Speaker Boehner. US Speaker of The House Boehner has survived a challenge from so called ‘insurgent conservatives’ to replace him. According to some reports this was the strongest effort to replace a sitting speaker since the 1860’s. As many as 24 Republican members voted against the Speaker. ‘Insurgents’ are unhappy with the Speaker because they do not feel he fights for principles. Freedom Works had urged its followers to write, call and email their Congressmen to vote against Boehner. Once again so called Conservative Insurgents across the country are learning an important lesson about politics. That would be money talks, you know what walks. Whatever you want to call them; Tea Party, Liberty, Insurgent … until this group commands a political machine that actually holds real political power, these kinds of demonstrations (or stunts as some call them) will continue to be just that. When you have the power, you win the vote. Nice try though. There is a lot of snark on this story, which ignores the fact that the insurgent movement — people who actually think our legislators should govern from principle rather than expedience — is growing in strength, contrary to reports of its demise. Meanwhile, what is the agenda for so called ‘moderate’ Republicans in Congress? Make changes on the margins? ‘Restore’ faith in the IRS? Vote tax breaks to teenagers? Really? There are rumors the Keystone Pipeline will come up for a vote soon. As usual all the ‘journalism’ concentrates on the GOP majority in the Senate as being ‘filibuster proof’. This isn’t the question. The question is whether the House and Senate can muster the two-thirds majority needed to override an almost certain Presidential Veto, unless moderates cram all sorts of goodies into the bill. If you want to use email, your phone or write a letter to someone in the government, you might try send a letter to the FCC to demand it does NOT reclassify the Internet as a Utility. The last thing the world needs is regulation and taxation on the Internet. How expensive will Obama Care be in 2015? Aside from some who are now earning more than they did when they qualified for ACA subsidies in 2014, having to pay those subsidies back (yes, it’s true), copays and insurance fees are increasing so much and so quickly the Harvard Professors who supported and demanded the ACA pass, are now protesting those same copay and insurance increases! For Thee, not me, these perfumed princes and princesses are saying. That’s why we trust their positions on other political issues so much. Meanwhile, as the US makes nice with Communists in Cuba, they’re cracking down on dissidents sending thousands to jail. Same thing is happening in China and North Korea. One thing about Maoists, they don’t like dissent. And what happens when a Chicagoan rides his bike to the Police Station to report a theft? Sponsored by Baklund R & D.
Not 1995! Lots of stories in the news about real estate and consumer culture, and the state of retail. Its starting to feel like the business models that have propelled us from the 90’s aren’t working so well anymore. Now analysts wonder why millennials aren’t buying homes. Zillow theorizes that people are trapped in a high rent situation that prevents them from saving for a home down payment. There’s a greater question though. While we have been subjected to one rosy scenario after another about housing’s comeback — which really hasn’t materialized — when repairs, taxes, assessments, interest and other costs of home loans over thirty years are considered, do you think owning really that much economical? With millennials burdened by student loans, the specter of higher lifetime social security costs and poor quality employment, is anyone really that surprised they’re not in the home buying mood? Then, when you consider higher spending and debt levels, and the pension commitments for state and local governments, would you say you think taxes will be going down, or up? Potential buyers are also factoring this in, and the cost of the urban utopia created by subsidies, federal spending and higher taxation. Finally, have you priced homes in these urban utopias millennials supposedly want to live in? By the way, a new survey says the one thing people ‘blow’ their budget on these days is eating out, all the more expensive in the ‘urban utopia’, ruled by broke hipsters. When millennials finally do start families, they’ll be looking in the suburbs for housing because its more affordable. Then there’s the retail question. This week congress decided not to tax purchases made on the Internet, much to the chagrin of retailers that have been manhandling their legislators to push for a tax to ‘even the playing field’. More and more there are examples of how retailers want to use law and licensing to fence off competition. Meanwhile their business models suck. Poor service, high prices, snooty attitudes; It’s no wonder people want to buy things on line. Uber’s fight to get into Portland and New York City are just two examples; There taxi drivers try to fence off competition by selling ‘licenses’ rather than providing a service people want. We’re on the cusp of big changes when it comes to consumer culture in America, and it’s a good thing. Sponsored by Ryan Plumbing and Heating of Saint Paul and by Depotstar.