Thursday, March 26, 2020

Fact Check: Socialism Kills!

It's way too early to close the book on this, but there's already a strong correlation between economic freedom and COVID death rates.  Free markets save lives, and an unfree market (ie: socialism) kills.

To make this graph, I took the top 100 countries in the Heritage Foundation Index of Economic Freedom and calculated the Case Fatality Rate (CFR) as of 3/26/20 based on raw data from Worldometers.

I only included countries that had both significant COVID cases and could also be considered reasonably reliable data sources.  (China is not in the top 100, and I don't trust their numbers anyway.)

I'll update this periodically, and we'll see if it holds.  Below is the raw data.

(Note: The two outliers in the first quadrant are UK and Netherlands, which both have socialized medicine yet relatively free economies.  Again, it's very early in the progression of this pandemic, and there's a lot of data uncertainty.)

Economic Freedom
Cases Fatalities  Case Fatality Rate
683 2 0.29%
Hong Kong
453 4 0.88%
2806 13 0.46%
11811 191 1.62%
1564 9 0.58%
United Kingdom
11658 578 4.96%
1877 41 2.18%
3897 37 0.95%
538 1 0.19%
802 2 0.25%
7431 434 5.84%
1306 4 0.31%
299 4 1.34%
United States
81864 1173 1.43%
1453 9 0.62%
958 5 0.52%
2840 71 2.50%
Czech Republic
1925 9 0.47%
2031 23 1.13%
Korea, South
9241 131 1.42%
2693 8 0.30%
43646 262 0.60%
3346 14 0.42%
6847 49 0.72%
1399 47 3.36%
1029 22 2.14%
1045 4 0.38%
1221 16 1.31%
6235 220 3.53%
893 78 8.73%
3544 60 1.69%
56197 4145 7.38%
29155 1696 5.82%
707 45 6.36%
3629 75 2.07%
892 26 2.91%

Friday, March 20, 2020

The Coronavirus Economic Crisis - How to Fix It?

I believe we are doing this all wrong.  Not the medical part.  I think the world is getting that right as evidenced by the success of gene mapping, vaccines, hydroxychloroquine/zinc, anti-bodies, anti-virals, etc.  The medical crisis might be a supply chain problem at this point.  Still deadly serious, but there's a light at the end of the tunnel.  However, the economic crisis is an unfolding disaster.  

The current approach is like the Dutch boy with his fingers in the dyke.  Except he's trying to plug a million holes with his fingers.  It's simply not possible and doomed to fail.

The government is talking about trying to bail out every individual industry involved, well, at least the big ones with lots of lobbyists.  Airlines, cruise ships (yeah, there's an essential industry) automobiles, chain restaurants, banks, planes, hotels, etc., will all get generous bailouts in the trillions.  And these industries were the ones who for years have been blowing their money on stock buybacks to enrich their execs.  Why should they get a blank check worth trillions?  They shouldn't.

Nor should they be asked to twist in the wind thanks to a pandemic.  

Meanwhile, massage therapists, wait staff, carpenters, bartenders, yoga instructors, musicians, small businesses, restaurants, bars, and people like YOU are completely out of work and on their own. 

There's another way which would save everyone, and avoid the disaster we are creating.  

Believe it or not, this is NOT a MONEY problem.  It's a TIME problem.  

We don't need BAILOUTS,  we need TIMEOUTS!

Going back to the dyke analogy, what if there was a way to freeze the ocean?   

The idea is similar to the sci -fi concept of suspended animation.  To do that we need to both support life AND suspend time.      

Therefore I propose two remedies:

1. Suspend all time related expenses: debt, taxes, rents, leases, insurance, etc. until this is over.  We simply go into timeout for the shutdown weeks or months and add that time to the end with interest. This would freeze bank loans, the entire bond market, municipal market, mortgages, rents auto leases, loans, insurance, and all taxes, etc.  Nobody would be obliged to pay anything, and nobody would be able to demand anything regarding these obligations.  Bankruptcies, evictions, lawsuits, etc would all be in suspended animation until normalcy returns.  

No company would need a giant bailout under this scenario because no company would have these time related expenses during a time of no revenue.  Any company that could continue operations would do so and would continue paying their debts, taxes, rents, and leases. Those that cannot though, would not go bankrupt simply because of a pandemic.  The federal government would still be there to lend to states and local governments who need it.  

2. To deal with the need to sustain life, everyone who needs money in the U.S. would go on the existing food stamp program (SNAP), which would be increased to encompass other essential expenses like energy, gas, and medications.    

SNAP is an existing program. It wouldn't require much modification to scale up for the entire population.  (Alternatively, checks could be sent to everyone, but what could possibly go wrong with that?)  

The timeout bill would be much shorter than the bailout monstrosity and way cheaper.  The only money spent would be for citizens to sustain life and governments as loans.  No money would need to go to businesses and corporations. 

Let's freeze this ocean of economic woe until this nightmare clears up.  When it's over, we can thaw the economy and bring it back to life.    

[Update: Unfortunately, the government will never do this.  Why?  First, freezing the economy would be a huge statistical hit to GDP and the unemployment numbers.  Pumping trillions into a bailout will flow directly to GDP and paying employees who can't work will moderate unemployment numbers. Politicians can't allow the bad optics of crashing GDP and rising employment numbers.  That would spook the markets, God forbid.  Second, Democrats see this as an opportunity to blackmail Trump to sign their agenda.  Both sides want a 2000 page bill that no one will ever read except the lobbyists who write it.  That's why we will spend trillions of dollars we don't have and flood the market with the monetary equivalent of Fentanyl.  Sad!]  

Friday, March 13, 2020

DIY Virus Mask

(If video doesn't play, click on the YouTube button.  Links are not working well these days. )

The government says you don't need a mask unless you're sick.  Translation: YOU NEED A MASK, and everyone you know and love needs one too!   Why?  Because there is significant asymptomatic spread and minimal compliance by the symptomatic.  

Here's how you can make many very good masks for about $1 plus labor. 

See graph below.  What more do you need to know?  

When this is all over, the no-mask policy promoted by the U.S. CDC will be rightly seen as deadly and criminal.   Heads must roll.  

Saturday, February 29, 2020

Coronavirus and Leverage

Forget for a moment the potential death toll.  And forget for a moment the financial damage from plummeting stocks.  The coronavirus could make the 2008 mortgage crisis look like child's play.

The last time there was a real pandemic was 1918.  Spanish flu killed up to 5% of the world's population.  Obviously a huge human tragedy.  (On the bright side, 95% of the world survived!) But there are big differences between 1918 and 102 years later.  High speed travel is ubiquitous, medicine has improved greatly, aaaand LEVERAGE IS EVERYWHERE (ie: borrowed money).

Unlike the early 1900s, everything today is bought on time, and the coronavirus does not care about your payment schedule.  

Banks, businesses, bonds, houses, cars, hospitals, you name it.  Everything today depends on a matrix of time sensitive payments happening at precise intervals. If time slows down, or takes a temporary pause, those payments will not happen and the deck of ownership around the world will be  completely re-shuffled.

If you are a leveraged company and depend on China for some part of your product, you cannot sell product TODAY.  If you cannot sell product, you cannot pay your debts. If your debts are collateralized by assets, someone else will soon own those assets. 

If you hold a mortgage and your job depends on business as usual, guess what?  Business as usual is going to take a temporary pause.  Can your mortgage payments?    

There will be bank runs, defaults, bankruptcies, and financial chaos beyond anything the world has seen before.  

Just another fun aspect to the unfolding pandemic.  


Thursday, January 23, 2020

Fact Check - The One Thing You Need To Know About Impeachment

There's a lot of noise in the Trump impeachment story, and it's deliberate.  Noise obscures the clear and obvious truth.  To help simplify things, here's the noise-free version, first from 30,000 feet, and then in high resolution from eye-level.

From 30,000 feet it looks like Donald Trump did exactly to Joe Biden what he's been screaming Obama,  Clinton, Comey, and Brennan did to him; that is enlist foreign actors to dig dirt on a political opponent.  When Donald Trump asked Ukraine's leader to investigate how the Bidens made millions from a Ukraine energy company, Joe Biden was leading the polls as Donald Trump's Democrat rival in 2020.  He was clearly asking a foreign country to investigate his political opponent. 

That's how it looks from 30,000 feet, and that's the story Democrats want you to hear.  It looks pretty bad, right?  Maybe even impeachable.  But a funny thing happens when the same events are examined at eye level.

The detail that is missing from 30,000 feet hinges on one key word: "predication".  Was there a basis for what Donald Trump asked Zelensky about the Bidens?  Did he have a good reason to suspect corruption by a former Vice President of the United States?

Here's an analogy:  Consider the cases of two fatal shootings.  In both cases the victim was shot at point blank range in the back.  That's what happened from 30,000 feet.  Are both shooters guilty of murder?  Now consider that in the first case the victim had robbed the shooter and was fleeing.  In the second case the victim had stabbed the shooter and was lunging with a knife for his child.  Those are the details up close.  One shooter had a basis for using deadly force and the other did not.  Predication makes all the difference.

In the case of Obama, Clinton, Comey, Brennan et al digging dirt on Trump, the search for predication came up dry.  Not only that, Obama and Clinton manufactured fake dirt and then looped it back to U.S. intelligence to create the appearance of predication.  That's what the Steele dossier, Stefan Halper,  Joseph Mifsud, Alexander Downer, etc. were all about.  Even after spending years and unlimited funds looking for predication,  Robert Mueller came up empty.  In essence, the Democrat spying on Trump in 2016 and 2017 was part of a coup d'etat.  (Overthrowing an election, in French.)

In Trump's case, he not only had predication, but he also prefaced his request with that very justification during the Ukraine phone call:

There's a lot of talk about Biden's son, that Biden stopped the prosecution and a lot of people want to find out about that so whatever you can do with the Attorney General would be great.  Biden went around bragging that he stopped the prosecution so if you can look into it... It sounds horrible to me.   

(Full transcript here)

Here's what Joe Biden openly bragged about doing in Ukraine that piqued Trump's interest: (video below)
I was supposed to announce that there was another billion-dollar loan guarantee,  And I had gotten a commitment from Poroshenko and from [then-Prime Minister Arseniy] Yatsenyuk that they would take action against the state prosecutor. And they didn’t.
I said, ‘I’m telling you, you’re not getting the billion dollars.  I said, ‘You’re not getting the billion. I’m going to be leaving here in, I think it was about six hours.’ I looked at them and said: ‘I’m leaving in six hours. If the prosecutor is not fired, you’re not getting the money.’ Well, son of a bitch. (Laughter.) He got fired.

Mind you, the Ukrainian prosecutor that Joe Biden had fired for $1 billion U.S. dollars was investigating how Joe's son, Hunter Biden, came to be paid up to $8,000,000 by a Ukrainian energy company for sitting on it's board while knowing nothing about energy, Ukraine, or doing business in the region.

The Bidens took an actual bribe in the form of millions from Ukraine, and then bribed Ukraine with a billion U.S. taxpayer dollars to fire the prosecutor looking into it.  If that is not corruption, then the word is meaningless.

That's it. Donald Trump had ample predication and expressed it to the Ukraine leader.  Case closed.

Donald Trump was actually just doing his job when he asked Zelensky to investigate the Bidens.  It is the responsibility of Presidents to hold government officials accountable for corruption, bribery, extortion and wrongdoing according to the U.S. constitution.  Politicians like Joe Biden are not exempt from this accountability, even if they are running for office. Were they to be immune due to seeking office, that would put them above the law, and "no one is above the law", as Democrats constantly remind us. 

Moreover,  Ukraine and the U.S. have a treaty that requires cooperation for rooting out crime and corruption.  In other words if Trump had NOT asked about the Bidens, he would be ignoring his official duties as President and could have been impeached for that based on the Democrats newfangled definitions of impeachable offenses!

It all comes down to predication.  Trump had it.  Obama, Clinton, Comey, Brennan did not,  tried to manufacture it and got caught.  That makes all the difference.  Everything else is just noise.

Will that stop Democrats from continuing their coup?  Not a chance.  They've been promising to impeach Donald Trump since before he even took the oath of office!  

The Washington Post headline on the day Donald Trump was inaugurated read:
"The campaign to impeach President Trump has begun"-  Washington Post 1/20/2017

Eleven days later, the lawyer representing "whistleblower" Eric Ciaramella tweeted that the "#Coup has started".  He tweeted it twice to make sure the message wasn't missed:

The impeachment of Donald Trump has always been a coup d'etat.  He is restoring constitutionally limited government, borders, strong defenses, free markets, and an independent populace to the U.S.  In other words, he is an existential threat to the entire Democrat project.  


Here's "predication" in Joe Biden's own words:

Sunday, January 19, 2020

A Bird-Dogging Sequel in Richmond, Virginia?

Here we go again.  The Democrat party (and Hollywood, but I repeat myself) loves a sequel, so tomorrow they are attempting to stage Charlottesville II in Richmond, VA hoping to stir up violence and make some juicy headlines.  This time the plot centers around the 2nd Amendment and the right to bear arms.  In other words, a Charlottesville sequel with guns.  I hope the Democrats fail this time, because unlike in the movies, real lives are at stake in these live-action agitation-propaganda events.
Let's review what happened at Charlottesville I, the original.  It started as a protest over removing a statue of Robert E Lee, and ended with a bunch of white-supremacists marching at night with tiki torches.  A woman was killed when one of the marchers drove his car into a crowd of counter-protesters.

In the wake of that event it became apparent that much of it was quite possibly stage managed by Democrat operatives.  Sounds like a conspiracy theory, right?  Well, don't take my word for it, watch the video below and hear Democrat operatives in their own words.

James O'Keefe's Project Veritas video exposed Democrat operatives like Bob Creamer as they revealed the tactics they use to stir up violence and trouble.  According to them, they train massive numbers of operatives, union guys who will do anything they ask, in tactics like direct-action, bird-dogging, conflict-engagement, and how to create anarchy, all of which are designed to produce exactly what happened in Charlottesville.

Democrat operative fingerprints were all over Charlottesville:

The organizer of the white-supremacist march was a Democrat Obama supporter and an Occupy Wall Street organizer named Jason Kessler.

The Governor, Mayor, and Chief of Police were all activist Democrats.

The Democrat Mayor had declared that Charlottesville would be a "capital of resistance" to Trump's Presidency.  He also worked with John Podesta at The Center for American Progress (CAP).  CAP is a bridge organizations between the official DNC and the dark-arts operatives like those caught on camera below.  John Podesta founded CAP, ran the the Hillary Clinton campaign, and ran the Clinton Foundation.  The Governor of VA was Terry McAuliffe, also an activist Democrat, big Clinton loyalist, and top money man to both Bill and Hillary.

The activist Mayor deliberately had his police herd the marchers and counter-protesters onto a collision course for maximum conflict-engagement. He then ordered his police to stand-down to allow maximum anarchy.

Meanwhile, the white-supremacists actually marched with tiki torches!  Can you write a Hollywood script with a better visual than that?  But no one in the mainstream media bothered to look into Mr. Kessler's past.  They had their narrative and their visual.  Case closed.

So how could these choreographed operations happen right under the media's nose without them realizing it?  First, they aren't looking.  And second, as revealed in the third clip below, these operations are deliberately disguised to never be traceable back to Democrat operatives.

The sequel is scheduled to take place tomorrow in Richmond, VA.  This time it's about guns, not a statue.  The new Democrat Governor,  Ralph Northam, provided the set-up by bird-dogging second amendment supporters with 9 new radical unconstitutional anti-gun laws.  What could possibly go wrong?   


Here are the Democrat operatives explaining their tactics to James O'Keefe's hidden camera.  If you have the time to watch the whole sixteen minute video, I've embedded it below.  If not, here are some links that begin at the appropriate segments:

Conflict Engagement and Creating Anarchy
Trained Agitators in Massive Numbers
Disguised to Look Like Ordinary People
Our Union Guys will do Whatever We Want
Importance of Media
Using "Trump Is A Nazi"
Bird Dogging
Bob Creamer is Diabolical

Watch the whole video:

Perhaps the biggest political fallout from Charlottesville was the fake narrative that Donald Trump had praised white-supremacists as "fine people".  Joe Biden launched his Presidential campaign using that false claim.  Trump's "fine people" comment specifically addressed the statue supporters, not the white-supremacist tiki torch marchers.  If you don't know that, and I'd wager most people don't, then
here's a full debunking:  Trump didn't call Neo-Nazis "fine people".  Here's proof.