The Administration Implementation Of The Cloward-Piven Strategy

Herschel Smith · 29 Jun 2014 · 39 Comments

The setup for this has been occurring for quite a while.  The collectivists on the right have helped the leftists gain strength, but the rate and fury of activity that has been consequential in destabilizing the United States has increased almost beyond comprehension. The long term evolution of America to a position where such a strategy might stand a greater chance of success began long ago with the move towards urbanization.  The flight from rural America was helped along with family…… [read more]

Daniels Tells GOP Candidates to Man-Up: Pot Officially Calls Kettle Black

BY Glen Tschirgi
2 years, 10 months ago

Esteemed political consultant and columnist Michael Barone pens a piece for Human Events that covers a recent speech by Governor Mitch Daniels:

Indiana Gov. Mitch Daniels did not attract as large a crowd when he spoke at American Enterprise Institute (where I am a resident fellow) earlier this week as he did when several months ago, before he disappointed admirers by announcing that he wouldn’t run for president.

I saw no political reporters there — though a few may have been lurking in the back — and he got only one question (from me) about presidential politics. No, he said, he isn’t reconsidering his decision not to run, and doesn’t think that Chris Christie is, either.

But Daniels’ message, based on his new book “Keeping the Republic,” was important — one that every presidential candidate should heed — because it was about a looming issue that Barack Obama has so far decided to duck but that one of them, if he is elected, may have to confront.

We face, Daniels said, “a survival-level threat to the America we have known.” The problem can be summed up as debt. The Obama Democrats have put us on the path to double the national debt as a percentage of gross domestic product, bringing it to levels that, as economists Kenneth Rogoff​ and Carmen Reinhart have written in “This Time Is Different,” have always proved unsustainable.

Daniels put it this way. Debt service will permanently stunt the growth of the economy. And that will be followed by a loss of leadership in the world, because “nobody follows a pauper.”

That growth in debt will continue to be driven by growth in programs labeled entitlements — though Daniels objects to that term. Congress, after all, can vote to cancel entitlement programs and deny promised benefits any time it wants, as the Supreme Court ruled in Flemming v. Nestor in 1960.

OK, fine, Mitch.   You have nicely summed up the problem and its catastrophic proportions.  Now just stop there before you get yourself into trouble.

But Mitch could not resist, apparently:

This is quite a contrast with the Republicans out there running for president, who have had little to say about the problem of entitlements, in debates or in their platforms. Mitt Romney​ raises the problem but hesitates to advance solutions, and then attacks Rick Perry for intemperate comments about Social Security in his book “Fed Up!”

On defense, Perry points out the success of public employee pension plans in three Texas counties that outperform Social Security. But these programs are impossible to scale up in a society where most employment is in the private sector, where most people will hold multiple jobs over their working lifetimes and where many people move from state to state (often, as Perry points out, to Texas).

Daniels laments that the candidates “have not yet stepped out on these issues.” He says that he is “a little concerned that our nominee might decide, ‘I’ll just play it safe and get elected as the default option’” to an incumbent discredited by obvious policy failures.

“My question then is what matters — winning or establishing the base that enables you to make big gains?”

(Emphasis added)

Maybe this is just a personal quirk of mine, but I find it extremely irritating (to say the least) that Mitch Daniels can stand up at a podium and promote his new book, declaring that we are in national “survival-level” mode, and then criticize the GOP presidential candidates for not taking the risk of establishing a policy position on the debt and entitlement spending.

Why?

Because he did not have the spine to run for president himself.   If he doesn’t like the present candidates’ lack of nerve, he should just shut the heck up or throw his hat in the ring.   Oh, wait.  I forgot.  His wife didn’t want him to run.   Cry me a river, fella.  Don’t go talking about national “survival-level” and then say you can’t run for president because your wife is not on board.   Maybe this is a telling sign of what passes for “leadership” in America today.  Or, rather, the absence of it.   If you truly believe that the times are perilous and our future is at stake (and, in the case of Daniels, you have the long record of experience, political connections and positioning to make a serious run at the presidency— especially when clowns like Ron Paul are running!) then either step up to the plate or shut the fat up.

To some extent, this same criticism can be leveled at Rep. Paul Ryan and Senator Marco Rubio, both of whom I admire very much.   When they rightly and persuasively talk about the grave crises that we face as a nation, I say, “Fine.  Run for president where you can do the most good.”   It disgusts me that these otherwise fine men would decline to run simply because they do not feel that the time is right or some, other political calculation.   These are not normal times.   2012 is not a normal election.   We need every viable candidate on deck, contributing their insights and persuasion to the national debate.   I defy Ryan, Rubio or Daniels to make a convincing case that the nation is better served by their refusal to run than to have them in the race.

And I suppose my ire is fueled all the more as I see the GOP field self-destruct.   Perry seems clueless when it comes to illegal immigration.   Romney cannot bring himself to disavow his government-mandated healthcare scheme that inspired at least part of the godawful Obamacare.   Herman Cain is appealing at a certain level but I have yet to hear him articulate anything like a foreign policy perspective that would make anyone take him seriously– deferring to his advisors is not going to cut it.    The rest of the pack are in the single-digits.   At least Newt Gingrich seems intent to enrich the debate.    And at least Rubio, Ryan and Daniels could do that much.

How can it be that the Revolutionary War produced so many amazing leaders?   Washington, Adams, Jefferson, Madison, Hamilton, Franklin and the host of others seemed to spontaneously rise to the occasion that demanded it.   Has America sunk so low that the 2012 Election– an occasion that everyone agrees is a momentous point in U.S. history — can call forth no one better than the current, blighted crop of Republicans and those too timid to run themselves but bold enough to snipe from the gallery?

Not good, my friends.  Not good.

Democrat Response to Rep. Ryan Spending Cuts: Burn The Witches!

BY Glen Tschirgi
3 years, 3 months ago

Wisconsin Congressman Paul Ryan went on the Sunday news shows last weekend to preview Republican plans for the 2012 Federal Budget (not to be confused with the current combat over the 2011 Budget that Democrats refused to pass last year).

Ryan made it clear that the 2012 Budget sets out on a very ambitious path to cut over $4 Trillion from Federal spending over the next 10 years in an effort to reduce the size of the Federal government and get spending back in line with revenue.

My concern here is not to talk about the specifics of Ryan’s budget ideas.  Afterall, the proposed budget is not expected to be released until later this week.  Instead, I want to highlight the preliminary salvos being fired by Democrats attempting to “prepare the ground” for the Budget Battle of 2012.

Here is the Associated Press reporting on Rep. Ryan’s remarks as well as the Democrat response:

In an interview with “Fox News Sunday,” Ryan said budget writers are working out the 2012 numbers with the Congressional Budget Office, but he said the overall spending reductions would come to “a lot more” than $4 trillion. The debt commission appointed by President Barack Obama recommended a plan that it said would achieve nearly $4 trillion in deficit reduction.

Ryan said Obama’s call for freezing nondefense discretionary spending actually locks in spending at high levels. Under the forthcoming GOP plan, Ryan said spending would return to 2008 levels and thus cut an additional $400 billion over 10 years.

Ryan tells the interviewer, in general terms, that the proposed budget will include things like premium supports for Medicare and Medicaid, a bifurcation of treatment for those 55 and older who would continue under the present approach and those younger who would be put under a new, cost-savings approach.   Ryan previewed ideas such as block grants to the States for Medicare/Medicaid to allow each State to decide how to deal with their citizens on a local level;  a statutory cap on discretionary federal spending;  a revision of the tax code to broaden and simplify its implementation; no new tax increases.

The reaction by Democrats?  About what you would expect:

Maryland Rep. Chris Van Hollen, the top Democrat on the Budget Committee, slammed Ryan’s plan in a press release Sunday. “It is not courageous to protect tax breaks for millionaires, oil companies and other big-money special interests while slashing our investment in education, ending the current health care guarantees for seniors on Medicare, and denying health care coverage to tens of millions of Americans,” Van Hollen said.

Democratic Sen. Mark Warner of Virginia was skeptical that Ryan’s proposal could achieve its targets without damaging social programs. He also questioned whether reductions in defense spending and seeking more revenue through tax reform would be part of the plan.

“I don’t know how you get there without taking basically a meat ax to those programs who protect the most vulnerable in the country,” Warner said on CNN’s “State of the Union.”

“I’ll give anybody the benefit of a doubt until I get a chance to look at the details,” he said, “but I think the only way you’re going to really get there is if you put all of these things, including defense spending, including tax reform, as part of the overall package.”

Sen. Dick Durbin, D-Ill., part of a six-member group of Republicans and Democrats forging their own budget proposal, said that the lawmakers would be looking for “real balance” in Ryan’s plan and wanting all options considered.

“I think we’ll come at it differently,” Durbin said on “Meet the Press” on NBC. “The idea of sparing the Pentagon from any savings, not imposing any new sacrifice on the wealthiest Americans, I think goes way too far. We have got to make certain that it’s a balanced approach and one that can be sustained over the next 10 years.”

This knee-jerk reaction by Democrats– that “the Rich” are not paying their “fair share” and must be subject to “new sacrifice” — puts me in mind of that classic scene from Monty Python And The Holy Grail:

Democrats have the very same kind of medieval thinking when it comes to economics and tax policy.  Just as the villagers in The Holy Grail are determined to have their “witch” to burn, even if it means dressing someone up to look like a witch and making the most absurd claims of the woman’s evil deeds, Democrats in Congress are determined to burn the Rich regardless of the efficacy or, indeed, the great harm that it causes to the economy.

In this video by The Center for Freedom and Prosperity, Dan Mitchell explains how this type of witch hunting is so wrong-headed and, ultimately, damaging to our economy:

One thing to highlight in this excellent video is the fact that we live in a global economy that will always favor those who can move their capital elsewhere.   Professor Paul Rahe, in volume 1 of his book series, Republics Ancient & Modern, he notes that eighteenth century writers recognized that, “the invention of the bill of exchange [was] a turning point in world history.” (page 47).  The French philosopher, Montesquieu, noted that the effect of the bill of exchange was to allow the merchant class to avoid the arbitrary and confiscatory policies of the monarchical rulers of Europe by sending their assets to other, less oppressive states.  As a result, a veritable revolution in politics occurred because, for the first time, rulers’ decisions were checked by the ability of these merchants to vote with their movable assets.  (Ibid).

The same phenomenon applies today, but Democrats (and protectionist Republicans) just don’t get it.   They look at factories and jobs moving overseas and, rather than look squarely in the mirror at our anti-business, anti-manufacturing policies fomented by left-wingers still living in the 19th Century as the cause, they vilify the owners as “un-American” or unpatriotic or just evil.   The reality is that America will continue to shed jobs and capital until we stop demonizing “the rich” and start implementing policies that make it easier for businesses to stay in the U.S. and thrive.

Democrats in Congress, if the AP article is any indication, seem prepared to continue on their idiotic quest to “burn the witches” of our economy, not because there are witches, but because they know it offers a grotesque but satisfying spectacle to a constituency that they have carefully cultivated to feed upon envy, hatred, resentment and victim-status.

Congressmen like Paul Ryan and his colleagues in the Senate must not for one moment give in to this vile practice when it comes to hammering out the 2012 Budget and beyond.


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