The Carter record is a litany of despair, of broken promises, of sacred trusts abandoned and forgotten. Eight million — eight million out of work. Inflation running at 18 percent in the first quarter of this year. Black unemployment at 14 percent, higher than any single year since the government began keeping separate statistics. Four straight major deficits run up by Carter and his friends in Congress. The highest interest rates since the Civil War, reaching at times close to 20 percent, lately they’re down to more than 11 percent but now they’ve begun to go up again. Productivity falling for six straight quarters among the most productive people in the world.
Through his inflation he has raised taxes on the American people by 30 percent, while their real income has risen only 20 percent. The Lady standing there in the harbor has never betrayed us once. But this Administration in Washington has betrayed the working men and women of this country.
The President promised that he would not increase taxes for the low and middle-income people, the workers of America. Then he imposed on American families the largest single tax increase in our nation’s history. His answer to all this misery? He tries to tell us that we’re “only” in a recession, not a depression, as if definitions, words, relieve our suffering.
Let it show on the record that when the American people cried out for economic help, Jimmy Carter took refuge behind a dictionary. Well if it’s a definition — if it’s a definition he wants, I’ll give him one. A recession is when your neighbor loses his job. A depression is when you lose yours. And recovery is when Jimmy Carter loses his.
Ferguson: Chinese economic growth has been almost 10% but more importantly China’s consumer growth has been even higher.
[Editor’s Note – America’s “recovery” if that is what you want to call it is not consumer friendly, it is not investor friendly, it is not production friendly which means it is just not business friendly unless of course that business is well-connected to government, but even that is not a guarantee when one looks at Solyndra and these other “green jobs” boondoggles that have proved to be a colossal waste of money with the only people who benefitted were those who were politically connected who paid themselves ridiculously.
China and even Canada’s recovery has been more consumer and risk taker friendly. China has no capital gains tax and they are still bringing in revenue in a big way which is another indicator of the utter brokenness of our gargantuan tax code.
I disagree with Ferguson that we need to weaken our dollar even further, quite frankly enough is enough. We have weakened it plenty and we have not seen the desired/theoretical increase in manufacturing exports. Why? Confidence in America, its leadership, and as a place to do business cannot recover while we are trashing the dollar. Of course this interview was done in June 2010 so perhaps Ferguson has moderated his view on this by now. There are other reasons the consumer and the risk taker have lost confidence besides the deliberate trashing of the dollar, but it is a significant reason nonetheless.
Ferguson correctly states that what is bigger than our current economic problem is the lack of those in power to deal with our unsustainable fiscal path. The Paul Krugman/leftist idea of trillion dollar deficits for the next 70 years is ridiculous because those who by our bonds will just stop loaning us the money. The TEA Party zeal to tackle this problem combined with the genius of those like Paul Ryan/Mitch Daniels/Herman Cain etc may yet save America.]
A one hour lecture at Chatham House speaking on history, economics, empires, and global security.
Pardon the dopey 15 second introduction before the substance of the video begins (we didn’t edit this piece), but watch this video.
The Chinese have noticed what the rest of the worlds investors pretend not to see: The United States is on a completely unsustainable fiscal course with no apparent political means of self correction…
Have you ever heard one of those sports guys on the radio who can tell you the stats of every football and baseball game since 1940 right off the top of their head? Prof. Niall Ferguson is like that, but with history and the history of economics. Prof Niall Ferguson is accepted by many academics as the most brilliant historian alive and judging by all I have seen in recent years I have only seen one man in my lifetime who is in the same ballpark as far as ability in this area is concerned. Take a look at his bio HERE.
Ferguson said in another interview that only one time in history has a major power emerged from this kind of debt and survived and that was England after the wars of the 1800’s. It doesn’t look good unless we change course now.
The volume is low on some of the videos so you may have to adjust your speaker volume.
“This situation is obscene and we must change it now.”
For those of you who do not know Michelle Rhee, she is one of the stars from the hit film “Waiting for Superman”. The film is a brilliant documentary about people who made a difference or who tried to make a difference in public schools. Rhee was the Washington D.C. Schools Chancellor. While she was able to make positive changes, the key aspects of her reform plan were stopped by the teachers union who is desperate to maintain the failing status quo [if you think that what I just said is even a MILD exaggeration please consider this your personal invitation to demonstrate otherwise in the comments below – Editor].
If you care about kids or education at all this is a must see.
Profiles in ridiculous: 70% of the superintendents in New Jersey make more than the governor…
“You achieve I’ll pay you…”
[Sarah Palin from April 2011. Those who say that Sarah is dumb or parrot other such elite media smears just didn’t do their homework – Editor]
It’s unbelievable (literally) the rhetoric coming from President Obama today. This is coming from he who is manipulating the U.S. energy supply. President Obama is once again giving lip service to a “new energy proposal”; but let’s remember the last time he trotted out a “new energy proposal” – nearly a year ago to the day. The main difference is today we have $4 a gallon gas in some places in the country. This is no accident. This administration is not a passive observer to the trends that have inflated oil prices to dangerous levels. His war on domestic oil and gas exploration and production has caused us pain at the pump, endangered our already sluggish economic recovery, and threatened our national security. Through a process of what candidate Obama once called “gradual adjustment,” American consumers have seen prices at the pump rise 67 percent since he took office. Meanwhile, the vast undeveloped reserves that could help to keep prices at the pump affordable remain locked up because of President Obama’s deliberate unwillingness to drill here and drill now. We’re subsidizing offshore drilling in Brazil and purchasing energy from them, instead of drilling ourselves and keeping those dollars circulating in our own economy to generate jobs here. The President said today, “There are no quick fixes.” He’s been in office for nearly three years now, and he’s about to launch his $1 billion re-election campaign. When can we expect any “fixes” from him? How high does the price of energy have to go?
So, here’s a little flashback to what I wrote on March 31, 2010, at National Review Online’s The Corner:
Many Americans fear that President Obama’s new energy proposal is once again “all talk and no real action,” this time in an effort to shore up fading support for the Democrats’ job-killing cap-and-trade (a.k.a. cap-and-tax) proposals. Behind the rhetoric lie new drilling bans and leasing delays; soon to follow are burdensome new environmental regulations. Instead of “drill, baby, drill,” the more you look into this the more you realize it’s “stall, baby, stall.”
Today the president said he’ll “consider potential areas for development in the mid and south Atlantic and the Gulf of Mexico, while studying and protecting sensitive areas in the Arctic.” As the former governor of one of America’s largest energy-producing states, a state oil and gas commissioner, and chair of the nation’s Interstate Oil and Gas Conservation Commission, I’ve seen plenty of such studies. What we need is action — action that results in the job growth and revenue that a robust drilling policy could provide. And let’s not forget that while Interior Department bureaucrats continue to hold up actual offshore drilling from taking place, Russia is moving full steam ahead on Arctic drilling, and China, Russia, and Venezuela are buying leases off the coast of Cuba.
As an Alaskan, I’m especially disheartened by the new ban on drilling in parts of the 49th state and the cancellation of lease sales in the Chukchi and Beaufort seas. These areas contain rich oil and gas reserves whose development is key to our country’s energy security. As I told Secretary Salazar last April, “Arctic exploration and development is a slow, demanding process. Delays or major restrictions in accessing these resources for environmentally responsible development are not in the national interest or the interests of the State of Alaska.”
Since I wrote the above, we have even more evidence of the President’s anti-drilling agenda. We have the moratorium in the Gulf of Mexico as well as the de-facto moratorium in the Arctic. We have his 2012 budget that proposes to eliminate several vital oil and natural gas production tax incentives. We have his anti-drilling regulatory policies that have stymied responsible development. And the list goes on. The President says that we can’t “drill” our way out of the problem. But we can’t drive our cars on solar shingles either. We have to live in the real world where we must continue to develop the conventional resources that we actually use right now to fuel our economy as we continue to look for a renewable source of energy. If we are looking for an affordable, environmentally friendly, and abundant domestic source of energy, why not turn to our own domestic supply of natural gas? Whether we use it to power natural-gas cars or to run natural-gas power plants that charge electric cars, natural gas is an ideal “bridge fuel” to a future when more renewable sources are available, affordable, and economically viable on their own. It’s a lot more viable than subsidizing boondoggles like these inefficient electric cars that no one wants. I’m all for electric cars if you can develop one I can actually use in Alaska, where you can drive hundreds of miles without seeing many people, let alone many electrical sockets. But these electric and hybrid cars are not a quick fix because we still need an energy source to power them. That’s why I like natural gas, but we still have to drill for natural gas, and this administration doesn’t like drilling or apparently the jobs that come with responsible oil and natural gas development. They don’t have a coherent energy policy. They have piecemeal ideas for subsidizing impractical pet “green” projects.
I have always been in favor of an “all-of-the-above” approach to energy independence, but “all-of-the-above” means conventional resource development too. It means a coherent, practical, and forward-looking energy policy. I wish the President would understand this. The good news is there is nothing wrong with America’s energy policy that another good old-fashion election can’t solve. 2012 is just around the corner.
– Sarah Palin
The talking point: What do you mean drill for more oil, the oil companies do not want to drill for more oil, they bought the leases and just let them sit there so we will pay Brazil to look for oil there. [Oh by the way who has a money stake in Petro-Brazil? Obama money man and buddy George Soros – Editor]
That entire narrative is a complete scam as you will soon see.
WASHINGTON – An Interior Department report to be released Tuesday says more than two-thirds of offshore oil and gas leases in the Gulf of Mexico are sitting idle.
According to the report, obtained by The Associated Press, those inactive swaths of the Gulf could potentially hold more than 11 billion barrels of oil and 50 trillion cubic feet of natural gas. The report also shows that 45 percent of all onshore oil and gas leases are inactive.
President Barack Obama ordered the Interior Department review earlier this month amid pressure to curb rising gas prices. The White House says Obama will address his plans for the country’s energy security during a speech in Washington Wednesday.
The first problem is that the permitting process to actually get the permits to drill on the lease take years.The government puts years worth of roadblocks in the permitting process, this complicated by the fact that in each stage of the permitting process that gets approved by the federal government, eco-extremist groups sue to stop it.
Obama instituted an offshore drilling ban as was widely reported. The ban was illegal and a federal judge ordered him to stop. Obama ignored the court order. Then look at what Obama did to the regulations to have a de facto ban anyways. The film below explains how they did it. It will infuriate you.
So here is the situation, the government charges money for the lease and then works with anti-capitalist and eco-extremist groups to prevent that lease from ever getting the permits.
UPDATE II – Dick Morris:Obama has zeroed out new drilling permits. The few that are starting now are left over from permits that were approved from the Bush Administration
Talk about a slow response to Katrina, how about no response because you are a Republican.
White House: Gov. Perry disrespected us because he would not greet us when the President flew in.
The Facts: Obama flew into El Paso, a two-hour flight for Gov. Perry and yet just a few hours later Obama was to be in Austin, where Gov. Perry was, for two fund-raisers. “We offered to meet the President here in Austin” says Gov. Perry. President Obama refused to meet with him.
White House: Border counties are safer than ever.
The Facts: The White House bases that number on the number of illegal immigration apprehensions. The apprehensions are down because the economy in the USA is bad and fewer people are coming across, but the drug cartels and border violence are up and some parts of the border have been ceded to the drug cartels and are not under our control.
White House: Gov. Perry is not telling the truth about the fires as the federal government is paying 75% of the bill.
The Facts: The Federal Government is helping with 25 fires out of 9000. [Editor’s Note – By the way, wild fires would not be so bad if the federal government did not have restrictions on forest management such as cutting fire breaks and cleaning underbrush.]
UPDATE – If you want to see the depth of President Obama’s border security lie, the Federal Government through the BLM is posting these signs in Arizona just south of Interstate 8. This is not just on the border as Interstate 8 is THREE COUNTIES inland.
If the border is safer than ever, why are these signs needed now and say not when Reagan was in office or even Clinton?
The Arizona TEA Party recently posted this message on one of their web sites:
“Sheriff Dever’s Dept. (Cochise County) and also the Pinal County Sheriff’s Depts (Sheriff Paul Babeu) which are the two counties that are directly on the AZ/Mexican border, are now being sued by Obama and Eric Holder to prevent them from enforcing immigration laws? Mark, this situation has become extremely dangerous now. Not only are thousands of illegal Mexican immigrants crossing our border daily, we have thousands of OTM’s (Other Than Mexican….a-hem, middle-easterners). Obama and Holder want to stop these Sheriff Depts from apprehending them, and handing them over to ICE for deportation.”
ABC’s Jake Tapper makes a few observations about the president’s border speech. He quotes the increase in border agents from the early Bush Administration, counting the increases authorized by the former president as his own. In short putting up a light fence on a few hundred miles of border when that border is thousands of miles long is hardly securing it, and neither is adding 3000 border agents which is an ounce in the bucket. Obama has hardly secured the border and in fact files harassment suits against local law enforcement to stop serious enforcement of it.
The taxes Democrats propose to “soak the rich” always seem to miss those who they demagogue for not paying their fair share. They have been “soaking the rich” for decades and keep missing the target. Why?
Veronique de Rugy is one of the most respected economists alive today.
Political Arena Editor Chuck Norton comments from June 2011:
[Note – some people who are just reading the first few paragraphs are assuming that we are endorsing any form of class warfare, actually it is quite the opposite. Class Warfare is foolish because it not only causes wealth to flee, but it eventually destroys wealth. The opposite of poverty is wealth. One cannot be against poverty and against wealth at the same time as it is as perfect an economic paradox as is possible. Class warfare spreads poverty and that is what it is designed to do, because a prospering middle class whose wealth is growing doesn’t a host of government dependence programs.]
UPDATE 10-10-2002 – I have repeatedly talked about “Consolidation” as Obama’s economic theory. Dick Morris is on Sean Hannity right now saying that Obama wants to have one big union, one big corporation in each industry, along with one big government. He is describing Obama’s merging of Corporatism and Socialism. “The left voted for socialism and got Goldman Sachs”. Anyone mind of I just gloat for a minute 🙂 I started saying this over a year ago on my old college blog. We try to always bring you the cutting edge. ]
This came as absolutely no surprise to me. As with most taxes that are “designed to target the rich” they do no such thing and the “alternative minimum tax” is no different.
The Democratic Party leadership pretends to be interested in genuine class warfare. You hear President Obama talk about “taxing millionaires and billionaires” yet the very policies he and much of the Democratic leadership advocate do no such thing.
Democrats have not been interested in taxing the genuinely rich and aren’t today. John Kerry made $5,072,000 in 2003 and had a total federal tax burden of 12.34%. The very wealthy enjoy a 60,000 page tax code that is filled with exceptions. Much of the income those like John and Teresa Kerry receive is defined as “unearned income” or earnings that are not taxable at the wage earner rate so even if the regular income tax rate was increased to 50% the percentage the Kerry’s would pay would only go up by a couple of points, if that.
Yet small business “sub-s corporations” (most domestic small businesses that have between 1-200 employees) are taxed at the wage earner rate and would be devastated by a 50% rate. Small businesses do most of the hiring in this country. Would someone care to explain how Democrats can claim to be for workers while being against their employers?
We need to be mindful of how a politician defines “The Rich”. I have a close friend who owns a small car repair business. My friend qualified as “The Rich” because his small business is an s-corp that brings in more than 250k per year. Out of that 250K he pays federal and state taxes, his employees, the payroll tax matching, rent, equipment, insurance, parts to put on cars, consumables such as motor oil, advertising etc. What is left is what he gets for his family. He drives an old Chevy truck because that is what he can afford.
The truth is that very few people make over $250k in taxable wages. President Obama talks about taxing billionaires and millionaires (defined as those who make over $250k), but the way the tax code works the wealth of George Soros like billionaires is almost perfectly protected. If George Soros and the Kerry’s paid a percentage like small businesses must, who would fund the Tides Foundation and the Democrat’s 527 groups?
As you may be aware, Google made $3.1 BILLION last year and had a federal tax burden of 2.4%. Google throws fund-raising galas for Obama and the Democrats and have given the Democrats massive donations. Where are the “liberals” condemning the Google Corps of the world? How about GE, whose former CEO now works at the White House, earned 14.2 billion dollars and not only did they have a tax bill of zero, they received taxpayer subsidies.
Yet Obama has waged a rhetorical war against the Chamber of Commerce and who do they represent, you guessed it, most small and medium-sized domestic businesses. Obama blasted the Chamber of Commerce for daring to oppose his plan to tax such businesses at a rate of 39.6%.
[Note: In some cases capital gains is double taxed in that the corporate income tax is paid before hand on the same money. Some connected corporations pay next to zero tax anyways, and if the company is overseas the corporate income tax is usually less and is paid to another country. Once again it is the case of the medium sized corporation here in America that gets creamed because we have the highest corporate income tax in the industrialized world and those American companies do not have the resources to get goodies in the tax code or how it is enforced. Japan and several other countries have lowered their corporate income tax dramatically so now the US is the highest. – Editor]
Policies such as ObamaCare, tax increases, and other actions that cause regulatory uncertainty all but force the producers and investors to stop moving their money domestically. They have the option of just parking it or investing it in China, all of which has the effect of transferring the tax burden away from the wealthy onto the working poor and middle class. Democrats are not interested in taxing the wealthy; they are interested in taxing the domestic producer class.
This brings us to Norton’s First Law: big Business loves big government because big government taxes and regulates the small and medium-sized competition out of the competition. This is a staple of modern “Alinsky” style Democrat strategy. This process is called “consolidation”. The goal of leftist philosophy is to control the wealth “rationally” from above so that less is “left to chance”. With all of these small businesses creating wealth that is chaos which is difficult to control. Through consolidation more of the wealth that is created flows through large corporations that are easier to control.
The Obama bipartisan deficit commission was tasked with the challenge of how to raise revenue, grow the economy and pay off the debt. After an exhaustive study the commission concluded that lowering tax rates, lowering the corporate tax rate and simplifying the tax code to encourage tax compliance, and to encourage more wealth to come back home (so it at least can be taxed), was the most prudent course of action. Reagan would have been pleased with those recommendations.
If you wonder why so many jobs have moved overseas and in some cases to places where governments are corrupt and workers are really exploited; now you are seeing the other side of the coin. The private sector and the jobs that go with it cannot be expected to pay for a government that costs $4 trillion a year and hope to remain competitive. If you want to see demand for American labor to rise, start by making it more economical for jobs to come home.
UPDATE – The Obama Administration is using a variation of this very theme that I wrote about last June in it’s recent effort to raise taxes. Rest assured in the 6o,000 plus pages of the tax code that those who are the Democrats biggest donors will not be impacted greatly. As we have seen with Solyndra, the Stimulus Bill, and the other spending in this administration, much of the spending is done for the purpose of Chicago style kickbacks. One can be most confident that taxes will continue to follow that same path just as the so called Alternative Minimum Tax has.
UPDATE II – Warren Buffet opposes Obama’s new “Buffet Rule” campaign trial balloon because he sees it for what it really is. Real Clear Politics (follow the link to see the video):
CNBC: “Are you happy that the way it is being described. Is the program that the White House has presented a million dollars and over your program? ”
Warren Buffett: “Well, the precise program which will — I don’t know what their program will be. My program would be on the very high incomes that are taxed very low. Not just high incomes. Somebody making $50 million a year playing baseball, his taxes won’t change. Make $50 million a year appearing on television, his income won’t change. But, if they make a lot of money and pay a very low tax rate, like me, it would be changed by a minimum tax that would only bring them up to what other people pay.”
CNBC: “Does that mean you disagree with the president’s new jobs proposal which would be paid for by raising taxes on households with incomes of over $250,000.”
Buffett: “That’s another program that I won’t be discussing. My program is to have a tax on ultra-rich people who are very tax rates. Not just all rich people. It would probably apply to 50,000 people in a population of 300 million.”
Indeed. There is a small group of people who greatly benefit from the way the tax code works which is only a small portion of who most people would consider wealthy. Among these people are among the largest political donors in the country.
I am glad that Buffet clarified (read changed his tune just slightly) on this issue because the way his close friend President Obama had presented this it was going to just as we had described it earlier, a new tax that would barely touch him but sock smaller competition and CNBC called him out on it: