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A Confederacy Of Dunces?
Are The “Best And Brightest” In Charge?
Did We Elect The Most Arrogant and Stupid?

Five Basic Laws of Human Stupidity

Setting New Records For Pitiful Stupidity?

Every day in every way, we are getting better and better! Who believes that? You try and try, but isn’t it getting more and more difficult to keep the faith? Just look around. Or in a grocery store. Or any kind of store. We are #1! Setting records every week… ain’t it grand?

BASIC PRICE INFLATION. In March 2022, the United States set a 40-year record high for inflation. April 2022 says, “Hold my beer.” And catapults past March, with a new 40-year record high. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. Let’s blame Russia.

(Don’t you just love this chart which pretends you can ignore food and energy prices? Excellent!)

cpi change

MORTGAGE INTEREST RATES. Not to be outdone, mortgage interest rates also jumped to new highs. The Federal Home Loan Mortgage Corporation, known to its friends as “Freddie Mac,” proudly proclaims prodigious price proliferation. “Well done, Freddie!” say us. You want to buy a house? Ha ha ha. Renting is good.

freddie mac

FEDERAL FERTILIZER FRACAS. Is it ridiculous to observe that large quantities of cow-based organic fertilizer are produced by government operations? Do you doubt that the highest level of government work product consists primarily of bull-based fertilizer, also known as “BS”? Verily, the highest praise from one bureaucrat to another: “That is total BS!” How can there be a fertilizer shortage with all this manure and BS? Our “public servants” find the way.

BONUS QUESTION: Will skyrocketing fuel and fertilizer costs reduce food prices? What do you think? Asking for a friend…

fertilizer price index

IT AIN’T JUST FERTILIZER. Is it crazy to think that raw material costs have something to do with store prices? Do manufacturers get everything for free? Is the cost of steel and rubber and aluminum and a whole bunch of other stuff irrelevant to the price of your new car?

ppi 12 month change

Let’s look at overall raw material costs. Remember that store prices are up 8.5%. How about raw material prices? Any good news there? Nope. Those prices are up 11.2%. Unexpectedly.

RUSSIAN INVASION. Everybody feel bad for murderous thieving Russian crime boss. Crime boss unhappy because neighborhood victims no want murder or stealing no more.

Is good club in neighborhood. Nice neighborhood people make good club so murderous Russian crime boss no murder them and steal stuff. But Russian crime boss like murder and steal. Sad now.

Other neighborhood folks name Sweden and Finland want join good club. Russian crime boss no like that idea! So, Sweden and Finland not join good club so Russian crime boss not get very sad then start murdering and stealing again.

Nobody to murder or steal from. Russian crime boss sad, so sad. And bored. Russian crime boss get angry. Say no one even think about join good club. Then Russian crime boss start murder and steal from neighbor.

Sweden and Finland see Russian crime boss murder and steal. Sweden and Finland now say, “Hmmm, maybe good time join good club.”

Russian crime boss get many Russians killed. Russian crime boss lose lots of Russian stuff. Russian crime boss get many neighbor people killed. Russian crime boss wreck lots of neighbor’s stuff. [By the way, there are very few Russians healthy and young enough for military service. And this idiot is feeding them wholesale into a meat grinder. That’s how stupid he is.]

Russian crime boss gets nothing good, loses lots. Russian crime boss neighbor gets nothing good, loses lots.

No good. All bad. Very bad.

Russian crime boss evil, yes. Very evil. Russian crime boss worse than evil. Russian crime boss stupid.

“Never attribute to malice that which is adequately explained by stupidity.”

—Robert J. Hanlon, Hanlon’s Razor, 1980

The Five Basic Laws Of Human Stupidity

Carlo M. Cipolla stated that there are 5 basic laws of Human Stupidity that help to explain the world around us. Do politicians intend to harm us? Are they doing it on purpose? Some are, probably, but most are just stupid. They actually believe that creating more money will cure inflation. Well.

Last week we visited the first 3 of Cipolla’s Laws:

The First Basic Law Of Human Stupidity

Always And Inevitably Everyone Underestimates The Number Of Stupid Individuals In Circulation.
There are more stupid people hanging around that you can possibly imagine.

The Second Basic Law Of Human Stupidity

The Probability That A Certain Person Be Stupid Is Independent Of Any Other Characteristic Of That Person.
Rich people, poor people, Harvard graduates, elementary school dropouts, artists, butchers, bakers, candlestick makers, lawyers, doctors, politicians. All are equally, proportionately, stupid.

The Third and Golden Basic Law Of Human Stupidity

A Stupid Person Is A Person Who Causes Losses To Another Person Or To A Group Of Persons While Himself Deriving No Gain And Even Possibly Incurring Losses.

BANDIT. It is possible to be an almost intelligent bandit. The bandit always harms others. Bandits are evil. But not necessarily stupid. An intelligent evil bandit steals your car. And keeps your car. You are down a whole automobile. Bandit is up by an automobile. You lose. Bandit gains. Gains and losses balance. The whole is not worse off, even though evil stuff happened.

Most bandits are not intelligent. Most bandits are stupid. Most bandits cause far more harm to you than they benefit themselves. Bandit carjacks your car. Shoots you. You lose automobile, pancreas, kidney, and part of your left lung. You are way way down. Bandit does not get to keep stolen car. Bandit sells for cheap to chop shop. Bandit is now Public Enemy #1. Bandit gets caught, goes to jail. Bad things happen.

Bandit hurts you and hurts self. Stupid.

BANDIT POLITICIAN. Politician wants to be liked. Pumps up trilllions of money from nowhere. Gives to friends. Lots of friends. Would print up and give away even more, but spoilsports say “NO!”. Politician sad.

Price inflation takes away more money than Politician gave to friends. Friends now unhappy. Much more unhappy than before. Cannot buy house. Cannot go on vacation. Cannot buy food.

Politician now unliked by all. Popularity in the toilet. Most people say “Big Stinker!”. Politician loses. Friends lose. Everybody loses.

Politician hurts you and hurts self. Stupid.

The Fourth Basic Law Of Human Stupidity

Non-Stupid People Always Underestimate The Damaging Power Of Stupid Individuals. In Particular Non-Stupid People Constantly Forget That At All Times And Places And Under Any Circumstances To Deal And/Or Associate With Stupid People Always Turns Out To Be A Costly Mistake.

Did you think Russia would be threatening thermonuclear war against Sweden and Finland (and the rest of us) in the Spring of 2022? Did you guess that the United States would be fighting a land war in Europe right about now? Did you foresee the highest inflation rates in 40 years? Did your crystal ball foretell that testicle’ed humans would be celebrated for beating uterus’ed humans in athletic contests? Did you predict that the Massachusetts Institute of Technology would give up the most effective screening tests available to admit unqualified students who flunked out at astounding rates? And so on and so on and so on…

Stupid people endanger us all. With nuclear war. And conventional war. Murder. Destruction. And the acceptance of preposterous positions that no one with a grain of common sense could countenance.

As George Orwell once said:

“Some ideas are so stupid that only intellectuals believe them.”

The Fifth Basic Law Of Human Stupidity

A Stupid Person Is The Most Dangerous Type Of Person

Traditional Planning Is Stupid Planning

Traditional Planning Is Dangerous To You And Your Family

Stupid people are unpredictable. Totally and completely unpredictable. You cannot protect yourself, or any part of what you value, from the stupid person.

For example, you can calculate how a bandit will operate. An “intelligent” bandit wants your stuff. If you give the “intelligent” bandit your stuff, the bandit will (probably) not harm you further. It is evil. You have lost. But you live another day.

Stupid bandits shoot you. You lose. They wind up in a bad place. Everybody loses. See, Ukraine. Intelligent people are quite predictable.

Intelligent people see what is good for them. You can understand why they want what is good for them. Intelligent people do not want to hurt you, because you can benefit them again in the future. Also you get good things from the intelligent person. Cooperation! Even competitive cooperation, where both persons actively and intelligently strive for advantage, without gratuitously harming the other. What a wonderful thing!

Middle class folks may be proportionally as stupid as any other groups. But, middle class people act more intelligently than any other group. Murderous thieving Russian crime bosses, grifting politicians, overbearing tech oligarchs, and other persons in positions of power are tolerated because of their power. They do not hear the truth because they are feared.

Who fears you? Who lies to you rather than tell you the truth because of your awesome, terrible power? Nobody.

Powerful People are just as stupid as we are. But we get better information than the Powerful People who are surrounded by fear-ridden toadies. Do you want to be the one who tells murderous thieving Russian crime boss that his big missile boat was blown up? Me neither.

Stupid Powerful People unpredictably, do harmful things that hurt all of us and benefit them not at all.

Thank God that you are middle class. You have the power to do good. And nobody lies to you out of fear.

Traditional Planning Is Stupid Planning

Traditional Planning Is Dangerous To You And Your Family

Traditional estate planning is concerned with avoiding probate, saving taxes, and dumping your leftover stuff on your beneficiaries. After you die. Nobody cares what happens to you while you are alive. How does that help anyone? Stupid.

Traditional estate planning fails because the overwhelming majority of us will need long-term skilled care. 70% of us. For an average of 3 years. And we will go broke paying for it.

Is it surprising that thousands of recreation properties: cottages, cabins, hunting land, are lost to pay for long-term care? Why is your estate planner hurting you and your family? It is evil intent? Or stupidity?

LifePlanning™ defeats Nursing Home Poverty. Keep your stuff. Get the care you have already paid for. Good for you. Good for your family. Good example for society.

When my mother suffered from the dementia which led to her death, over 10 years ago, their estate plan preserved their lifesavings. Mom’s months in the nursing home did not mean Dad’s impoverishment. Dad spent the last years with security and peace of mind.

Is Now A Bad Time For A Real Solution?

Perhaps you think you already have an answer to this problem. Maybe you do not see this as a problem at all. It is possible that you do not believe in the passage of time or its effects on you.

Peace of mind and financial security are waiting for everyone who practices LifePlanning™. You know that peace only begins with financial security. Are legal documents the most important? Is avoiding probate the best you can do for yourself or your loved ones? Is family about inheritance? Or are these things only significant to support the foundation of your family?

Do you think finding the best care is easy? Do you want to get lost in the overwhelming flood of claims and promises? Or would you like straight answers?

Well, here you are. Now you know. No excuses. Get the information, insight, inspiration. It is your turn. Ignore the message? Invite poverty? Or get the freely offered information. To make wise decisions. For you. For your loved ones.

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“Contemptible Idiots Who Are Kind Of Evil”

Clowns Are Leading The Parade While You Do The Work

Ever wonder what elite experts think about you? Probably not. You have a life to live. Bills to pay. Kids to raise. Grandchildren to spoil. You are busy. Lots of stuff going on. And yet. You cannot help noticing that things are not what they should be. Or used to be.

“Some Ideas Are So Stupid That Only Intellectuals Believe Them.”
—George Orwell

You expect politicians to be hypocrites. Tell you to do one thing, while they do the opposite. Wear masks! Except at my fundraiser/birthday party/hairdresser. No riots… stay between the velvet ropes! Unless you are firebombing federal courthouses, shooting commercial fireworks at police officers, or assaulting people in cars. By the way, shoplifting is A-OK! And rent is optional.

Everybody knows university professors are out of touch. Their job is to think Great Thoughts. Re-segregate campuses on racial lines. Tear down, cover up, or suppress politically incorrect art, speech, thought. In Madison, Wisconsin, they are removing a landmark boulder from campus, at great expense, because someone, about a hundred years ago, may have used a racial epithet in referring to that boulder. Harvard’s new chaplain is a loud and proud atheist (Let that sink in.). Insist that fairness requires women athletes to compete with “twig and berries” athletes who “identify” otherwise. Even at the Olympics.

Still, you expected more of military leaders, but… Abandon the guys who helped us fight for the last 20 years. Overnight. Slander our foreign allies who lost 70,000 dead. Abandon hundreds of billions of dollars in advanced weaponry, aircraft, ammunition, electronics, and military installations to folks who want to kill us. A/k/a bad guys. The same bad guys who also, by the way, want to subjugate the population. Again. And export terror. Again. Meanwhile, the British and the French (the French!!) rescue their civilians, while the 82nd Airborne is ordered to stand down and leave American citizens to their fate. Stupefying. (Unless you know any British or French soldiers.)

“If You Would Only Recognize That Life Is Hard, Things Would Be So Much Easier For You.”
—Louis D. Brandeis

You and I know that the world is a harsh place. Making the right decisions is a challenge. Follow through is tough. We make mistakes. Do things wrong. Take our lumps. Accept responsibility. Apologize. Fix it. And move on. Do better next time. Results. No excuses. Yes, it is difficult. But you do it anyway because that is what it takes. For you. But not for them.

Some folks rise high in academia, corporate culture, and government. Smart people who punched their tickets at Harvard, Yale, and other prestigious institutions. They did work hard to punch those tickets. Scrambling to the top of the heap is not easy, simple, or fair. And now they never make mistakes. They fell into the trap. They believe what is said about them. Surrounded by an impenetrable cocoon of adoring supporters, reality does not bite, it does not even bark.

Military fiasco? Fire the lieutenants, captains, majors. Give medals to the colonels and generals. Political disaster? No worries! If you are of the correct persuasion, it never happened. If they cannot cover it up, biased media will bend over backwards to make excuses. Educational calamity? Cannot read, write, do math, think? Eliminate honor roll. Close “elite” high schools. Erase standards.

Ever wonder how the people doing these things can live with themselves? Puzzling, isn’t it? You do not need me to tell you things are bad. Look out the window. Yes, your news sources are controlled. Directly and indirectly. Mostly by herd instinct. Wrong opinion? Get cancelled. No Tweets for You! No Facebook either. Too bad that some things are too big to cover up entirely. Afghanistan. COVID. January 6. Ongoing riots.

If you failed at your job as enormously as these folks, the “elite experts” fail, you would be on your knees praying for forgiveness. Which is why you never will fail so completely. You have the gift of humility. Humanity.

We all count on one another to grow the food, pump the oil, mine the coal, keep the electricity on, stock the shelves, build the houses, fix the cars, fill the teeth, engineer the bridges, pave the roads, replace the knees, administer the medicine, rehabilitate the sick, research the cures… We work hard, but who’s complaining? The people who are better than you. They are complaining. You annoy them. They must put up with you. They do not like it.

Arrogance and blindness. Human frailties. They go together and we all suffer from them. But when arrogance and blindness overwhelm common sense, practicality, and basic decency… well, sometimes you get a book! Like this one:

How To Talk To A Science Denier
Conversations With Flat Earthers, Climate Deniers And Others Who Deny Reason

Lee Mcintyre, Mit Press

Professor McIntyre has a distinguished resume. Harvard. Boston University. Wesleyan University. University of Michigan (Ann Arbor) (of course!), Tufts. A genuine, certificated, credentialed smart person. Deep thinker. Author. Honored intellectual. Candid, too.

Unlike some other experts, he wants to talk to you. Show you the errors of your ways. In his book, he “shows that anyone can fight back against science deniers”. Courageous! The professor “use[s] his persuasive powers as a philosopher to convert” you. And he wants to teach like-minded others how to do the same. In his promotional material there is a good bit of blather about dealing with folks like us “calmly and respectfully.” A U of M professor who reviewed the work agrees. She thinks he is a champion of “listening respectfully, discussing science patiently, and fostering interpersonal trust.” Too bad she did not read the book.

Fortunately, our hero is not content with winking to his audience. He drops the mask in the book. You do not have to wonder what he thinks of you, he tells you:

“When speaking to a contemptible idiot who is kind of evil, don’t call them a contemptible idiot who is kind of evil! Many contemptible idiots find that language insulting.”

Wow. Way to “foster interpersonal trust”! Just lie to the rubes. They will never notice. Just be polite. Unless you just cannot stand being polite to contemptible idiots who are kind of evil.

“When speaking to them, we should remember that it is an insult to use the word ‘anti-vaxxer.’”

One reviewer then counted “109 uses of the term “anti-vaxx” in the book.” Interspersed with calls to civility are his true feelings. Your skepticism? Nothing more than “ridiculous conspiracy theories and partisan nonsense”. Thank you, professor!

Professor M did do some real field work. Went to an airport hotel. Spoke with Flat Earth Society members. At their convention. Well.

Out of 330 million Americans, he found the few needles in the haystack who think the world is flat. Or at least claim to think it’s flat. Hey, it’s a club. Perhaps a little common sense is in order. Don’t people join clubs for lots of reasons? I have heard of another club claiming direct descent from the stoneworkers who built the pyramids. George Washington was a member. Quick, get the fact-checkers!

But mostly, the good professor deceives himself, and his chosen audience, by describing absurdly extreme caricatures. He then beats up on those false images. COVID deniers. Anti-vaxxers. Global warming deniers. So much denial! Plus a GMO skeptic. Not sure how he fits in.

It is the sort of thing I remember from freshman year dormitory BS sessions at Notre Dame. Supreme confidence. Argumentative skill. Closed mind. Strawman Fallacy in Technicolor. Or Kodachrome.

You say, so what? Grifters gotta grift. Academic authors must flatter their audience. One more book catering to “intellectuals’” invulnerable, insufferable notions of themselves as the good and wise. What else is new?

But Professor M has done us a huge service. Without his candid revelations, you might wonder “Just how do they think about us?” The mystery is over. Case closed. The “Let’s talk” psychobabble is an amateurish smokescreen.

This is how the clowns got to lead the parade. We believed what they were saying. But they did not believe it themselves. We were conned. It was always a confidence game. They do not hate you. They do not respect you enough for that. They despise you, you contemptible idiot who is kind of evil.

Look around and see the consequences.

Never Complain And
Never Explain
—Benjamin Disraeli

The hour is late. There is no time to complain. Professor M would just write another book. But we are not helpless, and we are not hopeless. Have we faced worse than this? I do not know. What I do know is that it is up to us to make it right, one family, your family, at a time.

What does it have to do with Elder Law? Quite a bit.

The federal government says long-term care awaits 70% of Americans aged 65 or older. Three-year average length of care. And for 1-in-5, that three-year average goes to more than five years. Who pays for this care? You do. You did. Every paycheck. Every health insurance premium payment.

We, the middle class, bear the greatest burden of long-term care. Can you pay $12,000 per month without strain? Congratulations! I’d call you rich. Is paying $12,000 per month a joke because you don’t have two nickels? Don’t worry… we will pay for you.

Does a $12,000 per month bill make you sick to your stomach because it means losing the security of lifesavings? Don’t you wish you had a cottage or cabin to sell. Wouldn’t it be nice if there were an extra car or truck to trade for a month of long-term care? But all you have are the CDs and life insurance you managed to scrape out of the grocery, heating, and car bills. And when it is all gone? Now you are broke. Your choices do not matter. You get what they feel like giving you.

Isn’t it obvious? Middle class families are targeted by long-term care costs. Savings evaporate. Grandparents helping grandchildren… Prohibited, Penalized.

Professor M has done you an enormous favor. Learn his lesson. You thought you were saving for your own retirement and then to offer a stepstool for the next generation. They have other ideas.

LifePlanning™ keeps the American Dream alive. LifePlanning™ rejects Nursing Home Poverty. LifePlanning™ preserves your hard-earned dollars to serve your spouse, you, and the next generations. You earned it. You paid in. You did the right things.

And now they want you broke. Dispirited. Discredited. Dependent. Why do they want you a beggar? Because beggars are easier to please.

Must you go broke? Can you preserve what you have earned, protect what you value? Yes, you can. LifePlanning™ preserves your savings. LifePlanning™ does not create wealth, you did that. I know it wasn’t easy. LifePlanning™ makes the rules work for people who play by the rules. That is you.

Maybe thousands of LifePlanning™ Michigan families are wrong. Perhaps the thousands who have received long-term care benefits while preserving their life’s work are mistaken. It is possible that just want to surrender. Give up. Wave the white flag. That is OK. Personal Choice.

Or maybe the hundreds of millions in homes, farms, and other assets protected by LifePlanning™ Michigan families will preserve and strengthen our middle-class values. For you. For the next generation.

Think about it? Not enough. Those who wish to tear down America are acting. So should you. Find out how. Ask questions. Get answers. LifePlan™ Workshops are available on-line and in person. Don’t look back with regret. Face the future with hope and confidence.

Here’s how you start:

1. Call 1-800-317-2812.
2. Get the next LifePlan™ Workshop.

Easy. See you there!