According to Mish Shedlock, the Federal Reserve owns one third of U.S. mortgages.

Did Fascist dreamers ever imagine our government owning 1/3 of the U.S. mortgage market?

Two trillion dollars of mortgage backed securities are now owned by the Federal Reserve.

I’ve been using the internet to keep an eye on real estate prices all across our nation since about 2016. After the Great Recession, U.S. real estate lost around 30% of its value. To stem that deflation, investors started buying and trading properties, increasing the property price each time. Since then, some markets have tripled their prices. Real estate values are inflated more than anyone would expect if you consider the declining number of Americans who can afford to buy a house because of insecure employment and falling wages.

The absence of bargains and the missing deflation after numerous foreclosures in real estate assets has happened because investors have purchased properties with low interest loans, treating America’s home portfolio as just another capital asset. They’ve done cosmetic improvements and resold that property at an inflated price: often double the price before improvements were made. The whole real estate market has been inflated into a bubble.

If you look at foreclosure real estate online, there’s a suggested price that is usually significantly higher than what should be expected for properties that sometimes need significant repairs. How can “As is” properties be sold at such a high price?

This seems like a crime to me. How can the American monetary system be used for low interest loans to investors AND be cycled into real estate mortgage backed securities in order to maintain those same high prices? Is it any wonder that there are so many homeless Americans? Property taxes are kept at higher rates because of this. Americans can’t get an affordable real estate price in this rigged market that ignores the market mechanisms of supply and demand. A real market, unlike our current real estate market, is affected by what people want and by what they can afford.

Shame on the Federal Reserve. It’s time to close it down. It’s time to make derivatives like mortgage backed securities illegal. It’s time to restore interest rates to around 5%, their historical average. Higher interest rates would end casino stock market gambling and allow people to save for retirement.

If you want to understand more about out-of-bounds actions by our government and how they have come about including banking deregulation, monetarism, corruption in the federal government, and how politics and economics act together to influence our opportunities in the United States, buy a copy of Political Catsup with Economy Fries available at Amazon.com.

Here’s the source citation on mortgage backed securities owned by the Federal Reserve: Mish Shedlock, The Street, http://www.thestreet.com/mishtalk/economics/the-fed-now-owns-nearly-one-third-of-all-us-mortgages, accessed 14 September 2020.

What stands between you and getting ahead with a good job?

This is a longer post because what I’m talking about is complicated. I hope that you will stay with me to the end.

What stands between you and getting ahead with a good job? Here’s a list that may seem familiar to you:

(1) The U.S. has a tax structure that undermines small businesses as compared with large corporations.
(2) An expiration date has now been added to your college degree. If you got it ten years ago, it’s expired.
(3) Covid-19 mandates now elevate on-line buying over in-person shopping.
(4) HR algorithms can disqualify you for an unknown reason.
(5) There’s an economic demand gap so that people have less disposable income to buy a product if you should try to sell them one.
(6) Long-term unemployed people need not apply because they are disqualified; a small business owner may be seen as similar to the long-term unemployed.
(7) Universities in the U.S. have expensive inflated tuition as compared with your last degree’s cost and some people with new degrees also can’t get work.
(8) Volatility in the workplace means that mergers and acquisitions can displace you after you find a job–getting another one is your problem.
(9) Unfair labor discrimination can happen because employers don’t have to tell you why they don’t want to hire you when they post an overly specific job description.
(10) Real earnings continue to fall in the atmosphere of dollar overprinting by the Federal Reserve.

During my life so far, I’ve watched computers become more important. Every business has to use them from a mechanic that fixes your car and his diagnostic tool to a computer data base that holds medical records or criminal records. Computers have changed the way stocks are traded and how banking transactions happen from automatic check readers to digital transfers of money. Computers have affected how pilots fly their planes. Computers are essential to communications that happen in e-mails, in text messaging and now having a cell phone is becoming an essential requirement “for security reasons” when you apply for a job.

But somehow, with all these computer aids, people are losing their ability to trust each other. They are also losing their ability to get ahead by finding a good job. The whole job application process has been changed with computers so that you don’t get to meet anyone at the company where you apply, and you may never hear from them after you apply for a job. Sometimes it looks like unfair decisions are being made that affect your employment. The person who made an algorithm that is excluding you is someone you will never meet. If you can’t get work, you are just invisible in the job hunting process and your desire for work is easy to ignore. There’s no appeal or any kind of a remedy as your opportunities are going from bad to worse.

Some say that the long-term unemployed will never work again. What a waste. And now, the economy has come to a mandated stop. Why is that?

Back in the 1990’s when people told me that computers were taking over and becoming essential, I had doubts that it was possible for computers to do that. Why? Because of Moore’s Law. According to Moore’s Law, computer processing capacity and processing speed had been and would continue to double every two years. This is an exponential rate of growth. But human beings are not capable of sustaining prolonged exponenial growth. Even when you can hire the cheapest labor in the world.

A while ago, the rate of processing speed growth started to slow down. Some say that because of physics-based processor limitations computers are now reaching their processing expansion limit. But I think that our society went past our biological and societal limits a while ago.

If you look at my list of obstacles to finding a good job some of them are related to computers causing an increase in complexity. Politicians have been willing to embrace that growing complexity. The idea of limitlessness was once so appealing.

Global trading policies that once provided more generous tax advantages for doing business abroad are still hurting American workers who can’t find a job at home because our labor landscape has been so altered by outsourcing policies. President Trump changed our global trading policies in order to help American workers during his first term in office, but corporations have grown accustomed to large profits from low labor costs abroad; they don’t want to invest in American labor. There’s a lot of complexity in global trade and knowing how Americans will come out in the end is and has always been pretty impossible to do. Potential profits in the short-term motivated Congress’s policies to enhance global trade opportunities. The long-term consequences haven’t been and aren’t being addressed.

What about the talk that all of us have heard about the value of an on-going education? When your degree is disqualified after 10 years, it undermines its value and your value as an employee and this devaluation of you makes computers seem more valuable in comparison. Wages keep falling. New algorithms have come into play for your job applications, “Apply on-line, it’s easy,” we heard, and now there’s new cell phone security protocols. Doesn’t all of that ease of application make you blame yourself as you face day after day without the prospect of a gainful job? But who is really to blame for the number of unemployed Americans? There certainly aren’t enough good jobs in the U.S. for the number of people who want a good job. And there are obstacles to “pulling yourself up by your own bootstraps.”

Why did media and governments around the world engineer a global panic over covid-19 when we have effective drugs to treat it? Was the purpose to transfer more money to a centralized global banking system and simultaneously stimulate on-line purchasing while people stay at home with not enough to do? Who is winning from that strategy and where will it lead us? We should find out.

Why is it ok to replace an HR person with an algorithm? Is it to save the salary you would otherwise pay to a person while also circumventing the rules of hiring? I think that long-term unemployed people shouldn’t be blamed for being unemployed in an atmosphere where people are commonly displaced from employment by mergers and acquisitions. And job descriptions list so many qualifications that even well educated people can’t qualify. Someone with two university degrees, suddenly isn’t qualified to be a shop keeper at a manufacturing facility. Are they really unqualified? Has it become possible only to hire people for exactly the same job over and again or nothing? What exclusion protocols are in play? Is there no prospect for a worker to try a new challenge of their abilities in a brand new area? I hear that credentials are less important, but job descriptions don’t show that.

If computers are too expensive for society to afford their constant need for processor evolution and they’ve now reached their processing limit it doesn’t prove that people are worthless. I’m sick of hearing that people’s jobs are all going to be replaced by a robot. Maybe the computer revolution has just hit the wall and its constant improvements in processing have stopped for now.

Recently, I was trying to discern if there are any new manufacturing jobs coming our way. For a long time, I’ve hoped that fusion energy could revolutionize our economy by providing cheaper energy. When I checked on government expenditures for fusion energy research, it was seriously outpaced by government research into artificial intelligence. I wonder, has our government decided to let the computer finally save our economy? With a room temperature superconductor, processing speeds could increase and actually, LENR fusion technology may be able to create a room temperature superconductor. Is LENR providing the change needed for a faster processor? Shhh….if that’s happening, it’s probably a big secret. Even if there were a super-processor, I’m not sure that computers can save us. Maybe we have to save ourselves with more accountability in politics. Vote. We also need more accountability in hiring and transparency in the use of hiring algorithms. It’s easier sometimes to see what isn’t working and stop that before you know what else to try. Computers have circumvented oversight and that’s damaging the people who make up our society.

If you want to learn more about how the economy and our political system are entertwined, buy a copy of Political Catsup with Economy Fries at Amazon.com.

Corporations scared each other in 1933 under the National Recovery Administration.

I’ve been enjoying some summer reading of Hard Times by Studs Terkel. I came across an interview he did with Gardiner C. Means, who was a member of the Consumer Advisory Board of the NRA (National Recovery Administration) in 1933 during the Great Depression. He was enthusiastic about the work that he did on the Consumer Advisory Board, the National Resources Planning Board, and the Budget Bureau. There had been a consequential storm of deflation in wages and prices that scared people and the NRA tried to bring wages back up and bring prices up by acting as a bridge between consumers, workers and corporations. Gardiner thought that the NRA served to make an essential improvement but he acknowledged that it was necessary to abolish it after a short time. Why?

” Things had been going downgrade–worse, worse, worse. More than anything else, the NRA changed the climate. It served its purpose. Had it lasted longer, it would not have worked in the public interest…Had the NRA continued, it would have meant dangerously diminishing the role of the market in limiting prices. You see, there was little Government regulation of the NRA. The Government handed industry over to industry to run, and offered some minor protection to others in the form of Labor and Consumer Advisory Boards. Industry became scared of its own people. Too much power was being delegated to the code authorities. It was business’ fear of business rather than business’ fear of Government…You might say, NRA’s greatest contribution to our society is that it proved that self-regulation by industry doesn’t work.” (1)

The New Deal was when neoliberal partnerships between the federal government and businesses were being tried out in the United States. Today we live with neoliberalism in a later stage after eighty four years of neoliberalism in the United States if you count the beginning of neoliberalism here as starting with the end of WWII.

The same problems erupt today in government partnerships with corporations as what Gardiner commented on under the NRA. Today, there are problems with prices not matching market demand. The market can’t limit costs because the market mechanism has been ignored by the powerful. This is true in the real estate market, in the cost of a university education, in the cost of automobiles, in the cost of pharmaceuticals and medical treatments, in the inflated stock market. There are also now added problems with tyranny growing as can be seen with covid-19 mandates and Obamacare mandates. We see fewer jobs. We see more monopolies. We see lower wages. We see falling demand for products but a huge effort by the Federal Reserve to prevent deflation that would correct higher prices than the market can support. Now we see more monetary malfeasance with printing dollars not supported by production which is leading to a lower dollar value–an effort to create inflation. We see an added problem of endless pointless bickering among politicians and an appearance of corruption. Corporations are becoming scared of each other, scared of government, scared of their own employees.

Neoliberalism is failing us. Again. If you want to learn more about political ideologies over American history and if you want to understand the way our economy is affected by political policies buy a copy of Political Catsup with Economy Fries available at Amazon.com.

(1) Studs Terkel, Hard Times: An Oral History of the Great Depression, The New Press, New York, London, copyright 1971, 1986, 247-250.

Unplug and empower yourself.

Every moment of your life belongs to you to invest whatever effort you wish whether to help yourself or another person. You have power to order your free time.

For a whole day, or a whole week, or a whole year, or even perhaps for seven years (I did that a long time ago), unplug your television. What will you do with your time?

Television is full of anxiety producing jeopardy that drive the plots in police stories, medical examiner investigations, reality shows, remodeling shows and many others. Instead of passively watching stories about what tv characters are doing, you could create and write a story with characters that you may begin to care about. There’s no deadline when you take pleasure in creating a story all on your own. What will your story show you about your own experiences and opinions? Will you learn a new way to appreciate your own creativity? Will you learn to appreciate the knack of story-telling that others have entertained you with for most of your life?

Maybe instead, you will want to investigate a topic of interest like symmetry in physics, or art or some other branch of learning. You could look into emergent properties in complex adaptive systems. Our economy is a complex adaptive system. So is the politic. And social networks. Would you like to avoid being manipulated by social networks? Stop visiting them and start investigating them by learning how more social networking isn’t the same as a little bit of it. How can a social network create crowd effects? How can it affect your opinions and beliefs?

You could instead design and build a new piece of furniture or sew a new duvet cover or make (really) almost anything. Paint a picture. Write a poem. Write a letter.
Your pent up potential is wanting to be set free. Grab some courage and face your world of open possibilities. There’s no telling where it may take you if you make something, learn something, or do something new.

If you want to learn about how our political and economic system works to create or limit new opportunities for you, get a copy of Political Catsup with Economy Fries: Liberalism, Pragmatism, Opportunism, available at Amazon.com. Learn all about political ideologies and the people who invented them. Learn about the policies that affect American outcomes over history.

The Lion, the Tin Man and the Scarecrow personify how we feel.

I’ve been watching reporting about the Federal Reserve that tells me that it’s printing trillions of dollars and not telling us in any kind of audit where all that fake fiat money is going as it robs us of our savings by devaluing our currency. It was once considered treason to debase the currency and it still should be. There is no excuse for overprinting currency in the way that is happening everyday now in billions of dollars. In fact it is an attack on the monetary system that we all rely upon. It’s an attack against savers… people who put money away for when they were old and can’t work anymore (and what will happen to them with no money when they are too old to work?). It’s an attack on all of us in our family and in our community.

It’s time to shut down the Federal Reserve. It’s time to end the experiments of the Federal Reserve and to stop experimenting with the monetary system.

Some don’t want to shut down the Federal Reserve because they imagine that it has solutions to economic problems. They pretend the Federal Reserve can fix the economy. Pretending that the Federal Reserve is fixing anything ignores the fact that the fix is already in, everywhere you care to look.

Look at the shut down economy–that’s part of the fix. Look at the requirement to have a cell phone in order to get a job through a text alert…that’s part of the fix. The ongoing destruction of social security and medicare through government debt and fiscal abuse, that’s part of the fix. Social media rage, that’s part of the fix. Algorithms that exclude people from employment and never explain why they can’t have a job, that’s part of the fix. The spread of despair as people face overwhelming economic poverty, that’s part of the fix. On-line tele-medicine to destroy doctor’s private practices and close down their offices during the covid-19 scare, that’s part of the fix. Leveraging people’s retirement stocks in the stock market along with Federal Reserve stock purchases that allow night-time stock selling and daytime buying, that’s part of the fix (it’s the magic money machine). People in the news crow about 5G being a good invention while others worry that it may harm all living things, but 5G is also part of the fix. Mergers and acquisitions that displace American workers combined with importing foreign workers, that’s part of the fix. Overly specific job description and absurd claims that American workers aren’t the best candidate for all kinds of jobs, that’s part of the fix. The requirement to wear a mask and stay away from other people may be nothing more or less than just another part of the fix.

Is another Great Depression also part of the Federal Reserve’s fix? It looks like it is.

The Wizard of Oz was written in response to the Great Depression. A good resource to read about how people experienced the Great Depression is Hard Times by Studs Terkel. This book explores people’s recollections about the Great Depression in interviews conducted well after it was part of the past. Interviews show that the Great Depression affected groups of people in different ways depending upon their class and their economic resources. Some people had to struggle into a new profession by actually inventing it. Some just gave up. Some starved to death. People felt all kinds of different ways. Some felt afraid like the Lion who believed that if he could just find some courage, if he were only brave enough everything would be ok. Some felt broken-hearted, like the Tin Man, not knowing how to help anyone in order to prevent suffering, or how to find a way to love again towards happiness. Some felt, like the Scarecrow, that if only they were smart enough to understand the whole world they could fix it and life would somehow make sense again.

How are you feeling? Do you feel like the Lion, the Tin-Man and the Scarecrow? Do you want to let the Federal Reserve keep fixing us? If you want to learn more about the specific policies that our government has been following to get us into this fix, get a copy of Political Catsup with Economy Fries and Amazon.com.

Are you happy enough with the response to SARS2 to do this again with SARS3?

I’m taking a survey. What do you think? Was it the right choice to isolate healthy people and close businesses in response to SARS2 (covid-19)? If there were another novel coronavirus of unknown infectious potential, say SARS3, should we follow this policy set again? Send me a comment and tell me what you think.

Addendum: See this source about false positive test results discovered in Conneticut testing for covid-19. The test that tested with so many false positives is one that has been widely used across the U.S.:

Conneticut State Department of Public Health, Press Release, July 20th, 2020 https://portal.ct.gov/DPH/Press-Room/Press-Releases—2020/Connecticut-State-Public-Health-Lab-Discovers-False-Positive-COVID-19-Test-Results, accessed 22nd July 2020.

Political Catsup with Economy Fries can help you to understand our complicated world of politics and economics while providing a well researched and carefully cited history of our nation to help you understand what’s happening now. Get your copy of Political Catsup with Economy Fries available at Amazon.com.

When more money doesn’t matter anymore.

My friend sold her house in March of this year, 2020. She got her asking price for it because some investors were bidding in search of a stable investment along with a few other people who wanted to live in her house and weren’t just looking for a place to park their money. The person who bought her house enabled my friend to get a townhouse in a larger city so that she could get a job in her profession which would provide her an income.

It has been her fourth move in the last nine years. She didn’t prefer her 90’s era townhouse in a larger city to the house she left behind in a smaller city, but she had to move in order to remain employed. She’s middle aged now and she has to remain employed in her established career because it’s so hard to get work in a new profession when you are older. She has wondered about going back to school to learn something new but she decided she probably couldn’t find work doing something new even if she invested in more education. She can’t increase her income by going back to school. School no longer offers a way for her to get ahead. The value in university schooling has declined for her and also for others who got an education but can’t find a job.

You can look on-line anytime to appreciate the high price of real estate across America. Everytime the Federal Reserve lowers interest rates since the Great Recession, housing prices in the U.S. have gone up. Even middle-sized communities offer no respite to high prices as compared with bigger cities. Even foreclosures are listed at high prices; even so when the property has been damaged. Retirees can’t trade a large house to buy a smaller house for less money. All houses that I see when I look on-line of every size and type are expensive now. Empty lots for sale are expensive too. The value in housing has been damaged by capital buyers in an easy-money low-interest system. There are no bargains.

If you imagine the future of real estate in a slow economy with high healthcare costs, high costs in tuition, high cost cars, high cost food, in an unstable economy with periodic crashes and less employment there aren’t likely to be buyers that can afford the use-value of a house and living in a community. It’s still desireable but no longer is it affordable. Many ordinary people can’t afford the high cost and their employment isn’t secure enough to risk a mortgage. Investors may be all that will remain of buyers in real estate. Even if investors trade houses with each other, the use value without a real market of family buyers is disappearing. Homelessness is rising. This is the new-normal economy.

Sometimes the new-normal economy has appeared to me as a poker game where the stakes are always high and the player across the table has way more money than me and no betting limits. I know the idea with poker is to win a big pot of money with a lucky hand of cards but if you can’t leave the game and you have to continue playing, you will eventually lose to the player with more money to bet who can stay in the game longer. That’s bad enough. But it’s worse than that. The player across the table can rely on the Federal Reserve to lend him an unlimited amount of money while my smaller amount of money is worth less every moment as the Treasury continues bringing more money into existence beyond the amount of money generated by GDP. Because the Federal Reserve has kept investors flush with money, some have bought out companies and fired the workers who take an income hit while they are unemployed. They have a lot of time to play poker but no money flow.

The number of living-wage jobs has fallen across America since the Great Recession when the Federal Reserve doubled down on their financial experimenting. Shall I sell my house in order to get some capital? My house seems to be worth more on paper than it once was. Investors bidded up the price of housing. But dollars when I cash out are worth much less than they once were when I earned them. And dollars can’t help me when they are worth less every day.

I read an article last week. Here’s a quote from Imprimis, with Heather Mac Donald writing in an article titled “Four Months of Unprecedented Government Malfeasance,”:

“Capital is accumulated effort and innovation, the sum of human achievement and imagination. Its creation is the aim of civilization.”

The word capital can mean more than one thing, according to the Dictionary of Banking and Finance. It can mean the money and assets needed to establish a business, for example a million dollars to buy a franchise with some of that money being used to buy equipment, some to hire workers and other money used for the franchise permission. A second meaning of the word capital is the money that people or companies own which they can use to invest.

What Heather McDonald said is not true if she is speaking of the second meaning where money and capital are terms being used interchangeably. Capital in the second meaning of money people own, is only a means of exchange. It isn’t the same as what people or societies make and do. Even if you mean the means to acquire assets when you say capital-like-money, capital in that instance is only the means to buy an asset or hire a person. Even if you buy a factory to make widgets, its isn’t the capital that makes them. Even if you buy robots to make the widgets, someone has to program and mind the robots.

In fact, as we live in this neoliberally broken economy, it is harder to use capital to make worthwhile exchanges at all or even use it to buy assets with a stable value. Capital is becoming worth less as it loses its mojo. This loss of mojo has happened after the Federal Reserve’s experimentation with our monetary system.

The Federal Reserve, in the Greenspan Put, put a backstop against investor’s losses in high risk capital markets. They decided to use tax dollars to backstop losses and guarantee that investors could keep betting with or without losses. Investing was considered to be the energy that turned the wheels of the economy. It was thought that the value of money could be kept high by the constant trading and buying of capital–capital like a commodity, like gold once was.

In the managed gold money system that FDR put into play, gold partially backed the value of the dollar. That was before our current fiat money system of dollars without any gold backing which we have had since the Nixon Shock. Investors in the managed gold money system maintained the value of gold by trading it. They agreed to buy enough of it to maintain its price. But gold as a traded commodity has a limited supply and the supply of capital is not limited.

It isn’t really possible to make the analogy between gold markets and capital markets working in the same way because the value of an unlimited commodity tends to decrease. Also, deciding to back investment risk with tax dollars caused an additional problem beyond dollars losing value. It undid the need for caution when investing. It made malinvesting seem of no consequence to risk takers by externalizing the consequences to tax payers. But wasting any resource has consequences for everyone. The economy we live in produces less and can accomplish less right now than it could before. Individuals have fewer opportunities. More money can’t change that.

If you want to learn more about our political and economic history and predicaments buy a copy of Political Catsup with Economy Fries available at Amazon.com.

How does covid-19 phobia resemble antisemitism?

Part of my summer reading is a book by Hannah Arrendt titled The Origins of Totalitarianism, published originally in 1968. I decided to buy it after press coverage about covid-19 became fraught with exagerrations and the arguments about staying at home became strange.

I have only begun to read what promises to be an intellectually honest examination of totalitarianism from a well educated Jewish intellectual who lived through that horrible time in history when the Nazis tried to take over the whole world, waging war against all resistance. The volume that I have is a compilation of three books, the first on antisemitism, the second on imperialism and the third on totalitarianism. I’ve just read the preludes to all three.

According to Arrendt, attacks on Jews under Hitler’s fascism were outrageous in that they were unexpected and horrible and made no sense. Jews had assimilated into society across Europe and they were part of everyday life in many nations, participating as workers and property owners. After WWII, several histories claimed that antisemitism accompanied life in Europe all the way from the Middle Ages but Arrendt states that this is a false history that was assembled after WWII.

As a Jewish woman who aspired to becoming a scholar from a young age, she remembers that only crackpots cared about a person’s Jewish heritage. The commonplace of Jews living across Europe was exploited by Hitler to take away Jewish economic opportunity and give that opportunity to others. He used hurting Jews as a fulcrum for his power. No one expected that. The large numbers of Jewish Europeans made his final solution one that he could apply everywhere. It was outrageous, didn’t make sense, was murder on a gigantic scale and moved economic fortunes into new pockets while terrorizing everyone. It politically disempowered people who deserved to belong and cast them out as a demonstration of total power.

Why does this remind me of press responses to covid-19? First of all, illnesses from microbes have been common across all nations for all of history. They are widespread, much as Jews were widespread across many nations during WWII. To single out one microbe and make it a mascot-excuse for controlling people’s movements and choices doesn’t make sense–like how attacking Jews didn’t make sense. The original excuse of preventing hospitals from being overwhelmed by a new virus by isolating healthy people has been replaced with an argument that no one can be safe in public because of covid-19. This is in spite of the low threat that covid-19 poses for most people. Press coverage has been phony and has failed to enhance anyone’s understanding, appearing instead to be more like fear enhancing propaganda. It’s not science. Over history, isolating sick people has been how quarantine works. Isolating healthy people is a new strategy that has actually failed to prevent the spread of the virus.

Does isolating people across the globe because of covid-19 make sense? Not now. Is there a reason to single out this illness when the CDC says that the overall death rate in the U.S. hasn’t exceeded what was seen last year at this time? No. Is it outrageous? Yes. It’s not anything like Hitler’s plan for mass murder but it is an effort to control people and prohibit their lives in specific ways that don’t respect natural rights.

A long time ago, a psychologist warned me about being conned with “if” statements in everyday life. In philosophy, you can use if/then statements to make arguments. But prefacing a real world generalization by “if” usually means that you are departing from reality and entering the world of fantasy, where any idea may be deemed valid even when it’s contradicted by real experience. This morning I heard a radio announcer say that if covid-19 can be carried by children and make even one child sick then it isn’t safe for public school to go into session this fall. But wait. Illness often makes children sick. It is a commonplace happening. There’s no reason to keep schools closed now that it has become clear that the threat from covid-19 has passed from being huge threat to becoming a small one.

Is the resemblance between covid-19 phobia and the outrageousness of antisemitism just a case of one absurdity resembling another? Is the additional absurdity of arbitrary declarations calling people’s jobs essential vs. non-essential another resemblance because it singles out one group for economic hardships? A haunting detail of commentary from Arrendt is the idea that totalitarian systems get more power by destroying their economy. Ever since the Great Recession, parts of our economy have been destroyed. Homelessness increased after the Great Recession and it is thought to be increasing after the covid-19 economic downturn.

Let’s keep our eyes and ears and hearts open to a better understanding about covid-19 than the one being handed to us in the press. Let’s recognize that arguments about the continued necessity of social distancing are not credible and that human rights are being abused by our government when it restricts people’s freedoms.

If you want to learn more about politics in the world and how economics and politics combine in everyone’s life to affect opportunities, buy a copy of Political Catsup with Economy Fries available at Amazon.com.

Press hype implies no end in sight for covid-19.

Press coverage continues to blather about increasing virus risks.

It’s time to notice that these arguments aren’t rational.

There’s no science behind them.

There’s no scientific method in the definition of death or even illness by covid-19/ SARS-2/novel coronavirus.

A person who has antibodies to the novel coronavirus is counted as a new infection and not an old one.

Tests have never been reliable.

Multiple tests each count as a new positive case of covid-19 even when they come from the same patient.

If you have already gotten over an infection with SARS-2, no one will say that you should stop being afraid.

Quarantine powers will never end according to some.

The emergency will continue screaming into the future.

It’s up to you to decide what you think about this.

How much influence do you want these fear-managers to have over you?

Buy a copy of Political Catsup with Economy Fries available at Amazon.com to get some new insights into politics, economics and what they mean for you.

Covid-19 shows us once again why we should keep government out of healthcare.

Happy Independence Day! Today, I sit in my office reviewing our recent history since Dec 2019 when I first heard of the novel coronavirus breaking out in Wuhan. Many months have gone by and what I notice is how poor our information about covid-19 continues to be. It’s also obvious that some in politics and in the press want that fuzzy obscurity to continue. It should end.

Our federal state and municipal government response to covid-19 was too authoritarian and it continues to confuse rather than clarify. In fact it makes clear to me and perhaps also to you that our government shouldn’t be involved in healthcare because politics doesn’t belong in healthcare.

Declaring that some businesses should be shut down to isolate healthy people from a new infection was costly and didn’t protect people from catching the virus. In history it has been common to isolate sick, not healthy people. People are suffering economic harms right now because so much of the economy was shut down. Even after the death rate has fallen, there are many who call for mask wearing and isolation of healthy people.

If most people don’t get sick and many don’t get any symptoms, there’s already some level of immunity. There’s no need for a free-for-all spree of new rules that flout historical precedents for dealing with new contagious illnesses. It’s time to update the deathrate and admit that it’s not that different from regular seasonal flu. Covid-19 stopped being worthy of quarantine when the death rate dropped from the millions that had been estimated in March.

Exagerrations of covid-19 fatalities should stop. Covid-19 declared deaths should be followed up and checked to see if they can be confirmed in the laboratory. If they can’t, they shouldn’t be counted. People who did multiple tests for covid-19 should be counted as a positive once; right now they are being recounted as a new positive covid-19 test as though they are a new covid-19 patient each test.

Back when trains were improving transportation and connecting the nation in a new way, the press gained a new importance because people started travelling and getting to know their neighbors within a train’s ride from where they lived. Suddenly news could expand beyond local information. Social problems in far away places gained a new importance because there was a new audience that could read stories that made far away cities suddenly more real. During covid-19 news coverage we’ve been saturated with global misinformation and panicked descriptions of millions of soon to be seen deaths everywhere. Covid-19 press coverage has been intoxicated with fear, intoxicated with fake statistics and models that failed to approach real experience.

Who wins? Banks got a multitrillion dollar subsidy. Jobs evaporated, putting more downward pressure on wages. Online buying increased as compared with stores that were closed down.  Some people gained a temporary enhanced level of importance as experts and they continue to believe that you should heed their warnings. I agree with Rand Paul who thinks that Fauci and crew have overplayed their expertise and abused your trust.

What do we still need? We still need a treatment regime that works and I heard recently that hydroxychloroquine is back in focus as an effective treatment. We need to change what’s not working in healthcare and in politics and in banking and in our economy. Covid-19 shouldn’t continue to distract us from doing that. If you want to learn more about the United States and how we can solve our current problems in the twenty-first century, buy a copy of Political Catsup with Economy Fries available at Amazon.com.