Wednesday, January 27, 2010


Today we are digging deeper into the meaning of work. What could be more basic? What can someone possibly add to this inquiry? Turns out: a lot. What Jack Miles is to theology, Walid Shoebat to Bible prophecy, Malcolm Gladwell to perception -- i.e. a groundbreaker -- Matthew B. Crawford is to work.

Yes, that stuff we do each and every day. In SHOP CLASS AS SOULCRAFT he challenges our basic assumptions about blue collar vs white collar work. He goes on to to tackle bigger issues of meaning, satisfaction and community.

The writing style is a joy. One section he is the uber-academic (he has a PhD from the uber-University of Chicago, what can be more academic?), the next is talking like an earthy mechanic (he is one of those too, a motorcycle shop owner in his real life).

Not too be missed.

At the very least you'll have a new appreciation for the guy who fixes your pipes or tunes your car. And maybe you'll steer your son or daughter to consider ALL of their options. Here's a range of hourly rates for plumbers in my area: 138, 156, 172. Compare that with Best Buy's starting rate of some $8 to $10 per hour. That's a 15:1 ratio. Like they say, "do the math."

Friday, January 22, 2010

This web page tells you everything you need to know about USA financial picture

USA debt clock. We call your attention especially to the harrowing bottom line of tsunami debt soon to break on shore and wipe everything out in its path: unfunded liabilities for Social Security, Medicare, and Rx drugs. At this writing, an incomprehensible $107 trillion. Worth bookmarking.

We desperately need new representation in all levels of government by those who understand and can solve this massive and accumulated problem. There are a few, men like Ron Paul, Rand Paul (his son). Does the recent election in Mass. portend a turning................?

Sunday, January 17, 2010

Japan -- bankrupt

You hear a lot about Uncle's deficits, and how bad off Euroland is (Greece, Ireland, Portugal, Spain, etc.), but not as much about Japan. They have been, shall we say, "under the radar." Here is a new screenshot of the radar, however....