If there is one issue that both the left and right would miraculously agree on is the abolition of the Federal Reserve. From Ralph Nader to Milton Friedman, to even former Fed Chairman Paul Volcker, the Fed has heard its share of intense criticism and scrutiny. That’s because it is ultimately and directly responsible for one tax the rich and poor alike end up paying – inflation. And it’s a well-hidden tax at that.
The Federal Reserve’s policies and its somewhat difficult to understand process of creating money, which at times seems to be out of thin air now that we are officially off the gold standard, is an issue which is rarely addressed in the media. That’s because it’s hardly understood by most. Which is why it’s so difficult to prove whether the Fed’s inflationary machinations are caused with malicious intent, or simply unintended consequences that arise from convoluted economic policies.
What is more interesting than this quasi-public/private institution’s process of creating and ultimately controlling our money supply – by depositing cash into member banks and then charging the banks for this newfound money by directly dictating the discount rate at which they repay the Fed (not to be confused with simply setting interest rates which it targets by selling or buying Treasury bills) or something like that – are the conspiracy theories that abound regarding the Federal Reserve.
Was John F Kennedy assassinated because of his tampering and questioning of the Fed? Hmm. Or what about Abraham Lincoln whose assassination is attributed to earlier money lenders led by the Rothschilds? You know, the five Jews that secretly run the world and may (or may not) happen to run every bagel shop in the country.
But certain facts are well, certain. The Federal Reserve was created in 1913 as was the birth of the income tax we’re stuck with every paycheck. And it’s to the chagrin of other critics such as former 2008 presidential candidate Ron Paul that the Federal Reserve continues to exist. It was not for nothing hundreds gathered at an “End the Fed” rally this past weekend in the Financial District led by Congressman Paul’s Campaign for Liberty organization to do just that.
Though ending the Fed anytime soon is highly unlikely, this Monday April 27 is the day to “melt the switchboards” by calling Congress at 877-851-6437 and insisting your Senators and Congressional district representatives push forward HR 1207, a bill that will finally audit the Federal Reserve. It may (or may not) resolve John F Kennedy’s assassination, but it will most certainly force open the books to this private institution that somehow answers to no one, even every time it raises a tax nobody should have to pay.
“Why do you want to raise my energy prices?” Myron Ebell instructed attendees at the 2009 International Conference on Climate Change to ask their congressional representatives. A seemingly counterintuitive question posed by a prominent global warming “skeptic” who’s reportedly in the pocket of big oil, namely Exxon, and was listed in Greenpeace’s “A Field Guide to Climate Criminals” distributed at the 2005 UN climate meeting.
However, enough environmentalists who swear by anthropogenic global warming and it’s doomsday predictions would answer Ebell’s question by stating the need to create more “green jobs”, finding alternative energy sources, and imposing significant restrictions on what they consider to be a gross and even immoral excess of energy consumption by developed nations, namely the US.
Yet more data and information is surfacing that completely refutes the notion of manmade global warming. Facts such as global temperatures decreasing since 2001 despite the increasing levels of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere. But most importantly, the growing chorus and dissent of 31,478 American scientists who’ve signed a petition against the Kyoto agreement and refuse to be counted into the consensus of less than 700 scientists who’ve helped “author” the UN’s IPCC reports. Their petition can be viewed at http://www.petitionproject.org.
Which is why a more accurate question that should be asked is “Why do our governments want to UNNECESSARILY raise our energy prices and convince us that government mandated energy rationing is somehow a viable alternative?”
A question which should be posed to Al Gore and T Boone Pickens, who are working together on a ten year plan to get all utilities off of carbon based fuels and move to an energy system “based on fuels that are free forever” as Gore has stated. A noble chore indeed, one that not a single attendee at the 2009 ICCC would argue against. Unless of course Americans are left with no choice but to have to conform to whatever Gore and Pickens push through if they have their way and tax the coal industry out of existence as Obama had suggested last year.
And why exactly would a multi-billionaire such as Pickens care to invest in an energy system that could be supplied to anyone at any time free of charge, and no less forever? Especially under the guise of “saving the planet” from carbon dioxide, the very gas we exhale.
“Controlling carbon is a bureaucrat’s dream. If you control carbon, you control life” stated MIT climate scientist Richard Lindzen, another guest speaker, and noted manmade global warming skeptic at the ICCC. And if that dream happens to collude with a multi-billionaire’s Shamanic vision for unlimited profit, the answer to Ebell’s question is a foregone conclusion.
Libertarians of the world unite! You have nothing to lose but another significant percentage of your income to wasteful government spending on pet projects that empower career politicians and guarantee them direct control over billions of taxpayer dollars under the guise of purportedly helping the less fortunate. But most importantly, you have nothing to lose other than your individuality, property rights and civil liberties which are steadily being redefined by those very lifelong bureaucrats who have zero understanding of basic economic logistics and principles and even less empathy for anyone they don’t think they can “help”, ie, relentlessly tax.
Sounds like a load of ideological tripe? Not to anyone who realizes there must be a limited role for government before it teeters on a nanny state, or worst yet, a deluded socialist dream of benevolent totalitarianism. We might be experiencing a great depression soon, but not because of the housing crisis and the credit crisis it helped fuel. But because of the hyperinflation and crushing taxes sure to come, coupled with the rationing of resources due to the inevitable shortcomings of leftist central planning fever taking over the current Obama administration and their “spendulus” plans and trillion dollar deficits.
For the average taxpayers who’ve bothered to do the math (after all, they’re the ones footing these bills), the numbers simply don’t add up. This current concept that “deficits don’t matter” being bandied about by economists such as Paul Krugman, is just as ideological as assuming tax cuts will solve everything. Most fiscal conservatives, particularly of the Libertarian stripe, know that “tax cuts” lose their efficacy when government spending exceeds the lost revenue. That’s what occurred under Reagan and Bush Jr. “Compassionate conservatism” may as well have been called “compassionate central planning”, which come to think of it, is what leaders such as Mao Zedong, Joseph Stalin, Fidel Castro, and now Hugo Chavez seem to always have had in mind before they issue out monthly ration booklets to their citizens, ie, indentured servants.
So what can be done other than leaving phone messages, emails and letter writing to your congressional representatives and senators? Particularly if one of them happens to be Chuck Schumer who believes he knows how to better spend 5.5% of your forcibly redistributed NY state income tax alone than you do?
Mark your calendar for a Libertarian revolution come next year’s congressional midterm elections.
Is government ultimately our only option out of this financial crisis as President Obama has recently suggested? Perhaps it is for those who seem to forget, or may not be familiar with the old adage “necessity is the mother of invention”.
There is an inverse relation between self-responsibility and the need for parasitic government bureaucracies. With every headline in the news talking about the “stimulus” package that appears to balloon with entitlement programs by the trillions, it seems government officials are attempting to inch us further away from the impetus that has allowed us to achieve a standard of living we dangerously take for granted.
There was a time when immigrants who came to the US by their own will and not on slave ships had no option but to create their own opportunities. Long before there was the faintest fantasy of internet access, let alone telephones or even telegraphs, most Americans had to farm, hunt or do both in order to ensure themselves a day’s meal. The idea of government doling food stamps, welfare programs, or Section 8 housing vouchers was as unfathomable as an iPhone.
And so was born the “entrepreneurial spirit of America”. But entrepreneurialism had flourished throughout other parts of the world in varying degrees before being snuffed out by suffocating levels of governmental oversight under the absolutist rule of kings, dynasties or tyrannical theocracies.
By the late 1800’s, even former slaves, such as the famed North Carolinian Lunsford Lane who bought his and his family’s freedom, took to the entrepreneurial spirit. Not because it was the “American way”, but because essentially, it was the only way for anyone choosing to not only survive, but thrive.
Fast forward a hundred years or so and many Americans, have in a sense become the spoiled, cynical, and whiny inheritors of our ancestors’ collective fruits of labor. Many of us fail to give much thought to how or why food materializes at local grocery store shelves, or internet access is delivered to our homes, or how far medical care has come in the form of over the counter pharmaceuticals that keep us from dying from the very same ills and diseases that took the lives of even kings and noblemen centuries ago.
There is a way out of this global financial crisis. But it involves realizing that dire economic consequences such as record foreclosures, job losses, and looming hyperinflation are actually Darwinian wake up calls to usher in a new age of self-responsibility. We need to return to a way of thinking our immigrant ancestors simply couldn’t take for granted. One where government was hardly the only option, since usually some form of government was what they were fleeing from in the first place.
“You’ve got some economists and some folks who think they’re economists. By the way, these days everybody thinks they’re economists,” President Obama joked at a White House ceremony late last week renewing his demand that Congress act quickly on his economic recovery package which was finally passed.
If only everyone were an actual economist, or at the very least understood the basics, perhaps we wouldn’t be in the insane financial crisis of this global magnitude we’re in now. Of course, that is a huge “IF” considering economics is viewed as one of the most boring sciences which most people confuse with financial witchcraft or some biased political agenda.
But the primary purpose of economics deals with scarcity and how to best allocate our limited resources such as time and energy to create surpluses and avoid shortages from scarcity. This inescapable reality is not politically partisan and hardly confined to the realm of stocks, bonds, interest rates, credit default swaps or anything else that too many people erroneously believe is only relevant if you’re planning a career of screwing over the “little guy” by working on “Wall Street”. Economic principles are just as useful to a third grader after school who wonders how best to utilize their time if they need to get their homework done, watch some TV, play some Xbox, or sort out their allowance before going to bed.
Which brings up a most crucial “if”. IF we actually taught our children basic economics and a sound financial education in school for more than just a half semester elective in their senior year of high school instead of 8 to 10 years of MacBeth, Beowulf, The Great Gatsby and a slew of other English lit classics that are hardly as relevant to the life they are about to enter in the modern “real world”, they would infinitely better understand the difference between a job and a career, and how to utilize their talents in the most mutually beneficial way for themselves and society that doesn’t involve living paycheck to paycheck or pointlessly indebting themselves to credit cards with 14% interest rates.
While economics can be (OK, is) boring, it’s just as relevant, if not more so than any other subject we could teach our children that pertains to their future. Particularly a future that doesn’t require career politicians and a systematic bureaucracy telling them how their allowances will be spent and condescendingly chiding them when they question why the rush for an additional $780 billion “stimulus” package that actually involves more expansion of government and its unintended consequences at the cost of further devaluing our dollar and our futures.
Oh, if only.
It takes one to know one who has lived under the oppressive rule of an actual communist regime, and all its freedom restricting mandates based on collectivist ideologies, to recognize an eerily similar movement when branded with the same “morally imperatives” and one world government agenda they’ve heard before.
“I don’t think there is any global warming” declared Vaclav Klaus, the Czech Republic’s president at a Davos Meeting this weekend having met Al Gore and spent two hours discussing the issue with him. “I’m very sorry that some people like Al Gore are not ready to listen to the competing theories. I do listen to them”.
Among some of those competing theories which rival the divisive, knee jerk “consensus” many in the media are more than happy to cram down our throats thanks to tenured academic peer review that not only ignores the other side of the argument, but flat out refuses to admit it even exists are:
1. Rises in carbon dioxide DO NOT precede rises in temperature, they follow them.
2. 97% of greenhouse gases are water vapor. Carbon dioxide, the very air we exhale, does not even account for the remaining 3% since Methane, another gas we exhale out our other end, accounts for a significant portion as well.
3. Temperatures have actually been dropping since 1998. And for those who refuse to pay attention to some of the record snowfalls and temperatures as of late, there is yet to be a sensible argument on how all this cold is “masking” the rises in temperature.
4. According to the Russian Vostok Station in Antarctica, using ice core samples, they are coming to the conclusion that we are actually heading towards a new Ice Age.
There is a colossal difference between actual environmental pollution and predictions of cataclysmic proportions that involves the very end of the human species as we know it. Yet the Al Gores of the world want to continue to impose Kyoto, cap and trade, carbon rationing cards, and the banning of just about anything remotely related to “economic progress” from nuclear technology to the limiting of Google searches. Policies that would do nothing to address what each day is appearing to be natural, not man made, climate change.
Nothing as long as you discount the stifling of our economies, let alone our freedoms. Something people such as Vaclav Klaus know all too well that when they’re lost, they’re almost impossible to recover. Especially when they’re buried under the rubble of apocalyptic moral imperatives.
Keynesian economics is an obsolete system for anyone who cares to know, or anyone who doesn’t care to live through the inevitable inflation created by it’s truly failed policies of spurring economic activity through massive government spending, especially when it involves impossible deficits. If someone could please inform this to our president elect Mr. Obama, let alone Nancy Pelosi, Harry Reid and particularly Barney Frank who possibly referred to this ideology by coining the term “changeenism”, unless he meant to say Keynesianism, a few weeks back when informing a reporter that deficits are nothing to worry about.
Really? Considering we’re footing the bill, is anyone doing the math? First, there was the $150 billion stimulus package earlier this year, where millions of checks were sent to the wrong address. Oops. Guess they’ll have to spend millions more, again, in administrative costs returning money that was ours to begin with, since cutting our taxes would be much too easy. Then there was the $700 billion stimulus package, which they didn’t anticipate banks to hoard the money, and the $85 billion paid out to AIG. And lest we forget bailing out the auto industry. Check please.
And now there’s talk of another stimulus packages once Obama takes office. Not to mention the promise of millions of new “green jobs” which can’t be outsourced, and will no doubt be unionized, replete with lifelong pensions most likely footed by taxpayers in the private sector who don’t have that same luxury. These should come in handy once Obama follows through on taxing the coal industry out of existence. Heck, it only supplies over 50% of our energy. But that’s OK. Just make sure to really, really inflate your tires and wear a sweater come winter like Jimmy Carter prognosticated when he too promised taking us off foreign oil.
There’s nothing new about the “change” we’re going to experience, other than naming it the New New Deal. Maybe this time around it will defy the laws of supply, demand , labor and scarcity unlike the previous New Deal which most people aren’t aware how it’s policies turned a recession that would have corrected itself into the Great Depression and prolonged it by seven years. All the signs are there. High taxes, protectionism, the subtle socialization of our banking and energy industries. The only missing puzzle pieces are John Maynard Keynes and Franklin D Roosevelt. At least we have Barney Frank and Barack Obama. They’ll do just the same.