Friday, June 29, 2012

Random Thoughts

Basic economics says that the factors of production (land, labor, capital and entrepreneurship) are substitutes for each other and will be used in what proportion can produce the appropriate output at the least cost. So if Obamacare gets fully implemented then the increase in the cost of labor will cause it to be substituted for (more capital – technology). This is why it is called a job killer. If I were an employer I would tell my workers that if Obama is allowed in November to return to work, then they won't. So they can opt for either Obama will be employed or they will be. Choose. I went to a motorcycle rally in Keystone, SD – home of Mt. Rushmore. I ate at a Golden Corral in Rapid City and the young lady who brought the tea was named Nikita. To my amazement she claimed never to have heard of her namesake – Nikita Khrushchev. Rather she said she was named for an Elton John song. Nonetheless, surely she was joking that in her 21 years no one had mentioned Khrushchev. Much has been made from the right about the president golfing for 100 times, attending 163 fundraisers and taking 61 vacation days. Two points come to mind. First it would seem that the Obama detractors would want him to spend more time out of office rather than less. Second, the left points out that at this same point, Bush had taken 180 days on vacation. However the difference is that Bush quit playing golf after 911 to avoid criticism that he was golfing while the country was in crisis. Also Bush’s vacation days were weekends at Camp David and at the Crawford Ranch rather than going to ritzy places hobnobbing with the rich and famous. At least Bush vacationed at places where the president could still work. I worked for 10 years in the federal government and the slackers and less than conscientious were no more numerous than the one’s I have encountered either at universities or in the private sector. However, given that the government has no real budget constraint it is easy to see why federal government employees are higher compensated than comparables in the private sector. What do you think the impact would be if Milt Romney were to say that he will work to see that federal employees would have compensation no higher than the median total compensation (salary plus benefits) of comparables in the private sector? Also, the lack of a profit motive has also caused an excess supply of federal workers. Therefore, what would be the impact if Milt Romney also said that each year he is president he would roll back federal employment in each agency by five percent? Realizing that federal employees are among the most loyal democrat voters (along with blacks, the media and college professors), Romney would not lose any of their votes regardless but the gain on all the other voters would be immense.

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