Junkies

Junkies

http://westernrifleshooters.blogspot.com/2009/04/junkies.html

Some readers know that I am a recovering alcoholic and drug addict. I have been extraordinarily blessed, having put down the booze in August, 1981 and being clean since April, 1982.

But recovery is a daily matter, and continued sobriety is a function of rigorous honesty about who I am and what I become when I use alcohol and/or drugs. In the first and last analysis — if I use drugs or drink booze, I will go straight back to where I was when I began my clawing journey into responsible life 28 years ago.

Nothing more, and nothing less.

I was thinking about addiction as I took mass transit home from tonight’s Atlanta Tea Party. On the surface, the event was very successful; speakers claimed more than 15,000 people in attendance, and that number made sense based on my ground-level estimates. Several presenters also stated there were more than 800 separate Tea Parties held across America today. While the majority of folks at the Atlanta gig were over forty, there was a significant sprinkling of older children, teens, and college students. Most people were white, although there were a few Asians, blacks, Hispanics, and other ethnicities mixed in the crowd.

As I stood listening to the speakers, I kept listening and looking around for any signs (literally and figuratively) that folks actually understood politics in Comrade Barry “We Won” Soetero’s America, circa 2009.

The closest I saw?

One woman I spotted on my way to the transit station holding a sign which simply said, “Peaceful Attempt”.

But if I gotten up on stage and said, “Do you understand that by demanding the elimination of socialism from this country — which you claim to want — you are implicitly and necessarily demanding the end of

– Social Security;
– Medicare;
– Medicaid;
– the new prescription drug benefit for geezers;
– Federal aid to local schools;
– the deductibility of mortgage interest;
– subsidized student loans; and
– a myriad of other government transfer payments?”,

Locust says, I would add selfish Americans to that list of what would end, because those who seem to believe that, they have a right to my money, are truly selfish indeed.

I would have been booed off the stage, at best.

And the Second Amendment?

Oh, no. Far too scary that topic, apparently, for the Tea Party organizers. Only two speakers mentioned gun rights, and let’s just say that those references were hardly Vanderboeghian.

Riding the MARTA train back to my parking garage, I realized where I had previously experienced the kind of cognitive dissonance I saw demonstrated en masse tonight by both speakers and attendees.

In a countless number of 12-step meetings, I had both attempted to alibi for myself and listened while others did the same about the realities and consequences of drug addiction:

“I wouldn’t drink, except for my lousy home life.”

“If you had my problems, you’d use drugs, too.”

“I don’t have a drinking problem. My spouse has the problem. I just drink to calm my nerves.”

Et cetera, et cetera, ad nauseum.

Only when I learned that my only real problem was my addictions, and that every other issue was a consequence of those addictions, did I begin to turn around my life. Only by disciplining myself to understand that as long as I thought like a junkie, I would continue to act like a junkie, was I able to put those issues behind me (at least so far today, as we say in the “one day at a time” business).

With all due respect to the organizers, speakers, and attendees of the various Tea Parties, I would offer this observation:

Only by understanding that the overwhelming majority of Americans have become almost hopelessly addicted to government intervention in their lives can we, as a society and as individuals, begin to get free and clean from that vice.

So long as any American’s position on the relationship between state and individual can be reduced to “Let’s just go back to the amount of socialism (and its necessary correlative theft from my fellow citizens) that I liked”, that American is just as deranged and just as pathetic as an alcoholic who, after a bad incident, vows to avoid hard liquor and only drink wine in the future.

Recovery is always possible, even for the most dissipated of addicts.

I know.

But recovery simply is impossible until the junkie gets honest with himself about what the real problem is and who is responsible for that problem.

Be honest, America.

The real problem is not the politicians. They’re just doing what a majority of your fellow citizens have directed them to do at the ballot box.

The real problem is the junkie’s mindset in most Americans — young, middle-aged, and senior varieities — that it is both possible and morally acceptable to get other people’s money for yourself via state-sponsored theft by taxation.

Until people understand that addiction, we’re doomed.

Will the New Congress Be Different?

Will the New Congress Be Different?

by Jeff Davis

The Republican Congress is coming into office in a few days. One significant change is the Tea Party. There are a number of House Representatives and Senators who are effectively wild cards, who may actually do things and ask questions, which polite mainstream Republicans would never dare.

USA Today reports: “An incoming House committee chairman said today that the new Republican majority will probably move this month to repeal President Obama’s health care bill, setting up a major political battle over the president’s major domestic initiative. Rep. Fred Upton, R-Mich., incoming chairman of the House Energy and Commerce Committee, agreed that the Senate is unlikely to follow suit, and Obama would doubtless veto any repeal effort. But he said Republicans would then seek to block various aspects of the law, including the requirement that all Americans buy health insurance.”

Obama can veto any attempt to repeal his health care bill so this seems like a waste of time except as a political stunt. This is going to be the story of the next two years; gridlock, which is fine, so long as it prevents Obama from destroying any more of what remains of America. But will it? A president with nothing to lose can still do some damage.

The article notes “‘We’re going to go after this bill piece by piece,’ Upton said on Fox News Sunday, later adding: ‘We will look at these individual pieces to see if we can’t have the thing crumble.’ Upton said a general repeal vote by the House will probably take place before the president’s State of the Union address, which is expected to be in late January. The health care law is also under challenge in federal court.”

Well, if the Republicans do have the moral courage to go after Obamacare, more power to them. I’ll believe it when I see it. The Republicans even more so than the Democrats have a tendency to have memories six minutes long when it comes to campaign promises. Politicians think promises are for the “rubes” on election day, not something one keeps.

What you have to remember is that through some kind of weird unwritten code or something, Congress and the federal government never repeal any of this liberal crap once it’s passed. Social security, medicare, the Civil Rights Act, Roe vs. Wade, now openly Gay soldiers in the military, all of these things are now effectively engraved in stone. No conservative opposition ever has or most likely ever will succeed in repealing any of this –at least not with the two-party system in its current configuration.

Will the Republican class of 2011 be any different with all those Tea Party types in there? It’s true they don’t have the numbers yet, but they do seem to have the will of the White majority behind them. Anyone who gets in front of the Tea Party steamroller is likely to get flattened in his next election just ask Senator Bob Bennet or Senator Arlen Specter.

Of course, the usual corrupting influences will try to seduce the Tea Party politicians into becoming venal sleazebags just like John McCain. Let’s hope the Tea Party folks aren’t so quick to sell their souls.

Tax Policy For A New Nation

Tax Policy For A New Nation

by Russell D. Longcore

December 9, 2010

We talk secession here at DumpDC.com. And as such, we think about what a newly seceded state, now standing on its own as a new nation, would do to raise money from the citizens to pay for the functions of the new nation.

Washington’s methods of taxation are insane. There are so many methods of taxation…so many assessments, fees, tariffs and penalties…that we cannot keep up with them. Then consider the voluminous IRS tax code. It has been said that there are so many laws in the IRS tax code that every taxpayer is likely violating some tax law at any given moment in their lives. And all of this tax insanity at every level of government robs Joe Taxpayer of about half his income.

The doublethink and mendacity coming out of Washington about taxes is enough to make even a liberty-minded free-market person confused. So today, I’m going to address some fundamental issues about taxation…kind of like “Tax 101.”

First lesson is about money. There is only ONE form of legitimate money, and that is precious metals such as gold and silver. But money is not currency and currency is not money. Currency…paper and coins not made of gold and silver, can easily be counterfeited and passed off as money. Most people think that the greenback paper bills in their wallets or purses are money. But that is just currency.

The word “Federal” would be dropped from the lexicon in a new nation, since the new nation is a single entity, not a confederation of states. The proper term going forward would be “National” to describe the government of the new nation.

A new nation needs to go on the gold and silver money system. For more about this, read Sound Money and Limited Government.

Once the money issue is settled, then the government can begin planning for how to generate revenue of money for its purposes.

“Taxation” is to impose a financial charge or other levy upon a taxpayer (an individual or legal entity) by a state (or the functional equivalent of a state) such that failure to pay is punishable by law. That is one method whereby governments collect money to pay for the costs of the government.

All taxation is the ethical equivalent of theft. But taxation has been found, over centuries, as the most workable way for government to collect revenue from its citizens to fund government activities. Most taxation is inequitable, meaning that some pay more, some pay less. Much of taxation is an attempt by government to either reward certain activity or penalize other activity. The disparity of taxation between income earners in America is so great that a large percentage of citizens effectively pay no tax, while other groups of citizens pay the most. So the best that any government could do would be to make the taxation as close to voluntary as possible. The sales tax is the method of taxation closest to voluntary contribution. Think about it. The only time you pay tax is when you spend money.

And what about so-called “fairness?” I’ve said for a long time that “fair” is a place you take your pig to win a blue ribbon. The fairness in taxation ends up being whatever those in power say it is, and that’s certainly not fair. But should not every person pay taxes? Every person enjoys some benefit from the functions of government. Why should the poor be exempt from taxes? More to the point, why should ANYONE be tax exempt? I hold the position that all tax exemptions be ended, no matter if you are a poor individual, a charity or a church. And with a national sales tax as the only method of taxation, all of the other tax exemptions would end as a byproduct of reinventing the tax system. They simply wouldn’t be needed anymore.

Another even more insidious method of taxation is inflation. There is only one source for inflation, and that is a government that devalues its own currency. Inflation lowers the currency’s value. When currency is devalued, it takes more currency to pay for a product or service than before inflation. So it’s easy to look at price increases and think the increase is inflation. It is not. For some excellent information about inflation, go to www.Inflation.us.

I’m going to offer my proposals for generating revenue for the new nation. And when you read these, remember that I am throwing out everything that Washington has done over the last 200 years and starting with a clean sheet of paper.

National Sales Tax

A national sales tax only collects from taxpayers at the point of a retail sale. Every state already has a mechanism in place for the collection of retail sales tax. So any seceding state would have to revise the percentage of sales tax collected but that’s about it.

To fund all operations of the new National government, a sales tax of 15% will be assessed at the point of purchase. This turns national taxation upside down. No longer would the government be able to spend over its income. The new government would be forced to operate within its income, and that income would come from one source…the sales tax. Consequently, the new nation would have to prioritize the services it rendered based upon income, not providing services and then squeezing the citizens for money, borrowing or inflating to pay for it.

If this proposal seems unworkable to you, remember that a new nation, formed from a seceded state, would not have to start with the burdens presently laid upon all of us by Washington. No Social Security, Medicare, big military, and long list of three-letter bureaucracies like HHS, FBI, DOA, FTC, etc. The new nation would start with a very small government, and would be prevented from adding new government burdens unless it could pay for them.

Advantages:

• One tax, no other taxes. No property tax, personal property tax, estate tax, income tax, gift tax, capital gains, tariffs, duties, alternative minimum, Social Security, Medicare, and self-employment taxes.
• The gold standard money could be paid to the new national Treasury through coin, currency or electronic money.
• All government functions, from national down to county, city, village and townships, would be paid from the sales tax.
• All employees earning paychecks would have no government deductions of any kind.
• There would be no exemptions for any individual, business, charity or religious organization.
• No goods or services would be exempt, like food and medicine.
• There would be no tax forms whatsoever for citizens to fill out.
• It would eliminate the need for an IRS-type tax collector. Tax revenues would be forwarded to the Treasury by retailers. Retailers would be paid a service fee for collecting and forwarding taxes to the Treasury.
• No tax breaks, tax deductions, tax credits, tax amnesties, tax returns.
• The sales tax would collect revenue from citizens, aliens, illegals and tourists equally. If you spend money in the new nation, you pay sales tax.
• The national sales tax encourages savings and investment.

The Single Disadvantage:

Those who wanted to avoid the sales tax would sell stuff as a non-retailer, just like people do today when they do personal sales transactions like at yard sales.

There is no way to estimate the revenue that would flow from a national sales tax for any new nation. First, we’d have to know which state it was that seceded. Then, possibly some estimates could be made based upon the economic output of that state at the time of the secession. But a new national sales tax would be a game-changer for this new nation. What individuals or businesses would not LOVE the abolition of all other taxes and the establishment of the sales tax?

I predict that the economy of the new nation would explode with growth and prosperity. Capital from all over the planet would flow into the new nation as individuals and businesses sought the stability of this government and its monetary system.

The national sales tax as the sole method of taxation radically simplifies the taxation process while bringing taxation out into the light of day. It promotes transparency in the new government. Between the sales tax and the gold standard, it affords the new nation the freest economy in North America…arguably the freest economy in the world.

Secession is the hope for mankind. Who will be first?

DumpDC. Six Letters That Can Change History.

© Copyright 2010, Russell D. Longcore. Permission to reprint in whole or in part is gladly granted, provided full credit is given.

Meg Whitman Spends $163 million to Lose the California Election

Meg Whitman Spends $163 million to Lose the California Election

Whitman waffled on illegal immigration, lost credibility with voters, losing by 13 points.

by James Buchanan

After defeating Steve Poizner in the Republican primary, it looked as though Meg Whitman would simply steamroll the Democrat candidate. Meg Whitman had been the CEO of e-Bay and became a billionaire in the process. The idea of a successful businesswoman running California had a strong appeal, but an over-managed campaign by inept advisers and Whitman’s inability to take a stand on key issues of the greatest importance to California doomed her campaign to failure.

The individual running against Meg Whitman is none other than aging hippie retread, Jerry Brown, the same bungler who allowed California state workers to unionize, which led to salary and pension deals, that are helping to drive California toward bankruptcy. You’d think Whitman might have mentioned that in a few commercials, but her dream team of “genius” political advisers either didn’t think it was important or they were afraid of offending the union members.

A recent news article reports “Democrat Jerry Brown has opened up a wide lead over his Republican challenger, Meg Whitman, with just eight days left before Election Day, a new LA Times/USC poll has found. Brown’s lead over Whitman has jumped to 13 percentage points. Of the voters surveyed, 52% said they would vote for Brown while just 39% said they planned to vote for Whitman.”

Meg Whitman has failed over and over to make her positions clear on the issues. When the Arizona immigration law SB1070 became national news, Whitman could have clearly voiced her support for it, but instead she produced a bewildering answer that it was OK for Arizona, but bad for California because California is bigger. Why should the size of California matter?

Whitman failed to take a clear stand on Proposition 23, a bill to repeal California’s Global Warming Act, which will cost California over a million jobs according to two different studies. If Whitman came out loud and clear supporting Prop. 23 to repeal the Global Warming law, it would have benefited both her and Proposition 23. As things stand now Prop. 23 is losing by 11 points thanks to a barrage of left wings ads and Meg is losing by 13 points. Left wing political ads claim that Prop. 23 will cause electrical rates to shoot up –while the complete opposite is true.

Whitman’s gutless political advisers are apparently telling her to avoid taking a clear position on anything. This however is totally insane. After a while, everyone begins to notice that Whitman is continually speaking like a lawyer and can’t say anything straight.

Whitman came out looking bad again when her illegal alien nanny went public. It’s a little hard to believe that Whitman didn’t know her maid was an illegal alien, considering that the maid was barely able to speak English after being in the US for over 10 years. Whitman didn’t bother to make the effort to hire an American nanny.

What completely killed Meg Whitman’s chances to win were her attempts to pander to Latinos. After telling the John and Ken radio show that she would be “tough as nails” on illegal immigration, she then released ads in Spanish that talked about a “path to citizenship” for illegals. This attempt to take both sides of the illegal alien issue immediately was exposed by the media and talk radio. It was at this point that Meg Whitman lost all her credibility with the White people of California. Her million dollar advisers look like complete imbeciles once again.

Politicians need to decide how they’re going to get a majority. It’s possible to get a majority in California by taking a strong stand against illegal aliens. Even though White people are less than 50 percent in California, Blacks are strongly opposed to illegal immigrants who compete with them for government programs.

Meg’s fuzzy position on illegal immigration and her attempts at pandering to illegals led to her splitting the White vote 41-to-41 with the Democrat, which is an absolutely horrible performance by a Republican. A strong stand against illegal aliens should get 80 percent of the White vote.

A Meg Whitman interview on the immensely popular John and Ken show, which is broadcast throughout California went disastrously wrong. John and Ken tried to get Whitman to take a clear position on Prop. 23 and the illegal alien issue. If Meg had bothered to listen to the John and Ken show like millions of other Californians, she might have been better prepared and realized that she could NOT weasel her way out of answering some basic questions that are of great importance to the people of California. Whitman was reportedly sniffling in the elevator on the way out of the KFI studio. After Meg Whitman’s disaster, Jerry Brown avoided the John and Ken show like the plague.

The people of California want someone who has political beliefs that mirror their own. California is literally being driven bankrupt by illegal aliens and unionized state workers who have salaries and pensions that are totally unsustainable. The crazy California legislature refuses to do anything about these two issues, which will doom the state to bankruptcy.

Maybe it’s just as well that Meg Whitman loses to Jerry Brown. Let the aging hippie retread, Brown take the blame when California eventually goes bankrupt. And if we’re really lucky, these rich egomaniacs will quit running in Republican elections. Whitman doesn’t have the guts to tackle the illegal alien problem, and without deporting millions of illegal aliens, California is going bankrupt. By running in the California race, she squandered $163 million just to lose the election and she also denied California a chance to have a more serious right wing candidate on the Republican ticket.