Archive for March, 2008

Response to Paul Krugman

Posted in Politics on March 29, 2008 by poyers

Paul Krugman is a big Hillary Clinton supporter and in my opinion, he wrote a very silly piece in the NY Times this week.  He thinks that Mrs. Clinton’s economic vision for the country and her “solutions” are best.  I just had to scribble some thoughts.  It is quite late so give me a break.

  I disagree with his analysis.  It sounds an awful lot like Mrs. Clinton and Mr. Obama want to eliminate free markets.  In fact, I rarely hear them tout freedom; all of their speeches revolve around bold promises to spend more money that they do not have, increase requirements, force companies to follow their agenda,  and raise taxes on producers.  As typical politicians, they make assurances to people that they are going to spend more and get more accomplished.  What do they have to show for their promises over the last 50 years?  We have huge bureacracies and the same problems.  The notion that taxing people at higher and higher rates is going to be good for the world is based on nothing.  I read Krugman’s previous article about how higher taxes have helped Europe but he has been proved very wrong.  Look at Ireland before their housing problems and look at Eastern Europe as they succeed with low taxes and less regulation. 
Also, since when does a $75K annual income make one so rich that they need to have their taxes raised as argued by Mr. Obama?  Why should they pay more in capital gains taxes when the wealthy are the producers, entrepreneurs and employers?  Forget about the wealthy, around 100M Americans own stocks including most employees of large corporations and Union members; they hardly fit the “rich” who should pay “their fair share”. 
Beyond that, the wealthiest 25% pay 86% of all income taxes in the country.  We have one of the highest federal corporate taxes in the world and our state corporate taxes are higher than most countries; even in France and Germany in over half of the states in the Union. 
In addition, the tax cuts for the rich argument holds no water.  In 1980 the top income tax rate was 70% and the richest 1% paid over 19% of all income taxes.  Today, with a tax rate at 35%, they pay twice as much as in 1980.  The top 1% pays 39% of all income taxes today, UP 2% from 2000 when Bush took office.  People earning under $35K per year do not pay any taxes on their income.  The wealthy are not evil (as evidenced that progressives have higher net worth than conservatives by about 7%).  In fact, they are most often the risk takers and entrepreneurs that we should be supporting and uplifting by reducing regulation and the burden of government intervention.  Was that not the hub of McCain’s argument when he said “”I will not play election year politics with the housing crisis.  I have always been committed to the principle that it is not the duty of government to bail out and reward those who act irresponsibly, whether they are big banks or small borrowers.”
In Krugman’s own book, The Tyranny of the Status Quo, he talks about the dangers and problems with big government bureaucracy.  Yet he promotes two candidates that would like to increase bureaucracy and take away freedom; punishing those who take risks and grow opportunity and freedom.  Where does Mrs. Clinton’s $30Billion mortgage restructuring come from?  Where does government have the authority or right to freeze mortgage rates or impose moratoriums on loans?  That is borderline unconstitutional is it not?  If lenders (and mortgage financiers) know that the government can arbitrarily rewrite the terms of contracts, this would make it more difficult for homeowners to obtain mortgages, and would trigger a spike in interest rates on new loans.
The New Deal was a horrible failure and caused the Great Depression to last much longer than necessary.  Read Amity Schlaes’ book Forgotten Man for a great analysis. 
Mr. Krugman’s article is not even close to being fair or accurate about McCain.  Mr. McCain still left the door wide open for some form of government intervention down the road. He said he was “prepared to examine new proposals” that were consistent with his principles. 
On a conference call with reporters yesterday, McCain advisor Doug Holtz-Eakin echoed Obama, asserting that “certainly John McCain is interested in a 21st Century financial regulations system.”
Another advisor, former Hewlett-Packard CEO Carly Fiorina, emphasized that McCain still believed there was a role for government to help the “truly needy.”
One of the best arguments free marketers have to stave off a big government rescue plan is that the overwhelming majority of lower and middle income American homeowners behaved responsibly when they took out mortgages on their homes. It simply isn’t fair for them to be stuck with the bill for those who acted recklessly.
Free markets work.  Mrs. Clinton and Mr. Obama have failed policies as evidenced throughout history.  Low taxes and limited government is what creates a vibrant economy.  As is a fed that does not overly meddle in markets.  How can one argue that it is the role of government to get involved in voluntary transactions other than to enforce contracts?  When people make stupid decisions, that is too bad and it is not “evil” to say so; nor is it careless or heartless as progressives argue against conservatives.  It is a mature and thoughtful ideology.

Michigan has problems (and not just the football team)

Posted in Activism on March 26, 2008 by poyers

Michigan has suffered a very bad fate.  From 2000-2006, the state lost 336,000 jobs.  Its unemployment rate is the highest in the country at around 7.2% (http://www.mlive.com/newsflash/index.ssf?/base/business-15/1206543541113000.xml&storylist=newsmichigan) and it has lost its AAA bond rating.

I traveled to Michigan not too long ago on business and while listening to the radio, I heard about the Michigan economic development council.  It is in essence a group of top Michigan entrepreneurs that are working to encourage others to move to Michigan as it is a great place to work.  The president of the group for the last year?  The CEO of Comerica Bank.  That is great, except that Comerica Bank recently moved their headquarters away from Detroit to Texas because it was not economic for them to remain in the state.  The Michigan economic development council cannot even keep their own leader and spokesperson in the state!

As Michigan faced trouble and faces trouble today, the government has decided to raise taxes.  This was great news to the public employee unions.  The troubles of the state can be found most profoundly in Detroit especially given that Oakland County, not too far removed from the city in the northwest suburbs (and where I grew up by the way) is one of the top 10 wealthiest counties in the country!!!

In 1950, Detroit had 1.8 million resident and ranked FIRST in median income of all major cities in the U.S.  Today, Detroit has only 871,000 people and ranks 66th out of 68 major American cities in median household income.  Its population has shrunk by 46%.

But what about the second-largest employer in the city, the government?  During the same years that the population was shrinking by 46%, a huge number, the number of city employees only shrunk by 30%.  Of the city’s 25 largest employers, 40% of jobs are provided by state, county, and city governments which comes out to a ratio of 50 residents per city employee (Chicago has 68 and Indianapolis has 223).  This means that there are almost as many jobs in the city of Detroit paid for by taxes as there are private sector jobs providing a tax base!  How do you possibly encourage companies to move to Detroit with these facts???  Given that the leadership of the city is dominated by Democrats and has been for decades, how are they ever going to unwind this bureaucracy???

The largest employer in the state is the Detroit public school system.  How do you think that the Detroit public school system ranks in the country?  Let us explore:

The Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation found in a 2006 that only 21.7% of entering high school freshmen in the Detroit public school system graduate on time.  The national average…70%.  To be fair, a study found that the graduation rate has risen all the way to 24.9% in 2007.  21.7% was the lowest rate among the fifty largest school districts studied.  The Gates Foundation found that Detroit’s eleventh largest school district in the nation is the worst big-city education bureaucracy in the country. 

The Detroit schools will spend $7,469 per student this year.  By comparison, Marin County, California spends $6,579 per student and graduates 96.8% of their students.  Oddly enough, the Bureau of Labor Statistics show that the Detroit metro-area has the highest average public school teacher pay of ALL major metro areas at $47.28 per hour.  What do you think about that Obama???  Do we need more money to help “lift up” these troubled students???

State law prohibits charter schools in districts with under 120,000 students; maintained at a level just beyond the districts in Detroit so that no charters can be created.  Charter schools have worked in Detroit when they are allowed to operate.  University Prep has a graduation rate of 95% and 100% of its graduates go to college or post-secondary programs.  The Cornerstone schools have seen a high school graduation rate of over 90% since their foundation in 1991!

The problem with Michigan is that it is a system and government run by bureaucrats.  We need more investment and freedom in our great state and we need to make sure that the ails of Michigan do not spread!

Money Trouble Part 2.

Posted in Activism on March 26, 2008 by poyers

Absolutely hilarious.

As a solution to the budget problems in Tucson, and as a jab to our beloved Democrat leaders in the Arizona legislature, Republican rep Judy Burgess has proposed a new law, HB 2339, that would authorize the “I didn’t pay enough” fund.  That is right, if you feel that you did not pay enough and would like to voluntarily pay more to your state the fund will be put into place!

Something similar was established in Virginia about 5 or so years ago and since then, they have raised about $15,000.  That is it!  All of these rich people (like Warren Buffet) that claim that they are not taxed enough should be running over each other to give to this fund.  But where are they?  How come people, especially those that love a big government, do not give and donate as charity to the government?

There is an old saying that goes something like “put your money where your mouth is”.  Apparently, Mr. Buffet et al have their mouth in tax free, far removed from the government trough!

The solution to our budget problems: private donations!  hehehe

That is too rich.  And what is even funnier is that cranky Democrats are complaining about this bill.

http://www.tucsoncitizen.com/ss/byauthor/78628

Money Trouble

Posted in Activism on March 26, 2008 by poyers

I have heard very many times over the course of the last 5 years that as a result of the war in Iraq, we are spending way too much money and that we need to think about “what we could do with those funds if we were not fighting a war in Iraq.”

Consider that we are spending a relatively low amount on defense as a percentage of GDP.  But that is not what I want to address.

 Do you look at your state budget and the health of your state?  I live in Arizona and grew up in Michigan. 

Well well well.  Michigan had to shut down the government late last year as a result of awful decisions, over the top spending, abundant government programs, and a huge public bureaucracy.  Michigan also has one of the largest tax structure in the country and a huge corporate tax rate.  How much of their funds is going to the war in Iraq????  Nope, they are wasting their own money.

Now, in Arizona, we are set to run out of funds on April 1st.  Congratulations to us.  One of the fastest growing states in the country with one of the fastest growing cities (Phoenix).  What have we done about this?  The governor typically has a meeting with the press every Wednesday and guess what she spoke about this week?  Well, she did not speak at all as she cancelled her press conference for the second week in a row stating that she was “too busy” working on the budget.  Fine with me, afterall, I have no rights to know about what is happening with my government and the money that I give to them. 

But get this, knowing that they were going to face problems, the legislature here still managed to pass 1400 different laws.  1400.  That is almost 4 new laws each day every single day of the year.  Included in their work: a law mandating that all gas stations must provide free water and air, a gay marriage ammendment, and on and on and on.  Governor Napolitano can find time to talk about how great Obama is and how bad George Bush is, but she cannot seem to find time serving the people of Arizona, balance the budget, or meet with the people.

The treasurer just had a press conference to say that he is not going to be able to write any more checks because the state does not have any more money. 

The problem is not the war in Iraq.  The problem is big government politicians who grow and grow the government, push off budgeting and saving until they are out of office, and leave the people with the bill and the pain. 

Do some research on your state and take a look at the economic health therewith. 

Let us try to hold our local leaders accountable and bring back a strong local government and take power away from the federal government and big shot politicians.

Thoughts on Obama

Posted in Activism on March 21, 2008 by poyers

I thought that I would put forth some thoughts on the current Obama situation; i.e. his recent speach about race.

I was not upset about Obama’s association with Reverand Wright because of his racist remarks.  The kind of rhetoric that that man spewed is dumb and foolish and I do not believe for a moment that Obama hates white people or is a rasist in any form.  Our generation of people do not have a race problem in my opinion.  Racism comes from our parents and their parents as they continually tell us on TV, the radio, and everyplace else that racism is a real problem.  Go to a university today and you will see all groups of people mingling and being friends.  Our generation does not really care what race you are!  We care if you are good, honest, sincere, and motivated; these traits are hardly unique to any race in particular.  Thus, hearing Reverand Wright, I just hear another old man that is irrelevant.  He is sad, pathetic, and useless to our world.  As is Jesse Jackson, Al Sharpton, David Duke, John Hagee and any other old and out of touch hater.  They are stupid and I do not think that they represent the next generation.  I do not think that Obama is part of the old way of thought either; how could he be!

But one thing that the Wright files did expose was that Obama is just another left-wing politician.  He only addressed this issue out of political expediency and did so in such a low brow way; the same as could be spoken by any other left-wing Democrat.  His odd assertion that the old, out of touch, and cranky people like Wright can be appeased by throwing more money into the government and creating more bureacracy and dependancy does not even make sense.

What offended me the most was picturing Obama sitting in the pews and nodding his head as Wright spoke angrily about America.  Not the racial remarks, but the policy and social aspects of this great country.  I picture Obama as president getting his wish to sit before the leaders of Iran, Venezuela, North Korea, Russia, any of the horrible places in Africa, or elsewhere in the Middle East, listening to these people speaking of America as the Great Satan and an evil empire that tortures people and nodding his head to them.  Agreeing with these enemies of humanity and goodness.  Losing all of the moral authority that so many have died for in this great country.  I see him thinking to himself that “these people have a point.”  And thus I see him negotiating from a position of weakness.  I see him leaving these meetings and adopting the same policies as these dictators; more government power because only Obama as leader can know what is good for us and only if nobody stands in his way.  His stance is that the government needs more power, influence, and less opposition.  The same policies as our enemies and the people that he wants to “negotiate” with. 

Listening to Wright’s rants and Obama’s acceptance of the social and political lies that Wright espoused was frightening.  Listening to his speech and his attacks on talk radio and conservatism made me embarrassed for him.  Where is his evidence that left-wing, big government solutions are what is best for this country?  Where?  He has nothing!  He sounds the same as Hillary Clinton and the rest of these loser politicians except that he is black and in today’s political climate, that makes him immune to criticism.

Obama is dangerous to America.  If you get the e-mails from his campaign and read his policies they are indeed frightening.  No plan to defend our country.  No plan to lead our country.  No plan to cut waste, beauracracy, or spending.  His only plan is to find victims and give them things.  His defense and support of Jeremiah Wright only show that he thinks that this country is bad; just like Chavez, Ahmadinejad, Putin, and the rest.

As a person attempting to run for president of this country, could you not at least pretend that you love and admire this country and its principles.  Could you not at least fake it and appease us with an occassional modicum of support or praise in a consistent manner rather than to save your political hide?

Obama is just like everyone else.  He is just a politician that is power hungry, greedy, and out of touch.

How to truly govern

Posted in Activism on March 18, 2008 by poyers

We who are General Authorities and general officers are called to teach His general rules. It is so sad to see that our politicians and so called “leaders” lack almost any semblance to leadership and principle.  I challenge you to try and understand the principles behind either of the parties.  Good luck with that.

Now, to see how principle is truly explained, take a look at this statement:

You and we then lead specific lives and must seek the Lord’s guidance regarding specific circumstances. But there would be mass confusion and loss of gospel promises if no general ideal and no doctrinal standard were established and, in our case today, repeated. We take great strength in knowing the Lord has spoken on these matters, and we accept His counsel even when it might not be popular.

http://www.lds.org/library/display/0,4945,8027-1-4404-2,00.html

The Party of Lawyers

Posted in Activism on March 17, 2008 by poyers

It seems to me that an overwhelming number of politicians these days are lawyers.  From Fred Thompson and Rudy Giuliani on the Republican side to everybody on the Democrat side; is it not a bit scary to have this many lawyers seeking public office?  Of all of the occupations out there, is not that of the lawyer one of the slimiest and most untrustworthy?  I picture the ambulance chaser and the John Edwards story teller and envision them stealing candy while kissing babies as much as any politician.

A great article in the American Thinker (www.americanthinker.com) addresses this issue:

 The Lawyers’ Party sees these sorts of people, who provide goods and services that people want, as the enemies of America.  And so we have seen the procession of official enemies in the eyes of the Lawyers’ Party grow.  Against whom do Hillary and Obama rail?  Pharmaceutical companies, oil companies, hospitals, manufacturers, fast food restaurant chains, large retail businesses, bankers and anyone producing anything of value in our nation. 

This is the natural consequence of viewing everything through the eyes of lawyers.  Lawyers solve problems by successfully representing their clients, in this case the American people.  Lawyers seek to have new laws passed, they seek to win lawsuits, they press appellate courts to overturn precedent, and lawyers always parse language to favor their side.

As the article says, this is fine in a practice of law, but is it anyway to govern a nation???

Check out the article here: http://www.americanthinker.com/2008/03/the_lawyers_party.html