THE GROWING POWER OF GOVERNMENT AND THE THREAT TO LIBERTY: ELECTION 2016

declaration of independence

OF A POST TO COME promised to compare the governing approaches of Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton with respect to two issues.

  • The growth of the power of government.
  • The protection of our rights.

The Growth Of The Power Of Government

Why is it a problem when government is powerful? Government exists to protect our rights. Yet the power we give our government makes government itself a threat to our rights. Therefore, we must choose between giving the government just enough power and giving it too much.

  • To give our government the resources it needs to defend our rights, we must give our leaders the authority to tax us and spend our money. Nevertheless, the more we allow our government to tax and spend, the more we work for government instead of ourselves. At some point, we risk slavery.
  • Some decisions which effect a people must be made jointly. Thus, government must sometimes make decisions we would otherwise make for ourselves. So it is that in a nation of free men and women, we have laws that restrict us from harming each other (traffic laws, for example). In a nation of slaves, however, the laws just list a few trivial decisions that the leaders permit the people to make for themselves.

Here is a table that summarizes where the candidates stand.  Not certain the information is correct? Then check their web sites. I have only provided links where their positions are not available on their own websites.

ISSUE Donald Trump Hillary Clinton
Taxing and Spending Favors tax simplification and reduction Favors increased taxation and spending (inferred from lengthy list of proposals)
Healthcare Private market solution Doubling down on Obamacare
School Choice For School Choice. Will end Common Core Against School Choice. Favors Common Core.
Immigration Favors extreme vetting Open borders/put new immigrants on the dole
Government Regulations Committed to reducing regulations Defends the current regulatory regime
Free Trade Opponent of the big trade bills Helped to craft TPP

To be continued: The Protection Of Our Rights

WHY I SUPPORT DONALD TRUMP

Trump in August 2015 (from here)
Trump in August 2015 (from here)

Why am I going to vote for Donald Trump? If you check earlier posts on my blog you will find I once supported Senator Ted Cruz. Since Trump and Cruz parted with bad feelings, I am not happy with Trump. I think Trump has a problem with keeping his ego in check, and he gets very nasty when he doesn’t.  That said, Trump’s problems ego problems look to be of the ordinary variety. He is not a political pro, and the stresses of running a political campaign are extraordinary. So there is not much reason to expect him to handle those stresses like a pro. Hopefully, he is learning. After you needlessly insult someone, it can be difficult to patch things up.

Still, I have a problem. Like every other voter I have to figure out who to vote for.  The two candidate with a serious possibility of winning are either Donald Trump or Hillary Clinton, and I vastly prefer what Donald Trump has promised to do.

Here are my key issues (See Trump’s Positions Page).

HealthCare Reform

Trump will fight for the repeal of Obamacare.

But none of these positive reforms can be accomplished without Obamacare repeal. On day one of the Trump Administration, we will ask Congress to immediately deliver a full repeal of Obamacare. (from here)

Trump has also promised to work to replace Obamacare.  I am not sure I will like what he and Congress cook up. Nonetheless, he promises to work for a system that uses free market principles.

Tax Reform

Trump will fight for a simpler tax system and to eliminate the death tax.

When the income tax was first introduced, just one percent of Americans had to pay it. It was never intended as a tax most Americans would pay. The Trump plan eliminates the income tax for over 73 million households. 42 million households that currently file complex forms to determine they don’t owe any income taxes will now file a one page form saving them time, stress, uncertainty and an average of $110 in preparation costs. Over 31 million households get the same simplification and keep on average nearly $1,000 of their hard-earned money. (from here)

We should get rid of the income tax. As the paragraph above indicates, the people who advocated the 16th Amendment to our Constitution, created a monster that has funded the excessive growth of our government. Note that Trump’s tax reform does not address Social Security or Medicare, a major part of that 16th Amendment monster.

Trump’s plan includes tax relief for corporations and small business. That would help keep businesses from fleeing our country. Trump would also eliminate the Death Tax. That would also be a boon for small business and increase competition.

Therefore, what Trump proposes is progress. How do we get rid of the 16th Amendment. I expect that would take a Convention of the States.

Immigration Reform

This issue is the one that kicked off Trump’s campaign. I am not a big fan of the wall or Mexico paying for it. I just want to vet immigrants BEFORE they come into our country.

  • So we know each people coming into the United States is not a security threat.
  • Can speak English fluently.
  • Has a job or some means of support.

Currently, our welfare system is a draw to both legal and illegal immigrants. That’s stupid. We don’t need a welfare system so the Democratic Party can import voters.

In addition, we are allowing terrorists into the country. Instead of trying to help refugees as close to their homeland as possible, we are bringing them here, and we are not separating out the terrorists. There is no good excuse for that.

Trump is running on securing the border and securing our country again. I am happy with that.

School Choice

School Choice is my main issue. Unless we put education back under parental control, civil servants posing as teachers will continue to indoctrinate children. Am I trying to say I hate teachers? No. Of course not.

When government runs the schools, teachers are civil servants. That is a literal fact. As civil servants, teachers must teach what politicians who pay their salaries want them to teach. What politicians want children to learn very often not good for children. Politicians don’t necessarily love our children, but all them are tempted by power and prestige.

So I am disappointed Trump does not mention school choice prominently on his website, but he did say he favors school choice in his book (see my post, CAN DONALD TRUMP DELIVER ON HIS PROMISES?), Crippled America: How To Make America Great Again. In addition, Gov. Mike Pence, his running mate, apparently has an interest in the subject (see Ryan Applauds Governor Pence As Vice Presidential Choice) and Trump is on the record as being against Common Core (see DONALD J TRUMP PRESIDENTIAL ANNOUNCEMENT).

Conclusion

On the issues that matter most to me, Trump is the best choice.

TED CRUZ WOULD REPEAL EVERY WORD OF OBAMACARE

Ted Cruz campaign ad (from here)
Ted Cruz campaign ad (from here)

“We’re at war” by insanitybytes22 is one of those interesting posts that gets us thinking. Since thinking can be a rather random process, the comment thread soon rambled over to Obamacare. Since Obamacare is topical to this election, I decided to steal some material from my comment and turn it into a pro Ted Cruz post.

You don’t like Obamacare?

Vote for Ted Cruz.

Where does Cruz stand on the issue of health care? There is lots of BS out there. Hence, Michael F. Cannon wrote Clean Up Your Act, PolitiFact: Why Ted Cruz Was Right On Obamacare And Jobs to refute what the mischief makers are writing. Here is an article that is fairly specific about where Cruz stands on the issue.

As an issue, Cruz addresses the topic of Obamacare on this page: Jobs and Opportunity. Why? The health care sector is a large part of our economy. When government steps in and makes our health care decisions for us, government kills jobs and limits our opportunities.

How do I feel about Obamacare? Obamacare is too much government, and I am voting for the candidate who most wants to reduce the size of our government. I hope Ted Cruz will kill Obamacare, but I don’t think he will rid us of Medicare and Medicaid.  Just killing Obamacare, limiting the ambulance chasing, and encouraging interstate competition between insurers will be monumental tasks. Getting our government out of the health care business — if it ever happens — will most likely take decades.

What is the Christian position on how we should make our health care system work? I cannot speak for all Christians, but one message that comes from the Bible is that no man is good, not one (Romans 3:9-20). That is why the people who wrote our Constitution designed our government with numerous checks and balances.

Because it forces us to accept the involvement of politicians and bureaucrats in our health care, Obamacare outrageously violates the Constitution. Because Obamacare is blatantly unconstitutional, we know from the get-go the people who crafted the legislation cannot be trusted. The majority of Americans don’t even want Obamacare. So the notion our leaders created Obamacare for the good of the American people is absurd.

Do I have a solution for all our health care woes? Yes. Don’t get born. Don’t get old. Don’t get sick. Don’t have accidents. Failing all that, rob a bank and spend somebody else’s money. Seriously, isn’t that all devious politicians have promised us?

When our government takes money from one person and gives it to the “needy,” that is stealing. Even if it were not, our Constitution does not charter Congress to redistribute the wealth. When the Supreme Court says that it does, they have to use ridiculously convoluted arguments. For example, because the Constitution is supposedly a “living document”, judges have the discretion to amend it. However, there is an obvious problem with that argument. If we say the Constitution is “living document”, that just says the Constitution doesn’t mean what it says.

Therefore, sneakier members of the judiciary try to hide their shameless shenanigans under the guise of common law.

Our constitutional system, without our fully realizing it, has tapped into an ancient source of law, one that antedates the Constitution itself by several centuries. That ancient kind of law is the common law. The common law is a system built not on an authoritative, foundational, quasi-sacred text like the Constitution. Rather, the common law is built out of precedents and traditions that accumulate over time. Those precedents allow room for adaptation and change, but only within certain limits and only in ways that are rooted in the past. Our constitutional system has become a common law system, one in which precedent and past practices are, in their own way, as important as the written Constitution itself. A common law Constitution is a “living” Constitution, but it is also one that can protect fundamental principles against transient public opinion, and it is not one that judges (or anyone else) can simply manipulate to fit their own ideas. (from here).

Yet those  sneakier souls ignore plain words of the Constitution which must take precedence over common law. Thus, whether they admit it or not, those sneakier souls are arguing that the Constitution is a “living document”,  that judges have the discretion to amend it.

So what is the alternative? If we don’t want government-run health care, how is free market health care suppose to work? It will never work perfectly, but does anything we can devise?

What are the problems with free enterprise health care? When we get sick, it is too late to go shopping for healthcare, and some people will always procrastinate. Some people will always be poor, unable to afford a doctor. And some will always be sickly at birth, so that insurance is impractical. Nevertheless, most of us want insurance, and we can afford it.

What does insurance do for us? When we have a catastrophe, our insurance helps us to pay the bills. In addition, because insurers have market clout and can hire people with the appropriate skills, they can negotiate affordable doctor and hospital fees. Therefore, if we can and we are willing to purchase health care insurance, the main thing we need our government to do is prosecute fraud.

What about those who don’t have insurance? The solution is charity. Charity is something politicians did not invent, and government NEVER provides. Politicians just take money from some people so they can buy the votes of other people.

When we let our leaders redistribute the wealth (or health care), what is Christian about that? Doesn’t redistributing the wealth bankrupt and corrupt our government? Don’t meddlesome government regulations wreak havoc on free market solutions that work quite well for the majority of people? Why is any of that Christian?

But what about the fact the people of the United States spend too much money on health care? Do government-run solutions reduce the cost of anything? Isn’t more government involvement just going to lead to the rationing of health care? Do we want bureaucrats to decide who doctors can treat and how?

If you or I want to buy an expensive car or house, why should politicians have the right to stop us? We don’t buy health care for the “People.” We each want to buy health care for ourselves, family members, and individuals we care about. It is a cinch that few politicians actually care about the “People.” Therefore, our leaders should just have the same right to health care as the rest of us, to buy health care for themselves, family members, and people they care about.

CHRISTMAS PRESENTS FOR THE SPECIAL INTERESTS

Something for everyone? (from here)
Something for everyone. (from here)

It seems that every year now the our politicians scheme to work while the rest of celebrate our joy in the birth of Jesus Christ. Here is how CNN,  the first of the blatantly Liberal Democrat cable news networks, puts it.

Mimicking college students everywhere, Congress is waiting until the end of the term to get things done.

Lawmakers have crammed a year’s worth into two massive tax and spending bills they are expected — but not guaranteed — to pass later this week. Released in the middle of the night Tuesday, the measures detail how the federal government will spend $1.1 trillion on everything from national parks to NASA to veterans’ health. They also dictate new policy for cybersecurity, oil exports and suspend some Obamacare taxes. (continued here)

In fact, the going has been so smooth for our new Speaker that he is getting his bills passed with so little opposition he is having trouble delaying them to a time when almost no one is noticing.

Democratic leaders are unanimous in declaring a complete victory over House Speaker Rep. Paul Ryan (R-WI) and his close allies, who wrote the $1.1 trillion omnibus budget without asking House conservatives for any input — or even for some public objections to help their closed-door negotiations.

The Democrats’ victory, and Republican Ryan’s defeat, was garishly displayed when his omnibus got more Democratic votes in the House and in the Senate than it got Republican votes.

“I said I would not accept a lot of [conservative] ideological riders that were attached to a big budget deal,” President Barack Obama said Friday, at his end-of-year press conference. “And because of some terrific negotiations by the Democrats up on Capitol Hill and I think some pretty good work by our legislative staff here… it was a good win,” he said. “We met our goals,” he said. (continued here)

Think about the sheer stupidity this headline describes: Congress Votes To Fund Nearly 300,000 Visas For Muslim Migrants In One Year. Will you find anything in the Liberal news media about this provision in that 2,000 page bill that Congress  presented to us at the last minute? Yet it is there. Even though we are heading for an obvious crash, our glorious leaders still have us on auto pilot. Spending is through the roof. Our foreign policy is a wreck. We don’t even protect our borders. Even with a majority in both houses, we have too many RINOs in the Republican Party, too many RINOs who care more about pleasing fat cat donors than they do about the welfare of our country.

Is the Virginia Commonwealth different? Time will tell. Consider this email I got from Delegate Rob Bell.

ROB BELLDear friend:

Just in time for Christmas, Governor McAuliffe announced his $109 billion budget, which includes a wish list of $3 billion in new initiatives. Some of his proposals, like cuts in the corporate tax rate, are clearly intended to win conservative support.

But look deeper and McAuliffe’s real plan becomes clear. To pay for these proposals, McAuliffe endorses the Obamacare Medicaid expansion and imposes new taxes on hospitals (that would ultimately be passed on to patients).

This is fiscally reckless. Since 1985, Medicaid spending has increased by 2068% and has grown from 5% of the general fund (state) budget to more than 22%. (See the full chart, here.) Just since 2004, state Medicaid spending has grown from $1.8 billion to a projected $4.46 billion in 2018. This growth is clearly unsustainable, and McAuliffe’s proposed expansion would add hundreds of thousands more Virginians to the Medicaid rolls. Such expansion will only make it that much harder to address Medicaid’s runaway growth.

McAuliffe has stated that the only way to pay for his budget is to expand Medicaid. The House has repeatedly rejected this approach. As the budget process moves forward, I hope you will support a more fiscally responsible budget that addresses Virginia’s true needs without raising taxes or mortgaging our future.

If you would like to share your thoughts with the Governor, you can contact him here. Please also e-mail me any thoughts you have.

Sincerely,

Rob Bell
Delegate, 58th District

Autopilot is not good enough. We have to replace the RINOs.