Tuesday, September 30, 2008


In an article in the Chicago Sun Times, Deborah Douglas says "Blame deep-seated racism if Obama loses"

But is it true? On the conservative Republican side, color wouldn't matter anyway. Condoleeza Rice, Colin Powell, or Thomas Sowell could have walked away with the election over John McCain if they had been there. But the lily whitest Liberal Democrat could not move them in opposition. It is about principle.

But on the Democrat side? Might Ms. Douglas be right? To what measure is she correct? The Democrats were the ones with the history of bigotry and prejudice. It was Democrats who stood in the schoolhouse doors. It was a Democrat who stood on the Edmund Pettis Bridge. It was even the Democrats who stood opposite their freedom from Lincoln up to Eisenhower. So if a Democrat doesn't vote for Obama, what else could it be? The man, his associates, his inexperience? The one thing it can't be is principle.

Most People Are Too Blind To Recognize This

Do not expect an equivalent to this from ABC, CBS, NBC, or CNN. They are too busy trying to fool you into believing the opposite.

Let Barney Frank bail the companies out. He made this mess.

How very great to be a Democrat to have your cake and eat it too; then to blame it on the Republicans and have the mainstream media lie to support you.

Those who do not remember history are condemmed to repeat it

In December 1968, in response to a fiscal crisis, the City of Philadelphia imposed a $0.05-per-share stock transfer tax for all transactions on the PHLX. In response, on January 2, 1969, the PHLX moved its trading floor to an office building—then known as the Decker Building—just outside the city on City Avenue in Bala Cynwyd to avoid the tax. In February, a court ruled that the tax was illegal, and the PHLX moved its trading floor back to its headquarters in the city.
Wikipedia on Philadelphia Stock Exchange

According to Neal Boortz, Nancy Pelosi (D - San Francisco) has proposed a tax on Stock Transactions to be added to the bailout plan. It will be very effective and enriching - effective in moving stock out of the United States and enriching the economy of some other country - Singapore maybe? Or Dubai? It is a lot further to there than it is to Bala Cynwyd.

Are we deliberately trying to sink the economy, Nancy?

Saturday, September 27, 2008

I'm Glad I'm An Electrician

Joe Biden's disclosure forms say that although he is four years older than me and gives less to charity than I do and he has held his job ten years longer than me, he is worth less than I am.
He must be in the wrong line of work. I always though being a Senator would make you rich. He didn't even get a fine Washington home like the others. Maybe it's his Amtrak bill?

Hair Of the Dog

Big Puppy Wants You

Why is it that every politician's prescription for forking the world up is more of the same? The economy is not currently screwed up enough? No, politicians (in particular, but not exclusively Democrat) want to add credit card, auto and college loans to the bailout.

Every politician's prescription is step five "Punishment of the innocent". Make the good citizens bail out the bad ones and the politicians and the bankers once again.

Part of me says the bankers were just doing what the politicians demanded. But they didn't use their power to stand up for right against Washington, ACORN, and LaRaza. They took the profit from this while it was available and built their mansions in the Hamptons and Palm Beach. There is blood on their hands too. They are complicit.

It does make me wonder how bad things have to be before they will let us just heal. Or is there even such a point?

The Orange Faction - Sierra

I didn't do it. I didn't ask for it. I don't even want it.

Thursday, September 25, 2008

Fractional Reserve

Our old money was honest. It said what it was, and what it meant. Gold and Silver certificates were like a receipt for a certain amount of "money" on deposit. Even the Government knew which of the look-alike bills seen in As Constant As the Dollar were which.

This one was from our "National Currency", our first Federal Reserve Notes. The banks would honor them for most purposes -- buying a loaf of bread, paying a salary, ordinary trade. What they were not good for was paying taxes or debts to the Government. In that case, only real money "lawful money" would do.

Both types of money circulated, but unlike the fiat currency of today, this fiat currency was kept at a strict ratio with the hard currencies of the time. It provided the liquidity necessary for commerce without diluting the value of the dollar.

Today's currency on the other hand is entirely fiat and is issued by the Governor and researchers of the Federal Reserve Bank based upon the perceived need for liquidity of the current economy. This is a tap-dance on a high-wire. Where anything can trip it up.

Now the currency is backed by our debt, by our willingness to pay in the future for the dollar of today. The baby-boomers are seeing retirement close in on them and are following the (correct) advice of Dave Ramsey and reducing their personal debt. With the intricacies of fractional currency, this reduces the debt backing and hence the dollars in circulation. This is compounded by the increase in loans to members of our society who do not have the ability nor intention to repay or ever carry their own weight. A crash not only was inevitable, it still is, for we aren't even there yet.

Issue an extra 800 billion and see what happens.

Don't Just Do Something. Stand There.

There is an expression "rearranging the deck chairs on the Titanic". That does not describe this situation. "Opening up the portholes on the Titanic" is a better analogy. We will sink faster.

But the best analogy is one I thought of first regarding the New Orleans levees, but it is just as true about financial consequences:

If you dam a stream with a small dam and it impounds a small pool, when the dam breaks, the water will rush out, flood the downstream momentarily, and move some pebbles and small stones.

If you build that dam a little larger and it impounds a small lake, when that dam breaks, the water will rush out, flood the downstream area to a greater extent and for a longer time, move larger stones and even rocks, and erode the earth near the dam.

If you throw together something to reinforce that dam that will make it even larger and make it impound an even larger lake, when the dam finally breaks, more water will rush out and with even more force and for an even longer time, move even very large rocks and erode all around.

If we bail out the economy now by rescuing the great financial houses leaving them in control and not correcting the underlying problems. We are only putting off the disaster and making the ultimate reckoning worse and longer.

Yes, not doing anything will be painful. Doing the wrong thing will be worse and last longer.

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

National Health Care Fear

In a couple of hours, I will take my eighty-seven soon to be eighty-eight year old mother in to the hospital to have her pacemaker replaced. When I get to be eighty-seven, will this still be done? Or will it be considered wasteful surgery? Will we, like England, ration out health care? After all, there is only so much government money to go around, and I will have lived my life; and be considered to be taking valuable space and money that would better serve a teenage gansta gunshot victim who is young and thus has his whole life (?) ahead of him and who might have to give up his spinner wheels to afford health insurance.

It has been the story of my life that I was the one at the cafeteria line up there at Shimer College when the steak ran out on steak night and they put up the liver and onions instead.

Follow up: The operation was a success. Everything is fine.

Monday, September 22, 2008

This Just In, Democrats Behind Financial Crisis

How the Democrats caused the financial crisis

Not a word on the news the dumb masses get to see; but the financial industry trades don't have the luxury of hiding the truth to help Obama.

The mess wasn't created to create bad times in order to blame it on the Republicans, that was just an added benefit aided by the mainstream media.

Obama was the second largest recipient of Fannie and Freddie's thanks for keeping the regulations off their back. And McCain was one of three sponsors of the bill S.190 in 2005 that would have prevented all the pain and expense we will experience for the rest of our lives.

Sunday, September 21, 2008

Larry Waldo Paramoure

October 24, 1936 - September 12th, 2008

{Background Music - Church by Stephen Stills}

I buried one of my closest friends, one of the people I most admired, and ex-father-in-law Saturday. Larry was a salesman by trade and by temperment. He was naturally comfortable with everyone from the top of society to the common working man. He died six weeks after his wife of 44 years, Betty; perhaps of a broken heart. Larry was a man of strong opinions who could be just as happy playing devil's advocate.
I owe much to the man, having developed my debating skills at his dining room table.

He never failed to find some interesting tidbit of information with future consequences for the world. And he was generally right. Larry predicted the Hurricane Katrina disaster scenario to me in 1973 or 4. And he was right. But I remember most the rest of his story -- there was no height that those levees could be built to that was out of God's reach. And that all that trying would do was make the magnitude of the breach that much more massive.

Just a few weeks ago we spoke of banking, money, and gold. He predicted the imminent collapse of the big mortgage banks and of the coming gold crisis in South Africa as it follows the path of wealthy Rhodesia's change to impoverished Zimbabwe.

I will miss him immensely as I miss Betty's charm and gumbo.

How are Bill Gates, a Bum, & I the same?

Everyone one of us is born with twenty-four hour days. And three hundred sixty five of them a year.

You. Me. Bill Gates. The welfare mother. Donald Trump*. Barak Obama. And the bum under the bridge. There is one way we are all the same. The units of time. The difference is what we do with them.

If every one of us is truly equal under the law, we must pay an equal share. Obviously, if the currency is money, the seven above cannot all pay the same. But ...

If the currency is the worth of our time, we can. And indeed should. If we all must give one eight hour day a week or its cash equivalent, we are each and all giving 20% of our (working) life. Not some riding for free and some giving 38% or more.

Money or labor should be your choice. If Bill Gates would rather show up and the King County service report point to sweep streets or empty bedpans rather than give up whatever that day would have earned him or if Donald Trump were to prefer to buy his time out in cash, so be it. No one would ride for free and no one would be the sacrificial cash cow. And that bum sleeping under the bridge? For one day a week he would have to rejoin society like every one else and perform some public good like everyone else -- which just might remind him that he is a part of this society too.

There is one last added side effect. Under this system there is less need for a professional politician class buying their comfortable station in life by redistributing other people's wealth though his hands for his own enrichment and power. That alone would bring the cost of our government down and reduce the need.

* Hair preparation time comes out of your own time, not the public's time.

Saturday, September 20, 2008

How Much is a Trillion?

1,000,000,000,000. A one with twelve zeros behind it. Ten to the twelfth power.
10 times 10 times 10 times 10 times 10 times 10 times 10 times 10 times 10 times 10 times 10 times 10.

A trillion dollars would buy 222.2 Nimitz class aircraft carriers at 4.5 billion dollars each.
A trillion dollars would buy 1000 World Trade Centers at one billion dollars each.
A trillion dollars is more that 1664 times the gross of the Movie Titanic.†
A trillion dollars would be three thousand three hundred thirty three dollars for every man woman and child in the United States.
A trillion dollars would be $541,726.68 for each of the 1,845,950 families¹ ² who make up the top 2% of taxpayers in addition to all of the other taxes we on the bottom 98% have heaped on them. Since that is all of those who earn $250,000 or above³, it won't include your family doctor, but it will include your cosmetic surgeon, your local Superintendent of Schools, all of your Congressmen, Your Union leaders, all of those whiny Hollywood stars, and the NBA (only the true stars of the NFL though).

My salary stops half way to the forth times ten. The parachuting CEOs are only escaping with a little over 300 times that. And we are still a long way from a trillion dollars.

I have always thought of my self as a free market Laissez Faire type of person, a real Ayn Rander. But there is something else. There is an implied honesty, integrity, and nobility required that seems to be missing from these bankers. They are not Midas Mulligan who paid off every depositor to the penny. They are from the "Fuck you, I got mine" group instead.


A I, A I, G - With an oink oink here and a oink oink there

Eighty Billion, but who's counting.

The only thing Robert Willumstad was counting was his Golden Parachutes; and counting on the US Taxpayers largess.

Lest I pin it all at the top, I have watched these Insurance sales people from AIG Valic prey on my co-workers for years now. Selling them variable annuities. Collecting massive commissions and fees for selling them those variable annuities. Shearing them like so many sheep lines up to enter the trough. Commission for selling that was no more than filling out the forms.

Variable annuities are an insurance product, not an equity product. They would not have survived a collapse of AIG. Do you suppose any of them know how close they came? I haven't met any.

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

"... Failed Economic Policies ..."

"Do we need four more years of Bush's failed economic policies? Try mine instead." Does that mean try his failed policies?

It doesn't matter which candidate you choose. None of them are bright enough or modest enough to do the right thing. That is, nothing at all. What? Yep. Mixing Government and free enterprise bought us this mess. More Government will not make it better. Our masters in Washington have distorted cause and effect.

Let the companies collapse. Let other insurance companies take over the vacancy and write policies according to sound feduciary guidelines. Let other mortgage companies buy the loans and administer them according to traditional banking standards. The existing policies and loans are assets of the corporation and should be sold to pay the creditors and what's left to the stockholders. Clip the shrouds on the golden parachutes and/or persue criminal charges.

The CEO's of the giant corporations have long forgotten that they work for the stockholders. The interlocking Boards of Directors have taken care of each other to the exclusion of ordinary stockholders for so long that we have come to think that the compensations are actually justified by their value to the system. Yet Every CEO of a failing company thinks his worth is similar to a successful one.

You may wonder how this all ties together, but risk and reward are inherent to the system. Reward without risk may have success, but only by blind luck. There is nothing to force the CEO to do right. A company that is bailed out broadcasts the news that it does not matter if the CEO is responsible or not. So does a Golden Parachute. The $14,000,000 that the CEO of Lehman Brothers is leaving with is just one more thing he is stealing from the stockholders. Only this time he has added the $35,000,000,000 he has stolen from the US taxpayers to the loss of the recent market value of the stock in the company that is now worthless.

Monday, September 15, 2008

Look at All the Dominoes Fall!

I have kvetched about mortgages before. I probably will again. Since we do not seem to learn. I have also bitched about political correctness. This is where the two of them meet.

Mortgages were issued based on politically correct considerations rather than on credit worthiness. Issued mortgages were based on need or race rather than ability to pay. What other end could there be? When you lend money the only consideration should be can (will?) they pay it back? Any other criteria means you will not only lose your profit (interest) but your principle also.

So Fannie Mae, Freddy Mac, Lehman Freres, Merrill Lynch (whatever happened to Pierce, Fenner and Smith?), Good Bye. You brought it on yourselves by being irresponsible with other people's money. You abused your fuduciary responsibilities. I am only sorry that you had golden parachutes; maybe the courts can recover that theft.

Our Liberal politicians have used fiscal irresponsibility to buy votes for decades. This is only the first to go. At some point or other the fate of these giant financial houses will be the fate of our government also. Since countries don't actually go bankrupt. It will manifest itself in a different form -- most likely a collapse of our currency will be the first step. From there? Anarchy? Or totalitarianism? Or Anarchy then totalitarianism? It will not be good.

Saturday, September 13, 2008

Supply and Demand - Not Just a Good Idea, It's the Law

Every time something like a hurricane comes up, we hear a word that we hear at no other time -- Profiteering. Today Hurricane Ike is coming ashore in Houston. The offshore Drilling platforms have been shut down. The petroleum refineries have been shut down and secured. The pipeline pumps have been turned down and ultimately shut off. There is no more coming for a few days or even weeks.

The price of gasoline shot up. One station in my immediate area, which is normally known as a cheap station in an especially cheap area for gasoline, had unleaded for a while at $5.25 a gallon. The television is stridently complaining of price gouging. The Governor (a Republican) has declared a state of emergency which punishes profiteering.

What was lost in that Paragraph? Capitalism. Supply and demand. Private Property. Note first that it is his gasoline. Mr. Patel bought that 5000 gallons of that gasoline yesterday at the risen price. It is his not the Governor's gasoline, nor yours, nor mine. When the price goes back down next week because the supply has been restored, he will not get a refund to the then price. His base price will be yesterday's spot price. He does not have to sell it at all, which may well be his decision. But he will have gasoline to sell you when the others have all sold out; and what will it be worth to you then?

Government controlled rationing will always cause shortages -- not worth it to buy to sell, hoarding, diversion to politically expedient markets.

Price rationing, voting with your feet (wheels?), creates not just a more even flow; but it causes conservation as it makes us, the end user, decide how much a particular trip is worth to us. But raising the price has another effect -- it makes it attractive for someone to step up and take the risk to fill the void.

We have seen this in other things, too -- plywood, ice and even water. Several years ago there was a man here in Atlanta who bought a truck load of plywood at Home Depot and drove it to South Florida to sell after he heard on the television that the stores down there ran out. He was arrested for profiteering and his plywood taken away from him. The same thing has been done over bottled water and I have even heard of it happening over generators. What do you bet that those people have learned their lesson? This time that plywood is still sitting on the shelf at Home Depot here in Atlanta.

To each according to need, from each according to ability
, it's the Democrat way.

p.s. Just wait till the government rations healthcare.

Friday, September 12, 2008

I Feel a Little Nauseous Tonight

[For those who don't know I work in the schools. I am all but invisible. I work on the electrical things in the rooms, and they barely notice me come in or go out. And my religion would be best described as agnostic. I am neither fanatically attached to nor hostile to people having religious convictions; But I abhor double standards.]

This afternoon, I slid into a classroom to check the quality of the television reception, since an area of a middle school was having problems. When I arrived, they were watching a documentary on Islam. To me it seemed a very flattering presentation on the pillars of Islam. They were at the part that goes "There is but one God and his name is Allah". As I walked out I thought "you know that is the same as in the Ten Commandments really." And then I remember that even though the Ten Commandments is in two of world's five great religions, it has been banished from the public schools.

Once more there is a double standard in our government that no one dare acknowledge.

Thursday, September 11, 2008

Lest We Forget

Hudson River
Originally photographed by luxomni
Today is September Eleventh, 9-11. It was on an early fall morning, with skies like the ones in the picture, about the same time in the morning as the photograph that the world changed.
Despite the protests of the Liberals and Democrats, it was not Bush's fault. He had not even been in office eight and a half months. He was still fighting at that time to get his staff approved. I wouldn't even say it was Clinton's fault despite his not persuing Bin Ladin. According to Osama Bin Ladin, it was our fault, Yours, and mine, for living, for going about our business, for our way of life, and for tolerating the Jewish people and Isreal.

Whatever it was, it brought us together for one brief time. We were one United States of America.

And then it was back to trying to the normal business of trying to make political advantage out of the misfortunes of others.

Thursday, September 4, 2008

Biden on Palin

The morning after the Sarah Palin's speech and Joe Biden is complaining that he did hear a word about what she is going to do to get us National Health Care. The answer Joe is nothing. As it should be.

Sorry if it means you have to spend your own money on your own health.
You may have to forgo some toys. Sorry Joe, but we can do it without you.

Why Obama? Why Won't People Answer?

I'd heard of it, but I hadn't tried it. I ran into an Assistant Principal who was an open Obama supporter. I asked her why.

"Because of his experience" she proudly said.
"Such as?"
No answer.
"And the things he's going to do" she went on.
"Such as?"
Blank stare.
"He's for the kids".
"Anything in particular?"
"And he has surrounded himself with talented people".
I thought of Jerimiah Wright and Bill Ayers, but bit my tongue.

Now this is not only a college educated woman, but one with advanced degrees. She is not stupid, but I am wondering if she is honest. Her answers are throwaways. There is no depth to them. Nothing. And I think she knows it. Then what is the truth?

It could be race? Like a team sport. "One of ours". Except she was white. White guilt?

Wealth envy? Tax the dirty rich? An Assistant Principal is in the top twenty percent of income earners.

Straight out Socialism?

Never before a campaign with so much mystery of where he really wants to go or why people want to follow him.

Whatever it is, she either can't or won't say it. Neither will any of the other Obamaniacs.

I'm In Love!

She's beautiful. She's witty. She's smart. She has a beautiful voice. She can mush a dogsled, and can shin a moose. Unfortunately, she's married and has five kids. Sarah Palin.
The CNN pundits are on now (6am Eastern) whining about how sarcastic she is, so I guess that will be today's talking point. I thought she was merely expressing the frustration that we middle Americans feel about the dismissive non-humerous sarcasm that the Megalopolis elites use in referring to us.

I found an interesting comment on Ann Coulter's blog. I'll just borrow it:

McCain/Palin 2008!!!

Palin/Jindal 2016!!!

To which I say:

Palin/Jindal 2012!!!

Wednesday, September 3, 2008

I'm Still Angry - Just Repost Yesterday's

I'm Still Angry - Just Repost Yesterday's Blog

I am supposed to give you something new, but I can't break away from thinking how disappointed I am at the double standards, the meanness and the inhuman crudity and cruelty of what we can news.

Tuesday, September 2, 2008

I Have Never Been So Disgusted In My Life

Somewhere tonight is a seventeen-year-old girl crying in her pillow. She already had a heartbreaking problem. But people from the political party of love and compassion have been holding her trouble up for political gain.

Many times we say "it cannot get any lower than this", and somehow it does. I believe this time we have reached the absolute bottom of human depravity. I believe that the only step down for these sanctimonious @ssh07es will be checking the candidate's Maxi-pads to check on the Candidate's reproductive condition. Film at 11:00.

Many times over many years I have wished that these newspeople were held to the same moral standard to which they hold Republicans. Hang out their dirty laundry for humiliation by the rest of us. I know it exists.

For a tiny example, In the late seventies, I knew some of the local Atlanta newspeople. I even went to Christmas parties several times with about 20 people, some of whom still read the news on radio and television. Any of you Atlanta newscasters remember sitting on the waterbed to watch a little of Saturday Night Live only to have a 15 inch vibrator spring out from between the mattress and the frame? She still reads on AM radio. Anyone remember the styrofoam Christmas tree circled with rows and rows of joints like so many candles? I love your anti-drug news reports. Since they hold so much power and sway over our lives, it is time to start vetting our reporters and anchor new people to have such perfect lives as they demand of others.

I want you news people thinking back over your own lives before you pile on a seventeen-year-old girl who has done nothing you haven't done -- she just didn't do it as well.

Remember, good girls get pregnant. Bad girls know what to do.

Monday, September 1, 2008

Gustav - a disappoinment to the Networks?

About the middle of last week, both my daughter and my ex who live in the New Orleans area have called up in tears. I guess the networks got their wish, even if they didn't get the disaster that would wash the ratings up into their Nielsen book. ABC, NBC CBS and CNN managed once again to create panic even if they couldn't cement us to the TV and create anger at Bush at the same time. They at least paniced the natives. I hope they read the story of the little boy who cried wolf. Next time they'll over-react the other way.
My daughter rode it out again, staying in the city through it all. She lives in a high ground area, but stayed with her boss and friends. To me, that sounds more like a party. My ex and her husband went to Mobile to stay with his family. From the weather images, it looks like she might even have had more rain from the outer bands than NOLA.

Not talking much on the tube about politicians this time. No space for good news. I suspect the praise goes to the new Governor, Piyush "Bobby" Jindal. Last time the blame was heaped on the Federal Government in a fit of Bush Derangement Syndrome. But this time, things seemed to have worked the way they are supposed to. I personally believe the credit here should go to where the blame should have gone last time - the City, Parrish and State governments of Louisiana.

And re: the postponing and truncating of the Republican National Convention by storm coverage.
This is probably some well needed editing. Remember, this law of nature: meetings expand to fit the time available for them. However it does help the networks by having their electioneering bias covered by "The storm was important news".


I have been asked about an inconsistency in my essay abort abortion.

I favored moving this issue from Federal to State or local. Then I wrote of:
"Bad in that it was one more nail into the supremacy of the U. S. Constitution."

I do not see that as a contradiction.

I have a saying at work that "if everything is the highest priority, then nothing is". The same holds true here. There was a hierarchy of our legal system. Each level moderated the level below it. Differences between people should first be resolved at the local level. Differences between people in different communities were to be handled at the state level, and laws effecting differences between states at the Federal level. Now, every issue is a Federal issue. Always in the name of safety or the children, but the truth is that the states could and should handle most of these issues with a better relation to the needs of its people. Education is a great example but I will cover that in another missive.

Since the last presidency of one of the founding fathers, there has constantly been a desire to consolidate power away from the people. In the last hundred years starting with Woodrow Wilson, the push to subjugate the entire country has been ever excelerating, especially through FDR, and LBJ.

With all issues at the Federal level, the only hierarchy of importance is in the hands of bureaucrats, not the law.

If we have to surrender a war, end the War on Drugs

Since I have pissed all my Liberal and conservative readers off with the last post, I might as well stay on a roll.

Most readers' minds snap shut at the mere mention of this idea. That is a shame, for legalization just might work. It cannot do worse than what we have now.

First, we have to have one basic agreement. The goal is too reduce and end drug dependence. Sometimes I wonder if the current war on drugs even has that goal, or whether its goal is to generate revenue for the legal system, and support the price of drugs.

The goal should be to save lives, both mortality, and quality of life. As it stands the goal seems to be punishment for thinking differently, for choosing a path that the mainstream of thought sees as self-destructive and not conducive to being a good servant of the state.

If the goal is to save health, it is only right that the problem belong to the medical system. The legal system has no concern for the health and safety of the drug users, in fact, the opposite is true.

The argument for illegality is that it keeps people from using drugs and the laws didn't exist there would be a great increase in the use of drugs. The implication is that the fact that drugs are illegal keeps the use of drugs down. But is that true? Are there people out there who say to themselves "I would become a crack addict, but it is illegal"? The people who make self-destructive choices know, and they make that choice in the face of Draconian punishment. Risking the punishment is just one more self-destructive choice, and a lesser one at that. In fact, in the case of marijuana, the illegality gives it a bit of cache. It becomes an us versus them, youth versus old age, counter-culture versus the establishment game. A game that leads them into a disbelief of the danger of the harder drugs. After all, "if they lied to us about the danger of pot, they have lied about everything else."

I am not saying there will not be casualties in ending this war. But over the long run it will improve. With the black market gone, the profit from drugs fall to nothing, the illegal import will disappear. With that disappearing, the violence and theft that currently follow the money trail will greatly reduce. So will the corruption of law enforcement officers and public officials.

And finally, the drug users themselves will feel freer to seek help and treatment to stop taking drugs, since there would be no fear of self-incrimination. Which is what we wanted in the first place. Thirty years of War haven't worked -- try a different tactic.

The only loss to this plan is the loss of the ability to feel smug and morally superior.