Category Archives: government spending

What was wrong with Obama’s speech? Everything.

In presenting his so-called “Jobs Plan” to the Congress, President Obama was 100 percent in everything he is good at. 

1.  It was a well crafted and delivered  campaign speech — more fitting for the stomp than a joint session of the United States Congress.  There is no doubt that Obama can make a good speech.  It is hard to disagree with a lot of things he says.  However, what he does not say and what he does has little in common with his words.  This was not an exception.  It is a character trait.  He lies on a grand scale — a strategy that I suspect he learned under the tutelage of his Chicago Machine handlers.

2.  In that mode, he was naturally lacking in detail.  His repeated call for the Congress to quickly pass his self-proclaimed perfect plan before seeing if there is even a pig in the poke is outrageously arrogant.

3.  He reinforced his reputation as a strident philosophic and political partisan.  The speech was all about politics to the exclusion of economic realities.  Notice that he wants the taxpayers to provide hundreds of billions of dollars to feed money to his base, mostly the unions and government workers.  His promised assist to the millions of small businesses is a sop and any advantage will be wiped out by the negative impact of the increased debt and continuation of draconian regulations.  He is using the federal treasure and our children’s money in the hope of gaining permanent empowerment for his party and his radical left philosophy.  His unabated scheme is to make Washington and the White House more powerful at the expense of the people.

4.  He set up the same old trick that got us into this mess.   He wants to spend up to $500 billion more borrowed dollars with the claim that it is all “paid for.”  That is not just a lie, it is a dangerous and damnable lie.  According to Obama, the $500 billion will come from cuts in the envisioned increases in federal spending over the next ten years.  Under his plan, the federal budget will continue to grow, the deficit will surge to a new unfathomable level and our children and grandchildren will pay the price when the federal budget bubble bursts.  Even if he was well-intentioned, there is no way that he can guarantee that future congresses will follow through on even the cuts in proposed new spending.

5.  He played the shop worn “bleeding heart” card.  He wants to help the elderly, and children and keep teachers in the classrooms.  He carried forward the progressives’ favorite tactics — social division, class warfare and fear-mongering.  It is easy to talk about all the good things we could do with another trillion dollars or two.  But it does not take a degree in economics (and I have one, by the way) to understand that even our best intentions and most charitable instincts have to be carried out within the limits of our resources. 

So … if Obama knows all this, and I am sure he does, why does he pursue such destructive policies.  It is obvious.  His goals and objectives are purely political and partisan.  He and his ilk want to use the financial crises and public fear to gain more power for their idea of a ruling elite.  Yet!  That’s it, folks.  Remember, it was his senior advisor, Rahm Emmanuel, who opined that “no good crisis should go to waste.”

If you want to understand the Obama game, look at it this way.  let’s say I earned only enough money to pay 52 percent of my bills, so  I borrowed 48 percent of the money from the bank– and this has been going on for years until my interest payment to the bank each month is more than all my other bills.  Even though I am not sure of my income in the next ten years, I go to the bank and ask for another huge loan on top of all that I already owe — and I promise to repay them out of the additional money I hope to make in future years.  I suspect the banker would think I was stark raving mad — and I would be.  But this is exactly the Obama jobs scam.  He expects the American public to be suckers at least one more time.

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Of human bondage … liberal style

I was pondering our current economic and political situation and for some reason the term “slaves of the state” popped into my mind.

We know that the term had real meaning to the peasants of ancient China, the pyramid builders in the days of the pharaohs, the serfs of medieval Europe, the subjects of potentates, and even the proletariat of Communist Russia. In fact, it was not until the democratic experiment of the Greeks and Romans did mankind begin to envision of system of governance that was based on the assumed or God-given authority and inalienable rights of the governed. This has led to a growing global era of political, social and economic enlightenment — and freedom. Central to political freedom was economic freedom — to own property and freely distribute the earnings of one’s labor. However, the forces of totalitarianism are an ever present danger.

Under one system, the people derive their rewards and success from the beneficence of the state — be it a regime or an autocrat. You obey the rules of the state, turn over the fruits of your labor to the state for redistribution and accept the paternalistic care — at least minimal care — from the state according to the power elite’s will, whims and their need to remain in power.

The key to any slavery is that the benefits of your labor are confiscated for the benefit of the slave master, first and foremost — and subsequently doled out to those who support the system. In most cases, you, the peasant, receive only the barest of sustenance in return — only a fraction of the value of your labor.

The key question is: When do you and I become slaves to the state? At which point is the confiscations of our personal wealth tantamount to slavery?

This is not a frivolous question. Most “slavery” does not come in the form of kidnapping, being sold to some private enterprise and whipped into submission. In fact, most slavery is the result of authoritarian governance — slaves to the state. It can come by sweeping change as was the case in Chile, when the generals overthrew the democratically elected government. But, more often it comes by slow erosion, as the corruptive influence of power consumes more of our rights and freedoms with the false promise to improve the quality of our lives.

The most common characteristics of slavery is a wealthy elite and an impoverished captive laboring class. It is the same whether the enslaved is chattel or just subjected to the dependency on government for life’s minimal essentials. If you look closely, you realize that the residents of the American socialist ghettos are captive — stuck in generational poverty and segregated, figuratively and literally, from the personal opportunities of free market America.

You not only find slavery in America’s Old South, but in every society governed by rulers. The evidence of the suffering of the masses in undemocratic societies is so overwhelming as to be indisputable. All-powerful governments produce deprived masses. It can be called communism, socialism, Marxism, feudalism, or whatever. The more the state possess decision-making power over the lives of the governed, the more the governed are “slaves of the state.”

Many liberal political science professors like to proffer the theoretical benefits of a “benevolent dictatorship” as the potentially best form of government. However, significant examples of this “ideal” are impossible to find. Therefore it is safe to say that the more a government confiscates the value of our productivity, the more we are enslaved. More government means less freedom. Simple as that.

The Greco/Roman precepts of democracy have given those who live under them the most advanced and highest standard of living in history. Political freedom, the right to own property, pick our leaders, and engage in free market enterprise have brought the commoner personal wealth beyond the wildest imagination — far better than even those in this modern world who are still enslaved to their state.

While state-desired innovation has occurred under totalitarian regimes, it pales compared to the staggering progress achieved for the masses under free market capitalism. The Soviet Union did not sire the technology that got them into space or balanced our nuclear advantage. They stole it. And while the Russians and Red Chinese were able to focus on specific competitive military technologies (the so-called “arms race”), the people of their nations lived two centuries behind the average American.

As Ronald Reagan said, we are always only one generation away from totalitarianism. The democratic revolution in France, that was to mimic our own, ended with the rise of Napoleon Bonaparte. The more democratic Mensheviks of the Russian Revolution were crushed by the brutal statism of the Bolsheviks. Democracies are always threatened by forces, internal and external, which would enslave the public. This is why Thomas Jefferson admonished us to “eternal vigilance.”

So, what is the point.

The point is that we have every reason to be fearful with what is happening in Washington today. It is currently calculated that we already work for government from January 1 until mid August — more than half a year. This means that more than half of the wealth you and I earn is confiscated and redistributed by government. For most of the year, we already are “slaves of the state.”

As if that is not bad enough, we now have a regime in Washington determined to extend or servitude even more. Like all would-be dictatorship, they claim that the government must provide the benefits to society since you and I are not either capable enough or good enough. Like all statists, the radical Democrats currently in power demonize the producers of wealth as greedy and immoral — and only their government can protect the poor, the infirmed, the needy, and the very natural world in which we live from the evil of our intentions.

This sounds good, like the pitch of the snake oil salesman, but look at the reality of their world. We need not look to history or overseas to find the examples of socialistic statism. Detroit was a city run by radical socialists. The most “liberal” (read that socialistic) states in America are on the verge of economic collapse.

After a speech in a African American church in one of Chicago’s Democrat-run ghettos, I was challenged by an young lady to explain what free markets and capitalism has done for her. I told her, “Nothing.” Before she got too smug, I explained that she does not live in free market American. She is trapped in socialist America — an island of socialism surrounded by the obvious benefits for capitalism.

I often refer to the plight of modern inner city African Americans as the second great enslavement. They are trapped in dependency on the meager hand out of the government masters. Like the American slavery that ended with Abraham Lincoln, the new and more subtle economic slavery of today results in depravation of housing, depravation of food, depravation of healthcare, depravation of education, depravation of mobility and depravation of personal freedom. For meager considerations, the slaves of yore were to pick cotton. Today, the enslaved minorities provide the political plantation owners with votes.

More than anything, our founders were small “d” democrats, and more than anything they feared unbridled government as the enemy of the people. “The government that governs least, governs best.” “A government that can give you anything, can take away everything.” Their warnings ring through their writings, which, by no coincidence, are no longer taught in our government-run schools.

One can argue the extend of the danger in Washington today, but can anyone really say that we are not moving in the direction of an authoritarian regime? Already, the grip of Washington is so strong that many see it as inconceivable to take back the influence of the federal government.

Over the course of my blogs, I will examine this most critical issue from different perspectives.