Jan 30, 2009

Stimulate this.

I cannot believe this so-called "stimulus" package (that's what she said) actually passed the House. A more appropriate name would be spending package. Actually, that doesn't even do it justice--I'd call it the stealing package.

This legislation is just another way to arbitrarily print money. Need a new TV? Uncle Sam will print you one out of thin air! Late on your mortgage in lieu of your new Escalade? Uncle Sam will print you cash to pay your bills! Is your nostalgia being threatened because the auto-makers might not be able to pay their workers $70 an hour to build crappy cars? It's OK!--As long as the CEO's sell 2 of their 7 private jets, I'm sure they can work something out!

After WW2, Germany started printing money to counter their post-war recession. Inflation went up so much (about 1000% per month) people were actually burning money to warm their homes.

The chart at the left shows how much money is in US circulation in billions of dollars, beginning in 1929 with the stock market crash. Notice it stays almost totally flat up until Nixon's genius idea to get rid of the Gold Standard (which meant the government could now print money just for fun), with a slight bump in 1941 in light of WW2. It continues to curve upward (C'mon, could you have resisted?) until the September 11 attacks, where it takes a pretty dramatic spike upward on account of everybody buying patriotic shoes that apparently countered terrorism.

Then there's that HUGE spike in October of 2008 to present. This is the auto/corporate bailouts. I can't even imagine what kind of damage another $800+ billion would do.

This thing is oozing with the concern for special-interest, NOT the people's. In fact, earlier this week Al Gore took his turn injecting his bit in the bill to fund global warming research. (Yeah, that's at the top of my prority list.) And only something like 20% of the money in this bill is going to be used for "stimulation" in 2009, if passed by the senate.

ugh. --Jesse

Jan 22, 2009

(myself)x([my view of myself]-[flaws])

I'm currently reading a book called The Shack, by Wm. Paul Young. I've only got a few minutes before I have to go to work, but I just wanted to jot this down real quick. This is a quote from Papa, who is a fictional (but not-so-fictional) representation of God, talking to the main character, Mack:

"The problem is that many folks try to grasp some sense of who I am by taking the best version of themselves, projecting that to the nth degree, factoring in all the goodness they can perceive, which often isn't much, and then call that God. And while it may seem like a noble effort, the truth is that it falls pitifully short of who I really am. I'm not merely the best version of you that you can think of. I am far more than that, above and byond all that you can ask or think."

Jan 11, 2009

If you're happy and you know it...

Welcome all! My name is Jesse, and this is my blog, tentatively titled Everybody Lies--which may or may not be a motivating factor for people to read.

I've never really "blogged" before, so I'm not sure if I'm doing it right. It seems quite a peculiar activity--one sharing his thoughts with a faceless crowd, in hopes of people reading, relating to, and discussing the subjects at hand, yet still maintaining a certain blanket of unaccountability via anonymity. So whether I'm going to end up being good at this or not, I'm giving it a shot at the suggestion of some of my friends and (fellow) bloggers. So, here it goes...

If my title seems a bit odd, then perhaps you havn't seen, or at least don't share my captivation with, the show House on Fox. This brings me to my first subject, which is inspired by a rerun of House I saw a few nights ago. (The show is currently in the mid-season hiatus surrounding Christmas and New Years.... New episodes start Jan. 19! Meanwhile, reruns must suffice.)

A couple seasons ago, one of Dr. House's staff members, Eric Foreman, caught the same sickness as a patient the team was diagnosing--a patient that eventually died, and quite horrifically and in extreme pain. Luckily, the team was able to accurately diagnose and treat Foreman due to things they learned during their time with the patient who died.

Upon his recovery, Foreman returns to work with a new attitude onlife: A positive, everyday-is-a-blessing kind of mantality that is indicitive of many people--even chronic pessimists like Foreman--who have a near-death experience. Of course, this attitude drives House insane, as it conteracts the very traits of Foreman that make him a good doctor. It inhibits the team's ability to diagnose their unique medical mysteries, because Foreman's tendancy to question everything and everyone (including House) has gone out the window.

House knows this phase is just that: A temporary, irrational phase. So he convinces Foreman to get over it as soon as possible. When confronting him, the conversation goes something like this:

House: You need to get over this phase. I need you to question me and the team.
Foreman: Phase? Just because you're miserable doesn't mean I have to be. I've found happiness; I'm content. You're jealous.
House: Happiness?!? Contentness?!? Oh please... If everyone was content, the human race would have died long ago in it's own feces.

And that was all it took. And as gross as it sounds, I think he's right. We all want to be 'happy', but what if everyone really was? Would we just start pooping our pants instead of using toilets, totally disregarding the consequences? Would we, in our sense of total self-contentness, stop having sex and therefore cease to reproduce? For that matter, would we stop striving to be a better people? Stop caring about ourselves? Stop caring about others?

Happiness only exists because it's possible for it not to exist. And more often than not, it doesn't.

I, for one, never really feel content--with anything. But it encourages me--or rather, forces me--to strive for what's next... the next oppurtunity for improvement, the next big (or small) step. Without sadness, lonliness, fear, etc., there would be no happiness. And there would be no need to do anything, much less strive for improvement.

So there it is, my first blog. Now how do I publish this thing?...