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.

Sunday, July 25, 2021

Kitchen Fire Safety Message Update

Except for the video the fire safety message below is essentially the same as the one from March 2011 that recently appeared in the daily ten most viewed posts on RTE.  The reason I am repeating this post is because the owner of the video in the original post took the video down - I'll never know why because it was so good.  I found another video & present it & the substance of the original post below.

 click on image to enlarge 

Click on this link of a video of a very practical fire safety message that could very well save your house &/or your life in the event of an oil fire in your kitchen.

The above graphic displays the fire triangle - when heat (flame or spark), fuel (oil), & oxygen (air) are present in the right proportions the chemical exothermic reaction that is fire will be produced.  Remove any one of the fire triangle elements & the fire will go out.

The video from the original 2011 post showed that in the event of a kitchen oil fire you should first turn off the heat on the stove & then simply wet a large towel & place it over the flame in the pot or pan to allow the combustion reaction to consume the oxygen in the contained utensil so the fire will be smothered & go out.  You can also place another pan over the fire so the reaction consumes the oxygen as demonstrated in the above video.

Pouring water on the flaming pot or pan will throw the fire into the rest of the kitchen as dramatically shown on the above video.  Water has a higher density than oil & will therefore sink to the bottom of the pot or pan where it will instantly expand to over 1,600 times its original volume (the ratio of the specific volume of water vapor to that of liquid water under these conditions is greater than 1,600).   

Do not throw sugar or flour on an oil fire - one cup of either creates the explosive force of two sticks of dynamite.

It is also a good idea to have a fire extinguisher handy in your kitchen & to be familiar with how to use it - but a simple wetted large towel or another pot strategically placed can save many a day & house.

Sunday, July 11, 2021

The Solution To Social Security's Funding Problem

"Now there are more 18 year olds who believe they have a better chance of seeing a UFO than a Social Security check." - John Kasich speaking @ a Republican presidential primary debate in 2016.  The reference to UFOs & Social Security goes back @ least 40 years based on my own recollection of discussions regarding Social Security checks & UFOs.

Social Security currently makes up almost 25% of federal spending.  It cannot continue indefinitely as the number of workers decreases, the number of beneficiaries increases, & benefits increase based on a wage indexing formula that grows faster than the cost of living.  

click on graphic to enlarge

Now the 18 year olders of decades ago who were not afraid of UFOs will learn in the real world, from the graphic above, that they were 20% correct in that they will receive only about 80% of their expected Social Security benefits when the Old Age & Survivors Insurance Trust Fund (OASI - solid blue line on above graphic) runs out of money.  Long time readers of this blog know that the Trust Fund is an accounting gimmick that draws on money from the general treasury until the Trust Fund balance reaches zero thereby signaling that the Trust Fund is exhausted & the reductions in benefits commence.

Check the bold print of page 2 of the document entitled "Your Social Security Statement" (available to everyone online with reminder to review your "Social Security Statement" online three months before your birthday & mailed to people over 60 who do not have an online account) that clearly tells people that "by 2035, the payroll taxes collected will be enough to pay only about 80% of scheduled benefits."

Because of Covid-19's  impact on the American economy the Congregational Budget Office (CBO) has updated this calculation, prior to the Social Security trustees' update, & determined that the Trust Fund will be depleted five years earlier, in 2030, with the reduction in benefits starting in 2031.  The OASI curve in the above graphic started to slope downward about 2010 - the year that 10,000 baby boomers per day started to retire.

I have never met one person @ any of my FairTax seminars or radio programs I have been on, including the radio hosts, who were aware of the Trust Fund's pending exhaustion & the program's subsequent reduction in benefits. 

Please remember that the Trust Fund was created because the large number of baby boomer payroll tax payments created a surplus which was promptly borrowed & spent by Congress - i.e., it's gone.  Today there are only IOUs remaining in the Trust Fund & money is drawn from the general treasury to meet Social Security benefit payments.  There are no real assets in the Trust Fund - only an accounting for returning the borrowed funds from the general treasury. 

This post is written to answer what I had hoped would be the third question asked to Biden & Trump during the 2020 presidential debates - "Shouldn't we be taking steps now to head off this 20% reduction in Social Security benefits & if so what are these steps?  If not, why not?"

Over the years there have been proposals made to sure up the Social Security program such as increasing the age to receive full Social Security benefits (which would also decrease the benefit for those filing @ age 62), increasing the amount of income taxes paid on Social Security benefits, raising the cap on payroll taxes, & allowing participation in private accounts.  Although this post presents the far & away best solution to the Social Security funding problem I also endorse letting young workers put, say 15%, of their payroll taxes up to age 50, into private stock market accounts - but that has politically blown the roof off any discussions of this issue in the past.

The Social Security Act was signed into law by FDR on August 14, 1935 with the understanding that Social Security benefits were not intended to be a total pension but rather "some measure of protection to the average citizen & to his family." 

This understanding is carried through even to today when on page 1 of the aforementioned "Your Social Security Statement" it says "Social Security benefits are not intended to be your only source of income when you retire.  On average, Social Security will replace about 40 percent of your annual pre-retirement reported earnings.  You will need other savings, investments, pensions, or retirement accounts to live comfortably when you retire."

But over the years Social Security expanded both the number of people in the program & the amount of money they received thereby making more & more people dependent on this government program.

The initial Social Security benefit is based on a formula that counts the highest 35 years of earnings, indexed to the growth in average real wages, over the lifetime of a person's earnings.  The formula fills in zeroes for years not worked when considering the 35 year period.

The highest 35 years of someone's earnings are all indexed, up to age 60 for that person, to real average growth in wages, an adjustment that brings nominal wages close to current wage levels meaning that Social Security benefits track productivity increases closely.  It is the real wage growth component of the formula, not the benefit starting age, or the ratio of beneficiaries to workers, or the amount of payroll taxes, that is @ the heart of the Social Security problem.  It is the wage indexing adjustment that brings the calculated benefits much higher, actually greater in inflation adjusted terms, than what people earned in those 35 years of work.  In short, benefits keep getting larger for each cohort of retiring workers, which has put the program on the path to unsustainability for the country.

As a check of this point, compare your Social Security benefit with that of your parents & you'll find that yours is much greater - for similar inflation adjusted incomes while working.  Accordingly, yours is much smaller than siblings several years younger than you.  It is this increase that is unsustainable as the workforce decreases.

John Cogan, of the Hoover Institution, has calculated that thanks to the benefit formula based on the average real wage index, the benefits paid to a teenager @ the turn of the twenty-first century are scheduled to be 60% higher, in real terms, than the typical worker who retired in 2001.

Just changing the benefit formula to follow inflation based on the Consumer Price Index (CPI) instead of the average real wage index will bring the Social Security system into long term solvency in a new system.  

The phase into the new CPI system would not affect anyone age 55 or older.  Anyone aged 54 or younger would retain their wage index work years in the benefit formula but would switch to the CPI basis immediately – so everyone would retain the portion of the existing system methodology up until the change in benefit basis from wage to CPI.  In essence, those aged 54 & younger would follow a sliding scale with people in their 50s today receiving higher real Social Security benefits when they retire than those just entering the workforce when they reach retirement age..

The above proposed system is based on a sound financial footing for everyone, especially younger workers, unlike the current system where the benefit formula is based on average real wage indexing – where the choices for a solution to the funding shortfall in the near future are to raise payroll taxes around 50% on younger workers (& all others), borrow hundreds of billions of dollars, or abruptly slash benefits 20% on current benefit recipients as the Social Security website indicates is a certainty under current law & described hereinabove. 

Adjusting Social Security benefits for inflation alone & ending the average real wage index increases would address the challenge.   This step limits the growth on projected benefits to preclude painful future cuts as described above. The wage index to CPI adjustment would make Social Security a smaller part of Americans' retirement package a few decades from now & would also erase at least two-thirds of the currently projected shortfall thereby eliminating the obvious predictable suffering & distress that will be realized by unsuspecting Social Security recipients in the not too distant future.  

I first learned of the above solution to the Social Security funding problem from Susan Lee in November, 2004.  Amity Shlaes confirmed its validity in November, 2007.  I am honored to cite the references of these two women who I deeply admire.

Just imagine how much farther ahead we would be if we would have started implementing the above solution 17 years ago.

For that matter just think how much farther ahead we would be if the media would have pressed Trump & Biden about the above solution during the 2020 presidential debates instead of questioning them about the mindless dribble that was asked.

But then again, can you imagine either Trump or Biden really addressing this issue?

***

Special note for people born in 1960 regarding a big hit to Social Security benefits because of Covid:  Andrew Biggs of the American Enterprise Institute has calculated that Social Security benefits will be about 15% lower for people born in 1960 because of quirks in the current Social Security benefit formula, the formula described above, that indexes individuals' earnings to the growth of the national average real wages up to the year people turn 60, after which the formula follows the CPI.  Mr. Biggs calculated that because of Covid the national average wage in 2020 was 15% lower than projected for 2020 in the 2019 Social Security Trustees Report meaning that a worker, born in 1960, who earned $50,000 per year while working would permanently receive about $3,900 per year less than previously expected in Social Security benefits.

Since an individual's Social Security benefit is dependent on the value of the average real national wage in the year the individual reaches 60 years of age it follows that a 15% reduction in the average national wage in the year a person reaches 60 will carry back to all of the other years' earnings as they are indexed to this lower wage figure thereby resulting in a permanent reduction in benefits for the rest of such a person's life.

The 2020 Social Security benefit formula replaces 90% of the first $960 in average monthly earnings, 32% of monthly earnings between $960 & $5,785, & 15% of monthly earnings above $5,785.  The 2012 Social Security benefit formula called for commensurate inflection points @ $767 (instead of $960), $4,624 (instead of $5,785), plus 15% of amounts over $4,624 (instead of $5,785) meaning that the average real wage index increased 25% over this relatively short eight year time span while the CPI increased 13%.

Look @ a longer time frame to see the full impact of compounding that magnifies the difference of the two indices - the average real wage index increased 336% between 1979 & 2019 while the CPI increased 276% during this same 40 year period thereby showing the difference in growth of the two measures & verifying the improved sustainability of the Social Security program by adopting the CPI instead of the average real wage index in determining initial benefits.

In both the above numerical examples the average real wage earnings growth is greater than the CPI inflation growth so in essence the government is guaranteeing, by using the average real wage index to determine Social Security benefits, a real positive return on everyone's financial participation in the Social Security program - a guarantee no other investor has in the marketplace.

If Social Security benefits were based on CPI adjusted earnings instead of earnings indexed to the average real wage over the years this Covid related reduction would not have occurred to the people born in 1960.

Sunday, June 27, 2021

July 4th History Quiz

 

For those in the readership who took the Independence Day quiz two years ago & wanted a chance to atone, I found the subject quiz that offers another chance @ about the same level of difficulty.  So I hope you brushed up in the meantime.

Like the quiz two July 4ths ago this one will also provide an explanation of the correct answer after every question so this is not just a quiz but an excellent refresher.  It is also a lot of fun & can serve as a topic of discussion during Independence Day celebrations in your backyard. 

I do however recommend keeping track of the number of right & wrong answers yourself because the website totalizer @ the end of the quiz has given wrong overall scores on some computers - mostly low scores.

Please feel free to take the quiz with any child or grandchild.  I'm interested to see how each of you do.

  Bonus - who are these people?  

Thursday, June 10, 2021

The January 6 Commission Vote Shows Republican Infighting Makes It Hard For GOP To Win The 2022 Midterms

"We are going to pursue this one way or the other."  House Majority Leader Steny Hoyer - Democrat, Maryland - speaking about Pelosi's intention to form a commission, with or without Republican participation, to investigate the January 6 assault on the Capitol after Trump called thousands of his supporters to Washington, on that day, specifically to stop Vice President Pence's constitutional function, as President of the Senate, to ratify Biden's Electoral College victory.

Trump tweet of December 19, 2020 - "Big protest in D.C. on January 6th. Be there, will be wild!" 








Midterm elections have historically been referendums on the sitting president's performance of his first two years in office of a term & these elections have not gone well for the sitting president.  Since World War II the sitting president's party has lost an average of 26 House seats & an average of 4 Senate seats in the midterms thereby setting up a real opportunity for Republicans, in the 2022 midterms, to stop Biden's assault on the country.


Republicans are also favored in the 2022 midterms because of the redrawing of district boundaries from the decennial process resulting from the 2020 census. 

Of course Republicans are doing everything they can leading up to the 2022 midterms to not take advantage of the above historical midterm election statistics & trends that would normally give them a big edge to regain control of Congress thereby providing a check on Biden.  But many Republicans remain divided, continuing to foolishly fight the last war about the 2020 presidential election that has been over since @ least January 20, 2021 when Biden took the oath of office for the presidency & moved into the White House that Trump had vacated - a puzzling move by Trump if he thought he had won.

The latest point of Republican division centers on Pelosi's plan to politically milk the January 6 assault on the Capitol for all its worth by forming a commision to study the event as described above by her right hand man Steny Hoyer.  Many Republicans want to stick with @ least an outward show of allegiance for Trump & the rest can't stand him.  I mean both Republican elected representatives & voters.

The above graphic of the House vote on May 19 regarding the commision shows that 35 Republicans voted with Pelosi to form the commision that will keep the matter alive all through 2021 & issue a report @ the end of the year just in time for 2022, an election year.  All the while Trump will stir the pot shooting out missiles defending himself & blackballing anyone who sides against him thereby losing focus on Biden's destructive plans for America.  What a missed opportunity - a distraction that plays right into the Democrats hands.

Now these 35 House Republicans are getting blasted all over conservative media but you have to believe they voted in what they thought was their best interest meaning they represented the opinion of the majority of people in their districts (i.e., people who would not vote for Trump or his supporters again).  To not believe this is to not understand the survival instincts of politicians.

This post is not about reliving the 2020 presidential election.  Or about Trump's claims & actions since the early morning hours of November 4 when I heard him say "Frankly, we did win," without following up by ever presenting one scintilla of evidence in dozens of court cases.  Or about whether you believe or deny that Trump called his supporters to Washington on January 6, in a last gasp attempt, specifically to stop Vice President Pence from fulfilling his constitutional function, as President of the Senate, to ratify Biden's Electoral College victory.

This post is intended to show the division in the Republican party that is centered around Trump - a larger than life figure who continues to make everything all about himself instead of the country's future, but nevertheless one that is killing any chance for Republicans to take back Congress in 2022 from the most openly anti-American administration in the country's history.  Failure of Republicans to take back @ least one chamber of Congress in the 2022 midterms means that the Biden administration keeps rolling over America.

The point is that every day that Republicans talk about Trump & whether or not the 2020 presidential election was stolen is a lost opportunity to decry Biden's anti-American agenda where Biden is obsessed with undoing any policy that Trump put in place.  

Trump talks powerfully but since 2016, under his leadership, Republicans lost the House in 2018 & the Senate & Presidency in 2020 & more pathetically the two Georgia Senate seats on January 5 when the stakes were precisely known - namely, retaining Republican control of the Senate if only one of the two Georgia Republican candidates had won.  None of the Biden anti-American assault could have happened if Trump would have campaigned for Loeffler & Perdue instead of whining about his presidential loss during campaign stops in Georgia supposedly on their behalf.  And Republicans are continuing & perpetuating this mistake, as if they can't learn, & Trump does not help by threatening any incumbent or challenger who does not show loyalty to him.

Trump's two highest profile lawyers, Rudy & Sid, are feeling the price of their loyalty to Trump in that the court cases they presented, in many instances were so weak, including ones in front of Trump appointed judges, that courts are now considering whether or not some of the legal challenges were frivolous or improper & if Rudy & Sid should be reprimanded, suspended, or disbarred. Sid stated in her motion to dismiss the argument against her - “Reasonable people understand that the ‘language of the political arena, like the language used in labor disputes … is often vituperative, abusive and inexact.  It is likewise a ‘well recognized principle that political statements are inherently prone to exaggeration and hyperbole."'  Why didn't Sid tell this to the American public last winter when she was a regular nightly guest on Lou Dobbs FBN TV program?

An April 17-20 NBC poll of 1,000 adults found that Trump's approval among all adults is 32% favorable & 55% unfavorable.  Sean Hannity famously bragged shortly after the 2020 presidential election that 93% of Trump voters in 2020 would vote for Trump again meaning that 5.2 million less people would vote for him in 2024 then did in 2020.  The lesson that needs to be relearned is that Trump brings out more anti-Trumpers than supporters thereby proving once again that we are outnumbered.

Below is the list of the 35 House Republicans who voted in favor of forming the January 6 commision.  Note, Cheney, Katko, Upton, Rice, Kinzinger, Valadao, Herrera Beutler, Newhouse, Gonzalez, & Meijer are the ten on the list below who voted to impeach Trump last winter.  Daniel Webster of Florida was the lone Republican not to vote regarding the January 6 commission matter.












Many of the 175 House Republicans who voted not to form the January 6 commision hope to draw on Trump's popularity with the base that came to his rallies, without having to confront Trump's continued unproven claims about a stolen election.  These people do not know Trump very well because he will never admit that he lost to the stumbling Biden, or anyone else, thereby creating a never ending confrontation that the vast majority of the electorate grows more tired of everyday.

On May 29 the Senate blocked the House approved January 6 commision from going forward as a bipartisan independent effort by voting 54 in favor to 35 against - thanks to the filibuster rule the measure failed because it took 60 votes in favor for the bill to advance.

Six Republican senators joined 48 Democrat senators to form the group of 54 - Cassidy of Louisiana, Collins of Maine, Murkowski of Alaska, Portman of Ohio, Romney of Utah, & Sasse of Nebraska.  But as always the devil is in the details.  There were 11 senators (nine Republicans) who did not vote thereby indicating a bigger divide in Republicans than is immediately obvious by just looking @ the number of yeas & nays.

Democrat Senators Murray of Washington & Sinema of Arizona said they would have voted yes if present as did Republican Toomey of Pennsylvania thereby bringing the vote to 57 in favor of the commission - very close to the 60 votes needed for passage.  Coupling this with eight other Republican senators not voting is a powerful demonstration of dissenters in the Republican ranks against Trump.

The 35 GOP defections in the House, coupled with 30% of Republicans in the Senate not being supportive of Trump in the commision vote, showcases a significant break with Republican leadership in Congress & Trump, both of whom had urged members to vote against the legislation.  

The list of all 11 senators not voting, from the Senate website:





So much is up in the air with Biden being so weak & Republicans still reeling from Trump's divisive personality.  But what we do know with 100% certainty is that, with or without the commission, the Democrats will present the worst case possible of the January 6 events & their presentation could very well be dispositive to enough voters that Republicans lose the 2022 midterm & 2024 presidential elections.

It will be a neat trick if Republicans can regroup in the next 17 months in time to win the midterms while minimizing or eliminating Trump's influence on the party yet following his policies on border control, low taxes, deregulation, record low unemployment in almost every category, good paying jobs, judges who decide cases based on the Constitution & the rule of law, support of our ally Israel, & not being pushed around by China, Russia, or Iran.  

The problem is that Republicans can't win with Trump & can't win without him - i.e., can't win - as it stands now, so they need to develop a clear concise inspirational message to unwind this conundrum.  

The 2024 presidential election does not have to be Biden v. Trump, Harris v. Trump, or anyone else against Trump.  Republicans need to find another candidate who can return America to excellence - please let me know your own suggestions.

But the job gets easier for Republicans the more they focus on Biden's anti-American plans, policies, & ideas purposely designed to transform America (i.e., destroy the American way of life) - incentivizing tens of thousands of people from Central America, all wearing Biden T-shirts, to come to our southwest border to pursue admission to the U.S. to take advantage of the 126 welfare programs identified by the Cato Institute; supporting the establishment of sanctuary cities & states that protect illegal immigrants from law enforcement; defunding the police; abolishing the police; abolishing ICE; & pushing for the passage of the Protecting the Right to Organize Act (PRO Act) that would re-empower unions by nullifying the states' "right to work laws" in all 27 states that have such laws.

If the above Biden policy preferences aren't anti-America enough for you add - encouraging the continuation of federal supplements to state unemployment benefits (i.e., unnecessary stimulus non-work programs that adversely affect peoples' desire to work & ultimately their ability to work @ all) while there is a continuing labor shortage evidenced by the 9.3 million record number of job openings - see latest Labor Department JOLTS report dated April 30 where employers were able to fill only 1 in every 14 new positions in April - that is hurting the economy & small businesses; 
stopping the construction of the border wall where sections could easily be completed with a minimal of effort & contractors are being paid whether they finish their work or not; reversing Trump's corporate income tax cuts - such reversal, when coupled with Biden's planned increase in the capital gains tax rate, will give the U.S. the highest overall federal tax burden on corporate income in the 37 nation OECD @ 59.3%; signing a presidential memorandum that reversed restrictions on abortion access, both foreign & domestic, thereby allowing American tax dollars to be used for abortion businesses & promoters overseas; & outlining a comprehensive immigration plan (amnesty) that will put 11 million immigrants in the U.S., who don't have legal status, on a faster path to citizenship than those standing in line legally today.  

And then there's - halting the deportation of illegal aliens including felons with final orders of removal in direct vioaltion of Biden's oath to enforce the immigration laws of the U.S.; flying or busing migrants, a significant percentage of whom have not been tested for Covid-19, to states all over the country thereby making "every state a border state;" requiring that biological boys (i.e., transgender females) who self identify as girls be allowed to compete on girls' sports teams whether they had sex reassignment surgery or not, thereby ending the competitive sports dreams of many young women; jawboning the Fed to keep interest rates @ zero, meaning savers like seniors are paying for much of any growth in the economy; & a tremendous lurching to the socialist left steeped in Green New Deal incentives & policies aimed @ making America weak by encouraging  government dependence instead of the liberty that produces wealth & value. 

Add in Biden's $6 trillion spend, tax, & borrow proposals that are intended to make Democrats look good to voters between now & the 2022 midterms. This type of deception is the basis of the Death Of Democracy throughout history where the citizenry falsely believes they can vote themselves generous gifts from the public treasury without a care in the world as to who is producing the wealth & value that keeps this utopia going.  Biden is counting on his Santa Claus spending increases paying off in the 2022 midterms without the majority of voters ever wondering where the money came from thereby creating an opportunity for Republicans to teach a lesson in basic economics - if anyone wants to learn it. 

And in one early action intended to turn America on its head, Trump's executive order that banned critical race theory-based training programs in the federal government was rescinded by Biden within hours of his taking office.  I don't know one person who favors this anti-American action that is intended to make life worse for everyone in a lower middle class household up to the ultra rich - namely, all of us.  The states have taken to fighting this in their own way with six of them, so far, restricting the teaching of CRT in public schools. 

The above list provides all the ammunition Republicans need to return to office in 2022, without mentioning Trump, unless the American people want Biden's socialist policies that include up to $4,000 per month federal government paid family & medical leave, free universal preschool, & two years of free community college.  These Biden benefits become part of permanent universal new middle class entitlements, as opposed to being part of a temporary social safety net only for people in need, that are not linked to any work requirement such as other permanent middle class entitlement programs like Social Security & Medicare.

America was not founded on a social safety net but rather on liberty & creating wealth & value.  All of our prosperity since our founding in 1776 comes from these principles.

When was the last time you heard a Democrat talk about liberty or creating wealth & value?  I can't remember it ever.

Biden's real agenda was revealed in way less than his first 100 days in office.  Although I can't recall him personally ever saying so during the campaign, Biden was always portrayed as a moderate, especially when compared to AOC, Bernie Sanders, Elizabeth Warren, & most pointedly Kamala Harris - despite his 47 years in Washington when he was anything but moderate.  In fact, @ this point in his life Biden is quite malleable & his first 100 days in office looks like AOC or Bernie won the presidential election.

Republicans make a bad mistake clinging to Trump's fallacious claims about the 2020 presidential election being stolen while seemingly forgetting, or @ least never mentioning, that his calling for protests on January 6, peaceful or otherwise, to stop Pence from certifying the Electoral College vote was an egregious affront to the Constitution by a sitting president that should not be tolerated by any supporter of the American Republic. 

Countering the above list of Democrat, Biden administration, anti-American points with the above list of Trump principled points provides a much better focus for winning the 2022 midterms.  If Democrats prevail in the 2022 midterms we will fall further, with no resistance, down the Democrat socialistic slide of government dependence, mediocrity, & misery.  

If Republicans can make a clear, concise, & educational presentation exposing the damage, harm, & worthlessness of the above Democrat points while offering viable alternatives to them, in race after midterm race, we will have a good indication from the margins, how soon America will succumb.


Tuesday, May 25, 2021

Memorial Day Tribute From Hillsdale College

For those who enjoy the annual Memorial Day TV celebration hosted by Gary Sinese & Joe Mantegna click here for a preview presented by Hillsdale College.

The video features remarks by President Reagan & is set to the Hillsdale College choir singing "Mansions of the Lord" which was also sung @ President Reagan's funeral.

The Mansions of the Lord
# To fallen soldiers let us sing
Where no rockets fly nor bullets wing
Our broken brothers let us bring
To the mansions of the Lord
#No more bleeding, no more fight
No prayers pleading through the night
Just divine embrace, eternal light
In the mansions of the lord
#Where no mothers cry
And no children weep
We shall stand and guard through the angels sleep
While through the ages safely keep
The mansions of the lord

Sunday, May 9, 2021

Mike Huckabee's Tutorial On Government Spending & Who Pays The Taxes For It

Even the least discerning among us did not need 100 days of the Harris/Biden administration to know that Joe Biden is executing the statists' long term plan to make people totally dependent on government - both financially through taxes & physically through yet another expansion of Medicaid & ObamaCare that is leading to universal healthcare.


On April 28, during Biden's address to the joint session of Congress on the eve of his 100th day in office he outlined the American Families Plan - a plan costing $1.8 trillion that includes upto $4,000 per month federal government paid family & medical leave, free universal preschool, & two years of free community college.  These benefits become part of permanent universal new middle class entitlements, as opposed to being part of a temporary social safety net only for people in need, that are not linked to any work requirement such as other permanent middle class entitlement programs like Social Security & Medicare.

The families plan follows Biden's $1.9 trillion Covid-19's relief package that was passed into law in March entirely on borrowed money & his $2.3 trillion jobs plan introduced @ the end of March to upgrade the nation's infrastructure, fight climate change (i.e., the weather) & create jobs doing so.

The top income tax rate on wage & salary compensation under Biden's plan would be increased to 39.6% from 37% & the top capital gains tax rate would increase from 23.8% to 39.6% plus the 3.8% ObamaCare surcharge on investment income meaning the new top federal capital gains tax rate of 43.4% on financial asset income would be greater than the top rate on wage & salary income.  Talk about a flip flop.

Not one of the world's ten largest economies taxes individual long term capital gains anywhere near ordinary income tax rates.  Most pointedly, China, vying with America to become the world's leading economy - whether Biden realizes it or not - has a top capital gains tax rate of 20% for Chinese investors.

Biden proposes raising the corporate income tax rate from 21% to 28%.  All told, if Biden has his way, the U.S. will have the highest overall federal tax burden on corporate income in the 37 nation OECD (Organization for Economic Cooperation & Development) @ 59.3% & if you add in the average state corporate income tax of 4.9% the combined federal & state tax burden on corporate income is 62.8%.  You can derive these tax rates  from the information contained above in this post.

Biden proposes increasing the IRS enforcement budget by $80 billion, supposing this will bring about the collection of more revenue.  And, of course, Biden has the usual targets of increasing taxes on corporations & the wealthy.  Naturally, if these steps don't raise enough money Biden figures the rest of us can chip in to make up the difference.

Biden's corporate tax rate increase masks the most basic of economic principles starting with corporations don't pay taxes - people do, whether they are consumers, employees, or shareholders.  The general populace loves to bad mouth corporations (whose products they love) & from whom they receive a portion of their retirement income (pensions).  Talk about not knowing what is going on. 

But as insidious & deceptive as the corporate income tax is the capital gains tax plan designed by Biden is every bit as insidious & deceptive & even more destructive. 

Biden's capital gains tax plan treats the death of an owner of stock or a family business as a sale if the assets bequeathed have gone up in value more than $1 million since the time they were bought.  Heirs of such appreciated assets currently pay no capital gains tax until they decide to sell the assets because the appreciated value of the assets are stepped up in basis to the fair market valuation @ the time of the taxpayer's death - a part of the tax code since the Revenue Act of 1921.  Biden compensates for eliminating the step up in basis by arbitrarily providing a $1 million exemption before the new higher 43.4% top rate is applied. 

Biden needs to treat death as a taxable event since he knows many people would be incentivised by the new higher capital gains tax rate to hold assets longer than they otherwise would.  In essence the new higher capital gains tax rate & taxation @ death work together in Biden's plan.

The higher 43.4% capital gains tax rate also applies to taxpayers with over $1 million of annual income, but these people would have discretion when they choose to sell their capital assets & bring about the tax meaning such people would sell their assets in years when they did not have a million dollars of income.

Already congressmen from Iowa are proposing exemptions to the proposed capital gains changes for family farms & if the rest of us want to keep eating we should support them.

Click here to hear Mike Huckabee provide a tutorial that addresses the fallacies of people thinking the government is giving them something for free & how taxes play into the equation - i.e., there is not enough money from people in the top income tax brackets to pay for all the programs so people in the middle class wind up paying for much, if not all, of the programs they think are free.  In addition, government spends the money inefficiently & society would be better off if people kept their own earnings & spent the money as they saw fit. 

Now unless something goes terribly wrong very soon the more immediate effect of Biden's $6 trillion spending plans will be to boost the economy thereby bringing America deeper into the tempting lure that socialism will work this time.  Biden has promised that no one making less than $400,000 per year will have their taxes raised which by definition means that the 2% of households that make @ least $400,000 per year will pay for all the free stuff & benefits that the other 98% of Americans will enjoy.

Just look @ the graphic above to see that the top 1% of income earners already pay 40.4% of the total income taxes paid & the top 5% already pay 60.6% meaning that households making more than $400,000 per year, the top 2% of income earners, do not make enough money for them alone to foot the bill for Biden's entire additional $6 trillion spending spree. 

But America is way down the road to socialism.  In fact when Trump said @ the 2020 State of the Union address "America will never be a socialist country" - & Bernie Sanders just smiled in the audience - we had already been more than halfway socialist for decades. 

The only way to snap out of this delusion is for people to understand that our prosperity, that has made America the envy of the world, is built on people contributing to society by working to create things of value that produce wealth.

Meanwhile, Republicans offer no solutions, but continue to whine, without presenting a scintilla of evidence, that the 2020 presidential election was stolen from them.

Sunday, April 25, 2021

Kim Strassel @ Hillsdale College

I recently received a message from Hillsdale College entitled "Why Is Socialism Popular?"

Hillsdale recognizes that socialism becomes more & more fashionable among young Americans everyday.  I also can't help but recognize that it becomes more fashionable among older Americans everyday as well.  

Hillsdale reports that 70% of Millennials are either "somewhat likely" or "extremely likely" to vote for candidates with socialsit positions.  In fact, the results of the last presidential election verified that young voters preferred Biden over Trump by a whopping 61% to 36% margin.  

In Washington County, Michigan - home of the University of Michigan - Biden received 23,000 more votes than Hillary got in 2016.  Michigan State's home county provided 20,000 more votes for Biden than Hillary.  This 43,000 additional youth vote for lackluster Biden was over four times the amount that Trump won Michigan by in 2016 thereby attributing a very significant portion of Biden's win in Michigan in 2020 to people 18 to 29 years old.

A similar story is told in Wisconsin where Dane county, home of the University of Wisconsin-Madison, produced nearly 35,000 more votes for Biden than Hillary received in 2016.  Trump won Wisconsin in 2016 by less than 23,000 votes.
 
Hillsdale reports that for decades far too many American K-12 schools have failed to provide young people with a solid grounding in American civics - the study of American history, government, & economics & that this failure has contributed to the attraction so many young people today feel for socialism.

In turn, American colleges & universities are now hotbeds of progressive & "politically correct" ideology, including socialism, to the point that nearly half of younger Americans would "prefer living in a socialist country than a capitalistic one."  The word "socialism" does not carry the stigma that it did in the past thanks to celebrity politicians like AOC.  Much of America's youth ignorantly think the term refers to FaceBook or Twitter.

To help explain why America's youth, the future of our country, has turned to socialism Hillsdale sent me a video of Kim Strassel's recent address on the Hillsdale campus & asked me to present it on the blog.

Kim writes the Potomac Watch column every Friday in the WSJ & is a member of the WSJ editorial board.  She frequently appears on TV.  During the video Kim says she has only had one job in her life & it is @ the WSJ for the past 25 years, meaning I have probably read every piece Miss Strassel has ever had published in the paper.

But in answering the original question, "Why Is Socialism Popular?", Kim offers the following cognizant points that I take from her speech:

1.  The American youth has turned to socialism because they do not grow up.  In fact they are not being asked to grow up.  They stay dependent on their parents well into their thirties.  They are getting married later, putting off having children, putting off buying a home, all the things that usually lead to developing adults being more skeptical of government schemes & government plans for redistribution.

2.  What Progressives are advocating today is just another version of socialism.  It would be a U.S. version in which some markets would be allowed to exist, in which some wealthier Americans & corporations would be allowed by the government to keep some of what they earn - but they would be, by & large, working for the benefit of everyone else.  That is the common thread that makes up every socialistic system including the one today in America that is more euphemistically presented & called Progressivism.

3.  Younger Americans who are adopting socialism @ least have the excuse of being ignorant of history thanks to America's poor government school system that in fact teaches socialistic values not free enterprise values.  America's youth today are never taught the extraordinary cruelty & devastation that the pure forms of socialism have wrought - ending free speech, free assembly, a free press, free religious belief, free elections, & a free judiciary.  Socialism's more communistic versions have resulted in imprisonment, execution, & starvation of tens of millions of human beings - examples: Russia, China, North Korea, Cuba, Cambodia, Vietnam, Ethiopia, & more recently Venezuela.  America's youth mistakenly think things will continue harmoniously for them, as it does today, as they spend down their parents wealth without a clue of the foregoing dangers or any idea of the freedoms they are throwing away.

4.  Kim explains that Democrats' messages are inherently simple - they take advantage of young Americans demoralized by a global economy,  struggling to find jobs, overloaded with student debt, & unable to buy a home.  Democrat messages to young Americans portray the world as unfair, stacked against them, with the rich keeping them down - all messages not designed to lift people up or inspire them but rather to pander saying I'll pay for your healthcare &  education.  Kim counters by saying this opportunity to prey exists because conservatives simply have not done enough to combat Democrats' messages that appeal to young Americans' basest instincts.  The claims that the government can do anything & everything are too overwhelming & America's youth are not hearing a compelling message to the contrary as the majority of commenters to this blog regularly point out.  Kim gives a list of things conservatives could do & I have given a list of fourteen questions that must be asked & answered by the citizenry or the slide toward socialism will continue.

5.  At the end of the speech Kim has a Q&A session where, if possible, she speaks even more freely than during the talk including explaining the difference between Bernie Sanders & AOC & how AOC came to power.

***

In her talk @ Hillsdale College Kim Stassel cited several reasons why we're seeing more & more Americans embracing socialistic ideas, including ignorance of history among the young & desire for power by those in authority - & all @ our expense.  For over 120 years Communists in America, whether labeled Marxists, socialists, or fascists, have sought to subvert America until today socialism has taken hold of over half of Americans between 18 & 29 years old.  Socialist elites are trying to overrun America, rather than places like Darfur, because America is where the material wealth is that will provide them luxurious lives of power while making worker bees out of everyone else.  America was founded on the principles of limited government, personal responsibility, & free enterprise & American youths are about to throw all this away without having a clue about what will happen to them if they ever speak out against the government they profess to want.

Sunday, April 11, 2021

Three Big Income Tax Surprises In Tax Year 2020

Most every income tax filing season has some surprises - but not many more than for those who worked remotely @ home in a different state than where their employer is located or for those who received unemployment insurance benefits caused by the government shutting down businesses under the pretense of concern for the Wuhan coronavirus.  There were also a few surprises for people scheduled to take RMDs from IRAs.

The IRS's decision to extend the filing deadline to May 17 gives affected people a few more weeks to cope with these surprises.

For states with an income tax people are usually taxed by the state where their employer's office or business is located & of course this is where they normally went to work every day before March 2020.  After working remotely from home for about ten months in 2020 a significant number of people are finding that more than one state is making income tax claims on their earnings.

Some remote workers have found they are taxed in the state where their employer is located unless the employer actually requires them to work remotely in another state.  If two or more states are involved the state income tax liability is never based on where it is convenient for the work to be performed.  Such affected workers may have to file two, or more, state income tax returns.

States like New York are very aggressive in claiming NY state income taxes are due for people working from home in another state but whose employer is located in New York.

The biggest surprises could come to people who found that working remotely was so convenient that they traveled to the homes of friends, family, or second homes in states other than where their principal residence (main home) is located to work.  Some states, such as Michigan, require someone who is not a resident to pay Michigan state income tax on the money they earned the first day the person starts working remotely in Michigan.  Some states subject all of your income to state income taxes regardless of where it was earned, leaving you to hope there is a reciprocal agreement between states (like PA & NJ) or that your state of principal residence is reasonable in recognizing taxes paid to other jurisdictions (i.e., income earned outside your principal residence state is subtracted so that such income is only taxed once @ each state level). 

This state income tax problem started when California recognized that professional athletes were easy high income targets who were good sources of extra income for the state.  A professional NBA basketball player living in Florida, a state with no state income tax, still pays state income tax in 18 other states that he plays basketball in.

There are 41 states that have state income taxes & more than 20 of them have a one day rule for owing state income taxes if someone travels there to work or works there remotely.  Technically, someone going to a trade show or one day seminar could be liable for state income tax in such a state.

There are 16 states that have agreements that make it easier for those who commute across state lines to come under the jurisdiction of the state in which they live.  

Six states tax someone working remotely based on where the employer's office is located if the remote work is not required by the employer @ a genuine work location.

Nine states have no state income tax - Alaska, Florida, New Hampshire, Nevada, South Dakota, Tennessee, Texas, Washington, & Wyoming.

In balancing out any dual state income tax payments you should take into account the tax rates of both states.  For instance you could get a credit for taxes paid to a state other than your principal residence state.  If your principal residence state has a lower tax rate than the state you chose to work in you could get a tax surprise if you had figured it was convenient to work in the other state for part of the pandemic scarred year.

Remote workers should be better prepared after this income tax filing season.  Being proactive in understanding your state income tax withholding & the rates of other states you choose to spend time in is a great start.

The second big surprise in tax year 2020 affected people who had never received unemployment benefits in their lives - only to find out that unemployment compensation is taxable for federal purposes including money received under the Federal Pandemic Unemployment Compensation (FPUC) program.  In brief, millions of workers had thousands of dollars per family in income tax liabilities on their unemployment benefits.

New Jersey allowed people to voluntarily have 10% of their unemployment benefit withheld & sent to the IRS so @ least there was a warning of what was to come for people in NJ.  But California did not withhold taxes on the enhanced federal $600 supplemental benefits made through the FPUC so many Californians were unsuspecting of the income tax liability on their unemployment benefits.

The IRS started accepting income tax returns on February 12 with most early filers expecting a refund, as usual, figuring it made no sense letting the government hold their money interest free any longer than the beginning of the year.  Do you see something wrong with this reasoning?  

The income taxes due on the unemployment benefits cut into that refund so on March 11, 2021 the American Rescue Plan was enacted that retroactively  included a new exclusion of up to $10,200 of unemployment compensation, per recipient, in households whose adjusted gross income was less than $150,000 in tax year 2020.  It wasn't until March 23 that the IRS released guidance for those affected who had already filed 2020 returns & for those who haven't - a combination that includes 40 million affected Americans.  By the beginning of March the IRS already had received 45 million income tax returns, many of which would be affected by the new law exempting some unemployment benefits from taxation.

The government is so anxious to send people money that the IRS has told affected tax filers, who had already filed, not to prepare amended returns but rather the IRS would calculate the amount due & send out the checks.  In any event everyone will be made whole one way or the other in this regard.  

A $10,200 unemployment tax exemption in 2020 amounts to every recipient of the $600 per week unemployment compensation, in a household that totals a cumulative income of $150,000 per year, or less, receiving the top $600 per week benefit for 17 weeks tax free.  Since many people received more income from unemployment compensation (both regular state unemployment compensation like $1,234 per week in Massachusetts plus the $600 per week federal supplement) than they did working & paying both income & payroll taxes on their incomes it is not surprising that many firms & small businesses have had trouble hiring people.  The tax exemption described above only exacerbates the problem. 

The third big surprise came on March 27, 2020 when Congress passed & Trump signed the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, & Economic Security Act (CARES Act) that temporarily waived required minimum distributions (RMDs) in 2020 for anyone with an RMD due in 2020 (the Secure Act of 2019 had already changed the starting age for RMDs to 72) including IRA beneficiaries taking single life expectancy payout distributions, & IRA holders who had turned 70 & a half in 2019 & had until April 1, 2020 to take their RMD for tax year 2019.  Talk about good timing.

Congress included this RMD waiver in the CARES Act because 2020 RMDs are based on the fair market value of an IRA on December 31, 2019 when the DJIA was 28,462 (S&P 3,221).  The Dow had dropped to 22,552 (S&P 2,630) on the date the CARES Act was signed into law meaning that without enactment of the CARES Act many IRA holders would have been taking large taxable RMDs on a market value that no longer existed.

The complication involved taxpayers who had already taken their 2020 RMD before enactment of the CARES Act or who had submitted their income tax returns figuring in a 2020 RMD (realized or merely projected) & its tax liability for tax year 2020 & included this in making the first estimated tax payment for tax year 2020 - such people would have overpaid, & some substantially overpaid. 

The IRS ultimately altered their rules allowing early 2020 RMDs to be repaid, treating the repayment as a tax-free rollover not subject to the one rollover every 12 months rule.  The estimated tax payer who overpaid was on his own to recalculate the other three estimated tax payments making sure he did not underpay for the year or any other quarter, which would have drawn an underpayment of estimated tax penalty plus interest, even though he overpaid the first estimated tax payment.

These are the three big income tax surprises for tax year 2020 that I have come across..  Please let me know of any others that you are aware of.

All of the income tax surprises described above stem from the adoption in Amendment XVI of the Constitution of the income tax "from whatever source derived."  In this case the sources are assessments of state income taxes depending on where you live or work or where your employer is located, the federal government taxing unemployment insurance benefits, & the federal government deciding what portion, & when, your retirement savings will be taxed.

There is a better way & it is the FairTax.

Sunday, March 28, 2021

No Voter Remorse

On Thursday March 11 Biden made his first presidential prime time TV address to mark the one year anniversary of the Covid-19 pandemic in America.  The address also coincided with his signing into law the same day of the $1.9 trillion stimulus bill known as the American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA), Biden's first legislative victory in office.

Almost half of this gigantic stimulus spending will go directly to the well publicized $1,400 per person direct deposits or checks ($8,400 for a family of two adults & four small children), $1,300 per child expanded child tax credits ($5,200 for this same family), bigger food-stamp payments, & $300 per week federal enhanced unemployment benefits in addition to regular state unemployment benefits.  And $350 billion payments will be made to states - the majority of which will go to Democrat states that have been financially irresponsible for decades meaning that states like Tennessee, Florida, Texas, & Georgia will bail out New York, New Jersey, Illinois, & California.  For instance, New York will receive more money from the bill than Florida despite New York having a smaller population than Florida - one of the consequences of the November election. 

The ARPA will also provide 14 weeks of paid sick, family, & medical leave through September, while reimbursing local governments for the cost of this leave, provide an additional $25 billion for rental relief & $5 billion to cover home energy & water costs for low income people, extend the federal eviction moratorium through September & allow people with federally guaranteed mortgages to apply for forbearance until September, provide $40 billion to ensure childcare providers can remain open & expand the childcare tax credit, provide an additional $15 billion to the Paycheck Protection Program in flexible, equitably distributed grants to small businesses to help them reopen & rebuild, & provide $20 billion to support public transit agencies to ensure that workers keep their jobs & routes are not cut from service.

All of this federal deficit spending - just when the economy is growing on its own.   Mitch McConnell said: "Our country is already set for a roaring recovery.  We are already on track to bounce back from this crisis.  That's not because of this bill.  It's because of our work last year."  

The graphic below shows the initial claims for unemployment benefits fell below the pre-pandemic record last week without this government stimulus - this will convert to GDP growth.  The ARPA stimulus bill contains measures that are less targeted than the two previous stimulus bills the past year & to make matters worse comes when the economy is already recovering.  In short, it is just a blanket giveaway to buy votes.  And of course the entire plan is unconstitutional. 


Biden & Harris went on a cross country victory tour marking the passing of the ARPA, billed as the "Help Is Here" campaign to proclaim the merits of the stimulus plan & to make sure that voters know who made this bailout money possible - the bill passed without one Republican vote in either the House or Senate & I fully expected this point would be driven home by Biden & Harris during the tour - & it was regardless of Biden's claims to be a unifier.  See Senate vote below.



The initial eight state tour started with Biden's visit to Pennsylvania on Tuesday March 16, while Harris & her husband visited California, Nevada & Colorado & Jill Biden visited New Jersey & New Hampshire.  The second gentlemen moved the message to New Mexico.  Biden & Harris wrapped up the week in Georgia.

Biden expects, & incidentally so do I, that the massive giveaway will be largely more popular with Republican voters around the country than it is with Republican elected officials.  The nation is already coming out of the economic pandemic doldrums strongly on its own capitalistic free enterprise merits but Biden is there to falsely tell people that it is his stimulus package that did the trick.  As the economy strengthens Biden will both take credit for it & count on watching his popularity grow thereby helping congressional Democrats win in the 2022 midterm elections.  A perfect setup for an unsuspecting poorly educated citizenry.   

Many people who have received the relief funds clearly recognized that they would one day run out of money but did not think that the government could face the same fate never realizing that the government gets its money from people & no matter how rich these people are they too will also sooner or later run out of money.   

Now the $1.9 trillion stimulus plan is just the start of the Democrats plans.  There is a $3 trillion infrastructure plan being developed that includes climate change initiatives, extending the newly created child tax credit, providing for universal pre kindergarten & tuition free community college, raising the minimum wage to @ least $15 per hour, & providing for universal child care & rental assistance.

These plans are pretty much set up because during the campaign Biden had proposed more than $3 trillion in tax increases over the next decade & there is evidence from polls, such as from Gallup, showing that people think businesses & wealthy people do not pay enough in taxes.  These polls do not indicate where these people think their employers get the money to hire them or if they would be willing to take a pay cut or be discharged if their employer took the money saved from their salaries to pay more in taxes.

To put Biden's spending binge into perspective:  in less than Biden's first hundred days in office he will have proposed $4.9 trillion in deficit spending.  The national debt from the start of the Republic to 2000 was $5.6 trillion.  Is anyone thinking about the significance of the national debt?  Or what the government's maximum claim on earned income should be?

But as long as people are receiving the Biden stimulus money they do not have any remorse about voting for Biden, even considering the following seemingly significant items during the campaign that have blindsided Biden voters:

1.  On the eve of the annual March for Life event (this year virtual) Biden signed a presidential memorandum that reversed restrictions on abortion access both foreign & domestic.  The new Biden policy rescinds the so-called Mexico City Policy (also known as the global gag rule) thereby allowing American tax dollars to be used for abortion businesses & promoters overseas.  Biden claims to be a practicing Catholic who until recently followed the Hyde Amendment, a legislative provision that barred the use of federal funds to pay for abortions with rare exceptions.  Many religious people were surprised by Biden's religious contradictions but really are fine with Biden's pro-abortion position as long as the stimulus money keeps flowing.

2.  Biden placed a 100 day halt on deporting illegal aliens including felons with final orders of removal in a direct violation of his oath to enforce the immigration laws of the U.S.  Shortly after his 12 noon inauguration on January 20 Biden sent a memo to Congress outlining a proposed comprehensive immigration bill (a form of amnesty) that includes an eight year path to citizenship for the 11 million immigrants in the U.S. who don't have legal status - thereby putting many of these people on a faster path to citizenship than those standing in line legally today.  Comprehensive immigration reform is of course the source of new Democrat voters that will keep the statists in power until everyone realizes what they have been throwing away.  

In the meantime, while we wait for many on the eight year citizenship path to come of voting age, Biden's policies have incentivized & attracted tens of thousands of people from Central America to come to our southwest border to pursue admission to the U.S. to take advantage of any or as many as possible of the 126 welfare programs identified by the Cato Institute.  Although the general procedure is to let the migrants in & bus or fly them to northern states like New Jersey & New York there has been a significant number of positive cases of Covid-19 discovered among the illegal border crossers.  So after a year of the government restricting American citizens from going to church, weddings, funerals, or visiting family members the Biden administration has allowed possibly Covid diseased people who are the poorest, least educated, lowest skilled people in the world into America in what Biden perceives as a permanent Democrat voting block - all of which will sooner or later be financed by taking away your life's savings through paying for one welfare program after another.

See photo below of Hondurans clashing with Guatemalan soldiers as a migrant caravan tries to cross into Vado Hondo, Guatemala on January 17,  three days before Biden's inauguration, on their way to the U.S. in what is the biggest surge of illegal migrants in twenty years, including a record number of unaccompanied minors.  Biden does not consider the type of scenes depicted in the below photo to be a crisis although the Federal Emergency Management Agency was sent to our southwest border.  Biden's election in & of itself incentivized these people to come to America, many of whom did not even know Biden's name, & most of whom were men in search of work such as picking lettuce & washing dishes.  Now ask yourself: do we really need more dishwashers?


3.  And of course there were the usual Democrat abuses & insults to the intelligence to the American people such as A) the $1,400 checks going to pedophiles & felons such as Boston Marathon bomber Dzhokhar Tsarnaev in his jail cell; B) $5 billion going to "Farmers of Color" to compensate for the alleged discrimination of the USDA & "to support activities @ the USDA that will supposedly root out systemic racism, provide technical & legal assistance to agriculture communities of color, & fund under resourced programs that will shape the future for farmers & communities of color" - source:  The Emergency Relief for Farmers of Color Act introduced by Reverend Raphael Warnock (D-GA), Cory Booker (D-NJ), Ben Ray Lujan (D-NM), & Debbie Stabenow (D-MI); C) millions of dollars going to lawless sanctuary cities; D) the welcoming back to America of people legally deported by Trump; & E) in the biggest abuse & insult of all - portraying the American Rescue Plan stimulus bill as a plan to combat the Covid-19 pandemic when so little of the proceeds go toward Covid relief as you can tell by reading the above.

From his first news conference last Thursday, painfully slow, protective, & well scripted, Biden feels he is on a winning path with American voters even saying @ one point he did not know whether there would even be a Republican Party in 2024 - & neither do I.

The GOP must do more than have their elected representatives or paid pundits come on TV to talk about radical socialism or what has escalated recently to talking about fascism citing Biden's large number of executive orders.  This won't & hasn't cut it.  We are long past this.  Long before Trump said in the 2020 State Of The Union address that "America will never be a socialist country" we were well more than halfway there already.  This is what the citizenry has become accustomed to & voted for more of in 2020 with no remorse.

It is very disheartening to see conservative commentators miss the point entirely as to what happened last November when they list the offenses Biden has committed on America & act like Biden's election was a mistake - laughing as if Trump is a shoo in in 2024 when in reality he has no chance @ all of being reelected after the way he conducted himself after losing a close election in which he offended virtually every voting group imaginable.  This attitude will play well to die hard Trump supporters but will not help @ all in returning America to excellence.

The majority of American voters want, & have signaled that they want by electing Biden, the government programs described hereinbefore & have no remorse whatsoever regarding the 2020 presidential election.  People who have not been affected by one iota by Covid 19 are lapping up the $1,400 stimulus checks, & the previous two, as if they deserved them.

In our lifetimes we have seen the descendancy of the Death Of Democracy stages (that every democracy in history has gone through before becoming a dictatorship): from learning in elementary school & junior high about the Founders' great courage & successful fight for liberty, to the resultant liberty to abundance stage of our heritage, & then more recently to our direct witnessing of the abundance to complacency stage & the complacency to apathy stage, & now the apathy to dependence stage as described in this post above.  

It could not be clearer.  The most powerful influence of any election is the destructive message that your vote can be bought by promising government programs that seemingly offer security & plenty of leisure time & freedom.

This destructive process of the majority always voting for the candidates who promise the most benefits from the public treasury will continue until it collapses of its own financial deadweight or enough citizens, who know better, spend themselves in the worthy cause of helping our country fight off the socialist onslaught that is on course to fully take over America.

The genesis of our problem is the socialist education system presented by government schools & human nature that is always looking for something free.  

Professor Friedman wrote in the Cato Policy Report, March/April 1999 - "Any institution will tend to express its own values & its own ideas.  Our public education system is a socialsit institution.  A socialist institution will teach socialist values, not principles of private enterprise."

Reversing the socialist bent in American education will take a dedicated effort from virtually all of us.  Otherwise the socialist slide will continue as sure & as natural as the entropy of the universe increases.

If you have children, grandchildren, nieces, hephews, or friends & neighbors who have bought into the socialist destruction of America through the "I deserve" or the "I am entitled" mentality ask to see their textbooks - I do with every person I meet who tells me they are a student.

Do not send children to schools that do not teach American values.  

A charter subscriber to this blog told me she has tutored her neighbors' children in American values while she supervises them, @ their parents request, after school.

This blog is written @ the suggestion of former South Carolina Senator Jim Demint & this month the posts will reach over 10,000 readers.  If you can't write your own blog for whatever reason pass these messages on if you see value in them.  Or comment - all comments are posted whether they agree or not with my points of view unless they use profanity.  Commenting is a good way to add to the discussion so that everyone learns starting with me.

But don't rely on me - I always leave one thing out of every post hoping someone will find it.

Before the first presidential debate last fall I suggested fourteen questions that should be answered by every citizen before being presented to our incumbent politicians or new candidates for office.  Once you are sure of the answers you are armed to make a positive contribution so that the electoral result of 2020 is a one off proposition.

Understanding the answers to these questions is the way to return America to the excellence of the liberty to abundance stage of our history that has the potential to benefit everyone in the world.  If we don't teach these principles to others the electoral margins of 2020 will not change.

I don't know of another way to turn this Biden/Harris electoral nightmare around.  But if you do, please do not hold back.  If you don't, I hope this post gave you some ideas of what to do to help.