Can You Guess Who?

I got this idea from a member of the BlogsforVictory Google Group.  I’ve redacted details that would give the answer away.

WITH THE FEDERAL DEBT spiraling out of control, many Americans sense an urgent need to find a political leader who is able to say “no” to spending. Yet they fear that finding such a leader is impossible. Conservatives long for another Ronald Reagan. But is Reagan the right model? He was of course a tax cutter, reducing the top marginal rate from 70 to 28 percent. But his tax cuts—which vindicated supply-side economics by vastly increasing federal revenue—were bought partly through a bargain with Democrats who were eager to spend that revenue. Reagan was no budget cutter—indeed, the federal budget rose by over a third during his administration.

An alternative model for conservatives is [redacted]. President from [redacted], [Redacted] sustained a budget surplus and left office with a smaller budget than the one he inherited. Over the same period, America experienced a proliferation of jobs, a dramatic increase in the standard of living, higher wages, and three to four percent annual economic growth. And the key to this was [redacted] penchant for saying “no.” If Reagan was the Great Communicator, [redacted] was the Great Refrainer.
Following [redacted], the federal debt stood ten times higher than before the [redacted], and it was widely understood that the debt burden would become unbearable if interest rates rose. At the same time, the top income tax rate was over 70 percent, veterans were having trouble finding work, prices had risen while wages lagged, and workers in Seattle, New York, and Boston were talking revolution and taking to the streets. The [redacted] administration had nationalized the railroads for a time at the end of the [redacted], and had encouraged stock exchanges to shut down for a time, and Progressives were now pushing for state or even federal control of water power and electricity. The business outlook was grim, and one of the biggest underlying problems was the lack of an orderly budgeting process: Congress brought proposals to the White House willy-nilly, and they were customarily approved.

The Republican Party’s response in the [redacted] election was to campaign for smaller government and for a return to what its presidential candidate, [redacted], dubbed “normalcy”—a curtailing of government interference in the economy to create a predictable environment in which business could confidently operate. [Redacted], a Massachusetts governor who had gained a national reputation by facing down a Boston police strike—“There is no right to strike against the public safety by anybody, anywhere, any time,” he had declared—was chosen to be [redacted] running mate. And following their victory, [redacted] inaugural address set a different tone from that of the outgoing [redacted] administration (and from that of the Obama administration today): “No altered system,” [redacted] said, “will work a miracle. Any wild experiment will only add to the confusion. Our best assurance lies in efficient administration of our proven system.”

One of [redacted] first steps was to shepherd through Congress the Budget and Accounting Act of [redacted], under which the executive branch gained authority over and took responsibility for the budget, even to the point of being able to impound money after it was budgeted. This legislation also gave the executive branch a special budget bureau—the forerunner to today’s Office of Management and Budget—over which [redacted] named a flamboyant Brigadier General, [redacted], as director. Together they proceeded to summon department staff and their bosses to semiannual meetings at Continental Hall, where [redacted] cajoled and shamed them into making spending cuts. In addition, [redacted] pushed through a tax cut, lowering the top rate to 58 percent; and in a move toward privatization, he proposed to sell off naval petroleum reserves in Wyoming to private companies.

Is there any doubt that history repeats itself?  Read the whole piece here, and pray that another [redacted] comes along soon.

From “Spending Cuts” to “Spending Reform”

Allahpundit points out what is going to be for many conservatives a depressing poll – boiled down, no one wants to cut anything.  At least, that is, when a pollster asks a question like, “do you want to cut aid to the needy in the United States?”.  To that question, 27% want to increase it, 44% want to keep it the same and only 24% want to cut it.  Like I said, rather depressing to most conservatives.  To me?  Its delightful.  Shows we can easily win this debate and get America back to fiscal rationality.

Continue reading

Scare Mongering the Sequester

Twitchy has collected a bit of Democrat scare-mongering regarding the sequester – the best was Rangel’s claim that 2,100 food inspectors would be thrown out of work.  My first question was:  we have more than 2,100 of them?  Rangel wants to know if we want to worry about the food on our table?  My attitude:  meh…properly cooked food is just about zero risk, at all events, and even without the inspectors its not like the food producers will suddenly go, “oh, goody, now we can poison people with food!”.  There is an indisputable fact to place before the American people here:  some how or another, we didn’t all die before food inspectors came along.  Muddling through without the Nanny State, those who provide food for the market managed to divine that their best bet was to provide good, safe food because that meant your customers stayed alive and came back the next day to buy some more.

Now, just why are our Democrats so hyped up about this?  The real reason seems to me that they are fearful that if real cuts are done – and while the sequester is a teeny, tiny little cut which won’t actually reduce our fiscal peril, they are real cuts – then if death and destruction don’t result, the argument for more cuts will become overwhelming.  Democrats are desperately afraid that their license to steal might soon be revoked – that the American people will figure out that about half what we spend is just payoffs to Democrat constituencies.  And so they will keep banging the drum saying that we’re all going to die if the Sequester (Obamaquester – because it was his idea, after all) goes through.

Exit question:  will all this Democrat whining megaphoned by the by-lined Democrats in the MSM cause the GOP to cave?  So far, it doesn’t appear it will – but never underestimate the Congressional GOP’s ability to wilt under pressure…we shall have to see.

UPDATE:  The article has it as a growing alliance between the RINOs and the Democrats.  Me?  Nope; its just the Ruling Class taking the mask off.  It is an us vs them fight – the people vs the powerful, with our biggest problem is that a large number of the people don’t realize how badly they are being screwed.  Yet.  Matters are being clarified and once we start campaigning in the “blue” areas, the lines will be drawn.

Dystopia–In His Own Words.

Just prior to the 2008 elections, Barack Obama boldly stated,

“We are 5 days away from fundamentally transforming the United States of America” (October 30, 2008)

Many among my conservative friends took that to be so much fluff; pretty much liberal boilerplate consistent with his whole “Hope and Change” campaign message.  Given, however, Obama’s background, cutting his teeth with the radical leftists/communists of his day (i.e., Frank Marshall Davis, Bernadine Dorn, Bill Ayers, Jeremiah Wright) I believe I was one of the relative few that took him at his word.  Unlike most of America, conservatives such as myself and others who actually took the time to vet Obama, knew that background and worldview mattered, and that Obama’s past gave more than a glimpse of how he intended to govern in the present.

When Obama uttered those words, “.. fundamentally transform AmericaI knew he meant it. It was Obama himself who stated (emphases added),

“As radical as I think people try to characterize the Warren Court, it wasn’t that radical.  It didn’t break free from the essential constraints that were placed by the founding fathers in the Constitution, at least, as it’s been interpreted and Warren Court interpreted in the same way, that generally the Constitution is a charter of negative libertiesSays what the States can’t do to you; says what the Federal Government can’t do to you, but doesn’t state what the Federal government or State Government must do on your behalf.”  (Barack Obama, June 18, 2001).

There is no question that Barack Obama was unhappy with his perception of unequal distribution of wealth that America so unfairly championed, and that he wanted to transform this nation into something more ‘equitable’ in his eyes.  The question was how, and to what extent.  Just how does one “fundamentally”  transform a nation whose very basis for existence is freedom, itself?  The only feasible answer is to transform that already-free nation, into a nation with fewer freedoms.  Given Dinesh D’Souza’s brilliant insights as to Obama’s worldview engendered by his past, one knew that Obama’s absolute contempt for what he saw as America’s unequal distribution of wealth would result in his promoting policies that would necessarily stifle economic growth.   Obama’s America would no longer be one of unbridled economic opportunity; rather, America would be a nation of egalitarian outcomes, regardless of effort; to coin a phrase, to each, according to his needs; from each, according to his means.  

As a means of bringing about this transformation, America could no longer be a free nation.  No where as free, at least, as it was at the time of he assumed his presidency.  Liberties would need to be forsaken to bring about his vision of utopia.  The free market system would need to be reined in, and done so in no small measure.   Obama would have four years, eight at most, to make this happen.  This transformation would need to be done quickly, and in a big way.

Enter Obamacare, America’s first stop on its train ride to Utopia. Against the wishes of 60-70 percent of Americans, and without the vetting of congressional legislators who rammed through the legislation, the United States Federal Government took control of a full one-seventh of the American economy, which had the net effect of driving up the cost of health care for all involved,  taking away freedom of choice, relegating freedom of conscience incompatible with the party line to irrelevancy, while at the same time having the no-doubt intended effect of casting a chilling pall on America’s ability to sustain economic growth and prosperity.  For those who wish to argue regarding this latter point, how better to right the wrongs of the perceived injustice of unequally-distributed wealth than to stifle the engine that creates such wealth?

As I’ve said, Obamacare is but stop one on America’s train ride to Obama’s Dystopia.  Obama’s seeming assault on everything traditional America has held dear for centuries appears to have taken on epidemic proportions.  Remember- Obama only has three and three-quarter years left.  Those who haven’t yet felt the pinch of his “transformations,” most likely have not yet realized that they, too, have been pinched.   Obama’s willing media accomplices can only cover for him for so long before a critical mass of Americans, admittedly as dull as many of them are, will start to put two-and-two together and finally determine that the hopey-changey unicorn jockey they voted for may actually have had something to do with the plight in which they suddenly find themselves.

Then what?

When the critical mass of Americans finally wake up one morning, to find that they have been played as chumps, they are liable to get a bit–shall we say, testy. When this inevitability finally does come home to roost, The TEA party protests that grew out of Rick Santelli’s historic February, 2009 rant will no doubt look like a series of school pep assemblies.   Such civil unrest would certainly be difficult to quell, and will no doubt be yet another bump in the tracks on the way to Obama’s Dystopian dream.

What to do, what do do? You can’t just sick the military after the troublemakers. Well, you could, I suppose, but then you risk pissing off your fellow travelers who have had a history of contempt for men and women in uniform.

What to do??

Since, at least philosophy- and policy-wise, one can take Obama at his word, one may get a clue as to Obama’s plans by again, studying his own non-TelePrompter inspired rhetoric:

“We cannot continue to rely on our military in order to achieve the national security objectives that we’ve set.  We’ve got to have a civilian national security force that’s just as powerful, just as strong, just as well funded.”   -Barack Obama, July, 2008.

Yeah- remember that phrase?  Neither did a lot of other people.  Like the rest of Obama’s sordid past and rhetoric that if brought to the light of day would have rendered his election impossible, The media (true to their sycophantic nature) pretty much glossed over that little tidbit.  A powerful Civilian security force. Remind you of anyone?

So when you see articles like this, or like this, or like this, and then think, aww–Leo–take off that tinfoil hat!  You’re just blowing smoke.  That would never really happen here.  There’s no way.

Just remember.  I didn’t put those words into Barack Obama’s mouth.

He did.

Federal Legislative Criteria

This is a idea I’ve been kicking around for a while. Has anyone here ever asked his or her Congressman or Senators what criteria they rely on when they write a bill, co-sponsor a bill or vote on a bill? If you’ve ever read a House or Senate bill, particularly one of the uber-long and complicated ones like The Affordable Care Act or Dodd-Frank, you’ve probably wondered if there are any criteria at all, other than to make it so long and complicated that no one will or can read it. I’ll bet, without a great deal of effort, we here at B4V can come up with a comprehensive list of criteria that we could forward to Congress in the form of an open letter.

Number one, IMO, would be, what is the goal of the legislation, and is the means to achieve that goal allowed by the Constitution?

Second: do the projected benefits outweigh the projected costs? (ie. can we afford it?)

Third: Has the issue been addressed before, and, if so, what was faulty about previous legislation that prevented it from solving the problem? IOW, is it a new idea, or has it been tried before?

Fourth: will the proposed legislation duplicate any existing program/s (think the dozens of federal jobs and job training programs currently in existence)?

Fifth: is there a sunset provision in the bill in the event that (a) it doesn’t achieve the stated goal, or (b) it does achieve the stated goal?

Well, I think you get the idea. Everyone feel free to chip in. I have a feeling we can come up with a very long list, most of which will come as a complete and utter surprise to our lawmakers.

A Couple Months Too Late, But People are Waking Up…

From Pew via Hot Air:

As Barack Obama begins his second term in office, trust in the federal government remains mired near a historic low, while frustration with government remains high. And for the first time, a majority of the public says that the federal government threatens their personal rights and freedoms.

The latest national survey by the Pew Research Center for the People & the Press, conducted Jan. 9-13 among 1,502 adults, finds that 53% think that the federal government threatens their own personal rights and freedoms while 43% disagree…

Perhaps it took the way Obama has become increasingly arrogant since re-election to get people to understand what is going on?  I don’t know of a re-elected President who went with more of a “my way or the highway” attitude upon being re-elected.  The general run of things is at least some sort of attempt to bridge the partisan divide and extend some sort of olive branch to the defeated…all we’ve got from Obama is demands that GOPers cave in, and, also, accept blame for everything that is going wrong.  Not exactly the way to appeal to us…

For the longer term, this poll encourages me greatly in thinking that our future battles should be fought out over personal liberty – even if it means we have to engage in tactical retreats on some issues.  If our strategy is to restore America then key must be re-energizing the spirit of ’76…that one-time ardent American desire to just live free or die.  It is the basis for reducing the size of government, creating a genuinely free economic market and, of course, allow us in our localities to run our own affairs without let or hindrance from the federal government.  This is not necessarily the time to emphasize what we are against but, instead, to emphasize our commitment to personal liberty…after all, if we believe that freedom is best and that our ideas are true (and I answer “yes” to both) then we must believe that if given a genuinely free and fair debate – impossible under current, tyrannical conditions – people will come over to our side.  That is, people will come to understand that freedom really is the freedom to choose to do the right thing – and that, in the end, wins for us all down the line.

But, meanwhile, we’ve got a government more and more out of control – remember, we have a Raisin Administrative Committee – and ever more determined to curtail our rights.  Unless all of us who believe in freedom unite – and that includes uniting with people who have widely divergent views – then we’re doomed.

Fear Not, Americans: The Raisin Administrative Committee is on the Job!

Thank goodness for Big Government!

Long-time California raisin farmers Marvin and Laura Horne have been forced to experience firsthand the costs that America’s regulatory state imposes on entrepreneurs, especially innovative members of the agriculture industry.

No longer do farmers enjoy the ancient right to sell their produce and enjoy the fruits of their labor.  Indeed, Horne v. U.S. Dept. of Agriculture exemplifies the extent to which all property and business owners are made to suffer a needless, Rube Goldberg-style litigation process to vindicate their constitutional rights.

In this case, the USDA imposed on the Hornes a “marketing order” demanding that they turn over 47% of their crop without compensation.  The order—a much-criticized New Deal relic—forces raisin “handlers” to reserve a certain percentage of their crop “for the account” of the government-backed Raisin Administrative Committee, enabling the government to control the supply and price of raisins on the market.  The RAC then either sells the raisins or simply gives them away to noncompetitive markets—such as federal agencies, charities, and foreign governments—with the proceeds going toward the RAC’s administration costs…

I mean, my goodness, that was a close shave!  Imagine if we lived in a world where raisin growers could grow as many raisins as they wish and sell it for whatever price they want!  Utter chaos would certainly ensue.  There would be an unregulated market out there – and such things have been known to put an eye out when in the hands of irresponsible people – you know, citizens.  But we’re safe from all that – there are plenty of wonderful government regulators in the Raisin Administrative Committee on the job to protect us from ourselves.  And better than that, some of the Horne’s fellow raisin growers – clearly from altruistic reasons; couldn’t possibly be out of a desire to limit competition – are entirely on the government’s side here…protecting us from having to make our own choices!  After all, we know that there are only two valid choices a human being – unsupervised by government – can make:  to have an abortion and to have sex.

All kidding aside, this is what Big Government is all about – and the fact that some of the Horne’s (allegedly) private sector competitors are on the government’s side illustrates what I mean about a Big Government/Big Corporation alliance to suppress the people.  The United States is simply awash in bodies like the RAC and various administrative authorities – essentially unsupervised by anyone; do you want to bet that Obama and the entirety of Congress are completely ignorant of this case? – ruling over people who are doing nothing other than what people do.  In this case, a couple raisin growers are just growing raisins – a wanted and needed crop and if they can grow more and better than other people, then they deserve to prosper…but Uncle Sam (and their competitors) say, “no”…you can’t do better than others.  If you do, then you must surrender what your hard work has produced so that we can make things all fair and square with those who aren’t as successful as you.

This is the battle we need to fight – the fight for a free market, opportunity society.  This is how we can build a 60% majority – by fighting for the real rights of the American people.

UPDATE:  Details on the RAC:

The Raisin Administrative Committee is comprised of 35 members representing producers; 10 members representing handlers of varying sizes; 1 member representing the Raisin Bargaining Association (RBA); and 1 public member. Members serve 2-year terms of office that begin on May 1. Producer and handler members are nominated at meetings and by mail ballots.

Meetings and mail ballots?  Oh, that sounds like it can’t possibly become an old-boys network which works to protect those most juiced in with government.

There is a list of government agencies, but it doesn’t even begin to cover it all; the RAC is not listed…it is part of the FDA and Lord only knows how many similar bodies are covered by the FDA and all other Departments of government.  Someone needs to get us a genuine list of all agencies – and a one paragraph description of what they do.

 

What OWS Got Wrong…and What We Have to Get Right

 

I don’t often say that a video is “must see”, but this one is.  It lays out what is wrong with our financial and government system.  Our task is to educate the American people about the fact that what has happened is that Big Government and Big Corporation have got together and screw everything up.  The OWS people were shouting about the banks…and demanding that government fix it!  Government carefully and diligently assisted the bankers in ruining the economy.

Free markets are the silver bullet to fix what ails us – politically and economically.  We must have a revolution so that we can ensure that anyone who wants to participate in either market can do so without let or hindrance from a corporate or government bureaucrat.  If we want to occupy something, then we should be occupying the Federal Reserve and the Department of the Treasury – that would set us on a path back to rationality.

With a Measure of Disgust…

Oath of Office
“I do solemnly swear (or affirm) that I will support and defend the Constitution of the United States against all enemies, foreign and domestic; that I will bear true faith and allegiance to the same; that I take this obligation freely, without any mental reservation or purpose of evasion; and that I will well and faithfully discharge the duties of the office on which I am about to enter: So help me God.” -Oath of office for Congress.

Just words– without one iota of consideration as to what those words mean.

I’m just getting more and more nauseated every time I think of this whole damned bunch of traitors, liars, opportunists, and career criminals.

I’ve lost every iota of optimism and faith in government.

They are no longer public servants, placed in a position of trust.

They–the lot of them– are self-serving, egotistical leeches who are in it for no one but themselves.

The inmates have taken over the asylum.

God have mercy on our nation, and please, drain the swamp, once and for all.

I’m so disgusted.

Just a Note on the Fiscal Cliff

Given the way Obama is getting insulting about the negotiations and, also, given the increasing level of hateful, eliminationist rhetoric from the left, my feeling is that we just dig our heels in and become increasingly unwilling to go along with the Democrat-led charade.  Agree to nothing.   Pass a bill out of the House keeping tax rates just where they are and cutting $1 trillion from FY2013 spending and then refuse to budge.  Also, refuse to raise the debt limit or pass any further continuing resolutions – pass a budget and then refuse to budge.

Does this carry risk?  Yes, it does – the American people might turn on us and toss us out of the House in 2014.  So be it.  I’m not about to be kicked and spat upon and then still be blamed for all the misery that Obama policies are bringing to the United States.  We can show our responsibility and patriotism by passing out of the House reasonable bills which actually address our spending and debt problems – let Obama and his toadies in the Democrat party and the MSM make of it what they will, and let the people decide next election time what they want.

UPDATE:  I was suffering from a really bad bout of stomach flu starting on the night of the 31st and continuing until just a few hours ago…so, I didn’t need Congress to make me sick to my stomach, for once.  Still, the additional nausea was unhelpful.

We really should have just passed a tax cut/spending cut bill and sent it off to the Senate to make of it what they will.  Look what going along with them got us?  Tax hikes, no real spending cuts and our brand so toxic that Chris Christie (who has killed his 2016 chances, entirely) not only throwing Boehner under the bus, but backing up a few times to run over him, again.  We’d have done better by sticking entirely to our guns.

And that is what we must do from now on – heck with Obama and his Democrats.  They are uninterested in what is best for America.  They just want to win.  Ok, so let them win – let them have it all…or, at least, as much as they can get with zero cooperation from us.  Just keep passing common-sense bills (which will be popular, by the way) and allow Reid and Obama to ignore or mutilate or whatever they want.  Can this eventually result in our loss in 2014?  Sure can – but so can nonsense like the “fix” to the fiscal cliff…how many GOP voters just said “heck with them” last night?  If we are to be defeated, then let us be defeated gloriously…and, who knows?, maybe if we fight for what is right, victory will crown our efforts?