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Betting Our Future on a Shell Game

San Diego – OK, what am I missing here?  The Republican Speaker says in order to get him to raise the debt ceiling the Dems have to agree to more budget cuts while the Dems are saying that if we do not raise the debt ceiling we will default on our obligations.  Wait a minute.  Am I the only one to see the logical disconnect with that.  THe only way those statements, especially the ones from the democrats, make sense is if we have ALREADY exceeded the debt ceiling by knowingly borrowing more than we were allowed to under the current debt ceiling.  And if they can just do this anyway then what is the point of even having a debt ceiling?

This is not only a classic shell game, good old cups-and-ball with our nation’s future at stake, it is, as it generally was by good con men, rigged already.  And it is rigged by extremely good con men who already managed to convince their simpleton prey that (a) shutting down the government was disastrous despite the fact that it has happened numerous times with little more than inconvenience at stake and (b) that real cuts of under $10 million were actually nearly $40 million.

And yet, with those actually minuscule cuts already the feeders at the government trough are starting to squeal their displeasure.  And knowing now how easy it is to fool the republican politicians it is no wonder King Barrack was so confident in his speech now openly starting to sell the idea that American prosperity did not really start until Social Security and Medicare, two classic cons that would make Charles Ponzi proud.

The only hope for this country resides in the 2012 election at which time my prediction of 1998 will come true that by 2014 we will have irrevocably cast out future in stone to either get back on the right track or toward doom as just another Balkanized Federation ala European social “democracies.”  Failing that, only the dangers of a real revolution could change things back and if we do not change course then i would predict that sometime by 2030 we will see that revolution getting underway.  What a frightening prospect.  THe people who start revolutions are but rarely the ones to control the authority that follows.  Almost unique was our own revolution but truthfully it was far more a war for independence than a true revolution since we did not seek to overthrow the monarch merely to break away from his rule.

Such prospects, again, make me glad I’m an old guy and will likely not live to see it.  But then, I never thought I’d live to see the day when a slick politician could, in one term, turn us almost completely away from our core values and align us much closer to those of the collectivist, socialist thinking of our former enemies.  i had a higher regard for the American people than to think their intellect so shallow as to not remember the failures of such regimes in the past or their laziness so vast as to think the slop from the government trough was OK.

Propelled by their rush to have all things provided for them, they have forgotten Jefferson’s warning that any authority sufficiently powerful that it can give you anything is powerful enough to take it all away.  Remember the old saying that if you give a man a fish he can eat for a day but if you teach him how to fish for himself he can eat forever?  We seem to be saying to our newly minted king to not waste time with the fishing gear, just keep the flow of fish coming and we will be happy.

Not me, thank you very much.  I know how to fish. And hopefully i will not live to see the government simply close off the fishing holes so that I cannot continue to fish for myself and must eat at their trough and then do their bidding because that has, throughout history, become the inevitable end of such policies.

No wonder the liberal history professors needed to revise history to cover up the litany of failures of their philosophies, as King Barrack is starting to do in his speeches as he continues to run for another term.  I had been concerned about the spread of Islam as a threat to this country’s values and culture but there is a far more imminent danger and it is coming not from without but from within.  It is our own growing weaknesses stemming from too many soft beds and warm meals that will make us vulnerable.  In the end, if we do not change course and get back on track quickly, we will become victims of our own success and in the doing, throw that success away.

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Posted by on April 14, 2011 in Uncategorized

 

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When You Find Yourself in a Hole…

San Diego – An old saying goes, “When you find yourself in a hole, the first thing to do is stop digging!”  But the approach of our brilliant congress takes another tack: they want us to give them a bigger shovel, or, better yet, a backhoe.

After the fight over the peanuts involved in the “negotiations” over keeping the government open, the next hot topic appears to be the Liberal Keynesian clamor to raise the debt ceiling so the country can borrow more money.  The rationale given is that if we do not raise the debt ceiling thereby allowing us to borrow more money, then it will be a disaster because we will have to default on some of our loans.  What?  Do they not realize what they said?

Basically they are saying that they do not have money to pay the sources from which we have borrowed money and so their best solution is to… borrow some more.  They want to borrow more money to keep from defaulting on previously borrowed money.  Put simply, the plan is to borrow more money to help with their debt problem.  Before becoming President, Senator Obama knew the reality of this and eloquently railed against raising the debt ceiling calling the need to do so a failure of leadership.  He was right then and that statement is STILL right.  But now that he has to apply it to himself, he is saying it was a mistake.  No, Barrack, baby, it wasn’t.

Does anyone out there with some credit card debt see that as a good way to get out form under their debt?  In fact isn’t precisely that approach the first step down the road toward real bankruptcy for so many of us?  We don’t want to cut back, we don’t want to lower our expenditures for material things we have come to see not as niceties but as necessities, we don’t know how to raise our productivity, so we get another credit card to use or raise the limit on ones we already have.  And has that plan ever worked?  No.  So why will it work for the government?

“But, but, with that “breathing room” they can now tackle the underlying and real problems!” goes the cry supporting the plan.  Really.  And i would believe that, why?

In the last fight over a tiny fraction of the budget problem those who wanted to cut back were accused of “…coming to town to kill women!”  They were going, with the paltry cuts proposed as a stop gap, to starve children and old folks, it was screamed about.  So do you really, for a split second, believe that those same people will not fight tooth and nail when the REAL cuts are being proposed?  THey do not want to cut a penny.

As I have said before, the problem is simple.  The citizenry wants more goodies than the government can afford or that they are willing to work for themselves.  And that has led politicians to give them those goodies and in return they keep getting voted in to keep the slop flowing in the trough.  When the revenue did not meet the demands of the expenses, to keep themselves employed by keeping the people happy, the politicians simply borrowed it.  It was easy.  Too easy.  They borrowed it from China, Japan, Saudi Arabia, Great Britain, they even printed money and are borrowing it from themselves!  But astonishingly they kept spending at a rate higher than the initial borrowing could handle so they need to increase the borrowing.  And now the deficit (the amount needed to pay for those goodies that we do not actually have) is in the trillions while the debt itself is in the tens of trillions.

And now they want to be able to spend more (raising the deficit) and borrow more (raising the debt) as a solution to it.  if you wrote this as a novel most people would say it makes so little real-world sense as to be unbelievable.  When a situation arises where you do not have the money to pay for what you want and you can no longer borrow money, then you have a clear set of choices; only have what you can pay for, or increase your revenue.  The government is no different.  To be fiscally sound they can either deliver only what the government has the money to pay for, or the citizens have to agree to pay for the services they want.

That is so obvious and so clear, to push for an obviously disastrous third choice, i.e. to raise the debt limit so you can borrow more, is nonsensical on the face of it… if, that is, the goal really is to achieve fiscal stability.

We have long ago passed the point where solutions will be pain free and are well into the phase where solutions will really hurt across the board.  But no one wants to be the ones in pain: they want those OTHER feeders at the trough to be the ones to suffer, but not themselves.  Anybody else hurting is OK, but not themselves or their pets.  So why would anyone believe that the coming fight over the real money is going to be any less rancorous than the fight over the paltry money (in government terms) just fought so viciously over?

Or, since that line of thinking that you can borrow your way out of debt is so bizarre is it possible that applying Occam’s Razor to the issue (Occam posited that the simplest solution was usually the correct one) we might have to realize solving the problem is not really the goal?  Perhaps the problem is, to the ones in charge, not a problem at all but actually a tool and a means to an end. Our system, unique in the history of world governments, was so well thought out, has been so strong and so able to persevere since its inception, the only way to truly transform it, as King Barrack says he wants to do, is to tear it down and start over.  That would be nearly impossible.  Only if the system crashes will there be a likelihood that a new one, built on the constantly failing european social systems can be built in its place.  Hmmmmmmm

Now that is, to me at least, a really ugly line of inquiry.  I do not want it to be true.  But since the declared reasons are so fallacious and spurious on their face it logically means that either the people supporting the declared reason are stupid beyond belief, or that rationale is simply there to cover for a truth that does make sense.

So I need a little help here in figuring out the truth of it.  Can someone show me how it has ever worked to borrow their way out of a debt crisis and if so, how that translates into the government’s avowed plans?  And if not, then can you explain why the sheep are knowingly following their bellwether leaders to almost certain doom?

 
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Posted by on April 12, 2011 in Uncategorized

 

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A Trillion Here, A Trillion There… Pretty Soon You’re Talking a Real… Disaster

Wow, the ever gracious and wise congress agreed to a deficit reduction of just under $40 billion.  Compared to the actual deficit of several Trillion that is chicken feed and compared to the National Debt it is utterly inconsequential.  Do you know how much a single  trillion dollars is?  Actually do you know how much a million dollars is and if you have that much do you recall how hard you had to work to get it  (unless you had a parent who was willing to work and just gave it to you…)?  Well if, starting on the date commonly ascribed to the birth of Jesus, you had been given one million dollars every single day until now… you still would not have but a fraction of a trillion dollars.

And if the ever-so-entitled feeders at the government trough are going to go to the wall in some of the most despicable and false scare language I’ve ever heard over an amount that is a tiny fraction of the deficit (the difference between what we take in and what we are committed to spending) then how are they ever going to deal with the REAL number to get the country back on a fiscal even keel?  The reality is that the country, especially the liberal side of it, has for years wanted the country to provide for it things they have also been unwilling to pay for.  They want someone else to pay for it, but oh, they deserve it anyway.  I’m sorry, breathing is not a reason for support by me or the government.  One of the freedoms that made us great and provided serious motivation for productivity was the “Freedom to Fail.”  We allowed people to fail and either learn from that or go sit on their rock in mindless contemplation and starve.  It was their choice and they had a right to make it and accept the consequences.  We need to return to that ethic.  Without the Freedom to Fail the other freedoms will soon be seen as detrimental to the protected society and done away with.

The country and the citizens, to be fiscally sound, have a very simple choice to make: do they (a) deliver only the services that the people are willing to pay for and stop there or (b) can they talk the people into actually paying for the services they want?  In the end, to be fiscally sound one or the other action has to take place.  THe government has only one source of income: you the people.  It does absolutely nothing of a productive nature to earn any money on its own and has to rely on the tribute needed  by confiscating some of what YOU have earned.  It has no magical money tree, no hidden treasure vaults, and unlike the european Kingdoms of old, has no “new world” of its own that it can plunder for its riches.  Just us.

We cannot forever try to make up the deficit by borrowing more money and thereby increasing the debt.  Why is that not obvious to every one who has ever tried to make ends meet as a family?  When you get overextended sometimes you have to eat hamburger not steak, sometimes it is chicken not beef (I’m not ignoring vegans I just have so little in common with them i do not know a workable metaphor for them).  Sometimes you keep the old car and wait for the new one until you can afford it.  But those people living off of other people’s money via government handouts have no clue about such things nor are they willing to have to substitute chicken for the beef for which they have become accustomed.  And neither do the professional politicians against which Franklin and Jefferson warned us back at the start because they can make rules for themselves that are very different from the rules they make for us.

They are like those of my colleagues in academia who have had no real experience trying to make a living outside of the protected fantasy arena of education and simply want the government to give them more money so they can continue doing the only thing they know how to do despite the stunning facts surrounding the failure of the entire educational system in this country.  In the real world many of them would have been fired long ago.  Now protected by the equivalent of the Prince of Darkness, they simply whine, with the others, that “they” need to come up with more money.  They are like a caged monkey with its pathetic hand out for some peanuts because it can no longer forage for itself.  Now THAT is greed: the desire for economic protection totally divorced from the individual’s contribution to that pot from which the protection comes.

I just did my taxes.  I am a college professor.  I made less this year than last and paid more taxes for it.  What?  I had a third more income than national average and paid twice the average in taxes. And then I hear the idiot congress woman complain about the shut down saying she couldn’t afford it… on her $200 K plus per year and pension for life she was, she asserted, “…living paycheck to paycheck just like everyone else.”  Her salary is over three times what I make living here in one of the higher cost of living areas of the country.  Ask me how much sympathy I have for her.  Everyone else?  Please, does this not tell you how out of touch they are?

A dear friend recently tried to tell me our problem was all greed.  I agree but I think she is looking at the wrong segment of society.  I do not think it is greedy to want to keep the money you have worked for with either your muscles or intelligence.  But I do think it is greedy for someone to want that productive person to then carry them because they won’t put in the same effort.  Before you misinterpret that let me quickly assert that I think if someone has been blindsided by life, e.g. health has failed them, something out of their control and that did not in any way flow from a choice they made has devastated them, then yes, to the extent we can, we should try to help them get back on their feet.  but the operative concept is to “help” them not to simply carry them and facilitate their never getting back into society in a productive way.

That paltry $30+ billion finally agreed to be cut by congress was all in so-called “discretionary” budgets.  Well I think entitlements are discretionary too.  We CHOOSE to help people when we can afford it; but when we cannot… we cannot.  Except for professional idiots like Michel Moore what does “no money” mean to you?  What does the math that you are taking in far less than you are paying out mean to you except that you have to borrow more and more money?  Why does not Moore, whose brain is a thick as his girth, not get that?   In preparation for government shut down that never happened we heard that “Non-Essential” people would be laid off.  Wait a minute… why should we the people pay for a single person that is non-essential and why would a government of, by, and for the people have them in the first place?

Now I’m not here to let corporate greed escape condemnation too.  Like the handout crowd at the trough, they are doing what the system allows and I think it needs to be tightened on BOTH ends of the spectrum.  Having GE pay no taxes is incredible but it is, under current law legal.  just like giving full protection and economic deals to illegal immigrants.  The problem is that in congress we have each end of the economic spectrum represented but not the country as a whole.

I do not think this congress has the stomach for the fight ahead and the few that do, that actually listened to the people in the last election; are so in the minority they will not have that much power anyway.  i expect to see the most insidious and scandalously false accusations of those trying to rein in the impending doom as simply wanting to kill women, children, minorities, endangered species, the planet, and God knows what all.  But here is the truth of it.  Only this country can protect those things, only this country has the potential power and might to do it.  But not if we are broke.  We cannot help others if we are crippled ourselves.  in order to regain that position where we can help others we have to make ourselves healthy again and that means a period when we have to withdraw from world policeman status, and seriously tighten our own belts.

I will be asked to pay more taxes to help.  I refuse until I can see that all of the extra money being asked of me is NOT going to simply be used to pay for more entitlements, more warm and fuzzy programs, and more funds to prop up and facilitate tin-horn tyrants around the world.  Show me that we can cut the real waste, like all — ALL — of those non-essential people and all — ALL — of the duplicated programs and services, then and then only come and see if I am willing to kick in a little more if it is needed.

 
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Posted by on April 9, 2011 in Uncategorized

 

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