Federal Reserve System

Ron Paul’s Libertarianism Gone Amuck!

Texas Congressman Ron Paul, a Republican Presidential candidate well known for his libertarian views, has come up with a new proposal to resolve the budgetary crisis, and makes it all sound simple, as if anything in government is simple: eliminate FIVE cabinet agencies, end other federal involvement and regulation, and cut back defense spending dramatically! He claims he can cut $1 trillion the first year, and with other proposals, balance the budget in one year!

There is as much chance of all this happening as Ron Paul becoming President on January 20, 2013!

Specifically, Paul calls for the following:

1. Close down the Department of Education, Department of the Interior, Department of Commerce, Department of Housing and Urban Development, and the Department of Energy.
2. Eliminate the Transportation Security Administration, leading to privatization of airport security.
3. Slash spending for other departments to the level of 2006, and cut the federal work force by 10 percent, and congressional salaries and the President’s salary would also be cut.
4. Immediately end all war spending and bring troops overseas home.
5. Cut most federal regulations and cut taxes further.
6. Give Medicaid administration and responsibility over to the state governments.
7. End taxes on capital gains and dividends completely.
8. Repeal the Obama Health Care plan and the Wall Street regulatory reform program.
9. Conduct a full audit of the Federal Reserve Bank, one of his favorite “whipping boys”.
10. Honor Social Security, Medicare and Veterans benefits programs, but allow younger people to opt out of the programs.

To believe that all of the above could be accomplished, and that it would be good for the nation, is to believe in Santa Claus!

In many respects, this series of ideas are extremely dangerous, extremist, and radical, and some would say looney as well. No serious observer can possibly believe that such a program is doable, advisable, and would pass muster in a Presidential campaign!

But then, Ron Paul is NOT going to be the GOP nominee in any case, so it is just a side issue to look at, laugh at, and dismiss as NOT serious in nature!

The Debate Audience In Tampa: What Are We Becoming? Shame Over Their Behavior!

In watching the CNN-Tea Party debate in Tampa, Florida, last night, beyond the points made by the potential GOP Presidential candidates, one characteristic stood out, a very ugly characteristic!

The audience at the debate demonstrated just how nasty, mean spirited, self centered, and lacking in humanity the Tea Party crowd have become!

It has become a disease in America, if one wants to believe that the Tea Party movement is spreading far and wide, which the author hopes is NOT the case!

Witness the following:

1. When Rick Perry brought up the idea of Federal Reserve Board Chairman Ben Bernanke being treasonous, the crowd cheered wildly.
2. When the subject of a 30 year old male who chose not to have health insurance coverage and then is in the hospital for six months, the reaction of the audience is to applaud the idea that he should not be put into intensive care to save his life, that he should die, that there is no responsibility for others in medical crisis.
3. The hatred of the audience toward illegal immigration, and readiness to destroy Social Security and Medicare was obvious.
4. The refusal of the audience to consider that Ron Paul had some good points about our foreign policy causing a lot of our woes financially, and instead booing him, was disturbing.
5. There were many other moments of poor behavior by the crowd, too numerous to list here.

But beyond all this, the fact that the audience at the Reagan Library debate last week cheered and applauded the fact that Rick Perry had been responsible for the execution of more prisoners than any governor in history, was also very disconcerting, as if the death penalty is the answer, when it is well known that mistakes ARE made and have been made in Texas and elsewhere, with denial of new evidence, refusal to recognize that some testimony against some defendants is unreliable, and that the death penalty is unevenly utilized against minorities as compared to whites!

If this is the country we are becoming, the equivalent of the Tea Party mentality, this nation is in deep trouble, and we have lost our common decency and humanity!

But the thought is that this is a minority view, which demands full commitment to fight and defeat this poison, this cancer, in our society, before it becomes endemic!

George W. Bush To Rick Perry: The Potential Further Deterioration Of The American Presidency In The Election Of 2012!

Much has been written about the faults and shortcomings of the George W. Bush Presidency, but we are now faced with another Texas Governor who could, if elected, make us wish for the “good old days” of Bush 43, and certainly for the “very good old days” of Bush 41, and even to wish for a “Bush 45 (Jeb Bush)”!

The Bush family and their supporters are clearly vigorously opposed to a President Rick Perry. Jeb Bush has been indirectly critical of the GOP Presidential field, saying instead of just attacking President Obama, real alternatives to his policies are needed, a swipe at Rick Perry. His son, Jeb Bush, Jr. has formally endorsed Jon Huntsman, and Huntsman met with the elder President Bush at his home in Kennebunkport, Maine, before entering the race. Bad blood has existed between the second President Bush and Perry, who was his Lieutenant Governor and succeeded him when Bush became President in 2001. Karl Rove, adviser to the second Bush, has been vehemently against Perry, as he and the Bush family were when Perry ran in the 2010 GOP primary for another term against Senator Kay Bailey Hutchison.

George W. Bush promoted “compassionate conservatism”, and while that is often ridiculed, in fact, for all its faults, Bush’s administration DID promote a prescription drug plan for seniors, although it was not funded by taxes and has added to the national debt. Bush also was not, and his family are not, supporters of the Tea Party movement, which in many ways, are a reaction against steps taken by Bush in the economic crisis of 2008–2009.

Now we have Rick Perry, who has threatened Ben Bernanke of the Federal Reserve Board, an appointee of Bush. He has had the gall to say Barack Obama does not love America, even though Obama’s record of going after terrorists successfully far outdoes the eight years of Bush and Dick Cheney. Perry has also attacked Social Security, calling it a Ponzi scheme, and is trying to stir younger Americans to rise up against paying the Social Security tax, which effect would be to bring the whole system down and deny senior citizens the safety net that has worked well for 75 years, and is in good shape, even without any modification, for 25 more years, and with some tinkering, will be just fine for the long run!

Under Perry, the number of poor Texans, growth in minimum wage jobs, decline of educational funds and standards, and percentages of people with no health care coverage, has magnified, while under Bush, many of the statistics showed much more positive results. And one cannot just say that the Great Recession beginning in 2008 caused these downturns, as they were occurring all along during the past ten and a half years of Perry’s Governorship!

Perry has also had more people executed, including those on which there was doubt, than under Bush, and he is proud of this, as if that is an accomplishment! And the people around Perry make Bush’s “people” look brilliant by comparison!

The only virtue Perry would bring to the White House would be to make us “appreciate” George W. Bush for the first time, as the further deterioration of the Presidency would be in full swing!

Is Rick Santorum Becoming Soft And Fuzzy?

Former Pennsylvania Senator Rick Santorum, the only person in the Republican Presidential race who has served in the Senate, has had a reputation for hard nosed, aggressive rhetoric throughout his career and during his Presidential run.

Santorum, who ended up fourth in the Ames, Iowa Straw Poll, behind former Minnesota Governor Tim Pawlenty, said yesterday that he will not drop out of the race as Pawlenty has done.

At the same time, both yesterday and last week, Rick Santorum sounded as if he is becoming soft and fuzzy!

Imagine this social conservative, who has strongly condemned gay rights and gay marriage, being critical of Iran for its treatment of gays! What has happened that he worries about gay rights in Iran, but not in America?

Yesterday, he was strongly critical of former Texas Governor Rick Perry for his threatening language toward Federal Reserve Board Chairman Ben Bernanke. Santorum said it was unPresidential behavior, comparing it to Michigan Congressman John Conyers calling for the impeachment of former President George W. Bush years ago.

Santorum declared that someone running for President should not use loose language threatening people and accusing them of treason because we do not agree with their views on public policy, and also should not talk about impeachment of a President!

Austin is not Washington, DC, Santorum said, and he declared that Perry needs a learning curve to understand the differences. He seemed to be passing judgment on Texas politics as he criticized Perry.

This is all very shocking, as by showing concern for gay rights in Iran, criticizing an attack on the Federal Reserve, and ridiculing Texas politics, all sound like Santorum is losing his social conservatism and his Tea Party credentials, or his attempt to gain their backing!

Rick Santorum actually sounds reasonable for the first time in years! What is going on, Rick?