Feb 21 2009

Liberal DC Democrats Have Ignited A Modern Revolution

Published by at 2:31 pm under All General Discussions


You can only cry “Wolf!” only so many times before people reject you because you lost all credibility with them. The liberal Democrats now in charge in DC have royally screwed up, and in record time. Their blindness to what they were doing, and how it could fail spectacularly, is a testament to their toxic combination of arrogance and ignorance. They actually do believe they are God’s chosen and the masses are too stupid to understand their simple minded PR!

Let’s begin with someone on the left who clearly has seen the warning signs, and what appears to now be coming:

As more Americans lose their jobs and their homes, as more businesses crater and banks topple, popular anger is rising like a wall of water over a suddenly quiet beachfront resort. You’d think that the Democrats in Washington would be aware of the danger. After all, the massive expansion of Great Society spending in the 1960s, followed by the stagflation of the 1970s, allowed the marginal conservative movement to tap populist anger and dominate American politics for a generation. Substitute stimulus for Great Society and years of possible “stag-deflation” for stagflation, and you have a scenario in which the Obama’s overwhelming majority could collapse as quickly as LBJ’s.

To date, however, the Obama administration has seemed more concerned with reassuring Wall Street that it will be protected against Main Street hotheads than in disciplining Wall Street on behalf of Main Street Americans who have lost jobs, homes, and savings.

Geithner himself is a lightning rod for populist wrath. Ordinary Americans who fail to pay their taxes can expect strict punishment. When Geithner forgot to pay sizeable sums, he was quickly forgiven and made Treasury secretary. Most Americans cannot afford maids, legal or illegal.

For a generation, the white-collar liberals who now dominate the Democratic Party have shown a remarkable ability to dress up their own economic interests in the rhetoric of globalization and anti-racism while attacking the motives and assaulting the characters of Americans who are far less wealthy and privileged. They conveniently forget to pay taxes for their illegal-immigrant maids and nannies, and then they denounce fellow citizens who can’t afford servants as Nazi-like xenophobes for insisting that all immigrants, not just some, obey federal immigration laws. They use their status as alumni of elite universities to get their mediocre children admitted by means of legacy programs (class-based affirmative action), and then they blame racism when working-class and middle-class whites criticize race-based affirmative action. They benefit from a regulated national labor market that effectively restricts the number of lawyers, MBAs and teachers allowed to practice in the US, and then they altruistically offer to sacrifice the livelihoods of American factory workers to help out the Chinese poor and to put American farms out of business to help the African poor. They claim that by living in expensive doorman buildings in fashionable downtowns and using uneconomical, taxpayer-subsidized mass transit they are saving the planet from global warming, and then they criticize working-class Americans with a fraction of their incomes who can only afford to live in exurbs and shop at Sam’s Club as sprawl-creating slobs. 

The majority of Americans, even during the conservative years, were never against big government; they were against big government that provides special treatment whether to minorities, illegal immigrants, or the CEOs and shareholders of Wall Street firms that are too big to fail. What wrecked the Democratic Party was the public’s perception of double standards.

Amazingly, some prominent Democrats have yet to figure this out.

Harshly accurate. Strange how some people remain stubbornly clueless. Now combine this snobby self interest of the wealthy and well connected liberal elites (which used to be the face of the rich snobby conservatives) and combine that with a series of disastrous mistakes and the stage is set for what is to come.

The Feds cried “crisis” last fall, when Bush, Dems and Reps all passed the huge TARP bill – bankrupting our future for at least a decade. The promise was this would fix the economy.

Then Obama takes office and starts crying “crisis” again, handing over the reigns of the stimulus bill details to the pork addicted Congress. Obama cried “Crisis!” so many times you can now listen to a long clip of him using the word to get the stimulus bill passed on Hannity’s radio show. The second bill passed, but this time without the GOP (there were more Dems against it than Reps for it). This put the nation into debt for maybe a quarter of a century – and again the bill promised to fix the economy.

Then not even one week went by before the fools in DC cried “crisis” again – this time with the banks which everyone thought were fixed under last fall’s TARP. It has become clear the liberals in DC have no idea what to do, except keep crying “crisis”. They are not fixing the economy as promised, and they have bankrupted us for decades

And it gets worse, if that were even possible: there will be NO new jobs from the spendulous bill for at least a year. Since the bill is a spending bill and not a stimulus bill it will take the cumbersome federal government months (if not years) to just start the new projects. The proposal process alone will take 6-9 months, and then you have to plan, review plans, get the proper paperwork filled out, review designs, etc. 

All this time between now and 2010 there will be no fix to the job market – which will simmer the American people like applying a torch to a can of gas. Instead of jobs the bill does provide 5-10 stories a day for the next year on idiotic ideas on how to waste our money. As people scrape to survive they will be reminded of the daily list of wasteful projects from around the country. Each project in itself enough to take a well deserved family from desperation to riches in one fell swoop. The bill is massive, it has endless wasteful spending to mine and to remind those people without relief what foolishness is being funded.

And so the talk around the nation’s dinner tables will be pondering question like why dogs in CA are getting an area to run and defecate for a price tag that could send all my kids through college? Which is a better national investment: my kids or some pooping puppies in Pasadena?

President Obama is rapidly morphing into President O’Blunder, with good reason. People are starting to notice he has no idea what he is doing and has basically lost control. Tony Blankley was one of those who made this observation recently. Tony goes through the now classic litany of Obama screw ups from the tax cheating cabinet to the stimulus disaster. But what is important to note is his conclusions on what this means in terms of Obama’s governing skills:

Whatever the reason, this level of presidential detachment from high policy decision making is dangerous in a White House that has so many czars and other senior players (the West Wing staff is reputed to be more than 130 — about double the usual number) combined with emissaries and strong-willed Cabinet secretaries. It may well lead to what has been called (regarding another country’s government) “the immanent structurelessness to the running of the state.”

We can see evidence of this already. The Transportation Secretary floated the Big Brother idea of taxing Americans by the mile, relying on GPS to track a car’s every move to calculate the taxes owed. This ludicrous idea would penalize everyone who goes with fuel efficient cars by treating them equally – tax wise – to gas guzzlers. The fact is by taxing the fuel you are taxing the miles traveled, without the surveillance required. Talk about your simpletons!

Another example of his losing control of the message are his recent attempts to stop the financial blood letting on rumors of nationalizing the banks. It has gotten so bad President Clinton had to come out and push for more “Hope” in all this change, while Obama tries to stop the rumors flying from loose lips around DC.

Karl Rove also recently noted the emerging image of President Obama as more inept than inspirational:

Nevertheless, this fast start can’t overcome a growing sense the administration is winging it on issues large and small.

Team Obama was winging it when it declared the stimulus would “save or create” 2.5 million, then three million, then 3.7 million, and then four million new jobs. These were arbitrary and erratic numbers, and they knew there’s no way to count “saved” jobs. Americans, being commonsensical, will focus on Mr. Obama’s promise to “create” jobs. It’s highly unlikely that more than 180,000 jobs will be created each month by the end of next year. The precise, state-by-state job numbers the administration used to sell the stimulus are likely to come back to haunt them as well.

And that is the bottom line – all we have to do is watch the job numbers. Obama wants us to watch the spending numbers, but that is not sufficient. State by state stimulus spending tracked against state by state unemployment will be the test. And since these numbers are publicly available from the government it will be hard to blame others for the Democrats pending failures.  They cannot avoid the measurements, and the coming months of failure to produce jobs while the money flows.

The most glaring example of Team Obama being in over their head and not ready for prime time was Treasury Secretary Tim Geithner’s disastrous bail out plan roll out. It was so glaring it had to be reported as the blunder of colossal magnitude it was – and it was all about not being prepared:

Just days before Treasury Secretary Timothy F. Geithner was scheduled to lay out his much-anticipated plan to deal with the toxic assets imperiling the financial system, he and his team made a sudden about-face.

According to several sources involved in the deliberations, Geithner had come to the conclusion that the strategies he and his team had spent weeks working on were too expensive, too complex and too risky for taxpayers.

They needed an alternative and found it in a previously considered initiative to pair private investments and public loans to try to buy the risky assets and take them off the books of banks. There was one problem: They didn’t have enough time to work out many details or consult with others before the plan was supposed to be unveiled.

The Obama administration, they said, failed to rein in the grand expectations built for the plan on Wall Street and in Washington, concluding that they would rather disappoint the markets with vagueness than lay out a lot of details they might have to change later

Moreover, the department made a strategic decision to limit input from the financial industry and other outsiders, aiming to prevent leaks and avoid a perception they were designing the plan for the benefit of big banks. But that also meant they were unable to vet their plan with the companies involved or set realistic expectations of what would be announced.

Klutzes – plain and simple. The new media rumor mill of playing to back-room deals and stereo-types is no excuse to blow this window of opportunity. This is why the Bush administration discussed energy policy with leaders in the field before offering their plans, and stood by their guns when challenged on the impropriety of vetting national polices with key groups. Boy, do the media look stupid or what? Not only did they misreport on Bush, they pushed Obama into another O’Blunder.

Another bad sign: the Markets have been grading the Democrats through out all of this, and so far they are failing miserably. Every time they open their mouths America grows poorer.

And what about US Attorney General Holder coming out and insulting America and calling us all cowards? Them fighting words. It is one thing to screw up. It can be a crime to take other people’s money and screw up. But to take our money, screw up using it and insult us  – it doesn’t take a rocket scientist to see where this is headed.

This week something awoke in the nation and is starting to spread. The ignition spark seems to have been a commentary on CNBC this week by Rick Santelli, who called for a second Boston Tea Party. The original tea party sparked the revolution against the oppressive British rulers who simply saw America as a source of personal wealth and not a people full of pride and spirit. The similarities to today and the liberal elites in DC is clearly disturbing.

This is spark is igniting the fuel of frustration that has been simmering with all the false promises, corrupt cronyism and ineptitude – all while bankrupting hard working, responsible Americans. There is now talk of tea parties in every city and town in the nation. If done right, there could be a massive, grass roots event coordinated across America here very soon, and without a lot of effort. People are ready to end this nonsense.

Some have asked would I rather see me lose equity or bail out those who abused the system (to save the system). I would rather lose the equity, because (1) it’s already lost and (2) I still need to pay my mortgage and I cannot afford someone else’s debt. So no, don’t bail out the failures. Worst case is I lose equity. If I have to bail out people I still lose the equity but also go further into debt against my will. I think this is what Santelli has tapped into, this feeling that for those of us working and paying our way, we are done bailing out.

This is not to say the GOP is going to gain a windfall from this. They don’t deserve it and we don’t need to keep trading one fringe group for another. This time the revolution will be broad (and bloodless). The American center is fed up with the screw ups from the hyper partisans, who demand purity over progress, therefore producing failure over progress.

The non-aligned center is going to rise up and not only throw the bums out, they are going to throw the dysfunctional parties out as well. America has the power of the internet to spread the word to millions at minimal cost (opposed to national TV ad costs). All that is required is for this rising wave of rejection to coalesce around a new direction, new ideas. Once this takes hold the real change will finally begin to happen.

And let me see if I can give the new movement a little boost with some proposals of my own. Just a few today, more in the coming days. I will see if LJStrata has time to give me a panel on the site to list the proposals and get comments.

Here is one element of MY stimulus package proposal: Young Workers Tax Exemption

I propose workers under 18 years of age be exempt from income and social security taxes. These are people just entering the job world, typically living with their parents who are paying taxes for the family. These jobs can have no benefits and are seasonal or temporary. There is no need to tax the next generation at this early stage. Given the debt we are handing them they deserve a bit of a break as they begin their transition into the work force.

I would not exempt the employers from the social security taxes, etc. I don’t want to give them a financial incentive to cycle through a lot of underage workers to save a few bucks on the bottom line. Being a businessman I can understand there are times you do what you must or can to keep the business alive. This break is for the kids, not businesses.

I would extend this tax exemption through four years of college (maybe with a cap at the age of 25 or so). This would provide a further incentive to get a college education, and give those folks investing in their future a break, since we as a nation will reap the financial rewards of their efforts by taxing them their entire remaining lifetime.

This is a great way to push money into the economy (young people spend like bandits), while providing incentives for young people to work and get a good education. No wonder the special interest geniuses in DC can’t think this one up – makes too much sense.

Proposal two: Everyone Chips In

Everyone needs to pay some federal income tax – even if it a small amount at first. I propose everyone pay at least $2 dollars a week. This would be the lowest tax bracket – a minimal rate (as a percentage of some income or poverty level). After this the normal income tax brackets would kick in. We are all in this together, everyone should chip in something. It’s not a lot and probably should be a bit more, but it is imperative that everyone chips in.

Welcome to the revolution!

Update: Well, if Obama wants to stimulate the economy maybe he should pay the nearly $2 million he owes Chicago as well as the other bills his campaign dodged out on.

Update: Others note the bubbling caldera of populism beginning to break through.

Update: Obama is crazy to make promises he can’t keep. Check out this week’s radio announcement:

“Earlier this week, I signed into law the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act – the most sweeping economic recovery plan in history. Because of this plan, three and a half million Americans will now go to work doing the work that America needs done.

Is he serious? Mark my words – no fix to the job market for a year.

Because of what we did together, there will now be shovels in the ground, cranes in the air, and workers rebuilding our crumbling roads and bridges, and repairing our faulty levees and dams. 

Shovels in the ground? Dude, what kind of job is that! This thing reads like a B-Movie script. Is he kidding?

28 responses so far

28 Responses to “Liberal DC Democrats Have Ignited A Modern Revolution”

  1. BarbaraS says:

    Let me tell you a little story that will appall you. A friend of mine has a credit card account with Bank of America. Three months ago her interest rate went from 18% to 29.9%. The reason? She went over the limit because of a credit card insurance payment so they charged her a over th limit charge of $39. Her limit was $10,000.. 29.9% of $10,000 amounts is way over $350 per month. Her miimum payment is now $350 per month. She is not paying anything on the principal because she just does not have the money to do so. She will never get out of this trap. No wonder Bank of America didn’t need a bailout. They are soaking their customers.

    If congress, with all its wonderful ideas, can regulate how much water we can use to flush our toilets, what kind of light bulbs we are allowed to use and how we must go from analog to digital tvs, how come they can’t put a cap on the rates of interest credit card companies can charge? They seem to want to put a cap on everything else. I’ll tell you why. The lobbyists (that Obama says he won’t let into his administration) have to strong a hold on our gutless congresscritters. If this is going on all over the country, it is no wonder there is no spending. People just can’t afford to buy anything else and rasie their debt at this kind of interest rate.

    In case anyone forgot, this whole mess started not with the GSEs falling but with Shumer writing an open letter in a newspaper about the bank Indy Mac tanking when it wasn’t. There was a run on Indy Mac after that so, of course, it tanked. Probably confidence in banks fell also at that time. The dems are responsible for this whole debacle from the beginning. Babbling about our economy being in a recession when it wasn’t, the Indy Mac boondoggle and the GSEs falling just in time for the election. I think they bit off more than they can chew. After all, they were going home with this mess hanging because they said they didn’t know how to fix it and are now flailing. They only know how to spend, not to recoup or otherwise tighten their belts so they are doing their thing and spending like mad. God help us with a neophyte as president and men of such greed for money and power in his administration.

  2. CatoRenasci says:

    Mike m: I agree with you that there are growing and disturbing parallels between Obama’s Amerika and the ancien regime in France – I working on an essay on the topic – and that we may well be heading for a pre-revolutionary situation.

    The ultimate question is what will the military — the state National Guards as well as the Regular and Reserve forces — do in the face of a taxpayers’ revolt against government by the ‘laws don’t apply to us’ Democratic elite and the new aristocracy of the beneficiaries of all of this increased largess?

  3. WWS says:

    Barbara – what your friend needs to do – and this is hard but realistic advice for these times – is to quickly run every credit card she can up to the limit, get most of it in cash and find a place to keep it *NOT* in any account. Gold would be even better, but there’s the liquidity problem. After that she’ll have to learn to live a life without credit cards, but she’s already there now, isn’t she?

    Then, simply stop making payments on everything, mortgage included. Continue hoarding cash, but find a way and place to keep it so that it cannot be tracked electronically. The system is so overloaded that it will be many months and probably years before any judicial enforcement is attempted – and the courts by then will be so overwhelmed that most debts will be written off or settled for 10 cents on the dollar. Also, if she quits paying her mortgage now and proclaims hardship, this will qualify her for all of Obama’s new aid package. When push comes to shove and she has to file bankruptcy (like 20 million other americans will be doing this year) this will give her another year, at least, before she has to move and possibly under Obama’s new program a bankruptcy judge will simply write off whatever principal she doesn’t feel she can pay and set her payments and interest rates at much lower levels than today.

    This is going to be life in Obama’s America – the only people who are going to come out ahead are going to be the ones who figure out how to manipulate this system to the extreme. Everyone else is going to be crushed.

    Whether or not your friend follows his path, be assured that millions of other debtors are already well down this road today. This is why Bank of America and the other credit card companies are all going to fail by midsummer. Actually, they won’t fail, they’ll be nationalized in some form or manner. And then we can all pick up the tab.

    She better get hers, and you need to get yours, while the getting is good. This entire system is going to blow up soon, and once it does it will be too late. We’re already over the cliff, the freefall can be kind of a giddy sensation. Don’t wait for that sudden stop at the bottom to try and do something about it.

  4. […] stupid Fausta: Obama vs Cicero and Rick Santelli Mad as Hell: And that’s pretty mad Strata: Watch the job market; it will tell the story Doubling: The Misery Index The End is Nigh: if we can watch all three do we get a prize? Profane: […]

  5. kathie says:

    So Obama is going to cut the deficit in half in 4 years. He claims the deficit is 1.3 billion dollars, inherited from Bush. So I looked up how it got so big. Bush left an Operation budget of over $500 billion, and then Obama added defense spending to that, I’m not sure what else. I guess he didn’t add the $786 billion in that number, as Bush didn’t leave that or $275 billion for housing, or the car bailouts. Does anybody know what Obama is talking about? Obama did send an outline of what he wants to Nancy to fill in the new budget. Oh boy is she good at filling in.

  6. […] fringe of the left (and at times the right) is a serious lack of basic mathematical skills. With a rising wave of voter revolt appearing from his spendulus bill debacle, President Obama is now introducing an even more bizarre economic proposal for a recession – tax […]

  7. […] have decided to occasionally propose solutions to our economic problems that make sense (first two can be found here). First is on exempting kids from income and payroll taxes, the second is on how everyone must chip […]

  8. […] a country. You need to elect someone who has run a business, an administration – something! I wrote this back on February 21, 2009, after the so-called stimulus bill passed with all its over inflated promises: And it gets worse, […]