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"Write out of love, write out of instinct, write out of reason. But always for money."
Louis Untermeyer

Weekly Muse
My humble opinion on current events

September 24, 2001

Bush's speech

I thought President Bush delivered a great speech last Thursday night. He spoke with some eloquence and even poetry, all the while maintaining a somber yet resolute tone. I loved it when he pointed out the oppressive policies practiced by the Taliban.

I did have one quibble. At one point, he listed the major evil ideologies of the 20th century, reciting "fascism, nazism, and totalitarianism." I remember remarking to my wife, during the applause that followed, how disappointed I was that he didn't name communism, but that would have ticked off China, who we are trying to enlist in our coalition against terror. A minor retreat from principle, but a retreat nonetheless.

Bush's strategy

I do like Bush's game plan so far. It seems he's trying to isolate the Taliban, so they have no friends in the world, and therefore no moral legitimacy. I think he made his demands knowing full well they'd refuse, thus giving us the perfect reason to attack. 

And attack we must. This act of war cannot go unanswered. A non-response would tell terrorists that Americans are free game, encouraging further attacks. Kill enough of them, and destroy the governments that harbor them, and then let's see how likely they are to attack again.

Traitors in our midst

The Associated Press reported on Sunday that a husband and wife have pleaded guilty to spying for Cuba. They are the latest members of an apparently large espionage ring to face sentencing. The FBI says more arrests are coming.

Also on Sunday, the Washington Post reported that the Defense Intelligence Agency's senior analyst for Cuba was arrested and charged with handing over classified material to the Cuban government. 

Spying is a serious business, folks. For too long, we've allowed convicted spies to cop deals and avoid a death penalty. I say it's time to start executing traitors again.

California abandons deregulation

California recently undid the last remnants of a supposedly failed deregulation plan by turning control of electricity over to a tiny cabal of bureaucrats: the governor, a new public power authority and three utilities. Consumers no longer can choose their electricity provider.

This is supposed to be a good thing. We'll see. I have my doubts. But the problem with California's original deregulation is that it didn't deregulate enough. It prohibited power companies from passing any price increases to the consumer. 

In a free market, supply and demand regulate price, which regulates consumer behavior. Limited demand lead to higher prices, which encourages consumers to conserve, which then increases supply and lowers prices. It's Economics 101, but the politicians who seem to know better never gave it a chance to work. Rather than blame their own half-hearted deregulation scheme, they blame the very concept of deregulation, and so re-impose a system similar to one that led to the deregulation in the first place. 

Russian government enters 21st Century

Finally, after eighty long, miserable years of communist rule, the Russian government has allowed its citizens to buy and sell land. Naturally, the dwindling and ridiculous Communists in Russia's Parliament opposed it.

This is a wonderful thing, although it restricts available land to urban and industrial areas, only two percent of the country. But why did it take ten years after the collapse of communism?

The Zimbabwe thug

Robert Mugabe is the duly elected President of the African nation of Zimbabwe. A couple years ago, as his popularity and chances at re-election dwindled, he declared war on the white farmers, who owned most of the farms in his country. He ordered black mobs, made up mostly of his supporters,  to occupy white farms, murder the owners and their families, and seize the property for themselves. Since March 2000, 1,700 white-owned farms have been occupied by these militants. The government has designated an additional 4,500 white-owned farms to be seized and given to landless blacks. 

Mugabe calls this land reform. Most people call it racist murder. Much of the international community has remained silent about this atrocity, but to their credit the British have stepped in to halt the government-sponsored slaughter. To top it off, Mugabe recently blamed the white farmers for the violence!

In a civilized society, the government would provide incentives to the white farmers to sell their land, if they so desired, while at the same time making it easier for landless blacks to qualify for loans to buy the land. But apparently, those who ignore Mugabe's bloodthirsty policies do not expect such civilized behavior from him or his people. That is the greatest travesty of all.

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