Real Wealth Society

Wednesday, October 03, 2007

Thinking about Gomer By Fred Cederholm

Column for on/after September 30th, 2007

I’ve been thinking about Gomer. Actually I’ve been thinking about “arresting,” the Bernanke FED, the National Debt, the wars, Blackwater, and WE the people… Growing up in the 1960’s, I enjoyed watching the Andy Griffith Show about daily life in the fictional community of Mayberry RFD. A favorite episode was the one where gas station attendant Gomer Pyle asserted his rights as a citizen and challenged the authority of Deputy Barney Fife (let’s call him “B”) by running into the intersection shouting “Citizen’s ah-RAY-est! Citizen’s ah-RAY-est! Citizen’s ah-RAY-est!” Citizen Gomer stopped ole Barney cold in his tracks while “B” was making an illegal U-turn in front of the Sheriff’s office.

You see the verb “arrest” not only means to apprehend, it also means to stop. With the trappings of his office, - his limo (I mean squad car), his uniform, his side arm, and his bullet – “B” had gotten just too big for his britches. In a letter to Bishop Randall Creighton in 1887, Lord Acton stated: “Power tends to corrupt, and absolute power corrupts absolutely.” In a comic sense, even ole “B” in the sleepy little town of Mayberry fell victim to the heady rush of his office. It took Gomer’s initiative to set things straight and bring ole “B” back to Mayberry from his Olympian fantasies. We can learn so much about ourselves and our contemporary messes via these comedic caricatures from the Andy Griffith Show.

The FED’s action to ease interest rates on Sept 18th temporarily kept the US equity markets within less than 2% of their all time highs, but the action trashed the dollar relative to other currencies in the process. EURO’s continue to test new record highs. The British pound, the Japanese yen, and EVEN the Mexican Peso have risen relative to the dollar. This action did zip to fix underlying messes created by cheap money – the housing bubble, the escalation of consumer/ household debt, or the global proliferation of virtually worthless collateralized debt obligations (CDO’s). The benefits of temporarily propping up some $300+ BILLION in sub-prime mortgages were more than lost by the drop in the current purchasing power of the dollar to an economy which imports more than $800 BILLION a year than it exports. Sha-Zamm! Even Gomer knows that 800 of negatives offsets 300 of positives. Chairman “B” and FED Governors… your mission is to control inflation and provide a stabile currency for US/us.

Last week Congress (with the help of the national media) snuck through another $850 BILLION increase to our National Debt ceiling. The proposal also had at least $9 BILLION for continued military action in Iraq and Afghanistan. It should be noted that the Pentagon is seeking $190 BILLION more. It took this nation from 1791 to midway 1980 to accumulate $850 BILLION in total National Debt and now our fiscally profligate Congress hopes WE the people won’t notice a BUMP in the ceiling of $850 BILLION? What Congress really hopes is that this increase will get them through the 2008 elections!

Last week, the use of mercenaries supplementing our troops in the sundry military actions blew up when Blackwater USA was said to have killed over 16 innocent civilians in unprovoked retaliation. The duly-elected government of Iraq pulled their certification and wanted them out. Our government ignored both the de-certification and the request. We also learned that such private hired guns are so critical to the war effort because they may actually out-number our regular troops there. Huh? What? Let me repeat that: “paid mercenary/ consultants may actually out-number our regular armed forces in Iraq.”

Now Gomer was not a scholar of politics, economics, ethics, or warfare by any means; but he had such a beautifully simplistic and common sense appreciation for what is truth. Nobody needed to lecture him on what was the right thing and what was flat out wrong. He already knew that - naturally. He was honest, loyal, and trustworthy. He loved his community of Mayberry and he loved his country - the United States of America. We must learn from Gomer and hold our elected (and appointed) officials accountable for what it is that WE the people… want. “Citizen’s ah-RAY-est, Citizen’s ah-RAY-est, Citizen’s ah-RAY-est.” Enough already… end the policies and actions that are destroying this nation and our reputation worldwide. I’m Fred Cederholm and I’ve been thinking. You should be thinking, too.

Copyright 2007 Questions, Inc. All rights reserved.


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