Monday, December 22, 2008

Politics and Finances

In the financial world there has been another stunning scandal; Bernie Madoff, scamming people and institutions to the tune of $50 billion. It boggles my mind that he could get away with that much and that he would try it at all, given his background. I wonder, was he desperate, crazy, or stupid?

There has also been a lot of talk about the government bailouts; mainly that we're not allowing the market to take care of itself, also known as free-market capitalism. A lot of conservatives like the idea almost to the point of religion. The other side, mostly liberals think that the government should have more involvement in the running of the country. Be bigger and more controlling, aka socialism. Though they haven't come out and called it that formally.

Anyways, I was thinking that one would seem to prevent the abuse from the other, but then it could be abused itself. What I meant by that is that the capitalism model is prone to the type of abuse we've seen, people abusing the system to try and get more money out of it than they should at the expense of other investors. And usually the other investors loose, as in with Enron and the accounting scandals and Mr. Madoff most recently. On the other side, if the market were regulated and the economy as with a central government model, then you might get abuse by the government. like excessive regulation or outright oppression. Unfortunately, corruption can occur anywhere.

So will people ever treat each other better? With or without religion people are going to get greedy in some fashion, for money or power, or both and sometimes other will suffer. It seems to be the human condition and probably will go on till the end of time. Right now I think all we can do is hope for the best and be careful.

Monday, December 1, 2008

One a month

Well, I'm going to try and post once a month. Hopefully it will keep me in the mindset and I"ll remember to post more often.

I think blogging is hard to do if you're ADD. Some many thoughts, so little time. Thoughts come in a flash, and go in a flash. One minute you get an idea and by the time you sit down to write about it, you can't remember it. Damn frustrating. Anyway, I try.

In the future I might try blogging about various topics; politics, consipacy theories, UFOs and the paranormal. I hope it will be as fun for you as for me. Of course it could become just a bit more stressful for me than you, but fun nonetheless.

Well, of my a fore mentioned topics, to ad-lib about something off the top of my head, it will be...politics.

Much has been made of President-Elect Barack Obama's success in the election. How he'll take the country in a new direction and do wonderful things. I think that will be a challenge given the situation he has inherited. What will he be able to do and who will he do it for? A lot people felt that President Bush was for big corporations, particularly big oil. And Vice-President Cheney was in a similar field of interest. Now who is President-Elect Obama aligned with? Some feel it is the unions. The worker verses the corporate elite. A classic democrat-republican tug-of-war. That is why Speaker-of-the-House Nancy Pelocy is promising that the big 3 won't fail. She owes them something.

Listening to talk-radio, much has been said about how they are afraid of Barack Obama's liberal-leanings, if not socialistic tendencies. We shall see how things pan out.

I have sometimes wondered about the value of capitalism verses socialism. Recently it seems that capitalism is a real good idea until it all falls apart big time, like now. Then the government steps in and props everything up so it won't fail, and it looks more like socialism than capitalism. That does seem a bit odd. So I guess we're not really truley capitalists? Maybe fair-weather capitalists? Hmmm.

It seems any ideology cannot be enacted and carried out because it will be corrupted by the people that are enacting it. Capitalism is corrupted by greed, (notice Wall Street of late) and socialism is also corrupted by greed and selfishness, (see N. Korea, China and Russia).

On the surface, socialism is interesting because nobody seems to get left out, all the wealth gets 'spread around'. So you don't have grinding poverty, but you also may not have extreme wealth.

Capitalism on the other hand doesn't have the boundaries, if you will, of socialism so you do have grinding poverty and extreme wealth. Which one's better? Does it depend on if you're wealthy or poor? I'm not sure, but I'd like to explore it further at a later time.