Libertarian Commentary on the News: #14-51C: Economy slipping?

By Nathan Barton

Good afternoon! Let us look at the economy briefly, with a couple of stories.

Convenience Store Decisions, a professional webzine I receive, notes that demand for gasoline in the US nosedived after Thanksgiving, despite the continued drop in gasoline and diesel prices in much of the country. This is extremely rare: usually demand picks up when prices drop.  But what it DOES indicate is that there are still millions and millions of us who don’t have the money to travel and are having to adjust our lives – even our daily live – to that fact: the economy is rotted and rotten, and the Crash of 2009 is STILL with us, despite all the lies spread by government agencies and politicians and bankers.

Tribune News Service (a mainstream media source) now says that the current drop in oil prices means that the Keystone XL pipeline project may no longer make economic sense: that (according to “some experts”) it “won’t pencil out,” even though a veto-proof majority may exist in Congress next year for the project.  This is, of course, utter nonsense: although WTI is now at $55.93 (close of business on Tuesday) and Brent is below $60 a barrel, this is not expected to last, and the price will recover.  But this seems to be another media attempt to support what is, ultimately, a Tranzi-inspired campaign of lies and bogus claims that demonstrates the stupidity of much politics.  There is only one real reason to oppose any of the Keystone XL project, and that is the use of eminent domain to force landowners to sell rights-of-way and easements to the company.  The bogus claims and outright lies about pipeline safety, environmental damage (especially contamination of ground OR surface water), impact on AmerInd communities (it has been claimed that most AmerInd women living on reservations near the pipeline route will be raped), and other information spewed for more than five years are now joined by yet another.

Senate abruptly wraps up, capping least productive Congress in modern history. What the WaPo calls “the least-productive Congress in modern history” (Yea!!!) shut down late Tuesday as the U.S. Senate extended dozens of expired tax breaks but failed to renew a federally backed terrorism insurance program supported by big businesses and major sports leagues.  This last is ALSO good news: the NFL had warned Congress a few days ago that if the FedGov didn’t pay for the insurance for the upcoming Super Bowl (1 Feb 15 in Arizona) just as they have since Bloody Tuesday, that there might not BE a Super Bowl.  While the Phoenix area economy might take a big hit, this MIGHT make people wake up to both the terrible condition of the economy AND how controlling the FedGov has become in the past two decades.  No, I’m not a big football fan, but even those who are should want to see the FedGov get out of the game.

Worldwide, things are not doing better.  The continued drop in oil prices is due (according to some people) to the continuing recession in Europe (although many people claim it ended a couple of months ago).  This, in turn, is seen as contributing to the collapse of the Russian ruble, which a good many in NYC, DC, and London are gloating over.  They claim that the major cause of the ruble’s drop is the sanctions imposed to punish Russia for Ukraine’s troubles, when in the eyes of many, Russia is trying NOT to aggravate that Ukrainian situation, while DC and others are trying hard to push it to open war.  And of course, there are rumors that the Russians are “dropping” the dollar, even as it makes sense for as many as can to shift from rubles to gold or the dollar.

Here at home, a nice cheerful bit of holiday season news: an armed family captures Christmas present thieves at gunpoint on live television after identifying them by security cameras robbing their house.  Amazingly, they were able to get the Sheriff to respond and take the robbers into custody (and recover property stolen from a nearby neighbor)!  Mama Liberty comments: Things like this make me think the jihadists are not going to have it so easy in America… unless they go to NYC or California, of course.

Nathan: Sadly, to too many Americans, this family is wrong on so many counts:  “taking the law into their own hands,” “seeking revenge,” “disrespecting law enforcement by making them look bad by catching the criminals,” and of course, filming the burglars without permission, and then stalking them.  What I really like about this story is that it shows a NON-defensive but morally and legally valid use of weapons by good people taking action against bad people.

Mama’s Note: The fact that they didn’t have to shoot, and that the stolen goods were recovered, tells the story. I just wondered immediately how much of their property they got to take home… Bet you anything the cops kept it all, as “evidence,” if nothing else.

About TPOL Nathan

Follower of Christ Jesus (a christian), Pahasapan (resident of the Black Hills), Westerner, Lover of Liberty, Free-Market Anarchist, Engineer, Army Officer, Husband, Father, Historian, Writer, Evangelist. Successor to Lady Susan (Mama Liberty) at TPOL.
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