Tag Archive | economy

Economic Self-Interest

So the Nobel Prize in economics was recently awarded to Thaler, who showed that economic actors (i.e., “people”) don’t always act rationally, or in their best interests. While I have not read his award-winning work, that isn’t even important, because there are two underlying assumptions that don’t hold up, and that must be true for the hypothesis to be true: first, that rational and irrational behavior are different things, and second that “best interests” can be definitively measured.

Without going further, everyone should by now be identifying the scientific woo in the assertion. As I’ve written about before, rationality and irrationality are two sides of the same coin–that which we value, we value for emotional reasons, yet it is only rational to care (emotion-based) about our values. That’s rather circuitous, so let me explain with an example. Let’s say that I love chocolate milk, and that I’d be willing to pay $5 for a bottle of Hershey’s Chocolate Syrup if only one remained at the store and I was competing with someone else for it. It is only rational that I put my desires first, and therefore only rational that I seek out and attempt to acquire the chocolate syrup. But why should I care about having chocolate syrup, and why should I care whether I am happy (with my desires fulfilled) or unhappy (with my desires unfulfilled)? Why should I care whether I am happy and acquired the chocolate syrup, or unhappy without the chocolate syrup?

We have a strong tendency to separate the two things, but they cannot be separated. There is no rational reason that I would care whether I am happy or sad–only emotional ones. Yet it is only rational that, if my emotional state matters to me, then I would attempt to keep my emotional state positive. If I care, then it is only rational that I do things that satisfy that concern, but there is no rational reason that I should care except that I care, and that, since I care, it only makes sense for me to do things to satisfy that concern. See? It’s all circular. Rationality and irrationality are woven together, inseparable; no one ever “acts rationally” and no one ever “acts irrationally.” They perpetually act both rationally and irrationally.

Suppose I run into a burning building to rescue a cat. Many people would say that I had behaved irrationally. Yet others would say that, because I care deeply about cats (no, really, I do, and I would rush into a burning building to save one), it is only rational that I would do everything in my power to save them. Yet there is no rational reason that I should care about cats–I care about them for emotional reasons, hence the use of the word “care.” Yet is it not irrational for an untrained person to rush into a burning building for any reason? Is it not irrationality–emotion–my love for cats–that inspired my behavior, even though it’s got an overwhelming likelihood of being against my best interests (survival)? And, if so, why should my survival be considered a rational goal?

On the surface, it would certainly appear that it is only rational for a person to want to keep themselves alive, but is it? No. Such a want–a desire–is motivated entirely by emotional concerns: a fear of death, a love of life, whatever. There is no rational reason to want to continue living, but look what we are doing–we are calling it irrational to rush into a burning building because it could lead to death. We are assuming that it is rational to want to continue living, but that assumption is flawed; there are only emotional reasons. So we are not using “rationality” in its accurate, true sense when we ascribe it as a value to certain actions; we are labeling a broad range of actions with “self-preservation” as the ideal goal–a goal that we put as the ideal only for emotional reasons.

For what rational reason does an individual, group, or species conclude that their survival and procreation are valuable? There isn’t one, and that’s the assumption upon which his idea is built–that there is. There is absolutely no rational reason that I should care whether I live or die, whether humanity lives or dies, or whether the entire freaking planet lives or dies. Why? Positive and negative statements are value statements, and they are made according to unknown, subjective, individual-specific criteria and weighed for emotional reasons, not rational ones.

Before anyone can say that actors occasionally act rationally or irrationally, they must define what these words mean. Apparently, “rationally” in this context means “in their best interests.” According to whom? And by what criteria? Plenty of people would say that habitual drug users are acting against their best interest by continuing to do methamphetamine, but are they? Who is to say that the short-term high of meth isn’t a sufficient reward for them to outweigh the longterm damage? Who is to say what is in their best interests and what is not? Who in the world has the omniscience to make such a statement, and then to present it as science? This guy won a Nobel Prize for “demonstrating” that Person A occasionally acts against Person A’s best interests.

What?

What in the bloody hell are we considering to be in Person A’s best interests? Economic stability? Amassing untold wealth? Getting lots of pussy? And then why are we considering those things to be in their best interests? And even if we could somehow come to a universally agreed upon criteria of what is and isn’t in someone’s best interests, this doesn’t even begin to answer the question of whether they’re acting in their long-term best interests, but against their short-term best interests (as I do each time I buy cryptocurrency). How in the world can we ever attempt to say scientifically that Person A has acted against their short-term best interests and against their long-term interests, according to this gargantuan list of factors and concerns that we have by fiat determined to be “best”?

And this guy won a Nobel Prize for this.

In actuality, what Thaler has proven is that “By the criteria of what I consider to be ‘best,’ people occasionally do things that will not yield the results of what I consider ‘best.'” It doesn’t matter if his criteria is economic stability, productivity, long-term survival, or anything else–why in the world should his values, or even the majority’s values, dictate that another person has behaved irrationally? No, Thaler. You have demonstrated that people occasionally do things that you feel are not in those people’s best interests. That’s all you’ve demonstrated, and that, as science, is meaningless and useless.

If you define their “best interests” in the way that you prefer, then it’s no surprise that you’ll find people occasionally act against the “best interests” that you’ve defined, because not everyone is trying to achieve whatever goals you have outlined; not everyone cares about those same things. It’s not in my economic and financial best interests to take time out of my workday to write this article, but I care about whether science is actually, you know, scientific. Is it rational that I care about that? Well… It’s no more rational than your estimation of what is and isn’t in other people’s best interests.

We Need to Talk About This Debt Thing

So the United States officially has a national debt of twenty trillion dollars. Forbes recently did the math and, based on the estimate that Taylor Swift earned $80 million last year, Taylor Swift would have to do one concert every single day for three years just to pay one day of interest on the national debt. That’s right–such a figure wouldn’t even cut into the principal. It would simply pay one day of interest. After three years of daily performances, one of the most successful singers in the world would be able to pay one day of the interest on the national debt.

This is not a problem that people take very seriously, because it’s so out there, it’s so… intangible. We have no idea how the national debt is a force crushing our necks. We know that the economy sucks, and we all sense that something is wrong, but it’s so hard to connect it to the national debt, especially when humans are naturally poorly skilled at connecting events over long periods of time. That’s not a shot at my fellow species, but a statement of fact. After all, it has taken us decades to realize that the direct correlation in the increase in high fructose corn syrup and the increase in the rates of diabetes and obesity probably aren’t coincidental. Our species is short-sighted. We simply are.

Looking backward in time and connecting Event Z to Event Y to Event X… all the way back to Event A is exceedingly difficult, and it’s even more difficult when we’re talking about the economy, when most people’s eyes glaze over and they start hearing Taylor Swift songs in their heads while the guy from the old Clear Eyes commercials drones on about aggregates and derivatives. However, I’m hear to tell you that none of that crap actually matters. The national debt, its increase, its effect on the size of the state, and its impact on inflation aren’t that complex, and it’s hopefully something I can convey simply.

First, with something like the leading paragraph being true, it must be obvious to you that American taxpayers are not footing that bill–at least not directly. According to this Bloomberg article, the income tax debt of 2014 was $1.4 trillion. Divided across roughly 300,000,000 people, that’s only $4.66 per person. Something seems off about that, but I don’t know what. Oh. Yeah, I do. It’s that the government spent $3.77 trillion. It’s also that only people who earned $50,000 or more paid in anything at all, which only makes about about 40% of the population–at best.

The difference, though, between “how much the government steals through taxation” and “how much the government” spends isn’t really of that much significance, although it’s worth pointing out that if we cut the defense budget completely then the $677 billion deficit from 2014 would almost completely evaporate. How interesting that our deficit each year is so very close to the “defense” spending. None of this is really important, though.

What’s important to know is this: the government spends a lot more money than it gets through taxation.

Fuck, I knew those numbers were way off, but I’m going to fix it here instead of amending it above to make a point. The actual figure is $4,666.67 per American citizen, at 300,000,000. I was dropping three zeroes accidentally. So if every man, woman, other, and child paid $4,666.67 in taxes, we could have fairly met the IRS’s tax demands. Of course, that wouldn’t have satisfied them, since the government spent $3.56 trillion that year, so we’d still have only had about half of what they needed. See? It’s really not that complicated.

So every man, woman, and child would need to pay $9332~, if I’m just looking at the figure and doing a very rough doubling, to come up with about what the IRS needed. Nearly $10,000 for every man, woman, and child to run the government for one year. Mostly. It would still have to cut about 2-3% of its spending.

Of course, there’s that whole stupid idea that the rich aren’t paying their fair share, but that’s such a ridiculous statement, compounding an absurd way of viewing the world. Taxes as a percentage are useless. When you go to Wal-Mart and fill your basket with enough food to feed your family for a week, they don’t ask for 30% of your paycheck, do they? We don’t live in a world where each paycheck we spend:

  • 7% on gasoline.
  • 12% on various types of insurance.
  • 35% on rent/mortgage and utilities.
  • 25% on groceries/food.
  • 15% on taxes.
  • 6% to go out once a month.

That’s not the world we live in. And thank whatever deity you believe in that we don’t live in that world, because it’s impossible to move forward in that world–no matter how wealthy you become, no matter how successful you become, you will never be able to move ahead, to generate savings, to earn a profit against life. That’s an appalling world, and none of us would want to live in it. So be thankful that when you go to Wal-Mart, they don’t crack open your paycheck and say, “Hm, you earned $1,000 this week, which amounts to 25% of your check–give us $250.” No, we live in a world where you can cut out coupons, buy generic brands, and all sorts of crap to save money–to cut your food costs to 15% rather than 25%.

But in this one area, we forget that and start talking about tax liabilities as percentages as though it makes any more sense. It doesn’t. It’s still just as ridiculous. I went into the folly of this type of thinking a bit in this video, but I’ll briefly go over once again.

This is always used to suggest that “the rich” aren’t paying their “fair share” in taxes, when the reality is that either a. the rich are paying their fair share and we are not, or b. the rich are paying well and above their fair share.

Evidently it takes between $2 million and $3 million to pave one mile of a new 2-lane, undivided highway. Let’s assume the lower end of that–two million dollars. Let’s assume that this new highway is going to be packed with taxpayers–one thousand of them on this one mile of highway. We can already see that this is not actually “rural” and would have to be extremely urban, while this estimate deals with rural highways, but let’s go with it.

It will cost each of those taxpayers $2,000 to pave that highway. Holy crap, right? Each and every one of those one thousand people has to scrimp and save and come up with their share of the $2,000. That is what’s fair. Of course, in reality, if those people actually had to pay for that road, this is what they would do:

  1. Most of them would volunteer their own off-hours to help construct the road.
  2. They would shop around and find the cheapest deal, and would probably get the figure cut down drastically.
  3. Between doing a lot of the work themselves and shopping around, they’d probably get the amount of payment required down to $200,000 or so.
  4. They would probably petition local business owners, granting them some sort of special access to the road, or special properties on the road, in exchange for larger payments. “If you pay $10,000 of it, we’ll make sure your employees are never ticketed on it, and we’ll make sure that you can open a new office along this stretch of highway.”

It’s hard for us to even imagine such things, but it would happen. No one is more cautious with their money than the person that money belongs to. I proved it today, when my colleague told me to buy some crap with his credit card. I splurged a bit and bought some things I’d never buy if I was spending my own money. It only cost him $6, of course, but that’s still $6 I would never, ever have spent if it was my money. But I didn’t have to pay for it, so I basically wasted it–I enjoyed it, of course, and he knew I would waste it, so it’s not like I did anything messed up. The point is–people aren’t careful with other people’s money, and the government definitely isn’t.

But there’s this idea that taxes are a percentage thing, and that everyone should be charged 10% to pay for the road. This means Jack the burger flipper pays $75 for the road, while Eric the millionaire business owner pays $225,000. This, the leftist says, might mean that the millionaire paid his fair share. More likely, the leftist isn’t happy and thinks the millionaire should have had to pay more. And if we lived in a world where Wal-Mart charged you a flat 25% of all your money when you checked out, the leftist would have a point. But in a world where Wal-Mart charges you an actual dollar figure based on what you’re actually buying, they don’t. Is Eric going to use the road 3,000 times more than Jack is?

No. In reality, Eric is paying far more than his “fair share” so that Jack doesn’t have to pay his fair share. Obviously. They’re going to use the road about the same; they need the road to the same degree. Yet Eric is paying three thousand times what Jack is paying, for exactly the same product. If the millionaire bought one week of food at Wal-Mart and paid $14,500 while Jack bought one week at Wal-Mart and paid $14.50, we wouldn’t have a hard time seeing how the millionaire was clearly being gouged by Wal-Mart, and that Wal-Mart was doing it simply because they knew that Eric had that much money and could afford it.

It’s so messed up it’s not worth more discussion. Taxes as a percentage is a grotesque and greedy notion. The only “fair share” of taxes that could be paid–if we forget, for the moment, that taxation is theft–is an actual dollar figure. Taxes as a percentage means that some people are paying their fair share, some people (the poor) are not paying their fair share, and some people (the rich) are paying far beyond their fair share. I know it bothers the leftist to be told that, but this is the truth; this is reality. This is how fairness as a concept actually works. You can’t price gouge the millionaire simply because he has the money and then proclaim that it’s fair. It’s not–it’s price gouging the millionaire. There’s nothing “fair” about it.

Anyway, taxation is theft.

That preamble is critical to this discussion, because it’s important for us to recognize that it’s not fair to look at the Taylor Swifts, Metallicas, Marilyn Mansons, Bill Gateses, and expect them to pay huge chunks of money so that we don’t have to. Under the statist propaganda and mindset, the “fair share” of the national debt is a dollar figure doled out among each and every American citizen, not some of them proportional to how much money they made. As I amply demonstrated above, there is nothing fair, just, or moral about that; everything about it is unfair, unjust, and immoral.

As it stands with a twenty trillion dollar national debt, that’s a bill being sent to every American citizen for $66,666.67.

One has to squint at all those sixes.

But even if every single American paid the government every single dollar they had, do you know what would happen?

We would still be in debt.

This is because of a couple of things–primarily, that most Americans are in debt personally to banks for credit cards, houses, and vehicles. That’s the nature of a debt-based currency, and the USD is a debt-based currency, through and through. If every single dollar that everyone owed was paid back, we would still be in debt, and Interest is the reason why. The entire currency is a game of musical chairs–there are never enough chairs, and someone always gets left standing. This threatens to divert into a related topic, though, so I’m going to get back to the national debt.

So how is the government to pay for its stuff, if it can’t tax everyone to pay for it? Why, that’s simple. It borrows the money.

Imagine if you borrowed $1,000 to do the stuff you wanted to do, which, with 1% interest, means you have to pay back $1,010. You manage to make about $300 doing that, but you want to continue doing the stuff you want to do. So you borrow $2,000 and pay back the $1,010 from the first loan, and then have $1290 to do what you want to do. A year later, you have to pay back $2020, but you only made $320 from your endeavor. So you borrow $3,000. You now make only $230, but a year later have to pay back $3030. To keep your operating expenses where they were, you actually have to borrow $4100 this time, to pay back the $3030 and make up for the $100 you didn’t make back in the last year. Each year, your debt increases.

With the intricacies of a national economy, taxation, and all that, it’s not that cut and dry, but that is the gist of what’s going on. After more than a century of doing this, the United States Government has worked its way up to a twenty trillion dollar debt–a debt that we can’t possibly pay off, and a debt that we the American People shouldn’t even be worried about paying off. The government did that, not us.

The United States GDP for 2013 was just over seventeen trillion dollars. The data for 2015 shows that we nearly reached $18 trillion. For 2016 thus far is about $18.5 trillion. Now, if I know anything about figuring out which number is bigger than the other number, this means that the national debt actually exceeds the GDP of the United States.

In literal terms, this means that allllll the productivity of alllllll the American people is exceeded by the amount of money that people in Washington, D.C. are spending. This means that a relatively small number of people have managed to spend more than the entire freaking country produces. This means that all the industriousness, productivity, creativity, ingenuity, and excellence of the American People has been matched and exceeded by government spending.

These ticks have managed to engorge themselves to the point that they are consuming more blood than the dog even has.

You don’t have to be a veterinarian to realize that tick is gonna kill that dog–and sooner, rather than later.

It’s Time For Cruz, Kasich, and the Establishment To Surrender

Another soundtrack for your reading pleasure. 😉

You might also be interested in checking out last night’s episode of Rantings & Ravings, where I discuss the absurdity that sexual orientation is defined just as much by the gender of the person “who is attracted” as the gender that is the recipient of the attraction.

Anyway. Yesterday’s results for the Republican Primary made two things exceptionally clear. First, the Democratic nomination process is over. Second, the Republican nomination process is over. As I predicted back in November (though that link is from December), the general election is going to come down to Trump versus Hillary, and Trump will win. I’m not saying that’s a good thing or bad thing, but it is what’s going to happen. The only way to prevent that is for wider America to turn away from the established parties to a third party. And, realistically, the only third party with any chance whatsoever of upsetting the balance of power is the Libertarian Party. By the way, have you seen John McAfee’s new ad?

But enough of all that.

The current Republican Primary results are:

Candidate Delegate Count
Donald Trump 954
Ted Cruz 562
John Kasich 153

1,237 delegates are needed to secure the party nomination before the national convention. If that number is reached, then the person who reaches that number is automatically made the nominee. If that number is not reached, then some debating and argument ensues, the delegates cast their votes again, and the process repeats until someone hits the magic number.

187 delegates will immediately be up for grabs after the first wave of delegate voting (think of delegates as elected representatives) because the people they were elected to support have dropped out of the race. This includes Marco Rubio, who holds more delegates than John Kasich, who is still in the running.

There are 502 delegates remaining that are up for grabs, meaning that both Cruz and Kasich have been mathematically eliminated from earning the Republican nomination. Even if things radically change and Cruz wins 100% of the remaining delegates, he will only reach 1069, which is only barely more than Donald Trump’s current 954. Giving Cruz the nomination when Donald Trump has been the clear frontrunner for months and consistently earned a larger share of the votes from all across the country through a large time period would result in absolute chaos in the GOP. Whether people like it or not, it is time to accept that the nomination must go to Donald Trump.

Because Cruz won’t secure the remaining 502 delegates. Already, the tendency of people to vote for the person they think likeliest to win is taking effect, and Trump will continue to gain 50% or more of the vote in the remaining states. If Trump doesn’t hit the magic number, it’s an irrelevant point, because he’ll be so close to it–within a few dozen, according to most scenarios–that doing anything else would be viewed as outright robbery and political shenanigans.

The reality is that, according to the rules, having 1,236 delegates going into the convention won’t guarantee that person will become the nominee. This is because, in a two person race, there would be two candidates with 1,236 delegates, so neither of them can be assured victory. That isn’t the case here, though–this is a 3 person race, the totals are nowhere near even, and there is a huge gap between the other two candidates and the number of delegates needed to secure the nomination. In a two person race, it absolutely would be unfair to guarantee one of the people with 1,236 the nomination. In a three person race that used to be a 12 person race, however, it’s much less unfair. In a very real way, these goons that dropped out early in the race have screwed up the entire system, and I think that should be one of the GOP’s rules going forward: you can’t drop out of the nomination process.

Just think of all the people who voted for Marco Rubio, Rand Paul, and Carly Fiorina. All of those people have been disenfranchised by the people they supported. When Rubio, Paul, Fiorina, Christie, and all the others announced their campaigns and then proceeded to campaign, they made a promise to the people that they would try to secure the nomination. And then they dropped out, breaking their promises to the people who supported them. How would Rand Paul be performing in this narrowed field? How would Fiorina be doing?

Yet, at the same time, I think it’s time for Cruz and Kasich to admit defeat. I’m not saying that they should drop out of the race by any means–for the same reason the others shouldn’t have been allowed to drop out; it’s weak, disingenuous, and a betrayal to their supporters who now effectively wasted their votes on people who are no longer candidates. How many people would have supported Trump as their second choice, if Rand had not basically caused the votes he received to disappear into a blackhole of political shenanigans? How many people would have supported Cruz or Kasich if Rubio had never run at all? All of these people–their votes have been reduced to nothing, and might as well never have been cast at all.

Many Americans think their vote is wasted if their candidate doesn’t win, and this is what drives people to vote for the candidate they think is likeliest to win. If people had known that Paul, Fiorina, Christie, and all the others weren’t going to see it through, and therefore would never win, they would never have voted for those people at all. And now these people who voted in their primaries for these candidates who dropped out have their voices completely and totally nullified in the delegate process. The people who voted for the delegates going to the convention in the name of Rubio, Paul, Christie, et al. no longer have a voice. Behind-the-scenes “I’ll scratch your back if you scratch mine” political brokering has taken over, allowing candidates to influence delegates. That delegate going to the convention in Rubio’s name–he’s a Cruz supporter. That person who voted for Rubio who may absolutely hate Cruz has effectively become the reason that Cruz will win one more delegate in the second round*. Maybe that person would have selected Kasich if they’d known that Rubio wasn’t going to have the courage and spine to hang around; it doesn’t matter, their voice is nullified. That person who voted for Jeb Bush may hate Kasich and may have preferred Cruz as their second choice. But in the second round, that delegate who is a Trump supporter will vote for Trump.

It is inescapable that this process has marginalized tons of voters. One might ask, “So? If Trump hits 1,237, then all the people who supported Cruz similarly have their voices erased.” But no, that’s not the case. Losing an election (and primaries are elections) does not erase the votes for the loser–that’s the widespread belief I referred to earlier that a vote is wasted if the candidate doesn’t win. However, “Trying to the very end and losing” is not at all the same thing as basically telling people you’re going to try to the very end, and then absconding with a ton of votes.

If I told investors I need $10b to do some complicated thing that would make us all trillionaires, and then I took that money, gave up on the project, and left them standing there wondering what happened, that would be an enormously different thing from doing what I said I would do and simply failing at it. The consequences appear to be about the same, but the circumstances and details couldn’t be more unlike.

So what am I arguing, then, if not that Cruz, Kasich, and Sanders should give up and drop out of their races? I’m saying they should stop campaigning. They should remain candidates so that the voters can continue to speak, but the reality is that, contested convention or no, neither of them have a viable path to the nomination. Trump isn’t speaking in bravado when he says he thinks people will riot if he doesn’t get the nomination. People may or may not riot, but one thing is certain: they will never switch their support to the candidate who took the nomination more or less from Trump. And it doesn’t matter that “the rules say this” and “the rules say that.” The rules don’t matter, not really.

What matters is what the voters think and feel, not the rules that the Establishment has in place to go against what the voters think and feel.

They can hide behind the rules all day long and say, “No, see? We were totally allowed to ignore the fact that Trump needed only 9 more delegates and instead let Kasich have the nomination.” But their delusion has reached new levels if they think that “Well, the rules allow it” is going to appease anyone; if anything, such an explanation will only rile them further. The primary is done; it’s over. There is no way for Cruz or Kasich (or anyone else for that matter) to get the nomination without shattering the Republican Party. And no–the Trump supporters will never switch their support to a candidate who they believe unfairly took the nomination from Trump, and they do think that would be unfair.

As do I, for that matter, but I’m not a Trump supporter. I understand the rule, and I understand the process, but “Because it’s the rule” and “Because it’s fair” aren’t even related, much less the same thing.

Cruz and Kasich, however, should stop campaigning and should start attempting to bridge the animosity between themselves and Donald Trump. Yes, it’s their responsibility now to bridge those gaps–they are the losers, and they are the ones who must now accommodate Trump and his positions. Trump is the clear winner, and that will continue going forward. It is time for them to put aside their differences, accept that Trump is going to get the nomination, and begin making inroads so that their supporters, when Trump secures the nomination, will support the selected GOP candidate. Continuing to drive wedges into the Republican Party will not help matters. It’s time for them to start tweeting, “You know, guys and girls, Trump isn’t really THAT bad…”

Actually, to be totally clear, it’s time for them to start focusing on Hillary and going after her. That is how they continue to be candidates while ceasing to drive wedges into the party. When Trump (who is childish) insults them, they must ignore it and counter with an insult of Hillary. There is no excuse for continuing to fracture the Republican Party all the way up to the convention, especially not since it is inescapably clear that Trump must be the nominee–because, as I’ve said, the rules are irrelevant.

Rule 40B

Briefly, the RNC is likely to repeal their changes to Rule 40B, which requires any prospective candidate to win the majority of delegates in at least 8 states. By widespread admission of the Establishment, this rule was changed in 2012 specifically to keep Ron Paul from getting the nomination. It prompted the majority of Ron Paul supporters to walk out in disgust, and it represents the most brazen official interference of the Establishment that we’ve ever seen. Ron Paul had the 2012 nomination stolen from him in a number of ways–the media refusing to report his victories was yet another, and it was so common and blatant that even Jon Stewart called out the media on it.

I’m not a Trump supporter. Obviously–I support John McAfee, through and through. But I did support Ron Paul in 2012 when the GOP retired him and didn’t even invite him to the retirement party (seriously–that actually happened), when the Establishment passed 40B specifically to shut down Ron Paul’s chances. They should not even be allowed to repeal that rule now. Oh, by the way, there is also evidence that Rule 40B was rejected by the delegates, and there is proof that the Establishment was going to pass 40B whether people liked it or not–there were some teleprompter issues that revealed a lot more than the establishment intended.

They made this bed when they passed 40B illegally (Illegally according to their own rules, not illegally according to the state’s laws), and they should now be forced to lie in that bed. This eliminates Cruz and Kasich, and good riddance. All three of the GOP options are just bloody awful, and it’s a terrible fact that Trump sucks the least out of them. But Cruz is a constitutionalist and, despite what most people think, the Constitutionalist Party is not built solely from the Constitution; it is a Christian political party, through and through, and its own platform rejects the notion of separation of church and state.

We also need separation of state and economy. There has never been anything more critical to our freedom than to forever separate these two things. But that’s another matter. The point is that Cruz and Kasich don’t have a valid pathway to the nomination, even if it can be done without violating rules, and it’s time for them to accept that and start trying to heal the damage that their campaigns caused in their attempts to win.

On a side note, one of the reviews of V2: The Voluntary Voice read my essay “The Power Gap” and reached the conclusion that, because I talked about the Second Amendment, I must be a Constitutionalist. What an idiot. This is something I’ve always wanted to address, but have never bothered to. He also blatantly asserted that he disagrees because “he felt otherwise,” which is just more of that crap where people think their feelings are good enough to outweigh facts and reason. But anyway–the notion that I, an anarchistic atheist, am a Constitutionalist is absurd, and nothing about the essay indicates that I’m a Constitutionalist. I would urge people who think that my reverence to the U.S. Constitution and insistence that, at the very least, the state should abide its own Constitution, makes me a Constitutionalist to actually look into what a Constitutionalist is.

 

* This is speaking hypothetically, of course, and assumes that Trump won’t hit 1,237. If he doesn’t, then this absolutely will be more or less how it plays out.