Friday, March 31, 2017

Here comes the moral agonizing over Trump's budget cuts.

     Well it didn't take long for the leftist media to roll out its predictable orgy of bleeding heart anguish over President Trump's recent budget cut proposals. Sunday's Mar 26th leftist Detroit Free Press carried three opeds decrying those cuts.

     They appear to be written by staff writer Nancy Kaffer which the paper titled "Promises to Keep" regarding said budget cuts.

     First, it shows a picture of a young lady whose life was saved by a doctor when she was an infant. The doctor invented an extracorporeal membrane oxygenation machine which saved her life. He was able to create the machine because of a grant from the National Institute of Health, the very program president Trump's budget seeks to cut.

     Second, is one subtitled 'feeding the hungry' which shows food being loaded into cars to be delivered to needy elderly as part of the Meals on Wheels program which is now jeopardized by Trump's cuts.

     The third, subtitled 'staying warm' is about a lady whose electricity was shut off and had to rely on The Heat and Warmth Fund (THAW) for help with heat. It's another federally and state funded program which Trump's budget would 'wipe out' according to the article.

     The theme is quite obvious: government spending is doing lots of good for a small price so Trump's budget cuts should be rejected and the taxes on the people to pay for them should be continued. There are several unAmerican premises underlying this theme.

     First is the notion that it's moral to forcibly take money via taxation from people who earned it and could then use it to donate to charities of their choice, and give it to government so that it can decide which charity will get the money. This in turn is usurping the morality of kindness from the people and embedding it firmly in the government. Such charity taxing would be fine if taxation were voluntary but it isn't. This federal program of robbing Peter to give to Paul is designed to destroy in the minds of the public the fact that the moral is the chosen, not the forced.

     A second premise is that the needs of some people are a claim to the money of others. Again, no it isn't. The worship of need is replacing respect for and protection of, rights. Those who aren't in need are targeted to have their money taken to benefit those who do need. Sadly, it can be said that many of the needy are needy precisely because in their productive years their money was taken to benefit the poor of the time thus depriving them of the ability to save for a more secure future for themselves.

     A third premise is the idea that if government didn't provide grants for science, feed elderly, and provide heat, people would be dying for lack of medical technology,  starving in the streets, and freezing in their homes. This of course is utter nonsense.

     Perhaps that particular lady's life would not have been saved by that particular machine at that time in a free market. But in all probability it would have been invented sooner. More millions of people allowed to keep their tax dollars would mean many more people deciding which charity to help would have increased the odds of its creation.

     As for Meals on Wheels, it is mostly privately funded. About $3 million federal dollars are given to Meals on Wheels America which is an advocacy group that does not feed a single person. That is what Trump wants to cut. There is no reason MOWA can't do its own fundraising.

     As for the lady with no heat, there are private charities that will help with that. The American Red Cross, the Salvation Army and United Way just to name a few off the top of my head, provide help with paying heating bills. Besides, THAW is partly funded by state money which is not affected by federal cuts so it isn't all going to be 'wiped out.' And if the state money is tied to the federal money a simple bill to untie it would be easy.

     There is the further implication that past private charity was woefully lacking so government had to step in with its forced charity. From his excellent book "Rooseveltcare: how social security is sabotaging the land of self reliance" author Don Watkins writes"
"In 1910, in New York Sate, for instance, 151 private benevolent groups provided care for children, and 216 provided care for adults and children. If you were homeless in Chicago in 1933, you could have found shelter at one of the city's 614 YMCAs, or one of 89 Salvation Army barracks, or one of the seventy-five Goodwill Industries dormitories, among others."
     No there was no shortage of private benevolence before government decided to usurp it on a large scale.

     But President Trump is not going to return government charity to the private sector. He just wants to drain the corruption in it. He isn't going to make an unjust system just. But he can lay the ground work for a successor to the finish the job if he stays the course now.

     The media and the Democrats will fight tooth and nail and won't let up until he gives in. So, we can expect to see a lot more of this emotional agony as the media will try to blame every social, political and economic ill on Trump's budget cuts. President Trump and his various spokespersons need to arm themselves with the moral and practical arguments against these and other government enforced sacrifices.










Sunday, March 26, 2017

Damned Liars

The Saturday Mar 25, Macomb Daily again carries an oped by leftist Washington Post writer Eugene Robinson. Ecstatic over the failure of AHCA, aka RinoCare, Mr Robinson can't wait to unload on president Trump:

"President Trump called himself “instinctual” this week, but the word he must have been groping for was “untruthful.” He lies incessantly, shamelessly, perhaps even pathologically, and his lying corrodes and dishonors our democracy."

Really? This is wishful thinking. Trump certainly exaggerates a lot but he doesn't come close to Robinson's goddess Hillary Clinton. If there is a pathological liar in Washington it has to be Hillary. The NY Times did an article in 1996 on Hillary Clinton: the "congenital liar." Her incessant lying makes most politicians look like saints.

Hillary lied to the lead attorney in the lead up to the Watergate trial.
Lied about Benghazi.
Lied about her private email server. In fact, Real Clear Politics has a lengthy list of her lies here.

Actually it is Robinson who is doing the lying now. He is the obedient defender of all things Democrat and chief smear artist of everything Republican. His dishonesty has even been noted by the leftist blog Daily Kos who called him a 'total disgrace." (Even the leftist press, NYT and Daily Kos, sometimes can't stomach the extreme dishonesty of some of their own)

Citizens have to watch the leftist press. Whenever Democrats say something that's not accurate or even false, they 'misspoke.'  But when Republicans do the same, they 'lied.'

It seems to me that the NY Times and WAPO are in competition to become America's version of Pravda.

Monday, March 20, 2017

Freedom From ...?

My local county newspaper, The Macomb Daily--Macomb County abuts Wayne County, the home of Detroit--carried an oped by Walter Williams on this Sunday 03/19. It's titled "True Liberty is not for wimps."

Mr Williams writes
"Congress has no resources of its very own. If Congress gives one person something that he did not earn, it necessarily requires that Congress deprive somebody else of something that he did earn."

Very true, and continues with:
"Another area in which there is contempt of liberty, most notably on many college campuses, is free speech.
 The true test of one's commitment to free speech does not come when he permits others to say things with which he agrees. Instead, the true test comes when one permits others to say things with which he disagrees."

True again and adds:

"A very difficult liberty pill  for many Americans to swallow is freedom of association. As with free speech, the true test for one's commitment to freedom of association does not come when one permits people to voluntarily associate in ways that he deems acceptable.
The true test is when he permits people to associate in ways he deems offensive."
I was happy  to see these ideas of true individualism in my county's paper. We need many more discussions on the meaning of freedom and I'm bouyed by the fact that Mr. Williams is a syndicated columnist who is widely read.

But the question is why do so many Americans today appear to be political wimps? I say it is because they are intellectual wimps i.e. they are not being taught the real meaning of freedom in any of our public schools.

My favorite writer on freedom, Ayn Rand, writes:
"Freedom, in a political context, means freedom from government coercion. It does not mean freedom from the landlord, or freedom from the employer, or freedom from the laws of nature which do not provide men with automatic prosperity. It means freedom from the coercive power of the state--and nothing else." (From the essay 'Conservatism: An Obituary' from her book "Capitalism: the Unknown Ideal"

It also means freedom to associate or not with people of one's own choosing. In a free market any buyer can refuse to buy and any seller can refuse to sell regardless of reasons. Mr Williams is right, many people find this liberty pill hard to swallow. Today's leftists believe freedom means freedom from want, of any kind. And they are willing to employ the tyranny of government force on others to get it.

This is why it is so critical to get government out of education. Progressive Education has already produced several generations of such intellectual wimps who now need remedial courses on the real meaning of political freedom.

Saturday, March 04, 2017

Trump a do-nothing president?

The print edition of the Macomb Daily, a paper of the Detroit suburban county of Macomb, carried an oped by Washington Post columnist Eugene Robinson On March 1st. It's titled "Does Trump Know that He's in Office?" In the first paragraph Robinson tries to get his readers to believe that Trump is largely a do-nothing president.

"The Trump administration so far has been smoke and mirrors, sound and fury, self-proclaimed victimhood and angry tweets. Where is the substance? Where is the competence? And where--increasingly--is the public support?"
If Mr Robinson can't see the things Trump has done in his first 5  weeks then he couldn't have been looking very hard. Off the top of my head Trump:

1. Rescinded Obama's order to allow men into women's bathrooms.
2. EO to freeze Federal hiring except for military.
3. EO to cut 2 regulations for every new one.
4. EO okaying the Dakota and Keystone pipelines
5. Notice to pull out of TPP
6. Begin building border wall
7. Rescinded EPA's Waters of the United States act which allowed blatant violations of property rights.

That's just to name a few. But then, given that Mr Robinson writes for the leftist WAPO he probably would not consider any of these to be accomplishments. He then brings up the old leftist canard:

"...Trump will never erase the fact that he lost the popular vote."

Anyone with any knowledge of political history knows that our Founders wanted nothing to do with democracy, the tyranny of the majority. They wanted everyone in every state to have at least some say in the electoral process. That's why they created the Electoral College. If we had pure democracy today only 5 states would decide every election, California, New York, Texas, Florida and maybe Ohio or Michigan or Pennsylvania. All the rest would be disenfranchised.

According to mrctv.org, Obama lost the popular vote to Hillary in the 2008 Democratic primary. I don't recall any WAPO writers complaining about that.

Mr Robinson obviously has no use for the electoral college because if you can control elections by controlling just 5 or 6 of the most populous states, the other 44 or 45 are your voiceless slaves to whom you can dictate. A leftist utopia.