Tele-Prompter Boy and Obamacare

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Listen to this lead-in by a CNN Tele-Prompter reader about a federal judge in Texas ruling that the Affordable Care Act’s mandate to buy health insurance is unconstitutional:

“The law that brought health care to millions of Americans has been struck down by a federal judge.”

First words out of his mouth.

That’s what they used to call editorializing – as opposed to the statement of fact without the color of opinion you read just above it, in the lead to this story – about the same subject.

The Tele-Prompter reader leaves no doubt as to his view about both the Texas judge’s ruling and the Affordable Care Act, which is annoying right out of the gate because who cares what this Tele-Prompter reader’s opinions are about anything? It’s one thing to listen to a veteran newsman who’s earned some bona fides offer up his slant on an issue, especially if it’s something he’s been covering for decades and maybe thus the man has something to say that’s worth listening to.

But this kid?

What really makes the ol’ teeth begin to ache is the Millennial-looking Tele-Prompter’s efforts to shame – and then lead by the nose.

Those poor millions of Americans! Their health care is in peril! Mean judge!

Bad man!

Of course, no one’s health care is in peril. The federal judge didn’t rule that it is unconstitutional for people to purchase health care. He ruled it is not constitutional to use the taxing power of the government to force people to buy it.

See the difference, Tele-Prompter boy?

No, of course. He doesn’t. He – like so many of his colleagues – editorializes unconsciously, because he and his kind literally cannot imagine that anyone could possibly take issue with something like the Affordable Care Act.

It is the authoritarian collectivist given from which the editorializing proceeds.

The left is so far left it has fallen off the edge of the spectrum into a holler (as we say out in the Woods) where everyone not only agrees but cannot imagine others might not. Every utterance presumes the collectivist premise – and proceeds from there.

One sees this canker all over the face of the public discourse, which is almost entirely controlled by people like Tele-Prompter boy.

“If the ruling is upheld, millions may end up losing their health care,” he lugubriously intones – once again, letting the listeners (if they are still listening) know just exactly what they ought to be thinking about the judge’s decision.

But those millions will still have the right to buy health insurance; what they might lose – if the  judge’s ruling stands –  is the federal bayonet used to force others to subsidize their health insurance. A statement of fact – as opposed to the lubricious editorializing of the Tele-Prompter boy.

Who then calls up an amen chorus in the form of David Katz, a Clinton-nominated former assistant U.S. attorney – which is like calling up Robert Shapiro to neutrally elaborate upon the innocence of OJ Simpson.

Katz soliloquys about the “troubling” ruling – another example of the media’s premise-accepting. It is a fact that if the Affordable Care Act were to be declared unconstitutional, health insurers would be free to charge premiums that correlate to risk – just as car insurance companies do.

Whether that is “troubling” is an interpretation of facts. An interpretation which presumes it’s vicious, somehow, that those who cost more to care for ought to perhaps pay more for their care than those who require less care.

Oddly enough, it is not considered vicious or even “troubling” (yet) that people who get lots of speeding tickets pay more for their car insurance – on the theory that they are more likely to cost the system money than people who rarely or never get speeding tickets.

Tele-Prompter boy does not tear up while relaying the “troubling” story of the multiple DWI offender who has totaled several cars, along with several people in the process, who can no longer find “affordable” coverage.

And Katz is nowhere to be found.

Such stories, of course, are never aired at all by Tele-Prompter boy and if they were, the serial DWI driver would receive no encomiums from the amen chorus.

Meanwhile, it is “troubling” – to Tele-Prompter boy, Katz, et al – that the 44-year-old obese chain-smoker who ate himself into diabetes might no longer be able to use the IRS to force healthy 25-year-olds to provide the “coverage” he requires at an “affordable” price.

Elvis, the story goes, used to shoot out the TV whenever Robert Goulet appeared.

Such extreme measures are hardly necessary.

Just push the button and say bye-bye to Tele-Prompter boy.

Millions already have. Millions more will. Many of those millions voted for Trump – for all his many flaws – precisely because they’d had their fill of being lectured by Tele-Prompter boys (and girls).

Fake News would be tolerable. The Weekly World News was entertaining.

CNN, et al are not.

. . .

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85 COMMENTS

  1. 90-95% of the media in America is owned by 6 corporations. The WaPo being the latest to be purchased by Amazon owner Jeff Bezos who btw is a hundred times wealthier than tRump.
    Both the WaPo and N.Y.Times have been for decades, propaganda outlets for the CIA. In truth the cIA “owns” nearly everybody who is anybody in the media. They own them. whether it’s Don lemon, Rachel Maddow, Sean Hannity or Wolf Blitzer, the CIA has control over what they say.
    In truth the idea of a free and unfettered press in America is as about as false and unsupportable as the belief in a jolly old fat elf that comes down the chimney and gorges himself on cookies.
    Anybody who swerves outside Uncle’s narrative is considered a domestic threat.
    which is why some websites as Veterans Today gets attacked on a regular basis. Some of it from a U.S. Army base, Fort Huachua.
    Freedom of speech is being attacked from both sides, forget the First Amendment. It’s for old white rayciss male oppressors. The newspeak is now in support of those who wish to display themselves in one of the 200 odd+ gender pronouns and the gods help you if you get it wrong, especially in comrade De Blasio’s Big Apple.
    Nothing leads to the destruction of a free society more than the destruction of freedom of speech and press. Censorship is the bane of liberty. The use of propaganda destroys the human soul and the ability to think freely. It leads to total control of the individual.
    That’s what tyranny is: total control. That’s where America is headed. In a fashion that not even Orwell could imagine.
    “There are none so enslaved as those who believe they are free” Goethe
    “The man who reads nothing at all is better educated than the man who reads nothing but newspapers.” Thomas Jefferson.

    • Even the smallest newspapers and radio stations in the smallest towns, are no better, ’cause we’re to the point where even if they aren’t directly owned or controlled by the few big boys, they’re still owned and staffed by people who have been reared and edumacated in the statist system; and even the few which may not push a certain viewpoint or agenda, still preach everything from a statist/collectivist mindset.

      This is how what was once conspiracy, becomes the self-perpetuating, self-replicating modus-operandi of an entire culture/society.

  2. Hey Eric?

    Totally off topic (I know…so unusual for me, right? 😉 ) but since you know Lew Rockwell….

    I’ve fallen back into the habit of checking LRC most mornings, again- and actually decided to read one of the articles today- just to get up to speed on a current event, since I don’t follow “the news”. Lo and behold, what do I see in an Andrew Napolitano article? This filth:

    “The rule of law in America is what keeps us free from tyranny. ”

    https://www.lewrockwell.com/2018/12/andrew-p-napolitano/the-presidents-legal-woes-continue-to-grow/

    I dunno- but when ya see stuff like that on a website run by a guy who is one of the modern mouthpieces/gurus of Libertarianism….it’s a sad, sad day 🙁 What’s next?! Will Larken Rose vote? Will you send a donation to the Policemen’s Benevolent Association?! (Hmmm…that last one gives me an idear- maybe we could start a Policemen’s malevolent Association!)

    This world certainly is no danger of becoming more Libertarian…but Libertarianism sure is in danger of becoming more worldly….

    “The rule of law….” 🙁

    • Napolitano is far off the reservation these days. He used to be pretty good.

      I found this interesting tidbit on commiepedia “According to a March 2017 report in Politico, Napolitano told friends that President Donald Trump told him he was considering Napolitano for a United States Supreme Court appointment should there be a second vacancy.[7] Ultimately, Judge Brett Kavanaugh was chosen instead.”

      Could go a long way toward explaining his recent writings- sour grapes?

      • Hi Ernie,

        I don’t get guys like Napolitano. He ought to have no money worries. So he can afford to not be a shill/hack. I sometimes think I made a mistake just calling ’em as I see ’em, regardless of who takes offense. Because (like anyone) I’d like to not have to worry about money, ever again. Napolitano’s in that position… and still shills. Can he be that greedy? That desperate to remain a celeb?

        I don’t get it…

        • A lot of people who should have enough money don’t because they expanded their lifestyle to their income every step of the way. As a result they are just as broke as they were at 22 years old. With regards AN, keep in mind for everything he’s good on he came up through the system. He’s a member of the bar. The club or at least a club, one we’re not in and hit over the head with.

      • I don’t think it’s the money. My experience of judges and lawyers is that they are smart enough to be dangerous, corrupt, and extremely arrogant and ego driven. Could it be that he’s gone over to the dark side because he didn’t get to be a supreme tyrant? The last couple of AN articles I read had him pointing out that Mueller’s frame of Trump might succeed- which is of course true- everybody who’s been the victim of a cop’s testi-lying, or forced into a plea deal by a corrupt prosecutor out for a win should know this reality. I really don’t think he’s shilling- I think it may be worse.

      • Sadly, Napolitano has gone to the dark side. I’ve always believed the Beltway changes people’s personalities. I’ve had several family members that weren’t the same once they worked in the Beltway for a while.

        • Hi Handler,

          I spent a decade there, in the ’90s – and it changed me, all right… I left hating everything about DC and hoping to never see it again, except perhaps through a bombsight at 50,000 feet.

    • Hiya Nunz,

      I can’t speak for Lew and his editorial choices. I can say that Lew is a good guy and – like the rest of us – imperfect. Lord knows I’ve made my share of mistakes (I was once a . . . Republican). So I’ll cut Lew a lot of slack, given he’s one of us and not on the wrong side of the line.

      • Hi Eric,

        I’m sorry to even bother you with such stuff (Goodness knows, you’ve got enough of your own to worry about!)- But I just have to rant when I see stuff like that!

        I guess the issue is too, that I had come to expect a rather high standard from Lew- and when one sees the quality of something decreasing, it tends to be much more disconcerting than if it had never been there to begin with.

        On the positive side….he does link your articles- which are like a shining beacon compared to most of the other stuff there these days… (Compare the say-nothing ads…err…articles by Charles Hughes Smith, whose main objective seems to be to sell ya gold, and get ya to subscribe to his website… 🙁 )

    • AN doesn’t seem to understand that the rule of law is dependent on the law serving the people. Then those who operate the law use its rule to their advantage. When it no longer serves people in the net people won’t follow it unless there is surveillance and force behind it. In other words the rule of law decays into tyranny.

      And of course all laws are selectively enforced. Trump’s crimes if they amount to crimes are lesser than those who preceded him.

      • Hi Brent,

        Of course, I’ll go farther… Law is just arbitrary force applied by thugs to legalize their control (and so ownership) over the lives of others. What matters – morally speaking – is whether harm has been caused. That ought to be the thing which defines legal right – and wrong.

        Put another way, the law should have no coercive power whatever over an individual whose actions haven’t harmed the property or person of another actual human being. Not “the people” Not “the state.” Certainly not “the law.”

        It should be essential to establish harm actually caused – to produce a victim – in order to establish that a crime/offense has been committed.

        Anything less is just order barking tyranny.

        • Amen, Eric!

          What Hitler did was perfectly “legal”.

          What law essentially is, is just a codification of morality. When men can make up their own laws- i.e. define morality; and enforce such on whomever they wish to, they essentially become a god, whom all must serve and obey, just by reason of being within the physical bounds of that god’s dominion; regardless of whether they have harmed or damaged anyone. Just committing the blasphemy and idolatry of not heeding the commands of the god of the state and it’s black -uniformed thugs, is reason enough to be “guilty”. And thus the god of state is all powerful, and demands all allegiance. It can do no wrong, because IT determines what constitutes right or wrong- so it defines what you do as wrong, and what it does as right- and thus it has ultimate authority over men and property; who lives and who dies; and it does not tolerate competition- which is why, every government that gets to such a level, always persecutes followers of the Real God- whether by overt decree, or by outlawing the practices and values(morality) of His worshipers.

          The rule of law is the essence of tyranny, because it necessitates a system in which some men who were not harmed, have special rights and privileges to exercise coercion, force, violence, and theft against others, at any time for any reason that the state deems appropriate, so long as it puts those conditions in writing and gets a few of it’s parishioners to sign it; -parishioners who have no stake in the matter, and who are not accountable for the results of their actions.

          This is why I get disgusted with Lew- because if I saw anything like what AN said appear on a website I ran, I would NEVER post another thing by that author- as what he said is the ultimate heresy for Libertarians (And let’s face it, AN is NOT a Libertarian- so why is a Libertarian website even promoting him?)[Not to even mention all of the clickbait ads disguised as “articles”…]

        • There needs to be a little bit more to standard than harm caused because there are limits to human knowledge. I say this because the scumbags in political and judicial classes leveraged the causing harm as a pollution standard. This resulted in the rivers on fire and more. Which of course then got us the EPA. Under property rights though there is no fouling another person’s property allowed even if it doesn’t cause (known) harm.

          For instance I don’t think you’d want someone touching your TA without your permission even if the touch 99 times out of a 100 didn’t cause any harm to it. That’s of course property rights. It’s your property. So any harm based system must put property rights before it. Otherwise we get these scumbags who will just declare we aren’t ‘harmed’ and they’ll run roughshod over our property, even our bodies.

          • Trespassing.

            If someone steps on my land without my permission; enters my home, or touches my stuff with my permission or invitation, they are trespassing.

            We, as property owners (what ever that property may be, whether a bean or an island) are either the sole determiners of the use and disposition of that property, or, we in effect don’t really own it.

            Any “rights” must therefore be predicated upon property rights being inviolate- whether that property is our own bodies, or anything else that is ours.

            And of course, these various systems of bastardized [they’re run by bastards!] governance, are predicated upon others having rights/authority over your body/property, as the bastards so decree.[Somehow, they have delegated to themselves the right to control all property within their domains, just as a monarch would].

            Of course, the Libertarian solution would be that you have the right to protect your property by what ever means necessary, from trespass.

            Notice how the overlords extend to themselves the right to so protect THEIR property- whether it be some ground upon which we paid for but are not allowed to set foot on; or one of their armed goons, whom we are not allowed to touch, etc. They then have no problem using the natural right to defend their property- but yet deny us the same right, while decreeing that they can do what ever they want with our property- from confiscating it or destroying it.

            Just another of the utter hypocrisies of “the rule of [unnatural]law”.

  3. CNN in the 80s was not nearly as bad, or maybe I was not awake enough (teen) to see all of the levels of propaganda. I remember they had a couple hours period where they would show local news casts from all around the world with subtitles. Not just big cities but small ones in places like Finland for example; places where a cow falling in a well was real news. Anyway, I found it entertaining.
    In or near big cities the cable packages usually include news from all the immigrant home lands, but its often not translated and looks similar to the crap we get here, 60 secs of officially selected “news” and 29 minutes of crap.
    I can mostly only stand to read news. But it seems as though all outlets, conservative as well, are pushing video more and more. What I find intolerable about it is exactly what someone here pointed out. They want to create context, and “an experience” of the news. Its insulting! Give me the facts of the situation and STFU.

    • 24hr cable TV in general was much better in the 80s. There wasn’t a lot of programming out there so they had to seek out stuff and thus wound up with material that would never air (at least in the USA) today.

  4. The real problem that absolutely NOBODY will address is that we haven’t had any appreciable free market health care in at least 50 years, and really over 100. Government meddling, tentacles of the beast, are everywhere from restricting supply by licensing and prescriptions, regulation and bureaucracy, to increasing demand by subsidizing freebies for what I laughingly call the “poor”. (Some of them are poor. Most of them are not worthy poor- a judgement I’m increasingly comfortable making).

    The problem really hits home- I recently suffered a severe illness which caused complications leading to a day and a half stay in a hospital. I am self employed, haven’t had medical insurance in 10 years, so am now facing a $30000 bill for a minor surgery and a couple of diagnoses.

    Now, on the one hand, $30k in medical expenses is far less than insurance would have cost me and mine over the last 10 years (that would have been about $300K). And I’m alive and healing. But why on earth would a few simple doctor visits and a small routine surgery (that the Surgery Center of Oklahoma does for about $3800) be billed at $30k?

    Because government, that’s why. And the infection is so deep that the patient may not be cured without radical and unorthodox treatment! The fact that local medical care is pretty much a monopoly and that the company suits and bureaucrats pay themselves hundreds of millions per year is a symptom of monopoly/cartel behavior, not the real cause.

    I respectfully submit that just getting rid of Obastardcare is neither necessary nor sufficient to solve the actual problem. And since government caused it, government will likely be a big part of the solution. With the outrageous taxes in this country and its’ satrap states, I respectfully submit that we’re already paying for socialized medicine, and over half the people (codgers, our sainted military vets, cuddly fuzzy wuzzy muzzy immigrants, welfare mommies, etc all are worthy of unlimited medical care) are getting theirs paid for and it’s as good or better than people who work for a living get, because we actually have to pay for it.

    No more taxes, no more BS mandates, take a chunk of the current bloated and wasted military budget, and use it to ensure a minimal standard of medical care to take care of the militia- the whole people. Since the medical industry accepted and lobbied for monopoly licensing privileges, perhaps they will understand the obligation to provide those services at a rate set by someone else to a standard list.

    Is this a statist approach? God help me, it is, but with the state of the nation I don’t see any better solution coming. Until we can get of licensing, “privileges”, restricted use medicines and get back to the wonderful freedom our ancestors had in the 1800’s (where you were free to walk into the drugstore and pick up some laudanum for your stomach ailment pay cash and walk out, or go pick some medicinal herbs and sell them to your neighbors), any tinkering around with mandates and insurance, and throwing other people’s lives and money at the problem is going to make it worse.

    • Hi Ernie,

      I actually empathize with everything you’ve written (and am also very sorry to hear about your illness – but glad you are recovering).

      I can also speak to this issue, to a degree, as a guy whose dad and grandfather were primary care doctors. My grandfather was an allergist and his practice was largely fee for service, the fees very affordable. This was before the HMOs – in the ’40s, ’50s and ’60s (he retired in the ’70s). He had a nurse/receptionist. No staff of fraus to handle insurance paperwork because there was none to speak of. That meant his overhead was minimal. His practice was on the ground floor of his house. A modern practice has a dedicated building and a staff of fraus who have nothing to do with delivering care to the patients, but chiefly handle insurance paperwork. Two or three full-time fraus equals at least $100k in overhead, annually and that’s before the rent/electricity and malpractice insurance are paid for. Figure at least $300-$400k before the doctor sees a single patient.

      Now add in the cost of medical school – and the fact that the doctor starts his practice (typically) in massive debt and is already close to 30 years old before he begins to chip away at that.

      I agree, it’s insane.

      But the solution isn’t more coercive collectivism. Among the reforms I advocate:

      1. Elimination of mandatory insurance.
      2. Return to fee for service for minor events.
      3. Insurance pays only for unanticipated/catastrophic events.
      4. Coverage cost based (as with other insurance) on risk factors.
      5. No coercive cost shifting (i.e., if a hospital or doctor wishes to provide “free” service, then it’s on them to cover the cost – not transfer the cost onto others.)
      6. End mandatory licensing; let anyone who wishes treat patients and let the market determine their competence to do so.

      Just off the top of my head.

      • Ron Paul was the only high-profile person to publicly advocate for the reforms you’ve mentioned. That’s one of the reasons why the corporate media shunned him during both presidential runs. There’s only a small percentage of Americans that are aware of the healthcare racket, and they plan on keeping it that way.

      • Yep I have that bookmarked and Im going to give it a try- worst they can do is say no. There was another link on ZH or LRC (or maybe Daily Reckoning?) awhile back about negotiators who handle this for hire. That seems like a worthwhile profession to talk to. Anyway thanks for the link.

        • I took a quick look at that Zerohedge article- as someone who has done that [Negotiate “the real price” of of a medical procedure] several times. The article wastes a lot of time and space to say something that could be stated in a paragraph.

          What ya do is: Simply state [to someone in a position to handle it- usually not a random person at a front desk] that you do not have any form of insurance. Simply say that you’d like the cash price. The price that they would get if they accept Medicare or private insurance. They actually HAVE to give you that price. It is actually illegal for them to accept more from a cash customer for a service than what an insurance co. pays them for that same service.

          Sometimes you have to talk to a few people, going up the ladder, before you get to someone who knows [Lower-level staff usually simply doesn’t know, because it is so rare for anyone to pay cash these days- and even when many do, they usually don’t know any better, and simply pay what the inflate “billing amount” is].

          I’ve done this twice in the last 20 years (once just 3 years ago) for eye procedures (surgery center surgery)- Last one, the “bill” would’ve been $12K at the surgery center, or $20K in a hospi’l- my cost was $4K.

          You just have to keep hammering home the fact that you DO NOT have insurance. With the one I had done 3 years ago, the first doctor didn’t want to take a cash customer [I don’t know if uit’s “legal” for him to refuse-I don’t think it is- but of course, I believe in the right of a business/practitioner to choose whom they care to deal with or not].

          No. 2 was a charm- and of course, I had to pay all but $600 of it up front. (They don’t always know what the EXACT cost is going to be before hand- so always plan on a little more- and get a signed contract for big stuff- from all entities involved, that the cost will not exceed x)

          Well that was more than a paragraph…but it was quicker, and probably more informative than the Zerohedge article. (Sorry, Brent! 😀 )

    • There’s no such thing as “the poor” here in ‘Murca today. How the hell can you have “poor” in a freaking welfare state; and in a place where people come from all over the world to labor; and they thrive and prosper?

      I was reading some [non]census data a while back (Does that mean I participated in the census?), and it said things like c.80% of people below “the poverty line” had air conditioning; c70% had at least one car, and something like near 40% had TWO cars…etc.

      The poorest of the poor here today live better than kings did throughout most of human history!

      We DO have a lot of people who are BROKE- from baby mamas with a gaggle of mulatto sprogs they can’t afford; to many middle-class types who have no savings, and are highly in debt for a house they can’t afford, and a car or two or three, and a bunch of toys…..but they sure ain’t poor- they’re just broke and or irresponsible and or highly in-debt because they refuse to live within their means.

      Easy credit has caused more of this so-called “poverty” than anything else….but it is not poverty- just as those getting free/cheap rent and free food and utilities etc. are not impoverished…they’re just living being their means too- and restricting their incomes because it’s easier to leech off of others.

      So, I’m a Christian and believe in voluntary charity- but I can’t remember the last time I “gave” anything, except to a dog or cat- because subsidizing these cretins whom Uncle labels as “poor” (just because they earn or ‘receive’ less than a certain amount of income, is as bad as giving to the rich.

      Real poverty is something that happens to one because of circumstances not of their own doing- like in olden times, when a husband would die, and the widow would have no means of support because there was no type of work suitable for a woman, or she had kids to take care of, and there was no welfare state- NOT because she chose to procreate with sum bum who had no obligation to her, and probably no means of support himself.

      Or….a family dependent upon crops for survival, and a flood or drought comes along (When there were no subsidies or price supports or relief programs, etc.)- and even then, not if they were suffering because they were heavily indebted, because they bought a bunch of stuff they couldn’t afford, and thus have nothing to sell (but have a lot of bills) when the affliction hits [And I use the word “affliction” because that is the meaning of the word translated in God’s Word as “poor”- afflicted- It is not something of our doing, or a consequence of our own refusal to do what is right]

      I laugh when I hear the word “poor” today. If the poor were truly poor, they wouldn’t have the time to make so many babies and cause so much trouble, and take drugs and get so fat, and watch TV….. (Oh, yeah- that’s another one from the ensus- I think it was around 90% of ’em had cable TV!)

      Technically, I live well below the “poverty line” and i am anything but poor. I’m sure any king or swell of 150 years ago or anytime between then and creation, would have gladly traded places with me. Holy crap, how much we ALL have! Not to even mention the blasphemy of the average 10 year-old today walking around with a several-hundred dollar phone in their pocket and a monthly bill attached to it!

      Ha! My black friend volunteered at a soup kitchen/shelter once….She quit before long, because the slobs showing up for freebies all had phones; and mostly more expensive ones than she had! (And she made 6 figures at the time!)

      • The last welfare cliff article I read calculated that for a single mother taking advantage of all the programs available to her would need a $70K/yr job to break even. Then if you count the time required for a full time job, that job has to pay a lot more than $70K/yr.

        Now if you compare hand to mouth on such a full suite of welfare to living on a cash basis without welfare and saving money for retirement and all those deferred gratification things required when not living on welfare a person would need to make 100K year or more.

        • Morning, Brent!

          There’s a “sub-thread” in MGTOW circles about young men opting out of work/careers (as well as women and marriage) for the reasons you adduce.They see it as not worth their while – and there’s validity to the argument. Looking back on my younger working years, I realize I was able to buy my first house in large part because I did not have to buy health insurance (a bad deal for a healthy single guy in his 20s) and was able to not “contribute” to a 401k and could drive a $600 Beetle without air bags and with no insurance. I cut my living expenses to the marrow – and hoarded money. This is much harder to do today. Illegal, to some degree, to do today.

          And, today, I am single again – so can live on little. If I had a wife and kids…

          • It’s perfectly reasonable because the “social contract” was altered against decent productive men. There’s little to no point being one any longer.

            • Morning, Brent!

              Yes. Absolutely. I think about this business often these days, now that I am single again. Every now and then, I think about attempting to date (and have gone on a few) but I hear the voice of the robot from Lost in Space… Danger! Danger! And I think: Worst case scenario, I can retire. Buy a small place in a cheap place, way off the beaten path – and just read my books, go for walks and maybe write a book.

              The car industry is clearly dying – or at least, any passion for cars and for driving is dying. An electric/automated car future is not for me and – fortunately – I am not married and have no kids so my option to just “punch out” is entirely feasible.

              • Eric!

                ” Buy a small place in a cheap place, way off the beaten path – and just read my books, go for walks and maybe write a book”.

                Welcome aboard, my friend! Such is the essence of life (Real life, anyway.).

                That’s all I’ve ever wanted out of this life….and I got it; and it’s WONDERFUL (O-K, so I’m not retired- but all of my work centers around my homestead; and I’m not off the beaten path quite far enough yet, as I’m still here in Babylon USA- but about as close as one can get to that life here in ‘Murca.)

                Even for people WITH wife[shudder] and kids[shudder], it’s still a great option- as it provides a life centered around the home and fambly; and allows full control and autonomy (as opposed to subjecting your fambly to the control of strangers) and really provides a secure and rich environment for the kiddies, in which they can be free. There are more families pursuing such a lifestyle than singles. Of course, the more people ya have, the more work ya have to do- i.e. raising more food; cuttinmg more wood, etc.

                But man! This is the life! I often look at all those around me- toiling away- trading the present for some future dream that never materializes, or which they don’t live long enough to see, and I wonder why? Why are they willing to claw in some rat race, when almost anyone is capable of pursuing this good way of life?

                And funny you should mention the cars! I’ve been wondering for a while, how it is that you manage to sustain interest in all of these modern vehicles, when thanks to Uncle, they are all essentially the same. Of course, with the increasing ranks of EVs, this is going to be even more so- but even now, I’m sure that writing about one make and model must be almost indistinguishable from writing about others.

                And it’s not just cars- this has sadly become the case, or is becoming the case across the spectrum of pretty much ANYTHING that involves electronics; big corps; and/or control by Uncle. Everything’s becoming homogenized and standardized; they all do the same things; have the same quirks and problems; use the same or indistinguishable parts…..

                The spice, variety and uniqueness are long gone. Gone are the days of making interesting discoveries of truly different or unique products, that do things different or better or offer choices the others don’t; or that offer real craftsmanship- not just in the item’s outer shell or controls, but in the way it works. That’s all gone now, thanks to electronics and Uncle.

                Now, whether it’s a car or a camera- whatever- pick a bunch at any given price point, and they are all the same, in look, feel, performance….right down to even many of the same parts that make them function- the only thing that varies is the packaging; the shell, and the amount of silly bells and whistles, gizmos and gadgets. [Pay more, and you get more to annoy you!]

                Years ago, I used to think it would be cool to be a product reviewer- for cars or cameras or tractors, etc., etc. Today? Just thinking about it for 10 seconds bores me.

                This is the beauty of pursuing the off-the-beaten-path cabin-in-the-woods lifestyle: You still get to live in the real world, and deal with the real elements, and the basic principles of mechanics and nature; and the real elements- the habitat that was created for us/which we were created for- as opposed to the artificial world of screens and buttons and blinking lights, and code…..

                The rift between the two worlds is growing ever bigger. The real life is being extinguished and out-lawed here…..

                • Nunzio,

                  “standardized”

                  No kidding. But do you know why?

                  Think UN (specifically UNESCO) and ISO (the International Organization for Standardization).

                  It really is a conspiracy to standardize humans.

                  Started by the brother of Aldus Huxley (of Brave New World fame) in the late 40’s, they are responsible for all idiot lights being the same in all cars.

                  You might be familiar with things like ISO 100 and 400 for film. And you probably have seen the ISO 9000 flag flying proudly over the factories of this free country.

                  But the Brave New World in which we live in is currently enjoying ISO 26000 – Social responsibility.

        • So true, Brent!

          Just the free healthcare alone! Having grown up among some of that crowd, I got to see first-hand how it is. These people use FAR more medical services than any working/middle-class/rich person does.

          Go to the doctor any time, for any reason. Little Bobby…errr…uhh Deyshaun has a tummy ache or headache at 11PM? Don’t just go to the ER (’cause it’s free, or has some token co-pay of $2)….but take the freaking ambulance (Hey, after all, yer not opposed ta drive when yer bombed, right?!)…and the free Medicaid taxi ($55 billed to the taxpayers for what would be a $10 ride on the free market), and then go see the doctor at his office next week for a follow-up to make sure that frozen pizza, shrimp and Skittles REALLY were in-fact digested!).

          It might be true that “The rich get richer and the poor get poorer”- but no one seems to stop and ask WHY? They seem to blame the rich for the plight of the broke…errr…uh “poor”.

          But the fact is, the “poor” are poor, usually because of their own actions and choices; and no matter how much money ya give them- whether support for life on welfare programs, or winning MILLIONS in the lottery….they always remain just as poor as they started, as long as they persist in their same practices and choices.

          But we have been led to believe by Uncle, that the problem of “the poor” is that they don’t have enough money….. [As if money just falls into everyone else’s lap out of the sky- but somehow these people missed out]- but of course, not having enough money is not the problem- it is just the symptom of the real problem. And here, money does just fall out of the sky for some [thanks to the taxpayers], but those are the very ones who remain broke!

          • Youre so right – we are always told its about he “poor” not having enough money, but in reality the the problem is something else. I think we are told that because then Uncle can justify stealing our money to give to them… when as you say money is hardly the issue. There are cases and cases of guys in the UK who win the lotto, and within years are broke as they were before they won… here is a famous case over the past few years…. started as a binman, won £10mil, started living it up (in the papers every few days for something stupid, and buying then trashing expensive stuff). Within 8 years was broke once again and back working as a binman to pay the bills….

            • Same here, Nasir.

              There was one guy who won $350 MILLION (!!!!) and managed to blow through even THAT within 9 years….. Astounding!

              When my sister still lived in NY, she had a neighbor who lived on the street behind her, who won a few million- and the guy already had his own business. Ended up getting divorced; got sued by someone he ran into with his car; neglected his business and lost that; and within just a couple of years, ended up FAR worse off than he had been before he won the lottery!

              “Binman”- I know that’s the word over there for what we call a garbage-man here. Reminds me of a joke the Geordie comedian Ned Kelly used to tell (I had a Geordie neighbor back in NY- an old guy from somewhere outside of Newcastle Upon Tyne. He was a rip!):

              Why do flies have wings?
              So they can beat the Paki’s to the dustbins!

              • Morning, Nunz!

                It’s astounding, isn’t it? If I had a windfall of even $75k in liquid cash I could leverage that to provide me a decent monthly income – by using it to buy/fix up a rental property and then rent it out. Or buy a place that needs work and flip it (I’m handy). But the typical idiot would take that money and go out and buy a new $50,000 truck and use the rest to buy a flatscreen TV and “party.”

                • Right, Eric?!

                  That has been my modus operandi since I was a kid. It was never “What can I go out and buy?”, but rather “What can I do with this money to double or triple it?”.

                  Ditto a friend of mine who is worth several million. Granted, he’s older, and came up in the days when we were freer and it was easier to earn money- but the same principles apply.

                  In high school, when other kids were buying their first car to impress their friends and the girls, my friend bought a Mack truck, and was hauling loads of garbage from NYC to Long Island for $250 a day! (And this was in the 60’s!)

                  Not sure if I mentioned this here or not, so forgive me if I’m repeating….but:

                  Conversely, a guy who used to work for my above friend, was told that he had a year to live (former drug addict; alcoholic; smoker; former professional thief and street fighter…)- so what does he do? Goes out and buys a brand new pick-up!

                  Then, courtesy of the taxpayers of NY, he was cured of his ailment (to the tune of $98K paid for by medicaid)- and now he’s straddled with a $700 month truck payment…..

                  I wouldn’t gripe, if we were all just left alone to reap the consequences and rewards of our own actions- be they good or bad; but when we live under a tyranny in which the fruits of the labor of the diligent are redistributed to the slothful, hedonistic and irresponsible (who can only persist in those behaviors because they are being subsidized)….I am just so appalled, because such is at the same time a great injustice and slavery.

                  It boggles the mind: They make the taxpayers pay to cure a guy, who now drives around in something that costs almost as much as the cure that he “couldn’t afford”……[The guy actually has a murder warrant in another state, from many years ago- and somehow can participate in all of this without being detected…but if he had a traffic ticket, they’d probably nail him! 😀 What a freaking system! ]

      • Morning, Nunz!

        Brilliant separation of poor and broke – bravo, sir!

        Perhaps the defining thing about poverty is hunger. A truly poor person hasn’t got enough to eat; he is skinny. Yet most “poor” people are overweight. They have too much to eat.

        A second characteristic of poverty is lack of access to shelter and to heat and to hot/cold running water.

        Most American poor have all of those things – and AC/refrigeration/microwave ovens, too. Henry VII, Lorenzo d’Medici had shelter.

        How many Russian serfs owned a car? Most American poor do.

        • A funny story that happened to me when I first came to London – it was around 05, the newest thing was the big 40 inch plasmas. I wanted one, and had a new job which paid many times the median income, but after taxes, paying a deposit on the place I had to rent, and some basic stuff, I basically had zero cash, even borrowed from a buddy….. now I hate monthly payments and all, so well despite being officially quite rich (in the version of the word which means the tax guy keeps screwing me over), I went miles somewhere outside of London and bought an old piece of shit tv for a hundred or so pounds.

          Couple days later I was walking down the street in a part of town which was mostly council housing as we call it here (ie housing paid for by me for people who couldnt be bothered to work)….. and MOST windows you can see inside had huge TVs on the wall ! But apparently they were poor and I get shafted because im one of those evil rich people 😛

        • Thanks, Eric!

          Funny, what you mentioned is a frequently-used catch-phrase of mine: “America: The nation where you can spot the “poor” because they are almost always obese!”.

          • I think you guys need to temper your chastisement of the poor always being obese. I say this b/c, if you think about it, the really cheap food is all junk. It is highly processed food which is produced on an industrialized scale. Don’t deny that this type of food isn’t a direct result of capitalism and the free market. (Which is of course: If I wanted to make as much $$ as possible on something/anything, I would highly industrialize the process to produce it and use the cheapest raw materials I could get.)

            Now, If you equate being broke/fat with being lazy, which is a fair indictment, then you have an argument. I say this b/c it is actually a lot of work to eat healthy. It takes time, planning and effort to do meals, and the ingredients are more expensive. More expensive simply b/c the ingredients aren’t mass produced to such a scale. (Produce being the easiest example to cite.)

            But your overall generalization is readily observed out in the world.

            • Hi Tom,

              I think the point here is that the broke (not poor) have an abundance of food; regardless of its quality, calories are plentiful. The broke aren’t going hungry in this country, at least – and hunger is arguably the thing which (historically) has defined the poor.

              The broke also often have terrible habits – make terrible choices as regards food. One can see this at any Wal Mart or grocery store. Obese people lining up at the checkout with cases of soda, potato chips and so on.

              Even Wal Mart sells apples and chicken breasts and tuna. But people choose not to buy good food – and instead eat crap.

              I am sympathetic toward people who eat too much (and too much bad food) as I am guilty of the same thing – or rather, have a weakness for food, in excess.

              So I’m not casting stones.

              But, no one gets morbidly obese by eating reasonably.

              I will occasionally gorge on Chinese at the all-you-can-eat buffet. But I also run 5 miles the next day. And again, the day after that…

              • Have you ever been on a cruise-ship with a buffet? The most horrifying of sights to see the morbidly obese gorge themselves at the all you can eat buffet that “they paid for.” They pile their plates layers high with the offerings of french fries, pizza, mystery meat burgers and hot dogs – and then go back again and again before doing the same with desert. Of course they fill up their big gulp glasses with the high fructose corn syrup laden liquid candy several times to wash it all down.

                The sad part of it is that they mass consume the cheapest foods when on the same line there are far healthy fare – fish, vegetables, healthy meats- prepared in differing ethnic styles – instead they go for the bland cheap foods in mass quantities.

                I get nauseous just looking at them, then they of course claim they cannot help being obese.

                The other areas I witness piggish consumption is in the mock juries and other focus groups I do whenever I am called. The ones with catering will attract the most disgustingly obese gluttons who raid the “breakfast” table piling multiple bagels with as much butter, cream cheese and jelly as their fat fingers can hold – of course going back multiple times. They do the same thing for the “snack” before and after lunch. The voracious gluttony on display is so appropriate to our ignoble masses.

                In one mock jury I did years ago, there was a boxed lunch prepared for all of the jurors – a hearty sandwich , chips, soda, cookies, crackers and a small salad. Enough to fuel a ditch digger for a day, let alone a sedentary chair sitter. I ate the sandwhich on the first day and it left me so full that I couldn’t eat anything the rest of the day and passed on the sandwich altogether the second day – only eating a small bag of chips.

                In this one mock trial, there was an announcement that there was ONLY enough boxed lunches for each person and that someone had “accidentally” taken two – to please return the second lunch.

                We all knew it would be some obese mouth breather to come waddling down the aisle to return the extra lunch he “accidentally” took. Sure enough it was the humpty dumpty looking pig who was nearly gasping for air after the exertion of having to walk down the aisle to return the lunch he had taken out of the mouth of some other mock juror.

                Gluttony and piggish greed is more to blame for morbid obesity than any “metabolic disorders.

                Speaking of – there is a show titled “My 600LB Life” on cable that features the most horrifically obese creatures ever witnessed on the small screen since Jabba’s Palace is Return of the Jedi.

                These people aren’t 20lbs overweight, the excess weight that nearly all people will stop and realize they have to make changes when they look in the mirror. They are 500LBs past that stage. At some point wouldn’t simply looking in the mirror act as a hunger suppressant? How are these people affording this food let alone getting it when they are bedridden? I don’t see much employment opportunities for the slovenly bedridden, so it is the tax slave paying.

                Ours is a dying society where once invading armies would have had to kill, they now only have to allow enough of us to indulge their grotesqueries. Hard to stand against an enemy when you can’t even get out of bed to use the toilet.

                Fattening up before the slaughter.

                • Thought Criminal,

                  What an AWESOME post!

                  I pictured examples of everything you mentioned as I was reading it, and was cracking up!!!!

                  “Grotesqueries”! LOL! I have to steal that! From now on, I’ll refer to ’em as “Grotesquery stores”!!!

                  Oh, man- I have to save that post! Thanks for the laughs…and the spot-on observations!

            • Tom,

              What Eric says.

              I can go into Walmart, and buy whole-wheat pasta (c. $1 a box); brown rice; beans; lettuce; squash; bananas, etc. nothing fattening- and all quite nutritious, even if not *the best*- and it’s FAR cheaper and MUCH healthier than what the person with the EBT (foodstamps) card on the check-out line in front of me has (Which is inevitably: Frozen pizzas; ice cream; expensive meats and seafood;sugar-laden highly processed chemical-laden convenience foods, soda; candy, etc. -and then invariably, they will buy a CARTON of cigarettes with cash!)

              By contrast, my mother and her siblings grew up during the Great Depression- they were the children of immigrant parents- my grandfather raised all 7 of ’em and a stay-at-home wife by driving a taxi…they weren’t exactly rich- and they didn’t have food stamps and all of that nonsense.

              They all lived to be good ages (My mother will be 94 next month) and were never fat; and were healthy all of their lives….they didn’t have the BEST food either; but they ate simple nutritious things- like beans and broccoli; pasta; etc.

              Being poor- without all of the foodstamps and BS of today, was actually a blessing. They had to eat good on very little; they couldn’t afford junk; and they couldn’t afford to get sick.

              Today, by comparison; I’ve noticed that many of their descendants are in rather poor health, although they are still young…and it seems to me, that a large part of the reason for it is because they freaking eat like kings! It seems, all of the ones who are in poor health are FAT, because they are sedentary and they fare sumptuously (and these are working people- not poor; not on the dole)- When I hear of the way they feats; the things they eat daily, I am just flabbergasted. I wouldn’t eat like they do even once in a year…much less on a daily basis. I eat like a bird, and could still stand to drop a few pounds. But my point is, both “the poor”, just like my not-poor relatives, all have access to abundant foods of their own choosing today- and it’s actually doing people more harm than if they had to go a little easier and actually had to think about what they eat, and work a little for it (And that is especially true of “the poor” who have come to expect to just be handed food- and everything else, just for being alive/taking up space on this earth)

              Here in the rural area where I now live, even the poorest usually have a backyard in which they could even use the time they spend watching Oprah to plant a few seeds and grow some real food, and even put their sprogs to work doing something useful in a garden, instead of playing with phones and video games. This would save them [or should I say “us”?] money AND provide the highest quality fresh food possible.

              But does anyone do it? AHahahahaha! “What?! Toil out there and maybe break a sweat?! When I could just drive my donk down to the Food Lion (cant be bothered to shop at the cheap stores and such; no need to, when the food is free to me, ya know!) and shop in de air condish whilst I listens to Mary J. Bilge on muh phone!”.

              Hell, they can’t even be bothered to keep the grass growing…they just let it turn to dirt.

            • I know the meme, I’ve seen it. Healthy food costs more. No it doesn’t. Yeah it’s not exactly cheap if you go to the big chain grocery store that has only perfect produce. You pay for that. Perfect. Go to an independent grocer and it’s pretty cheap. The expensive stuff for me is the stuff americans indulge in.

              I can get good imported Italian Pasta for $1.50-$2.00 a pound. So much of the food I buy that doesn’t expire fast is imported and it’s not expensive. I buy it because it is better than the corporate USA stuff and often cheaper.

              Around me are a bunch of mexians and eastern european immigrants with a smattering of various asians. I see people using link cards frequently but these people who learned how to eat back in the homeland are pretty normal sized to thin. Hell I’ve learned to eat some of their food because it’s the good food that I can get here (see imported as well as the local food businesses that make bread and such for them)

              I understand the food deserts though. But who’s fault is that? Largely government and the neighborhood residents. Both of which making having a business there not profitable.

              • Speaking of “food deserts”, it’s very telling, that one can go to virtually any slum- be it Baltimore, or the worst wastelands of Detroit- and there may not be a supermarket around for miles….but they’ll be a liquor store, party supply store, and beauty supply store literally within 4 blocks of where ever you may be standing.

                As they say “Just follow the money”- and that is where the redistributed money goes, and why the broke get broker…oh, wait. What am I saying?! I mean that the real reason is it be the fawlt of them ebil “rich” people, for not paying homie $200K a year, with a month’s paid vacation for his Walmart shelf-stocking job (When he can be sober enough to bother showing up for it)…..

                • Hiya Nunz!

                  I was thinking the other day… I haven’t taken a full day off in three years now… chiefly, because of the need to generate money to pay “rent” to Uncle.

                  • OUCH! Eric!

                    That makes me think: I haven’t worked a full day since…err…uh…I can’t remember when 😮 (But unlike the free-shit army, I ain’t asking no one to pay my way!).

                    Work is like an afterthought to me! Yeah, maybe if I have enough time, I’ll do some work 😀 I find myself doing my one source of somewhat steady good-paying work increasingly only because i feel I owe it to my long-term client/friend since he depends on me.

                    But then, I’ve positioned myself in a place and style of life where I can afford to be like that, and even still live below my means. But I still feel a little “guilty”, what with having a work ethic and all….but then, why work more than ya have to, just to subsidize Uncle and collect FRNs or beads and baubles? When we’re dead, we wont remember the beads and baubles or all of the hours we wasted chasing after them; but rather, the time we spent sitting on the porch or taking a walk or reading that good book….. (Well, technically, I’m working now- cleaning the house- but that don’t pay nothin’!)

                • Where I live, every new grocery that opens in “the poor part of town” has been forced to close its doors as a result of losses from shoplifting within twelve to fifteen months.

                  Of course, that does not stop “community leaders” from claiming that the children in their area are overweight simply because there are only fast food restaurants and no grocery stores.

                  • Trevor, years ago (the early 70’s!) my older sister lived in seedy neighborhood- kinda right in the little buffer zone from where the nice working and middle-class neighb transitioned to the poor white trash band, just before the ‘hood; and the supermarket closest to her was in the ‘hood.

                    My mother remembers that supermarket, and the homies ya’d see shopping there. The store was a dump. She’d always say “Oh, those poor blacks! They always get all the dumpy, dirty, higher-priced stores!”

                    To this day, she STILL says that! (She’ll be 94 next month)- I try and explain to her, that such stores in such neighborhoods are like that because the people who shop there MAKE them like that.

                    To keep ’em nice, ya’d have to have an employee with an elephant-poop broom follow each and every shopper around. Their freaking kids run wild and through the produce at each other, like moneys; they knock stuff over and just leave it; break things, and just ignore it; throw garbage on the floor; and of course, shoplifting in such places is rampant- so the prices HAVE to be higher to compensate; and those stores never get a facelift, because they are always the under-performing ones, due to the added expenses and losses caused by the customers- if anything, they are closed down, because they are a liability to the chain.

                    But in this crazy world where everyone is blocked from seeing the reality before their eyes, by a media which makes up fairy tales (’cause most people don’t shop ion the ‘hood, and therefore have no way of knowing personally) it’s always the fault of “the rich”; “the ebil white man” or “de big corpration which deskrimnates, ’cause black folkses money aint as green as white folkses”….. Meanwhile, the schvatzes can do no wrong, and are always “innocent victims”.

                    And nearly 50 years later, nothing has changed, ’cause there is NO progress with some people- people who are still living in the Stone Age.

                    A while back, in the town where I go shopping (and 1000 miles from where we lived 50 years ago), one time, a store I shop at was out of something I needed, so I thought I’d check their other location over in the small ‘hood on the other side of town.

                    I go into that store, and it was JUST like that store I had seen my sister shop in 50 years ago! The same customers, exhibiting the same behaviors, and making the same mess!

                    And sure enough, driving my mother past that store one day, I say “That store is a DUMP!” (Picturing the pigs who shop there as I say it), and sure enough, my mother utters the standard “Oh, the poor blacks, always get all the crummy stores!”

                    There’s no hope; people never learn- even when ya point out the obvious truth to ’em.

                  • Errr, “Their freaking kids run wild and through the produce at each other, like moneys; ”

                    Should be: “Their freaking kids run wild, and throw the produce at each other, like monkeys…”:

      • Back in the “glory” days of Stalin’s Russia, American movies were forbidden but one – “The Grapes Of Wrath” – was permitted to be shown because the Communists believed it showed how poor American workers were being oppressed by their evil capitalist masters.

        Instead, the message received by the Russian public was that even the poorest Americans owned a car and could freely drive across the country! (Of course once Party officials realized this the movie was pulled.)

      • Hi Nunz, guys –

        You guys are right – Having lived in Asia, you realise how fake the poverty here in the west is. Even by definition, for example in the UK poverty (by the child poverty act 2010) is defined as “‘household income below 60 percent of median income’. Which basically means that no matter how well off society gets overall, a certain percentage of households are poor. I guess its so that the politicians and charity industry here can always continue to justify their existence, and in effect keep their hands in our pockets no matter how well off we become.

        The worst outcome of this is the mindset it puts certain groups into – who always think they are victims or something. Like this fool, who lived in a nice area in a fairly decent family in the west making a statement like this – https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-england-beds-bucks-herts-46598155

        • Hi, Nasir!

          You know what gets me too? The attitude they’ve instilled that all old people are “poor” and deserving of charity, just by reason of being a certain age.

          Though, demographically, the elderly are among the wealthiest- having had a whole lifetime to save and acquire assets; no kids to raise; receiving private and or government pensions, etc.

          They always refer to them as “Being on a fixed income”-LOL- as if you and I can just vary our income and make it whatever we want it to be (I should BE on a “fixed income” instead of the sporadic helter-skelter ways I make mine!); and never mind that their “fixed income” may be a civil-service pension of $100K a year…..

          Not only is it disgusting that all old people should automatically now be ranked as though they were poor souls [You’d think at least pride would prevent many from acting the part- but it doesn’t. I have a friend who is 70 and worth several million, and he gladly takes advantage of every freebie he can which is available to anyone based merely on age] but it also makes the current generations more irresponsible, because they reason “If I can get an income, and freebies and services and charity and discounts just for being a certain age, why bother providing for my own retirement?”

          So we now have housing projects full of the elderly, who have lived nice middle class lives, or poor lives being supported by others- it doesn’t matter to Uncle- and they all get rewarded by having a good deal of their rent and utilities paid by others.

          I knew a guy who lived in such a place- in his mid 60’s- He drove a not too old Lincoln, and had a 30′ cabin cruiser, and took vacations at least twice a year…but he “qualified”, so he figured “What the hey?”.

          The gist of this system seems to be to isolate/insolate people from the consequences or rewards of their own choices and actions. Make everything collective, and your outcome is determined by your relationship to the system and what others decree. If you work hard and are responsible, it is increasingly unlikely that you’ll prosper- but rather that you’ll be penalized. Be an irresponsible leech, and you’ll be rewarded with the prosperitry of those who earned it….and you’ll get the added advantage of being able to bitch and moan because you are “poor”, while you don’t have to work (But the guy who pays for your lifestyle does)…..

          It is just all so sick.

          • Hiya Nunz!

            I can relate to this… my parents blew through money, lived way beyond their means. My mom now lives in a small apartment on Socialist inSecurity. She should have several hundred thousand dollars in assets – but pissed it away on new cars (I wrote about this a few months ago) and expensive clothes and eating out all the time, among other things. She and I are often at loggerheads over this – because I live below my means and often find myself explaining to her why she’s broke and I’m not.

            I may drive an old truck, but the thing was paid for the day I drove it home – as all my vehicles have been. I wear clothes until they have holes – and then patch the holes, until they can’t be patched anymore. But I am not in debt to anyone – and support myself, without not sinking my fangs (via the government) into other people’s veins to drain their lifeblood.

            I’ll live in my Trans Am, down by the river, before I become a tax feeder.

          • It’s always what I call ‘help for the hapless’. People who created their own situation but the prudent hardworking forward thinking people are supposed to pay for their ‘misfortune’. Except there is no ‘misfortune’ about it so very much of the time. They simply ate their seed corn so to speak.

            It’s always about ‘luck’. See choosing to live below one’s means is just ‘luck’. I call it planning ahead. But to the masses it’s just luck. They wouldn’t fathom doing such thing themselves but they sure want what we stashed away when things go bad for them.

            I say I go to work so other people can live better than I do. The life of a tax donkey.

      • Hi Nunz, before they turned the firehouse down the street from us into big buck condos it housed the local food bank. Every Saturday morning it was open my street was lined with way better/newer cars than I ever drove. I also believe in voluntary charity but restrict my donations to animal shelters.

  5. CNN has become a joke…. When even Larry King says CNN is no longer “news”…. I do however see hope because most of the people I know below 30 dont even have cable anymore, or follow any of these teleprompter…… Funnily enough last night I was with my daughter (4) and was flipping channels on the cable box wondering when my contract ends so i can get rid of it (we normally watch youtube or netflix on TV now)….. actually saw something interesting on discovery channel so put it on…. When the ads came on – my daughter just couldn’t understand how its possible there are ads on which we couldnt skip or get rid of…. then she told me to put it back on…. im like uuuhhh i cant…. she was shocked that its even possible….

  6. The cable TV wasteland is dying. I have a front row seat, since my paycheck comes in part from supplying it.

    Over the last few years I’ve seen the amount of bandwidth from headends to customer homes go from 99% video to about 70% video and now to about 50% video. Customers are cutting service at a rate that can only be described as “hemorrhaging.” Comcast now includes Netflix, Youtube and Amazon Prime in their X1 set top boxes. In the 2nd quarter 2017 earnings call Brian Roberts stated that Comcast is now an Internet service provider that happens to have television service, not a cable company that offers Internet.

    CNN and Fox News are scrambling to keep relevant in a world that no longer requires them. Back when bandwidth was scarce you needed someone to distill the story down to key points. Now because it is somewhat easy to see an unedited view of an event unfold in real time, from hundreds of cell phone feeds, they feel compelled to add “context” to their reporting (while still distilling down to a sound bite or several seconds), in the false hope that it will convince viewers they’re still necessary. No thank you. There’s millions of opinions out there and the tradition of journalism has shifted to the blogosphere backed by the raw feed.

    Oh I still watch a fair bit of TV. Just the other day I saw Cramer on CNBC telling his hundreds of viewers that they should be looking for bargains in the recent selloff. And I never miss a post from AvE on YouTube. But my new favorite channel has to be over on Pluto.TV, the Cat Channel. 24/7 of cat videos! How can CNN compete with adorable cats? At least Fox still has the hot anchors in boots…

    https://appreciationofbootednewswomen.blogspot.com

    • Hi RK,

      Amen in re the cat videos; and ever watch Mexican TV weather chicks?

      On a more serious note: If these networks relayed the news, I think they’d still find an audience. But the bias – which has always been there – is now so obnoxious, so pushy, that it is insufferable to any intelligent, fair-minded person.

      • If I could go back in time and give my young self advice for sure one thing would be to get fluent in Spanish! ¡Ay, caramba! 🙂

        The lens has a fairly limited field of view of only a few degrees. How many times have we seen Jim Cantore decked out in full-on hurricane outfit (sponsored by North Face or Columbia) in front of a storm? What they rarely show is the rest of the hotel parking lot, or the the crew in shorts and t-shirts. Or that the flooding in the streets is only a foot or so deep and that every time it rains the storm sewers back up there anyway. The palm tree that blew over is the news story, not the hundreds still standing. Now apply that same thought to the war zone, or the political debate. I remember going to a bike race years ago that was televised. The finish line was as you might expect, very crowded with fans and it looked like all of Aspen came out to watch the race. But one block away was business as usual. And after the cameras were shut off most everyone went home and the sidewalks were empty. Remember that when you see footage of protesters in the streets. What the rise of the cell phone camera and instant sharing has done is allow us to all see a larger field of view, one that doesn’t depend on one or two people to decide what’s important.

        What’s sad is that when something really is as bad as the news reports, like Katrina or the yellow vest protests in Paris, or the rise of tent cities*, we are so desensitized it doesn’t register. And instead of offering insight that only the 24/7 news media could supply all they have is endless loops of the little bit of action footage they have and uninformed descriptions. And when they do bring in an “expert” his agent is probably better than his list of credentials. I’m reminded of Bill Nye the Science Guy rendering his expert opinion of the Fukushima disaster. He’s a TV clown with a mechanical engineering degree. That’s the best CNN could come up with? No photogenic nuclear engineers available? Or are news producers so uneducated as to think that Bill Nye really is an expert at anything more than entertaining children? They certainly can’t tell when a protest is bought and paid for by activist groups with an agenda.

        * oh wait, you won’t see that story at all on the news.

        • Nye is chosen because he is a celebrity intellectual politically correct voice. He will say exactly what the powers that be want said.

          Also the left only uses their battle of credentials for people who don’t agree with them. For instance even though I will actually study other areas instead of parroting like Nye does I am disqualified because I don’t agree with them despite my credentials exceeding Nye’s. Thus Nye can speak with authority on anything.

          As someone who’s been in engineering for a long time I can say that the professor’s photo is unlikely to be realistic, although she would appear better than that photo on TV if the media wanted her to.

          • CNN has makeup artists on staff. And there are devices that are rarely spoken of that companies like Grass Valley Group and Snell & Wilcox created that will “clean up” faces in real time.

            It’s showbiz. Pretty people come off as more credible than homely people. Bill Nye has the additional benefit of nostalgia.

    • The recent Comcast takeover of sky here in the UK goes to show how absolutely lost and detached from reality the senior ranks of these companies are from the real world. Sky is losing subscribers like anything…. hardly know anyone younger than me who bother with sky subscription (and I am part of that urban professional crowd where people still earn much more than the average). Why dont people get it – on one side you have the biased one sided drivel of the kind you mentioned above, while on youtube – you gut much more open free debate with people like say Joe Rogan actually having open discussions with people talking like normal…

      How views are being pushed on the sheep is becoming abundantly clear here after this Brexit debate…. apparently we all had no idea what we were voting for and now suddenly want to return to the EU… or even more recently the coverage of the yellow vest protests on the continent…. where its just a couple thousand troublemakers in paris….. nothing else to see or hear….. look online, you hear something completely different…

      • Still scratching my head over the Sky acquisition. Stock went down and still sinking, so I’m probably not the only one. The reason was basically to stick it to Disney and AT&T/Time Warner I guess and the claim is that it will be revenue neutral because cashflow will pay for it. Pretty expensive pissing contest, especially when Comcast is just about to get some real competition from 5G cellular and could have used that credit to upgrade most of the cable plant in preparation.

        • Execs in all fields of bidness making absurd decisions has become the norm.

          Look at Stanley Tools buying of the Craftsman name from Sears. WUTT?!!

          Stanley, known for making low-quality junk for many years now, pays hundreds of millions for the Craftsman name…. Craftsman, which has also become synonymous with Chinese junk over the last couple of decades….. “Yes, lets keep turning out garbage, and buy a name from a bankrupt entity that has also been making garbage, because that name was once associated with quality several decades ago”.

          Maybe if they’d just make decent stuff to begin with, their own name would again become associated with a postive image and quality products……

  7. So many people are celebrating this ruling as though it will put the kibosh on Obozocare…..when all that will likely happen, is that they will just reinstate the penalty…and likely give the IRS the teeth to actually enforce it. 🙁

    Can Trump be so stupid as to not realize this (He is also calling it a “victory” and an end to Obozocare), or is he just playing along, like he does with most other things, to play the part for his supporters? I think the latter is the case, because the man can not be that stupid. Had he done the right thing, and actually held fast to his promise to end Obozocare and not gone soft and cut a deal, we might actually be rid of it, instead of seeing it gain new teeth.

    Basically, since Obozocare was deemed “constitutional” as long as it is treated as a tax, I guess that sets a precedent for any other thing the gooberment wants to ram down our throats and force us to buy- just call it a “tax”….and voila!

    • Even worse, Trump wants Pelosi and McConnell to come up with a replacement!

      It will be like the NAFTA deal. Tweaked and renamed. Trump will boast about it.

      • Hi Handler,

        Yes, I smelled a rat when they began to speak of “repeal and replace.” In other words, government will still “administer” the medical system; the only question seems to be whether we’ll be allowed to decline to participate.

  8. Eric,

    This is a serious question man, why do you watch tv?

    I gave mine away after the passage of Digital Transition and Public Safety Act of 2005.

    “What really makes the ol’ teeth begin to ache is” watching TV.

    I honestly think you’ll feel better pulling your own teeth or better yet, break out the sawzall and give yourself an orchiectomy.

    TV is bad mKay.

    I’ve watched people use TV to occupy their children. Those kids are now in their 20s and 30s and are retarded. (And I use that word in the proper sense.)

    If you (or anyone) feel a need to watch TV, try something like this – https://youtu.be/KBmcvVwK6XY

    I bet Nunzio has watched it. Lol

    • Haven’t seen it, Tu…but I’ll going to!

      Gave up TV in 1992! (and radio over a decade ago).

      The mess we see before us today, -the power of government; the destruction of traditional culture and values; and the brainwashing of hundreds of millions of people, would not have been remotely possible without mass media.

      It is truly the tool of the Devil!

      Even if one has their “mental filter” turned on, TV and radio STILL strongly affects us whenever we are exposed to it. When you give it up completely, it is truly amazing how your perception and thinking changes- even if you were watching it with a critical eye. You notice the difference in a matter of DAYS! Even commercials affect us.

      TV becomes our “inner voice” (even when not watching it) if we expose ourselves to it; it interrupts our natural thought processes; becomes a familiar friend when we look forward to seeing; fills our minds with erroneous info; gives us a false impression of how those around us think (Although, now, that impression isn’t so false, as the media pretty much dictates what people think!); it ruins our attention span/concentration/logic; and makes us want to fill our heads with outside stimuli when not watching it……

      Giving up TV is the first step, and number-one thing we can do to regain control of our own lives and minds.

      Even seemingly innocuous things, like the Honeymooners (I have the DVDs… )…. Think of the impact it has hearing Alice Kramden telling her husband Ralph “Ahhhh, shaddup!” has had on generations who grew up watching it. It normalizes it…. (One of the most nefarious aspects of mind control- “It’s just comedy; it’s funny; harmless…”) -and BOOM! A decade later, we have radical feminism.

      The most seemingly innocuous things, end up becoming the scripts of our lives, without us ever realizing it. And that was simple old-fashioned entertainment. Imagine how much more so that is true today, with the use of soundtracks and sound-effects, and colors, and imagery designed specifically for that purpose!

      Every time I even pass by a TV or radio, there is always a continuous rhythmic beat or percussive sounds emanating from the background. What really scares me, is not that people can’t answer why this is, but that when you mention it, they usually aren’t even AWARE of it!

      The soothing, pleasant soundtracks orchestral music of decades ago, has been replaced by hypnotic thumping and annoying whoohes and booms!

      What’s funny too, is sometimes I’ll click on a youtube link of some scene from a show or movie that someone posts…and I’m always AMAZED at how terrible the acting has become in recent years! I have a collection of DVDs- maybe 30 movies from the late 30’s-50’s- and a few classic comedy series, like All In The Family- and to me, that is about the sum total of anything good Hollywood has produced over the last near-century. BILLIONS of dollars expended…and they’ve managed to make a handful of watchable shows.

      I’ve yet to think of anything bad about The Little Rascals. I’ll they don’t air THAT anymore! (I’m sure “It be raciss, ya know!”- showing a couple of black kids who really acted like a black kid of the time might have actually been. Of course, had they portrayed the black kids acting exactlyu like the white kids, then it would also be “raciss” for not showing them in a realistic context!)

  9. Hi Eric. Great article, as usual. I do want to make one legalistic point to correct to one of your statements, though.
    You wrote of the judge that “He ruled it is not constitutional to use the taxing power of the government to force people to buy it.” That’s not quite right. In fact, the Supreme Court case that so inexplicably validated the ACA held that the taxing power, exercised through the penalty, is precisely what made the ACA constitutional. But Congress has since repealed the penalty. The argument presented to the judge in this case was that since the penalty no longer exists, the taxing power is no longer implicated and there is therefore no remaining constitutional basis for the law.
    The judge was quite right in agreeing with that argument, based on the original Supreme Court opinion. Given the total corruption of the black-robed nine, however, I predict that when this case reaches them they will come up with another idiotic excuse for why this abominable legislation is constitutionally justified.

  10. This emotionalized society will still buy any crap from the TV News.The same society that now believes that victims of a crime are now undeniable experts on the same subject. Stupid twats like “soy-Boy Hogg” who is being hailed as a leader against “gun violence”, or the Mentally Ill Bruce “Caitlyn” Jenner and Zoey Tur(d), who are held up as experts on the subject of transgenderism.
    Sorry, these are traumatized, mentally unstable individuals, and as victims, ergo, were clearly NOT experts on what they were victimized by! If I step out on front of moving traffic, it demonstrates that I am not aware of the lethal nature of moving automobiles, NOT that I’m a traffic management expert, OK???
    No one is ‘victimized” by having that which was illegally obtained, and given to them for free, suddenly removed. We USED call that receiving and forfeiture of STOLEN PROPERTY! This society is really getting Fucked up!

  11. There has to be a way to get CNN out of airports. Turning them off is not enough, as they are subsidized by cable packages etc. Ultimately, subsidized by people who don’t want to see or hear them. If market forces were allowed to hold sway they would be gone already.

    • Gave a friend a “TV B Gone”, when he was getting his cancer treatments and was spending lots of time in doctors waiting rooms. It’s basically a universal TV remote that only has an off button. He said it was a great relief to be able to shut off the TV’s.

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