We must vote for those candidates of any party that reflect these values: hard work, self-determination, smaller government, fiscal responsibility and honesty. Look to the character of anyone you chose to support. Their past does matter if they haven't learned from it. Their personal life is as relevant as their public one. We must be able to trust those who will be advising and leading us on what our country must do next. -Glenn Beck

Tuesday, December 1, 2009

Does this really surprise anyone?

Check out the following articles:

The Worst Scientific Scandal of Our Generation

But why would they need to make up facts...?

Friday, November 20, 2009

Need Help Today!!!

This is from my sister-in-law. I encourage everyone to please read it and make some phone calls.

Hello Friends,

The Senate is trying to pass, on a weekend so there is less press coverage - the 2,000 page health care bill, that they haven't even had time to read fully, TOMORROW. So I'm sending the link below with a plea to you, to call both your senator's office and Harry Reid's office today - phone calls do matter even if your senator already doesn't support the health care bill. Plus you can send information to anyone you know, especially anyone in Nevada and any of the blue dog democrat states. I talked with my Senator's office yesterday and they said the only thing we can do at this point is call - and spread the word so that others call. So I'm doing it - the prospect of this passing is frightening.

Here's a link to show all the added taxes - frightening stuff even if we aren't considering the way the quality of health care will decline and the socialistic nature of this bill!


There is no excuse for not doing something if you believe it's wrong. Please call.



To find your US senator and contact info:

Friday, November 6, 2009

Do Unto Others As You Would Have Them Do Unto You... Unless You're a Democrat

In local Utah news, a mayor was voted out of office this week. A few days before the election, this mayor had fired a police officer for giving his son a ticket for driving without a license. The question is: Had it been anyone other than his son, would he have acted the same way? (I guess the public thought not.)

The past year since the presidential election has been an eye-opening experience. For example, what if George W. Bush had talked about the amount of lives he saved that would have been lost had his policies not been in place during Hurricane Katrina? He would have been ridiculed.

Yet Pres. Obama continues to cite jobs that he's saved that would have been lost had it not been for the stimulus, and where is the uproar from the Democrats as jobs continue to be lost in droves?

Democrats were in an uproar about Bush golfing while troops were dying in Iraq. (He decided to give up golf for that very reason.) Yet they are silent as we find out that Pres. Obama has already played more rounds of golf in 9 months than Pres. Bush did in his entire presidency. Troops are still dying, and our economy is crumbling. Where are the protests?

In fact, August was the deadliest month for troops in Afghanistan. Barack Obama could have pulled all of the troops out of Afghanistan. Where is the uproar?

(I actually gained a little bit of respect for Cindy Sheehan as she protested Barack Obama for vacationing in Martha's vineyard. Unfortunately, there was no support from fellow Democrats (or the "unbiased" media.))

If it's Democrats protesting, then they're exercising their rights to free speech. If it's Republicans protesting, it's a bunch of crazy, mind-numb kooks that should be ignored. Ever notice how you never hear of Republicans trashing Democrats for protesting? We understand it's an important right.

Any liberals reading need to be honest with themselves. Let's say that a story broke tomorrow that said:

"Pres. George W. Bush Accused of Conspiring to Hide Evidence in Afghanistan Deaths"

Now what if the story instead said:

"Pres. Barack Obama Accused of Conspiring to Hide Evidence in Afghanistan Deaths"

If how you react to the story depends on who the story is about, there is something wrong. A principled person would react the same regardless of who the story was about.

Democrats' opinions are based on what is politically expedient at the time. That is why they haven't passed health care reform. If Democrats truly believed that universal health care was a right of every American, they would simply pass the bill based on principle. They have the majority -- There is nothing that the Republicans could do to stop the bill from being passed. But Democrats are scared, because the vote they thought would make them popular with the masses is turning out to be extremely controversial.. but they now have to pursue the bill because they can't afford the implications of a political loss this early in Barack Obama's presidency.

When Pres. George W. Bush sent our troops to war, Republicans supported him. (So did Democrats... until it was no longer politically expedient.) When Pres. Bush passed his tax cuts, Republicans supported him.

But when George W. Bush supported the McCain / Kennedy immigration bill, Republicans protested and fought against the bill. When he wanted to bail out the banking industry, Republicans protested and fought hard against the bill.

For Republicans, it truly doesn't matter who presents the idea. If Barack Obama were to announce tomorrow that he was slashing the capital gains tax in order to stimulate investment, Republicans around the country would cheer and support him.

This is all generally speaking, obviously. I'm sure there are principled Democrats and unprincipled Republicans. But I believe the last year has been telling.

Any other examples come to mind?

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Is This What Liberals Really Think?

Bill Maher was on The Tonight Show with Conan O'Brien on Monday night. I think it goes without saying that Maher is a liberal (regardless of what he claims to be -- A libertarian would never support government-run health care.) What scared me about the interview was that Bill Maher might be saying what other liberals are thinking. Here are a few highlights:

CONAN O'BRIEN: Some people got upset because you said that America is stupid.
O'BRIEN: And they got upset.
MAHER: You know who did? The stupid people.

O'BRIEN: You have said, and you may have a point here, that you think that President Obama, uh, in how many day has he been in office now? They were counting for a while. It's his ninth day. It's his 100th day. And I don't know what it is now -- it's 140 days, 120 days in office -- that he's overexposed. Do you think our president is overexposed?
MAHER: Well, he is. I mean, at some point, 'Change we can believe in' became, you know, 'Tyler Perry meets the Obamas,' which is fine. I like him. I mean, let's put this in perspective. I'm glad he is the president. You know, I mean, it's a big difference from what we had, just grammatically, you know.
When the president speaks, English teachers don't cry now. But, yeah, there is a fine line between transparency, which we did not have with the previous administration, and being overexposed.
I mean, I get it. He likes to be on TV. I like my bong. I take it out of my mouth every once in a while.

MAHER: Right, right. Uh, but, yeah, I mean, you know, they're talking about 60 votes they need. Forget this stuff, 60.... You can't get Americans to agree on anything 60 percent. Sixty percent of people don't believe in evolution in this country.
He just needs to drag them to it. Like I just said, they're stupid. Just drag them to this. Get health care done, you know, with or without them. Make the Gang of Six an offer they can't refuse. This Max Baucus guy? He needs to wake up tomorrow with an intern's head in his bed.
O'BRIEN: Good Lord.
MAHER: I'm serious. You know, this is where, I said this months ago and people criticized me, this is where the president needs to be a little more like Bush. Bush had horrible ideas -- torture, deregulation, massive tax cuts for the rich, preemptive war -- horrible ideas.
But you know what? He had that swagger that said, 'I'm just gonna get it through. Suck on it, America, if you don't like it.'
O'BRIEN: So, you think Obama needs to get to that level of toughness.
MAHER: He needs to marry his good ideas with that kind of attitude.
They asked Dick Cheney once, 'Most of Americans are against the Iraq war.' Do you remember what he said? 'So?'
In other words, 'We got elected. You have your opinions. Fine. That's what Twitter is for. But, I'm gonna do what I have to do.'
And that's what Obama should do. He should wake up tomorrow and say, 'Jesus told me to fix health care.' I'm certain about it. Seriously.
O'BRIEN: Well, he does. It's one thing to say that he needs to get tough, but we have a two party system. He needs those votes. He has to convince....
MAHER: He doesn't need those votes. That's the point. He does not need those votes. They have 60 votes. They only need 51.
O'BRIEN: But there is something to be said probably for making in a two party system...
MAHER: He has tried. We do not have a two party system.
O'BRIEN: Right.
MAHER: We have two parties, but we don't have the right two parties. We have one party that is a good party if you're defending banks, credit card companies, big agriculture, pharmaceutical lobby. That would be the Democrats. And then on the other side, we have a fringe party of religious lunatics, flat-earthers, and Civil War reenactors who call themselves...
They call themselves the Republicans, and they take their orders from Rush Limbaugh. And they think Obama is a socialist. Socialist? He's not even a liberal. What we need is a progressive party in this country. We don't have it.

I think Bill Maher's comments speak for themself. (I did cut out a few comments because Maher is a crass individual, and I didn't think they needed repeating.) Sometimes we don't even have to say anything -- We just need to stand by and watch the person shoot him/herself in the foot. If Bill Maher were President, this is what he would do!

Maher did make one good point that we need to remember. I need to preface my saying that by refuting Maher's argument that Bush and Cheney simply said "Suck on it, America, if you don't like it." Here is the voting record from 2002 for authorizing the war in Iraq:

Yea: 263
Nay: 7

Yea: 111
Nay: 147

71% voted to go to war in Iraq, Bill, including 43% of the Democrats. Bush and Cheney never told anybody to "suck it." In their second term, they didn't even have majorities in the House and Senate.

And even when they did have Republican majorities in the House and the Senate in their first term they still never told Americans to "suck it." Look at the voting record for the Bush tax cuts in 2001:

Yea: 211
Nay: 0

Yea: 28
Nay: 153

62% voted for the tax cuts, including 18% of the the Democrats! For tax cuts!

That being said, Maher was correct in saying that the Democrats don't need any Republicans to pass the Health Care Reform Bill. So why aren't they just dragging us "stupid" people to it and get it done like Maher is suggesting?

The reason is that the Democrats are afraid to go at this alone. They realize there will be repurcussions at the voting booth. They don't want to pass it alone because they want to be able to share the blame with the Republicans when health care reform fails.

A vote for socialized health care is political suicide, and they know it. They've seen it at town hall meetings around the country.

What Bill doesn't understand because he is an elitist is that the government doesn't control the people; the people control the government. The "stupid" people have spoken and will continue to speak as long as bad ideas are presented.

I hope and pray that Bill Maher does not represent the liberal viewpoint, or our country is in serious trouble.

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

The Largest Business in the World, Run by a CEO with No Business Experience

Studies have shown that for people who open a restaurant, 26% fail in their first year, another 19% fail in the second year, and 14% more fail in the third year. So in the first three years, almost 60% of new restaurants fail. (Some estimate that average to be higher.) Why would that be?

Somebody makes some killer food and loves doing it. Friends and family start telling them they need to open a restaurant, and they start thinking about how much they would enjoy that. So they find a place to buy somewhere, take out a second mortgage to pay for it, put a kitchen together, throw up some decorations, and open for business.

Everything moves along fine for the first few months as customers show up and that first dollar is tacked to a wall somewhere. The money starts adding up, but so do the expenses. Before long, the owner tries to figure out why the numbers aren't adding up.

This chef has never had a class in accounting, or finance, or marketing, or management. He's never heard of a cash flow statement, or net present value, or niche markets, or reward systems. All he ever wanted to do was cook.

A bad month or two hits, and the dream turns into a nightmare. The same thing is happening to our country.


President Barack Obama graduated from high school and attended Occidental College. After two years, he transferred to Colombia University, majoring in political science. He worked as a research associate at Business International Corporation (mainly a publishing firm) and then at New York Public Interest Research Group.

Four years later, he moved to Chicago and worked as a Community Organizer for three years. Nobody really has a good definition for what a community organizer does. According to Wikipedia, community organizing is a process by which people living in proximity to each other are brought together to act in common self-interest. (The only familiar example of community organizing I could find is ACORN, which organizes community members to register dead people to vote and hand out cigarettes to have voters register 72 times.)

In Obama's case, he was the director of Developing Communities Project, a church-based community organization comprising eight Catholic parishes. The main purpose of the 13-person organization was to set up a job training program. The budget came from fundraising (which Obama found he excelled at.)

Obama then went on to Harvard Law School, earning his Juris Doctorate. He was the editor and then president of the Harvard Law Review. He directed another community effort called "Project Vote." He spent time as a lecturer at at the University of Chicago and worked at a law firm.

He was elected to the state legislature, where he stayed for 7 years, and then was elected as a U.S. senator. He served for 5 years (2 of those on the road, campaigning.) And he was finally elected President.


Barack Obama has never run a business. He is a lawyer. He specializes in politics and the law. Most of his career has been spent in government. He is a talented speaker and writer. His specialty is researching, writing, talking, and voting (assuming he's actually there to vote.) He has never, in all of his experience, had to worry about turning a profit. In his world, if you run out of money, you simply raise more.

How far would we have to go back to find another President with no business experience:

  • George W. Bush: M.B.A from Harvard University, ran oil companies, the Texas Rangers, and the state of Texas
  • Bill Clinton: Ran the state of Arkansas, and studied Economics in school
  • George Bush: B.A. in Economics, co-founded and ran an oil company
  • Ronald Reagan: Ran the Screen Actors Guild and the state of California.
  • Jimmy Carter: Ran a peanut farm, and the state of Georgia
  • Gerald Ford: No business experience, but at least a B.A in Economics.
  • Richard Nixon: Lawyer

The answer is Richard Nixon (although he, unlike Obama, had at least served as vice-president.) He was a lawyer and a career politician. With the exception of George H.W. Bush (who had been vice-president for 8 years), every President in the last 33 years has been a governor of a U.S. state previous to being elected, which makes perfect sense.


Governor and Senator are two vastly different positions. The position of a senator is legislative and requires expertise in law. The position of a governor is executive and requires expertise in business.

A senator studies issues, and proposes bills, sometimes as a member of a committee. Debates occur and speeches are given. After many hours, a vote is taken. The situation is very much like a courtroom, with procedure and formality, posturing and rhetoric.

A governor, on the other hand, does exactly what the President does, just at the state level. The governor runs the "business" with thousands of employees. The governor works through his/her "managers", all the way down to last employee, to accomplish tasks. The governor controls the national guard, signs and enforces law, and makes appointments. The governor works on a fixed budget. (No printing money at the state level.)

This is why it was so comical that any liberal would question Sarah Palin's two years' experience as a governor + 6 years' experience as a mayor (which is also an executive position, just at the city level), in light of Barack Obama's experience.


So Obama is now getting on-the-job business training in his first executive experience as the Commander-in-Chief. His inexperience is apparent.

Anybody who has studied business would understand, for example, that you can't decrease unemployment by raising taxes. A tax discourages a behavior. When you raise the tax on a business, the business has less money, and has to find ways to cut expenses. The quickest way for a business to cut expenses is to slash jobs.

Even the anticipation of raised taxes leads to higher unemployment. Businesses realize, unlike Obama, that money doesn't grow on trees. Introducing a health care bill that plans to insure all Americans, after spending $1 trillion of money we don't have, and in the middle of a financial crisis, is an incredibly stupid idea. In a meeting today, the university I work for spoke about cutting back in anticipation that things are going to get worse. I'm guessing the business you work for is doing the same.

And even if you happen to be a liberal and believe in demand-side (trickle-up?) economics, you would realize that stimulus money should be used to actually stimulate the economy. Back in the Great Depression, FDR (who ran the state of New York as governor before being elected, by the way) used the New Deal to put people back to work. They built roads, bridges, schools, and houses that didn't exist -- Huge projects that required a lot of people and work. Obama is using the stimulus money, as expected, to push his liberal agendas.

For example, spending $8.3 million to replace perfectly functional light bulbs at an airport with overpriced high-efficiency "green" light bulbs. How many jobs does that create? What kind of lasting value does that have? I drove past a school today that the New Deal built 71 years ago. Where will those light bulbs be in 71 years? How about 10? How about even 5?

We won't even mention the perfectly functional cars...


Obama thinks like a lawyer, not a businessman, because that's what he is. He has grown up under privileged circumstances, having nearly every penny he's "earned" in his career being handed to him by fundraising or through taxpayers. He is using this financial crisis to posture and position in order to push every item on his liberal agenda through. Nothing he has done, or is currently doing, has been for the financial good of the country.

So we shouldn't be surprised that the economy continues to crumble when a manager at McDonald's has more business experience than the current leader of the free world.

Friday, August 7, 2009

Obama Won't Accept Health Care Limits for His Own Family

I don't have time to write more about this, but wanted to post the link to an interesting article. It comes from an ABC News special on health care reform.


Thanks to Skylar for sending it in!

Thursday, July 30, 2009

The Conservative Solution to Health Care

I was watching the Health Care Reform infomercial channel (CNN) yesterday, and they continually made comments that gave the impression that the big bad Republicans were blocking the Democrats' attempts to help the poor downtrodden citizens of the U.S. to recieve good health care. Completely false. The Republicans simply realize there is a better way:

"Mr. President, what's the rush?" by Mitt Romney

Imagine that... Provide health care to all citizens, allowing them to maintain their freedoms, at no additional cost, limiting government control, and all the while creating a structure that will continually drive down the costs of health care. 2012 will not come soon enough.

Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Palin and the Wolf

I just flipped over to CNN (as I do sometimes when I want to get the liberal viewpoint). Wolf Blitzer was talking about Sarah Palin and played her quote where she tells the media to quit making things up.

After they played the clip, Wolf asked the question: "If she wants national office, is that a smart strategy for her?"

I rewound it and listened to it again to make sure I'd heard right. That is exactly what he said, word for word. Wolf, probably without even knowing it, was showing his true colors. His comment was a threat.

It used to be that journalists would report the news. The mark of a great journalist was objectivity. But somewhere along the line, the media decided that rather than simply reporting the news, they wanted to influence the news. Like most liberals, they consider themselves elite (i.e. smarter than others), and they seek for power. Rather than just standing by and reporting the outcome of elections, they want to actually influence who gets elected. Wolf believes that if Palin wants to get to White House, the road goes through the media. Cross them, and they will crush your dreams.

Better watch out, Sarah! If you're not careful, the media will attack your experience as a mayor of a small town, your record and investigations, your education, your record as governor, your husband, your teenage daughter, your handicapped son, the way you talk, the way you dress, the state you were governor of, your religion, your hobbies, your finances, your win in a pagent 20 years ago, and everything you do or say, and it will continue long after the election is over!

Thursday, July 23, 2009

"I'm not asking for a handout"


I turned on the news this morning to see a woman speaking at news conference. She was telling a sad story about her experience with health care. The story went something like this:

"I was being responsible. I purchased a health care plan with a high deductible for a true crisis. Then one day I heard the horrible words 'You have cancer.' My first thought was not about the treatments or my family or my life; I worried about how I was going to pay for it. I went through the treatments, and one item on the 4-page itemized bill was for $6000. My only thought was whether I was going to have to lose my house. I finally made it through all the treatments. My mortgage company threatened to foreclose on my house, even though I had never missed a payment or even made a late payment."

Then came the kicker for me. She said:

"I'm not asking for a handout."

Then she proceeded to say that she just wanted government to take care of people like her that can't afford health care.

Once again, I thought I must be taking crazy pills. My understanding had always been that a handout was when somebody got something for doing nothing. I realized that I must have been wrong my whole life. So I went to the dictionary and saw this:

"Hand-out: Anything given away for nothing."

This woman was asking for the government to give her $100,000 worth of hospital treatment for $0. It doesn't matter if it was $100,000 worth of treatment for $10,000, or $20,000, or even $99,999. What she is asking for is for the government to give her a certain amount of treatment in exchange for nothing. I've got news for you sister: That is a handout.


Nancy Pelosi stood contently behind this woman as she told her story. It really would have been a compelling story, if it were true. I don't doubt that the woman had cancer, and I am completely sympathetic to her situation in that regard. But I know other parts of the story are either not true or are exaggerated. How do I know?

If she had truly purchased the insurance with a high deductible for a crisis situation, I believe the cancer would have qualified. If her deductible was $10,000, then she would have paid $10,000. The insurance would cover the rest. Even if there were a co-pay of 10% on a $100,000 bill with no maximum (an unusual situation), that would have added only $10,000 more. My guess is that the car she drives cost more than that total.

Then, as Dave Ramsey tells us, he's done some research, and 100% of the homes that are foreclosed have a mortgage on them. This woman took out a loan, and obligated herself to repay that loan in 360 monthly payments. If she fails to make those payments and meet her end of the obligation, the mortgage company takes the home as stated in the contract she signed when she bought the home. It has nothing to do with health care. But a mortgage company will never (and legally can never) take the home if she has never missed or even been late on a payment.

The Democrats find a well-spoken, well-dressed woman to tell this half-true sob story, and the people sitting at home think, "If it can happen to her, it could happen to me!" They mislead them to believe that she had to pay for every item on that 4-page itemized list (with only one of those items costing $6,000) even though she had insurance, and that the mortgage company was trying to take her home even though she was doing everything right.

Liberals operate on emotion, and one common liberal tactic (that is an Obama-favorite) is to try to scare people. It's been quite an effective tactic over the years. Democrats like to tell elderly people that the Republicans want to take away their Social Security, for example. Then when the Republicans say, "What? No we don't", the elderly people think the Republicans are trying to hide something.

Obama used fear to push the stimulus through, and the Democrats are using the same tactic to try to get health care socialized in two weeks. "We don't have time to debate this -- The American people need health care now!"


Unbiased CNN, presenting the official story as "What would you be willing to give up for health care?" then played a clip from Obama saying something like, "Some people say this is socialized health care. I don't want to socialize health care. The government shouldn't and couldn't run health care."

OK. Back to the dictionary:

"Socialized Medicine: Any of various systems to provide the entire population with complete medical care through government subsidization and regularization of medical and health services."

Hmmmm... Maybe Obama's dictionary got misplaced along with his birth certificate.


Liberals believe that every American citizen should be entitled to health care, although they get quite offended if you actually use the term "entitlement":

"Entitlement: The right to guaranteed benefits under a government program."

Where in The Constitution does it say that Americans are entitled to health care? Where did this idea come from that a person should get something for nothing?

Why has America emerged as the superpower that it is? It wasn't because of handouts from other nations. Quite the contrary, as a matter of fact. America is the land of opportunity, where it doesn't matter if you were born a "peasant"; anyone can rise as high and go as far as they want to if they are willing to work hard. That is why peole from other countries flock to the United States.

The American philosophy of "something for something" (the opposite of something for nothing) is what has pushed us and propelled us to be the economic and political power of the world. If a person gets out what that person puts in, that person will be willing to put more in to get more out.


And as long as we're entitling, why start with health care? Basic human needs are food, shelter, and clothing. If the government is going to provide, why not start with universal food? Or how about handing out a house to everybody? I know I spend way more money on housing than I do on health care. Why not socialized clothes? Where does it end?

We understand that if we want to buy a house, we have to pay for it. So how has this sense been created that a surgery is something that we shouldn't have to pay for? (Especially understanding that it is our neighbor who is paying for it.)


Some are probably thinking, if universal health care is such a bad idea, and it's going to increase costs and hurt the economy and lead to even more job loss and increase waiting times at hospitals and reduce the quality of care and on and on... Why would the Democrats be pushing for it?

One of our Founding Fathers, Thomas Jefferson, said:

"A government big enough to give you everything you want is strong enough to take everything you have."

Obama and the Democrats would silently smile and say: "Exactly."

Once again, it's about power and control.

Thursday, July 16, 2009

Real Life Economics

I regret that I'm feeling vindicated. I've taken my fair share of courses in economics over the years. In each of those courses, it really bothered me every time the teachers would ridicule "trickle-down" economics. Without mentioning any names specifically, they would smugly bash Reagan and his economics policies. As we studied the Great Depression and other depressions throughout history, they would demonstrate that the best way to get out of a recession and grow the government was for the government to spend our way out of it using demand-side economics.

I sat there in each class, knowing what they were saying was contrary to everything I believed, but not having enough knowledge to debate them as they "proved" everything through formulas.

It's unfortunate for our country, but the past 10 months have vindicated everything I believe. The country doesn't run on formulas.

Starting with President George W. Bush (who, as great as he was in many ways, was unfortunately not a fiscal conservative) and the housing bailout (remember when we thought $700 billion was a huge number?), and then the additional $1 trillion from Obama's stimulus plan, the government has been pumping record-breaking amounts of cash into the economy since September 2008. If what my economics professors had been telling me in each of these classes was correct, the GDP should have skyrocketed, unemployment should have sunk, and we ought to be well on our road to recovery.


Instead, here are the results of the government "saving" the country through spending:

Economic (GDP) Growth

Q1 2008: 0.9%
Q2 2008: 2.8%
Q3 2008: -0.5% (This is when the economy was "really bad")
Q4 2008: -6.3% (First bailout)
Q1 2009: -5.5% (Second bailout)
Q2 2009: ? (Numbers are not yet available)


July 2008: 6.0%
August 2008: 6.1%
September 2008: 6.0%
October 2008: 6.1% (First bailout)
November 2008: 6.5%
December 2008: 7.1%
January 2009: 8.5%
February 2009: 8.9% (Second bailout)
March 2009: 9.0%
April 2009: 8.6%
May 2009: 9.1%
June 2009: 9.7%

So what's President Obama's solution? The bailout and the first stimulus worked out so well, that Obama is now telling us we "need" a second stimulus.


Any time anybody calls Obama on the horrible performance of the economy, he tells us:

A) This is the Bush administration's fault. (He'll be using this one throughout his term as President.)
B) "This was not designed to work in four months. It was designed to work in two years." (Seeing the numbers, I'm scared to see what the economy will look like in two years.)
C) The condition of the economy have been worse had we not put the stimulus through.

C is my favorite. This is the same method liberals have had to revert to when global temperatures decreased (record July lows around the country): "Ummmm... Well, the fact that the country is seeing record lows is actually caused by global warming. Let's call it... 'climate change.'" Just compare the numbers to imaginary numbers. If only Bush would have known about this technique: "Well, the economy grew by 0.1% in Q1 2008, but that is actually 10% better than it was going to grow."


If a true conservative like Romney or Thompson had been elected, or even the non-conservative Republican John McCain, the first item on the agenda would have been to slash taxes. The record shows it. The result of slashing taxes is immediate; there would have been no excuses and no waiting period.

What would have happened if, rather than opening the floodgates on government spending, we would have slashed taxes? Nothing imaginary about this. We know what would have happened, because it's already been done in the early 1980s in a similar recession. Check out the post "The Solution" from April 10, 2009 for some numbers on what happened as a result of those tax cuts.

I just read a quote from Eric Cantor (R - VA) that I thought put things into perspective:

"For the [first] stimulus alone, Washington borrowed nearly $10,000 from every American household. Let me ask you: Do you feel $10,000 richer today?"

You will have to feel $10,000 richer before the stimulus is worth it to you. What if, instead, the government had cut your taxes by $10,000? Would you feel $10,000 richer then?


It looks like to pay for a part of the stimulus (it won't pay for it all, so look for more tax increases), the government is going to raise the tax rate of those making more than $1 million per year by 5.4%.

Better us than them, right? They won't miss it! The problem is that people who make more than $1 million got that way buy investing in business for the most part. (Check out "Econ 101" from February 11, 2009.) So if you take 5.4% of $10 million, that's $540,000 in additional money that would have been used to open new businesses and hire new employees and invest in start ups.

The tax increase kills business growth and increases unemployment. But the liberals keep stealing from the rich.


So why do the democrats persist when the stimulus is obviously not working? The strategy is to increase spending to the point that taxes need to be raised, and then you get stories like this:

Calif tax officials: Legal pot would rake in $1.4B

In order to push through their agenda, the liberals have to create an environment where their policies "need" to be pushed through in order to save the country. President Obama has used the stimulus, not to create jobs, but to socialize the country.

It now appears the next item on the liberal agenda is to finally push through socialized health care. That money has got to come from somewhere, and according to the Drudge Report today, New York's richest may pay 57% in taxes to pay for it. Taxes will be similarly hiked around the country.

The economy will continue to flat line as more jobs are slashed, more businesses shut their doors, and more companies move their operations overseas. Obama's policies will destroy the economy of this country.


The democrats have a super majority, so the Republicans can't do anything to stop them. There is only one thing we can do. Write a letter, wherever you are, to your congressmen, and let them know they are facing their last term if they vote for the health care bill. Their job is the only language they understand.

We have to limp along until 2010, retake majorities in Congress, and then work hard for 2012 so that we can undo the mess that's been created.


Demand-side economics may fine work on an exam, but we've had nearly a year of running the model in the real world. If you were assigning a grade to the economy over the past year, what would it be?

I want my tuition back.

Friday, July 10, 2009

[Insert Laughter Here]

Ladies and gentlemen, look what our commander and chief is up to:

Looks like he's giving his own personalized Presidential Seal of approval! ZING!

But seriously, folks, this picture, though funny, is just a case of a picture taken at just the wrong time. You can see the entire video of this "incident" here. But this once again raised a question that has been bugging me since Obama began to run for office - WHY IS EVERYONE SO AFRAID TO MAKE JOKES ABOUT PRESIDENT OBAMA??

I'm not a political person by any means. I've refrained from posting on this blog for some time because I am not informed about political issues. However, I do watch a lot of TV and, in particular, a lot of comedy and it's shocking to see how they avoid mocking our 44th president.

During the campaign, it was pretty obvious that the majority of "Hollywood" wanted Obama to win. Saturday Night Live (a sketch comedy show, NOT a politicial forum, might I add) made a point of slamming the McCain/Palin team each and every show while mocking the people who were against Obama. In a world where the rising generation (people like me) knows less and less about the political system, television shows like SNL really will sway their opinon. And I truly believe that this was the case with this past election. Entertainers said that John McCain was old, Sarah Palin was stupid and Barack Obama was cool - and the mindless masses blindly believed them.

Someone else noticed this as well:

There was even a study done by the LA times that gave statistics of how many jokes were made about President Bush, John McCain, Sarah Palin and Barack Obama. You can see the results here. It's not just me, comedians really were avoiding making fun of Obama!

I figured it would all blow over after the election, but I have been shocked and annoyed with how late-night comedians like David Letterman and Conan O' Brien have CONTINUED to make jokes about John McCain, Sarah Palin and even former President Bush even though they are, for the most part, out of the picture.

Now why is this the case? Why does President Obama remain practically untouched by the humor writers? Well, there are some theories out there (see here, here and here). Some say that it's because you'll be considered a racist if you make fun of him, others say that it's because the media is biased and wants to keep President Obama "cool" in the public eye. It's definitely not because the media respects the office of the President of the United States. Comedians have been making fun of presidents and presidential candidates almost as long as those positions have existed - and it's only gotten worse in the last 30 years (think Chevy Chase as Gerald Ford).

And please, please do NOT give me the excuse that you "just can't make fun of the guy."


You're just not trying hard enough, comedians.

We deserve current comedy.

Friday, June 19, 2009

Obama's Health Care is Not the Answer

A few weeks back, a friend invited me to go down to an NBA playoff game. He had tickets to a box suite. We ate prime rib and crab while we watched the game, and then sat and watched the second half from our cushioned leather box seats.

My friend guessed that our box tickets to this game were probably worth $250, but that for this particular game, they could have probably been sold for more like $1000. We had no idea, because the tickets had been given to them by his brother's employer. The ironic thing is, that had I been paying, I would have gotten something from McDonald's Dollar Menu and watched the game on TV. But the story always changes when it's somebody else's money.

This phenomenon isn't uncommon. I've been to a fair number of dinners with clients, and it's always seemed funny to me how freely people spend when they have the corporate credit card.

This tendency is the reason that universal health care simply cannot work. It's not that conservatives wouldn't like for everybody to have completely free health care -- If it were possible, we would be the first in line. But we have the disadvantage of being grounded in reality.


Liberals used to speak of free health care. But that was too deceptive, even for them. It is not free. Just like my playoff game, somebody is paying for it. If there is one group of people in the world who will not work for free, it is doctors. They have been conditioned to feel that they deserve $75 for a 5-minute visit to prescribe some antibiotics after all the investment they put into school. Sadly, it seems like fewer and fewer people get into the medical profession because they want to help people, and more and more simply see the dollar signs.

The liberals now speak of it as "Universal" health care. The intention is noble. Again, most liberals have big hearts. There are many people who can't afford health care, and we ought to do our best to help these people. But we need to look at why health care became unaffordable in the first place.


There is a major problem in the current health care system. The costs of health care are out of control. Have you ever looked at an itemized bill for a hospital visit? My wife recently had a C-section, and as I reviewed the bill, I realized that we had paid $2 per each 800 mg Tylenol. The actual half-hour surgery cost thousands of dollars.

How did the prices get this way? Insurance is supposed to provide for unforeseen circumstances. We buy car insurance in case we get in an accident. We buy life insurance to take care of our family in case we die unexpectedly. But we do not then intentionally get in a wreck or jump off of a cliff.

Insurance should not be for teeth cleanings and baby deliveries and prescriptions. These are things we expect to happen. But somewhere along the lines, people started buying insurance to cover these types of things.


When you buy a TV, you shop around and look for the store that will sell you the TV at the best price. When was the last time you shopped around for the best price on a cast for a broken bone?

Insurance has given everybody access to the corporate credit card. For the most part, we don't even look at the prices. We just pay our deductible and our co-pays and don't worry at all about the total cost because the insurance will cover it.

I love college football. Have you ever noticed the price for a bottle of water inside a college stadium? Why can they charge three times as much in the stadium as they could at the gas station across the street from the stadium? It's because there are limited options.

What if another vendor started selling water for $0.50 per bottle inside the stadium? What would happen? Everybody would obviously buy from the new vendor. What would Vendor #1 have to do to compete? They would have to lower their prices. Competition drives down price. So what does the lack thereof do?

The person who is insured doesn't hold the hospitals accountable. The insurance company cares to some extent, but they are detached from the situation and don't find out about the claim until after the service has already been performed. They are content as long as they are turning a profit, and they accomplish that by continually raising premiums.

So year after year, the doctors and hospitals have been working in a veritable monopoly, charging $2 for a single 800 mg Tylenol when you can buy a bottle of one hundred 200 mg Tylenol for $10 at the local drug store. But we don't worry, because we just have to pay our deductible and then it's the insurance company's problem.

At this point, it is financially impossible for any average American to pay for health care out of pocket. If the average American can't afford it, what does that say about the poor?


While the idea of providing health care for those who cannot afford health care is noble, government will only exacerbate the problem. There is not a government agency on the face of the planet that runs efficiently. The government is like a big black hole that sucks in all money in its path.

My son got what appeared to be his first cold a few days ago. My wife and I debated on whether to take him to the doctor because of the simple $25 copay. After a little Internet research, I realized that there was nothing the doctor could do for him because he is so young. But my wife decided to take him, and the doctor told her there was nothing that they could do for him because he is so young. We paid our $25 copay. The insurance company will likely pick up at least another $50 for the 5-minute visit. If we were paying the $75 out of pocket, we wouldn't have gone (unless his symptoms got worse, obviously.)

What will happen if health care becomes free? There would be no reason not to go in for a doctor's visit. The number of patients increases, and the number of people paying decreases, and the doctors charge the same amount. What will happen? Somebody will have to foot the bill, which means taxes will have to increase.


Any liberals reading might be saying, "So what? We just tax the wealthy more. Done."

The problem is that this removes even one more layer of accountability. Who is going to complain if a Tylenol goes up to $3 per pill? It's the "government"'s money. Prices can (and will) increase, because of the lack of competition. The black hole will continue to expand, and we will have to keep funding it.


So what is the solution then? It does no good to complain about something if you can't offer a better solution.

Ideally, we would completely reform the health care industry. Not through regulation -- But through competition. We would all simultaneously raise our deductibles to somewhere in the neighborhood of $5000 to account for truly unexpected emergencies. Premiums would be completely affordable at a couple dollars a month. And then we would shop for the best value (quality & price) for any health care within reason.

Hospitals, dentists, and pharmacies would be forced to reduce their prices in order to compete with other hospitals, dentists, and pharmacies. Since everybody would be spending their own money, they would be a lot more careful about heading to the doctor for unnecessary care. The decrease in demand would force the health industry to lower prices even further and raise quality to draw customers in.

The medical field would feel a little pain as their salaries came back down to reasonable, but that would only help to filter out those who are in it only for the money, which would leave only those who truly wanted to help people.

Prices would drop to the point where the average American could afford to pay cash for health care. And for the truly poor, we would handle that the same way we handle taking care of the homeless -- Charitable donations (with incentive to contribute through tax breaks.)


That would be ideal. But doing so would take a coordinated effort, so it's not likely to happen without government regulation, forcing people to do it. And it's not the proper role of government to tell people where to set their insurance deductibles.

So what is a realistic solution? A well-known conservative, much smarter than myself, with proven business and management savvy, and with a record of reform, has a tried solution that works and moves us closer to the ideal:

The answer is unleashing the markets -- not government

Given the fact that 8 states are now seeing record unemployment thanks to Obama (who is still blaming the previous administration every chance he gets two quarters into his administration and then tells us we haven't reached rock bottom yet)'s economic policies, we have reason to be skeptical that he has the answer to health care.

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Case in Point: Michael Moore & GM

Dealers facing tight supply of SUVs, trucks

So how exactly is manufacturing more small cars going to help GM financially...?

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

Batman Is a Conservative

I watched The Dark Knight last night. This is the second time I've seen it, but it struck me even more than the first time that this movie is a great (and likely purposeful) analogy for the world we live in. In fact, I think what makes it such a great movie is that it hits home for all of us.

But I'm curious to know how many liberals watched The Dark Knight and thought Batman was acting correctly. I've posted briefly on this subject before, but watching the movie has re inspired me.


There is a great part in the movie where Alfred tells Bruce Wayne the following story:

ALFRED: "I was in Burma. A long time ago. My friends and I were working for the local government. They were trying to buy the loyalty of tribal leaders, bribing them with precious stones. But their caravans were being raided in a forest north of Rangoon by a bandit. We were asked to take care of the problem, so we started looking for the stones. But after six months, we couldn't find anyone who had traded with him.
"One day I found a child playing with a ruby as big as a tangerine. The bandit had been throwing the stones away."

BRUCE: "So why was he stealing them?"

ALFRED: "Because he thought it was good sport. Because some men aren't looking for anything logical, like money... they can't be bought, bullied, reasoned or negotiated with.
"Some men just want to watch the world burn."

You can't reason with Kim Jong Il. You can't reason with Mahmoud Ahmadinejad. You can't reason with Osama Bin Laden. Just like you couldn't reason with Adolf Hitler or Saddam Hussein. Some men just want to watch the world burn.

If Batman were a liberal, he would have apologized to The Joker for other superheroes treating the mob bosses so poorly in the past and set up a peace summit with The Joker to discuss how the mob bosses and Gotham could get along better.


Another great part in the movie is when Mr. Lau, who launders the money for the mob bosses in Gotham, has escaped back to his safe-haven in China. He tells the mob bosses:

"As the money is moved, I go to Hong Kong. Far from Dent's jurisdiction. And the Chinese will not extradite one of their own."

Gordon and Dent realize the same thing as they meet to talk about what to do about all of the money that has been hidden. Batman then says:

"If I get him to you, can you help him to talk?"

Then, in one of my favorite parts in the movie, Batman goes to Hong Kong and steals Lau from his safe-haven and brings him back to the U.S. There was no warrant, no negotiation with the Chinese government to try to bring him back, and Dent threatened Lau with his life (by telling him he would lock him up at county) in order to get him to talk. And he agreed.

If Batman were a liberal, he would have had the police try to work through the Chinese government to get Lau back while Lau provided the ability for the mob bosses to function at home. And Lau would have stayed at China, because they don't extradite their Chinese nationals.

If Al Queda, who is seeking to do harm to the U.S., is in Pakistan, and the Pakistani government won't cooperate, we do the same. We go there and take care of the problem. We fight terrorism wherever it is. If Iraq is a safe-haven for terrorists, we move in. Afghanistan? The same. If there are people who we have intelligence on (just like Bruce Wayne got to look at Lau's books) that are seeking to do us harm, we detain them.

The Geneva Convention protects our troops from torture by foreign countries. But the Geneva Convention is for soldiers who wear identifiable clothing and come out in open war. Al Queda is not a country and does not abide by the Geneva Convention. The debate over waterboarding is silly when Al Queda beheads innocent civilians for no reason. Waterboarding is mild compared to what they would do and have done to our troops. Saying "pretty please" does not get the information needed to save lives -- Waterboarding does. We act civilly with civilized people.


A little later in the film, you'll remember that The Joker releases a video of a Batman impersonator he's caught. After forcing the captured individual to read the message, The Joker says:

"This is how crazy Batman's made Gotham. You want order in Gotham? Batman has to go. So... Batman must take off his mask, and turn himself in. Every day he doesn't... people will die. Starting tonight. I'm a man of my word."

If Batman were a liberal, he would have taken off his mask. (In fact, he is tempted to do just that until Harvey Dent steps in.)

Batman didn't make Gotham crazy. The reason Batman ever came into existence was because Gotham was already crazy. We didn't create terrorism by anything we did. As I mentioned in the previous post, what did we do to Al Queda to provoke 9/11?

Al Queda would have us believe that the deaths in Iraq and elsewhere are coming as a result of our being there, and people have a natural tendency to want to stop the deaths. How many more Americans would have died had we not taken the fight there? We can't give into the demands of terrorists because of fear.

If Somali pirates capture a U.S. ship, we take them out. It's that simple. Obama actually got this one right. We do not negotiate with terrorists. We don't let fear control our actions, or the terrorists win.


The most obvious (and likely blatant) analogy in the film comes toward the end as Lucius Fox discovers that Bruce Wayne has built a machine that gives him the ability to "see" the city by using sonar through cell phones.

BATMAN: Beautiful. Isn't it?
FOX: Beautiful. Unethical. Dangerous. You've turned every phone in the city
into a microphone...
BATMAN: And high frequency generator/receiver.
FOX: Like the phone I gave you in Hong Kong. You took my sonar concept and
applied it to everybody's phone in the City. With half the city feeding you sonar you can image all of Gotham. This is wrong.
BATMAN: I've got to find this man, Lucius.
FOX: But at what cost?
BATMAN: The database is null-key encrypted. It can only be accessed by one
FOX: No one should have that kind of power.
BATMAN: That's why I gave it to you. Only you can use it.
FOX: Spying on thirty million people wasn't in my job description

Batman then points to a TV screen to see The Joker saying "What does it take to make you people want to join in...?" as he tries to turn the citizens of the city against each other.

If Batman were a liberal, this machine never would have been built in the first place. The two ferries would have been blown up, and the Joker would still be roaming free in the movie. Ultimately, it was this device that allowed Batman to save the hostages and locate the Joker. And after that mission was accomplished, the machine was destroyed.

Conservatives value privacy as much as anybody. But we understand that desperate times call for desperate measures. And measures such as the Patriot Act allow us to protect ourselves against those who would seek to do us harm. There has been a lot said about this over the years, but this power has ultimately made us safer.


There are many more analogies, but I'll just touch on one more. At the point where Batman is about to reveal his identity to stop The Joker from killing innocent people, Harvey Dent steps forward and identifies himself as Batman. Rachel is astounded that Harvey would do that and that Bruce Wayne wouldn't stop him. Alfred again says something profound:

RACHEL: Why is [Bruce] letting Harvey do this, Alfred?
ALFRED: Perhaps both Bruce and Mr. Dent believe that Batman stands for something more important than a terrorist's whims, Miss Dawes, even if everyone hates him for it. That's the sacrifice he's making- to not be a hero. To be something more.

I believe President George W. Bush will go down in history as one of the greatest presidents this nation has ever known. The illogical hate that people have for him makes absolutely no sense.

Politics are dirty, but I have never seen a President in my lifetime take the kind of abuse that George W. Bush has taken. And he takes it humbly, without defending himself. He could have saved his popularity rating by taking polls and doing what was popular. He could have gone on late night talk shows and done comedy skits and blamed everything on the previous administration long after he took office to gain popularity.

Instead, he did what he knew needed to be done in order to make this country safe. And he took a railing unparalleled in modern history for it. He didn't try to defend himself by showing that hundreds of chemical weapons have actually been discovered in Iraq. He didn't schedule prime time news conference after prime time news conference to explain why he was doing what he was doing.

He and his administration put their heads down and pushed forward with what they believed was the right thing to do and didn't let unfavorable poll numbers deter them from that path. And nobody can dispute that we have not had a terrorist attack on American soil in almost 8 years. NEWS FLASH: It's not because Al Queda wouldn't love to attack us. It's because they are using all their resources to try to defend themselves, as tens of thousands of the taliban have been sent to Allah.


The Dark Knight is only a movie, but we live in a world with people like The Joker who would love to see the world burn. It seems comical to me that anybody who loved the movie and thinks Batman was justified in everything he did could turn around and bash George W. Bush for his policies.

Personally, I think Batman and Bush would get along just fine.

Thursday, June 4, 2009

Obama & Ahmadinejad: If you were President, what would you do...?


Earlier this morning, President Obama stated in a speech given in Egypt that "any nation, including Iran, should have the right to access peaceful nuclear power if it complies with its responsibilities under the nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty."

This seems fair, right? Why has the U.S. made such a fuss about Iran having nuclear weapons anyway? First, let's check out a map of the Middle East:

Then, let's review some of the things that Iran's President, Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, has said about Israel (which sits within missile range of Iran):

  • "Our dear Imam (referring to Ayatollah Khomeini) said that the occupying regime must be wiped off the map and this was a very wise statement. We cannot compromise over the issue of Palestine. Is it possible to create a new front in the heart of an old front. This would be a defeat and whoever accepts the legitimacy of this regime has in fact, signed the defeat of the Islamic world. Our dear Imam targeted the heart of the world oppressor in his struggle, meaning the occupying regime. I have no doubt that the new wave that has started in Palestine, and we witness it in the Islamic world too, will eliminate this disgraceful stain from the Islamic world."

  • "Those who think they can revive the stinking corpse of the usurping and fake Israeli regime by throwing a birthday party are seriously mistaken. Today the reason for the Zionist regime's existence is questioned, and this regime is on its way to annihilation."

  • "You should know that the criminal and terrorist Zionist regime which has 60 years of plundering, aggression and crimes in its file has reached the end of its work and will soon disappear off the geographical scene."

  • "The Zionist regime has lost its raison d'ĂȘtre. Today, the Palestinians identify with your name [Khomeini], your memory, and in your path. They are walking in your illuminated path and the Zionist regime has reached a total dead end. Thanks to God, your wish will soon be realized, and this germ of corruption will be wiped off."

  • "The Iranian nation never recognized Israel and will never ever recognize it ... But we feel pity for those who have been deceived or smuggled into Israel to be oppressed citizens in Israel."

I don't see why we would be worried about Iran having the technology to destroy an entire nation...

Conservatives believe that the U.S. has a responsibility as the world power to use that power to maintain order in this world we share. The entire world has benefited by the generosity of the U.S. The U.S. has never used its power to conquer and expand.

After World War II, we helped to rebuild Germany and Japan and other nations that had just sought to destroy the U.S. A quick Google search just showed that the U.S. gives an average of $18 billion per year to other countries in foreign aid, asking nothing in return.

What other nation in the world would do that? What if Germany had won in World War II? How would they have used that power? What if Russia had won the Cold War? What would our world be like? What if Iran was the world super power? The U.S. does not act out of self-interest.


"Hey! -- What about the unjust war in Iraq? Bush lied, people died!"

How many more Iraqis would have been raped, killed, and tortured if Saddam Hussein were still in power? Even Barack Obama agreed in his speech: "Although I believe that the Iraqi people are ultimately better off without the tyranny of Saddam Hussein, I also believe that events in Iraq have reminded America of the need to use diplomacy and build international consensus to resolve our problems whenever possible."

The U.S. did build diplomacy. They went to the United Nations. They did everything by the book. The U.N. inspectors were denied access in Iraq. If the inspectors had been able to do their job and nothing was found, the U.S. would not have attacked Iraq. Everybody at the time (including yourself, if you're being honest) thought Saddam Hussein had WMDs (and likely did)... especially when he wouldn't let the inspectors in.

Let's think about this logically. Why else would we attack Iraq other than to protect ourselves? For oil? Why haven't we taken a drop of oil then? It makes no sense. Just like in Japan and Germany, we quickly handed back control in Iraq to the native people. If the Iraqis told us to pull our troops out tomorrow, we would leave.


The U.S. has used its power well to maintain order in the world. The world is better off because this great nation exists. We need to continue to protect countries like Israel who has done nothing to provoke these threats from Iran.

Allowing Iran to have nuclear capabilities would be like taking Dawenette Knight, who stalked Catherine Zeta-Jones (and even said in a letter, "We are going to slice her up like meat on a bone and feed her to the dogs"), and saying "Alright -- If we give you a backstage pass and a knife, you have to promise you won't kill anybody. Okay? Promise?"

One stark contrast I've observed between conservatives and liberals is that liberals believe that if we are just nice to everybody, everybody will be nice to us. They don't seem to believe that true evil exists in the world.

To those people, I ask: What did the U.S. do to provoke the 9/11 attacks? What could we have done different to appease Al Queda so that they wouldn't have attacked us?

If there were a button that Osama Bin Laden could push right now that would wipe the U.S. off of the face of the earth, he would push it in a heartbeat. Even if we said we were really, really sorry for being infidels.

What Obama and liberals need to understand is that evil does exist, and that no amount of pandering and apologizing will change that. The U.S. needs to continue to make this world safe for all inhabitants.

If you were President, what would you do?

Monday, June 1, 2009

Michael Moore & GM

Something astounding happened today: For a brief second I thought Michael Moore and I agreed on something. Then I read another paragraph or two of his column.

I know I'm beating a dead horse on the auto bailouts and nationalization, and I hadn't planned on posting any more on the subject. But what I just read changed my mind. I believe that this column by Michael Moore exemplifies everything that I've spoken about in my other posts on the topic.

Michael Moore is a liberal and represents many of the liberal viewpoints. He says many of the things that liberals only think. His viewpoints come from the extreme left, where President Obama's viewpoints lie (according to his voting record.)

Here is a link to the column that Michael Moore wrote this morning in response to the government takeover of General Motors:

Goodbye, GM ...by Michael Moore

(For length's sake, I won't go through this paragraph by paragraph. I'll just hit the highlights.)

I'll start with the paragraph that made me think for a brief second that we actually shared a common point of view. Moore starts out talking about what has happened to his hometown in Michigan as GM has fallen apart. He talks about some of the things that led to the downfall of GM, and we almost agreed until he said that GM "was hell-bent on punishing its unionized workforce, lopping off thousands of workers for no good reason other than to 'improve' the short-term bottom line of the corporation." (I've mentioned before that unions are one of the major problems because they force companies to pay employees more than the market. It is nearly impossible for a unionized company like GM to compete with a non-unionized company like Toyota when they have to pay their employees almost double what their biggest competitor does for doing the exact same job.)

So this then led to the sentence that made me think that Michael Moore and I actually agreed on something. Here it is:

"Let's be clear about this: The only way to save GM is to kill GM."

Granted, I probably wouldn't have used the word "kill"; I probably would have used "let die." But the idea that the government should not interfere and should let the market run its course is one that I support wholeheartedly. I was shocked that Michael Moore would support this company dying.

Then I read on. Michael Moore introduces his plan for GM:

Step #1: "Just as President Roosevelt did after the attack on Pearl Harbor, the President must tell the nation that we are at war and we must immediately convert our auto factories to factories that build mass transit vehicles and alternative energy devices. Within months in Flint in 1942, GM halted all car production and immediately used the assembly lines to build planes, tanks and machine guns. The conversion took no time at all. Everyone pitched in. The fascists were defeated.

"We are now in a different kind of war -- a war that we have conducted against the ecosystem and has been conducted by our very own corporate leaders. This current war has two fronts. One is headquartered in Detroit. The products built in the factories of GM, Ford and Chrysler are some of the greatest weapons of mass destruction responsible for global warming and the melting of our polar icecaps. The things we call 'cars' may have been fun to drive, but they are like a million daggers into the heart of Mother Nature. To continue to build them would only lead to the ruin of our species and much of the planet."

(Side note: It just occurred to me as a non-scientific person that, if we are now supposed to refer to "global warming" as "climate change" because the cooling we see is actually caused by the warming, won't the net result be that the polar ice caps stay the same?)

It is always extremely offensive to me when Michael Moore uses these types of analogies. That's fine if he wants to say that automobiles are destroying the planet. But to draw an analogy between that and an unprovoked attack on innocent people at Pearl Harbor is offensive. To compare auto executives to Nazis is outrageous. To compare an automobile to mustard gas used for genocide by evil men or a nuclear missile in the hands of North Korea or Iran is absolutely ridiculous, and trivializes the threats that we face in the world.

(Ironically, if Michael Moore were a citizen of one of these countries he idolizes such as Cuba or Venezuela or China, he would be imprisoned, beaten, and beheaded (or worse) in a heartbeat for an unfavorable documentary about the government. Yet George W. Bush is somehow the evil, murdering tyrant...)

That being said, here is a summary of his plan:

#1: Declare state of war, and transform GM into building mass transit vehicles.
#2: Use the $30 billion bailout to keep autoworkers employed building mass transit.
#3: Announce we will have Japan-esque bullet trains within 5 years.
#4: Build mass transit for large to medium-sized cities using GM factories.
#5: Have the GM plants build energy efficient buses for rural cities.
#6: Have factories build hybrid or all-electric vehicles.
#7: Transform some GM car factories to build solar panels.
#8: Provide tax incentives to those who switch to alternative energy.

Sounds great, right? There is one major problem at this point. Even if Obama decides to follow Moore's plan and declares war on the automobiles, and converts GM to build bullet trains and mass transit, and magically made car factories produce solar panels, and uses taxpayer money to the employees to do all of it... who is going to ride the trains and the buses and buy the solar panels?

With the exception of New York and Chicago and a few other of the largest cities in the U.S., mass transit has failed. Americans like the convenience of being able to get where they need to efficiently and in the time frame they would like. This is the same reason Al Gore takes a private jet wherever he goes rather than flying Delta.

When was the last time Michael Moore or Al Gore took a bus? Or any who are reading who are concerned about global warming? What do you drive? If you really wanted to save the environment, you would trade in your Prius for a Hummer. Why don't you at least drive a Scion xB if you're not going to ride a bike? A bullet-train can do 165 mph? Seems pretty inconvenient compared to 500 mph in the sky for $49 each way.

I don't know about you, but I've received notices that bus routes are closing in my neighborhood. So how is building this multi-billion dollar mass transit system going to help if there is nobody to pay fares? I understand that the government doesn't have to worry about efficiency or making a profit like other businesses, but California is showing us that their are limits to government spending.

Again, conservatives have nothing against mass transit or the environment. We would love to take mass transit if it were as convenient, safe, and cost-efficient as a car. It would be completely ideal to have a battery-powered car that ran like a gas-powered car. We would love to have solar and wind power that is as cost-efficient as current methods. But we are at a disadvantage to the liberals: We have to be realistic. We have to ask, So how is all of this going to sustain itself?

Never you fear. Michael Moore has already considered this. Here is his solution:

#9: "To help pay for this, impose a two-dollar tax on every gallon of gasoline. This will get people to switch to more energy saving cars or to use the new rail lines and rail cars the former autoworkers have built for them."

(I do have to pause and mention that I always find it humorous that a tax on gas will stifle the use of gas in the mind of a liberal, but that a tax on business will somehow make business grow.)

This is the only way the plan will work. Unfortunately, this is always the direction liberal actions end up when they don't work in the free market: If you don't do it, we will force you to do it. If a $2/gallon tax, isn't enough, then we'll raise it to $4/gallon. If that doesn't work, we'll raise it to $20/gallon. And if that's not enough, we will outlaw gas-powered vehicles. But believe you me, you will stop driving those cars, and you will take mass transportation.

Again, it all comes back to control, as exemplified by our good friend Michael Moore.

Friday, May 22, 2009

Actions & Consequences

We learn from the time we are young that we can choose our actions, but we cannot choose the consequences to our actions. We find out that we can choose to touch a hot pan, but we cannot choose whether we will get burned our not. We can choose to jump off the roof, but we cannot choose whether or not we will break our legs. To every action, there is a consequence. When you pick up a stick, you pick up both ends. We all learned this before we were 2 years-old. All of us, that is, except our 47 year-old President.

The automobile industry is bleeding to death. We have been told again and again that the U.S. automakers are "too big to fail" as the rationale for pouring billions of taxpayer dollars in to bailout the automobile industry. Yet, Chrysler just filed for bankruptcy. The White House has been preparing GM for bankruptcy. Ford is hearing the knock of bankruptcy at the door as well.

What is President Obama's solution? To enact more stringent emission standards on the auto industry. This solution is like tying cinder-blocks to the legs of a person who is drowning.


The proposed standards require that by 2012, all cars will average 42 miles per gallon, and trucks and SUVs will average 26 miles per gallon. The government says the word, and the auto industry must comply.

So this begs the question, why do cars currently not average 42 miles per gallon? (To give you some perspective, the only two car models on the road that currently meet these standards are the Toyota Prius and Honda Civic Hybrid.) The liberal response to that question would likely involve something about George W. Bush's rich oil buddies. Mm, hmm.

Let's take a look at this logically: What would be the reason for a business (in this case a struggling business) to purposely withhold technology that would give a competitive advantage in an industry? If an automaker could build a full-size truck that could get 26 mpg with all the same performance as those getting 14 mpg, they would rule the industry. The technology doesn't exist.


So in order to meet the government mandate, the auto industry has to do one of two things. First, they could modify the functionality. They could make the vehicles smaller with less power. But as I mentioned in a previous post entitled "I Feel Like I'm Taking Crazy Pills" (which I still do), the top selling vehicle in the U.S. is the Ford F-Series, which averages around 16 mpg. I just read on wikicars.com that it is estimated that the F-Series alone makes up half of Ford Motor Company's profit.

Three of the Top 10 Best Selling Vehicles in America are full-sized truck. Why isn't the Toyota Prius #1? I believe the obvious answer is that people like to be able to fit the entire family along with cargo comfortably. They like to tow boats and haul trailers and drive in a blizzard without worrying about getting stuck. They want to be safe if they get in an accident. If you were the CEO of a company, would you change your best-selling model? Doing so would be suicide for any automaker.


The only other option would be to develop the technology. We are the greatest and most innovative nation on the face of planet. If anybody can develop the technology to power a full-size truck at 26 mpg, we can.

So what's the problem? R&D requires what the auto industry apparently doesn't have: Money. And lots of it. The technology does not magically appear because the government says so. It takes a lot of effort from a lot of expensive people. These new regulations will break the backs of the auto industry. If there was any chance of survival for Ford, Chrysler, and GM, this is the end.

And even if the automakers could somehow survive the enormous costs of R&D, who is going to pick up the tab in the end? Let's just say that the base price of a Ford F-150 will no longer be $22,000. The people on "Main Street" will pay significantly more as the automakers attempt to recover their costs. (But they will not see their taxes go up a single cent!)


Conservatives would love to see a clean, renewable energy source just as much as anybody else. (I know, I know... Rich oil buddies of George W. Bush. My guess is that they would just invest in the new energy source. They didn't get to be rich by being stupid.) But we understand there are consequences to actions.

We understand that you can raise taxes on business, but you can't choose the consequences of what that does to the unemployment rate or the stock market. The natural consequence of a tax is to discourage the behavior. We understand that you can spend a trillion dollars that you don't have, but you can't choose what that does to inflation and the value of the dollar. The natural consequence of printing more money is the devaluation of that money. We understand that you can give handouts, but you can't choose whether that handout decreases productivity.

We understand that you can require the car industry to produce 42-mpg cars and 26-mpg trucks, but you can't choose whether that action will lead to hundreds of thousands of workers losing their jobs.

There is a natural consequence to every action. When you pick up a stick, you pick up both ends.


Now for the scary part. Barack Obama is not stupid. The people surrounding and advising him are not stupid. They all learned, just like the rest of us at 2 years-old or younger, that actions have consequences.

Why would President Obama want the auto industries to fail? I'm sure it wouldn't have anything to do with this story...

GM bankruptcy plan eyes quick sale to the government

...or this one...

Government May "Nationalize" GM By Swapping Debt for Equity


If the government owned the auto industry, they could tell us what to drive by limiting our choices. This is the ideology of the extreme left: If people are left alone to make choices, they will make choices that hurt themselves, so the government will protect the people from themselves by eliminating choice. The government decides how money is allocated amongst the people so nobody has too much or too little. The government provides healthcare for all its people, by taking from those who have and giving to those who have not. They tell the people what they can read, what they can watch, and how they can worship so the people don't hurt themselves. And in return for all this care, the only thing that the people have to give up is their agency.

If I were a liberal, I would be in awe at the genius of President Barack H. Obama. (As is, I am in awe at his audacity.) He has the checklist of every liberal agenda item, and he is working to push them all through in his first year in office. He will not rest until he sees them all through, no matter what the consequence.

Wednesday, May 6, 2009

Swine Flu & Global Warming


The world is in hysterics over the breakout of the now notorious "swine" flu. We first heard about the swine flu on April 23 when 7 people in the U.S. were infected with an unknown virus. Suddenly there were stories about 152 deaths in Mexico and confirmed cases in the U.S. The Vice President of the United States told people to avoid traveling. Egypt slaughtered 300,000 pigs. Schools shut down, people are wearing masks around in public, and everybody seems to be in a state of panic.

Then we find out that the 152 deaths in Mexico were actually only 7. (The number now is suspected to be 42, but nobody really knows.) Two people have died in the U.S. (one native Mexican.) We then find out that the "normal" flu is responsible for 36,000 deaths in the U.S. each year, and the media sheepishly reports that the swine flu is actually more mild then the "normal" flu. Yet, we don't see too many masks out during flu season. One of the many school districts that planned to shut the school down this entire week called my sister last night and told them that school will be back in on Thursday. The panic is subsiding.

The irrational fear and panic reminds me of global warming. I realize that we are now supposed to refer to it as "climate change" after people started asking why the earth was getting cooler if it was supposed to be getting warmer, (SCIENTIST: "Um... yeah... The earth getting cooler is actually a result of the earth getting warmer. ANY 8 YEAR-OLD: "Huh?"), but I prefer the classic name myself.


I don't pretend to know much about science (it was always my one of my worst subjects), but I have taken a few classes in statistics. One of the basic fundamentals in statistics is that the sample needs to be representative of the population. The larger the sample, the more accurate the results. The smaller the sample, the more inaccurate the results. It's common sense that if you poll two people about the presidential elections, the results will not be representative of the population. But if you randomly sample 1000 people across the nation, you can say with 95% confidence that the results are accurate. (At least, those are the numbers we trust every 4 years leading up to November.) And we know from experience that even those numbers can be wrong.

Scientists estimate that the earth is 4.55 billion years old. Meteorologists began estimating the temperature of the earth in 1860. These estimates are incomplete and likely inaccurate, but we'll give them the benefit of the doubt. So let's say we've been keeping track of the temperature for 149 years. Scientists use the trends from those 149 sample years to describe the population of 4.55 billion years. (That is 0.00000003% of the population -- The equivalent of polling 9 people about the presidential election.)

What's more, scientists agree that the earth has gone through at least 4 ice ages. What did the cavemen do to cause those ice ages? How many species were destroyed then? And once they were in the ice age, how did the earth come out of it without the help of cars and airplanes? I can imagine if I was talking to a scientist, they would tell me that the earth goes through natural cycles... but that this current warming (er, I mean "change") isn't part of a cycle.


I understand that you can also look at ice core samples and measure the ozone and those types of things. I also understand that the carbon dioxide emitted from car engines can have an effect on the ozone. But I also know that the greatest contributor to greenhouse gas is not cars. The greatest contributor at 95% is water vapor. Not only that, but a recent UN report indicates that the methane from livestock flatulence is significantly more destructive to the environment than car emissions. That means that even the dinosaurs were "destroying" the environment. According to the first link, "total human greenhouse gas contributions add up to about 0.28% of the greenhouse effect."

I know scientists would likely say that the CO2 from automobiles is somehow pushing us over the edge. What about when there were no people on the earth to eat the livestock and the buffalo roamed free on the plains?

Last summer, I took a trip up to Yellowstone National Park. I have been there many times, but I was again impressed by the extent of damage caused by the wildfire in 1988. That fire was said to be started, at least in part, by lightning strikes (a natural cause.) That was a fire that (after letting the fire try to burn itself out naturally) firefighters worked feverishly around the clock to control and extinguish.

How many cars would it take to make up the carbon emissions from that fire? (The answer is 67,200,000 cars driving for one year in case you were curious.) What would have happened if that same fire had started even 100 years ago? How many more acres would have burned back then? How many wildfires occurred before the invention of the the automobile? How far would this current California wildfire be spreading without humans to stop it, and how many automobiles would that be worth?


My guess is that some reading might say, But aren't we better off being safe than sorry? I believe there is again a stereotype with Republicans that they hate the environment; all they care about is putting money into their pockets at any expense. That is false.

I love the environment, and I believe that it is our responsibility to care for the earth. I was taught from a young age not to litter, and I still make it a habit to pick up trash I find lying around. I recycle. I don't pour antifreeze or motor oil down drains. I try to take care of our planet. The problems that conservatives have with global warming, and the reason they fight it, has nothing to do with the environment. It has to do with control.

Democrat leaders use global warming as an excuse to exercise control the lives of others. Generally speaking, the democratic party leaders seek for power. They are envious of kings. They believe that most people aren't smart enough to take care of themselves. They believe that the benevolent government can do a much better job for people than they can do for themselves.

Conservatives love the environment just like liberals, but they don't believe that it falls within the proper role of government to tell people whether their emission output is too much to drive their car. Here is a list of 600 items said in news articles around the world to be caused by global warming:

Things Caused by Global Warming

(I especially enjoy the ones such as "avalanches reduced" & "avalanches increased" or "birds face longer migrations" & "birds returning early" or "Atlantic more salty" & "Atlantic less salty" to name a few that are both somehow caused by global warming, even though they are exact opposite effects.)

The more effects of global warming, the greater the ability to exercise control through regulation. The leaders aren't actually worried about the environment. We know that, because of people like Al Gore, who still flies around in private jets and drives SUVs and uses 20 times the energy of an average household. If he truly were concerned about the polar bears, he wouldn't be doing any of those things. Why would he say it if he didn't believe it? I believe the answer is that the idea that he can exercise influence over people and nations around the world appeals to him.


We ought to take care of our planet. Just like we learned in Boy Scouts, we ought to leave any "campground" we visit more clean than we found it. But the government has no right to tell us what color car we can drive (as is currently being considered in California.)

Who is the President of the United States' boss? How about Congress' boss? How about the Supreme Court's boss? They all work for "We the people of the United States", and not the other way around. That is the way the founding fathers structured it, because they had just fled a country that eventually told them how they had to worship their God.

The hysteria surrounding global warming is no different than the swine flu. The propagation of irrational fear based on incomplete information. Again, it's all about control.

Thursday, April 23, 2009

I Want to be a Democrat

I have a confession to make: I am secretly considering becoming a Democrat. No, this isn't due to the fact that the Republican party nominated John McCain for President (although that is nearly reason enough.) I am a true conservative at heart, and that wouldn't change, but I just daydream sometimes about how much easier life would be if I were a Democrat. Let me give a few examples:


If I were a Democrat, I wouldn't have to spend all the time and effort researching facts and putting numbers together. For any argument that anybody presented contrary to my views, I would just say:

"It's because of the failed Bush policies!"

You may think I'm exaggerating, but watch any debate on CNN or Fox or MSNBC that involves a Republican strategist and a Democratic strategist. The Republican will always try to gear the argument toward logic. "How is Obama going to increase government spending by $1 trillion and keep his promise not to raise taxes on 95% of the people?" The Democrat will always respond by appealing to emotion and making a personal attack. "The people on main street are hurting! We have to make sacrifices to fix this economic crisis. George W. Bush got us into this mess while his rich oil buddies got richer."

If you doubt that, try me. Turn on the TV right now and watch any debate. Find one example where a Democratic strategist tries to debate an issue based on facts and logic. The Republican comment in this example is actually a logical question -- Where does the money come from? But if I were a Democrat, I wouldn't have to worry about answering. I would actually just claim that asking that question is a personal attack on Obama. Take that, Republicans!


If I were a Democrat, I wouldn't have to worry about being consistent. For example, the same people who defended Bill Clinton during the Monica Lewinsky scandal, claming that his personal life has nothing to do with his private life, are the same people who ridiculed and called for the resignation of Senator Larry Craig for something he may or may not have actually done.

I'm sure most of us saw this clip from Susan Roesgan this week following the tea parties, and her different responses to which President had a Hitler moustache painted on his face:

Susan Roesgan - CNN

Whether it's David Axelrod calling the Tea Party protests unhealthy (while the Cindy Sheehan War in Iraq protests were a perfectly healthy expression of free speech) or Obama scoffing at notions that he's pushing socialism at the same time the government acquires common stock (meaning they are part-owners in a the company) in the nation's banks, the need for consistency is not a problem. That would take a lot of pressure off.


If I were a Democrat, I wouldn't have to worry about playing fair. Liberal talk-radio shows have little demand, so they simply can't compete with conservative talk-shows. What do the Dems do? They talk about bringing back the Fairness Doctrine, so that people like Rush Limbaugh who has 13.5 million listeners per week would be forced to give opposing points of view on their show. That way, they get their point of view to 13.5 million people too.

Environmentally friendly energy solutions losing out in the free market? We all remember this statement from Obama on the campaign trail:

"So if somebody wants to build a coal-powered plant, they can. It's just that it will bankrupt them because they're going to be charged a huge sum [in proposed carbon taxes] for all that greenhouse gas that's being emitted."

We've always learned that kids need to play nice in the sandbox. In this case, if somebody won't share with us, we just go get our Dad to come take it from them. Problem solved.


If I were a Democrat, I could think that I'm the exception to the rule. For example, socialism has never worked to build prosperity. Here is a list of current countries that practice socialism:

  • China
  • Cuba
  • Laos
  • North Korea
  • Vietnam

Which of those countries would you want to move to? Even without complete socialism, let's look at some of the countries with only socialized medicine (a.k.a Universal Healthcare):

  • Canada
  • Finland
  • Israel
  • United Kingdom

These are the countries that people from around the world go to when they are in need of expert medical care, right?

But that's the great thing! It doesn't matter that socialism has never worked in the history of man -- I would simply believe that we are the exception. We are different. It would work in our case!


Along those same lines, if I were a Democrat, I would be able to define my own rules. For example, it is illegal to kill a 1 year-old son or daughter. It is also illegal to kill a 1-minute old son or daughter. It is not your choice.

The debate regarding abortion has nothing to do with choice, because we all know that murder is illegal. The argument has to do with when life begins. So we just claim that life doesn't begin until the third trimester (even though if we didn't interfere, a baby would be born), and that it's the mother's choice because the baby is part of her body. Viola! Not murder anymore.

Using that same logic, I could rob the US Mint, and claim that those dollars weren't distributed into the system yet, and that I am a US Citizen, so it was my choice to take them.

As a Democrat, I would also have the ace in the hole, because I can also claim that anything is unconstitutional. I read an article today about how a law banning wearing saggy pants on a Florida beach was ruled unconstitutional. Here is a link to the Constitution:

The U.S. Constitution

Read through that, and try to find where our forefathers wrote that outlawing people who let their knickers hang out in public for all to see is unconstitutional. (You can actually save yourself the trouble -- It's not in there.) But that's the great thing: It doesn't matter! Here's what I would use:

"Amendment 1: Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances."

It doesn't matter that it doesn't say anything about saggy pants or abortion even. See, saggy pants are a form of speech! Abortion is a form of speech! All I would have to do is convince a judge that whatever inappropriate or illegal activity I want to do is a form of speech, and I'm golden!


One of the major democratic platforms is that the government should not be allowed to limit the freedoms of the people. If they want to smoke marijuana, that's their own choice. But the good news is that I wouldn't have to extend the privilege to others.

For example, if students in my class want to say the Pledge of Allegiance, I would complain it was unconstitutional, and it's over. It wouldn't matter if I was only 1 in a class of 30! I know what you're thinking -- Isn't making saying the Pledge of Allegiance illegal a "rule" imposed by the government? Doesn't matter! Remember that First Amendment?

I could go on, but I'll stop there. Can you see why I daydream sometimes about being a Democrat? I honestly think it would be much easier.


Now I realize that I've spoken in general terms and a bit sarcastically, which I've tried to avoid in these posts, because my intention is not to be divisive. I'm taking the highly visible Democrats that I see on TV and those that I read in the news, and stereotyping based on that. I realize that.

The few Democrats that I know personally are great people. As I've mentioned in previous posts, I believe that they are good people with big hearts who just want to help others. But I believe the policies they support are like giving a child who is crying because he doesn't want to eat his vegetables some ice cream instead. It solves the immediate problem, but is it good for that child in the long run?

I realize this doesn't apply to all Democrats. But as with any stereotype, the stereotype comes from the majority. And I think if you'll pay attention to what you see on TV and read in the news, you'll see that the Democrats lead an envious life.