Gambling

rouletteSome say that gambling is the devil’s work, others say that it is acceptable entertainment. The truth is, it is a day to day occurrence. Every decision you make is a gamble, as the outcome is calculated based on probability of various results. This is the nature of insurance…the insured gambles that their expenses will be higher than their premiums and the insurer gambles that they won’t.  But this post is more concerned with “legal” verses “illegal” gambling for fun…and what the difference is. Continue reading

Free vs. Freedom

EBTMany of us are quick to take free stuff. However are these things really free? Most (if not all) of the things that are given away must be paid for by someone.

Let’s take a look at some of the more common things that people are quick to take advantage of. There are many, including businesses offering incentives, charities, food stamps (now called EBT which stands for Electronic Benefit Transfer or SNAP for Supplemental Nutritional Assistance Program), there is unemployment, welfare, heating subsidies and housing subsidies and the list goes on. Who pays for these things?

Free perks offered by a business are funded by the customers, as a general rule.  Often there is a requirement to purchase something…free toothbrush with purchase of XYZ toothpaste.  Sometimes free things are offered in the hopes that you will purchase something, but again the expense is factored into the items for sale.

Charities (private organizations) are funded by donors who willingly give money to the group.  But they are also funded in part by your tax dollars, if only because they do not have to pay taxes on their income.  Now I am not saying this is a bad thing, only pointing out the fact.  Actually, I think that income tax is theft and anti-freedom, but that is for another post.

In the case of unemployment, I hear many say that they paid into this so they deserve to collect it. Well, in most states this is not the case. The employer pays a tax based on past claims and on an average for their region. So an employer who has never had a claim will be paying into the pool as long as they have people on staff.  And if they are in a “high risk” pool they will pay higher rates even if they never had a claim.  This cuts into the net pay of every employee at those companies

Welfare, EBT and other subsidies are slavery in disguise.  Those who work are forced to give the proceeds of their labor to others…who may or may not NEED the funds, but did not EARN the funds.  Make no mistake, this is not charity.  Charity is voluntary, not forced and the donor can select the beneficiary.  The other insidious effect of these programs is the theft of the self respect of the recipient.  There was a time when no honorable man (or woman) would take a handout except under the most dire circumstances.  If they were forced to accept charity it was paid back as quickly as possible.  Today, there seems to be a race to see how many “free programs” one can participate in!

In Virginia former Governor McDonnell gave an award and a promotion to a Social Services director for growing the department and exponentially expanding the number of recipients.  Isn’t the goal of such programs supposed to be helping people to become self sufficient?  Or is it to “create more jobs” by expanding government and requiring those working in private industry to give up even more of their hard-earned dollars?

The concept of freedom is that if you work hard you will be rewarded by accumulating wealth which you can use to make your life, and the life of your heirs, more enjoyable.  The practice of penalizing success is counterproductive to that goal.  There are many lures to entice us to take these give-away programs, but there is always free cheese in a mousetrap.  Even if we don’t have to pay for these things, our children and their descendants will.  Perhaps we should think long and hard before we give up our freedom and theirs in exchange for a little bit of “free” stuff.

Redskins and Other Politically Incorrect Names

There has been a bunch of yapping going on lately about the Washington Redskins being offensive.  I say, so what?  If someone is offended, that’s okay.  There are others who are flattered by the name and some of them would no doubt be offended if it were changed.

Too much attention is given to not hurting the feelings of a few sensitive individuals.  The old saying is that you can’t please all of the people all of the time.  These names were not given out of spite.  In fact they honor a heritage and symbolize bravery and athleticism.  Frankly for a few individuals to demand that the rest of the world cater to their indignance is, well, offensive!

Help A Fellow Blogger

At the risk of seeming to be spam, a fellow blogger is campaigning to generate likes for her new facebook page.  I normally don’t promote things like this, but there is something in it for you!

If she gets 150 likes by 5:00 p.m. EST on Saturday, Sept. 20 she will give away a $50.00 gift certificate to one lucky “liker”!  The gift certificate is to WonderBooks, a used book store in Maryland.  If you don’t live anywhere near Maryland, all is not lost…they have a web site!

This store is awesome!  They have thousands (no exaggeration) of books and even sell books by the foot!  Go to their site and check it out.  In the mean time, if you have a fb account please look up Kitty Lusby and like her page…before 5:00!

Thanks for caring!  If we can return the favor we will!