I'm working my way up to some major rants. But on this nice winter day TMR is in a preview mode. So here are the trailers::
--1. We already fell off the fiscal cliff. Pedants will insist on knowing just when we tripped. I'm still working it out. The earliest reasonable date in January 20, 1961, when the poseur John F. Kennedy promised the world that the United States of America would be pleased to bankrupt itself to put a Weber grill and a gaggle of Harvard lawyers in every back yard from Vietnam to Kaphukistan. (bear any burden, pay any price et al. oratorical nonsense). The latest likely date is around the time Bill boffed Monica to celebrate passage of the revised Community Reinvestment Act, requiring banks to lend to people who could not possibly repay and probably wouldn't if they could.
(The fall was often pleasant in in its early years -- floaty, you might say, something like riding a very good hang glider, rising in vagrant thermals which mask the sure triumph of gravity. Updrafts are rarer lately, and the descent accelerates, much like Poe's increasingly frantic prose as the Red Death approaches the ballroom door.)
--2. We become broker by the day because we continue to do incredibly stupid things, large and small. One of the small ones is roiling my psyche lately because I drive by it daily -- a million-plus worth of "trail." It skirts the edge of my village , relatively harmlessly in the highway ditch for a while, then through a patch of wild land purchased by private citizens a decade ago and turned over to the Iowa DNR in order to save it from a housing development. The federal DOT, Iowa DOT, and local taxpayers are now financing a noticeable rape of that land. Some of the greenery will grow back, of course, but not on the paved strip which, by the way, is built to a standard just shy of that required to support Peterbilts. We wouldn't want a road bed failure to endanger the the strolling mom and her perambulator. The significant point, however, is that hardly anyone actually uses these things.
--3. Kwee 4. The first one moved me to counsel accumulating copper pennies; the second to acquiring large stocks of ammunition; the third to laying in pints of whiskey for barter. This latest QE persuades me we might as well just drink the whiskey.