About Me

In writing the "About Me" portion of this blog I thought about the purpose of the blog - namely, preventing the growth of Socialism & stopping the Death Of Democracy in the American Republic & returning her to the "liberty to abundance" stage of our history. One word descriptions of people's philosophies or purposes are quite often inadequate. I feel that I am "liberal" meaning that I am broad minded, independent, generous, hospitable, & magnanimous. Under these terms "liberal" is a perfectly good word that has been corrupted over the years to mean the person is a left-winger or as Mark Levin more accurately wrote in his book "Liberty & Tyranny" a "statist" - someone looking for government or state control of society. I am certainly not that & have dedicated the blog to fighting this. I believe that I find what I am when I consider whether or not I am a "conservative" & specifically when I ask what is it that I am trying to conserve? It is the libertarian principles that America was founded upon & originally followed. That is the Return To Excellence that this blog is named for & is all about.

Wednesday, August 31, 2011

ACTA Study Update 2011-2012

Earlier this week ACTA (American Council of Trustees & Alumni) released their 2011-2012 edition of their invaluable study of the state of general education in our nation's colleges and universities.  The updated study covers all the major public and private colleges and universities in all 50 states -- a total of 1,007 four year institutions that together enroll more than seven million undergraduate students.  Click on WhatWillTheyLearn.com to check out any school's grading from A to F based on ACTA's seven core subject evaluations - composition, U.S. government or history, economics, literature, math, science & foreign language at an intermediate level.

ACTA reports that "most of the findings are deeply troubling as several crucial subjects are completely ignored by American colleges and universities...And paying a lot doesn't get you a lot. The higher the tuition, the more likely it is that students are left without guidance on general education...The average tuition & fees at the "A" schools is $16,223. At the "F" schools, it is $27,529.  The average number of subjects required by the Ivy League schools is only 2.88...The What Will They Learn? study shows that many colleges are letting students and taxpayers down. Tuition is at an all-time high, yet colleges and universities aren't ensuring students have the skills and knowledge they need to succeed in careers and life."  This latter point is the most important to me – are our schools graduating people who can find employment or start a business either of which increases the American standard of living?

If you know of someone who will be attending college in the near future the above ACTA website is a common sense starting point to begin your search or @ least verify the school of your choice will be teaching what you want to pay for.  For instance I checked out Albany State (just by chance) & found it got much higher marks from ACTA than many much better known schools. 

But my study of the website did result in my questioning ACTA about their own grade inflation – in particular I questioned why Columbia got a "B" with only four of the seven core subjects being required.  The answer to my question is below from Anne Neal – President of ACTA.

---ACTA Response To Grade Inflation Question---

Hi Doug and Carol,

Great to hear from you!

ACTA doesn't inflate our grades—if we did, surely there would be more "As" than 19 (a mere 1.9%) out of 1007 schools! In devising our grading scale and criteria, we strive to avoid two extremes—grade inflation on the one hand, and being too severe or not giving credit where it is due on the other, both of which would likely be counterproductive and defeat the purpose of our project. After all, the goal of our ratings is to point to some serious gaps in today's general education practices, give much-needed guidance to parents and students, and, at the same time, encourage colleges and universities to improve their own practices.

It would certainly be unfair to rate schools like Columbia—which, though not fully in line with our criteria, nevertheless has a commendable core—with ones like Brown or Evergreen State, schools that openly admit that they have no general education requirements whatsoever. Hence, Columbia gets a B, while the other schools fail. I think that's where we want to be!

I hope this answers your concerns.

Best, Anne

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Solutions- Forward March - Clockwise

As promised I post below the solutions to the subject riddle of people who did solve it.  Sorry for those who tried & could not get it.  Please try again with the info below.
---Solution #1---
Easy solution. Instead of starting the no. 6 from the top, start the circular portion of the no. 6 from the top in a clockwise direction ending it at the top.
---Solution #2---
ha - make the numeral 6 BACKWARDS! Cya soon
---Solution #3---
It is possible. Most of us start writing the number "6" at the top and finishing with the circle. If you start your "6" with a clockwise circle and then finish by going up to the place that most of us start with it will work.

Monday, August 22, 2011

Forward March - Clockwise

Thanks to a subscriber to ReturnToExcellence.net for passing along this challenge from an orthopedic surgeon that follows the popular "Intelligence Test" of a few months ago that only one person that I know of scored 100% on (& he admitted he had seen @ least part of the test before).
Very simply lift your right foot off the floor and make clockwise circles.  Now, while doing this, draw the number '6' in the air with your right hand.
Your foot will change direction & start to move counterclockwise.
The original piece sent to me says there is nothing you can do about it.  But wait, I found this not to be true.  I thought outside the box & was able to move my right foot clockwise & draw the number "6" in the air with my right hand without my foot changing direction.  
Please offer your solution to this riddle if you find one & I will post it for all to see.  Alternately, if you cannot solve this seemingly perplexing riddle but would like to know my solution just let me know & I will explain how to do it privately.



Friday, August 19, 2011

Responses - The Question Is Do You?

Thanks to the responses to the subject message & in particular one from our Mid-west member who asks the $64,000 question – "I believe the people who read this blog are very much aware of the trouble we are in....now is the time for ACTION! We say this over and over. The question is, what is each individual planning to DO about the problem?"
Another question I received I referred to our Wall Street Financial VP for response – you can't do better to get a drink of water than to go right to the stream.  Both Q & A are below along with another response that adds to the discussion that refers to an IBD editorial by James Dorn of the Cato Institute.  The biggest point to me of this piece is – "The reality is that both China and the U.S. are growing the state sector at the expense of the private sector."
You bring up a good point - gold has zoomed up a lot, as of today about $1,825 per oz. But gold stocks HAVE declined, a lot. Only a few rose. How do you explain it? Personally I think hedge funds are shorting gold in a big way. As gold stocks decline - they make a bundle of money. Maybe others have a different view. Let me know.
---Answer From Wall Street---
Many who buy gold seriously on fundamentals -- expect severe dollar fall and also weak global economy.  Some who invest in gold stocks will short them expecting to time short term gains. That is point 1 and most significant. Point 2 is that gold is the main attraction. Gold once purchased and especially if it is in your physical possession, is less risky than a gold stock.  I bought gold myself this spring and did not want to take risk of choosing gold stock whose management may or may not be reliable. Take the sure thing - the commodity. Hence demand for the commodity tends to be greater than the company managing it.
---Another Response---
Doug - Yes we are in a deep financial mess and the numbers are against us who champion fiscal responsibility.  However whether one pays taxes or not, most Americans do not want their government begging China to buy our increasing new debt with China possibly demanding cuts in our defense and allowing China to increase their influence in the Far East. Thanks to Investors Business Daily editorial today raising this possibility while Biden meets with China.  What a coincidence that U.S. just nixed F16 sale to Taiwan before Biden's visit. What Presidential candidate will stand out and question this?



Thursday, August 18, 2011

The Question Is Do You?

"President Obama's approval rating on the economy has plummeted 11 points since May to a new low for his presidency, according to a new Gallup survey.

"Just 26 percent of Americans now think Obama is doing a good job handling the economy, down from 37 percent in mid-May – a sharp decline from the past 18 months when the number had hovered between 35-39 percent.

"The poll, which was conducted Aug. 11-14, found 71 percent disapprove of the president's handling of the economy, a new high. The margin of error is plus or minus 4 percentage points.

"The figures underscore the challenges facing Obama following a bruising political battle over the debt ceiling, first downgrade of the U.S. credit rating, wild swings on Wall Street and persistent unemployment above 9 percent."

The above is from a Washington Times front page story on Wednesday that portrays some of the reasons A through Y why BO should not be reelected – the question of course is how much does any of these disapproval statistics mean to an electorate who is becoming more & more government dependent every day – dependents who look to the mindless "let the wealthy pay" call to arms class(less) warfare as the only relief from their grief & anxiety for their statist lot in life they have accepted.
In line with all of the above listed economic disasters is the 40 year anniversary this past Monday of Nixon taking America off the gold standard on August 15, 1971. In one of those "do you remember where you were moments" I was on vacation in Ocean City, Maryland & will never forget that moment or date.  Forty years later I dread it more than ever.
Since Nixon's Executive Order in 1971 the per ounce price of gold has gone from $35 to $1,800 today & the purchasing power of a dollar in 1971 has been reduced to 18 pennies today. Click on this link to determine the impact of inflation for any period in your lifetime – like the year you started work to now.
Thanks to our SC businessman who took the time to write an easy to understand explanation of our government debt problem:

"These are the actual proportions of the federal budget and debt, reduced to a level that we can understand...Radio personality Dave Ramsey stated that if the U.S. Government was a family they would be making $58,000 a year, they are spending $75,000 a year and are $327,000 in credit card debt.

"The Government family is currently proposing BIG spending cuts to reduce their spending all the way down to $72,000 a year with a great deal of wailing and thrashing.

"I am sure the numbers can be disputed but the essence of his example cannot. Now this brings it home!!!

"Now you know the trouble we are in....."

Yes, I know the trouble we are in – the question is do you?

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Close Call Isn't It?

The only thing more ridiculous than BO going on a "listening tour" on Greyhound One @ this point in his presidency is conservative TV hosts, who should know much better, who fill the airways with losing or misleading points like the two I highlight below.

The first point is the protesting & complaining that 51% of income earners do not pay any federal income taxes.  The normally level headed Neil Cavuto even seemed irritated about this during a recent monologue.  Now who can think that presenting this fact this way, @ this time, is a winning issue when you are looking for a majority.  The time to bring this up was long ago when the number was around 10% or 41% ago.  The issue can still be presented properly but to be effective requires a change in mindset where all Americans regardless of how much income tax they pay realize they really do have skin in a game they are in jeopardy of losing in November 2012.

The second point is the questioning by pundits as to whether or not BO understands basic economics because his programs do not or have not created an atmosphere for job creation.  The universal response & discussion I have seen on these shows concludes fallaciously that BO does not understand economics.  These arguments make it look like we are all on the same All-American Team with just different ideas of how to improve life.  Well we're not all on the same team.  BO is on an anti-American team that counts on the 70% of our citizens who receive some sort of government subsistence – & have no idea or concern where this money or benefits comes from – to stick with him as long as the government provides the means for their subsistence.  BO perfectly understands economics & his programs are designed to produce precisely the terrible results they have so that more & more people become government dependent.  Click here for an encore presentation on this blog by Jon Voight for the best explanation I know of re this matter .

For long time readers of these messages I don't need to list every one of BO's transgressions – just go to ReturnToExcellence.net & click on "Classics" on the left hand side of the blog & look up "Obama Payback Will Cause Us Problems - 11/9/08" to see what lied ahead for us after the last presidential election.  This message has unfortunately played out with America very well falling into the very last stage of Death Of Democracy.

As described by Jon Voight above, in BO, our citizens face the biggest enemy America has faced since King George III in 1776.  TV & radio hosts would be wise to portray this accurately instead of hoping for the next interview to spike their ratings regardless of which network they are on.

Thanks to James Schaefer who recently summed up our political future when he wrote "Ultimately, this is a discussion about what we as a nation want to be.  Do we seek to be a can-do, make-do society, so ably demonstrated by our parents' & grandparents' generation who left a better world  for those who followed, or a society marked by citizens trying to extract as much as possible from government on somebody else's dime." 

Close call isn't it?

Saturday, August 13, 2011

Tea Party Prepared For MoveOn

Most will remember that last June 1 a subscriber to ReturnToExcellence.net presented an excellent heads up for any of us across America who planned to attend Tea Party or Town Hall meetings.  The message detailed how MoveOn.org planned to attend such meetings for the purpose of disrupting or controlling them – I experienced such an event myself @ a FairTax seminar @ a Tea Party meeting last fall.  

Last Wednesday night many readers of these messages attended such a meeting in Scotch Plains, NJ & thankfully we were prepared for the invasion.  MoveOn was not anywhere near as successful as they were on June 1 in disrupting the meeting  because Tea Party people outnumbered them 4 to 1 @ the meeting even though MoveOn had scores of people in attendance.  The enemies of America (& so many unsuspecting Americans) are many & I sincerely thank the subscriber who attended both meetings & took the time to detail the thoughtful message below (like she did the one on June 1).

---Details Of Scotch Plains NJ Tea Party Meeting---

The Scotch Plains/Fanwood Tea Party held a town hall meeting with Congressman Leonard Lance on Wednesday evening and it was very well attended.  The Tea Party had received word a few days before the meeting that MoveOn.org would be attending and contacted other local Tea Party groups asking them to be there.  The meeting room was so crowded that some people had to stand and others sat in an adjacent room. Others stood outside with signs. I estimate that there may have been 150 to 200 people in attendance.

After preliminary introductions, the Scotch Plains/Fanwood Tea Party and Congressman Lance acknowledged the presence of MoveOn.org. He explained that a group of MoveOn members had visited his Flemington office earlier that day.  Congressman Lance went on to speak to the audience and shared a slide show about the national debt.  He noted that there were several people taking videos of the meeting and had them identify themselves.

The next phase of the meeting was a question and answer period.  Again Congressman Lance asked each person who wanted to ask a question to identify himself and tell which group they represented.  The first question was asked by a Tea Party member and then other members of the audience, both Tea Party and MoveOn, asked questions.  The meeting went smoothly with the exception of some moderate noise coming from outside.  I assume the noise came from some MoveOn.org protesters outside.

When one woman, who identified herself as a progressive, MoveOn member, started to make a speech, some members of the audience shouted out "What's your question?"  She was rather indignant, but finally relented and asked a question.  She clearly wanted to hold the floor. The last two questions were given to Scotch Plains/Fanwood Tea Party members. 

I am convinced that if Scotch Plains/Fanwood Tea Party had not notified other local Tea Parties, the meeting could have been dominated by MoveOn members.  There is strength in numbers and I am sure MoveOn was surprised by the large crowd of Tea Party members. This meeting demonstrated that Tea Party groups must prepare for opposition groups.  It also proved that both groups can sit in a room together and be respectful of one another even though differences of opinion were very pronounced.        

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

Two Late Comments - FairTax Ambushed & Alphabetically A Through Y Why BO Should Not Be Reelected

Below are two late comments that I present because they add to the discussion of the two subject messages.  I don't know FairTaxer, a fellow blogger, who must have picked up the posting from the internet like so many commenters do.  The second comment is from a subscriber to ReturnToExcellence.net who took up my challenge of refuting the numbers game re BO's reelection chances.
---FairTax Ambushed---
FairTaxer (http://fairtaxer.wordpress.com/) has left a new comment on your post "FairTax Ambushed":

In addition to the "unbiased" hearing it was given where, as you mentioned, many Democrats already had an unfavorable opinion of it, did you notice how the seats (nearly filled in the beginning) gradually emptied as time rolled on? It's like "I'm done making my attacks, I don't need to hear anything more."

It's sick the way these corrupt politicians work. Every one of them need to be voted out immediately, but as you also alluded to, we don't have the grassroots movement needed to do that at this point.

The only thing I can say is keep trudging along. We'll eventually get there; as long as we don't give up.

Thanks for this article, I look forward to more from you. Please check out my blog and follow me on twitter @TXFairTaxer
---Alphabetically A Through Y Why BO Should Not Be Reelected---
I must disagree. Not that Obama WILL be beaten, but that he can be...Yes, it's all about numbers, but its the numbers that actually go out and vote...Further, its about the numbers in about 10 (swing) states...sorry, 40 states are accounted for, and won't play in the campaign. Sure, money matters, but since Obama won't have much good to sell, he'll have to go totally negative; that could be over kill. Very few people who voted for McCain will now vote for Obama...so the question is, are enough swing voters, from swing states, angry enough to change their votes....just maybe...


Tuesday, August 9, 2011

More Responses - KO BO Responses - Alphabetically A Through Y Why BO Should Not Be Reelected

Below are three more responses that add to the discussion re the original message.  Haven't received one yet that thinks BO will lose reelection.  In fact over the last 24 hours every one I have talked to buys the propaganda that millionaires & billionaires don't pay their fair share of taxes.

---Response #1---

Very good article.  Another thing going for BO is that he has amassed a very large war chest: to use in his re-election campaign.  Republicans need a person with a known name and who will outline some things he would do as President to give BO a fight in the election.  A person not currently well known, will in my estimation not win.

If economy improves - another plus for BO.

BO is a good speaker who says nothing.  As an economist - he rates near zero.  He has no knowledge of the subject.  But he overcomes this drawback by saying things that appear to be positive - and that is what the public wants to hear.

---Response #2---

The last figure I saw of people getting some kind of government assistance is 51% - that is quite a voting block.

---Response #3---

Doug, I sent the posting to several.....praying that people will WAKE UP!

Monday, August 8, 2011

KO BO Responses - Alphabetically A Through Y Why BO Should Not Be Reelected

For everyone who thanked me (really Bret Stephens) for providing "the food needed to argue points of interest to the FB crowd" you missed the point of the original message as many others saw it including me.  Much closer to the mark was "The Z for zero is so disheartening....surely someone will come forward to step into the ring and KO BO!"

As any regular reader of Global View knows Bret Stephens is as much against BO's completion of the socialization of America as anyone I know & yet after providing reasons alphabetically A through Y for why BO should not be reelected  he concludes his dynamic column by writing  "Z is for zero, which is the likelihood that one of the current GOP hopefuls will defeat Mr. Obama in 2012."

Why is this?

The answers is simply a numbers game for our country that is in the "apathy to dependence" stage of the Death Of Democracy.  Wealth creators are plainly outnumbered compared to those who want to redistribute wealth & I believe that, like me, Mr. Stephens believes this also.  The class(less) warfare pitting millionaires & billionaires making over $200,000 per year against middle class people who can not make ends meet resonates with far too many people I know.

Democrats outnumber Republicans 39 to 27.  Independents are currently breaking against BO 3 to 2.  This is the good news which might make the election close if this was all there was.

Blacks, Hispanics, & single mothers overwhelmingly voted for BO in 2008.  Millenials, defined as (young) people who are the first to come of age in the new millennium, voted for BO in 2008 better than 2 to 1 & there is no reason to believe that they will not continue this way & their size is larger four years later.  A
round forty percent of the millennial generation is African American, Latino, Asian or of a racially-mixed background that totals around 80 million people – not all of whom are voting age yet.   

There is another group that has started to gain notice lately – the 51% of households (not people or income earners) who do not pay any income taxes.  I add to this the 20% of households who do not pay enough income tax that any of reasons A through Y in Mr. Stephens piece means enough to them that they would vote against BO.

But the worst part (for us) is the power of BO's community organization skills following the Alinsky Method explained in Rules For Radicals.  If he can organize all of the above groups that see a reason to vote for him plus tens of thousands of people who have not given one thought to any of this but can be organized & controlled to vote BO's way the election comes to the zero likelihood of BO's defeat that Bret Stephens described in his column.  You can also add to BO's list Tea Party people under 55 who finally realized that some of their entitlements are the ones needed to be cut.

As the economy becomes worse & worse everyday with more people becoming government dependents I present the above type of information to you & hope it is important to you.  If it is I recommend that you redouble your efforts, & then some, because the numbers are stacked very high against us.

Sunday, August 7, 2011

Alphabetically A Through Y Why BO Should Not Be Reelected

Below is the August 2 edition of Bret Stephens' "Global View" column.  The column appears every Tuesday in the WSJ.  In this edition Mr. Stephens takes us through the alphabet from A through Y providing reasons why BO should not be reelected.
Snapshots from President Obama's efforts to improve America's standing in the world, 923 days into his administration:

A is for the Arab world, and our standing in it: This year, Zogby International found that 5% of Egyptians had a favorable view of the U.S. In 2008, when George W. Bush was president, it was 9%.

B is for the federal budget deficit, which is estimated to come in at around 11% of GDP in 2011, up from about 3% in 2008.

C is for China's military budget. For 2012, Beijing plans to increase spending on defense by 12.7%. The Obama administration, by contrast, proposed Pentagon cuts in April averaging out to $40 billion per year over the next decade, and Congress may soon cut a lot more.

D is for—what else—the federal debt, which grew to $14.3 trillion this month from $10.7 trillion at the end of 2008. D is also for the dollar, which has lost almost half its value against gold since Aug. 2008.

E is for energy. The average retail price of a gallon of gas hovered near the $1.80 mark when Mr. Obama was inaugurated. It has since more than doubled. E is also for ethanol, the non-wonder fuel the U.S. continues to subsidize to the tune of $5 billion a year.

F is for free trade. Bill Clinton signed Nafta in 1994, which facilitates $1.6 trillion in the trade of goods and services between the U.S., Mexico and Canada. George W. Bush midwifed more than a dozen FTAs, from Australia to Singapore to Morocco to Bahrain. Number of FTA's signed by the current president: zero.

G is for Guantanamo, which remains open, and for Gadhafi, who remains in power, and for Greece, which offers a vision of America's future if we don't reform our entitlement state.

H is for Hillary Clinton, who—I can't believe I'm writing this—would have made a better president than Mr. Obama.

I is for Israel, a Middle Eastern country the president claims to support even as he routinely disses its prime minister, seeks to shrink its borders and—why not?—divide its capital.

J is for jobs. In November 2008, president-elect Obama promised he would create 2.5 million jobs by 2011. By October 2010 the economy had shed 3.3 million jobs.

K is for Karzai, Hamid, Afghanistan's feckless leader. Still, the Obama administration probably did itself no favors by publicly dumping on the man, leading him to seek new best friends in Tehran.

L is for Laden, Osama bin. The president's greatest triumph, which will forever put him one notch—if only one notch—above Jimmy Carter.

M is for Mexico, a country that manages 5.4% unemployment and 4.2% annual growth even as it fights a war against the drug cartels.

N is for NATO, once a pillar of Western security, which Mr. Obama is in the process of destroying through his decision to withdraw from Afghanistan and his refusal to give NATO the push it needs to win in Libya.

O is for ObamaCare, which goes far to explain B, D, J as well as the Greek part of G.

P is for Pyongyang, whose ruler the administration is once again attempting to engage in the six-party talks. This is after the Kim regime welcomed Mr. Obama's plea for a nuclear-free world by testing a nuclear bomb, torpedoing a South Korean ship, shelling a South Korean village, and unveiling a state-of-the-art uranium enrichment facility.

Q is for QE2, the most disastrous experiment in monetary policy since Fed Chairman William Miller's low-interest rate policy crashed the dollar in 1978.

R is for the reset with Russia, the principal result of which is an arms-control treaty that brings us to parity in strategic nuclear weapons, leaves us behind in the tactical category, and ill-equips us for the challenge of a proliferating world.

S is for shovel-ready. Enough said.

T is for taxes, which Mr. Obama would like to see raised for "millionaires and billionaires"—curiously defined as people making $200K and up.

U is for Iran's uranium enrichment. When Mr. Obama came to office promising to extend his hand to the mullahs, Iran had enriched 1,000 kilos of uranium. Today they have produced more than 4,000 kilos.

V is for Venezuela, a country whose extensive subterranean links to Iran the administration has consistently downplayed.

W is for the Dubya, whose presidency now looks like a model of spending restraint.

X is for Liu Xiaobo, an example of what a deserving winner of the Nobel Peace Prize looks like. X is also for Xanax, likely to be remembered as the drug of choice of the Obama years.

Y is for Yes, We Can! Unfortunately, it's also for Yemen.

Z is for zero, which is the likelihood that one of the current GOP hopefuls will defeat Mr. Obama in 2012.

Friday, August 5, 2011

FairTax Ambushed

As most of you know the House Ways & Means Committee (W&M) agreed last month to hold a hearing on the FairTax on July 26.  The initial excellent list of people expected to testify for the FairTax included Governor Mike Huckabee, Professor David Tuerck, Dan Mastromarco – drafter of the original FairTax bill, Dr. Wayne Angel – Former Federal Reserve Governor, Congressman Rob Woodall, & Dr. Karen Walby – Chief Economist for AFFT.

It didn't take long for W&M to alter the agenda or the list of testifiers.  First, it was announced that the hearing would be a study of consumption taxes rather than devoted exclusively to the FairTax & the time allowed for the FairTax was reduced in order to allow a second panel to testify on value added taxes (VATs).  Second, the above list of experts was ignored & W&M selected Professor Lawrence Kotlikoff (a name taken from the AFFT website) to join Governor Huckabee. Thankfully Professor Kotlikoff was successful in getting permission for Professor Tuerck to assist him.  The Democrats appointed long time FairTax critic Bruce Bartlett to present anti-FairTax positions.

The actual hearing went down hill from here.  The VAT panel consisted of six people & the FairTax panel had four.  Kotlikoff explained that he was not "a FairTax guy" & spoke of the importance of retaining the IRS, collecting an imputed tax on services (rent) for owner-occupied homes, & explaining his endorsement of a so-called "purple tax" that he has concocted -  in between he did say a few things favoring the FairTax.  With friends like this you can't afford many enemies on the witness stand.  Huckabee had to leave early to catch a plane for Lord knows where leaving Kotlikoff as the principle protagonist for the FairTax which gave him more time to explain the "purple tax."  Bartlett presented his usual list of misinformation including how the FairTax handles the taxing of new houses & of course his favorite distortion - the taxing of government services under the FairTax.  Answers to all of Bartlett's monotonous points (but thought provoking points if you don't know better, which most people don't) can be found on ReturnToExcellence.net under "The FairTax" on the left hand side of the blog.

The Democrats on W&M repeatedly revealed their hand.  One called the FairTax a "Fairy Tale Tax," another called it the "unfair tax," & NJ's Pascrell called it a "foolish proposal."  Some Democrats just said they were against it – so much for an unbiased hearing. 

Now I never favored the idea of this W&M hearing re the FairTax to begin with but I didn't think it would deteriorate to such a low point the way it did.  Despite all of the work & effort there simply is not the thousands of active supporters that is required in every congressional district yet to call for such a hearing & make the result successful.  I am afraid the hearing is cover for W&M to recognize that consumption taxes are excellent revenue generators & that either the FairTax or a VAT is great in this regard & as such the committee then starts the process of adopting a VAT in addition to the income tax of course.  BO will be only too happy to sign such a bill if he wins reelection.  This hearing sets the stage for such an event. 

The hearing illustrates the exercise in futility it is to pursue individual Members of Congress especially once it becomes obvious they have other agendas for themselves & America & accordingly no intention of supporting the FairTax.  Such a pursuit will only burn out FairTax supporters.  Our best immediate hope for passage of the FairTax lies in finding a presidential candidate who unabashedly runs on the FairTax & through his leadership convinces & inspires a majority of the 70% of income earners who pay little or no income taxes, but who do vote, that the FairTax is best for America's future - he has to convince them that they really do have skin in the game in that their entire standard of existence is @ stake on the road we are travelling. This type of leadership will have to catch the imagination & inspiration of most of the youth, black, & Hispanic voters. This is where the constant consistent beating of the drum of spreading the FairTax word by all of you to everyone who will listen - with no quit or fatigue whatsoever - will pay off for our country.  Start with your next door neighbor – have you told him about the FairTax?

Wednesday, August 3, 2011

Responses - Debt Ceiling Bill - Just Another Compromise

Thanks to all of the responses & phone calls I received re the subject message.  With people like all of you America still has a chance to defeat our enemies – both foreign & domestic.  I provide below three messages that shows the passion I wish everyone  had & worked for. 

Response #1 is from a frequent contributor & business owner who worked his heart out for his family; #2 is from a retired school teacher in Illinois who takes heart in the possible Senate caucus I describe; & #3 is from a former NJ congressional candidate – a person for whom I have the greatest personal respect – he was honored exactly one year ago tonight – August 3, 2010 @ an event I billed "Candidates' Night" – see report of August 4, 2010 on ReturnToExcellence.net.

---Response #1---

Doug:  I really enjoyed reading you overview of the recent ceiling vote along with the associated rhetoric designed to twist our arms till we cried uncle.

I commend those leaders who hung tough.  It takes courage to be true to your convictions. I can only imagine the pressure our new congressmen were under to "go along". Many Americans, like myself, worked hard and risked everything we had to start our businesses including working aro und the clock. We sacrificed our families for success. Now, we are the greedy, the selfish, America's bad people who can afford to pay more taxes and resist.  I am only trying to keep what I have earned.  Is that a sin? When I vote for leaders I do not concern myself with the college they went to, the fraternity they belonged to or the significance of their last name. I want to know if they were educated at the University of Self-employment - that's the fraternity I belong to.

One commentary note: The people of Arizona should be ashamed of themselves for electing John McCain.  He has done more damage to the Republican Party than any Senator in recent memory.

---Response #2---

It is discouraging. The bright light in your message is the Senate caucus that is forming! There is some hope!

---Response #3--- 

The Republicans wimped out again. Particularly disappointing was Paul Ryan and Eric Cantor's affirmative vote on increasing the debt ceiling. I called Rep Ryan's office to clarify the Congressman's position.

A few months back Rep Ryan to great fanfare introduced his plan to reduce spending. His plan would have prioritized how and what the federal government does with the revenues they receive. Voting down the increase of the debt ceiling would have made the federal government prioritize how the revenue is disbursed, precisely what the Congressman's plan called for.

And yet he voted to raise the debt and kick the problem down the road, in short selling the people of America into financial slavery to those who buy our debt. His aide said she didn't know how to respond. I told her not to worry, our objective will now be to make sure Mr. Ryan, and the Boehner's and McConnell's lose in the next election.

I called Mr. Cantor's office with similar results.

Keep in mind that last fall the Republicans stated they were going to draw a line in the sand and hold firm on government spending and on the debt ( along with de-funding ObamaCare).  And true to form, they collapsed like the whimpering cowards they are.

Also say goodbye to dreams of de-funding ObamaCare, these cowards have made clear that they have no such intention. They will be good little obedient boys at the mercy of Obama and the Democrats. The only question we should have for them is what dress size do they wear?

Their claim that they needed to soothe the financial markets is total nonsense. The "markets" knew they would cave and vote in favor of raising the debt ceiling, instead of having to reduce spending to either the seniors, welfare programs or corporate welfare. Simply put, they won't do this as it may jeopardize their re-election. After all, their only real concern is to get themselves re-elected and hope and pray (the only time prayer is acceptable) that they and their pensions get out before "D" day hits.

And the market promptly dropped 265 points. The reason? Simply, the "markets" know the United States has no way to pay back all this debt without printing more fiat money, also known as counterfeiting. But never fear, in a couple of days the market will begin to rationalize why it was a good move to increase the debt ceiling. After all, Wall Street's Christmas bonuses are just around the corner.

Bottom line. Anyone who voted for this bill should be voted out of office.

Tuesday, August 2, 2011

Debt Ceiling Bill - Just Another Compromise

Several readers & subscribers have taken heart in the passing of the debt ceiling bill earlier today choosing to believe the Republicans have turned the conversation toward fiscal responsibility & away from congresses' spending irresponsibility.  Conversations can be turned on a dime which is about the amount of fiscal responsibility in the bill which cuts less federal spending the first year than the Post Office lost last year to put it in perspective.  The real cuts will be left up to a committee & automatic spending cuts like the old Gramm-Rudman bill of 20 years ago that was shelved by Congress when the heat got a little too high.

Republicans are breaking their arms patting themselves on the back because there are no tax increases in the bill in their opinion.  Yet, Senator Kent Conrad (D., ND) said "We had our lawyers go over this very carefully.  It is really clear that new revenue can be part of any solution that the special committee develops."

Being able to compromise is another good trait that supporters of the bill cite.  In voting against the debt ceiling bill Georgia Congressman Tom Graves said "compromise is the reason for the problems we have."  Oh how true.

Notable Congressmen who joined Freshman Graves in voting against the bill are Michele Bachmann (MN), Jeff Flake (AZ), Steve King (IA), Tim Scott (SC), Scott Garrett (NJ), Chip Cravaack (MN), Trent Franks (AZ), Louie Gohmert (TX),  Tim Huelskamp (KS), Jim Jordan (OH), Tom McClintock (CA), Ron Paul (TX), & Ben Quayle (AZ).

Freshmen Congressmen who appear lost to the Republican establishment sadly include Rob Woodall (GA), James Lankford (OK), Kristi Noem (SD), & Jon Runyan (NJ) in that they have consistently voted with the old guard since joining Congress despite their campaign promises last fall.  Extremely disappointing is the yes vote on this bill of Freshman Allen West (FL).    Mike Pence who is running for higher office appears to have thrown in the towel also choosing political friends he perceives can do more for him than the American people.  Do they all reach this point?

Senators voting against the bill include Jim DeMint (SC), Tom Coburn (OK), Lindsey Graham (SC), Rand Paul (KY), Mike Lee (UT), Saxby Chambliss (GA), Jim Inhofe (OK), Ron Johnson (WI), Gerry Moran (KS), Marco Rubio (FL), Pat Toomey (PA), Jeff Sessions (AL), & Kelly Ayotte (NH).  This is the type of Senate caucus I was hoping would form – one that would join Jim DeMint & Tom Coburn.  I hope they stick together.

Jim DeMint said a few years ago that he would rather have 30 Senators like himself than 70 like Arlen Specter.  Now if  you only have 30 members in your caucus you will lose every vote until things get bad enough & you pick up the total to 31, & then 32 & so on until you reach a majority.  When you reach a majority with these type of people you have something – right now we don't have anything except just another compromise.