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Monday, April 30, 2012

President Obama Speaks on American Infrastructure: Someone we could've used three years ago



There's a growing consensus at least amongst Democrats and perhaps the country as a whole. Even Mitt Romney at one point supported new Infrastructure Investment. To rebuild the country and put people back to work, before he checked the latest weather report. That we need to rebuild the country and do it for a few reasons. The Core of Engineers has estimated that we need around 1T$ in Infrastructure Investment. To prevent things like the damage form Hurricane Katreena from happening again. And to prevent bridges from collapsing, which happened in Minnesota back in the summer of 2007. So we have newer roads, better roads, less Traffic Congestion, people spending less time in Traffic. Expanding airports, improving airports, building new schools, rebuilding new schools. Infrastructure Investment is one of the things that FDR got right with his New Deal back in the 1930s. Plus all of the well paid jobs that would come from Infrastructure Investment. All the Construction Companies it would hire, all the unemployed Construction Workers it would put back to work.

Infrastructure Investment is exactly that, your investing in the country, building things that we all use. Hiring Private Companies to do the work, who hire its workers to do the jobs. And we all use the roads, buildings, bridges, airports, schools etc. And they all pay for themselves to keep up with repairs etc. Barack Obama becomes President in January, 2009 in the heart of the "Great Recession". The Minnesota Bridge Collapse, happens roughly eighteen months before, Hurricane Katreena happened a little over three years before. The economy is tanking at negative 7%, we are losing 700K jobs a month. President Obama calls for a stimulus of 800B$. Acknowledging the need for Infrastructure Investment, they had already acknowledged that they were going to have to borrow the money to pay for it.

My point being if your going to borrow around 1T$ and thats before interest. Why not go all out, borrow what it takes to put these people back to work. Instead of spending 40B$ in Infrastructure Investment, how about ten times that. Along with the Middle Class Tax Relief and State Aid. The American Recovery Act as it was designed to do, which was basically to stop the bleeding. Of the "Great Recession", worked we were out of Recession by the summer of 2009. But it could've been a lot better and maybe we are not looking at 8.2% Unemployment today.

Friday, April 27, 2012

"Study: Millennials Reject Religious Doctrine": The Millennium Generation moving Left on Social Issues and Economic Policy



There was a study yesterday by the Pew Research Center, an Independent Research Center. Not Democratic or Republican, not Left or Right. That suggested that the Millennium Generation is Liberal-Libertarian on Social Issues. Thinks like Same Sex Marriage, guns, guns, immigration, tolerance towards people who aren't the same as you. And then there was a another study today by Cal Berkley, suggesting that the Millennium Generation isn't very religious at all. That even though they may come from Religious Families. They are not fundamentalist with they're beliefs. All these things are good news for Liberals and Libertarians and whatever is left. Of the Conservative Movement, not the Far Right but real Conservatives. Americans as a people don't like being told what to do by Government, especially Big Government. Not saying all of this believe in this, which is why we have a Far Right and Far Left in America. But a consensus of Americans don't want Big Government in our wallets and bedrooms.

The Millennium Generation is a perfect example of this, people who everyday are becoming. Small Business owners and running they're own companies. They don't want to be told how to run its business or have to pay high taxes. And they don't want Corporate Welfare or like Corporate Welfare. And they know and like plenty of people who are of a different race, ethnicity, religion, sexuality. And don't judge these people by these things and don't believe things like Same Sex Marriage should be illegal. And don't like the War on Drugs and a lot of these people voted for Barack Obama for President in 2008. But are now disappointed with the President on some of these Social Issues. Some of these people have voted for Ron Paul for President, one reason why he's done so well with young people. And young people who are more Liberal then they are Libertarian, such as myself. Are looking at Gary Johnson for President.

Liberals and Libertarians are in good shape politically as we move forward. As the country becomes even younger and grows even more Liberal-Libertarian. Which is why I believe both the Democratic and Libertarian Parties. Has a strong future ahead of them, if they capitalize on it. That the Democratic Party continues to be a Liberal Party and doesn't move more left. But Religious and Neoconservatives, as well as Progressives. Are going to have to adapt its messages, if they want to remain relevant in American Politics.

Thursday, April 26, 2012

An Address by Senator Marco Rubio: America's Global Engagement: What American Foreign Policy should be



There use to be a Bi Partisan consensus in America, that American Foreign Policy. Should be about defending American interests, protecting people where we can. That are being murdered by its own government and are just looking for freedom. And that America can't police the World but must be a Leader in the World if not the main Leader in the World. In insuring peace but that we couldn't do these things ourselves. We had to work with our allies to not only protect our National Interests but to protect peace in the World. Which is how the United Nations and the North Atlantic Treaty Organization or NATO was created. Not trying to sound partisan here and I'll criticize Progressives here as well. But that all changed in 2002-03 when the Bush National Security Council, led by its Neoconservatives, pushed Preemptive War.

When Neoconservatives pushed the War in Iraq and had they had more time, perhaps would've gone after other regimes as well. And there's evidence they were looking at the Islamic Republic of Iran as well. American Foreign Policy changed and for the worse. Republicans became Neoconservative on Foreign Policy and that America had to lead. And that working with our allies was no longer necessary and if anything we no longer needed them. Progressives and Libertarians became more Isolationist. And that America was overcommitted and should pull back. Not just the the War in Iraq was a mistake but the War in Afghanistan was a mistake. And the War on Terror was a mistake as well.

Hopefully Sen. Marco Rubio and other leading Republicans will recognize that a Neoconservative Foreign Policy. Is not the right course that America has to lead in the World. To protect our own interests but that we can't do everything by ourselves. And we must work with our allies when we can and need them. And that we've paid a heavy price for how we've been involved in Iraq and Afghanistan. Especially with cost of lives and the debt we've piled up.

Wednesday, April 25, 2012

Arizona's Immigration Law Heads to the Supreme Court: Another Failure by the Federal Government



Whether you like the Arizona Immigration Law or not and I don't. I wrote a blog coming out against it two years ago and there's nothing mew thats changed my mind about it. We would not be debating this, had the Federal Government been doing its job. Had they been enforcing our Immigration Laws and securing the Borders, especially the Southern Border. Enforcing current Immigration Laws, like preventing people from entering the country illegally in the first place. Cracking down on employers that hire Illegal Immigrants. Things they could be doing as of right now, thats already Federal Law. That they have the Constitutional Authority to do but have chosen not to. Why because Illegal Immigrants provide employers with Cheap Labor. And they could pay these workers less then they would have to pay American Workers. Why because who would the Illegal Immigrants be able to turn to. They are already in the country illegally and obviously don't want to be turned in by their employer. Employers have been lobbying the Feds not to crack down on Illegal Immigration. Because they want their Cheap Labor.

The Federal Government has known the Illegal Immigration has been a problem in America. With somewhere in the neighborhood of 15M Illegal Immigrants in the country. The same size as the Los Angeles Metro Area by the way. The 2nd largest Metro Area in the country. For ten years now but have either chosen not to or have failed to pass any laws to fix the problems. To President George W. Bush's credit and it may be five years before you hear me give President Bush credit. For anything again, he attempted to pass Immigration Reform. From 2005=07 and came fairly close, a Republican House passed a Border Control bill in late 2005. But President Bush said he would veto that and Senate Democrats led by. Then Senate Minority Leader Harry Reid, had the votes to block it. The Senate with a Bi Partisan Comprehensive Immigration Reform bill in 2006-07. Led by Sen. Ted Kennedy, Sen. John McCain, Sen. Lindsay Graham, Sen. Pat Leahy and others. Had that bill that President Bush supported but Senate Republicans blocked it both in 2006 and 07.

I don't like Arizona Immigration Reform bill, it will lead to Racial Profiling. And why the bill will get thrown out later on. The only thing is Latin Americans will experience this before the bill gets thrown out. But the Federal Government only has themselves to blame for this failure. Because this failure is there's and what Arizona did was try to step up where Uncle Sam has failed them.

Tuesday, April 24, 2012

"Mitt Romney Flips Faster than Pancakes at iHOP": His Positions change as fast as the Washington Weather



It must be great to be able to change your mind whenever its convenient. My position is no longer popular, so I'm going to change it. Its one thing to change your position, as facts and evidence changed. And just say look I was wrong, if I knew now what I didn't know then. I wouldn't of taken that position but its another to change your position. For political convenience, which is what Mit Romney has become an expert on. Governor Romney what's your position on abortion? Well when I'm running for US Senate or Governor of Massachusetts. I'm Pro Choice but when I'm running for President in the GOP, that considers abortion murder. I'm Pro Life and you could go on to the Healthcare Mandate, the House Republican budget plan and others. I'll give Governor Romney credit for not going after the Religious Right. To go out of his way to bring them to his corner and come out for things like outlawing pornography, gambling and other things. Which is what Rick Santorum did but again thats another Flip Flop. From 2007-08 when he tried to convince Republicans he was a Religious Conservative.

Mitt Romney's Presidential Campaign slogan should be, if I need your vote and your for it. So am I and if I need your vote and your against it, so am I. He gives new meaning to the term Practical Leadership, because instead of trying to accomplish the Politically Possible. He tries to accomplish the Politically Popular. At least amongst people he believes he needs to vote for him. When he's running for President in the Republican Primaries, he runs as a Reagan Conservative. Which is why the Religious Right doesn't like him and when he runs in the General Election. He'll run as an Independent Republican, or Moderate Conservative to seek votes from Independent Voters. What he really should do is clone himself, have Conservative Mitt run for Republicans. Independent Mitt to run for Independents or get a Time Machine to erase all of his positions he took in the Republican Primaries. That Independents don't like.

This won't work for Mitt, he'll end up being the John Kerry of 2012, where Independent Voters. Are trying to figure out who the real Mitt is and running out of time. And sticking with the guy they know. Because Mitt Romney might not even know who the real Mitt is anymore. Because he's changed his positions as often as some women changes their hair color. To the point they can't remember what their natural hair color is.

Monday, April 23, 2012

Prager University: "The Welfare State and the Selfish Society": Some of the Differences between Economic Liberalism and Democratic Socialism



Again I know I've said this several times now, as well as recently. But there's so such thing as a Free Market Economy in the World. In any country that has a National Government. With maybe the exception of Somalia and Afghanistan, who both don't have governments. That can defend and govern their countries on their own. The idea that America has a Free Market, is a myth its fiction. We subsidize our Private Industries and have countless subsidies for them. Costing in the billions if not hundreds of billions of dollars. So does Canada and Europe and probably Japan as well. If you believe in Free Market Economics someone like Libertarian Professor's Milton Friedman and Walter Williams. You don't believe in things like Tax Loopholes, Corporate Subsidies and Corporate Welfare. You believe that all business's should be able to do as well, based on the products and services that they sell. And how much money they make selling their products and services. And that these business's shouldn't be regulated.

What America has is American Capitalism or at least what we use to have. Is American Capitalism, Economic Liberalism. Before the Bush Administration came to power in 2001 and they installed Supply Side Economics. Which is basically Economic Neoconservatism. What Economic Liberalism is based on, is having strong Private Enterprise. Thats regulated well enough to protect innocent people from being abused. But where government doesn't try to run Private Enterprise. Where all business's and individuals are taxed based on their ability to pay. But not to the point, where they lose incentive to be profitable. Or to the point that they go out of business. Where there's a Safety Net for people who fall through the cracks in the economy. And can't support themselves but helps them get back up to become Self Sufficient. And where we have an Education System that provides future workers the skills that they need to be successful. And an Infrastructure System so people can get around safely and efficiently.

A major difference between Economic Liberalism and Democratic Socialism. Which is what's practiced in Europe. Is American Workers are expected to take care of themselves. Be able to do as well as they can based on their skills and production. And where we have a system that allows for Americans to get themselves the skills. For them to be as successful and as productive as they can. And if they fall down, a Safety Net to help them get back up. Where in Europe take Britain, France and Sweden to use as examples. The Welfare States there are so generous, all funded through high taxes. That the people there can live off the benefits provided to them by government. They have a job, earn a living, government takes most of their money from. And gives them back what they feel they need to survive. The Welfare Benefits in these countries are a hell of a lot more generous then they are in America.

The American Economy hasn't fallen because of Economic Liberalism but because we moved away from it. Our Federal Government became Fiscally Irresponsible with a Borrow and Spend Supply Side Fiscal Policy. That we are now trying to dig our way out of, we stopped regulating Private Enterprise. While we kept subsidizing them with Corporate Welfare and other things. And by the way a lot of the economies in Europe aren't doing very well either. And Britain, France and Sweden are all looking at their Welfare States. And looking to make savings in them.

Sunday, April 22, 2012

James Miller Center: Video: President Jimmy Carter: Report To The Nation on Energy, February 2nd, 1977


This post was originally posted at FRS FreeState on WordPress

President Carter was right to take on energy policy and creating a national energy policy. That would move America off of foreign oil and move us towards energy independence. He understood that America has a surplus of natural resources and that we can and should be energy independent. Like Canada, Russia, Saudi Arabia and others and we shouldn’t have to import foreign oil. He understood the energy crisis of 1973 and how that hurt the American economy, thanks to OPEC. And understood the energy crisis of the late 1970s and how that effected the American economy. With higher energy prices, that contributed to our high unemployment. Because people were spending more money on their energy and as a result weren’t spending money on other products.

The problem with President Carter’s energy policy, is that it didn’t go far enough. It was almost completely focused on renewable energy resources. Wind, solar, natural gas and others. When yes, they should be part of a comprehensive energy policy. But those energy industries were so brand new and underdeveloped in the late 1970s. When this speech was given and still are today. That they alone can’t get America to energy independence. America produces oil, coal, nuclear and natural gas. We have the potential to produce a lot of these and can produce them all over the country. But we simply can’t get there on nuclear Power and oil drilling alone. They won’t get us to energy independence, but they are our mature energy resources right now. And have to be part of the picture.

Renewable energy, conservation, high energy standards, should and have to be part of a national energy policy. For our economy, so we can produce a lot more jobs in brand new energy industries. For our environment, to make it cleaner. And for our foreign policy, to get us off of foreign oil. And so countries that don’t have our best interest at heart, will have less leverage over us in the World. And this is exactly what President Carter was pushing. But he didn’t go far enough. He should’ve included oil, coal, natural gas and nuclear power as well.

Because we don’t have to develop oil, gas, nuclear. Just produce more of them and do it as safe and as clean as possible. These energy industries are already there, because they are already there and mature. And employ a lot of Americans in this country. And we can produce them in a way that doesn’t harm the environment through regulation and taxation. President Cater deserves credit for focusing on energy policy and making it a centerpiece of his economic policy. And probably pushed this debate farther along than any President since. But missed an opportunity to create a comprehensive energy policy. That by now could’ve moved America to energy independence and finally off of foreign oil.

Friday, April 20, 2012

Robert Skidelsky on economist John Maynard Keynes: The Impact of Keynes Economics



During the "Great Depression" of the 1930s, the only institution that had money to spend in America. Was the Federal Government, not because they built up great surplus's because of great Fiscal Policy. And obviously not because of the "Great Depression". But because the Feds control the Federal Currency, the American Dollar. And are the only institution that has the authority and can afford. To borrow billions if not trillions of dollars to spend, without going out of business . They can borrow money from other countries, up to a certain point. That their Tax Payers get stuck paying the bill for, like with Interest Rates and in taxes. And this is how a lot of the New Deal was financed, not all of it. The FDIC, Social Security and Unemployment Insurance are all Self Financed. But the new Infrastructure Investment that came because of the New Deal. Was paid for through borrowing, the theory being that when the Private Sector. Doesn't have money to spend, the Public Sector must spend. In order to make up the difference.

The New Deal was clearly a collection of Keynes programs, designed to invest billions of dollars. In the American Economy, to make up for the lack of Consumer Spending in the Private Sector. Because a lot of people, companies and banks were broke and going out of business. So the FDR Administration stepped up with the New Deal, to try to fill that void. To fill the huge hole and deficit of Consumer Spending left by the "Great Depression". Same thing with the American Recovery Act of 2009 by the Obama Administration. Roughly 800B$ in State Aid, Infrastructure Investment and new Tax Cuts. Designed to stop the hole from getting even bigger by the "Great Recession". And the American Economy was technically out of Recession by the summer of 2009. Even though the damage left by the "Great Recession, was still left in place.

Keynes Economics didn't get America out of the "Great Depression" and "Great Recession". As far as the economy moving back to Full Recovery and getting back to where they were. Before these two Economic Crisis's but what they did do. Was to stop digging, plugging the hole, so things wouldn't get any worse. And buying America time to recover and get past these Economic Crisis's. Which is what happened in the 1940s and what's happening now.

Thursday, April 19, 2012

Cuba Reforms Economy in Effort to Preserve Political System: State Capitalism Designed to Save Cuban Communism




If your going to be honest and accurate about why the Communist Republic of Cuba. The only Communist Republic in the Americas. Is abandoning State Ownership Socialism in their economy, you would be saying that they are doing it. To save the Communist Republic, to prevent the Cuban People from declaring a revolution against the Castro Regime. Perhaps there are some people in the Castro Regime, perhaps even President Raul Castro himself. That now acknowledge that State Ownership has failed Cuba and they have to privatize their economy. In order to produce the Economic and Job Growth, to lift Cubans out of poverty. And so the Cuban Economy can be productive but the main reason they are doing this. Is to save the Communist Regime and so they don't get kicked out of power. What the Castro Regime may not understand though, is that when a country has Economic Freedom. The people then have money and resources and enjoy that and feel the need for more Freedom, Social and Political Freedom as well.

Cuba is not headed to becoming like America, they aren't going to establish American Capitalism. Or what Europe has, which is Democratic Socialism. The direction Cuba is headed in, is what's called State Capitalism. Which is a mixture of Private and Public Industry, with a large Welfare State. But only there to help the people who need it. Which is what's done in China and Vietnam, both Communist Republics. But where Social Freedom is still very limited. And we'll see how it works out for the Cuban People.

Wednesday, April 18, 2012

Citizens Against Government Waste Releases 2012 Pig Book: Why Members of Congress need a Diet




I realize my blog is mostly for Political Junkies, thats what you get from a Washingtonian. I mostly blog about American Politics and Current Affairs and American History. And some of the subjects I touvh sound bland, hopefully my writing doesn't sound bland. I try to blog in an informative and interesting way. So my blogs aren't used to cure insomnia and so the readers actually get something useful out of it. Perhaps learning something they haven't already known. And blogging about Congressional Earmarks, perhaps something that only 1/4 Americans have ever heard of. Is the ultimate of wonky Egg Headed Political Junky blogs. There a lot Americans who can't even name their own Representative or Senator. Perhaps not even Governor, let alone what a Congressional Earmark is. But could tell what certain celebrity wore to the last Awards Show. So I'm covering some ground here that might be for a very limited audience. Thats not reason not to blog about Congressional Earmarks, because the subject is still important and I'll explain why.

What is a Congressional Earmark, its an amendment to a bill that a Representative or Senator. Gets approved to attached to a bill, generally Appropriations bills. The bills that fund the Federal Government and Earmarks almost alway involves money and its the Transportation bill and other Infrastructure Investment bills. An Earmark is an amendment that authorizes targeted spending in a certain area. To use as an example, lets say there's a Highway bill, Rep. Smith or Sen. Jones. Gets an Earmark attached to the bill to fund a new highway or bridge. In their District or State, its not Congressional Earmarks are bad exactly. Its really the process thats corrupted Congress to the point. That Representatives and Senators have lost their jobs and are now even in prison for their involvement.

What's made Congressional Earmarks the problem, is that they are used to my Members of Congress. To get reelected, they are tickets to get reelected. And with a Congress thats full of Career Politicians and even Career Members of Congress. It makes the process even more corrupt because now Members can go to their constituents and Special Interests. And tell them I hear you need funding for your school or institution. How about we work together on this, I'm a Member of the Appropriations Committee. Or even the Chairman or Ranking Member of that Committee. The constituent sees what Rep. Smith or Sen. Jones did for them. And decided to make a Political Contribution to them or even vote for them. And because they are tickets to reelection, it makes reforming them almost impossible.

I'm not a fan of Congressional Earmarks, wish Congress didn't have them and that they would at least reform the process. But there's a difference between good Earmarks and bad Earmarks. And with a better process, we would be able to keep Congressional Earmarks. And keep in the good Earmarks and eliminate the bad Earmarks. A good Earmark, lets say Rep. Smith who represents Boston, Atlanta, Chicago or San Francisco. Or some other big city with a large Metro Area. Has high congestion in their area and too much traffic and traffic jams. Needs funding to expand a road or build a new road, to cut down on the Traffic Congestion. So their constituents would have other options to get around. Or secures funding to expand or build a new Metro Center, that hundreds of thousands of people would use.

A bad Earmark would be an Earmark that Rep. Smith or Sen. Jones secures. To build a bridge or road in their District or State, that only their family and close friends use. Perhaps to get to their Vacation Home or new Vacation Home. And if your familiar with the "Bridge to Nowhere", you know thats not far fetched. So knowing the fact that we as Tax Payers are probably stuck with Congressional Earmarks indefinitely. We need to clean up the process with a few reforms. One all Congressional Earmarks are transparent, meaning the Rep. Sen. who authored the Earmark. Would be made public before the Earmark is voted on. As well as what the Earmark is for and how it paid for. Two that all Earmarks are paid for, that none of them are funded by borrowing. And three that all Congressional Earmarks are relevant to the bill that they are attached to. Defense Earmarks to Defense bills to use as an example.

We are probably never ever going to be able to eliminate Congressional Earmarks. Especially as long as we have so many Career Politicians in Congress. But we can certainly open up the process to make it transparent. So we know what they are for, authored by who, how they are paid for. And then hold our Representatives Senators accountable for them.

Monday, April 16, 2012

"Milton Friedman Schools Young Idealist Stanford": Lecture on the Role of Government




If we want to have true Free Society, a Liberal Democracy where all Free Adults. Have the freedom to live their own lives and be as successful and productive as they can. Then we need an Economic System that allows for that to happen. Where we can all have access to quality education and of course what we make of that opportunity, is up to us. There are no guarantees in any Economic System, that everyone in the country. Will do well and be free and not dependent on Public Assistance and obey the law. So they don't get thrown into jail and make the rest of their lives harder. Because we are held accountable for all of our decisions in life. Whether you believe we should be or not, we simply are and always will be. Then we need an Economic System that rewards people based on what they produce, what they put into society. Not what they take out, that empowers everyone to be able to be successful and productive. And again what they do with those opportunities is up to them.

Thats the basic point that Professor Milton Friedman was making back in 1978 at Stanford University. That we should be rewarded based on what we produce, paid for the work that we do. Not be rewarded base on what government thinks we should be compensated. But based on what we produce and not be dependent on Public Assistance. Its just that Professor Friedman's view on economics is a bit different then mind. I believe in things like Public Education, even though I would reform it and make it a hell of a lot different. Education is the key to everything in the economy, the better educated you are in life. You better you are going to do in almost every area. If your working Low Skilled, Low Paid jobs and your an adult. Its generally not because you want to but because you don't have the skills to get a good job.

So what we need is better education in America, a much better Public Education System. That empowers everyone to have an opportunity to get a good education. Not matter the income level of their families and then empower our people on Public Assistance. And our Low Skilled workers to go back to school. Or go to school and get themselves a good education. So they can get a good job, be much more productive and then be rewarded for their production.

Saturday, April 14, 2012

Daily Worldwide News: Charles Manson Denied Parole- Why Charles Manson is Lucky to be Alive

This peice was originally posted at FRS Daily Press: Daily Worldwide News: Charles Manson Denied Parole- Why Charles Manson is Lucky to be Alive

Charles Manson has been in prison for his current sentence of forty-two years. After being convicted for his part in the Manson Family murders of the late 1960s. He is now 77 years old, so just for is current prison sentence alone, he’s been in prison for more than half of his life. And the last time he was a free man from the mid 1960s, after being paroled from prison in Washington State, to the time he was arrested in 1969, for his role in the Manson Family murders, that’s really the longest stretch he’s ever been free at any point of his life. It’s not just that Charlie Manson has spent most of his adult life in prison he’s spent most of his life period in prison. He’s exactly where he belongs, he’s never shown the ability to be productive on the outside, without hurting innocent people, or having them killed. Charlie Manson is not in Prison for actually physically committing the murders. He’s in Prison for conspiring the murders, for inspiring others to do his evil work.

Charlie Manson was originally sentenced to Death for the role in the Manson Family murders from 1969. So were his co-defendants Leslie Van Houten, Patricia Krenwinkel, Charles Watson and others. But then California outlawed the death penalty shortly after their sentences. So their sentences were changed to life in prison with the possibility of parole. none of the convicted murderers have been paroled and they will never be. But imagine that, you’re responsible for intentionally killing not just one innocent person, but innocent people and not only is your life spared, but you actually have a shot as small as it is, of one day being free. Even though your victims will never be free from the crimes you committed against them.

The Manson Family is lucky to even be alive right now and that’s the best they’ll ever do. You can make a good case that sparing the lives of Leslie Van Houten and Pat Krenwinkell, was a a good move. Both have made productive use of their prison sentences. Both completed college in prison, both hold good prison jobs. Both have shown they are now rehabilitated and probably no longer represents a threat to society. And both have shown remorse for their crimes. But Charlie Manon is exactly where he belongs and is lucky to have whatever time he has left to be alive in Prison. He’s shown no remorse or admitted any responsibility for his crimes.

Wednesday, April 11, 2012

"Cuba before Fidel Castro": What Cuba could be Post Communism




Post World War II, you could make a case that Europe was a collection of Third World nations. Because of the damage that was done to Britain, France, Germany and Italy. Because of the damage from World War II and a lot of that can be credited to Nazi Germany. Well Cuba not because of World War II but because of several Authoritarian Dictators. And perhaps the Spanish Kingdom as well, was a Third World nation post World War II as well. Because of help from the United States, Europe is basically nothing but Developed Nations right now. With few exceptions because of the Marshal Plan, which was a lot of Foreign Aid to Europe. So they can rebuild their countries, we saved them from Nazi Germany. And then we helped Europe rebuild itself, including West Germany. Had Cuba not had the Bastsita Regime, followed by the Castro Regime. And moved into a more Democratic direction or at least had an Economic System. That empowered its people to be able to take care of themselves and promoted Economic Growth. Instead of relying on the State to provide everything. Maybe they are a Developed Nation today as well.

Cuba is not a Third World nation because of their people or the lack the resources. To be a Developed Nation, similar to the Islamic Republic of Iran. The Communist Republic of Cuba is a Third World Nation. Because of their government, thats screwed up their economy so much. With their Central Planning and putting so much of their power into the State. That the people lack the power and resources, despite the good education. They get from the State, to be able to run business's, be productive and create new products. That can be marketed and sold at affordable prices. That so much of the country today, unless they work for the State. Or has friends that work for the State. They probably live in poverty today. Thats not the fault of the Cuban People except they haven't overthrown the Castro Regime yet. But the fault of the Castro Regime.

Cuba has already moved to privatize their economy and in the process of doing this. And are developing their own version of State Capitalism. That you see in China and Vietnam, so going forward we'll see what the Cuban People can do for themselves. And what the future of Cuba will look like.

Tuesday, April 10, 2012

Fidel Castro Full Movie: What Fidel Castro Achieved for Cuba and where he Failed




When Fidel Castro came to power in Cuba, he took over for a very corrupt an Authoritarian Dictator. But a country that had reached an economic level, where a lot of Cubans. Had some financial security and President Castro took a lot of that away. He did eliminate a lot of the corruption from the Bastista Regime. But replaced it with heavy handed top down Authoritarian Communist Rule. And the Cuban People have paid a heavy price for that. But what the Communist Republic of Cuba as I call them. Have gotten in return is a quality Educational and Healthcare System. That the Cuban People have benefited a lot from, especially for a Third World country. But the problem is that even though, Cubans tend to be well educated. Because the Castro Regime has messed up the Cuban Economy so much. With their State Ownership Economic System. Where the Cuban State at one point owned the entire Cuban Economy. A lot of Cuban Workers can't find the good jobs that their level of education should give them.

In some ways the Fidel Castro has benefited Cuba, I'm not one that sees Fidel Castro as completely evil. But he could've done so much more for this country, especially considering how long he was in power there. With the Cuban People, the size of their island, with their Natural Resources. With its educated workforce, with their Healthcare System, Cuba should've been the Hong Kong or Israel. Of the West Indies economically but with President Castro being so hell bent on having power. And constantly worrying about being ousted from power and having so little faith. In his own people to be able to build their own lives. To be able to take care of themselves and their families. Instead of making Cuba a Socialist Republic or Democratic Socialist Republic. Where the Cuban People could have freedom to live their own lives. At least economically, they've been held down by their own government.

I blogged this last night but the China Model is the path forward for Cuba. Thats the best they'll be able to do under the current Castro Regime. Which is basically State Capitalism, with a large Welfare State, supported by high taxes. But where the Cuban People will have Economic Liberty to live their own lives. And be able to take care of themselves and their families. But the Scandinavian Model would've been the way for Cuba to go, since the fall of the Bastista Regime back in 1959. Which is Democratic Socialist Republic, with considerable Economic and Social Liberty. But with a large Welfare State as well.

Monday, April 9, 2012

Economic Reform in Cuba: What The Future of Cuba could look like




Over the past five years or so, the Communist Republic of Cuba as I call them. Has been opening up Economic Liberty in the country. Allowing for Cubans to open up their own business's, sell their own properties. Allowing for them to get loans from banks to have the capitol needed to start their own business's. In hopes of allowing Cubans to become more Self Reliant in the country. And to jump start an economy, thats been struggling. Ever since the Fidel Castro Regime came to power over fifty years ago. This is huge for Cuba, because it means they'll have an opportunity to live up to their potential as a country. They have a solid Healthcare and Education System and now we'll see their. Educated Workforce put to work and be able to see the type of country that Cuba can be. Similar to what happened in Hong Kong and Israel when their economies were opended to Private Enterprise.

Cuba at least under its current regime and maybe never will have an Economic System. That looks like America, they'll never have American Capitalism. Their State will always play a pivotal role in its economy. With its Welfare State but what we'll see in Cuba, is that the people. That can takes care of themselves and earn a living on their own. Will be expected to do so, especially if they have a quality education. That the State provides and are physically and mentally able. But what I believe we'll see in Cuba, is the China or Vietnam Model take hold there. Which is basically State Capitalism, Private Enterprise thats mixed in with a large Welfare State. As well as some State Enterprise as well, which is what China still has. But what can happen from this, is as more Cubans have more resources. They may decide to organize and seek more freedom in Cuba.

What we are seeing in the Communist Republic, is the Castro Regime loosening its power. On its own people for them to live their own lives. And the question is what the Cuban People do with their new power and what they make of it. And what Cuba looks like 10-20 years from now.

Friday, April 6, 2012

US Economy Adds 120K Jobs, Jobless Rate at 8.2%: A Mixed Jobs Report




The United States created a net of 240K jobs in February with the Unemployment Rate. Holding steady at 8.3% and in March we add 120K jobs. With the Unemployment Rate dropping to 8.2% but with fewer people looking for work. More people staying in the workforce looking for work. But not as a result of too many people going back to work. Meaning we still have a lot more work to do to generate some real Economic and Job Growth. That puts more Americans back to work. To the point our Unemployment Rate fall steadily, we finally get under 8% and fall even farther then that. The economy grew at over 3% last quarter, which is still isn't great. But an improvement and better then 1.8% or so that we great at in 2011. So hopefully thats a sign that Job Growth with higher Economic Growth. Will lead to more jobs being created in 2012, the problem is Gas Prices keep rising. And the more money people spend at the pump, the less they are spending doing other things. Buying other products that leads to Economic and Job Growth. The less shopping they do for example, the less cars they buy and so fourth.

One thing that Congress can do to help the economy and do what use to be a Bi Partisan thing. Is pass a long term Highway bill, so we can start to doing the work on much needed. Infrastructure Investment that we need around the country. The Republican House keeps passing two month extensions to the Highway bill. The Senate wants a two year extension and has passed one in the Senate. So if the House and Senate can come together and get this done. Especially in an Election Year, where Infrastructure Projects can help Members of Congress in both parties. Because they can see their unemployed Construction Workers back to work. And then their Representative and Senator will be able to take the credit for helping that person back to work.

The economy is clearly improving from 2011 and we are finally moving back to where we were. In January 2009 and then the Unemployment Rate took off from there. The first six months was the heart of the "Great Recession", with negative -7% Economic Growth. And losing 700K jobs per month, we are clearly past that. And moving back towards where we were in 2008 but we still have some work to do.

Thursday, April 5, 2012

"America's Benign Neglect toward LAC?": Where America can help Latin America




Its true with 9/11 that the United States has focused more on the Middle East. And to a certain extent Eurasia and Asia, to fight the War on Terror. As we should be doing but the fact is there are some problems, as well as potential in Latin America as well. Mexico, where we are involved with them in a War on Drugs and broader War on Crime. As well as fighting Narco Terrorism there as well. There's also a lot of potential in Mexico, that if you look at in on paper. With its large size, population and Natural Resources. On paper should be a First World country. But they have so much crime and corruption and are still being held down. By high poverty, that they haven't come very close in reaching their potential. Even though they've made a lot of progress in the last twenty years or so. Venezuela another country with a lot of potential on paper. Again with its size, population and Natural Resources. But they have a Socialist President in Hugo Chavez, that governs like a Communist Dictator. Who looks up to Fidel Castro. Its not just Brazil thats becoming a First World country that has promise in Latin America. Cuba is another example as well.

The Communist Republic of Cuba as I call them, hopefully one day becoming a Democratic Socialist Republic of Cuba. Has the population, thats educated, that gets decent Healthcare at a decent price. With the new Raul Castro Administration, has moved to privatize parts of their economy already. Like in their Entertainment Industry, Small Business's, hotels, agriculture etc. Has shown signs that they want to move past Fidel Castro Communism. And have been opening up their economy and may headed towards the China Model. Where they open up Economic Freedom and perhaps loosen restrictions on Social Life. But remain a one party Communist State. Which would be a major improvement. Over what they have now and could lead to normalizing relations with America. Something I support with certain conditions. And there's Central America that has some potential as well, especially economic. Like in Panama but has its own crime and corruptions issues as well.

Its in the United States best interest to be engage with its neighbors. Economic and strategic, with fighting terrorism and Narcotics Trafficking. But also they are our neighbors as well and I haven't even mentioned Columbia yet. Where we've been helping them fight their rebels and Narcotics Traffickers. And then there's Argentina that ten years was moving towards becoming a First World nation. Before their Stock Market crash ten years ago and have been struggling to get back ever since. The three countries for me to watch in this area, are Cuba and Mexico. And where are they ten years from now and are we trading and talking to Cuba by then. With the reforms the Castro Administration makes. And Venezuela, President Chavez still their President even a year from now. Or does Venezuela moves past Chavez Authoritarianism.

Wednesday, April 4, 2012

Marijuana Grower Supply Store Opens in Washington: The War on Drugs losing ground in the Nations Capital




I'm not a big fan of marijuana for either personal or medical use. If it relieves pain for people with horrible diseases, who live in pain. Thats great and they should have access to it, as far as it being legal. Its just not someone I would engage in myself, unless I was going through one of those diseases. Similar how to I feel about alcohol and tobacco, so hopefully by now. You know where I'm going with this. When it comes to both Economic and Foreign Policy, I've tended to agree with President Obama. Except when it comes to the debt and deficit, where I don't think he's been very strong there. But when it comes to the War on Drugs, I believe he's been just as bad as the Bush Administration. Or perhaps even the Reagan Administration, Attorney General Eric Holder. Who I believe has done an excellent job when. It comes to Law Enforcement, especially the War on Terror. Has been way to tough and authoritarian, with his raids on Medical Marijuana clinics and stores.

Marijuana is a perfect example of why the Federal Government should step back. And let the States take the lead and lets see what happens with this. If Washington, DC believes marijuana is okay enough to be legal. Then Uncle Sam should but out and actually deal with criminals that cross State Lines. That actually represent a threat to the country, instead of arresting people. For how they live their own lives and see what happens with it. And look into things like regulation and taxation to make marijuana as safe as possible. So its not sold to minors and that sorta thing. Or dealers praying on people who become addicted to it. Marijuana similar to alcohol and gambling. Is a Freedom of Choice issue, as long as your not hurt by it, you should mind your own business.

It starts with Medical Marijuana and then goes to Legalizing Marijuana all together. Something that now Law Enforcement groups now support. Because they saw all of the people they were arresting, just for possessing or using marijuana. And were wondering why, what a waste of time and money. We actually have dangerous criminals that we have to deal with. And the City of Washington will take the next step and Legalize Marijuana all together. Bringing in billions of dollars of new revenue for Washington.