Apparently, there’s not much difference between the way in which a democratic republic (the United States) and an oligarchy (Russia) handle “economic crisis”. According to an article in The Moscow Times:
Former Soviet leader Mikhail Gorbachev accused the government on Friday of bailing out billionaires at taxpayers’ expense in a letter co-signed by four businessmen and economists.
Gorbachev has until now been supportive of the Kremlin, and by speaking out he has joined a small but growing chorus of influential Russians who say the government’s tight control of the economy and politics is making the slowdown worse.
“The Russian authorities have turned their back on structural reform and instead satisfied themselves with inventing a mythical model of an ‘energy superpower,’” said an open letter whose signatories included Gorbachev.
The recent Israeli military incursion into Gaza has been correctly termed an “invasion”, as put by Congressman Ron Paul. It shows the world, once again, that the policy of preemptive or “preventive” war carries the day with Israel and its policies towards its neighbors. In reality, this is an extension of the U.S. foreign policy of intervention into the internal affairs of other nations, having taken its latest form in the past five years as preemptive war with the U.S. occupation of Iraq. Many staunch (i.e., blind) supporters of the state of Israel somehow believe that the latest military strategy will somehow work in staving off the threats of rockets being fired by members and supporters of Hamas.
I believe the very heart and soul of conservatism is libertarianism. I think conservatism is really a misnomer, just as liberalism is a misnomer for the liberals… The basis of conservatism is a desire for less government interference or less centralized authority or more individual freedom, and this is a pretty general description also of what libertarianism is. -President Ronald Reagan
The past two general election cycles have been bleak for the Republican Party. Looking back on its celebrated rise from near irrelevancy in the 60’s, 70’s and 80’s, it becomes clear that 1994 was a peak rather than a new beginning. When Newt Gingrich, Jim Babka and PNAC took control of the GOP from what was left of the Goldwater/Reagan conservatives, it marked the beginning of the end.
* Barack Obama will realize that Congress is not ready to go along with his progressive agenda. Many Southern and rural Midwestern Democrats were elected as pro-life conservative Democrats. Hence, his Freedom of Choice Act (FOCA) will never see the light of day.
* With nervousness on the economy, Obama will not push for Nationalized Health Care. You will see some adding around the edges, but no major increases in federal programs. Obama’s advisers will warn him about the effect of more spending and especially, more taxes on our fragile economy.
In the last two weeks, Alabama State Government has been severely curtailed by the forced nine percent cuts in spending due to proration. Remember, proration is required because the Alabama Constitution (yes, the 1901 version that supposedly is outdated) requires a balanced budget. Hence, when revenues fall below expectations, then proration is automatically ordered so that funds are not spent until the monies are available.
Telegraph has an article up that serves as a wrap-up analysis of the Bush presidency on the eve of his departure. There was one paragraph that really stood out:
Peter Feaver, who served as special adviser for strategic planning on Bush’s White House National Security Council, agrees: “He’s had a once-in-a-century natural disaster, Hurricane Katrina, a once in a history of the Republic terrorist attack and he’s had a once-in-a-century financial crisis. Any one of those would be a pivotal moment. To have three is extraordinary.”
The GOP chief knows the gig is up:
In a frank and private memo sent today to Republican National Commitee members, the RNC chairman acknowledges that the GOP has grown too addicted to ideology, places politics before policy, and is bereft of ideas — and that it’s imperative that the party shift towards a genuine effort to develop concrete policy solutions to people’s problems in order to rescue itself.
I have a few quick ideas:
This past week, the US Senate failed to concur with the House of Representatives in passing a bailout package for the nation’s large domestic automakers. This bailout had the support of the Democratic leadership in Congress as well as the Bush White House. Already, doomsayers are bemoaning this lack of financial infusion from an already depleted federal budget. However, I applaud this decision as a victory for principle over pragmatism. Hoping that conservatives will learn from this effort to continue enlarging government, consider some lessons from the bailout controversy.
Thursday evening I posted on my Facebook profile the speech that Congressman Ron Paul gave on the House floor, opposing the auto industry bailout (the so-called “bridge loan”), along with the following comment:
“This speech on the auto bailout speaks for itself. Congressman Paul really puts it all into perspective. Were that there were more in Congress like him.”
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.