Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Obama's $100 Million Budget "Cut" Explained

This video explains what Obama's $100 million budget cut really looks like:

The Swine Flu & Limited Government

It is surprising that a conservative approach to handling the recent swine flue would show up in the New York Times but it did. David Brooks has written a piece in the NYT's op-ed called Globalism Goes Viral in which he argues that decentralized institutions are better than centralized institutions in handling threats.

David Brooks' arguments can be be applied to the debate over whether or not the size of our government be big or small. The Founding Fathers knew that decentralization always works best and that's what they had when they set up a Republican form of government.

A decentralized institution, regardless if is to handle a health crisis or manage the affairs of a nation, is the best way to go. Here's what David Brooks said about why decentralized institutions are better at handling problems:
It is a fact of human nature that in times of crisis, people like to feel protected by one of their own. They will only trust people who share their historical experience, who understand their cultural assumptions about disease and the threat of outsiders and who have the legitimacy to make brutal choices. If some authority is going to restrict freedom, it should be somebody elected by the people, not a stranger.

Finally, the decentralized approach has coped reasonably well with uncertainty. It is clear from the response, so far, that there is an informal network of scientists who have met over the years and come to certain shared understandings about things like quarantining and rates of infection. It is also clear that there is a ton they don’t understand.

A single global response would produce a uniform approach. A decentralized response fosters experimentation.

In a few short paragraphs, David Brooks has successfully made the case for why a smaller, limited, decentralized government is better than a larger, expansive, centralized government.

Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Health Care Reform=Bigger Government

Hot Air has a nice article with revealing videos of what health care "reform" really means in the Obama Administration.

I highly recommend people go over to that website and read about it.

Monday, April 27, 2009

Fact: Capitalists Give Better Hugs!!

This is the perfect demonstration that capitalism is better than other economic systems because the free market will encourage people deliver a better product at a competitive price.

In this case, this video shows that that the free market will deliver better hugs than free hugs!!

For California Voters: May 19 Is Your Opportunity To Stop An Increase In Taxes!!

Saturday, April 25, 2009

Global Warming: Not About RisingTempratures, But Rising Taxes!!

Whenever politicians talk about Global Warming/Climate Change, they're not talking about an increase in temperature, but an increase in taxes. Listen to the conversation between Al Gore and Represenative Dingell discuss the issue of Cap and Trade:

For those of you who don't know what Cap And Trade is about, here is a brief explanation of how it works:

These measures would set a limit, or cap, on carbon dioxide emissions from fossil fuel use. The effect of such a cap would be to impose rationing of coal, oil, and natural gas on the American economy. Each covered utility, oil company, and manufacturing facility would be given allowances based on past emissions or some other formula. Those companies that emit less carbon dioxide than permitted by their allowances could sell the excess to those that do not; this is the trade part of cap and trade.

The Cap and trade scheme is essentially saying that business can put out all the CO2 they want just as long as you they Congress to do it. But the truth is that corporations rarely pay taxes because they pass the taxes on to their customers in the way of higher prices. Thus, Cap and Trade or a Carbon Tax is nothing more than another attempt for the government to get more money in taxes.

Not only is it a tax but it is another method of redistributing wealth.Notice that Al Gore is in favor of BOTH a Carbon Tax and a Cap And Trade tax. Did you catch the fact that these taxes are "revenue neutral" and that the money will be returned to the "people"!? This is nothing more than a attempt by the government to redistribute wealth via taxes.

So, in the end, ladies and gentlemen, its not the corporations who will be paying these taxes. Its YOU, the regular tax payer.

And politicians wonder why citizens have Tea Parties...

UPDATE (MAY 1, 2009): The debate has no shifted to how much the Cap and Trade Tax will cost the average American family. Republicans argue it will cost every American family as much as $3,100 a year while democrats think the cost shifted to the American public will be minimal.

Friday, April 24, 2009

Celebrate Debt Day on April 26!!

I think everyone ought to look at a short article posted at Red County in which U.S. Representative Denny Rehberg has identified April 26, 2009 as Debt Day. Since 2001, Debt Day happens on a different day every year depending on how fiscially responsible the politicians are at our nation's capitol.

What is this day about? U.S. Representative Denny Rehberg gives us a brief explanation of why this day is important to all Americans:
"On Sunday, the United States Federal Government will run out of money. It won’t, however, stop spending.

April 26 is “Debt Day” – the day on which federal spending for the 2009 fiscal year reaches the end of the available revenue and begins to finance itself with borrowed money. Money borrowed against the futures of our children and grandchildren. Money borrowed from countries like China."

As you can see from the picture below, Debt Day will happen sooner than usual.

You can read more of Rep. Rehberg's article here.

Thursday, April 23, 2009

Should England Have Thier Own "Tea Party?"

America isn't the only country that is facing a severe financial crisis right now. England, like the United States, is also struggling with an irresponsible government that has been engaging in excessive spending and piling up a massive deficit. As of today, April 23, 2009, the United Kingdom's budget deficit to hit a record £175 billion. The economic future for Britain doesn't look very good as the total government debt will double to 79% of GDP by 2013 - the highest level since the Second World War. To make matters even worse, Britain's trade deficit gap is getting wider.

Politicians are pretty much the same around the world: They're stupid. They think raising taxes while continuing to spend beyond what they can afford will bring them out of the current economic crisis and into financial prosperity.

The British government is attempting follow America's approach to resolving the financial problem by raising taxes. Chancellor Alistair Darling has announced that he will be increasing the tax rate from 45% to 50% for those who are making £150,000 and above. That is not the only tax increase England will see. He has also announced that he will be increasing taxes on fuel, alcohol and cigarettes.

The Chancellor of the Exchequer, Allistar Darling, isn't afraid to explain the justification for the massive tax increases. The justification is a simple which is "to pay for additional support for people now." Basically, he's saying that an increase in taxes is needed for an increase in spending. To be even more blunt, Allstair Darling is raising taxes to keep the British Welfare state alive.

Ever since Allistar Darling released the details of the British government's budget last Thursday, the GDP fell by 1.9% during the 1st quarter, making Darling's 3.5% fall over 12 months look overly optimistic (and they only have 1.6% left for the next 9 months!)

If the forecasting by the government is wrong, then the debt figures quoted will be wrong too. It is widely expected that borrowing will exceed £200bn now.

Yet, the current Chancellor of the Exchequer refuses to learn from the past. Raising taxes on the rich never works as intended.

Mr. Darling has received a lot of harsh criticism for being financially irresponsible with the tax payer's money but taxes are only one side of the problem.

The other side of the problem is excessive spending. Even some politicians are getting upset on this issue. Look at the Conservative MEP, Daniel Hannan, attacking Prime Minister Gordon for spending beyond what England can afford.

Politicians like Daniel Hannan are rare. However, the truth is that the British deficit cannot be attributed to just a single party. Falling into debt occurred regardless if political parties such as Labor, Tory, or BNP had the majority power.

I think citizens of England should have their own "tea party" as a way of fighting against financially irresponsible politicians. For obvious reasons, I don't think Britons would like call their protests "tea parties."

What do you think the name of the British version of the tea party should be called?

UPDATE (5. 22.09) : Britain's debt outlook lowered to negative from stable by Standard & Poor's

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Understanding the Deficit

It is perfectly understandable for many people to be lost and confused about the complex topic of America's national debt.

As a I stated before, America has always been a nation in debt. However, that is not entirely true. The debt was almost liquidated several times. This is proof that the United States has some history of paying off it’s debts. In other words, America hasn't always suffered under a condition of increasing debt load as seen in the graph below:

A simple way to understand the history of America's debt problem is think of it in terms of dieting. Some people attempt to lose weight and are successful at it. However, some people are only briefly successful at reducing the excess weight in which the weight comes back on or find themselves even heavier before they tried to slim down.

In keeping with the diet analogy, America's history of paying off the debt is similar to the problem of yo-yo dieting. The best way to visualize America's struggle with yo-yo debt reduction is by looking at America's deficit in chronological order of Presidential Administrations:

As you can tell, America has a habit of almost reducing the debt, letting the debt get bigger and then trying to pay it down again. This is Yo-yo debt.

One of the reasons why America struggled with paying off the debt is that it pays down the principal but has not been paying down the interest. However, the biggest factor is spending. One can argue about the amount of deficit spending between Bush and Obama but the truth is that the blame lies with both the Republicans and the Democrats.

Neither party has been financially wise or prudent in the management the taxpayer's money. Just look at how much money the Republicans and Democrats have been spending since the collapse of Freddie Mae and Freddie Mac.

If we are going to be serious about permanently erasing the national debt, you cannot do it by massive spending and bailouts. Spending money to erase a debt doesn't work. It doesn't work in personal consumer debt or business debt. Why does the government think its the exception to this rule!?

Trying to get out of debt by massive spending and bailouts is like going on a diet with the hopes of losing weight by consistently going to the local all you can eat food restaurant.

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

When and Where Will The Buck Stop?

America has always been a nation in debt. Shortly after the birth of our nation, our country went into debt and continued as political leaders came and left Washington D.C. President Truman once claimed that the “buck stops here” but like other politicians, he just passed the buck to the next successor coming into our nation’s capital.

America has always been a nation in debt. Shortly after the birth of our nation, our country went into debt and continued as political leaders came and left Washington D.C. President Truman once claimed that the “buck stops here” but like other politicians, he just passed the buck to the next successor coming into our nation’s capital.

As politicians passed the buck to the next generation, the national debt steadily grew. Politicians, both past and present, are infected with the false belief that they can wash their hands of responsibility for paying down the deficit and that some future generation will take up the mantle of eliminating our country’s debt.

Politicians, regardless of political party, have recklessly allowed the federal deficit get out of control. Neither party has, nor currently, been able to say no to spending beyond what our nation can afford. Consider this, in 1980, the year I was born, the US National Debt was approximately 900 Billion dollars. Today, as we speak, the US National Debt is over 11 Trillion Dollars.

The heavy mantle of paying off the debt falls on the shoulderS of every young adult in this country. They are passing the debt to my generation, and subsequent generations that are after us. The national debt is equivalent to having every man, woman and child in the country saddled with $35,000 in debt and we are piling on more debt. Let’s not forget that American individuals are also drowning in their own consumer debt as well. The American Dream is being taken away from us by irresponsible adults.

As a young adult who is about to leave higher education and enter the workplace, I have a burning question for the political leaders of our nation: will you continue to spend away our American Dream or will the buck stop with you?

I fully support the outrage over the bailout money irresponsible corporations have been given by equally irresponsible politicians. America has a history of bailing out failing airline companies, incompetent car companies, greedy savings and loan associations, and now irresponsible financial institutions. When will politicians end the practice of giving the buck to incompetent business leaders and corrupt corporations? This practice needs to stop and it needs to end today.

When we talk about the consequences of passing the buck of financial stewardship over our nation’s finances to the next flock of politicians who enter the halls of government, we’re not talking about dollars and cents. The discussion was, and never is, about money -- nor is it about taxes, reckless spending, deep deficits and gigantic bailouts. Such discussions are just a way to help us visualize what we’re really talking about, which is Rights and Freedoms.

We have learned from the sad history of nations across this planet that a government once stretched by the increase of power, never regains its original dimensions. As the government grows in size and power, it expands at the expense of the rights and freedoms of its citizens. We know that a decrease in the rights and freedoms of its citizens is a direct result of an increase in acts of oppression and abuse by the government.

We have also learned from history that when a country spends beyond its means, such as providing massive bailouts, there will be a corresponding loss of freedoms. A nation that runs on debt ensures that it will not remain free and strong forever. A state that is burdened by debt will be powerless in guaranteeing rights or preventing the loss of freedoms that were once enjoyed by the public. Likewise, the people will not have the ability to exercise their rights and freedoms because they will not have the financial ability to do so. A government that is not economically free, will abuse the citizens and rob them of whatever rights are remaining.

Despite its weaknesses and flaws, one the best protectors of individual liberty and freedom, and strongest defenses against the abuse of government power, is capitalism. When an individual is able to earn, keep and spend his wages, they are in the best position to meet his or her needs and wants, to pursue their desired careers, to support institutions that reflect their values and beliefs, to improve the community they live in, help the downtrodden or oppressed, enjoy the environment, and pursue their dreams.

Capitalism never was meant to operate only by an invisible hand. Government has the responsibility to ensure that corporations conduct honest transactions with the public and that they do not abuse their powers gained through the income from its consumers. It is to ensure that the market place operates freely, fairly and openly for all. Government should not meddle in the affairs of the free market by dictating who can get fired, how much a person’s wage should be and whether or not a business or employment contract should be honored. The government is only to be a referee to put bad corporations permanently in the penalty box and leave the good corporations to participate in the free market.

Any government that has the absolute authority to determine the flow of commerce will not be content with just having dominion over the economic sphere of the nation. It will also seek to dictate the political, social, religious, and cultural affairs of the nation. When the government has greater power than the people, inequality occurs because it is typically just the ruling class and everybody else. As a result, oppression and abuse at the hand of government occur with greater frequency and the light of individual liberty will grow dim.

We are at a unique moment in American history. We can either preserve our freedom or let it slip away from us. We choose to either avoid or face the consequences of financial irresponsibility.

To anyone even considering running for office or any politician seeking reelection: I don’t want to hear any promises other than that they will get us out of debt and stop the reckless spending of our tax dollars.

We the People, young and old, male and female, rich and poor, republican and democrat, believers or disbelievers in God, are united today in protest against the financial irresponsibility of our leaders. Prosperity is not a guarantee -- it is a challenge that must be earned every generation. But because the politicians have refused to let the buck stop with them, the buck stops with us. It stops with my generation. TODAY.

UPDATE: You can watch the speech on YouTube: