Monday, 10 October 2011

Point Form Ramblings. Check.

POKER

  • Started upswinging again after my last rant.
  • Trying to stay calm.
  • Remember to valuebet.
  • 2.5x multiplier sucks. I can see why recreational players that are smart irl but are just bad at poker think this is a bad deal when they're capable of shopping around.
  • 4 days ahead of pace to get Supernova back by end of the year.

HOCKEY

  • Jets get blown out in home opener. 5-1. Ewww.
  • First goal against them within 3 minutes.
  • Byfuglien needs to step it up. Or fight someone.
  • Fantasy hockey league HUD-matrix = Great Success!
  • 102 points out of a max possible 120 so far. 2nd place has 77 points. Easy Game.
  • 2% of the season is complete so my sample size is obviously large enough.

POLITICS

  • Updated the straw poll results chart again.
  • Herman Cain is scooping polls left and right and is now 1st Tier right behind or tied with Ron Paul imo.
  • Front-runner Rick Perry has a total of 6 Top 3 finishes to tie Gingrich's 6 and has yet to win a straw poll.
  • Front-runner Perry has been relegated to 2nd Tier with Bachman and Huckabee.
  • Front-runner Perry is somehow still regarded as Front-runner Perry.
  • Ron Paul remains 1st Tier with little change to his numbers other than winning yet another poll for a leading 8.

Standard GOP Skype Group Session:
Paul: Well, the Federal Reserve...
Gingrich: You're alllll nuts...
Palin: Wait for it... WAIT FOR IT...
Bachman: : menacing stare :
Perry: Hey guys watch this: [quote] CNN: Front-runner Perry | click | FOX: Front-runner Perry | click | CBS: Front-runner Perry [/quote] Neat trick huh?
Romney: attentionwhore.jpg
Paul: and the IRS... nation building... bail outs and moral hazard...
Gingrich: I'm surrounded by morons...
Palin: WAIT FOR IT!
Romney: : rolleyes :
Perry: Ok Ok I'll tell you how it's done, see if I change my first name to "Front-runner... "
Palin: Just kidding!
Paul: : tap : : tap: Is this thing on?





BOOK

I've also been reading Mark Steyn's After America. Amazingly good book and to paraphrase one of the Amazon reviews: Mark Steyn is incapable of writing a dull sentence. Concise, witty breakdown of the breakdown in society, economics and politics.

Some gems:

As Senator Michael Bennet of Colorado fumed to a room of voters in 2010, "We have managed to acquire $13 trillion of debt on our balance sheet. In my view, we have nothing to show for it."

If something cannot go on forever, it will stop. - Herbert Stein.

If you're careening along a road toward a collapsed bridge, you'll certainly stop, one way or the other. But it makes a difference, at least to you, whether you skid to a halt four yards before the cliff edge or whether you come to rest at the bottom of the ravine.

According to CBO projections, by 2055 interest payments on the debt will exceed federal revenues. But I don't think we'll need to worry about a "Government of the United States" at that stage. By 1788, Louis XVI's government in France was spending a mere 60 percent of revenues on debt service, and we know how that worked out for the House of Bourbon shortly thereafter... So take your eye off the far prospect, and instead look about fourteen inches in front of your toecap. Within a decade, the United States will be spending more of the federal budget on its interest payments than on it's military... by 2020 the government will be paying between 15 and 20 percent of it's revenues in debt interest. Whereas defense spending will be down to between 14 and 16 percent. Just to clarify: we're not talking about paying down the federal debt, just keeping up with the annual interest charges on it... The superpower will have evolved from a nation of aircraft carriers to a nation of debt carriers... If that trajectory holds, we'll be spending more than the planet's entire military budget on debt interest [by 2050].

We've spent too much of tomorrow today - to the point where we've run out of tomorrow.

There's nothing virtuous about "caring" "compassionate" "progressives" demonstrating how caring and compassionate and progressive they are by spending money yet to be earned by generations yet to be born... It's not just about balancing the books, but balancing the most basic impulses of society. These are structural and, ultimately, moral questions. Credit depends on trust, and trust pre-supposes responsibility. So, if you have a credit boom in an age that has all but abolished personal responsibility, it's not hard to figure how it's going to end.
China is dangerous not because of its strength but because of its weakness... the People's Republic has a crude structural flaw: thanks to its disastrous one-child policy, it will get old before it gets rich... That's actually worse news than if China was cruising to uncontested global hegemony - because it means that Beijing's calculations on how the Sino-American relationship evolves are even less likely to align with ours. China has to maximize its power before demographic decay sets in. In other words, it has strong incentives to be bold and to push, hard and fast.

Industrial power [which Steyn compares to today's government power] should be decentralized. It should be scattered into many hands so that the fortunes of the people will not be dependent on the whim or caprice, the political prejudices, the emotional stability of a few self-appointed men. The fact that they are not vicious men but respectable and social minded is irrelevant. - Justice Marshall, 1948.

In Europe, there are no kids or grandkids to screw over. In the end the entitlement state disincentives everything from wealth creation to self-reliance to the survival instinct, as represented by the fertility rate. If the problem with socialism, as Mrs. Thatcher famously said, "is that eventually you run out of other people's money," the problem with Greece and much of Europe is that they've advanced to the next stage: they've run out of other people, period.

Steyn goes on to detail a lot of issues in society and how they affect the economy. One that really struck me as profound was the technology issue. If you took someone from 1890 and transported him to 1950, he would be blown away by the advances of the past 60 years. Leaps and bounds in the fields of transportation, medicine and communication. Transport him another 60 years in the future to 2011 and he's rather underwhelmed by how little has changed. Everything is slightly faster and the toys are a little more shiny but, aside from the advent of the Internet, that's it. We haven't cured anything despite the plethora of cure  _____ support bracelets. We haven't solved any energy dependencies. We're still using the same basic TV, radio and phone technologies. Where's my jet pack I was promised in the 80s?

He's a little on the liberal-bashing bias side of things but to be fair he gives it to the conservatives too since they haven't done anything to fix it when they've had the chance and he states quite frankly that government grows and grows regardless of who's in charge. If you're looking for a good read regarding today's economic and social issues this is definitely one you want to pick up.

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