Tonight, the U.S. House of Representatives voted 237-170 to use taxpayers funds for a downpayment on a recovery program for the failing auto industry. Alabama’s US Senator Richard Shelby is leading the opposition to the bailout. Shelby declares that the total cost of the bailout will easily exceed $100 billion. The late Samuel Francis often quipped that the United States has two political parties: the Evil Party and the Stupid Party. Occasionally, you see a true bi-partisan effort and you can count on that bi-partisanship involving both evil and stupidity.
An interesting commentary entitled “And now for a world government” appears on Gideon Rachman’s blog on the web site of the Financial Times in London. He begins by saying:
“I have never believed that there is a secret United Nations plot to take over the U.S. I have never seen black helicopters hovering in the sky above Montana. But, for the first time in my life, I think the formation of some sort of world government is plausible.”
The Lakota people of the north-central U.S. have established the Free Lakota Bank. It is touted as the “world’s first non-reserve, non-fractional bank that issues, accepts for deposit, and circulates REAL money” in the spirit of Austrian economics.
The bank charges a fee for the protection of your savings, which are measured in ounces, and for those who wish to put their savings at risk, there is an investment fund. Deposits to the fund are frozen for one year, but have a healthy return of over 7%. Loans are granted from the investment fund are distributed to applicants based on the merit of the investment - imagine that!
Displaying both passion and courage, GOP Senator Richard Shelby of Alabama has been leading the charge against a taxpayer bailout of the automobile industry. With pressure from both corporate interests and the White House, Senator Shelby is standing firm and leading the opposition to this big-government bailout.
Shelby won his seat in the US Senate in 1986 as a Democrat, defeating Republican incumbent Jeremiah Denton. In his initial Senate campaign, Shelby had maximum support from organized labor, groups now clamoring for attention in the bailout legislation. Shelby’s home state of Alabama is home to major Toyota, Honda, and Mercedes plants. Yet, this Senator has chosen to face the special interests and stand for principle in opposing a giant step toward socialism.
Anti-government and bank rage reached a boiling point Monday in the small island nation of Iceland, where residents have seen unemployment and inflation skyrocket following the fall collapse of the Icelandic banking system. Iceland, a nation recently prided as a great example of the “Scandanavian Model” of a prosperous welfare system, has in a matter of months been transformed into the least politically and ecnomically stable nation in Europe. The International Herald Tribune reports below-
On Tuesday, December 2, Georgia voters will determine what could be a definitive vote in the US Senate. Former Democratic US Senator Zell Miller is crossing party lines to endorse incumbent Saxby Chambliss, Georgia Republican and US Senator. Georgia is the one state in the Union that requires a majority vote to seat a US Senator. Senator Zell Miller said, of the importance of this election, this is the big one. In this case, Chambliss won 49.6% of the vote, just short of a majority. The Democrat, Jim Martin is a liberal State Representative who’s vote was bolstered by a large black turnout for Barack Obama. However, the wild card that forced the runoff was the 5%+ of the vote garnered by Libertarian candidate Alan Buckley.
German Chancellor Angela Merkel yesterday criticized the presence of “cheap money” in the United States in recent years, blaming it for the current financial crisis.
Angela Merkel, the German chancellor, turned the tables on her international critics on Wednesday by accusing the US and other governments of making “cheap money” a central tool of their economic management, thus planting the seeds of a similar crisis in five years.
As Henry Paulson recently stated, an economic crisis of this magnitude only comes around once or twice a century. I’m not exactly sure what the basis for such an argument might be other than looking at a sample size of… about one century. Whether there is merit in this assumption or not, we certainly are facing an economic crisis. In times like these, our government leaders look to policy experts and lessons of history - and possibly listen to them more than usual. This doesn’t mean they stop looking to lobbyists and the next election.
Meet my new parents: the U.S. Government. The parallels are astonishing when you think about it. (Forgive my generalities… they are for illustration!)
1. Parents want their kids to be the best: Just like proud moms and dads show up at little league games and fight with other parents, help (or take over) fundraising activities so their kids will “win” by raising the most money, or argue with teachers about grades… we see the U.S. Government assert its authority all over the world - both economically and militarily - so that we can be the “greatest nation on earth”.
In last week’s article titled “Problems of the Republican Party”, I discussed some key policy mistakes the modern day Republican Party has made over the last quarter of a century. The problems are deep and quite fundamental, as I mentioned before, but with some significant reform and a bit of policial realignment it is possible for the Republican Party to regain the prestige it once had. For the voices within the party that stand for reason and liberty, this battle will be very slow and may never be won, but finding and implementing solutions to fix the myriad of problems the party faces is a worthy cause.