As The Election Rolls To A Close...

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Posted on : 11/07/2012 07:28:00 AM | By : Dann | In : ,

While we are waiting for the results from the only poll that matters to be finalized, I've got a few words of wisdom.  At least, I like them....

To my friends in the GOP:

You understand fiscal sanity.  You understand national defense.  But your "social war" is a losing proposition.  Recognizing that everyone has rights...God given rights according to some...is not a bad thing.  Strengthening the right of women and minorities to vote and work and live as they choose has strengthened our country.

Gay marriage and abortion are not dragging our country down.  They are distractions that cause your candidates to say goofy...dark...things.  See Missouri and Indiana for examples.

More pointedly on abortion, while I might agree with some of your positions, the basic problem is that this is not an issue that you solve after pregnancy occurs.  It is one that is solved years before the two people responsible got busy making the two-backed beast.  And it doesn't require government to solve it.

We already know that GOP leaning areas give more to charity than Democrat leaning areas.  So perhaps it is time to step up your charitable game some more.

Our country was founded upon the idea of individual liberty.  Not the collective.  And certainly not "corporate liberty".  Yet the individual has few champions in federal office these days.  Corporations and other organizations (i.e. unions) pretty much get what they want at our expense.  Perhaps the GOP ought to become advocates for individual liberty.

You can begin some "training wheels" legislation.  I call it "The Individual Right To Privacy".  It requires companies, non-profits, and political candidates to assume that the individual does not want their mailbox, fax machine, email inbox, and telephone jammed with the associated forms of spam.  If they want to advertise via these messages, then they must first obtain confirmed permission.  If they don't have permission, then it is trespassing; a crime that puts the CEO or the candidate in jail.  Call me and we can do lunch to discuss the details.

If you can manage this one, then you might be ready for bigger challenges.

To my friends in the Democrat Party:

Stay classy.  I read of far too many incidents of intimidation yesterday.  The victims were decidedly not voting for Mr. Obama.  This sort of thing is a dark shadow on your reputation.  As above, see Missouri and Indiana for examples of what happens when that dark shadow gets too big.

The single biggest problem we have today is spending.  Government does too much of it.  Our long rate of federal revenue is in the 18-20% range.  We cannot continue spending 25% of GDP while only having 18-20% of GDP revenue.

Where are you willing to compromise?  We can probably fiddle with taxes on "the rich" a little, but not enough to solve that 25% gap.  It ain't even close.  Do the math.

We have education programs spread across close to a dozen different federal agencies.  Why?  Couldn't we save some money by combining them under one agency?  Might we prevent people from double dipping and save money that way as well?  How can we apply that principle elsewhere?

For a brief moment in January of this year, Mr. Obama's press office was touting his intent to eliminate wasteful spending.  It lasted about one news cycle.  I was encouraged.  Then the next news cycle came.

While there is certainly some waste in the DoD, Defense spending has been steadily declining as a percentage of GDP for the last 50 years.  Defense spending is not the source of our problem.  Social spending is.

Are you prepared to identify programs that don't work so they can be ended?  Can we reduce civilian federal employment?

Can we make our economy more competitive?  Are you prepared to eliminate the corporate income tax in exchange for raising taxes on individual investment income?  How about making all income taxable at the same rate?  Wouldn't this allow companies to bring their profits (and the jobs that go with them) home from tax havens like Ireland, and various countries in the Caribbean?

A free market economy is the best option.  Bar none.  How do you plan to make it better?

And to my Libertarian friends:

I know that the GOP and Dems and their media myrmidons won't talk about our issues.  We have to keep trying.  The best quote I saw this week was regarding the third party debate that so few people watched:

"Six questions were posed to the nominees, and answers ranged from all in agreement to all four sharply disagreeing with one another. However, there was none of the pandering, gutless nonsense that pervaded the mainstream "debates." Virgil Goode, the Constitution Party candidate, even stated, "If you want to end the drug war, then you should vote for a different candidate," as he expressed his support for federal legislation against narcotics. While one may disagree with him, his honesty and integrity should be appreciated by anyone, especially considering how different that is from the nonsense we've seen up until this point."

Don't give up.  History isn't over.

Monkeying Around

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Posted on : 11/05/2012 07:00:00 AM | By : Dann | In : , , , ,

Robb Allen makes a most apt analogy.

His basic point is one I try to make frequently;  that whatever authority you grant one party to do things for you, the other party will eventually be in power and use that same power to do things against you.  One of my greatest fears in the War on Terror is that successive exchanges of majority positions will expand government authority, diminish individual liberty, and leave us less safe.  That has been the cycle with respect to the War on Drugs and the War on Poverty.

I see little reason to expect to be disappointed this time around.

Take a look at Robb's post.  It's worth the five minutes it will take.