News from Tim Howe – Wed 6 Dec, 2017

Big Al guarantees that you are going to like this editorial submitted by my friend Tim.

Starving the beast

 Image result for cal thomas
CAL THOMAS Tribune Content Agency

One way to kill a predatory animal is to deny it sustenance. The tax-cut bill passed by the Senate, if it clears a conference with the House and President Donald Trump signs it, may be the first step toward starving the big government beast.

Reporting on the Senate vote early Saturday morning reflected the biases of various media outlets. Predictably, The New York Times and Washington Postcharacterized the cuts as favoring the “rich,” while doing nothing for the poor. Bulletin: Relatively few low-income people pay federal income taxes. They join the 46 percent of Americans who pay no income taxes to Washington.

Citizens Against Government Waste, a private, nonprofit, nonpartisan organization focused on eliminating waste and inefficiency in the federal government, expressed a view opposite that of the major media. President Thomas Schatz said: “This taxpayer-first bill lowers tax rates on American families; simplifies the tax code; reduces the tax burden on small businesses; and makes American companies more competitive globally.”

Two frustrating things about this: One is that too many people expect more from government than they expect from themselves. The Founders never intended government to be a nanny. That it has become one, egged-on by many politicians who preserve their careers by making people dependent on Washington, is why liberty shrinks and debt deepens.

The second and perhaps biggest frustration is that solutions to growing debt exist, but are ignored by many of these same politicians. They fear attacks by liberals who claim conservatives don’t care about children, the sick and elderly. One need only consider Speaker Paul Ryan’s proposal from a few years ago to reform Medicare and Social Security. Rather than debate the merits of Ryan’s proposal, a liberal group hired an actor who was shown pushing an elderly woman in a wheelchair over a cliff.

Google “cut federal spending,” and you will see dozens of suggestions. Mostly liberal and some Republican politicians don’t want to embrace them because cutting spending would reduce their power over us.

Two of these proposals deserve serious attention. One comes from Downsizing the Federal Government, a website designed to highlight where federal spending goes and how to reform each government department, which proposes shrinking “every federal department by cutting the most harmful programs. This study proposes specific cuts that would reduce federal spending by almost one-quarter and balance the budget in less than a decade.”

The philosophy behind this proposal (which is too long to reprint, so look it up) is this: “The federal government has expanded into many areas that should be left to state and local governments, businesses, charities, and individuals. That expansion is sucking the life out of the private economy and creating a top-down bureaucratic society that is alien to American traditions. So cutting federal spending would enhance civil liberties by dispersing power from Washington.”

A similar proposal comes from the Heritage Foundation, a Washington-based conservative think tank. Nothing has changed, except more debt, since senior fellow Brian Riedl wrote it seven years ago. It includes empowering state and local governments by transferring programs and power out of Washington to governments closer to the people, consolidating duplicative programs, of which there are many, privatizing the many programs that could be done better by the private sector, eliminating outdated and unnecessary programs and of course eliminating waste, fraud and abuse.

I would add reform Social Security and Medicare, the main drivers of increased spending, which President Trump has hinted Republicans may try next year.

Ignoring solutions and letting the debt increase is irresponsible. With this Congress, as with many before it, sexual harassment isn’t the only example of irresponsibility.

Contact Mr. Thomas at tcaeditors@tribpub.com.


Comments:
  1. On December 6, 2017 at 11:28 am,
    CFS says:

    I read the piece, and my first reaction is Bullsh*t!. Cutting off tax revenue (and I’m not sure the tax bill actually does that, means simply that the government will run up bigger deficits.

    The spineless politicians that are fat off the backs of the tax-payers, with great healthcare and pensions, are gutless when it comes to spending CUTS.

    The following is a few years old, but much better reflects my feelings:

    By Robert A. Hall

    I’m 70
    Except for one semester in college when jobs were scarce and a six-month period when I was between jobs, but job-hunting every day,
    I’ve worked, hard, since I was 15. Despite some health challenges, I still put in 50-hour weeks, and haven’t called in sick in seven or eight years.
    I make a good salary, but I didn’t inherit my job or my income, and I worked to get where I am.. Given the economy, there’s no retirement in sight
    and I’m tired. Very tired.

    I’m tired of being told that I have to “spread the wealth” to people who don’t have my work ethic. I’m tired of being told the government will take the
    money I earned, by force if necessary, and give it to people too lazy to earn it.

    I’m tired of being told that Islam is a “Religion of Peace,” when every day I can read dozens of stories of Muslim men killing their sisters, wives and
    daughters for their family “honor”; of Muslims rioting over some slight offense; of Muslims murdering Christian and Jews because they aren’t
    “believers;” of Muslims burning schools for girls; of Muslims stoning teenage rape victims to death for “adultery;” of Muslims mutilating the genitals
    of little girls; all in the name of Allah, because the Qur’an and Shari???a law tells them to.

    I’m tired of being told that, out of “tolerance for other cultures,” we must let Saudi Arabia use our oil money to fund mosques and mandrassa Islamic schools
    to preach hate in America and Canada , while no American nor Canadian group is allowed to fund a church, synagogue or religious school in Saudi Arabia
    to teach love and tolerance..

    I’m tired of being told I must lower my living standard to fight global warming, which no one is allowed to debate.

    I’m tired of being told that drug addicts have a disease, and I must help support and treat them, and pay for the damage they do. Did a giant germ rush out
    of a dark alley, grab them, and stuff white powder up their noses while they tried to fight it off?

    I’m tired of hearing wealthy athletes, entertainers and politicians of both parties talking about innocent mistakes, stupid mistakes or youthful mistakes,
    when we all know they think their only mistake was getting caught. I’m tired of people with a sense of entitlement, rich or poor.

    I’m real tired of people who don’t take responsibility for their lives and actions. I’m tired of hearing them blame the government, or discrimination or
    big-whatever for their problems.

    Yes, I’m damn tired. But I’m also glad to be 70.. Because, mostly, I’m not going to have
    to see the world these people are making. I’m just sorry for my granddaughters and grandson.

    Robert A. Hall is a Marine Vietnam veteran who served five terms in the Massachusetts State Senate.

    • On December 6, 2017 at 11:39 am,
      CFS says:

      The Government SHOULD be working For the people, For MORE Freedom, not less. For more liberty, not less.

      Just look at every socialist or communist state throughout the millennia of history. They always trend towards less freedom and more oppression and the US is headed in exactly that direction; stifling the natural creativity of its unique population and heritage.

      • On December 6, 2017 at 12:59 pm,
        Excelsior says:

        If the tax cuts aren’t paired with real spending cuts, then I don’t see them accomplishing even a fraction of the promises towards fixing things in the economy.

        If there are not substantial spending cuts and a disbanding of most of the government agencies and departments sucking at the government teat then they aren’t even coming close to starving the beast of big government.

        Cutting taxes creates a larger deficit moving forward, so without reigning in the spending then it’s a lopsided effort.

        • On December 6, 2017 at 1:02 pm,
          Excelsior says:

          When they announce they are laying off 80% of the government workers, fixing Social Security, trimming back Medicare benefits, reducing down unemployment, fixing who qualifies for food stamps, and all the social nanny state initiatives, then it will be something to discuss. Until then it is just a huge charade, and not much is really changing.

        • On December 6, 2017 at 7:20 pm,
          Big Al says:

          Excelsior, respectfully I think that the writer and you are pretty much saying the same thing. Notice I said “petty much”

      • On December 6, 2017 at 7:18 pm,
        Big Al says:

        Well, of course CFS

    • On December 6, 2017 at 12:55 pm,
      bonzo barzini says:

      Put Robert Hall on the Supreme Court.

    • On December 6, 2017 at 1:06 pm,
      Robert Moriarty says:

      This is one of the dumber statements I’ve read lately.

      One way to kill a predatory animal is to deny it sustenance. The tax-cut bill passed by the Senate, if it clears a conference with the House and President Donald Trump signs it, may be the first step toward starving the big government beast.

      What the government brings in in the way of taxes is totally meaningless. Cutting taxes is like taking a $100 bill from your left pocket and putting it in your right pocket and thinking you are better off. It is not what the government collects via taxes that is vital, it is what they spend since inflation is tax and so is default and before the end of this spending monster we will see higher inflation, defaults and more taxes.

      • On December 6, 2017 at 1:13 pm,
        OOTB Jerry says:

        BIG AL GUARANTEES THAT YOU ARE GOING TO LIKE THIS EDITORIAL ……… 🙂

        • On December 6, 2017 at 7:22 pm,
          Big Al says:

          I personally think that it is actually a very good opinion, Jerry!

          • On December 7, 2017 at 6:24 am,
            OOTB Jerry says:

            I Guarantee you………..you are correct …….OWl…..

      • On December 6, 2017 at 1:54 pm,
        Excelsior says:

        Bingo. The government spending and bloated departments and huge numbers of employees is the predatory animal.

        Fire 80% of the government workers, and shut down most of the departments, overhaul “entitlement” programs, funding, and subsidies, and that would be the actual denying the animal of sustenance.

        Inflation is just like taxing in that it robs the pockets of the citizens the same way regardless. If the mountain of debt gets even larger, then confidence in the dollar erodes, and as it falls, inflation rises.

        The only way to make a real dent in the Trillions of dollars of debt is to quit spending so much, and I don’t see politicians on either side of the isle really taking meaningful action as far as that is concerned, as there would be so much public outcry.

        We do have a debt ceiling issue coming up soon, but look what happened the last few times – each time the government decided to RAISE the spending limit (again).

        People on Capitol Hill were in a panic — “but, but… We can’t have a government shut down right?” Where would we all be without those TSA workers there to grope people at the airports? 🙂

        The problem is the overly bloated government and all the obligations that they’ve committed to. Without going through and slicing the spending, then nothing will change, and the world’s confidence in our ability to pay back the debt will only erode further.

        Honestly, we are past the point where we can ever really fix the math on the debt monster anyway, so the the more things change, the more that they stay the same….

        • On December 6, 2017 at 7:24 pm,
          Big Al says:

          Actually Excelsior, wasn’t he talking, in part, about the dysfunctional elected officials?

      • On December 7, 2017 at 5:22 am,
        Steven Rowlandson says:

        Bob, inflation is an increase in the currency supply that exceeds the collateral backing it up. It and greed causes higher prices but not necessarily higher pay rates.

    • On December 6, 2017 at 7:18 pm,
      Big Al says:

      I happen to share his thoughts exactly, CFS

  2. On December 6, 2017 at 12:02 pm,
    CFS says:

    The problem with Government is not lack of efficiency. (Although governments are never efficient.)
    The problem with government is not waste. (Although I do not know any government that is not wasteful.)
    The problem with government at every level is SIze and Control. (All governments grow, forever, bigger and want more control.) Therein lies the problem. The US government needs , in the Roman sense, to be decimated and then in a few years decimated yet again.

  3. On December 6, 2017 at 12:11 pm,
    jhpace1 says:

    Catherine Austin Fitts has told her audience many times of when she was hunting down governmental waste and fraud in our US government. She cornered an employee in Housing & Urban Development one time with her results, and the response was “But how will we pay our friends in the construction business?”

    This is “crony capitalism”, which is really “soft fascism”, or taxpayer-funded kickbacks and exclusive, bloated contracts to well-connected businesses that every citizen above high school in American knows goes on, but cannot put their finger on the perpetrators. Because we are told “If we follow the law as it is written nobody would make any money.”

    • On December 6, 2017 at 12:18 pm,
      OOTB Jerry says:

      Fitts has been spot on for years………..she was even correct 3 or 4 years ago, when she said the stock market would “Crash Up”.

    • On December 6, 2017 at 7:27 pm,
      Big Al says:

      Of course it is a bit of fascism, Mr. Pace!

  4. On December 6, 2017 at 12:16 pm,
    OOTB Jerry says:
  5. On December 6, 2017 at 1:00 pm,
    OOTB Jerry says:
    • On December 6, 2017 at 1:08 pm,
      Robert Moriarty says:

      OOTB and without any question, it couldn’t have been an inside job.

      • On December 6, 2017 at 1:10 pm,
        OOTB Jerry says:

        No manipulation there……… 🙂

    • On December 6, 2017 at 1:23 pm,
      CFS says:

      With 50 million BTC stolen, you’d think someone would be P.O.’d enough to track the thief down and eliminate him from the face of the earth in a very unpleasant way.

      And I’m not sure such things will be untrackable forever.

      Exchanges are supposed to “know” their customers.
      The blockchain itself records ALL transactions, so in theory it should be possible to track everything.

      • On December 6, 2017 at 1:25 pm,
        OOTB Jerry says:

        Check Jimmy D’s pocket book………..I bet he is carrying some extra change in his wallet.

        • On December 6, 2017 at 1:28 pm,
          OOTB Jerry says:

          About time for Corslim to surface, any body check his wallet…………..

  6. On December 6, 2017 at 1:18 pm,
    OOTB Jerry says:
    • On December 6, 2017 at 1:19 pm,
      OOTB Jerry says:

      Does that mean………”they are too big to fail”……….. 🙂

    • On December 6, 2017 at 1:26 pm,
      CFS says:

      So let citi go belly up. It is about time fatcat bankers FEEL the pain.

      • On December 6, 2017 at 1:32 pm,
        OOTB Jerry says:

        Hope so, they are the Big Usury Kings…of the 70’s

      • On December 7, 2017 at 8:42 am,
        Big Al says:

        We definitely need big changes in the system CFS.

  7. On December 6, 2017 at 1:24 pm,
    OOTB Jerry says:

    HUI within 10 of Ganns prediction………..

  8. On December 6, 2017 at 1:35 pm,
    OOTB Jerry says:

    House Demwits…….actually 58 vote to Impeach Trump………..
    http://www.zerohedge.com/news/2017-12-06/house-rejects-democrats-resolution-impeach-trump-again

    • On December 6, 2017 at 1:36 pm,
      OOTB Jerry says:

      I would say 58 are about to leave congress…….

      • On December 6, 2017 at 1:37 pm,
        OOTB Jerry says:

        Out of 58 , how many can read……….

    • On December 6, 2017 at 7:29 pm,
      Big Al says:

      Of course Jerry, they are “running scared”

      • On December 7, 2017 at 6:31 am,
        OOTB Jerry says:

        THe morons should be having a real debate over real issues
        Like TERM LIMITS< END THE FED.

    • On December 7, 2017 at 8:43 am,
      Big Al says:

      I realize the high degree off animosity that exists, but that is just plain stupid as important and positive changes have been made.

      • On December 7, 2017 at 9:01 am,
        OOTB Jerry says:

        What do you expect from a bunch of 8th graders……….

  9. On December 6, 2017 at 3:08 pm,
    Temple says:

    This is partisan, kosher conservative pablum. No real solutions.

    • On December 6, 2017 at 7:31 pm,
      Big Al says:

      I don’t completely agree with you on this one Chris. I saw a lot of criticism of politicians in this one. Oh well, it’s all insane at this point anyway. I was watching Hannity tonight and simply turned it off!

      • On December 7, 2017 at 6:27 am,
        OOTB Jerry says:

        Ditto BIG OWL……….it’s all insane at this point anyway.

  10. On December 7, 2017 at 5:15 am,
    Steven Rowlandson says:

    Bitcoin is getting close to $14,900 this morning.

    http://markets.businessinsider.com/currencies/BTC-USD

    Frankly I am expecting an official counter attack by governments to quash this upstart in order to forestall ruinous interest rate rises to defend the currencies from Bitcoin making them all look like crap.

    • On December 7, 2017 at 11:14 am,
      jhpace1 says:

      We may not need government-backed loans soon. There is an Ethereum-backed token called SALT (https://www.saltlending.com/) that uses crypto currency to back personal loans. Cryptos are the collateral. Of course, if your collateral is 2 Bitcoin at the beginning of the loan, and the loan is for $10,000.00, then the 2 Bitcoin may exceed the amount of the loan in a very short time – days, even! So you can pay the loan off with SALT or other altcoins or Bitcoin.

      We don’t need the banks anymore for loans to keep businesses going!

  11. On December 7, 2017 at 5:32 am,
    Steven Rowlandson says:

    Last look and we are over $15,160 USD for Bitcoin. How does 50 bitcoins per real troy ounce of silver sound as a silver price? I’m not making any buy or sell offers by the way.

  12. On December 7, 2017 at 8:43 am,
    james says:

    Hi AL ! The Salvator Mundi is in Dubai ! I Told You ! 450 000 000 $ The New World Order ! Maria in Paris Jesus in Dubai ! The New World Order Religion !

    • On December 7, 2017 at 8:44 am,
      Big Al says:

      Franky, life would be so simple if it actually came to that!

    • On December 7, 2017 at 8:47 am,
      james says:

      Donald Trump ! Health Wise Something Wrong i feel God works we can’t understan !

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