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, October 29, 2014

The Projected Closeness Of The Midterm Elections Is A Fearful Message For America

"When the midterms come along, then too many of our people just tuned out.  And that's what folks on the other side are counting on this year – because when we stay home, they win.  Make those calls.  Knock on some doors as you did for Barack."  Michele Obama speaking @ a Charlie Crist rally in Orlando the world's third largest Puerto Rican city.
"Iowa, leave here committed to working as hard as you can.  Remember, when Democrats show up, we win."  Hillary Clinton speaking @ retiring Senator Tom Harkin's annual steak fry.
"If we have high turnout in NC, then we will win.  We have high turnout in GA, we will win.  If we have high turnout in CO, we will win.  And so, so, across the board, it is important for us to take responsibility & not give away our power.  Just turn out & vote...get out there & vote.  Now's the time to do it, no excuses.  Keep on getting those folks out to the polls.  Tell them the president said no excuses.  The first lady said no excuses."  BO speaking on Al Sharpton's radio show clearly showing he knows Democrat inclined voters outnumber people of substance.
 Click on graphic to enlarge
All of the above quotes are true because people of substance in America are overwhelmingly outnumbered by people who would never vote for anyone other than a Democrat, if they vote @ all.  And that is the question regarding the midterm elections whose voting ends on November 4 – will BO's community organizing skills again carry the day for Democrats like they did for his reelection in 2012?  All of the miseries in 2012 remain today & we even have new ones like ISIS beheading people (two Americans to date) & people flying to America from West Africa with Ebola – where 5,000 people have been killed by the deadly disease from this virus America has never seen.  Of course none of this matters to government dependent people (voters) who have resigned themselves to live in the apathy to dependence stage of our deterioration & really would not be upset when the dependence back into bondage stage arrives.  Many such people prefer this to getting a job while taking for granted all of the freedoms they currently have - believing these freedoms will always be there.  Bondage takes away freedom.
Twice in the last seven presidential elections the voting age population exceeded the actual number of voters by over 100-million people (in 2008 it was 75-million people & in 2012 it was 93 million).  Now just who do you think the vast majority of these people would vote for if they voted?
Governor Huckabee tells us there are 80 million self identified evangelicals in America & only half of them are registered voters.  Only 50% of those registered (20 million) vote in presidential elections & only half of them again (10 million) vote in off year elections like 2014.  It is hard to have a good result when 70 million church going Christians don't vote or more importantly don't care what happens.
Normally the results of midterm elections during the sixth year of a presidents' second term are not good ones for the incumbent president because the electorate tends to rein him in his last two years in office.  Accordingly conventional wisdom & many polls forecast a Republican victory wave in the Senate contests – big or small wave.  But in 2014 there are many close races & the above graphic shows Democrats have narrowed the gap from September to October.
Polls on October 26 show Republicans lead by 0.7% in five races & trail by 0.25% in two races meaning that seven races being too close to call is the real story that something is different in America that none of us has experienced before.  Lord knows that voters have every reason to vote against Democrats who have supported BO & his anti-American anti-free enterprise policies over 90% of the time with their congressional votes.  But the fact that the Republican opposition has given no positive reason to vote for them & the fact that BO has raised so much money @ one fund raiser after another is keeping the Democrat hopes alive. 
Thanks to the money being spent brainwashing the public every Democrat incumbent is still competitive.  In addition to the above quote BO also told Democrat incumbents "I will be responsible for making sure that our voters turn out." 
This is the unknown commodity in this sixth year midterm election that is different from other ones.  Can a community organizer turn the normal results of scores of these kind of elections on their head to the detriment of the country by an organized onslaught of propaganda.  Looking @ the education level & involvement (paying attention) of the voters is not encouraging.  Accordingly, the amount of government dependent welfare programs voters participate in & the promise of more such benefits to come will be enough to carry the day if BO can get the recipients of these programs to the polls.  His job is to convince them to know how, where, & by whom their bread is buttered.
Over the weekend we saw the results in Brazil where the statist incumbent president won reelection despite the country remaining in recession with high inflation & schemes of corruption in the state owned oil company.  This is quite reminiscent of BO winning reelection in 2012 meaning calls for freedom & democracy are not running rampant any place I can think of other than Ukraine.
Counterbalancing all of the above conventional wisdom & historical experience regarding elections like the 2014 midterms is the potential power of BO's community organizing skills that were quite obvious in the 2012 presidential election.  With over 200 years of history the voters should not have reelected BO in that 2012 gimmee election, even with the most flawed pitiful Republican opponent imaginable.  So we can safely say that something else was in play – & that something else was the principles of Death of Democracy where the majority of the electorate had come to realize that in voting for BO they were voting themselves generous gifts from the public treasury @ the expense of the rest of us.
Three examples of the fragility of the midterms – FL Governor Rick Scott won the 2010 race by 60,000 votes – if even a quarter of the missing 450,000 black voters from 2010 vote in 2014 Scott will lose to Charlie Crist, former Republican, former Independent, & now Democrat.  In 2008 Crist was on McCain's short list for VP indicating politicians are capable of doing anything or aligning themselves with anyone to gain the power to rule.
Even worse from an issues side is the Michigan gubernatorial race where incumbent flip flopping governor Rick Snyder has compromised every known principle starting with abandoning his oath of office to support the Constitution of the United States during his run for reelection – see The General Welfare Of The United States for details.  Since the race is close we should have expected the Republican to not tell us what he really believes but rather to pander to whomever he thinks will get him the most votes.
Third, I am so sorry to give Republican Governor John Kasich (OH) as an example of a politician who has gone from top notch to statist over the past few years.  A serious Republican voter in Ohio voting for Kasich will be sadly disappointed if he is not already – Kasich abandoned his previous collective bargaining reforms & reversed course by having Ohio join the Medicaid expansion of ObamaCare after originally holding the line people thought they had voted for.  All of this from a man who wrote a book entitled Stand For Something – who now stands for nothing the Founders would recognize.  Kasich has turned into the classic RINO – Republican in name only.
What these examples tell us is that the candidates in the Democrat & Republican parties for the most part play us for fools – throwing a few crumbs from the table while they dine in luxury @ our expense.  Some primary races this year had as many as 86% of the people eligible to vote (Cantor defeat in VA) stay home meaning that 7.1% of the people eligible to vote turned the election in favor of their candidate – an example of the very few who stayed involved controlling what happens.
With all of the dissatisfaction with many if not most of the Democrat & Republican candidates it is becoming more & more obvious that third party candidates are the answer to our problems – many of the good Republicans could easily go this way.  Democrats are socialists as are @ least half of the Republicans while the majority of the rest of the Republicans are afraid to stand for something – that is why if the Republicans gain control of both Chambers of Congress on November 4 we will not know what principles the people elected stand for. 
That is why Jenny Beth Martin, Co-Founder of Tea Party Patriots, recently wrote to me "Yes, if Republicans take back the Senate, we will have a much better chance of blocking & rolling back BO's disastrous socialist agenda.  But no, as we have seen over & over again in the past, a GOP majority does not guarantee lower taxes, less spending, smaller government, &/or a balance budget.  Case in point?  Since the Republicans took back the House in 2010 not one tax has been repealed, not one federal bureaucracy eliminated, & not one dime of deficit spending has been cut."
But the fact that the midterm election may be close, either way, with BO's rotten purposefully destructive programs in place for almost six years is a fearful message in & of itself for America.  All of the senators who have supported BO over 90% of the time (congressional votes) should not be in neck & neck races but should be tarred & feathered & run out of the country on a rail instead of being within a gasp of being victorious – which they just might be.
So why should we care about any of this?  Is it just because of the illusive concepts of freedom & liberty? – the fundamental concepts from which the entire rational legal system of the civilized world is based.  Is it that just enough of us still realize that without the spirit of individual freedom that civilization cannot grow & prosper any more?
Far too many Americans have become so spoiled & oblivious that they take our way of life for granted with many not realizing that the statist policies in place are causing them to spend down the wealth created by their parents & grandparents until one day it will be depleted with not enough people left who have the ability to build it up again to anywhere near the heights we once realized.
America's foundations were built on the bedrock of limited government, personal responsibility, & free enterprise.  The danger to our liberty & individual rights is BO's relentless onslaught on America's structural foundations.  Those of us who cherish these freedoms see clearly the great cause for concern that there will never again be times like most of us grew up in again – that is what we should be caring about.
Voting for the lesser of two evils is the way we got into all of this trouble.  We should only financially support or vote for candidates who have earned our support or vote.
In this regard I have found Mike Huckabee & Gary Johnson @ the presidential level, Jeff Bell (NJ) @ the senate level, Sam Brownback (KS) @ the gubernatorial level, Steve King (IA), Dave Corsi (NJ), & Jim Gawron (NJ) @ the congressional level, & Amanda Vaughn-O'Neill & Erica Silvestri both @ the town council level to be such candidates worthy of our support. 
On Sunday we watched the NJ Bell-Booker senate debate.  At its conclusion Carol told me that Jeff Bell is too good for NJ & with the condition of the state & country that we have let happen I could not agree with her more.

Thursday, October 23, 2014

Policeman Provides Standard To Follow

Click here for the account of Michigan police officer Ben Hall, who dealt with a potentially dangerous traffic violation in a way that produced immediate positive results.  Upon investigation of the matter Officer Hall knew that a ticket or even a warning ticket would not solve the infraction he encountered during a recent patrol where a child was not secured in a booster seat.
The humanity & benevolence shown by Officer Hall to the mother & child certainly was above & beyond the call of duty.  But I was struck by his words that anyone else would have done the same thing & that he would do it again if he had the chance. 
Although on a different scale these are the same thoughts expressed by every Medal Of Honor recipient – meaning that we could follow them too – as could both the mother & child during their lives returning the favor to someone else in trouble.

Friday, October 17, 2014

ObamaCare's Tangled Web Continues To Unravel

click on graphic to enlarge
No later than November 1 thirteen states & DC plan to cancel ObamaCare policies that do not conform with the national healthcare law – such policies, affecting thousands of people (250,000 in VA alone), do not offer the level of coverage required by ObamaCare.  It was this time last year that people were having all of the computer problems with both the federal & state healthcare websites that would not allow them to sign up for ObamaCare.  Accordingly BO issued a directive that allowed states to extend nonconforming policies.  The aforementioned 13 states & DC that granted a reprieve last year are no longer willing to do so.  Over the past year BO had carefully timed waivers & extension through executive orders to soften the blow of ObamaCare thereby protecting his Democrat supporters' reelection chances.  But setting up the unleashing of thousands of cancelation notices a few days before the midterm elections was a sloppy mistake - the federal law requirement of 60 days prior notification of cancellation was overlooked.  Although the exact number of cancellation notices that will be sent is not clear four of the states involved have tight senate races – NC, KY, CO, & VA – & these cancellations bring an unfavorable ObamaCare feature to the public's attention @ precisely the wrong time for Democrats.  Early voting by unsuspecting Democrats may not be enough to overcome the damage that will be done on election day.
Much more connived is the increase in ObamaCare premiums for 2015 that are currently known but are not scheduled to be released until November 15 per BO's executive order – this is the type of trickery we are more used to in watching the fundamental transformation of America right before our very eyes.
The Joint Committee on Taxation has calculated that the ObamaCare legislation will levy between $675 billion & $800 billion in new taxes over the next ten years to offset some of ObamaCare's costs for subsidies & Medicaid expansion.  The subsides help people, who make between 100% to 400% of the federal poverty level, pay their healthcare insurance premiums & the taxes levied for Medicaid expansion cover government costs for providing healthcare services for many of the poor who currently use the emergency room as their primary medical facility.
In all there are twenty-one taxes, most of which have increased since the passage of ObamaCare into law, that will be paid for by all taxpayers – not just those in the highest tax brackets.  Originally BO had unilaterally determined that singles making over $200,000 per year & couples making over $250,000 per year would pay most of this additional cost – these earnings figures are not indexed for inflation.  However twelve of the twenty-one new taxes are paid by people below this threshold – meaning most of us.  See the aptly named Grabbing All Of Our Stuff for details.
This amounts to a trade off – taxpayers pay additional taxes to cover the healthcare insurance costs of people who did not have healthcare insurance before the passage of ObamaCare.  The people with newly acquired healthcare insurance appear better off than before but we don't know what benefits the taxpayers in this arrangement would have produced with their money if these new taxes had not been imposed.  We do know in general that government spending @ any level should be minimized because it is "improbable that the wealth created by government spending will fully compensate for the wealth destroyed by the taxes imposed to pay for that spending." – source Henry Hazlitt – Economics In One Lesson.  In essence the private sector overwhelms the public sector in the creation of wealth because the latter does not benefit from the excellence of competition of the free enterprise system.
It was about a year ago that Tammy Bruce first alerted us to the problem of the high deductibles of the ObamaCare Bronze plans (generally the plans with the lowest premiums) – typically deductibles in the $5,000 range before the plan would start to pay.  People are finding that what they thought was going to be healthcare insurance that covered teeth cleanings & routine eye examinations is really policies with several thousand dollars of deductibles meaning it is not really what they were hoping for @ all – they are paying something for nothing as far as they are concerned.  (People between 100% & 250% of the federal poverty level may be eligible for Cost-Sharing Reduction Subsidies which can help lower deductibles, copayments, coinsurance, or any other costs the insured is required to pay – which helps out some.)
The purpose of insurance is to protect the insured from a catastrophe they cannot afford to pay for themselves.  Over the years as the entitlement state has grown in America & people got more & more used to thinking they are not paying for anything themselves insurance has come to mean every routine healthcare maintenance item imaginable.  In this sense it is ironic that for many people the policies listed under ObamaCare are more in line with the classic definition of insurance than the free no-charge policies people envisioned when they were totally for the law.
During the past year healthcare costs have slowed & ObamaCare may have inadvertently contributed to this because it is a documented fact that high deductible healthcare insurance plans, like those provided under ObamaCare, reduce spending more than plans with no co-payments (i.e., suddenly people were paying when they went to the doctor).  The classic Rand Health Experiment that studied healthcare costs from 1971 to 1982 found the spending reduction to be 30% greater for high deductible healthcare insurance plans than plans with no co-payments. 
As companies prepared for BO's imminent increases in the federal minimum wage businesses started balancing their costs in 2014 by raising workers' contributions to employer sponsored healthcare benefits – see graphic above that shows low wage workers are the ones most affected by this cost shift – because they are the ones who will get the wage increase mandated by new minimum wage laws.  How long this will continue is uncertain – low wage workers may decide not to participate in their companies' healthcare insurance programs but could rather take their chances with the ObamaCare penalty in future years relying on the emergency room for medical services – both routine or real emergencies.
In addition, Wal-Mart, Home Depot, & Target – for starters – have dropped healthcare insurance coverage for employees who work less than 30 hours per week on average, thereby either throwing these employees onto the healthcare insurance exchanges if these employees want healthcare insurance coverage (significantly paid for by taxpayers like you & me) or having these employees go without healthcare insurance meaning they are subject to the penalty (tax) imposed by the individual mandate.  This phenomenon was delayed about a year ago when BO waived the employer mandate until 2015 – it is only now that employers feel the need & incentive to reduce workers hours in such a way that will avoid the impending employer fine (tax) that starts @ $2,000 per employee mandated by ObamaCare.  Up until now the extremely high portion of the work force who work part time for economic reasons was just plainly caused by BO's purposely designed poor economy & had very little to do with the ObamaCare employers' mandate.
The table below from the National Federation of Independent Business (NFIB) provides a good primer for nine different scenarios regarding how the penalties (taxes) are determined.  Scenario #9 shows how employer healthcare insurance penalties (taxes) are reduced by replacing full time employees with part time employees.
click on table to enlarge
Although ObamaCare still has not entirely kicked in readers of RTE can see what is coming – the continuation of BO's tangled web to make people totally dependent on government - both financially through taxes & physically through universal single payer healthcare. 

Saturday, October 11, 2014

Derek Jeter Video - A Return To 1950s' Boyhood America

You don't have to be a Yankee fan or even a baseball fan to appreciate the impressive subject video that one of Derek Jeter's sponsors produced regarding his retirement from baseball @ the end of September.  Every tribute that I read concerning Derek Jeter was very favorable for his work both on & off the baseball field – most notably the Turn 2 Foundation, a charitable organization founded by Mr. Jeter to help children & teenagers avoid drugs & alcohol while also focusing on high academic achievement so that today's youth has a good chance to become the leaders of tomorrow.
The video was filmed in July for release a few days before the regular baseball season ended.  The sponsor, Gatorade, allowed Mr. Jeter to do anything he wanted in thanking his fans who obviously admired him.
It brought back memories of some of my boyhood sports heroes. 

Sunday, October 5, 2014

High School Cheerleaders Demonstrate Individual Liberty

Human rights, civil rights, legal rights, & the rights of various groups are statist ideas to one degree or another that enemies of America try to blur with the libertarian concept of individual rights that are established as the bedrock principle defined in our Constitution. 
The people who participate in the Oneida, Tennessee high school football program experienced the above point the second game of their season after the ACLU instigated a ban on prayer prior to the school's games.  Although such prayer had been a school tradition since 1930, without any objection or complaint, the ACLU, with no relationship or connection with the school or the football team, took it upon themselves to protest by putting the school on notice citing a 2000 Supreme Court decision that found such practice was unconstitutional in that school initiated-prayer in the public school system violates the First Amendment.  In brief it was a pure ideological play by the ACLU, who had no personal grievance themselves, but rather based their position on a legal precedent in trying to interfere with the participants of the school's football program – players, coaches, fans, & most important in this case the cheerleaders.
The school did not just capitulate but held a moment of silence instead of the prayer which had previously been said over the announcer's loudspeaker.
Click here to see how the school's cheerleaders spontaneously moved everyone in the stadium to join in a demonstration of the primacy of individual liberty that was even better than the decades old tradition the ACLU tried to banish. 
So far the story has a happy ending.  But there are two questions going forward: 1) Will the ACLU keep looking for trouble trying to interfere with people who all seem happy with the school's football program as is?  2) What will the Tennesseans do if the ACLU persists?
In the meantime the young cheerleaders have offered an example that America can use just when it looks like we have lost the will to fight for or against anything.