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Irreversible damage — the U.S. economy cannot be repaired

Irreversible damage — the U.S. economy cannot be repaired

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As I outlined in my article The false economic narrative will die in 2017, the mainstream media has been carefully asserting the propaganda meme that the Trump administration is inheriting a global economy in “ascension,” when in fact, the opposite is true. Trump enters office at a time of longstanding decline and will likely witness severe and accelerated decline over the course of the next year. This fits exactly with the basis for my prediction of the Trump election win — conservative movements are indeed being set up as scapegoats for a global economic crisis that international financiers actually created.

Plus, it doesn’t help that Trump keeps boasting about the farcical Dow hitting record highs after his entry into the White House. Talk about the perfect setup…

With the speed at which Trump is issuing executive orders, my concern is that people’s heads will be spinning so fast they will start to assume an appearance of economic progress. Here is the issue — some problems simply cannot be fixed. Some disasters cannot be prevented. Sometimes, a crisis has to run its course before a nation or society or economy can return to stability. This is invariably true of the underlying crisis within the U.S. economy.

It is imperative that liberty activists and conservatives avoid false hope in fiscal recovery and remain vigilant and prepared for a breakdown within the system. Despite the sudden political sea change with Trump and the Republican party in majority control of the D.C. apparatus, there is nothing that can be done through government to ease fiscal tensions at this time. Here are some of the primary reasons why:

Government does not create wealth

Government is a wealth-devouring machine. The bigger the government, the better it is at snatching capital and misallocating it. Such a system is inherently unequipped to repair an economy in a stagflationary spiral.

I’m hearing a whole lot of talk lately on all the jobs that will be created through Trump’s infrastructure spending plans, which reminds me of the desperation of the onset of the Great Depression and the efforts by Herbert Hoover to reignite the U.S. economy through a series of public works programs. Reality does not support a successful outcome for this endeavor.

First off, Trump’s ideas for infrastructure spending to kick start a U.S. recovery are not new. The Obama administration and Congress passed the largest transportation spending bill in more than a decade in 2015 and pushed for the exact same strategy that is now being suggested by Trump. I should point out though that like Herbert Hoover, Obama’s efforts in this area were essentially fruitless. Obama was the first president since Hoover to see “official” annual U.S. GDP growth drop below 3 percent for the entirety of his presidency, with GDP in 2016 dropping to a dismal 1.6 percent.

Though projects like the Hoover Dam were epic in scope and electrifying to the public imagination during the Depression, they did little to fuel the overall long-term prospect of the American economy. This is because government is incapable of creating wealth; it can only steal wealth from the citizenry through taxation, or, it can strike a devil’s bargain with central banks to print it’s way to fake prosperity.

Some might argue that Trump is more likely to redirect funds from poorly conceived Obama-era programs instead of increasing taxes or printing, but this does not change the bigger picture. Redirected funds are still taxpayer funds, and those funds would be far better spent if they were returned to taxpayers rather than wasted in a vain effort to increase GDP by a percentage point. Beyond this, the number of jobs generated through the process will be a drop in the bucket compared to the 100 million plus people no longer employed within the U.S. at this time.

Bottom line? Though new roads and a wall on the southern border are winners for many conservatives, infrastructure spending is a non-solution in preventing a long-term fiscal disaster.

Interdependency is hard to break

Another prospect for raising funds to pay for job generating public works projects is the use of tariffs on foreign imports. Specifically, imports of goods from countries which have maintained unfair trade advantages through global agreements like NAFTA, CAFTA or the China Trade Bill. This is obviously a practical concept and it was always the intention of the founding father post-revolution for government to generate most of its funding through taxation of foreign imports and interstate commerce, rather than taxation of the incomes of the citizenry. However, the idea is not without consequences.

Unfortunately, globalists have spent the better part of a half-century ensuring that individual nations are completely financially dependent on one another. The U.S. is at the very center of this interdependency, with our currency as the world reserve standard. In order to change the nature of the inderdependent system, we have to change the nature of our participation within that system. This means, in order to assert large tariffs on countries like China (which Trump has suggested), America would have to be willing to sacrifice the main advantage it enjoys within the interdependent model — we would have to sacrifice the dollar’s world reserve status.

Keep in mind, this is likely to be done for us in an aggressive manner by nations like China. China’s considerable dollar and treasury bond holds can be liquidated, and despite claims by mainstream shills, this will in fact have destructive effects on the U.S. economy.

Also keep in mind that with higher tariffs come higher prices. The majority of goods consumed by Americans come from outside the country. Higher tariffs only work to our advantage when we have a manufacturing base capable of producing the goods we need at prices we can afford. The American manufacturing base within our own nation is essentially nonexistent compared to the Great Depression. In order to levy tariffs we would need a level of production support we simply do not have.

Manufacturing takes time to rebuild

Much excitement has been garnered by reports that certain U.S. corporations will be bringing some manufacturing back within our border over the course of Trump’s first term as president. And certainly this is something that needs to happen. We should have never outsourced our manufacturing capability in the first place. But, is this too little too late? I believe so.

I remember back in 2008/2009 mainstream economists were applauding the Federal Reserve’s bailout efforts and the call for quantitative easing, because, they argued, this would diminish the dollar’s value on the global market, which would make American goods less expensive, and by extension inspire a manufacturing renaissance. Of course, this never happened, which only adds to the mountain of evidence proving that most mainstream economists are intellectual idiots.

It is important that we do not fall into the same false hope trap in 2017. While Trump may or may not handle matters more aggressively, there is only so much that can be accomplished through politics. Rebuilding a manufacturing base after decades of outsourcing takes time. Many years, in fact. Factories have to be commissioned, money has to change many hands, wages have to be scouted for the best possible labor per-dollar spent and people have to be trained from the very ground up in how to produce goods gain. In many cases, the skill sets required to maintain functioning factories in the U.S. (from engineers to machinists to assembly line labor to the people who know how to manage it all) just don’t exist anymore.

Beyond this, at least in the short term, America will have a much stronger dollar on the global market, rather than a weaker dollar, due to the fact that the Federal Reserve initiated a renewed series of interest rate increases just as Trump entered office. What this means is there is even less incentive for foreign nations to buy our goods now than there was after the credit crisis in 2008. If the dollar loses world reserve status (as I believe it will during Trump’s first term), then at that point we will have a swiftly falling currency — but too swift to fuel a manufacturing reboot.

Is there even enough internal wealth to support the rise of manufacturing within the U.S. for a period of time necessary for our economy to rebalance?  If there is I’m not seeing it.

Ultimately, the shift away from being tied to a globalized system towards a self-contained producer nation with a citizenry wealthy enough to sustain that production in light of limited exports to foreign buyers is a shift that requires incredible foresight, precision and ample time. It is not something that can be ramrodded into existence through force or by government decree. In fact, the act of trying to force the change haphazardly will only agitate an economy already on the verge of calamity.

I understand that conservatives in particular want to “make America great again,” and I fully agree with that goal. But, someone has to point out the inconsistencies in the current strategy. To make America great again would require decentralized efforts to maximize production and self reliance at a local level, not centralized federal tinkering with the economy. The globalists have been far too thorough in their programs of interdependency. The only way out is for the system to crash and for the right people to be in place to rebuild.

Sadly, not only will a crash result in great tragedy for many Americans, but it is also an outcome the globalists prefer. They believe that they will be the men in the right place at the right time to rebuild the system in an even more centralized fashion. They hope to sacrifice the old world order to inspire the social desperation needed to convince the masses of the need for a “new world order.” Again, this crash cannot be avoided, it can only be mitigated. We can prepare and become self sufficient. We can fight to ensure that the globalists are not in a position to rebuild the system in their image once the dust settles. But, we should not place too much expectation that the Trump administration will be able to solve any of our economic problems, if that is even their intent.

— Brandon Smith

Source: Will County News

Rauner taps Munger as deputy governor

Rauner taps Munger as deputy governor to leverage her versatile skillset

 

Chosen for her extensive business, government and human services experience, former Illinois Comptroller Leslie Munger was named deputy governor today by Gov. Bruce Rauner in order to support conquering the state’s financial ordeals.

“We are thrilled that she has agreed to return to public service and bring people together to find long-term solutions for our state and its residents,” Rauner said, according to CapitolFax.com.

Munger’s history prior to public service includes stints at private sector companies Unilever HPC/Helene Curtis and Procter & Gamble, as well as nonprofit human services work helping disabled adults. She spent 20 years doing volunteer work.

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The former comptroller, who lost the November 2016 election to Susana Mendoza in a spirited competition, will now serve alongside current Deputy Gov. Trey Childress, according to CapitolFax.com, and earn $135,000 annually. With her broad skill set, she is expected to participate in a range of roles, from budget discussions to working with area nonprofits to help them attain stability.

“I love Illinois, I was born and raised here, educated here, and my husband and I chose to raise our family here,” Munger said. “I am excited to use my skills and experience to help get our state back on track, and I am grateful for the opportunity to work to bring financial strength to state government and ensure that Illinois lives up to the promises it has made to our human service organizations.”

Munger earned a bachelor’s degree from the University of Illinois, Champaign-Urbana, and an M.B.A. from the Kellogg Graduate School of Business at Northwestern University.

Source: Will County News

The Audacity of Obama

 The Audacity of Obama

 

Barack Obama delivered his farewell address. Aside from his lovely tribute to his family, there were more than a few portions of his address that raised eyebrows, hackles, and dander.

For 240 years, our nation’s call to citizenship has given work and purpose to each new generation. It’s what led…slaves to brave that makeshift railroad to freedom. It’s what pulled immigrants and refugees across oceans and the Rio Grande, pushed women to reach for the ballot….It’s why GIs gave their lives at Omaha Beach and Iwo Jima; Iraq and Afghanistan—why men and women from Selma to Stonewall were prepared to give theirs as well.

It’s both audacious and offensive for Obama to compare the struggle of blacks for freedom from slavery, segregation, and Jim Crow laws or the sacrifice of soldiers fighting to defeat evil totalitarian regimes to the protests of homosexuals clamoring for America to affirm and celebrate homoeroticism.

Obama then boasted about his galling impropriety, spuriously couching it in language that appeals to our better selves:

If I had told you eight years ago that America…would win marriage equality… you might have said our sights were set a little too high.  But that’s what we did.

Obama and five U.S. Supreme Court Justices did not win marriage “equality.” They imposed a radical revision of the legal definition of marriage on the entire country. Equality demands that like things be treated alike. Equality does not demand that we treat unlike things as if they were alike. An intrinsically sterile union of two people of the same sex is as different from a union composed of two people of different sexes as men are from women (which is a difference that even homosexuals acknowledge is real, substantive, and profound). Homosexuals have always been free to marry. They’ve been as free to marry as polyamorists have been. They weren’t fighting for a right they were denied. They were fighting for the unilateral right to revise the legal definition of marriage.

Obama inadvertently alluded to this when he referred to “reinvention”:

Our youth, our drive, our diversity and openness, our boundless capacity for risk and reinvention means that the future should be ours. But that potential will only be realized if our democracy works. Only if our politics better reflects the decency of our people.

Obama has used every extra-legal and unconstitutional means at his disposal to force people to share restrooms, locker rooms, and shelters with persons of the opposite sex. He has undermined true marriage and eagerly endorsed family structures that deny children their intrinsic right to be raised by a mother and father. He refers to people who publicly proclaim their embrace of homoeroticism as heroes. He has vigorously supported the putative “right” of women to have the humans growing in their wombs killed and believes taxpayers should subsidize this barbarity. And Obama has the audacity to talk about decency.

Obama-the-Audacious continued his reverie in la-la land:

 “Now, I’ve lived long enough to know that race relations are better than they were 10, or 20, or 30 years ago, no matter what some folks say.”

Surely Obama jests. More likely he lies. Well, perhaps race relations are better than they were in 1996 or 1986, but are those improvements the result of Obama’s words and actions? More to the point, are race relations better now than they were eight years ago, before Obama assumed office?

In an interview that aired shortly before Obama’s farewell address, liberal pundit Stephanopoulos asked him  about his record on race relations: “The heart of your promise when you first burst on the national scene, bringing everyone together. And you look now and most African-Americans think we’ve gone backwards on race relations over the last eight years. What do you say to that?”

Obama responded, “I am absolutely convinced that race relations on the whole are actually better now than they were 20 years—.” An incredulous Stephanopoulos interrupted him: “Better now?”

Sly rhetorician that he is, Obama changed the question Stephanopoulos had asked. Stephanopoulos asked about the trajectory of race relations during Obama’s eight-year tenure. He did not ask if race relations were better compared to race relations in 1996.

Obama, whose honey-tongue (or is it forked tongue?) masks his extremist and divisive cultural agenda, continued:

…[I]f our democracy is to work in this increasingly diverse nation, then each one of us need to try to heed the advice of a great character in American fiction—Atticus Finch–who said “You never really understand a person until you consider things from his point of view…until you climb into his skin and walk around in it.”

Has Obama walked around in the skin of orthodox Christians—especially those who are being persecuted for their faith? While “progressive” business owners have the freedom to live in accordance with their deeply held convictions by refusing to provide baked goods, music, or dresses, orthodox Christians are sued for doing likewise. One dress designer justified her refusal to design a dress for Melania Trump: [W]e consider our voice an expression of our artistic and philosophical ideas.” Apparently Obama spends more time walking around in designer clothes and little time walking around in the skin of Melissa and Aaron Klein who lost their bakery business and were fined $135,000 because of their artistic, philosophical, and religious ideas about marriage.

Obama warned about the deep distrust Americans have of government:

When trust in our institutions is low, we should…insist on the principles of transparency and ethics in public service.

When Obama entered office he promised his would be “the most transparent administration in history,” but in a scathing report for the Committee to Protect Journalists, Washington Post vice president at large Leonard Downie Jr. wrote that the Obama “administration’s war on leaks and other efforts to control information are the most aggressive I’ve seen since the Nixon administration.”

In this report, New York Times chief Washington correspondent David Sanger described the Obama administration as “the most closed, control freak administration I’ve ever covered.” And New York Times public editor Margaret Sullivan said, “it’s turning out to be the administration of unprecedented secrecy and unprecedented attacks on a free press.”

Obama continues to foment division even in his waning days. He commuted the sentence of traitor Bradley (aka “Chelsea”) Manning who was convicted of 17 charges resulting from leaking 700,000 pages of classified or sensitive government documents to Wikileaks that, according to experts, resulted in incalculable and ongoing damage to national security. Obama commuted his sentence from 35 years to 7, a commutation that even Democrats oppose.

Obama also offends with his audacious reference to Manning as “she” despite the fact that Manning has not yet been castrated and despite the scientific fact that castration and cross-sex hormone-doping cannot turn Manning into a “she.” This is particularly ironic in light Obama’s supposed commitment to science and reason:

But without some common baseline of facts, without a willingness to admit new information, and concede that your opponent might be making a fair point, and that science and reason matter, then we’re going to keep talking past each other, and we’ll make common ground and compromise impossible.

Surely a scientifically-grounded, reasonable man like Obama knows that it’s not actually possible for Manning ever to be a woman. Even a child can tell that he’s a man in the empress’ new gown.

In his farewell address, Obama proclaimed “Our Constitution is a remarkable, beautiful gift.” Equally remarkable, his nose didn’t grow when he said it.

If he actually did believe our Constitution is a beautiful gift, he wouldn’t have abused it. In a congressional hearing, Left-leaning and well-respected constitutional scholar Jonathan Turley warned about the danger to the Republic posed by Obama’s abuse of executive actions to legislate:

The danger is quite severe. The problem with what the president is doing is that he’s not simply posing a danger to the constitutional system. He’s becoming the very danger the Constitution was designed to avoid.

At the beginning of this article, I provided the definition of audacity—well, I provided one definition of audacity. There’s another. Audacity also means “boldness” or “daring.” As Obama at long last leaves office, let’s not follow in his impudent, at times even galling footsteps. Let’s step into the public square with boldness, constrained by our remarkable Constitution and unsullied by impropriety.

Source: Will County News