School House Rock (style) presents Tyrannosaurus Debt

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I watched this this morning and found it to be interesting while entertaining. I really wish these guys would come back, they were great to watch back in the day.

(10-02-2008 new link since the old one went dead)

How much is 700 billion dollars?

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The number buzz now is seven hundred billion dollars. How much is that exactly?

That is $700,000,000,000.  $7 X 10-to the eleventh power.

If you were to put that in a savings account, assume 1% interest with no componding of the interest, that is $7 billion ($7,000,000,000) a year.

From now on, I’ll only deal with the interest numbers.

That’s $583,333,333 a month (yes, over $580 million) a monthi in interest alone.

It is roughly $19,178,082 a day just in interest.

A little under $800,000 in interest an hour.

$13,318 a minute.

$221 a second.

This $700 billion “buyout” can earn $221 a SECOND in interest.  That’s a var payment to some, a week’s worth of groceries to another.  A credit card payment, a student loan, even some utilities.

In a minute you could buy a lower end car, pay off an entire credit card, or even put a down payment on an inexpensive house.

In an hour you could buy a nice home in most parts of the USA, a modest home in the rest.  You could buy 10 fully loaded luxury cars (or maybe 5 if you go really high end).  You could buy 4 nice boats or one small yacht.  In one hour you could put an entire family though a nice college.  You could start a business and have a good cash reserve on hand.

In a day is more money the average American would see in their entire lifetime.  It would buy a lavish home in some of the nicest areas in the US.  One day’s worth of interest is an average lottery jackpot.

In a month the average person would be thrust into high society whose worth would be near the top 1% of the USA.  You could buy a modest company.  You could live the rest of your life, comfortably and lavishly, just off of the interest.  You could own homes in Hawaii, Italy, France, Florida, and California and hire a staff to take care of each home.  In a month you could give significant help to the average disaster in the world.  In an month you would earn more than many nations own GNP.  You could buy a nation for that much.

On the last estimate, ( http://www.federalreserve.gov/paymentsystems/coin/ ) the amount of currency in circulation is roughly $792 billion.  Yes, our government is about to spend just that much alone to bail out some companies that made bad decisions

Just imagine how this will affect the value of the US dollar.  It is already weaker than wet tissue paper, but this will thrust it to lows we can’t even imagine.  The value of the US dollar will drop, that’s a given.  Since a lot of our needed supplies (oil) are foreign, then it will cost that much more, just in inflation, to get what we used to get.  We saw $4 a gallon gas earlier this year.  I think that is nothing.  I wouldn’t be surprised to see $6-$7 gas if this goes the way it is heading.  All the companies who outsourced their jobs will now be paying a lot more for the same help (maybe this is the silver lining?  They’ll be forced to hire more people in the US since we’ll have the “cheap labor”?).

Now that I’m all caught up..

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All the posts from Draggar’s Blog are now on this site. Enjoy – this is where you’ll see them from now on. :)

Blogger / Google is NOT letting me take my domain with me!

Author: admin  |  Category: Internet, Rant  |  Comments (0)  |  Add Comment

I’ve been trying to transfer my domain from Blogger’s / Google’s control into my own GoDaddy account (so it’s only $7 per year as opposed to $10) but they’ve locked “private registration” and seems to have set up a no-transfer policy with my domain. In essence, it seems that they are holding *my* domain hostage which is a violation of ICANN policies.

Obviously with all the advertising and other revenue streams Google feels that it is important to hold these domains hostage.

Beware other blogger subscribers, they are probabaly doing this to you too.

I am working on alternative means of hosting my blog now because of this.

The New American Revolution

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The 2008 presidential election has opened my eyes up to changes that are going to happen. No, I don’t mean the whole Barak vs. McCain thing; I’m talking about the whole political process.

In the past, when people are younger they are liberal but as they grow older they tend to grow conservative as they get older (this is how a lot of people are, not all, some are conservative form the beginning and others stay liberal their entire lives). We even see this with our elected, Republican (conservative) candidates tend to be older while Democrat (liberal) candidates tend to be younger (we’re seeing this exaggerated in our current election, if elected Barak would be the 5th youngest president ever and if elected, McCain would be the oldest president ever elected (ahead of Ronald Regan).

I’ve noticed that the largest demographic in the US (baby boomers) are also the most conservative; I don’t think many people would argue that point.

Over the next few elections, as the baby boomers start to stop voting and more younger people start to vote, we’re going to see a serious swing in how our elections are handled. People are getting tired of the same old stuff that we get every 2, 4, and 6 years from the people who supposedly represent us. Votes are going to become more in-tune with “today”. Today’s technology, today’s politics, today’s world. They’re asking questions where the older generations took things for granted. Generation X started all of this but we were labeled as “whiners” and “babies” who didn’t know what we want. Now, though “generation Y / the MTV generation” are becoming more and more noticeable in today’s political world.

I think a good example of what could happen is the “Velvet Revolution” in the former nation of Czechoslovakia. High school and college students staged peaceful protests and gained popularity with their nation. It took only weeks for their communist government to step down and make way for elections which held until the country peacefully sprint into the Czech Republic and the Slovak Republic.

No, I’m not saying split the US into two, but peaceful protests and demonstrations can get the attention of governments, small and large. Unfortunately, too many people in the US want to turn peaceful protests into violence. Very rarely do we have a large peaceful protest stay that way, there are always bad eggs out there who want to promote violence and use innocent protests to get their own agenda going (which always ends in police intervening and ending what was a peaceful protest).

I also see this accelerating if McCain is elected. Conservatives usually don’t protest and fight, liberals do. We will see these changes coming faster and when they come, most of us won’t know what happened.

What changes? I think by 2020 (yes, only 3 elections away, 2012, 2016, and 2020) we’re going to see a strong representation by non-traditional parties (Republican and Democrat). We’re also going to see the promotion of unity (just look at the “divided we fail” ads). Right now, I think the worst part of our government is the political parties. The fact that we have just two and you will rarely see people working together from different sides. As other options come up and gain in popularity, we’ll see more cooperation between the sites.

I also think we’re going to see more politicians listening to us and not just spewing out what we want to hear. In the beginning (2016 and on) we’re going to see a lot of short term senators and representatives. They tell us one thing and then do another, they won’t get voted back in. As they catch on that people won’t take the smoke screens and stretched truths, they’ll start to stick with their word and deliver with what they promised us.

We have the tools now, Web 2.0 (interactive web). Anyone with an internet connection can get a blog and write their own stories, rants, and agenda. More advanced people can get sites and forums up to promote communities. The younger generations are quite adept at these tools while the older generations are having a harder time adapting. Who knows, maybe this will be the medium where the new revolution happens. Not on the streets but on our computers in our blogs and forums.

Politicians, politics, and political supports are hypocits.

Author: admin  |  Category: Politics, Rant  |  Comments (0)  |  Add Comment

It’s quite interesting how politics can be as hypocritical as possible. It is OK for one candidate to do something but not OK for the other candidate to do the same thing (one is doing it because “he would be a good guy in office” and the other is doing it “because he wants the votes”.

Perfect example, recently both candidates (Barak Obama and John McCain) have said that now is the time to try to help people in the gulf coast in preparations for hurricane Gustav. Now is the time to make donations, help friends and family in need, communities to work together, and for “us to act like Americans”. It is a great thing for both candidates to day.

So why is it that a lot of people one minute would say “See, this is why Obama would be a great president, he’s being proactive about this” but then a few minutes later they’ll say “McCain is only doing this to look good and/or get votes” (and I’ve seen people say the same with the candidates reversed). So, it is OK for the candidate that you like to show this kind of support but not OK for the other?

People complain about their (the politician’s) inconsistencies but then come out with inconsistent statements like this. People, that is hypocritical. How dare people complain like this and moan about politicians’ inconsistencies when the complainers themselves are inconsistent in their support.

The reasoning? Political parties. Most people who debate politics are very biased towards their on party and their party’s agenda and ignore the other sides strengths. Personally, I hate political parties. I’d say get rid of them, we don’t need them. This political bickering is what slows down our progress (along with lawyers trying to find loopholes to exploit and/or close). Just imagine, people might actually have to research who they vote into office as opposed to voting strictly by R, D, and I / other.

Breed speciific legislation – a double edged sword.

Author: admin  |  Category: Animals, Politics  |  Comment (1)  |  Add Comment

I consider breed specific legislation a serious problem here in the US. It is a very sharp double-edged sword.

On one hand, legitimate and responsible breeders and owners are kept from owning the breed in question thus reducing the number of people trying to improve the breed. With the reduction of responsible owners and breeders you have a much higher percentage of irresponsible owners and breeders thus making a bad situation worse.

Now, this breed that is labeled as a bad breed will get nothing but bad press from the bad owners and breeders making it seem like there is need for stronger legislation against the breed.

And it spirals downward in that direction.

On the other side, instead of the bad part of the breeders and owners into this breed, they now get into other breeds making them a “bad breed” in the eyes of the people who write these laws.

Perfect example:

Pit bulls have a very bad reputation in the US. I don’t think anyone would argue this point. From what I’ve also seen, a majority of the pit bull owners and breeders are irresponsible (note: not all). Pit bulls are also the choice dogs for dog fighting.

So, states, counties, and cities are banning pit bulls making it harder for these people to own them and the few that do, are less likely to be responsible with their breedings and ownerships.

There are a lot of people now who can’t get this breed so they want to continue with their dog fighting and irresponsible ownership so what do they do? They get into another breed. Shepherds, bulldogs, Dobermans, rottweilers, and so on. Now, there is a more dominant bad element with these breeds. So what happens? The politicians start to make legislation against these breeds. I’m already seeing places ban shepherds (one of the most loyal breeds out there, if well bred, trained, and owned).

The solution? That’s easy. Stricter guidelines for breeders and certifications for dogs (allow dogs to be bred that meet a standard) and require all dog owners to go though at least one set of training classes with their dogs. Don’t discriminate, educate people on dogs, how they act, how they thing and so on.

People need to wake up and see that banning specific dog breeds is not the solution.

George W’s War

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This came to me in an email so I cannot cite it’s source but it does put a perspective on things.

No one likes war. War is a horrific affair, bloody and expensive. Sending our men and women into battle to perhaps die or be maimed is an unconscionable thought.

Yet some wars need to be waged, and someone needs to lead. The Citizenry and Congress are often ambivalent or largely opposed to any given war. It’s up to our leader to convince them. That’s why we call the leader “Commander in Chief.”

George W.’s war was no different. There was lots of resistance to it. Many in Congress were vehemently against the idea. The Commander in Chief had to lobby for legislative approval.

Along with supporters, George W. used the force of his convictions, the power of his title and every ounce of moral suasion he could muster to rally support. He had to assure Congress and the public that the war was morally justified, winnable and affordable. Congress eventually came around and voted overwhelmingly to wage war.

George W. then lobbied foreign governments for support. But in the end, only one European nation helped us. The rest of the world sat on its hands and watched.

After a few quick victories, things started to go bad. There were many dark days when all the news was discouraging. Casualties began to mount.

It became obvious that our forces were too small. Congress began to drag its feet about funding the effort.

Many who had voted to support the war just a few years earlier were beginning to speak against it and accuse the Commander in Chief of misleading them. Many critics began to call him incompetent, an idiot and even a liar. Journalists joined the negative chorus with a vengeance.

As the war entered its fourth year, the public began to grow weary of the conflict and the casualties. George W.’s popularity plummeted. Yet through it all, he stood firm, supporting the troops and endorsing the struggle.

Without his unwavering support, the war would have surely ended, then and there, in overwhelming and total defeat.

At this darkest of times, he began to make some changes. More troops were added and trained. Some advisers were shuffled, and new generals installed.

Then, unexpectedly and gradually, things began to improve. Now it was the enemy that appeared to be growing weary of the lengthy conflict and losing support. Victories began to come, and hope returned.

Many critics in Congress and the press said the improvements were just George W.’s good luck. The progress, they said, would be temporary. He knew, however, that in warfare good fortune counts.

Then, in the unlikeliest of circumstances and perhaps the most historic example of military luck, the enemy blundered and was resoundingly defeated. After six long years of war, the Commander in Chief basked in a most hard-fought victory.

So on that historic day, in a place called Yorktown, a satisfied George W. sat upon his beautiful white horse and accepted the surrender of Lord Cornwallis, effectively ending the Revolutionary War on Oct. 19, 1781.

Endangered animal habitats will be, well, endangered

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If the Bush administration has their way it will be up to agencies who conduct projects like highway development, commercial and residential development, and so on, whether or not their projects will endanger the habitats of endangered species.

That’s right, the people who stand to profit the most from these projects will decide if animals are in danger from the projects or not. Sure, the way our government has been going they won’t let a thing like MONEY get in the way of protecting endangered species. What next? Allowing pedophiles decide if they should be allowed near children or not?

Seriously, this is a bad move. We need to protect our planet and legislation like this will surely do the opposite by allowing the destruction of animal habitats for the benefit of a few already wealthy politicians and developers. Because of legislation like the endangered species act stopped the over-development of places like the Florida Everglades which has proven to be highly important to the local ecosystem. Now, we will be able to witness the destruction of such species on the brink like wolves and the buffalo. Nah, we don’t need them, that superhighway is more important. Oh, and since we’ll have the superhighway, we might as well build a 500 acre mega mall with a 1500 acre parking lot.

Freedom of Relgion – under attack or freedom of favoritism?

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The Sun Sentinel reported a story about a very nice home in an upscale community, and the adjacent lot, are “tax free” due to the religious exemption. For Joe Average, this property would cost about $64,000 in taxes a year.

If this property was a church I wouldn’t mind as much (even though Jesus said something along the lines of “pay Caesar the money owed to him” referring to taxes). But it is not. The Sun Sentinel describes the property being used as:

“Church representatives say they use the property to house missionaries working in Haiti and as a home for the church founder”

That’s right; the founders personal home is tax free due to the religious exemption.

Here is the kicker. We have some friends in our Pagan / Wiccan groups who tried to claim religious exemption but were denied by the county since “Paganism and Wicca are not recognized religions”. In other words, only Christian, Jewish, and Muslim places of worship are “recognized”.

I guess someone packed us up and made us leave the USA without our knowledge (is Florida still part of the US?). I thought we had the “freedom of religion”? Hmm..

Oh, wait, we have this little document called “The United States Constitution” and the very first Amendment is:

“Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the government for a redress of grievances.”

Being the first Amendment (well, Amendment I for all of you law people) means it was the fist thing that came to the writers’ minds. It was the most important part of this document. If not, it would have been further down the list.

So, the Broward county officials feel that they can override the most significant part of the founding document of this nation by creating laws that benefit one religion over another.

Watch out America, our “Freedom of Religion” is under attack also.