Thursday, November 18, 2010

Microcredit Too Big To Fail?, and A Surprising Admission in the New York Times

The Mises Economics Blog links to a New York Times article noting potentially major issues for India’s microfinance industry, which I have posted on in a positive light in the past, though I did have to redact some of my positive comments.

The NYT article is headlined India Microcredit Faces Collapse From Defaults, and the article contains a seemingly obligatory phrase to be trotted out when billions of dollars are at stake, “too important (big - ed.) to fail.”

But what actually caught my eye in the NYT piece were the following words.

Now some Indian officials fear that microfinance could become India’s version of the United States’ subprime mortgage debacle, in which the seemingly noble idea of extending home ownership to low-income households threatened to collapse the global banking system because of a reckless, grow-at-any-cost strategy. (bold by ed.)

I seem to recall that extending home ownership to low-income households was previously not a “seemingly noble idea” to the editors and writers at the NYT, but actually a noble idea requiring the full force of the United States government to ensure the idea had sufficient traction within the entire American lending industry.

Posted by John Venlet on 11/18 at 04:24 PM
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Gun “Safety” Juxtaposition


Take a good look at that AP photo, which is annotated with these descriptive words.

Afghan boys take aim with toy guns as they enact a scene of gun battle on the second day of the Muslim holiday of Eid al-Adha, or Feast of the Sacrifice, in Kabul, Afghanistan, Wednesday, November 17, 2010.

How is one to know, with certainty, that those Afghan boys are taking aim with toy guns?  They certainly do not comply with United States Code: Title 15, Chapter 76, Section 5001, which requires that blaze orange plug at the muzzle end of the barrel.  If those Afghan boys were playing their game on the streets of America, they probably would be shot and killed.

Posted by John Venlet on 11/18 at 03:25 PM
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Handbook for a More Dangerous Obama

On October 17, Malone Vandam stated the following in a post titled This election will make Obama more, not less, dangerous, which I have linked to in the past.

If his complicity with Pelosi and Reid in the abuse of the legislative process impressed you, wait until you see what he does when all he has at his disposal is executive power. And don’t think he hasn’t been getting ready for this and hasn’t already got the machinery in place to show you just what kind of abuse of executive power a radical Marxist can conjure up. (bold be ed.)

Well, the handbook for a more dangerous Obama (pdf of 54 pages) has been prepared, courtesy of the Center for American Progress, and fawningly presented to Obama by John Podesta, for our own “good,” of course.

Linked via a post at Classical Values titled This Is An Order.

I have a distinct hunch that Vandam is correct.

Posted by John Venlet on 11/18 at 02:37 PM
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Do You Mind Reading Me My Rights While You Grope Me?

From a post at GunRights4US titled John Galt’s solution to the tyranny of the TSA - The Solution to TSA Groping and Scanning.

The presumption behind a pat down and grope your groin search is that you, the passenger, are guilty of hiding something. The same philosophy or idea can be applied to the full body scanner which pilots are objecting to now due to the invasion of privacy. Thus the premise that you are guilty before being declared innocent and allowed to proceed is the methodology used by the TSA which is a direct violation of the concept of Due Process.

Thus if you are flying a simple solution. These cards (Miranda rights card - ed.) can be typed up or written up on an index card or feel free to print this screen and hand it to your grope happy TSA agent when you fly:

I do not know if this is the “solution,” but undoubtedly the suggestion presented is a peaceful form of civil disobedience.  Miranda rights card at link.

Posted by John Venlet on 11/18 at 01:23 PM
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“Or Not So Much…,” Unfortunately

Claire, at SondraK’s place, posts a Norman Thomas quote, which reads as follows.

The American people will never knowingly adopt Socialism.  But under the name of ‘liberalism’ they will adopt every fragment of the Socialist program, until one day America will be a Socialist nation, without knowing how it happened. (bold by ed.)

Norman Thomas, unabashed Socialist, ran for the presidency six times, as the Socialist Party of America candidate, and that quote, above, especially the words in bold typeface, are quite humanly prescient.

But American individuals who have been paying attention to history, and current events, knew America was moving to embrace Socialism.  The unabashed Socialists knew, as is evidenced in the editor’s note which appends the Thomas quote.

[Ed. note: Norman Thomas and Gus Hall, the U.S. Communist Party Candidate, both quit American politics, agreeing that the Republican and Democratic parties had adopted every plank on the Communist/Socialist and they no longer had an alternate party platform on which to run.]

That statement, “they no longer had an alternate party platform on which to run,” is true, and explains why the Socialist Party of America is basically viewed, today, as a mere blemish.  The Republicans, “janitorial socialists,” and the Democrats, “malignant socialists,” stepped up and embraced the Socialists’ thunder, and thus are equally culpable for the demise of the idea which is America.

This is not breaking news, as is evidenced by these words from Garet Garrett’s essay The Revolution Was, written in 1938.

There are those who still think they are holding the pass against a revolution that may be coming up the road. But they are gazing in the wrong direction. The revolution is behind them. It went by in the Night of Depression, singing songs to freedom…

In a revolutionary situation, mistakes and failures are not what they seem. They are scaffolding. Error is not repealed. It is compounded by a longer law, by more decrees and regulations, by further extensions of the administrative hand. As deLawd said in The Green Pastures, that when you have passed a miracle you have to pass another one to take care of it, so it was with the New Deal. Every miracle it passed, whether it went right or wrong, had one result. Executive power over the social and economic life of the nation was increased. Draw a curve to represent the rise of executive power and look there for the mistakes. You will not find them. The curve is consistent.

Those two short quotes speak volumes, but I suggest reading Garrett’s entire essay.  It will take you some time to read, so bookmark it, like I did in 2008 when I first saw it linked at Western Rifle Shooters Association, for re-reading from time to time.  Read it a bit at a time if you must, but read it.

Americans have knowingly adopted Socialism, but they plead ignorance.  “The revolution was,” it needs to be reversed.

Posted by John Venlet on 11/18 at 10:46 AM
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