Posts Tagged ‘Lawyers’

A Corrupt People can Never be Wealthy

Wednesday, April 29th, 2015

Dear Friends,

It seems to me, when the people of a nation become so corrupt their word is no more valuable than a turd, business cannot be done. When business cannot be done the economy collapses like a popped balloon. Any economy requires, as a prerequisite, that people be trustworthy, even a socialist economy. In a socialist country, or a country turning to socialism, the morality of the people is eroded until they become utter reprobates like their leaders, and is why socialism fails every time it is tried. Which brings us to the thrust of this article, that one of the major problems in the US economy, (and economies around the world), is that people have become so immoral, such reprobates, lazy and liars that even if the government got out of the way, the economy wouldn’t start growing again until the people got back a tiny bit of their morality and human heartedness.

The proliferation of lawyers in a nation is not a sign an economy is mature but that the people cannot be trusted. Attorneys themselves are largely to blame since the incentive for them is to break contracts, stab others in the back, create the conditions where no one can be taken at their word, and the moral get molested by the immoral, calling it serving their client’s needs. The collapse of integrity is a windfall for lawyers and so they push it. Today you can’t buy a cup of coffee unless there is legal paperwork in triplicate and signed by a third party… explaining the dangers of hot coffee, the terms and conditions of the sale, refund policy, ingredients, limited liability, potential health concerns from drinking coffee to access, and the specifications of the cup.

As people get screwed over by unscrupulous connivers they will increasingly turn to government to protect them. The government is always too happy to become more powerful, and never gives up a whit of power, so a corrupt people wratchet their government to despotism. More regulation makes it harder for a person to make money legally, and so more will turn to stealing, cheating and conniving to get ahead. Why work when that option is all but closed… and business is done by larceny anyway? In such a country the government will take advantage of the people, the strong will abuse the weak and the family will turn against itself.

Of course corruption starts at the top and flows down the social ladder like sewage. The leaders are never held to the same standards as everyone else, that has always been the case everywhere and at all times, which shows there has never been a standard but only arbitrary rule. Human history is nothing but a list of corrupt kings, emperors and Presidents. The more corrupt and evil the larger their name is in history texts. I have maintained for years that it is impossible to live in a cesspool without smelling like it. The very few people who have held positions of power, who were not so utterly corrupt they stank like a cesspit, have pushed against this paradigm of arbitrary rule. Most of them were murdered as reward for their singular service to humanity.

In the few times and places where the people have not been fully corrupted by their elites, those nations in those times have seen unbounded prosperity, social harmony and civil justice. When a man or woman holds themselves to their handshake, profit is based on value, not getting a line in a contract past an unsuspecting chump. When value is the basis of profit everyone profits. Those who provide the most value, profit the most, simply by being honest because honesty is value. The butcher gets money to provide for his family, the buyer gets meat for her table…

The market system’s superiority is based on the fact that value is traded not goods and services. Goods and services are the currency but value is what is actually traded. When people get value for their money both parties win. When both parties to a transaction win the economy of that nation is improved a little bit. Magnify both parties winning, over the tens of thousands of transactions a day in a populous country, and the economy is improved drastically every hour of every day.

Honest people can negotiate hard terms, but when the negotiations are done, they both stick to the terms they negotiated, the conniver, despot and confidence man trades in lies however. Those who trade in lies, not value, create the conditions where people will turn to government and lawyers to protect them from their own butcher, car salesman, Realtor and haberdasher. The more a people must turn to those in power to protect themselves, the more corrupt society will become, which in turn creates more corruption creating a feedback loop that can only end in despotism, poverty and endemic violence.

Look around the world, those places that are hell holes are all characterized by corrupt governments, corrupt people and corrupt courts. See for yourself, where the government is despotic, where the people are connivers, where the courts only enforce arbitrary power, aren’t they always unsafe, poor, and prone to social upheavals? Then ask yourself, what nation on this planet would you want to raise your children, one where the people are corrupt, the government is tyrannical and the courts serve the powerful… or one where the people can be trusted, the government is limited and the courts serve justice? You can make a small difference, be honest, trade in value and hold yourself to the same, or better yet, a higher standard than you do others. Lead by example.

Sincerely,

John Pepin

The Economic Argument Why Obama Care Must be Defunded

Monday, September 23rd, 2013

Dear Friends,

 

It seems to me… Obama care is an economic train wreck. The devastation it’s already done, has lowered the standard of living of the World’s people for generations, let alone the future damage it will do. Since the growth of an economy is an aggregate thing, it piles upon itself, slow economic growth, for whatever reason, lowers the pile that is being piled on as well as the amount that is added… The effect is not only immediate but cumulative and everlasting. This is very bad, if you consider that we have been under this economic malaise, since the recession was claimed to have ended. So, not only are your economic outlooks lowered the well being of your children and grandchildren will be effected… negatively.

 

Think of this, the Federal Reserve has been printing 85 billion dollars a month for a year. In 12 months that accumulates to a bit over a trillion dollars. Now compare that trillion of printing to our actual GDP growth. The US is an economy that is about 15.7 trillion dollars, (according to the BEA)… at a growth rate of 2% yields annual growth of about 320 billion dollars. In other words, to get 310 billion in annual growth the Federal Reserve is printing, from whole cloth and adding into the economy, over a trillion! That implies a recession loosing 680 billion annually if the printing went away! Moreover, it’s a pathetic return at 1/3 of the money put in! Instead of getting more money out, due to the ability of banks to magnify the money supply, the FED is seeing negative return on their printed money! So… what is happening to that 680 billion? Is there so little business activity the money is setting in the banking system’s reserves, or is it going overseas? Now the question must become, why is it not spent here?

 

Businesses need to know what their cost structure will be to project future profit or loss. Obama care throws a huge monkey wrench in firm’s ability to predict. The law is thousands of pages long, it’s impossible to know how the bureaucrats will interpret and apply them, heck, they haven’t even written all of them yet, and they have already written tens of thousands of pages of regulation! Therefore, no one knows what they really are, or will be, and obviously how they will effect businesses. Moreover, Obama care is costing firms real money today to hire experts to answer these very unanswerable questions, money that could be better spent investing in labor or productive machinery. The sad part is, until Obama care is implemented, or not, the uncertainty of it will continue to corrode the economy, like acid. If it is implemented the continuing damage to economic growth will be immortalized in entitlement.

 

The lack of investment in machinery and labor will accumulate. As the demand for labor goes down the price of labor must go down. Meanwhile, Obama care is driving up the cost of doing business so prices must rise else firms will have to lay off or go out of business, further driving down the demand for labor. As people’s wages are driven down by Obama care, and the prices we all have to pay for the goods of society go up, our standard of living must necessarily go down… profoundly. In Complexity Theory this is called a feedback loop. The negative input into the system, is fed back into the system, by the system, in a self sustaining way, thus exaggerating the initial input.

 

Experts are telling businesses large to small that Obama care is going to hobble them. That is why so many firms and groups, using political favor, have escaped Obama care. The associated paperwork, taxes, and regulations will drive up their costs and lower their efficiency dramatically. No one knows how much… but everyone knows it will be impressive. Since the first responsibility of a business owner is to keep the doors open they will try mightily to do just that. Unfortunately, due to Obama care, they have to limit the hours their employees can work, else they get hit with the most draconian parts of the law, simply to keep the doors open. Small businesses, who have much more limited ability to hire lawyers and experts than large firms, are effected far more than big ones.

 

Small business is the engine of any economy. Real growth in an economy is organically driven by small startups not giant ones. Entrepreneurs get an idea and they start a business. If that new idea revolutionizes some aspect of business, a new economic cycle is started. Ford did that with the Model T, Gates did that with MSDOS… hydro-fracking and 3D printing are just the newest incarnations of this paradigm. When the environment for small business becomes toxic, as Obama care makes it, the cycle is shut down. Banks won’t loan money to a fly by night who has no useful projections of his or her cost structure. That would be an irresponsible thing to do with depositor’s money. The leviathan bureaucracy of today’s government, a Godzilla that has been expanded dramatically by Obama care, now has the ability to regulate in real time. Thousands of little bureaucrats in their cubicles, dutifully regulating anything they can get their hands on, especially new ideas… undermining economic growth in the process.

 

The main reason our economy is so wounded is Obama Care, pure and simple. This tragically flawed law stops the entrepreneurial process in it’s tracks. Small businesses are hurt the most… magnifying the effect on real economic growth. Diminished growth, that will be exaggerated over time, as future growth has a smaller base to expand upon. Nothing I have said here is astounding or out of left field, it is economics 101. Any economist will tell you that incentives count. This is a basic law of economics. But, due to the willingness of this administration to use the mechanism of government, for political ends, economists are cowed… one only need look at the way Nial Ferguson was treated. Obama and the democrats have silenced most opposition, and set regulatory incentives against the capitalist mode of production. That is why the republicans must not blink, they must defund Obama care… Not as much for ours, but our children and grandchildren’s economic future depends on it.

 

 

Sincerely,

 

John Pepin

Ends and Means, Faith and Reason

Thursday, July 18th, 2013

Dear Friends,

 

It seems to me, the ends do not justify the means; the means taint the ends. In the Machiavellian sense of good ends justifying bad means, the the logic is understood to be flawed. Not only flawed but dangerously and perniciously tarnished. This was understood when people were not ignorant of biblical principles, but today those same principles are nowhere to be found in popular culture, social interactions or are even commonly known. That we have lost such an important measure of rightness, is tragic, that our society is so negatively impacted by such ignorance, is damning.

 

If we go to get food from the store, no one would carry vegetables through raw sewage, even though that may be the most direct route home. Simply exposing them to effluent will taint the vegetables. This is so obvious to anyone that it is considered common sense. But, just as dragging food through human waste taints that food, using evil means to good ends taints those ends. If we seek freedom and liberty, murdering all those who oppose us, is an evil means that taint the good ends, ie. liberty and freedom. The result will inevitably be tyranny and oppression.

 

Ignorance is never a form of enlightenment. Western philosophy is based on reason and faith. Reason comes to us from Plato and Aristotle, while faith comes to us by way of Christianity, through Judaism. Far from being incompatible, Christian faith and reason are harmoniously married into a enlightened philosophy. Pragmatic reason shows us that what has resulted in good in the past, is good, and that which has resulted in evil, is evil. Faith teaches us to be on constant guard for evil that couches itself in goodness. If we combine the two, it becomes obvious that doing an evil, can only beget more evil, no matter the intentions. In fact the Bible says, “the road to hell is paved with good intentions.” When people understood these biblical principles, along with the reason that underlies them, people were better armed to intrinsically understand that the means taint the ends, but when people are ignorant of both reason and faith… they become ripe for the picking.

 

Schools don’t teach biblical principles anymore due to the spurious claim of separation of church and state. This sophist notion has replaced the original intent of the First Amendment… which was freedom of religion. Now, our children are set adrift in the World, ignorant of biblical principles, unless parents make a herculean effort to establish that knowledge in our little sweethearts. Every bit of propaganda they are taught, from our culture, society and especially politics, undermines this effort. Reason is not taught in schools, rote and following are instead… for political expediency. Reason interferes with the powerful’s ability to convince us, what is not good for us, is good for us. Evil is called good and good is called evil, while we are disarmed of reason and faith as a sword and shield.

 

A large part of the political establishment today, believe the ends justify the means, and as a result they rationalize using evil means to self interested “good ends.” They don’t openly avow it, but their actions convey it, louder than any words could ever convince. Since the political elite, the cultural and social elite as well, believe that good ends can be achieved by evil means, they put no limits on their actions… to get their ends. They ignore Constitutional limits on government authority, because they presume themselves so enlightened, they need not follow old rules that the elite find limiting. The elite believe they know best and who are a few old dead guys to tell them this or that is evil.

 

The result is that citizens have neither the reason to understand, the ends do not justify the means; the means taint the ends, nor the faith to be aware that evil always cloaks itself in a sheep’s skin of goodness, as a way to trick us into evil. The elite, who have the advantage of the best education, either are willfully ignorant, and so ignorantly use evil means to what they believe to be good ends, else they do know and are unaffected by the sight and smell of evil. So much of what is purported to be enlightened thinking is based on this pernicious view of good and evil. Abortion is one example, but the list is nearly endless.

 

We rationalize our evil actions by claiming the intentions are good, proving our ignorance of biblical principles, and our lack of ability to reason. If we truly seek to live in an enlightened society, it is imperative we return to the foundational principles handed down to us by our forefathers… faith and reason. To eschew faith is to act the fool and to forgo reason is to prove ignorance. It is up to us to ask for grace for us and our children and teach our children how to reason. If we don’t, and continue down the road we are on, calamity can be the only result.

 

 

Sincerely,

 

John Pepin

The Presumptuous and the Insane

Monday, May 13th, 2013

Dear Friends,

It seems to me, just as those who consider themselves to be the only sane person on the planet, are insane, those that consider themselves to be the only enlightened people on the planet, are truly unenlightened. These two groups of people have many attributes in common. They both have the hubris to believe they presume to know better than everybody else, they feel they must take matters into their own hands, often resorting to violence and both deny the human right of self determination. The threat both groups represent is that they feel they have a moral imperative to do what they believe they must do. In the case of the insane, they sometimes go into theaters and shoot up the place, in the case of the unenlightened, they overthrow governments and install tyrannies. The one threatens only a few while the other threaten all of mankind.

Throughout history we have faced those who presumed they had a duty to protect us from ourselves. They have taken many forms, the dreaded inquisitor of the Dark Ages, the despot, the revolutionary and the eugenicist are but a few. They have all done their part to keep churn in the affairs of Mankind. The common thread is the hubris to believe they know better than everyone else. The rest of us, who have not been enlightened, must be controlled for our own good… else we might think wrongly, worship wrongly, have wrong government, warm the planet, or breed wrongly. They deny self determination, are materialists, and know better than all the rest of humanity… because they believe they do.

Another common thread is that the insane and the presumptuous are amoral. They don’t feel compelled by human mores and traditions. They are psychopaths and sociopaths. Why should they allow others to do as they please when the hubristic and the insane know better? If you or I say something they disagree with, they appoint themselves to shut down our free speech, if you or I want to do something they don’t like, they outlaw that action, if you or I have property they want, they are greedy enough to take that property by force.

The violence the insane and the self righteous visit on humanity takes many forms. It can be as mundane as censoring the opinions of others to chopping off the head of an infidel with a scimitar. Those who believe themselves to be enlightened are the quickest to resort to violence… especially when they claim to be nonviolent. As history has shown, those that seek revolution disdain violence by others and so call themselves nonviolent, but are happy to use violence to further their own agenda. Only people who eschew violence themselves can reasonably be called nonviolent. Those that willingly and happily use violence themselves, but decry it in others, are dangerously delusional hypocrites.

One way to instantly tell the insane and presumptuous from the average person, is that their proscriptions are always for the rest of mankind… never themselves. They seek to shut down the free speech of others, but freak out if their free speech is impeded, they seize control of the language to forward their goals, they call for shared sacrifice, while they live in luxury, their own life is precious, but the lives of others are valueless, the list is endless but is tied together with a common bow, they don’t lead by example, they lead by the nose. They do unto others that which they would never want done unto themselves.

Neither of these groups in human society can be eliminated. They are as human as the need to eat and sleep. Moreover we do ourselves a disservice by trying to eliminate the hubristic and the insane. To do so makes us just as guilty of self appointed grandeur as them. As I have pointed out in past blogs… the ends does NOT justify the means, the means TAINTS the ends.

The answer to the question of, “how to keep society from succumbing to the self appointed gods and lunatics,” is to recognize them when we see them, then deny them the power they seek over us and our fellows. When we ignore their censoring the thoughts and words of others, we participate in their shutting off debate, when we agree with the rantings of sociopaths, we empower them, and most of all, when we react out of fear, we are giving legitimacy to violence as a means to control society. To stop the next Pol Pot or Adam Lanza, we must understand that they don’t act alone, they have help. Pol Pot had the help of brainwashed children and Adam Lanza had the help of everyone who turned a blind eye to his insanity. We must grow ourselves, recognizing them, standing against violence and we must refuse to be taken in by a charismatic sociopath, but most of all, we must lead by example. Else we become the sponsors of our own oppression.

Sincerely,

John Pepin

Un-American Attacks on Our Constitution

Thursday, April 11th, 2013

Dear Friends,

It seems quite alarming to me, that so many who serve in the US government, have open antipathy to the US Constitution. Members of the Supreme Court have said they would not use the US Constitution as a template for a new republic, members of the Legislature calling the Constitution antiquated and out of step with the times, and even the President himself calling the Constitution a charter of negative liberties, the Constitution it would seem, is a problem for many if not most who serve in the American government. Every facet of the Constitution is under assault today from the very people who have taken a oath to uphold and protect it. The result of their attacks is to turn mindless, uninformed people and the fawning press, into useful idiots.

There is no facet of the US Constitution, especially the Bill Of Rights, that is not under direct assault today. The First amendment’s prohibition on the establishment of a State religion has been perverted into establishing the State religion of atheism, the other part of the First Amendment, freedom of speech and of the press, is being undermined by the very press it seeks to protect. The Second Amendment is daily undermined by the incessant call for more gun control, and freedom from search and seizure, has been eroded by the drug laws and fish and game laws that allow law enforcement to search your person or property without warrant or probable cause. We are under constant surveillance by the State, as we go about our daily tasks, while the workings of government are hid more and more by a veil of secrecy. The list of incursions grows longer every day. The hubris and boldness of these usurpers is ever more apparent every time they undermine another facet of Our Constitution.

It would seem that the Constitution stands in the way of these people’s desire to mold the government. The reason for the Constitution is to limit the power and scope of government to the minimum possible to function. That is an anathema to those that are in government today. Many have, as their stated goal, to evolve the United States into a socialist country. They openly avow this, until it becomes a political liability, then they change the subject and vilify the person sounding the alarm. History clearly shows the result of unconstitutional rule, oppression, famine, tyranny and war. There are no examples where this is not so.

There is nothing more un American than to be against the Constitution. Someone could take a position that is not in line with limited government and not be un American. It is evidently American to argue against the actions of any and all branches of government, that Right is enshrined in the First Amendment, but today the political elite call those who disagree with the President un American, without repercussion. Our Constitution is the foundation of our government. The function of Constitutional government is not dependent on who are citizens, or what the geographical location, it is entirely dependent on following the Constitution. This makes the very definition of what it is to be American is to agree with and follow the American Constitution. To be otherwise is the very definition of un American.

If we want to stem this dangerous trend in our elected and appointed elite, then we must start calling any attack on Our Constitution un American, do it boldly and without apology. To shrink in the face of a usurper is to accede to eventual tyranny. Acceding to tyranny is to be unworthy of being called American. Our Constitution is all that has ever stood between us and oppression. Make no mistake about it, our liberty is dependent on our Constitution, and our Constitution is dependent on our vigilance.

If we hear an elected or appointed representative attack our Constitution, it is our duty to pillory that politician, justice or bureaucrat. To grumble in silence is to accept, we must openly state we are in absolute support of our Constitution, and that we will broach no disrespect of it… especially from people who have taken an oath to follow and protect it! To attack and undermine our Constitution, after having taken an oath to protect it, is high treason and it must be called so! In the end, it is our silence or our vociferous defense, that will win the day. It is up to everyone who reads this to make up his or her mind, are you for the Constitution or against it? Ask yourself this… am I a useful idiot? If you are not, then take a stand, and remember… the pen is mightier than the sword, and your voice is louder than you think!

Sincerely,

John Pepin

The Irrelevancy of Congress

Thursday, March 28th, 2013

Dear Friends,

It seems to me… workers in various industries have a tendency to give up their work. This happens many times in union shops as well. Often, difficult jobs are rejected by workers, and the work is then performed by contractors. Eventually, the workers that have given up all the difficult tasks, find their jobs become easier and easier, taking up less and less time during their day. All the difficult tasks are given away to contractors. Without exception, those workers become redundant and a burden to the firm that employs them, and as a result, they are laid off or replaced with contractors. This paradigm has appeared many times in many industries around the World. Congress should beware of this trend, because they are at the that road, and are nearing the end of it.

Congress has given up most of it’s responsibility to the Bureaucracy, the Executive and the Judiciary. Today, any major public concern is far more likely to be addressed by the court system, than by the political system. As Congress becomes more and more superfluous, and redundant, they will continue to loose all the power to legislate, control government’s purse and write the laws they pass… and they will loose their jobs.

The Court system is the source of most of our social legislation today. No social ill is exempt from legislation from the bench. From abortion to gay marriage the court system has become the legislator of last resort. This not only renders Congress irrelevant but sets a dangerous precedent. The court system has become an oligarchy by this paradigm. They pass laws that enrich lawyers at cost to the economy, liberty and common sense. The state of our republic is inevitably defiled by this action of the oligarchical Judicial branch. We suffer as a result… but our children will suffer far more as this trend continues to it’s logical conclusion.

The Executive now ignores the irrelevant Congress regularly. Obama is asked if he can go “around” congress almost daily by the unbiased press. They expound on the efficiency of an executive who wields arbitrary power. The fact that this is antithetical to Our Constitution gives them a shiver up their collective legs. This has progressed to the point where Obama has arbitrarily decided what laws to enforce and which laws to ignore. The check on the power of the Executive is eliminated by this very fact.

The bureaucracy has taken over almost all the tedious responsibilities of the legislative. Recently there was a Supreme Court ruling that imparted the bureaucracy with this power. The Supreme Court basically accepted that Congress had ceded their power to pass laws to the bureaucracy, the fact of their acquiescence being sufficient to set the precedent for the bureaucracy to take over most of the law writing and regulating functions, that are given to the Legislative branch under the Constitution.

Beware power granted because once granted it is very difficult to take back. Now that Congress has ceded so much of their power to legislate, control the purse of government and write the laws they pass, they have become redundant in all but name. This may seem a good thing to those who agree with what the government is doing today, but the real problem is, you may not agree with what they do with that power tomorrow. The limit on the Executive, Judiciary and Bureaucracy’s ability to ignore the national government, Congress, has become entrenched.

This trend has been going on for a long time now. The weal of politics turns slowly but inexorably. The legislative branch has willingly given all the tough jobs to contractors and scabs. Those that have inherited the tough jobs, don’t have to face the people’s wrath for their decisions, they are immune from prosecution for undermining Our Constitution, and they are only too happy to do it. The laziness of the Legislative branch have rendered them supercilious. But, they are happy to attend black tie parties, make a speech or two, and pretend to be power brokers. But, they are getting closer and closer to the day when the Executive will simply order them disbanded, and lay them all off. Will this make our liberty safer or more at risk?

Sincerely,

John Pepin

Government Thinks We are Stupid

Monday, January 21st, 2013

Dear Friends,

It seems to me, a fundamental problem with most regulation, is that they require as a precondition, people are stupid. This premise of regulation doesn’t comport with reality. People are smart, self interested, and for the most part rational maximizers. The ability to reason, makes our desires like water, they will seek any opening to flow downhill. Regulation that seeks to stymie some want or need of people, whether to be free, to be able to engage in the business that best suits them, to be famous, to be wealthy, to take drugs or whatever their heart desires… usually drives that activity underground. Those with sufficient desire and enough craftiness will find some loophole in the regulation that they can slip through. If not then violence is the next choice. In the face of more regulation, the desires that self interested individuals will seek, will not be stopped, they will only become more pernicious, more damaging to society and more inhuman, warping our society by the tensions built up from the disparities regulation creates.

Regulation always has, as it’s justification, the intent to stop the meeting of one’s interests by damaging the interests of another. In this, regulation has a noble intent, but as we all know, the road to hell is paved with good intentions. Regulation is usually not put in place to protect citizens, regulations are, more often than not, enacted to allow an oligopoly to form. Governments believe oligopolies are in their economic self interests, and so, are always trying to help them form. Proposed regulation, that is actually to protect some economic interest, cannot be sold to the public as such. That would be a certain kiss of death. It has to be sold to the citizenry, how it is to protect them from “unlicensed” practitioners, or “unscrupulous” businessmen. Reality being that the very people protected by the regulation are often the unscrupulous ones, the ones barred, the entrepreneurs.

Think about a group of people walking through the woods. A large tree has fallen across the path. They will quickly find the easiest way around the obstacle. Once the most effective path is found the majority of the group will take this path. The path will be enlarged, and made easier to go around the tree, for the next group that stumbles across it. Regulations for economic interests, are like cutting brush and filling in the path you have made around the obstacle, enhancing the barrier of the fallen tree to those who will come later. People however, have the inherent ability to size up an obstacle, and find a way around it, even enhanced ones. Regulation is no different than any other obstacle, if someone wants to get by it, they will. Therefore, regulation is only a true obstacle for people inclined to follow it anyway, or those dumb enough not to be able to find a way around it. Those that have the desire, intellect and daring, will find a way.

There are many kinds of regulations that this philosophy applies to. Sin tax regulation for example, The higher the government taxes cigarettes the more the black market for cigarettes grows. No one is foolish enough to believe that the black market is a benevolent phenomenon. Therefore the government, through regulation, provides the incentive and ensures the profitability, of bad actors. Obama’s fiat regulation, that mental health care givers, report on patients that have guns is another example. This sets up an entire universe of negative incentives and feedbacks magnifying those incentives.

Remember our premise is that “people are not stupid.” The information that Obama has ordered this new law by arbitrary rule, and so it is now the law of the land, will not be lost on those people who self identify as needing mental health help. Being self interested they will forgo treatment, even where they themselves understand it is necessary, because they understand that the person who administers to them, will be nothing more then a government snitch. If this is the case with those who self identify, then how much more, for those who do not?

I am sure all of you know of many other examples to go along with these. It is a fact that human beings are sly. This makes it true, that regulation is merely an obstacle, and we are smart enough to get around obstacles, cannot be overstated in the case of regulation. As additional poorly considered regulations, build more tension and further warps our society, the functions of civil life, our standard of living, our emotional well being, our safety and the safety of our children… will be put more at risk. The answer, is to remove the distortions in our civilization, with more liberty, more standards and less regulation.

Sincerely,

John Pepin

Obama’s Depression

Monday, January 7th, 2013

Dear Friends,

It seems to me, a magician directs the audience’s gaze away from the real action, as does a scam artist, to allow something to happen they want to keep hidden. The story the unbiased media and the political class have been telling us, about the poor performance of our economy, is an example of this. It is a red herring. The reality is, that while the fiscal cliff negotiations have some bearing on economic consideration that businesses must make, there are far more important government policies that have a much larger and more direct impact. The tax question is now settled and the new spending ceiling is now being debated. They both are important for the economy to function properly, but their effect is muted, compared to the impacts of Obama care. These are important considerations. Since everyone has a stake in the economy, even those who don’t work or own businesses, are poorly served when the debate about the state of our economy is filled with political rhetoric, misinformation and outright lies.

We see the reality of this in the December 2012 job numbers. More to the point, buried in the job numbers, the BLS put out. In it we see that there was essentially no small business hiring. They have been on a hiring freeze since the 2008 recession and following economic depression. Obama’s depression. Small businesses play a fundamental role in the job economy and especially economic recoveries.

Small businesses generally provide the bulk of new jobs. This is an economic truism. Small businesses not only provide the lion’s share of job creation; those jobs are often introductory. They are filled by people with less job experience, training and education. These jobs, that small businesses create, are the entry level positions that allow teenagers and under served minorities an opportunity to start engaging in the workforce. Larger firms pay better and as a result require more skilled workers. Workers that small businesses have trained to engage in the working economy. This was shown in the job numbers by the extremely high unemployment rate among minorities and young people.

Small businesses are the drivers of economic recoveries. Creative destruction is the term coined by Joseph Schumpeter. It is a theory to explain the growth cycle of economies that use the Capitalist mode of production. In it, a new process, way of organizing, or innovation, increase the efficiency of the economy. These new ways make the older ways less competitive and the outmoded go into bankruptcy. The new means open up better paid jobs that are less strenuous, because they are more efficient in some way. The creation is the new way of doing business and the destruction is the bankruptcy of the old firms using the old ways. Entrepreneurs are the creators of innovation, and so, are the drivers of economic growth. Therefore they are the source of recoveries. Large firms are like an old growth forest, they are mature and so don’t expand, therefore hiring is primarily a means to replace retiring employees. Small businesses are all about expansion; unless government policies get in the way.

Obama care has led to Obama’s depression by creating a universe of negative incentives to small businesses. Many of the provisions don’t kick in unless a firm reaches 50 employees, therefore, small firms have a strong regulatory incentive, to stay under 50 employees. If they are rapping against that ceiling, they do everything they can to stay under it, and if they are just above, they will lay off just enough employees to get back under it. Obama care also creates unknowables in the cost structure of a small business. Uncertainty is a killer of jobs because firms cannot, with any certainty, know what profit they will make from a new hire, or even if the regulations will cause them to loose money, if they employ that new worker. This is magnified, by the annual tranches of Obama care regulation, that will be implemented until it is fully functional in 2016, further increasing uncertainty. Under these conditions, no smart small businessperson would hire new employees, or expand… and they aren’t.

Large firms have the ability to absorb more regulatory costs than a small firm. Large firms have the financial wherewithal to hire lawyers, to get them through a regulatory maze, but small businesses, with their smaller profit margins and dramatically smaller staffs, must use scarce revenues and time to muddle through regulation. Often with disastrous results. Large businesses usually have the ear of several politicians, who will pave the way for them, but small businessmen have no such political favor. This results in larger firms being less impacted by regulation than small firms. This is exemplified in the carve outs that many large firms got under Obama care… like McDonalds. Since McDonalds got an exemption, how can a start up expand and compete, with the large corporation that has a lower cost per employee, due to political favor?

The upshot of all this is, entrepreneurs, the drivers of economic recovery, are being squeezed out of the economy. Every business must get more efficient, to control costs, in the face of the Leviathan of regulation that is steaming down on them, but those very regulations undermine the process. The creation part of creative destruction is hampered, and the destruction is accelerated, by the new costs of Obama care regulation. Regulation that lowers small businesses profits and raises their costs. Because of this, every business person is hunkered down, trying mightily to simply keep his or her business afloat. Smaller businesses more than larger ones. The fiscal cliff negotiations have far less impact on small business, than the tsunamis of Obama care regulation, that will wash the shores of every firm in the economy, for several years to come. The fact that the unbiased media are all abuzz with, the debt ceiling, a balanced approach to the deficit (that is all tax increase and no spending cuts), and political finger pointing, is a sure sign that they are diversions, to keep us focused on the lure, and not the real source of our economic troubles; the democrat’s and Obama’s penchant for regulating, taxing and deficit spending… which is the source of that fishy smell.

Sincerely,

John Pepin

To Shine the Light of Criticism on Evil is Heroic and to Vilify Good is Not

Thursday, December 27th, 2012

Dear Friends,

It seems to me, no one fears criticizing good, but all fear accusing evil. That is because we understand that there are consequences for ridiculing evil but none for abusing good. A good man, organization or group will tolerate the abuse, without a thought to harming the abuser. Evil men, associations and groups will exact revenge however. As a result, those that libel the good in our society are cowards, while those that point out evil are heroes.

We all know that evil grows in the dark and is often called darkness itself. That is why, when we hear criticisms of despicable people or organizations, we cringe. We know that if the wrong person overhears they might react violently. The evil among us are as prone to violence as the good are to forgiveness. Violence being in the nature of evil and forgiveness a quality of good. Those that criticize evil put themselves in mortal danger while those that criticize good have no such fear.

The Catholic church comes under much criticism not all of it unwarranted. However, the people that attack it have no worries they will be hunted down and stabbed to death. They are in no danger of being shot from a bicycle on their way to the store. Not a one among us fears the Catholic church today.

There was a time in history when this wasn’t true. Those that even questioned the Church’s teachings were threatened with burning at the stake. This wasn’t due to anything Jesus taught but due to the evil men that controlled the Church at the time. Evil works outside the tenets of faith, societal moors and the cultural ethos. Evil fears the light of scrutiny just as a vampire of exposure to the sun.

The reaction to criticism is a reliable way to determine if that person, organization or society is evil. If any criticism of such people strikes fear into those that hear it, we can say that it is most assuredly true, that person, organization or society, is evil. The fear we feel is as sure a way to prove evil exists as any. In this way we have a metric for measuring evil. The more violently the reaction to criticism the more evil we can say that group is.

To do a thing that has no peril, is not a brave thing to do, just as doing a thing that brings with it great danger, can be heroic. The soldier who runs through a hail of gunfire to save a friend is a hero but a person who allows a car to go first is not. Heroic actions require danger in their doing.

Not all dangerous actions are heroic however. Jumping from a bridge into shallow water is just foolish, as is swatting a bees nest, and not all good actions are heroic. Helping an old lady cross the street is an honorable thing to do but is not heroic.

So we can say that those who attack good people, organizations or groups are not heroes. No matter the hypocrisy they may point out. The heroes in society are the people that point out evil. Those that shine a light on evil put themselves in peril doing so. Those that attack a good man do not. Heroism is about forwarding good actions not undermining them.

Society benefits when good is highlighted and society is damaged when good is attacked. The good among us are attacked by evil without consequences but the evil among us is protected by their propensity to violence. This sets up a pernicious feedback loop. Good is diminished while evil goes unrecognized because of the fear of pointing it out. The prosperity of Mankind is undermined and those that would usurp power are protected by the darkness of fear they wear as a cloak. People turn away from good, and the cause of evil is advanced, until evil oversteps like the Nazis did. Then mankind is forced to act.

Men and women would be well advised to consider this carefully when they hear criticisms. If a shiver runs down your back, and you cast an eye about to make sure you are not overheard, the group being criticized is quite likely evil, but if an accuser yells his or her accusations loudly and without fear, you can reliably say the group being chastised is good. We diminish good and ignore evil at our mutual peril. The interests of Mankind are only helped when heroes stand up to evil. They are often jailed, abused and condemned for it, but the future of humanity hangs in the balance. That is why I say, to shine the light of criticism on evil is heroic, and to vilify good is not.

Sincerely,

John Pepin

The Weed of Regulation

Thursday, December 13th, 2012

Dear Friends,

It seems to me… regulation has a way of overgrowing the economic garden of a country. Regulation becomes a weed, when it ceases to be a standard and instead becomes accordant, or is a means to prevent competition. The reason for this is inherent in the market system. Schumpeter had the most insightful theory, in that he pointed to the capitalist himself, who is the greatest danger to capitalism. This weed, nurtured and protected by the capitalist himself, will eventually overgrow any garden… but knowing it’s roots will help to hold it back.

Economic operations cannot function without some regulation. When asked what he would do if he were made Emperor, Confucius replied, “I would rectify terms.” He meant he would set standards of measure for barter. This means that even 500BC wise men understood the need of an economy for regulation. Like anything in a complex system, and economies are complex systems, anything can gain a sort of life. This is especially true of something intrusive as regulation.

Regulation has it’s normative function, it allows us to interact in productive ways, and it is a means to close the door to competition. This is the crucial distinction to make, bad regulation is there to create some barrier to competition, it might make the initial step to staring up a competing business so high that an oligarchical system is set up. Bad regulation may holdup the permitting process to absurd extremes, like it taking Walmart 20 years and a Supreme Court decision, to get a permit to build in an overgrown cornfield, as an overt and stated means to limit competition.

When someone gets in a position of extreme wealth, often generated through their own virtue, they inevitably try their mightiest… to close the door behind them. They usually do this with regulation. Take Warren Buffett for example. Who has made the most money from Obama’s vetoing the Keystone Pipeline? Warren Buffett with his trains. The oil is still being shipped the Texas refineries, but it going by train, driving up the cost and lowering efficiency, however… Warren Buffett is making millions from it. And who is Obama’s greatest supporter of tax the rich? Warren Buffett. One hand washes the other. This is one example of how regulation benefits the wealthy anti capitalist at the cost of the average person. Add up all the millions of other examples we will never hear of and we can see why regulation overgrows the garden of an nation’s economy.

The next phase is, as the companies that built the regulatory maze for their own benefit eventually go under, the regulation that prevents entry still exists! The jobs, often high paid, are lost to economies that have not been overgrown with regulation. There is no mechanism within government to examine regulation. As a result, the pages grow and grow. The mass of regulation, if printed for the United States, would fill an average bedroom top to bottom. That mass grows, not linearly, but at the golden ratio. It grows upon itself and the mass of it requiring more simply to interpret what is already there.

More social services are needed due to the lowering job participation rate as the ability of the economy to generate jobs is smothered by regulation. This leads to the need for more taxes, to fund the social services, and more impediments are put in the way of entrepreneurs. As the economy is overgrown with regulation, the only people who can get the license or permit to do anything, are people politically connected. As soon as the do, they also seek to close the door behind them, so they have an interest in keeping anti competitive regulation, so the vine turns to wood and strangles out everything else, but the tree of political favor, that over tops it and it grasps for support. Add politically expedient redistributive cures and the feed back loop becomes self evident.

Sincerely,

John Pepin