Friday, December 23, 2011
When the Republican Party won back the entire Congress in 1994 for the first time since 1952. They quickly discovered that they liked being in power and went about figuring out how to keep it. Even though I'm a Liberal Democrat I believe the 104th Republican Congress of 1995-96 did a pretty good job. As far as laying out and passing their Conservative Agenda and even though Newt Gingrich. Was an anchor pulling down the GOP Popularity down, especially with the Government Shutdown of 1995. And almost cost them the House in 1996 Speaker Gingrich was able to get a lot done as Speaker. He had a very good Legislative Record, House Leader Dick Armey deserves a lot of credit as well, as far as passing Legislation and seeing it become law. He learned from the Government Shutdown and was able to work with the Senate and Clinton Administration. And was able to pass things like eliminating Unfunded Mandates, Welfare Reform, Tax Cuts, Medicare Reform, Balance Budget Act. And had the Congressional Republican Party stayed down this road, especially during the Bush Administration. Where from the 2003-07 they had all the power, Democrats held the Senate from 2001-03 and then won Congress back in 2006. Had they sticked with what Speaker Gingrich was doing, to lay out with the Contract with America. And kinda kept the Religious and Neo Right at bay and sticked with Economic and Foreign Policy. The Republican Party would be in much better shape today.
If the Republican Party just stayed with the Contract with America and built off of that. Perhaps George W. Bush doesn't become President and they go with John McCain who would've beaten Al Gore in 2000 I believe. And they would still be the Goldwater/Reagan Conservative Republican Party. But in 1999 when Dennis Hastert became Speaker of the House and you had Trent Lott Leading the Senate. Getting elected and reelected became the GOP's top priority. Even if that meant moving way from their Conservative Values and this just became more apparent when George W. Bush became President in 2001. We hate Big Government from the Democratic Party but Big Government coming from the Republican Party, not so bad. So you got things like exploding Congressional Earmarks, breaking Federal Records that Tip O'Neil could only dream of accomplishing. No Child Left Behind of 2002, giving the Federal Government more power in the Education System. With 9/11 giving the Federal Government more power with the War on Terror with things like the Patriot Act. 2003 the Medicare Prescription Drug Benefit, borrowing 500B$ to pay for it. Warrantless Wiretapping, Indefinite Detention. A Christmas List for Big Government Neoconservatives.
As the "Southern Avenger" says someone who's a real Classical Conservative maybe even Libertarian. The Republican Party when it use to be a Conservative Party, was about using Conservative Values. To get elected and into power this is what we would do if elected. Which is what Ronald Reagan did in 1980 but 1999 or so the Conservative Movement to the Republican Party meant. Do what we need to do get elected and reelected to keep Democrats out of office. Which is where the Modern GOP is today, as long as Democrats aren't in Power. We'll have a Conservative Government whether we govern as Conservatives or not.
Wednesday, December 21, 2011
Ron Paul For Dummies: "Ron Paul Against Current Racial Discrimination in Judicial System- The Anti-Racist Candidate"
|Source: Ron Paul For Dummies-U.S. Representative Ron Paul, R, Texas-|
Ron Paul makes a good case as a Libertarian. That if you really are a Libertarian and don't just call yourself that to defend either economic or civil liberties, that you can't be both a racist and a libertarian. It has to be one or the other, because if you're a Libertarian, you believe in individual liberty because you believe in individualism. But if you're a racist no matter which race you're a member of, you judge people as groups generally in a negative way. I definitely believe Ron Paul is a Libertarian and not a racist, but he's made some statements in the past about Israel and other Jews that could be viewed as racist and has been associated with people that have made racist statements about African-Americans that could be viewed as racist. However he's been associated with these groups, loosely or otherwise, that he's going to have to explain in a satisfactory way for him to have any chance of being elected President of the United States. Or even win the Republican nomination.
Because the Republican Party is not going to want to defend someone who's viewed as a racist. They don't want another Pat Buchanan or David Duke, they want to move past that. A lot of Republicans in the past some for good reason, have had to defend themselves against charges that they are racist. Like Pat Buchanan for his statements about Jewish and African-Americans and David Duke obviously for being with the Ku Klux Klan. So if you're a Libertarian Republican like Ron Paul, you're in the best position possible for a Republican to fight off those charges. Because Libertarians aren't racist. We obviously need to work to build a society especially in our criminal justice system. Where individual liberty sometimes for the rest of people's lives is at stake. Where we don't judge suspects by their race or ethnicity or who they hang out with or how they dress or talk. But what they do and arrest people for committing crimes. Not because they were the closest person to the crime.
We do have a lot of African-Americans in the criminal justice system as far as their percentage of the overall population and some of them may be in their because they were given unfair trials, had racist law enforcement or whatever the case may be. But a lot of them are in the CJS because of bad decisions that they made in their lives. One bad decision after another that built a road that they took to prison. Coming from a low-income, probably single-parent family in a rough neighborhood. Being stuck in bad schools where they weren't educated properly, those things aren't their faults. But dropping out of school, getting involved in organize crime at a young age and then committing crimes that landed them in prison, are their faults. So what we need to do instead is make sure these kids get a better shot at education in life, give their parents choice in where they send their kids to school, empower their parents to go back to school to get a good job so they don't have to live in rough neighborhoods and can move up to the middle class. And get to what's called "At Risk Youth" early on before they make mistakes that land them in prison. Make sure they get the counseling and education that they need to be able to go onto college. Or the next step in life for them after high school, to become productive citizens.
Tuesday, December 20, 2011
|Source: Liberty Pen- Tom Woods-|
If you look at what limited government and what federalism is, it's about limiting what government can do. Which is how we protect our constitutional and individual rights.
So government couldn't break in our house with out a search warrant or for no reason. Couldn't take our property away from us, force us to live somewhere. In an attempt to limit how big government can be how much authority it has.
So Individuals have the individual liberty to make these own decisions in how they live their own lives. And limit the Federal Government to what authority it has in the U.S. Constitution and leave the rest of the power up to state and local government's as well as the private sector to make these decisions. To prevent the Federal Government from doing things just because they believe it's a good idea. And by limiting what the Federal Government can do, which is one thing that Limited Government is about. We can limit the amount of money that they can take from us by limiting its growth.
That's why limited government is so important, to figure out what the Federal Government should do. And giving it the resources to do those things in a fiscally responsible way, because it simply can't do everything. It's not very good at the things that it does right now, like the so called War on Poverty excellent example of that.
We are defending countries around the world that have the resources to defend themselves.
We have Federal departments that can't be audited we don't know the size of their budgets.
If we really have a limited government and technically we still do because our Federal courts have thrown out some of the laws that Congress has passed making government even bigger as unconstitutional, but what we really need is a more limited government. Get back to the U.S. Constitution and figure out what the Commerce Clause means. Because Congress and the administration always use the Commerce Clause to justify new laws and programs.
And then also figure out what the Federal Government should be doing and then only limit it to those things and nothing else. Cut back, eliminate things that it shouldn't be doing that they are currently doing. Or pass them down to the states, or Privatize them and turn them into non profits.
Which is what I would like to do with the safety net including the big entitlement programs. Social Security, Medicare and Medicaid. For me my limited government as far as the Federal Government is concern, would be national security, foreign policy, interstate law enforcement, control of the currency and Regulation. The Federal Government is very good at national security, foreign policy and interstate law enforcement. Use to go a good job of regulating when regulations were simple and could be understood. So so great with currency right now with the FED. Limit the Federal Government and eliminate a lot of the junk it does now, privatize the safety net to be run as non-profit community services.
A more limited Federal Government and Federalist system and using the safety net to empower low-income workers and low-skilled non-workers, would be a big boost to the non-profit community service sector. Send more power back to the states like with emergency management so this can be in place as soon as it needed. And you can have enough resources on the ground when they are needed. Instead of having to call Washington for reinforcements, we could have a much more efficient and affordable Federal Government. And be able to keep our taxes down by limiting Governmental Power. I've blogged this before, but is very important. Not in favor or interested in small government or big government. But ab effective limited government at all levels doing only the things that we need it to do that they have the constitutional authority to do. And fund it with the taxes that it needs to perform those services well that is consistent with a strong growing economy. Which would be smaller than your typical social democracy, or authoritarian regime. But bigger than essentially having no government at all.
Monday, December 19, 2011
At first when I heard of Rand Paul running for Senate in 2010, I though he could be interesting a Libertarian Republican. Then as we was getting closer to being elected to the Senate and that was really never in doubt. His opponent Democrat Jack Conway despite being the Attorney General of Kentucky wasn't very strong. I started hearing things that Dr. Paul was a Social Conservative, well in American Politics. That means you believe in an Authoritarian Big Government with limited Social Freedom. Which is the opposite of my liberalism and I'm a liberal across the board, I don't like any form of Big Government. But lately when I've heard Sen. Paul speak against the Patriot Act and against Indefinite Detention of Terrorist Suspects and other Suspects, that gives me the impression. That Sen. Paul is serious about being a Social Conservative for real, meaning someone who believes in Conserving Social Freedom. Not subtracting from the current Social Freedom that we have, which is what Religious and Neoconservatives and Authoritarians believe in. That we have to limit Individual Liberty in order to protect National Security. Rand Paul is not Jim DiMint or Michelle Bachmann, he truly believes in Individual Liberty. He's closer to his father Ron Paul or Sen. Mike Lee or Ron Reagan or Barry Goldwater. Then Dick Cheney, Paul Wolfowitz or any other Neoconservative you want to name.
I'm with Sen. Paul on a lot of the Fiscal Challenges that we face as a country and the need to cut Federal Spending. And Decentralize the Federal Government, I'm to the left of Sen. Paul on abortion, Marijuana Legalization and I'm sure a few other issues. I also wouldn't completely Privatize Social Security and allow people to invest all of their Payroll Taxes. In Private Accounts or the Stock Market but I do support Social Security Plus. Keeping the base Social Security Income in place but allowing people to invest their own money. To prepare for their own retirements, that their employers would match at Tax Free for both sides. That this money could only be used for retirement. I also wouldn't convert Medicare into a Private For Profit Health Insurer but allow Senior Citizens to stay with Medicare. Or opt out for other Health Insurance, Healthcare and Health Insurance to me at least is about Freedom of Choice. Not Uncle Sam knowing what's best because a lot of times he doesn't. I'm a Liberal Democrat so I probably wouldn't vote for Rand Paul, unless he was running against a Socialist Democrat. But the thing is you would have an easier time finding a an ocean in Kentucky then a Socialist. You can count them on one hand and not need all of the fingers.
Rand Paul to me represents the Future of the Republican Party if they ever get passed Religious and Neoconservatism. Sen. Paul also represents the Future of the Tea Party Movement again if they ever get out of bed with the Religious and Neoconservative Movement. And drop people like Michelle Bachmann and Jim DiMint like sack of potatoes and get back to Goldwater-Reagan Classical Conservatism.
Friday, December 16, 2011
|Source: Jack Hunter-|
Actually, I agree with Neoconservatives that say libertarianism isn't conservative and its certainly not part of the modern conservative movement. Libertarianism is clearly not neoconservative and part of that movement which a lot of modern Conservatives are today, along with Religious Conservatives. Who tend to be statist except for when it comes to the welfare state, to me any way.
I'm a liberal, so it might sound strange hearing me speak up for conservatism especially in this very partisan environment. Where you have the two major political parties trying to destroy the other to obtain absolute power. These so-called modern Conservatives aren't actually conservative as far as I'm concern and as far as a lot of Conservative-Libertarians and Libertarians are concern as well. But Religious Conservatives in America who are basically Christian Theocrats, are authoritarians and statists wanting to use the Federal Government and in Michigan the state government there, to protect people from themselves.
Statists on the Far-Right, got this idea that free societies are dangerous when people are free to live their own lives. And you need government to police people from themselves. Just like people who are called modern Liberals aren't Liberals. Because they are Statist as well when it comes to economic policy as well as gun control and free speech. People who are called modern Liberals are basically Democratic Socialists and in some cases Neo-Communists, if not Communists all together.
Libertarianism to me anyway is basically a diverse political ideology. With Classical Libertarians like Ron Paul, who are basically anti-government and basically just one step away from being anarchists. Then you have Conservative Libertarians who are very worried about governmental power especially power coming from the Federal Government. But aren't anti-government. They do believe in things like law and order, they just don't want government trying to protect people from themselves. And tend to be tougher on foreign policy as well, but that civil liberties are also important in national security.
Conservative Libertarians like Barry Goldwater, Ron Reagan, Bill Buckley and others. And there also Liberal Libertarians like Gary Johnson and I would add Jon Huntsman to that list. Who are also very worried about governmental power, especially coming from the Federal Government. Who don't believe in dismantling the safety net but would like to see more competition as well as privatization in it. And that the Federal Government shouldn't be running the safety net and trying to solve every problem on its own. I'm pretty close to being a Liberal Libertarian myself.
Conservatism to me at least in a political sense, is about conserving individual freedom, individual rights, the Bill of Rights, and the U.S. Constitution. Letting free people live their own lives in a free society. Its not just about national security and even using government to protect people so much, like looking after what they read and who they talk to and locking suspects up indefinitely, because you're worried they might be found innocent. And not just about economic liberty as well. But its the whole ballpark when it comes to individual liberty. The right of free people to live their own lives freely in a free society. As long as they are not hurting anyone else with what they are doing. If you look at the word Conservative, it means someone who believes in conserving. And in a free society that means conserving freedom. Something so-called Religious and Neoconservatives don't understand.
Thursday, December 15, 2011
|Source: Sidewinder 77- Professor Milton Friedman-|
The reason for capitalism or in America the reason for American capitalism, is that in an economy like that, its assumed that the people can make it on their own if given the opportunity. That there’s a limit to what government can do and should do. The whole point of constitutional law and limited government and federalism. That government doesn’t do everything right and when it tries to do too much, like taking so much out of the economy to take care of its people, doing things for the people that they can do for themselves. Like run a business, make their own health care decisions, plan for their retirement, decide where to send their kids to school, etc. And you can go down the line.
That if you give the Federal Government all that responsibility to go along with defending the country and other areas and then you add things like trying to run the lives of people, that you would get in a Marxist-Socialist system like in North Korea. That government will be too expensive and inefficient. Trying to make the decisions for people it doesn’t know. But if you give the people the power to make these decisions for themselves, they’ll be able to make much better choices for themselves, because they know who they are and what they need. Which is what we’ve been in America for 235 years now in this liberal democracy. And that you need profit motive in a liberal democracy. Perhaps not in every area of the economy, but in most sectors, so people have incentive to succeed to be as productive as they possibly can, to be as successful as they can.
You have profit motive in a liberal democracy so people know they can be as successful as they can based on their education, qualifications and production and you have a safety net. Not there to take care of people, but to help then when they fall down to get themselves up. So they know they’ll have to take care of themselves, because government won’t be there indefinitely to take care of them. Just to help them in their need. Which is different from government taking care of people. Which assumes that people in need having nothing to worry about, because government will always be there to take care of them.
But with a safety net you only have that there for people who are in need to help them sustain themselves in their time of need, but also help them get back on their feet. Take profit motive out of the economy, what do we have instead, you want government controlling everything with everyone dependent on government to take care of us? Do you want to make government an absolute power with no one to answer to like they have in North Korea? Or do you want a system where everyone has an opportunity to be as successful as possible based on what they put into the country.
I prefer the last approach and history proves that works better. It’s the old Jack Kennedy line, “not ask what your country can do for you, but what you can do for your country”. Which is why we need what’s been called a world-class education system where everyone in the country has an opportunity to be successful in life. That’s how we win the so-called War on Poverty. By moving people out of poverty into the middle class and to become self-sufficient. Not by having them dependent on government their whole lives. And not allowing for their kids to be dependent on government their whole lives. Living on people who take care of themselves and are productive.
Wednesday, December 14, 2011
The best way to have the best economy possible, is to have an Economic System that creates the right Infrastructure Investment. For one so people can get around and be safe doing it but also it creates jobs. And benefits the Manufacturing Industry because supplies will be needed to do those projects. You also need an Education System that can produce as many Educated Workers as possible so a lot of people can be qualified for good jobs. You also need a lot Individual Liberty in the System so people can have the Liberty to go out, get a good job start their own business's. And be as productive as possible to make as good of a living as possible. You need some type of Safety Net to help people get back to work and help them survive while they are down. It doesn't have to be Centrally Controlled but it has to be sufficient enough to get the job done and be Financially Affordable. You need a Tax Code thats fair and doesn't take too much money out of the economy and is simple. You need Foreign Trade so you can sell as many products as possible to as many customers as possible. To produce as much wealth as possible to create as many jobs as possible. And you have to be able to regulate well enough to punish and prevent abuses in the system but not regulate too much. That you make it difficult for company's to comply and stay in business, spending a lot of money on lawyers and so fourth.
You need all of these things in an Economic System for it to be successful. And these are things that America as a country use to do very well that we've gotten away from. Apparently Michael Parenti is arguing that wealth creates poverty, a socialist couldn't of said that any better. But its not true, what creates poverty, is a lack of education and infrastructure and under regulation. Spend some time in a Third World country or even spend some time in some of the poor States in America or poor areas. And you'll know exactly what I mean and the answer to bringing down poverty, we'll never eliminate poverty. But we can bring it down to a much lower level, is by creating more wealth. Through Infrastructure Investment and Education in the under served areas, so those people can get the skills that they need. And be able to get around and be able to build their own wealth, you don't eliminate poverty just through Welfare Checks. All those do which is important, is help sustain people while they are still living in poverty. How they get out of poverty is through Education so they can get themselves on their feet and again create their own wealth.
Unless your a socialist American Capitalism is a great thing because it allows people to take out of the system what they put into it. And keep a lot of the rewards that they produced for themselves. And for the people who don't produce very much, chances are it has to do with a lack of education. So if you empower them to get themselves a good education, then they'll have the skills that they need. To go out and get a good job, be productive and create their own wealth.
Tuesday, December 13, 2011
When people on the Front Line of the War on Drugs, the so called "Drug Warriors", say that the War on Drugs is failing or failed. We should listen to these people because they are fighting the War on Drugs for us. They are our "Drug Warriors" who fight this Failed War for us that was declared by President Nixon forty years ago. And all we've gotten out of this War is 1T$ spent and turning Drug Addicts into criminals and throwing people in prison for what they do to themselves. Even if they haven't hurt anyone else with what they are doing. Thats exactly what Big Government is about whether it comes from the Far Left or Far Right. In the War on Drugs case the Far Right, Big Government is about power, the Power of Government to be able to control how its own people live their lives. Some people especially on the Right who tend to be Economic Libertarians. But not Libertarian on Social Issues, say Big Government is about money, take a lot of peoples money away from them. For the government to control in order to control society and make people dependent on Big Government. But money is just the tool, a big tool but a tool to Finance the Power of Big Government. The War on Drugs case in point its all about power the power for Big Government to control how individuals live their own lives.
The War on Drugs is stupid and counterproductive because criminalizes people for what they do to themselves. Which has had a major negative impact on our Criminal Justice System with all the overcrowded jails and prisons we now have as a result. And its hypocritical because it allows people to use drugs that are just as if not more dangerous then marijuana. First of all my answer to the War on Drugs and what I would do instead. Is not go from a system where all of these narcotics are illegal. Except for alcohol and tobacco, to a system where everything is legal, because of the negative effects it would have on our Healthcare System. Thats already way to expensive but what I would do is Legalize Marijuana but then Regulate it like Alcohol. 21 or over to smoke, grow or sell, can't operate as a doctor or vehicles while high etc. And then criminalize people who break these laws like we would criminalize people. For drinking, selling or making alcohol underage and without a license. Get the Bad Actors out of the system and let the people who comply with the Drug laws go about their business. And then instead of sending people and addicts who use heroin, cocaine, met etc, force them into Drug Rehab instead at their expense. We would save a lot of money and space in out Criminal Justice System with an approach like this.
Just because you make something illegal and government says its the wrong thing to do. Doesn't mean it goes away, it just means it goes underground if there's a market for it. Again the War on Drugs case in point narcotics are now more available in 2011 going into 2012 then they were in 1971. When the United States officially Declared War on Drugs, its time we recognize this and change course in how we deal with narcotics. Before we lose any more lives with this misplaced War on Drugs.
Monday, December 12, 2011
The last thing that Mitt Romney needed with both Newt Gingrich who more and more looks like the favorite. To win the GOP Nomination for President and with Ron Paul also on his tail. Flip Flopper now trails both Gingrich and Paul in Iowa, was another bad mistake something else to make him look more out of touch with Working Class Voters. Especially in a State like Iowa where basically the whole State is Blue Collar, even the Religious Right there. The 10K$ bet he proposed to Rick Perry Saturday Night on whether Romney supports or supported a Federal Healthcare Mandate. Was his George HW Bush 1992 looking at his watch moment in the debate. Who am I and what am I doing here moment, Mitt Romney's appeal is that he's electable. That he's a solid Economic and Foreign Policy Conservative that can win Independent Voters. You don't win Independent Voters who tend to be Middle Class and can't afford to make 10K$ bets casually. By doing things like that. In 1994 Ted Kennedy when they were opponents for Sen. Kennedy's Senate Seat. Said that Romney wasn't Pro Choice on abortion but Multiple Choice. Seventeen years later that line still hurts Romney with positions he's changed his mind on. Four years ago Mike Huckabee, who I might not even agree with on the weather. But who has an excellent Sense of Humor, said that Romney looks like the guy who fired me or my father something like that, the big bad CEO. And now he has all of this baggage, talk about Newt Gingrich's baggage, you don't have enough bags to store the baggage of either Newt or Mitt. Plus he's Flip Flopper and now the causal bet.
Mitt Romney on paper is the strongest Republican Presidential Candidate the GOP has in a General Election. If he can get the Republican Party fully behind him, working and voting for him. Because he's solid on both Economic and Foreign Policy in the GOP but liberal enough on Social Issues. That he wouldn't scare Independent Voters plus he was Governor of a major Democratic State. To go along with having a very solid record in the Private Sector and not being addicted to Congress. He's clearly an outsider to Washington as well as with the Tea Party and Religious Right of the Republican Party. Plus he's very intelligent and can speak to and debate all of the major issues that the country faces. Which is why I don't like him because he could beat President Obama in the Presidential Election and would beat him. If the economy is not clearly improving with strong Economic and Job Growth. With a strong economy but or at least solid improvements in the economy, the President beats Romney 52-48. Where the election comes down to three States but with a sluggish economy, Mitt could win the election 55-45 win 35 plus States. But he has to get the Republican Nomination first and stop shooting his foot off until he runs out of toes. And in this campaign alone he's shot off two toes alone, "Corporations are People" back in Iowa and the 10K$ bet.
The way the Republican Party knocks off Flip Flopper who they clearly don't like, like how kids feel about their Evil Stepmother. That their father married, at least half of them. Because he'll say just about whatever he needs to, to help him politically. Is by beating him in Iowa and New Hampshire. That means someone other then Mitt wins those first two contests. Gingrich or Paul in both contests with the other winning the other State or one of them winning both States. And then the GOP would be able to knock out Flip Flopper in South Carolina. If Mitt wins either Iowa or New Hampshire, he's still the favorye to win the Republican Nomination.
Wednesday, December 7, 2011
The next time I hear a republican say he's against any Tax Hikes what's so ever but supports letting the Payroll Tax Cut expire. I going to get someone to stick their head in the toilet after they just used before they flush it. Of course I would never do something like that, without the money being right but thats how mad I would be. Cutting the Payroll Tax is a Tax Cut by definition so letting it expire, your letting the Payroll Tax go back up. Which is what a Tax Hike is by definition, so if your against extending the Payroll Tax Cut, your by definition supporting a Tax Hike. And House Republicans were gambling about letting the Payroll Tax Cut expire, that it wouldn't be notice because it benefits a lot of people that need it. That don't normally support them because the Republican Party for good reason looks like they are in the bag of wealthy people. Not carrying about people who are struggling and can use a Payroll Tax Cut. I would argue for making the Payroll Tax Cut permanent, because its a Regressive Tax on people in the Middle Class. And especially on Low Income Workers and makes their lives harder because they have less money. Especially on top of the Income Tax which is one reason why I support scrapping the Federal Income Tax as well. And replacing it with a Progressive Income Tax but thats for a different blog. The Payroll Tax Cut has to be extended to prevent a huge Middle Class Tax Hike. A punch to the economy thats still fragile but improving that it can't afford to take right now.
Nick Gillespie of the Reason Organization, a Libertarian Advocacy Group does have a point about the Payroll Tax in how it effects Social Security. That the Payroll Tax is suppose to be dedicated for Social Security and Medicare, like spouses are suppose to be dedicated to each other. When we have a 50% Divorce Rate in America, Congress sometimes goes out of their way to spend Payroll Taxes on their Pet Projects, when they don't feel like paying for things. Which is about as often as thieves, which is again why I support turning Social Security over to the States. And let them collect those taxes but have fifty different versions of Social Security in America. With each State having their own Pension System, expanding what Social Security could do. For people in their retirements to go along with other Pension Plans they may have. The only good idea well I've heard two good ideas from Rick Perry so far a Presidential Candidate. Turning Social Security over to the States and requiring the countries we give Foreign Aid to. To apply for any aid that they receive from us, my Social Security plan would be different. Because each State would have their own Social Security System but they wouldn't be running it. It would be a Semi Private Non Profit Well Regulated Retirement Insurance System.
We should make the Payroll Tax Cut permanent, to help out the Middle Class and Low Income Workers because its a Regressive Tax. While we are making High Earners pay more into the system and taking less out to fix the system. And establish Social Security Plus to the system that would still have a floor of income in it. That would be the Payroll Tax by allowing people to increase their own Payroll Tax, if they decide to. To give more people Financial Independence in how they plan for their retirement and how they live in their retirement. Once they retire.
Tuesday, December 6, 2011
I like any Social Security or Pension Reform plan that expands Freedom of Choice in how people can plan for their own retirement. As long as there's a Floor of Income that people could count on. That under my plan would be 125% of the Federal Poverty Rate or roughly 25K$ a year right now. So if people were to blow their Retirement Fund through bad investments or business deals, bad economy whatever. They would at least have the Social Security Minimum that they could count on. Which today is 14-15$ a year which to me seems way too low, thats only around 60% of the current Poverty Level. And some people rely on that for all of their income and then have to rely on Public Assistance and Private Charity to make up the rest. Get that up to around 25K$ a year and that would help take some of the strain off our Public Assistance and Private Charity. My plan is what's called Social Security Plus which is a plan that was developed early in the last decade or even before that in late 1990s. When the last Bi Partisan Commission on Social Security was established that didn't produce a Final Product. Newt Gingrich's plan is similar to this but he would allow people to put their Payroll Taxes in the Stock Market and other investments. What I would do is leave the Payroll Taxes in the SS System but allow people to increase their own Payroll Tax. That their employer would match and they could use that revenue not to spend. Unless they pay a 100% Penalty on their consumption that would go into the SS System. But they could use that money to invest in the Stock Market or other Business Ventures. Like their own business, investing in a business, a side business to go with their regular job, money they make in Real Estate. Any Lawful Investments they may make and it would be their choice.
Social Security Plus that then Senate Minority Leader Tom Daschle endorsed back in 2004 when the Bush Administration. Was looking at Social Security Reform, and they developed a similar Plan to the Gingrich Plan. Won't save Social Security on its own but it would reform our Pension System by giving people the Freedom of Choice to plan their own retirements. And so people aren't so heavily dependent on Social Security and have more Retirement Security when they retire. Because if your completely dependent on Social Security to pay your bills, your living in poverty. Your making around 15K$ a year and probably living off of Public Assistance. So this is why SS Plus would be beneficial for those people who are the Working Poor. Not Poor Workers but Workers who live in poverty because we could expand the Earned Income Tax Credit to allow them to be in SS Plus as well. But to save the Social Security System, we have to fix the financing and turn it into more of a Welfare Retirement System. For the people who need it, by increasing Payroll Taxes on people who afford it and only having people who need it collect from it. And lowering taxes on the people who get hit hard by the Payroll Tax. And making the floor of Social Security Benefits 125% of Poverty so they can survive easier.
I don't agree very often with Newt Gingrich especially on Social Issues and the War on Terror. But he tends to come up with good and interesting ideas on Economic and Education Policy as well as Social Welfare Policy. And his goal of giving people Freedom of Choice in Retirement Income, is solid and worth considering. Even though its different from mine but at least he's put a plan on the table and if Mitt Romney did something like this. Months ago maybe he would have the Tea Party behind him and not trailing in the polls right now. Having republicans believing he's a centrist.
Monday, December 5, 2011
One of the reasons why the United Kingdom and European Union as well as the Imperial Republic of Japan have such large Welfare States. To put it simply, because they can afford to but the better question is why do they have such large Welfare States. Compared with the United States is because their Defense Budgets, are about 1/5 of ours as part of their GDPs. And a good question would be why is that, because not only are we responsible for the National Defense of America but I would argue North America as a whole. As well as Britain, Scandinavia, Europe, Saudi Arabia, Korea and Japan. All Developed Nations that have the resources to defend themselves but American Tax Payers spend hundreds of billions of dollars every year to defend them. Now I'm not arguing that we cut our Defense Budget by 200B$ a year or so, so we can have a Welfare State like Europe, far from it. But to point out that we shouldn't have to pay for the National Security of countries that can afford their own defense. Let their Tax Payers pick up the bill for their own National Security, bring our Tax Revenue home that we spend. Defending other countries and lets pay down down our Federal Debt and Deficit as we are Rebuilding America. And work with our allies jointly on intelligence and Humanitarian Missions, like in Libya. NATO being an excellent example of this and let Developed Nations defend themselves. We have a National Debt of now 15T$ and a National Deficit of 1.8T$, we spend over 700B$ a year alone on defense. We also spend around 200B$ a year defending Developed Nations. The Defense Budget has to be on the table in Deficit Reduction.
American Foreign Policy should be about defending American National Interests, not interfering in Civil Wars. Unless there's genocide going on there and we can play a role along with our Regional Allies. And have a good chance of success there with our limited role, Libya being an excellent example of that. I would argue Neoconservatism doesn't really work anywhere, as much as the Heritage Foundation advocates for it. But especially in Foreign Policy where we had eight years of it in the Bush Administration and to a certain extent. Still have it in how the Obama Administration is conducting the War on Terror. You can't build and design nations for people and what type of government they should have. Which is what we tried to in Afghanistan and Iraq, they have to do that for themselves. Now you can help them with resources and sorta thing like in Foreign Aid. But they have to do the work for themselves And figure out what type of country they are going to have on their own. They live in the country, they know their own people, culture and land. They have to do the work on their own. Afghanistan and Iraq both have been examples of how not to conduct Foreign Policy. We were sorta making it up as we went along and only have had success lately because we've changed course.
American Foreign Policy needs to be based on our own National Security Interests. We are just one country and are simply not capable of governing and defending the rest of the World. And we certainly can no longer afford to defend large Developed Nations that have the resources to defend themselves. Which is why they should do that for themselves and America get back to Rebuilding America. And we do some of our own Nation Building with our own money. Instead of trying to build other nations for them and deciding what type of countries and governments they should have.
Friday, December 2, 2011
What is the role of a Safety Net and again I emphasize the term Safety Net which is different from a Welfare State. Safety Net to catch people who fall through the cracks of the economy. Not to encourage people to fall through those cracks, a Welfare State is basically designed to take care of people. So when you have a Safety Net, the idea is to have as many Working Adults as possible taking care of themselves. And being Self Sufficient, not quitting their jobs even if they are Low Skilled to go on Public Assistance. And not be expected to work again and for the people who don't have the skills to be Self Sufficient. And are physically and mentally capable of working, empower those people to get themselves the skills. That they need in order to get a good job so they can take care of themselves and their families. Not encourage people to quit their jobs, especially people with kids to go on Public Assistance. Not pay people more on Public Assistance then they would collect in the Private Sector. Based on the skills that they have for working, which is why I believe Welfare and Unemployment Insurance. Should pay less then the people on these programs would've made with a job. So these people have as much incentive as possible to go out, go back to school and get a job. People should not be making a good living collecting Public Assistance, thats just there to help people sustain themselves when they are in need. Not take care of them so they don't feel the need to go back to work and earn a living.
What we should do instead is reform our entire Social Insurance System in America and with the debt and deficit we face. That we are going to have to address, this is the best time to do that. To get our debt and deficit under control and cut some of the expenses of the Federal Government. First by getting the Safety Net off of the backs of the Federal Government and the Federal Budget. By turing all of our Social Insurance Services over to the States in the short term. Not to be eliminated because all of them perform a critical roles and are needed. But to be run closer to the people and so Congress and the Administration can't mess with them. And to cut some of the Red Tape so they don't have to call Washington for permission to make reforms. And then the States would set up their own Social Insurance Systems but then tern their Social Insurance Services, that are affiliated with the Federal Government. Over to the Private Sector to be turned into Semi Private Non Profit Self Financed Community Services. And the Federal, State and Local Governments would serve as regulators with all of these Community Services. That are only in the business to help people in need sustain themselves but also empower them to get themselves on their feet. That would have to meet basic Federal Standards in how they operate.
People who aren't eligible to receive Public Assistance, shouldn't receive it obviously. People shouldn't be encouraged to quit their jobs to collect Public Assistance instead. Public Assistance is for people that need it for whatever reasons can't take care of themselves. And its there to help while they are in need and help them get up on their feet. So they become Self Sufficient and can take care of themselves and their families. Not to be paid out to people who don't need this assistance and not to encourage people who are taking care of themselves. To quit their jobs and go on Public Assistance.
Thursday, December 1, 2011
The main reason why I don't like Term Limits in Congress, even if they are generous. Is because I don't like the idea of Government limiting who we can vote for, as long as we meet basic qualifications. We are alive, free, American Citizens and meet the basic Age Requirement to Run for Office. The reason why Term Limits makes sense for Executives, Presidents, I would add Vice Presidents, Governors , County Executives and Mayors. Is because there's a lot of power given to Executives, Individual Power and you don't want them in Public Office. Indefinitely making decisions based on how to get reelected but if you Term Limit Executives. That gives them the Political Freedom, until their term is over. To make decisions that may not be popular but may be the right thing to do. And of course they can make unpopular decisions that are the wrong thing to do. Like pardoning murderers that are clearly guilty and that sorta thing. But thats why we have Legislatures to step in and try to convince the Executive not to do those things. And can threaten Executives with impeachment and that sorta thing. Term Limits aren't the answer, what we need is Congressional Reform as well as Campaign Reform and we need to try to force these things on Congress. Things like Full Disclosure on all Campaign Contributions as well as people who lobby them, as well as their activities in Congress. Who they talk to, what are their positions, their Voting Records, what bills and amendments to bills they've offered and sponsored. And allow their constituents to take their whole record in consideration on whether they should reelected them or not.
Congressional Term Limits are popular and have appeal to them, especially amongst Independent Voters and Members of Third Parties. Because they see it as their shot to get to Congress and to hold Congress accountable. But our Founding Fathers got it right for the most part when they set up. How long Members of Congress would serve, Representatives who serve in the House serve two years at a time. Because the House moves quickly and responds to issues quickly and can write and pass a lot of bills quickly. Whether they become law or not and they wanted the House to have to answer their constituents quickly. Where in the Senate, Senators have to respond generally to a broad range of people throughout a State. Unlike. Reps. who tend to represents a small segment of a State that tends to be pretty partisan. And each State only gets two Sens. and the Senate moves slowly and you usually needs Bi Partisan cooperation to get anything done. So they figured that people should give Sens. six years before they decide whether they should go back to Congress or not. Because they have to speak and answer to a whole State, not just a Partisan Faction of a State. One of the reasons why so many Senators run for President because they feel they can speak to a wide range of people. A lot of Reps. run for the Senate so they can get Elected Statewide and widen their base.
Term Limits aren't the answer they are an attempt at a quick fix to a much larger problem with Unintended Consequences. Like limiting who voters can vote for when we already have enough limits. What we need instead is Congressional and Campaign Reform so we can do a better job at holding our Members of Congress more accountable. I would go even farther by making the Leadership in both the House and Senate, Majority and Minority. At Large Members of Congress and make them National Leaders, meaning the Speaker and Minority Leader of the House. Wouldn't also Represent a House District but just hold their Leadership Post and do the same thing in the Senate with the Leader and Minority Leader. To cut back on these Leaders using their Leadership Positions to benefit their District or State. And instead having them take more of a National View in performing their jobs.