November 22nd, 2008

#1363: Breakfast makes me weep for joy.

Okay, the hash browns are a bit soggy since I didn't cook them correctly, but I made a real breakfast and it is so much better than anything from McDonald's.

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Note to self: for that SF story you wrote about a member of a religious order in 2700-odd, this article by the Anchoress provides some invaluable information about monks.

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Og discusses the crisis facing the domestic auto industry, and he is 100% (possibly 200%) correct on each and every point.

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Using rockets to hang suspension bridge cables. This is teh awesome.

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Meteorite caught on tape! We had a meteor shower not too long ago (the Leonids) so this is probably from there.

Someone thought it might be the missing toolbag lost by the space station. That's not likely, as the tool bag has to be in a highly similar orbit to that of the space station. It's not very likely that a person could--even if he threw it at the Earth with all his might--cause an object to reenter the Earth's atmosphere from the space station's orbit. It's too high up and the velocities too great. Considering that the thing orbits the planet about once every two hours, and that the average person can throw an object at perhaps sixty, seventy miles an hour, it's more likely that the toolbag is just floating around the space station somewhere nearby and will eventually drift back into contact with it.

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WTF are they smoking in Raymondville, Texas? A county prosecuter there is attempting to bring charges against Dick Cheney and Alberto Gonzales. Having read the article I still don't understand what the hell Cheney and Gonzales have to do with the issue.

Just another crazy Democrat, that's all. Relax, crazy Democrat! Obama's inauguration is a scant two months away, and then you can be happy again. least, as happy as you can be, which ain't much. (Liberals are never happy.)

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I saw gas selling for $1.80 this morning and it's $1.90 here in Crete. Apparently it was last this cheap in March of 2005, which is 3.67 years ago. Dayum.

Democrat Senator Jeff Bingamen thinks there should now be a tax increase on gasoline to keep the price high.


After all, we might not make the right choices if gas stays cheap, right?

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And they say that the price of gold may drop, too. I don't know about this one. The price of gold going down means deflation, which is both good and bad. Deflation is a horrible thing to experience while it's happening, though it makes things a bit better once it's over and done with.

But the dollar isn't tied to the price of gold, anyway.

Still, all of that goes out the window if prominent governments decide to monetize their debt. If the major economies in the world did that, gold would cost at least $20,000 per ounce.

I was thinking about this the other day when I heard an ad on the radio for gold. If you bought gold at $1,000 per ounce, and countries monetized their debts, it would be a great day for you. (At least until you paid your capital gains taxes.) But if you bought gold and we entered a deflationary cycle--and debt was not monetized--it would mean you'd thrown away your money.

Sure, as the ad pointed out, "Gold is never worth zero!" But if you buy gold at $1,000 per ounce and deflationary pressures reduce the price to $500 per ounce, you've lost half your investment.

The Dow is below 7,500--it's lost about 45% of its value in less than a year!--and all the signs are pointing to recession. If we enter a deflationary cycle (which seems possible so long as Obama doesn't go too haywire with the socialist crap) the dollar will ironically increase in value. $1 will buy more gold, and the people who invested heavily in precious metals will take one up the pipe.

The linked article makes a good case for lowered oil prices leading to lowered gold prices--and if that's the case, monetizing our debt would be a bad move.

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This is a good idea, which is why it's not going to be allowed.

It seems simple, doesn't it? In the US, you have to have a social security number in order to hold a job--the employer is required to make certain tax payments which are tied to that number, and in most cases it's illegal simply to hand an employee cash. There are exceptions for "independent contractors", but the contractors are then supposed to do the paperwork and make the tax payments themselves. In no case is a person supposed to be able to hold down an actual job without a valid social security number.

So it seems logical that the US government can require companies to verify that their employees have valid social security numbers, and to terminate any employee whose SS number is invalid. After all, a person without an SS number is not eligible to work in the US, thanks to a number of laws which were, in fact, the result of Democrat policies.

Apparently people who use immigrant labor don't see it that way, but whatever. By the time Barry Obama is done being President it won't matter anyway.

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If you are interested in hearing what the soundtrack for Chicory might sound like, if it were anime, check out music by Liz Story. It just fits.

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I inhaled my yummy breakfast. O Lord did I need that.

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I had this dream that I was taking a guy's place. He used to be an NFL football star, but he'd retired from that and was now an engineer for Amtrak. For some reason he had me go to dinner with his old friend, a teammate of his from the old days, who happened to be a black guy. And so I was supposed to be impersonating the athlete-turned-engineer.

Problem is, the black guy saw right through me, and then he started making racist jokes. "You know how I love watermelon," he said, sampling some from my salad. And after several similar lines--to which I had not responded, thus demonstrating that I was indeed not the real guy--he finally said, "Look, you and me both know you're not so-and-so, so why don't we stop pretending you are? Here, you sign this paper and I'll give you $49 million dollars, and you can stop prentending to be him."

And in the dream I was upset because I knew I was going to sign the paper and admit I was just pretending to be the guy, breaking my word to him--but Jesus, it was $49 million dollars!

There was some component of mafia-ness to the whole deal, and after I signed the paper I went to Nagi Sanzenin and told her, "Well, I can marry you now!" (because I was rich in my own right) so somehow I had turned into Hayate Ayasaki--WTF.

Again, WTF.