It’s Time for Reaganomics Again + More

Posted on Mon 08/29/2011 by

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The Patriot Post  Brief

The Foundation

“A morsel of genuine history is a thing so rare as to be always valuable.” –Thomas Jefferson

For the Record

It's time for Reaganomics again

“If you really want to light the fuse of a liberal Democrat, compare Barack Obama’s economic performance after 30 months in office with that of Ronald Reagan. It’s not at all flattering for Mr. Obama. The two presidents have a lot in common. Both inherited an American economy in collapse. And both applied daring, expensive remedies. Mr. Reagan passed the biggest tax cut ever, combined with an agenda of deregulation, monetary restraint and spending controls. Mr. Obama, of course, has given us a $1 trillion spending stimulus. By the end of the summer of Reagan’s third year in office, the economy was soaring. The GDP growth rate was 5% and racing toward 7%, even 8% growth. In 1983 and ’84 output was growing so fast the biggest worry was that the economy would ‘overheat.’ In the summer of 2011 we have an economy limping along at barely 1% growth and by some indications headed toward a ‘double-dip’ recession. By the end of Reagan’s first term, it was Morning in America. Today there is gloomy talk of America in its twilight. My purpose here is not more Reagan idolatry, but to point out an incontrovertible truth: One program for recovery worked, and the other hasn’t.” –columnist Stephen Moore

The Gipper

“When a business or an individual spends more than it makes, it goes bankrupt. When government does it, it sends you the bill. And when government does it for 40 years, the bill comes in two ways: higher taxes and inflation. Make no mistake about it, inflation is a tax and not by accident.” —Ronald Reagan

Political Futures

“The GOP members of the ridiculous ‘Super Committee’ will lose credibility for their party if they do anything other than support budget cuts, or force across-the-board cuts to come into law if no agreement can be reached, as the debt-ceiling bill calls for. If anyone doubts this, they need only check with the Republican members of Congress in so-called ‘red states’ who voted for the debt-ceiling compromise. They’ve been having quite the unpleasant time at town hall meetings back home…. They’ve heard catcalls, jeering and lots of tough questions. Raise revenue or refuse to keep every possible tax break for individuals — ranging from the home mortgage deduction to the current reduction in the payroll tax — and the public won’t be seeing ‘red’ anymore. Instead, they’ll be seeing images of white flags and Swiss cheese.” –columnist Matt Towery

Government

“The Obama State Department has just released its annual terrorism report. It was due to Congress on April 30; the administration that talks incessantly about ‘the rule of law’ — but has little interest in enforcing or complying with the law — held off until the end of August, when Washington is a ghost town. But that, as President Obama must say a lot, is par for the course. The immediately notable thing about the report is what is not in it. Once again, the Taliban is not included in State’s listing of Foreign Terrorist Organizations … the Taliban whose terrorism and safe haven for al Qaeda are the justification for continuing to have our troops fight and die in Afghanistan. … [W]hat’s the chance that we will be clear about who the enemy is if the administration can’t even bring itself to say the Taliban is a terrorist organization? Of course, if the Obama administration were encouraging negotiations with the Taliban (it is) and even anticipating a settlement in which the Taliban were brought into the Afghan government (ditto), the State Department wouldn’t want to complicate that by naming the Taliban as a terrorist organization, right? So we are putting our forces in harm’s way in the War on Terror to fight an outfit that we won’t call ‘terrorists’ and that we actually see as part of the future Afghan government we are building. Great.” –columnist Andrew C. McCarthy

Opinion in Brief

“In this political culture, the black political leader does not encourage his people to move forward, but rather convinces them that they cannot move forward. Whatever choices they make, their future is determined not by personal choice, but by the restrictive confines of white society. … President Obama is constrained by the political paradigm of black leadership, since for him to be in control of the government would mean to betray his people. … His strategy is to highlight and blame the political context of his predicament, rather than make and own decisions. He cannot own his decisions since in his view, and the view of black politicians, only white society controls the process of decision-making. … While in reality President Obama is the most powerful man in the world, his Chicago-forged sense of identity as a black political leader restricts him to complaining about why he can’t effect meaningful change because of others, the excuse-du-jour now being the GOP House. President Obama is not limited by the Republican Congress, or the decisions of past presidents, or the state of the economy; he is limited by his perceptions of what a black politician can and cannot do.” –columnist Michael Bargo Jr.

Re: The Left

“When we say ‘less fortunate,’ we generally mean the poor rather than the disabled, who actually are less fortunate. … The ‘less fortunate’ are not less fortunate in terms of their chances in the economy; the government has instituted program after program dedicated to helping those who begin at low socioeconomic status. … In many cases, the ‘less fortunate’ get to spend their days watching television rather than participating in educational endeavors, as studies tend to show. … The question is how society can rectify those imbalances, or if we actually should. The answer is clearly yes in some cases; everyone agrees that the mentally and physically disabled deserve societal protections. But if we get rid of the incentive for the non-disabled to work hard by giving them excuses not to do so, like attempting to provide equal outcomes for the non-equally gifted, we destroy the capacity for true class mobility. The beauty of a free society is that someone slightly less gifted who works harder than usual can rise; the burden of a free society is that someone slightly less gifted is expected to work harder than usual.” –columnist Ben Shapiro

Culture

“In a speech at Sichuan University, Vice President Joe Biden said ‘Your [China’s] policy has been one which I fully understand — I’m not second-guessing — of one child per family.’ … Biden didn’t condemn the immorality or brutality of a system of forced sterilization and forced abortion — he merely noted that the demographic consequences of thus drastically limiting the population would lead to problems for China’s version of Social Security. … Is the vice president truly unaware that children born in defiance of the one-child policy are not permitted to enroll in school or see a doctor? But many, many Chinese babies don’t even get that far. They are ripped from their struggling mothers’ wombs by government goons. … The Chinese communist government, which has killed more people than any regime in the history of the world (65 million according to the Black Book of Communism), regards human beings as widgets to be manipulated or destroyed in the service of the state. … [T]he regime remains one of the most vicious on the planet. It is deeply shameful that the vice president needed to be reminded of that.” –columnist Mona Charen

Insight

“[Tyrannical] power is absolute, minute, regular, provident and mild. It would be like the authority of a parent if, like that authority, its object was to prepare men for manhood; but it seeks, on the contrary, to keep them in perpetual childhood: it is well content that the people should rejoice, provided they think of nothing but rejoicing. For their happiness such a government willingly labors, but it chooses to be the sole agent and the only arbiter of that happiness; it provides for their security, foresees and supplies their necessities, facilitates their pleasures, manages their principal concerns, directs their industry, regulates the descent of property, and subdivides their inheritances: what remains, but to spare them all the care of thinking and all the trouble of living?” –French historian Alexis de Tocqueville (1805-1859)

Essential Liberty

“What laws are we morally obligated to obey? Help with the answer can be found in ‘Economic Liberty and the Constitution,’ a 66-page pamphlet by Jacob G. Hornberger, founder and president of The Future of Freedom Foundation. Hornberger offers a hypothetical whereby Congress enacts a compulsory church attendance law that requires children to attend church service each Sunday. Parents are penalized if their children fail to comply. Would there be any moral or constitutional legitimacy to such a congressional mandate? The law would be a clear violation of one’s natural, or God-given, rights to life and liberty. As to whether it would be constitutional, we have to see whether mandating church attendance is one of those enumerated powers of Congress found in Article 1, Section 8 of our Constitution. We’d find no such authority. Our anti-federalist Founding Fathers didn’t trust Congress with religious liberty, so they sought to protect it with the First Amendment to explicitly deny Congress the power to mandate religious conduct. Suppose there’s widespread popular support for a church-going mandate and the U.S. Supreme Court rules it constitutional; do Americans have a moral obligation to obey the law? … [O]ne cannot avoid the conclusion that the liberties envisioned by the nation’s founders have been under siege, trivialized and nullified. Philosopher Johann Wolfgang von Goethe explained that ‘no one is as hopelessly enslaved as the person who thinks he’s free.’ That’s becoming an apt description for Americans who are oblivious to — or ignorant of — the liberties we’ve lost.” –economist Walter E. Williams

Reader Comments

“I read Alexander’s Essays every week and agree with The Patriot Post that we are in a battle with socialists who are very aggressive. In recent essays, like Ballots or Bullets? you seem to be escalating the alert that we need to be prepared to take up arms in our cause. This mystifies me somewhat. Against whom are we to take military action? Liberals? Politicians with whom we disagree? The president? The military or local police? The IRS? Labor Unions? The education establishment? I think that you are off base implying that we should take up arms.” –Dean

Editor’s Reply: Actually, if you have read my recent essays on the subject of revolution (The Next American Revolution, Sunset or Sunrise on Liberty? and Restoration or Revolution?), you will note the common theme in these essays is that I believe the Ballot Box option is still viable, and to the extent it fails, then we step up to measures of “civil disobedience” as our Founders did when dumping Tea into Boston Harbor. Beyond that, I will cross that bridge when we get there, remembering also that the “Shot heard ’round the world” was fired at at Concord’s Old North Bridge, when oppressors of that era were in route to confiscate the arms of Patriots. As for the “need to be prepared to take up arms in the cause of Liberty,” every Patriot should be so prepared in the best of times.

“You noted in Friday’s Digest that the Congressional Budget Office is making debt predictions based on tax increases. Surely with all the historical data existing showing the positive impact on revenues after tax decreases are implemented, there is similar data showing what happens when taxes are raised? Does our great and powerful CBO look at this data when making their assumptions that revenues will skyrocket and growth will increase? More stimulus, less revenue, more debt, another downgrade, higher interest costs, a vicious cycle. We survived incompetence under Jimmy Carter. It’s a different matter when ruining America is the plan.” –Jon

“When Thomas Edison tried repeatedly in his quest to create a working light bulb, he was always using his own money. When Obama tries to stimulate the economy with one stimulus plan after another, he’s using our money, only he’s using it like it’s play money, as if it never had to be paid back.” –Paul

Correction: In Friday’s Digest we said incorrectly that the Virginia earthquake was Monday. It was Tuesday. Apparently, our collective editing mind was jarred by the tremors.

The Next Disaster.....Congress

The Last Word

Whenever anyone wants to prove that millions of Americans are either dumb or just plain nuts, they mention that 12% of the population is convinced that a badly scarred James Dean is living as a hermit and a 450-pound Elvis Presley is working at a 7/11 outside Nashville. I say that doesn’t prove anything beyond wishful thinking. A far more convincing case can be made by pointing out that even now 40% of Americans believe that Barack Obama is doing a bang-up job. In a saner world, it’s Obama who would be a hermit or working at a 7/11 in Chicago.” –columnist Burt Prelutsky

Semper Vigilo, Fortis, Paratus et Fidelis!
The Patriot Post Editorial Team

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(Please pray for our Armed Forces standing in harm’s way around the world, and for their families — especially families of those fallen Soldiers, Sailors, Airmen, Marines and Coast Guardsmen, who granted their lives in defense of American liberty.)

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