Obama gave a speech today touting a “new beginning” (I don’t even want to know what that means) to the Muslim World. It was, as usual, a great speech. Understanding. Mutual respect. Freedom of religion. Women’s rights. Good stuff. I was fine until this part: “Summit on Entrepreneurship.” That’s where my eyeballs started to bleed. I began to wonder why Obama is such a fan of Entrepreneurship in the Muslim world. Maybe he believes it’s a uniquely Muslim phenomenon.
Make no mistake. The Government has staged a hostile takeover of three major facets of our nation’s economy:
First, our financial sector is already firmly in Government’s hands.
Second, our manufacturing and energy sector is on its way. How? Let me connect the dots:
Government Bails out GM and Chrysler.–CHECK
Government asks GM CEO (employee of GM for 30 years) to step down.–CHECK
Government converts its GM and Chrysler assets into Preferred Stock (which means it has voting rights…it didn’t have to do that, it could have just issued bonds)–CHECK
Government owns over half the voting rights of GM and Chrysler–CHECK
THEN the Government send them into Bankruptcy (couldn’t have done that BEFORE owning them, that would be CRAZY).
Government creates a brand new division of GM to build little munchkin cars that noone (currently) wants to buy.–CHECK
Government Motors then decides to spin off Hummer, the most gas-guzzling of the gas guzzling cars to another company–in China–for a profit–CHECK.
Government then begins pushing HARD an “energy” plan which would (by Obama’s own admission) drive gas prices WAY up–COMING SOON
The people of the United States like good citizens are then encouraged even more (through EXTRA tax incentives on top of the ones that are already in place) to buy the little piece of junk munchkin cars–call it “The People’s Car”–because they can’t afford a gallon of fricking gasoline–GOD HELP US ALL.
Result? Federal Government has taken over the energy industry and a huge chunk of the manufacturing sector–which narrows down further the ability for anyone to compete with the Government, therefore ENTREPRENEURSHIP in the energy and manufacturing sector goes away. Noone can find a decent job that doesn’t involve dealing with the Federal Government. And guess what…at the Government’s OWN admission, carbon emissions planet-wide doesn’t go down ONE BIT for decades…DECADES.
Next is Health Care:
Government spends $19 billion on creating a system where doctors (many who are entrepreneurs) are bribed into putting their patients’ medical information on a DHHS managed database.–CHECK
Government creates a “Nationwide Exchange” where people can compare plans…all of which will be forced to accept pre-existing conditions without exclusions.
The private plans on the “Exchange” become too expensive, because (as happened in NY and other states) guaranteed issue results in noone buying insurance until they desperately need it…for a “pre-existing” condition.
Government steps in to fix this “crisis” by creating a “Public Option” where tax-subsidized plan options are made available to compete with private plans…Those who can’t afford it are given a “hardship exemption” so they get it for free. (OH, and by they way, now it’s against the law NOT to get ANY coverage)
Doctors (small business owners) who have stopped accepting coverage from Medicare and Medicaid will now be forced by law to do so, along with accepting “Public Option” patients.
Finally, it becomes against the law to pay cash for medical treatment, because the DHHS can’t control it, so for “safety reasons” all transactions will be made through Government insurance coverage or maybe one or two (“bailed out”) insurance companies who will provide benefits to a few Government-owned companies in the Financial, Manufacturing, or Energy/Utilities sectors.
The result? The Federal Government has destroyed any aspect of Entrepreneurship in the Health Care sector and instead has full operational and informational control over your health care through the handy dandy DHHS database. So whether you’re covered by a DHHS “public option” or benefits through a company (which will likely be owned by the Federal Government), your health care will be finely controlled by Bureaucrats in the Department of Labor and the DHHS.
Why am I telling you all of this? What can we do? They ignored us on the Financial sector, they’ve been ignoring and are continuing to ignore us on Manufacturing and Energy. They will ignore us on Health Care as well.
I’m becoming more and more convinced that the only option left is for 37 states to call for another Constitutional Convention to create an amendment to clarify the tenth one.
But if that seems to extreme, at least understand this. If we don’t act locally, starting RIGHT NOW…
Next is housing and education. Then it’s all over…
Apparently the real victory for Mr. Maldonado, the Republican who broke ranks to end the “crisis” (by raising taxes by almost $13billion) was a provision to create (or potentially create, subject to a referendum, of course) an “open primary” system.
A proposed constitutional amendment would go before voters in June 2010 instituting a “top-two” primary system, which would effectively eliminate party primary ballots, erase candidate party labels in primary elections and allow voters to choose the two candidates – of whatever party – who would compete in the general election.
An open primary would dissolve the current political primary system, and has the potential to seriously erode party power and change the entire landscape of state politics.
The measure was the work of Republican state Sen. Abel Maldonado of Santa Maria (Santa Barbara County), the swing vote Democrats needed to push through state budget legislation Thursday morning. That vote earned him the wrath of his party.
So, in other words, Maldonado has cut a deal whereas while earning the wrath of his party he weakens the party, therefore weakening the party’s ability to affect his reelection (by pushing an alternative in the primary). How “courageous” of Maldonado to cut a deal to protect his job, and how “bi-partisan” of all the other legislators to agree to protect their jobs from “party politics.”
Meanwhile, about $26 billion dollars of the Stimulus Package will be coming California’s way. Wonder how much of that will given BACK to Californians in a tax cut? Anyone want to guess?
The bill was finally posted in its “final” form late last night at about 11pm Eastern. This is the $48 hours that we have to look at this thing? They’re voting today…less than 18 hours after the final version of the bill was posted. The NTU emailed me this morning with a summary of some of the non-stimulating stimulus:
$24 million for USDA buildings and rent
$176 million for renovating Agricultural Research Service buildings
$290 million for flood prevention activities
$50 million for watershed rehabilitation
$1.4 billion for wastewater disposal programs
$295 million for administrative expenses associated with food stamp program
$1 billion for the 2010 Census
$200 million for public computer centers at community colleges and libraries
$650 million for the DTV converter box coupon program
$360 million for construction of NIST buildings
$830 million for NOAA research and facilities
$2 billion for Byrne JAG program
$10 million to combat Mexican gunrunners
$125 million for rural communities to combat drug crimes
$1 billion for the COPS program
$1 billion for NASA
$300 million to purchase scientific instruments for colleges and museums
$400 million for equipment and facilities at the NSF
$3.7 billion to conduct “green” renovations on military bases
$375 million for Mississippi River projects
$10 million for urban canals
$5 billion for weatherizing buildings
$2 billion to develop advanced batteries for hybrid cars
$3.4 billion for fossil energy research (possibly including an earmark for FutureGen)
$5.1 billion for environmental cleanup around military bases
$5.5 billion for “green” federal buildings
$300 million for “green” cars for federal employees
$20 million for IT upgrades at the Small Business Administration
$200 million to design and furnish DHS headquarters
$98 million earmark for a polar icebreaker
$210 million for State and local fire stations
$125 million to restore trails and abandoned mines
$146 million for trail maintenance at National Park Service sites
$140 million for volcano monitoring systems
$600 million for the EPA Superfund environmental cleanup program
$200 million to clean up leaking underground storage tanks
$500 million for forest health and wildfire prevention
$25 million for the Smithsonian Institution
$50 million for the National Endowment for the Arts
$1.2 billion for “youth activities” (for “youth” up to 24 years old)
$500 million earmark for NIH facilities in Bethesda, MD
$1 billion for Head Start
$32 million for home-delivered nutrition services
$160 million for volunteer programs at the Corporation for National and Community Service
$500 million earmark for the SSA National Computer Center in MD
$220 million for the International Boundary and Water Commission, U.S. and Mexico
$8 billion for high-speed railway (including an earmark for Harry Reid’s LA to Las Vegas MagLev)
$1.3 billion for Amtrak
Name one of these items (totaling over 50 billion dollars) that actually do anything to stimulate the economy? If these spending items are not worthy of making it on their own weight, then they certainly don’t need to be a part of a stimulus package. And this list is just a tip of the iceberg. A real stimulus package would be a tax break to the top 1%, but don’t get me started on that.
(If you don’t think a tax break to the top 1% would have a more drastic effect on our economy as a whole than ANYTHING in this $800 billion crap sandwich, then go study economics. Even John Meynard Keynes would have trouble disagreeing with this statement, and he’s the so-called “father” of this twisted sort of “demand-side” philosophy that’s dominating the progressive mindset these days.)
But the real problem is that Congress wants to get this to President’s desk on Monday…before giving us a chance to realize how laden with nonsense it really is.
The reluctance of banks to lend these days has me curious. When capital becomes more scarce, does not it’s value intrinsically rise? In the case of money, the reluctance of banks to lend, which seems to stem from not knowing how many bad assets are held by trading partners, should and does lead to higher interest rates. However, Bernanke and company are keeping rates low, and keep the shell game going by injecting capital into 9 big banks regardless of their assets. My open question is whether holding down the interest rates has any economic standing whatsoever, or is it simply to keep the adjustable rates mortgages from going up and more homes from foreclosing? Isn’t the right thing to do to let rates go up and let this adjustment work it’s way through the market? Once we find out who are the winners (Wells Fargo?) and losers (Citibank?) we can more quickly park money in safer harbors.
Oh, I guess we should just let the government choose winners and losers.
In case you guys haven’t seen it, here is the entire exchange between Joe the Plumber and Barack Obama. Watch the whole thing and listen carefully as Obama explains to Joe why he had to work too hard to get where he is, but because of where he is Obama has to make sure that the businesses coming behind him (his competition, for instance) shouldn’t have to work so hard:
Then Obama adeptly (God he’s good) leaves the audience with the impression that “Hey, he might even pay LESS in taxes because he’ll get that Capital Gains tax break.” What a bunch of poppycock. It’s a plumbing company. The odds of his having any real capital gains (other than possibly real estate) is almost NILL until he sells the company. Obama knew better than to think he’d convince Joe with this shell game (“Think back ten years ago”–HA), but he did manage to convince the sycophants in the audience.
And again, I’ll say, neither Obama nor McCain has any real economic acumen, but it’s obvious from this little exchange that Obama feels that the Government should be the arbiter of how much money is too much money, and how successful is too successful, and how much hard work is just too much hard work. Punish ability and reward need. It’s Marxism at its best, and as Mr. Marx himself said, it all starts with a heavily progressive income tax.
To further illustrate the point, listen to Joe Biden tell us that he doesn’t have any Joe the Plumbers in his neighborhood:
The only people that are important to Joe the Biden is Joe the cop, Joe the teacher, Joe the whatever. Joe the Plumber is not important, because Joe the Plumber can create his own job. Joe the Plumber should be taken for all that he is worth (I can hear it now, “it’s only a few thousand dollars–he can afford it!”), so Joe the whatever else can feel that much more grateful to Uncle Sam for his well being.