Here’s what Obama is gonna do if he stays for 4 more years

He will continue doing much of what he’s done for the last 2.5 years. That means:

:bulletblack: More indefensible bureaucratic expansion. [link]
:bulletblack: More regulation of company mobility to prevent profitable enterprises from fleeing Democratic majority states to search for more freedom elsewhere. [link]
:bulletblack: More economic failure, leading to Carter-style stagflation. [link]
:bulletblack: More debt growth, as he resists all attempts to steer the country away from an imminent Greek-style crash. [link]
:bulletblack: More moralistic nationalization, enforced through militarization of the US police forces, pushing us towards a Soviet-style police state. [link] [link] [link]
:bulletblack: More corrupt abuses of executive power, bordering on illegality. [link] [link] [link]

If you want to continue these disturbing trends, to disregard liberty in favor of a Soviet-style socialist nation under a government with totalitarian control over your personal life and endeavors, then by all means, vote for Obama in 2012. But if you want change- economic recovery and the restoration of the values of liberty -then for your own sake, vote against the Democrats!

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Dan Mitchell vs. Austan Goolsbee on Taxes

If you want to see what a debate between a Cato economist and a White House economist looks like, now’s your chance.

Judge for yourself: is Dan Mitchell being fair? Is Goolsbee representing the situation accurately? Who has a better grasp on the effects of tax hikes? Whose message do you buy into more? Is there anything you disagree with that isn’t addressed in this video?

The U.S.A. Is 13 Years Away from Economic Collapse

The current administration is spending 50% of our GDP per year, and that percentage is expected to increase. Our deficit every year is well over the 3% of GDP value considered to be the upper limit on long-term sustainability. The CBO estimates that the President’s budget will bring the national debt to 90% of the nation’s GDP by 2020. The Greek debt at the time of the country’s economic collapse was around 120% of that country’s GDP.

The numbers don’t lie. Even without adding any more of the spending bills that the Democrats in Congress have lined up, we are already less than 13 years away from an economic crisis that we can’t tax our way out of. The largest economy in the world cannot support even its current welfare state, let alone the one that the Democrats want.

It is mathematically impossible to sustain our massive government much longer. It’s time to start slashing down the welfare state. If we don’t, in a little over a decade we will be where Greece is now, except we won’t have anyone to bail us out.

Should America Bid Farewell to Exceptional Freedom?

Representative Paul Ryan of Wisconsin gave this speech on March 31st:

Last week, on March 21st, Congress enacted a new Intolerable Act. Congress passed the Health Care bill – or I should say, one political party passed it – over a swelling revolt by the American people. The reform is an atrocity. It mandates that every American must buy health insurance, under IRS scrutiny. It sets up an army of federal bureaucrats who ultimately decide for you how you should receive Health Care, what kind, and how much…or whether you don’t qualify at all. Never has our government claimed the power to decide when each of us has lived well enough or long enough to be refused life-saving medical assistance.

This presumptuous reform has put this nation … once dedicated to the life and freedom of every person … on a long decline toward the same mediocrity that the social welfare states of Europe have become.

Americans are preparing to fight another American Revolution, this time, a peaceful one with election ballots…but the “causes” of both are the same:

Should unchecked centralized government be allowed to grow and grow in power … or should its powers be limited and returned to the people?

Should irresponsible leaders in a distant capital be encouraged to run up scandalous debts without limit that crush jobs and stall prosperity … or should the reckless be turned out of office and a new government elected to live within its means?

Should America bid farewell to exceptional freedom and follow the retreat to European social welfare paternalism … or should we make a new start, in the faith that boundless opportunities belong to the workers, the builders, the industrious, and the free?

We are at the beginning of an election campaign like you’ve never seen before!

We are challenged to answer again the momentous questions our Founders raised when they launched mankind’s noblest experiment in human freedom. They made a fundamental choice and changed history for the better. Now it’s our high calling to make that choice: between managed scarcity, or solid growth … between living in dependency on government handouts, or taking responsibility for our lives … between confiscating the earnings of some and spreading them around, or securing everyone’s right to the rewards of their work … between bureaucratic central government, or self-government … between the European social welfare state or the American idea of free market democracy.

What kind of nation do we wish to be? What kind of society will we hand down to our children and future generations? In the coming watershed election, the nature of this unique and exceptional land is at stake. We will choose one of two different paths. And once we make that choice, there’s no going back.

This is not the kind of election I would prefer. But it was forced on us by the leaders of our government.

These leaders are walking America down a new path … creating entitlements and promising benefits that model the United States after the European Union: a welfare state society where most people pay little or no taxes but become dependent on government benefits … where tax reduction is impossible because more people have a stake in the welfare state than in free enterprise … where high unemployment is accepted as a way of life, and the spirit of risk-taking is smothered by a tangle of red tape from an all-providing centralized government.

True, the United States has been moving slowly toward this path a long time. And Democrats and Republicans share the blame. Now we are approaching a “tipping point.” Once we pass it, we will become a different people. Before the “tipping point,” Americans remain independent and take responsibility for their own well-being. Once we have gone beyond the “tipping point,” that self-sufficient outlook will be gradually transformed into a soft despotism a lot like Europe’s social welfare states. Soft despotism isn’t cruel or mean, it’s kindly and sympathetic. It doesn’t help anyone take charge of life, but it does keep everyone in a happy state of childhood. A growing centralized bureaucracy will provide for everyone’s needs, care for everyone’s heath, direct everyone’s career, arrange everyone’s important private affairs, and work for everyone’s pleasure.

The only hitch is, government must be the sole supplier of everyone’s happiness … the shepherd over this flock of sheep.

Am I exaggerating? Are we really reaching this “tipping point”? Exact and precise measures cannot be made, but an eye-opening study by the Tax Foundation, a reliable and non-partisan research group, tells us that in 2004, 20 percent of US households were getting about 75 percent of their income from the federal government. In other words, one out of five families in America is already government dependent. Another 20 percent were receiving almost 40 percent of their income from federal programs, so another one in five has become government reliant for their livelihood.

It continues. I urge every American to read the entirety of the article and ask yourself the rhetorical questions posed in it. Paul Ryan is a smart man- he had Obama on his toes at the Health Care Summit  and he’s the one who exposed the deceitful gimmicks used by the Democrats to get the answer they wanted from the CBO. I don’t agree with everything in Rep. Ryan’s proposed solution, but he is right that we are at the tipping point, where we have a choice between a nation built on individual freedom and a nation hanging from the precarious limb of government support. We are approaching the end of an era, and it’s up to all of us to decide what the future will look like.

I, for one, choose freedom.

New Enemies of the State: Bankers

After a number of banks that received bailout money started handing out bonuses, people were furious that their tax money was being used by big bankers to turn a profit. The man who enabled all of this, President Obama, was rightfully embarrassed, and declared a need for a new tax on bank bonuses which would only affect about the 50 largest banks.

However, as recently as December, Obama was claiming that there would not be losses from the banking side of the bailout program. Rather, it’s the corporate acquisitions by the government that are turning massive losses.

So what exactly is Obama hoping to accomplish by imposing this massive tax on bankers? They’re not the ones losing the government’s money, so why does Obama want to punish them instead of GM and Chrysler?

Although, the banks are the ones who embarrassed Obama politically. And that’s where Obama’s true motivation becomes clear. Obama is upset about how a few bankers turned his own political machinations against him, and so the bankers at the 50 largest lending institutions, many of whom have not received any bailout money at all, are to be punished.

And so, not withstanding any constitutional checks against bills of attainder, Obama feels he can use taxes punish those who do not act the way he wants them to. Fear will keep the local companies in line. Fear of new taxes.

I think this is the first time I’ve ever heard a President of the United States threatening their own citizens:

“What I’d say to these executives is this. Instead of sending a phalanx of lobbyists to fight this proposal, or employing an army of lawyers and accountants to help evade the fee, I’d suggest you might want to consider simply meeting your responsibilities and I’d urge you to cover the costs of the rescue not by sticking it to your shareholders or your customers or fellow citizens with the bill, but by rolling back bonuses for top earners and executives,”

A notable quote comes to mind:
“I’ve altered the deal. Pray I do not alter it any further.”

Is Health Insurance a Right?

One reason why some people think that we have a legal right to health insurance (note that health insurance is not the same thing as health care) is because the costs for medical care necessary for good health sometimes make people go bankrupt. Does this choice of “health care vs. bankruptcy” in some cases make health insurance a need rather than a luxury?

The thing is, people go bankrupt for a lot of reasons. People go bankrupt because they bought houses or cars they can’t afford. They go bankrupt because they make poor decisions with their credit. Sometimes they just go bankrupt because of bad luck in the stock market. Should the government be insuring all of these things as well?

In general, you can certainly have the medical treatment that you need, possibly at the cost of some financial stability. But if financial stability is considered a need, and not a luxury, then where’s my taxpayer-funded general bankruptcy insurance to cover me in case of poor investment decisions, credit abuse, or bad luck in stocks?

If health insurance is really a basic human right, then does that mean that countries like Ethiopia and Uzbekistan where people can barely even afford to eat should create national health insurance programs so that everyone can get the latest and greatest medical treatment while being taxed into starvation? Forget economic development of luxuries like industry and improved agricultural methods; These people need MRIs!

“Style of Government” Poll

I’ve just posted a poll asking a very important question: If you had to choose between a government which kept you alive and comfortable and one that gave you freedom, which would you pick?

I understand that most people prefer some sort of middle-ground between the two. That’s why in the comments of the poll I ask the more qualitative question of, “Where is that middle ground?” I’ve heard a lot of people suggest that they’d be willing to give up a few inconsequential rights here and there in order to ensure that everyone has food to eat, a home to live in, a basic education, and doctors to stave off untimely death. But I want to know exactly how far you are willing to go for that cause. If the government told you they were going to put you on a strict meal plan to ensure the poor had food to eat, would you be okay with it? What if they said you had to follow a specific career path of their choice that would be necessary to provide for society? If it took 30% of your income to take care of everyone else, would that be too much? What about 40%? Or 60%?

At what point do your personal freedoms become more important than the survival and comfort of others?

I want everyone who takes the poll to try this thought experiment. I’m interested in hearing what people have to say.

EDIT: Post comments and explanations from the poll here, so that individual conversation threads can be maintained.