Ricks Picks

Deficit Hawk Coburn Should Save His Breath


(The essay below has coaxed forth quite a response.  We urge you to jump into the discussion with your own thoughts.  RA

Interviewed by Fox’s Chris Wallace recently, Senator Tom Coburn (R-Oklahoma) made quite a splash in the news, warning that America could suffer “Apocalyptic pain” within the next few years if it doesn’t get debt under control. Coburn’s heart seems to be in the right place, since he is one of the most vocal members of Congress in railing against bailouts that have pushed public debt into the cosmos. But we wonder whether he isn’t a few steps behind the real world in worrying that our standard of living will plunge if America’s budget deficit is allowed to grow.  For in fact, the standard of living has been plunging for several years, to the extent that the middle class can no longer afford health care; that even households with two professional incomes must hock the ranch to put their kids through college; and that Baby Boomers’ retirement plans are either being pushed back by five or ten years or postponed indefinitely. Moreover, for the broad middle class, the situation is likely to grow even worse in the years ahead as strapped cities and towns are forced to raise taxes to cover fixed expenses – especially pension and health care benefits for public employees — that are difficult or impossible to shrink. Add in the fact that real estate valuations from coast to coast are due to be reassessed downward for at least the next few years, and you begin to see why the deflation that holds the economy in a death grip cannot be loosened no matter what countermeasures are employed.

Sen. Coburn says that the U.S. has just three or four years to get its fiscal house in order before it faces the kind of austerity measures that have recently been imposed on Greece and Ireland.  Unfortunately, austerity is not going to save those countries, nor will it save any of the others, including Spain, Portugal, Italy, where it eventually will be tried. Bear in mind that the purpose of austerity is not to bring budgets under control, but to buy time before the rest of Europe collapses in a crisis of confidence that seems all but inevitable.  By putting the squeeze on the likes of Greece and Spain, the EU is providing cover for loan facilities that will keep the game going for yet a while longer. The U.S. is in somewhat better shape, but only superficially. Whereas Europe is committed to “saving” the euro because it is the only thing sustaining the dream of a transnational Europe, America has no such ideal or goal at stake when it acts aggressively, as it has, to trash the dollar.

A Sea of Deflation

Much as we respect Sen. Coburn, we’d advise him to save his breath when it comes to preaching austerity.  The problem is that, no matter how drastically we cut spending or raise taxes, it won’t begin to cover future obligations that will continue to grow like topsy.  We are alluding mainly to outlays that usually get lumped together euphemistically as “unfunded liabilities” – in large part, Social Security, Medicare and public pensions. The sums involved have been estimated at $125 to $150 trillion – vastly more than could ever be recouped through politically driven remedies.  Looking at an even bigger picture, we see that those unfunded liabilities exist within a highly leveraged, quadrillion-dollar financial edifice that itself is collapsing. Under the circumstances, we might as well enjoy a final, inflationary blowout before deflation fully asserts its irresistible force.  We suggested in an earlier commentary that the government consider a one-year moratorium on income taxes. This “gift” would amount to about $2.5 trillion – just a drop in the bucket compared to the sea of deflation that has come to engulf the world’s assets.

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kkken530 December 31, 2010, 1:03 am

Coburn should save his breath because he shows he doesn’t understand Modern Fiat Currency.Check out Mike Hudsen’s blog or Bill Mitchell’s Blog. The Government Deficit is Not a problem.The panic about it IS.The Deficit has ballooned for several reasons. 1)Bush tax cuts for the Wealthy and Two wars.2)The collapse of the housing market and the resulting unemployment adding to the unemployment from outsourcing{large loss of tax income&cost of unemployment insurance payments adding to deficit}3)resulting business slowdown adding to unemployment and loss of tax income.Too many people don’t have money to spend and most of those that do are afraid to spend{this last item seems to have eased over Christmas} . Lower interest rates don’t help as those that need money won’t qualify to borrow and without customers to buy goods business won’t invest. Lower rates hurt those who depend on income from bonds. The Federal government is different from State and local government{and private parties} as it is NOT revenue constrained. It does NOT need to tax or borrow to spend as it is the Monopoly issuer of money. The only limit to Fed spending is Real resources. As long as there is unemployment and underutilized capitol{tools and supplies} there is no problem with inflation. The problem isn’t government spending as much as WHAT they are spending for. If we spent to fix bridges,water supplies,sewer systems and other needed infrastructure it would create wealth for the nation and reduce unemployment{which would increase tax income and reduce unemployment benefit payments,lowering the deficit} so we need congress to understand how modern money systems work..AS Coburn shows He doesn’t.

Other Paul December 29, 2010, 5:48 pm

“Simply because savings “exist” on paper and multi-million dollar computer models, government will think we can afford the burden”

Your words hit the mark..exactly.

The Federal Government, especially the Congress and the executive branch hope that fiat remains viable as long as possible. So do fiat holders.

Until the store shelves are empty and the bank holidays begin, fiat holders will not be concerned about the viability of their paper and digital “cash.”

The Federal Government and Federal Reserve prevented (postponed?) the total collapse of fiat in the Fall of 2008. Future QEs and TARPs still look like silver bullets to both Feds.

Robert December 29, 2010, 7:12 pm

QE’s and TARP’s are indeed silver bullets; and just like in the old horror movies, each silver bullet comes one step closer to killing the vampires that are sucking the lifeblood out of society…

As of yesterday,(Dec 28) those silver bullets became 3.5% more expensive.

Gold and silver prices sure are taking the long road toward their inevitable deflationary collapse… {wink}

Since this will likely be my final comment on Rick’s forum for 2010, I’ll close with a big “Cheers!” to my compadres here and extend best wishes for 2011 and beyond…

Remember, the Mayans, the Bible, the Quaran, Nostradamus, Edgar Cayce… they all predicted that at some point we (civilization) would be exactly where we are- and the only common theme with all of them is that the other side, after the the chaos subsides, will be a more joyous, peaceful and prosperous period for humanity.

Party like it’s 1999.

Benjamin December 29, 2010, 3:20 pm

In summary… Out of control semi truck, in Georgia over-drive (central bank), zipping on down the road toward one spoiled, snot-nosed brat (government; think them as that kid in the Twilight Zone, with the power to wish people into ‘the corn field’).

Laugh, and insist on no mercy.

Anyway, I’d like to point out that in just a couple days, beginning in California (where else?), it will be illegal to buy and sell incandescent lightbulbs.

Another way to look at it is that energy taxes will be going up. I don’t know this for certain, but why would it be any different than it is with gas prices, where, no matter what the oil price does, gasoline goes up, up, up?
And I can just see it now. Simply because savings “exist” on paper and multi-million dollar computer models, government will think we can afford the burden. Too, we musn’t forget about the rain-forest-from-green-shoots recovery we’re all experiencing in this most prosperous time in human history.

So there ya are. You have the money, the new laws are _good for you_, and you know the drill… Pay up, peons!

Happy New Era…

CompassionateFascist December 29, 2010, 1:41 am

All these intelligent analyses and heartfelt statements of value will soon be ashes in the wind. Either via Black Swan event – probably, war with Iran – or our hollowed-out “economy” going the natural way of all Ponzi’s, dollar collapse will occcur c. spring-summer 2012. Then: Civil War II. State secessions. Right vs. Left. Race vs. Race. Suburbs vs. cities. Still, I’m optimistic: Have Gun, Will Travel.


Glad someone’s able to see the bright side, CF. I’ve always seen the glass as half-full myself — of hemlock. RA

mario cavolo December 28, 2010, 1:41 pm

As rwd often and well points out, don’t play their game, exit gracefully; a response that many could agree will be the one that gets you the most bang for your buck, the highest possible amount of control you could ask for.

Being one of the Americans who lives overseas, it wasn’t intentional at the time eleven years ago, but I pretty much did it. There are quite a few meaningful and dynamic choices for those interested in the decision to pack it up and move outside of U.S. borders, all choices offer a variety of huge advantages and huge disadvantages. (There are also plenty of choices and directions for those staying within the United States to get out of the mainstream society. )

For those of us who have the sense, the idea, the brass ones to make a big, scary, exciting, desperate, life shift, one of your top assets is a good attitude, an attitude in my opinion which focuses on your being a citizen of the world, a human being; not stuck in or focused on too much nationalism, idealism, patriotism, politics, etc. Not to say we should not care about or be engaged in such matters of significance and philosophy and principle, but to do so maturely, objectively, dispassionately, so as to keep our heads about us; even not so much for ourselves, but for our future generations who have to face this world long after we are gone.

Many of us have said it and it is worth saying again, this forum is a great and unique place to get educated; read here with a dash of intelligence and maturity, understanding the point of view from which a person is writing or commenting, maybe they’re pissed, maybe they’re being idealistic, maybe they’re theorizing, maybe they’re a genuine expert with first hand knowledge, or not; its important to note those differences.

Meanwhile all, enjoy the holiday week! Its been a great 2010 sharing thoughts with all of you here at Rick’s…

Cheers, Mario

Steve December 29, 2010, 6:50 am

My People have not run from this land since 1688. I believe the American Dream of Peace is worth fighting for. Fighting takes many forms. Some are simple like pouring a small 3″ diameter spot of gasoline on the blacktop until it melts away. Then big brother must fix the hole. 10 billion little things, a 1000 cuts. Refusing to vote in a military voter scam is a 1000 cuts toward proving illegimate mobocracy. The government HOG is filthy. Why believe one can clean up mobocracy. JUST DON’T EAT PORK !

Merlot December 28, 2010, 1:28 pm

I’ve never commented here before. But after the mention of “The Last Samurai” maybe it’s time to venture into the unreality of “Inception”. Yes, if only your reality were a dream, but sadly not the case. The “Oprah” show must go on. The eventuality of a worldwide-systems end is real but in general people are inured to this. And no, Robert, the sun may very well be darkened, so how will you navigate? And no Cam, it will not be in “God’s hands” since this is where the ultimate end will come but when everything is still functioning “normally.” Yes, the rich will get richer – the poor will get poorer and the dollars or euros or whatever will be produced so the party can continue, will be available. But does your life — your “real” life — depend on what the government does? I don’t think so. They can never take away who you are and what you believe.

Steve December 29, 2010, 6:42 am

Merlot; well stated. In fact each individual gives away liberty for a little security. No one Lives into what is Right no matter what the cost in the new world.

Lon December 28, 2010, 7:11 am

some years ago I was told to BUY American! The job I saved may one day be my own. we all know american products were then and are now much higher than foreign items. back in the day VW’s were frowned upon and owners’ vehicles were sometimes turned over so as to get their attention that it was wrong to buy goods from other countries. Well, all has not been workers’ fault as big business has moved to 3rd world counties so as to increase their profits at the benefit of jobs lost here in the good ol USA. Never to return I might add. This world is run and controlled by Big Banks and Money. It is not governments who rule. If the Money people can kill presidents and topple governments in their quest for more power and Control with no one to hinder and stop them, then I can see our world sooner than you think under a one world dictatorship. All under a direct control of the World’s money supply, which they will have

Dave December 28, 2010, 8:58 am

Corporations do things in their own best interest. Just like governments or individuals. Those that moved out of the US did so primarily because of taxes and onerous burdens placed on them by the government, unions, EPA, etc. Not for cheap labor although that is a bonus.

mario cavolo December 28, 2010, 2:08 pm

To Lon, indeed, buy American is a great idea. Here in Shanghai, the American Chamber of Commerce is the largest, busiest and most dynamic of all American Chamber’s across the globe, at the center of the action, and they are all about business advocacy for U.S. business across the globe; this includes encouraging U.S. citizens and gov’t to get past their ridiculous political and other bias’ against Chinese and realize that increasing exports to China, part of the NEI (National Exports Initiative) is a great way to help America’s economy recover.

Dave, I’ll respectfully suggest that all those benefits are very important regarding companies and individuals who have taken their focus overseas, however, I would also suggest that cheap labor was a much larger incentive than you are suggesting. Even today, China’s advantage in her expansion is the reality that the infrastructure and services expansion is taking place with lower and middle class people earning slave-level wages. Thus China’s inflation, including rising wages are a major threat; Indeed let’s not forget that Europe and America also built up their economies on cheap labor.

Cheers, Mario

Steve December 29, 2010, 6:37 am

A corporation is a license from the government to engage in unlawful acts. The ‘corporate veil’ protects the individual actor. That is what my dictionary reads – but; it is a law dictionary. By the way; all license is permission to violate the law.

Larry D December 29, 2010, 5:07 pm

Steve, so what is a Partnership or Cooperative, then?

I always figured my Doctor was a crook because he has a license, just like my Barber, and my Pilot friends.

Steve December 29, 2010, 10:37 pm

Some of my family members were medical doctors. They had no license during the Spanish American War, only a certificate that they knew their stuff. I flew SuperCubs and some Cessna in Alaska, I had no license, though I was trained by a Bush Pilot. A certificate of ability to display for commercial reasons ‘licensing’ is quite different from Private Affairs, or licensing for profit on the Public Trust.

A license to practice medicine is quite different than the Sheep Skin that says a board of doctors certify your skill. The certifcation says you can do your job as a healer. The license says you may be criminal to the extent licensed by the state.

A ‘drivers license’ is commercial and allows the corporate person to engage in unlawful activity on the Public Right of Way. A Man may travel by Right. A corporate u.s. enfranchisee is deemed to be commercial in all activity as a foreign resident over a several State while domicled within the district of _________.

Men used to be accountable for their personal actions. Today limited liability via democracy spreads the blame upon the heads of all members of the body of democracy. Thus, the democracy gives the medical doctor a license to kill 1 person every 3 years without worry of being put before his certifying board of peers.

If I fly a SuperCub and hurt someone I am responsible. I may even be required to enslave myself to the family of the man hurt if fault is mine. Given a license from the democracy I might pay a little fine, but; there is no payment of the debt owed the injured party. Every day the legislature moves to limit corporate responsibilty by limits on law suits.

Medical insurance is expensive because the medical profession refuses to police their own ranks and expel doctors who should not be practicing. These doctors need to go before review by the Board that issued their Sheep Skin, instead they have a license from the state and protection from the legislature.

License – Permission by some competent authority to do some act which, without such permission, would be illegal. State ex rel. Zugaravu v. O’Brian 130 Ohio St. 23, 196 N.E. 664. Blacks Law Dictionary Fourth Revised Edition 1968.

Marriage License – A license or permission granted by public authority to persons who intend to intermarry. ..

A state may impose an excise upon the franchise of corporations engaging in a business which every private citizen has a right to engage in freely. . . 26 R.C.L. sec. 131. . . A right common to every citizen such as the right to own property or to engage in business of a character not requiring regulation cannot, however be taxed as a special franchise by first prohibiting its exercise and then permitting its enjoyment upon the payment fo a certain sum of money.

Guess how to win ! Just market a scheme under Roman Civil Law wherein the Sovereign assents to lawlessness and license to become corporate having no Individual Rights, only licensed privileges under the legislative act of Congress a.k.a. the 14th amendment voluntary political act.

Steve December 29, 2010, 10:56 pm

To answer your question more directly a partnership, or co-operative effort depends first upon the Character and Identity of the parties. A single corporate enfranchisee, or two corporate enfranchisees are still corporate under the body whole.

Are there a group of Sovereigns co-operating in regard to a state Trust? Or, is the co-op a corporate body having members in mass, as distinct from Individual Sovereings agreeing to defend the State.

Today any argument in regard to corporate or not corporate is really difficult because the presumption is that every u.s. citizen is create by corporate legislative act. The current democracy is a mass having one body. The u.s. citizen is merely a cell of one complete system, Bennett v. Bennett 1 Deady 307 Oregon.

The Sovereign is Common may surely co-operate. Problem is that the masses will not obey the law.

The United States Government is a foreign corporation with respect to state. sec. 1785 Federal Corporations 20 C.J.S.

Cal. Gov. Code
Sec. 242, Title 1, Sovereignty of State
Persons of State not its citizens are either:
(a) Citizens of other States; or
(b) Aliens.

Guess if one is a U.S. citizen one is “Alien” to the several State.

People of state are entitled to all rights which formerly belonged to the king by his prerogative. Lansing v. Smith 21 D. 89.

” [i]n our country the people are sovereign and the government cannot sever its relationship to the people by taking away their citizenship.” 397 U.S. at 257, 87 St.C. at 1662 “Afroyim”.

A “civil right” is a right given and protected by law, and a person’s enjoyment thereof is regulated entirely by law that creats it. Nickell v. Rosenfield 82 Ca 369, 375, 255 P. 760.

corporate first – corporate always.

Jill December 28, 2010, 5:04 am

I myself would love to see massive voter movements throughout the U.S.– pledging to vote ONLY for candidates who accept NO money from Special Interest Groups and who have a reputation for honesty & true public service in their communities. Then we wouldn’t have to wait for Congress to vote for campaign finance reform– which they would never do, because they benefit too much from the current system. It would be automatically done by the voters. We wouldn’t have to worry about the courts overturning campagin finance reform that way either. No law would be on the books to be overturned. Voters would simply reform campaign finance by whom they choose to vote for.

Maybe I am overly optimistic for still trying to think about ways for our country to get out of this mess. But, once one moves to the country & finishes stocking up on propane, canned goods, gold & silver coins, & guns & ammo, what else is there to think about?

Larry D December 28, 2010, 5:31 pm

Jill, after all the people have moved out to the country, you would be able to think about what a uncrowded place your city has become. 🙂

Steve December 29, 2010, 6:33 am

Jill, all u.s. citizens claiming ‘that citizenship’ are registered in advisory to a military voter scam. Read The State of Georgia v. Stanton 73 U.S. 50 and get a grip. Doing democracy like you state is going to end in violent destruction. There is but one cure. Don’t practice democracy because you do not know the rules and you will loose.

Jill December 28, 2010, 4:56 am

Rick, or anyone, how would term limits change things? It would seem to me that Congress folks would still have to fund their Congrssional campaigns by accepting legal bribes, i.e. campaign contributions from Special Interest Groups. And since they want to get another job real soon when their only term ends, they would be sure to be very faithful indentured servants to the lobbyists of the corporations who paid for their campaigns and who have the power to offer them a good paying job when their Congressional term runs out.

Rick Ackerman December 28, 2010, 5:21 am

No more Charlie Rangels. No more professional politicians. If they hanged them all tomorrow, it would be America’s brightest day since 1776.

Wesley December 28, 2010, 4:51 am

A lonely Senator howling in the wilderness of DC isn’t going to gain a handful of supporters in this or any other Congress; these pols are nothing more than power hungry sociopaths who just passed massive new health care legislation that will create dozens of new federal agencies whose costs just don’t matter to these fools. Lies are the rule not the exception.

Just look at what the lame ducks have been doing since the election for evidence of their ways; and the American sheeple, who still think Social Security really has a trust fund, will scream at every program that is even hinted at being curtailed. Tell them about 70 thousand new pages in the Federal Register every year and their eyes glaze over. Public education has done its job dumbing us all down.

The sooner this system crashes the sooner we hopefully return to the Constitution.

Dave December 28, 2010, 8:46 am

I wouldn’t wager on that happening. The pendulum has to swing the other direction first. Sad, but the American experiment failed due to greed and laziness.

scott December 28, 2010, 3:15 am

Redwilldanaher: I have to agree with you, but where to go? And when?

Dave December 28, 2010, 4:03 am

Out of a city. More than walking distance. Soon.

redwilldanaher December 28, 2010, 5:26 pm

I believe the answer is peaceful secession. I know that it is an extreme long shot but I am working towards it within my state with other like-minded citizens. In fact, it’s one of the key reasons why I decided to extricate my family from the Northeastern corridor 6 years ago after living and suffering there for most of my life. Despite growing up there, I NEVER liked the attitude and approach to life that 99% of the people adopt there. I saw no reason to force my children to suffer the same fate and wanted to see what I could do to put them in a better environment as I see it. SC has become a great fit/great blessing for us and I did know in heading here that the state has had some form of an active secessionist movement with which I could try to assist. I’m doing that in a small way now. I see Dave’s comments and while my heart agrees with them I have no desire to opt for the survivalist lifestyle for my children unless that’s all that’s left to choose. I think that if secession is handled properly, it will still result in significant life disruptions but that they won’t be nearly as painful as living in a broken down society like the USSA where the nanny state’s worst effects have yet to be seen. Just imagine what happens when its dependents go searching for it only to find that the nanny is no longer behind the curtain.

Cam Fitzgerald December 28, 2010, 3:01 am

Should the US dollar ever collapse, and it could happen given all we know, my greatest concern is that the supply chain for North America would break down altogether.

This is not only a plausible outcome but is actually likely as every worker would be squeezed beyond their ability to function within a system of rapidly rising prices and wages that could not keep pace. A refusal of truckers to haul freight for example would precipitate a national crisis.

More worrying though, suppliers would not be able to meet contractual obligations that had been signed earlier on fixed terms and so would simply refuse to honor agreements or ship goods. Crisis time.

The outcome would be martial law and soldiers in the streets. Rioting would break out as store shelves ran bare. Elections would almost certainly be suspended, possibly indefinately as emergency measures came into force and civil rights went out the window.

Yes, the growing mountain of debt is a huge worry and the implications implied by it’s resolution on the day of reckoning when it all suddenly unwinds could be swift, severe, even ferocious. It is beyond belief how serious the problem has become and there just seems to be no solution except via a crisis. There can be few winners.

The day we wake up and learn that the government will not go to the polls as usual but will instead govern on an emergency basis for our protection is the day you will want to be sitting on a pile of canned goods, gold or silver coins that you can use to get by with and an assured supply of fuel for heating and cooking.

The rest will be in God’s hands.

scott December 28, 2010, 12:31 am

My concern is what do we do as individuals when the house of cards falls? Trying to figure out the details and the sequence of events is an interesting game, but what then? Will owning gold and silver be enough to live at least a meager life when all else has failed? I want some help with this scenario as I believe our fate as a nation is already signed, sealed, and delivered. I have already grieved for the death of our once great country. I want to know how to prepare for the time when the last shovel of dirt is thrown on its grave.

redwilldanaher December 28, 2010, 2:03 am

Agree 100% Scott. That’s why we have to leave and start building again. It’s the best way to control our own destiny.

Cam Fitzgerald December 28, 2010, 3:04 am

Squirrel away a dozen or so full propane cyclinders just in case. It will be worth more than gold itself on the sorry day that “it” hits the fan.

Dave December 28, 2010, 3:56 am

Your PM’s will be worth a lot. Just don’t be in a city “when the last shovel of dirt is thrown on it’s grave.” Invest in some lead if you want to keep your gold. Stay low, go fast. Get your head around the idea that you are on your own.

Robert December 28, 2010, 8:12 pm

Learn how to germinate seeds and how to can vegetables.

And- get to know your neighbors.

Steve December 29, 2010, 6:26 am

Scott, decide one simple thing – will you kill to keep what you have ? If not – someone is going to take it from you. That is what the U.S. Army taught me as a civilian in regard to civil disorder. That is what the Federal Government expects. Should you expect less than what the Federal Government expects and trains.

dan December 27, 2010, 9:13 pm

I feel that all have debated as to tax or raise or lower but we miss the true solution..The CONSTITUTIONAL Taxes.. tariffs and excise and sound money gold and silver

these are the ONLY solutions to our saving the REPUBLIC all others are just political bs spoken for many years and taught to the masses… All politicians have been corrupted to the point of suggesting this or that group pay this or that much some pay more and some pay less and congress will decides who and what gets a free ride or pays whtaever……..SPENDING is the problem and that is the way POWER is used by congress.
It is after all only about POWER and the federal grab of any and all rights and freedom to be determined by CONgress and not by the people… we elect liars and thieves and wonder why we are abused ….. amen

redwilldanaher December 27, 2010, 11:00 pm

dan, a lot of good points but Why save this republic? It’s been completely corrupted. It in no way resembles what it was intended to resemble. Start a new one.

Steve December 29, 2010, 6:22 am

Red, The Republic still stands. But, within a sphere of private contract a corporate structure has been created. The mobocracy of Obama as CEO of a foreign corporation is not the Republic. If groups would stand back into the Repbublic and refuse to assent to the private corporation Democracy things will change. Our problem is that the people do not know what the legislature knows. The people think they are free, and they think a democracy and a republic are the same thing. Bad thinking, bad result. That result is that when the fed takes a Citizen to court the jury does not know it’s donkey from a hole in the ground. I’ve read it time after time. The jury says “I don’t care what the law says”, if I have to pay the I.R.S. that guy must pay.

Going back to my original comment. Why not live into Liberty no matter what the cost. Right now the corporate enfranchisees of democracy are commmiting suicide and are the walking dead.

redwilldanaher December 29, 2010, 6:21 pm

Steve, I think you just made a few solid points as to why we shouldn’t work to fix the USSA and instead should secede and form a new republic, in my case, the Third Palmetto Republic. The USSA is too large and the weaknesses of a centralized government lording over us all are painfully clear to see. The opinions are disparate, with the left coast being the left coast, the Northeast/NE essentially serving as Moscow on I95, and the south and west, god bless them, largely remaining the south and west. Midwest there’s lots of blue and red interplay. There’s no point in trying to keep this madness intact. And as you noted with your IRS reference, many of them think and act like zombies (not entirely their fault IMO), so what would it take to reverse that long-running indoctrination? Too much energy and time wasted IMO. Concentrate a strong effort of mostly like-minded folks in one coastal state and break-away a la the dissolution of the USSR. “Breakaway Republic” has a nice ring to it. Apparently your ancestors were here long before these former colonies became a republic. If those that fought AmRev 1 were patriots to leave and establish, then what would be wrong with you/us/I doing so? And peacefully to boot. Seriously Steve, if the horrors of the kleptocracy that have been revealed over just the past few years aren’t enough to energize serious numbers to take to the streets, then what will it take? It will only happen after its too late. After the right to assemble has been “suspended”. Thou sleepest too long, thou art beguiled! I can anticipate that the “best and brightest” would be happy to let SC leave more so than almost any other state. I’m not saying that they wouldn’t oppose it, I’m saying that the commentary would be very condescending. I welcome that. I saw first hand what the “best and brightest” have done to NE/Northeast. I’ve seen what they’ve done to our governments at the state and national levels. I’ve seen what they’ve done to our financial system. I’ve seen what they’ve done to our manufacturing base. I’ve seen their other face lie about it all in the process. I’ve seen how there is one standard for them and other for us. I’ve noted how the elitist mind works. I can now better understand the atrocities of the 20th century as a result. And it all comes back to ego and greed, elitism. “Those who know whats best for us must rise and save us from ourselves.” Of course they do it to their great gain and our great pain. Continuing to going along for the ride without opposition has to be some bastardization of the Stockholm Syndrome. Think about it, 3rd year of Pres. cycle. The OPM players will do even more than they already have to mark this fantasy-based line up towards the all-time highs. Fearless leader, after perhaps the most pathetic and disgraceful performance by any Pres. in their first 2 years, (which is saying something), will soon be the favorite vs. any challenger. Do you really want to keep playing this game?

Rich December 27, 2010, 8:42 pm

As several commenters today and last week’s disappeared documented comment noted, someone has to pay what corporations did not, contributing less than 11% to US tax revenues while owning with untaxed Foundations and Trusts the bulk of wealth around the world, headlined by GE paying no taxes last year, GS paying around 6%, while the middle class paid more than 39.6% and Obama instituted 24 new taxes hidden by unread legislative bills and executive orders like 0Care and FinReg. Time to realize big government corps in the hand of criminals. Meanwhile Shilling’s Deleveraging a good read on current situation and future prospects. Rather than a one-year tax holiday that does not change economic trends, how about real reform with the 28 basis point APTT replacing the IRS with a steady money supply computer replacing the Fed? Just saying again.
Prosperous New Year All…

Larry D December 27, 2010, 10:23 pm

You realize corporations pay income tax on taxable net income, not on gross revenue. And the net loss from a negative year in a down economy can be deducted against a subsequent year’s taxable income, until exhausted.

Vast economic growth in the US occurred when firms reinvested earnings, not paid Uncle Sucker with them. It’s fascinating to watch how people have come to view the engines of our economy as a mere tax base.

ben December 27, 2010, 8:30 pm

If we went one year with no income and no payroll taxes…would Americans ever be willing to go back? I’d prefer a national VAT or consumption tax over an income tax…along of course with sever reductions in government spending. After all it is the consuming of things and not the creation of things or making money that is the root problem in America. Americans always viewed taxes as a punitive measure rather than a civic duty…just like at the furor over the Stamp Act…and the fact that imports are subject to federal taxation while exports are exempt…and vices like alcohol and tobacco have always been subject to extreme taxation. Should creating wealth for one’s self be the type of thing that should be punished? Only perhaps to Marx and Lenin.

Robert December 28, 2010, 8:07 pm

“If we went one year with no income and no payroll taxes…would Americans ever be willing to go back?”

Seems that if working American suddenly had 20%-40% more discretionary income that some of it would be spent, yes?

I’m not a proponent of VAT, but I love the idea of consumption/sales taxes- provided that they are applied in a manner so that savings (accrued by those who choose not to spend) are not simultaneously confiscated via predatory inflation.

The primary failing of the consumption tax argument is that it would not take governments long to realize that a little inflation means higher tax revenues, and a little more inflation means even more, etc… ad nauseum…

Steve December 29, 2010, 6:12 am

Step back 100 years and there was no excise tax on Persons who were presumed Men. Corporations paid it all. Now look where we are where a 1040 tax is part of an implied agreement to pay under Roman Civil Law and YOU are presumed to be a corporate enfranchisee domicled in the district of Columbia under a Foreign Corporation called U.S. There is no debtor prison allowed so the I.R.S. charges you with breach of contract under the Interstate Commerce Clause. Nice operation.

John Jay December 27, 2010, 7:59 pm

Points well taken Redou!
One hundred years ago the robber barons actually made things we could sell to the rest of the world, and actually employed Americans in their factories.
Carnegie made steel
Rockefeller made oil products
Armour made meat products
Vanderbilt had steamships and railroads
Ford made automobiles
Now we export factories, jobs, and our military.
And we are about out of factories and jobs to export.
And our military just makes more enemies for us.
Oh, almost forgot, we export dollars too.
Lots of dollars.

Mike December 27, 2010, 7:45 pm

I’m struggling with the opposing arguements between the deflationists and the hyperinflationists.

Will it be ultimately deflation in terms of “real money” and hyperinflation in terms of fiat money? What will be the sequence of events that will lead us there?

Rick Ackerman December 27, 2010, 10:36 pm

We’re broke either way, Mike. The (hyper)inflation/deflation debate matters only in relationship to how mortgage debts are settled.

Redou December 27, 2010, 7:39 pm

The American Wealth Engine ran admirably for hundreds of years. It had good parts, was built well.

Entrepreneurs dreamed dreams and worked hard to achieve them.
Savers saved.
Colleges, schools educated people.
Banks invested wisely and prospered or failed
on their own merits.
Workers worked.
Taxes were low.
Government had limited power.
People were responsible for their own fate.

The profits piled up.

Then the public and the politicians found out
it was easier to steal profits through political
means than to produce anything. This worked
until the profits were depleted. After that
the nation lived on credit and the good name
of America built by our forefathers and mothers. Now the credit has dried up.

Creeping Socialism came in, the public was corrupted. Crony capitalism took over in the halls of power. Colleges became apoligists for
the failings of Socialism.

Something for Nothing is the essence of corruption.

Now the American Wealth Engine has weak parts.

Corporate controlled Media lying to the
public daily. The founders who built the American Wealth Engine counted on a free press.

A lazy, demanding, drug ridden, obese, undereducated public with an ingrained sense
of entitlement.

Elites with political connections and politicians
have more power than those who produce wealth.

The American Wealth Engine needs to be rebuilt but this cannot happen until the majority of people change their way of thinking
and elect leaders who realize that government
cannot produce wealth.

What will happen – gov’t and the public will try
every POLITICAL means to solve an ECONOMIC problem. Of course, no POLITICAL solution will work. Government will attempt
more and more Rooseveltian and Marxist solutions. They will all fail. America will go through an extended period of POVERTY.
Eventually, when things are so bad that NOBODY can stand it any more, THEN things
will change. The only question is: how many years it will take for the change to come.

Government will have to GET OUT of the WAY
and let those who produce something of VALUE
be rewarded for their efforts, and those who
produce nothing of value receive what they
really deserve, which is NOTHING.

China is graduating PHD engineers.
We are gambling in casinos.
Who will win, who will LOSE?

China, Brazil, India, Russia, South Korea –

These nations are piling up profits now.

These nations now KNOW what WORKS:

Those who produce prosper.
Those who do not produce do not prosper.

Can it get any more SIMPLE than that?

redwilldanaher December 27, 2010, 7:50 pm

Nice commentary Redou. Cycles are what they are too and I’d add that the TPTB abused this outpost as much as possible and then the international corporate rapists have largely moved on to plunder elsewhere.

Dave December 28, 2010, 3:38 am

“Something for Nothing is the essence of corruption.”
That says it all. Until it changes we remain on the same trajectory. I will pass that on Redou. Thanks

Steve December 29, 2010, 6:07 am

Not sure ! Well I am sure that the “value” of a Federal Reserve Note is Zero! I also know that any alleged owner of property only holds a ‘fee’ in admission of slave status. How does that all end for China ?

ricecake December 27, 2010, 7:14 pm
ricecake December 27, 2010, 6:55 pm

The problem is the issue of “Offsprings’ Safety Net Building”

The rich want to keep all their multi billions dollars and maintain the purchasing power for their next, the after next, and the next and next after the after next offsprings. So their offsprings don’t have to work.

The public workers want that too. While they don’t have the billions fortune, they want to keep their service-turn-small fortune and leave to their offsprings. So their offsprings don’t have to work. Or at least don’t have to work hard.

All of these keep making more and more parasites of the future generations who benefit from these kind of legacies. For those unfortunate without sugar daddy mommy will inevitably become slaves of those fortunate mentioned above.

To break such vicious cycle, you got to break the chain. You must tax the wealth while you cut the over extended pension and social security programs.

On the other hand, the big corporations and wealthiest has been enjoy tax break for more than a decade now why things getting worse and worse? Don’t expect things get better after the Bush tax break extension. More is the same and worse. Plus, now you have snow 3 feet deep and flood mud slid with no help no rescue because of the state local budget cut. So don’t cry “Help!” cuz no one’s hearing. Instead, Help yourself!

China now realized how stupid they are allowed the foreign businesses to the status of special treatment big tax break so the China’s local and national businesses been treated like second class and worse in their own country. But the problem is not only stop there. these big export driven foreign big investment and business are one of the major cause of China’s major environmental disaster. China are now changed policy to treat foreign business the same way as they treat the locals to compete at the same background. China also pass law require foreign businesses to pay environmental protection tax! That’s why you hear all the foreign businesses are complaining that’s why you keep hear the US government attacking China for giving hard time to the US Businesses because they can’t compete with the Chinese local businesses without the special privilege they have been enjoyed.

And speaking of cutting the social program in the US… Yes the Americans are over spending. But China are now building up their own social security and medicare system inspired by the American system. The last thing China and anyone want is social instability. When that happens, all thing go. You will lose more money + your social stability which takes lots lots lots of money and effort and time, blood and sweat to build. So you may end up lose much more than you save!

p.s. Ireland has been giving the Big corporation big tax benefit. Look what happen to them?

Robert December 27, 2010, 7:18 pm

Another great point by Ricecake!

It’s not the tax breaks for the “wealthy” that are the problem (the top 5% of earners do pay 95% of the personal taxes, afterall)

It is the tax breaks for the Uber-large CORPORATIONS that exist at the heart of the issue. Our governments (regional and national) have dug their own graves trying to schmooze large corporations into staying in their jurisdictions, subscribing to the premise that less tax income is better than none.

They made their bed. How does the reat of that saying go?

Rick Ackerman December 27, 2010, 10:33 pm

Tax the wealth and give it to whom?

ricecake December 28, 2010, 1:14 am

Hello, Mr. Rick,

“Tax the wealth and give it to whom?”

To give to build a better harmonious society and deficit reduction. U.S won’t be as deep in debt had the they tax the corporation and the wealthiest then use those money in public spending like education, infrastructures update/development, to help the country’s innovation new tech development, therefore building a better society.

Mark Uzick December 28, 2010, 1:36 pm

The Case Against the Corporate Tax – by Gary Jason


mario cavolo December 28, 2010, 1:46 pm

rice cake, thanks so much, you hit a lot of great points here; from my own point of view here in Shanghai, I can easily validate your disturbing point that privileges and incentives for foreign companies at many levels and across many sectors of development have indeed withered away.

Cheers, Mario

Robert December 28, 2010, 7:57 pm

“To give to build a better harmonious society and deficit reduction. U.S won’t be as deep in debt had the they tax the corporation and the wealthiest then use those money in public spending like education, infrastructures update/development, to help the country’s innovation new tech development, therefore building a better society.”

– Holy Cow!

RiceCake is Michelle Obama…

{wink} just kidding, but the utopian ideal that tax dollars can improve or beautify society is pure folly.

Free money, with no accountablility as to it’s usage, brings out the worst in humanity, not the best.

Robert December 27, 2010, 6:49 pm

I’ve been thinking a great deal lately, not about deflation per se, but about just how bad things would be if these Central Banker and their government stooges simply stepped aside and let the free market do its work, letting prices go where they may.

Then it occurred to me that this just might be what is going to happen, based in an inoccuous little blurb about Ron Paul that I read last week where the new Chair of the House Subcommitee on Monetary Policy said that he is going to push for a platform where US citizens will have the legal ability to choose their own preferred legal tender.

Now, on first glance such a minor little blurb doesn’t seem worthy of additional analysis, until you realize that Ben Bernanke, who now has no escape from Ron Paul’s incessant badgering, will be faced with two choices:

1) Continue to regard Ron Paul as an antagonist, and watch as Paul slowly shifts the tide of public opinion to support his hard money viewpoints (a position that the Gold Price suggests has already left the lift and is starting slowly down a Black Diamond slope)

2) Take a more neutral public position angled toward compromise, whereby the ideals of hard money versus printed bank coupons/notes can assert themselves as a function of the choice of individuals to put their faith in their own monetary vehicle of choice.

… Seems like the only way the Fed will get to remain relevant in the coming 5-10 years will be to choose option number 2.

The net effect will be no worse for creditors or debtors, only financial activity and economic activity will both slow down, rather than being where we are today; whereby economic activity is slowing, and financial activity is sporadically rising and being heralded by TPTB as a dubious proxy.

Spiralous debt deleveraging seems scary, but it seems to me that declining general price levels are the best buffer to such a scenario… better that the cost of living should fall as debt becomes harder to service, yes?

Mercurious December 27, 2010, 6:49 pm

I am employed by a local government, and make social security and pension payments each paycheck. Do I want to get back at retirement what I was promised? Yes. Is Jill right about public employees not having a better ‘payday’ than taxpayers? Absolutely. Much as I would have to scramble, I cannot see how government can ask citizens to give up more than it will, in facing financial truth. My only problem is that I want the bankers, administrators and assorted government opportunists at the top to take it in the wazoo just like the guy from animal control, water billing etc.

I don’t think anyone who looks at the present situation can say with a straight face they can see an out that isn’t chaotic, if not anarchic. The math doesn’t work, what else is there to say? The only questions remaining are timetable, level of disruption and possible individual palliatives…everything else is a mental enchantment that will have a difficult time weathering reality when it chooses to reassert itself.

We spend a lot of time talking about the mechanics of finance, market moves, preemptive maneuvers, etc. What we really should be doing now is studying human psychology–especially mass psychology–to get a sense of how it could all turn out. I spend more time these days thinking about how human being react than worrying about any retirement.

It is not going to be pretty, it could be really ugly and there is every possibility it could be uglier than we as Americans have ever imagined it could be in this country. Think about that for a couple of days straight and the kabuki theater we see in the news every day becomes even more surreal. We are watching what happens when a culture develops traits that make it unfit for continuing existence as it is. This is not a moral question finally, it’s existential. The result of that process is what we face. Sweet dreams…

Dave December 28, 2010, 3:23 am

Whatever local gov’t. you work for is very fortunate to have hired you.

John Jay December 27, 2010, 3:45 pm

The DC gang is at the stage of Hitler’s bunker at the end of WWII.
They are moving imaginary armies around on an outdated map.
The USA has had so much muscle for so long, that the folks in the bunker can’t see that it has all slipped away.
However, the “Russians” are indeed in the neighborhood, in the form of currency collapse and destitution.
The bunker is starting to shudder from the impact of incoming artillery rounds, and dust is falling from the ceiling.
Those of us out on the streets of “Berlin” in the spring of 1945 have seen it coming for a long time.
We are bemused by the stream of propaganda spewing from the bunker talking about “turning things around and final victory”
The smart rats will be exiting the bunker before the end.
Paraguay is back in vogue again!
In some cases, quite literally!

Robert December 27, 2010, 7:07 pm

Good analogy John Jay!

The people walking around Berlin outside the bunker did have a more “real” perspective regarding their surroundings, AND, most of them (the ones who avoided the artillery successfully anyway) fared a lot better in the post war period than did the folks inside the bunker…

It’s more scary walking in broad daylight when you have to look around every now and then to make sure you aren’t walking into a cross-fire, but it’s only way I’d want to exist.

Even for as doom and gloomy as my own prognostications are, I refuse to leave my home country (the land, not the nation) and I refuse to dig in.

I will navigate by the light of the sun.

bozzy December 27, 2010, 3:29 pm

What follows is not a trick question: does anyone believe that this can end well? Traders, to a man, myself included, believe our financial systems are breaking up under the insupportable weight of their own inequities i.e. debt and untruths. However all we discuss is the likely flavours, colours, sensations and timescales of the slow motion collapse-in-progress. Is it too late? can anything be fixed up? Should we now hasten to bear the economic pain of meltdown which many thought would have been better borne in 2008?

All these are important questions to my way of thinking, but the most important question for the future is how can we take back ownership of our societies from the hegemony of banks and state? This question applies equally in Europe as now in the USA. It is not yet a question bearing much discussion nor provided with many responses.

Rick Ackerman December 27, 2010, 5:50 pm

Term limits and an end to fractional-reserve banking would put us on the right track, Bozzy. Meanwhile, it’s hard to believe that two ideas as simple as those could succeed only when voters are literally ready to revolt. We’ll get to that point, but the Dow will be trading closer to 1000 than to 12000, and the acknowledged rate of unemployment will be double what it is now.

roger erickson December 28, 2010, 4:07 pm

Wow, so much gloom & anger. Here’s my attempt to cheer y’all up. We have both options and responsibility to explore them. Gloom & anger only arise when encouraging axioms become clouded by too many unsupported presumptions.

Real Axioms:

1) every fiat currency is “issued” by a monopoly issuer;

2) that issuer is itself eventually “backed” only by public initiative;

3) we cannot “run out of” public initiative by anyone’s efforts except our own

4) at heart, all currency solvency issues are issues of coordinated operations;

5) with the right info, delivered to the right people, in the right positions, at the right time … ANY organization can re-equilibrate to master a new context (you’re taught this in biology & in the Marines, & in the school of hard knocks);

So, the only failure we have is a failure to “make a more perfect union.” Any fiat currency is only the bookkeeping we use to denominate our complex activities. With a little intelligence applied to coordination, the RETURN on coordination can always swamp supposed problems. Otherwise, we simply wouldn’t be here.

So please don’t lose faith, or teach your kids to be resigned, cynical or negative.

First, just start voting your convictions (as a start, refuse to vote for ANY organized gang, er …. political party).

Second, always speak these truths to power:

a) that further organization of very complex, growing systems requires continuous development of new levels of indirection; (if it was easy, baboons would still rule the world, maybe even dinosaurs)

b) that this can always be done – otherwise we’d all still be Neanderthal, not Homo Sapiens;

c) leveraging the return-on-coordination requires investing in the cost-of-coordination, instead of just blindly hoarding assets (snails hoard commodity assets; in contrast, army ants & humans live better by laying down their burdens & using their wits, a much better commodity to hoard!)

The outcome is that we need to be far more selective about whom we elect to in all public service positions. We need to select only those quality of people who far better represent the peak of intelligence_x_knowledge_x_public-purpose expressed within members of our large population.

We have plenty of people to choose from. We all better start selecting them far more carefully than at present. Even Control Frauds can’t cheat an honest population, IF citizens don’t let citizens vote stupid.

Dkane December 27, 2010, 7:50 am

Like calling the kettle black, Colburn was all for the $700B bailout of the banksters. Didn’t seem to concerned about deficits a couple years ago and NOW he is all concerned. Give me a break. Just another can-kicker in CON-gress.

Jill December 27, 2010, 5:54 am

Public employees’ pensions– including those of Congress folks– should all be combined with Social Security and paid out at that rate. So that taxpayers will no longer be paying for the pensions of public employees who end up getting far more retirement pay– in comparison to their yearly working incomes– than the taxpayers do. That is, taxpayers won’ t be paying for comparatively lavish retirements for public employees & then living on noodles & water during retirement. While it’s true that the public employees won’t get what was promised to them if that happens, nobody else is getting the American dream that was promised to them either– except a few CEOs of hedge funds, investment banks, health insurance companies etc. Why should public employees be any different?

I always wonder why people who complain all the time about the deficit also expect not to pay any taxes– even the richest 1% or 2% of the population. This doesn’t seem consistent to me. Is it just the usual American expectation that we will all have our cake and eat it too? While it is true that politicians have figured out that the way to win elections is to promise everything to everyone– and also promising to bring the federal deficit under control– anyone who can do elementary school math knows that this isn’t possible.

Steve December 27, 2010, 8:06 am

Well Jill ! The premise that the masses can do elementary math seems to be rebutted by the fact that 26% of persons graduating high school cannot pass the math to join the Army. Of those able bodied able to join the military age 18 – 45 fully 76% cannot do the math. [I must admit this is information from the A.P. last week and I did not lock down the source]. Setting that aside there needs to be some who care enough to care about doing the math. I commend you Jill for wanting people to do the math. Fact is they just don’t care.

I’ve been waiting for an appropriate time to inject a movie into the conversation named “The Last Samuri”. A simple watch of the movie and one can understand past, present, and what needs to be done in the future for Our Nation. First, there are only a few watchmen, and they generally have witnessed the worst of political activity [ in this case our Indian Wars, Hawaii, and new global abuses] as a commercial monster driven to control at all cost. Second, we have the warriors. Some warriors are deceived and work for evil, and some maintain the spirit of more and greater knowing. These warriors give everything for what they believe in heritage and culture. And third, we have the commercial boys who care nothing about culture and history only seeking to gain more and more control by abuse. Finally there should be hope in a leader who would take the illegitmate gain of the political/commercial class and put it into Trust for the People. Hope Jill, but; be real in that that hope does not rest with the current congress, executive, or judicial branch of democracy.

Today we witness the illegitmate abuses of corporate practice to line the pockets of bankers, and other corporate insiders in Government Motors, and on senator Simpson Commissions. Thursday and Friday of last week the executive usurped the Legislative Branch to engage Cap and Trade, seize the Land of the People in lockup, and start the ‘death boards’ that Senator Brown of Mass. said he would not tolerate in healthcare bill. We have statements that the executive will not be stopped by the legislative branch from reaching its goal of total destruction of American Culture. We saw 70+ percent of the senate charge down the path of immorality and against the Immutable Law, the Laws of Nature and Natures G-d; [citing the unanimous Declaration of the thirteen united States of America July 4th 1776].

If you are the same Jill, not long ago you said “Can’t we just all get along.” I only wish to be left alone guided/judged by the Immutable Law, and what is known as the Common Law, and its Torts against man. I wish for you to be left in peace on your land judged by a Law that is over 5000 years old. The 70% in congress are not going to stop abusing, corrupting, and giving control to the few corporate heads. Obama is not going to stop his destruction of American Culture. The 70% in congress are not going to listen to anyone no matter what was wished the first week of November. There are two kinds of warriors today. The bad guys have all of the weapons of mass destruction and will use them on whomever they need to use them on. The Americans of Samurai mind are nearly all dead, or too old to fight. There is a hope we can all live with that was expressed by Mr. President James Madison – ‘A democracy is a tyrany run by despots leading to violent destruction’ [my summary from Federalist Paper #46, and other sources]. Watch the movie and ask who will fight the corporate whore, and who believes in America and American Culture? Ask if it possible today to have a young leader address the Scarlet Whore and take what is rightfully the people’s from the bankers, corporate C.E.O.’s, and fat workers of legislative pork.
Live today Jill in the spirit of Right. Find joy in living for our Culture, and our American way. This is the message you can get from “The Last Samurai”. Find the strength to bring the message Jill, to live for Our Way, Our Nation, Our Constitution. Truly Jill, find the way to Live for what our Nation should be. Hear the difference between commiting suicide, and living into the face of corruption no matter what the cost of that living may be.

The other side will bring death soon enough. Commercial death, tax death, healthcare death, feudal death, corporate death, family death, as the death of Our Culture. Hope Jill. If Dec. 23rd, and 24th 2010 are the sign – hope it is not so even though reality comes on Friday and stares us in the face on Monday. We have killed the American Samurai.

Rick nails this one on the head. What is going to happen is going to happen and it will not be good for Joe Sixpac as he looses and looses and looses until his hope turns to knashing of teeth in the streets of protest. Deflation/inflation it does not matter as ‘dear leader’ is intent on the destruction of the American Way of Life. Give great cheer though Jill because some will remain after the Scarlet Whore who is democracy fails in mortal destruction. Why can’t we all just get along ? Because the governmental form does not want to get along, they want to control.

Robert December 27, 2010, 6:59 pm

“Why can’t we all get along”, and “I only desire to be left alone” are mirror reflections of the same sentiment… and that sentiment seems pervasive today.

I definitely get along better with people when I know that my actions are voluntary and not the by-product of mandated coercion by those who seek to assert their power of “Democracy” (mob-rule) over my power of self-discipline and willingness.

redwilldanaher December 27, 2010, 7:44 pm

Nice commentary Steve. I believe that you’re genuinely concerned and well-intentioned Jill however IMO nothing should be combined with Soc Sec because Soc Sec shouldn’t exist. You know that they’ve already plundered the “lock box”, why send more $ to them to steal from us? Stockholm Syndrome? The “openness” (legalized bribery) of our system in the USSA is a major weakness in times that are dominated by “values” that our forefathers would find antithetical and repulsive. I can’t state it enough and I’ll never stop stating it: The “answer” is to leave this all to them that caused it. Why continue to play their game? It can’t be won. I can’t completely agree with Rick’s comments below. I don’t think that Term Limits will do much, although they can’t hurt, ending the FED is the key of course, that can help but with a system this large, concentrated and distant from the people over which it governs, other forms of abuse will flourish and that doesn’t pass for me. Turn the tables. Jail the jailer. I’ve seen with my own eyes how competitor firms in options trading came to own their clearing house. Just like Wall. St. owns the government. “To big to fail” isn’t only applicable to the JPM and Goldman thugs, the small-time options hoods have been kept afloat by their clearers in hopes of getting the “catastrophic losses” back. The losses were so large in relative terms that the client in this case actually “owned” the clearer. If we peacefully exit this prison, after careful planning, they will be left holding the bag. The problem is that it can’t be done alone and on a whim. But, continuing to waste time trying to fix this system from within? To me, that’s the worst option of them all. I’d personally prefer blissful ignorance or constant toil towards independence from the grid somewhere in Appalachia to working and caring in the most conventional ways: Take it from Robert Stack in Airplane: “No, that’s just what they’ll be expecting us to do.” As far as your issues with taxes and the logic of the people Jill, for me it’s this simple, and it’s the same solution that would help nearly everything: scrap it. Eliminate the tax code. Leave it. The alternate forms of taxation are all better than this IRS (secret police) managed monstrosity and if we return to a loose confederation of states they won’t need to be nearly as high as they are now.

Steve December 29, 2010, 6:56 am

Robert, I disagree in part. Getting along is giving up what one believes in order to find security. Benjamin Franklin wrote about that “If Yee give up Liberty for a little security Yee shall soon have neither”. Wanting to be left alone within the Order of the Law and Constitution is quite another. I will Stand. The others will give up. There is a superior Law, or there is not. There is Peace, or there is anarchy. These seem to be maxims.

Steve December 29, 2010, 6:58 am

Red, I agree in theory with what you are saying. My concern is that the Oregon Constitution provides for the Right of the People to abolish the government.

redwilldanaher December 29, 2010, 5:28 pm

Steve, you’re clearly one of the legal experts that comment here but IMO if a state was free to join it should be free to leave. I don’t recall any part that stipulated forever and ever… Today we have clever tyranny but it is still tyranny and it’s ratcheting up in front of our eyes. I don’t recall that in the Constitution it makes clear that the FEDs have the right to prevent secession so therefore it would follow that the power to secede would still remain with the state. Remaining a party to this completely corrupted insanity shouldn’t be an option for anyone that fully thinks this through IMO. It can’t be fixed. When you buy a home and then later find you need to expand it and upon inspection realize that the home is in fact completely unsafe, you demolish and rebuild it upon a new foundation. I think that more people need to see this dilemma for what it is.

Lee December 29, 2010, 7:24 pm

Excellent, Bravo!

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