Archive for the ‘Stimulus’ Category

BOOK REVIEW: SHADOWBOSSES BY MALLORY AND ELIZABETH FACTOR

Friday, October 5th, 2012

 

BOOK REVIEW: ‘Shadowbosses’

Reviewed by Grover G. Norquist – Special to The Washington Times

 

Wednesday, September 19, 2012

SHADOWBOSSES: GOVERNMENT UNIONS CONTROL AMERICA AND ROB TAXPAYERS BLIND
By Mallory Factor with Elizabeth Factor
Center Street, $24.99, 336 pages
EXCERPT FROM THIS ARTICLE:  Why can President Obama impose expensive regulations on coal miners and steel workers? Because those industries he is damaging are small potatoes compared to the public-sector unions that now fund his campaigns. He doesn’t care about unemployed coal miners. They are not paying customers. Most miners now are non-union.

Mallory and Elizabeth Factor have written an important and powerful new book, “Shadowbosses,” that explains the symbiotic relationship between the modern Democratic Party and today’s labor unions. One is not possible without the other. Democratic politicians pass laws that give union leaders power over workers, and union leaders use that power to take “dues” money from workers to give to Democratic politicians.

Last year, in 2011, 16.3 million workers who belong to unions (in every sense) had $14 billion taken from them in union dues. Much of that money flowed into political campaigns as cash and to pay “volunteers.” Labor unions are the skeleton and muscle of the modern Democratic Party.

Before the federal government passed the Wagner Act in 1935 forcing workers to join unions as a condition of employment, only 8 percent of Americans chose to join unions voluntarily. Thanks to Franklin Roosevelt’s legislation giving unions power over workers, once a union was in place, it did not need to ask workers to join. They paid dues or did not work.

Before the creation of government-empowered unions, the Democratic Party was the party of the discredited Confederacy, and from 1860 to 1932, of 15 presidents only two were Democrats: Grover Cleveland and Woodrow Wilson. Wilson only won because Teddy Roosevelt ran as a Progressive, splitting the Republican vote.

When Herbert Hoover imposed massive tariffs, hiked the new income tax to 75 percent and spent like Barack Obama, he deepened a recession, and Franklin Roosevelt was able to win the 1932 election. FDR continued Hoover’s policies of higher taxes, “stimulus” spending and government regulations. He might have lost the next elections. But FDR created a new extension of government — labor unions with powers over workers to extract union dues. With government relatively small, those unions were in factories and there was a limit to how high wages and work rules could go without bankrupting businesses. Union power was constrained by its interest in the health of the overall economy.

Over time, unions killed off much of the auto, steel, mining and manufacturing industries in the United States. They went on the prowl, looking for new sources of dues money — and they found it in government workers: police, fire, teachers and generic bureaucrats. (more…)

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VIDEO – HOW THE ECONOMY WORKS UNDER OBAMA

Tuesday, September 11th, 2012

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CAN OBAMA LEARN FROM THE SUCCESSFUL ECONOMIES OF SWEDEN AND CANADA?

Tuesday, May 15th, 2012

May 14, 2012

By Warren Beatty

Will Obama learn from Sweden?  Will he learn from Canada?  Or will he cling to the European socialist economic model that is currently failing?

Sweden

Anders Borg, Sweden’s finance minister, reduced Sweden’s deficit and created economic growth.  There is one thing that Borg did: “Since becoming Sweden’s finance minister, Borg reduced the size of government and cut taxes.  His ‘stimulus’ was a permanent tax cut.”

Canada

Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper said that Forbes magazine selected Canada as the No. 1 country in the world in which to do businessForbes stated, “Credit a reformed tax structure.”  On New Year’s Day, 2012, Canada’s corporate tax rate — both federal and provincial rates combined — fell to 25%, giving Canada the lowest rate in the Group of Seven countries and a more competitive economy on a global basis.  In annual steps, Canada lowered the federal rate from 22% to 15%, while the provinces now have a common rate of 10%.  The gradual lowering of the corporate tax rate appears to have resulted in little loss in corporate tax revenue.

Between 1992 and 1996, Canada’s central government departments saw their budgets cut by an average of 20%.  Aware that efficiency savings and pay freezes alone would be insufficient, the prime minister Jean Chrétien (Canadian PM from November 1993 until December 2003) ordered that all non-essential national government spending be cut.  Under a system called Program Review, a committee of senior civil servants demanded that all departments nominate spending programs that a lean national government should not be funding.

Canada, in April 2012, added far more jobs than expected and marked the biggest two-month employment gain in more than 30 years.  With a Canadian population one-ninth the size of that of the United States, it would be as if the U.S. economy had added about 1.3 million jobs in two months.  Economists say the Canadian unemployment rate would be 6.4% if reported in the way the U.S. calculates its rate.  The Canadian economy has recovered all the output and jobs, including full-time positions, that it lost in the 2008-09 recession.

Now let’s look at what has not/is not working in what is increasingly becoming socialist Europe — namely, the European Union (EU); its (mostly rejected) austerity program; and France, Greece, and Spain.

European Union and austerity

In place of austerity, there is a growing belief that there may be some magical, pain-free way out of this economic crisis, but this is an illusion.  Resolving the eurozone crisis depends upon the continuing willingness of Germany to bail out irresponsible economies.  But why should Germans continue to write checks for people who are not prepared to accept the consequences of their own fiscal irresponsibility? (more…)

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OBAMA’S CUTS TO THE MILITARY, BUT NO CUTS TO ENTITLEMENTS

Sunday, April 1st, 2012

OUR REPUBLICAN PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATES SHOULD BE MAKING THE VOTERS VERY MUCH AWARE OF OBAMA’S    HUGE CUTS TO THE MILITARY WHILE NOT CUTTING ENTITLEMENT SPENDING.

Published on The Weekly Standard (www.weeklystandard.com)

A Path to Security

Gary Schmitt and Thomas Donnelly

April 2, 2012, Vol. 17, No. 28EXCERPT FROM THIS ARTICLE:  To be sure, these are only first steps toward undoing the damage of the Obama years. In 2009, President Obama’s first year in office—and while ramming an $800 billion “stimulus” bill through Congress—the White House directed $330 billion in defense cuts. The next year, Defense Secretary Robert Gates went looking for “efficiencies” to reinvest in priority programs; thank you, said the president, I’ll take another $100 billion from your budget. And under the 2011 BCA, Obama harvested $487 billion from the Pentagon, charging it with the full bill for cuts needed from all “security” accounts, as the law described them. So Barack Obama has racked up about $920 billion in defense cuts to date.

Rep. Paul Ryan calls his budget plan the “Path to Prosperity,” but it could be termed as well a “Path to Security.” In reclaiming more than $200 billion of the nearly $500 billion in military cuts made in last year’s Budget Control Act (BCA), the House Budget Committee chairman takes national security more seriously than does our commander in chief.

To be sure, these are only first steps toward undoing the damage of the Obama years. In 2009, President Obama’s first year in office—and while ramming an $800 billion “stimulus” bill through Congress—the White House directed $330 billion in defense cuts. The next year, Defense Secretary Robert Gates went looking for “efficiencies” to reinvest in priority programs; thank you, said the president, I’ll take another $100 billion from your budget. And under the 2011 BCA, Obama harvested $487 billion from the Pentagon, charging it with the full bill for cuts needed from all “security” accounts, as the law described them. So Barack Obama has racked up about $920 billion in defense cuts to date.

But the president wants more. Because the congressional “supercommittee” could not agree to the larger savings mandated in the budget control law, the president’s 2013 budget does nothing to keep the sequestration guillotine from coming down on October 1, chopping an automatic $55 billion per year out of defense budgets, allocated across each and every program. That would push the administration’s defense-cut total past $1.4 trillion. Though he commands troops involved in an ongoing war, Obama won’t lift a finger to avoid what his defense secretary has described as a catastrophe, unless taxes are raised. The net effect, as Gen. Martin Dempsey, the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, has said, is that the United States will no longer be a global power. (more…)

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KARL ROVE – ‘THE ROAD WE’VE TRAVELED’ WITH OBAMA

Saturday, March 31st, 2012
The Wall Street Journal

  • March 21, 2012,
  • ‘The Road We’ve Traveled’ With Obama

Three dismal years are spun into 17 minutes of fact-challenged campaign film.

By KARL ROVE

This month, Barack Obama’s re-election campaign released a 17-minute film, “The Road We’ve Traveled,” that previews the Democratic general election narrative. Directed by Academy Award winner Davis Guggenheim and narrated by actor Tom Hanks, the film explores Mr. Obama’s most important decisions.

Viewers are told Mr. Obama deserves re-election for restoring America to prosperity after a recession “as deep as anything . . . since the Great Depression.” He accomplished this in part, so the film says, by bailing out the auto companies—deciding not to just “give the car companies” or “the UAW the money” but to force them to “work together” and “modernize the automobile industry.” The president, we’re told, also confronted “one of the most worrisome problems facing America . . . the cost of health care.”

Abroad, Mr. Obama ended the Iraq war and, in the “ultimate test of leadership,” Osama bin Laden was killed on his watch. The film heralds Mr. Obama as a leader committed to “tough decisions” and as someone who “would not dwell in blame” in the Oval Office.

Where to begin? Perhaps with the last statement: Mr. Obama has spent three years wallowing in blame. His culprits have ranged from his predecessor, to tsunamis and earthquakes, to ATMs, to Fox News, to yours truly. If you Google “Obama, Blame, Bush” and “Obama, Inherited,” you’ll get tens of millions of hits. (more…)

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JIM DEMINT – A ROTTEN HIGHWAY BILL

Thursday, February 16th, 2012
The Wall Street Journal

  • FEBRUARY 15, 2012

Ready for Another Rotten Highway Bill?

We can dramatically cut the federal gas tax. States could adjust their gas taxes and make their own construction and repair decisions without costly union regulations.

By JIM DEMINT Mr. DeMint is a Republican senator from South Carolina

The Congressional Budget Office now estimates that our national debt could nearly double over the next 10 years—to an astounding $29.4 trillion from $15 trillion today—so you might think Washington would be looking to stop the fiscal train wreck. You’d be wrong.

Despite all the hyperventilating about a tea party takeover in Congress, the sad truth is that in 2011 Congress increased spending from the year before, raised the debt limit by $2 trillion, and funded ObamaCare.

The highway bill is the latest example of Washington’s bipartisan addiction to big spending. Every six years, Congress passes a spending bill that divvies up the revenues from the federal gas tax and other highway user fees. The money goes into an account called the Highway Trust Fund, and for decades Congress has promised not to spend more on roads and bridges than is available in the trust fund.

But the trust fund has run dry thanks to reckless spending and wasteful earmarks, so Congress bailed out the highway program—to the total tune of about $35 billion—in 2008, 2009 and 2010. (more…)

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VIDEO – MARCO RUBIO – THE PROMISE OF AMERICA

Sunday, January 29th, 2012

JANUARY 28, 2011

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OBAMA’S CRONY CAPITALISM

Saturday, January 28th, 2012

EDITORIAL: Obama’s crony capitalism

Friends of the president are given billions in government largesse

By THE WASHINGTON TIMES

Thursday, January 26, 2012

President Obama said in his State of the Union address that one of the American values that must be reclaimed is “an economy where everyone gets a fair shot, and everyone does their fair share, and everyone plays by the same set of rules.” For three years, he and his political allies have been undermining this vision. They see government as a means of rewarding their friends and punishing their enemies. For the Obama circle, rules apply only to other people.

Obamacare is a growing burden to American businesses, but not if you have friends in high places. Mr. Obama’s signature and highly unpopular legislative achievement was sold as a measure that would require shared sacrifice but bring lasting benefits to all Americans. Yet as soon as the law was implemented, hundreds of waivers were issued that allowed the recipients to duck under Obamacare requirements. The vast majority of recipients were labor-union chapters, large corporations, financial firms and local governments with strong Democratic connections. One in 5 waivers issued in April 2011 went to upscale nightclubs, bars and hotels in Rep. Nancy Pelosi’s San Francisco district. Mr. Obama is not even covered by his own law. (more…)

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THE FEDERAL RESERVE AND THE ZERO DECADE

Saturday, January 28th, 2012
The Wall Street Journal

  • JANUARY 27, 2012

The Zero Decade

The Fed doubles down to reflate the housing market.

The two most powerful men in Washington have a big disagreement. No, not President Obama and Speaker John Boehner. We mean Mr. Obama and Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke, who can’t seem to agree on the health of the U.S. economy.

On Tuesday night, the President proclaimed that the “state of our Union is getting stronger,” employers are hiring faster than they can find skilled workers, and manufacturing is booming. Less than a day later, Mr. Bernanke and his Open Market Committee (FOMC) downgraded their already modest growth outlook and said the recovery is so vulnerable that the Fed must keep interest rates at near-zero for another three years.

The contradiction may not be as profound as it seems. Mr. Obama is running for re-election and this time he needs to sell audacity more than hope, while the Fed is still trying to reflate the housing market that it seems to believe is the main driver of economic growth. The Fed is straining to deliver the asset-price “stimulus” that Mr. Obama can’t any longer get out of Congress. (more…)

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KRAUTHAMMER – ‘FAIRNESS’ FALLS FLAT FOR OBAMA

Saturday, January 28th, 2012
Printed from the News & Observer – www.NewsObserver.com
Published Fri, Jan 27, 2012
‘Fairness’ falls flat for Obama

Washington Post Writers Group – Charles Krauthammer

Under penalty of what? Jail? The self-proclaimed transformer of America is now playing truant officer?

It sounded like the Clinton years with their presidentially proclaimed initiatives on midnight basketball and school uniforms. These are the marks of a shrunken presidency, thoroughly flummoxed by high unemployment, economic stagnation, crushing debt – and a glaring absence of ideas.

Of course, this being Obama, there was a reach for grandeur. Hope and change are long gone. It’s now equality and fairness. (more…)

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