Belmont Club

I Have Seen the Future ...

The future of a number of things is going to be decided in the next few days. The Intrade prediction market rates Governor Walker’s chance of beating back the recall in Wisconsin at 90%.  Upon that result will depend the fate of public sector union dominance in Wisconsin. In order to guard against the vast right wing conspiracy corrupting proceedings , the Justice Department will be monitoring polling activities in the recall election, on the lookout for violations of the Voting Rights Act. “The Voting Rights Act prohibits discrimination in the election process on the basis of race, color or membership in a minority language group.  In addition, the act requires certain covered jurisdictions to provide language assistance during the election process.”

Meanwhile black blogger Ali A. Akbar is being taught how to show respect by left wing activist Brett Kimberlin. “I cannot believe this. ‪#BrettKimberlin‬’s associates have now literally gone after my family,” Tweets Akbar. “Prayers please.”

Also at stake in the near future is government healthcare. The Huffington Post reports that “health care reform advocates are growing more confident in the idea that the Affordable Care Act can remain viable even if the Supreme Court strikes down the provision that requires individual citizens to purchase health insurance.”

“As someone who believes the court is going to uphold fully, I do believe there is plenty of time — and plenty of options to develop and for Congress to enact — [for] alternative inducements should it be necessary,” said a top health care reform advocate, who asked to speak anonymously for fear of getting ahead of the post-Supreme Court political process.

And of course, there’s high speed rail. Unfortunately, short-sighted voters in California “are experiencing buyers’ remorse over a $68.4 billion  high speed rail project which critics say risks becoming a “bullet train to nowhere.” It still has to raise about $59 billion dollars to complete the project.

The Californians don’t realize that the trains will feature unparalleled legroom, since surveys have shown that very people intend to ride it.

A new poll shows almost three fifths would oppose the bullet train and halt public borrowing if given another chance to vote. Almost seven in 10 said that, if the train ever does run between Los Angeles and San Francisco, they would “never or hardly ever” use it.

Not a single person said they would use it more than once a week, and only 33 per cent said they would prefer the bullet train over a one hour plane journey or seven hour drive. The cost of a ticket, estimated at $123 each way, also put many off. Jerry Brown, California’s Democrat governor, has championed the project as a way to create jobs and is backed by unions. The 74-year-old governor has been personally committed to a high speed rail link since the 1970s.

But there should be no problem funding the train. The New York Times features an article by Larry Summers, which explains where the money is going to come from. “It is time for governments to borrow more money”, Summers argues. “There is, of course, still the question of whether more borrowing will increase anxiety about a government’s creditworthiness. It should not, as long as the proceeds of borrowing are used either to reduce future spending or raise future incomes.”

The money will all be paid back, of course. While hope, along with debt, is a claim upon the future, there can be no doubt that public sector unions, government health care and empty trains will be much appreciated by posterity which has so far been giving the current crop of officials a lot of loans on very generous terms. Every socialist knows that the future is a pawnshop where all the promises made today will someday be redeemed.

The locomotive of history is leaving for to-morrow. All aboard.

One way ticket!
One way ticket!
Got a one way ticket to the blues.
Gonna take a trip to lonesome town.
Gonna stay at heartbreak hotel.
A fool such as I never learns.
I cry a tear so well.


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