Left Pushing To Replace Andrew Jackson On $20 Bill With Baby Killer And Genocidal Enviro-Statist

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stanton-elizabeth-cady

 

Hat/Tip to Warner Todd Huston at Publius’ Forum.

If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it. Hell bring the $2 bill back and put someone with female genitalia on that…

There is a new campaign afoot that is tickling the interests of the mainstream media. It is an effort to kick President Andrew Jackson off the $20 bill and replace him with a woman. Sadly at least three of the candidates do not belong on the list. One is a famous hater of men, another can only be termed a mass murderer, and the third was an important supporter of the genocide of African Americans. How is it these three women deserve to be celebrated on the $20 bill is anyone’s guess.

The campaign called Women On The 20, is, the group says on its website, is an effort to “compel historic change by convincing President Obama that NOW is the time to put a woman’s face on our paper currency.”

The group hopes to have the change on the money made by the year 2020, which happens to be the 100th anniversary of the 19th Amendment, the one that gave women the right to vote.

One of the ways that proponents of the new face on the 20 hopes to achieve their goal is to have Americans sign a petition that would “force” Obama to take notice and make a decision on the proposal.

So, Iran is close to getting nukes, ISIS is damn near committing genocide, Putin is building up Russia’s military, as is Red China and these folks think THIS is what our President needs to be focused on??!!

The group has also proffered a list of 15 candidates from which website visitors may chose their top three. The list of candidates, though is in many cases little else but a cavalcade of leftists some of whom celebrated things that should disqualify them as the sort of Americans whom people should respect.

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Here is the full list:

  • Alice Paul (1885-1977): Woman’s suffragette
  • Betty Friedan (1921-2006): Radical feminist
  • Shirley Chisholm (1924-2005): Politician
  • Sojourner Truth (1797-1883): Former slave and abolitionist
  • Rachel Carson (1907-1964): Environmentalist
  • Rosa Parks (1913-2005): Civil rights activist
  • Barbara Jordan (1936-1996): Politician
  • Margaret Sanger (1879-1966): Eugenecist
  • Patsy Mink (1927-2002): Politician
  • Clara Barton (1821-1912): Founder of the American Cross
  • Harriet Tubman (1822-1913): Former slave and abolitionist
  • Frances Perkins (1880-1965): FDR’s Labor Secretary
  • Susan B. Anthony (1820-1906): Abolitionist and women’s sufferage leader
  • Eleanor Roosevelt (1884-1962): First Lady and human rights activist
  • Elizabeth Cady Stanton (1815)-1902): Women’s rights leader

Now, most of these candidates are personages worthy of being included in a list of candidates for famous American women. But three of the candidates are not famous, but are infamous and do not belong on this list of worthies.

Namely, Betty Friedan, Margaret Sanger, and Rachel Carson.

Rachel Carson is famed as the author of the thinly researched and now thoroughly debunked envirowacko book Silent Spring. Carson’s faux “work” led to the banning of the insecticide DDT. Carson claimed it was a carcinogen and an environmentally disastrous. The the facts are that DDT helped kill mosquitos and save the lives of billions who otherwise would have died from malaria. Since its banning tens of millions have kept dying, most of them in underdeveloped nations. Rachel Carson is guilty of mass murder for her lies.

Next up is the unworthy Margaret Sanger. She is famed for coining the term “birth control” and is an icon for lovers of infanticide everywhere. But one of the dirty little secrets that the pro-abortion lobby refuses to accept is the fact that she worked in her chose field of eugenics in order to cleanse America of the black race. Sanger was little else but an advocate of the genocide of blacks in America.Sanger wanted to use abortion and sterilization to cull from the population a list of “undesirables” that mirrors the list the Nazis used to purify Germany. She wanted, for instance, to eliminate the mentally retarded and blacks from the gene pool of the country.Sanger was a disgusting, murder-supporting eugenicist that should be reviled.

Lastly is Betty Friedan, one of the founders of the women’s rights movement, wrote the famed book The Feminine Mystiquein 1963, a book that sparked a massive movement for women’s rights. But ultimately Friedan proved to be merely a man hater, some charge a racist, but most certainly a major liar.

Read the full story here.

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The Famous Mr. Ed

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Ed Schultz - Rich Socialist

A horse is a horse, of course, of course,
And no one can talk to a horse of course
That is, of course, unless the horse is the famous Mr. Ed.
Go right to the source and ask the horse
He’ll give you the answer that you’ll endorse.
He’s always on a steady course.
Talk to Mr. Ed.

Once a horse’s ass, always a horse’s ass.  The Daley Gator elucidates:

Suddenly, After Pimping Class Envy Rhetoric For Years, Ed Schultz Hates Class Envy

Hypocrisy much Ed?

The Angriest Man on TV™ gets paid big bucks for his act as a left-wing populist who hates Republicans like God hates sin. Alas, when it comes to the lowly wage slaves who haul the freight at his network, Ed Schultz sounds like more like Ebenezer Scrooge:

Ed Schultz decided to take a break from his normal act of ranting against Republicans today by raging against some fellow liberals who had the temerity to criticize him and other MSNBC hosts for declining to publicly take the side of union members in a dispute they’re having with the cable channel’s parent company, NBC Universal.

Schultz … lashed out at a report from Salon.com which mentioned him: “I become the target because I’m living good. I become the target because I have a platform … They’re just out to take somebody down who’s got something they don’t have.” …

“I’m not going to lower myself to people who just have got employment envy, income envy, exposure envy, platform envy,” Schultz said, according to a Salon transcription of the show…

Schultz also attacked an internet columnist named David Sirota in a way that could not be construed as anything but “punching down.”

“It’s interesting that you have had class envy on me for years, that you’re never going to be as big as I am. That’s what you’re all about, Sirota.” He reiterated his opinion moments later, calling Sirota a “loser.”

Wow, that’s weird. I actually agree with Ed Schultz: His critics are envious, and David Sirota is certainly a loser. But that message is not in sync with the egalitarian ethos of the Left, and Ed Schultz just exposed himself as a loud, phony, hypocritical plutocrat.

Did I mention Ed Schultz’s reported salary is $4 million a year?

Four Million for that ass hat? Whoever thought acting like a complete buffoon with anger management issues could make you rich? But, when you think about it, many rich Liberals are not that different from Schultz are they? Angry, bitter, foul-mouthed, need I go on?

Funny how Liberals like Schultz change their tune on the “rich” when they are themselves attacked for being rich.

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Original Post: Be Sure You’re Right, Then Go Ahead

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Classic Snarky: I’m a Democrat-You Owe Me

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Note:  Here is a classic CH 2.0 post from the one and only Snarky Basterd.

I’m a democrat. You owe me.

I’m a democrat. I have my own pile of money, but I want yours, too, including the four pennies you have rattling around in the bottom of that peanut butter jar you frugal idiots like to use as a change holder. Give it up! You owe me.

I’m a democrat. I just say I like the public school system. My kids go to private schools so that your kids can go to public schools and learn how to be good little democrats like me. When my kids grow up and become better members of a collectivist society, and your kids grow up confused, my kids will get government jobs and take more money and freedom from your kids. You owe me.

I’m a democrat. I have a job with health insurance, but I think it’s everyone else’s fault when I get sick and have to cut back on my lifestyle so I can pay for health care that should be free, along with cars and houses and big screen TVs. You owe me.

I’m a democrat. There is no god. You can go ahead and get down on your knees and pray to the ceiling for forgiveness and strength and peace, but I’ll be standing right behind you with a tire iron, bashing your skull and stealing your wallet. You owe me.

I’m a democrat. I hate people. I would rather sleep with my dog or a cucumber or a tree than with another person…unless I can just dump them on the curb after we’re through. You just have sex to make more people so you can continue to earn more money while you rape the planet. You owe me.

I’m a democrat. I love taxes. It’s patriotic…for you…to pay them. I don’t pay any, anyway. And if I have to, I’ve figured out loop holes or have offshore accounts to shelter my money, so the government never really gets too much from me anyway. You owe me.

I’m a democrat. It’s not only my right but also my duty to take freedom and representative republicanism from you, little by little, and replace it with government bureaucracy. From each according to his ability, to each according to his need. I’m needy. You owe me.

I’m a democrat. I have a $20 million vacation playground on Martha’s Vineyard and a guarded compound in South Chicago and belong to the richest majority in Washington’s history. But I hate rich people who aren’t democrats and want your property too so I can save endangered swamp rats and build turtle tunnels and fix toilets. You owe me.

I’m a democrat. There are more of you than there are of me. You breathe too much. I’ve told the world outlandish lies that you’re causing global warming, using faulty correlations to get everyone so worried they’re about to let me tax thin air. And you’ll breathe a lot less. You owe me.

I’m a democrat. I’m an elitist. I’m perfect. I’m not like all of you stupid wingnuts out there working your greedy little fingers to the bone trying to make a little money and feed your family and have something to call successful when you retire. You owe me.

I’m a democrat. I live in the city so I can get stupid drunk and piss on the streets when I want and kick your parked car when it gets in my way. It’s too bad that you have all those guns in your humble suburban and country homes. If you didn’t, I’d come and toss you out on your naked ass and make you live in the fetid cities that my government policies screwed up. You owe me.

I’m a democrat. I think you hate homosexuals. I have no idea that you just want to be left alone and live your life the way you see fit and not have your children taught with government money that they should seek alternative lifestyles for the fun of it. I just want you to do what I think you should do with your life. You owe me.

I’m a democrat. I’m so tolerant I can’t tolerate anyone who doesn’t think the way I do. In fact, I hate white people. I hate all people. I hate myself. I hate myself so much that I hate you even more when you are happy. You owe me.

I’m a democrat. I don’t know how to do anything for myself. I need to be told what to do. I don’t think human beings are capable of taking care of themselves. That’s what government is for. You owe me.

I’m a democrat. I don’t think any people should have rights. I think fish and frogs and grass should, however, and I want to represent them in court…and you to pay for it. You owe me.

I’m a democrat. I’m a child. I act like a child and I think like a child and I live like a child and I throw up my hands and have little fits when I don’t get my way. There should be no consequences for anything I do. But there should be consequences for you, even if you’re blameless in what I accuse you of. You owe me.

I’m a democrat. I’m racist but I get others to think that you are racist just because I call you one. It’s a riot to watch you squirm because I know you have a conscience. I do not. You owe me.

I’m a democrat. I was born poor or middle class or rich, but it doesn’t matter. I was born black or white or Asian or Latina, but it still doesn’t matter. In fact, it’s Bush’s fault that I was even allowed to be born at all. You owe me.

I’m a democrat. I want health care at your expense, while I’m young and virulent and child-like. But then I want you to kill me when I start to get old and weak and feeble, so that all of my young and virulent and child-like democrat friends can have health care at your expense.

Then I want to come back to life as a rock, so lots of birds can shit on me. They owe me, too, for being a loony moonbat.

Previously posted at Feed Your ADHD.

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The Premeditated Murder of America’s Economy

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The title of today’s post is my humble attempt at taking “artistic” license with the title of an outstanding article at Monty Pelerin’s WorldEconomies Don’t Die. By quoting extensively from this article, my hope is that you will be encouraged to read the entire essay. I have never seen a more clear explanation of what is happening to our once great nation and why it is happening and who are the actors who are a fault. The author (Monty Pelerin is a pen name) starts with this pronouncement:

This country will die. History will record the cause as due to an event worse than the Great Depression. That diagnosis will be wrong.

Most conservatives know that this fiat debt driven economy will collapse in the not so distant future and it will be catastrophic for all but the most rich. So, why does the author say that the diagnosis will be wrong?

Economies do not die except when they are murdered. Free markets are self-equilibrating, healing themselves unless they are prevented from doing so.

And the, the author goes on to explain how this happens:

The very purpose of government intervention is to produce outcomes that otherwise would not occur. Intervention is always an attempt to overcome the natural equilibrium at which an economy would settle. Its very purpose is to thwart the intentions of individuals who make up the economy. Intervention is intended to alter the natural healing process.

Every so-called “economic” problem can be traced back to prior political intervention(s). Political actions deemed necessary today result from damages inflicted by prior government interventions.

And, the results are predictable:

  • Prices become inflated and distorted by liquidity and regulatory interventions. They no longer reflect true supply and demand.
  • Capital is mis-allocated as a result of false interest rate signals. Eventually this capital is seen as unprofitable and is abandoned.
  • Cheap lending and low lending standards encourage imprudent and eventually unsustainable levels of debt.

These distortions decrease an economy’s efficiency. General economic metrics like GDP eventually grow more slowly as a result, prompting calls for more political intervention. Eventually the distortions and disincentives grow to a point where standards of living and economies stagnate and then retrogress.

So, does the author put all of the blame on the political elites? No. He says that much of the electorate is as corrupt as the political class. He makes his point with a lengthy quote from Angelo M. Codevilla, professor emeritus at Boston University. The lengthy quote is about how the lies of President Richard Nixon were dealt with compared to the lies of Presidents Bill Clinton and President Barack Obama. This one paragraph catches the essence of the professor’s point:

Consider: In 1974 President Richard Nixon lied publicly and officially to cover up his subordinates’ misdeeds. His own party forced him to resign. In 1998 President Bill Clinton lied under oath in an unsuccessful attempt to cover up his own. But his party rallied around him and accused his accusers. In 2013 President Barack Obama lied publicly and officially to secure passage of his most signature legislation. But when the lies became undeniable, his party joined him in maintaining that they had not been lies at all.

When the professor says the “party” rallied around Clinton and Obama, he is not referring to only the party apparatus but also to those who support the party; the electorate.

This apt graphic of a quote from Frederic Bastiat was also taken from the Monty Pelerin essay.
plunder

As much as I enjoyed this Monty Pelerin essay, I humbly suggest that the author left out one of the main culprits to the murder of the American economy; the Federal Reserve and its monetary policies. The Fed’s interventionist monetary policies cause as much or more distortions to the economy than do the politicians. Defenders of the Fed often argue that their monetary policies are necessary to try to counter balance the detrimental fiscal policies perpetrated by the politicians. I don’t buy that argument. The Fed and the Political Class work hand-in-hand. They serve the same masters; the 1/10 of the “one percenters”. One of the principles of a murder investigation is “follow the money”. The same is true in the murder of an economy (although the word money should be replaced by the word wealth). It should be obvious that when the American economy dies, the only beneficiaries will be the 1/10 of the One Percenters. They will end up with all the marbles and then the game can be started over again. This premeditated murder of our economy has been going on for over 100 years.

The Players Play and the Payers Pay

For a further explanation of what I mean by that statement, please read the “About” page here at Asylum Watch.

Well, that’s what I’m thinking. What are your thoughts?

Original Post: Asylum Watch

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14+ Years of Marxist Style Socialism and Things Keep Getting Worse

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On Monday night, the 24th of June, I left a message that we were moving and that Asylum Watch would be back on-line as soon as I could get reconnected to the internet. Using my word processor, I started this post on Saturday morning, the 29th., not knowing; suspecting it was going to be a while before I would be able to connect to the internet again. I will explain why that was the case  and why it is related to the title of this post in a moment.

Nineteen days without access to the internet and I was bouncing off of the walls. Being a news junky, I was feeling lost. There are just so many games of Solitaire and Mine Sweeper one can play before going mad. Also, I am sick and tired of the computer cleaning my clock at novice level chess. I tried to convince myself that the computer wasn´t really playing as a novice. I fear, however, that I still have a ways to go to reach the novice level. I can’t tell you how much I have missed our daily interactions. So, I thought that today, since I am not up to speed on the news, I would tell you a bit about what life is like here after more than fourteen years of Marxist style socialism.

For those who do not know what country I am living in, please understand that I must be a bit cryptic. The country is in South America and its name starts with the letter that comes before “W”.

For nearly fifty years, following the fall of the last dictator here, the country was run by one or the other of the two largest political parties. (There are many political parties here.) Then in 1998 H.C.,The Magnificent, former military coup leader, was given a full pardon, by the then President R.C. and was released from prison. Instead of picking up arms again, the charismatic populist decided to form a new political party and run for president in the 1999 elections. Not one of my coworkers thought he had a chance to win. I told them they were wrong. H.C. , The Magnificent, had a simple campaign message: the oligarchs had been running the country for five decades to the benefit of the richest 20% and it was time for the poorest 80% to elect him to run the country for their benefit. It was an easy sell. H.C., The Magnificent, won by a massive landslide and the rest is history.

Some day someone more talented than I will write the complete story of how the ignorant masses allowed one charismatic man to destroy every institution of this beautiful country in the name of socialism. The poor and undereducated, as well as those who knew how to take advantage of system, adored this man and had he not died of cancer after winning reelection for the fourth time, he would be serving another six-year term that would have given him twenty years in office.

Sadly, only a relative few will read that valuable lesson in man’s foolish search for social justice through government. History buffs will read it and so will political science buffs. Of course, all those here of the loyal opposition will eat it up. But, those who need to read it, those who believe that government can and should solve every problem. will not read it. And so, history will once again repeat itself; sometime, somewhere.

The policy changes the H.C. The Magnificent would implement were predictable. They had been tried so many times by second and third world countries. The results of those policy changes were equally predictable. Let’s look at just two of them today.

Land Reform

The largest cattle ranches and farms were expropriated by the government and in many cases were turned over to collectives (officially formed groups of poor locals) to work the lands for their own benefit; but without ownership of the lands (the State would retain ownership). Prior to H.C. The Magnificent and his land reforms, this country produced 80% of its food consumed. Now it imports 85% of the food consumed.

One example of just how screwed up these socialist can be was demonstrated by the importation of chicken from Brasil. After putting the big chicken producers here out of business (nasty oligarchs), the State said it would import chicken from Brasil. Her is how it works. The States pays the chicken producers in Brasil (Brazilian oligarchs) more than they would have paid the local “oligarchs” and they have to pay the Brazilians in dollars rather than in the local currency. The chickens are bought frozen and either transported by ship or by truck from Manaus. Then to demonstrate to the masses how great socialism is compared to capitalism, the State sells the chickens for less than they would have paid their own oligarchs. In other words, the State heavily subsidizes all that they import.

Recently, my wife made a trip to a lovely small town near the Brazilian border. She told me the town was teeming with Brazilians, who among other things, were there to buy Brazilian chicken for 25% less than they could buy Brazilian chicken in Brasil. A good use of scarce dollars, right?

Currency Controls

Typically in these countries, when the socialist come to power, one of their immediate concerns is that the rich will try to get their capital out of the country and so currency controls is one of the first new policies to be put in place. By currency controls, I mean that they fix the exchange rate and create a huge bureaucracy  to establish rules and controls on who can get hard currency (dollars) and how much they can get. It is a nightmare for people who want or need to travel outside of the country. But, more importantly is that importers of all the things that the people need in their daily lives from food and medicins to appliances and personal hygiene products become scarce because the importers, either do not receive the dollars they need or they have to buy the dollars they need on the black market, which appears like magic over night.

But where do those black market dollars come from? It should be obvious that the majority of those dollars could only come from corrupt government officials (socialism for thy but not for me, who use their position to buy dollars from the government’s central bank at the fixed low rate and then ell them on the black market for three or four or at the moment for five times the official exchange rate. They then use their huge profits to buy more dollars to sell and also to deposit in their offshore accounts. In this manner, we now have a new class of socialist oligarchs. All of this, of course causes prices (inflation) to skyrocket.

Another much smaller source of hard currencies for those in desperate need of it are the few foreigners living here. For example, lets say there is a Frenchman living here that receives his pension, in Euros, which is deposited monthly in bank account in France. And, let’s say this is a small businessman here who imports products from France for resale here. This small business man, who is not getting the hard currency he needs from the government at the low fixed rate will seek out the Frenchman living here and offer to deposit local money in the Frenchman;s local account at the black market rate if the Frenchman will deposit the appropriate amount of Euros in the businessman’s French account. Of course the businessman will have to sell those French products at a price that reflects what he had to pay to import them.

So, now let me explain how this great socialism caused a 19 day delay in my getting reconnected to the internet after my recent move to a different city.

The physical move from a metropolitan city on the coast to a large industrial city eight hours by car inland went without a hitch. The moving van arrived two hours after we did and the unpacking of the truck took about an hour and a half. exhausted from the day we went to bed early and the next morning my wife, knowing full well my dependency on the internet, set out to arrange cable service for our new residence. There is only one private cable service company for this area and the house has existing cable tha needed only to be rehooked up. My wife arrived at the cable company’s office shortly after they opened their doors for business. She was informed that they no longer sold internet service but only cable TV service. They explained that the platform for their internet serve became  saturated more than a year ago. They further explained that they were trying to negotiate a deal with the State’s cable company; but so far without any luck. (The State does not like competition.) So, my dear wife took another taxi to the offices of the State owned cable company and stood in line for four hours to sign up for TV and internet service. When she had finally had filled out and signed the necessary documents, she asked how long before they would come to connect us? The person attending her calmly aid that her name would likely come up in six moths to a year.

My wife refused to be defeated. She knew that when I first got my computer we were living where there was no cable service and that I had bought a small device (a wireless modem) from one of the three cell phone companies that operate in this country. She visited the offices of all three cell phone companies and was told the same thing: they had no wireless modems to sell because they hadn’t been able to get the dollars necessary to import them. They each informed her that if she could find a modem they would be happy to change the SIM card and give her new line and sell her the internet service she was seeking. She arrived home at about five o’clock with the bad news. I was not a happy camper! But again, my wife was not ready to give up. She made calls to our daughter who lives in the country’s capitol city and to one of our sons who lives in the city we just left and put them to work looking for a wireless modem to buy. A week went by. The daughter had no success and the son found one for sale at five times the market value. We told them to keep looking. Another week passed and the son calls to tell us he found one for sale at twice the market price and I told him to buy it. He did and he sent it by courier service the next day. It arrived thre days ago to late to go to cell phone company. So, the day before yesterday my wife takes the modem and heads for the cell phone company. They quickly change the SIM card and sold her more than sufficient pre-paid cards to give me weeks of credit. The person attending her took the modem and plugged into to the company’s computer and attempted to download the company’s homepage so that the modem could be charged on-line with the pre-paid cards. Believe it or not the company’s homepage would not open. After an hour of trying, my wife gave up and came home. The next morning she went back and the result was the same. Me? I’m in a state of rage by this time.

In the afternoon yesterday, my wife’s brother came by. She explained our internet service saga to him. My brother-in-law, who does have internet service in his home offered to take the pre-paid cards and the phone number assigned to our modem’s SIM card and try to download the company’s homepage and charge up my modem. He called at eight o’clock last night saying he had been successful. After my wife and I did a little celebration dance, I plugged-in my modem and I was CONNECTED, at last!

And that is the story of how socialism made my twenty-third move an unpleasant one, to say the least. I have really missed you guys!

This post is far too long, I know. But, I want to make one more observation before I sign off.

After more than fourteen years, people here are beginning to wake up. Support for this socialist regime has fallen from over sixty percent to about fifty percent since H.C. the Magnificent passed away in March. My impression is that things would not be mch different had H.C. not died. Interestingly, it wasn’t years of fifteen to twenty percent inflation that changed the people’s mind. I wasn’t periodic shortages of things like chicken, sugar, milk or even coffee that got the people’s attention, But, fifty percent inflation and shortages of things like toilet paper, sanitary napkins, toothpaste, deodorants, and laundry soap that finally opened their eyes.

We bloggers who write about US politics and economics often ask the question: “When will Americans wake up?” If this country I am living in is an example, things have to get very,  very bad before people will recognize that government is the problem and not the solution.

Well, that’s what I’m thinking. What are your thoughts?

Original Post: Asylum Watch

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What Recovery? Part I: Velocity of Money

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The recession officially ended in 2009. Government reports tell us that the United States has been in recovery for four years now. The vast majority of Americans don’t feel as if they experienced any recovery. Is it because the rate of economic growth has been the slowest in US history? Shouldn’t the average American feel some benefit from an average GDP growth of 2%? Unemployment is the same today as it was in 2009. Why? The Federal Reserve  has used a policy called Quantitative Easing to pump trillions of dollars into the economy over those four years.  At the same time, the Fed has maintained a Zero Interest Rate Policy (ZIRP). Federal Reserve Chairman, Ben Bernanke, has said on numerous occasions that these policies are designed to help the economy grow faster by providing low-interest loans to home buyers and businesses, which would in turn cause businesses to invest and, thereby, create jobs.

Well, job growth is not keeping up with the number of people who have dropped out of the workforce nor with the number young people entering the potential workforce. So, where is all of that QE money. After all, through its QE policy, the Fed has created and put over $3 trillion into a $15 trillion economy. Adding 20% to the economy must be showing up in somebody’s pocket, right?  And, why do most Americans not feel the 2% growth in the economy?

To answers those questions, we need to understand some terms used in analyzing economic data. So, let’s se if we can get a handle on three terms: Gross Domestic Product (GDP), Money Supply, and Velocity of Money. We are going to see that Velocity of Money tells us more about the economy than the GDP does.

Gross Domestic Product (GDP)

The GDP is calculated by summing consumer spending with government spending and business investment spending plus the difference between exports and imports. If exports exceed imports, there is a positive impact on the GDP calculation. The opposite is true if exports are less than imports. Not all economist agree that exports and imports should be part of the GDP calculation, but that the subject of another post some day. We must deal with GDP as it is calculated. To repeat:

GDP = Cons. spending + Gov Spending + Bus Investment Spending + Exports – Imports

Currently, the United States GDP is about $15 trillion. Government spending, under the Obama administration, has been about 25% of GDP. Unfortunately, the governments income has been only about 18% of  GDP, which is why the national debt is now over $16 trillion.

Money Supply

In economics, the money supply or money stock, is the total amount of monetary assets available in an economy at a specific time. In the US the money supply depends on how it is defined. We will look the two most common, M1 and M2, and  a lessor known way of defining the money supply called MZM.

M1 Money Supply: When economist refer to M1, they are talking about  all the notes and coins in circulation plus travelers checks, demand deposits, and other checkable deposits.

M2 Money Supply: The M2 money supply includes M1 plus savings deposits and Time deposits less than $100,000 and money-market deposit accounts for individuals.

MZM Money Supply: The MZM money supply includes M2 plus all money market funds.

Because MZM money supply is the broadest measurement of the money that is easiest to use in economic activity, we will use MZM for our discussion of money velocity. But, first we need an explanation of what money velocity is and why is important to us.

Money Velocity

Joshua Kennon helps understand the velocity of money.

The velocity of money is one of the most important economic concepts you can ever learn.  It isn’t perfect, and it doesn’t fully capture vital influences on the way a nation’s money supply behaves as driven by behavioral economic considerations such as mass panic, fear, overoptimism, et cetra, but it does have very important implications for determining an appropriate taxation policy to generate the optimal amount of governmental revenue from the population.  This is meant to be a very basic, simplified explanation so beginners can grasp the velocity of money, and how it interacts with the so-called Laffer Curve.

What Is the Velocity of Money?

Simply defined, the velocity of money is a measure of the economic activity of a nation.  It looks at how many times a unit of currency ($1 in the case of the United States) flows through the economy and is used by the various members of a society.

All else equal, the faster money travels (the higher the velocity of money) and the more transactions in which it is used, the healthier the economy, the richer the citizens, and the more vibrant the financial system.  The velocity of money tells you how efficient $1 of money supply is at creating economic activity.

In simple terms, the velocity of money of money velocity is equal the GDP of an economy divided by the money supply. And, the more times money circulates through an economy, the higher will be its GDP for the same supply of money. Mr. Kennon gives a very simple example of an economy of only three people where there is no government spending or business investment spending or exports or imports to worry about.  Let’s take a look.

Imagine that a farmer, a grocer, a doctor, and a scientist live in the world’s smallest country.  Between all of them, they have $1,000 in money supply.  Over the course of a month, the following transactions take place:

  • The farmer sells $500 worth of food to the grocer.
  • The grocer marks up the price and sells $700 worth of food, split among the doctor and scientist who are his two customers.
  • The grocer falls and hurts his knee.  He goes to the doctor and pays $200 to the physician.
  • The scientist needs fertilizer for an experiment.  He goes to the farmer and pays him $300.
  • The physician is working on a liquid band-aid product with the scientist.  He pays him $300.

The total value of the transactions in our time period is $2,000.  We have $1,000 in money in our economy, so the velocity of money is 2.

In this little example the GDP was the consumer spending or $2000. The money supply was $1000. When the GDP is divided by the money supple, we see that the velocity of money was 2.0. If we had our three person economy do many more transactions with each other, we could get the money velocity up to 3.0 or even more. They would be enjoying a very rapidly growing economy (GDP).

In this example, the money supply was fixed over the time frame of the analysis. Things get more complicated when the money supply is constantly growing. When banks use fractional reserve accounting, they create credit and ,thereby, the amount money in circulation. Also, when the Federal Reserve uses Quantitative Easing to buy mortgaged back securities or US Bonds with money they don’t have, they are effectively creating money. Since they started QE, they have created over $3 trillion in just the last four years. So, let’s look at how America’s money supply *MZM) has increased over time.

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Graph of MZM Money Stock

We see that the broadest form of easily available  money, MZM, has increased from less than a trillion dollars in 1980 to nearly twelve trillion in early 2013. If you are interested, you can look at the growth of the M1 money supply here and M2 money supply here. The patterns are much the same.

The Federal Reserve in Saint Louis also has a graph of what the velocity the MZM  money supply over time. Here it is.

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Graph of Velocity of MZM Money Stock

We see that except for a spike in the velocity of money in the early 1980?s, the velocity was a fairly constant 2.5 from 1975 to 1995. Since then it has fallen to about 1.4 in January of this year. That, my friends, explains why most Americans do not feel that the economy is getting better. The GDP is growing, but the money supply is growing even faster. This trend started, however, not in the Obama or the Bush presidencies; but in the Clinton Presidency. According to this graph the velocity of money is now much lower than it was in 1960. But, this article has the same graph going back to 1920 and the current velocity of money, at 1.4, is worse than the years of the Great Depression and World War II. Are you beginning to understand just how bad our economy is today?

But, wait a minute.  Something doesn’t jive. The S&P 500 index is back to 1400; regaining its loses from the 2008 financial collapse. Look at what this CNBC article says:

The stock market has gone from wealth destroyer to the nation’s largest manufacturer of new millionaires and billionaires. The market moves are creating a new virtuous cycle of confidence for the wealthy. A new survey from Spectrem Group shows that millionaire confidence in the economy hit the highest level in two years, led by their bullishness on the economy and corporate earnings.

Corporations and the big banks are making big profits and paying management big bonuses. Wall Street investors are doing well, aren’t they. The Feds velocity of money graph doesn;t tell the whole story. The graph is an aggregate for the entire economy and doesn’t show what is going on with different segments of the economy; such as, the part made up by big corporations and banks and big Wall Street investors. That segment of the economy is doing very well. The velocity of money they are seeing is much higher than the aggregate 1.4. And, that of course means that the velocity of money you are experiencing is less than the aggregate 1.4. In fact, most people on Main Street are probably experiencing  a velocity of money of less than 1.0, which explains why the folks on Main Street, you and I, are not experiencing the same recovery as the big boys.

So, do you now understand why the income gap keeps growing at an accelerated rate? The Fed’s efforts to stimulate the economy by printing money Quantitative Easing has done nothing to reverse the trend that started in the Clinton era. WHAT IS GOING ON!

In Part II, we will investigate further why the economy for the middle class appears to be in systemic decline. We will also look at what a pessimistic pundit has to say about structural changes in our economy that mean high unemployment will be the norm, for the foreseeable future. But, in Part III, we will look at what an optimistic pundit has to say about increasing freedom and innovation in the world, which he says will be positive for the United States.

Well, now you know what I’m thinking. What are your thoughts?

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Money For Nothing

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“The common denominator to all of history is that all governments almost universally act irresponsibly to debase their currency.” — Robert T. Lutts

“The abandonment of the gold standard made it possible for the welfare statists to use the banking system as a means to an unlimited expansion of credit.” — Alan Greenspan

Ah, the coin of the Realm … t’was a time when our specie was fashioned of precious metals — silver, gold even — back before America’s elected larcenists decided to mint money from materials with the same intrinsic worth as a Tijuana bus token.  Debasing the currency, of course, is an ancient racket, engaged in by official chiselers from Nero to Nixon. The only thing that ever changes is the names of the thieves.  To wit:

H.R. 6162: Coin Modernization, Oversight, and Continuity Act of 2010

111th Congress 2009- 2010

To provide research and development authority for alternative coinage materials to the Secretary of the Treasury, increase congressional oversight over coin production, and ensure the continuity of certain numismatic items.  Status: Signed by the President

Even such a staunch Keynesian as Keynes himself said, “There is no subtler, no surer means of overturning the existing basis of society than to debauch the currency.” Adulterating our mintage, however, is small potatoes compared to the abuse perpetrated upon the once sound dollar by the charlatans entrusted with its stewardship.  The venerable greenback has lost 96% of its value since the creation of the so-called Federal Reserve system (a consortium of banks which are not federal and have no reserves).  A wise saver would have been better served over the years by hoarding tuna fish.  The modern dollar, stripped of its convertibility, is nothing more than a political promissory note, one which we are ordered by law to accept, despite the fact that the promises of politicians are never worth even the cheap paper on which they’re printed.

Our “legal tender” has been a convenient illusion since 1971, a bit of showy legerdemain, like the mangy rabbit a carnival magician pulls from a previously empty hat.  The primary difference is that when times get tough, you can always eat the rabbit.

Original Post:  Be Sure You’re Right, Then Go Ahead

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The Constitution: It’s Around Here Somewhere

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“Barack Obama, a man long intent on breaking free from the Constitution’s essential constraints, has succeeded in doing so.” — Phil Kerpen

Despite the best efforts of Barack Obama and the Federal Government, our Constitution is not dead yet, but it soon will be unless we can force the bushwhackers in the Executive, Legislative, and Judicial branches to cease using it for target practice.

Our friend Curtice Mang, a contributor at What Would The Founders Think, has ruminated upon the assault on our founding document by the socialistic control freaks presenting themselves as ‘progressives’ and ‘Democrats’, and he offers his conclusions in a tome titled The Constitution: I’m Not Kidding! And Other Tales of Liberal Folly.  A sampling:

  • To suggest, for example, that Article 1 of the Constitution (which created the legislative branches and specifies their powers and duties) is not relevant because James Madison didn’t have an iPod is akin to belittling Mozart’s music for its lack of electric guitars.
  • The political left has a fundamental belief that all money is theirs to spend. There are, however, two exceptions: they won’t spend it on defense and they won’t spend their own.
  • For a brief look at the effect of higher taxes we must turn our attention to that esteemed economist, businessman and preeminent rock guitarist, Keith Richards of the Rolling Stones. In his autobiography, Richards wrote that in the early 1970s the tax rate in Britain for high-income earners was 83 percent and it went up to 98 percent for investments and “unearned” income. The Stones then made a rational business decision: they moved to France.
  • The role of government is to protect all its citizens from everything—except government.
  • During the 2008 presidential campaign, Barack Obama said, “We are the people we have been waiting for.” Although I’m sure it was unintended, it sounds quite similar to Jimmy Buffett’s “We Are the People Our Parents Warned Us About.” Keep that in mind the next time a liberal politician says that the government needs to increase your taxes or you drive past the Robert C. Byrd Memorial Lint Factory.
  • Over the past couple of decades, the government—from George H. W. Bush to Bill Clinton to George W. Bush to both parties in Congress—encouraged home ownership. But, really, they did much more than encourage. They made laws and regulations, like the Community Reinvestment Act (1977), that made it easier than ever to own a home. The CRA was used to help fuel the housing bubble in the first decade of the new century by providing justification for lowing lending standards. No credit, no problem. No job, no problem. No income, no problem. Any convenience store clerk with an associate degree in women’s studies could qualify for a half-million–dollar mortgage. If the two-year degree was in minority studies and you worked part-time in fast food, you could get a $700,000 loan. And, if you never went to college, lived in your parents’ basement, and spoke highly of the 1960s, that got you a million-dollar house, plus your loan officer would meet you for drinks—and he paid the tab!
  • If one were to listen to the political left (not a practice I would recommend on an empty stomach—or even a full stomach, for that matter) the mortgage meltdown was the result of: a) Wall Street greed or b) Greedy Wall Street. That the government encouraged, cajoled, coerced, or even demanded that lenders make bad loans played no role. And Fannie Mae got a free pass. Not to worry, Barney Frank and Chris Dodd (D–Clueless) came to the rescue with the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act (2009). (Ugh! I just swallowed a Life Saver.) Only in Congress could an individual who had a large role in creating the housing crisis get to “reform” the financial sector. When eight members of the Chicago White Sox took bribes from gamblers to throw the 1919 World Series (and became known as the Black Sox), even the baseball owners (not the brightest lot) had the good sense not to put them in charge of “reforming” the integrity of the game.
  • Judging by their performance, the likes of Frank, Dodd, Pelosi, and Obama, et al., have much to be modest about. Yet modesty and humility are not in their DNA. If they had any modesty or humility, they would not tell the banks who to lend to, what interest rates to charge, what socks to wear, where to eat, what to eat, and where to be merry. They have all the answers—just ask them. The problem is they don’t have the correct answers.
  • The environmental left would have preferred that the internal combustion engine never have been invented. They look back fondly on the horse and buggy days when horse dung was piled neck deep along the side of the road and flies were so plentiful they had their own union. Ah, yes, those were the days.
  • Given what the American taxpayer has doled out to GM, I think each American of legal driving age ought to get a free car. Really, we’ve already paid for it.

The Constitution: I’m Not Kidding! And Other Tales of Liberal Folly by Curtice Mang is available through Amazon or Bob Mack’s humble Book Emporium.

Original Post: Be Sure You’re Right, Then Go Ahead

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Leftist Claims “Democracy Died Tonight,” Because They Lost a Democratic Vote

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As we all know, our lefty opponents love to chant, “this is what democracy looks like.”  Of course, what that really means is preventing votes by fleeing, beating up opponents, vandalizing property, intimidating businesses, and the like.  Then, any vote that they actually lose is NOT democracy.   Take a listen to the following, via Brietbart…

So, this guy is quoting some of the new talking points. Let’s assume that his $30,000,000 figure is correct for pro-Walker spending. Then, let’s take a look at the fact that the unions have thrown $60,000,000 into Wisconsin-a rather convenient omission, if you ask me.

So, let’s review the liberal definition of “democracy.”

1. “democracy” means only they can win. Any other result? It’s someone else’s fault.

2. Only they represent the “people,” and “democracy” means that if the people disagree, then they people should be beaten into submission, and forced into compliance.

3. Everyone should be unionized, whether they want it or not, because “democracy” equals force.

4. “democracy” means that votes that they will lose should not occur.

5. “democracy” means that everyone should vote, including the dead-repeatedly.

6. “democracy” means that people should be intimidated into voting the “correct” way, or coerced into supporting the “correct” causes.

And, if you agree with this post, you are an evil person who should be visited by some union thugs to make your mind right. Because, my friends, that is what “democracy” looks like!

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Occupy Wall Street Running out of Other People’s Money?

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I would seem that demanding that governemt steal from others and give to them is expensive business, as Occupy Wall Street is running out of money.  Breitbart has more...

A finance report shows the group that galvanized the nationwide movement against economic inequality six months ago had about $45,000 left in its main account. That’s for the week of March 2. Weekly donations plummeted to about $1,600.

The report on the group’s General Assembly website says at “the current rate of expenditure” the occupiers will be “out of money in THREE WEEKS.”

In all seriousness, I’m sure they’ll get donations, and have enough in their coffers to pay for bail, weed, or whatever else they spend their money on.  I do have to wonder though, how much can the unions afford to pitch in?  They seem to be stretching themselves rather thin as of late.

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War on Santorum Continues: Apparently, Bringing up Satan at a Religious Institution is “bad?”

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Wow, someone in the White House, or perhaps Spooky Dude’s minions, must have said, “get this guy!”  Because, the full fury of the MSM has been turned on Rick Santorum.

Today’s edition of Attack Santorum comes from 2008, when he spoke at Ave Maria University.  The following is from Ben Shapiro at Big Government…

Here’s what the Republican frontrunner said:

Satan has his sights on the United States of America! … Satan is attacking the great institutions of America, using those great vices of pride, vanity, and sensuality as the root to attack all of the strong plants that has so deeply rooted in the American tradition …. This is a spiritual war. And the Father of Lies has his sights on what you would think the Father of Lies would have his sights on: a good, decent, powerful, influential country – the United States of America. If you were Satan, who would you attack in this day and age? He attacks all of us and he attacks all of our institutions.

File this one under WTF. Santorum’s attack on Satan is an ill-advised, horribly misguided attempt to play on his religiosity yet again – and yet again, he has painted himself into the “religious nut” corner. The vast majority of Americans are religious and believe in the evil of Satan, but they also find such talk alienating when its speaker is now a candidate a mainstream political campaign. Santorum may win the anti-Beelzebub vote, but he isn’t likely to influence Americans who are more concerned about the economy and foreign policy.

OK then, let’s take a step back, and put this in perspective.   First off, he wasn’t a candidate for POTUS when he made this speech. Ave Maria University is an Uber-Conservative Catholic University.  To illustrate, here is some background from Wikipedia…

Founder’s goals

In a May 2004 speech, Monaghan expressed his wish to have the new town and university campus be free from pre-marital sex, contraceptives, abortion, pornography and gay rights.[12] This elicited sharply critical statements from the international press, who saw such proposed restrictions as violations of civil liberties.[13] Howard Simon, executive director of the American Civil Liberties Unionbranch in Florida, challenged the legality of the restriction of sales of contraceptives.[14] He said, “This is not just about the sale of contraceptives in the local pharmacy, it is about whether in an incorporated town there will be a fusion of religion and government.”[15] An opinion column in The Wall Street Journal quoted an Ave Maria faculty member who exaggeratedly called it a “CatholicJonestown“.[12] Frances Kissling of Catholics for Choice compared Monaghan’s civic vision to Islamic fundamentalism, and called it “un-American”.[16] In response, Monaghan announced a milder form of civic planning in which the town could mostly grow on its own, except that it would not have sex shops or strip clubs, and store owners would be asked rather than ordered not to sell contraceptives or porn. Contraception and porn would still be banned from the university.[17]

So then, Santorum was speaking as a very Conservative Christian, to other very Conservative Christians, at a very Conservative Christian University.  It’s called context kids!

Secondly, every Evangelical Christian that reads Santorum’s comments are going to respond as follows…

…and so what else is new? 

Then, they’re going to donate money to him, and eagerly await the opportunity to vote for him.

Of course, everyone is concerned that this will drive away moderates-and it might scare off a few.  However, as long as Santorum can keep getting back to the economy, and hammer away at Obama, he has a shot.  That’s going to be a tall order, as anytime he is interviewed, or shown on the MSM, they are going to ignore the economy and go after him on the social issues.

Secondly, this is the primary season, when candidates try to lock up their base.  And, even though this speech predates the campaign by several years, I believe it will clinch it for Christian Conservatives.  The real challenge will be to deal with this when he’s facing Obama.  Let’s face it, if Obama’s people, or the MSM, can’t find more speeches like this, they’ll just make it up anyway.

And for the third point; while people are going to make a big stink about this, it isn’t going to be remembered on election day.  However, if gas prices rise to the levels that they are expected, people WILL notice.  That, and no matter how uber-Christian Santorum sounds, he still isn’t Romney, who has enough money to air-condition Hell (Which is Satan’s home town, don’t you know), but  still can’t put the underfunded Santorum  away.

Related Posts:  Hot Air, Gateway Pundit, Sister Toldja, Lonely Conservative

UPDATE:  Bunkerville has linked the audio of the Satan bashing…

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A Tale of Two Stories: Electronic Medical Records Costs Jobs, Doctors Losing Money

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For our latest rendition of A Tale of Two Stories, we need to look at what is happening in with ObamaCare.  One of it’s requirements is for providers to convert to a electronic medical record, or EMR.  While this, on the surface, would allow for some advantages, like making it easier to get records from distant providers in the event of a medical emergency.  However, with government involved, the law of unintended consequences always rears it’s ugly head.  Big Government has the details…

Last week, layoffs were announced  at the University of Mississippi Medical Center due in part to the 80 million dollars that it will cost to implement a new computer system named EPIC Systems , Obama’s newly mandated electronic medical records system.

Naturally, the system Obama is forcing on an entire nation of medical professionals and hospitals is the same system owned and operated by Judith Faulkner, one of his own big donors . Faulkner is also a big donor to the Democrat Party. Not surprisingly, besides affording her the lucrative, crony capitalist business deal, Obama also put Faulkner in a key role on the Health Information Technology Policy Committee, the committee responsible for implementing the President’s e-records policy. She has become known as Obama’s medical records czar.

One of the things about the system Price told the audience was that the system requires a pathologist to fill in a field of information on what a patient is allergic to in every case the docs deal with. If they do not fill in this field the system will “ding” the doctor on his reimbursement funds. That may not seem so absurd, but Price also noted that the pathologist has to fill out these same fields even if he is just consulting on a case by looking at a slide in a microscope and won’t actually see the patient in person.

It gets worse. Price went on to recount that this system is so dysfunctional that it requires the same fields to be filled out for a corpse at an autopsy.

“This is no lie,” Price says. “The federal government wants the pathologist to determine whether or not a corpse has any allergies. …This is nonsense.”

Because, we must “ding” practitioners for failing to list the allergies of corpses, right?  Or, does Obama one day plan to cover zombies?

So, now that we’ve established that ObamaCare is increasing costs on the EMR front, let’s take a look at the fiscal health of doctors.  CNN recently ran a story about how so many doctors are having financial difficulties.  Newsbusters took a look at that article…

What’s interesting is that my tweeting commenter is right that Obamacare is definitely already influencing the viability of medical practices. But Ms. Parija Kavilanz’s Friday report acts as if the mind-numbingly lengthy legislation and the torrent of regulations which appear destined to end up being huge multiples of that outrageous length don’t exist, and actually blames many docs for their predicaments:

Doctors in America are harboring an embarrassing secret: Many of them are going broke.

This quiet reality, which is spreading nationwide, is claiming a wide range of casualties, including family physicians, cardiologists and oncologists.

Industry watchers say the trend is worrisome. Half of all doctors in the nation operate a private practice. So if a cash crunch forces the death of an independent practice, it robs a community of a vital health care resource.

“A lot of independent practices are starting to see serious financial issues,” said Marc Lion, CEO of Lion & Company CPAs, LLC, which advises independent doctor practices about their finances.

Doctors list shrinking insurance reimbursements, changing regulations, rising business and drug costs among the factors preventing them from keeping their practices afloat. But some experts counter that doctors’ lack of business acumen is also to blame.

The stories of doctors being lousy investors are legion, but to extend that to the idea that all of a sudden a lot of them have become inept at running their own businesses is ridiculous. What’s happening is that the revenues many of them are receiving are plummeting while their workload remains unchanged. Meanwhile, the fixed costs of running a practice can’t be changed on a dime.

Kavilanz does cite other factors, but makes sure to keep the following words which belong in his report out of it: “Obama,” “administration,” “Sebelius” (there are probably others, but that will do). The word “federal” appears once. The factors noted:

 (One doctor) said recent steep 35% to 40% cuts in Medicare reimbursements for key cardiovascular services, such as stress tests and echocardiograms, have taken a substantial toll on revenue.

Gee, I recall that Obamacare cut about $500 billion out of Medicare over 10 years. This sure looks like one related result. Ask yourself how long any business, no matter how well-run, would last if it had to reduce what they can charge for every unit or consulting hour sold by over one-third.

So then, all of a sudden, according to CNN, doctors have lost the ability to manage their practices?  But, as the Newsbusters examination points out, it’s the cuts in reimbursements that have done the damage.  It would seem that the $500,000,000,000 cut to Medicare to fund ObamaCare is already starting to take it’s toll.  Of course, the EMR is also going to add a massive expense.

Back when this started, we said it was Cloward-Piven for the medical sector as a whole.  So far, that theory seems to be coming to pass.  Hopefully, we will be able to stop it before ObamaCare causes the crisis that it was meant to cause, and usher in the brave new world of single payer health care.

 

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Occupy Wall Street: Are the Occupiers Learning that the "Collective" is Oppressive?

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It seems that the Occupy Wall Street effort has a money problem-they are sitting on about $500,000!  Also, this surplus is being controlled by a few, and the rest are not all that happy with what the few are doing with it…

According to the New York Post, OWS has deposited five hundred thousand dollars into an account and is using the money to fund the daily operations in Lower Manhattan. They also have physical assets substantial enough to require significant storage space. CBS News reports that the protesters are filling a large storage space around the corner from the park they occupy.

“They’ve amassed mounds of blankets, pillows, sleeping bags, cans of food, medical and hygienic supplies — even oddities like a box of knitting wool and 20 pairs of swimming goggles (to shield protesters from pepper-spray attacks). Supporters are shipping about 300 boxes a day.”

But wait, it get’s even more hilarious…

Less than a week after that news broke, the total amount in the OWS bank account has reportedly swollen to $500,000 and according to the New York Post, the money, and how it is or isn’t being spent has started causing problems inside Zuccotti Park.

For example- the Comfort Working Group (one of several small sub groups that have sprouted up inside OWS) thinks its daily $150 allocation to purchase shoes, socks and cold weather gear is too little, especially compared to the $2000 a day afforded the Kitchen Group.

A drummer representing the “Pulse Working Group” (they support the seemingly non-stop Drum Circles)  is not happy after his request for $8000 to cover drums damaged by vandals and weather,  was rejected by the General Assembly.

Alrighty then, the alleged 99% is protesting the fact that the 1% controls all the money.  Then, in their very own movement, there is a small faction that…controls the money?  Does that mean that 1% of the 99% percent controls all of Occupy Wall Street’s money?

These useful idiots are already getting a taste of their Communist Paradise, and they are still clueless.  They criticize Capitalism because they say that all the money is concentrated at the top.  They, of course, fail to recognize that any of a number of people may, through work, and imagination, move into the 1% percent, or, if the government would quit killing initiative and growth, the 1% might become a 2, 3, 4, or 5%, or even higher.  Instead, they embrace what they are getting now- a small minority that controls all aspects of everything, and they have no options.

Of course, they’ll never connect the dots, but it is fun to watch.

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Classic Conservative Hideout: Change, Intervention, and Dependency

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The concept of the government “solving” all the problems of the world has crept into our society over time. With every new program, every new entitlement, the public has  gradually become accustomed to the government solving the ills of the world. And what of fact that the government seemed to make all of these problems worse? Well, that’s neglected. After all, the government is taking care of it-I don’t have to worry about it, right?

Starting with the “progressive” movement in the late 19th century and accelerating greatly since the great depression, the government has vastly increased it’s meddling in human affairs.  Ignoring the Constitutional limits on its power, the government has expanded its powers and influence to impact everyone’s life, many times, with negative results.  This begs the question; does it really work?

While going over every government intervention would require writing a book, it might be prudent to to take an in-depth look at one: public education.

Since 1970, per pupil cost of public education, according to investors.com

Far from being an engine of wealth creation, the education system is bleeding the economy to death. The U.S. spends 2.3 times as much per pupil in real, inflation-adjusted dollars as it spent in 1970, but the return on this ballooning investment has been less than nothing.

And what is that return?  First, let’s take a look at some results of public education over time.  Here is the graduation rates in the Us, by state, in 1990.

Next, here are the same figures for 2006

So, all this extra money, and graduation rates continue to drop?

Next, let’s take a look at how much different states spend on education.

Utah spent the least per student ($5,257), followed by Arizona ($6,261), Idaho ($6,283), Mississippi ($6,575) and Oklahoma ($6,613). All 10 of the states with the lowest spending per student were in the West or South.

So, what are the results of this huge disparity?

Recent studies reinforce the disconnect between spending and achievement. For example, the American Legislative Exchange Council’s (ALEC) “Report Card on American Education, a State-by-State Analysis 1976– 2000” concluded that “it is clear after studying the data and results that the policies of the past have failed to meet the educational needs of our country’s children. If we continue to spend more money on the existing educational system in an attempt to buy our way to better student achievement, we will condemn another generation of students to mediocrity.” The ALEC study showed no correlation between conventional measures of educational inputs (such as expenditures per pupil and teacher salaries) and educational outputs (such as scores on standardized tests). Simply stated, increased funding does not translate into improved achievement.

An analysis of per-pupil expenditures on a state-by-state basis is illuminating. For example, in the 1998–99 school year, Utah spent $3,807 per pupil whereas Maryland spent $7,059. There is little evidence to suggest that equalizing resources between the two states would equalize achievement. In the 1998 NAEP, 31 percent of eighth graders in both Utah and Maryland scored at proficient or better in reading, despite the large discrepancy in per-pupil expenditures. Also, based on several standardized tests, the ALEC report rated Iowa (ranked 32d in per-pupil expenditures) as having the top-performing public elementary and secondary schools in the nation, followed by Minnesota (14th in spending) and Wisconsin (9th). At the bottom of the achievement ratings were Mississippi (50th in spending), the District of Columbia (5th), and Louisiana (39th).

Expenditures per student have increased over time, and the distribution of the expenditures has been according to popular emphasis: The level of teacher education has increased, teacher experience has increased, and student-teacher ratios have fallen. But the desired outcome—student achievement—has remained flat.

So two of the sacred cows of education do not stand up to scrutiny.  Namely, class size and expenditures.  Both are mantras of the left, yet neither have any statistical relevance to graduation rate.  In simple terms, they have NO IMPACT AT ALL!  This however, does not dissuade the left from raising them as issues at any time educational funding is discussed.

This is just one example.  There are so many more.  For example, the government has run social (in)security into the ground. It’s a ponzi scheme anyway-one that makes Mr. Madoff look like a rank amateur.

They created the fraud and waste infested Medicare and Medicaid programs.  They’ve had 40 years to stop the (now, hundreds of) billions of dollars in yearly fraud and waste, with no meaningful results.

They can’t pay out on cash for clunkers.  Even as late as this past weekend, the government has only paid approximately 7% of the dealerships. Many have now dropped out of the program.  After all, why accept a program when the program doesn’t deliver?

They were negligent over obvious warnings and caused our current recession with the CRA and by ignoring all of the warning signs that Fannie and Freddie were about to implode.  Instead, at the time, they attacked those releasing the warnings. They now deny their involvement, and instead blame the administration that released multiple warnings over the course of several years.  Ironically, the very warnings they ignored.

Even the Post Office is failing!  Not a good track record, yet the American people continue to accept these programs, and many ask for more.  Based on their record, they’re going to do a great job with health care, right?

As previously stated, as all of these programs are enacted, the people become comfortable with the concept of the government addressing social problems and issues, no matter how badly government performs.  But, there is a second, perhaps more damaging aspect to this; that government assistance creates dependency that allows for influence.  To illustrate this, let’s go back to the education example.  The public school districts obtain most of their funding either locally, or at the state level (note that this varies greatly by state).  However, the federal assistance they receive, as well as the federal funds the states receive, if removed, would cause a “crisis” in the schools.  They have become dependent on these funds to provide the services that they have established.  Any threat to that funding therefore creates a reaction from the benefiting organization.

It is helpful to remember that the first priority of any bureaucracy is self-maitenence.  The stated purpose or task of a bureaucracy is secondary, and is only done to the extent that the primary goal is met.  When the primary goal is threatened, there is an immediate reaction.  Even surviving at a diminished scale is not acceptable.  Protests will be organized, politicians will be lobbied, children & seniors will be exploited, and rent-a-mob will be paid, all in order to maintain the status quo (and influence/power!), even if that status quo is dysfunctional, or even destructive.

In this situation, government is in the position to issue mandates to states, communities, and organizations in order to receive government funding.  Government can use its checkbook as a means to push their agenda on the recipient organization.  If the government is leftist, the mandates will be to the left-if the government is to the right, the converse holds true.  Since the recipient organization is now dependent on the government money to maintain itself and it’s power, it has little choice but to go along with the scheme of the day.

Many organizations, in turn, lobby the government to help craft these mandates, or simply support them with some well-timed contributions and/or PR campaigns.  They then have the opportunity to use their influence over government to push their agenda.  When so many politicians and organizations are left leaning, is it a surprise that they manipulate us into following some leftist scheme that create more problems, or exacerbates existing ones?  The lobbying organizations use their influence over the government to manipulate the government into exerting influence over still others to push an agenda.

To illustrate, let’s again go to the educational arena.  With the government having an increased role in society, other groups benefit from the intervention, prompting them to lobby, donate, and otherwise influence the government’s activities.  For example, increased spending and decreased student to teacher ratios benefit the NEA.  The NEA supports and lobbies for the increased spending and benefits from all of the additional teachers that are hired as a result.  More teachers lead to more union dues, which lead to more money with which to influence the government, which leads to more teacher and union dues…you get the point.  In the end, powerful groups gain more power by influencing the government’s actions, as well as assuring their own funding stream.  Since many of these organizations, and particularly the NEA are leftist, the mandates that the government decrees are increasingly socialist in nature.  Here is evidence of the political nature of the NEA.  It is a long video, so the part of interest is at 16:00.

 

The results for public education are seen every day.  Violence, pregnancy, poor test scores, and increasing drop out rates have all continued, or even increased, with the advent of increased funding.  It actually appears that the social engineering aspect of education is the goal. With the teacher acting as facilitator, the children are guided, mislead, and manipulated to a pre-determined ideological mindset.  Again this is all set from Washington, with the left and the lobbyists manipulating each other, and, in the end, you and I.

Additionally, government and its supporters seek to eliminate all functional or ideological competition.  Taking the lead of most totalitarian regimes in the last century, they seek to eliminate threats to their eminence and power.  Other ideas are poisonous to their plans, so they are banned.  For example, home-schooled children do not meet their leftist ideological goals, and perform at a higher academic level.  Rather than take what works from this system, the left seeks to ban it.  Again, if high scores and knowledge were a concern, they might study the matter.  However, the goal is indoctrination, so home schooling must be ridiculed, restricted, and then banned.    They have not let this goal drop from their list of priorities, and they are using their influence with the state and federal governments in a schemes to gradually restrict, then ban, home schooling.  They can use their influence to write government legislation or regulations to their liking, while the other entities are subjected to the whims of the leftist government, as well as their well-fed supporters.  After all, government assistance comes with strings attached!

So, where does this leave us?  Caught in the middle of lobbyists, government, interest groups, thugs, goons, and mobs.  Each group uses it’s influence over government  to enrich and empower itself.  in turn government uses it’s “endless” checkbook to fund schools ( and other entities), and makes demands in exchange for the funding.  In the end, we all lose.

The solution to this mess is simple; return the federal government to its Constitutional role.  When the government does little, as it should, there is no motivation to influence it.  If the government has no influence over education, why would the NEA pay off some congressmen or senators?  If the federal government stayed out of health care, why would the insurance companies, big pharma, the unions, and any of a number of  leftist groups attempt to influence it?  If the government didn’t try to control and thereby ruin our energy supply, why would big oil try to influence it?  In the end, it is the size of government that creates the problem.  A large and powerful central government invites corruption and creates dependency-cutting it down to size solves both problems.  Power does corrupt, and the more power the government attaches to itself, the more corrupt it becomes.  It matters little if the administration is Democratic or Republican, the size of government, and it’s accompanying corruption, makes victims of us all.

Note: Originally posted on 8-24-09.

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Anti-Semitism Alert: Avoid the Jew Money

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I know that this story is a few days old, but I can’t let it go without taking a look at it.  In case you weren’t watching, here is the background from the Observer, via Hot Air & Redstate.

But in an effort to show that Grimm lacks support among voters in the district, which covers Staten Island and parts of Brooklyn, the McMahon campaign compiled a list of Jewish donors to Grimm and provided it to The Politicker.

The file, labeled “Grimm Jewish Money Q2,” for the second quarter fundraising period, shows a list of over 80 names, a half-dozen of which in fact do hail from Staten Island, and a handful of others that list Brooklyn as home.

“Where is Grimm’s money coming from,” said Jennifer Nelson, McMahon’s campaign spokeman. “There is a lot of Jewish money, a lot of money from people in Florida and Manhattan, retirees.”

McMahon is a Democratic incumbent, and his campaign wanted to stress that his support comes from outside of the district.  That’s fine.  However, why collect and list donations ONLY from Jewish contributors?  Why divide people by group, and then point it out?  Who does that appeal to?

Look, this story might be an aberration if it were not for the other  Anti-Semitic comments coming from the left.  They accuse us of racism and division, yet they are actually the ones doing it.

I have to admit that as we see more and more of this, I am shocked.  I never thought that I would have to create a category for Anti-Semitism, unless I would just be posting about Islamists.  However, more and more of these posts are about our political left.  It brings me back to the question that I’ve been asking a great deal lately, is this new, or simply being unmasked?

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