Freedom or Totalitarianism

Freedom or Totalitarianism
Liberty or Death

Friday, September 30, 2011

Liberty Pen: Walter E. Williams- Self-Ownership or Socialism?

Source: Liberty Pen-
Source: Liberty Pen: Walter E. Williams- Self-Ownership or Socialism?

I believe as a Liberal that people should have the right to live their lives as they see fit. As long as they are not hurting anyone else with their freedom. Thats what individual liberty and maximize freedom are about and that government's only role is to protect our freedom. For example, I believe that automakers should be required to put seat belts in their cars, so we can protect ourselves. But if we are eighteen or over, we shouldn't be required to where them. I believe some of the differences between liberalism which is what I believe in and authoritarianism and even socialism. At least on economic policy.

But Socialists in some cases, are liberal or even libertarian on social issues. Liberals want laws to protect people from the harm of others. Whereas authoritarians and Socialists want laws to protect people even from themselves. So-called many state laws like requiring everyone including adults, to wear seat belts, would be one example. Socialists also believe that it is somehow unfair that some people who do a much better job of taking care of themselves and live their lives much better, because they were better educated and have more resources and therefor its unfair for them to be able to have better lives than people with much limited resources that struggle just to survive. But Liberals believe that people should have the individual liberty to live their own lives as they see fit as long as they are not hurting anyone else with their liberty.

Liberals believe that people in a free society (like take America, for example) should be held accountable for their own decisions and not be bailed out by people who made better decisions in their lives. That non-smokers shouldn't have to bail out smokers when they get cancer. That non- alcoholics shouldn't have to bail out alcoholics, etc. That people who take care of themselves shouldn't be forced to bail out the people who don't.

For example, if someone without health insurance doesn't and can't afford major health care costs, gets in a driving accident and fly's through the window of their car and ends up with brain damage and will never be able to work again or even function on their own, that taxpayers shouldn't be forced to bail that person out for being an idiot. But that if people who lose their job, doesn't have enough of a pension and can't afford health insurance for no fault of their own, that government should step in and try to help those people out. Under the Welfare Clause of the U.S. Constitution.

This whole discussion really gets to the heart of the role of government debate. Should government's job be to protect people and how far. National security and public safety. Most people believe thats a role of government. Then the question is how far should government's job be to protect people's individual freedom as I believe or protect people from themselves.

Prohibition Vogue: "Why We're Still Talking About "The Noble Experiment": Why Prohibition Fails

When I'm thinking about why we should have laws to prohibit people from doing harm on others. I think about having laws that make it illegal for people to hurt innocent people. So when we are talking about prohibiting certain actions, which is what prohibition is. We should be talking about prohibiting people from hurting innocent people. Its that simple, prohibiting things like murder rape, battery, terrorism, robbery, bribery, stealing etc. All things that hurt innocent people and the country as a whole as well as the economy. Essentially making it illegal for people to hurt innocent people. And let people live their own lives as long as they are not hurting innocent people with what they are doing. When you try to regulate how people live their own lives. They are going to do it anyway if they want to do it bad enough and you end up making criminals out of them. Even though they haven't hurt anyone with what they are doing and they get arrested. To stop them from doing what they are doing and to protect them. Even though as a result your actually hurting them, because they are not criminals in any other sense. And now your forcing them to live with people in prison, who actually belong in prison. Because they have hurt other people on the street. And will probably hurt more innocent people in prison. So what you end up doing in the name of protection and protecting people from themselves. Is filling up our Legal and Prison Systems with people who don't need to be in there. Taking away resources that should be used against actual criminals and forcing non criminals to live with actual criminals.

Another bad thing about prohibition whether its alcohol or marijuana. Especially for people who believe in government and Social Insurance programs. Is that prohibition costs governments billions of dollars every year because of all the Tax Revenue they lose as a result. Because these activities that are technically criminal, still go on but they are not taxed. And people become criminals as a result and some people who deserve to be criminals as well. Like Drug Dealers and mobsters and Organize Crime making money Tax Free of the people who are addicted to their products. Because there's no one their to regulate them because these activities are conducted over the Black Market. So people who you want to protect are not only criminals but victims of your prohibition. And you end up sending Drug Addicts to prison as a result. Where they get no help for their addiction.

Alcohol and marijuana are perfect examples of why prohibition doesn't work when it come to trying to protect people from themselves. Because these activities continue to be done but in a less safe environment as they would otherwise. If they were Decriminalized, meaning Taxation and Regulation instead. And this is an approach that now has Bi Partisan support across the country and we'll see which is State is the first to practice it.

Thursday, September 29, 2011

"The Tragedy of Urban Renewal in New York": The Failures of Public Housing

The whole notion of Public Housing I believe is sound, the idea that government will do what it can to prevent homelessness. By having Public Housing Projects around the country so Low Income people would have a place to live. And to a certain extent its been very successful, its prevented millions of people. Who would've otherwise been homeless without Public Housing from being homeless. But it was designed so badly like most things that are designed from a one size fits all framework. Find something that you think can work for the whole country, without looking at the whole country. And the different issues and populations that each State and City has to deal with. And thinking that a National Policy will work for everyone even if the problems are different in each part of the country. And then forcing that policy on the whole country. Thats exactly what Public Housing is and this example of Urban Renewal. In Public Housing's case, building these Public Housing Projects in run down communities. That no one would live if they could afford not to, with lousy schools, high Crime Rates, and high Poverty Rates. Essentially creating new Public Ghettos that the Federal Government introduced to the country. With these Public Housing Projects, some of them the size of skyscrapers with people poor people living on top of each other. In rough communities without much hope for the future. And in this case of Urban Renewal, forcing people out of their homes in these rough neighborhoods. To build new and expensive Housing Projects for people with money to come in an revitalize the communities.

One size fits all doesn't work in Anti Poverty Policy or Education Policy and there's plenty of more. Each community really needs to look at their own issues that they deal with. Do the best job that they can to deal with them and then go to the State Government and Federal Government. When they need help, these are the issues that they face and what they are trying to do to address them. And try to get more resources from them to deal with their issues. Actually I don't believe Local Governments should be running these Public Housing Agency's either. But they would be an improvement over the Federal Government, what I would like see done in Public Housing. Is have each Local Government set up their own Public Housing System. But then turn it over to a Non Profit Community Service to run it for them. That they would regulate along with their State Government and the Federal Government. And have each community with a Public Housing System that works for their own needs. Instead of a one size fits all policy from the Federal Government like in Public Housing.

The notion of Public Housing is sound to prevent homelessness so Low Income people can have a place they can afford to live at. But it has to be designed in a way that works. That doesn't build new ghettos but you build these projects in communities where these people can have a better shot at life. And where you let each community set up their own Public Housing System that best works for them. Instead of a one size fits all policy.

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

"How Privatization Can Help Fix America": How Individual Liberty can fix America

If we knew about our Public School System, New Deal and Great Society before and how they would be today. Before we actually designed them which of course is impossible, we wouldn't of designed them the way we did. Unless of course they were designed by the exact same people as designed them before who didn't know any better. We wouldn't designed a Public School System that would force people to go to school based on where they live. But what was the best school for the students and that their parents would make that decision. Or where there wasn't much accountability in the Public School System. Where people were paid and promoted based on how long they've worked. Instead of how good of a job they do educating or let educators keep their jobs based on how long they've been doing them. Instead of how good they are at their jobs or fund our schools based on where they are located, instead of what they need to do a good job. Or pay our politicians some of them who only work about six months every year and who are members of perhaps the most unpopular profession in the country. Three four times as much as our educators and some of our educators being eligible for Public Assistance because of how little we pay them. And these are well paid well trained professionals who could've made a hell of a lot more money in other professions.

We probably would've gone farther in and been more efficient with Social Security and set up some type of Pension System not run by government. But that would've empowered people plan their own retirements and not have to be dependent on Social Security as Senior Citizens. We probably would've designed a Medicare System that would've empowered Senior Citizens to decide where they get their Health Insurance. And we probably would've gone farther in Health Care Reform and addressed the millions of people who can't afford Health Insurance one way or the other. By letting them decide for themselves where they get their Health Insurance, instead of creating Medicaid. We would've designed all of our Social Insurance programs better and perhaps they wouldn't be run by the Federal Government or government at all. Which would be my choice but yes created but by run by Non Profits Social Services. When we set up all these programs in the past, we created them in the New Deal/Great Society Democratic Socialist era. Where we created a lot of these programs in one sense. Because of what Europe was doing and the the supposed need to catch up with them.

My argument about our Social Insurance System is not about the Constitutionality of it, I believe the Federal Courts have already decided that. Or whether we should eliminate them or not, I don't believe we should the fact is a lot of our country is still dependent on it. Which is another problem but my argument is about the management of them. How they should be run and how they are financed and to what degree and who should be running them. And what we should be doing with them in the future.

Monday, September 26, 2011

Reason TV: Rep. Jeff Flake on Limited Government; What Classical Conservatism looks like

Rep. Jeff Flake Republican from Arizona the Goldwater State politically at least as I see it who's in his sixth term in House. To me represents what Classical Conservatism looks like and what the Republican Party used to be. And is much better then the Tea Party could only to be, because he actually does believe in Limited Government and Individual Freedom. And isn't part of the Religious Right in the Republican Party and doesn't care about Social Issues. Or doesn't speak to them, Gay Marriage is not something that drives him as well as these other Social Issues. That drive the Religious Right in America but comes from the Barry Goldwater/Ronald Reagan faction of the party. And is a Classical Conservative and represents what Classical Conservatism is, that is truly about Limited Government and Individual Freedom. And not using the government especially the Federal Government to tell Free People how to live their lives. That conservatism should be about conserving Individual Freedom. Not subtracting Individual Freedom which is what authoritarians want and tell people how to live their lives. Which is what the Religious Right is about and I believe would to see America look more like a Christian Theocracy then a Federal Republic.

When he says he believes in Fiscal Responsibility, you better believe him. He's voted against every earmark that comes to the House. He's voted against the trillions of dollars that we've spent on the Wars in Afghanistan and Iraq. He doesn't have this view that all of our fiscal issues. Started in the Obama Administration but started with the Bush Administration. But that they've gotten worse under President Obama. And has been working in Congress to try to fix some of these problems and he's not negative but critical. These are the issues that we face and how they started but this is what we should do to resolve them. And if he can get Bi Partisan support if he can to solve some of these issues. Rep. Flake represents what the Republican Party used to be that Barry Goldwater worked so hard to advance. That had actually been around since the early 1900's but lost power in the 1960s. And that Sen. Goldwater worked so hard along with other Classical Conservatives back into power so they could stay in power. Which is what happened with the Reagan Revolution in 1980.

Hopefully for American Politics and the Republican Party, Jeff Flake represents the future and not the past on the Republican Party. And that they get back to Classical Conservatism, Limited Government and Individual Freedom. And that Neoconservatism and Religious Conservatism fades out of the Republican Party. And then America will once again have two Political Parties that will be strong now and going into the future. Representing true choice for American Voters.

Walter E Williams: Government Charity: Role of Government?

I realize that libertarians and Classical Conservatives to a certain extent believe that the Federal Government has no role in dealing with poverty in America. And looking after the Economic Welfare of its people because of the 10th Amendment of the US Constitution. That according to libertarians and some Classical Conservatives lays out exactly what the Federal Government can do. But there's also the Welfare Clause in the US Constitution. And it doesn't just say that the Federal Government has the responsibility to look after the Public Safety and National Security of the country. But the Welfare of the People which can interpreted to mean other things. Which along with the Commerce Clause in the US Constitution, has been justified for the New Deal and Great Society agendas. And the Federal Courts have agreed with the Federal Government over and over the years. Which is why most of both the New Deal and Great Society agendas have stayed in place. But representing a huge part of both President Franklin Rossevelt's and President Lyndon Johnson's Presidential Legacy.

I've made this argument before but as a liberal my issues with the Federal Government's. Involvement in Anti Poverty programs and other Social Insurance programs, doesn't have to do with the Constitutionality of the programs. But the wisdom of them, for instance should the Federal Government be running some of these programs or not. Take Public Housing and Food Assistance to use as examples or could these programs do more good and be more effective. If they were run by other entity's and Levels of Government, could they be run better then they are now or not. As a liberal I believe the Federal Government has a responsibility to look after the Welfare of its People as well as protect them physically. And has a role here, not just as the Administrator of all of the Social Insurance programs but I would like to see them more as a regulator. Similar to what the do in education rather then running these programs themselves.

Our Social Insurance programs I believe would be a lot more effective if they were Decentralized. Instead of the Federal Government trying to run all of them and the total budget being around 2T$. Just on Social Insurance alone, they would be better off as well as these Social Insurance programs. Being passed on down to the States and given autonomy and run as Semi Private Non Profit Community Services. With its only role and responsibility with each State having its own version of these programs. And lets see what works and doesn't work across the country. After all the States have been called "Labs of Democracy" and there's a lot of truth to that.

Each State has its own issues and populations that it has to deal with and govern and should have more authority to dealing with these issues. Instead of the Federal Government trying to manage all of these programs, a lot of them duplicate. For a huge country of fifty States and of over 310M people.

Sunday, September 25, 2011

Joel Klein: "Who should be forced to go to an Under Performing School": Status Quo is Unacceptable

Joel Klein makes and excellent point here and it gets at the heart of Education Reform in America. "Who's child should be forced to go to and Under Performing school?" If people who can afford not to by living in a community with good Public Schools or can afford to send their kids to a Private School. Doesn't have to send their kids to bad schools, then why should kids of Low Income parents and who live in Low Income communities. Be forced to go to bad schools, which is exactly the case today in our big cities. Like Washington, Baltimore, Detroit, Los Angeles and other big cities, as well as other cities. Why because their parents don't make enough money to live in a better community where they would be able to go to a good school. Or send them to Private Schools, should we doom these kids and sentence them to a life of poverty. Which is what we might of already done with their parents and force them to go to bad schools. Just because they are children of Low Income parents, its not their fault their parents make little money. Kids don't pick their parents they are born to them.

Joel Klein also makes a good point that its not a question of whether we can educate our kids well or not. We are the richest country in the World, the question is will we. Will we put the reforms in place as a country to do this and take on the Special Interest groups to make this happen or not. Or will our kids continue to be stuck going to bad schools just because of where they live and nothing else. And why should a kids residence be a block in front of them in where they go to school. They have no say in where they live, thats up to their parents. And thats what we do mostly as a country with our Public Education System, make kids go to school based on where they live. Not what's the best school for them. So if you live in a wealthy or Middle Class community, chances are you get to go to a good school. Or your parents can afford to send you to a good Private School.

President George W Bush who I agree with about as often as there 100 degree days in the North Pole, once said that education will be the Civil Rights issues of the 21st Century. And he was right because now that all americans are equal under law and can't discriminated against based on race, ethnicity etc. And those things are important but without an access to a proper education, its very difficult for people to advance in life. Because they won't have the skills that they need to get a good job that will support themselves and their families. And most likely will be dependent on some form of Public Assistance. President Bush also said that we should eliminate the "Soft Bigotry of Low Expectations". Meaning just because kids are from Low Income families going to bad schools. That we shouldn't automatically assume that they won't be able to learn and be successful in life. And he's dead right on both of those points.

What we've been doing with our Public Education System is exactly what we shouldn't be doing. And now we are 39th in the World in education as a result. And what we should be doing instead, is have a Public Education based on choice and accountability and funding our schools. That are in Low Income communities in a more adequate fashion and reform our Property Taxes.

Saturday, September 24, 2011

Thomas Sowell: Growth Of Government: What should Government do

When it comes to the Federal Government especially, libertarians and Classical Conservatives. Their arguments against Federal Intervention in the country, economy especially. Is based on the US Constitution and that the Federal Government does way too much and most of the things that they do are Unconstitutional. According to the 10th Amendment to the US Constitution that lays out a few things for the Federal Government, mostly having to do with National Security. But what they fail to mention or recognize and I believe mention, because people who generally make this argument. Have a pretty good idea of the US Constitution and what's in it and what it means. Is that there are two clauses in the US Constitution. That the Federal Government has used to justify in Federal Courts its activities and programs. The Commerce Clause which gives the FEDS the ability to regulate Interstate Commerce and the Welfare Clause. Which essentially gives the Federal Government the ability or responsibility to look after the welfare of its people. And the FEDS have used these clauses to justify programs like Social Security, Medicare Securities and Exchange Commission and others. And that if the Federal Government is to live up to its responsibilities in these areas. They need mechanisms to accomplish this meaning programs and agency's.

My issues with a lot with what the Federal Government does, does not get to the Constitutionality generally. The Patriot Act would be an exception to this because I believe it violates the Fourth Amendment but thats a different discussion. My issues as a liberal with a lot of what the Federal Government does, gets to are they the best qualified or not to be doing x and fill in x yourself. Or is there a better way that the issue that they are trying to addressed should be addressed. And I believe a lot of times, there's a better way of handling the issue that they are trying to address. And I'll use Public Housing as an example, to me thats clearly an issue for Local Governments as well as the Private Sector. That they could work in partnership on that the FEDS could regulate but not manage. Similar to addressing homelessness. There are a whole range of programs that I don't believe the Federal Government should be running. That could be run better and be more Cost Effective with less Red Tape and be more beneficial to the people that they serve. I'm not talking about eliminating these programs that libertarians tend to talk about. But having them run by different services and organizations and where the FEDS would regulate them.

One positive aspect that libertarianism has brought to American Politics is that its gotten a lot of people to rethink. The Role of Government and the Role of the Federal Government in particular. What it does, what it does well, what its not as effective at and what it should be doing to begin with. Which I believe is healthy we should always be examining this question because we pay for the government we get good or bad. So we might as well have a pretty good idea exactly what we are paying for and what we are getting out of our money.

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

"Economic Vs. Civil Liberties": One isn't worth much without the other

I like what this guy said early on in this video in how conservatives and liberals are stereotyped. That conservatives are stereotyped as people who love Economic Freedom and have a pretty good idea in what that means. But don't care that much about Social Freedom and that its not worth much. And that liberals love Social Freedom but don't care that much for Economic Freedom and don't really understand how the economy works. He's dead on about that, those are stereotypes and all you have to do to know that. Is understand what conservatism and liberalism are actually about and means. And I'm talking about in the classic sense, not how they are both stereotyped today. Conservatives tend to get stereotyped as Religious Conservatives or Neoconservatives and liberals tend to get stereotyped as Democratic Socialists or Socialist Libertarians. And some of these people are but they aren't conservative or liberal but Neoconservatives and socialists. And these are all different Political Ideology's not one in the same, with their own politics and policy's and ways to make the country as good as it can be.

The way that some people who are called conservatives today and they are described, those people are actually not conservative. At least not in a political sense. They are what's called Religious Conservatives or how I would describe them as theocrats. People who look at policy issues from a religious point of view and believe that all people should live their lives the same way. Under what they see as a "Moral Code" and the other people they would describe as conservative. Are actually Neoconservatives and this is starting to sound very Political Junky but I'll put it simply. Neoconservatives basically believe that security is more important then freedom and that without security there's no freedom. And that security is even more important then Individual Freedom and Constitutional Rights. I as a liberal would actually argue the opposite but thats a different discussion.

Some people that get described as liberal today are actually Democratic Socialists or Socialist Libertarians , again I know it sounds pretty junky. But these people essentially believe in a lot of Social Freedom as all Socialist Libertarians do. But that Economic Freedom should be pretty restricted and they use a lot of taxes and regulations to do this. To prevent people from making too much more money then others and also to finance a large Welfare State. That instead of allowing people to advance in life on their own and being as productive as they possibly can. That we should achieve success together through these Social Insurance programs and that when some people make a lot of money. A lot of that money gets taken away from them in High Taxes to take care of the people who don't have enough.

So if you actually know what conservatism and liberalism actually is, you know that they are both centered around Individual Freedom and Constitutional Rights. As well as Limited Government and that the major function of government is to protect these liberties. And as this guy said, that Economic Freedom and Civil Liberties aren't different but one on the same. That without one the other is not worth much of anything.

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Reason Magazine: Nick Gillespie Interviewing Penn Jillette- Atheism, Libertarianism & More

Source: Reason Magazine-
Source: Reason Magazine: Nick Gillespie Interviewing Penn Jillette- Atheism, Libertarianism & More

Penn Jillette has a great take on libertarianism when he says, he's a Libertarian because he doesn't know what's better for everyone else. That sums up what libertarianism is, that people should live their own lives and see how well they manage that. And not try to live how other people live their own lives and government especially shouldn't try to control people either. Because government especially in a country the size of America, doesn't know all of its people. How could they, we are just too damn big for anyone in a country this big, for anyone to know everybody.

So that people should live their own lives making their own decisions for themselves. As long as they are not hurting any innocent people with their freedom. And when they do hurt innocent people with their actions, that they pay consequences for their harmful actions. I'm a Liberal because I believe in this, which is what liberalism is actually about, its not about collectivism.

Now I don't agree with libertarians on everything, that its America's fault for 9/11 which some Libertarians do believe in. I'm not for legalizing all narcotics but I do support decriminalization of marijuana as well as prostitution and gambling. Regulate them instead of prohibiting them, because either way these actions are still going to happen. So knowing this fundamental fact, you might as well make these things as safe as possible. But the overall message of libertarianism of individual freedom, regulation over prohibition etc. Is sound as far as I'm concern and fits in pretty well with liberalism as well as conservatism.

Here some quotes that all Liberals, Conservatives and Libertarians should all love.

John Kennedy- "ask not what your country can do for you but what you can do for your country.

Milton Friedman- "Maximize freedom is the freedom for people to live their own lives as they see fit. As long as they are not hurting anyone else with their freedom.

Pretty basic I believe but something very important and worth remembering. And of course the famous New Hampshire saying of give me liberty or give me death.

I would add another and one of my favorites from a political hero of mine.

Bill Clinton- "there's nothing wrong with America that can't be fixed with what is right with America."

And almost twenty years later I still feel the same way about America, if anything I feel stronger about that today. This is what liberal democracy and America is about and to a certain extent we've gotten away from it. Which is one reason for all the issues we face as a country.

If you believe in limited government, individual freedom and the U.S. Constitution, you believe that there's a limit in what government can do well and that there isn't government programs that can solve all our problems, that it should only be doing what only government can do well. Protect, defend, regulate the market not try to control the market and that the people should have the individual freedom to live their own lives and not be harassed by government. This is what libertarianism, liberalism and conservatism are actually about. And anyone who says they are not and that these ideology's are about "Corporate Greed", doesn't know what they are talking about.

Reason Magazine: Matt Welch Interviewing Wayne Allyn Root- 'How He Will Become President'

Source: Reason Magazine-
Source: Reason Magazine: Matt Welch Interviewing Wayne Ally Root- 'How He Will Become President'

Wayne Allyn Root I believe actually has some positive ideas in how to advance the broader Libertarian movement. And if that helps the Libertarian Party, which frankly needs a lot of help and as of right now the LP is probably at least ten years away from becoming anything bigger than a third party, even the biggest third party if they are that. But in this context the broadening of the broader libertarian movement is what I believe Mr Root is about and he has some ideas in how to accomplish this.

WR Root is right the country's biggest concern and issue right now, is the economy. And how weak it is and how weak are recovery has been from the Great Recession, which happened three years ago. And we are still no way near from fully recovering from it. Libertarians tend to speak about issues like legalizing narcotics, ending the War on Drugs, legalizing gambling, repealing the Patriot Act, eliminating most of the Federal Government, phasing out entitlement programs if not eliminating them all together.

There's support for a lot of these libertarian Issues, including outside of the libertarian movement. But thats not what the country is concern about right now and for people to get elected they have to speak to the issues that their voters are concern about. And be able to communicate a message that tells them, "I like this person I'm going to support them." And for them to get reelected and reelected after that, they have to do the same thing. I'm not talking about policy positions here, but being able to communicate in a positive way about the issues voters are concern about. And this is what Wayne Root is talking about, whether he has a blizzard's chance in hell of becoming President of the United States or not.

For the libertarian movement and their party to advance in American politics and one day be a major force in American politics, they have to be able to speak to the issues that Americans are concern about. And save their pet issues so to speak, like narcotics legalization to use as an example, for if and when they ever get to power as well as bring some positive change to the issues they ran on. And for them to become a major force in American politics, they either have to advance the Libertarian Party to the point to where its major party and not third party like ultimate ballot access and fundraising to use as examples. Instead of being a small piece of the two major parties.

I believe the Libertarian Party is the official third party in American politics and a lot of that has to do with their message of limited government and maximize freedom. Because Americans generally don't like to be told how to live their lives. But they've failed for forty years to be able to do that and thats still their biggest challenge.

Saturday, September 17, 2011

"Are Public Schools Harming your Kids?": Some are and what to do

Unless your on the Far Right or your some type of what I would call an Extreme Libertarian, where you don't want government doing anything outside. Of Law Enforcement and National Security and perhaps not even those things as well. And your prone to considering or believing Conspiracy Theory's, especially as they relate to communism and socialism. For example you may believe that Public Schools are evil or something and that they teach the benefits of socialism and communism. Unless your someone like this and if you are someone like this, your part of a pretty small minority. But unless your someone like this, you don't believe all Public Schools or perhaps even any. Are designed to teach about the positive aspects of socialism and communism. And you have more of a balance view of our Public Education System. That we have some good Public Schools K-12 but a lot more good colleges but we don't have enough good schools. Being 39th in the World in Education should be a pretty good clue there. And we need to improve our Public Education System, just because of the fact because what ever we do Education Reform. Are Public Schools will always be there for good or bad.

The overwhelming majority of students will still be getting their education from Public Schools. As much as libertarians may want to eliminate the Public Education System all together, which is run by State and Local Governments. Mainly Local Governments, they are mainly responsible for operating the Public Schools more then anyone else. The States and FEDS role is mainly about some extra funding, regulations to a certain extent. And research which may be the only thing that the US Department of Education does well. Things that they aren't good at and I'll be brief but there's more, Unfunded Mandates and passing on down mountains of Red Tape and regulations.

Libertarians will never be able to eliminate the Public Education System from the Federal Level. For one not possible that would probably be Unconstitutional or at least challenged in court. Two that would also violate Libertarian Principles of States Rights, Local Control, as well Constitutional Rights. But also because libertarians aren't in charge of any government at least not any major government in the country. So my point being if its Education Reform your interested in, then Public Education Reform needs to be part of that picture. Since the overwhelming majority of students go to Public Schools today, into the near future and the future going forward.

So what we need to thinking about in Education Reform, is how we reform our Public Schools. And that gets to choice, competition, accountability good and bad. Rewarding good educators and retraining or firing Low Performing educators. And setting up a system where Public Schools and Low Income communities that have the resources to do a good job. Just like schools in High and Middle Income Communities.

Friday, September 16, 2011

Three Reasons Not to Fund Art with Taxes: I have a few of my own

I'm not going make the case that if we eliminated the NEA that we could solve our massive Federal Debt and Deficit by doing this. The NEA National Budget is somewhere around a billion dollars or a few billion dollars or even under a billion dollars. In a Federal Budget of 3.7T$ with a debt and deficit of 14T% and 1.8T$ respectfully. Which is peanuts compared with the rest of the Federal Budget but perhaps only Washington is a billion dollars consider peanuts. But perhaps thats another blog down the line, besides I'm only blogging about the NEA. Because I couldn't find anything else to blog about. And just to say from the outskirts, I can't believe I just said outskirts perhaps the first time in my life. But just to say I'm all for the arts being taught in Public Schools and colleges, I believe this is something that should be taught. Besides I love movies and have a pretty good size collection and I love Blues Rock music and Rhythm and Blues. And these artists have to learn these skills somewhere and schools are a great place to learn these skills. Besides people almost have to be entertained to keep them as healthy as possible. So they can relieve stress and enjoy life so we basically need entertainers in society to have as healthy a country as possible. But we are talking about a profession here and like all other professions, the workers in them should be as successful as their skills will allow. Movies should be financially successful based on how good their movies are, with the market determining their success. By how many fans they attract and how much money they make based on how many tickets they sell. Same thing with Musical Artists, comedians, plays, television. Instead of the Entertainment Industry being guaranteed revenue by Tax Payers through the NEA.

I'm not for eliminating the NEA or National Endowment for the Arts or the NEH National Endowment for the Humanities. I just don't believe the Federal Government should be funding it and that Tax Payers should have to pay for it. If these two organizations are as important to Hollywood and other aspects of the Entertainment Industry. The Entertainment Industry can fund the NEA and NEH that partially funds the arts in America. And they could fund and run the NEA and NEH a hell of a lot better then the Federal Government. Because they would have their own Revenue Sources and Management and Board of Directors. They wouldn't have the Administration and Congress to deal with any longer. They wouldn't have to worry about these people stripping or drastically cutting their funding because they would have their own revenue. Based on how these shows would do and they wouldn't even have to pay Federal Taxes either because they could be a Private Non Profit Organization. That would be in the business of making sure Arts Education is funded properly and adequately in the country. And giving schools grants to help them pay for it.

So what I would do is make the NEA and NEH independent of the Federal Government and take away its Tax Payer funding. And if the Creative Coalition and the Entertainment Industry as a whole feel these institutions are important enough to keep in business. Then they and their customers could fund them with a fee on their tickets and profits. And I would go one farther and let each State have their own version of the NEA and NEH. That would be run independently of the State Governments, that the Entertainment Industry's in their States as well as their customers could fund. Again with a fee on tickets and profits.

I support Arts Education and believe that are schools should continue to teach them, I just don't believe that Tax Payers should be forced to fund them. That the market meaning the customers should decide for themselves how much they collect in profits. By the quality of their entertainment and that Tax Payers should be funding things that we have to have. Schools, Law Enforcement, infrastructure, military etc.

Federal Expression: Dan Smoot Report- A Constitutional Republic

Source: Federal Expression- The Dan Smoot Report-
Source: Federal Expression: Dan Smoot Report- A Republic, Not a Democracy

It’s not a Constitutional Republic that should be goal for people who believe in individual freedom, but individual freedom that should be the goal. And then figuring out what type of governmental system is best that guarantees individual freedom for its people. A Constitutional Republic, doesn’t guarantee freedom, Egypt is a republic with a constitution. But even after the fall of the Mubarak Regime which was very authoritarian, they are still not a democracy ye,t but hopefully for the Egyptian people are moving in that direction.

And if individual freedom is a goal, then its democracy that you want. And then you have to figure out what type of democracy you want. A liberal democracy, conservative democracy in a neoconservative sense, not classical conservative and they are different. Or a social democracy, or a majoritarian democracy and then you have to figure out exactly what’s the best type of government to guarantee your democracy. If that is what you want, then you’re a democrat in the sense you believe in democracy. Small d democrat, actually both democrats and republicans are democrats. Republicans being Small d democrats. They both believe in democracy just have different views in what democracy is.

If you’re a Liberal such as myself, or a Conservative or Libertarian, you believe in liberal democracy. The ability for individuals to have the liberty to live their own lives and not be harassed by government. As long as they are not hurting any innocent people with their actions. Thats called individual liberty, or Freedom, means the same thing. If you’re a Socialist, or Democratic Socialist, you believe in social democracy. With a lot of individual liberty for the people when it comes to social freedom , for the most part, but where the state is highly involved in the economy.

With a social democracy, you get a big centralized government providing a lot of social services through a welfare state financed through high taxes. If you’re lets say a majoritarian for lack of a better word, that government has to be responsive to a majority of the people and what the majority wants is what the country gets and minority rights aren’t respected, then of course you want a majoritarian democracy. Where the majority rules over the minority and gets what they wants. And can make the minority do things, even if the minority doesn’t want to do these things.

After you figure out what type of democracy you want, you have to figure out what type of government is the best form to provide and guarantee this democracy. America as I see it is a liberal democracy and not just saying this because I’m a liberal, but its the case we are and have been a liberal democracy in the form of a Constitutional Federal Republic. Thats designed to guarantee our constitutional rights. Where Europe is made up of mostly socialist democracy’s. Mostly in the form of Constitutional Federal Republics, like in Germany, France and Italy, to use as examples.

And in Britain’s case, they are a social democracy with a monarchy. So if you’re a Liberal, Conservative, or a Libertarian, you probably prefer the American form of government. And if you’re a Socialist, you prefer the European form of government. And Liberals, Conservatives and libertarians debate Socialists in America all the time about what’s the best form of government, America, or Europe. And I’m in these debates on a regular basis as well.

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Bill O'Reilly: "Demands Higher Taxes Calls For 2% Consumption Tax: I'm for the Fair Tax

Bill O'Reilly actually has a point here, perhaps the first time in weeks or months on his point that a Consumption Tax would force everyone to pay Federal Taxes. And not just Payroll Taxes and that even criminals and not all criminals steal everything they get. Even criminals go into a store and purchase something and actually buy those products. I like the idea of the Fair Tax because it lets people decide for themselves how much they pay in taxes. Based on what they spend to live and people who hate taxes all together. Would probably live very cheaply but the rest of the country. And americans tend to be spenders would pay more in taxes, the wealthy would pay more in taxes today. Even by percentage if a Consumption Tax is designed correctly because they spend more money. And again if a Consumption Tax is designed correctly, Low Income people would get a break in taxes because they don't spend a lot on Luxury Items. And again Middle Class people would have the freedom to decide for themselves how much they pay in taxes, again based on how much they spend.

Big spenders would pay more in taxes, low spenders would get a Tax Cut. With a Fair Tax we would be able to eliminate most if not all Tax Loopholes in the Tax System. Because most of those Tax Loopholes are based on the Income Tax. I'm not for creating an Consumption Tax to go on top of all the taxes we pay as a country. Otherwise that would result in a major Tax Increase especially on the Middle Class who can't afford it right now. And Low Income people who can never afford a Tax Increase but a Consumption Tax to replace the Income Tax. But still leave in the Payroll Taxes, Corporate Tax and other taxes. But reform those other taxes that best makes sense for the economy and our Fiscal Policy.

Before Tax Reform we need Government Reform, figuring out what the current Tax System is and how much if any would a new Tax System affect new revenue for the government. If a new Tax Code brings in less Tax Revenue and perhaps thats one of your goals, then you have to figure out how your going to. Cut, reform or both in the Federal Government and where your going to make the savings and what your going to do with the savings. If the new Tax Code brings in more Tax Revenue, then of course you have to figure out what your going to do with the extra Tax Revenue. And then you need a Tax Code that works better for the economy, can be understood and makes good Fiscal Policy.

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

The New American: Dan Smoot Report- Basic Constitutional Government: 1960s Leader of The Tea Party?

Dan Smoot-
If you’re a supporter of limited government, as well as individual freedom, that without limited government, individual freedom is threatened, as I am, then you believe in the U.S. Constitution. Because that’s what it’s about. The theory being that the more power that government and I mean any government at any level, has to regulate our lives and do more for us and take more of our money, the less freedom that we have to live our own lives and do these things for ourselves. It’s a big difference between America and Europe.

Where America in many ways is about individualism, the liberty for Americans to live their own lives without being harassed by government. And government taking a lot of their money away from them. Where Europe in a lot of ways is about collectivism. “That we are all in this together meaning life and that we need to put a lot of our resources together into one pot. For the betterment of all people. And government will take this money from people to make the country as good as possible. Through government services basically.”

This is a simple way of putting it, but accurate. If you’re a what’s called Constitutional Conservative, or a Constitutional Constructionist, that you basically believe that government should only do what is laid out for it in the Constitution, that you take that text to be literal and only read the constitution in its literal sense, then of course a lot of what the Federal Government does today would be unconstitutional as you see it.

For me, I see the Constitution as meaning that it’s based on limited government and individual freedom. And the main role of the Federal Government is to protect our individual freedom and not harass us. And not get involved in areas like medical care. Except to regulate it, or marriage at all, except to maybe how it relates to the tax code. Or marijuana, or alcohol, tobacco, prostitution, pornography, etc. Let the people live their own lives as they see fit. That free people have the right to live freely in a free society.

That government should only be doing what the people can’t for themselves, or not as well. That government should be there to regulate and protect. Not regulate people, but regulate how people interact with each other, which is different. Step in when innocent people are being abused unfairly and protect and defend the country. Law Enforcement and a military, both strong, efficient and affordable enough to defend the country. Basically looking after the welfare of the people like a referee, but not try to control the people. With the Welfare Clause in the U.S. Constitution.

I wouldn’t eliminate a lot of the programs that the Federal Government currently operates. I would just reform a lot of them. Most of them in the social welfare area by making them independent of the Federal Government. And letting each state set up their own system in how these services would be operated in their state. That would have to meet basic Federal standards and also run independently of the state and local governments as well. If we had a Federal Government like this, then I believe we could answer a lot of questions and settle debates. About the role of the Federal Government and what its supposed to do under the U.S. Constitution.

Monday, September 12, 2011

CNN: U.S. Representative Ron Paul- Should Society Let Uninsured Die?

Source: CNN- U.S. Representative Ron Paul, R, Texas-
Source: CNN: U.S. Representative Ron Paul- Should Society Let Uninsured Die?

Again I have a lot of respect for Representative Ron Paul politically and personally. Politically as a Liberal myself, we have plenty in common on social issues, foreign policy and even to a certain extent on fiscal policy. But the idea that government can't make people buy products or services is for a lack of a better word, is bogus. Auto insurance, Social Security, Medicare, etc. The whole point of an individual mandate is to require people to pay for at least parts of their health care through health insurance. So when Ron Paul suggests that instead of having an individual mandate, or Medicare and Medicaid and going back to what we were doing pre-1965 and passing those costs onto hospitals instead. And having them provide the uninsured with free health care, he's suggesting that we pass down these health care Costs to public and private hospitals. Perhaps unintentionally, but thats what he's implying. That eventually get passed on to the insured, making them cover their own health care costs. As well as the costs of the uninsured.

So when people get hurt especially for doing something foolish, like drunk driving, driving without a seatbelt to use as examples, the people who get hurt doing these things or are hurt by people doing these things to them especially foolish things like getting hit by a drunk driver, or people not taking care of themselves by smoking, drinking too much, bad eating habits, not exercising, that they are held accountable for their own decisions and have to pay the price for them good or bad. And that their health care costs don't get pushed on to hospitals private and public or other people who are responsible for having health insurance. If you look at it, the individual mandate is actually a conservative idea that was supported by Conservatives in the past. Like in the Clinton health care reform debate in 1993-94. Because it's about individual responsibility. Holding people responsible for their own decisions that they make in life for good and bad.

The individual mandate isn't about making people buy certain health insurance plans, just that they pick one. Low-income people that are uninsured would need to get on Medicaid or get their own health insurance plan. Senior citizens obviously would have Medicare, people in between Medicaid and Medicare financially and can't afford their own health insurance, could get a tax credit to pay for their health insurance. Business's that can't afford to cover their employees with health insurance, would be eligible for a tax credit to do that which would make their business a more attractable place to work. Especially if they are married or have kids or a medical condition. Perhaps all of those factors and this health insurance would help cover some of their health care costs. The individual mandate in health care reform is about individual responsibility as well as individual freedom. Just not having the freedom to abuse other people's freedom by passing your health care costs down to them. It's a conservative idea which is why its strange at least to me, that Conservatives and even Libertarians today are now so against it.

Sunday, September 11, 2011

George W Bush's Iraq War Part 1: How we got in and why we should leave

The original mission in the War in Iraq of 2003, was to go in and take out Saddam Hussein's Weapons of Mass Destruction and destroy them. Figuring that we would have to take down the Hussein Regime and its Security Forces, or as it turned out. What was left of them which brings me to another point. Our military and intelligence apparently wasn't aware that even though they believed that Iraq had a Military of 500,000 personal. Easily one the the largest military's in the World, they didn't have much of a military left and didn't have any WMD as well. We didn't know that they didn't have the WMD at the start of the war of course, Iraq is a big country about the size of Nigeria physically. But we did know early on that Iraq didn't have much of a military left. And I think this should've been a pretty good clue. That if a country can't even manage a military, how are they going to be able to develop Nuclear Weapons. Iraq no longer had WMD let alone the ability to develop Nuclear Weapons.

Iraq is clearly not North Korea with its military, even though they are substantially wealthier economically. North Korea clearly has WMD and Nuclear Weapons and the ability to deliver them. So does Saudi Arabia and Egypt as well as Turkey with WMD but these are all allies so we are not worried about them. I supported the War in Iraq originally because we were in a War on Terror and our intelligence as well as European Intelligence. Suggested that it was clear that the Hussein Regime had WMD and was trying to obtain Nuclear Weapons as well. And that we couldn't afford to let a brutal evil Authoritarian Dictator of a large country. Have these weapons and them spread them around to other dictators or even Terrorist Groups. But apparently we found out later that Saddam Hussein didn't have any Terrorist Groups that he liked or trusted and didn't have relations with them. Which is more evidence suggesting that we shouldn't be there in the first place.

President Bush famously or infamously depending on your perspective, declared Mission Accomplish in Iraq in May or June 2011. And looking back at it even though it might seem comical eight years later. But in a sense if you look at the original mission, President Bush was correct. Because again the original mission was to take out the Hussein Regime and locate and destroy the WMD. And whatever Iraq was working on as far as developing Nuclear Weapons. Saddam Hussein may of had dreams of have Nuclear Weapons and being the Superpower of the Middle East. But his WMD were taken out by the late 1990s, four or five years before the Iraq War. And taking down the Hussein Regime happened within a few weeks of the Iraq War. Because Iraq no longer had a military capable of defending this big country. We've done our part now its time for America to pull out and bring in other partners. To help Iraq develop its Federal Government and Security Forces so they can govern and defend this large country.

The United States has borrowed about 2T$ to finance our involvement and we now have a National Debt and Deficit and a weak economy to show for it. Its time that we do some Nation Building in our own country and keep these resources at home before we try to build other peoples countries.

Saturday, September 10, 2011

Ron Paul 2008: Freedom Watch With Andrew Napolitano- Ron Paul & Ralph Nader- A Libertarian-Socialist Alliance?

Source: Ron Paul-
Source: Ron Paul 2008: Freedom Watch With Andrew Napolitano- Ron Paul & Ralph Nader: A Libertarian-Socialist Alliance?

To think that a Classical Libertarian like Representative Ron Paul and a Social Democrat/Democratic Socialist  like consumer advocate Ralph Nader can come together on anything, look at this video. And the reason why the can come to together is because they share things in common on social issues, obviously. Generally speaking they are both liberal to libertarian there, but also foreign policy, where they both tend to be isolationists. And believing that our foreign policy should be based on our national security. Socialists also tend to believe our foreign policy should be based on human rights as well. Not just with military involvement, but they have some thing in common on foreign policy as well. But Libertarians and Socialists also have some things in common on economic policy as well, not much but some things. Ron Paul and Ralph Nader are both against the supply side borrow and spend fiscal policy that the Bush Administration put in place. That the Obama Administration has kept into place to a certain extent.

Paul and Nader, both believe our debt and deficit are a threat to our economic policy, they disagree on how we should pay it down. And when Ron Paul believes in trimming the military and entitlements, Ralph Nader believing in tax hikes on the wealthy and perhaps the middle class as well. As well as cutting back perhaps gutting even our defense budget. And they both believe the Federal Reserve should be audited and perhaps eliminated. But Libertarians and Socialists tend to have a lot in common actually, that both ideology's are based on some degree of liberty. Libertarians just believe that government should have a much smaller role in our society. And that Socialists believe that government should play a big role in our society, with providing a lot of human services through large social insurance programs through a Welfare State. Like in health care, health insurance, pension, education, transportation, etc.

Ralph Nader does represent the social democratic win of the Left after all and I'm talking about Democratic Socialists, not Marxists or Communists. Which are different, Communists believing in the state owning the means of production in society. Ron Paul and Ralph Nader are both anti-Patriot Act, so am I to a certain extent. Anti-Wars in Afghanistan and Iraq, I'm for pulling out of both places, anti what they would call corporate governance. Where government jobs and contracts are rewarded based on connections with government officials and where certain people. And company's aren't prosecuted because of their connections with government officials. It's good to see a Libertarian and a Socialist come together because they aren't complete opposites. Even though when it comes to the role of government they have clear differences and probably couldn't work together. But it shows that country doesn't have to be as divided as we are politically. When we just look for areas that we have things in common, even if we look very different from the outside.

Walter E Williams: "States' Rights and Nullification": The Importance of the 17th Amendment and States Rights

Anytime its a question of whether government at any level, has more power or the people have more power. I always go with the people as long as we are talking about the power to live our own lives. And not hurt innocent people which of course no one has the right to do. Thats what the 17th Amendment is about, giving the power to the people as far as who represents us in Congress. Both the House and Senate and some might say that the House of Representatives was created to represent the people in Congress. And the Senate was created to represent the States in Congress, well what's the difference between representing the people or States. When someone says that the Senate was created to represent the States, that tells me. That they are talking about the State Governments not the people that they work for and serve. And could lose their jobs as a result and Senators get their salary's paid for by the people, so they work for us just like Representatives. So we should decide who represents us in the Senate, if your a liberal, conservative or libertarian. You should be able to agree with that, why should State Governments have more power then the people.

Some might say that we need to get rid of the 17th Amendment, because State Governments are underrepresented in Congress. And that the Federal Government could essentially make them do anything that they want and not give them the resources to pay for it. Which in Washington Speak means Unfunded Mandates but actually thats not true, because if State Governments don't like a law that was passed by the Federal Government. They can take it to Federal Court just like the people can. To repeal the 17th Amendment just to enforce States Rights, is essentially cutting off your leg. Because you have a sprain knee. You may solve on problem but then create another by taking power away from the people. Repealing the 17th Amendment would give State Governments more power but at the expense of the people. Which isn't good for anyone, we can protect States Rights by law, electing people who will do these things and not elect people who are looking to empower the Federal Government at the expense of the States.

To make sure that States Rights are protected, can be done by statue which means by law. Like the law that the Federal Government passed in 1995 in the 104th Congress. That bans Unfunded Mandates which I believe the Bush Administration who wasn't keen on States Rights or Congressional Rights let expire. Another law that would be helpful, would allow States to opt out on all mandates that the Federal Government passes down on them. That they don't pay for, which would give the Federal Government plenty of incentive to fund laws that they pass, especially State and Local Mandates. Another thing that Governors and the National Governors Association can do jointly is to make sure they keep in touch with their own Representatives and Senators. Especially their Party Leadership and testify on Capitol Hill when they see bills that would effect them that they don't like. And weigh in on them and if the don't like their Congressional Delegation. Work to have them defeated in the next election.

We shouldn't be repealing the US Constitution that was written by liberals and libertarians, especially in a way that takes power away from the people. States Rights is something that should be respected and is something that we can do without hurting the people. Who have to live under these laws.

Thursday, September 8, 2011

The Insiders: The John Birch Society on China: More Far Right Propaganda

In the late 1970s to early 1980s, just a few years after President Richard Nixon opened up relations again with China. One of his biggest accomplishments as President and then President Jimmy Carter formalized Diplomatic Relations with China. In 1978 again one of his biggest accomplishments as President, China decided that it has to modernize its country. Economically, education, it military, Foreign Policy, Trade Policy. Just on things like on Social and Political Freedom and how it treats its Ethnic and Religious Minorities as well as Women's Rights. But this is a country that has come a long way in thirty years, after completely being a Communist Republic with basically no freedom. To a Semi Capitalist Communist Republic, because they finally realized that Classical Socialism where the State owns the Means to Production in Society. Where there are no Property Rights and that sorta thing, to a country where they privatized a lot their State Owned Industry's and allowed the Chinese People to open up some of their own business's.

China has moved in this direction, because even though it has the largest population in the World, back then and today. As well as the fourth largest country in the World physically, its either China, Australia or Brazil. Don't know this exactly but you get the idea that they are huge but despite all of this. As well as having some Natural Resources, including Nuclear Power. They were one of the poorest nations in the World and were seeing nations like the United States, Soviet Union, European Union. United Kingdom and Japan which is a clear rival of China, with a lot of the power in the World and not much power for them. Despite their huge population and size and decided that they needed to step up, reform and become a player in the World. Not so they can run the World, I don't believe they've ever intended to do that but have their share of the power. China has the ability to essentially control its destiny, any country with its resources and size. Has that ability and right as far as I'm concern as long as its not threatening innocent people.

China's Human Rights Record is awful, anyone who believes in Individual Freedom and is knowledgeable about China knows that. That actually calls themselves the Peoples Republic of China, which I find ironic but thats their official name. And they've become a country where the Federal Government or whatever they call their National Government. Can still at this point, control their people but the question is how long. With owning most if not all of the media in the country. Where their people can't vote for anyone who's not a communist if they can vote at all. Where Churches and probably all other organizations have to register with the government before they organize. But where the Chinese People have enough Economic Freedom to make the country move and keep it moving. So they can have a strong military and infrastructure and everything else in the country. So they have their place in not only Asia but the rest of the World as a power.

China is going to do what they are going to do and they'll be an Economic Power and a Military Power within 10-20 years if they stay on present course. The question is what they'll do with their power but if America, Europe and Japan do what they need to do. China won't be a threat capable of knocking them off or taking them over or something.

Empire: "The China Arms Race American military threat": What is China about

Does the Peoples Republic of China which is the official name of China, I call it the Communist Republic of China but perhaps thats a different debate. But do they want to be a superpower economically, yeah that I think thats obvious by the way they've developed their economy. The last thirty plus years or so, they already have the largest economy in the Asia the largest Continent in the World. They passed Japan a few years ago but Japan still dwarfs China in Per Capita Income, something like 5-7 times more. Which is actually more important when it comes to economics. The ability for people to spend money to have money to spend in order to support themselves and their families. Thats what Per Capita Income is about and why its more important them the actual size of a GDP. Which I believe is the next step for China's economy, how do they translate Economic Growth into education and Job Growth. That benefits most of the country instead of parts of it and become a Developed Nation. China is a country of 1.5B people and maybe 1/3 of them, which is still 500M people live in the Middle Class or could be considered wealthy.

Does China want to become a Military Superpower, again they are a huge country of 1.5B people, they can already defend themselves quite well and are already an Asian Power. As well as having one of the largest military's in the World and having Nuclear Weapons. And they are still developing their military and perhaps will be a Military Superpower within 10-20 years. Fine so what, its not a matter if countries are powerful or not, with their military or economy. Its a question of what they do with that power. India is also moving in this direction as well, they are a country of 1.2B people the second largest country in the World. But I don't believe many countries, except for maybe Pakistan which is another huge country of 150M people but India dwarfs them in everything. Its about what you do with power not whether you have it or not and China has shown that they are not the Soviet Union, they don't want to own Asia or the World. Unlike Russia that wanted to spread communism around the World.

America doesn't need to worry about China in the sense that China will own the World or something. If America does what it has to do, which is rebuild our economy, Economic and Job Growth. Fixing our Fiscal Policy by actually having one and getting our debt and deficit under control. Exporting our products around the World and having the same Trade Access in Foreign Nations that they have in America. With the same low Tariff Rates. Rebuilding and expanding our infrastructure and bringing it into the 21st Century. Having an Energy Policy that moves America towards Energy Independence. Reforming our Public Education System, there is no way we should be 39th in the World in Education. America has a lot of work to do and we have some time to do it and if we get our work done. We'll still be as powerful as we need to be to address all of our concerns because we'll have the resources to do them. And China will still be China but they won't be America, they'll never be anything like America as far as how great and important as we are. As long as we do what we need to do and China is still a Communist Republic. With very limited if any Social and Political Freedom.

Its not about having power thats the problem, its about what you do with the power you have. And so far China even though they've done some things we've disagree with. Like with Taiwan and how they deal with their Ethnic and Religious Minorities. But this is not the Soviet Union thats trying to establish a Communist State for the World. And if America does what America needs to do, then the rest will be taken care of for the better.

Wednesday, September 7, 2011

Ron Paul 2008: The One Who Stood With Reagan

Source: Ron Paul- Ron Reagan & Ron Paul-
Source: Ron Paul 2008: The One Who Stood With Reagan

I'm not sure a Libertarian running for President should be trying to make himself look like a President, who expanded the War on Drugs and War on Crime. Even though we saw an explosion in heroin and cocaine in the 1980s, as well as a President who expanded what Libertarians and Socialists like the call, "The Military Industrial Complex". As well as "The Prison Industrial Complex." And you could probably add the narcotics industrial complex. With all of the people in the 1980s going to jail in prison for drug use and possession. This TV ad is clearly about reaching out to Conservative Republicans, the ones that remain in the party. In a party that's now dominated by Neoconservatives and Tea Party Nationalists, the Christian-Right, who obviously don't like Representative Paul. Because he's a Libertarian and not a Neoconservative, theocrat, Ron Paul is obviously not theocratic. And Tea Party members that don't like Paul's libertarian views on social issues. And Representative Paul clearly has to break through with one of those groups of Republican voters, who are all leaning towards Rick Perry.

For Ron Paul to have any shot in hell of winning the Republican nomination for President, which I don't believe he has much of one and his best bet is to target parts of the Tea Party that haven't gotten in bed yet with the Religious Right, to have any shot at winning the Republican nomination and this Ronald Reagan ad is an attempt to do that, he needs parts of the Tea Party. The conservative-libertarian wing if it. But the problem that will come with it, is that it could cost him some libertarian votes. Votes again that Ron Paul has to have to win the nomination and Libertarians aren't fans of President Reagan. Because of President Reagan's increase defense spending, debt and deficit spending, and War on Drugs. This is the main problem that Ron Paul has running for President in today's Republican Party and why he won't win the nomination. He has to keep the Libertarians and pick away at least one more faction of the Republican Party without losing Libertarians. I believe his best bet is the few Classical Conservatives that remain in the Republican Party, but they alone won't get him the nomination.

Besides attacking Governor Rick Perry right now who is very popular in the Republican Party is not a smart play. The more people including Republicans find out about him as this election cycle moves on, the more they won't like him or see him as unelectable. The fact that Rick Perry used to be a Democrat who endorsed Liberal Democratic Senator Al Gore for President back in 1988, will be a big enough problem for him. Or that he suggested that Texas should succeed from the Union or called Social Security unconstitutional, a program thats very popular in the Republican Party. The mountain of debt and deficits that Governor Perry has piled up in Texas, 2nd only to California and this a man who is running as a fiscal conservative. Republicans will understand these issues very well in the next few months and they'll come out. It's a little early for Representative Paul to be attacking Governor Perry, especially by comparing himself with Ron Reagan. Ron Paul will never be elected President of the United States I'l just flatly say that right now and I'm taking a leap or anything. Those are the facts and I think he knows that as well. He's a man without a major political party that can get him nominated and then elected President of the United States. I believe his whole presidential campaign is about advancing the Libertarian Movement which he's succeeding at.

Tuesday, September 6, 2011

Liberty Pen: Milton Friedman- The Social Security Myth

Source: Liberty Pen-
Source: Liberty Pen: Milton Friedman- The Social Security Myth

If you look at it, Social Security in some senses is a myth and perhaps has the wrong title and I'm not saying this as someone who is against Social Security. I do believe that we as a country should have some floor of standard of living that people can count on. When they are no longer able to work as senior citizens. Or aren't able to work enough to support themselves in their work years, the disabled to use as an example. But Social Security itself is only as secure as the Federal Government allows it to be by how they managed it. Which is a big problem right there, we have to rely on them not to waste the taxes that we pay into it on other government spending, as well as reforming it before it goes bankrupt.

There's no such thing as a Social Security lock box, that sure as hell is a myth. Which is a term that came about during the Bush-Gore presidential election of 2000. Perhaps what we should call Social Security instead, is Basic Living or Pension Insurance, because thats basically what it is. Its not a pension program but a pension insurance program, money that people can collect to go along with whatever pension they may have. Because a lot of people don't have a big enough pension to support themselves as senior citizens.

Which is a big problem, we don't save enough as people and lot of us don't make enough money to save, which is another problem in our economy. The success of Social Security is that its lift millions of senior citizens out of poverty, people who otherwise would've had to live with their kids. Or would've been at the mercy of private charity and provided these people with some basic standard of living that they could count on. If the Federal Government doesn't screw it up in their senior years.

What I would like to do with Social Security and our broader pension system after we fix the financing of it, is to give more americans freedom of choice in how they fiance their own retirement income. Something that former Senate Democratic Leader Tom Daschle calls Social Security Plus, that would be and add on to their Social Security. Where workers along with their employers would put money away in a personal retirement account that would be tax free. As long as they are putting money in the account. This would literally mean increasing payroll taxes at around 50% to be able to fiance it in a way to make it worth doing.

So we would need to cut taxes somewhere else in order to avoid a huge middle class tax hike. But I would be for that as well and then set up a system for low-income workers as well, where they could get their money that they put in their PRA. Back in a Tax Credit so they could afford to put money away for their retirement as well. But I would go farther with Social Security as I mentioned in previous pieces and take Social Security off of the backs of the Federal Government. And get the Administration's and Congress's hands off of it and out of it, to finance their own pet projects. And turn it over the states to run their own Social Security program.

Social Security is a myth in the sense that its not completely secure, only intended to be and only as secure as the Federal Government allows it to be. Which is a problem in itself, when they take money out of it thats supposed to be their for people when they retire. To finance their other pet projects.

Sunday, September 4, 2011

Good Intentions: The Welfare System and where it went wrong

As a liberal I believe one of government's jobs is to help the people who can't take care of themselves, because one of government's roles is to look after the welfare of its citizens. Not to take care of the people who are physically and mentally able of taking care of themselves or running their lives. But to help them, empower them to be able to take care of themselves. I'm a liberal not a socialist, I don't believe government's job is to take care of people who aren't able to be Self Sufficient. But to help the physically and mentally able people who can take care of themselves. And our Disabled Population can live on Disability Insurance where a lot of them are able to and do work part time. Where our Welfare System has failed is that its assumed that people who are poor and Low Skilled or who are Single Parents. Automatically aren't able to take care of themselves and did nothing to break the Cycle of Poverty. And this happens by people making good decisions in their own lives, not having kids too early and not abandoning their kids. Fathers and mothers but sticking around and raising their own kids fathers and mothers. We have too many fathers abandoning their kids especially in the Low Income Communities and this has been a major contributor to Poverty in America. And their kids are left with their mothers who are Low Skilled and unable to take care of their kids on their own. So they end up on Welfare Insurance or their kids end up in Foster Homes or being adopted because their mothers aren't able to take care of them. So what we have to do as a country is to break the Single Parent Cycle in poverty and to encourage both fathers and mothers to stay and raise their kids. And one way to do this is to reform Welfare Insurance by not just having it for Single Parents. But allow both parents to go on it who don't have the skills to take care of themselves. And allow both parents to get the skills that they need to become Self Sufficient, like education and other Life Skills while receiving Temporary Financial Assistance.

To move people off of Welfare Insurance, their are a couple of ways to do this. One and not a very popular way and a way I would describe as mean. Is simply to kick people off of Welfare Insurance and end the program even if they haven't even broken and rules or laws. Another way which is much more practical and I believe popular is to empower these people to get the skills that they need. In order to get themselves off of poverty and gets to Temporary Financial Assistance, Child Care, Medicaid, Public Housing, Food Stamps probably. But this assistance only helps sustain them while they are collecting Welfare Insurance. To actually move them off of Welfare Insurance so they can become Self Sufficient. Gets to education, empowering them to go back to school and getting their High School Diploma or GED. And then going to Community College, so they can get the skills that they need. In order to get a good enough job that allows them to support themselves and their families so they are Self Sufficient.

The reason why our Public Assistance System has failed so long up until the 1996 Welfare to Work Law, was because it was badly designed. It allowed generations of people to get trapped in the Cycle of Poverty and created a "Culture of Dependency". What we should've been doing instead is creating a Culture of Self Sufficiency where people who are on Welfare Insurance. Are empowered to get themselves off of Public Assistance.

Realizing Freedom: Cato Institute Scholar Tom G. Palmer on Libertarianism

What I respect about libertarianism as a liberal is their belief in Limited Government, which actually means Small Government to libertarians whether they put it that way or not. Their idea of Limited Government would probably like 1/6 of the current Federal Government. They would probably only keep the White House obviously, Defense, State, Justice, Treasury and maybe Commerce and the CIA. And Congress and the Judicial Branch in the Federal Government. What I also respect about libertarianism is of course their belief in Individual Freedom as well as what Libertarian Economist Milton Friedman. Called Maximize Freedom the freedom for people to live their own lives as they see fit, adults that is. As long as they are not hurting anyone else with their freedom, that means Decriminalization or Marijuana, Prostitution, Organized Gambling to use as examples. The idea that people should be able to do these things if they want as long as they are not hurting anyone else. And the fact that people do these things anyway, we might as well accept these facts and try to make these activities as safe as possible. Instead of them being done in the Black Market with no rules and no one paying taxes while doing these things. My issues with libertarianism as a liberal, are personal as well as politically. They are so rigid and consistent and I would even argue stubborn politically. That if you don't take the libertarian position on everything for the most part, your not one of them and your basically a traitor to the movement. Your some type of Big Government socialist or communist or something even if you might only disagree with libertarianism on a few issues. Which I believe has hurt not only the Libertarian Party in drawing more members but the broader Libertarian Movement which is much broader then the LP. Which points out a weakness in the LP, with its inability to draw more members.

If the Libertarian Movement wasn't so rigid ideologically and basically took the stance that as long as you support the broader movement and your with us lets say 90% of the time. Which the Democratic and Republican Parties generally would accept as a good percentage at least historically. Then you would see more liberals and conservatives become libertarians and we wouldn't have terms like Classical Libertarian, the rigid libertarians. Conservative Libertarians and Liberal Libertarians such as myself, notice how liberal and libertarian sound so much alike. Yet in today's politics liberals get mistaken for socialists or even progressives but thats a different blog. I'll give you a few examples, Social Issues the libertarian way of thinking is the way to go as far as I'm concern. And a lot of other americans feel the same way, we don't as a country like to be told as a country how to live our lives. Which is why more libertarians haven't become republicans because they don't like the Religious Right. But a consensus of americans do like things like Social Security and Medicare which has hurt the Libertarian Movement in the past. When libertarians have called for the elimination of these programs, so what I'm suggesting is that they moderate their to use as an example. Say we accept that these programs are here and people depend on them which is why we are not going to eliminate them. But we would like to decentralize them and even bring competition to them. Then I believe libertarians would have a lot more success politically.

I'm a liberal because I do believe in Individual Freedom and Maximize Freedom but again this is what separates me from libertarianism. Because I believe in those things as long as people aren't hurting anyone else with their freedom and thats where government comes in. To protect innocent Free People from the harm of people who would take that freedom away and then punish them. Whereas I believe libertarians are Anti Government to the point that I believe some of them don't even want government doing that. And this is another thing thats cost libertarians politically.

Saturday, September 3, 2011

Ron Paul: Socialism in a Libertarian Society vs Libertarianism in a Free Society

One of things I respect both about libertarianism and socialism is the diversity in both Political Ideology's. A casual looker at both ideology's might think that are complete opposites. Or terms like Socialist Libertarian is contradictory in terms, libertarians believe in complete Individual Liberty. Let Free People live their own lives as long as they are not hurting anyone else with their freedom. As well as keeping most of the money that they earn. And socialists believe in collectivism, don't let anyone make too much money, spread the wealth. And do these things through High Taxes and through government providing a lot of services. Instead of giving the people the freedom to do these things for themselves and if they do it better then others. So be it as libertarians tend to believe but socialists tend to be liberal-libertarian on Social Issues. Take Noam Chomsky, Dennis Kucinich and Ralph Nader to use as examples, except for maybe Gun Rights, Organized Gambling and Hate Speech in America. What I'm getting at the Ron Paul's of the World aren't the only faces of libertarianism and the Fidel Castro's of the World aren't the only faces of socialism. There's Classical Libertarianism, the Ron Paul's, there's Conservative Libertarianism, the Barry Goldwater's, there's Liberal Libertarianism where I would fit in as well as people like Dick Durbin, Russ Feingold . And then there's Socialist Libertarianism the Dennis Kucinich's of the World. Who believe that people should have the right to live their own lives as long as they are not hurting anyone else with what they are doing. But want to see more Government Intervention especially from the Federal Government in the economy. And believe the Federal Government should try to bring about what they call "Economic Justice" to society, trying to make society equal for all. And not letting anyone by force have too much more then others.

Marijuana is a perfect example of this at least in America, where libertarians, liberal such as myself, socialists and conservatives to a certain extent. Like the late Bill Buckley, who are in favor of Decriminalization or Marijuana and treating it like alcohol and tobacco have it fall under the same regulations and taxes. These four different factions of libertarianism all believe in Individual Liberty, we tend to differ on the US Constitution. Property Rights being a perfect example of this where libertarians, liberals, conservatives all believe in Property Rights. Where socialists don't tend to be a big fan of Property Rights and believe that government can force Private Business's to become Public Utility's. For the good of the country, banking being an excellent example of this when our Banking System looked like it was collapsing back in 2008.

Libertarians, liberals, conservatives and even socialists as hard as that might be to believe. All believe in Limited Government at least to a certain extent, but we all differ in how limited government should be. Especially when it comes to the economy where socialists don't believe in Limited Government as much as liberals, conservatives and libertarians.