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Posts Tagged ‘Cap-N-Trade’

You Say You Want a Revolution

Our revolution changed the world.  Our Declaration of Independence proclaims self-evident truths.  That all men are created equal, they’re endowed by their Creator with unalienable rights, among these are life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness.  These words shook a world held in the vise-grip of hereditary privilege inspiring people around the globe.  Our Constitution established a representative republic with a limited government of the people, by the people and for the people.

We’ve watched as our constitutionally limited government grew until today it’s a leviathan running amok like Godzilla in Tokyo smashing things and scaring boy scouts.  Today the Federal government is the largest employer in America, states are the largest employers in the states and counties are among the largest employers in the counties get the picture?  Government is on a rampage and unless Mothra is going to fly in to save the day we’ll have to deal with Frankenstein-on-the-Potomac ourselves.

Such brazen power-plays as the Executive branch issuing the Legislature an ultimatum, either pass Cap-N-Trade or we’ll impose it administratively through command-and-control make the dramatic changes in our political culture shockingly apparent.   Has our balance of powers melted away under the glare of executive orders, signing statements and now ultimatums?   Some people say this is evolution.  To others it’s devolution.  Our hard-won and dearly-paid-for Republic is devolving into a command-and-control all-encompassing central-state.

With political dynasties bequeathing congressional seats like hereditary fiefdoms it’s becoming hard to explain why we left the British Empire.  Today we not only have taxation without representation as congressional party-line voters ignore their constituents we also have representation without taxation as the perpetually re-elected Lords and Ladies represent the illegal immigrants and the professional welfare hammock-riders.

These big government social planners may believe they’ve achieved their community organizing goals fulfilling Historian Will Durant paraphrase of Lincoln’s famous quote, “It may be true that you can’t fool all the people all the time, but you can fool enough of them to rule a large country.”  They may believe their revolutionary administration will fundamentally change America however, if they’d step 20 miles outside the Beltway obviously there’s a counter-revolution brewing.  The Tea Party is overtaking the Republican Party in popularity.  It has already supplanted them at the grassroots of the conservative movement.  By 2010 an avalanche of voters thronged the polling places demanding their country back.

Following the tactics of Saul Alinsky brought the ObamaAcornSEIU coalition control of the Democratic Party and the country but following the Cloward/Piven Strategy for overwhelming the system to impose an alternative system is going to lead to a complete repudiation of this radical departure from traditional American politics and economics.  We aren’t Venezuela.  Even after decades of legislative efforts to progressively create a permanent underclass of government dependents who’ll follow the leader to the next looting of productive members of society the majority in this country still want freedom and opportunity not cradle-to-grave mediocrity.

We can and should stage a counter-revolution against this growing tyranny.  A peaceful, lawful revolution at the ballot box and if you’re talking about destruction, you can count me out.  The last thing we need in this crowded theater full of combustible emotions is either a match or someone shouting fire.  Any incident right now would trigger a massive response.  Just as the executive is using the EPA to impose the onerous restrictions of a Cap-N-Trade style economy stunting strangulation of regulations he’s also using ICE to change the enforcement of immigration policy and cook the books without any messy debate.

Ruling by decree, “I have a pen and I have a phone,” is hardly compatible with constitutionally-limited government.  We’re told the administration has solutions.  They sold us a solution to heal the greatest health care system in the world “If you like your plan you can keep your plan. Period” lik e a pig-in-a-poke.  They claim to have a solution to save or create jobs while we lose jobs every month, a draconian solution for the man-made global warming hoax, a solution for endless wars for elusive peace.  You say you have a solution.  We’d all love to see the plan.

They say they want a contribution.  Back in the good old change we could believe in days the dialogue of class warfare repeated that no one making under 250,000, or was it 150,000, or was it …anyway only the evil rich would have to pay a dime of new taxes.  Watch out!  You might find out you’re rich come next April 15th.

Everyone has known since at least that tax-cutting wild man JFK that cutting taxes increases revenue to the government and raising them lowers revenue.  Since the government knows raising taxes lowers revenue and since they’re raising taxes to increase revenue what are they trying to do?  Complicated tax codes are used as a way to incentivize and de-incentivize behavior.

If you want more widgets give tax breaks for buying widgets.  If you want less widgets tax widgets.  Using that for a guide notice what’s being pushed and what’s being pulled?  Taxes on producers and tax breaks for non-producers imagine tax cuts for people who don’t pay taxes and tax increases for those who do.  Taking the money of producers to bailout the greedy, reward the cronies and support the lazy.  It’s time to tell the statists at the ballot box if they want money for things we hate they’re going to have to wait.

Executive orders and signing statements have been used in Republican and Democrat administrations for years to change the constitution without changing the Constitution.  Now sweeping new powers by regulators threatens to make Congress irrelevant as an all-powerful executive branch grows like a malignant tumor.  Don’t lose heart, don’t despair, don’t you know it’s going to be all right?  Keep the faith, keep the peace, organize and win the day.  We shall overcome.

Dr. Owens teaches History, Political Science, and Religion.  He is the Historian of the Future @ http://drrobertowens.com © 2014 Contact Dr. Owens drrobertowens@hotmail.com  Follow Dr. Robert Owens on Facebook or Twitter @ Drrobertowens / Edited by Dr. Rosalie Owens

 

The Revolution Passed in the Night 

Many things are holding the headlines hostage, the terrorist attacks, the crippling effects of Obamacare, the prospect of expanding war in Syria, and as always Iran.

There is one over-riding constant that defines as it divides the present era: the fact that America has a President who advances values and policies diametrically opposed to the traditional beliefs of a vast number of Americans.  From bowing to foreign leaders to not knowing how many states there are, from vowing to fundamentally transform America to actually doing it, President Obama is to many the Manchurian Candidate.

Elected the first time on a vague promise of hope and change he has been re-elected on a blatant promise to re-distribute the wealth and complete the transformation of  America into a welfare state.  His bureaucratically imposed policies such as Cap-n-Trade and the Dream Act are blatant end runs around the authority of a Congress that overwhelmingly rejected both.  The alarming reality we all must face is that for the first time in American history we may actually have a president who is anti-American.

Barack Obama is blatant in his anti-American rhetoric.  Such as:

In America, we have this strong bias toward individual action. You know, we idolize the John Wayne hero who comes in to correct things with both guns blazing. But individual actions, individual dreams, are not sufficient. We must unite in collective action, build collective institutions and organizations.”  Emphasis added.

And what would help minority workers are the same things that would help white workers: the opportunity to earn a living wage, the education and training that lead to such jobs, labor laws and tax laws that restore some balance to the distribution of the nation’s wealth …”  Emphasis added.

But the Supreme Court never ventured into the issues of redistribution of wealth, and more basic issues such as political and economic justice in society. And to that extent, as radical as I think people try to characterize the Warren Court, it wasn’t that radical. It didn’t break free from the essential constraints that were placed by the founding fathers in the Constitution, at least as it’s been interpreted. And the Warren Court interpreted in the same way, that generally the Constitution is a charter of negative liberties — says what the states can’t do to you — says what the Federal government can’t do to you — but it doesn’t say what the Federal government or State government must do on your behalf.

And that hasn’t shifted and one of the, I think, the tragedies of the civil rights movement was because the civil rights movement became so court-focused I think there was a tendency to lose track of the political and community organizing and activities on the ground that are able to put together the actual coalitions of powers through which you bring about redistributive change. In some ways we still suffer from that …” Emphasis added.

These positive rights are what Progressives have been trying to establish since FDR floated his idea of a second bill of right which included:

 

The right to a useful and remunerative job in the industries or shops or farms or mines of the nation

 

The right to earn enough to provide adequate food and clothing and recreation

 

The right of every farmer to raise and sell his products at a return which will give him and his family a decent living

 

The right of every businessman, large and small, to trade in an atmosphere of freedom from unfair competition and domination by monopolies at home or abroad

 

The right of every family to a decent home

The right to adequate medical care and the opportunity to achieve and enjoy good health

 

The right to adequate protection from the economic fears of old age, sickness, accident, and unemployment

 

The right to a good education

Now all of these sound great and in a perfect world might make up a laundry list of prizes falling out of the cornucopia of utopia.  In a real world they would mandate a government large enough to provide everything and powerful enough to take everything away.

The whole idea of having a constitution is to limit the government which is in essence a charter of negative liberties.

President Obama goes on to state, “Now, just as there was in Teddy Roosevelt’s time, there is a certain crowd in Washington who, for the last few decades, have said, let’s respond to this economic challenge with the same old tune.  ‘The market will take care of everything,’ they tell us.  If we just cut more regulations and cut more taxes — especially for the wealthy — our economy will grow stronger.  Sure, they say, there will be winners and losers.  But if the winners do really well, then jobs and prosperity will eventually trickle down to everybody else.  And, they argue, even if prosperity doesn’t trickle down, well, that’s the price of liberty.

Now, it’s a simple theory.  And we have to admit, it’s one that speaks to our rugged individualism and our healthy skepticism of too much government.  That’s in America’s DNA.  And that theory fits well on a bumper sticker.  But here’s the problem:  It doesn’t work.  It has never worked.”

And of course there is his infamous “You didn’t build that” statement which exposes his complete misunderstanding of what it takes to start and grow a business.

With a leader such as this whose basic understanding of America is at such odds with those who once constituted the majority of the citizens and the continuity of our History is it any wonder that so many feel as if they are living in a conquered nation?

Conquered by who?  As Pogo once told us, “We have met the enemy and he is us.”

Or as Garet Garrett, quipped as he chronicled the fall of the Republic and the rise of the American bureaucratic Empire said, “There are those who still think they are holding the pass against a revolution that may be coming up the road. But they are gazing in the wrong direction. The revolution is behind them. It went by in the Night of Depression, singing songs to freedom.”

Dr. Owens teaches History, Political Science, and Religion.  He is the Historian of the Future @ http://drrobertowens.com © 2013 Robert R. Owens drrobertowens@hotmail.com  Follow Dr. Robert Owens on Facebook or Twitter @ Drrobertowens / Edited by Dr. Rosalie Owens

 

 

DEMOCRAT CAP AND EVADE

How Senate Democrats maneuvered to kill a bill to rein in the EPA’s carbon rule.

Why do Americans hate politics? Consider last week’s Senate spectacle on whether to rein in the Environmental Protection Agency’s plans to regulate carbon dioxide. Democrats deliberately turned the votes into a hall of mirrors, with multiple amendments to dodge accountability.

The maneuvering began after Republican Leader Mitch McConnell introduced an amendment that would have barred the EPA from regulating carbon. Congress has never given the EPA that power, and a Democratic Senate expressly rejected cap and tax last year. But Administrator Lisa Jackson’s EPA has claimed that power anyway under the 1970 Clean Air Act and later amendments, even though Michigan Democrat John Dingell says that he and other co-authors never intended to include CO2 as a regulated pollutant.

The McConnell amendment scares the incumbency out of Senate Democrats, especially after what happened in last year’s election to House Democrats who voted for cap-and-tax regulation. Last week the House voted 255-172 for a bill similar to Mr. McConnell’s, and the ayes included 19 Democrats. So what’s a nervous liberal to do?

Jumble the categories to confuse the voters. In classic Senate fashion, this means supporting phony alternatives as political cover, then turning around and voting to kill the McConnell amendment.

Democrats weren’t taking any chances and offered no fewer than three alternatives. West Virginia’s Jay Rockefeller got 12 votes for his proposal to delay the EPA’s carbon rule for two years. Michigan Democrat Debbie Stabenow’s bill to exempt agriculture from the rule received seven votes, and Montana’s Max Baucus got all of seven votes for his bill that would codify the current EPA rule while also exempting agriculture.

Everyone knew all three would fail overwhelmingly because the GOP leadership and most liberal Democrats opposed them. But the amendments served their political purpose in allowing 13 Democrats to vote for one or another. The Senators will now claim that they, too, voted to rein in the EPA, even as they also whisper to the Sierra Club and other green lobbies that they voted to kill Mr. McConnell’s amendment. As Democrats expected, the media ignored all this and merely reported that the effort to limit the EPA had failed. Notice, too, how the green lobbies are keeping quiet lest any crowing embarrass the 13 Democrats.

The McConnell proposal received 50 votes, so it would have reached the 60-vote threshold for passage if those 13 Democrats had voted for it. The nearby table lists the names of those 13 Democrats, along with Maine Republican Susan Collins, who also voted for Mr. Rockefeller’s two-year delay but against her own leader’s more consequential ban.

It’s no coincidence that five of those Democrats are up for re-election in 2012, with Ohio’s Sherrod Brown, Pennsylvania’s Bob Casey, Missouri’s Claire McCaskill, Michigan’s Ms. Stabenow and Minnesota’s Amy Klobuchar running in states that rely heavily on fossil fuels and would be especially hurt by the EPA rule.

All 13 tacitly acknowledged that the EPA rule will do economic damage because they voted to limit its breadth or delay it for two years. But then they helped to kill the one bill that had the most support and would have done the most to prevent that economic damage.

We have far more respect for Jon Tester, the Montana Democrat who is running for re-election in 2012 and voted against all four bills to limit the EPA. Those votes may hurt him next year, but at least he didn’t join the cynics. As for the rest, they are today’s reason to hate politics.

 

Thugocracy

Extortion, intimidation, and scams: these are the tactics of thugs. On the streets of Chicago there are neighborhoods where the police won’t enter after dark. Gangs of thugs rule the night protecting the neighborhood or engaging in what the police in other places quaintly call extortion, intimidation and other activities common to organized crime.

The difference between the clique that has captured power in the United States and an organized crime family lies more in the magnitude of their scams and the legalized cover which gives them impunity than any other standard. The generational theft and constitutional subversion that the Obama administration and Congress commit on a daily basis is no more morally defensible than the shakedowns and extortions of a local street gang or other community organizers on the Southside of Chicago.

Thugs use intimidation. A liberal application of “Do this or I’ll do that,” as a means of forcing innocent people, seen merely as sheep to be fleeced, into doing what they want. The examples of the Obama Administration’s thuggishness abound and are as close as the headlines.

The legal limit of liability for oil spills had been set at 75 million dollars unless gross negligence has been proven. So far nothing has been proven, yet using his tried and true tactic of a bashing with the club of a compliant media and a short meeting behind closed doors President Obama was able to shakedown BP for 20 Billion. Of course, where the 20 billion is and who gets it are items to be filled in later.

The list of beat downs goes on: GM and Chrysler bond holders were pushed into accepting a surrender of their first position so that the companies could be given to the unions and the government. Solvent banks were forced to take TARP money so that consumers would not be able to identify the insolvent banks. After passing a law which mandates who they must insure and for what they must insure them, insurance companies are being pressured not to raise rates to cover their rising expenses and liabilities by the personal intervention of the president. After the BP spill the Obama administration took the opportunity to shut down all American drilling in the Gulf while they lend money and seek to give tax breaks to foreigners to do the same thing. When a federal judge declared the Obama ban on drilling in the Gulf is unconstitutional the Secretary of the Interior announces he’s going to reissue the ban any way abrogating the rule of law.

This highlights the style and tone of our current leadership crew but what’s the goal? Is it personal aggrandizement? Is it systemic change? President Obama has stated that his administration would fundamentally transform America. He has said that he sees himself as a transformative president.

Joining the New Deal, the Great Society, and the Reagan Revolution as a game-changer in American history, the Obama administration’s Progressive transformation of America has passed more major legislation in less than two years than many administrations do in two terms. Building upon TARP, the parting present from the Progressive Bush, President Obama lost no time beginning a spending binge that soon added as much to the deficit as every president from Washington to Ragan.
Within months of assuming power the stimulus bill, the largest spending bill in American History was rammed through a compliant Congress. Its ostensible purpose was to end the recession but which was also meant to take over such diverse things as educational lending and medical records. In the meantime, as the Recession rolls on, the non-stimulating stimulus bill now acts as an election aid for Democrats.

The next shakedown came in the form of an overhaul of the health care industry. This was promoted as the only way to stabilize premiums and insure the mysterious millions the Progressive media tells us are uninsured. Of course now premiums are going through the roof because of the government take-over and according to the Congressional Budget Office the uninsured still will not be insured.

Then came the takeover of the financial industry as a way to save the financial industry. With Senator Dodd adding his, “No one will know until this is actually in place how it works” to Pelosi’s infamous “We Need to Pass Health Care Bill to Find Out What’s In It.” The arrogance of the thugs adds insult to the injuries caused.

Before the electorate have a chance to “throw the bums out” and show them the door in December look for the Cap-N-Tax scam, the card-check unionization bill, net neutrality, open Internet or whatever they want to call a government speed limit on the information super highway, and import-a-voter immigration reform. If these can’t be done legislatively in a lame-duck session before the one-party rubber-stamp leaves town look for a New Year’s present in the form of executive orders or bureaucratic regulation as the vehicle for the change no one hopes for anymore.

These major Progressive goals, both achieved and potential, move the United States from a society based upon free enterprise and personal liberty solidly into the world of the socialist cradle-to-grave welfare state. The only question remaining is will our leaders move from political readjustment to social realignment as America staggers like a battered spouse looking for a shelter in the thugocracy of Chicago’s 51st Ward.

Dr. Owens teaches History, Political Science, and Religion for Southside Virginia Community College and History for the American Public University System. http://drrobertowens.com © 2010 Robert R. Owens dr.owens@comcast.net

HELP US KEEP YOU BETTER INFORMED ABOUT THE TRICKS OF THE RADICAL PROGRESSIVE REVOLUTION PLEASE DONATE ANY AMOUNT YOU CAN