Life on the Rockpile

Life on the Rockpile
Bob D's effect on women

Wednesday, June 1, 2011

Over $6000 in debt and counting

This statement was sent to my email via the Tea Party Patriots website, link to site .

”The House of Representatives voted against raising the debt ceiling last night. More than 70% voted against the measure (No-318, Yes-97, Present-7,Did Not Vote-6) that would have increased the debt ceiling by over $2 trillion dollars. Thank you for your phone calls, emails, and faxes. Your engagement really does make a difference and Congressional offices keep track of the number of times that issues come up in various communication with constituents.”
What does this mean to the average US citizen? Let’s take a look at a few numbers. Our
current population in the US is about 310 million people. The Obama administration has
asked Congress to increase our debt by two trillion dollars, that’s a 2 followed by 12 zeros.
The rest is straight forward division. 2,000,000,000,000 divided by 310,000,000 equals
6451.6129. That means that Obama wants each and every citizen in this country to add over $6,000 to their debt load.

The average yearly wage in the US is about $46,000. I don’t know about you, but with the cost of gas hovering around 4 bucks a gallon and the cost of a cart full of groceries well beyond a couple hundred dollars, I don’t see where going another six grand in debt is going to help the situation. Obama and his economic team claim we must do this in order to keep our country solvent. That makes about as much sense as a regular at one of those check cashing companies claiming that if he or she just kept borrowing money they would eventually be out of debt. How?

In a recent interview Obama claimed that he had the economic record to win reelection. link to article Again, I ask how? His administration has increased our debt by over a thousand fold and he somehow considers this a good thing. When Obama says that we must reduce our deficits by trillions of dollars he is not speaking of economizing, he is talking about adding additional taxes to an already over-taxed nation. Reducing the size of government, increasing efficiency and being more prosperous are concepts of which he has no grasp. His economic record is about as outstanding as the humanitarian record of Uganda’s Idi Amin. If Obama really did wish to better this country’s economy he would have to do something that would scandalize every existing support group in his contacts list.

The reason for that reaction is that part of the recipe for prosperity demands a lessening of the greed factor. Right there we have ruled out a significant portion of corporate and political America, but, believe me, it is necessary. A NeoCon considers the Michael Douglas character in Wall Street to be something to strive for. What America needs rather is a whole container load of Sam Waltons.

In order to deal with our current economy, we need to consider the problem from two sides, both in the reduction of costs and in the growth of revenue. The first factor is the cost of fuel, which is directly related to infrastructure. If we spent the time to put in place the infrastructure to handle and distribute alternative fuels, increase continental exploration and refinement and to eliminate our unnecessary importation of both oil and gas, fuel prices would plummet. Nothing balances a market like competition, and building that infrastructure would add thousands of high quality jobs. The greed and corruption factor could be handled by adding in real oversight that included stiff fines and even jail time for offenders, including that of politicians. As is often the case, there are some who claim that such oversight is too far-reaching and adds a chilling effect. This may be true as oversight often does disturb some of the powerful and it may prevent certain multinational corporations from participating. However, would that be a bad thing? Not one of the major corporations in this country began at the size they are now. Many began in a garage or even a bedroom. This country has plenty of smaller and smarter firms willing to step in and grow.

The next part is to behave like every other member of the UN and actually have a national language. Government printing agencies would save literally billions by only printing official documents in English. If a business wished to cater to other language speakers, which is their choice and their right. It used to be that in order to obtain citizenship the applicant had to prove a proficiency in English, the one-time common language of this country. We have reached a point where this standard needs to be reestablished. We need to do so for the simple fact that it makes economic sense. Believe it or not, English is the language of business worldwide.

Another area is education. An educated populace is by every historic record a prosperous populace. Our problem is that the education establishment in America has become far more concerned about self-esteem and cultural diversity than the three r’s. Going to school used to be not only a right but a desired privilege, and it is still that way in many countries. The teaching profession used to be one of honor, but not so in present day America. All of this has to change. The only way a business is going to be able to compete on the world stage is by hiring and retaining the best employees available. It is preferable that those employees be here already rather than having to be imported.

Next, those businesses have to be present in order to hire workers. Jobs cannot be created out of thin air. In order to do that the government has to relax its stranglehold on development and allow entrepreneurs to at least try to succeed. The Toyota Volta is an electric car that combines Italian styling with Japanese ingenuity and can travel upwards of 250 miles on a single charge from a standard household outlet. Mini Cooper has teamed up with a third-party company to produce a hybrid that gets 85 miles to the gallon with no loss of acceleration. There are dozens of other examples of vehicles that would sell and sell well in the US, but none of them are allowed to be sold in the US. The reasons for this as expressed in Washington are varied and underwhelming. What it boils down to is that the bureaucracy is not comfortable with success, especially when that success is in the private sector. Here are some examples:

Just north of Las Vegas, up I15 before you get to the town of Mesquite, there is a long stretch of BLM land that would be ideal for an industrial development. Plants to build cars like the Cooper Hybrid and the Volta would be ideal fits for both the region and the infrastructure. When proposed, the idea runs into a problem. The federal act governing BLM lands does not allow for-profit development without considerable time, trouble and expense, even if those working in the BLM see the benefit. Members of congress won’t even discuss attempting to amend the act.

In Nevada’s Armagosa Valley there is a dairy. Because of milk price controls (the price is kept high, not low), the dairy is not allowed to sell all of its production. A deal was worked out so a gourmet ice cream company could build a plant across the street from the dairy to turn the overproduction into ice cream. Nevada and California sued to prevent the plant from being built because of “environmental concerns”. Now Utah has yet another prospering concern adding to its fortunes.

Ever since gambling was legalized in Nevada, tourists have been crowding I15 as they flow in from California. Train tracks run along that route for most of the way. A commuter train has been discussed without resolution for about as long as the highway has existed. A number of companies have proposed both maglev and high-speed rail with some, but not significant interest. The problem lies in both the government’s timidity in the face of radical environmentalism and the desire of assorted politicos to line their pockets. Again, the best course is to do it the old way, allow the business to prove itself or fail trying, or to forge public/private partnerships where both the taxpayer and business work together to improve each other’s lives. Not doing anything gets us nowhere.

A major factor in America’s bleak economic picture is the mortgage issue. With so many banks crumbling because they allowed themselves to be sucked into the ACORN ponzi scheme, a radical restructuring had to be considered. Both the lender and the borrower created the problem. Neither one of them really had to bend to governmental pressure, but they did and now we have the problem. A good portion of the solution lies in denying the legal profession easy access to unsophisticated clientele. The last thing a person needs when faced with foreclosure is an attorney asking for several thousand dollars that could go toward the mortgage. Another part is the lenders need to be able to restructure the contracts based on actual value rather than contract value. Since the vast majority of mortgages are under the federal umbrella, all the government needs to do is step in and help both the lender and the borrower create a compromise both can live with, but that will take the Obama administration actually doing something to benefit big business.

So, the recipe is, education, entrepreneurship, corporate and governmental honesty, public-private partnerships, the ignoring of bothersome environmental suits only intended to prevent growth, and common sense. The last component could be the rarest of all.

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