The Barber Shop

A barbershop philosopher/theologian talks about religion, current events, and issues concerning black america

Sunday, April 30, 2006

Save Darfur

400,000 – KILLED!

2,500,000 – DISPLACED!



Wednesday, April 26, 2006

Thoughts on Money and Materialism

I’ve got finals next week so I don’t have time for longer articles. Instead I will share some of my personal philosophical thoughts about money.

Developing a healthy distain for materialism is one of the best things you can do for your financial life and peace of mind.

Living a simpler material live with a healthy cash flow surplus is better than a larger material life full of debts.

Have a good week!

I’ll try to post again this weekend depending on how my studying goes.

Monday, April 24, 2006

Rising Crude Oil Prices Do Not Equate to Rising Profits!

We are in the middle of witnessing the largest robbery of the century. Crude oil prices are always going to rise and fall, but passing those fluctuating costs on to consumers shouldn’t increase a company’s profits.

A street vendor sells hotdogs for $1.50 and it costs him 50 cents per link to buy his daily supply of hotdogs. Now let’s say for some reason the overall price of hotdog links goes up to 60 cents per link. If the vendor wanted to maintain his profits he would need to raise his selling price to $1.60 to cover his increased costs. He would do this because he knows other vendors will also have to raise their prices or lose profits.

Now what if there were only three other vendors in town and they got together on the down low and decided they wanted more money. As long as they all agreed to not start underselling each other they could slowly raise their prices to $2.50 per hotdog even though the operating costs only rose a little bit.

This is essentially what the oil companies have done. For every 10 cents crude oil goes up they raise prices by some multiple of 10, but never just the 10 extra cents it cost them.

In 2004 Exxon-Mobil’s profit increased 218% to


In 2005 Exxon-Mobil’s profit increased again over 30% to


(Click hyper links to view supporting articles)

Now remember we are talking about profit not earnings. They took home over 36 billion after costs and expenses including Katrina.

We’re being robbed and no one’s calling the cops.

Friday, April 21, 2006

Illegal Workers Suppress Wages

Illegal workers are a problem that is important to African Americans because they interfere with the natural progression of wages.

No one may want to pick oranges for $5 per hour or a $1 per bushel, but they would for $7 and some benefits or $9 with none.

In a competitive labor market employers are forced to raise wages and incentives in order to attract workers who would otherwise do something else. When illegal workers enter the picture they are exploited because their employment options are greatly limited by their illegal status and often times language barriers. Also, many illegal workers do not intend to live in the Unite States permanently so they send a good deal of their money back to their countries of origin. The disparity between the cost of living in their countries and ours is often great enough that the $5 per hour job they take here is the equivalent of a $15 per hour job there. This works out great for them and the employers that hire them, but it leaves the unskilled or low skilled legal American worker with suppressed wages because employers aren’t forced to pay more.

The companies say we can’t compete if we have to pay wages that high, but that is why, historically, the government has subsidized some industries. Unsubsidized companies need to develop business models that work without illegal workers or fold up shop.

We don’t need a big wall or electric fence across the border; we need to severely fine and punish the business and industries that create the demand and send back illegal workers as we catch them.

Instead of the “guest slavery program” the president proposed, we should expand and properly fund the immigration service so they can enforce the existing laws and protect low income Americans.

Thursday, April 20, 2006

Criminally Irresponsible Music Industry

I originally posted this on Vibe Magazine's message board in August of last year.

A lot of money is being made at the expense of our children. The television industry, music industry, and publications like Vibe are lying to our children. It's criminal how they are targeting our little ones and manipulating their thought lives with negativity. Behind all the videos and beats, the heart of a song is its expression of an idea.

When I turn on the radio or watch videos it saddens me to see the hateful messages being sent out. Our music is promoting selfishness, materialism, self-degradation, violence, drunkenness, lawlessness, adultery, and all other kinds of immorality and irresponsibility. Combine these social influences with peer pressure and cyclical family dysfunctions and you get this:

· 13% of the population but 46% of those in prison/jail

· 50% high school dropout rates is some of our areas

· Black people are 6 times more likely to be murdered than whites

I could go on with the stats but there’s no need. Many Hip Hop entertainers throw gas on the fire and call it art, and we envy and celebrate these death merchants while they aid in the destruction of our people. Content matters! Ideas are more deadly than bullets. When is the last time you saw a gun fire itself? It takes a thought to squeeze that trigger. If you plant enough negative thoughts into impressionable minds, what do you think happens?

The good man brings good things out of the good stored up in him, and the evil man brings evil things out of the evil stored up in him. Mt 12:35


Welcome to my site. I’ve been floating around the Internet for a little while now and I’ve decided I need a home. I still plan to post on other sites but I will start re-posting that material here as well. I will also post original material here every few days as events occur or I get inspired. In addition to my other obligations I’m going to grad school at night so during midterms and finals I most likely wont post.

I've never had a blog-site before so this will be a work in progress for a while.