Turn out the lights for $$, not earth

So, apparently tonight is some feel good nonsense called “turn out the lights night” or something. The scheme is bonkers. For these people think that by turning out the lights for an hour tonight they’re going to do some sort of good, which even they can’t articulate anymore than “it’ll save the planet.” Sure, and stub a toe too, but hey. Meanwhile, the planet is not in need of saving. It’s seems to do whatever it wants to do; as Japan so recently learned. As many across the Mid-Section of the country learns every Spring as tornadoes dot the horizon, and as Gulf Coast and Southeast states will learn which will get struck by a hurricane this year and how severely. None of this is affected by some lights on anywhere, or off, for that matter.

But if you want to turn your lights off – fine, do it. But do it for a rational reason – like saving money. I know people who live with every light in the house on and the A/C full blast, and they occupy one room most of the evening, and go out for dinner, and leave it all running. I know people who keep two or three TVs running constantly, one in the bedroom, one in the den, one in the kitchen, and they out in the yard perhaps. It’s strange. Just using electric for no good reason – but I don’t care. It’s their money. When they complain about their $300 and $400 monthly bills I say “Turn out some lights, turn off the TV, don’t use the electric can opener.” Or what’s suitable to them. Not because I want to save the earth, but because I hate spending money for nothing. Why should I support the electric company?

The weird thing about the profligate users of electric – they tell me about the lights out hour – and they complain the most about the perils of global warming. Several of my global warming friends don’t have a tree in the yard. The lady next door complained about global warming, I told her: “plant some trees.”

“Oh, no, trees are messy.”

And I just marvel at the stupidity. But the pointless feel good measure does nothing. There’s plenty of advice on how to live cheaply, more inexpensively, how to save money at every turn – all of which are environmentally friendly by their very nature of conservation of wealth through not spending money on resources we don’t need. There’s plenty of books on this. In fact, I wrote one, with my father – www.housesarefree.com

And I think – why not turn out one light all year long, to be the equivalent of all the lights for one hour?

Ah, but rational thought never interferes with the politically motivated. And the problem we face in the Western World, in the rational world, is far too much politics.

Like in Britain, just today, riots over budget cuts. Well, if the government hadn’t taken the money in the first place then there would be nothing to cut. You’d have it already, and you wouldn’t riot over your own money. Even if the money is not taken directly, say in taxes, it’s taken in the price of goods, which is laden with taxes. And there’s just no way to take money from people to give it back to them to help them.

Far better to cut taxes, cut spending, cut programs. We got so much of it now, it might be wiser to do it slowly, sure. How about a 3% cut a year in all spending, and a 3% cut in total taxes every year, for everyone, across the board, for a decade? Even an two president term would do. Such a reasonable thing, something that is hard to argue over – 3%? Will that kill anyone? And thus in a decade or two we’ll be out of it all.

Sure this is a simplistic rendering. But the cuts are going to come soon, for government is not immune from the reality that labor is always the biggest expense. But government labor always costs more and does less, and often hampers the real wealth building. And when the labor costs finally consume all the budget what you’ll have left is a group of people doing nothing but being paid by taxing everyone else. Europe use to have this – they called it royalty, nobility, aristocracy.

Or, sometimes, comes a political movement to cut the government labor force, cut the spending, and cut the taxes, cut the size and scope of the federal morass. Cut the numbers of programs, cut the farm subsidies, and in general cut until the whole thing is unraveled and the few core functions of the federal government are in back as our focus, which should probably cost, oh, a Trillion Bucks a year. I would estimate that fully $3 trillion can be cut from the federal maw. Sure, some might be turned over to the states, that’s their job. Some might be given back to the people – we even have a 9th and 10th Amendment for that very reason.  www.cato.org look at this a lot. So does www.reason.com. Sites people should go to for some real thought.

And that’s about it, that’s reality. For this can’t last, it really can’t. The Democrats think it can. Michael Moore proposed just seizing the wealth of the richest and spending it – which would be gone in a year. And then what? What else would there be to seize? Seize enough, and nothing is worth anything. Ask East Germany. The liberals think spending can go on forever and taxes raised on high. It never worked, it never can. The math isn’t there, even if the politics is. So I look to the Republicans, who promised to run on fiscal sanity. So I watch them, those who jockey for the opportunity to take on Obama.

And then, yesterday, at www.goodasyou.org, www.queerty.com and elsewhere — I learn that Mike Huckabee, New Gingrich and Tom Pawlenty all started their presidential moves, and were herding along with Donald Trump, and Buddy Roemer and one or two others – and this whole pack has but one thing in common – in the face of the enormity of our fiscal challenges they all went to speak with Bryan Fischer – a man who’s job it is to stomp on gay folks – and nothing else. The man produces nothing but grief for people. That’s his job – he’s a grief purveyor. Legally, morally, philosophically, humanely, theologically – he doesn’t care – just stomp us out of existence and consideration whatsoever. He’s delusional of course, but still, there the contenders for the most powerful position on earth were – all getting sage advice on how to stop the gay menace. It’s ludicrous of course, but what can I say? I don’t have a job like Fischer has, and I’m not seeking a job like the others want.

And the entire mission of the man is consumed by gay folks. And now this troop of five all went to see him and ponder the great problems of the nation. And they’re agreed. Sissy smooching. And now they’re going to “slow” some agenda which exists in their own minds. “Slow” it? Not “stop it”? Pshaw, gentlemen, why mere “slow” what you want to disappear? Indeed, I doubt Fischer will invite Fred Karger down to his show, even though Karger is a declared candidate for the Republican nomination. Turns out Fred’s a gay guy. Which does put some ruckus in the proceedings. Still, he’s my man. A fiscally responsible guy — with a sweet twist. Not even the Democrats have a gay guy running.

Still, may as well turn off a few light bulbs and save the planet while you’re at it. It’s as effective. Really, is there anyone in politics rational anymore? Or is everything just for grandstanding entertainment? I’d say of the six contenders only Pawlenty stands a chance, and his is slim. www.jammiewearingfool.blogspot.com brought up Dan Quayle the other day, and you know, I think — why not? He always seemed rational.

Who knows next who will troop on down to the NO GAYS movement’s fabled Bryan Fischer. A man so unsuccessful at stopping or slowing anything one wonders why anyone would listen to a word he says. For there’s no bulb there, not lit, not unlit, not dim or broken. Just no bulb at all. Not even a tulip bulb. The man is more a Medieval alchemist chanting incantations and casting spells, and tossing all the figurative stones in his arsenal. I pity him. But what presidential contenders are doing talking to such a nut job I don’t know. It’s unfathomable really. I mean, don’t they want my vote? Do they think the lunacy of Fischer will not make the nightly news eventually. The news already has it in for the Republicans — and now these guys are giving ammunition. For talking to Fischer is like getting advice from a psycho, because, well, because he is.

So I’m going to turn on all the lights tonight that I need to have on, and probably run the wash, and the old man will watch TV and I’ll be at the computer, being just as judicious with spending money as I always have. Which mostly boils down to crying every time a penny leaves my hand. And wondering if I’ll have any pennies left after the politicians spend all their time telling my friends not to like me, while the nation collapses around us all.


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