bright and motivated, we want you to live here; and, because your ideas and hard work will make this a better place for everyone, we’ll let you keep most of what you earn and enjoy the fruits of your success.’

“In aging superpowers, it goes something like this– ‘If you are bright and motivated, we expect you to provide for everyone else. You should be happy to do this because it is your patriotic duty, in our sole opinion. There will be consequences if you fail to comply.'” more…

Regulars

Politics and such

  • Ron Paul: National bankruptcy will repeal the healthcare bill. (Video 6:00).
  • Judicial Watch’s list of top ten corrupt politicians. For the most part Republicans are absent from the list, and the only Republican on the list is involved in a sex scandal, so I suppose we can take this with a grain of salt. Of course it’s very hard to compete with Charley Rangel, Chris Dodd, Barney Frank, and Zero himself.
  • 20 ways ObamaCare takes your liberty.
  • 25% say that China is the greatest threat to the United States. The United States itself must not have been included in the poll.
  • Gordon Brown is taking some heat for selling some of England’s gold a few years back.
  • There will be a referendum in California to legalize marijuana. Now that’s nullification in action!
  • The challenges to ObamaCare are coming to a federal courthouse near you. Still not sure how an entity can be a legitimate judge of its own lawlessness though.
  • And next comes immigration “reform“. But that dog might not hunt.
  • Greece is saved, at least for now.
  • US debt could reach an end game.

And now the numbers…

DOW Jones Industrials – 10,850.36 (+108.38/1.01%)
S&P 500 – 1,166.59 (+6.69/0.58%)
VIX – 17.77 (+0.80/4.71%)
CSI 300 (China) – 3,275.002 (-18.869/-0.57%)
BSE 500 (India) – 6,931.15 (+18.18/0.26%)
MICEX (Russia) – 1,415.54 (-5.55/-0.39%)
BOVESPA (Brazil) – 68,682.656 (-146.321/-0.21%)
RICI – 3,127.11 (-52.79/-1.66%)
Gold/oz – 1,105.40 (-2.20/-0.20%)
Silver/oz – 16.906 (-0.126/-0.74%)
Copper/lb – 340.30 (+3.05/0.90%)
Oil/bbl (Brent) – 79.29 (-0.59/-0.74%)
Wheat/bu (CBT) – 464.75 (-19.00/-3.93%)
Corn/bu – 356.25 (-18.25/-4.87%)
EUR-USD – 1.341 (-0.012/-0.89%)
USD-JPY – 92.518 (+1.973/2.18%)
USD-BRL – 1.819 (+0.0173/0.96%)
3 Month Treasury – 0.13 (-0.01/-7.14%)
2 Year Treasury – 1.04 (+0.05/5.05%)
10 Year Treasury – 3.85 (+0.16/4.34%)
30 Year Treasury – 4.75 (+0.17/3.71%)
3 Month LIBOR – 0.29 (+0.04/16.00%)
U.S. Public Debt (official) – 12,687,570,153,023.90 (+26,274,096,716.70/0.21%)
Baltic Dry Index (BDIY:IND) – 3,098.00 (-281.00/-8.32%)

Well, the healthcare debate is over, or at least debate over the bill is over, as it was passed by the corrupt House of Representatives on Sunday and signed, I hear with 22 different pens, by President Zero on Tuesday. Almost a week later this is not news, but given it’s enormity how can I not mention it?

One bit of relief is that now that the bill has passed we can finally read it. Sort of seems backward, but for a country that is on the fast track for Banana Republic status I suppose it’s par for the course. Suffice to say one thing, it doesn’t look too pretty.

So what’s next?

For a number of state governments and individuals it’s time to see if the federal courts will reign in the congress, and give us permission to exercise our rights. I’ll say it over and over, a lawless entity can not be a legitimate judge of its own lawlessness.

For the IRS it’s a hiring spree.

For the Congress it’s on to bigger and better things. Or at least new things. Immigration reform. Financial reform, of which the Senate version is notably missing a provision to audit the Federal Reserve Bank. We can keep the pressure up on this, and we should. The Federal Reserve and its ability to blithely create money out of thin air is the lynchpin for the whole system of big government. So please lobby (call/write/fax/visit office of) your local Congressional Critters and demand that they co-sponsor HR1207 or S604. Also for the Senatorial Critters demand that they amend the Dodd bill to include the language of S604.

For me, I think it’s time to start making an escape plan. Yes, expatriation. After all it’s better to have a plan and not need it than to need it and not have it. Anyway, I’ll have more on that this summer and in particular will be putting together a report that survey’s the logistics of getting residence in a number of other countries, including Uruguay, Chile, Hong Kong, Malaysia, Australia, New Zealand, and perhaps some others. Thailand and Germany are in my second tier. As I make progress I will share the details. I will entertain serious suggestions to research other countries unless I have already dismissed them – Brazil, Argentina, all of Europe, Canada, and Mexico are a portion of that list.

In other news, Week in Review will be two years old in two weeks. So in the spirit of the anniversary I would like to solicit suggestions for improvement. What do you like? What don’t you like? What do you want to see more of? Less of? Happy with the numbers? Want additions or changes? Let me know and I’ll do my best to accommodate you.

On a personal note baby girl really liked her swim lesson last weekend. Like I figured it was mostly just splashing around, and singing, it turns out. The lesson also included some baby dunking. Well, actually that was an accident. I slipped and we both went under. Baby girl was surprised, and maybe even a bit distraught, but she didn’t cry, got over it quickly, and we were having fun again in no time. I did get some looks though… Meh.

As for wife, she’s been off the last few days and it’s been nice seeing her around the house. The way her job is, she will get these really long runs of days off sometimes, but on the other hand she has long stints of having to work too. No free lunch… Ready or not, spring cleaning is happening in the Wright household!

As for me  work, school, family, some kung fu, and a little TV here and there. Gotta try and get some homework done tonight. I’m a bit ahead, I’d like to stay that way!

Have a nice weekend.

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