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September 24, 2009


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Your concerns presuppose there is a difference between big government and big oil. They are the same guys. We don’t even nationalize our armed forces in the U.S. All nationalization of big oil will do is put Blackwater in the oil business. Meet the new boss…same as the old boss. Lennin said “the best way to control the opposition is to lead it”.

I usually like you writings ( or I wouldn't subscribe) but ... While you make good points, this post came off as the somewhat senile ravings of an old coot with one leg in the nursing home. Think about who you're speaking of here... High school aged children. The exercise was not to reach a specific conclusion, and it would have corrupted the political lessons in the classroom if that lawyer you cite as being "so proud" had guided the discussion. Or would you rather the moderators HAD guided the conclusion? Towards your goals, of course?

Bingo, Karl... I AM an old coot. I like the childlike innocence and freedom of my senility. Just lose the nursing home.

What concerns me, Karl,is that high school students can reach a conclusion about nationalizing any industry in such a facile manner that ignores basic understanding of markets and supply and demand. How can that be the case? Why are they not educated in this arena? Why are most Americans ignorant here? This is WHY we are the beneficiaries of the magnificent largesse that comes of being part of this society, and we apparently don't even understand why.

Sorry the message wasn't clearer, or that it was offensive. The blame doesn't lie with the students, it lies with our educational system and whatever other powers exists that want to obfuscate, for whatever reason, the real benefits of a market system.

Maybe it is not misunderstanding of the market. Perhaps the perception of a market is rooted in ideology. Sometimes where you stand depends on where you sit.

You have done a very good job repeating the capitalist’s position on the purpose of a market. A socialist may take the position that markets are not created to match supply with demand, but are created for profit, and when left alone, they spin out of control or turn into monopolies. Therefore, markets need regulation and social input.

History shows that the socialist view is correct every time.

Hate to disagree, Scott, but the concept of supply and demand works every time. It is your precious socialism that hasn't worked as advertised. Ever. And violence is the all to common method employed by the idealogues to get people with the program. I vote with every dollar I spend for people and institutions (even corporations) that make my life better that I am free to use or not use. Your ideal leaves me with no choices other than yours.

Although I am not a Sean Hannity fan, this "face of socialism" from the G20 meeting should be disturbing...


“Hate to disagree, Scott, but the concept of supply and demand works every time.” Choke…have you read the newspapers? Look what laissez-faire capitalism has produced in America. In case you missed it, we just nationalized General Motors and the banking system. Capitalism, as we once knew it is gone. It is gone because it failed due the same old reasons it always fails. Nationalizing the oil companies is a drop in the bucket compared the nationalizing the banking system. The game is over.

Scott, you are being disingenuous when you try to confuse fraud with markets. I am not against regulating a market to ensure transparency and to prevent fraud. Confusing cons and frauds with legitimate markets is just lazy. Your solution, if you truly are a socialist, is to the fact that some people cheat is to create a bureaucracy to take the place of legitimate businesses and prevent freedom of choice. Command and control by an ungovernable massive central authority that somehow you aren't scared of. I don't get it.

Choke, maybe being lazy is not the issue. I am not confusing fraud with markets. I am asserting that an unregulated market is a fraudulent market. It happens every time. It is the nature of a capitalist. They will kill the golden goose to get two eggs in one day. In recent years, capitalists have created new markets to avoid regulation, and then raped any and all that were foolish enough to engage these markets. Enron was the 20th century king of this game. Band width futures, electricity futures…..etc., is what ENRON was all about. If you can’t get an existing market deregulated, create a new one.

Now comes the 21st century, and CDF’s and derivatives are the new unregulated medium. Same result. Same thing, only the scale is bigger. This time they did it. The genie won’t go back in the bottle this time.

As we say “Game stays the same. Only the players change.”

Scott, Let's separate finance and insurance from Free Market for a moment. The banking system in the US is hugely munged up and a bit of a monopoly. Finance makes up 30% of our GDP. WTF? However, note that most investments are NOT made ignorantly. Why would someone invest in iffy mortgages? Because they were insured by Fanny Mae and Freddy Mac. Gov took the risk out. Why would anyone invest in the Enron type markets? Insurance. Except that we really don't understand if insurance companies are economically viable in the first place. A Richter 9.5 level earthquake in Southern California bankrupts the global insurance industry, as does one in Tokyo. They are gambling that it won't happen on their watch. Socializing risk that doesn't except these 100 or 1000 or 10000 or 100000 year events guarantees worldwide economic failure. Figure out how to realistically deal with insurance and you fix a lot of problems, healthcare among them. But insurance lobbies heavily to pass laws that MANDATE having it for all sorts of things... to the market's detriment.

Anytime the reward is near term and the risk long term, bad juju happens. Not a perfect allegory, but that is why you want the prospect generator to have WI instead of an ORRI.

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