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Tuesday, April 14, 2009

Tea Party Movement Gains Momentum

Tea Party Movement Gains Momentum

Of course, what’s interesting about the Tea Party movement, whatever its success, is that it is pretty much about what it says it is - lower taxes and less government spending. A lot of people, Republican and Democrat, are concerned about our escalating debt and what this might mean for future generations. This is clearly a serious subject for serious discussion from whatever side of the issue you fall out on, but… no matter… the moment something gains momentum out comes the derangement crowd. In a certain way, it’s a sign of success.    Roger Simon  

Taxed Enough Already (TEA) information can be found at    (Be patient with URL, as the server is getting double duty on US Tax deadline day!)   The web site has a state-by-state “find a tea party in your state” list of cities that the grassroots movement has sprung up in, and where the Tea Party (round 2) will be held.   In this blog, we posted about the original Rick Santelli (CNBC business reporter) on his ‘rant and rave’ about higher gov’t spending and too much government, and his call for a Chicago Tea Party (March 3rd post).   On February 27th, a number of 1st round Tea Party protests and rallies were held.    Now the second round is planned for US Tax day:  the April 15th deadline to pay your 2008 income taxes.

In Colorado, Tea Party events are to be held in Colorado Springs, Craig, Delta, Denver, Durango, Loveland, Montrose, Grand Junction, Fort Collins, Pueblo, Steamboat Springs, Walsenburg and Woodland Park.   (Blogger note:   Boulder and Aspen are absent from list.   Do the fine residents of these towns really think all is well, and taxes are too low?)

In New Mexico, Tea Party events are to be held on April 15th in Artesia, Albuquerque, Alamogordo, Carlsbad, Clovis, Farmington, Hobbs, Las Cruces, Roswell, Ruidoso, Santa Fe, Silver City and Taos. 

Meanwhile the political left is trying their level best to discount, diminish and dumb down the Tea Party political movement.   In fact at the Huffington Post, “citizen journalists” can sign up to cover the Tea Parties:   “The Huffington Post wants to have citizen journalists at as many of these events as possible. If you think you'd be interested in attending one of the Tea Parties and reporting back to us with dispatches, photos, or video, click here to sign up. We'll contact you shortly with further instructions.” 

We’ll contact you shortly with further instructions?      From whom?   To really cover the Tea Party events, or just try to discount this grass roots American movement?    

Back to the Tea Party movement.    Many Americans, from the political left and right, Republican & Democrat, independent and other political parties are alarmed as the massive US Government spending, expansion of Federal programs coming from Washington DC and the Congressional appetite for more spending, more taxes and more government “top down” solutions.    Thus the Tea Party movement. 

On April 14th, at the National Press Club    the Citizens Against Government Waste    gave their annual press conference on the 2009 Pig (pork) Book.   This well researched document (available from the web site) details wasteful US government spending and pork.     While it is disappointing for taxpayers to read, the annual Pig Book details the members of Congress and their pork spending ways.   You can find the “Porker of the Year” and the other details on the big spenders in the Congress.   

Let’s look at what the wasteful government spending leads to:  Higher taxes at the local, state and Federal level.   In 2008, the “Cost of Government Day” was July 16th.  According to Citizens Against Government Waste, “Cost of Government Day for 2008 is July 16.  Americans now work more than half of the year 197 days to pay their share of the cost of government with 84 of those days due to federal spending alone.  This year, the average American will need to work an additional 16 days out of the year to pay off his or her cost of government compared to 2000 and four days compared to last year.”

Will the massive spending in 2009 push the “Cost of Government Day” into August?

If you are tired of more government programs, irresponsible spending and inevitable tax increases, we’ll see you tomorrow at the Tea Party event near you.

© 2009, Jasper Welch, Four Corners Media,     

Thursday, April 9, 2009

The Other (GOP) Federal Budget

The Other (GOP) Federal Budget

The Democrat Majority in the US House and US Senate passed the US Federal FY2010 budget, without one Republican member voting for it, and 20 “blue dog Democrats” voting against it.  $3.6 Trillion of largess, earmarks (8,500 of them), increased social spending and decreased military spending.   And a structural deficit in the US budget due to overspending by Congress of will be laid at the feet of our children and their children.    And, despite promises of only “taxing the rich”, over time the Congress will raise taxes on all American’s, just to cover the new government programs, spending and interest on debt.

So what was alternative budget to the massive Democrat Federal budget, as put forth by the Republicans?

Answering President Obama's challenge for critics to present alternatives, the House Republicans have offered a responsible budget blueprint that:

+Borrows $3.6 trillion less than the President's budget;

+Would create $23,000 less debt per household than the President's budget;

+Keeps federal spending just above 20 percent of the gross domestic product (GDP)—the same level as before the recession;

+Avoids all tax increases and even simplifies the overly complex tax code;

+Includes a temporary moratorium on earmarks; and

+Begins reforming the unsustainable costs of Social Security, Medicare, and Medicaid

The House Republican alternative rejects all tax increases. It would permanently extend the 2001 and 2003 tax cuts, as well as the AMT patch. It would also finally reform the complex income tax code by allowing individuals the choice of opting into a simplified tax system with a 10 percent marginal tax rate on incomes below $100,000 and a 25 percent marginal tax rate on incomes above $100,000. It would also encourage economic growth by reducing the corporate tax rate from 35 percent to 25 percent and suspending capital gains taxes through 2010.    From the Heritage Foundation

Let’s compare the sensible Republican alternative (that unfortunately was defeated by the Democrat majority in the US House in early April 2009) to what is being predicted by the Heritage Foundation of the US tax system in heading higher and by 2050 will be like the high tax countries in Europe:

According to the CBO’s long-run forecast in December 2005, federal taxes under current law will rise from 18.3 percent of GDP to nearly 19 percent within five years and reach almost 24 percent of GDP by 2050. This means that the federal tax burden on Americans, as a proportion of income, will increase by almost one-fourth. When state and local taxes are included, the U.S. tax burden will be comparable to the burden in today’s slow-growth Europe. 

From the Heritage Foundation:

So while the Dems in Congress are claming to be moving to Pay-Go (paying for government programs as you go), what is really happening with a $3.6 Trillion budget and projected $1 Trillion deficits per year is this:

         Expand US Government programs by spending money we don’t have, so we’ll borrow it from the rest of the world, to spend it on programs that expand the cost, scope and reach of government, which in turn will raise the public debt and desperate politicians in Congress looking to increase taxes on all Americans to pay for it.

Thus, we are heading towards being more like the country of Greece, whose debt as a country is forecast to exceed 100% of its Gross Domestic Product (the US public debt is $6.4 Trillion, which is about 42% of the US GDP).  Greece’s financial problem is that their biggest economic burden is interest on their public debt.    And Greece has been remanded by the European Commission to keep their continued deficit spending below 3% of GDP.      The US budget deficit (just from the official FY 2010 budget) is 1.2 Trillion, or 8% of the US GDP.   However, it is now projected at $1.8 Trillion, which is 12% of US GDP.  No wonder France and Germany are lecturing the US on overspending, deficits and reining in government spending.


So where is Greece today?   At a standstill, as a nationwide public strike over public sector pay and job losses has brought the country to a standstill  Wall Street Journal, Page A11, April 3, 2009   As for a public stimulus by the Greek government?     They can’t, as they ran out of money and the EU mandated “3% of GDP budget deficit spending cap” precludes the government from spending money.

Does the US want to become a permanent debtor nation, weakened by financial irresponsibility in Congress due to overspending, overreaching government programs and higher taxes?  Under Obama and the Democrats in Congress, the US becoming subject to those countries, banks and individuals who hold US debt and leverage over us.   Is that what a free, financially responsible and independent America should be doing?  For more and more Americans, the answer is No!

© 2009, Jasper Welch, Four Corners Media,  

Thursday, April 2, 2009

The Devalued Prime Minister of Britain

The Devalued Prime Minister of Britain

The devalued Prime Minister of a devalued Government was a three (3) minute speech given in late March 2009 at the EU chambers in Brussels. Daniel Hannan, is a conservative Member of the Parliament in Great Britain, and Mr. Hannan is a Member of the European Parliament (MEP) who formally addressed his fellow EU representatives, including British Prime Minister Gordon Brown.  His brief comments on the state of the UK financial conditions and overspending by the British Labor government have resonated throughout the democratic world, as many citizens are questioning the US and UK governments and their massive increases in government programs, spending and (soon to be raised) taxes.   

Here is the blog excerpt from Daniel Hannans’ blog   posted March 25, 2009, following his speech at the European Union (EU) parliament entitled, “The Devalued Prime Minister of a Devalued Government”  (in which the British Prime Minister Gordon Brown was in the EU chambers): 

“The Internet has changed politics - changed it utterly and forever. Twenty-four hours ago, I made a three-minute speech in the European Parliament, aimed at Gordon Brown. I tipped off the BBC and some of the newspaper correspondents but, unsurprisingly, they ignored me: I am, after all, simply a backbench MEP.

When I woke up this morning, my phone was clogged with texts, my email inbox with messages. Overnight, the YouTube clip of my remarks had attracted over 36,000 hits. By today, it was the most watched video in Britain.  (As of 3/31/09, over 1.8 million views). 

How did it happen, in the absence of any media coverage? The answer is that political reporters no longer get to decide what's news. The days when a minister gave briefings to a dozen lobby correspondents, and thereby dictated the next day's headlines, are over. Now, a thousand bloggers decide for themselves what is interesting. If enough of them are tickled then, bingo, you're news.”   Daniel Hannan, UK blogger & MP.

DANIEL HANNAN is a writer and journalist. He has authored seven books on the EU, contributes regularly to a number of European newspapers, and has served as Conservative MEP for South East England since 1999.  He has also written a book called the Plan, which is a blueprint for citizens to shift power from the professional politicians back to the people at the local level.

“Britain is heading in the wrong direction. The Plan shows how to put our country on the right track. Daniel Hannan and Douglas Carswell show how a future government could actually shift powers back, from Brussels to Westminster, from Whitehall to town halls, from the state to the citizens. Their plan aims to restore honour and meaning to the ballot box. It would disperse power among communities, through localism and through referendums. Things do not have to be as they are. The Plan shows how we can change our country for the better.”   Book review on in the UK Telegraph

© 2009, Jasper Welch, Four Corners Media