Tuesday, December 30, 2008
(Cross Posted from Indiana's Conservative Hardball)
So we ended up bailing out the car companies (well, except for Ford...). People were against it, they rang up the switch boards at the US Capitol. And certain lawmakers are going to have a difficult reelection because of it.
There's been talk of a "Car Czar" as a watchdog to make sure that the bailout money is spent correctly. And my initial thought was "it's not government's job to do something like that".
Well, then Chrysler went and did something like this... Maybe a watchdog may not be such a bad idea after all...
Chrysler went ahead and took out a series of full-page newspaper ads to thank Americans for "investing" in the company through the government's $17.4 billion dollar bailout plan
So, the money we gave them to fix their companies troubles, were used to advertise a "thank you note". Maybe they don't get it; public opinion towards the auto bailout was not about 30% last I had checked.
These ads ran last week in newspapers like:
The Wall Street Journal
The Atlanta Journal-Constitution
Let's talk dollars here a moment. Even though circulation is down... USA Today and the Wall Street Journal still have the highest circulation rate in the country. And these ad's aren't cheap people.
Full-page ads in the WSJ run between $206,000 to $264,000 and a full-page in the USA Today run between $112,000 and $217,000 according to their respective websites.
Chrysler's ad pledged to produce cars and trucks that are "attractive to consumers and improve their fuel economy".
Here's a concept: how's about using the money to actually produce a car, rather than use it to rub in our faces that you got your money against the will of the American people?
When Chrysler was among a group of automakers who started buying their steel from foreign companies and in effect, closed down steel mills in Northwest Indiana and Pennsylvania, we didn't bailout steel mill workers and companies. We let them fold up and put hundreds, if not thousands out of work because the car companies wanted to save money.
So I should have sympathy for GM?
I did my part to help save GM; last year, my wife and I bought two vehicles. A Chevy Equinox and a Chevy Cobalt.
And in my opinion, that's the only help they will get from me again. My next car will be a Honda. At least I know it was made in America...
Commenter CJ Dunnaway has a hissey fit over my characterization of Obama's stimulus package as nothing but pork:
"Every responsible economist in the world agrees we need to stimulate the economy, but a self-proclaimed 'Drunken Swede' from Hoosierville thinks it's all a big porkfest boondoggle. But I'm sure you're smarter than all those economists combined!"
Buzz and CJ are using some strong language, but well worth a read and comment. If you aren't subscribed by RSS to both blogs, you'll want to add them today.
RDA levee loan hits logjam
My Summary: The NWI RDA intends to wait for the state legislature to decide if and when to release the remainder of the current $6 million loan to keep the federal levee project moving. As it stands now, the project will run out of money by the end of January, well before the General Assembly completes its budget session.
It was interesting to me that CJ was against spending for the levees but argued in favor of Obama's spending spree proposal. Be interesting to watch the debates unfold.
American dominance as a global superpower is fading fast and we must learn to be a better world neighbor, or risk losing our ability to influence world affairs entirely.
Americans are in for a rude awakening when we come to the realization that our days of world supremacy and domination have come to an end. We grew up believing in our country's preeminence and are not inclined to believe that American supremacy could possibly end. We suffer from a terrible superiority complex and our national psyche will be shattered when we discover that the United States no longer dominates the world.
"No new taxes. Not now. Not ever." says Lake County Commissioner Fran DuPey, D-Hammond, in response to a county food and beverage tax and a vehicle registration surcharge. "How can I campaign for office on no taxes, and then one month later say, 'Oops, I changed my mind?' Every time there is a money problem that comes up, someone says let's put in this kind of tax or that kind of tax." - From TEAM HAMMOND again add them to your feed reader if you haven't already
Some of you know I'm working on a book project, A Conservative on the 2009 Housing Recovery, and today specifically the second chapter which details commonly held myths about housing. Here's a bit of Myth Number One - would appreciate any feedback positive or negative.Reason For The Season from Prayeramedic
Later today I'll post Day Two of Online Plan for Conservatives (or just people wanting to get more politically active in general) which will focus on bookmarking (digg, r-igg, stumble, delicious and others) Check back in a couple hours
Saturday, December 27, 2008
Follow along if you like - The steps will be as easy as I can explain with links to places for lots more details if my method of "esplaining" isn't all that great.
Day One - Social Media for Conservatives (allow 20 minutes)
1. Join Twitter - Go to twitter homepage and sign up. My recommendation would be to use your own name or a nickname you use often. You may have to try a couple different names, if yours is common and already in use. I would not suggest doing the AOL thing and doing your name followed by a number. Too generic and impersonal. You'll need an email address, I think they limit each email to one twitter profile ... of course we all have multiple email addresses and yes some of us also have multiple twitter profiles.
2. Once you're signed up, and this really only takes a matter of minutes. Click my profile Daltonsbriefs and press "follow" ... it would be great if you would go to the bottom of this post and in the comments section tell me you followed and leave your profile name too. Frankly, I have over 2,600 followers and I don't always follow back right away. Sorry.
3. Go to Top Conservatives on Twitter and choose "Get Added" just enter your profile name, remember that profiles have no blanks (perhaps an underscore if you used but no blanks) and email and whether you desire to have a mentor assigned to you.
4. Go to Search.Twitter (#TCOT) this is the live stream of all posts on twitter that feature the hashtag #TCOT so that we can follow along. You'll see big names like Michelle Malkin, Drudge Report, Instapundit, and thousands of little bloggers and activists as well. The fun really starts when the elected officials, like Bill Frist and members of Congress, start posting and engaging.
Watch as long as you want, it will keep updating and you'll merely have to choose "refresh" to see the new ones as they flow in. When you see a tweet that you want to respond to ... now we're going to dive in.
Press "reply" under the tweet that you liked, disliked or want to comment on. Your twitter homepage will come up, you now have 140 character to say anything you want. Because you hit "reply" you'll see the original person's profile with an @ in front of it. That creates a reply to that person ... but everyone can still read it!
Hit "update" when done with your comment or reply. Now, you need to follow some people so they'll follow you. Go to Follow-TCOT and follow this person. It's a listing mechanism to make following easier. I think they have to follow you back to make it real easy, so we'll just follow today and come back in Stage Two tomorrow.
5. Lastly here are your first 15 people to follow: As you go to each link choose follow and then come back for the next link. Obviously multiple tabs in your internet explorer is going to help make this quick work. Follow all 15, anything they post will appear on your timeline on your profile, the rest of the #TCOT posts you'll have to watch on the search.twitter site. Anytime you see a post on search.twitter that engages you, follow that person too. You'll get followed back by most and the goal is to pick up 100 followers in the next week!
Another great Article from @jenuinejen Twitter for Dummies
Check out David All (@davidall)'s
More tomorrow, check back in, leave comments below especially if what I said doesn't work or doesn't make sense. Update: thanks to commenters already, I just know there's a good Youtube out there too if anyone remember the link leave it for me pls.
Last Update for Day One - @traciknoppe did post a good video for basic level twitter starters
Thursday, December 25, 2008
From the Post Tribune:
Gov. Mitch Daniels makes sense when he says it would be best for all public employees in Indiana to forego a raise next year, some local officials say -- but don't expect it to happen.
The governor announced earlier this week that he thinks the move would be best because few tax payers in the private sector will get raises, so public employees should show solidarity and also help ease the tax burden. Reports have already announced that the state budget is going to fall short by almost $1 billion, which has led Daniels to look at possible cuts to the state budget.
Valparaiso Mayor Jon Costas said that although he agrees with the governor in part, Valparaiso has already managed to cut $140,000 from its 2009 budget without having to take away raises.
"I think he's wise; we have to be really careful in the next year or two," Costas said. "(But) we will stick with the 2009 budget, which we feel pretty strongly about."
Costas also pointed out that elected officials in the city had agreed to not accept a raise. The mayor did say, though, that the city would consider a pay freeze for the 2010 budget if it needed to.
Porter County Councilman Dan Whitten had mixed feelings about the governor's announcement, saying that he agreed with the concept of withholding raises when the economy is doing poorly. Whitten had voted against raises for county employees for next year's budget. The raises were approved.
"When we ask people to tighten up their belts, I think we need to do the same," he said.
However, Whitten was offended by the governor asking local governments to cut their budgets even more, when the state has already put financial pressures on them through the cap on property taxes, he said. Also, by making the announcement so late in the year, there's no time for the Porter County Council to go back and change the budget, Whitten said. Most of the council members are out of town on vacation.
"I think a lot of what the governor does is, quite frankly, grandstanding," Whitten said.
Local governments could also save money if they were paid their tax money on time, Terry Hufford, president of the Portage Township School Board, said. A majority of the taxing units in Northwest Indiana have had to take out loans because tax dollars were delayed and then they have to pay interest on those loans.
Hufford said that if the state made certain it was on time with payments, giving out raises wouldn't be a big deal.
Hufford also said that he thinks the focus should be on accountability and making sure employees are earning their pay, instead of just looking at it as raises as a whole.
Wednesday, December 24, 2008
Cross posted from Indiana's Hardball.
Ya know, I never thought of buying my wife seven swans-a-swimming... or my daughter four calling birds. But if I did, this is what it would cost this year.
According to PNC Wealt Management, here's a breakdown of the 2008 cost of “The Twelve Days of Christmas,”:
- Partridge, $20 (last year: $15)
- Pear Tree, $200 (last year: $150)
- Two Turtle Doves, $55 (last year: $40)
- Three French Hens, $30 (last year: $45)
- Four Calling Birds (canaries), $600 (last year: same)
- Five Gold Rings, $350 (last year: $395)
- Six Geese a-Laying, $240 (last year: $360)
- Seven Swans a-Swimming, $5,600 (last year: $4,200)
- Eight Maids a-Milking, $52 (last year: $47)
- Nine Ladies Dancing (per performance), $4,759 (last year: same)
- 10 Lords a-Leaping (per performance), $4,414 (last year: $4,285)
- 11 Pipers Piping (per performance), $2,285 (last year: $2,213)
- 12 Drummers Drumming (per performance), $2,475 (last year: $2,398)
Grand Total: $21,080.00
The three French hens (down $15 to $30) and six geese-a-laying (down $120 to $240) reflect declines in food prices.
The eight maids-a-milking will cost 12 percent more, $52.40 from about $47 last year, thanks to their second annual minimum wage increase.
The 10 lords-a-leaping, 11 pipers piping and 12 drummers drumming are all up about 3 percent, reflecting the general average wage increase.
Now, where does one go to buy a Lord-a-Leaping?
Is that something Lowe's carries?
The election of the new National Chair for the GOP has turned just a little frustrating and controversial over the last week. Perhaps for the same reasons that elections for similar chairs in states and counties nationwide will be just as difficult. Republicans lost, and lost big time, and conservatives nationwide are asking some hard questions. "Who chooses these people to lead our party?" "Who chooses the choosers, and why do RNC members think they're above being thrown out after losing so substantially?
In Indiana we have an RNC member, Jim Bopp, who leads a study committee mentioned in the article below. Should he even have a say in choosing future party leadership after the embarrassing loss of Indiana to Obama just 45 days ago? I'm just asking, and wondering what the process is that chooses and chooses again the same or similar people?
The co-founder of #TCOT the three-week old Twitter movement of roughly 1,700 conservatives online called two days ago for Mike Duncan to step down and agree to not run again for RNC chairman. Some agreed wholeheartedly, others beat up the author for daring to suggest that any of us have anything to do with this decisioin, it's all about the 168 voting RNC members they said. What?
Articles of interest:
Special Meeting Request by RNC member
Response on Next Right - only matters what 168 voters thing
Tuesday, December 23, 2008
As an aside, I'm even working this week on my first book about a Housing Recovery in 2009, but that's for another promotion and another time.
I was meeting with one of my commercial bankers a few weeks back and got this exchange of information that really made me stop and ponder and think a bit:
Banker: "we will be pulling out of all our community banking lending, focusing entirely on BIG participation deals, in the billions where a few banks at the national level work together and share the risk"
Me: "what happens to all these small businesses and car loans and doctors and self employed people that need community banks?"
Banker: "I guess they'll have to find new places to borrow, maybe credit unions or small local banks that can't get in on the big safe deals"
Me: "when does all this happen?"
Banker: "we'll be focused on workouts and getting rid of what we have now for the next two years, and then we won't replace very much of that activity with community lending"
Now, for the sake of job security there's no way I'll reveal which of the Top 20 American banks thiss person works for, and I have paraphrased enough to keep myself from getting drawn into any of their problems. They have your money in their banks though, and they won't be circulating that money to your communities and small businesses.
I propose that you pull your money out of deposit and savings accounts in any Top 20 Bank in America today, and put it in a small local bank or credit union where lending will still occur. Go ahead ask your Big Bank what they did with the federal bailout money, are they lending it? I don't think so.
Friday, December 19, 2008
Today, he raises the bar again and announces substantial reorganization of the county level of government with an eye to both cost reductions and efficiency of services. There will be many against this major proposal, namely those holding the positions now. I talked to a Democrat last week and asked about this very potential, and his position was that this type of massive re-organization wouldn't save any money and would put far too much power in the hands of 92 county executives taking power away from the grass roots.
It stands to be seen whether the county councils would gain more members, perhaps an equal number as townships, and also take a more legislative role than their now budgetary-fiscal only position. It also stands to reason that if township level government is eliminated someone will have to provide leadership over rural fire departments and handle poor relief? Who?
From Howey Politics
By BRIAN A. HOWEY
INDIANAPOLIS - Gov. Mitch Daniels announced Friday morning that he will push for a single county executive who would then appoint county treasurers, assessors, recorders, surveyors and coroners. The single county executive would replace the three county commissioner structure that has existed in Indiana since 1851. All township duties would be transferred to the county executive.
Daniels will also seek to consolidate school systems with fewer than 1,000 students. That differed from the 2007 Kernan-Shepard Commission recommendations that schools with fewer than 2,000 students combine. Indiana has numerous counties with as many as six separate school corporations.
Kernan-Shepard also recommended that county sheriffs be appointed by a county executive, but that appears to be dead due to the political opposition expected.
Daniels will seek legislation in 2009 that would create countywide health departments, library districts and public safety boards, and move municipal elections to even years.
“This is a set of changes that’s long overdue in Indiana,” Daniels explained. “We are an outlier among states. We have more of almost everything - taxing units, subdivisions and politicians. It’s more than we need, more than taxpayers can get service for and certainly more than we should be paying for.”
The battle lines are forming quickly. The Association of Indiana Counties will oppose the elimination of elected county officials, saying, “The greatest concern is with the elimination of local elected officials. This could create an unfunded mandate for greater personnel costs, reduce local accountability, and destroy the checks and balances between local government and the state.” The AIC says it opposed 22 of the 27 Kernan-Shepard recommendations.
The Indiana Association of Cities and Towns announced on Thursday that it would support much of Kernan-Shepard. “I am pleased that after a thoughtful review process our Association has determined the majority of the recommendations put forth by the Commission on Local Government Reform are in the best interest of Hoosiers. We look forward to assisting the Governor in achieving this significant reform package,” said Noblesville Mayor and IACT President John Ditslear. “Much has been said and written in the past two years about where local government would stand on Kernan-Shepard. We want our support to send a message that the leaders of Indiana’s cities and towns support good ideas that are focused on positive change,” said IACT Executive Director Matt Greller.
IACT will support the election of city clerks in Class 2 cities and possibly moving municipal elections.
House Minority Leader Brian C. Bosma called for a debate on the reform issues. “Gov. Daniels’ suggestions on local government reform, as well as those outlined in the Kernan-Shepard Report, are very worthy of consideration, as is anything with the promise and potential to increase government efficiency,” Bosma said. “Sweeping statewide legislation designed to reform critical areas of local government will take thoughtful consideration and consensus-building, and we look forward to those discussions and debates both in the Statehouse and beyond.”
Bosma agreed with a central Daniels position that during the tough economic times facing Indiana and with unemployment at 7.1 percent, “We must examine every proposal with the potential to cut costs and increase efficiencies. The role and scope of local government and the Kernan-Shepard reforms will no doubt be part of our debate.”
In Fort Wayne, the Allen County Council just cut the salaries of its three county commissioners to part-time status. Their pay would be cut from $65,000 to $35,000.
Kevin Brinegar, Indiana Chamber president, reacted today, saying: “In these challenging economic times it’s more important than ever for Hoosiers to demand that the General Assembly enact the recommendations of the Kernan-Shepard Commission so that we may all benefit from high-performing local governments, and for those local units to operate as cost-efficiently as possible.”
Let me be the first to suggest some names for his replacement:
... an interesting opportunity and a whole bunch of regional challenges. The key is that Porter County may look to pull out of the RDA, Mayor Costas doesn't want to see that happen, so some Porter County leadership may be in store to cement things going forward.
"The Wall Street Journal reported today that “Auto Makers get $17.4 billion dollars,” from exiting President George W. Bush. How’s that for a fine & dandy kick in the teeth as a parting gift. It’s almost as if he said on his way out, “I don’t feel like I’ve done enough to give boat loads of money to failing industry, & this might be my last chance. Just in case this Obama fella is on to something with his spread the wealth business, I’m going to spread it from the tax payer to the criminally negligent and obnoxious auto giants.”
I'm torn on this whole bailout fever we've caught this year. On the one hand I really don't like the government stepping in to give cash to an industry that needs substantial reorganization. On the other, the government caused a lot of this economic mess by over-regulating auto manufacturing, energy, gasoline, and over taxing. Jump in, what do you think should have been done? Keep in mind you probably have a neighbor or fellow church goer that works at the steel mills her in Porter County who's job is affected by whether or not the auto makers go out of business.
Thursday, December 18, 2008
“Concentrated power has always been the enemy of liberty.”
“Entrepreneurs and their small enterprises are responsible for almost all the economic growth in the United States.”
“Facts are stubborn things.”
“Freedom is never more than one generation away from extinction. We didn't pass it to our children in the bloodstream. It must be fought for, protected, and handed on for them to do the same.”
“Freedom prospers when religion is vibrant and the rule of law under God is acknowledged.”
“Government always finds a need for whatever money it gets.”
“Government does not solve problems; it subsidizes them.”
“Government exists to protect us from each other. Where government has gone beyond its limits is in deciding to protect us from ourselves.”
“Government is like a baby. An alimentary canal with a big appetite at one end and no sense of responsibility at the other.”
“Government's first duty is to protect the people, not run their lives.”
“Government's view of the economy could be summed up in a few short phrases: If it moves, tax it. If it keeps moving, regulate it. And if it stops moving, subsidize it.”
“Governments tend not to solve problems, only to rearrange them.”
“History teaches that war begins when governments believe the price of aggression is cheap.”
“How do you tell a communist? Well, it's someone who reads Marx and Lenin. And how do you tell an anti-Communist? It's someone who understands Marx and Lenin.”
“I favor the Civil Rights Act of 1964 and it must be enforced at gunpoint if necessary.”
“If the federal government had been around when the Creator was putting His hand to this state, Indiana wouldn't be here. It'd still be waiting for an environmental impact statement.”
“Inflation is as violent as a mugger, as frightening as an armed robber and as deadly as a hit man.”
“It has been said that politics is the second oldest profession. I have learned that it bears a striking resemblance to the first.”
“Man is not free unless government is limited.”
“No government ever voluntarily reduces itself in size. Government programs, once launched, never disappear. Actually, a government bureau is the nearest thing to eternal life we'll ever see on this earth!”
“No mother would ever willingly sacrifice her sons for territorial gain, for economic advantage, for ideology.”
“Peace is not absence of conflict, it is the ability to handle conflict by peaceful means.”
“Protecting the rights of even the least individual among us is basically the only excuse the government has for even existing.”
“Recession is when a neighbor loses his job. Depression is when you lose yours.”
“Republicans believe every day is the Fourth of July, but the democrats believe every day is April 15.”
“The best minds are not in government. If any were, business would steal them away.”
“The problem is not that people are taxed too little, the problem is that government spends too much.”
“We must reject the idea that every time a law's broken, society is guilty rather than the lawbreaker. It is time to restore the American precept that each individual is accountable for his actions.”
“They say the world has become too complex for simple answers. They are wrong.”
“We should measure welfare's success by how many people leave welfare, not by how many are added.”
“Welfare's purpose should be to eliminate, as far as possible, the need for its own existence.”
“The most terrifying words in the English language are: I'm from the government and I'm here to help.”
This would equate to a fragment of the wisdom that was passed on by the Reagan Revolution. These short quotes should serve as a reminder to what conservatives should be focusing on, and the reason why I choose to actively support the Ron Paul R3VOLUTION.
Now a clip from Ron Reagan's Farewell Address:
Monday, December 15, 2008
The Philosophers Stone
The story of the Philosophers Stone is simply this:
Being able to turn Lead into Gold.
It is the alchemist's dream. An ancient philosophy of chemistry and mysticism or perhaps better left to Merlin and Arthurian legend. It is a pipe dream or a fools legend. It is something out of the dark ages that in every essence of the concept is for all practical purposes a foolhardy venture.
American future can be compared to the sleeping old man who had seen better days. His youth is completely gone and for all intents and purposes, he is unable to be productive any more. All this “old man” can do is simply lay around and consume producing nothing of intrinsic value for the young men of the world to consume themselves. His wealth squandered and his prosperity in shambles he lays almost helpless and weak begging for a lump of bread and a slice of moldy processed cheese, the American future to come.
This old man began decades ago relying upon his Asian/Arab cousins to fish for him, to cloth him, to hunt for him, to provide fire, warmth and substance for him... simply, the young of the world began to provide everything for him. Now, the only aspect that this old man can do for himself is to consume. Perhaps two or more decades ago, when this old man was a little younger, he was quite capable of producing for himself. At one time, he understood the meaning of a hard days work. He knew the meaning of saving, of producing and what it meant to be prosperous. As he matured into an old man, he began to get indolent and slothful. He became plump off his savings from youth, consuming more and producing less every day forgetting what had once made him so prosperous. Eventually this old man matured into a glint of his former youth and prosperous young self having consumed his own savings and now borrowing any potential of future prosperity away so that he can continue to consume more and more while producing nothing the rest of the young in the world want all the while decaying into that old helpless man that is begging for that lump of bread and slice of moldy processed cheese.
With the changing of the world into a global economy, America has failed to adapt properly. It has failed to protect its industry. The Keynesian philosophy of economics would dictate that America is a vital part of the world global economy. We are a consuming culture. Lets say for an instance that that old man is on an island with all those other cousins of his. In Keynesian economics he would serve a vital role for there has to be someone to consume the fruits of everyone else's labor while leaving just enough crumbs so that the cousins can continue to produce. However, eventually those cousins will get tired of producing themselves and eating just the crumbs. Eventually they will begin to realize that they want some time to just lay around for themselves. Eventually they will stop producing for the consumer and begin to just produce for themselves so that they can finally become prosperous. This leaves the old man now a shell of his former self and too old, to self mortgage from all his borrowing to be able to pick up the pieces and regain his youth to become prosperous again.
“What America has succeeded in creating is not an economy impervious to shocks, but merely one which enables their consequences to be postponed to a later date.” ~ Peter Schiff, President of Euro Pacific Capital
The Philosophers Stone is a legend of a foolhardy nature. So why do our Keynesian economist insist that they can make our credit driven consumer economy and turn it into gold through inflationary policies of the Federal Reserve. I noticed in today's paper, they are once again getting ready to cut rates. Only a fool does the same thing over and over and expect different results.
Sunday, December 14, 2008
set fire to the Wasilla Bible Church, the Alaskan church which drew negative attacks from the Left during the presidential election because of its best-known parishioner, Gov. Sarah Palin. The fire broke out Friday night while several people were inside, causing $1 million in damages to the structure. Gov. Palin visited the church on Saturday after the fire and told an assistant pastor she was sorry if the "undeserved negative attention" her candidacy brought to the church led to the arson. An Anchorage Daily News report indicates fire investigators have no evidence at this time which suggests a political motivation is behind the fire."
Thursday, December 11, 2008
Daniels won every age demographic, including the 18-29 year-olds by nine points (51%-42%). 18-29 year-olds were 19% of the Indiana electorate in 2008, compared to McCain receiving 35% of Hoosier 18-29 year olds. Seniors 65 and older were his strongest demographic, supporting him by 36 points (67%-31%). This is a 19 point improvement over 2004, when Daniels lost voters 60 and over by two points (48%-50 %.).
How did Daniels win so big in such a tough environment?
Initially, many believed this race would be close because of the bold way Mitch Daniels governs. His opponent was a former Congresswoman supported by the Service Employees International Union, EMILY's List, the National Education Association, etc., and the investment President-elect Obama made in Indiana . Obama spent millions of dollars on continuous TV ads since the primary, employed hundreds of field staff, and visited Indiana nearly 50 times. His effort paid off, as he won the state, the first time a Democrat nominee has won Indiana since 1964. Lastly, the national mood was expected to be the worst it had been for Republicans since Watergate. Despite these factors, Daniels won re-election by 58% -40%. The Indianapolis Star newspaper headline read "not even close." So, how did he win so big?
1. Daniels talked about "change" in 2003 before "change" was cool. When first elected, he inherited a dysfunctional state government, hundreds of millions of dollars in debt. Since taking office, he has had only balanced budgets, the biggest tax cut in state history, telecom reform, ethics reform, and millions of dollars have been paid back to schools and local governments. Indiana is now the only state in the nation to have a fully-funded ten-year transportation plan with no debt or tax increase.
At the same time, Indiana has added 800 child case workers, increased the number of state police, and passed a long overdue state veterans benefits package. Indiana has the lowest unemployment in the region and a healthy rainy day fund, instead of the budget shortfalls shared by surrounding states. Despite strong resistance to a few aggressive proposals at the time, it was affirmed that Indiana is better off today than four years ago and better off than all surrounding states. Daniels proved results matter. Daniels talked about these real accomplishments and did not rely on slick D.C.-created direct mail pieces to share his message. These same accomplishments earned him and Indiana various national awards including Governing Magazine's "Public Official of the Year" award and the best Bureau of Motor Vehicles in the country.
2. Hoosiers made a connection with the governor ' s steadfast leadership and work ethic. Voters recognized his constant focus on attracting a record number of new and diversified jobs, dramatically reducing homeowner's property taxes, and the state's immediate, organized and effective response to the severe weather/record floods in the summer of 2008.
3. Daniels kept it real. He has remained in touch and accessible to average Hoosiers through constant statewide travel. His view is always from the taxpayer's perspective and that showed on Election Day. Voters came to appreciate his preference to travel the state on his Harley Davidson motorcycle and his insistence to stay overnight in Hoosier homes, not in hotels. It's no coincidence Daniels did not use campaign consultants, and personally wrote the scripts for all campaign commercials.
4. Daniels was supported by a formidable coalition of both typical and atypical interest groups. Because of his approach, he received backing by union building trades as well as the Chamber of Commerce, the Manufacturer's Association and the NFIB. The FOP and prominent veteran leaders were seen on TV ads pledging their support in their own non-partisan words. The International Association of Fire Fighters supported Daniels and Obama. African American leaders passed out Governor Daniels suggestion boxes to urban barbershops and hair salons. Fluent in Spanish, Daniels earned the support of traditionally Democrat Latino voters. The governor's 2004 opponent and a former governor himself co-chaired a bipartisan effort for one of Daniels' most important legislative initiatives. Even the losing candidate in the 2008 Democrat primary joined Daniels in an effort to raise funds and rebuild a historic covered bridge that had been destroyed in a storm.
5. Lastly, Daniels insisted on running a principled and positive campaign. His opponent ran all-negative-all-the-time. Daniels has run three campaigns and has not run one negative ad. Not only was this a positive vs. negative matchup, it was also a contrast of the future vs. the past. Daniels talked about reforming education and local government and permanently capping property taxes in a second term, while his opponent spent time and money on yesterday's issues such as observing Daylight Saving Time and the leasing of the Toll Road .
In Indiana, Governor Daniels has not only redefined how to run for governor, but more importantly, how to govern. His problem solving approach proves if you are courageous enough to see your vision through, good policy makes good politics and the big problems we face can be solved.
Mitch for Governor
Tuesday, December 09, 2008
the actions "would make Lincoln roll over in his grave"
Here's the actual legal indictment ... for a constant breaking live update use this link Twitter search Blagojevich
Patrick Fitzgerald press release with details http://tinyurl.com/6h8ben on Blagojevich corruption arrest
News broke this morning that Illinois Governor Rod Blagojevich has been arrested by federal authorities and will be in court later today to face charges. Some reports suggest that he was offering to "sell" the Obama senate seat.
You have to love Chicago politics. I can't blame all of you that moved here from Chicago and Illinois to get away from this kind of rampant corruption. I am proud to live in Porter County, where we may disagree on political issues, but this kind of corruption isn't happening.
I'll post updates here later today. Open thread, if you have links post them in comments below.
More: CNN interviews FBI agent who says three counts - bribery solicitation, a deal to broker a sale of the Tribune's Wrigley in return for getting rid of editorial board, and a third count. This one day after he attempted to shake down Bank of America over a company closing.
Monday, December 08, 2008
This week's surge in twitter activity due to Top Conservatives on Twitter, especially among those of us who are conservatives, created a series of tweets between @joshgillespie: @chrisfaulkner @daltonsbriefs @sfluhr
I'm sure there were others, I just grabbed the list from the most recent message today - and out of that chatting came a proposal to host a meetup for conservatives and right of center activists in February. February 21st to be exact in Indianapolis.
The details, what's even nailed down so far, can be found at Facebook event Indiana Facebook Blogfest.
If you're a conservative or right of center blogger, twitterer, journalist, author or politician ... you'll want to clear Saturday February 21st for this event. I even noticed that some states are publishing lists like Indiana Conservatives on Twitter ... if you'd like to be included on such a list leave a note below. I'll try to put a list together so we can all follow and connect.
Third Party conundrum is simply this, how can they ever become effective? The sad truth is that they more than likely never will. The last great movement for a third party that had any success was the Teddy Roosevelt's Bull Moose Party. When we examine that, we begin to understand why third parties are ineffective. Essentially, the Bull Moose Party, traditional named the Progressive Party, split the conservative vote right down the middle handing the election to Democrats and Woodrow Wilson.
Now we come to the next most successful third party, the Libertarians. The Libertarian Party formed when the young and disenfranchised Republicans walked out of the 1972 Republican National Convention. They walked essentially because of Nixon closing the gold window and instituting price and wage controls in 1971. Since staging the walk out, what have they really accomplished other than becoming a strong and ultimately ineffective debate society?
In order for a third party to become effective, it needs another strong third party to rise up at the same time and from opposite sides of the political spectrum. In a sense, what we learned from the Bull Moose is that all another strong third party does is weaken the strength of its core philosophies essentially handing the election over to whom should be their true idealogical enemy. What I'm really saying is that a three party system here in America will never work for it strengthens one party at the expense of the other two. However, if we were to ever see the true socialists depart from the Democrats and form a strong third party, then the need for a Libertarian party would become prevalent. In all actuality, there is a enough of a base here in America we really could have 6 separate parties:
According to the Kato Institute studies it suggests that roughly 15% of Americans can be identified as Libertarians, however, where are they on election day? I'll tell you... more than likely voting Republican for they know at the very least they get a little of what they want rather than handing an election over to another party where they get nothing of what they want. This is the very reason I advocate Libertarians folding back into the Republican party, not by just voting but by becoming active within the establishment or leadership roles. Libertarians should begin to vote in the Republican primaries, run for precinct committee person spots, become active and become part of the leadership or forever be an ineffective debate society that wins small victories and mostly moral victories.
I'm not saying this to be mean as I endorse most, not all, Libertarian philosophies. I'm just being realistic.
One of my favorite quotes from one of my favorite movies:
“You can do a lot more damage from inside the system than you can from out side of it”
I BELIEVE the strength of our nation lies with the individual and that each person’s dignity, freedom, ability and responsibility must be honored.
I BELIEVE in equal rights, equal justice and equal opportunity for all, regardless of race, creed, sex, age or disability.
I BELIEVE free enterprise and encouraging individual initiative have brought this nation opportunity, economic growth and prosperity.
I BELIEVE government must practice fiscal responsibility and allow individuals to keep more of the money they earn.
I BELIEVE the proper role of government is to provide for the people only those critical functions that cannot be performed by individuals or private organizations, and that the best government is that which governs least.
I BELIEVE the most effective, responsible and responsive government is government closest to the people.
I BELIEVE Americans must retain the principles that have made us strong while developing new and innovative ideas to meet the challenges of changing times.
I BELIEVE Americans value and should preserve our national strength and pride while working to extend peace, freedom and human rights throughout the world.
FINALLY, I believe the Republican Party is the best vehicle for translating these ideals into positive and successful principles of government. ~ Now what libertarian-minded individual can disagree with those principles? It is just up to us, the true base of the party to continually remind them of these principles through getting involved within the leadership of the party. The I believe portion was taken from gop.com.
Sunday, December 07, 2008
I'm sure many of you have been following conservative "movements" over the last month. I won't suggest this is a complete list by any shake, and if I'm missing some groups feel free to list in comments below. These groups are all national in nature, one big question for our own local NW Indiana area, is there a way these kinds of movements can be translated to local? Or, better yet are there local issues that can rise up and become movements like these, and if they do will the party apparatus cleaned out in the process?
Let's Get This Right - started during summer of 2008 by group of pro-McCain bloggers. McCain's campaign did a terrible job working with the roughly 600 bloggers that were supporting his campaign. But this group decided to try and connect to more conservatives, under the theory that some conservatives were boycotting McCain. All of this kinda washed away when McCain chose Sarah Palin. The groups growth slowed as the election matured into the late fall, the economy faltered causing McCain's numbers to freefall, and Republicans had to grapple with a dismal election result in early November. I'm sure there are other groups like this one, please list in comments and I'll gladly update.
Dontgo Movement - also known as #dontgo since the movement started during the summer again when Congressional Republicans decided to stage a debate-in even though Speaker Pelosi sent everyone home and turned off the lights. Republicans felt that $4.00 gasoline was too much and something needed to be done. One Congressman actually used his blackberry to post to twitter from the floor of the House. The #dontgo hashtag on twitter was born and quickly became quite the rage with websites set up for petitions, and videos being shot and posted on Youtube ... on and on. The question is how to harness that activity and energy going forward?
Rebuild the Party - I believe this effort was launched immediately after our dismal loss last month and had leaders including Patrick Ruffini from NextRight. Today's site suggests that over 6500 people have signed the petition to endorse the 10 point plan, including two of the men running for RNC chair. Immediately the effort grew enough in a matter of days that a ning network was set up at Rebuild the Party Social Network, again the problem will be that though the ideas are great ... and I'm an endorser, once a chairman is selected by the RNC, will they actually be able to get a bunch of old line power brokers to look at themselves as the problem? When was the last time anyone voted themselves into oblivion?
This last week, we saw the surprise splash activity with Top Conservatives on Twitter, when Red County author Micheal Patrick Leahy decided to make a list of conservatives on twitter. This first was posted entirely manually at Top Conservatives on Twitter on blogger, then moved within days as the list reached over 600 people and become automated, to Top Conservatives on Twitter Official Site. Well guess what? As in each of these quick growing movements on the conservative side there's some in-fighting and scrapping. Some members believe that there are politicians and publishers using the list to grow existing subscribers or raise money. Others are frustrated that anyone on the list would do anything except follow everyone on the list. Guess what, the magic of twitter has always been the democratized nature of interaction. You follow those you find interesting. You unfollow those that you don't.
I'll stop there for now, go ahead and list others that I've missed. Want to know my beef? Nah, the engagement is well worth it for me. As conservatives we need to talk, listen, debate, and get over our own little petty egos. We need to talk to some liberals, and progressives, and Ron Paulers and Libertarians and la leaders ... we better since they know grass roots better than Republicans do.
Here's my challenge to you all, at least those that read. Engage and debate, but do so knowing that one day you'll need to work together to win elections. Argue and cajole, but remember that when you see these people face to face, it's quite a thrill to meet men and women committed to our nation and our community for all the right reasons. Sure, they may disagree a bit with you. Support someone for office, and for rebuilding any party, talk to you own state party members, but when or if they don't respond dig in and start making plans to get better leadership.
Feel free to tell me I'm wrong, but know that I still look forward to seeing you in person, and shaking your hand as a patriot and friend and neighbor.
Congratulations to Congressman-elect Joseph Cao, who sent Dollar Bill Jefferson packing tonight, in a D+28 seat. The GOP can win when it runs everywhere. -Patrick (from Next Right)
"There were two elections in Louisiana tonight, and it's fair to say that before tonight, what became John Fleming's squeaker in the 4th attracted 99% of the attention from the political class. After tonight, that figure should be reversed.
In the heart of New Orleans, in a district that is 28 points more Democrat than the national average, Joseph Cao sent Bill Jefferson packing. As Swing State Project notes, Cao now represents the district with the most lopsided voting patterns favoring the other party, outstripping the R+26 margin in Jim Matheson's UT-3."
NEW ORLEANS — Voters in Louisiana ousted indicted Democratic Rep. William Jefferson on Saturday, instead electing a Republican attorney who will be the first Vietnamese-American in Congress.
Unofficial results showed Anh "Joseph" Cao denying Jefferson a 10th term. Republicans made an aggressive push to take the seat from the 61-year-old incumbent, who has pleaded not guilty to charges of bribery, laundering money and misusing his congressional office.
Cao, 41, won a predominantly black and heavily Democratic district that covers most of New Orleans.
From Right Pundits:
In a stunning upset, Republican Ahn “Joseph” Cao, a Vietnamese immigrant with no political experience, has defeated Democratic incumbent William Jefferson for the U.S. House of Representative’s seat of the 2nd District of Louisiana.
Ahn “Joseph” Cao will represent the 2nd District of Lousiana in the new Congressional term after defeating William Jefferson. Cao, an immigration attorney is a newcomer to politics and will be the first person of Vietnamese descent to become a representative in Congress. His opponent William Jefferson was plagued by allegations of corruption throughout his campaign and is currently facing federal indictments related to illegal funds received from Nigerian business interests. Jefferson became notorious in Louisiana after the FBI found $90,000 in cash allegedly received as bribes in his freezer.
Saturday, December 06, 2008
The Times features the story this morning
- Now due to some software program, the property tax bills are expected to go out in January for the second half of 2008. Remember that last month it was the State that made a mistake that caused a couple week delay. The prior six months is was waiting for assessments to be certified under the new trending system.
- This creates problems for people who like to claim their property taxes as a deduction on both federal and state taxes. So, if you want to send in the same as the first half estimate, although it will create complication and possibly require a refund to your escrow account, you are welcome to mail the government a check. They will try to apply it correctly. (tongue in cheek - see photo)
- We've completed $400,000 in expenditures to a consultant from out of town, and I don't think at this point even the council is happy with the work. One caveat, there's no way to know how much the existing Auditor, Treasurer, Clerk, Assessor, or Department heads have gotten in the way of the consultants. I agree with Councilman Poporad, "here's some crayons, please finish the job"
Despite hundreds of thousands of dollars in consulting services, extra efforts by county employees and weekly status meetings, Porter County officials now predict that property tax bills will not likely be mailed out until the first of next year.
The delay, which is a month behind recent predictions and two months behind the traditional due date, would not only mean late revenue payments to municipalities and schools, but also tax woes for many homeowners.
Homeowners with a mortgage who pay into an escrow account will not be able to take the entire deduction for property taxes this year if the second and final bills are delayed until January or beyond, according to county tax consultant Beth Henkel.
This group is eligible to deduct the amount from the first tax bills paid in July, said County Treasurer James Murphy.
Those who pay property taxes on their own can secure close to the full deduction by making a second payment before the end of the year equal to the provisional amount paid in July, Murphy said. Those with escrow accounts can also make a second payment to the treasure's office on their own, he said, but a payment will still be made through the escrow, resulting in the need for a refund and perhaps some complications.
The grim tax news surfaced Friday, as county officials gathered with their consultants for their weekly update on the status of efforts to repair the delayed tax collection system.
"It's been quite a week," Henkel said before delivering the bad news.
The group blamed the most recent delay on Hamer Enterprises, from which the county purchased new tax software for the auditor and treasurer's office.
The new software is not yet ready to be put into service, she said, and use of the old system would pose as many problems.
In the meantime, Murphy said the county has $40 million it can forward on to the various municipalities and school districts. The payment will account for only about 35 percent of the revenue owed to these taxing units, he said, but it will be something until the second round of tax money is collected.
When County Council President Bob Poparad heard these advance payments are also waiting on the new Hamer software, he called on the group not to wait.
"Do it by hand," Poparad said. "I'll buy you the crayons."
County Auditor Jim Kopp said he had informed the municipalities and most of the schools about the delay.
"No one was surprised this morning when I said, 'Don't plan on getting money from us,' " he said.
Friday, December 05, 2008
I've tried to avoid this topic, but I thought this morning, over an electronic copy of the Indy Star (because does anyone really buy one anymore) and a cup of coffee, I will give my two cents about this.
The Big Three are not going away. Those jobs are not going to be lost. Are you kidding?
Why? Because UAW workers vote Democrat, namely in my opinion. Do you really think that the Democrats are going to alienate a major voting block of their Party?
So yesterday, the Big Three show up in their own vehicles to beg for help.
Here's what the Star has on it:
Sen. Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y., pushed the idea of a single trustee designated by the president to control disbursement of additional money after March 31 and to force changes on the companies and the United Auto Workers union, which has been criticized for protecting current compensation packages for its members.
"I think that there's a general view that we want to see the conditions before we give you the money. And you folks sort of want the money and then say, 'Let the conditions work out,' " Schumer said. "I don't trust the car companies' leadership. . . . I worry that, if they're left on their own, they'll be back a short time later asking for more, and we won't be better off."
The company executives said they welcomed the prospect of government oversight.
"It would be very helpful for us, whether it's a board or an individual, to have someone to work with on this, to submit our proposals, and then for that person to say, 'OK, don't agree with that. You've got to change this,' " GM Chief Executive Rick Wagoner said.
Another idea floated at the hearing was to force banks that have received bailout money to lend to the automakers, with government guarantees on the loans. That would require federal officials to renegotiate the terms of the capital injections.
Now, pick up your jaw and read on.
The issue here isn't that the US Government doesn't want to help, it's that GM-Ford-Chrysler want the cash on their terms.
It's like me dictating terms of my mortgage to the mortgage company. "I want 1% interest and I will pay you when I want." Right, they'd show me the door.
I drive a Chevy and so does my wife. GM-Ford-Chrysler are not going anywhere. It's just they are going to have to agree to terms Schumer and the committee lay down.
If the Big Three want to survive, they will have to bend more. It appears that they are headed that way.
So, take a deep breath Mom... things are going to be okay.
Thursday, December 04, 2008
I theorized last month at some point, probably in a comment here on this site, that changing our election laws to mandate a runoff when no candidate receives 50% plus 1 vote would be preferrable.
A couple reasons why and then I'll sit back and watch commenting:
- I believe this would help third party movements, since they could encourage their supporters to vote the third party, without that sick feeling that their votes will never count. If you really want to eliminate straight party voting, I can't think of a better way than encouraging more third party candidates.
- I believe this would also clean up messy three or fourway races, when no one really gets the majority, and recounts are ordered in races where the winner may have received less than 40% of votes.
In Minnesota the battled recount features two candidates who didn't get a majority, and won't no matter the recount result because the Independant choice received over 15% of the vote. A perfect scenario for a runoff instead of a recount which will most likely end up in court.
Other ideas: Appointed Judges to be re-appointed every ten years by the Governor and confirmed by the State Senate. Truthfully approving judges to keep their jobs, without any competition is kinda useless. They always get approved.
We'll dig into re-organizing county and local government I'm sure in future posts since that looks to be a hot topic in the legislature this year.
Wednesday, December 03, 2008
Most of my entries will not be nearly as long, but then the question below is an awful big question. I would like to thank Mr. Dalton for allowing me this opportunity to join this community and hope that we can grow together.
In the FED We Trust?
“President Franklin D. Roosevelt's closest adviser and architect of the New Deal, Harry Hopkins, advised, "Tax and tax, spend and spend, elect and elect, because the people are too damn dumb to know the difference" ( Walter E. Williams, 2007).
The above quote will play into this article and at the end, I might just ask a question similar to the above quote. The next two quotes are for comparison purposes. I would engage you to read both twice and ponder before you continue to read on. You will find other quotes as you read, I would engage you to read them twice as well before continuing on.
Thomas Jefferson said, "[Gold] is the most perfect medium because it will preserve its own level; because, having intrinsic and universal value, it can never die in our hands. ... [Paper money] is liable to be abused, has been, is, forever will be abused, in every country in which it is permitted."
Karl Marx's Communist Manifesto, 1848 "Centralization of credit in the hands of the state, by means of a national bank with state capital and an exclusive monopoly." 65 years later America, land of the free with the promise of prosperity, embraced his advice in the form of the Federal Reserve Act of 1913.
If your boss were to come up to you and offer to pay you in gold and silver, I wonder just how many of you would say no... Let us all be quite honest with ourself, there wouldn't be many of us that would turn down just such an offer. Adversely, if you walk up to someone on the street and ask if gold or silver could be considered legal tender, you might just get an expression of confusion. This can be considered what is referred to as indoctrination. Most people don't even realize that our money is no longer gold or silver backed and for that matter, most people don't even realize that the Federal Reserve is a private bank separate from the Government. It is in these fallacies where deceit is born and truth is blurred.
When we begin to ask ourselves these questions, we begin to understand how little we know about the founding fathers wisdom and foresight or why they did not originally include a centralized bank. Centralized banking was not a foreign concept at the time either. To most people, the Federal Reserve system is or perceived to be an agent of the Federal Government. In perception, the Federal Reserve is a partnership between the Federal Government and the private banks. Even further, when we begin to examine this partnership, it is more grossly absurd and devious than one can imagine. It is in essence, a cartel.
Definition of Cartel:
A group of businesses that collude to fix prices within an industry or market limiting competition.
In a free market, competition is what keeps the market honest. It keeps the market honest through properly adjusted prices. Simplified, the market determines the prices. In a non-free market, like a centralized bank, prices are fixed or planned in collusion by the banks. The foundation of a socialistic planned economy is the absence of property rights, especially that of privately produced goods and services (Bostaph, 2007). Land, labor, and all production goods are planned by the state run economy from the beginning of the cycle to the end, just like the Federal Reserve system (Bostaph, 2007). However, if there are no free markets or markets where prices are determined for producer goods, then what is to be used as a unit of calculation? The law of supply and demand is an absolute which the socialistic planned economy fails to answer in its simplest equation. You cannot determine supply when there is no means to determine demand. In a socialistic state the motivation for raising or creating a middle class is negated by its very nature even though that is the underlining theory of socialism, to make everyone equal.
Lessons of class structure and socialism can be even traced backed to the founders of Plymouth colony in 1620-21. As the story is told, and wrongfully so, the pilgrims settled in and had a harsh winter where half the colonists die. The next spring the Indians teach the colonists how to farm and a great harvest for the next fall was abundant. However, this is full of half truths and is not the case. In actuality, the harvest of 1621 was not bountiful and the harvest feast was actually, more or less, a condemned man’s last meal for famine and drought reined for several years (Maybury, 1999). The harvest was not actually bountiful until 1624 (Maybury, 1999). What changed to make that harvest and all after that bountiful? When the colonists arrived, the governor of the colony set-up a socialistic system where all were equal (Maybury, 1999). All crops and goods were put into a common store and divided up equally among the populists according to needs (Maybury, 1999). The strong labors were asked to work all day long for the weak (Maybury, 1999). “So the young and strong refused to work and the total amount of food produced was never adequate” (Maybury, 1999). The colonist continued on with this arrangement for a few years until it was realized the system was not working. Then the governor made a declaration that all men were to keep what they produced. All the sudden the colony became prosperous and even had enough corn left to begin exporting. The harsh truth to be learned here is that even though socialism seems to be a blessed idea, in reality it never works for it contradicts the laws of humanity. For socialism to work, the nature of humanity would have to change.
We have witnessed similar aspects over the last eight years with the Federal Reserve system. When they lower or raise interest rates, they are essentially price fixing and thus reduce competition between the banks. Through the lowering or raising of interest rates, they have been able to artificially stimulate the economy, ignoring the laws of supply and demand. This lowering of interest rates creates an inflated supply of credit. With excess credit comes mal investment or the encouraging of banks to allow extension of credit to those who they would normally not extend a line of credit too under a true free market system.
The Great Depression was perhaps the most profound and defining event of the last century. The causes were numerous and it also fueled a new political belief in the United States that has created the defunct entitlement system that exists today. This was referred to as “The New Deal”. The New Deal was President Franklin D. Roosevelt's legislative agenda for rescuing the United States from the Great Depression. Some have argued that the Federal Reserve didn’t do enough to stave off the great depression. However, I will make the argument that exactly the opposite is what occurred, that is, that the Federal Reserve was the true cause of the Great Depression by executing too much intervention with our economy.
The term “Roaring ’20s” has been applied to the decade that came directly after WWI here in America. The “Roaring ‘20s” well deserved its nick name. The economy boomed and people made fits full of dollars. “The United States economy had expanded rapidly since the last downturn in 1920, latterly with the inflationary assistance of the bankers and the federal government” (Rothbard, 2000). This boom lasted until roughly 1924. Between 1924 and 1929 the Federal Reserve began to artificially continue the boom by increasing the money and credit supply. “When business in the United States underwent a mild contraction in 1927, the Federal Reserve created more paper reserves in the hope of forestalling any possible bank reserve shortage” (Greenspan, 1966). However, across the pond Great Britain was losing gold to us for they refused, for political reasons, to raise their interest rates. The Federal Reserve, in an attempt to help Great Britain, pumped more money into our banking system which in turn decreased our interest rates to that of the level of Great Britain’s. This helped cease their bleeding of gold to us and helped Great Britain “…avoid the political embarrassment of having to raise interest rates” (Greenspan, 1966). This excess line of credit fueled a speculative boom within our stock market. However, this set the stage for the fall out that was to come.
The Federal Reserve attempted to break this speculative boom. “But it was too late: by 1929 the speculative imbalances had become so overwhelming that the attempt precipitated a sharp retrenching and a consequent demoralizing of business confidence” (Greenspan, 1966). This resulted in the collapse of the American economy. The bull market effectively came to an end on September 3, 1929. Then on October 29, 1929, Black Tuesday occurred. It occurred because speculators were selling sound stock for desperately needed liquidity (Rothbard, 2000). “The severity of the Wall Street crash was not due to the unrestrained license of a freebooting capitalist system, but to government insistence on keeping a boom going artificially by pumping in inflationary credit” (Rothbard, 2000). Simplified, the economy collapsed not because the government did too little but because the Federal Reserve, a privately owned bank, had done too much.
This set the stage for the welfare-state and the “New Deal.” FDR’s New Deal created artificial work across the country by using tax revenue to pay for it (Altay, 2007). The New Deal was implemented between 1933 and 1938. “The Federal government would pretty much employ anyone to perform anything from public services to painting” (Altay, 2007). In order to understand why this helped further the Great Depression, we must understand the welfare-state system that under a free market system and an asset backed monetary value system such as a gold standard; the welfare-state cannot exist. “Stripped of its academic jargon, the welfare state is nothing more than a mechanism by which governments confiscate the wealth of the productive members of a society to support a wide variety of welfare schemes” (Greenspan, 1966). A good portion of the welfare-sate is paid for by tax revenue. However, the welfare state politicians were quick to realize that if they were to retain their political power their taxation would have to be limited (Greenspan, 1966). “…They had to resort to programs of massive deficit spending, i.e., they had to borrow money, by issuing government bonds, to finance welfare expenditures on a large scale” (Greenspan, 1966).
Under a gold standard, the amount of credit that an economy can bear is directly related to the amount of its tangible assets, “…since every credit instrument is ultimately a claim on some tangible asset” (Greenspan, 1966). However, government bonds are not backed by a tangible asset but rather the government’s promise to pay out through future tax revenue (Greenspan, 1966). “Thus, government deficit spending under a gold standard is severely limited” (Greenspan, 1966). The abandonment of a gold standard makes unlimited expansion of credit possible (Greenspan, 1966). What is created is a paper asset, in the form of government bonds, that banks will now accept as a tangible asset just as what was formerly the equivalent of a gold deposit (Greenspan, 1966). The unfortunate part is that the holder of that government bond or paper reserve bank deposit thinks that they have a legitimate claim to an asset, however, “…the fact is that there are now more claims outstanding than real assets” (Greenspan, 1966). This is where the law of supply and demand comes in and it is infallible. “As the supply of money (of claims) increases relative to the supply of tangible assets in the economy, prices must eventually rise” (Greenspan, 1966). Basically what this comes down to is that when the books are finally balanced, the government bonds are financed by bank credit expansion (Greenspan, 1966).
The New Deal, in all actuality, actually helped fuel the length of the Great Depression. I can comfortably make this assertion because in order to bankroll the rampant spending of the New Deal, the government began to spend money that it did not have to spend thus creating the deficit spending like we have today. “Whenever the government needed money, it would go to the Federal Reserve and print more money” in the form of excess credit or a loan to the treasury (Altay, 2007). In turn, this fueled to further lengthen the Great Depression by inflating or reducing the value of the dollar, much like what we see today.
The Federal Reserve system is essentially no different than a banana cartel, a sugar cartel or an oil cartel. The Federal Reserve system is a grouping of the large banking corporations who have come together in an agreement to limit competition, to ensure their profits, and to make certain that no new comers come into the game to take away their position. That by definition equates to a cartel. At its core, the Federal Reserve system is nothing more than a cartel. So why do our politicians allow such a grievous institution to exist? The answer is quite simple, politicians no longer have to rely upon raising taxes to meet their expenditures, rather, they can rely upon the inflationary policies of the Federal Reserve system to meet their spending needs. Raising taxes is an unpopular action which could and often can cost politicians their re-election attempts. The Federal Reserve Act of 1913 essentially gave government the power to create money out of thin air, through inflationary policies. Although this creation of money or inflationary policy didn't happen over night, that is exactly what has occurred over the last 90+ years.
Part of FDR's New Deal legislation was the National Recovery Act (NRA) of 1933. What the NRA essentially did was take all industries and grouped them together in individual groups such as steel was grouped into one group, coal mining was grouped into one group and poultry producers were grouped into one group. On the top, just like the board of governors for the Federal Reserve, was the National Recovery Administration board of governors. NRA was eventually challenged and the case went before the Supreme Court in 1935. The Supreme Court ruled that delegation of such power by congress to private parties was unknown to our law, meaning, you could not find reference to it anywhere, thus the NRA was deemed unconstitutional. Essentially, there is very little difference between the National Recovery Act act of 1933 and the Federal Reserve Act of 1913. The only difference is that the Federal Reserve Act has never gotten that question to the Supreme Court.
July 26, 1983 was the last time we as a society were made aware of who actually owned controlling interest in the Federal Reserve bank, and of course this was by accident. Five member banks own 53 % of the stock in the controlling interest of the Federal Reserve bank of New York. This would equate to a controlling interest in the controlling bank. The major stock holders of this bank are confidential meaning no one, including the President of the U.S., knows who owns stock in the Federal Reserve. Only a few elite insiders actually know who has or owns controlling interest in the controlling bank. Does this sound like the dream of Thomas Jefferson or Ben Franklin? Perhaps it is more astute to say the Federal Reserve system sounds more like something out of Orwell's 1984.
"Most Americans have no real understanding of the operation of the international money lenders. The accounts of the Federal Reserve System have never been audited. It operates outside the control of Congress and manipulates the credit of the United States" ~ Senator Barry Goldwater
"Give me control of a nation's money and I care not who makes it's laws" ~ Mayer Amschel Bauer Rothschild
The Federal Reserve Act was sold to the American people as a means of breaking up the “Money Trust”, as a means of putting monetary policy into the hands of the electoral process. It was sold as a means of preventing depressions, as a means of preventing mal investment through regulation. So my question is, hows that working for us?
On the other side of the coin, just like we see today, bankers did make bad decisions on lending prior to the Federal Reserve Act. Back then, the free market handled it by absorbing the losses and of course, some banks did fail. So large banking interest got together to draft the Federal Reserve Act. To create a reserve bank to protect the bankers from poor lending practices so that there was a bank of last resort to lend from to bail them out. Now we see that system crashing, and of course, we the citizens are now flipping the bill for their bail out. So once again I'll ask, hows that working for us?
When congress has its short falls, where does it get their money from to balance their balance sheets? I'll wager a bet that if you went out on the street and asked 10 random people that same question you would get 10 different answers. In reality, when they have that short fall, they borrow it from the Federal Reserve Bank or other centralized banks of the world. When they borrow it from the Federal Reserve, the FED essentially creates that money out of thin air which equates to an invisible tax on us, the citizens. Not only that, the FED then collects interest on that balance. So this money gets created out of thin air and begins to enter into society. At first, the people that get to use this money first, are the ones that reap the benefits. Let say you or I get this newly created money first before the market realizes that it exists. We get to go out and purchase our construction materials at the current price. However, the market does not realize that this new money is there. When we add new money into the market, those materials are supposed to become more expensive but by being able to make that purchase first, before the market knows that that money is there, we reap the benefits by buying before the price goes up on our construction materials. Adversely, the person that doesn't get to receive the benefits buys his materials at an increased cost, before his wages go up, which decreases his actual net worth or wealth. This is the same thing that happens when the FED lowers interests rates and creates excess supply of credit. The people that get to benefit from the excess credit reap the rewards first and the poor and the middle class suffer the most. They suffer the most for their pay scale does not keep up with the inflationary policies. Thus we have the invisible tax on the poor and the middle class. Essentially, the banks get to reap the profit from the influx of new money for they are the ones who get to use it first. This equates to a transfer of wealth from society to the creators of the money.
When an economy expand by 3 % then also should the monetary supply. The problem is that the supply of money expands far greater than that of the economy. Back in the early '80s, they changed the way in which we judge inflation. The inputs which they use to judge inflation changes pending the circumstances. If we were to use the same inputs, making the inputs a constant, like what we used before they started to “mess” with the inputs, inflation is actually around 14% or we increase the supply of money 14% greater than what our economy is expanding. Inflation is the destruction of the value of money. When a nation goes through hyper inflation, the value of their currency is destroyed. There are two prime examples of hyper inflation during the 20th century, the first being Germany pre-WWII and the next is the modern day Brazil, which underwent hyper inflation recently and it was, at the time, the 6th largest economy in the world.
“All the perplexities, confusion and distress in America arise, not from... want of honor or virtue, so much as from the downright ignorance of the nature of coin, credit and circulation.” ~ John Adams
Today, one oz of silver will buy you, once convert into FED notes, 3 gallons of gasoline. That same oz of silver 50 years ago would still buy you roughly the same amount of gasoline. The good or service actually never increases or decreases in value but it is the expansion of credit or monetary supply that increases the fiat or paper cost. The intrinsic value will always stay relatively the same for that good or service. When prices increase, the average person doesn't know exactly who to blame for they blame speculators, unions and everything but who they should be blaming, congress and the banking system.
The same people who wrote the constitution also had control over the Continental Congress, the precursor government to what we call today the Federal Government. They had in place a fiat system or paper currency backed by nothing and because of that understood the dangers thereof. They had runaway inflation. When they went to form the “new government” under the constitution, they wrote that only gold and silver shall be legal tender, why? Because it will always retain its value. No fiat currency in the history of man kind has ever survived and have always ended horribly. Simplified, the loss of purchasing power is an invisible tax that we all suffer for and of course, our fore fathers knew the consequences thereof and took steps in an attempt to ensure that it wouldn't happen to the good 'ol US of A. If one studies the constitution and the decades of debate that surrounded society and the question of a central bank, then one begins to understand exactly why a central bank concept was not included in the constitution.
So my question to you is, sorry I must be blunt, are you to damn dumb to know the difference?
Hey !!! But don't take my word for it, read and examine my sources of influence:
Altay, O. (2007). The Great Depression was caused by over regulation, not capitalism. Retrieved from The Libertarian Forum Web site: http://thelibertarianforum.com/A-Trek-Through-History/The-Great-Depression-was-caused-by-over-regulation-not-capitalism.html
Bostaph, S. (2007). Bostaph1. Retrieved from Mise Institute Web site: http://www.mises.org/journals/scholar/Bostaph1.pdf
Greenspan, A. (1966). Gold and economic freedom. Retrieved from 321gold Web site: http://www.321gold.com/fed/greenspan/1966.html
Maybury, R. J. (1999). The great thanksgiving hoax. Retrieved from Mises Institute Web site: http://www.mises.org/story/336
Rothbard, M. N. (2000). America's great depression fifth edition. Retrieved from Mises Institute Web site: http://www.mises.org/rothbard/agd.pdf
Williams, W. E. (2007). Another detriment of democracy. Retrieved from Worldnet Daily Web site: http://worldnetdaily.com/news/article.asp?ARTICLE_ID=57706
Fiat Empire, (2002). Google Video. Retrieved from Google Video Web Site: http://video.google.com/videosearch?q=Fiar+Empire&hl=en&emb=0&aq=f#