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Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Walking towards the gun

I think we are now a democratic socialist country or at least that is where we are headed. A 770 billion dollar bailout of businesses had taken the bottom out of any belief I might have held that there is a free market economy in the USA. In a way it had to be done. There is an historic precedent for this especially in 1892 and again in 1907. The government didn't do this in 1929-1932 and for various reason we tumbled into a deep depression with close to 25% unemployment (at tops).

What we have is freedom to speak our minds whether we have agreement with each other or not.

But I do hear much talk of helping each other and the common good and the disparity of earnings between the rich and poor and the word "poor" is now being expanded to cover those who we would once have called members of the middle class.

That is what this election is all about. It is a national rejection of an idea of free markets and allowing big business to operate in this market place. But big business blew it too and many of the "players" did not operate responsibly. The bailout came to prop up those who failed to follow good business practices, those who were impacted but were getting sucked down into the vortex and to keep some semblance of what we had before.

But enough people are tired of a presidency that didn't seem to care about the common man. That acted irresponsibly in putting us into a pointless war. That put us into harms way so to speak. I am not saying that all this was true but it sometimes seems that way. We'll never really know because we weren't in those smoke filled rooms of power. Maybe history will tell us.

In any case the price we have to pay is a democratic liberal congress and a democratic liberal presidency. How long we will have to pay this price, I don't know. The electorate will decide this. I even wonder if Ayn Rand were still alive how she would react to all of this.

There is no simple answer because today we have a world economy and our failure effected much of that which exists outside of our own borders.

It certainly has changed my plans. We took heavy paper losses on our investments. I still have plenty of F**K U money but now I can't just walk away. I stayed in a contract I hated longer than I wanted (it is ending this week). I am probably going back to a former client for another contract job but I have negotiated going in as an employee so that I get medical benefits. The costs of paying my own (you should try it some time) was getting out of hand. 40K last year for our family. That includes premiums and out of pocket. This will reduce that cost sizeably. When the job ends I will have COBRA which will take me to medicare (hopefully it survives). It will save me having to earn 60-65K a year just to net enough to pay for insurance.

My wife asked why I was going back inside. She knows I revel in being a consultant.

Someone had to take a bullet, I answered. But it is not an act of sacrifice. I am OK taking this bullet. In fact I am walking towards the gun barrel to take this "shot" because the work is something I want to do.


I ran another easy 60 minutes this morning. I tried to run a faster 800 in the middle someplace but frankly I didn't have the will power to carry it through. Getting back to running at a quicker pace is way off in left field for now.

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