The last best hope
By Robert Owens
In the darkest days of the war when one stunning defeat followed another and the Union couldn't seem to find a general capable of standing up to Robert E. Lee and the Army of Northern Virginia Abraham Lincoln said, "We shall nobly save, or meanly lose, the last best hope of earth." Today, we face a Leviathan of our own creation. Dr. Frankenstein a literary creation so brilliant he brought inanimate flesh to life had his name hijacked by his brutish creation. In like manner the noble experiment conceived by our Founders is now in the hands of those seeking to bring the collectivist dead back from the trash-heap of history.
You know capitalism is in trouble when markets move more over government reports, programs, bailouts, interventions and threats then they do over invention and productivity. Our once free nation is dissolving into a re-tread of the Corporate State once so fashionable with their natty Black Shirts and calendar starting at the year one.
These colossal boondoggles whether they're called stimulus, bail-outs or cross-generational theft are attempts by those elected to save the system to make the current crisis so bad we'll cheerfully put collars around our own necks. If our government really wanted to jump start the economy there are better ways to do it than strangling the baby before you throw out the bath water.
Instead of borrowed bailouts why not an immediate one-year personal tax holiday. We wouldn't have to borrow money or pay interest and it wouldn't cost any more than all the borrowing we're doing now. This would put money in every tax- payer's pocket immediately leading to increased spending stimulating the economy.
Everyone outside the black-hole beltway knows we need to simplify a tax code of over 60,000 pages. Let's do what the former Communists in Russia did and enact a Flat Tax. This would be fair for all and it would free up an estimated 6.6 billion hours spent filling out tax forms for productive pursuits.
We could make America business friendly again. Today we have the second highest corporate tax rate in the world while Communist China has the lowest. We also have some of the most stringent regulations and the highest amount of government interference in business operations. According to the Small Business Administration, small-businesses spend more than 1 billion hours each year filling out government forms at a cost of $100 billion. Let's cut the corporate tax rates, burn the paper work and let people get back to work.
Our current leaders are self confessed followers of John Maynard Keynes . Even Nixon said, "We're all Keynesians now." Keynes said, "The best way to destroy the capitalist system is to debauch the currency. By a continuing process of inflation, governments can confiscate, secretly and unobserved, an important part of the wealth of their citizens." Stop printing money, debasing our currency. Abolish the Federal Reserve System created n 1913 to stop the cycle of boom and bust by regulating the money supply. Congress alone is granted the power to coin money by the Constitution. Our government was created by the people not the other way around and the power we've lent them isn't to be abdicated to anyone else. Stop the presses now!
We're following the British Empire off the cliff into a sea of endless red ink chasing the phantom of Free Trade. As America reduces or eliminates all tariffs on incoming foreign goods, our goods are still subject to imposed fees when they follow the return route. No one calls them tariffs instead they're equalization adjustments based on a Value-Added Tax (VAT). Not only are American goods entering other countries slapped with VAT adjustments foreign companies sending goods our way receive rebates from their governments. These aren't subsidies which our Free Trade Agreements outlaw they're rebates working just like subsidies.
In his recent virtual town-hall meeting, President Obama was asked when people can expect a return of jobs outsourced to other nations. The president said, "Many of the lost jobs in recent years involve work that was done by people getting very low wages and those with limited work skills." I thought good paying factory jobs built the middleclass in this country and our Leader believes all those jobs our policies sent overseas weren't worth having. I believe millions of former factory workers now flipping burgers and chasing carts might have a different point-of-view. I say it's time to re-industrialize America. We need to make things again. The Arsenal of Democracy has become a flea-market filled with people living on charge-cards.
Even one candle looks bright in the dark. It's time to stand- up before we fall down. Tell your family, friends, neighbors, tell that person standing behind you in the check-out line, "We will not go quietly into that dark night!" We will not sit up and beg for scraps from the collectivist table. We're Americans and we will not be the generation that lost the last best hope.
Dr. Robert Owens teaches History, Political Science, Religion, and Leadership for Southside Virginia Community College.
Get weekly updates about new issues of ESR!