Tuesday, December 28, 2010
In Lola Savannah's on Bee Cave Road in Austin, listening to venture capital being raised, or at least pitched, at the next table. We need more of that, in more places.
Anyway, I have accumulated a huge pile of tabs, which I hereby disgorge. As usual, I do not remember where I found all this stuff -- it has been piling up for days -- so you may have seen much of it elsewhere.
Among the several states, population growth and the burden of taxation are inversely correlated. Note the relative positions of Texas and New Jersey, for instance.
Fifteen "surprises" for 2011, mostly related to investing and geopolitics. I simultaneously love lists like this and take them with a huge grain of salt.
The best performing American real estate markets of the last ten years. Washington D.C. leads the way, a gift at the expense of the rest of us from George W. Bush and Barack H. Obama.
Remembering Michael Bilandic.
I'll be rooting against the Tigers tonight.
Headlines from 1980: Will silver hit $50? Of course, a dollar isn't what it once was.
Regarding forgiveness, a taxonomy of sorts. A thought-provoking essay for the New Year.
The ten most "UNbelievable" moments at the United Nations in the year now concluding. The United Nations is a wholly contemptible organization. I acknowledge that it may be expedient for the United States to participate and even host it in New York City, but that does not make it any less offensive as a moral matter.
"The United Nations is a wholly contemptible organization. "
It mirrors the poor state of governance in the majority of countries. It is very easy for a group of dictatorships to pack, for instance, the Human Rights forum, thereby sabotaging the discussion.
If the UN is contemptible, it is because most of the world's governments are corrupt dictatorships.
However, diplomacy has to go on, and it is very convenient to have a building in New York where diplomats can meet semi-formally.
Forgiveness is a great topic, but the essay is too limited: It's a national value here in this country, and not just a personal moral act.
When America was founded our country distinctively forgave bankruptcy, when other countries imprisoned their bankrupts or worse. Our country welcomed without question immigrants trying to escape the consequences of serious crimes in their countries of origin. Can anyone forget the Mariel boatlift, when Cuba literally sent us all their criminals? We still routinely clear criminal or debt records, based on fairly arbitrary rules.
Somebody like Alcee Hastings can distinguish himself in the Congress, despite being an impeached and convicted federal judge, and people like Tim Geithner can be Treasury Secretary, despite willfully failing to pay his due taxes. Sure, some small crimes are punished weirdly, but overall our country has a national value of forgiveness right at it's core.