“The last thing you want to do is raise taxes in the middle of a recession,” President Barack Obama said in 2009. Two years later, in the midst of a still-struggling economy, Obama is proposing over $1.5 trillion in tax increases. What gives?
The President has apparently given up on his attempt to cover his leftist views with a veneer of moderation. First he submitted a jobs bill to Congress that would spend almost half a trillion dollars at a time when the government is already borrowing over 40 percent of the money it disburses. Then he proposed paying for it with hefty tax hikes on the rich, promising to submit a more comprehensive deficit-reduction plan a week later. That plan, released Monday, is essentially a rehash of his jobs bill’s spending and tax hike proposals — things that would take effect immediately if they were to pass, though most of them have been previously rejected by Congress — combined with promised reductions in future spending that neither Obama nor the current Congress can guarantee will occur. The President claims it will reduce the deficit by $3.2 billion over the next 10 years.
During the fallout following the government bailout of banking, investment, insurance, and the auto industry, President Obama justified the extension of corporate welfare by informing the American people that these businesses were “too big to fail.”
Regardless of the logic of such a stance, in the history of republican political thought, the opposite of the Obama Doctrine has been asserted as axiomatic. As the theory went (goes), a republic cannot function properly toward the end of preserving liberty if it grows too large. One might say of republics that they can be “too big to succeed.”
That is the sentiment behind a recent collection of essays addressing the increasingly untenable size of the federal government and the possibility and desirability of its perpetuation.
Rethinking the American Union for the Twenty-first Century is a collection of seven essays compiled and edited by Donald Livingston. The collection is an extension of the Abbeville Conference held in Charleston, South Carolina in 2010. Contributing scholars include Dr. Thomas DiLorenzo, Yuri Maltsev, Kent Masterson Brown, Marshall DeRosa, Kirkpatrick Sale, and Rob Williams.
“Pass this bill now,” President Obama is repeatedly demanding, regarding his new American Jobs Act.
There’s nothing new in the legislation, just more government spending, more transfers of money from “the rich” to Obama’s political allies, more spending for infrastructure enhancement so we all won’t allegedly be buried by collapsing schools and bridges.
And the “rush” tactics are the same. As with ObamaCare, there’s a proclaimed “crisis,” followed by demands to pass legislation “now,” even if no one’s adequately analyzed the bill, even if no one’s read it, even if the legislation will only make things worse, and even if we’re already flat broke.
And as with earlier stimulus packages, roads are a particular priority in the American Jobs Act, so much so that you’d think we were all riding around in mud ruts.
Although rarely looked at as such by the typical person, labor is an economic transaction. It’s a simple trade — one where the worker willingly gives to his employer, in exchange for monetary and benefit compensation, the use of his physical and mental services. As with any free market economic activity, either party can prevent ongoing transactions, whether such termination is based on dissatisfaction with what the exchange garners or on the influence of supply and demand in the micro- and macro-markets.
Basically, the act of employment is really no different from making a purchase at the local grocery store.
Unions, though, don’t see it that way. Whereas non-unionized employment sees equal strength and value between worker and the company, unionized plants are different. There, the workers are granted dominance in the transaction and the standard rules of fair and equal trade are thrown out the window. Through its perverse leftist outlook, organized labor views any given job as a right rather than a privilege.
Like many of my fellow Americans, I have been forced to economize and become more of a bargain hunter than I was in the happy days of go-go prosperity. Having been brought up in the great Depression, I still pick up pennies, and I have always loved a bargain, but now more than ever. So now when I receive three colorful supermarket circulars in the mail each week, I examine them closely to see where the bargains are.
We have one supermarket chain in this area of Massachusetts that has the best overall prices. Yes, even some of their prices have gone up, but they’ve been able to maintain low prices for some essential items. For example, milk. They sell a half-gallon for $1.59, while other markets charge over $2.00. I expect their price will go up one of these days, but so far so good.
Staples has been offering low prices on a number of utilitarian and back-to-school items. For example, the other day I picked up a packet of four scouring pads for one dollar.
Swiss bank UBS trader Kweku Adoboli was arrested early Thursday morning and charged with two counts of false accounting and one count of “suspicion of fraud by abuse of position.” His position was director of the Delta One trading desk at UBS in London, where he had worked as a trader for the past three years and as a technical advisor for two years before that.
The desk specializes in Exchange Traded Funds (ETFs) which allow investors to take a position in an index without having to purchase each stock represented by that index. Trades were profitable when positions were taken that move higher (long) and the index rises, or that move lower (short) and the index declines. Adoboli had learned the system well, and he lived well, paying $1,570 a week for an apartment in a high-end neighborhood just five minutes’ walking distance from his office.
But something went wrong — terribly wrong — when the Swiss Central Bank announced on September 8 that it would not allow the Swiss franc to rise beyond a certain level versus the euro. The mere whiff of intervention caused the Swiss franc to swoon by more than eight percent in two days.
We built up the industrial might of China, now the powers that be want to build up Russian industry.
The fiscal and monetary crisis confronting America today is more than an economic problem, it is a threat to our liberties and the nation's sovereignty, constitutional lawyer Edwin Vieira said at a Constitution Day celebration in Portsmouth, N.H. on Sunday. Unless a sound currency is established, the coming economic collapse will result in America "falling victim to a domestic totalitarian police state with the loss of American sovereignty and independence and lead to some sort of regional or global system, i.e. a new world order," he said.
Citing Italy and Germany in the 1920s and 1930s as examples, Vieira warned of the hyperinflation that occurs when a government dramatically increases its printing of dollars to cover its mounting debts. No form of government has ever survived a national debt that equal to more than 41 percent of its annual budget, he said, adding that in the United States today, it is 44 percent. "Our country is set up to fail," he said, as jobs and technology are shipped overseas, artificial "bubbles" are created in the domestic economy and banks and large-scale investors turn to the federal government for relief.
Former Massachusetts Governor Mitt Romney's highly touted RomneyCare has cost Massachusetts some 18,000 jobs, reduced investment in the state by tens of millions, raised health care costs, and lowered per capita disposable income, according to a computer model study by the Suffolk University-based Beacon Hill Institute. RomneyCare became the model for Obama's national health care reform legislation Congress passed in 2010, including an individual mandate, tax penalties for companies that don't offer care, a health insurance exchange, and several other similar key components.
The health care law "does not exist in a vacuum," Beacon Hill Institute executive director David Tuerck wrote in a September 15 press release unveiling the computer modeling study. "The 'shared sacrifice' needed to provide universal health care includes a net loss of jobs, which is attributable to the higher costs that the measure imposed."
The study concluded that the Massachusetts health care reform (HCR) signed by Mitt Romney in 2006 has:
After spending hundreds of billions to bail them out, the federal government is now turning on the big banks it once protected. Earlier this month, the Federal Housing Finance Agency launched a broad legal assault on 17 major banks, claiming the banks misled Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac in misrepresenting the quality of mortgage-backed securities. The FHFA’s lawsuit is a new attempt on the part of the federal government to recoup from big banks some of the taxpayer money lost during the financial crisis. Banks named in the action include Bank of America, J.P. Morgan Chase, Goldman Sachs, Morgan Stanley, Citigroup, and Deutsche Bank.
In a separate action, the feds went on a second offensive against Goldman Sachs, with the Federal Reserve — newly empowered as a financial regulatory and enforcement body, besides being a central bank — initiating legal action against the investment bank, claiming Goldman had exhibited “a pattern of misconduct and negligence” in its issuing of mortgage-backed loans.