Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Health Care Costs – We’re Doomed

We will never get health care costs under control until we start paying the bills ourselves. I don’t care if it’s private insurance or government money, as long as people spend “other people’s money” they will not care about the costs.

If we relied on auto insurance to maintain our cars, oil changes would cost $700, not $21.95.

September 24th Quote

No one asked me where the quote came from on my Sept. 24th post. I thought it sounded very tea-partyish. But it was from the 1962 Port Huron Statement authored by Tom Hayden and the Students for a Democratic Society. Others (Trudeau of the Doonesbury cartoon) have noticed strong similarities between the tea party and the 60s radicals in terms of their rhetoric. Though most of the platform diverges considerably, they both seem to share a basic premise that the people don’t need to be told by the “elites” what to do – that it is best if we’re left alone to live our own lives without interference.

We Are Doomed – Great Book!

A friend of mine recently turned me on to a great book: We Are Doomed – Reclaiming Conservative Pessimism by John Derbyshire. I am totally in sync with this guy. I like the use of phrases like “idiot optimism” and “tragic consequences always follow unbridled optimism”.

Let’s encourage more people to be homeowners by eliminating down payments and creating interest only loans! What could go wrong? Housing prices ALWAYS rise!

I’ve received a couple of requests to republish only one post in all these years – the post on realistic thinking. I think pessimism is properly called realism. I think many pessimistic people are generally happy, as long as their pessimism doesn’t slide to depression or obsessive worrying (which I admit I can slide to if not vigilant). I expect things to get goofed up, so when they don’t, or if they don’t screw up to the extent I expect, I’m pretty happy with the result.

His book is largely political, but his philosophy of realistic thinking instead of “sticking-your-head-in-the-sand” optimism applies to many areas in life.

Friday, September 24, 2010

Interesting Quote

“We regard men as infinitely precious and possessed of unfulfilled capacities for reason, freedom, and love. In affirming these principles we are aware of countering perhaps the dominant conceptions of man in the twentieth century: that he is a thing to be manipulated, and that he is inherently incapable of directing his own affairs. We oppose the depersonalization that reduces human being to the status of things--if anything, the brutalities of the twentieth century teach that means and ends are intimately related, that vague appeals to "posterity" cannot justify the mutilations of the present. We oppose, too, the doctrine of human incompetence because it rests essentially on the modern fact that men have been "competently" manipulated into incompetence--we see little reason why men cannot meet with increasing the skill the complexities and responsibilities of their situation, if society is organized not for minority, but for majority, participation in decision-making.”

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Superstitious? Me?

anna acorn 001

This is the lucky acorn my niece Anne gave me while hiking in Pennsylvania. The day I took it out of my pocket, I started feeling the symptoms of a very nasty cold. Coincidence? Perhaps…