Saturday, July 23, 2011

She had an amazing voice

Amy Winehouse had an amazing voice.

Sunday, July 17, 2011

A day in the life: visiting earthquake houses (#1)

Besides working in the healthcare field, HHF works on a number of other development initiatives. As you could imagine, one of the big issues relates to post-earthquake housing.

Following the EQ, many people left Port-au-Prince for good reason. It's now been more than 18 months and the city still has huge numbers of tent cities and fallen buildings.

As such, housing outside of PAP is needed. And we're working on that.

I just had the opportunity to go on a final review of much of our EQ housing project. Not much of it is located in Jeremie. Rather, the houses are located in the countryside outside of Jeremie. On this excursion, I visited the villages of Moron and Tessier.

Here's one of the houses I visited:And here's a close-up of the proud father with two of his children:After visiting that house and having the grantor (CRS) confirm the EQ-migrant status of the residents, we walked further up the hill to the next house:Here you can see the new house we built (center) and the old house (left) that was crumbling. As for the crumbling, I understand it was unrelated to the EQ:Here's a better view of the old house. You can plainly see how bad it is:And here's a close-up of the reason for the new EQ house. Three of these kids grew up here, but the other three kids are from PAP. They are among the tens of thousands of migrants who moved to the state of Grand Anse because they were displaced by the earthquake:It's unclear to me whether these children were orphaned or simply sent here to live with their relatives because their parents couldn't take care of them in PAP. And that's not a particularly uncommon story, since so many people lost their houses, spouses and so many other critical ingredients for making a home and raising a family.

And this was a going away pic for me. These kids were so happy for their new house with a roof and solid walls. They were adorable. It was nice to see them so happy.

Tim White

Saturday, July 16, 2011

Debt ceiling: pain now or pain later

When a top administration official asked The Big 0 for his approach to garnering support on increasing the nation's credit card, Obomba paraphrased David Farragut's famous words. In fearmongering typical of The Political Class, Obummer said:

Damn the torpedoes, full speed ahead!

Obama and Republican leaders keep talking up the "catastrophe" that lay ahead for America if the debt ceiling isn't raised. And while I accept their argument that there will be significant problems if the debt ceiling isn't raised, they FAIL to acknowledge the complete picture.

If the debt ceiling is raised, the pain will only be delayed. As I said in my opposition during the runup to the Bush Bailout, it's pain now or pain later.

The pain cannot be avoided indefinitely. Among insiders, it's already widely accepted that the dollar's life as the world's reserve currency is coming to an end. As our special status ends, our standard of living will drop because the dollar will have less and less buying power. So the pain is coming. I think the better solution is to deal with the pain now.

I agree with my favorite Congressman, Dr. Ron Paul:

By the way, Washington's fearmongering includes lies. America has defaulted in the past.

In 1933, FDR defaulted when he refused to pay debts -- as promised -- in gold and converted to "federal reserve notes" for all payments, excluding foreign central banks. And in 1971, Nixon completed FDRs default by refusing to pay foreign central banks in gold. So this would *not* be the first time we defaulted.

This really is classic fearmongering.

Tim White