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Showing posts from November, 2013

No money, no problem

Have you ever lusted for a Lamborghini?I have.Specifically, the Lamborghini Aventador LP 700-4 Roadster Convertible.There’s only one thing stopping me from getting one. 
With options, it sells for just under half a million dollars.  That’s for a car, albeit a special car but by no means the most expensive.  If I wanted to I could try talking the company into producing another Lamborghini Veneno that sold for $4.5 million earlier this year.  Zero to 100 kph (0-62 mph) in 2.8 seconds. Of course one buys a Veneno for reasons other than low 0-60 times.  Yet I wonder how the owner of one would feel if he or she came up against, say, a Suzuki GSX-R1000 or a Kawasaki Ninja ZX-14R, both street-legal motorcycles that could blow the polish off a Veneno.  If you sink $4.5 million into your wheels and come up short against a machine costing 1/300th of yours but which still draws attention to its sound and looks, that’s not good. 

Lamborghini only made three Venenos, one in each color of the Italian…

The lost world of the barbarous relic

It’s one of the greatest ironies of history that gold detractors refer to the metal as the barbarous relic, when in fact the abandonment of gold has put civilization as we know it at risk of extinction.
The gold coin standard that had served Western economies so brilliantly throughout most of the 19th century hit a brick wall in 1914 and was never able to recover, so the story goes.  Europe turned from prosperity to destruction, or more precisely, to the prosperity of a few and destruction of others, as the Great War got underway.  The gold coin standard had to be ditched for such a prodigious undertaking.  
If gold was money, and wars cost money, how was this even possible?  
First, people had been in the habit of using money substitutes instead of money itself - paper bank notes instead of the gold coins for which they could be redeemed on demand.  People found it more convenient to carry paper around in their pockets than gold coins.  Over time the paper itself came to be regarded as…

The dead end of interventionism

“Government Exits Health Care Market” says a headline we’ll never see.  Nancy “Are you serious?”/“pass the bill” Pelosi and her allies could tell us why.  Their statements about the poor and uninsurable notwithstanding, the whole point of the law was not to solve a problem, but to get a bill passed in the name of that problem.  Laws rarely if ever achieve the stated aims of the lawmakers, but once a law is on the books it becomes another foot in the door of the economy.  Even if it produces spectacular havoc and failure, the intervention itself will not be surrendered.  Why?  The people who championed ObamaCare are people for whom government is their raison d’etre.  To surrender the intervention would be to surrender power, and that kind of thinking has not produced the massive state we live under.
Besides, if the people who support government-mandated health care were serious about solving a problem they would not turn it over to the world’s number one problem-creator.  
ObamaCare is a…