A Typical Phone Conversation in Colombia

"Hola Jesse."
"Hola. Qué tal?" Caleñas are always calling from numbers other than their own and I'm not yet sure who I'm talking with.
"Bien. Qué hiciste ayer noche?"
"Hablas en serio?" It must be Jacqueline I'm talking to.
"Mentiroso. Estoy seria."
"I don't believe this."
"You were with other girls."
"I was sick."
"Liar. Mentiroso."
"I really am sick." I cough for effect.
"Listo, listo. Where are you now?"
"In my room."
"Yes, I am alone."
"Estas solo? Verdad?"
"No," I say. "Con Luisa. Hey, como te llamas? Leidy? I am here with Leidy too."
"En serio? Two girls!?"
"Malo! Eres hombre malo!"
"Ja ja ja ja ja!"
"Estas bromeando?"
"Claro que si. Of course."
"Estas solo?"
"En serio?"
"Si, tonta, si. Vamos. C'mon."
"Are we going out tonight?"
"Por qué?"
"I'm going out with other girls."
"Malo! Malo!"
"Ja ja."
"Are you serious?"
"Vale. We can go out."
"I will come to the hostel. Vamos a ir al sex hotel."
"Venga a las nueve."
"You will pay my cab ride?"
"Por qué yo pago para todo contigo?"
"Estas serio?"
"Mi tia va a pagarme manana. Voy a llevarte al cine el miercoles."
"Por qué quizas?"
"Nada. Just come at 9. Nos vemos."
"Nos vemos. Chao."



It is Western culture that endangers the man of destiny. Western culture comes to him as a beautiful woman, she is it’s vessel--for Western culture is a Western woman. His sexual desire allows her into his bed, to effect his work, and finally to undermine his project. She helps him to forget that for which he was destined and leads him to physical pleasure. It is only when his sexual desire for her has lessened that he remembers the project he has forsaken.

His one protection against this culture, and the women who transmit it, is a great mother that will shield him and nurture him according to his destiny. She is the only woman he will trust. She is the nurturer of greatness, the guardian of destiny. The mother must protect the son. His destiny calls out and requires her. It is that call that the great mother answers.

Her Great Weight

“A great weight has been lifted,” she said. “I have never felt so happy.”

My mother was sitting up in her hospital bed. Tubes ran into her body from the machines that blinked and beeped. Yesterday the surgeons had removed all of her non-essential insides, all the parts that had made her a woman. The cancer had grown rapidly in her uterus but had not spread into the organs and lymph nodes. She was going to live and I could see that she was truly and deeply happy.

“What do you mean by a great weight lifted, mom?”

“I can live the way I want now. It was never like this before. I have just begun to live.”

She did not stop smiling. Her whole face was smiling. She was ashen and very weak but the new happiness made her glow.



My apologies to Paulie the Pollock, with whom I once argued against unions from 3am to 6am on a cold April morning while fork lifting. You were right. I was wrong. You were a helluva forklift driver by the way.

I am now pro-union.

Yes, I understand and agree with the Austrian position that the end result of unionization is higher unemployment and a higher cost of goods across an economy. But as with many of the Austrian positions, there is an immediate benefit to the group that initiates an economic intervention. A union can improve the working conditions, wages, and benefits of its members. It is the non-union worker, or the unemployed man who would have been hired in that industry at the lower non-union wage, who is negatively affected. Such are the unintended, and often un-attributed, consequences of economic intervention.*

The Austrians make a similar argument of unintended consequences in regards to currency devaluation. In fact one might think of unionization as a bottom-up intervention and inflation as a top-down intervention. Currency inflation effects those in banking and the wealthy less than it does the working class. That is to say, as those standing nearest the cash registers and making commission from an expanding supply of money and credit, the banker's wages will rise first with an inflation. The income of the upper classes will also rise, as the managements of publicly held companies are compensated for the performance of the company’s stock, equity markets being highly correlated to inflation. Their ownership of homes and equity portfolios will also provide them protection.

The last to see his wages rise will be the low paid worker. If he owns no home or stock or precious metal he will have seen his savings eroded by the inflation. Even without a savings he will have seen prices rise in food, energy, clothing, and rent all before his wages have risen. Being furthest from the banking centers from which the inflation originates, the low-paid worker is damaged the most. At minimum a union is necessary to protect a worker’s real purchasing power by tying wage increases to an inflation metric.

But there is a more essential argument for unionization and that is for the workers to unionize and get their share of the company before it is slowly gutted by the Harvard trained, leisure-class managers. The brave entrepreneurs who created companies such as the Home Depot have all moved on. These were the risk-takers and innovators, who thought up new ways of marketing, sales and production. In their place is a crew of MBA men and women who make cost-cutting and efficiency decisions from the top. Alongside them are highly trained accountants, busy at work making adjustments to the balance sheet to best produce the illusion of growing profitability, working to manipulate the stock price higher and bonus themselves and their managers.

But these MBA men and women are economically unproductive. They create nothing new. They have none of the ingenuity and courage of the original entrepreneur and engineer. They are spreadsheet trained and bonus driven. What they call better efficiency and profit is no more than a further cost or sacrifice born by the company’s workers.

The Home Depot, like Walmart, is “proudly non-union”. I watched as they tried to run Old Marvin out. They had it out for Patrick and Dan who were experts in the electrical and plumbing departments. They had it out for Roy too. They had it out for all of the longest tenured workers with wages that had risen over the years, or had been hired at an earlier time for a higher wage (Home Depot jobs were at one time well paid). They were all being fired and replaced by new crop of minimum wage workers. How is this not corrupting and destroying a company? How is this economically productive?

There appears to me to be a company lifecycle where with luck and hard work and sometimes genius a business is engineered and grown. When its growth has peaked its creators move on, giving it over to the Harvard men and women who then slowly begin its destruction, slowly stripping it of its value for their own personal benefit (and the shareholders). Why shouldn’t the workers unionize to take their piece? Why shouldn’t they defend themselves against the sacrifices being forced upon them by management--by a management enriching itself as a result of those sacrifices? Unions are unproductive, but equally so are the leisure class managers. It is as though two parasites were fighting over a decaying corpse. What was economically productive and lively departed with the entrepreneur.**

As I argued above, inflation has less effect upon the wealthy class than the worker. At the Home Depot the average raise among those who received them was $0.10, clearly less than the Fed’s traditional 2% target inflation. The Fed is simply another group of MBA (and PhD) men and women trained in spreadsheets and management efficiencies. Like the wastefulness and corruption the managers reap upon a company, the Fed reaps a similar corruption upon the economy. In both cases it is the poorest who bear the dearest cost. A union is their only defense.


* There is also the Austrian argument that union intervention weakens and destroys a company and is thus counterproductive for its members. My view is nuanced on this point, as you will see below.

** The successful entrepreneurs make up a tiny fraction of the population yet their ingenuity and daring is what drives an economy, is what is productive. The unions and managers (and government) then parasitically fight over what was created. As in all things, only creators matter.

Hungry (Leaving Cali)

1. Where the hunt is comfortable, the terrain known, the feeling of danger gone, he will find nothing. The land is overhunted. The animals have moved into the new territory. The hunter must go to where it is uncomfortable and unknown to find the great beast.

2. Women now pick berries in the clearing where he killed the great bear. In the once dangerous forest he hunted, the women walk alone. The triumph of the bear is long ago, and the men and women no longer speak of it. Without meat protein his muscles have thinned, his strength lessened, and he has begun to resemble the women.

3. He must go to hunt in the unknown lands, in those darker forests: his constant hunger is a constant reminder of his lack of courage.
Copyright © Moraline Free