Archive for the ‘Economic Collapse’ Category

CHARTS: Here’s what Obama is calling “catastrophic” cuts imposed by the sequester

You heard President Obama’s hysterical press conference yesterday about “catastrophic” spending cuts imposed by the sequester.

Now for some perspective . . .

Note that federal spending still goes up every year under the sequester, even while household incomes continue to decline.

January posted the sharpest decline in personal incomes for Americans in 20 years, and the worst decline in after-tax incomes since 1959. American households have lost nearly $5,000 in annual income under Obama. But the federal government continues to grow and spend more regardless.

The federal government is now borrowing 46 cents out of every dollar it spends. If Obama were really concerned about the “children,” as he always claims, he’d be concerned about the mountain of debt he’s piling onto their backs.

Every baby born today in America owes $55,000 on the national debt debt. This number doubles every seven years at the current rate of spending.

If Republicans in Congress cave on this modest spending restraint mechanism known as the sequester, there really is no hope for the country.

Here was Obama’s presser on the sequester . . .

Why America is probably over

The low-information voter has triumphed.

Here’s a new Pew poll that should depress anyone who knows how to balance their checkbook. The poll shows Americans oppose spending cuts for government  . . . in every area — even for foreign aid.

48 percent support cuts for foreign aid. So almost half think foreign aid should be cut.  That’s the lone ray of hope in this poll. But with that lone exception, support for spending cuts doesn’t reach 35 percent . . . for anything else.

So all these people who oppose any and all spending cuts must include a lot of people who regularly vote Republican, voted for Romney. Go figure.

Only 20 percent support cuts for farm subsidies (which mostly go to giant agribusiness). Just 21 percent support cuts for Solyndra-style energy subsidies and the U.S. Department of Energy — which should be renamed the Department of Energy Prevention.

The U.S. Department of Energy produces zero energy, just prevents energy from being produced.

Similarly, the U.S. Department of Education should be renamed the Department of Education Prevention.

Does anyone think the quality of education in America has improved since the U.S. Department of
Education was formed under President Jimmy Carter in 1979?

The national debt stands at $16.6 TRILLION. We have trillion-dollar annual deficits as far as the eye can see. The federal government now borrows 40 cents of every dollar it spends.

Every baby born in America today now owes $52,834 on the national debt.

We’ve just added a gigantic new entitlement  program (the largest entitlement program of all time for America) with ObamaCare.

So government spending is just going to get even more out-of-control, if that’s even imaginable.

In terms of our national debt, we’re already in worse shape than Greece. Our only advantage is we can just print up more money, like confetti. Greece can’t because it’s part of the European Union.

But the American people see no problem with any of this. They want to spend more, not less . . . just like Obama.

Americans overwhelmingly support the Lindsay Lohan approach to fiscal discipline.

How well do you think this story is likely to turn out?

America is Getting Used to Obama’s “New Normal”

Last week, we learned that the U.S. economy (GDP) shrank by 0.1 percent.

Two straight quarters of shrinking economic growth means we’re back in a recession — yup, ye ole “double dip.”

For the entire year of 2012, official U.S. GDP growth was only 1.5%.

Most recessions are followed by economic growth rates exceeding 4 percent. So this so-called “recovery” is moving at about one-third the pace of normal economic recoveries.  But now the economy is shrinking again.

Meanwhile, the unemployment rate ticked back up to 7.9 percent, which means that the unemployment rate is now higher than on Obama’s first day in office.

Here are some more facts that should shock you . . .

  • Since Barack Obama’s first day in office, 8.4 million Americans have left the labor force because they believe looking for work is a fruitless exercise.
  • If the unemployment rate was calculated based on the portion of the population in the work force in 2008, the unemployment rate would be 10.2 percent.
  • Under the Obama Presidency, the number of Americans on Food Stamps has risen from 32 million to 47 million.
  • The Census Bureau informs us that 146,000,000 Americans (40 percent of the population) are now “poor” or “low income.”
  • Under Obama, median household annual income has declined by $4,600.
  • On Obama’s first day in office, the price of a gallon of regular gas was $1.84. Today it’s $3.51 on average across America (an all-time high for February).
  • Electricity prices have risen faster than the rate of inflation every year of the Obama Presidency.
  • Obama promised ObamaCare would reduce health care costs. But health insurance costs have risen 29 percent since Obama’s first day in office, mostly due to costs on insurers imposed by ObamaCare.
  • Today, 77 percent of Americans live paycheck-to-paycheck.
  • In America today, 41 percent of all workers make less than $20,00 per year.
  • Obama has added $6 TRILLION to the national debt — which now stands at $16.4 TRILLION.

But the mainstream news media keeps talking about this economy as in “recovery.”

And America reelected Obama for another four years.  Apparently, most Americans are satisfied with the current state of the union.

Two Cheers for Going Over The Fiscal Cliff

I favor going over the fiscal cliff.  No more talks with President Obama.

On November 6, 2012, the American people voted for bigger government over smaller government.

It’s about time the American people (including the Middle Class) start paying for the government benefits they are demanding.

Going over the fiscal cliff means we start making that happen.

Today, the federal government is borrowing 42 cents of every dollar it’s spending. We now have a $16.4 TRILLION national debt.

Obama’s own budgets propose adding a $1 TRILLION+ to the national debt every year for as far as the eye can see.

This means the American people are enjoying lots of benefits from government without paying for them. We are passing the bill onto future generations.

That’s not fair. And it’s immoral.

Assuming there’s no fiscal cliff deal (I hope there isn’t) the tax bill for the median family or household will increase by about $3,500 in 2013.

Some mandatory spending cuts also kick in. I’m all for that.

Now, if it were up to me, I’d cut the entire federal budget by about two-thirds.

That’s about what it would take to scale our federal government back down to Constitutional size. But that’s not what the American people are voting for.

The American people want more from the government. So it’s time they start paying for it.

When you really think about it, the fiscal cliff IS the compromise.

Obama wants no spending cuts, only tax increases.

People like me want all spending cuts, no tax increases.  In fact, I want tax cuts plus spending cuts, while Obama wants more spending and more taxes.

So there’s no possibility of any meeting of the minds in further discussions with Obama.

We just have a very different (polar opposite) philosophy of that the proper role of government is.

With the fiscal cliff, we get some tax increases and we get some real spending cuts. We begin the process of bringing the federal budget back into balance.

So that’s the compromise. It’s the compromise Barack Obama, John Boehner, and Harry Reid all agreed to in 2011.

It’s the compromise both chambers of Congress voted for. So let’s stick with that.

Even at this rate (of fiscal cliff-scale spending cuts and tax increases) it will take decades before we actually start paying down the national debt. But at least we’ll be heading in that direction.

But something eles may happen when we go over the fiscal cliff – something good.

Once the median family’s tax bill goes up $3,500 in 2013, more voters will start to wonder if all this government they are asking for is really worth it. As long as they can push the bill for all this government onto future generations (who have no vote), it’s fun to accept all these goodies from the government . . . because they seem free.

I’d love to have a credit card that allowed me to spend as much as I want, and have someone else in the future pay for all my spending. What a gas that would be!

That’s exactly what Congress and President Obama are doing.

At least the fiscal cliff imposes some discipline — on both Washington and the American people. Not much, but some.

Will we double-dip back into another recession if we go over the fiscal cliff?

Yup. Probably. Almost certainly . . . because the government’s credit card spending will be curbed.

When you hit your credit card limit and you’ve been living off your credit cards, your lifestyle is going to take a hit.

That’s what will happen if we go over the fiscal cliff and don’t raise the federal debt limit.

It’s tough medicine. But it is medicine. It’s ultimately good for us to live within our means. But that can be hard.

The endess deficit spending without consequences must end.

It will end eventually. The question is: When?

Will the spending end when the economy completely collapses, like a house of cards, under the weight of debt?

Or will some fiscal discipline start now — when we still have a country we can save?

I vote for starting now — which is why I hope we go over the fiscal cliff.

I vote for going over the fiscal cliff because it’s immoral to pass the bill for all these government benefits onto my children and grandchildren. It’s time to pay the Piper.

Is America Over?

Let’s not kid ourselves.

The recent election seems to indicate that America is probably over.

Unlike in 2008, we can’t say the American people just did not understand who they were electing — a socialist (at a minimum), but more likely some kind of Bill Ayers, Jeremiah Wright, Frank Marshall Davis, Saul Alinsky, Anita Dunn, Van Jones, ACORN-style neo-Marxist.

Americans knew exactly what they were doing when they reelected Barack Obama.

In 2012, America clearly chose more socialism, more deficit spending, a lifetime of debt for our children and grandchildren, and a future that looks like Greece, Venezuela, or worse.

And the election wasn’t that close.  The only states Mitt Romney carried that John McCain didn’t were North Carolina and Indiana.

We have become “Food Stamp Nation.” We have become the “Entitlement Society.”

Goodbye “land of the free.”

On July 4, 1776, America declared its “Independence” from the British Empire, and fought a seven-year war to achieve that.

November 6, 2012, will mark the day that today’s Americans declared that what they really want is “Dependence” on Big Government.  Most Americans don’t want “Independence” and freedom any more.

So let’s be honest  and cancel  July 4th celebrations — Independence Day . . . because we now have November 6th — “Dependence Day.”

Most Americans prefer to be “taken care of” by a busy body Nanny State.

Consider these discouraging facts on the state of American public opinion . . .

  • A Washington Post poll shows 54 percent of the American people trust Obama more than the Republicans in Congress on the economy. Only 34 percent trust the Republicans more than Obama on the economy.
  • The same poll shows six in ten Americans opposed even to raising Medicare eligibility from age 65 to age 67 as a way to save money.
  • 60 percent say any changes to Social Security are unacceptable — such as raising the retirement age for receiving Social Security benefits.
  • Only 29 percent of Americans think the best way to reduce the budget deficit is to cut spending.
  • 74 percent support raising taxes on Americans earning more than $250,000 per year.
  • 54 percent support increase taxes on Americans earning more than $50,000 per year, such as by phasing out or eliminating the mortgage interest payments deduction.
  • A new Rasmussen poll shows only 37 percent of Americans consider themselves “fiscal conservatives.” The rest just want to keep on spending — keep spending about the same, or spend more.

Obama has made it clear he will accept no spending cuts whatsoever as part of the fiscal cliff negotiations, just tax increases and more debt.  That’s his answer to the $17 TRILLION national debt — soon to be $20 TRILLION, then $30 TRILLION.

Yet the American people clearly like his approach far more than House Republican efforts to restore some fiscal sanity to our spending mess.

Obama’s job approval rating in the Gallup and Rasmussen daily tracking polls today stands at 56 percent.

Americans appear willing to accept the current 7.8 percent unemployment rate as the new normal.  The unemployment rate is over 10 percent if you use the size of the workforce that existed on Obama’s first day in office.

The U.S. economy is growing at a rate of about 2 percent a year — barely enough to keep up with population growth, and half the rate of the average economic recovery following a recession.

Almost all this meager economic growth we are seeing is occurring from government spending — that is, by deficit spending.

Almost none of the economic growth we are seeing is coming from the private sector — the wealth creating sector.

Growth that comes from government deficit spending is not real growth.  I can live better for a while by running up my credit card charges.  But at a certain point, my financial world implodes.

That’s how the Obama economy is achieving even the pathetic growth we’re now seeing.

The annual income of the median American household has dropped by $4,300 under the Obama Presidency.

But Americans appear satisfied with this state of affairs. Americans are giving Obama high marks for this performance.

So where’s the hope for a better future?

I’m not seeing any.

Will Republicans and conservatives win any victories in the future?

Sure, we will.  We’ll win some victories here and there.

But the long-term trend is downward.  The Republican candidate for President has won a majority of the popular vote just once since 1988.

What makes you think things are going to get better?

Unless we figure out  away to get at least 40 percent of the Hispanic vote instead of the 27 percent Romney got, we’re doomed.

American voters are making it very clear what they want, repeatedly.

What they want is clearly not freedom.

Americans just don’t value freedom and opportunity much anymore.

They want to be taken care of by the government.  And they don’t care much about what kind of a country they leave for their children and grandchildren.

Americans won’t accept one penny of cuts to their benefits even if it means saving America for future generations.

The truth is, we could solve the budget deficit crisis pretty quickly if we just . . .

1) Increase the age of eligibility for receiving Medicare and Social Security from 65 to 70 and then index that to increasing life-expectancy.

The average life expectancy in 1949 in America was to age 66.

This means people could expect to receive Social Security benefits for one year on average.

Today, the average life expectancy is age 76.  But many are living into their 90s.

I’m 54 years old.  I fully expect to be working until I’m dead or incapacitated  . . . because I love doing what I do.  I can’t stand the thought of retiring.  To do what? Play golf?

How many hours a day can I play golf?

I plan on working for as long as I’m physically able to do so . . . because I love working.  There’s just not enough time in life to do all I want to do.

We need to raise the age for receiving Social Security and Medicare to at least age 70 and then index the eligibility age for participating in these programs to average life expectancy, which increases every year.

Those reforms alone would mostly solve our deficit problem.

2) Cut defense spending by one third.

America now spends $950,000,000 a year on defense.  That’s nearly $1 TRILLION, or about 26 percent of our $3.8 TRILLION yearly federal budget.

Right now, 43 percent of the entire world’s military spending is, well, us. We are spending six times more on our military than #2 China.

We are spending 14 times more than Russia. Both Britain and France spend more on their military than Russia.

Russia is really just a Third World country, no longer much to worry about.

There’s no Hitler on the horizon and aircraft carriers are not needed to kill terrorists.

Surely the 12 aircraft carriers we now have are enough.

No other country in the world has more than two aircraft carriers. China and Russia each have one aircraft carrier.

The main threat to us is terrorism. Aircraft carriers and enormous standing armies are not what we need to defeat terrorism.  What we need to defeat terrorism are excellent intelligence, more special ops forces, more drones, and the like.  But these are not high-ticket items, like aircraft carriers.

President Eisenhower (no liberal) warned America about the “military industrial complex” and the threat it presents to our liberty and wallets.

But that Washington Post poll shows that most Americans don’t want any cuts to our military either. Americans want no cuts whatsoever to anything government is doing.

The U.S. government today is borrowing 42 cents our of every dollar it spends.

But Americans won’t tolerate  even modest common-sense budget reforms to put America’s fiscal house in order and save the country for future generations.

Today, it’s all about how much free stuff can I have right now from the government before the American economy completely implodes under the weight of this $17 TRILLION debt that’s going up $1 TRILLION every year, with no end in sight.

Add to this $500,000,000,000 new dollars the Federal Reserve continues to print every year like confetti.  Because of all this new money the Federal Reserve has been printing under Ben Bernanke and Obama, the value of the dollar has declined by 40 percent (compared to gold and other commodities) since Obama’s first day in office.

Americans knew exactly what they were doing when they voted to reelect Obama for another four years. They want to party on someone else’s dime until the money runs out and the economy implodes.

So I’m going to be changing the focus of this blog.

This blog is no longer going to be much about day-to-day politics.

I really don’t care much what happens in the fiscal cliff negotiations.

Ideally, we will go over the fiscal cliff.  We should not be negotiating at all with Obama. We should just let the fiscal cliff happen.

We should let the automatic spending cuts kick in along with all those tax increases that will also kick in on January 1 . . . because Americans should at least pay for the all the government they are demanding — not pass the bill onto future generations.

But this blog won’t be focusing much anymore on all that.

Instead, I’ll mostly focus on steps you can take to save yourself and your family from the coming inevitable economic collapse.

America appears to be over — at least for the foreseeable future.

If America is ultimately to be saved, things will need to get a whole lot worse before they get better.

Americans will need to experience true full-bloom socialism before they reject it — much as has happened in Eastern Europe.  Americans will need to find out what it’s like when most of the federal budget is dedicated to paying for the national debt.

Americans will need to find out what it’s really like to lose freedom before they start to value freedom again.

It’s no fun having government bureaucrats micromanaging every aspect of your life.

People in prison quickly learn that it’s no fun in prison. They’ll do anything to get out — even though the prison gives them free food, free housing, and free health care.  It’s still Hell.

People would rather live in the woods with nothing than stay in the prison.

To save America, perhaps then we should just let Obama and the Left have what they want.

Let them quickly turn America into Greece or Cuba . . . and then see how Americans like it.

Meanwhile, we can continue to talk about freedom and first principles, as articulated in America’s Declaration of Independence.  Then perhaps Americans will eventually return to that . . . because it was, after all, freedom that made America the most prosperous nation in human history.

Until then, until the American people learn what socialism (prison) is really like, and start to value freedom again, it will be like “Moses in the Wilderness” for us who believe in the original American idea of limited government.

Why I’m such a big fan of Grover Norquist — who was Best Man a my wedding in 1987

Grover Norquist has been catching a lot of heat lately for holding politicians to the pledge they signed not to vote for any net tax increases.

I’ve known Grover since 1982.

He was the Best Man at the wedding for my first marriage on October 10, 1987.

He may be the smartest political mind I know.

Here’s how his “No Net Tax Increase Pledge” came about.

Way back in 1984 or 1985, I was having dinner with Grover and several others at Gallagher’s on Capitol Hill when he (we) conceived of challenging all federal elected officials and candidates for federal office to sign such a pledge.

Drinks and dinner at Gallagher’s back then with Grover and our little group of pro-freedom activists was a near-nightly event — as none of us were yet married.  We’d get together almost nightly to plot and scheme the rollback of socialism and big government, plus tell jokes and laugh a lot.

One of our big complaints was that President Reagan just wasn’t moving fast enough to shrink the federal government back down to Constitutional size — which would mean cutting the size of the federal government by about two-thirds.  ”Why isn’t Reagan even trying to eliminate the Departments of Education, Energy, Labor, Commerce, HUD, and much of Health and Human Services?” we’d wonder.

One night, I mentioned to Grover that I grew up in Vermont and New Hampshire.

In the 1970s, New Hampshire had a great conservative governor by the name of Mel Thomson.

Thomson won the governorship of New Hampshire by pledging on a Bible in front of TV cameras that he would never institute an income tax or a sales tax in New Hampshire.

This then became a tradition in the state.

After that, you could not hope to win your race for Congress, for Senate, or for the Governorship in New Hampshire without putting your hand on a Bible and pledging never to vote for instituting an income tax or sales tax.

New Hampshire financed its government with a  fairly stiff property tax, state-owned liquor stores, and assorted user fees.

New Hampshire has changed a lot since then. People from Massachusetts have since moved into New Hampshire to escape high taxes in Massachusetts — only to vote for Democrats and higher taxes in New Hampshire.

Southern New Hampshire is now a suburb of Boston.

Too bad.

So New Hampshire has become a purple state instead of a solidly red state.

But back in the Mel Thomson days (the 1970s) Dartmouth economics professor Colin Campbell conducted a study comparing the quality of government services in Vermont versus New Hampshire.

The study made sense because the states are mirror images of each other geographically and demographically. But a Vermonter paid 40 percent more taxes on average than a New Hampshirite.

Professor Cambpell’s study found, however, that government services in New Hampshire were superior to Vermont’s. And New Hampshire’s government was collecting more tax revenue.

How can this be?

Well, Professor Campbell concluded that the business climate in New Hampshire was superior to Vermont because of New Hampshire’s low (almost non-existent) taxes.

So, given a choice, why pay 40 percent more in taxes just to live in Vermont?

As a result, business boomed in New Hampshire, and New Hampshire was able to attract triple Vermont’s population.

All this economic activity then generated more  tax revenue for the government of New Hampshire to spend on public services.

Grover (at our 1985 dinner at Gallagher’s) was very interested in Governor Mel Thomson’s idea of challenging politicians to take the “No Tax Increase” pledge.

So he developed a similar pledge for federal politicians to sign.

Who would have thought that 1985 dinner conversation at Gallagher’s would have turned into such a political firestorm in 2012?

Of course, no one is required to take this pledge.  But if you decline, voters have a right to assume you plan to raise taxes — or, at least, want to keep your options open.

Politicians take Grover’s pledge for one and only one reason — because they believe doing so will help them win their election.  So voters have a right to expect their elected representatives to keep their pledge.

Under Grover’s Pledge, you can vote for tax reform that closes loopholes if there is a corresponding decrease in tax rates. What you can’t vote for is a net tax increase.

But as Mel Thomson, JFK, and Ronald Reagan demonstrated — if you cut tax rates, this increases economic activity and economic growth. So there’s almost always an increase in tax revenue for the government. As people get richer, the government gets richer.  It’s a win-win proposition.

The logic is this . . .

If taxes are 100 percent, the government will collect no revenue . . . because no one’s going to work if all their earnings are confiscated by taxation. And if taxes are zero, the government collects no revenue either.

There is clearly an optimal level of taxation that produces the most economic growth and the most tax revenue for the government. This is the famous Laffeur Curve.

No one knows exactly what the optimal level of taxation is to produce the fastest economic growth and most revenue for the government. Regulation also factors into this because regulation acts like a tax.

Grover’s view (and mine) is that we are a long way past this optimal point on the Laffeur Curve.

The burden of government (taxes plus excessive regulation) is deterring business and economic activity — disincentivizing work, production, and risk-taking . . . while incentivizing  leisure and sloth.

If you don’t believe me, watch this video . . .

A big reason economic growth in the U.S. has been so slow in recent years is because there are other countries today that are more favorable for business — such as Canada.

Canada recently cut its top corporate tax rate to 15 percent.

The top corporate tax rate in the U.S. is 39.2 percent — now the highest in the developed world.

So why start a business in the United States if you can pay less than half the tax rate by setting up your factory a few miles to the north?

Communist China has also been cutting taxes like crazy lately — on both corporations and individuals.


Well, to spur more economic growth. That’s why.

China’s top corporate tax rate is now 25 percent — 38 percent lower than America’s top corporate tax rate of 39.2 percent.   But for qualified enterprises, the top corporate tax rate in China is now 15 percent. No wonder business capital is flowing out of the United States and into Communist China.

Communist China today is a lot less Communist than we are.

In Hong Kong (now part of Communist China) the top corporate tax rate is 16.5 percent.

By the way, two thirds of Britain’s millionaires have pulled a John Galt and left Britain since the introduction of its 50 percent top tax rate.

Grover doesn’t want that to happen to America.

Paul Krugman argued recently in the New York Times that in the 1950s, the top income tax rate was 91 percent for individuals. He notes that the U.S. was then the unrivaled #1 economic superpower in the world.

JFK than cut the top rate to 70 percent. Reagan cut the top rate to 50 percent, then to 28 percent.

What Krugman misses  with his 91 percent top tax rate thesis is that we had just emerged from World War Two as the big winner.  The rest of the world had been destroyed, for the most part.  Then most of the rest of the world was either Communist or Third World.

The U.S. (relatively unscathed by World War II) was just about the only game in town for any kind of capitalism.

The 91 percent top tax rate was a hangover from WWII when we had to fund the big war machine so we could defeat both Hitler and the Japanese.

Because of the huge tax rate in the 1940s and 50s, most corporate executives did not take much in the way of pay. Instead, companies had generous pensions and other befits that were not taxed.

And people tended to stay at the same company for their entire lives because they could not afford to leave their pensions and benefits behind.  So employees were, in essence, indentured servants.  So that’s not so good if you value freedom.

We actually had much faster economic growth in the 1960s than we had in the 1950s after JFK cut tax rates to a top rate of 70 percent (despite the cost of the Vietnam war and other Cold War costs).

Of course, no one ever paid close to these top rates.  They hid the money in their companies and had a lot of deductions and exemptions.

I actually think that, more than the top income tax rates, over-regulation is the much bigger hurdle to starting a business.

Regulations hurt start-up businesses more because they can’t afford the lawyers to make sure they are in compliance. As a result, new business start-ups are almost non-existent today.  Small business is always where the new jobs and economic growth come from.

Grover believes (quite common-sensicallly) that the emphasis should be on lightening government’s burden on new business formation and productive activity by lowering tax rates, striking down unnecessary government regulations, and reining in out-of-control federal spending.

That’s what JFK and Reagan did. The result in both cases was economic growth rates of more than four percent per year — more than double the growth rate we are seeing today.

Government at all levels is taking 40 cents out of every dollar earned in America. The federal government is borrowing 42 cents out of every dollar it spends.

Enough is enough. It’s time for government to tighten its belt and to stop strangling the goose (capitalism) that’s laying the golden eggs.

Romney Theme Should Be: CANADIANS NOW RICHER THAN AMERICANS . . . Obama destroyed America

The average Canadian household is now more than $40,000 richer than the average U.S. household.

This, according to Environics Analytics WealthScapes data cited in a Globe and Mail article

The average Canadian household was worth worth $363,202 in 2011 compared to $319,970 for the average U.S. household.

Canada is also economically freer than the United States. According to the 2012 Index of Economic Freedom put out by The Heritage Foundation, Canada (often thought to be more socialist than the U.S.) ranks as the world’s sixth freest economy, while the U.S. has plummeted to 10th on the index, ranking behind such counties as Ireland, Mauritius, Chile, New Zealand, Swtzerland, and Australia.

Hong Kong (now part of Communist China) and Singapore rank #1 and #2 on the Index of Economic Freedom.

Historically, the United States has ranked in the top three on this index.

Obama promised change and to “fundamentally transform” America  . . . and he delivered.

“Change has come to America,” he boasted.

Well, that’s certainly true – disastrous change.

The question is: Can America ever recover to its former status as the world’s #1 economic superpower?

Romney should be rolling out new ads on this theme.

The ad should say: “Obama has wrecked America. Now we’re not even the most prosperous country in North America, thanks to ObamaCare and Obamanomics.”

Romney should use this opportunity to teach America how free-enterprise works and why Obama is an enemy of free-enterprise . . . and why, if we continue to follow Obama down the Socialist road he’s taking us, it won’t be long before we become a banana republic.

Don’t be surprised to see a big migration now from the U.S. to Canada.

But will Canada want us there?

Obama is just is not all that keen on the American Dream

President Obama revealed a lot about himself when, on the campaign trail the other day, he made this statement:

If you’ve got a business, you didn’t build that. Somebody else made that happen.”

Obama is a believer in government, not in the private sector, not in businesss.

Obama steered virtually all stimulus dollars to plug holes in state and local government (to prevent layoffs of government workers) or to his pet “green energy” projects, mostly run by his big donors (i.e. Solyndra)

Now, obviously what Obama is saying makes some sense on one level.

We certainly need government. We need police. We need roads. We need regulators. The free market cannot operate without rules and laws. No one (with perhaps the exception of a few Ron Paul supporters) is saying we don’t.

We also need government when an enormous amount of resources is required to achieve a single focused objective — i.e. win World War Two.

We can’t expect the private sector to do something like that.

We also need government to conduct other big worthwhile projects — such as build the Hoover Dam or land on the moon in the 1960s (something we haven’t done again in half a century).

Obama’s rhetorical style is to posit straw-man arguments and knock them down — that is, to misrepresent our true views.

He says conservatives (and those who love freedom) are anti-government, that we just want a dog-eat-dog society where everyone fends for themselves — sink or swim, survival of the fittest.

But that could not be farther from the truth.

Conservatives are strong believers in government. Conservatives are not anarchists. Conservatives believe in ordered liberty, not chaos, not everyone fend for himself Road Warrior-style.

Conservatives believe government should be very strong where it’s supposed to be strong.  Conservatives believe government is needed to do jobs that the private sector is not set up to do, can’t do, or can’t do very well.

America’s founders did an excellent job of outlining the proper responsibilities of the federal government in the Constitution of the United States.

But to say, as Obama did, that “If you’ve got a business, you didn’t build that — somebody else made that happen” is like saying the New York Giants did not win the Super Bowl last year, the referees made that happen, or NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell made that happen.

Certainly referees were necessary to the playing of the Super Bowl. Also a stadium had to be built. The NFL brass had to decide to hold a Super Bowl on a specific date in a specific location.  And there must be rules for the conduct of the game. But to suggest that, because of all this, the New York Giants did not win the Super Bowl (someone else did), is pretty silly.

People pay to watch the game. People pay to watch the players play. They don’t pay to watch the referees. Obama wants to emphasize the referees, not the game.

The main game in America is capitalism.

Capitalism is why America grew to be so prosperous so quickly.

Capitalism is what creates the products we buy, generates the wealth, and pays for all this government. Government doesn’t create wealth. The private sector does.

We could not have won World War Two if America had been a poor country.

Obama thinks wealth is a finite and constant resource that needs to be spread around evenly.

But if that were true, America would continue to look like it did in the 18th Century.

Instead, just about everyone in America today (including the poor) has a computer, a flat screen TV, a car, a washer and dryer, a refrigerator, and very few Americans go hungry or homeless (unless they have a drug abuse or mental health problem).

The rising tide of capitalist-generated prosperity lifts almost all boats.

Yes, Jesse Jackson is right when he says some boats remain stuck on the bottom and need some help. Fine.  But that’s a small percentage. Maybe 10 percent, maybe 5 percent if you really look  closely.

But capitalism has been very good for 90-95 percent of us.

Even the bottom 5 percent in America are far better off than if they lived a century earlier.

But Obama has an almost Medieval view of the world — an age when the world looked exactly the same for hundreds, even thousands of years — a feudal, anti-capitalist world where there was no discernible progress from century to century.

It was grinding poverty for everyone – unless you were royalty or a high-level church figure.

Capitalism and capitalist institutions (such as enforceable contract law and banks) changed all that — also the PROTESTANT ETHIC & THE SPIRIT OF ENTERPRISE (as Max Weber called it).

Obama doesn’t understand capitalism, doesn’t like it. He thinks it’s more noble to work for a non-profit or for government.

But who has done more real good for the world — the RED CROSS (one of the world largest non-profits) or Bill Gates and Microsoft?

I would argue Bill Gates and Microsoft.

Bill Gates made the world a better and more productive place by creating software for personal computers that almost anyone can afford. He created hundreds of multi-millionaires (his employees and shareholders). And now he’s set up his own non-profit foundation that’s exponentially bigger than the RED CROSS — because of the profits he made from Microsoft.

Plus, of course, the RED CROSS could not exist without donations. Where do these donations come from?

The same place taxes are generated to finance government — the private sector.

But Obama tells us “the private sector” is doing fine now. It’s government that’s hurting, in his view.

But if the private sector really were doing fine, government would not be hurting. The tax revenue would be there.

Obama doesn’t seem to know where the golden eggs come from. He just continues to keep trying to kill the goose that lays the golden eggs.

He sees the goose that’s laying the golden eggs as the enemy.

In one of his memoirs (“Dreams of My Father”), Obama talks about a job he had briefly in the private sector. He wrote that he felt like “a spy behind enemy lines.”

Obama actually sees the private sector and business as the enemy.

Obama has spent his entire life working for far-left non-profits (like the notorious vote fraud organization ACORN) and for government.

Even Communist China and most of the Communist World has woken up to the fact that its capitalism that creates the wealth. Fidel Castro and Hugo Chavez are the only true Communists left in the world — well, except also apparently Obama.

While the Communists have abandoned Communism, Obama still clings to Socialist rhetoric that was common in the 1930s. He sounds like a relic from a bygone era.

He blames ATM machines and other forms of automation for the slow economy.

He’s like a Flat Earther who refuses to let observable facts alter his thinking.

Obama doesn’t understand the American Dream, and doesn’t like it much.

He thinks everyone should be working in soup kitchens and the like.

Then he wonders why his polices aren’t creating any new jobs, aren’t generating any economic growth.

If Obama were running the NFL, there would be hundreds of referees on the field — so many you’d have a tough time finding the players. And the rule book would be thousands of pages long — to ensure fairness, of course. A flag would be thrown on every play.

And then NFL Commissioner Obama would wonder why the game has become so difficult to play, and why so few people want to play the game or watch it anymore.

That, in a nutshell, is what he’s doing to the U.S. economy.

His ObamaCare law is 2700 pages.  His administration has just produced 13,000 additional pages of ObamaCare regulations under the 2700-page law.

Obama is very good at that — creating more rules, regulations and bureaucracy.  That’s what he knows how to do. That’s what he loves doing.

He is now in the process of hiring 16,000 new IRS agents to enforce ObamaCare. He is now building 159 brand new government bureaucracies to administer ObamaCare.

Paradoxically, the more government has grown, the more responsibilities it has taken on, the less capable it has become in undertaking big projects.

When was the last time the U.S. government undertook a project on the size and scope of the Hoover Dam?

In what truly is the ultimate insult, American astronauts are now going into space on Russian rockets because we cancelled our space program. We have a government today that’s enormous, but really can’t do much.

It took America one year and 45 days to build the Empire State Building in 1929-1930.

It took us 11 years to build the new version of the World Trade Center. And now it’s just one building instead of two. We’ll call this World Trade Center minus one tower.

We’ve become a pathetic country, unable to do much anymore.

We’ve become a world laughingstock.

Most Conservatives, of course, believe in a safety net for the disabled and those who are incapable of providing for themselves. We don’t want people starving on the streets or granny kicked out of her house into the snow. We believe there should be a floor through which no one should fall, but there should also be no limit (no cap) on what one can earn.

We’re still a relatively rich country (not nearly as rich as we used to be). We can afford an intelligently designed  safety net that has incentives for able-bodied people to get off it.

We’re happy to rescue the defenseless, but we don’t want to subsidize the lazy and clueless.

We don’t think the safety net should be gold-plated and lavish. Or why would anyone want to get off it? Why work if you don’t have to?

The safety net is not supposed to become a hammock.

But Obama has now (on his own) gutted the welfare reforms that Bill Clinton signed into law, including the requirement that you at least try to find work. That requirement’s gone. Now you can just sit on the couch, watch TV, and call that work.

He’s also running TV ads in poor communities urging people to get on Food Stamps.

In the World According to Obama, going on Food Stamps is good and noble, but working in a business is working for the enemy.

At every turn, Obama undermines the work ethic and competitive spirit that are essential to capitalism and a flourishing free-enterprise economy.

Instead of admiring a Michel Phelps and celebrating achievement, Obama’s first instinct is to tie a cement block around his ankle to make the race more fair.

And then he wonders why businesses are keeping trillions of dollars in cash parked on the sidelines until he’s gone . . . or setting up factories in places more hospitable to capitalism, such as in Communist China.

SONG: “Socialism Stinketh”

Tracking the So-Called “Recovery”

This Chart Tracks the Employment-to-U.S. Population Ratio . . .

The shaded area is the recession.

In other words, there is no recovery. A recovery would at least get us back to where we were.  That’s the definition of recovery.

But we do have the $6 TRILLION Obama has added to the national debt.

The fact that Obama’s approval rating, according to most polls, is around 46-47 percent certainly calls into question the intelligence of about half the country. How can 47% possibly think Obama is doing a decent job?

Notice that there was a bit of a recovery started that ended April of 2010 — right after ObamaCare passed into law on March 24, 2010.  It literally only took about a week for ObamaCare to kill the recovery.

Remember also that the Obama Administration proclaimed the recession over in June of 2009 — before a single Obama policy (including the stimulus) had kicked in.  So the recovery that had started in June of 2009 was really the Bush recovery that was killed by ObamaCare and other Obama policies.

This chart comes from Harvard economist Greg Mankiw, who is not real impressed with the Obama “recovery” either. If this is “recovery,” what would a recession look like?

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