The last several months saw a great deal of public outcry about the housing situation in Grand Forks. This was something of a spaghetti argument: Let’s throw a whole host of issues against the wall and something will stick. Topics included the affordability of housing, the availability of housing, the quality of housing, and so on.
The financial crisis still dominates the mindset of many callers when I go on the radio. It is also interesting teaching a new crop of students this year. Many of them are at that age where they were just starting to pay attention to business, the economy, and public affairs when the crisis hit. That is to say, it is really all they know that is not from a history book. As a result the start of the banking class this year has discussed the crisis quite a bit. One of the discussions we had recently was about banks attempting to cash in on the increased value of homes.
The title pretty much sums up my thoughts about the approaches in Washington to the fiscal morass Congress and the Presidents created for us over the last several years. Neither political party exhibits anything close to leadership, neither displays any willingness to have meaningful debates on the issues. Instead we get bombarded by poorly crafted messages about the ineptitude of the other side while both groups wait for electoral alchemy to take place and give them the ability to govern without a check on their power.
Anybody that listens to my appearances on the Jarrod Thomas Show will know the voice of my radio stalker. I am not sure I could live in the black-and-white world this individual inhabits. All roads lead to evil investment banks, every political party is wrong, China is the ultimate source of trouble, and so on. Usually he just does his little drive-by rant, selectively quoting anyone that agrees with his ill-pre-conceived notions about the economic world. Last week though he revealed the fatal lack of follow-through that taints all his ramblings.
Energy is a big story in North Dakota, and really North Dakota is a big story across the country. Domestic oil production is really taking off with North Dakota a celebrated part of the story. This graph shows the situation import-export situation for US as a whole.