And the crowd went wild!!!

24 02 2009
The sad part is that crowd was the democrats in congress.

Instead of putting together a package of spending and reforms that would cure the problems that were causing our economic woes, a package that would help both borrower and lender and also those that had lost money through not their own stupidity but the stupidity of others, the democrats in congress grabbed the opportunity to pour tax dollars yet uncollected into pet projects and policies that would or could never stand on there own.

Many experts (if there is really such a thing anymore) will tell you that one of the prime reasons that the republicans got creamed in the last election is because they lost their fiscal way and became big spenders. Once a party dedicated to thrifty ways and small government, they had taken to their fair share of pork barrel spending, and the voting public called them to the carpet for it. It was now the democrats that were pointing out the big budget pork projects and hollering about rising deficits.

Through the first few years of the Bush administration, which was helped along by republican control of the hollowed halls of congress, the economy had soared to record heights. Unemployment was at perhaps its lowest level ever and job growth was sky high. Real wages were up, interest rates were down, and the stock market was setting record after record after record.

Even with the tremendous costs that came with the aftermath of 9/11, the subsequent war(s) on terror AND two major hurricanes, our economy, which by all rights should have been in the tank, soared. Soared due to sound tax policy and the fundamental knowledge that in order to grow jobs you have to grow business, and to help business grow you have to know who those are you have to help – the entrepreneur and the small business man.

Somehow the fact that its those very people (the ones they keep referring to as “the rich”) are the ones that do all the job creation and all the hiring and who are already paying the vast majority of the taxes to make the government and it programs work, seems to be lost on the average democrat in Washington.

Well, after six years of listening to the democrats whine about phantom attacks on our constitution and the war in Iraq, and how Bush was somehow Hitler incarnate and Cheney was evil because he once ran a huge company that employed thousands of Americans and it was somehow bad that that company had gotten government contracts that put and kept thousands of Americans working instead of German and French competitors, the voting public bought the bull and put the democrats in control of congress. And…, here we are, two years later.

Barack Obama is now president and one could say that he inherited the problems he faces. Thing is its with who he really inherited these problems from…

Oh, now I’m not going to sit here and say George W. Bush is blameless in this sorry affair, for he made his share of boo-boo’s. But the underlying cause of most of the problems we now face can easily be traced right back to the democrats and there policies of fiscal irresponsibility.

What goes up will always come down, that’s kind of a given fact that even an elementary school student should know. The system of providing loans for people that couldn’t really afford those loans depended on a market the would never fall. Well, it fell. That policy was put in place by the democrats and supported and even pushed by Obama even before he was in government through his work as a lawyer, fighting to expand the programs that pushed that agenda. Now those people he fought for suffer because of his success.

True, Bush was president when it all came crashing down, so naturally the finger gets pointed in his direction. Truth is, however, Bush was one of the first to point out the coming problems and try to do something about it. In the first days of his first term he warned that this day may well come. Nobody listened. The democrats even scoffed at those warnings.

What they said was this country needed some stimulus. Something to get everything moving again. First Wall Street. It had to be saved from imploding. So, even before Bush left office, a package of monetary ‘viagra’ was popped open. Billions of dollars to cover the economy crapping out.

Where’d that money go? The economy still tanked.

Well, Mr. Obama took over. “Help me, help me!” cried the economy. Like a knight in shining armor he and the democrats came rushing to the rescue.

All of a sudden the democrats in congress took a look around and saw that here they were, like a big kid, standing all alone in the candy store. It was too good to be true. They looked around and said, “Ah shucks, the American people, they don’t really care about pork barrel spending.” And like I said, the crowd went wild.

The package they put together was nothing short of rape. A spending orgy of victor’s grabbing the spoils they’d lusted after so very long. Spending on projects and programs that under more scrutinous times would have never been able to stand on their own two feet. Spending the hard earned tax dollars of our children’s children, if not our children’s children’s children.

Now they even want to send 900 million of our hard earned tax dollars to help rebuild Gaza, that only got destroyed because of the actions of Hamas, who still won’t renounce the actions that lead to the destruction. A Gaza that may well be destroyed again if Hamas won’t come to reason.

Why should one red cent of our money go to Gaza?

Now, don’t think for a minute that I don’t know that Israel has made mistakes along the way. Nobody’s perfect and neither is Israel, but what they’ve done has come as a reaction to years of threat, harassment, and terrorism. Hindsight is 20/20, but what happened in Gaza any fool should have known was coming. Let those people that supported Hamas fund the rebuilding. They are as much to blame as anybody.

The democrats had a golden opportunity to create a real package of new policies and provide some real relief to the multitudes that suffered under the economies downturn. And yes, government was proper in coming to the rescue of some of these brokers and banks because it was government policy that created this monster in the first place. But they didn’t. That crowd…, well, they just went wild. And once again, as is the usual case, those people that they claim to care about the most will be the ones to suffer the most.

-Al

 

 

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Your hands too, Bill.

17 02 2009
Me? I’m the first to tell you that I think John Q. Public knows far far better than anyone in Washington what’s good for John Q. Public. America hasn’t risen so far and so strong from relying on Government programs to direct the needs and desires of American business and industry.
One of the most basic factors in the rise of this country was it entrepreneurial spirit and the willingness to work hard to make dreams become reality. We set our sights on achievement and discovery and put our own money and backs into the prospect of creating products and methods and invention. And when challenges arose one could speak a desire and stand back and watch as the mighty force of will that is America arise and meet whatever challenge that faced us. Ah, free enterprise!

War was no match for America. Our industrial base and leadership supplied material and manpower to supply an overwhelming Army to defeat foes far better prepared in the beginning than us. In just a few months we recovered from grave attack and soon went on the offence. Fighting enemies in both Europe, Africa, and Asia. Crushing those enemies.

Sure, we had help to defeat Germany, Italy, and Japan. But who sent the huge amounts of supplies to our allies necessary to win the fight? We did.

And here at home we achieved the highest possible standard of living, creating and building and achieving feats near impossible. Why? Because our government knew well that if its gave support to the people and was a facilitator great things could and would be done. America soared, because Americans were free to reach for the stars and go for the gold. There seemed that there was nothing we, through free enterprise, couldn’t accomplish.

Even in times of setbacks, a cold war, Sputnik…, America sucked in its gut and got down to business and overcame. John F. Kennedy issued a challenge and American industry rose to meet it. In ten short years hundreds if not thousands of American companies joined forced to innovate and create and send American men all the way to the Moon. And if we can accomplish that, what can’t we do?

But, somewhere somehow someone got the idea that government needed to step in and see that things we prim and proper. And probably with good reason, humans are humans after all. We are a great, yet imperfect country. Many here didn’t get to share in that ’American Dream’ that most were living. So, rightly regulations and policies were put into place to smooth the rocky road which freedom truly is. That was only proper.

Regulation requires bureaucracy. Bureaucracy breeds regulation. Regulation, by its very nature, limits.

America is a Republic, and a Republic is built upon Laws. It’s a natural, yet ironic, side effect of a nation built upon laws to also gather itself an abundance of regulations to go with those laws. Ironic, because a nation built on laws shouldn’t require much intervention, and regulations by there very action is intervention.

Over the course of the last, say fifty some odd years, we’ve see a huge surge in bureaucracy and the ensuing regulations that go with it. Naturally these regulations have a limiting effect on free enterprise. They change the values and the return on effort.

Something else that budded and bloomed over that last fifty some odd years was what I like to call the social sciences. Up rose the “sociologist”. Good at heart and good of intention these people were a natural fit with bureaucrats. Placing sociologists into positions within a bureaucracy is a whole lot like placing foxes into henhouses. Foxes do need food, and chickens need their population kept in check… and that’s about all the good that typically can be said for the arraignment. The results elsewhere are often going to be much the same.

One should note that creating bureaucracies during this time period was a rather easy feat. We’d just come off of WWII and Korea, and Armies are nothing if not huge bureaucracies, so there were plenty of experts in the field readily available.

What kept it all in check though was Russia. More specifically the U.S.S.R. Yep, our dislike of communism and socialist in general kept our own government from getting too big and too powerful, and out of much of the business of Americans going about the business of America. Regulations were kept more in the line of general rules to play by, and regulators more umpires of fairness. Business thrived.

However, more and more, public policy found its way into business policy, and again with noble intentions and very good reasons. The field of play wasn’t level for all Americans and government sought to even up the field of play. Many regulations were good things. Some weren’t. That’s a whole different subject than what this is about however. I’ll save that for another time.

Government being government and bureaucracies being bureaucracies, the art of legislating policy and manipulating business to suit different goals and desires became the forte of Washington. Especially Washington on the democrat side of the aisle.

Policies and programs were put in place that touched almost every product made in the USA. It was as if Washington wanted to leave no stone unturned in having its hand in the business of America. Yes, both sides of the aisle had there hand in it. Yet one side was far more willing to limit, change, and just generally interfere with the American free enterprise system. Social issues and special interests took smooth over the democrat party. It was no longer about “Of the people, By the People, For the People” but “Government over the People, For the People.” Big Brother knew best. (That’s socialism)

Communism fell pretty much twenty years ago now for the most part. Many, it seems, don’t remember much about our fight against communism and socialism, putting it into the context of fighting the Vietnamese in Vietnam. They remember something about the Slovakia’s and such, and China… but China’s kinda our friend aren’t they. Cuba’s communist, but isn’t that all about Castro? Dictators… that isn’t socialism is it? Those are just nut jobs, right? So… many don’t have a clue as to what socialism is and what it means. Some of it sounds so good, too. But… it doesn’t work.

People want to hear how good they’ll have it and what all great things are planned for them and all. And the drumbeat of those big old rich folks not paying there fair share supplies the rhythm to the feely good message of upping taxes on’em to pay for it all. Thing is, they are already paying for just about all of it now… Only truth is, they don’t pay, you do. They pass those taxes right on down to you. (You can call them PRICE INCREASES)

The problems our country faces right now stems from governments intervention in the market place almost exclusively. You can blame greedy Wall Streeter’s all you want, but the reason they had the ability to do what they did was because government created the means. They just took what the government handed them and ran with it.

You can blame the Detroit Automakers for Detroit’s problems too, but they never forced the first person to buy a Hummer or four door 4WD monster truck. But they were told just exactly how to make them in hundreds of regulated ways. And government shouldn’t mandate gas mileage, consumer demand should. Government should be honest with fuel supplies and get out of the way of production and then the market will control and create the rest. Be that new types of fuel, or sizes of vehicles.

Business has always thrived when it sought its way via the marketplace. Government manipulation of the marketplace and regulation of products and supply hinders development of desirable products and innovations. It stifles the free enterprise system and weakens us as a country. We’re seeing that baby birthed right now.

Government set up through manipulation and regulation a program of lending that was doomed from the start. Bill Clinton can whine and cry all he wants but his hand was very much in the problems we face today. Barack Obama too, for he was right there on the front lines fighting to have this very system of failure put into place. In fact, the roots of our current economic catastrophe are held in the policies of democrats stretching back to at least the sixties. Many democrats now stutter and stumble and protest, but this is their baby.

Today, through some twist of fate or irony, the very group that got us into this mess is charged with getting us out of it. Sadly however, they want to fix the mess created by misguided and socialist policies by creating even more misguided and socialist programs. Problems brought on by a big cumbersome bureaucratic government sought to be cured by even bigger and more cumbersome bureaucracy government? Astonishingly, that‘s their plan. They are adding huge debt to the backs of the workers of America, already burdened by an intrusive government bent on control and regulations that limits the very enterprise that keeps it afloat.

Who out there among us thinks government can build a better car? (Quick, name that Russian dream ride.) How many other industries will they get their hands in? How many banks? Retirement plans? Energy companies? Healthcare? And under what Constitutional authority does it get that ability?

All government should be about in the first place is leveling the playing field and smoothing the way. Not giving directions and placing limits and such. If Congress really wanted to fix what’s wrong with our country right now it could do so very easily. It could just get out of the way. American entrepreneurship and free enterprise can do anything, that I truly believe. It got us to the moon didn’t it?

-Al

 
 

 





Does anybody really know what time it is?

11 02 2009

This is a repeat of a part of a post from a while back. I’ve cut this part out of it and present it again, for I think it can stand alone.

There is a song that has lyrics that go like this – “Does anybody really know what time it is? Does anybody really care?” Well, with life there is a timeline, or stages of life. You’re born, you grow, you learn, you work, you live love and die… and so it goes for most everybody. With a country it’s much the same. There are stages in the life of a county. But there are differences between human life and a country or a society. You can change the course of events and reset the stages in the life of society and the purpose and values of a country. Think about each of the following –

The stages of life in a society

1. Bondage – From bondage Spiritual Faith and Truth is found and grows.

2. Spiritual Faith & Knowledge of Truth – From having faith God gives insights from which truth and knowledge derives. From this Courage springs forth.

3. Courage – From courage and faith brings strength to seek and obtain Freedom and Liberty.

4. Liberty – Liberty allows man to work for his own good, which allows man to obtain the abundance and bounty of creation.

5. Abundance – The liberty to create from which abundance comes also allows the ability to become complacent while enjoying the fruits of ones labors.

6. Complacency – Complacency breeds greediness, selfishness, and apathy. Apathy can manifest itself in laziness and leads to jealousy. It also causes forgetfulness of from where abundance is derived.

7. Apathy – Laziness and jealousy breeds a dependency on the work of others to satisfy selfish desires. Causes the loss of respect for others and for truths, large and small, both spiritual and human. Loss of faith. Beliefs become matters of convenience. The ends justify the means. The end result of all things becomes what one receives, not creates. The lack of the ability to create or do for ones own self, coupled with desire, results in dependency for survival.

8. Dependency – Dependency on others to provide gives way to bondage to others for that providence.

9. Bondage – Loss of Freedom and Liberty.

-Based on words attributed to Benjamin Disraeli, 19th century British Prime Minister

What time is it in the life cycle of our country? What can we do about it? Or, do we even care?

 

-Al





Kids nowdays…

5 02 2009

Somebody somewhere, badly needs to point out to Mr. and Ms. Average American the blatant stupidity of allowing young girls to dress so provocative as seemingly is the fashion of the day. One only needs to take a step back and open their eyes to see the problems it has caused. The question really is – How did we get there?

Let me explain that I’m the father of a young woman that is twenty three years old. I lived not so very long ago through perhaps the most scary few years a father can have: a baby girl, growing thru adolescence and those terrible teens, to womanhood. From what I’ve seen I believe I’m well qualified to put my two cents into the issue.

All this started years ago, to be blunt and not pussyfoot around the matter, when we as a society reevaluated the role of Churches and Schools in “the American way of life”. Someone came up with the brilliant idea that it wasn’t good to discipline a child. “Give them a ‘Time Out’, they said. Teachers shouldn’t, and couldn’t, spank a student. We took the roll of molding an honest, respectful, person away from the schools, but we forgot to give it back to the parents. And we as parents didn’t quite pick up on the fact that NOBODY was teaching our kids right from wrong anymore. Also, along with discipline, we took a couple of bedrock symbols of ‘Values’ out of our schools. No longer was prayer allowed. The Ten Commandments could no longer be posted. We were told that they interfered with a child’s personal choice and own beliefs.

This was the beginning of a new era of enlightenment they told us, but what did the beginning bring us? I remember, oh, its been a good many years back now, watching a high school Homecoming Parade in my home town. As the high school band played and marched along we all smiled and waved and rejoiced in the spirit of the moment – until the Band all of a sudden stopped marching and the drum line broke out into a different beat – and the rest of the Band began, and I’m not joking, literally dry humping each other. I mean got down on the ground and on top of each other and, I’m serious, simulated having sex. I thought my father was going to keel right there. “It was just a dance.” we were later told. It was all planned and choreographed by the band director. It was a new age. A new era. The protests didn’t go far.

Backing up a bit, remember the sixties? The youth of America. The world! Free love, if it feels good do it. Hippies (I thought I was one). Remember Clockwork Orange? Midnight Cowboy? Jimi Hendrix. The Beatles. All You need Is Love, DA dada da da. Remember when LSD was a mind expanding experience. And everyone needed a Guru. Are you experienced? Have you ever been experienced? Remember: The Pill. All those people are parents and grandparents now.

Now as we get older we see our children as miniature representatives of ourselves. And by God, if we weren’t popular in school our kids will be. If we weren’t pretty, or sexy, our kids will be. Look at my kid, that’s MY reflection your looking at. I’M COOL! I’M SEXY! It’s ME. I’m living again thru my child!!! We’re interjecting our grown up beliefs and ideas onto our little kids. We want to assure they become who we think we are. My boy is going to be macho, because I’m macho. So he gets a buzz cut and if we smell cigarette smoke on his clothes, or alcohol on his breath, well he’s my boy and he’s more mature for his age, and after all he has to start making his own decisions now that he’s growing up… HE’S TWELVE!!! The daughter? Well she’s going to be Miss Popularity! She’s cute. No, she’s beautiful! All the boy’s are going to be chasing her. After all, look at that cute figure of hers. And those long legs and skinny waist. She’s even getting a jump start, putting tissue in her training bra. Isn’t that cute. Wouldn’t I have been something if I’d had titties at her age. She’s the hottest ten year old in the whole darn school… Momma smiles.

My daughter was a cheer leader. It’s as much a sport as basketball or track or any other sport offered a girl at our local school. And it’s a whole lot more competitive. Tryouts can literally destroy a kid. Also their parents, mothers especially. My daughter didn’t make cheerleader her first try and I’m quite proud to say she was only broke up for a couple of days about it. One of her classmates didn’t make it and her parents pulled her out of the school. (She didn’t make it the next year at the new school either.) But that’s not my point about cheerleaders. Have you heard some of the cheers they do? And seen some of the dances!? And speaking of dances, several years ago the school Dance Team did a routine to the song ‘Poppa Don’t Preach’. MY jaw dropped as I watched those 13 thru 17 or 18 year old girls dance to the lyrics “I’m keeping my Baby”. I don’t know which was worse, that, or when they danced to “Gangsters Paradise”.

If you ever get the chance, take a trip to a store that sells computer and video games. See what our kids are entertaining themselves with nowadays. We worry about Sex and Violence on television, but buy video games for our kids that feature stealing cars and shooting cops. They are the most popular thing going right now.

Now we find ourselves wondering why teachers are having sex with students. Why date rape seems so prevalent. Why drugs and alcohol are rampant in our schools. Drugs, Alcohol, and Guns. And we are worried. We pass laws. And we react and don’t tolerate! No knives in school. Mandatory expulsion for fighting. Can’t wear things with writing on them because it my be provocative. Sexually, or racially, or socially. Sex between students and teachers has been going on for years. There are even songs about it. About being “Hot for the teacher” But do we search for a root cause? No. Why? Because it may step on somebody’s toes. So we go on, like a chess game, trying to block the attack and save our king. Hoping to avoid checkmate. Meanwhile, the answer continues to stare us in the face. Sadly, the answer isn’t ‘Politically Correct’.

No morality. For to interject morality you have to have a baseline of what is right, or acceptable, and what is wrong, or unacceptable. And right and wrong who gets to decide? Once upon a time it was the church. Well that’s no longer acceptable to our society. Or it was the values of the teachers, but they no longer have a right to interject their views on our kids. So, its become the views of the majority. That is, as long as those views don’t step on my rights. So, it all falls to the lowest common denominator. If it doesn’t hurt anyone and it feels good, do it. After all, isn’t abortion just another form of birth control? Isn’t homosexuality just a lifestyle choice? And what goes on behind closed doors at my house isn’t any of your concern. If I want my ten year old to look sexy, who are you to say otherwise? If I think its alright for her to date at twelve, who are you to say its not? And if I turn my kids loose at the mall on the weekends unchaperoned its nobody’s business but mine. It’s none of your business if my14 year old looks 18 and is attracting 18, or 20, or 25 year old guys. Cause, if my daughter gets raped, it’s the malls fault! Not hers. Not mine. But aren’t we really the ones who put Brook Shields, naked enough, on a platter? Or watched as she swam in that beautiful blue lagoon.

Where will we be in a few years? It hasn’t been all that long ago when a lot of what is commonplace now was wholly unacceptable. Just look at the statistics. How many people are in jail right now for statutory rape, or carnal knowledge? And its happening more and more. Kids are having sex younger and younger nowadays. And they are looking and acting more and more mature. Its nothing to find out a 12, 13, or 14 year old is sexually active. Why are we so shocked when we find that little girls are sexually active with older men? How long until its so common its acceptable? At the rate we’re going there will be a registered sex offender on every block. Shocked? Shocked like back when grandma found out her neighbor was homosexual? How long till it’s just a issue of choice and privacy. How long till the ACLU sues for the right of a 15 year old to be with her 20 year old lover? Or that man-boy group claims it as just another “Gay Rights Issue”!

I’m lucky. My kid made it through. She was a great kid and had a great mom and was smart and athletic and popular. Our best investment was teaching her a good set of morals. That and a cell phone. She often called her mom several times during a date just to let her know where they were and what they were doing, and how much of a good time they were having. My daughter, strange as this sounds, never had a curfew. She never needed one. She was always home at a reasonable time on her own accord. Why? Because she had values. She was brought up going to Church and Sunday school. We were able to put her in a private school where she got a good education, where those Ten Commandments were posted on the wall. Where prayer was offered at pep rallies and ball games and assemblies and graduations. She had a mother that was her mentor, as well as friend. And her mom and I gave her an example to live by. Now don’t get me wrong, she wasn’t perfect by any stretch of the imagination, but I wouldn’t trade her for anything. She’s a college graduate now. Graduated with honors, too.

Yes, we fell into that trap that a lot of parents fall into, Wanting our kid to be popular. Letting her wear some of those not quite appropriate clothes. Giving her too much “stuff”. But we saw where it was heading in time. Sadly, too many parents don’t.

-Al