The cap and trade in carbon emissions, the creation of homeland security, the TARP bailout, and the federal health care proposal are all examples of major political viruses. This does not mean it is wrong to be concerned about the environment, our physical security, a sound economy, or affordable health care. All of these things are socially desirable. The problem is that these social goods are used as a cover for political viruses. Continue reading →
Lord Monckton describes how global warming ideologues have rewritten data masqueraded as science and provided misinformation to scare people into giving them money for bureaucracies and programs to the detriment of the world’s working people and poor. It shows how easy it is to deceive large bureaucracies like the United Nations and how unreliable statements by such bodies are. Thanks to the Minnesota Free Market Institute for this presentation. This is the full hour and a half presentation with slides.
KTLK radio in Minnesota discovered an anomaly on the Recovery.gov website that further reveals the ineptness and fraud plaguing our federal government. Minnesota has 8 congressional districts, but here we are shown that millions of dollars of stimulus money also went to 10 other non-existent congressional districts, e.g., over $3,000,000 to the 27th district. And you want this bureaucracy to manage your health care? It is pretty hard for an individual to misplace $3,000,000, but not a bureaucracy.
Even with the best of intentions large bureaucracies cannot personally care for people’s welfare. And, we know the best of intentions are not always there. Let’s bring back subsidiarity, all social welfare and taxes to counties and states. Alexis de Tocqueville and the Founders were right. Personal responsibility and face-to-face community are required for democracy to work.
Many people don’t know that the true unemployment rate is over 20%, double the official 10.2% government unemployment rate. This is because over 10% of potential workers are not reporting an effort to seek a job, and part of the reason is a growing informal economy.
John Williams’ Shadow Government Statistics goes beyond the official government reports to include the informal economy. A growing informal economy or black market is a sign that people are unable to find a legal way to provide for themselves. As a result they resort to off-the-books cash transactions, bartering, selling banned substances, and other activities that, even if not legal, will allow them to find a way to live. Continue reading →
Americans want change. It is not the change towards socialism that Pres. Obama delivered, and it is not change back to the Republicans of Bush and Gingrich, which by the way, is not 180 degrees away from Obama. 180 degrees from Obama is eliminating 90 percent of federal programs and returning government to citizens and states. 180 degrees would be a repeal of the 16th and 17 amendments. 180 degrees would mean income tax collection at the state level and apportioned payments by the states to the federal government for protection of our borders. There is nothing wrong with a social safety net for those who have disabilities or need help getting on their feet. It is just that this is not the Federal government’s responsibility.
Democracies and Republics are built from the bottom up, not the top down. Top-down governments never led to happiness or general prosperity.
According to Max Weber, a state could be said to “succeed” if it maintains a monopoly on the legitimate use of physical force within its borders. The key here is the word “legitimate.” To be legitimate, a state must must be seen by its citizens as protecting their interests, and being fair and just. With an approval rating of Congress of 18% can we consider the government legitimate? And, if not, is the United States a failing or failed state?
The Federal Health Care debate brings to the surface a number of problems that indicate how the United States is failing: Continue reading →
No bill would be this big unless it is packed with pork and exemptions. A fair bill that treats everyone the same doesn’t look this way. Think of how large the U.S. Constitution is and what it does. The most valuable things come in small packages.
Federal Health Care is the Easiest to Defraud
Tonight 60 Minutes reported on billions of dollars of Medicare fraud. Most people know that patients, doctors, and hospitals frequently overbill, but other government agencies, druglords, and private entrepreneurs have learned that bilking medicare out of money through false claims is safer, easier, and just as lucrative as selling cocaine.
Readers of my book will not be surprised. I spent several pages explaining why it is easier to defraud bureaucracies than face-to-face market transactions. The greater the centralization of healthcare, the more fraud can be expected. To the student of human nature, the idea that a federal healthcare system would be subject to less fraud and abuse is ludicrous. Continue reading →
The Principle of Subsidiarity is Responsible Freedom
The principle of subsidiarity, or “the greatest responsibility to the lowest possible level” is a central principle of freedom, good governance, and the opposite of ponzi schemes that centralize power at the expense of freedom. The founding fathers implicity upheld this principle, as it follows from the Declaration of Independence. In my book Life, Liberty and the Pursuit of Happiness, Version 4.0, I devote a chapter to this principle and how it became inverted and unstable. Continue reading →