Dear Readers: I cannot express in words the heartfelt gratitude I have for the patriots of Massachusetts today. Thank you for sending Scott Brown to the US Senate. Also, thank you to the people of the Tea Parties across the country (including members of SoCal Tax Revolt Coalition and Tea Party Patriots), who spent time, money, and energy in assisting us to send a “enhanced” message to Washington DC.
As one of my favorite pundits puts it: Liberty 1; Tyranny 0
One of the most shocking developments of last night is that San Fransisco Mayor Gavin Newsom attributed the Brown win to the Tea Parties. According to the SoCal Tax Revolt Coalition CEO, Sarah Bond:
Gavin Newsom just acknowledges that the Tea Party is MAINSTREAM and key in Browns victory…and foreshadows the 2010 election…I’m pretty sure Hell just froze over!
Some now-scared senatorial Democrats, who ignored the August townhalls and citizens phone calls flooding their offices to pass a toxic version of healthcare reform on Christmas eve, seem a bit more amenable to listening to the vox populi now. Democratic Senator Evan Bayh says that the far left has taken over their party. Virgina Democratic Senator Jim Webb has called to suspend further votes on health care legislation until Senator-elect Brown is seated. Only now does Democratic Senator Claire McCaskill indicates the Dems have “gone too far, too fast”. Additionally, Clinton aide Lanny Davis says: We allowed the party of Bill Clinton and Barack Obama to morph into the party of George McGovern.
It seems the White House is silent, literally silent, in the wake of the Scott Brown victory. Shocking! I thought our Community-Organizer-In-Chief would be happy at the level of not-for-profit citizen activity that he has inspired. But then again: Live by the Alinsky Rules, Die by the Alinksy Rules.
As a reminder:
RULE 1: “Power is not only what you have, but what the enemy thinks you have.”
RULE 2: “Never go outside the expertise of your people.”
RULE 3: “Whenever possible, go outside the expertise of the enemy.”
RULE 4: “Make the enemy live up to its own book of rules.”
RULE 5: “Ridicule is man’s most potent weapon.”
RULE 6: “A good tactic is one your people enjoy.”
RULE 7: “A tactic that drags on too long becomes a drag.”
RULE 8: “Keep the pressure on. Never let up.”
RULE 9: “The threat is usually more terrifying than the thing itself.”
RULE 10: “If you push a negative hard enough, it will push through and become a positive.”
RULE 11: “The price of a successful attack is a constructive alternative.”
RULE 12: Pick the target, freeze it, personalize it, and polarize it.”
I want to highlight RULE 6 and provide a little YouTube entertainment, as I never get tired of a funny video. I must say, while I really enjoyed the version of this one that was played when Sarah Palin was running with McCain in 2008, this is both funnier and more accurate in its analysis:
* BOXER NO-CONFIDENCE VOTE IN JUNE.
* Part Time CA Legislature Petition(Let’s end the regulatory extravaganza that is our Assembly and Senate!)
* The Citizen Power Campaign(Pushing back on toxic combination of union and political elites).
* Stay tuned for our repeal AB-32 campaign (The California Version of Cap-and-Trade)! Historic launch scheduled for January 26th!
However, there is reason to be hopeful, too. Instapundit’s Glenn Reynolds has a forecast, based on last night’s results:
And on the third-party front, the Tea Party enthusiasm for Scott Brown bespeaks considerable pragmatism. Republicans who are seen as sellouts may face third-party challenges — or primary challenges, or both — but support for Brown indicates that people aren’t in a “take your marbles and go home” mode yet. Throwing a monkey-wrench into the ObamaCare works was seen as more important than getting the perfect candidate in, and that was a very wise move. I suspect that we’ll see similar pragmatism between now and November, but the GOP should also remember — as was shown in NY-23 — that making an example to encourage the others can be pragmatic, too.
He also provides a link to an article that says the “Recession Ended Last Night“! Speaking of the economy…..
The always savvy Professor Athena prepared the following essay for the New Year. As a senior level manager at a large financial institution, as well as a shrewd businesswoman, she offers ideas on what can get us on the right and wrong track!
PROFESSOR ATHENA: THE NEW YEAR STARTS NOW
This past year in hindsight has been one of the most difficult for America. The full ramifications of the financial crisis meltdown of 2008 in form of unemployment and changes in available leverage (that is, borrowing) has been both painful and seemingly interminable. Furthermore, it is far from over and the road to recovery will not be a short one. We have challenges facing us that are myriad and that are difficult. As I began to think about what would give America the greatest chance of financial leadership on the world stage going forward, my thoughts turn naturally toward the fears most Americans have at this point. We fear we are squandering our legacy. We fear we will leave our children with the greatest financial burdens in form of unfunded social entitlements since our country’s inception. We fear that, instead of being known as the “greatest generation”, we will instead be remembered as the “most foolish generation”.
What needs to be pointed out about the financial crisis is that it began with individuals. Defaults on mortgage properties were the heart of the problem of bad financial assets. Too much leverage to own such, along with unsustainable derivative “insurance policies” cooked the recipe for disaster. Though some reform efforts are needed, politicians are not looking at the root of the problems. Therefore, the overhaul of our financial system and our nation’s financial health must also begin its road back in the same manner it began its descent. Real reform has never come out of government, but instead out of the people. It’s how it all began in 1776. It’s how we the people must recover, and now is none too soon.
There are five points of real reform, some of them as basic as what we as individuals decide, some of them points of leadership where we can and must hold our elected politicians accountable. Here are the five things which would change America’s legacy.
1. Household deleveraging. Pay down your debts. At the start of the financial crisis, household balance sheets were almost 120% borrowed. It’s better now, but still right at 100%. We need to as individuals change this pattern if we believe our legacy matters.
2. Balance the federal budget, without the “off-balance sheet” tricks. Privatize Social Security and Medicare. They are programs we could never afford in the first place, and we can and should phase them out, not expand them.
3. Change the tax system—Change the psychology of money. Currently we discourage individual savings in form of capital gains taxes. Small businesses which are owned by individuals and represent the greatest job growth area are especially burdened by this. We tax interest on savings and investments at marginal tax rates. This can and should be changed in order to encourage private property ownership, one of the strongest of our capitalist system’s underpinnings. We currently have the second-highest corporate tax rates among leading world economic powers, yet are mystified why American corporations choose to off-shore to lower overall tax and employee costs. Which brings me to my next point.
4. Tort reform must happen. Not only are the proliferation of unchecked frivolous lawsuits choking off medical and drug research, they are choking off basic general surgery, obstetrics, and almost any type of small business where a service for fee is rendered. No longer do we have service for a mutual contract here in America. We have allowed our legal system to shift the burden onto the business owner in its entirety, whereby if the slightest thing goes wrong it is a lawsuit with all the inherent prohibitive expense. Too many are leaving rather than choosing to pay the insurance and malpractice premiums. This has to change if we are to develop and maintain small business, medical, and pharmaceutical development. Our business owners need and should have what a few states have already legislated, which is a tort cap beyond any actual financial damages incurred.
5. Change immigration. We issue student visas to the most talented applicants to our most prestigious colleges, then require them to return home after we have educated them and prepared them for success and contributions to society. At the same time, we allow the poor from Mexico and elsewhere to live here illegally, using our infrastructure and social entitlements on taxpayer largesse. Our immigration laws should encourage contributors more and users less.
In summation, our challenges are not easy ones. They require personal sacrifice, patience in lobbying for change, and a long-term vs. short-term plan. Political change never occurs overnight, but we cannot and should not give up. There are far too many of us evidenced in this past year in form of those who have chosen to speak out for change for the very first time, who have organized and marched and signed petitions and attended town hall meetings. We have confronted those who stand in power and informed them of their vulnerability to remain in power if they ignore us. Now, in 2010 comes our time to make them hear us at the ballot box.
May everyone have a bountiful and blessed New Year!