Monday, 14 January 2013

G Dub/AH on public credit

Washington's Farewell Address, 1796 (drafted by Alexander Hamilton):

As a very important source of strength and security, cherish public
. One method of preserving it is to use it as sparingly as
possible, avoiding occasions of expense by cultivating peace, but
remembering also that timely disbursements to prepare for danger
frequently prevent much greater disbursements to repel it, avoiding
likewise the accumulation of debt, not only by shunning occasions of
expense, but by vigorous exertion in time of peace to discharge the
debts which unavoidable wars may have occasioned
, not ungenerously
throwing upon posterity the burden which we ourselves ought to bear. The
execution of these maxims belongs to your representatives, but it is
necessary that public opinion should co-operate. To facilitate to them
the performance of their duty, it is essential that you should
practically bear in mind that towards the payment of debts there must be
revenue; that to have revenue there must be taxes; that no taxes can be
devised which are not more or less inconvenient and unpleasant
; that
the intrinsic embarrassment, inseparable from the selection of the
proper objects (which is always a choice of difficulties), ought to be a
decisive motive for a candid construction of the conduct of the
government in making it
, and for a spirit of acquiescence in the
measures for obtaining revenue, which the public exigencies may at any
time dictate.

[Emphases mine.]

NB: I published an extended discussion of this graf on Bloomberg here.

Sunday, 13 January 2013

Cleaning Up

Have you ever thought about making your own laundry detergent?  The other day, we were shopping at our local farm/home supply store and found coupons that had all the items necessary to make your own laundry soap on sale.  The total cost to make the detergent for 288 loads was just under $15.00 or about 5 cents per load, about 3 times the savings over commercial laundry detergent.

We tried the laundry soap and it works great!  Kristy is excited because she feels it works better and it is how her grandmother made laundry detergent. The directions:
  • 2/3 bar Fels Naptha soap*
  • ½ cup Borax
  • ½ cup washing soda

Grate the Fels Naptha soap. Mix in the Borax and washing soda.  Store in an air tight container.  Use 1 – 2 tablespoons per load.  Can be used in HE washers.

* Freeze the Fels Naptha soap prior to preparing the mixture to keep it from clogging the grater. 

Happy Washing!

PS. We have had questions following this blog posting asking for the liquid form of the detergent:
• 1/3 bar Fels Naptha Soap
• 1/2 cup Borax
• 1/2 cup Washing Soda
• 2 gallons water (32 cups)

Grate Fels Naptha Soap. Heat 6 cups of water and add grated Fels Naptha until soap melts. Add Borax and Washing Soda. Sir until dissolved. Remove from heat. Pour 4 cups of hot water into 2 gallon bucket. Add soap mixture and stir. Add remaining water and stir. Let sit for about 24 hours until it gels. Use ½ cup detergent per load of laundry. Can be used in HE washer.

Tuesday, 8 January 2013

Reminders of my views on debt ceilings and deliberate defaults

Due to the ridonculuous non-solution to the "fiscal cliff" issue, there has been all sorts of crazy talk about the debt ceiling ceiling, trillion dollar platinum coins, and what not so of course I have been fielding emails and phone calls instead of writing my book, Little Business on the Prairie. Here are some links to my previous writings on the subject, which seem pretty darn prescient (esp. the bit about needing to borrow to help a part of the country ravaged by a natural disaster). Enjoy ... again, or for the first time. And please, no more b.s. about trillion dollar platinum coins (or any other denomination for that matter).

On this blog:

April 21, 2011: The Debt Ceiling Crisis

July 19, 2011: Debt Ceiling Dilemma

July 25, 2011: Why Deliberately Defaulting on the National Debt or Any Other Sums Owed Would be Unconstitutional

On the History News Network (HNN):

Original Intent and the Debt Ceiling

And if any of you are wondering what I think of the ICE takeover of the NYSE, see my post of this day on the Bloomberg Echoes blog:

NYSE's Long History of Mergers and Rivalries