Sixty-second Legislative Assembly of North Dakota
In Regular Session Commencing Tuesday, January 4, 2011
SENATE BILL NO. 2309
(Senators Sitte, Berry, Dever)
(Representatives Kasper, Keiser, Ruby)
AN ACT to create and enact a new section to chapter 54-03 of the North Dakota Century Code, relating
to federal health care reform legislation.
BE IT ENACTED BY THE LEGISLATIVE ASSEMBLY OF NORTH DAKOTA:
SECTION 1. A new section to chapter 54-03 of the North Dakota Century Code is created and
enacted as follows:
Federal health care reform law.
1. The legislative assembly declares that the federal laws known as the Patient Protection and
Affordable Care Act [Pub. L. 111 – 148] and the Health Care and Education Reconciliation Act of
2010 [Pub. L. 111 – 152] likely are not authorized by the United States Constitution and may
violate its true meaning and intent as given by the founders and ratifiers.
2. The legislative assembly shall consider enacting any measure necessary to prevent the
enforcement of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act and the Health Care and
Education Reconciliation Act of 2010 within this state.
3. No provision of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act or the Health Care and
Education Reconciliation Act of 2010 may interfere with an individual’s choice of a medical or
insurance provider except as otherwise provided by the laws of this state.S. B. NO. 2309 – PAGE 2
President of the Senate Speaker of the House
Secretary of the Senate Chief Clerk of the House
This certifies that the within bill originated in the Senate of the Sixty-second Legislative Assembly of
North Dakota and is known on the records of that body as Senate Bill No. 2309.
Senate Vote: Yeas 32 Nays 15 Absent 0
House Vote: Yeas 69 Nays 24 Absent 1
Secretary of the Senate
Received by the Governor at ________M. on _____________________________________, 2011.
Approved at ________M. on __________________________________________________, 2011.
Filed in this office this ___________day of _______________________________________, 2011,
at ________ o’clock ________M.
Secretary of State
April 24, 2011
By Chuck Rogér
In January 1981, America’s Jimmy Carter disaster plodded to a merciful close. A new President judged the time right to acknowledge something that people had been realizing in greater and greater numbers since LBJ’s Great Society programs began ruining America. In his first inaugural address, Ronald Reagan declared, “In this present crisis, government is not the solution to our problem; government is the problem.”
A nation suffocating under a peanut farmer’s horrific policies inhaled the blast of fresh air. Today, most people who are not big-government liberals understand that Reagan was right.
But not all non-liberals understand.
Though 80 percent of Americans consistently self-identify as ideologically other than liberal, recent years’ polling has shown that as few as 56 percent of likely voters believe that government hatches more problems than solutions. So some people who are not big-government liberals don’t seem to object to throwing taxpayer money at problems that government inflicted on taxpayers in the first place. The contradiction is unsettling.
There are many possible explanations for otherwise clear-thinking people failing to appreciate the cultural decay assured by nanny-statism. One scenario carries particular credibility.
Faced with nationwide economic misery caused by politicians’ runaway deficit spending, some people choose resignation, others, disengagement. Far too many Americans still robotically swallow the left-flavored pabulum which is spoon-fed to audiences by alphabet TV networks, newspapers, and the entertainment industry.
Despite a surge in audience sizes for Fox News, talk radio, bloggers, the Cato Institute, the Heritage Foundation, American Thinker, and other libertarian and conservative outlets, the disastrous effects of government intervention in the private sector still appear nowhere on the radar screens of millions of Americans. Busybody politicians have fashioned decades of debacles. And yet many voters continue to cave in to manipulation by government-worshiping “journalists” and the busybody politicians.
Powerful or influential people using falsehoods to manipulate other people’s behavior is not a new phenomenon. More than a hundred years ago, “father” of modern psychology William James observed, “There’s nothing so absurd that if you repeat it often enough, people will believe it.” The “big lie” technique caught fire in the John Dewey, Woodrow Wilson, FDR days of the progressive era. The concept has found fertile gray matter inside the skulls of American progressives ever since.
Progressives relentlessly preach a narrative assembled from high-sounding fallacies. And the tactic works. Eyes do indeed eventually glaze over. Fiction does gain acceptance as fact. In other words, progressive falsehoods have staying power.
One progressive gimmick after another has darkened the American psyche.
Multiculturalism culturally divides. Affirmative action positions “underrepresented minorities” for failure in roles for which they are under-prepared. Relentless “diversity” efforts decay into emphasis on assembling the races toward one end: the assembling of the races. Diverse thought is diversity’s main fatality. Lopsided taxation moves income from “winners” to “losers” and teaches losers to give up the idea of winning. Crime-reducing incarceration gets painted as an abomination, while feeble “rehabilitation” schemes are repackaged as successes. Sermons on “building” self-esteem dismiss the importance of earning self-esteem through achievement. Casualties of hideous political correctness occur daily, as “choice” ends the lives of tiny humans. Dressing ugly reality in diversionary language erases no ugliness. And now the gargantuan federal debt run up through drunken deficit spending is poised to end all of the games, ending America in the process.
For two years, Obama’s federal agencies, thirty-nine czars, the Democrat Congress, and herds of media soldiers have turbocharged progressive lies. Big government continues to push an impossible vision of socioeconomic perfection. And through it all, among us live people who either condone or see no harm in the insanity. With the 2008 election of a man whose personal history sounded loud but unheeded sirens, no clear thinker can dismiss the likelihood that in 2012 a majority of voters would fall for big lies for the second time in only four years.
But maybe gasoline prices will soar sky-high during the run-up to Election 2012. Maybe the economy will grow unbearably bad. Perhaps the jackass party’s despicable refusal to address the $14.3 trillion national debt will render it impossible for all the fabrications in the world to save Obama and congressional Democrats from a second shellacking in a row. Would that America enjoy the “good” fortune of suffering such bad fortune in order to find relief from so much betrayal.
Then again the economy may continue to improve. Many voters, too emotionally spent to keep staring down the nightmare bounded by January 20, 2009 and November 5, 2012, will take comfort in seductive lies before heading to the polls on November 6. By then the lies will have grown to immense proportions. Democrats and mainstream media will have repeated the lies ad nauseam. Big lies might keep enough big liars in the White House and Congress to perpetuate the biggest lie of all: that a big-spending and yet flat-broke syndicate run by ruling-class mobsters can engineer societal nirvana.
A writer, physicist, and former high tech executive, Chuck Rogér invites you to sign up to receive his “Clear Thinking” blog posts by email at http://www.chuckroger.com. Contact Chuck at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Page Printed from: http://www.americanthinker.com/2011/04/the_government_of_the_big_lie.html at April 24, 2011 – 03:05:28 PM CDT
April 22, 2011
By S. Fred Singer
“Sustainable Development” (SD) is basically a slogan without a specific meaning. Linked to Earth Day (April 22), it masquerades as a call for clean air, green energy, and suggests a pristine bucolic existence for us and our progeny — forever. But in reality, it has become immensely useful to many groups who use the slogan to advance their own special agenda, whatever they may be.
The term itself was invented by Gro Harlem Bruntlandt, a Norwegian socialist politician and former prime minister. After her term there, she landed in Paris and, together with Club of Rome veteran Alexander King, began publicizing SD. Indeed, the concept is a successor to the neo-Malthusian theme of the Club of Rome, which began to take hold around 1970 and led to the notorious book “Limits to Growth.” In turn, the “Limits to Growth” concept was developed a few years earlier by US geologists like Preston Cloud and King Hubbert. In a report published by a panel of the National Academy, they promoted the view that the world was running out of resources: food, fuels, and minerals. According to their views, and those of the Club of Rome and Limits to Growth, most important metals should have become unavailable before the end of the 20th century.
(King Hubbert, of course, is best known for the concept of “Peak Oil” which achieved wide-spread popularity in the past few years. Princeton geologist Kenneth Deffeyes gained fleeting fame for his book “Hubbert’s Peak,” which predicted that world oil production would peak in 2008. Of course, it must peak sometime, but the date will be set by economic and technological factors that are difficult to predict.)
In turn, these neo-Malthusian concerns were opposed by the so called “Cornucopians.” Their leading apostle was certainly the late Julian Simon, who went somewhat overboard in the other direction. Many will remember Julian Simon’s famous bet with Paul Ehrlich, the noted Stanford University doomsday prophet, concerning the unavailability of minerals by 1990. Simon won the bet but he was certainly off-base in predicting that there would be no end to crude oil on this planet. Fossil fuels, of course, are essentially non-renewable. No matter how slowly they are used up, once used up, they are gone and not replenished over any reasonable time periods.
But in a certain sense this does not matter. Oil may become depleted — at least low-cost oil — but its essential function is to produce energy. And there we have a variety of ways to create energy for many millennia or even longer — based on nuclear fission.
The debate between neo-Malthusians and Cornucopians came to a head in a 1969 symposium of the AAAS, published as a book titled “Is there an optimal level of population?” Both sides recognized that population levels and growth rates are equally important in discussing the possible depletion of resources. Those proposing larger populations, like Julian Simon, seemed oblivious also to the environmental costs that would rise rapidly as the natural ability of the environment to absorb waste is exceeded.
But all this is history. SD lives on because it is useful in selling various policies. Some examples are:
1) Restrictions on the use of fossil fuels, under the guise of “saving the climate”
2) Transfers of resources to less developed nations – now justified for climate resons (but of course, quite contrary to resource conservation)
3) Striving for world government and UN sovereignty — all for “sustainability”,
4) Promoting a green energy future, using a solar and wind,
5) Advocating negative population growth, etc.
Among the worst policies being pushed with the help of SD is a scheme called Contraction and Convergence (C & C). The idea is that every human is entitled to emit the same amount of CO2. This of course translates into every being on earth using the same amount of energy — and, by inference, having the same income. In other words, C & C is basically a policy for a giant global income redistribution.
Since the SD concept has been popularized, it has become a fashionable topic for research papers, especially in the social sciences. We may yet live to see the day when trendy universities establish programs to teach SD — and eventually even departments of SD and endowed academic chairs. Never underestimate the drive for expansion in the academic world.
For Earth Day 2011, the National Association of Scholars, composed mostly of Conservative-leaning academics, released a Statement that critiques the campus sustainability movement. NAS president Peter Wood said:
“Sustainability sounds like a call for recycling and clean drinking water. But its proponents are much more ambitious. For them, a sustainable society is one that replaces the market economy with top-down regulation. They present students a frightening story in which the earth is on the brink of disaster and immediate action is needed. This is a tactic aimed at silencing critics, shutting down debate, and mobilizing students who never get the opportunity to hear opposing views.”
Here are some excerpts from the Statement itself:
“Sustainability” is one of the key words of our time. We are six years along in the United Nations’ “Decade of Education for Sustainable Development.” In the United States, 677 colleges and universities presidents have committed themselves to a sustainability-themed “Climate Commitment.” Sustainability is, by a large measure, the most popular social movement today in American higher education. It is, of course, not just a campus movement, but also a ubiquitous presence in the K-12 curriculum, and a staple of community groups, political platforms, appeals to consumers, and corporate policy.
The sustainability movement arrived on campuses mainly at the invitation of college presidents and administrative staff in areas such as student activities and residence life. That means that it largely escaped the scrutiny of faculty members and that it continues to enjoy a position of unearned authority. In many instances, the movement advances by administrative fiat, backed up by outside advocacy groups and students recruited for their zeal in promoting the cause. Agenda-driven organizations-such as the Association for the Advancement of Sustainability in Higher Education (AASHE) and the American College and University Presidents’ Climate Commitment(ACUPCC)-have taken advantage of academic sensibilities to turn sustainability into what is in many cases, a campus fetish. Sustainability also gets promoted by resort to pledges, games, competitions, and a whole variety of psychological gimmicks that bypass serious intellectual inquiry.
Some results are relatively trivial. For example, at certain institutions, cafeteria trays have been banned to save food, water, and energy, leaving students and staff to juggle dishes, cups, and utensils as they move between counters and tables. Many campuses have also banned the sale of disposable to reduce plastic waste. Yet however laughable, such petty annoyances have a sinister penumbra. They advertise a willingness to bully that creates a more generalized climate of intimidation, spilling over into other domains.
In practice, this means that sustainability is used as a means of promoting to students a view that capitalism and individualism are “unsustainable,” morally unworthy, and a present danger to the future of the planet.
Fascination with decline and ruin are nothing new in Western thought. The sustainability movement combines a bureaucratic and regulatory impulse with an updated version of the Romantics’ preoccupation with the end of civilization, and with hints of the Christian apocalyptic tradition. These are the “end times” in the view of some sustainability advocates-or potentially so in the eyes of many others. The movement has its own versions of sin and redemption, and in many other respects has a quasi-religious character. For some of the adherents, the earth itself is treated as a sentient deity; others content themselves with the search for the transcendent in Nature.
As a creed among creeds, sustainability constitutes an upping of the ideological ante. Feminism, Afro-centrism, gay-liberation, and various other recent fads and doctrines, whatever else they were, were secular, speaking merely to politics and culture. The sustainability movement reaches beyond that, having nothing less than the preservation of life on earth at its heart.
The religious creeds of faculty members and students are their own business, but we have reason for concern when dogmatic beliefs are smuggled into the curriculum and made a basis for campus programs as though they were mere extensions of scientific facts.
The sustainability movement is, in a word, unsustainable. It runs too contrary to the abiding purposes of higher education; it is too rife with internal contradictions; and it is too contrary to the environmental, economic, and social facts to endure indefinitely.
Atmospheric physicist S. Fred Singer is Professor Emeritus of Environmental Sciences at the University of Virginia and founding director of the US Weather Satellite Service. His book “Unstoppable Global Warming – Every 1500 Years” (Rowman & Littlefield, 2007) presents the evidence for natural climate cycles of warming and cooling and became a New York Times best-seller. He is the organizer and chairman of NIPCC (Non-governmental International Panel on Climate Change), whose reports reach conclusions that contradict those of the UN-supported IPCC. Other books he has written or edited, including a monograph on the price of world oil, deal with energy and similar resource topics.
Page Printed from: http://www.americanthinker.com/2011/04/the_sustainable_development_ho.html at April 22, 2011 – 04:15:48 PM CDT
“No matter who you are. No matter where you can came from. No matter what you look like. No matter whether your ancestors landed here on Ellis Island or came here on slave ships or came across the Rio Grande, we are all connected. We will rise and fall together. That’s the vision of America I’ve got, that’s the idea of the heart of America,” President Obama said at a fundraiser in San Francisco.
“That’s the idea of the heart of our campaign,” Obama added.
Adam Smith wrote that it takes deliberate untraining to remove a street sweeper’s child’s potential for brilliance.
After the Civil War the minds, ingenuity, and spirits of those dwelling in the only country on earth founded on unbounded liberty began to be imprisoned by central planners and revered “experts” in academia.
Thus arrived the onslaught of collectivism and government monopoly compulsory schooling to prevent an unmanageable social order and to groom people for the emerging industrial economy.
This was especially “necessary” amidst the flood of immigrants and the burgeoning quantity of independent thinkers and entrepreneurs.
The Biblical first principles that catapulted Americans to miraculous prosperity, effective government, and incomparable ingenuity were largely trashed by the time of Woodrow Wilson (a deceived academic like President Obama), who openly described his disapproval of our founding documents.
Progressives, and some Evangelicals, condemn the idea of “self interest” and individualism as militating against the “common good” and “fairness.”
Time to detonate this mind trap and extricate people from complacency about the onslaught of cultural Marxism, fiscal suicide, a parisitical administrative state, and the numbing effect of public schooling, television, main stream media, “intravenous” music streaming, video games, Facebook and artificial forms of recreation.
SONS OF LIBERTY
|The rate at which collectivists have been removing our freedoms since the Civil War and especially since Woodrow Wilson continues to accelerate.Are there enough sons of liberty(True Liberals) to reverse this “long train of abuses and usurpations”?The inimitable Samuel Adams, a leading voice among the original Sons of Liberty, asserted that “It does not take a majority to prevail… but rather an irate, tireless minority, keen on setting brushfires of freedom in the minds of men.” But in a day when most minds are cowed by the three-headed Goliath of media, academia and the ruling-class can that tireless minority make a difference? Political correctness stupification even permeates Conservatism. Witness the pathetic Republican response to our U.S. financial emergency; Michelle Bachmann, Allen West and Paul Ryan being the rare exceptions.Liberty is no more static than Biblical faith, love, justice, friendship and fellowship. If it’s not compelling you to appropriate action, beyond merely reading the news and casting your vote, you’re not a True Liberal.
The few who understand liberty are those who have wielded their moral capacity and the liberating power of truth to take responsibility for their own sinfulness and seek freedom amidst the harsh realities of life. Collectivists are those who intentionally or unintentionally look to society to relieve them from those harsh realities. They can’t comprehend the looming destruction of America.
The rugged individualist practices self government which is the foundation for moral character and a free society. Soccer teams, high tech companies and Marine battalions can only succeed as members support the collective effort, but only individually accomplished members are capable of this corporate achievement.
If you believe depravity is primarily a societal issue then you are not an individualist. Collectivists are either administrators of institutions that are supposed to make life more “fair” for the “oppressed” or they are the tens of millions who are materially and ideologically dependent on these institutions. That includes all Progressives, most Democrats, union members, nominal church attenders, public school advocates and those most complicit in the failure to prevent pernicious statism: docile Conservatives.
Pre-Civil War Americans were profoundly more free and self educated. They understood what makes people forfeit liberty for “security”.
May the Sons of Liberty get busy lighting those brushfires of freedom before it’s too late.
|The True Liberal takes responsibility to deal with his innate sinfulness and all the harsh realities of life by adhering to transcendent self-evident moral absolutes (Natural Law) in order to be free. He has the discrimination to judge true evil and uphold justice.||The collectivist, instead of dealing with his innate sinfulness, focuses on what he believes is the primary “sin” in the world. He sees the source of depravity to be “unfair” social conditions reflecting a lack of “social” and “environmental” justice. There’s no concept of evil in the mind of a relativist. The essence of collectivism is that the group I belong to is the primary source of my identity. Mankind, with the help of benevolent government, enlightened new agers, dominion theology proponents, communitarians, Fabian socialists, “emergent church” leaders, academicians and psychologists is evolving towards a more perfect global civilization.|
FREEDOM AND CIVIL SOCIETY
|God given rights to life-liberty-property should not be stolen by government for any purpose. To advocate the principles in the Declaration of Independence is not ideological. (Collectivism, however, is an ideological form of humanism.) It is unlawful for government to attempt to mitigate individual or societal failure and misfortune. Liberty loving people, with God’s help, can continue seeking to understand and actualize freedom, while avoiding encroachments to the liberty of others. Encroachments to liberty by the government are dehumanizing and grossly unlawful. Civil society should honor the Judeo-Christian ethic, America’s founding principles and the wisdom / self interest / experience / self-regulation / competition / dispersed self-correcting processes of the entire population. Constitutional governance is only necessary to prevent unethical and unlawful threats to inalienable liberties.||All law is politically-based. Government is the source of “freedom”, which instead of liberty, provides an illusion of collective security. Government is the implementer of “fairness” via the Welfare State by the theft of unalienable rights to property. This is a humanistic ideology. An ideologically driven person is not an open-sourced learner and cannot be objective about any reality that contradicts collectivism. A civil society requires central planning, judicial activism, a living Constitution, multiculturalism, affirmative action, redistribution, moral relativism and political correctness.|
|EDUCATION||Parents and communities should control the education of their children (education as opposed to schooling). There must be a complete dismantling of the current public schooling social engineering monstrosity.||Compulsory government monopoly standardized mass schooling tied inextricably to a massive commercial industry and teacher unions with little incentive for excellence.|
|ECONOMY||Unfettered free enterprise and entrepreneurial innovation. Minimal federal regulation over individuals, counties and states. The 16th/17th amendments, Federal Reserve, IRS, Ag Dept, EPA, Dept of Energy, Educ Dept, public employee unions and bailouts should end. A gold standard should be instituted. Major medical insurance should be available via state/private agreements, with minor services provided through highly competitive fee for service. There should be only be a consumption tax with prebates for the poor and no payroll deductions.||Extensive government regulations over healthcare, environment and business. Massively wasteful and complex tax code. Keynesian economics. Bailouts.|
|INSTITUTIONAL GOVERNMENT||Constitutional republic. Minimal centralized power. Term limited citizen legislators. Minimal bureaucracy. Self Governance. Sovereignty of the people. National sovereignty.||Centralized, progressive, liberal, socialist democracy. Unlimited administrative state led by a professional ruling class necessarily corrupted by excessive power and policies that violate self evident truth. Globalism (the ultimate form of collectivism).|
April 19, 2011
By Monty Pelerin
Despite Government propaganda and manipulated statistics to the contrary, our economy continues to deteriorate. For every “green shoot” highlighted by the Government and its lackey media, multiple contra-examples are cited by independent analysts.
To continue to deny reality risks credibility. Perhaps that is why S&P, arguably a sock-puppet of Wall Street, on Monday made its announcement regarding the financial condition of the US. As reported by the Wall Street Journal:
Standard & Poor’s Ratings Services Inc. cut its outlook on the U.S. to negative, increasing the likelihood of a potential downgrade from its triple-A rating, as the path from large budget deficits and rising government debt remains unclear.
Fitch and Moody’s have not yet seen fit to change their ratings. Preservation of the little credibility the ratings agencies have left will force them to follow in the course of time.
The S&P judgment was as unexpected as a terminally-diagnosed patient finally reaching his final destination. Reaction by the political class to the “death” is likely to be characterized by the Claude Rains gambit: “I’m shocked, shocked!” How could anyone have seen this coming? Actually, the only surprise is why S&P waited so long to report on the obvious and why it didn’t also remove the Triple A credit-rating of US debt. That downgrade of debt will follow eventually. Apparently S&P doesn’t want to pronounce a corpse dead until it is put into the ground.
Some believe the timing of the S&P announcement was related to the upcoming political battle over the US debt ceiling. Monday’s Dow was crashing, at one point down over 240 points. If markets are so easily rattled, the thought is one must raise the debt ceiling. Perhaps that played into the timing of the announcement, yet in a rational world this announcement should make it harder to raise the debt limit. After all, it is debt that is causing the grief. Why would more of it be considered prudent?
Economic damage over the last several decades is structural, yet decision-makers continue to treat the problem as a normal, albeit severe, economic cycle. The US economy and many other world economies are in a debt death spiral. That is showing up in numerous places. On Monday, yields on two-year Greek bonds exceeded 20%. Greece and Ireland reiterated that they want no bailout. Changes in the Finnish government may make it harder to push through a Portugal bailout.
European “bailouts” are charades of the first order. They merely move problems from sick countries to healthy ones, jeopardizing the survival of the Eurozone.
Academic economists fiddle with models and assumptions, looking desperately for something that will enable them to rationalize the situation. Ironically, it was John Maynard Keynes himself who said:
The ideas of economists and political philosophers, both when they are right and when they are wrong, are more powerful than is commonly understood. Indeed the world is ruled by little else. Practical men, who believe themselves to be quite exempt from any intellectual influence, are usually the slaves of some defunct economist.
The irony is that it is Keynes’ ideas that are responsible for the economic mess. He is the defunct economist he warned about. The average man in the street understands clearly the problem — It’s the debt, Stupid! He has an advantage over most economists who have been educated beyond their level of competence.
Academic economic nostrums are ill-equipped to deal with this problem. Structural debt problems are not part of their model. As a result Keynesians prescribe more spending (and more debt), further poisoning the economic patient. These economic charlatans know no other medicine.
In the meantime we spiral downward as life slowly ebbs from the economy. There is no way out except to recognize the level of debt is not supportable. Excess debt must be liquidated in order for the economy to recover. That requires pay-downs and defaults, not bailouts. There will be lots and lots of defaults. There is no other way.
Instead, the political class and their economic epigones insist on treating the problem as just another cyclical event. Easy money, stimulus and all the other Keynesian nostrums are useless. They are what brought us to this point.
Massive amounts of debt must be liquidated. But confidence also must be restored. Doug Casey characterizes our economic climate thusly:
We are in a financial no-man’s land. “Investing” is problematic because of a deteriorating economy, unpredictable and increasing regulation, rising interest rates and wildly fluctuating prices.
Mr. Casey’s negatives are enough to stop business investing, hiring, and growth dead in their tracks.
Contrary to the way that economics is taught, there is no such thing as an economic machine where a “pump can be primed” or the economy can be “stimulated.” All there are millions of individuals all making decisions designed to enable them to navigate through life. For most, their primary objective is the financial and physical security of themselves and their families. In scary economic times, these decisions are affected.
In order to right the economy, the fear and uncertainty imposed by existing and future government mandates and actions alluded to by Mr. Casey must be removed. Doing so will not be easy, for more is in play than Mr. Casey’s short quote suggests. There are at least five considerations that should be of concern to all of us:
1. An Incompetent President – The President is inexperienced and incompetent. He is likely a fraud, as evidenced by his guarded and unknown past. He is incapable of leadership, honesty, or management. Virtually every one of his policy initiatives has been harmful to the economy and country. His intentions are clear; the degree to which he will be able to drive us further down the Road to Serfdom is not.
2. An Incompetent Political Class – The political class attained power via Santa Claus economics, providing gifts to constituents in return for votes. Both parties are guilty. Politicians have conditioned themselves and their constituents to “free-lunch” governance. Few know how to govern in any other fashion. Most are indistinguishable from prostitutes — vote for me and I will do “that” for you. Both parties want to preserve the welfare-warfare State, disagreeing merely on the means of doing so.
3. An Incorrect Paradigm – The Keynesian model of spend and spend has been good for politicians but disastrous for the economy. Over time, it has encouraged loose credit, overspending, and living beyond our means. The failures are obvious to all but Statists and so-called Keynesian economists. The political class cannot stop “free lunches” without suffering severe political consequences. Hence, the abuses will continue until resources are exhausted. Like Rome of old, we will soon run out of bread and circuses.
4. An Unhappy Ending – Current economic problems cannot be mitigated or solved without incurring another Great Depression. Whether it is preceded by a deflationary collapse or a hyperinflationary blow-off is moot. The ending is inevitable and as more people understand this ending, they take more extreme steps to protect themselves — spending ratchets back, savings increases, and businesses refuse to engage in new investment or hiring.
5. A Dangerous Prelude to the Ending – Government is insolvent. It would be bankrupt without Federal Reserve Quantitative Easing. As a cornered, wounded animal will do anything to survive, so will Government. Does that mean confiscatory tax rates, capital controls, IRA investments forced into Treasury Bonds, “excess profits” taxes, a national sales tax, etc., etc.? It could mean any or all of these and more. Government will not roll over. It will do whatever it can to continue, regardless of how illegal, immoral, unethical, or harmful it may be for the country.
John Maynard Keynes referred to “animal spirits.” Alan Greenspan used the term “irrational exuberance.” Both expressions acknowledged the importance of expectations and anticipations. The five factors listed above are not universally known or accepted. As they become more evident, the dismal level of animal spirits and exuberance will sink even lower. There can be no recovery under such conditions.
The charade that government can solve this problem may continue for a while. So might the notion that the government cannot go bankrupt. Yet both beliefs are false and will be seen to be so. Spending, hiring, and investment will be unresponsive to anything the government may or can do.
The myth of government is breaking down around the world. For those with 20-20 vision, the Emperor is already seen sans clothes.
Monty Pelerin blogs at http://www.economicnoise.com.
Page Printed from: http://www.americanthinker.com/2011/04/its_all_coming_apart.html at April 19, 2011 – 06:40:08 PM CDT
April 17, 2011
By Miguel A. Guanipa
Fifty years ago, Soviet leader Nikita Khrushchev gave a speech at an antireligious rally, where he declared that the celebrated cosmonaut Yuri Gagarin had confided to him that while in space, he had peered into the infinite distance before him, but could find no traces of God. Someone in the audience is alleged to have murmured then that if he had removed his helmet, the proud space traveler would have instantly secured a personal audience with the one whose creation he so carefully surveyed in hopes of finding.
This amusing story illustrates the doleful plight of the itinerant Atheist, who is perennially engaged in trying to disprove the existence of something he is certain does not exist; which begs the question: if God does not exist, why spend so much time and energy trying to disprove his existence?
Take Richard Dawkins, the famous evolutionary biologist and atheist, for example.
In a recent interview with Der Spiegel, Dawkins was asked if he ever experienced a religious phase in his life. Of course, responded Dawkins — I was a child, wasn’t I?
Presumably Dawkins has moved on to matters that only grown ups consider worthy of serious consideration. To justify this inexplicable contempt for the religiously inclined, Dawkins goes so far as to casually wrench the Apostle Paul’s admonition to “give up childish things” from its long established scriptural context. Dawkins would have us believe that the intent of the most prolific writer in the New Testament was to demonstrate that belief in God is either a passing fancy of those still in infancy — like the Tooth Fairy or Santa Claus — or the imaginary wishes of well meaning adults who lack the basic reasoning skills to appreciate the absurdity of such a mindset; by far among the least disparaging of many an indignant remark Dawkins has typically leveled against his contrarians.
But this latent hostility against those who disagree with his conclusions only distracts from the obvious question which so few seem to be asking, which is why such a presumably brilliant man like Dawkins would uncritically accept the patently self-defeating logic inherent in the atheistic proposition in the first place; a proposition which collapses under the weight of its own logical inconsistencies.
The short answer is that Dawkins’ repugnance for anything that imports a deistic model into the public discourse is not grounded on reasoned skepticism because of lack of evidence, but on a willful refusal to believe despite any available evidence.
Initially one must ask how much of the universe has Dawkins spanned to come to a definitive conclusion that God does not inhabit it. And that is not the most devastating objection against his basic premise.
As a scientist, Richard Dawkins is aware that it is through direct observation that we discern the melody of an encoded universe, where the slightest variation in any of the Antrophic constants which regulate and sustain it would cause it to cease to exist. This order is so pervasive we cannot help but stumble upon it. In fact some of the major discoveries in the sciences have been made by sheer accident.
The universe is most easily understood by using intentionally calibrated methods to observe its fastidious regularity. Curiously enough, the scientific methods we employ to make sense of the universe’s architecture also possess an inherent order that facilitates the detection of the details in this meticulous arrangement.
But we do not arrive at these methods by accident; they mirror the order which permeates the universe we live in. We intuitively devise these methods and instruments of scientific inquiry as an extension of the minutely exact alignment we discover in the complex systems that surround us; thus naturally, this complexity is best apprehended through a framework of likewise precision.
According to Dawkins, this complexity is purely random, and the result of extraordinary coincidences. But since he cannot entirely dismiss purposeful design in the universe, he cleverly bypasses the inherent theological implications by describing it as something short of an illusion; in his own words, things that “give the appearance of having been designed for a purpose.” In Dawkins’ view, it is the fact that this fortuitous arrangement of the cosmos can be explained — in solely naturalistic terms — that makes them so fascinating and “beautiful.”
But how does a magnificent construct like beauty arise from the random, purposeless, haphazard “blueprint” of chance? Can that which is the product of random forces be called beautiful, or viewed as having purpose, or even be accepted as true within an amoral framework that is governed by the same blind forces which brought all things into being? In other words, how do ultimately purposeless birthing mechanisms give rise to life, or structured and meaningful values like truth, purpose, beauty, etc., values which incidentally, we must appeal to in order to judge the merit of Dawkins’ thesis?
Moreover, if the universe is the merely a product of blind forces, then Dawkins himself — and by extension his sloppily arrived at conclusion about the origin of all things — cannot claim special exemption from his reductionist criteria of origins. For in a universe governed by chance, as C.S. Lewis once wrote, “all thoughts are mere events with irrational causes.” One in which ideas, including Dawkins’ intimations about the beauty of an explicable universe, are mere reactions “determined by ultimately amoral and irrational sources, and no more capable of rightness or wrongness than a hiccup or a sneeze.”
And yet Dawkins remains undeterred by this glaring inconsistency in his worldview. In fact his next goal is to write a children’s book. No doubt he recognizes that it is far easier to impress those at the very early stage; one which he has decidedly forgotten, presumably in lieu of more mature undertakings.
Perhaps Dawkins might do well to give the doctrinaire beliefs he clings to as an adult a well- needed rest, and boldly revisit the wonder that is to behold reality anew through the eyes of a child; or at least a man less inclined to upbraid the God whose existence he so fiercely denies.
Page Printed from: http://www.americanthinker.com/2011/04/richard_dawkins_atheist_strand.html at April 17, 2011 – 12:02:36 PM CDT