Deficits and dictators, but is spring far off?
Jan. 30, 2011
COLUMBUS: While we’re all worrying about China and the deficit, why Egypt breaks out on us. It seems that a poor young Egyptian heard about the protests in Tunisia, sent a few friends a message on Facebook saying, ‘Let’s protest against our dictator Mubarak,’ and the next day a million showed up. I know they’re poor, with extreme unemployment, but how bad can it be when everyone seems to have a computer, a cell phone, and a TV to watch Al Jazerra.
Mubarak has been in there for thirty years and frankly no one in Washington expected him to last this long without getting shot. If we had a President for even half that long we would have riots, too. Mubarak helped keep the Muslim terrorists from getting a foothold in Egypt so we kinda strung along with him. We don’t like dictators, but we don’t like Hamas and other Islamic radicals either, like the ones running Iran and Gaza.
I have a friend in Cairo and I hope he can let me know soon how it looks to him. Egypt is a great country with a civilization going back thousands of years. It has survived storms worse than this, but a fairly smooth shift to democracy would be good for them, and the rest of us, too.
President Obama gave his solution to the budget deficit in the State of the Union speech: keep spending the same amount for the next five years. He probably meant it as a joke, but nobody is laughing. His plan would raise our debt $7,500,000,000,000 by 2016 if revenue stays the same.
There are two industries doing well through the Great Recession. Maybe with some encouragement those two can increase revenue and add to the overall economy. What are they? One is agriculture. Don’t laugh; farmers are growing more crops and exporting more than ever to balance imports of other goods. The other is the oil and gas business. Producing more of our own fuel can decrease imports, reduce prices, and lessen the headache that might result if the Egyptian protests spread to Saudi Arabia.
Hey, it ain’t all doom and gloom. Groundhog Day offers hope for an early spring.
Historic quotes by Will Rogers:
"It's kinder as I heard a very learned American man one time say, ‘Dictatorship is the greatest form of Government there is, provided you have a good Dictator.’" WA #641, Apr. 7, 1935
"A Senator introduced a bill where the government couldn’t appropriate more money than was coming in. That is, if you didn't have any money you could not dole out any. Well the Senate like to mobbed him. They called the idea treason, sacrilegious, inhuman and taking the last vestige of power for a politician, that is, the right to appropriate your money which you don't have." DT #2024, Jan. 29, 1933