I had to take the day off from everything yesterday. For the first time in over a month I fired up the DVD player and watched movies, and talked to family and friends on the phone. It was my first vegetative day since the Summer Solstice.
I am back to work this morning researching the schools—this time with a money slant. Seems appropriate as the intransigent nimrods in Washington continue to erode worldwide confidence in the US economy. This morning gold is at an all-time high $1,616/oz; silver is at $40.37/oz. (The higher these numbers go, the lower investors’ confidence in the Fed’s fiat currency is shown to be.)
I’m prepared for a dishonest “solution” to the debt ceiling impasse to be enacted in Congress. If you followed the state government shutdown in Minnesota, you have already seen a harbinger of things to come in Washington.
They are delaying state payments to the schools into the next budget year. The Republicans met their pledge to create no new taxes, but have forced the state’s school districts to borrow heavily (and raise school taxes at the local level to cover the extra borrowing costs).
In addition, they decided to issue bonds on future payments to the state by the tobacco companies—more borrowing.
Last week a former Minnesota state finance director was interviewed on the radio and said that the annual tobacco money (which is to be paid in perpetuity) varies based on a formula that includes tobacco sales.
In other words, the state has a money incentive to keep sales up so their payoff from the tobacco companies (best seen as a rebate) remains high. Now that the politicians are mortgaging future tobacco payments, they have a bigger incentive to assure future growth of tobacco use, even to young people. They’ll have all that extra interest to pay to banks and bond holders.
There will be a duplicitous game played by the Washington politicians, just as in the wars on drugs and terror as well as the shameful Minnesota “solution.” With a showy hand they’ll do one thing to allay the credulous public, and with a hand hidden under the table they’ll do the opposite.
How stupid do these politicians think we are? Unfortunately, their cynicism seems to be justified.
Groove of the Day