Friday, December 11, 2009

As D. C. Prospers, Freedom's Just Another Word for Nothing Left to Lose

From Newsweek, another argument against central planning of the economy: it favors one small region, which goes from strength to strength while the rest of the country bleeds:

When the recession first hit, the D.C. metro area was named by Businessweek as the top place to ride it out, and for a fairly obvious reason. The industries that have been most affected by the downturn are manufacturing and construction, both of which have seen double-digit losses since summer of last year. But Washington's leading industry is the blanketing expanse of the federal government, which has typcially acted as a buffer to normal economic downturns. To remedy high unemployment and sluggish economic activity, the federal government actually has to expand.

Over the past two years, it has, and government spending is one of the biggest reasons why. The district's fastest-growing industry is homeland security, which didn't exist at the beginning of the decade; now, it commands $7 billion in annual contracts to firms mostly around Northern Virginia. More recently, the area's jobless can thank the stimulus package Congress passed in February, which, in its aim to prop up new industries, also builds new legions of federal employees for things like overseeing renewable energy grants and spending on infrastructure projects.

If they would just leave the private sector alone as much as possible and just concentrate on helping the truly needy, the private sector would settle its debts and government would not grow so great. Instead we get wars without end, programs without benefit, and mandate after mandate. The latest scam of course is that even though there is no law that you have to have a house or buy food at a market, you are supposed to have to buy insurance for "healthcare" even if you are young and healthy, rich and can pay your bills with cash on hand, a disbeliever in conventional medicine, etc. And for this dubious privilege designed to enrich the existing powers that be in the medical-financial complex, there are to be several years of tax increases before the "benefits" kick in.

There is a reason beyond the economy why despite the concerted effort of all the mainstream media, the insane decision of Nobel Peace Prize Committee and an administration and left-wing war against the one cable news network that begs to differ, Barack Obama has the lowest popularity of any modern President at this point of his Presidency. That reason is that Americans see that Washington has grown great on the food provided by the people in flyover country, and they don't much like it. They see that the country was sold a bill of goods by an alleged moderate, but what moderate would put a Communist "truther" as a czar and subject New York to vast security expenses in order to have a show trial of one Khalid S M rather than simply a (legal) military tribunal that would have a rapid, fair and secure trial?

The healthcare goal of Barack Obama is that of Harry Truman, Lyndon Johnson and Bill Clinton. It is what Charles Rangel told me personally in the 1990s. It is complete state control of the healthcare system. The larger this system gets, the more the Party of Government wants that control. That's why Harry Reid is doing whatever it takes to get a bill, and why Nancy Pelosi has already caved on the "public option". The only principle this crowd has is power. They will wring no inefficiencies out of the system. The scamsters that have prospered off Medicare and Medicaid for decades will carry on at taxpayer expense, and to keep operating expenses low, nothing much will be done about them. But government will get larger, and government's acolytes will always call for more government to fix what government broke as well as for government to fix more things whether or not they are broken.

O'Brien told Winston Smith in 1984 that the Party lived for power even more than money.

Of course, these guys love the money as well as the power. What's the difference between them and the impotent opposition? The current crowd in power poses as being for the little guy, and the media goes along with the story because the mainstream media types vote 90%+ for them.

Once Government controls your medical care, and it already effectively controls the financial system, free speech is about the only freedom you will have left. (That and the always-under-challenge to the right to keep and bear arms.) And the war on FOX News puts the longer-term future of that bedrock freedom in doubt, as well.

The 10th Amendment, which reserves to the states all powers not specifically given to the Federal government, has sadly been forgotten due to the determined power-seekers in Washington.

The country needs a non-fringe libertarian-oriented party that could be a balance-of-power party, as the current Republican Party needs real reform before it can be considered credible in this regard.

In the meantime, gold--the one "money" government can't print-- is back to rising as much as the stock market. The ratio of gold to the S&P 500 is a comfortable 1:1, so in an overvalued financial marketplace, gold appears reasonably valued and has the best chart of any major asset class I know.

Copyright (C) Long Lake LLC 2009

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