“The American Constitution is remarkable for its simplicity; but it can only suffice a people habitually correct in their actions, and would be utterly inadequate to the wants of a different nation. Change the domestic habits of the Americans, their religious devotion, and their high respect for morality, and it will not be necessary to change a single letter of the Constitution in order to vary the whole form of their government.”
19th-century observer of American life Francis Grund
Many find my questioning of the motives and methods of government tiring. Don't worry, I do too. However, I wonder why those entrusted with governing don't have the same questions. I wonder why those in the various media outlets don't question obvious inconsistencies between what is said and what is done. We cannot legislate all the wrongs of the world anymore than we can subsidize all the social ills. At some point people have to take personal responsibility and do something for themselves. Evidence is plentiful all around us of people who have abandoned their moral and civil responsibilities. I could rant all day about seemingly little things which people do and don't do that manifest their dependence on someone else to do what they should do for themselves. Many good people are overwhelmed by the thought of taking corrective action and immerse themselves in nature and doing meaningless things to take care of crises designed purposely to distract. It is like a magician directing your attention away from one hand in order to do something "magical" with the other. What really is happening in government?
The size of government threatens the American way of life as we know it. The solution is straightforward — cut government. A vibrant grassroots movement insists that it happen, and Washington is lousy with rival plans for how to go about it. Rich Lowry
I predict future happiness for Americans if they can prevent the government
from wasting the labors of the people under the pretense of taking care of
them. Thomas Jefferson
As a final note of how much the U.S. government has increased its borrowing and spending, in February 2011 alone we borrowed and spent $222 billion. That’s almost 40 percent more than in ALL of 2007.
Hope 'n' Change: Improper PaymentsFederal agencies reported making $125 billion in improper payments in 2010, 94 percent of which came from social spending programs. The Government Accountability Office (GAO) defines improper payments as outlays that are overpayments, underpayments, or insufficiently documented payments, including, but not always, fraudulent claims. The $125 billion was spread across 70 different programs in 20 federal agencies. The bulk of the problem showed up in areas such as -- surprise -- Medicare ($34 billion), Medicaid ($22 billion), and unemployment insurance ($17.5 billion).
To put the $125 billion worth of improper payments in perspective, according to the Treasury Department, the entire State Department spent just over $11 billion in 2010, the Justice Department spent $16 billion, and NASA spent $17 billion. In other words, last year it cost more for the government to absorb fraud and poor accounting practices than it did to implement our foreign policy (such as it is), administer justice at a federal level, and fund our entire space program. The GAO said that the high total of improper payments was a result of the government's spending more money. This makes the solution to this problem even more obvious -- cut spending.
From the Left: The Enemies ListThe Obama administration, fearful of the Supreme Court's 2010 Citizens United ruling in favor of free speech, is looking to change the rules of the campaign game for 2012. The administration is demanding that potential federal contractors make known any political donations over $5,000 made by the contracting company or its executives. Government contractors are already required to disclose political contributions to candidates, but this order will expand that to include independent groups, a category in which conservatives outspent liberals in the last election cycle.
The implications are obvious: If a company wants to win a federal contract while Obama is in the White House, it had better have a campaign donation record that reflects greater support for Democrats. Leftists attempted to rig the corporate donation game in 2010 with the Disclose Act, but it failed to pass. Now the White House is again extra-constitutionally taking matters into its own hands with the same intent -- reduce the overall dollar amount received in donations by independent conservative groups. Federal labor unions don't have to worry, though. The SEIU, AFL-CIO and other groups that brought Obama some $200 million worth of support in 2008 are conveniently exempted from the new disclosure rules in the executive order. Perhaps they slipped the president's mind.
How does this work out in real life?
Obama's Silence on Boeing Is Unacceptable
The president's appointees have moved to block the company from building planes in my state. He owes us an explanation.
By NIKKI HALEY - The governor of South Carolina
In October 2009, Boeing, long one of the best corporations in America, made an announcement that changed the economic outlook of South Carolina forever: The company's second line of 787 Dreamliners would be produced in North Charleston.
In choosing to manufacture in my state, Boeing was exercising its right as a free enterprise in a free nation to conduct business wherever it believed would best serve both the bottom line and the employees of its company. This is not a novel or complicated idea. It's called capitalism.
Boeing has since poured billions of dollars into a new, state-of-the art facility in South Carolina's picturesque Low Country along the Atlantic coast. It has created thousands of good jobs and joined the long tradition of distinguished and employee-friendly corporations that have found a home, and a partner, in the Palmetto State.
This a win-win for South Carolina, for Boeing, and for the global clients who will see Dreamliners rolling off the North Charleston line at the rate of 10 a month, starting with the first one next year. But, as is often the case, a win for people and businesses is a loss for the labor unions, which rely on coercion, bullying and undue political influence to stay afloat.
South Carolina is a right-to-work state, and we're proud that within our borders workers cannot be required to join a labor union as a condition of employment. We don't need unions playing middlemen between our companies and our employees. We don't want them forcefully inserted into our promising business climate. And we will not stand for them intimidating South Carolinians.
That is apparently too much for President Obama and his union-beholden appointees at the National Labor Relations Board, who have asked the courts to intervene and force Boeing to stop production in South Carolina. The NLRB wants Boeing to produce the planes only in Washington state, where its workers must belong to the International Association of Machinists and Aerospace Workers.
Let's be clear: Boeing is a great corporate citizen in Washington and in South Carolina. The company chose to come to our state because the cost of doing business is low, our job training and work force are strong, and our ports are tremendous. The fact that we are a right-to-work state is an added bonus.
The actions by the NLRB are nothing less than a direct assault on the 22 right-to-work states across America. They are also an unprecedented attack on an iconic American company that is being told by the federal government—which seems to regard its authority as endless—where and how to build airplanes.
The president has been silent since his hand-selected NLRB General Counsel Lafe Solomon, who has not yet been confirmed by the United States Senate as required by law, chose to engage in economic warfare on behalf of the unions last week.
While silence in this case can be assumed to mean consent, President Obama's silence is not acceptable—not to me, and certainly not to the millions of South Carolinians who are rightly aghast at the thought of the greatest economic development success our state has seen in decades being ripped away by federal bureaucrats who appear to be little more than union puppets.
This is not just a South Carolina issue, and President Obama owes the people of our country a response. If they get away with this government-dictated economic larceny, the unions won't stop in our state.
The nation deserves an explanation as to why the president's appointees are doing the machinist union's dirty work on the backs of the businesses and workers of South Carolina.
Do you feel safe?