Friday, February 19, 2010

Obama: All Americans to Live on Debt

Barack Obama has announced that he aims to prohibit natural resource extraction from a large part of the southwest. At the same time, he boasts that after seventy years of deficit spending the January unemployment rate of 9.7% proves that "stimulus" has stopped unemployment.

In a phone interview today, Mr. Obama announced that he aims to illegalize productive jobs and improve the economy through government spending and printing more money. "Jobs need not produce anything of value," Nancy Pelosi says. "Only reactionaries believe that work needs to produce something." Rather, according to Mr. Obama, "if we double the money supply, wealth will be doubled. With twice the number of dollars, we can afford to reduce output. The nation will become richer as we spend and go further into debt."

Tim Kaine, chair of the Democratic National Committee, agrees. "Progressives know that by borrowing, in the long term more money means greater wealth." Kaine said that he supports the Obama plan of mandating indebtedness of all Americans.

To implement the non-productive work policy, Mr. Obama is releasing an executive order. All productive work will be curtailed or eliminated. Future generations of Americans can choose from seven careers:

Mortgage lender
Real estate developer
School teacher
Investment banker
Trial attorney
Government bureaucrat
Drug and guidance counselor

All other forms of work will be eliminated. Americans will be required to borrow an unspecified sum each year. "Through the expansion of borrowing, all will become wealthy," according to Mr. Obama. "Anyone who tries to produce something will be subjected to IRS enforcement," he added.

Ultimate Narcissist: Obama Aims to Raise Your Fuel Prices, Build Monuments to Himself

Fox News reports that Barack Obama intends to turn millions of acres of pristine wild land into a national monument (h/t Glenda McGee). Three potential sites in 11 western states are under consideration. The article notes:

"the mostly public lands include Arizona deserts, California mountains, Montana prairies, New Mexico forests, Washington islands and the Great Basins of Nevada and Colorado -- totaling more than 13 million acres."

The practical effect of this law would be to prevent development, including obtaining coal, oil and natural gas. Fox writes:

"Presidential use of the Antiquities Act is highly controversial because the White House, with the stroke of a pen, can lock up thousands of square miles of federal lands used for timber, ranching, mining and energy development without local input or congressional approval. The Act is generally interpreted to commemorate or protect a specific historical landmark, not prohibit development or deprive local communities of jobs and tax revenues."

Perhaps Mr. Obama plans to build a park full of monuments to himself.

This will not be the first time that Democrats have used laws to break the law. Clinton turned 1.3 million acres in Utah into a national monument in order to forestall all development. Note that the Bush administration lacked the courage to overturn the Clinton designation.

Glenda McGee points out a broader context in which this administrative step would occur. UN Agenda 21 is a broad plan to limit development in rural areas and confine human habitation to cities. Congressman Maurice Hinchey, the Congressman from the 22nd Congressional District in New York, has proposed a park federalization plan that might lead to depopulation of New York's Hudson Valley.

Fox points out that the inhabitants of Nevada and Utah where the park is proposed could stage a political revolt. Harry Reid, the Democratic Senate Majority Leader, comes from Nevada. This could mean the end not only of Reid but also of Democratic control of both houses.

If so, let us hope that the GOP at last grows a pair of avocados. Maybe they can use the park land for this agricultural purpose, even if agriculture has been outlawed.

Thursday, February 18, 2010

Joseph Andrew Stack's Austin Murder/Suicide

The Joseph Andrew Stack tragedy is revealed in his suicide letter. Stack had evidently suffered some kind of breakdown. Unfortunately, no one ushered him into a psychiatrist's office before it was too late. Apparently he killed one other person and injured about 13.

There are a host of ethical questions that surround tax resistance. Unfortunately, Stack cannot be called a tax resister because he had lost his rational mind before he flew his plane into the Austin IRS office.

I do not believe that all violence against the IRS is wrong. In order to be right violence must amount to self defense or defense of property. The IRS is a violent organization that is illegal and engaged in illegitimate theft. However, to be morally right the degree of violence must be appropriate and be targeted against the perpetrators of violence or theft. Indiscriminate violence is wrong, especially because Stack could not know whether the people he was attacking even supported whatever wrongs he felt he had suffered (his statement alludes to but does not make clear the wrong).

Would Kelo of Kelo v. New London have been morally wrong to fly an airplane into the US Supreme Court building? The Supreme Court is obliged to interpret the law, and has failed to do so, facilitating the theft of Kelo's property. It is a violent, illegitimate institution. Kelo is entitled to self defense. But gratuitous violence is still wrong. Four of the justices voted against the decision to permit stealing. Flying a plane into the Supreme Court building would have been likely to injure or kill people who did nothing wrong. So it would have been wrong.

Would Susette Kelo have been right to murder the leadership of the City of New London or the Supreme Court Justices who justified the stealing of her property? I do not think the answer is clear cut. I cannot say she would have been wrong.

In the case of Stack, there were mitigating factors. But he was wrong. At the same time, because we no longer live in a nation governed by law, but by the gratuitous violence of the Internal Revenue Service and the US Supreme Court, I no longer react to someone like Stack the way I did toward Timothy McVeigh.

I wonder if Stack is only the beginning.

63.02% in CBS Poll Give Obama Overall "F"

CBS has a non-scientific report card type poll where you can grade President BO (h/t Contrairimairi). You can fill out President BO's report card here.


The Economy

A:2.23%
B:3.60%
C:5.22%
D:18.92%
F:70.03%

Foreign Policy

A:4.33%
B:3.55%
C:7.90%
D:22.78%
F:61.44%

Health Care

A:2.46%
B:2.71%
C:3.64%
D:9.84%
F:81.36%

Afghanistan

A:3.52%
B:13.24%
C:27.28%
D:24.64%
F:31.32%

Iraq

A:3.91%
B:9.81%
C:26.18%
D:24.49%
F:35.62%

Threat of Terrorism

A:3.48%
B:4.16%
C:7.52%
D:19.54%
F:65.29%

Energy and the Environment

A:3.22%
B:4.60%
C:12.31%
D:21.04%
F:58.83%

Social Issues

A:3.76%
B:4.69%
C:13.28%
D:21.06%
F:57.21%

Bipartisanship

A:3.48%
B:2.80%
C:4.28%
D:8.88%
F:80.56%

Obama's Overall Job as President

A:2.96%
B:3.72%
C:4.22%
D:26.08%
F:63.02%

Will Obama Serve Only One Term?

The Rational Review reports that a Daily News poll found that 52% of Americans feel that Obama should serve only one term. But I suspect that 60% of Republicans are unhappy with McCain and Gingrich. Does this mean a window of opportunity for a third party? Or will Hillary Clinton upset Obama in a primary? Perhaps an insurgent Tea Party candidate within the GOP? Although most Americans say that they don't like the way things are going, will they prefer a GWB redux?

Another Rational Review post criticizes the recent "Conservative Manifesto" for failing to note the disconnect between the GOP's failed leadership and the principles the manifesto advocates. (H/t Chris Johansen). Which way are thinking Americans to turn their lonely eyes, now that Joe DiMaggio is gone?

Henry V, the Tea Party and Glenn Beck





D. Eris of the Poli-tea blog has responded to my claim that the Tea Party ought to work within the two party system. Relying on the skepticism of David Hume, Poli-tea argues against "charismatic authoritarianism", which in turn is based on the claim that power must be consolidated. As well, claims Poli-tea,

"The historical argument...is negated by the very existence of a third party and independent political tradition in the United States..."

David Hume said that skepticism did not prevent him from making merry with his friends. For truly believing radical skepticism otherwise would paralyze him. Hume's skepticism denies the possibility of science. We all know that science works. Nor would Hume say that it couldn't work, rather that it is based on non-rational assumptions. As Aristotle said about ethics:

"(W)e must be content, in speaking about and from such things, to indicate the truth roughly and in outline, and we must be content in speaking about things that hold for the most part and in drawing conclusions of the same sort from such things."

The Tea Party lacks leadership not out of historical necessity or because of a law that authority must be devolved upon a dictator but rather because on a real-world level no leader has stepped forward who has the capacity to lead and who is suitably independent of the GOP's national leadership or the media, both of which ought to be viewed as tainted. Without such a leader, the Tea Party will at most be an influence on the two party system.

That is not a necessary law but a practical assumption based on the past 200 years of American history. It is possible that a spontaneous, anarchic movement could transform the yahoos in the hinterland, but I doubt it. It is a matter for practical deliberation, not logical deduction.

Finding a leader is a supply-and-demand problem. We don't generally demand great leaders, and people with leadership potential are often diverted to other pursuits. Hence, there is a leadership shortage when the demand does appear, and it is not easy to fill.

Why leadership is necessary is not well understood by anyone. The human mind has limited rational capacity. To focus a movement of millions of people requires a focal point that is easily grasped. It requires a symbol. Few Americans know who their state assemblyman is, but most know who the president is because the president is an easily understood human symbol. We are all limited beings. A leader identifies the movement or organization. He or she provides a personality.

The two videos above, of Martin Luther King and Kenneth Branagh as Henry V in Shakespeare's play, exemplify charismatic leadership. The leader must match the movement and be able to articulate a vision that matches the broad concerns that motivate the movement.

The inability of the Tea Party to generate such a leader is likely linked to the important role of television. Television is powerful because it provides a human face to ideas. But the people who operate it lack ideas, so they allow special interests to dominate their content. Many Americans rely on television, and the quick and easy way is to rely on the leadership that television presents. But television fixates on the existing establishment, which is antagonistic to the Tea Party. Moreover, there is no incentive for television to present leaders who represent the Tea Party, whose concerns are directly antagonistic to television's corporate owners.

So where will the Tea Party find its leader?

Necessarily in the rank-and-file of the Tea Party itself. The Tea Party should do as General Savage in the classic war film 12 O'clock High. It should scour the organization for anyone who can lead a mule to water. It should find the Ben Gatelys, the future King Harry's who can present a vision like the famous speech at Agincourt copied above or Martin Luther King in his wonderful "I Have a Dream" speech.

To do so the Tea Party needs its own media. Television and the print media are not enough and cannot be trusted. Without its own media, the personalities necessary are much more difficult to discern. So far, the Tea Party has not begun to take the steps necessary to institutionalize itself.

Glenn Beck, the one television personality who may prove supportive of the Tea Party, needs to focus on introducing his audience to a wide range of potential leaders within the Tea Party movement. He should demand that they be well informed about issues like the Fed and the bailout. A wide range of consistently exposed potential leaders will greatly facilitate the Tea Party's ability to think for itself.

In sum, there is no antagonism between working with the GOP and trying to establish the Tea Party as a separate movement. The two can be done in tandem. It is much harder to establish a separate movement than to influence the existing two party system, which has always been flexible to change.

It is possible that because of the influence of special interests the two party system has been unable to change. It may have become brittle. In that case, a new party may be necessary. But party building should not come at the expense of influencing the two parties. Both strategies should be vigorously tried.

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Sign the Mount Vernon Statement

H/t Contrairimairi:

http://www.themountvernonstatement.com/

The Mount Vernon Statement

Constitutional Conservatism: A Statement for the 21st Century

We recommit ourselves to the ideas of the American Founding. Through the Constitution, the Founders created an enduring framework of limited government based on the rule of law. They sought to secure national independence, provide for economic opportunity, establish true religious liberty and maintain a flourishing society of republican self-government.

These principles define us as a country and inspire us as a people. They are responsible for a prosperous, just nation unlike any other in the world. They are our highest achievements, serving not only as powerful beacons to all who strive for freedom and seek self-government, but as warnings to tyrants and despots everywhere.

Each one of these founding ideas is presently under sustained attack. In recent decades, America’s principles have been undermined and redefined in our culture, our universities and our politics. The selfevident truths of 1776 have been supplanted by the notion that no such truths exist. The federal government today ignores the limits of the Constitution, which is increasingly dismissed as obsolete and irrelevant.

Some insist that America must change, cast off the old and put on the new. But where would this lead — forward or backward, up or down? Isn’t this idea of change an empty promise or even a dangerous deception?

The change we urgently need, a change consistent with the American ideal, is not movement away from but toward our founding principles. At this important time, we need a restatement of Constitutional conservatism grounded in the priceless principle of ordered liberty articulated in the Declaration of Independence and the Constitution.

The conservatism of the Declaration asserts self-evident truths based on the laws of nature and nature’s God. It defends life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness. It traces authority to the consent of the governed. It recognizes man’s self-interest but also his capacity for virtue.

The conservatism of the Constitution limits government’s powers but ensures that government performs its proper job effectively. It refines popular will through the filter of representation. It provides checks and balances through the several branches of government and a federal republic.

A Constitutional conservatism unites all conservatives through the natural fusion provided by American principles. It reminds economic conservatives that morality is essential to limited government, social conservatives that unlimited government is a threat to moral self-government, and national security conservatives that energetic but responsible government is the key to America’s safety and leadership role in the world.

A Constitutional conservatism based on first principles provides the framework for a consistent and meaningful policy agenda.

* It applies the principle of limited government based on the
rule of law to every proposal.
* It honors the central place of individual liberty in American
politics and life.
* It encourages free enterprise, the individual entrepreneur, and
economic reforms grounded in market solutions.
* It supports America’s national interest in advancing freedom
and opposing tyranny in the world and prudently considers what we can and
should do to that end.
* It informs conservatism’s firm defense of family, neighborhood,
community, and faith.

If we are to succeed in the critical political and policy battles ahead, we must be certain of our purpose.

We must begin by retaking and resolutely defending the high ground of America’s founding principles.

February 17, 2010

http://www.themountvernonstatement.com/

Tea Parties Should Work within the GOP

The Poli-tea blog has an interesting post (h/t Chris Johansen). The blog argues that Tea Party activists should avoid working within or infiltrating the GOP:

"Infiltrationist strategy plays right into the hands of the ruling political establishment: filling out the apparatus of the Democratic-Republican Party political machine is literally exactly what the ruling political establishment wants you to do!"

It is unlikely that the Tea Party will ultimately constitute a major party. The reason is its inability to find a national leader. My good friend Phil Orenstein is a likely candidate who seems to have been overlooked. Otherwise, there has been so much confusion that one of the groups claiming to be the Tea Party had Sarah Palin as their keynote speaker.

There are several reasons why a third party will not work. First, Americans have been committed to a two party system almost since the first Congress. Initially, partisanship was considered unseemly, and politicians did not consider it appropriate to volunteer to run--they ought to have been asked, they thought. Washington was concerned about the formation of independent political clubs. Nevertheless, by 1790 two discernible parties had formed, the Democratic Republicans of Jefferson and the Federalists of Hamilton. Although after Jefferson's election in 1800 there was a twenty-something year respite from parties (the "era of good feelings") partisanship reasserted itself when Andrew Jackson took several aggressive stands, especially against the Bank of the United States. In response, Henry Clay formed the Whig Party. The Whig Party was the forerunner of the Republican, but it broke up just prior to the Civil War and was replaced by an all-northern Republican Party that included abolitionists.

If you look at the history of the parties they were all started by charismatic or special leaders: Federalists-Hamilton; Democratic Republicans-Jefferson; Democrats-Jackson; Republicans-Lincoln. Who is the charismatic leader of the Tea Party (besides Phil Orenstein)?

Second, there is a long history of third parties playing a prodding role in American history. In the 1850s The Anti-Masonic Party pushed for some nativist platforms in the Whigs. In the 1890s, the Populist Party pushed for inflationist and "Progressive" platforms among the Democrats. I believe that the 1980 election of Ronald Reagan was in part due to prodding by the Libertarians.

The major parties have been good at integrating insurgent interests. In contrast, insurgents have been generally poor at building independent parties. The Progressive Party, founded by the redoubtable Theodore Roosevelt, spoiled the 1912 election and had an effect in the days of Progressivism and social democracy. But it never gained power. The same for Ross Perot. Perot was an almost-successful leader. But the proof was in the pudding. The failure of his party to generate a continuous organization shows how difficult it is to start a new party. Even a leader of Perot's caliber was unable to do it. I don't think Phil Orenstein can either (although he never said he was forming a third party--he's an active Republican).

In sum, the difference in difficulty of working through the GOP and starting a new party is the difference in difficulty of sending someone to the moon and sending someone to Mars or Venus. So far, I am not convinced that the Tea Party knows which end is up, much less whether it can start an independent party.

Infiltration of the GOP is possible. This is what happened to the Populist movement. When the Democrats ran William Jennings Bryan in 1896 as the inflationist/populist candidate, it had just seen four years of libertarian leadership by Grover Cleveland, a "Bourbon Democrat" from New York. Bryan lost to McKinley, who was a pro-tariff Republican who supported sound money. But within forty years, Franklin D. Roosevelt adopted most of what Bryan had advocated (in 1896 and in two subsequent failed presidential runs). In other words, the Populists transformed the Democrats.

That is a more fertile strategy for the Tea Party than to start a third party. I worked with the Libertarian Party in the 1970s and know that third parties are very difficult without charismatic leadership. And if Orenstein keeps refusing the job of leading the Tea Party, I'm not sure who is going to do it.

Do I Have Egg on My Face?



Do I have egg on my face? Sort of. Half an omelet. Chris Johansen forwarded the above video after my diatribes about Beck over the past couple of days. Glenn Beck is a hero for talking about the 2008 expansion of the monetary base. He is one thousand percent ahead of virtually the entire news media, which has tap danced around the financial system's exploitation of the average American.

But Mr. Beck can do more. For example, he attributes the monetary expansion to the government, and that is only partially true. Ultimately, monetary expansion is attributable to the banking system, not to the government. As Beck himself pointed out elsewhere, the Federal Reserve Bank is privately owned. Hence, the value of the dollars in your bank account are determined by private interests, not by the government and not by an objective standard.

As well, Mr. Beck could be exploring how the monetary system has been used to exploit the poor and working class to the benefit of the wealthy, especially the financial system itself which Americans have permitted to control their money. I had referred Beck to several books that examine this, such as Murray Rothbard's Mystery of Banking.

The subject of money is simple. In the 19th century most Americans, including those with first grade educations, were aware of the issue and it was publicly debated. Today, television and newspaper reporters attribute some kind of mystical aura to it.

It's good to talk about the monetary expansion, but omitting the redistributive effects of pumping up the stock market and of causing real wages to stagnate leaves the story incomplete. How the money supply pumps up the stock market is evident. More money means lower interest rates. Lower rates means higher stock market. Higher stock market means more trading. Nothing complicated. More money means more inflation. More inflation means lower inflation adjusted wages. Nothing complicated.

Fancy talk about a new world order is unnecessary to tell this story. The Whigs advocated central banking going back to Hamilton and before. Hamilton based his ideas on the philosopher David Hume, who was incidentally a mercantilist economist who set forth the basic Keynesian concepts that are in use among Progressives today. "Progressives" are "Progressive" because they rely on 18th century ideas.

So, Mr. Beck, you're doing ok, but you could be doing better. B-. But "A" for courage.

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

What Could Glenn Beck Be Saying about the Fed?

In the 19th century there were ongoing debates about the degree to which government should be involved with money. It was not until the 1930s, more than 150 years after the nation was founded, that government asserted a full monopoly on money by illegalizing the ownership of gold.

By February 1912, about 98 years ago, Senator Bob La Follette, a small business-oriented Progressive and presidential candidate that year, made a speech in which he noted that Wall Street had come to so dominate the media that even recently founded magazines were no longer independent. The next day the New York Times ran an article stating that La Follette had suffered a nervous breakdown, effectively ending his candidacy for president. He continued on as a Senator until the 1920s.

Since then the media has avoided discussion of Wall Street and the Fed. Some, like Glenn Beck, claim ignorance. Others simply kowtow to special interests across the board. Still other media outlets, the majority, do not know what news is, so cannot be expected to discuss a subject like the Fed. Still others are consciously linked to the interests of Wall Street. In any case, Beck is to be commended for being the first to speak on this issue. But is that really a good thing?

Glenda McGee just wrote me this e-mail:

"Glenn Beck and Sarah Palan had me and a few million others THRILLED for many months. The minute the TEA PARTY showed promise in Arizona and Texas they led the movement over the cliff."

Beck needs to do a better job if he is to remain convincing as a voice for advocates of small government. To do so, he could try a few things:

1. Read a few books on money and banking, including Murray Rothbard's What Has Government Done to Our Money and Hans Sennholz's Money and Freedom. He might also read some Hayek and learn about the concept of free market money, an institution that existed here in the US for most of its history.

2. He could be playing an educational role. In the videos I've seen of him he claims ignorance. If he wants to be a leader, he should take the time to learn the issues. It's fine to complain about the Fed's ownership structure, but that doesn't lead to any policy prescription.

3. He needs to learn basic history. Money has been a traditionally central argument in American politics until the past 80 years. The bad guys won and have been controlling the debate ever since.

4. Thus Beck could teach his viewers about: (a) the basic policy options, including competing, free market monetary systems and metallic-backed currencies and (b) the historical process by which centralized monetary control was rejected, re-adopted because it facilitates war (specifically the War of 1812), rejected again by Andrew Jackson, reinstated again in small part by the Republicans in order to finance the Civil War, rejected again during the Gilded Age, rejected by the public in the election of 1896, and then adopted by subterfuge in 1913 and re-enforced through fear tactics in 1932.

Shedding crocodile tears about the Fed's ownership structure is a good way to seem like you oppose something that your boss at Fox really favors.

Let's hope for a better performance from the undoubtedly theatrical but so far unconvincing Mr. Beck.

Monday, February 15, 2010

Is Glenn Beck a Bailout-and-Fed Supporter?

The biggest and most corrupt of big government scams surrounds the banking system, the Federal Reserve Bank, their connection to Wall Street, and the recent bailout. If you read my blog you already know this. The Fed was established to support the banking system; it does this through the legal tender law that the Republicans passed in the 1860s to ensure the viability of greenback inflation. The Fed subsidizes the banking system and Wall Street by keeping interest rates artificially low. This in turn leads to misallocation of resources and transfer of wealth to stock holders, Wall Street and the banking system. The banking system's monopolization of credit is re-enforced through income and other high tax rates that decimate personal saving and eliminate small scale private capital formation, effectively ending widespread entrepreneurship.

It is safe to say that if you favor the Federal Reserve Bank you are a friend of big government, and if you oppose its existence then you are a friend of small government. There is little in between. Without the Fed there might not even be big government because the federal government would be forced to raise tax rates to cover government spending, and there would be tax revolts.

The friends of big government have always favored central banking. This began in the US with Alexander Hamilton and continued on through Henry Clay, Abraham Lincoln, the Progressives (with Woodrow Wilson re-establishing the national bank in 1913), Franklin Roosevelt and Richard M. Nixon. The opponents of central banking were the Anti-Federalists like Sam Adams, Jefferson, Andrew Jackson and Grover Cleveland. Between 1900 and the 1960s the Progressives and their New Deal cousins destroyed the Lockean American freedom movement that Sam Adams and Jefferson had led. The freedom-oriented Democrats of Andrew Jackson's time were replaced by a new version of Whig elitism that claimed to favor the poor: social democracy. But both social democracy, which claimed to favor the poor, and Progressivism, which claimed to favor the rich, had the same effect of subsidizing big business. Both favored Hamilton's elitist philosophy, and both still do.

Since the 1960s there has been a rebirth of the liberty movement. This has come about because of the failure of the big government model. Despite large amounts of media and academic propaganda, thinking people have seen the Progressive model repeatedly fail and have begun to organize themselves. However, the interests that support central banking, namely financial institutions, corporations, real estate interests, and of course, big government, have gained ever greater power. The media and academia are both responsive to these interests and have refused to tolerate questions about the existence of the Fed. Academics who have questioned the Fed, such as Ludwig von Mises, have been refused employment. In von Mises's case he was allowed to teach at NYU but outside parties such as the Foundation for Economic Education paid his salary. No television station has discussed Fed issues (the center of American political debate in the 19th century) until...Glenn Beck.

I do not watch television news, including Beck, nor do I listen to the radio. However, the issue has come up recently because of the Tea Party's move to support national Republicans like Sarah Palin and because of Beck's attacks on Debra Medina. While it seems worse than absurd to me to claim that the US government institigated 9/11, I would rather have a conspiracy theorist who opposes the bailout like Medina than a big government apologist like Rick Perry. Perhaps Beck doesn't see it that way, but then we need to see whether he really takes opposition to the Fed, to the bailout and hence to big government seriously. Why would he focus on this admitted peccadillo of Ms. Medina's?

The 2008 bailout was closely linked to the Fed. Wall Street depends on the Fed in several ways. It obtains enormous amounts of credit which it uses for speculative purposes from banks that the Fed funds and regulates. The stock market increases since the 1940s have been dependent upon Fed stimulus. In a free market, interest covers the cost of capital and the stock market does not rise. In a semi-socialist state like the US, the stock market goes up whenever the Fed reduces interest rates.

Century-long stock market increases are not a free market phenomenon. In a free market, if a firm is able to earn excess profits, causing its stock price to rise, other firms will enter the industry and compete (such as Burger King and Wendy's entering the hamburger market because of McDonald's success). Because of the competition, the stock price will fall. But if the Fed creates money, pushing down interest rates over 100 years, the stock "averages" like the S&P 500 rise.

The collapse of 2008 was the product of Wall Street's incompetence and greed. The same kinds of collapses, incompetence and greed existed in the 19th century, for instance, the failure of Jay Cooke & Co. in the 1870s. The failure of Jay Cooke, the largest investment bank of the period, was followed by a period of rapid innovation and creativity in the economy at large. Nikola Tesla invented A/C electricity in the same decade, and he invented the framework for radio and television in the 1890s. The pace of innovation in the 1870s was much, much greater than today. So the failure of Jay Cooke led to economic progress. There will be no such progress in the face of the Fed's and the Bush-Obama administration's subsidization of Wall Street.

In the video below Glenn Beck states that he favors the bailout. This is in September 2008. In the video below that Glenn Beck decries Fed policy but does not say that the Fed should be abolished.

Mr. Beck cannot have it both ways. Either he is for the Fed or against it. Either he is for the bailout or against it. He is either for big government or against it.

I would be happy if Mr. Beck or his listeners could provide evidence that in fact Mr. Beck is for small government; for the abolition of the Fed; and against the bailout.

At http://www.glennbeck.com/content/articles/article/196/15602/:

"GLENN: We're talking about this bailout package and as I have told you before, I am for the bailout package, however that is getting weaker and weaker as the days go on because it is getting more and more caveats and it is becoming worse and worse"



In this video Beck discusses the Fed, but does not discuss the underlying dynamics of Fed subsidies to Wall Street and the banking system through monetary expansion.



I have stopped listening to television because of the lies. Can one of Beck's listeners explain to me: Is he dancing the two step or does he have something to say about big government?

Tea Party Movement HiJacked By Big Government RINOs on FOX?

I received this e-mail from Glenda McGee of Olivebridge, New York.

>This was sent to the 200,000 umbrella members of the Oklahoma Sooner Tea Party.

A WARNING TO THE TEA PARTY NATION

By Chuck Baldwin
February 12, 2010
NewsWithViews.com

As far as grassroots activism goes, the surge in Tea Parties across America is one of the more encouraging developments to recently take place. It reminds me of the "Conservative Revolution" of 1994, when the GOP reclaimed both the US Senate and House of Representatives. At that time, it had been over 40 years since the Republican Party controlled both the US House and Senate. And, between the two, the House victories were the most significant.

Spurred mostly by the election of Bill Clinton in 1992, a host of young, energetic freshman Republicans marched into Washington, D.C., determined to return a burgeoning and out-of-control federal leviathan to the constitutional precepts of limited government. I'm talking about then-freshman House members such as Helen Chenoweth, Steve Largent, Bob Barr, Joe Scarborough, Sonny Bono, John Shadegg, J.C.
Watts, etc. These young conservatives went to Washington, D.C., determined to reduce the growth and size of the federal government.

The vehicle used to transport these young conservatives from grassroots activism to US House and Senate seats was the highly touted "Contract with America" (CWA), which was orchestrated by House Speaker-to-be, Newt Gingrich. The CWA included a promise to the American people that if they would give the GOP a majority in Congress, they would eliminate up to 5 federal departments--such as the Departments of Energy and Education--and many federal agencies.

Obviously, not only did the GOP-controlled Congress not eliminate a single federal department or agency--or even shrink the size of the federal government at all--it expanded the size and scope of the federal government at every level. And there is one reason for it: Big Government neocons posing as champions of conservatism co-opted and destroyed the Conservative Revolution of 1994.

If one wants to put names to these treasonous wretches (and I do), I'm talking about charlatans such as Newt Gingrich and Trent Lott. Anyone who thinks that Newt Gingrich is a real conservative or that he will do anything to reduce the size and scope of the federal government needs to speak with any of those Republican members of the freshman class of 1994. (Sadly, too, some of the members of that great freshman class went on to become Big Government toadies themselves. Such is the
power of that Putrid Province by the Potomac.)

The Tea Parties of 2010 remind me very much of the Conservative Revolution of 1994. And if the Tea Party Nation is not very careful, they will succumb to the same fate. The signs of a silent takeover of the movement are already appearing.

First of all, the Tea Parties were actually born during the Presidential campaign of Congressman Ron Paul of Texas in 2007 and 2008. For all intents and purposes, the Tea Parties and the Ron Paul Revolution were one and the same. These were (mostly) young people, who were sick and tired of the same old establishment Republican Party. They were tired of establishment Republicans selling out the principles of limited government; they were tired of the US Constitution being ignored and trampled by both Republicans and Democrats; they were tired of an incessant interventionist US foreign policy that keeps sending US forces overseas to advance a burgeoning New World Order (NWO); they were tired of perpetual war; they were
tired of the bank bailouts; they were tired of the Federal Reserve; etc.

I know this because I met--and spoke before--the Tea Party Nation in State after State as I campaigned for Dr. Paul during the Republican primaries back in 2008. And I met them again all over America, as I was running as an Independent candidate for President--with Ron Paul's endorsement, no less. I was with them in scores of meetings (big and small) from Washington, D.C., to Spokane, Washington, and all points in between.

But now many of the Tea Parties are distancing themselves from Dr. Paul and embracing establishment players such as Sarah Palin and Glenn Beck. Even Newt Gingrich is being courted. Watch out, Tea Party Nation: you're in danger of losing your soul! Newt Gingrich is not one of you. He is not your friend. He is an imposter. He will destroy you just like he almost single-handedly destroyed the Conservative Revolution of 1994.

Plus, be careful about Sarah Palin and other establishment Republicans. Palin is currently playing both sides. She is promoting Big Government neocons such as John McCain on the one hand, and sincere conservative-libertarians such as Rand Paul on the other hand.

But if one wants a real barometer of Palin's true colors, look no further than her endorsement of Rick Perry in Texas.

Perry is the quintessential establishment Republican. Perry has been in office for some 9 years, and what has he done to thwart the NWO in Texas? Nothing! Perry is even a Bilderberg Group attendee. What has he done for State sovereignty in Texas? Nothing! In fact, he supports the North American Union and the NAFTA superhighway. What has he done to resist Obama's universal health care proposals? Nothing! What has he done to protect the citizens of Texas against an emerging Police
State? Nothing! What has he done to fight illegal immigration? Nothing!


As a result of both Rick Perry's establishment business-as-usual politics in Texas and the proliferating grassroots Tea Party movement, counterattacking establishment politics, a Tea Partier herself has entered the race for Texas governor. Her name is Debra Medina. As the Tea Party Nation in Texas already knows, Medina is one of you.

Medina is committed to preserving Texas' independence and sovereignty. She is opposed to the Patriot Act. She will secure the Texas border. She will give Texas Vermont-style open carry freedoms for gun owners. She wants to get rid of unconstitutional property taxes in Texas. She will stop the NAFTA superhighway. Medina is the real deal.

So, what did Sarah Palin do? She went to Texas and endorsed Rick Perry! I'm sorry, ladies and gentlemen, playing political games in order to rake in hundreds of thousands of dollars on the speaking and book-signing circuits is not what the Tea Parties are all about.

Tea Parties are supposed to be about putting principle over politics, supporting and defending the US Constitution, supporting limited government and personal liberty, getting rid of the Federal Reserve, abolishing the IRS, ending preemptive and pervasive wars, and putting truth and integrity back into government.

Don't get me wrong; there are things about Sarah Palin that I like. I especially appreciate her pro-life and pro-Second Amendment stands. I also appreciate her signing the Alaska State sovereignty resolution while she was governor. By all indications, she did a good job as Alaska's chief executive. At the national level, however, she favors the Patriot Act--and even wants to expand it. She supported the banker bailouts. And when it comes to foreign policy issues, Palin is just
another neocon. Plus, as with most Republicans at the national level, I think she is clueless about the NWO. And please remember, it was Mr. New World Order himself, Henry Kissinger, who vetted Palin on behalf of McCain.

The Tea Party Nation should expect better!

The Nation also needs to be careful about Glenn Beck. He says many of the right things. He is likeable and charismatic; but he's also dead wrong on a number of issues--issues that are critical to the Tea Party Nation. He's dead wrong when he attempts to disparage and impugn Congressman Ron Paul, saying Dr. Paul is a "crazy, kooky guy." He's dead wrong in supporting the banker bailouts. He's dead wrong when he supports raising taxes (which he has done on several occasions). He was dead wrong when he supported the Patriot Act. He is dead wrong when he viciously attacks the 9/11 victims' families who demand further information about what happened to their loved ones on that fateful day. And he is dead wrong when he mocks people such as Alan Keyes and Joe Farah for demanding that Barack Obama release his birth
certificate--if he indeed has one.

And now I hear that there are some self-professed members of the Tea Party Nation who are actually running for Congressman Paul's US House seat in Texas. If this is not a sign that establishment Republicans are hijacking the Tea Party movement, I don't know what is. Remember, the Tea Party movement began a s a support base for the Ron Paul Revolution back in 2007.

I strongly encourage the Tea Party faithful to read Jane Hamsher's
recent column on this subject.
[ http://tinyurl.com/tea-party-soul ]

I say again, be careful, Tea Party Nation. You are being infiltrated. You are being compromised. You are being neutered. Stick to your principles. Stick with the Constitution. Keep opposing unconstitutional, preemptive wars. Keep calling for the abolition of the Federal Reserve. Keep fighting for less taxes, reduced federal spending, and states' rights. Keep opposing the Patriot Act and the New World Order. Don't abandon Ron Paul. Be wary of people such as Sarah Palin and Glenn Beck. You don't need "big name" celebrities to give you credibility. As Samson's strength depended on keeping his hair uncut, your strength lies in keeping your principles intact. And unless you want to wind up like the Republican freshmen in 1994, avoid
Newt Gingrich like the plague!

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Sunday, February 14, 2010

Queens Village Republican Club Dinner a Triumph

The Queens Village Republican Club's annual Lincoln Day Dinner was fantastic. The QVRC claims to be the oldest Republican Club in the country. It was my first time in attendance at the dinner because I often teach on Sunday afternoons, when the dinner is held each year. I drove the 130 miles to Queens from Woodstock and was happy I did.

The highlights of the dinner were remarkable speeches by Lt. Gov. Betsy McCaughey, whom I was privileged to meet for the first time, and my good friend Candace de Russy. Lt. Gov. McCaughey, besides being brilliant, is utterly charming. I understand that she is a frequent visitor on Fox television. Her claims about the Senate health care bill are startling and are enough to give any American pause about this bill. I still harbor some second thoughts about supporting it. If it passes it could lead to a libertarian revolution, which would make me very happy. Eliminate Washington altogether, I say. But it is wrong to wish the country ill, even if for a greater cause. This is one of those conundrums for philosophers who specialize in particularist ethics. Is it wrong to support a bad that supervenes on circumstances that make it good? I say the answer is yes, despite my initial impulse. Virtue (or what particularists call "resultance") lives. Let us say no to "Obamacare"!

According to Dr. McCaughey, under Obamacare there will be significant reductions in the availability of pain-reducing surgery such as knee operations and hip replacements. In other words, care for baby boomers would be significantly reduced, resulting in much worse quality of life for boomers than has been true for their parents. The Democratic Party seems to have arrived at a new form of exploitation: inter-generational. Exploit 2030 voters to subsidize 1972 voters. Let's pray that Americans have not been so debilitated intellectually that they are able to revise this pattern. As Dr. de Russy suggests, schools have become Orwellian so that Americans have become unable to question the claims of Democratic Party politicians.

Which brings me to Dr. de Russy's talk, which emphasized political correctness and decay in American higher education. As usual, she was right on the mark. The "tenured radicals" who dominate higher education have created a nation of historical ignoramuses who worship the state.

I was delighted to meet Dan Halloran in person for the first time after a couple of years of e-mailing. Dan gave one of the concluding talks of the evening. He is a brilliant speaker, articulate and brave. I am expecting him to make a congressional run after conquering the City Council, and I will be thrilled when he does.

Finally, there is a wonderful rumor that Cortes de Russy and Phil Orenstein, two of my favorite people, are thinking of running for Congress this year. The Massachusetts Miracle seems to be infectious. Let us hope that they along with George Phillips in my 22nd Congressional district, a wonderful candidate as well, all will win.