Sunday, November 6, 2011

Using a Democrat GPS

"I cannot undertake to lay my finger on that article of the Constitution which granted a right to Congress of expending, on objects of benevolence, the money of their constituents...." --James Madison
Nineteenth-century historian Alexis de Tocqueville once observed, "Democracy and socialism have nothing in common but one word: equality. But notice the difference: while democracy seeks equality in liberty, socialism seeks equality in restraint and servitude."
Tocqueville was commenting on liberty and free enterprise, American style, versus socialism as envisioned by emerging protagonists of centralized state governments. And he saw on the horizon a looming threat -- a threat that would challenge the freedoms writ in the blood and toil of our nation's Founders.
Less than a century after Tocqueville penned those words, elitist Democrat Franklin Delano Roosevelt tossed aside much of our nation's Constitution and unleashed an unprecedented assault on Essential Liberty. Though our Constitution's author, James Madison, noted in Federalist Paper No. 45 that "The powers delegated by the proposed Constitution to the federal government are few and defined [and] will be exercised principally on external objects, as war, peace, negotiation and foreign commerce," FDR summarily redefined the role of the central government by way of myriad extra-constitutional decrees, and greatly expanded the central government far beyond the strict limits set by our Constitution. In effect, he substituted a fallacious "living constitution for our authentic Constitution.
He even went so far as to call for a new "Bill of Rights," which he proclaimed should include, "The right to a useful and remunerative job ... the right to earn enough to provide adequate food and clothing and recreation ... the right of every family to a decent home ... the right to adequate medical care and the opportunity to achieve and enjoy good health ... the right to adequate protection from the economic fears of old age ... the right to a good education."
Of course, none of those "rights" would pass constitutional muster, so FDR attempted to enlarge the Supreme Court so he could pack it with judges who would rubber stamp his proposals. When that failed, FDR implemented his programs by executive and legislative diktat, and the legacy of that gross expansion of the central government has proven disastrous.
FDR used the Great Depression as cover to establish a solid foundation for Democratic Socialism in America, and defended his unconstitutional statism with this this dubious assertion of classism: "Here is my principle: Taxes shall be levied according to ability to pay. That is the only American principle."
If Roosevelt's "American principle" sounds somewhat familiar, then you're likely a student of history (or The Patriot). Not to be confused with the Biblical principle in the Gospel according to Luke, "From everyone who has been given much, much will be required...", which some Leftist do-gooders cite as justification for socialist policies, Roosevelt was essentially paraphrasing the gospel according to Karl Marx, whose maxim declared, "From each according to his abilities, to each according to his needs."
Some have suggested that Socialism is a Biblical concept, but the Bible places the burden of responsibility for stewardship on the individual, while Marx, FDR and his Leftist successors advocate that the state should enforce redistribution of wealth. In failing to discern this distinction, FDR set the stage for the entrapment of future generations by the welfare state and the incremental shift from self-reliance to dependence upon the state -- ultimately the state of tyranny.
English writer, sociologist and historian H.G. Wells, whose last work, The Holy Terror, profiled the psychological development of a modern dictator based on the careers of Stalin, Mussolini and Hitler, said of Roosevelt's reign, "The great trouble with you Americans is that you are still under the influence of that second-rate -- shall I say third-rate? -- mind, Karl Marx."
More to the point, Soviet dictator Nikita Khrushchev said of Roosevelt's "New Deal" paradigm shift, "We can't expect the American people to jump from capitalism to communism, but we can assist their elected leaders in giving them small doses of socialism, until they awaken one day to find that they have communism."
Like Khrushchev, perennial Socialist Party presidential candidate Norman Thomas wrote: "The American people will never knowingly adopt socialism, but under the name of liberalism, they will adopt every fragment of the socialist program until one day America will be a socialist nation without ever knowing how it happened."
FDR never embraced self-reliance as the essential ingredient of a free society, nor have his Demo-successors Ted Kennedy, Bill Clinton, Albert Gore, John Kerry and Barack Obama.
Perhaps it's because most leftist protagonists and their benefactors come from tragically broken families (see Pathology of the Left) compounded by the fact that many of them inherited their wealth, their privilege and their political office.
The character of these "inheritance-welfare liberals" -- those who were raised dependent on inheritance rather than self-reliance -- is all but indistinguishable from the character and values of their constituencies who have been inculcated to depend on state welfare.
Today, eight decades after FDR seeded American socialism, the Soviet Union is but a memory. Former Soviet Block countries are thriving on low taxes and free enterprise. In addition, China and most other states with centralized economies (Cuba notwithstanding) are undergoing a dramatic shift toward free-enterprise -- as well as the political challenges that accompany such a shift. Yet despite the collapse of socialism around the world, wealthy liberals still dominate the Democrat Party and control their Leftmedia propaganda machine. They continue to advocate all manner of dependence upon the state (the poor man's trust fund), but have always been more dedicated to their country clubs than our country.
Western apologists for socialist political and economic agendas are nothing more than "useful idiots" advocating Marxist-Leninist-Maoist collectivism.
The great promise of socialism was to replace the alleged uncertainty of markets with the comforting certainty of a central economic plan. Socialized central planning has failed in every national application.
In 1916, a minister and outspoken advocate for liberty, William J. H. Boetcker, published a pamphlet entitled The Ten Cannots:
You cannot bring about prosperity by discouraging thrift. You cannot strengthen the weak by weakening the strong. You cannot help the poor man by destroying the rich. You cannot further the brotherhood of man by inciting class hatred. You cannot build character and courage by taking away man's initiative and independence. You cannot help small men by tearing down big men. You cannot lift the wage earner by pulling down the wage payer. You cannot keep out of trouble by spending more than your income. You cannot establish security on borrowed money. You cannot help men permanently by doing for them what they will not do for themselves.
Fact is that government cannot give to anybody what it does not first take from somebody else. And as Thomas Jefferson noted, a government that is big enough to give you anything, is big enough to take it away.
However, now the once great Democrat Party is replete with western apologists for socialist political and economic agendas advocating, essentially, Marxist-Leninist-Maoist collectivism -- the antithesis of Boetcker's principles of free enterprise.
Indeed, as George Bernard Shaw wrote, "A government which robs Peter to pay Paul can always depend on the support of Paul."
Has America learned its lessons, or is our great nation still under the spell of its useful idiots? Perhaps one day an American majority will reject the propaganda of the Left and their inheritance-welfare benefactors, will restore our Constitution as the central authority of the land, and will reclaim self-reliance as the central character of our people.
If not, then tyranny will prevail and we will be a slave to the cycle of democracy:
From bondage to spiritual faith; From spiritual faith to great courage; From courage to liberty (rule of law); From liberty to abundance; From abundance to complacency; From complacency to apathy; From apathy to dependence; From dependence back into bondage (rule of men). (Attributed to Frasier Tytler)
The only economic philosophy congruent with individual liberty and limited government is free market capitalism. Individuals contribute to this system through personal industry and initiative; government contributes by confining its regulatory activity within constitutional limits and by employing a system of taxation that is uniform (Fair or Flat) and comprehensible for all citizens. Entitlements and welfare schemes destroy not only personal initiative and responsibility, but also liberty and prosperity. Political freedom is inseparable from economic freedom. Thus, when the government stays within its constitutional role, America prospers.

Underlines by David in this article entitled;

Useful Idiots on the Left

· Friday, September 24, 2004

Thursday, November 3, 2011

An attempt to make sense of "it".

What is "it"?  It is the current situation in our National Economy.  I am often overwhelmed with the explanations offered by economists.  The blathering of most politicians who are reading from canned speeches never makes much sense to me either. So, I will once again attempt, with the aid of Monty Perelin's article from an October 31st edition of the American Thinker, to give some insight.

Gross domestic product (GDP) refers to the market value of all final goods and services produced within a country in a given period. GDP per capita is often considered an indicator of a country's standard of living.[1][2]  Wikipedia.

This is a simple explanation and is more than enough for me.  If you are given to finding out the three methods of determining the GDP, then go to Wikipedia and read the entire piece.  The following comments will be from the article I mentioned.  The sections in quotes will be those of Monty Perelin and the others will be mine.  Monty's entire piece is also worth reading.

"We are headed for an event that history will record as worse than the Great Depression. It is unavoidable."

"The principal reason for the dire prediction is the level of debt outstanding. Current debt levels are simply not sustainable. Assets and cash flows cannot support or service this debt."

"As a percentage of GDP, debt is at an all-time high. Immediately prior to the Great Depression US debt was about 200% of GDP. It rose briefly to 300% as a result of massive government interventions to combat the Depression"

"From 1870 forward, debt levels are generally in the range of 150% of GDP. That appears to be the norm for the last 140 years. Only in the 1920s and recently did debt exceed 180% of GDP. Even funding World Wars I and II did not drive debt above 180%."

"To return to 150% requires a reduction of about $30 Trillion in debt. That represents about two full years worth of GDP."

What then was the government's response in the 1930's and what is the response of the current Democrat led response today?

"After the 1930s politicians convinced themselves and the public of two things:
  1. Free markets need government interventions to produce a healthy economy.
  2. Keynesian pseudo science provided the tools necessary to manage the economy.
Both beliefs were false, but both aided politicians' insatiable drive for power and control. Once the public came to believe these myths, government owned the economy. Any economic problem became a political one. Economic slowdowns were no longer politically acceptable.

"Don't just stand there, do something" drove economic policy. It was politically impossible to allow an economy to correct on its own. Political action was required, even if such activity was ultimately harmful. Politicians had to do something, anything! Their constituents demanded it.

The "government is responsible" attitude quickly spread. Today, virtually any perceived problem or inequity is assumed to be fixable by government. Government readily took on responsibility for virtually every aspect of our lives.

The madness is evident. It is assumed that government creates jobs, educates kids, designs toilets and light bulbs. It is necessary to provide mortgages, retirement benefits and healthcare. "Green energy" and other new technologies are assumed impossible without the assistance of government.
This litany of the presumed need for government could continue for pages. Virtually all these presumptions are false. Worse, many in the public still believe that these "services" are "free."

"Every swing in the business cycle, no matter how mild, became the responsibility of government. Government was to step in and "fix" economic problems. Seventy years of such "fixes" preceded our current problem.

Economic downturns are both normal and necessary. Individual and business mistakes are remedied via economic slowdowns. Misplaced capital and labor is freed up for more productive uses. When this cleansing does not occur, an economy becomes less efficient and grows at a slower rate. The mistakes remain in place and are perpetuated.

Government intervention is not corrective. It is a cover up of prior mistakes. The phrase "pretend and extend" describes what happens. Instead of allowing the economy to correct, government attempts to avoid the correction and the pain by covering up the mistakes. That has been the history of much of the last 80 years. Continued interventionism brought the economy to this crisis point.

The artificial boom that began decades ago is exhausted. Response to the dot-com stock market bubble was the last coverup that "worked." The system was flooded with credit and one bubble was replaced with another. Now the housing bubble has burst, marking the high point of "pretend and extend."

Credit expansion since 2008 has been impotent. The real economy has stopped responding. Economists who advocate more stimulus or credit are either ill-trained or have political motives. Governmental stimulus and credit expansion created the problem. Recommendations for more of the same qualify as insanity per Albert Einstein's definition."

"The current credit bubble is bigger than the one that preceded and caused The Great Depression. Consumer and government balance sheets are worse than they were eighty years ago. Income is incapable of supporting current debt levels.

Reducing debt to manageable levels will produce another Great Depression, likely greater and more painful than the original. Debt reduction requires lower spending and higher savings. Large amounts of debt will not be paid and will be liquidated via defaults.

Until now, governments have done everything to prevent this natural process from occurring. According to Dalio, governments have "no more tools in the tool kit."