Monday, November 27, 2006

A "windfall-profits tax" will be enacted on toy producers as part of "our first 100 hours agenda" according to Nancy Pelosi, Democrat Speaker of the House of Representative designate in the next Congress. After running a whole mid-term election campaign based upon surrender in the ‘war on terror,’re-instituting the military draft, immigration and raising taxes, the first hours of the new Democrat Congress will be devoted to declaring a ‘war on toy makers?’ Is there a serious disconnect from reality here? After the last election some pundits speculated that the Democrats and Republicans Parties would engage in ‘a race to stupidity ’or at best a ‘dumb-off.’ The ‘race to stupidity’is on! Stupidity is an equal opportunity affliction. Hysterical Democrat dim bulbs, led by their posturing pinheads of leaders, rallied in front of toy stores decrying toy prices. Not to be outdone, 86 of the witless wonders of the Republican Party, including Sen, John McCain, joined in the feeding frenzy by issuing their own toy manifesto. Is this what we sent people to Congress to do?

What is the cause of this urgency that trumps the abandonment of Iraq and raising taxes on vile capitalists? ‘Tickle Me Elmo’ and ‘Play Station 3’ are the sources our national crisis! They are so central to our national well-being that Democrat Sen. Hillary Clinton wants to "form a commission to investigate the feasibility of a government takeover of the toy industry make toys affordable to every family in America regardless of income." The Republican statement says toy producers "seem downright un-American to us." Questioning patriotism was a touchy subject in the campaign of 2006 no matter how loony the statements of some candidates. Yet both Democrats and Republicans can now agree that toy producers are "un-patriotic."

This is dangerous work. Nancy Pelosi was agitating a crowd at a toy store by waving an Elmo when "unruly parents tried to snatch the doll away from her." She may put in for Combat Pay? Some wondered how Ms. Pelosi got the doll; did she, like John Edwards, trying to get an advance PS3 from Wal-Mart, pull some strings to get special treatment? Were the Proletarian Parents justified in trying to seize Elmo in the name of equal access to toys?

"Parents are demanding Congressional action" cries incoming House Commerce Committee Chairman, Democrat John Dingell. Obviously citizen parents are at fault for pleading for urgent toy relief from their Congresspersons even if it means the shelving of national security, immigration problems, international relations and global warming. The heavy hand of government is ready to descend on toy producers. Republican Mel Martinez has promised a "through investigation and stiff criminal penalties" for toy producers. But will parents be satisfied when they see toy executives sentenced to crushing rock in a federal prison?

Is the lesson never learned, once government gets involved all parties suffer? Imagine - if Hillary Clinton’s socialist plan to nationalize the toy industry took effect - what Tickle Me Elmo would look like after endless departments had their input in the design and committees had modified the plan and OSHA, the EPA, the Justice Department, and the new F.E.E.D. (Federal Elmo Equitable Distribution) Department finished their years of work. Of course,
U.N. approval would still be needed. Inevitably, there would be the protests by greying radicals of the 60's chanting and waving placards demanding "FREE ELMOS." I have a vision of what the PlayStation3 would look like under government design - a non-toxic neutral colored crayon with training wheels.

See what you have done by voting for these pompous egos in the last election! I am reminded of the woman who said she never votes because ’it only encourages them.’ Milton Friedman, the champion of Free Market Capitalism, once said " we will arrive at socialism through wage and price controls." He suggested a Constitutional Amendment to preserve freedom and lower prices that reads "Congress shall make no laws abridging the freedom of sellers of goods and services to price their products and services." Outraged at the interference by Congress in the free markets, he vowed to hold his breath until Congress came to their senses. After turning blue he died last week. The moral of the story is never give knaves, fools and poltroons power, they will outlast reasonable men.

One of the wonders of our political system is that often windbags win elections. Meditate upon Hillary"s Department of Toy Production and Pelosi’s "windfall profits tax".

Monday, November 20, 2006


A champion of freemen, Milton Friedman died recently at age 94. Dr. Friedman, the Nobel Prize Laureate in Economics, had for over sixty years been the defender of the citizen’s freedom from the Nanny State. In 1962 he wrote that, the freeman " regards government as a means, an instrumentality, neither a grantor of favors and gifts, nor a master or god to be blindly worshiped and served." Freemen ask, how can "government ... help us discharge our individual responsibilities, to achieve our several goals and purposes, and above all, to protect our freedom? ..... How can we keep the government we create from becoming a Frankenstein that will destroy the very freedom we establish it to protect? Freedom is a rare and delicate plant." It was clear to Dr. Friedman that the State is the servant of freemen; men are not the servants of the State as preached first by Communism, then by Fascism and currently by Democratic Socialism. But there is always the human frailty of wanting ‘something for nothing’ or in Friedman’s words "favors and gifts" which result in the concentration of power in the hands of the "grantor of favors", the State. Inevitably, this leads to the eventual corruption of the master who has unbridled power to distribute favors and gifts and to crush dissidents.
Dr. Friedman realized that no slave society ever produced wealth to be enjoyed by the masses. Witness the shambles when Communist societies collapsed - the people in slavery, industry in ruin and the environment awash in pollution while the masters dwelled in country ‘dachas’ and consumed Western delicacies. On the contrary, freemen create wealth by creativity, ingenuity, industry, manufacture and trade. Freemen have choices in their activities and are only constrained in those choices by recognizing their responsibilities to God, their fellow man, society and the State, in that order. When free societies prosper, even the least industrious prosper. Dr. Friedman’s book "Free to Choose" is the masterwork that explains the mechanics of this reality.
In the same week that Dr. Friedman was irrevocably retired from the war for freedom, we have the spectacle of the rising star of the Democrat Party, Senator Barak Obama , touted as the voice of Democrat ‘moderates’, intoning in a speech at the Kennedy Center the old Statist ideas of class warfare and the Nanny State. He comes across as viewing American citizens as parasites suckling on the State and not freemen who can choose with responsibility and dignity. The Senator stated that in Town Hall meetings he attended, participants always want Mental Health Treatment be a government benefit, want expanded funding for No Child Left Behind and want funding for work projects. He then said that some benighted soul usually enquires about abolishing the Death Tax which the Senator opposes. Sen. Obama said his reply is that there is "no free lunch" in government and if the Death Tax is abolished the government would lose one trillion dollars in taxes. He stated that 90% of the Federal Budget is spent on Social Security, Medicare, Medicaid, Defense and payments on the National Debt and cannot be changed. The remaining 10% of the Budget covers the operation of all other government services and functions and totals about one trillion dollars. He then queries the audience - if the Death Tax is paid by .5% of Americans should we abolish it and raise the taxes of 99.5% of Americans to raise the trillion dollars? "What reflects yours values?" Audience member roared,"Keep the Death Tax!" So confident is Sen. Obama that the "values" of the Nanny State have been internalized by the citizens, he expects his audience to roar with approval at the proposition that .5% of Americans should pay for 99.5%. Do you think this is just as the Democratic Centrist, liberal, politician believes? Do we want our flower of freedom to wither? In the days of Imperial Rome the policy was ‘bread and circus’ to appease the masses; now we give out ‘freebies and goodies’ to parasitic citizens at the expense of the dead who conserved their wealth so that they would never be a burden on society.
I use Sen. Obama’s own words and statistics to hoist him on his own petard. But as anyone with common sense knows, his statistics are, as Geo. Allen so delicately put it, "macaca." A one minute Google search shows this ‘rising star of moderation’ number to wildly wrong and, yet, no one in either his audiences or the major media dare shout "macaca." To think Sen. Obama’s Harvard education formed this economic mismash! It appears that he moved from the hothouse of academia to the teat of government without ever having gainful employment. Personally, I think holding a seance to contact Dr. Friedman is needed.

Wednesday, November 08, 2006

What do Chicken Little, of nursery rhyme fame, Michael Moore, the film maker, and Al Gore, failed presidential candidate, have in common? All three of these clucks are in the grip of environmentalist paranoia. Paranoia is a mental disorder characterized by baseless delusions ascribing hostile intentions to other persons and is often linked with a sense of mission.
Poor addled Chicken Little ran about crying "the sky is falling"; he was wrong of course but then he is fictional and is meant to convey a moral to children to not jump to conclusions. Mendacious, meaning big fat liar, Michael Moore not only is gripped by paranoia but has devoted himself to spreading delusions to others. On film he blends lies, deceits and fabrications into hysterical rants that lead weak minded audiences into paroxysms of anguish and angst. He is wrong, of course, but he is making a bundle of money off his nuttiness.
Then we come to poor, poor Al Gore. He has the unhappy combination of being as addled as Chicken Little and as proselytizing as Michael Moore without the saving virtue of either Chicken Little who "ain’t real" and Michael Moore who is making a bundle of money.
Earnest, delusional Al Gore has a movie out called "An Inconvenient Truth" in which he unrelentingly and dismally presents a case for "global warming" that is inevitable and catastrophic unless man, that us folks, takes drastic, expensive and immediate remedial action. How many times do we hear we have only ten years left to save the planet? He takes a fact, global climate change, piles assertion upon baseless assertion onto that fact and then weaves a web of mystification that culminates in hysteria. Christians believe that God made man in His own image, that is ‘good’. Liberal environmentalists believe that man is the spawn of Satan sent to defile a pristine earth that was in perfect balance before man walked upright. Al Gore’s pseudo documentary blames modern man, who in the brief period from the Industrial Revolution to 2006 man is accused of so fatally damaging the earth’s environment that our climate will spiral out of control unless draconian measure are taken to control man’s activities within 10 years.
Global climate change has always been occurring and always will. Only 10,000 years ago the last glacier reached U.S. Route 22 as it passes through Fayette County; half the county was under ice. It must have been a heck of a global warming to melt the glacier and give us our balmy summers now. How and why did the glacier melt if there were no evil industrialists around to pollute the atmosphere? In the year 1,000A.D. Greenland, note the name, was covered in vegetation and today students ask "why is that block of ice called Greenland?" Who is to blame for Greenland turning from lush to frozen without the internal combustion engine or coal fired factories? In 1813 the volcano on the island of Tambora erupted casting ash into the atmosphere and creating the Year Without A Summer from pole to pole. In a few minutes this wicked volcano created more pollution than man has in all his history. Another evil volcano, Krakatoa, had the temerity to again blow more pollution into the air than man ever has. Think back to few years to when Mt. St. Helen in Washington State blew its top and affected Ohio’s weather. And right now, Merapi volcano is erupting in Indonesia killing thousands and sending ash into the atmosphere. Man effect is a speck of sand compared to nature own pollution. If Al Gore, and the other clucks, wanted to do something just for the hubris of doing something, they could get the U.N. to pass a resolution against volcanos erupting. Such a resolution would be just about as effective as the U.N. resolutions on Iran’s nuclear program.
"An Inconvenient Truth" is to Environmental Science as the "Da Vinci Code" is to Christianity as a ripping good story that grabs a few facts, adds some fantasy and flies into Never Never Land. If only Al Gore had checked, in 500 B.C. the philosopher Heraclitus stated, "All is Flux," everything changes, even the climate, and he did not even have to say something as silly as only 10 more years until Doomsday. Remember, hysterical irrational Al still wants to be your president.
For an update of the "Chicken Little Fable" connect to Uncommon Sense,, for June 13, 2006.diey

Wednesday, November 01, 2006

Each election takes away a bit of our freedom. This paradox of democracy is inherent in the character of politicians and the nature of man. A politician desirous of being elected by the people makes promises to deliver ‘goodies’ to them in exchange for their vote. Human nature, being what it is, leads most citizens to cast their votes for the politician promising the most ‘freebies’ to them. Winston Churchill’s promise of only "blood, toil, tears and sweat" would not work with voters today. We want to hear about bridges, jobs, programs, benefits, protection from annoyance and reprisal against those who offend us; these are the ‘goodies’ the politician promises and the ‘freebies’ we have come to expect.
Welcome to the Nanny State. We are now in an era when the fulfillment our desires, wishes and wants are the duty of the state to provide. We have moved from security, national defense by the federal government and police protection at the local level, to expecting a security blanket. A security blanket’s job is to make us feel all warm and fuzzy inside; we have transferred our cares and concerns to officials who will make the right decisions without troubling us and then give us what we need to be happy; it is like having a nice comfortable English Nanny to comfort us.
Alas, every ‘goodie’ and each ‘freebie’ comes at a cost of a sliver of our freedom. The cost may be as simple as an increased tax to pay for the ‘freebie’ or it may come as the curtailment of a traditional freedom. The need to surrender freedoms for security is constantly hyped by ambitious politicians, the scare mongering media and elitist social and environmental activists. As each election approaches citizens are treated to ever mounting scare stories in the media about globalization, a collapsing economy, child abduction or an unsafe bridge. As anxiety levels rise to fever pitch about how unsafe we are, we turn to our nanny politicians who then promise a solution if only we elect them. Their ‘plan’ will solve the problem and restore our comfort level; all we have to do is concede a little of our, or preferably someone else’s, freedom. It might be a small new tax, the banning of the sale of some product or a restriction against who can build a home or business or where. Each ‘goodie’ to restore our comfort level etches away at our freedom of choice. But consider the cumulative effect of these ‘minor inconveniences’. 53% of 3,000 people surveyed, feel local governments should ban trans fats from restaurant foods. Look out McDonalds. Chicago banned the sale of goose liver. Towns are banning the building of Wal Marts and Home Depots because their images offend some elites. In the scare of the week for last week, Al Gore told the United Nations that cigarette smoke is a major cause of global warming. Systematically our elites are constricting our freedoms to conform to their world view even as their theme is, ‘vote for me and I will take care of you’.
Of course, a security blanket has costs; the most vital cost is freedom of choice which is ebbing away slowly. The most visible costs are the increased taxes needed to pay for each ‘goodie’ and ‘freebie’. Sometimes the tax cost is freely expressed, as when Rep. Charlie Rangel, scheduled to be Chairman of the Ways and Means Committee if the Democrats take Congress in November, states about increasing taxes, "No question about it. Everything has to be on the table." But he did say he would cut off funding for the war on terror. The stealth way to indicate that taxes will increase is shown by Democrat candidate for Governor, Ted Strickland’s sly method of always just referring to "increased funding" for all sorts of programs. He assumes that voters are too feebleminded to realize all "funding"or "investment" (the other political code word for spending) comes from taxes and not the tooth fairy. Some semblance of the old American virtue of self-reliance is in the Republican candidate for Governor Ken Blackwell’s goal of leaving more of citizens’ incomes in their own pockets by rolling back the Ohio Sales Tax and reforming the Ohio Income Tax. Europe has already wrapped itself in the ultimate security blanket by the Nanny State and is rapidly being smothered by it and I don’t think we want ‘to go there’.
Politics needs a version of medicine’s Hippocratic Oath: First, do no harm. ‘Goodies’ and ‘ freebies’are millstones on freedom.