Bloody Immigrants

They come to your country, build successful multi-million-dollar companies while still in high school*… as I remarked to Mr. Free Market, he’ll probably end up marrying into the Royal Family.

Most teenagers of his age spend their school lunch breaks playing football or chatting to girls.
But Akshay Ruparelia used every spare moment to sell houses.The young entrepreneur – nicknamed Alan Sugar by his friends – set up an online estate agency while still at sixth form.
The teenager started his business after persuading family members to lend him £7,000 and already employs 12 people.
And his clever business model has been such a hit that his company doorsteps.co.uk has been valued at £12 million in just over a year.
Now aged 19, Akshay has had to put plans of studying economics and management at Oxford University on hold because the firm he set up at school is expanding so rapidly.

I’m curious as to why he’d bother with university at all, seeing as he seems to be doing quite well without the academic drag of “theory” (as opposed to actual, you know, stuff that works in the real world).

Good for him.


*For my Murkin Readers: “sixth form” is the equivalent to an extra year of high school — thirteenth grade, as it were — as a preparatory step towards university. It is one of my deepest regrets that I didn’t stay on for the Sixth myself; my life would have been considerably different had I done so.

Easy-Peasy

…and in a somewhat-related note to the above post:

I drive many women of my acquaintance insane with rage when I tell them that men look for only three things in a woman: Sex, Sandwiches and Silence. (Don’t chide me: enraging women is my sacred mission.)

But courtesy of Insty comes this stunning revelation from a woman who has achieved that most elusive of female goals: finding and keeping a decent man. And it’s so simple:

Food, clean clothes, tidy room, sex and a shoulder to lean on.  Yep, it’s really that simple.

There’s a lot more detail, of course, but her plan is brilliant. Needless to say, the feministicals are going to go batshit crazy about JudgyBitch’s advice. I don’t care. Because it’s true, and moreover, I bet her guy does just as much to look after her (“LOTS!”). This, however, is the clincher for me:

But we’re not talking about quid pro quo here. If your first instinct was to set up a mental balance sheet and make sure all of YOUR thoughtful actions are being returned in EXACT PROPORTION to your outlay, you might as well give up now. You don’t know shit about men, or relationships of any kind.

Exactly. Give this lady a 50th wedding anniversary. I hope she gets it. (And a quick note to Mr. JudgyBitch: fuck this one up, and you deserve daily ball-kickings for the rest of your life.)

Manual Labor

I have often advised young men to get a trade before going off to college — and more especially so if they are unclear as to what career they choose to follow. There’s no point in getting into debt when a well-intentioned degree in, say, Languages does not result in decent job prospects, and even worse when you realize that your career preference is not really congruent with your degree — a youthful desire to become a recording engineer transforms into a real desire to become a doctor when maturity comes into play. (And note that I’m not even talking about worthless degrees in nonsense such as Post-Modernist Poetry or African-American Studies.)

In fact, I’d counsel young men to join the Armed Forces if they still haven’t made their mind up about their career by age 19. (My good friend Doc Russia is a case study in this scenario: shiftless yoot at 18, USMC for a few years, med school and now a respected doctor.) The military has a wonderful way of crystallizing one’s thought process and compelling maturity.

Now comes this little snippet from Over Here:

Electricians are earning as much as £3,000 a week as they cash in on a chronic shortage of skilled workers across the country.
That amounts to £156,000 a year – around six times the average wage and more than the £150,000 earned by the Prime Minister.
Plumbers and bricklayers are also benefiting, with wages rising by as much as 10 per cent in the past 12 months.
Plumbers can earn as much as £2,000 a week, while brickies can bring home £1,125 – more than £50,000 a year.

Of course, this should come as no surprise. I recall some years back when Reader Mark C., at that time an executive at a large corporation in the oil exploration / development business (think: Bechtel, Asea Brown Boveri, those kinds of companies) was bemoaning the fact that he was unable to find enough warm bodies to train as welders and oilfield technicians, even when after a two-year apprenticeship, newly-minted workers would have an internationally-portable skill set that could command a starting annual wage of over $75,000 — for a 21-year-old.

The same is true for carpenters (rough, finished or cabinet-makers), electricians (light- or heavy current) and many other such trades. All you need to do is look at the progress made by that Jason guy on the Holmes on Homes TV show — a raw, inexperienced kid with nothing but a strong back and willingness to learn; three years later a qualified construction project manager who could start his own business and make a small (or even large) fortune. Don’t even get me started on the pro electricians, plumbers and such who featured on the show: even for Canucks, they must each have made a fortune, and were worth every penny. (As I recall, Holmes used a young Polish plumber, an immigrant who could barely speak English, on his earlier shows; by the end of the third season, this same kid had his own business with lots of other kids now working for him, and spoke perfect English.)

Compared to that, a drama major or Womyn’s Studies professor look quite insignificant — which they should be.

I’ve said before that my late father always told me to work with my brain and not my hands. Considering that he started off as a welder / boilermaker and ended up as the owner of a civil engineering company, it was the worst advice I’d ever got. (He went to night school at the Tech while working his day job, and eventually graduated with a civil engineering degree. Not bad for a farm boy.) He always told me to get a degree — any degree — because I could always fall back on that if my chosen career as a professional musician didn’t work out. What he should have said was, “Do a trade apprenticeship — any trade — and you can always fall back on that if you decide that being a lawyer sucks.”

I often wonder what would have happened had I done a few years’ carpentry right after leaving school. Whatever I’d finally become, I’m pretty sure that there would have been far fewer periods of abject poverty in my life.

Proportions

The recent flooding of Houston made me think of numbers (because that’s the kind of guy I am).

One of my friends lives inside the City of Houston, and his house was not flooded (because the city is built on a hill, relatively speaking, of about 400 ft. above sea level. But it’s an island, so to speak, because most of the surrounding area is less than 100 ft. above the Gulf of Mexico — hence the massive floods caused by Harvey).

For my British Readers, let me give some perspective. The Greater London area (population 8.8 million) comprises about 605 square miles; greater Houston (pop. 6.5 million) comprises just over 8,900 square miles (in the U.S., “greater” is labeled as “metropolitan statistical area”, or MSA).

In so large an area, you’ll get a situation like this:

Texans don’t trust government, so they rescued each other when things got desperate

Across Southeast Texas, police, firefighters, the National Guard, the Coast Guard and other agencies responded with immense force. But in a storm of Harvey’s sheer monstrousness — hundreds of miles across, lingering for days with bucketing rain that swallowed roads and initially kept rescue aircraft grounded — no government response could ever have been enough.

So ordinary people took up the challenge.

When Andrew Brenneise saw his West Houston neighborhood flooding at a ferocious pace last Saturday, his first thought was Facebook Live. He pulled out his smartphone in the punishing rain and pleaded for volunteers with boats.

Forty-five minutes later, the first truck arrived with a boat on a trailer. Then ten more. Then twenty. Then Brenneise had a flotilla of fishing boats, kayaks, canoes and flat-bottomed skiffs which, over the next six days, rescued hundreds of people and animals.

“This is who we are,” said Brenneise, 31, a business development manager at a chemical company. “The police and firefighters can’t be everywhere, so the community has to step in and take control.”

It’s true that by and large, Texans don’t trust the government (any government, even our own) — our state constitution is the most restrictive covenant in the world — but coupled to that is the realization that government can’t be everywhere, all the time (especially as in the absence of a state income tax, we can’t and don’t want to fund it). That’s true even in the best of times, as it happens, which means that in a massive crisis like Harvey, we have to take care of ourselves — and it looks like we did.

I also note that comparatively speaking, there doesn’t seem to have been too much thievery, no doubt because of the many “You loot, we’ll shoot” signs that popped up all over the place. Yeah, we include “defense of our property” in the list of things we don’t entirely delegate to government either. And any suggestion that government agencies should disarm Texans in times of disaster would be met with mocking laughter, not just from ordinary people but also from our elected politicians and police forces.

Now for the rebuilding. Texas has an aptly-named “rainy day fund” of just under $10 billion, which we’re going to have to dip into, I guess. The federal government will probably kick in as well — and before anyone jumps in with a “so you hate government but you’ll take their money” snark, let me remind y’all that we Texans do pay federal income taxes — and in any event, if the rest of the U.S.A. wants gasoline for their cars, we’ll need to fix the drowned oil refineries around Houston too; so yeah, the feds should come to the party.

I haven’t really kept on top of this — I’ve been eating Full English Breakfasts, getting plastered on warm ale, and swanning around stately palaces, sue me — but that seems to be a reasonable overview of the situation.

Feel free to add corrections and comments in the usual place.


Afterthought:  the Dallas-Ft. Worth MSA (pop. 7.1 million) extends for 9,268 square miles, fifteen times the size of Greater London.

Sinking Ship, Fleeing Of

I note that conservative activists are leaving California in ever-greater numbers, and while I understand the impulse that makes people want to stay and fight, I sympathize more with those who have given up California as a lost cause and just want to get back to living in freedom.

I left Chicago for precisely those reasons.

I note that one of the conservative folks in the article landed up in McKinney, which is just a town or so over from my adopted home of Plano, TX. This is a good thing. As more and more people are discovering the joys of living in a conservative, well-planned and -managed area, it’s inevitable that the creeping cancer of liberal asswipes are also going to infiltrate the place; so it’s good to get a few firebrand gun-lovers (like, errr, myself) moving in to maintain the conservative imbalance, as it were.

I note with some alarm that Hillary Bitch Clinton got more than a few votes in our voting district, which meant that the outstanding Rep. Sam Johnson (PBUH) only squeaked in with 62% of the vote — his lowest margin ever, as I recall. (To put this in perspective, the next district north of us went 78% for Trump.)

So to all conservative Californians of that ilk — please come on over: Plano, McKinney and Allen will welcome you with open arms. And I bet you’ll just love the indoor range in Frisco (not the cesspit y’all know in the north of CA, but a good conservative town). This invitation is especially aimed at those Loyal Readers who are marooned in a rising tide of Blue liberalism — you know who you are.

Screw California. Let the place circle the bowl and sink without a trace. And if, in terms of the heading of this post you’re called “rats”, let me remind you that it’s the rats who first leave a sinking ship. You’ve done your bit as much as you could; now come and relax in freedom’s welcoming arms. Oh, and speaking of arms: you can ditch those stupid California-compliant semi-automatic rifles; we prefer the real thing here.

Seldom Spoken, Truer Words, Mankind For The Benefit Of

Sarah Hoyt sometimes makes me want to give up blogging, because she so often makes me think, “I should have written that. Why didn’t I?” Her latest, on what constitutes duty, starts off high with a brilliant Heinlein quote, and then soars up into the heavens. Sample:

Fulfill those duties you freely assumed, yes, even unto death, because that’s the price of your honor and your adulthood.  But those obligations imposed on you by force majeure?  Accept the need to do it, if there is no other alternative, but do NOT under any circumstances internalize it as your duty or feel guilty for not fulfilling it.

This is why you should harbor absolutely no feelings of guilt about avoiding taxes as much as you legally can, why you should never volunteer information to the police unless you’re an uninvolved witness and why (in 2020) you should tell the government’s “census”-takers to fuck off with their snooping and intrusive questions. And those are just the first three which came to me as I was reading it. Feel free to add your own suggestions in Comments.

Read Sarah’s whole post, please. It will clear your head and make your whole day brighter, as it did mine.