Federal Budgeting, Deficits and Debt

How to Eat an Elephant

How does one eat an elephant?  The answer, of course…is…one bite at a time.  It is such a simple and obvious answer.  If you have something massive, break it down into small
Budgetparts.  This is not really wisdom or insightful.  It is not particularly astute.  In fact, the concept to break down a large project into smaller manageable pieces is just…well…common sense.

So if breaking down a large project into more manageable pieces is just…common sense, why is it so elusive in our federal budgeting process?  Who would in a sane state of mind raise their hand and state that they believe it is a good idea to spend billions more than one takes in year…after year…after year?  There is an inability to honestly challenge the spending and so it grows.  It grows despite the acknowledgement of imperfection and waste by all lawmakers.  We are told we must spend more than we have on more than we need; this is a destiny of a democracy high jacked by progressive socialists. If the classic liberals (those for liberty) whether Republican or Democrat do not find a way to restore our democracy; there will be no nation.

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Income vs. Consumption Taxation

IRSThe Sledge Hammer or the Scalpel

Since 1913 Americans have had a love-hate relationship with the income tax.  As federal spending has grown from 2.5% of GDP in 1913, to 10% of GDP during the New Deal era, to 19% (average spending) of GDP during post WWII era and finally to 23% (average spending) of GDP during the age of Obama, the Income tax has become the primary means to fund our obsessive spending appetite.

We have historically fallen short of funding our spending obsession by ~1.5% (on average).  In recent years, due to a weak economy and explosive spending, our tax receipts have fallen short of our spending by 6.6% (excluding the financial bailout).  Despite this funding shortage and numerous imperfections, on average, as a government funding vehicle, the Federal Income Tax is effective. (more…)

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Progressivism – American Socialist

socialismFrom a purist point of view, one could argue that progressivism does not equate to socialism, after all progressives never have advocated the direct ownership of any industry.  This unfortunately, is a naive understanding of the purpose of socialism and to the same extent progressivism.  Both are forms of managed economies much like communism on the left and on the right, fascism.  American Progressives and European Socialists have the same ideals, thwart the evils of unfettered capitalism.

In addition to thwarting the evils of capitalism (economic booms and busts), American Progressives often have a social agenda.  The most common social agenda shared by both Republican and Democratic progressives is full employment.  The primary weapon of progressives to obtain full employment –spending. (more…)

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ObamaCare and the Great American Pay Cut

In the dust of the Tea Party standoff with the Progressives, the implementation of Obama
healthcare Care appears unstoppable.  In the coming days, months and years, we will witness first hand which economist; Adam Smith or John Maynard Keynes was correct.  And we will pay the price or reap the reward. 

In the initial roll out of ObamaCare, we see how challenging managing 20% of the US economy can be.  From a technical point, the challenges of the website will eventually be overcome, however, the ability of the government to efficiently manage anything so large and complex will plague the Affordable Health Care Act for years to come. 

Despite rampant fraud and inefficiencies, the government through cost shifting, has been able to deliver medical care near competitive rates.  Cost shifting occurs when large customers, in this case the government, uses their size to drive down “their” cost.  Another cost shifter are indigent patients.  To the extent that reimbursements are driven below market, providers increase their price to the public and insurance companies – the hidden subsidy.  The ability to cost shift will be limited as the government consumes more of the market.  The elimination or reduction of cost shifting is how advocates justify savings and opponents warn of exploding cost. (more…)

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Flip or Flop To Teach or Not To Teach

Flip or Flop

To Teach or Not To Teachflipped-classroom1

To navigate your children through the public school system is challenging.  You will encounter a few excellent teachers, some very good teachers that your child unfortunately does not get, far too many average teachers and a couple really bad teachers.  Your job as your child’s advocate is to maximize their exposure to the excellent teachers, remove them from the bad teachers and minimize the adverse impact of the average teacher.  I am a big fan of the excellent teacher.  I have seen them.  They truly are priceless.

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Syria? Seriously?

Is seems as though we have become
images a nation of War Hawks.  We just cannot pass up a war.  The greatest irony is when our war protestor Secretary of State justifies a war with less merit than the one he directly engaged in.  Or when Democrats, known for protesting wars, the senseless and sensible, suddenly find Syria justifiable, is this not the greatest irony?  And last but not least, let’s not forget the Republicans who loathe the president, concur on this whim.  We have John McCain who never saw a war he didn’t like one upped the president.  We need substantive interference!  The balance of Republicans would rather spill the blood of our children than look foolish.  Really? (more…)

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Defining “Marriage” is Unconstitutional

Marriage Rings
Marriage Rings

Today the high court is hearing cases regarding the constitutionality of DOMA and California’s proposition 8.  On the surface, the legal challenge is masked in the 14th Amendment as an equal protection issue but in reality, at the heart of the challenge, this is a first amendment issue.

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“…you didn’t build that”

The classic “chicken or the egg” conundrum
Candy shopWhen President Obama so eloquently enlightened the American entrepreneurial spirit that “they” were not responsible for their success but instead it was the result of the government and something that it did right that caused the entrepreneur to be successful.  Several in the media refer to the President’s statement as a gaffe, a statement by a public figure so absurd they obviously did not mean what they proclaimed…or did they?

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