The REAL Fiscal Cliff: We Just Went Over in a Rolls Royce Silver Shadow


Dear Reader:

Sometimes an individual puts a problem so succinctly that there is no way to improve upon it.  Here is one such example.  Credit goes to a talented writer, Simon Black:

Sovereign Man (www.sovereignman.com)

I apologize for what you’re about to read

Simon Black on November 6, 2012

 It’s really hard to ignore what’s happening today; the election phenomenon is global.

 Over the last several weeks, I’ve traveled to so many countries, and EVERYWHERE it seems, the US presidential election is big news. Even when I was in Myanmar ten days ago, local pundits were engaged in the Obamney debate. Chile. Spain. Germany. Finland. Hong Kong. Thailand. Singapore. It was inescapable.

The entire world seems fixated on this belief that it actually matters who becomes the President of the United States anymore… or that one of these two guys is going to ‘fix’ things.

 Fact is, it doesn’t matter. Not one bit. And I’ll show you mathematically:

 1) When the US federal government spends money, expenses are officially categorized in three different ways.

  • Discretionary spending includes nearly everything we think of related to government– the US military, Air Force One, the Department of Homeland Security, TSA agents who sexually assault passengers, etc.
  • Mandatory spending includes entitlements like Medicare, Social Security, VA benefits, etc. which are REQUIRED by law to be paid.
  • The final category is interest on the debt. It is non-negotiable.

 Mandatory spending and debt interest go out the door automatically. It’s like having your mortgage payment auto-drafted from your bank account– Congress doesn’t even see the money, it’s automatically deducted.  

2) With the rise of baby boomer entitlements and steady increase in overall debt levels, mandatory spending and interest payments have exploded in recent years. In fact, the Congressional Budget Office predicted in 2010 that the US government’s TOTAL revenue would be exceeded by mandatory spending and interest expense within 15-years.

That’s a scary thought. Except it happened the very next year.

3) In fiscal year 2011, the federal government collected $2.303 trillion in tax revenue. Interest on the debt that year totaled $454.4 billion, and mandatory spending totaled $2,025 billion. In sum, mandatory spending plus debt interest totaled $2.479 trillion… exceeding total revenue by $176.4 billion.

For fiscal year 2012 which just ended 37 days ago, that shortfall increased 43% to $251.8 billion.

In other words, they could cut the entirety of the Federal Government’s discretionary budget— no more military, SEC, FBI, EPA, TSA, DHS, IRS, etc.– and they would still be in the hole by a quarter of a trillion dollars.

4) Raising taxes won’t help. Since the end of World War II, tax receipts in the US have averaged 17.7% of GDP in a very tight range. The low has been 14.4% of GDP, and the high has been 20.6% of GDP.

During that period, however, tax rates have been all over the board. Individual rates have ranged from 10% to 91%. Corporate rates from 15% to 53%. Gift taxes, estate taxes, etc. have all varied. And yet, total tax revenue has stayed nearly constant at 17.7% of GDP.

It doesn’t matter how much they increase tax rates— they won’t collect any more money.

5) GDP growth prospects are tepid at best. Facing so many headwinds like quickening inflation, an enormous debt load, and debilitating regulatory burdens, the US economy is barely keeping pace with population growth.

6) The only thing registering any meaningful growth in the US is the national debt. It took over 200 years for the US government to accumulate its first trillion dollars in debt. It took just 286 days to accumulate the most recent trillion (from $15 trillion to $16 trillion).

Last month alone, the first full month of fiscal year 2013, the US government accumulated nearly $200 billion in new debt– 20% of the way to a fresh trillion in just 31 days.

7) Not to mention, the numbers will only continue to get worse. 10,000 people each day begin receiving mandatory entitlements. Fewer people remain behind to pay into the system. The debt keeps rising, and interest payments will continue rising.

8) Curiously, a series of polls taken by ABC News/Washington Post and NBC News/Wall Street Journal show that while 80% of Americans are concerned about the debt, roughly the same amount (78%) oppose cutbacks to mandatory entitlements like Medicare.

9) Bottom line, the US government is legally bound to spend more money on mandatory entitlements and interest than it can raise in tax revenue. It won’t make a difference how high they raise taxes, or even if they cut everything else that remains in government as we know it.

This is not a political problem, it’s a mathematical one. Facts are facts, no matter how uncomfortable they may be. Today’s election is merely a choice of who is going to captain the sinking Titanic.

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Posted in Congress, Failure to Govern, Federal Spending, Financial Crisis, Financial Suicide, Fiscal Cliff - the REAL one, Government Policy Failure, Taxes, US Spending Spree | Leave a comment

Are Unions Helping Or Hurting the Tragic Situation in New York?


I’m sitting in my warm home sipping a hot coffee and reading today’s Oakland Press, and came across the following article on page A-4:

Davisburg, Michigan trucker turned away in NYC after hauling power transformers – theoaklandpress.com
http://www.theoaklandpress.com/articles/2012/11/03/news/local_news/

What the bell is wrong with these union employees of ConEd?  I have friends and co-workers who have had no power since Tuesday, sitting in near-freezing homes while non-union truckers are being sent back with needed supplies that would repair some of the damage.  No different than “Let them eat cake” in 1789. 

If the goofy administration of Nanny Bloomberg and the feckless FEMA don’t discharge or stop these union thugs, they will be surprised when NYC residents rise up in frustration.  They are tired of the politics vs. really caring about people.

image

Posted in Failure to Govern, Political Intimidation, Voting for the Right Candidate | 1 Comment

Should Michigan Re-Elect Fred Upton?


Don’t Tell the NRA, but Fred Upton is Anti-Gun | RedState
http://www.redstate.com/dhorowitz3/2012/07/30/don%E2%80%99t-tell-the-nra-but-fred-upton-is-anti-gun/

Posted in Congress, Federal Regulation, Freedom, Government Overreach, States Rights, Voting for the Right Candidate | 4 Comments

Dude, where did my Congressman go?


Where it comes to politics, sometimes the level of noise is too great.  But sometimes it is just TOO quiet.  It seems the only time I hear from Congressman Mike Rogers (MI-08) is when he is running for re-election.  So I’m guessing his campaign staff will start pumpin’ out emal blasts beginning in September.

In the mean time, Rep. Rogers, I would sure like to hear you speak out about some of the things I have been calling you about:

  1. TSA Electronic Strip Searches – for a Republican, you sure have been silent about one of the biggest violations to the 4th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution.  As a former FBI agent, why aren’t you speaking out about us having to walk “naked” through a machine just to exercise our right to travel?  You must see the studies showing this is ineffective and potentially dangerous, and that TSA hasn’t caught a single terrorist in 10 years.
  2. Federal Spending – if you were paid $80,000 per year but spent $128,000 every year (while charging the difference of $48,000 per year on your MasterCard), how long would your household be able to operate that way?  Not very long.  But that is what the US Government is doing each year.  It spends $3.2 trillion while collecting $2 trillion in taxes, borrowing over 40% of what is spends!  Does that make sense to you?  It seems to me like a recipe for disaster.  Since you are in the US House of Representatives, and therefore control the US “purse strings”, where is your bill to reign in spending?
  3. Circumventing Congress – we have three equal branches of government, but one thinks it is “more equal” than the others.  Guess which one?  Let me give you some clues:
    • A certain President claimed to have made “recess appointments” of a couple of radical socialists to Cabinet-level jobs during a time the Congress was not in recess.  During that same time period, Congress passed some legislation.  So either the appointments are not legitimate, or the legislation isn’t legitimate.  Do you care about this?  I’ve not heard a peep from you …
    • A certain President decided, with the help of his Secretary for Homeland Security, to ignore Federal immigration law and issue a Presidential Order to implement his own version of the defeated “DREAM Act”.  While I again called your office asking that you stand up to this blatant circumvention of the Constitution, I’ve not heard any public statements questioning this behavior.
    • Last December 31st, Congress passed and the President signed legislation that includes provisions allowing the US Army and government to detain US citizens in the US who are “suspected” of terrorist activity.  Citizens can now be held without charges and without due process simply because those in authority believe they are a threat.
    • A 2012 Presidential Order gives the Executive branch sweeping power to run US transportation, food production and distribution, energy, and many other areas in case of “emergency”.  If Congress doesn’t overturn this, you can say goodbye to liberty.

  Without having any idea where my elected representative stands on so many critical areas, I have to ask, “Where did my Congressman go, dude?”.  I’m sure I’ll be hearing in September that he was successfully serving on this committee or that, or perhaps co-sponsored some lame bill to keep flags from being burned.  But on issues of the U.S. Constitution and circumvention of Congressional authority, I think the whole Congress will wake up in the near future only to find that some declared “emergency” has “temporarily” put all the power in the hands of the President and Executive branch to “properly address” the situation.  Congress will be lucky if the Prez keeps them on the payroll!

Posted in Failure to Govern, Federal Spending, Financial Crisis, Financial Suicide, Freedom, Government Overreach, Government Policy Failure, Immigration, NDA, Recess Appointments | Leave a comment

What can YOU do?


What Can You Do?

So many of our friends, neighbors and relatives are still asleep and have little idea what is coming.  Few understand the implications of continually printing money with no real backing and aren’t aware of the resulting devaluation it causes.  If you have ever asked yourself, “What can I do to wake people up?”, please continue reading and you will have the answer.  You will be empowered to help others, which in turn will help you develop new, lasting relationships.

In this regard, I recently hosted an event in Independence Township, Michigan which I named, “The Road to Independence”.  The purpose of writing this blog is to share the experience and let you know how easy it is to arrange such a forum in your area.

My April 21st event featured Chris Duane, the Silver Shield, as our guest speaker.  I was delighted to have over thirty people participate.  The group was diverse; attendees included a 14 year-old boy, a physician, a few business owners, a researcher, a teacher, a retired couple, a parking valet, and others.  One thing was common among them though:  they all came to hear what steps they should be taking to prepare themselves for the quickly approaching economic and social change tidal wave.  The meeting ran over two hours, and I had trouble ending the session because they all had so many great questions and comments to make.  So, how was I able to do something like this to help so many others?

It started one morning when I realized I had to do something to share the knowledge I had acquired over the last year or so from reading books and visiting sites including The Sons of Liberty Academy.  I thought the best way to reach out would be to host a meeting and try to attract everyday people in my community.  There are many people who have a sense that something is wrong, but either can’t figure it out themselves or don’t have time to do their own research.  I wanted to provide a forum to discuss the issues.

First, I needed a “theme” and someone to be the discussion leader.  While I did not know Chris personally, I followed his work and decided to ask if he would be interested in presenting.  To my surprise, he was able to fit this into his crowded schedule.  Once I had a speaker and a date (about 6 weeks in the future), I had to find a place to have the meeting and a way to get people to attend.

I settled on having the session at a local country club, primarily because they had the space and could also serve coffee and some light food.  It turned out to be a great choice, except that they really wanted us to end our meeting on time so they could set up for a wedding party that evening!

The next step was to talk with friends to see who might want to help with the publicity and other details.  I decided to advertise the meeting in a few ways:  by posting the event on my neighborhood Facebook page and my personal blog, and by printing up 300 flyers for distribution.  The one-page flyers described the event’s purpose, location, time, etc., and asked people to register via email to get their free ticket.  The flyers were handed out as follows:  (1) my immediate neighborhood; (2) the next neighborhood over; (3) the neighborhood around the country club; and we provided handouts to a local coin shop.  As March turned into April and the response rate was less than I wanted, I let people know they would receive a small gift if they registered a friend.  At that point Chris offered to post the meeting on his site for a few days.  This significantly picked up the number of planned attendees across Michigan.

The day before the event, I sent a reminder email to those who had registered.  On April 21st, my wife and I arrived early to check the arrangements and begin checking people in.  The room was very full.  The questions for Chris started even before noon, our “official” start time.  People were fully engaged in the discussion.  When it was over, eight of the 30+ attendees wanted to get together for a second meeting, which is now being planned for the summer.

All in all, I felt great that I had helped to bring people together for a chance to network with others, discuss their concerns, and find answers to many of their questions.  If this leads to additional meetings, I will have succeeded beyond my goal.   Based on my experience, I hope that you will consider doing something like this in your area.

Posted in Federal Spending, Financial Crisis, Freedom, Taking Back America | 1 Comment

Community Discussion Forum: Protection Against the Declining Dollar


What is happening with our economy and our federal government?
The facts are readily available.  No attempt is being made to reign in excessive federal spending – – which now totals $1.5 Trillion more annually than total revenues and taxes.  Further, the evidence is all around us that the value of the dollar has been in decline, and buys less and less goods and services with every passing year.  The cause of the decline appears to be the separation of the dollar from any real basis of value — gold — way back in 1973.   Since then, the value has declined over 80%.
Few people understand that they can take actions to protect themselves and their family.  It about time we get the word out to anyone who wants to listen.
In this regard, I just came back from the Oakhurst Golf & Country Club and reserved the “Board Room” for a forum on this topic.  I’ve invited a guest speaker who knows what he is talking about.  Here are the details:
Theme:  The Road to Independence
Date:  Saturday, April 21st
Time:  Noon to 2:00 p.m.
Available Seats for Guests:  30
Coffee, soft drinks and snacks provided.
Facility:
Oakhurst Golf & Country Club
The Board Room
7000 Oakhurst Lane Clarkston,MI 48348 248-391-3300
Speaker:  Chris Duane, blogger, author and former Marine Corps member
The forum is free, but a ticket is required to attend.  No sales pitches will be made.  This is a presentation and discussion opportunity.  If you have an interest, leave me information about how to contact you.  Of the 30 seats, I have 24 left as of today.
Posted in Federal Spending, Financial Crisis, Financial Suicide, Freedom, Government Policy Failure, Taking Back America | Leave a comment

Chris Duane Coming to Independence Township


Blogger and concerned citizen Chris Duane will be coming to Independence Twp. in either late April or early June. I’m looking for the appropriate forum in which to host this event, and looking to co-host this with a local group of concerned citizens. Please post contact information if you are interested.

Here is Chris’ website:

http://dont-tread-on.me/

Posted in Freedom, Government Overreach, Government Policy Failure, Taking Back America | Tagged | Leave a comment