There is plenty on our mind these days.
Perhaps most worrisome, though, is what can only be described as the great death of personal accountability in our culture.
Take this week’s crazy Facebook trial on Capitol Hill. What a farce.
It’s all there, Zuckerberg said. If folks bother to read what we write for them, he said, they know exactly what we’re doing with their data.
But, jabs the congressman, nobody reads all that fine print. Perhaps we need more regulation, he concludes.
And so it goes.
Washington gets bigger… the print gets finer… and society grows dimmer.
The future will be interesting.
But we don’t need Facebook to enhance our Connections. We’ve got a nice secure mailbag.
Let’s dig into it and see what your fellow readers have to say.
Since it’s tax season, we’ll start here…
Just saw the accountant and did my taxes for 2017. I’m mostly retired and had small amount of tax to pay. But then we calculated my tax burden for 2018. I will have basically the same income as 2017, but will pay almost 3 times more in tax!!! Could not believe it. I thought tax CUT was passed. – Reader T.T.
Sorry for the bad news, T.T., but somebody has to pay for that Facebook testimony… the panel that will explore the results… and the salaries of those who oversee the fresh regulation it will stir.
Think about the children.
We jest, of course.
The truth is the tax cut was a bit of a sham for retirees. Washington already knows how they’ll vote, so our lawmakers didn’t feel the need to bribe the folks who’ve left the working world.
But we warn folks it’s not the tax bill that’s going to hurt the most next year. It’s the health insurance bill that’s going to be a killer.
Thanks to some political twists of logic, healthy folks will soon be able to opt out of insurance pools, meaning only the sick will remain.
Premiums will surge, starting as soon as this summer when the first figures are revealed.
Again, the future will be interesting.
Our New Feature
Thank you, thank you, thank you, Andy!!! I’ve been trying to get my newsletter publishers for YEARS to provide an audio format to all of my subscriptions so I can listen to them while I drive. You are certainly ahead of the curve when it comes to conventional thinking within your industry (which is why I subscribe to your newsletter!). Thanks again. – Reader J.D.
You’re welcome, J.D.! We had fun with this new project.
If you’re not a Manward Letter subscriber (why not?), you aren’t familiar with what J.D. is referring to. But you should be. We’re doing something that nobody else in the industry is doing… an audio version of our monthly content.
With our new podcast, subscribers can listen to our issues while driving, while mowing… or even while mixing their favorite cocktail.
It aptly fits our mantra of doing more and doing better.
Our “Friendly Nemesis”
And finally, a note from the man who describes himself as our “friendly nemesis”…
Hi, Andy. Why are you afraid to even mention the seemingly obvious reason young men used to carry shotguns in the back of their pickup and did not go on mass shooting sprees? It is not about guns quite obviously because we had lots of guns back then and young men, too.
You should be the first to point that out. What certainly did change is we started giving young men these new style antidepressants (SSRIs like Prozac) in the early ‘90s – just when these mass shootings started.
I already sent you a long paper I compiled on the subject with plenty of references for you to check out, so did you? Had you read it and researched it with the footnotes, I cannot imagine you would not bring this up or admit it is a very suspect cause. These young men are at least mentally ill, that is by definition true if you go on a mass shooting spree killing other people for no reason – and you don’t even say that. But we had mental illness before and older drugs too that did not act like the new drugs and we did not have these mass shootings. Are you being paid by the drug companies to keep silent? Well I doubt that, but one might think so from your silence.
The way I see it is that if we do not ban the unsupervised use of these new antidepressants (use them only in a locked hospital ward) then society will start passing gun laws left and right that you and I know will do little to prevent these shootings by someone determined to get guns.
Still your friendly nemesis. – Super Reader J.H.
Oh, J.H., we could only dream of getting paid by the drug companies… they pay so well.
But, alas, they wouldn’t have us and we wouldn’t have them. (It’s the “selling your soul” section of their fine print that got our attention.)
The truth is we have mentioned the idea of mental illness and the concoctions modern man has cooked up to supposedly cure it in this column several times (most recently here). But we agree we haven’t taken it far enough.
It’s a serious problem that a slew of readers have asked us to tackle.
So that’s what we’ll do.
We’ll dig into the research, sort fact from fiction and cover it next week.