Saturday, June 2, 2012

California vs. the Productive Class

California is sinking fast economically, as we explained in States in Budget Crisis.
The Los Angeles Times points out that California placed 48th in a study of business-friendly states, trailed only by New York and New Jersey -- and that was the good news. A few weeks later, the Times reported even more dismal information.

Leading with the news that Chief Executive magazine had named California the worst place to do business for the eighth year in a row, they went on to detail some of the reasons.

Its 10.9% unemployment rate is only lower than Nevada's and Rhode Island’s. A third of U.S. welfare recipients live in California, the report noted. High state taxes and bundles of red tape make operating a business in the state unaffordable to many companies, critics say.

Last year, 254 California companies moved some or all of their work and jobs elsewhere -- 26% more than 2010. Most chief executives in Silicon Valley said they won't expand in the state, according to the survey.
In The California "Austerity" Trap, Robert Upshaw points out that California's expected budget shortfall has mushroomed to $16 billion and in response, Governor Jerry Brown offered a plan that ups the top tax bracket rate by 3% for the next seven years and increase sales taxes by one-fourth of 1 percent for four years.

In response to these woes, California's solution is to attack its underground economy, estimated by the state at between $60 and $140 billion, rather than lowering the tax and regulatory burdens that have driven that substantial portion of the economy underground, as Reason reports.

Friday, June 1, 2012

History Through a Different Lens

Author's Note: The theory advanced here is painted in extremely broad strokes, since I wanted to tell the story in one easily-digestible blog post. I'll expand on particular issues in future blog posts.
As part of the exploration of the transition that society is facing, it would be well worth our while to understand how we got into this sorry mess in the first place.

I often wondered how a society founded on innovation, self-reliance, and respect for the individual and individual choice above all else morphed into the society we see around us today. I found one plausible explanation in the pages of The Homebrew Industrial Revolution: A Low-Overhead Manifesto, by Kevin Carson.

When I first started reading The Homebrew Industrial Revolution (THIR), I was expecting a technical treatise. However, before the author got to that, he embarked on a tour of the evolution of society during the Industrial Revolution that is, to put it mildly, considerably at odds with the one we all learned in public school.

Wednesday, May 30, 2012

Fondling Fees Expected to Double

You may soon be paying twice the price for that affectionate send-off you receive from agents of the Transportation Security Administration. The Democratic-controlled Senate Appropriations Committee has approved an increase in the one-way fee from $2.50 to $5.00, and in the round-trip fee from $5.00 to $10.00. No "two-fer" specials have been announced to date.
The author of the proposal, Sen. Mary Landrieu, D-La., said that the current fee structure only covers about one-fourth of TSA's airport security costs and that people who fly should bear a greater cost of TSA's $7.6 billion budget – rather than taxpayers as a whole.
Let's not forget that they're going to need all these funds to expand VIPER, the Visible Intermodal Prevention and Response teams, which have been increasingly a presence in metro stations, ballgames, on highways, in truckstops, and at Amtrak stations. Talk about an appropriate acronym!

Sunday, May 27, 2012

Story Updates 5/27/12

If you haven't liked the Tireless Agorist page on Facebook you haven't heard the latest on some of the stories we've reported here. Click the link above and like the page, or use the button near the bottom of the sidebar to stay up-to-date.

Today we've got updates on Detroit, Emily Miller, armed drones, Tombstone, AZ's ongoing water battle, a new source for Phoenix Society type information, and more on the Ron Paul Revolution.