Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Last Night of the Proms

I had it in my calendar, planned to watch it via the BBC, and forgot!

So I'm watching some clips. The highlight of course is "Rule Britannia". And as is traditional, there were many flags waving. The Union Jack of course, but also St. Georges flag. And I can understand why the Australian flag was waving. The Royal Air Force Ensign has a proud history, and certainly belonged. The German flag was there (no doubt in tribute to the House of Hanover, though that line "The nations, not so blest as thee, Must, in their turns, to tyrants fall" has got to sting). But why was the guy in Hyde Park flying the Jolly Roger? Maybe the only flag we had? Maybe a political statement? Maybe drunk? But alas, we'll never know.

You got to wonder...

You got to wonder how some people stay in business. There is a local pizza place that we haven't ordered from in a long time. We're a little under the weather, so I thought we would order some pizza from them. Since the kids like cheese pizza, I asked if they could take their "2 pizzas with 3 toppings each" and put all the toppings on one of the pizzas. The answer was no. They could make sure that one of the pizzas had cheese and the other had 3 toppings. They told me they could pile all the toppings on one side of the pizza. But as for 0 toppings on one and 6 on the other, that wasn't possible. So I politely thanked them and told them I would order from somewhere else. So I phoned mega-chain-pizza-company and they said it was no problem. I threw out the flyer from the other place. Thanks guys, you had your chance.

Sunday, September 13, 2009

Will We Ever Learn

Starting under Clinton, the U.S. Government pursued policies that encouraged banks to offer loans to people who really couldn't afford houses. Government was happy, because it could point to a great success. Individuals were happy, because they thought they could afford homes. Banks became happy, and adjusted to the new reality. Unfortunately it wasn't reality. It was a socialist inspired dream, that government policy could flaunt the laws of economics and make life better for the poorest in society.

Last forward to 2009. To get the economy moving again, the U.S. Government has offered incentives for people to buy new cars. And the program has been insanely popular. The only problem is that 1/4 of buyers are having second thoughts on whether they can afford the shiny new cars they just bought. The lesson of course is that governments, by intervening in the market, usually do it in a way that is both popular with the people, and in a way that will ultimately make life more difficult for the poor.

Please understand that I am not saying we should abandon all social programs! But the more a government tries the flaunt the laws of economics, the more it ends up hurting the poor. Socialism ultimately leeches away the vitality of a system that generates increasing wealth for all, and replaces it with a system that simply redistributes ever decreasing wealth.

Thursday, September 10, 2009

Loblaws Supply Chain

Loblaws is up to old tricks with their supply chain. Which is to say they haven't fixed it, in the half-decade its been giving them troubles. Case in point, our local "Real Canadian Super Store". They have about 30 boxes of patio furniture piled up. Sorry, but the summer is over. It would take a massive sale to move them. Maybe they'll leave them piled up beside the building until Spring.

Don't get me wrong. In many ways I like the Loblaws chain. I think they are doing a whole bunch of things wrong with the RCSS brand, but the big thing is their supply chain. Trying to sell patio furniture and barbecues after Labour Day? Running out of meat on a regular basis? Looks like something needs a shaking up. Good luck to them. I wish them the very best.

Thursday, September 03, 2009

Harper must reach out

Jack Layton is saying that if Harper wants to avoid an election, he must "reach out". I think this Layton speak for "spend lots of tax payers money on socialist projects."