2012 December

September 20, 2014

Starving the Beast

My article as originally published in American Thinker:

With the failure of Boehner’s “Plan B” it’s looking more and more like we’re going over this so-called “fiscal cliff,” although it’s nothing of the sort when compared to what lies ahead in our near future. Because we have a spending problem and not a revenue problem, worthless “solutions” that raise taxes without any real spending cuts will only send us over the looming debt cliff at a slightly different point in time, but over it none the less.

That said, now may be a good time to get your affairs in order?

It’s clear that the burden of higher taxes will ultimately fall upon all taxpayers as there simply aren’t enough “rich” to satisfy the enormous appetite of Obamanomics. Whatever the outcome of current negotiations, it may be time to try a variation of “starve the beast” as a way to force politicians to deal with this out-of-control government spending problem sooner rather than later.

There is a way to do this that would actually help individuals in the process and it could be done without an act of Congress. Critics may point out that this method won’t halt the growth of government as the “beast” will still find other ways to satisfy its appetite, but its level of consumption under President Obama is now so gargantuan that it will only lead to further deterioration of its health and an even earlier death if not altered soon.

To help “starve the beast,” perhaps more small business and middle class taxpayers should heed the advice of progressive judge Learned Hand:

Anyone may arrange his affairs so that his taxes shall be as low as possible; he is not bound to choose that pattern which best pays the treasury. There is not even a patriotic duty to increase one’s taxes. Over and over again the Courts have said that there is nothing sinister in so arranging affairs as to keep taxes as low as possible. Everyone does it, rich and poor alike and all do right, for nobody owes any public duty to pay more than the law demands.

The “rich” already understand this, which is why they move their money into tax shelters or take other tax-reducing measures, just as progressive CEO Eric Schmidt does by sheltering Googles and Googles of dollars in no-tax Bermuda. This is but one reason why higher taxes on the wealthy often result in less revenue to the Treasury. Much of Obama’s campaign was based upon the demonization of Mitt Romney for utilizing this very same strategy which just shows that one must be a liberal to be given a free pass for its usage. And trust me; wealthy liberals use it in order to retain every penny possible despite what they say publically.

But there are also tax-saving options available for small businesses and middle class workers which are often not utilized to their full potential. Opening an IRA retirement account, buying a health insurance policy and donating unused items to charity are just a few examples of ways to help “starve the beast” and offset some of the would-be gains to the Treasury when taxes go up (please retain the advice of a CPA though, as I am not one).

Many small businesses and middle class taxpayers currently miss out on these and other potential tax saving measures because, even though they would ultimately benefit financially from such options, extra money (which may or may not be available) needs to be spent up front to gain these deductions. But if much of this money is now going to be lost to the black hole of government anyway, why not arrange your affairs so as to make sure more of this money stays in your own coffers?

It’s time for all producers to take full advantage of every legal tax-saving measure possible in order to help “starve” this enormous beast. This would have the added societal benefits of individuals being better prepared for the real fiscal cliff as well as being less dependent upon government.

There is talk of politicians confiscating our retirement plans but fortunately — for now — the U.S. government is unable to move quite as quickly as the communist government of China is and “get it done,” as General Electric CEO and Obama Jobs Council Chairman Jeffrey Immelt seems to long for.


Who Needs a Gun?

Pink FordMy article as originally published in American Thinker:      

After I picked up my son from school the other day we started to drive off but had to stop short of one of the crosswalks. I paused to think of the horrible tragedy in Newtown, Connecticut as the large group of children started to cross the road; many were of the same age as those who were brutally murdered by this deranged killer. While we sat idling in front of the “gun free zone” something struck me. In reality I was sitting inside one of the deadliest potential weapons imaginable; more powerful than any small arm.

I was driving a plain white Ford F-150 4×4 truck with a ‘high capacity’ V8 engine. I guess you could call it a ‘sporting’ truck. Fortunately, myself and the other drivers around me were of sound mind and there was no tragic incident on that particular day. But what if someone of unsound mind were to get hold of one of these deadly weapons? From where I was sitting, the only barrier to a disaster two, maybe three times the size of the one in Newtown was my sound mind maintaining control over my right foot. I shudder to think of the carnage that could have quickly been unleashed upon those dozens of innocent lives if my ‘weapon’ had been in the wrong hands.

Is it time to redirect valuable resources and initiate a national debate on this intolerable threat to humanity? Should all of these vehicular ‘weapons’ just be banned outright? Or should only certain types be banned? What if I were to make some cosmetic changes to my plain white ‘sporting’ truck such as a camouflage paint job with black accents? Should it then be reclassified as an “assault” truck? Should it then be banned as such even though it functions exactly the same as the plain white ‘sporting’ truck? Even if I were to add twenty horsepower to its capacity, would it really make a large difference in any outcome? By the same token, would the addition of Obama bumper stickers and a pink paint job make my ‘sporting’ truck any less lethal?

The more I look around the more I realize that short of abolishing the Constitution and living our lives in padded cells, we will never be totally safe from those who are truly committed to perpetrate mass murder. Perhaps if more of the known insane were actually kept in such a cell, we could worry just a little bit less about the welfare of our children?


Reagan’s 25 Year Boom

 Reagan

Mark Levin read from these two excellent articles on his show yesterday.  History shows what really works.  Please take the time to read both:

When President Reagan entered office in 1981, he faced actually much worse economic problems than President Obama faced in 2009. Three worsening recessions starting in 1969 were about to culminate in the worst of all in 1981-1982, with unemployment soaring into double digits at a peak of 10.8%. At the same time America suffered roaring double-digit inflation, with the CPI registering at 11.3% in 1979 and 13.5% in 1980 (25% in two years).

And the result of Reagan’s policies:

These economic policies amounted to the most successful economic experiment in world history. The Reagan recovery started in official records in November 1982, and lasted 92 months without a recession until July 1990, when the tax increases of the 1990 budget deal killed it. This set a new record for the longest peacetime expansion ever, the previous high in peacetime being 58 months.

During this seven-year recovery, the economy grew by almost one-third, the equivalent of adding the entire economy of West Germany, the third-largest in the world at the time, to the U.S. economy. In 1984 alone real economic growth boomed by 6.8%, the highest in 50 years. Nearly 20 million new jobs were created during the recovery, increasing U.S. civilian employment by almost 20%. Unemployment fell to 5.3% by 1989.

There is so much more so read the rest at Forbes:     

Setting the record straight on the Clinton tax increases and the Bush tax cuts:

Despite evidence to the contrary, President Obama and his supporters insist that a tax increase will not impede economic recovery. They claim that the Clinton tax hikes spurred the boom of the 1990s and that the subsequent Bush tax cuts hurt the economy. Members of Congress must reject this faulty notion—and reject the President’s call for burdening Americans with higher taxes and an even slower economy. 

Read the rest at Heritage 

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Fiscal Cliff Causes Hostage Crisis

My article as originally published in American Thinker:

During the campaign I subscribed to the Obama for America email list. I occasionally skim through the messages (but never while eating) to see what the opposition is saying. The email I received (which read more like a ransom note) from my new “friend” Stephanie Cutter the other day was especially nauseating. Here are a few excerpts:

Friend –

I hope you had a lovely holiday and all is well. I’m writing with a quick update on the “fiscal cliff” and how you can get involved.

Right now, President Obama is asking you to think about what $2,000 a year means to you and your family — because Congress needs to hear it.

Thanks for the note, but the so-called “fiscal cliff” that has everyone so paralyzed with fear is really just a politically-constructed illusion designed to scare Americans into handing over more money and power to politicians. It’s the same type of con job that the California electorate just fell for and isn’t a cliff at all but merely a steeper slope toward the real fiscal cliff. The real “fiscal cliff” is our national debt which is projected to grow to a staggering $20 trillion by the end of Obama’s second term if the borrowing and spending continues at the same unsustainable pace of the past four years.

President Obama is holding the middle class hostage and is demanding that the “rich” need to pay up if said middle class ever wants to see their $2,000 again. Republicans (our negotiating team) should respond by asking the middle class what those thousands of extra dollars have done for their families over the last decade and what their lives would be like today if the Bush tax cuts had never been implemented in the first place? I say this because when I look back at the congressional record I see that only ten Democrats voted for the 2001 Bush tax cuts and only seven voted for the 2003 version.

A centerpiece of his platform, and the campaign you built, was that income taxes should not go up on the middle class — that the responsible way to pay down the deficit, while investing in education, job training, research, and science, is to ask the wealthiest Americans to pay a little more.

None of this is a surprise to anyone in Washington. They heard the same arguments we did — they paid attention to the campaign, and then they saw a clear majority of voters deliver a verdict on November 6th.

If President Obama was reelected by a “clear majority” based upon the “centerpiece” of his campaign that “income taxes should not go up on the middle class” then those (working Americans) who trusted Obama and thought they would be released will be in for a bit of a shock. Had the electorate paid closer attention it would have understood that while ObamaCare is not an “income tax,” its implementation will result in higher taxes, higher health care costs, and fewer economic opportunities for this very same middle class Obama claimed to be trying to protect. And did you catch the other deception in the first paragraph? Isn’t paying down the “deficit” (not the debt) just a different way of saying you still plan on overspending?

For more than 19 months, President Obama campaigned on the idea that if we’re going to be successful, every American has to do their part and pay their fair share.

The Administration claims that the “responsible” way to pay down the deficit is to ask the wealthiest Americans (the ones who already pay the most) to “pay a little more,” but the projected revenue from letting the tax cuts expire for the “wealthy” amounts to less than $90 billion a year. This ransom demand won’t make the slightest dent in the deficit let alone the debt cliff and would only satisfy the hostage takers for about eight days. Even if the government were to demand 100% of the $1.7 trillion in wealth held by the wealthiest 400 in the U.S., there would only be enough to pay for a little more than one year of Obama’s average yearly deficits. A new group of hostages would soon be rounded up again.

The question then becomes: why hold the middle class hostage for a tax increase on the “rich” that will not only fail to make a dent in future deficits, but will further damage the economy and bring us even closer to the looming debt cliff?

Oh, I almost forgot, spending “cuts” are to be part of this “balanced approach.” The problem is that in Washington, the phrase “budget cuts” really just translate into a reduction in the rate of spending growth and doesn’t mean real cuts at all. Maybe it should be called less-more budgeting. In other words, the debt cliff will continue to gain in elevation and we will eventually go over it.

Any truly “balanced” bipartisan approach to these hostage negotiations would include actual spending cuts (not less-more budgeting) coupled with increased revenue. And the best way to increase revenue is to grow the economy by cutting tax rates and reducing regulations. You only have to go back to the Kennedy, Reagan, Clinton and Bush tax cuts to see that revenue (what Democrats claim to want and need) increases as a result of the economic growth that is created by such cuts. Couple tax cuts with actual spending cuts (what Republicans never get) and we just might survive this thing. Why was it said that everything was hunky-dory when the federal government consumed around 18% of GDP (still too much) under Clinton but we are now suddenly unable to survive with one penny less than about 26% of GDP being consumed under Obama?

Your story matters and Congress needs to hear it.

Think about what $2,000 a year can do for you, or your family, or someone you know, and submit it here:

http://my.barackobama.com/Share-Your-2k-Story

Your story does matter and Congress should hear your plea for release. Think about the fact that you are being held hostage over a symbolic tax hike on the “rich” that will only further slow down the economy, have no real impact on deficit spending and only increase the size of the real debt cliff. Tell Congress where would you be today if the Democrats had gotten their way more than a decade ago and you didn’t have the benefit of keeping those thousands of extra hard-earned dollars that the Bush tax cuts afforded you?

I wish I could be more optimistic but the media is helping the hostage takers by providing the blindfolds, the Chief Keystone Cop (Boehner) is totally botching negotiations and judging from the election results, millions of middle class voters are clearly suffering from an extreme case of Stockholm syndrome.


New Video From the California Federation of Teachers

From California Federation of Teachers:  Tax The Rich: An Animated Fairy Tale

Nice propaganda piece staring the one and only Ed Asner.

 

 And the rebuttal (hat tip: Red State ):

 

Wonder no more why we have so many low information voters out there.