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04 July 2012


Michael Anderson

I'd just like to point out that one man's moral busybody can be another man's Martin Luther King.

Happy Fourth, everyone!


Progressives must hate the 4th of July like an atheist hates Christmas/Easter. A progressive ideology requires the use of force by a (tyrannical) government body and the sacrifice of personal liberty; which is so diametric to the values of this holiday.

God Bless and Happy 4th of July!

p.s. I have seen the above quote attributed to Ayn Rand, though I actually think it is more powerful without her name 'attached' to it :)

George Rebane

MichaelA 816am - Ah yes, and there's the rub. How can we live together in liberty without being busybodies in each other's lives? (I'm sure in your connecting MLK with this observation, you did not mean to impugn him as a tyrant or fomenting tyranny, which is the conditional point made in reference to 'busybody'.)

Michael Anderson

George asked, "How can we live together in liberty without being busybodies in each other's lives?"

Great question for today. The Mad King started messin' with some people's liberties who were just trying to have a little offshore fun and look where that got him.

I'm afraid history has shown us that in the great struggle to find out where ends the reach of one side's fist and the surface of another's face, too often the boundaries are crossed.

I suppose the good news for today is that we are still going at that struggle hammer and tong, and neither side has yet to give up. I take that as a good thing.

Todd Juvinall

To compare MLK and his quest for justice with a busybody is frightening. He was asking simply for the enforcement and protection of the law and in a non-violent manner. Since MA loves the news intrusion into his body and it's functions by Reid/Pelosi?Obama, I would suggest he is a lost cause on the reason America is celebrating today.

Steven Frisch

Actually, MLK was asking for a change in the established laws of the land; the overthrow of Plessy v. Fergeson; a redefinition of states rights as interpreted by the SCOTUS; and expansion of the definition of rights under status quo interpretation of the 14th amendment that had set in between Reconstruction and the 1950's, and its due process, equal protection, and the citizen clauses in the Constitution; and enforcement of the voting rights defined in the 15th amendment.

To pretend that such a call for reform was not seen as a tyranny of the federal government over the rights of the states in its day shows an even more frightening lack of historical knowledge and context.

A Facebook User

My wife and I chose July 4th to get married on because we both know despite all its warts is still an amazing nation. The Declaration of Independence is one of the most incredible political documents ever written. I attached a piece I am sure you will love to hate but I challenge you to actually try to answer the questions honestly. Consider it a critical thinking exercise.

B. Emery

July 4, 2009
Howard Zinn

Untold Truths About the American Revolution

There are things that happen in the world that are bad, and you want to do something about them. You have a just cause. But our culture is so war prone that we immediately jump from, “This is a good cause” to “This deserves a war.”

You need to be very, very comfortable in making that jump.

The American Revolution—independence from England—was a just cause. Why should the colonists here be occupied by and oppressed by England? But therefore, did we have to go to the Revolutionary War?

How many people died in the Revolutionary War?

Nobody ever knows exactly how many people die in wars, but it’s likely that 25,000 to 50,000 people died in this one. So let’s take the lower figure—25,000 people died out of a population of three million. That would be equivalent today to two and a half million people dying to get England off our backs.

You might consider that worth it, or you might not.

Canada is independent of England, isn’t it? I think so. Not a bad society. Canadians have good health care. They have a lot of things we don’t have. They didn’t fight a bloody revolutionary war. Why do we assume that we had to fight a bloody revolutionary war to get rid of England?

In the year before those famous shots were fired, farmers in Western Massachusetts had driven the British government out without firing a single shot. They had assembled by the thousands and thousands around courthouses and colonial offices and they had just taken over and they said goodbye to the British officials. It was a nonviolent revolution that took place. But then came Lexington and Concord, and the revolution became violent, and it was run not by the farmers but by the Founding Fathers. The farmers were rather poor; the Founding Fathers were rather rich.

Who actually gained from that victory over England? It’s very important to ask about any policy, and especially about war: Who gained what? And it’s very important to notice differences among the various parts of the population. That’s one thing were not accustomed to in this country because we don’t think in class terms. We think, “Oh, we all have the same interests.” For instance, we think that we all had the same interests in independence from England. We did not have all the same interests.

Do you think the Indians cared about independence from England? No, in fact, the Indians were unhappy that we won independence from England, because England had set a line—in the Proclamation of 1763—that said you couldn’t go westward into Indian territory. They didn’t do it because they loved the Indians. They didn’t want trouble. When Britain was defeated in the Revolutionary War, that line was eliminated, and now the way was open for the colonists to move westward across the continent, which they did for the next 100 years, committing massacres and making sure that they destroyed Indian civilization.

So when you look at the American Revolution, there’s a fact that you have to take into consideration. Indians—no, they didn’t benefit.

Did blacks benefit from the American Revolution?

Slavery was there before. Slavery was there after. Not only that, we wrote slavery into the Constitution. We legitimized it.

What about class divisions?

Did ordinary white farmers have the same interest in the revolution as a John Hancock or Morris or Madison or Jefferson or the slaveholders or the bondholders? Not really.

It was not all the common people getting together to fight against England. They had a very hard time assembling an army. They took poor guys and promised them land. They browbeat people and, oh yes, they inspired people with the Declaration of Independence. It’s always good, if you want people to go to war, to give them a good document and have good words: life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness. Of course, when they wrote the Constitution, they were more concerned with property than life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness. You should take notice of these little things.

There were class divisions. When you assess and evaluate a war, when you assess and evaluate any policy, you have to ask: Who gets what?

We were a class society from the beginning. America started off as a society of rich and poor, people with enormous grants of land and people with no land. And there were riots, there were bread riots in Boston, and riots and rebellions all over the colonies, of poor against rich, of tenants breaking into jails to release people who were in prison for nonpayment of debt. There was class conflict. We try to pretend in this country that we’re all one happy family. We’re not.

And so when you look at the American Revolution, you have to look at it in terms of class.

Do you know that there were mutinies in the American Revolutionary Army by the privates against the officers? The officers were getting fine clothes and good food and high pay and the privates had no shoes and bad clothes and they weren’t getting paid. They mutinied. Thousands of them. So many in the Pennsylvania line that George Washington got worried, so he made compromises with them. But later when there was a smaller mutiny in the New Jersey line, not with thousands but with hundreds, Washington said execute the leaders, and they were executed by fellow mutineers on the order of their officers.

The American Revolution was not a simple affair of all of us against all of them. And not everyone thought they would benefit from the Revolution.

We’ve got to rethink this question of war and come to the conclusion that war cannot be accepted, no matter what the reasons given, or the excuse: liberty, democracy; this, that. War is by definition the indiscriminate killing of huge numbers of people for ends that are uncertain. Think about means and ends, and apply it to war. The means are horrible, certainly. The ends, uncertain. That alone should make you hesitate.

Once a historical event has taken place, it becomes very hard to imagine that you could have achieved a result some other way. When something is happening in history it takes on a certain air of inevitability: This is the only way it could have happened. No.

We are smart in so many ways. Surely, we should be able to understand that in between war and passivity, there are a thousand possibilities.

Todd Juvinall

Golly SteveF, I guess my living through all that busybody crap (per MA) of MLK just doesn't count with know it all liberals. You and BenE crack me up. You just are so full of yourselves you passed us by. No wonder the country is in trouble.

Oh and I bet you read somewhere and left it out about what MLK's favorite food was. Why did you do that?

billy T

Mr. Ben Emery, you make a good point. Canada is a good country. Besides, who can criticize a country that deported Amy Goodman? Glad we don't have debtors prisons anymore, but renegading on one's promise to pay does harkened back to an era were a man had to be as good as his word. Wonder why we haven't prosecuted those that filled out liars loans or overstated their income to get a home. Prosecute the liars and then watch Amy Goodman go bonkers. I would pay to see that. Yep, the Canadians are not without blood on their hands. The Canooks and Canook mercenaries were the ones that burned the Presidential Residence during the War of 1812, so I guess you can say the British did not light the match. Good ole Andy Jackson kicked their butt in the Battle of New Orleans when the war actually over. Darn snail mail. We don't even know Andy's age at the time. Talk about poor record keeping. Yes, our country was so poor and disorganized that they did not have enough money to repaint the Presidential Residence after the Canooks torched it so we used cheap whitewash, thus the name "the White House". True, we had Sunshine Patriots back then as we do today. The policy of appeasement has historically failed. Our nation was full of crude, rude, and tattooed unwashed rowdy masses that shocked the sophisticated European visitor. I suppose those bruts could have sat down with the British Governors with a nice spot of tea and settled everything. Who knows. We might even have the image of the Queen on our nickles and dimes today, just like Canada. The colonists were such beasts and wrote words in funny ways. Not well mannered. Sort of like the Aussies.

billy T

Lest I forget, Happy Fourth of July to all, great and small. The Stars and Stripes flies proudly from the South Pole to the Moon. Our founders had many grievances with the King of Great Britain, including this sentence from The Declaration of Independence: "He has erected a multitude of New Offices, and sent hither swarms of Officers to harrass our people, and eat out their substance."

George Rebane

Howard Zinn (BenE 932am), a man of guile and collectivist purpose, argues against war in general and the American Revolution in particular. What his histrionic historical recollections of miscalculating classes omit is that our Revolution left us a nation that for over 200 years has been the world’s beacon of hope and pot of honey drawing to itself all classes of people, especially the poor and oppressed.

My family and I were in those huddled masses that made their way to these shores with nothing but what we could carry in our hands. For their message to land on receptive minds, class warriors like Zinn count on more than intellectual laziness in their audiences.


George, did you announce a prize for the longest comment and I missed it (Posted by: A Facebook User | 04 July 2012 at 09:32 AM)? BenE, I am aware of such questions and I pray that any politician asking men/women to die for a cause meditate long and hard about their decision. I would love to believe that we could have 'defeated' the Redcoats 'peacefully' AND assembled documents such as the DOI and Constitution without a Revolutionary War, but such delusions would be fantasy.

I believe that every class of American is better off for the bled shed in the Revolutionary War. The Civil War is an entirely different story.

Thanks for the mental exercise.I will return the favor and suggest that you read some Mises, Bastiat, Rothbard and/or Hazlitt on the topics of labor and (moral) economics.

David King

To our friends from the left:

Happy Dependance Day :)

Todd Juvinall

Mikey, that BenE comment certainly was long. Since BenE is a politician, having run for high office and being trounced, I can now see why. When a paragraph would suffice, he does a novel. It appears the left is so enamored of the written word, well at least the number of them, that they can't resist so many. I learned brevity is best from a politician, that is why I only put my foot into my mouth a few times a month while they do it in every post.

George Rebane

Administrivia - Gentlemen, while I appreciate your enthusiasm in joining the debate, I did unpublish the last little series of repartees for reasons you will understand.

Todd Juvinall

Here is Congressman Allen West's view of the Roberts fiasco.


billy T

Darn it, Dr. Rebane, its the 4th of July and you removed the fireworks before I had a see them. Oh well. I must say I seriously loved the above quote and have chewed on it all day. I could write a long sermon on the quote, but I chose to take a cue from the Mr. Juvinill and keep it short and simple. Heard once that the difference between a alcoholic and a rageaholic is that the alcoholic eventually passes out. Not to offend anyone on the left. I know you never rage.

billy T

Two more grievances against the King of Great Briton as reasons for dissolving our allegiance and subjugation to the Throne: For taking away our Charters, abolishing our most valuable Laws, and altering fundamentally the Forms of our Governments:

For suspending our own Legislatures, and declaring themselves invested with power to legislate for us in all cases whatsoever. Happy Birthday Declaration of Independence.

Account Deleted

"It’s always good, if you want people to go to war, to give them a good document and have good words: life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness."
Yep - it's just a bunch of words. I think, George, we have discovered the very razor's edge of the great divide. We can point to that sentence and ask: "which side of the line are you on?" From there it all runs to 2 completely separate watersheds that will never meet.
A very happy 4th to all who value liberty and freedom above all else!
And a huge THANK YOU to all who gave their lives for that liberty and freedom!


Mikey, any excuse for a parade is fine by me. I especially liked the NU marching band.

George Rebane

ScottO 1032pm – Naifs and scoundrels are always telling us that ‘wars never settle anything’. In doing so the naifs invite wars, and scoundrels prepare wars to spring on the unwary. Winston Churchill wrote ‘The History of English-Speaking Peoples’, a four-volume magnum opus which is essentially the story of princes (aka national leaders) and the wars they fought. The wars demarked changes in national leadership, direction, and opportunities. They gave rise to succeeding periods/epochs of prosperity, plunder, or lassitude not only for the peoples involved in the wars, but also those who were affected by the subsequently established new regional and world orders. If ever there was a kind of human enterprise that ‘settled’ things – organized and directed people’s lives – it has been the punctuation that wars provide in the course of human events. Wars are a necessary resolution when intellect fails or is misused to solve problems of resources or politics.

I think that your observation of the attitude toward wars being at the headwaters of two watersheds is accurate. Zinn impugns wars, as do all good socialists, and seems to rest easily with the fact that collectivist nations kill more of their own by far during times of ‘peace’ than have been taken by all wars. This most certainly was true during the most horrific wars fought in the last century.

Dixon Cruickshank

That made them think of MLK and not the EPA, really? and Frisch has to go into some detailed expalnation of the bizare reach for reality??

Yes our world is lost I guess

George very well used

Douglas Keachie

George asked, "How can we live together in liberty without being busybodies in each other's lives?"

Certainly got Trayvon dead, and Zimmerman in a heap of trouble, this for being a busybody.


I was against the 2009 Stimulus BEFORE it was cool and before the media/politicians were SURPRISED by its failure.

"back in 2009, Team Obama predicted that if Congress passed its $800 billion stimulus plan, the unemployment rate would be around 5.6% today [unemployment TODAY is north of 8.2%]. #EPICMISS #bullshit #central planners = evil


Russ Steele

Here are the facts:

The nation lost nearly 8.8 million jobs between January 2008 and February 2010. Since then, it’s regained more than 3.8 million — less than 44 percent.

The economy has added just 137,000 jobs a month since employment hit bottom. At that pace, it would take three more years for employment to return to where it was in January 2008.

And that’s without accounting for the fact that it takes about 125,000 jobs a month just to keep up with population growth! To really get back to pre-recession levels, we’d need to add 260,000 jobs a month for three years.

We can do, it has been done before, from National Review Online:

Monthly job creation bounced around during the Bush years (when the unemployment rate ranged between 4 and 6 percent), but there were some nice monthly pops in the mix. March 2004 saw 337,000 jobs created, April 2005 saw 360,000 jobs created, November 2005 saw 334,000 jobs created, February 2006 saw 316,000 jobs created, January 2007 saw 236,000 jobs created.

As CNN noted, “In April 1984, the economy added 363,000 jobs . . . And the Reagan recovery sustained its momentum through the election, averaging 300,000 new jobs a month from May to October.”

In the booming 1990s, with a smaller total population, the country created more than 400,000 jobs in a single month several times: 462,000 jobs in March 1994; 434,000 jobs in February 1996, 404,000 jobs in February 1999; 405,000 jobs in October 1999. The economy created an astounding 507,000 jobs in October 1997.

It take more than blaming Bush, it lakes leadership that our current President cannot muster. Time for a change in leadership!

Paul Emery

So Russ, how would Romney's economic policies be different than Bush's?


Paul, your ? nails it. So far Romney appears to use more common sense than his Keynesian predecessor (Bush or Obama) regarding monetary policy. Romney has been very critical of the Federal Reserve.... though not a feisty as Ron Paul :). For me the drastic difference between Bush and Romney is monetary policy (Bush sided with the banks, Romney appears to be siding with liberty).

Douglas Keachie

Russ, "between January 2008 and February 2010," is an interesting selection of time block. Obama did not take office until Jan 20, 2009, so your block includes nearly 1/2 of its time on Bush's watch. Why is that? What are the numbers without Bush's watch included?

George Rebane

Re RussS 1015am - Numbers to cogitate on. US pop = 314M, Growth rate = 0.90%/yr or 2.83M/yr, US death rate = 0.84%/yr or 2.64M/yr. Since US emigration is negligible, the birth plus immigration rate is 1.74%/yr or 5.46M/yr. About 4.3M/yr leave (not necessarily graduate from) the US educational system. The US civilian workforce = 154.7M.

Through growth alone, we need to create a maximum of 2.83M/12 = 236,000 jobs per month if all growth becomes employed (actually all growth does not go into the workforce). Another measure for approximating needed job growth is to assume that the 4.3M leaving schools need to enter the workforce. This puts the minimum requirement for monthly job creation at (4.3M – 2.64M)/12 = 138,000 assuming the death rate ends the pipeline of the maximum number of people leaving jobs. Again, actually all people dying did were not former members of the workforce, therefore the minimum number of jobs required per month is above 138,000.

In conclusion, we see that just to keep up with the demographic dynamics, the economy needs to generate somewhere between, say, 150,000 to 200,000 jobs per month. If it does this, the unemployment rate remains essentially unchanged. Recall that these job numbers will increase even with the quoted rates staying constant.

Russ Steele


Bush is not running. The question is will Romney's economic policy be different from Obama's economic policy. Romney's jobs plan include approving the XL Pipeline, drilling on Federal lands and off shore to insure we are free from foreign oil. He will have a Republican House and Senate and will be in a position to reign in the EPA and create some sanity in the regulation of greenhouse gases. Romney will fire the 43 Czars which have created an unelected shadow government. Those are some starters on how Romney's policies will be different from Obama!

Paul Emery


Yes, Bush is not running but Romney is backed by the same Republican establishment that supported W so it stands to reason they will support the same policies that led us into this mess. The Repubs had the opportunity to back a true agent for change but instead went to the heir apparent rather than take a risk. He's going to lose anyway so this conversation has limited shelf life. He's the jello mold man with no real conviction on anything. He was a mediocre governor at best and he's running against his only accomplishment which is really weird.

Russ Steele


Can you provide more details on the exact policies that led to this economic mess, so we can check them against Romney's policy statements. If I recall it was Congress that demanded bank make questionable loans that Fanny and Freddie would cover, not Bush.

While you are at it let's hear your version of the Obama policies that are leading us out of this mess. Obama has had three years for his policies to work and we have had 41 months of bad job numbers. When are his policies going to kick in?

Check out the graphics on this post and then get back to us. Why is the Obama recover the longest on record?


Just wondering... why doesn't Pelosi, the Speaker of the House for the last Bush years, and Harry Reid, the Senate Majority leader for the last Bush years, and such long time luminaries of Congressional banking committees as Barney Frank (D-Fanny Mae) and Chris Dodd (D-Countrywide) share the blame?

Bush II inherited a recession from Clinton, and got hit with the 9/11 attacks just as the economy was beginning to grow again. Had the Democratic Party not nominated perhaps the two worst presidential prospects in my lifetime to run against W, they might have had a better chance to be the ones to look bad instead of Bush.

Russ Steele


One of the major differences between Obama and Romney are energy policy. Obama listens to the environmental wackos demand that we reduce CO2 emission by creating green energy, ignoring the US's huge fossil fuel resources. Romney is more willing to create an energy policy that exploits those resources. Energy use and economic development are linked.

Production from the Alberta oil sands are changing the petroleum industry . . . but that resource is dwarfed by the potential of oil shale.  The US has more energy available in its oil shale alone than the entire global reserves of conventional oil.  This is on top of the trillion cubic feet of natural gas and the world’s largest reserves of coal. Details HERE. Check out the chart.

Douglas Keachie

Russ, I see you ignored, along with the rest, the question about why you included Bush's watch and then assigned blame only to Obama. As for the difference between Obama and Romney, I think this cartoon about sums it up:

DoonesburyRomneyCapitalismChina copy

Douglas Keachie

And Russ, what is the cost per gallon of the finished gasoline from oil shale?

And everyone who loves to eat osyters may wish to pay attention to what burning fossil fuels is doing to the oceans: http://seattletimes.nwsource.com/html/localnews/2018496037_oysters22m.html You might ask yourself what percentage of food comes from the oceans, and how bad the smell might be if things got really bad.

George Rebane

DougK 741am - a possible reason for Russ' argument is that, even if you ignore Congress' role in creating the crisis, Obama has now continued almost four years of doing the dumbest things possible to borrow more, stimulate nothing, grow government, pass costly and stultifying laws, and pile on regulatory impediments to prevent the economy from recovery. On top of that, the man promises to double down on the whole approach once his re-election gives him more "flexibility". Other than that, he's just great.

A Facebook User

I guess the title and acknowledgement didn't require a conspiracy map so it threw everybody off.

The piece was from Howard Zinn from 2009. Just throwing out another way of looking at the American Revolution. Doesn't mean I totally agree with it but it means there are many ways at looking at historical events.

July 4, 2009
Howard Zinn

Untold Truths About the American Revolution

George Rebane

Facebook BenE 1250pm - Apparently it wasn't clear from my 1054am, but the cited Zinn piece would not 'throw off' any RR reader with whom I am familiar. Carefully fashioned historical perspectives are the important bulwarks of all ideologies. Since history is chronicles interpreted and integrated in the larger context of ages, intents (politics), economics, and conflicts, it might be better if we just read reliable chroniclers and fashioned our own histories. Now where did we put those reliable chroniclers?

Douglas Keachie

If I were on your side I would have come up with, "You don't know Jack, BenE," ages ago. ;)

A Facebook User

Are you saying Zinn isn't a credible historian? Also Zinn was part of the US military in the European Theater during WWII, maybe you should show him some respect of his perspective on the affects of war.


George Rebane

Facebook BenE 408pm - I have already defined the boundary of his credibility; he is a leftwing historian with lifelong active social agenda.

You confuse Zinn's commentary on the "affects(sic) of war" with his beliefs about the utility of war, specifically the American Revolution. His comments about being a bombardier and bombing European cities are more than a little removed from reality. He intellectualizes about the effects of war, and does it poorly.

As one of his terrified targets for many a day and night, and as a survivor I have a more visceral understanding of war than he, but that is also tempered with a far more realistic understanding of the utility of war which seems to have totally escaped him and his fellow ideologues.

A Facebook User

Thanks for the soapbox opportunity with your comment of "Mikey, that BenE comment certainly was long. Since BenE is a politician, having run for high office and being trounced, I can now see why. When a paragraph would suffice, he does a novel."

First, my comment was long due to it was an entire published piece from Howard Zinn on July 4, 2009. You had no opinion on the content of the piece and you didn't realize it was written by someone else despite the posting of the date, author, and title- those are some sweet critical thinking and observation skills.

Second, about losing in the 2010 US Congressional 4th District.
Out of 665 third party nationwide candidates we received the second highest vote total, top ten percentage and fundraising. Our campaign spent roughly $13,000 and incumbent McClintock spent $1,800,000 and didn't show up to a single public forum (nice representative). It has very little to do with issues but almost everything to do with party affiliation. I refuse to be associated with either of the duopoly and wasn't running for a political party but running for the average citizen to have a choice and possibly a representative in congress. No Tea Party congressional candidate that ran outside of the republican party were elected or received higher vote totals than our campaign.

2010 US Congressional 4th District registration numbers were
48% republican
31% democratic
19% DTS
0.8% Green

Todd Juvinall

Let's see. BenE got how many votes? I think I may have received more in Nevada County as a candidate in a non-partisan office, Assessor, than BenE got in the whole Congressional District. But I digress. If you want to make excuses for losing that is your business. You "third party" types never win because you really don't want to. Why not admit you have intention of winning only whining about the "duopoly" whatever the hell that is. If you want to make a difference on the planet in politics you must either join a winning party or go organize one. Third party whining just doesn't cut it anymore, not with the mess that needs fixing.

Russ Steele


I agree some of the job losses were during the Bush administration who was attempting to deal with a Democratic Congress. The voters decided they want a change in leadership who promised to fix the problem. Now we know after three plus years of trying that Obama was not up to the task. His actions, or lack of action, have made the problem worse for millions of the nations workers who cannot find a job.

As for the China jobs issues, you appear to be reading the Democrat Talking Points again. Undeterred by independent fact checkers that have debunked the thrust of their China claims, the Obama campaign is redoubling their attacks on Mitt Romney as an “outsourcer”. I would say that all those green companies buying solar panels, windmill towers, and CA buying a bay bridge in China created more jobs off shore than anything that Romney did.

I see you are doing your part to dispense Obama's distortion of the facts. Lovely!

Douglas Keachie

"CA buying a bay bridge in China created more jobs off shore than anything that Romney did."

And how many moons has it been since you complained about California spending its way into the poorhouse? The problem is millions of millionaires not creating jobs. The combined net worth of the planet's millionaires and higher as been set at about 48 trillion dollars.

Douglas Keachie

Bush created two wars and not much in the way of professional jobs. BTW, once again, how much is the finished gas from oil shale going to cost per gallon?

billy T

There is plenty of blame to go around. George Bush for sure. Then the tsunami in Japan, the housing crisis, the European crisis, the China slowdown, the banks hording cash and building up prudent reserves and capital after making stupid loans (wished Citizen's Bank did that), businesses not hiring due to uncertainty, consumers not spending due to lack of confidence, education system falling apart, evil oil companies gouging the poor people, The Arab Spring, the repulsive 1%ers and a bunch more. Yep, plenty of blame and Obama blames each and every one of them. Don't recall Reagen spending his entire first term blaming his predecessor.

Douglas Keachie

Don't recall Jimmy Carter setting Reagan up for such an economic catastrophe either. Reagan only did wars he could win, in a couple of weeks, max.

billy T

Mr. Keachie, its not all about wars. Reagen inherited an economy with higher unemployment, runaway inflation, massive layoffs and our standing in the world greatly diminished. Remember 14% mortgages rates plus points? Yes, it took him 6 years to turn it around and consumer confidence soared. Even had one month when 900,000 jobs added. People were pessimistic about the future as they are now and Old Glory had been trampled on. He was leader, not a blamer. Love him or hate him, he shone forth hope and change as a beacon on the hill. Had a Democrat Congress and no excuses. How is your hope and change working for you? Later fellow Night Owl.

billy T

Mr. Keachie, every man that has risen to the Office of President has faced enormous challenges in his time. The circumstances are different for each one. The challenges take some down while other thrive and see things as opportunities. I remember the gas lines (odd and even days), Ford's WIN buttons (whip inflation now), Chrysler declaring bankruptcy in 1973 or 74, and the price freeze under Nixon. I was young and pissed at Tricky Dick so I voted for Carter. I imagine alot of young people were pissed at Bush and voted for Obama. For me the picture of the crashed helicopter in the desert during the failed Iran Hostage rescue mission said it all for Carter's Presidency. He promised he would never lie to us and he probably kept that promise. But he lacked that natural leadership ability required of the Oval Office. When Reagen was elected and ordered the air wing strike on Libya at two in the morning at 600 miles and hour, the world was shocked. I remember reading a French newspaper the next day stating the diplomatic policies of Carter just got put in the "antique closet." And the civilized French called Reagen a cowboy as if that was a bad thing, lol. Reagen invoked optimism and the 'yes we can' spirit from sea to shining sea. Obama talked his way into the Oval Office. He has tried to talk to our Middle Eastern friends into liking us. Wasn't his first speech in Turkey before Cairo? How has his talking worked out? He talks about the economy and all his talk is just chatter. Results talk, bull shit walks. World leaders call him an amateur. A beer summit can solve minor tiffs between a couple of individuals, but does not fix the economy. The more he blames, the less Presidential he appears. The more he blames, the more pessimistic Americans become. Americans as a nation are right of center and optimistic. Obama should stop talking so much and show us his leadership abilities.

Russ Steele


Right on, you nailed it.

Russ Steele

Douglas @ 01:25am

You asked for the price of shale oil derived gas at the pump. I could not find a current estimate, maybe you have one to share. In the 1980s the company I worked for spent a billion dollars trying to figure out how to recover the shale oil in situ, the process they worked out required a lot of energy and water. To be cost effective the price of oil had to be above $60.00 a barrel. When they killed the project, oil was under $30.00 a barrel.

If we take natural gas directional drilling and fracking as an example this technology has driven down the cost of gas extraction. Directional drilling and fracking in the shale oil formation are estimated to do the same. If it was not cost effective companies would not be investing millions in exploration and testing. They would exit the market just like the company I used to work for stopped the project when the pay off was too elusive to be viable. But, the technology has changed. Directional drilling and fracking are the game changers in shale oil. While fracking takes a lot of water, most of it can be recovered and reused, as companies have developed portable water processing plants.

A Facebook User

Billy T,
I am not voting for Obama for numerous reasons and can't begin to tell you how disappointed I am with the leadership of the democratic party and the absolute spinelessness of the members of the democratic party. The republican party leadership and congressional members are flat out disgusting in their policies. A couple things you left out is the ability to work with congress. The republican party has obstructed since day one of the Obama administration in fact they had a meeting on inauguration day 2009 planning on how they will play with the lives of the people to make sure Obama is one term president.


The other since the Carter administration both party's have become 100% owned by big business and can no longer govern in the interest of the people. Obama and Romney are just the frontmen puppets for a group of multinational corporate businesswomen and men guaranteeing private sector profits. We are in the middle of the worst form of government, when government and big business are one and the same.

We need to remember government is us and until the people take the controls of campaign funding we will continue to go down this corporatist rat hole. From Carter administration to Clinton first administration campaign spending increased by 10% from Clinton first administration to Obama administration campaign spending increased 400%. From 2008 to 2012 is projected to increase another 100%.
It can no longer be denied we have the best government money can buy (best for those with the money).

B. Emery

Douglas Keachie

Reagan would be able to do no more than Bush or Carter, given that the jobs have been exported for the benefit of the multinat .01%'ers. He was great window dressing for a world in transition to the personal computer age, but had no magic powers. I didn't see Obama consulting before the Osama Death Strike.

For reasons of inactivity on Fukishima first and other reasons secondarily, I am not contributing to the Obama campaign, except maybe to buy a T shirt Money instead will go to Ami Bera, a good doctor and professor running for 7th District around Sacramento: http://www.beraforcongress.com/

I will vote for Obama, the Supreme Court is too important to ignore. Without the Clinton and Obama appointees, this picture would be solid red.


Douglas Keachie

Here is the image I was originally looking for. It should be the Number One Rallying Point for both sides:

SupremeCourtFuture copy

billy T

Mr. Steele. This is way off topic, but I would be amiss not to tell you that you can become a Mennonite to be exempted from Obamacare, per our discussions on another thread. Mennonites not longer live in communities, but in the general population. No problem there. They can drive automobiles and have electricity and modern conveniences. Can even go to movies. No membership roles. The only thing is that one should dress plain and not outlandish, which you could easily accommodate. Don't see you as the type to wear spandex overalls sporting chains and a spiked orange rooster hair do. No need to dig up your Native American heritage or become an Amish for the total exemption. You are a Mennonite if you say you are one. Hmmm. After rereading Dr. Rebane's quote which is the gist of his article... "rebut those who torment us for our own good will torment us without end, for they do so with the constant approval of their own conscience. (Anonymous)". I stand corrected as I am indeed on topic.

billy T

Mr. Keachie, no one disputes that Carter and Reagen faced a different set of circumstances than Bush faced in 2007 and Obama faces today in 2012. Each leaves his mark. The manufacturing sector has been declining for decades, and a robust manufacturing sector helped our country rebound under Reagen. Carter had the same manufacturing sector and problems as Reagen. Japan was the biggest threat back then to us (economically speaking) as the auto industry woes made headlines such as GM LAYS OFF 100,000 WORKERS. Reagen hung the misery index around Carter's neck, which was a combination of the unemployment rate and inflation rate. Reagen smashed inflation and it has not reared its ugly head since. Japan sailed through the 70's and 80's with annual 10% GDP until they started spending too much, inflation soared, there housing bubble burst, and now they are in their second straight "lost decade". Some much for those that said Japan would soon be the biggest economic power on earth, surpassing the USA. What Carter did was different than what Reagen did. Carter talked about having lust in his heart, while Reagen took control. Obama does not inflation to worry about, but he does need to worry about the fact that 70% of the jobs being created now are part time jobs or full time jobs in the service industry, retail, and other employment in jobs that are below a middle class wage. Today, we have a new misery index: http://bostonherald.com/news/opinion/op_ed/view/2011_0308obama_misery_index_hits_a_record_high

Douglas Keachie

We might just as well call it The Association of American Manufacturers Who Went Overseas" index.

A Facebook User

It was actually many of the policies Reagan put on steroids that created the huge debts, job loss, and income inequality we enjoy today. The Reagan administrations were antithesis of the Roosevelt administrations and it is easy to look the 30 year record of which one worked out best for the most Americans and the nation as a whole.

billy T

Today's web headlines reads similar to this one: Dems Go on Defensive Over Economy. Have at it boyz, defend the indefensible.

billy T

Ben, I actually do respect your heartfelt plea to end wars. I don't think the lion will lay down with the lamb anytime soon, but I do understand your point of view and what you are saying. I always said that the first man born on the planet killed his brother and we have not evolved much since then. However, there is hope: If the world were ruled by women then there would be no war… just couple of nations not talking with each other.

Russ Steele

Ben @ 01:23

I am struggle here Ben, help me out. If Bush’s policies caused the Obama recession, then it seems to me that Reagan caused the Clinton economic boom and surplus. If all the economic issues are played forward and the results are determined by the former President policies, then we have to assign the good and the bad with the same weight. So, it appears that the Clinton policies must be responsible for the Bush economic decline, using your logic. So, according to the play it forward logic, the Obama policies will be responsible for the Romney boom! Bring it on!

Russ Steele

Opps should read "I am struggling here Ben"

A Facebook User

Billy T,
There is a time and a place to use military force (in defense) but the US has become a military empire and we seem to think we have different rules of engagement than the rest of the world. I think Zinn was as much opposed to the glorification of war as war itself.

Here is the main reason why I am pro-peace/ anti-war and why I am an advocate of taking care of veterans, those still serving, and their families . The soldiers for any army whether it be national or ideological are taught their mission is just and god is on their side. A vast majority of soldiers are ordinary human beings that want the same basic things in life. Don't we all want to be able to earn a living, feed ourselves and family, have clean drinkable water, have shelter over our heads, receive medical treatment when needed, and at least provide an equal lifestyle if not greater for the next generation. Those who profit off of war greatest are the very ones who create war and convince the masses the “enemy” are less than human and inferior that want to strip the very foundation of the others culture. This is nothing new. Those asked to kill or be killed would most likely be friends in different circumstances. As the Christmas Truce during WWI exemplifies.

Here is a good song by Bob Dylan touching some of these ideas.

With God On Our Side

A Facebook User

Reagan put in place and every administration has continued the policies of boom and bust. Clinton just happened to be in a boom part of the cycle. Clinton administration pushing free trade agreements and deregulating the banks had a huge role in the 2007 banking induced depression. The Clinton administration is why I left the democratic party. The Clinton administration and the Democratic Party leadership embraced the corporate friendly "third way" or "triangulating" form of politics securely creating a duopoly or ending the essential part of a two party system, an opposition party. Labor or the average citizen was left without representation. The rhetoric remains different but on major policies the two parties are very similar.

I am glad Obama talks about same sex marriage in a positive light and some of the policies eliminating some of the second class citizen status but I personally am more concerned on the numerous free trade agreements the Obama administration has promoted and signed. I am concerned about having thieves like Ruben, Geithner, Summers, Paulson, and Bernanke either advising or having positions in the Obama administration. I am concerned that Max Baucus the chairman of the finance committee who was in charge of the Affordable Care Act and at the same time the number one recipient of health industry contributions allowed lobbyists at the table but had single payer advocates (MD's and RN's) arrested. I am concerned that Obama has kill lists, Guantanamo is still open, dropping bombs from unmanned drones, bypasses due process, signed extension of Patriot Act, signed NDAA, ignored habeas corpus, has the USDA under the control of big corporations, Dodd/ Frank didn't reinstate Glass Steagall or repeal CFMA 2000, and I will stop there because the list can go on and on. The difference between Bush and Obama, Obama puts a friendly face and much better spoken word on atrocious policies.

George Rebane

Re Facebook's (BenE's) 1039pm - Neither Reagan nor any other president has "put in place" the "boom and bust" cycles of our economy. Oscillatory booms and busts (formerly known as 'panics') are an intrinsic part of large complex systems 1) whose operating characteristics (transfer function) are not well known, 2) whose behavior is observed with error and delays, and 3) whose control laws are even more poorly known. Booms and busts have occurred approximately every 20 years throughout American history.

In such a situation, attempting to control something as complex as an economy invariably leads to wild oscillations which end in a crash, especially if the control mechanism is centrally imposed to be executed system-wide. Throughout evolution, Nature has minimized that problem through what is called 'distributed control'.

The closest Man has come to that approach is with minimally regulated free enterprise. The furthest Man has gone from the achievable ideal has been communism, and its precursor variants of socialism.

The central control of economies through force and fiat is always an enterprise that operates between ignorance and evil.

A Facebook User

Your ideology is getting in the way of critical thinking skills, again. From the Washington administration until the Hoover administration there was a banking "panic" at least once every 15 years. Roosevelt put regulations in place and the US had a 50 break from the banking "panics" until Reagan started deregulation of the banks in the early 80's, promoting the merger and acquisition era, and the stoppage of enforcing Sherman Anti Trust Laws. The Savings & Loans crisis was the return of cowboy banking/ monetary policy that has created the hyper trough and peaks of the markets of the last 30 years. Savings and loans in the 80's, .com early 2000's, and housing 2007. All bubbles that didn't need to happen. Those who suffer most with these bursting bubbles are the pay check to pay check worker.
B. Emery

George Rebane

Facebook 1005am - The average rate is computed by summing the number of incidences divided by the span over which the incidences occurred. And one should not confuse putative causes ascribed to a subset of incidences with its aggregate rate.

FYI, I have yet to find a liberal who can grok the content of my 912am, whether offered by me or anyone else comfortable with the concepts (of an admittedly technical nature). But the search goes on, so not to worry.

billy T

Just fix the sucker. That is what we want. I was puzzled with the term "jobless recovery" when it was the new buzzword 3 years ago. Now, we know what it looks and feels and smells like. I dig up past presidents only to make the point of how each dealt with the unexpected. LBJ had the Vietnam War handled to him, something that consumed the lion's share of his time, energy, and focus. All LBJ wanted was to expand the Great Society and War on Poverty. Vietnam prevented him from fulfilling even a more robust agenda and history will judge both the War on Poverty and Nam was failures. Each president is handed unexpected headaches and must deal with them. Bush had 911 on his watch, Carter the Iranian Hostage crisis and runaway inflation and Obama has to deal with a sinking economy. Look what headaches Lincoln had to deal with, with only a clerk/assistant and the Secretary of War to solve the mess. Guess Lincoln did not need hundreds of White House lawyers and political consultants. Each was guided by his character and moral compass, be it shipwrecked or stronger than steel. This is what Obama has on his plate: 41 straight months of unemployment over 8% and 780,000 less women in the workforce since the day he took office. The manufacturing index just dropped below 50, which signals a contraction. I would hazard to guess that Candidate Obama had bigger plans that LBJ to fundamentally transform America, but he has his hands full with the economy. The label "Campaigner in Chief" sticks because there is too much truth in the moniker. Just fix what you can, President Obama. You can't control the economy but you can dampen it. It is not Fox News fault or talk radio's fault. The ball is in your court. Obamacare is starting to look like the Great Society's War on Poverty. Its the economy, stupid. Take a page from Clinton and do baby steps if necessary instead of damage. To be fair to the left and Mr. Keachie, Obama faces a new type of economy.http://finance.yahoo.com/news/post-employee-economy-why-sky-141135515.html headache:

George Rebane

billyT 1045am - your link is just Yahoo catching up to the pre-Singularity posts on the topic that has appeared on these pages over the last five years. Most recently here
and here

Recording and debating this phenomenon is one of the mainstays of RR.

A Facebook User

How about you proving your model with examples of your beloved economic policies on an economy scale larger than a million people that spanned over a decade. Putting the burden of proving a negative is a weaselly and weak position.

A separate issue, what was your costs to attend UCLA in the 60's? When compared to today's generic projected student budget by the University, a resident would have had to pay roughly $4,000 in 1960. I seriously doubt that you paid anything close that amount to receive a higher education in one of the best university systems on the planet at that time. Just wondering?
B. Emery


It is the agenda of the progressives (those that celebrate May Day, Labor Day, etc) that require government FORCE (guns/tanks/prisons).

History has shown us that the FORCE of various governments have killed hundreds of millions more and imprisoned more than the agenda of the freedom loving pro individual agenda of those on the right. History (and modern day) will also show that capitalism has improved the standard of living for more humans than any other system.

It is not worth having an economic discussion with someone who has no respect for the individual and worships government as deity.

At the core of every progressive is hate (exemplified by the biggest bigot in America President Obama). I rest my case on Obama's hate speech this a.m.

George Rebane

Facebook/BenE 107pm - what burden of "proving the negative" have I asked for? And what has the cost of my undergraduate degree got anything to do with a half century of government fostered bloat in the country's higher education system (which has repeatedly been pointed out on these pages)? Are we having an attention span problem?

MickeyMcD's frustration is understandable.

Douglas Keachie

BTW, the Iraqi Constitution has Iraqicare built right into it, in part, at our behest.

Douglas Keachie

The MikeyMcD, just where the heck is there ANY hate speech in this video of Obama from this morning???


97% of the small businesses of America make less than $250,000/year. Obama wants to extend the tax cuts for them, now. He also agrees to further debates about tax cuts for those making over $250,000 per year. Are you playing the tape backwards and devining hidden messages?

A Facebook User

It is a two comment challenge to liberals. Given a false equivalence between the natural world and unregulated or minimally regulated free enterprise. I would argue negative feedback for homeostasis would be a more suitable comparison to your argument of a self regulating system.

To take a market/ economy in the purest perfect form a free market might work but the fact is there has never been a perfect pure market except on very small scale. Just like communism on paper it works or in small communities where anonymity doesn't exist a free market and totally privately owned business could function well. Much like trying to find a pure communist system a pure free market is just as difficult to find because on a mass scale it cannot exist. Communism is a totally failed form of political system just as laissez-faire capitalism or when ever we try to move towards it fails due to corruption, which becomes crony capitalism, which in turn becomes monopoly capitalism.

There was very little regulation in the US until the last 50 years and what we saw are many many species brought to extinction, forests harvested to the last tree, rivers overwhelmed with pollution, and business's hiding the horrific health dangers associated with asbestos for decades to give a few examples. In every one of these examples a small few profited and the vast majority suffered from the after effects. Remember in 1960's we just tipped the 3 billion mark for global population. As development and populations grow the importance to reign in reckless behavior grows due to it affects more and more people.

Here is where I feel you gave the burden of proving a negative.

"Throughout evolution, Nature has minimized that problem through what is called 'distributed control'.

"The closest Man has come to that approach is with minimally regulated free enterprise."

"FYI, I have yet to find a liberal who can grok the content of my 912am, whether offered by me or anyone else comfortable with the concepts (of an admittedly technical nature). But the search goes on, so not to worry."

A Facebook User

"History has shown us that the FORCE of various governments have killed hundreds of millions more and imprisoned more than the agenda of the freedom loving pro individual agenda of those on the right."

Go to any third world country (no government infrastructure in place) and try to measure the childhood death rates on one issue alone (drinkable water) and your numbers will be absolutely dwarfed in comparison. That is one issue.

Here is a good speech from a man who somehow understood the needs of average women and men.


Keachie, simply insert one of the following in lieu of 'rich' or 'making over $250k': "Black", "Jewish", "Female", "Gay", "Fat", "Short", "Disabled" and see if that helps your comprehension. Of course, I assume you believe bigotry to be hateful.

This may help: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bigotry

I have a friend who takes a shot of whiskey every time Obama says "fair share"; he has been drunk for 5 years.


Ben Emerey, thank you for accepting the fact that you promote the use of government force to attain your agenda. Ironically, each third world country has the government system you support/promote.


Bin Emrey p.s. I was indoctrinated into the 'Government = god' religion in the public school system via FDR worshiping curriculum [so please spare me].

A Facebook User

I will be more specific of a nation in mind, which as one of my brothers American Libertarian friends called it a perfect illustration of libertarian success. The nation is Cambodia. No taxes, no water, no electricity, no government services outside downtown in the city regions. One in three children will die before the age of five due to a water born disease. I believe in good government, which means representative government of the people not special interests a.k.a. American Interests. I would expect more coming from a private Lasallian educated person.

FDR had it correct on many policies (too many to start naming) and the biggest problem we face today is that we have had a 30 year assault on those very policies. The banking regulations is one of the big economic policies I am talking about.
112th congress is the newest version of the do nothing congress. I will not be voting for President Obama again but do understand the economic woes of our nation have been made much worse by obstructionist republican party to win an election. Unfortunately for our nation the republican party will bring down the US government and the democratic party is too weak to stand for the people of the United States of America. I wish President Obama would talk and act like the man giving this speech.


George Rebane

Facebook BenE 734pm - It may come as a shock, but my description of the workings of distributed control in nature and its analogue to economies is a well established thesis. It was Masanao Aoki who in the early 1970s left engineering and took his world recognized expertise in stochastic control to the business and economic side of academe. Suddenly distributed and stochastic control became a hot 'new' topic of study in economics, and has so remained since economists who understand systems theory. His early papers motivated the stochastic calculus solution to options pricing by Black and Scholes among other contributions. However, putting that theory into practice has encountered very high ideological and political hurdles. And with Obama in the saddle, it is not even on the administration's radar.

In any event, I still don't see what defense of the negative you claim that I required. BTW, I do agree with a lot of your second and third paragraphs as the record of RR demonstrates.

Re your 909pm - picking Cambodia as your example was a doosey. It was the debating equivalent of pulling the legs off of a pinned beetle. Nevertheless, I'll take it as your best shot.

Paul Emery

Well George, Mikey since you offer no examples of contemporary governments that come close to being an example of the direction you prefer we are left to guess to find examples to extend the conversation. You're views offer entertaining conversation but in the words of Clara Peller "Where's the beef?" In that sense B. Emery as least is coming up with something (Cambodia) as an example which you seemingly cannot offer.

By the way Russ, Romney's outright support for TARP is just the beginning of his support for
Bush's economic dictum.

Douglas Keachie

The public school system did not teach Stephen Decatur to treat his country as God, as we see in this excerpt from a blog located here:


Saturday, January 13, 2007
My country, right or wrong

This bizarre, odious and possibly insane sentiment originated with a slightly more innocuous toast by Stephen Decatur (1779-1820), an American patriot of the post-Revolutionary period (when it no doubt seemed very sound). In 1816 he proposed thus:
Our country! In her intercourse with foreign nations, may she always be right; but our country, right or wrong. (Quoted in A. S. Mackenzie, Life of Decatur, ch. 14)

Carl Schurz [?] made a better stab at it:

Our country, right or wrong. When right, to be kept right; when wrong, to be put right.

But ‘my country, right or wrong’ (only the other side of vox populi, vox dei) is all that has come down to popular consciousness, and to provide countless little reactionaries with a rhetorical flourish to their vulgarity, in response to which GK Chesterton replied:

"My country, right or wrong," is a thing that no patriot would think of saying except in a desperate case. It is like saying, "My mother, drunk or sober".

Nor do all Americans share Decatur's views:

You're not to be so blind with patriotism that you can't face reality. Wrong is wrong, no matter who does it or says it. (Malcolm X)

And in general, to a European ear, so much of American ideals and ideology is barely intelligible. As GK Chesterton also said:

There is nothing the matter with Americans except their ideals. The real American is all right; it is the ideal American who is all wrong.(New York Times, 1st February, 1931)

A Facebook User

Paul and George,
I picked Cambodia due to my brother living there the last 6 years, has a wife, speaks Khmer, and is the only foreigner in the organization he helped start. I have visited before and plan on going this fall again. I know the conditions and my brother knows how the government works or really doesn't work for the people. The government services are very similar to what American Conservatarians claim they want. I think Haiti, Somalia, and the Philippines fit the description of very little government services, infrastructure, safety nets, ect.. to give some more examples.


Does a man have basic protections under the law (to protect his personal property, life and liberty) in Cambodia?

A quick review shows a relatively small population, extremely low unemployment under 3.5%, high growth economy GDP growth above 10%, valuable resources [farmland, oil, rubber, etc] and health issues of which a free market can (and is) addressing. Cambodia has not been on my 'exodus list' because of the language barrier (I am told Khmer is challenging), the new government and lack of Christian Values.

George Rebane

PaulE 1023pm - You have started circling the same barn for the umpteenth time. We have already exhausted the notions of 'closest approach' to governance represented by our diverse ideologies. And in the process your requirement for an exact implementation has been rejected numerous times by people with all those ideologies. The problem always comes down to doubling down on dumb, for which we conservatives claim as evidence we have a century of history behind us, and today a continent of countries in front of us at which to point as exemplars.

(But what the hell, I'll offer the much preferred epoch of the 1990s when, under a Republican Congress and a President busy keeping his pecker polished, the country was in a much better shape. We can do it.)

Nevertheless, you are correct in that the debate in the larger sphere is not over. I will be addressing it again this coming weekend - keep your powder dry.

A Facebook User

The numbers and statistics you cite are a very inadequate way of measuring a undeveloped society, which shows the little understanding you have of how much of the world lives. One third of the worlds population lacks access to clean drinking water, which is 2,300,000,000(billion) people, many who are children. 3 billion people live on $2US a day and 1.5 million of those live on less than $1US a day.

I think here is the great divide continued in my opinion. I see the number 3,000,000,000 and I envision 3 billion people who are mothers, fathers, brothers, sisters, and friends who have feelings/ souls that live in abject poverty. I get the feeling you never get passed the numbers, which allows it to be calculated as a mathematical statistic.
I will try and download some pictures I can link that shows what rural life looks like. For now here is an image of better looking home in rural parts of the country. Most homes are on stilts for flooding during the wet season.



Bin Emry, it is because of my compassion that I fight for personal liberty. It is because of my hands-on knowledge of economics that I know freedom to be the best tool to lift people out of poverty (moral, physical). You worship governments/guns/violence/FORCE as the answer to poverty despite facts proving the opposite. Ironically, it is your hatred and illogical process that further convinces love-focused-thinkers that a government with absolute power has never and will never improve the quality of life for the individual OR the collective.

Your insults do not cover your erroneous contention that increased personal liberty correlates to increased unsafe drinking water (or poverty).

A Facebook User

Safe drinking water in general correlates with government infrastructure and regulation. It is an essential piece in becoming a developed nation. The more we go down this road the more you expose the limits of your knowledge and understanding with the planet from which you live and the fellow human being inhabitants (I don't include corporations as a human being).

During the depression (which was caused by unregulated housing market and financial sector) through the 50's the US federal government did massive infrastructure projects that paid themselves back tenfold over time. Many of those same infrastructures are used today. It was these very policies that set up the accomplishments of the "Greatest Generation". The GI Bill of Rights or Serviceman’s Readjustment Act (Roosevelt policy) allowed millions of returning military to be the first in their families to get a college education and own a home. Unfortunately over the years the law got more and more watered down.

"You worship governments/guns/violence/FORCE as the answer to poverty despite facts proving the opposite."

I believe in a democratic republic form of government, which elects those among the governed to govern. The rest of the statement is so ridiculous it doesn't justify any further comment.

Our wedding anniversary was purposely picked to celebrate along with our nation for this document and its sentiment.

"We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness. — That to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed..."


I drink from a well that is not regulated, produced [drilled] or maintained by any government agency. #magic!

I have a rain water collection system that is not regulated, produced [drilled] or maintained by any government agency. #magic!

I suggest Bastiat's The Law to help you focus your worldview [which in this comment thread has spanned from FDR's socialism to quoting the most libertarian document every written (DOI)]. #focusdanielson

George Rebane

Bastiat's The Law is accessible through RR's reading on the Bastiat Triangle.

Written in 1849, it is short and tightly written, a worthy volume for your library.


Perhaps a couple role plays would help:

Should SS be mandatory or voluntary?

Should employERS be required to 'enforce' SS deductions from paychecks?

Should taxes be assessed in an equitable manner (flat versus progressive)?

Should employERS be required to act as the tax collector for the IRS and State taxing authority?

Should a 'central bank' be responsible for the 'setting of interest rates' or should the market set rates?

Should a government be permitted to print unlimited amounts of money AND disallow its citizens to use their own forms of money (silver/gold)?

Should the government be in the 'business' of philanthropy?

If you limit the power of government don't you also limit the power of special interests/corporations vying to buy special treatment from said government?

Should an employER lose his individual rights when he hires an employee?

What laws are you willing to send a father of 4 to prison for ignoring?

Should pseudo agencies like CARB (state), Department of Energy (fed/state), Department of Education (state/fed) be given the right to enforcement powers (detain/arrest/carry guns)?

Russ Steele

Ben@your 12:16pm

You wrote: “one third of the worlds population lacks access to clean drinking water, which is 2,300,000,000(billion) people, many who are children. 3 billion people live on $2US a day and 1.5 million of those live on less than $1US a day.”

I agree, and just think if we had not wasted billions to save the planet from global warming, which was just a normal climate cycle. The US spent $60.4 billion to solve global warming, Japan wasted $78 billion and EU is spending 375 billion a year to control global warming. Yet, there was been no warming for over 15 years. Just think, it would only take only a few billions to provide clean water for to the millions with out clean water, yet we are spending billions to control a natural climate cycle. Why is that?

Paul Emery

I am told that NID actually owns the groundwater in Nevada County. Does anyone know anything about that? Also, why don't count in the "wasted money" tally the 3 Trillion $ estimated we'll spend on our unconstitutional wars in Iraq and

Paul Emery

The second part of my response was meant for


Paul Emery, I am right there with you on the 'wasted money' on unconstitutional wars. As for NID... if they owned it we'd be getting taxed on it; though nothing would surprise me at this point.

A Facebook User

I guess it needs to be spelled out for you. Many if not most of the nations that are the poorest, lowest living standards, don't have access to drinking water, and promote very authoritarian form of governments hold many of the tenets of your ideology. What they really represent are the remnants of kingdoms, feudalism, and caste systems.

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