The Random Comic Strip

The Random Comic Strip

Words to live by...

"How beautiful it is to do nothing, and to rest afterward."

[Spanish Proverb]

Ius luxuriae publice datum est

(The right to looseness has been officially given)

"Everyone carries a part of society on his shoulders," wrote Ludwig von Mises, "no one is relieved of his share of responsibility by others. And no one can find a safe way for himself if society is sweeping towards destruction. Therefore everyone, in his own interest, must thrust himself vigorously into the intellectual battle."

Apparently, the crossword puzzle that disappeared from the blog, came back.

Monday, April 4, 2011

On unrelated notes

I am not sure how these two subjects are related... if they are related at all, but they are what I have bouncing around in that mostly empty void between my ears today.

As those who follow my blog at all know, my mother suffered from Alzheimer's. She didn't really suffer much that I could see. She more or less enjoyed the ride, or seemed to. Like most times in her life when faced with adversity, she chose to laugh and make jokes about it. She told me it was like having a bright new world to explore every day ... and sometimes every hour. She only scared me one time and that was when she looked at me quizzically one day and asked "Which one are you?" Then she giggled. It was many years after that when she withdrew from the world, it seemed, and entered a place I could not. I watched, helpless, as she stopped being able to carry on a conversation over time. As she became more and more child-like. Less ambulatory. More indifferent to her surroundings.

I was fortunate, in a way, Mom was not ever combative, or irrational, or argumentative. She never wandered off. She never complained. She seemed at ease with what was happening, as if it was almost welcome. Even so, taking care of a grown woman who is almost as helpless as an infant is a struggle.

The other day, someone emailed me with a request to post something about Alzheimer's. She had a website where people can go for information, for links to assistance, to learn what little we know about this disease. The site is: and I urge you to visit it. I am not sure it will be an epidemic. I am hoping it won't. Each time I forget why I walked into a room or my mind goes blank as I open an editor to start a blog post or I find it impossible to remember the name of someone, I worry. But then I recall a "test"...

if you forget where you put the car keys, that's not Alzheimer's.
If you forget where you parked your car in that big parking lot, that's not Alzheimer's.
But if you forget you own a car then it's time to seek some help.

The following has nothing to do with Alzheimer's. I just found it interesting. The results of the survey are misleading to me. There isn't enough detail or "wiggle room" to allow for the wide variety of responses to the question of legalization of marijuana. It is just one question in a list of them concerning increasing revenue for governments. I remember talk of legalization back in the 70's. I thought then that the major impact would be an increase in the cost of pot. Like alcohol and cigarettes, it would be heavily taxed and those taxes would double or triple the price. And that was back when an ounce would cost you $10. I understand that now it is more than 10 times that for even the "cheap" (and weak) stuff.

Taxing marijuana is the most popular of several specialty taxes Rasmussen Reports has asked about recently. Forty-two percent (42%) of Americans say the federal government should legalize and tax marijuana to help solve the country’s fiscal problems, although 45% disagree.

The libertarian in me says it should be legal. But that is still a small, rather nervous, voice.

National Survey of 1,000 Adults
Conducted March 27-28, 2011

By Rasmussen Reports

1* The Congressional Budget Office (CBO) has just released a report saying that taxing people based on how many miles they drive is a good way to raise funds for highway maintenance. Do you favor or oppose a mileage tax?

2* Americans pay a federal tax of 18.4 cents on each gallon of gas to help fund transportation projects. Should the government raise the gas tax to help meet new transportation needs?

3* Do you favor or oppose so-called “sin taxes” on sodas and junk food?

4* Do you favor or oppose the federal government taxing goods and services on the Internet?

5* To help solve America’s fiscal problems, should the country legalize and tax marijuana?


Sightings said...

I don't know much abt. Alzheimer's, but yours is the first report I've read saying that the person really didn't suffer that much. I wonder if the disease is harder on family and caretakers than it is on the patient.

On the tax issue, people forget that in some ways we already have "sin" taxes. Booze and cigs. are heavily taxed, of course. But typically soft drinks are subject to sales tax (7.375% where I live) while food, including milk and fruit juices, are not. Doesn't that kind of classify soft drinks as a sin?

I don't think sin taxes are necessarily a bad thing. The hard part is where to draw the line. Some reports say a glass of red wine at night is actually good for your health ... so should wine be tax free!!!

Douglas4517 said...

I say my mother didn't suffer because she "embraced" it. She always saw
things in a positive light and accepted life happily. I do believe it is
much harder, physically and emotionally, than it is on most of the
afflicted. Some of the afflicted fight it and become miserable and that
doesn't help things. We tend to say the patient is suffering when it is
really the caretakers. And then we feel guilty for it.

We've always had "sin" taxes. Soda isn't taxed because it is sinful (yet)
but because it is not a "staple food item." And we are talking mostly
federal taxes here, not state sales taxes.


Steven Scott said...

The libertarian in me searches through my Constitution Android app to find the section granting Congress the power to write legislation concerning victimless crimes.

Douglas4517 said...

He's going to get very tired on that vain adventure.