Things Not Otherwise Noted: November Edition

By Doug Magill

Things the local media have not bothered to report recently:

The Egalite of Idiocy.
As if raising taxes and driving entrepreneurs out of the country were not enough, the President of France, Francois Hollande, thinks it should be the government’s responsibility to ban homework.  After all of the cheering by French schoolchildren has died down, let it be known that his position is not universally popular.  Of course, the reasoning of Monsieur Hollande has nothing to do with the well being of les enfants, it is his socialist fervor that homework may not be fair because some parents might actually care enough to make their children do homework.  Quelle injustice!  All children must have the same opportunity to be mediocre!

France to Ban Homework.  Really.

H.G. Wells Would Have Been Proud.
Despite the best efforts of the Luddite leaders of the Democrat party, the U.S. has continued work on an anti-missile defense system.  Part of the development was outsourced to Rafael, Ltd. where the Israeli defense company rushed their short-range and artillery defense system – Iron Dome – into production just in time for the latest wave of Hamas missile attacks.  Its success has been breathtaking, with over 80 percent of incoming missiles destroyed.  One would hope that the administration has been paying attention as their approach is pollyannish and guaranteed to strengthen our adversaries.  Policy experts are blushingly admitting that Bush had it right.

Bush Was Right on Missile Defense.

Labor Develops Its Own Circular Firing Squad.
While public employee unions grow ever bigger and more powerful with the recent Democrat victory in the White House, the diminishing private sector unions are finding ways to destroy themselves.  Machinists recently filed an unfair labor practices complaint against – you guessed it – the International Association of Machinists.  It seems that the membership is finally realizing that unions don’t necessarily negotiate in the best interests of their members.

Union Members Suing Unions.

In Order to Save the Owls You First Have to Shoot Them.
The controversy over the spotted owl has not been in the news lately, but the ecologically avaricious bureaucrats in the current administration have engaged in another land grab, this time 9.6 million acres in the West.  The intent is to redouble the effort to save the spotted owl, which is slowly vanishing – though not as fast as the jobs being destroyed by the destruction of the timber industry.  The problem is habitat destruction because of poor land management and the invasion of the barred owl.  So, our benighted zealots think it might be the best thing to shoot the barred owls to save the spotted owls.  And these people get paid by our tax dollars.

Saving the Owls by Shooting Them.

Tax Rates Matter.  Creating a Dividend Problem.
The increase in the tax rate on dividends which will occur without congressional action in a few weeks has created a bonanza in dividends in the waning weeks of the year.  Hundreds of companies are creating special dividends or increasing their rates, in order to take advantage of the currently-low rates.  For those of you that took token business courses in obscure places like Vanderbilt or Sweet Briar,  dividends are already subject to double taxation (a position held by the former Director of Obama’s economic council, Larry Summers).  So, raising the rate will cause companies to reduce or eliminate dividends to find better investment opportunities.  In effect, we are pulling corporate payouts from next year into this year.  Which means next year will be very difficult in a lot of ways.  One company, Costco, has found what this really means.

Costco’s Dividend Epiphany.

Income Tax Rates Matter too.
Kennedy and Reagan understood that if you raise tax rates on wealthy people you will get less taxes, and if you lower them you will get more taxes.  Britain is rediscovering this.

Millionaires Leave Britain to Avoid High Tax Rates.

Figuring Out the Fawning Media Doesn’t do Much Journalism.
Jay Leno is paying more attention to what is happening than most of the mainstream media.

Jay Leno: Asking Questions in the Media

The Deliberate Ignorance of Business in Washington.
It is hard not to wonder at the lack of business sense in the current administration.  The self-righteous blathering about tax fairness is leading to targeting the very people who we need the most to help the economy grow.  Here, the owner of one small business explains why the income reported by entrepreneurs is generally put back into the business even though the owners have to pay taxes on it.

Understanding One Small Business.

This Will Make you Angry.
California’s only surviving cannery and a 100-year old business is being shut down by the Interior department and environmental groups based on questionable data.  This is our government.

Autocratic Bureaucrats.

We Don’t Know What Kind of Hook You Need for Them.
Homeland Security is now testing new robotic fish for surveillance purposes.


 Maybe They Can Get Fake Money to go With Their Fake ID’s.
Another brilliant bureaucratic misjudgment of human behavior.  Setting a minimum price for alcohol to curb binge drinking.  Which is where 3.2 beer came from to the dismay of Oxford, Ohio.

Creating Other Markets: Raising the Price of Alcohol.





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