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.

Tuesday, February 11, 2014

Professor Williams' Column Describes Financial Responsibility Conundrum

Thanks to a long time subscriber & two-time congressional candidate in NJ for sending along a column by Professor Williams below that portrays the challenge we face in electing financially responsible candidates.  In this one Professor Williams highlights many themes that have been presented on RTE over the years from how even the most well intentioned elected reps wind up succumbing to Washington's ways, how the funding of Social Security, Medicare, & Medicaid are misrepresented on purpose by politicians, & how the mindset of America has changed so much from our founding to today regarding self responsibility.
Professor Williams specifically mentions Presidents Madison, Pierce, & Cleveland who he says would "be deemed both heartless and dumb if they were around today." 
But readers of RTE don't have to go back that far in time to know of candidates of the same ideology as those cited above.  Eric Klingemann, Mike Agosta, Anna Little, Jim Gawron, Alieta Eck, & Steve Lonegan are just some of the candidates I have written about on RTE & have worked with that follow the same principles that are described by Professor Williams below.  We are losing candidates of this caliber faster than they are stepping forward or we are finding them – 1) Allen West was targeted in 2012 by the statists & was defeated, 2) Michele Bachman was targeted & barely won reelection in 2012 & is not running again, & 3) Steve King was targeted in 2012 & faced a top opponent & won but is targeted again.
If you believe you have an exceptional candidate running in November in your district or state or if you know of one from another locale please consider helping because they may not come along soon again - if ever.
Dumb Politicians Won't Get Elected by Walter E. Williams

For years, I used to blame politicians for our economic and social mess. That changed during the 1980s as a result of several lunches with Sen. Jesse Helms, R-N.C., which produced an epiphany of sorts.

At the time, I had written several columns highly critical of farm subsidies and handouts. Helms agreed, saying something should be done. Then he asked me whether I could tell him how he could vote against them and remain a senator from North Carolina. He said that if he voted against them, North Carolinians would vote him out of office and replace him with somebody probably worse. My epiphany came when I asked myself whether it was reasonable to expect a politician to commit what he considered to be political suicide — in a word, be dumb.

The Office of Management and Budget calculates that more than 40 percent of federal spending is for entitlements for the elderly in the forms of Social Security, Medicare, Medicaid, housing and other assistance programs. Total entitlement spending comes to about 62 percent of federal spending. The Congressional Budget Office estimates that entitlement spending will consume all federal tax revenue by 2048.

Only a dumb politician would argue that something must be done immediately about the main components of entitlement spending: Social Security, Medicare and Medicaid. Senior citizens indignantly would tell him that what they're receiving are not entitlements. It's their money that Congress put aside for them. They would attack any politician who told them that the only way they get Social Security and Medicare money is through taxes levied on current workers. The smart politician would go along with these people's vision that Social Security and Medicare are their money that the government was holding for them. The dumb politician, who is truthful about Social Security and Medicare and their devastating impact on our nation's future, would be run out of office.

Social Security and Medicare are by no means the only sources of unsustainable congressional spending.

There are billions upon billions in handouts going to farmers, corporations, poor people and thousands of federal programs that have no constitutional basis whatsoever. But a smart politician reasons that if Congress enables one group of Americans to live at the expense of another American, then in fairness, what possible argument can be made for not giving that same right to other groups of Americans?  Making a constitutional and moral argument against the growth of handouts would qualify as dumb.

Let's examine some statements of past Americans whom we've mistakenly called great but would be deemed both heartless and dumb if they were around today. In 1794, James Madison, the father of our Constitution, irate over a $15,000 congressional appropriation to assist some French refugees, said, "I cannot undertake to lay my finger on that article of the Constitution which granted a right to Congress of expending, on objects of benevolence, the money of their constituents." He added, "Charity is no part of the legislative duty of the government."

In 1854, President Franklin Pierce vetoed a bill intended to help the mentally ill, saying, "I cannot find any authority in the Constitution for public charity" ... and to approve such spending "would be contrary to the letter and the spirit of the Constitution and subversive to the whole theory upon which the Union of these States is founded."

Grover Cleveland vetoed hundreds of congressional spending bills during his two terms as president in the late 1800s. His often stated veto message was, "I can find no warrant for such an appropriation in the Constitution."

If these men were around today, making similar statements, Americans would hold them in contempt and disqualify them from office. That's a sad commentary on how we've trashed our Constitution.



  1. If Prof Williams is correct then a likely way out of the current mindset toward entitlement spending and gross fiscal mismanagement may come via a day of Reckoning. This may involve a dollar collapse and a financial restructuring imposed on the US by foreign creditors. Given the current US mindset and explosive total debt growth this is a very possible event and at current rates quite likely. Therefore, how can we prepare for this Day of Reckoning, or try every way possible to avert it?

    The answer:
    To maximum extent possible please champion free market capitalism as the best and proven path to economic prosperity. Strongly support political office candidates with this mindset. The US will then be in a stronger position to recovery from this Day of Reckoning and likely severe recession if not outright depression. Otherwise the US mindset will be largely void of private entrepreneurship activities that will be crucial to a strong recovery.

    Also strongly support the revenue neutral Fair Tax as a solution to significantly improve the economy. The Fair Tax does not impact entitlement spending decisions. Entitlements can continue with no change. However, Fair Tax features such as zero personal and corporate income taxes by themselves will substantially increase private entrepreneurship and potentially reverse the growth of the nanny state.

  2. The conundrum will continue until there is a national mindset change as described by RTE and this will finally occur when the dependency state no longer can stand because there are no more rich to pillage (or to sack and loot.)