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The worm turns

Lead Summary
By Jim Thompson
HCP columnist

I have had a slogan in my business for a long time: “Spinning the Invoice Printer.” I follow this up with the statement that the most important machine in any business is the invoice printer.

And, of course, I mean this figuratively – the offering plate at church, the tab at the restaurant and so forth. The point is, if you cannot create an invoice recognized by the laws of the land, you have no income and are going out of business. This just happened to the Catholic school in Hillsboro – not enough invoice printer spinning.

But I am not here to criticize the Catholic school. I hope it can find a way to stay in business. What I want to notice, however, is that government and other pressures on society are creating untenable situations, killing some invoice printers and forcing others to operate at unsustainable speeds.

Take “Net Zero by 2050” – the idea that we can essentially attain an energy system where there are, in real time, no new carbon dioxide emissions, or the ones that are created are balanced by carbon dioxide absorption systems. In places, like West Texas and the UK, the cost of this attempt is being seen already.

When the windmills stop blowing in West Texas, the energy companies have to rely on conventional energy sources (coal and natural gas) in order to keep the grid operating. These instantaneous shifts are costly, a cost born by the consumer.

Electricity generations does not turn on and off rapidly. There is a cost to maintaining them on standby, and there is a bigger cost when they are plugged in to the grid. In the UK, they are having the same problem with solar. When the sun doesn’t shine or it is night, they must have conventional systems to take up the slack.

The average home’s energy bill has gone up by 230 percent in the last year (Ukraine War), and the additional charge for switching on the standby when the sun isn’t shining has cost the homeowner an additional $300 per year. This won’t fly long-term and the experts see no solution (battery backup cost is estimated in the quadrillions of dollars).

The energy solutions on many fronts will simply not be in place by 2050 to achieve the goals being set by the UN and others. People who influence these decisions are noticing this. Let’s see what they do about it.

The woke culture is taking a beating, too. Governor Sarah Huckabee Sanders of Arkansas, within her first two months in office, passed and signed an education bill that takes sexuality and Critical Race Theory out of schools, sets teaching standards, expands charter schools, and raises average teacher pay from $36,000 to $50,000 per year.

Larry Householder and Alex Murdaugh have been convicted. Dr. Anthony Fauci is not looking so great these days, either. Justice is suddenly looking more optimistic.

Finally, there is a new political party for those fed up with establishment Washington, both the Rs and Ds. It is called the No Label Party.

No Label intends to present a presidential candidate next year who is a middle-of-the-road moderate, not extreme on either the right or left.

No Label is working to get on the ballot, which is done by collecting enough signatures from registered voters per individual state requirements. They have already succeeded in three states. Of course, a third party will likely be a spoiler, as Ross Perot was in 1992. Yet, it ought to be a wake-up call for the establishment parties to get their act together, nevertheless.

When it comes to finances – and what doesn’t involve finances – my old spinning-the-invoice-printer test works well. In the divergent topics I have covered here this week, you can see it in each one, and in most you don’t have to dig too deep.

Jim Thompson, formerly of Marshall, is a graduate of Hillsboro High School and the University of Cincinnati. He resides in Duluth, Ga. and is a columnist for The Highland County Press. He may be reached at

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