Guest Commentary: Self Reliance, Not Government Approved?

guest-commentaryWe have again come to Friday Night and with it the ever growing Guest Commentary. As you all know, I am such a fan of the guest commentaries. I, of course, get to take the night off from writing (although those who submit them will tell you that I spend a lot of time formatting, critiquing, and ultimately…. procrastinating on them). The real reason that I remain a fan is because it allows each of you the opportunity to use your voice and voice your thoughts as the center of attention in the same way I get to do it each night here on the site. I value each and every voice on this site, no matter which “direction” it comes from. And the opportunity to give everyone a shot at writing their own articles is one of my most rewarding endeavors on the site. And besides, the fact remains that as much as I might try to appear to know everything, I think I am exposed over the last 10 months to the fact that there is MUCH that I don’t know. Hearing all these other voices exposes everyone to knowledge they may not get otherwise! I felt like this was a good topic given the recent discussions we have been having about government intervention in the home. While not the same topic, it hits some of the same veins.

Tonight’s guest commentary is another repeat performer who submitted his article to me back at the beginning of September. I finally got around to really working to get it ready towards the end of that month after Mrs. Weapon began to show real signs of healing. Life of Illusion is our author once again. Some of the conversations over the last month or two have been quite intense around the idea that we, as a society, are morally bound to take care of those that cannot take care of themselves. The reverse argument has been that many of those we are forced to take care of are not in that situation by accident. LOI takes that to task with some examples and some thoughts around the sad state of some of the poor in today’s America. In the end, the question we have to ask ourselves is whether we should be required to take care of those who fit the mold he speaks of in tonight’s article.

Self Reliance: Not Government Approved?
by Life of Illusion

My parents split up when I was in the third grade, mother took my sister and I back to her home, we lived with my grandparents for a few months.  As soon as she could, she got a job, saved up, and rented a house for us. She loved her parents, but could not stand living with them, independent streak, I suppose.  So a single working mother with two children, she required us to help out.  When we got out of school, we did the laundry, cleaned the kitchen and bathroom, etc.  We both even learned to cook a little.  My father joined us after a while.  In that time, my mother had obtained an FHA loan, and built her own house.  She lost everything except a car and our clothes, and in a few years time, had us living in the nicest house we had ever lived in.

I remember as a child noticing a change in my sister after my father came back.  We stopped doing as many chores, my mother still worked, but my father’s income meant times were no longer hard.  I expanded my cooking skills, my sister got into sports.  She would sit watching TV and ask mother to bring her a soda.  What happened to the girl who helped me clean the whole house and feed ourselves?  What happened to the mother who would require us to take care of ourselves?  I continued to get my own drinks. My father required us to work summers starting when I was eleven.  Both of us can paint, weld, woodwork and could make a living in any of those trades.

Greatergoodcs said August 31, 2009 at 3:53 pm

“You’ve convinced yourself of this stuff and I guess it works in here, but out in the real world, application is what counts (not theory). And there are still 304 million waiting to learn how they are to survive without gov’t and/or chaos.”

Jesse Lee Peterson

Peterson

“When 75 percent of New Orleans residents had left the city, it was primarily immoral, welfare-pampered blacks that stayed behind and waited for the government to bail them out. This, as we know, did not turn out good results.

 

One wonders how there was “no way” for these people to evacuate the city. We have photographic evidence telling us otherwise. You’ve probably seen it by now the photo showing 2,000 parked school buses, unused and underwater. How much planning does it require to put people on a bus and leave town, Mayor Nagin?” – Rev Jesse Lee Peterson

If New Orleans is an example, that 304 million would be 226 million taking action for themselves, and 78 million staring at the headlights of an onrushing vehicle.

I recall most of the VDLG “members” support limited welfare and assistance. Bill Clinton would have gone down in US history for the passing of 1996’s welfare reform act.

“Child poverty has dropped substantially since reform was enacted, from 20.8 percent in 1996 to 16.9 percent in 1999.”

Nancy Pelosi erased Clinton from those history books.  The 2009 Stimulus Act required states to expand welfare rolls back to previous levels.  Why?  Was it to help the millions who were starving, and give them a better life?

“Prolonged welfare dependence reduces children’s IQ levels. Out-of-wedlock childbearing and single parenthood are the principal causes of child poverty and welfare dependence in the U.S. Children raised in single parent families are more likely to: experience behavioral and emotional problems; suffer from physical abuse; engage in early sexual activity, and do poorly in school. Boys raised in single parent households are more likely to engage in crime; girls are more likely themselves to give birth outside of marriage. These effects are the result of the collapse of marriage per se rather than poverty; a poor child living with a mother and father united in marriage will do better than a similar poor child living in a single parent home.”  http://www.heritage.org/Research/Welfare/Test031501b.cfm

The harsh reality is Pelosi and her ilk are keeping and expanding a group of people who are willing to be dependent on the government, and to help the Democratic party to remain in power.  We have seen charter schools and voucher programs work, but for some reason, non of that will work for education reform.  Could it be that might affect the governments grasp of those young minds?

Unemployment in Detroit Climbs to 28.9 Percent, must be the auto industry.

Poor families by family type

Married-couple family (17.7%)
Male, no wife present (
8.5%)
Female, no husband present (
73.8%)

http://www.city-data.com/poverty/poverty-Detroit-Michigan.html

Detroit is a bad example.  Lets look at New Orleans, still being rebuilt after Katrina, there must be plenty of jobs there.  20.6% unemployment.

Poor families by family type

Married-couple family (19.6%)
Male, no wife present (
6.1%)
Female, no husband present (
74.3%)

http://www.city-data.com/poverty/poverty-New-Orleans-Louisiana.html

And this is not just about welfare, think about the crime rates in those neighborhoods.  78% of the nation’s jail and prison inmates grew up in a fatherless household.

The Goals of Welfare Reform
The Personal Responsibility and Work Opportunity Reconciliation Act (PRWORA) enacted in 1996 set forth three legislative goals: 1) to reduce dependence; 2) to reduce child poverty; and 3) to reduce illegitimacy and strengthen marriage.

Welfare reform was working.  Strong but poor families don’t have the high figures for children quitting school and ending up in prison.

“Prior to 40 years ago, such a pathetic performance by the black community in a time of crisis would have been inconceivable. The first response would have come from black men. They would take care of their families, bring them to safety, and then help the rest of the community. Then local government would come in.”Rev Jesse Lee Peterson

And where Rev Peterson sees this as an issue for blacks, I see it as an issue for all Americans.  I know of as many or more white that are content to trade their self reliance and freedom for the easy government hand-out. Our government knows the results of their policy on welfare, and is seeking to grow the dependence further with taking over health care.

And what has been happening in New Orleans lately?

The “news judgment” of the major networks implies there is no such thing as individual responsibility.

Kendall Deschamp, suggested all he needs is a little more taxpayer money. “A disabled state highway worker, Deschamp collects just $1,368 a month in benefits — not enough, he says, to afford the sheetrock and new hot water heater he needs for the permit allowing him to move back into his four-bedroom home, which stands just a few tantalizing feet away.”

A little Googling would show the name Kendall Deschamp shows up on a list of Mississippi recipients of taxpayer money in 2003 – $25,500 – two years before Katrina hit.

http://newsbusters.org/blogs/brent-bozell/2009/09/01/bozell-column-never-ending-katrina-bias

What really divides the nation into blue or red states?  It seems about three quarters of us can and do take care of ourselves.  Of that seventy- five percent, we are split on what to do about the remaining quarter.  Some children do not want to learn how to do laundry, clean a bathroom.

And they take that attitude to school, where deadbeat parents expect the school to raise their children for them, there are second graders that cannot clean their own tushes.  And the Pelosi’s out there seem eager to provide for them with money taken from the rest of us.  They are deliberately re-expanding the welfare rolls, knowing that increases child poverty rates.  They hamper or stop education reform, knowing charter schools and  voucher programs work, and instead, want to add pre-school to government control.

This is not really about helping people that cannot provide for themselves.

Its about a dependent class the government may not have created, but for sure has kept, nurtured, grown and exploited.

GreaterGood feels 304 million Americans are looking for a government to set our rules and provide for us. I do not see that. Three quarters of us are able to function very well without depending on the government. I think the 25% looking for the government to provide for them would drop to six to eight percent if we reversed the trend of the government will provide back to those values of self reliance that created this country.

My father told me a story from his childhood. He grew up in a poor farm family that used mules to plow, and had the normal assortment of animals.

A wild boar broke into their pig pen and stayed. Large, sharp tusks and a mean disposition. After a few weeks, my grandfather coaxed it into a stall in the barn. He then tied it to the side of a stall, first by the neck, then each leg in turn, until it was very secure. My father then watched from above as the boar first had his tusks pulled with large pliers, and was then castrated. After that, the boar no longer threatened him or the others, attitude adjustment indeed.

Can we liken the tusks to our second amendment and our testicals to the first? I don’t know. I do know the more we bow our heads like good little sheeple, and let the government think for us, the worse our country has become. Those who shout out for us to cast aside the values that made this the greatest nation in the history of the world are ignoring history and reality. How many millions died for the “greater good” under communist China and the USSR? The standard of living has risen since the Industrial Age for the US and every nation that embraced free markets. Conversely, those that adopt communism or socialism see their standard of living drop.

Is our government completely broken, where replacement, not repair is the only answer? I think not, and its not just the government, its all of us as well. We are the only nation known for “we the people”. The government can only do what we allow. We are a self reliant people, we need the require our government to follow those same values we live by.

Solution? Very Damn Little Government!

A thank you to Cyndi, for some good advice.

Life of Illusion

SOURCES AND COPIED INFO

Unemployment in Detroit Climbs to 28.9 Percent:  http://blogs.abcnews.com/theworldnewser/2009/08/unemployment-in-detroit-climbs-to-289.html

From an email  CONFIRMED by Illusion at Snopes before sending on:  http://www.snopes.com/katrina/soapbox/peterson.asp

Snopes/Rev Jesse Lee Peterson
Subject: New Orleans Orleans Went Under–A Black Man’s Comments
By Rev Jesse Lee Peterson

Say a hurricane is about to destroy the city you live in. Two questions:

What would you do?

What would you do if you were black?

Sadly, the two questions don’t have the same answer.

To the first: Most of us would take our families out of that city quickly to protect them from danger. Then, able-bodied men would return to help others in need, as wives and others cared for children, elderly, infirm and the like.

For better or worse, Hurricane Katrina has told us the answer to the second question. If you’re black and a hurricane is about to destroy your city, you’ll probably wait for the government to save you.

This was not always the case. Prior to 40 years ago, such a pathetic performance by the black community in a time of crisis would have been inconceivable. The first response would have come from black men. They would take care of their families, bring them to safety, and then help the rest of the community. Then local government would come in.

No longer. When 75 percent of New Orleans residents had left the city, it was primarily immoral, welfare-pampered blacks that stayed behind and waited for the government to bail them out. This, as we know, did not turn out good results.

Enter Jesse Jackson and Louis Farrakhan. Jackson and Farrakhan laid blame on “racist” President Bush. Farrakhan actually proposed the idea that the government blew up a levee so as to kill blacks and save whites. The two demanded massive governmental spending to rebuild New Orleans , above and beyond the federal government’s proposed $60 billion. Not only that, these two were positioning themselves as the gatekeepers to supervise the dispersion of funds. Perfect: Two of the most dishonest elite blacks in America , “overseeing” billions of dollars. I wonder where that money will end up.

Of course, if these two were really serious about laying blame on government, they should blame the local one. Responsibility to perform legally and practically fell first on the mayor of New Orleans . We are now all familiar with Mayor Ray Nagin the black who likes to yell at President Bush for failing to do Nagin’s job. The facts, unfortunately, do not support Nagin’s wailing. As the Washington Times puts it, “recent reports show [Nagin] failed to follow through on his own city’s emergency-response plan, which acknowledged that thousands of the city’s poorest residents would have no way to evacuate the city.”

One wonders how there was “no way” for these people to evacuate the city. We have photographic evidence telling us otherwise. You’ve probably seen it by now the photo showing 2,000 parked school buses, unused and underwater. How much planning does it require to put people on a bus and leave town, Mayor Nagin?

Instead of doing the obvious, Mayor Nagin (with no positive contribution from Gov. Kathleen Blanco, the other major leader vested with responsibility to address the hurricane disaster) loaded remaining new Orleans residents into the Superdome and the city’s convention center. We know how that plan turned out.

About five years ago, in a debate before the National Association of Black Journalists, I stated that if whites were to just leave the United States and let blacks run the country, they would turn America into a ghetto within 10 years. The audience, shall we say, disagreed with me strongly. Now I have to disagree with me. I gave blacks too much credit. It took a mere three days for blacks to turn the Superdome and the convention center into ghettos, rampant with theft, rape and murder.

President Bush is not to blame for the rampant immorality of blacks. Had New Orleans’ black community taken action, most would have been out of harm’s way. But most were too lazy, immoral and trifling to do anything productive for themselves.

All Americans must tell blacks this truth. It was blacks’ moral poverty not their material poverty that cost them dearly in New Orleans . Farrakhan, Jackson, and other race hustlers are to be repudiated for they will only perpetuate this problem by stirring up hatred and applauding moral corruption. New Orleans , to the extent it is to be rebuilt, should be remade into a dependency-free, morally strong city where corruption is opposed and success is applauded. Blacks are obligated to help themselves and not depend on the government to care for them. We are all obligated to tell them so.

The Rev. Jesse Lee Peterson is founder and president of BOND, the Brotherhood Organization of A New Destiny, and author of “Scam: How the Black Leadership Exploits Black America .”

78% of the nation’s jail and prison inmates grew up in a fatherless household: inkarcerated.intrasun.tcnj.edu/womeninprison/Prison%20Statistics.doc

http://www.heritage.org/Research/Welfare/Test031501b.cfm

http://newsbusters.org/blogs/brent-bozell/2009/09/01/bozell-column-never-ending-katrina-bias

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Comments

  1. Excellent post LOI! I am waiting to see if anyone publishes an article written by Rev. Dr. Ken Hutcherson called The Minority Thought Pattern. I heard him discuss it yesterday on Rush.
    Happy Halloween Peeps!

    Willo

  2. Excellent article LOI!!

    Sad but very true. I left Lafayette to go to Atlanta last year during Hurricane Gustav. I saw highway rest areas totally trashed, like the people had never seen a trash can or figured out to use it.

    I also saw convoys of 3 or 4 vehicles pulled over on the side of the highway, for the express purpose of dumping their trash.

    There was a lady on TV in Atlanta, talking on her IPhone (wish I could afford one) and complaining about “I ain’t got enough money to go home”.

    It would be nice if people were better able (or better motivated) to take care of themselves without all the dependency on the Gov’t to baby sit them.

  3. Good Article. Wefare has failed and only enslaves people, which is what the left statists want.

    • Birdman:

      I think you asked me the other day who my favorite economist was.

      I start with many candidates such as Aristotle, Aquinas, Locke, Smith, Jefferson, Mises and his friends, Friedman, and even Greenspan before he turned to the dark side. I think you get the idea.

      Anyone who stood for freedom and liberty as the philosophical core, and supported laissez-fair capitalism as the only policital/economic system compatible with the core principles. Note here that free market capitalism is not the beginning but the end product of the philosophy of freedom. With individual freedom and liberty firmly established, it is only free market capitalism that may develop.

      Anything else works backwards against, and eventually destroys, freedom and liberty.

      But my absolute most favorite economist is my son.

      • I need to read Friedman or Mises. My guess is that Mises is difficult to read but I could be wrong.

        Are you preparing yourself for the eventual collapse of our economy? I’ve got a long way to go to be fully prepared. I have begun to stock up on food and hope to eventually purchase a generator that can put out 8,000 watts of running power.

        I think we have several years before everything goes south but I could be wrong.

        As always, stay free!

        • Birdman:

          “Are you preparing yourself for the eventual collapse of our economy?”

          NO!!!!

          Now let me explain. I am preparing myself to live as independent and free a life as I possibly can. I have been preparing myself since I was about 25 years old.

          If I accomplish my goal of being independant then I will by default be prepared for the collapse of our economy as best as one can prepare for such a thing. For me it is not as big a thing to prepare as for the vast majority.

          Those are the folks who live in the cities.

          I do not believe it will collapse in the next few years. This doesn’t mean it won’t as when such things happen they come suddenly. I think we might have at least one more round of “govt intervention” to work through before it goes down. Alot will depend on the elections of 2010 and 2012. I hold little hope there will be substantive changes but a sudden turn towards fiscal responsibility would turn the first tidal wave from shore. This would require a Congress in 2011 that was willing to CUT govt programs DRASTICALLY, and pull our troops out of the middle east, while maintaining the current income tax levels (total tax revenue per Bush tax cut).

          But we have much more work to do than this to prevent subsequant waves from hitting us.

          • Sounds like you have a jump on everyone else if you started doing this since you were 25 years old. How have you prepared yourself to live as independent and free a life as you possibly can? Are you now financially independent and out of all debts? The only debt I have is my house and I will eventually get out of debt one way or another.

            I live in a small town but out in the country. I agree that those that live in a big city will be in trouble.

            I can only hope that we obtain a Congress in 2011 willing to cut government programs drastically. If elected, they may reverse health care but I doubt they will cut social security, medicare/medicaid, welfare or the military.

            • Birdman:

              I am not “rich” by the standard definition but I would consider myself “independently wealthy”, according to MY definition.

              I have a great family (loving wife, wonderful kids) good friends and enough money to do the things we like. In addition to some travel, fishing, hunting, golf, etc, I have enough for books and I have the time to read and do things like sit here and share my ideas.

              And that my friend, is my definition of “idependently wealthy.”

              At the age of 25 I decided that the only way to prepare for the future was to invest in real estate that would provide an income when it was time to retire. There were many lean years but we never invested or borrowed beyond our ability to pay and provide a comfortable life for our family. Not extravagent but comfortable.

              Our strategy was simple. We both worked so we decided to live within the means provided by the highest income and to save the other. This was not always possible, once the kids came along, but it has served us well in the long run. When my wife retires our combined retirment and investment income will still be equal to the highest working income. Thus our standard of living will not change, even with house payments.

              Our next step is to prepare for the worst to the fullest extent possible during retirement. For us this means living in a place where we can get by with wood heat and kerosene or candle light if needed. A place where we can raise a garden and few animals for food. A place that will accomodate our children if the whole thing collapses. A place where our tax burden is as low as possible but will provide for our other needs, such as a view of the mountains and access to the other amenities we enjoy.

              If we do not crave elaborate and extravagent “things” or “lifestyles” it is alot easier to accomplish all of this. As BF once said, eliminate “coveting” from your life. Once we let go of wishing for what others have, and most of us don’t need, life becomes less stressful and much more rewarding.

              I have lived and will continue to live a “flourishing” life according to my terms. This requires living within ones means and then appreciating what you have and not agonizing over what you do not have. It requires taking action to get what you want in a rational way that does not jeopardize what you already have. And most importantly, a “flourishing life” is not measured by money, but by LIVING a life that truly makes us happy.

              The best to you and yours
              JAC

              • I understand and I am glad that everything is working out for you as planned. My wife and I are really fortunate to have 4 good children and we always lived within our means. Like you, we live a modest life style and we don’t covet what others have. We really like where we are living but we know that we will eventually move out of MI as soon as I find another job. I’m not sure where we will end up but we plan to live the same way.

  4. So would it be your opinion that there should be no safety net? You point to the fact that:

    “The standard of living has risen since the Industrial Age for the US and every nation that embraced free markets. Conversely, those that adopt communism or socialism see their standard of living drop.”

    This conflates issues: You argue that by expanding welfare and provding a real safety net for people this country is marching towards socialism and, as a result, our standard of living will inevitably drop. The policies being proposed and expanded by President Obama however do not equate to ‘socialism’ despite what Rush Limbaugh and Glenn Beck may argue. In fact, our welfare programs are nowhere near as robust as those provided by other Western democracies such as Great Britain, Sweden, France, etc. This is not to say that these countries do not have their fair share of problems, nor that the United States should adopt all of their policies in their current form. However, what these nations all share in common is they provide programs more socialist in nature than our own country and the standard of living in these countries is arguably better than that found here.

    • Helping those that really need it is good. Letting able-bodied people sit on their @$$ and contribute nothing is not good. And this applies to people of all races.

      I don’t know what the solution is, but the current efforts to keep everyone down are not helpful.

      • I just feel its a bit overly simplistic to argue that the efforts are to keep everyone down. While many welfare programs that state and federal governments offer do go too far in certain respect, and while many are ripe for abuse, I don’t feel that would be best met by cutting benefits for everyone. I’m not sure what the answer is myself. Additional oversight could be helpful, but I have a feeling that wouldn’t be an acceptable answer to most people on this board as it would serve to increase government involvement.

        On another note, you hear no objection from me to the thread the other day on cell phones for people on welfare. That is just a prime example of riduculousness (if that’s even a word).

    • Jaybee:

      Aside from the inaccuracies and logical errors in your statement I would like to address your conclusion.

      “However, what these nations all share in common is they provide programs more socialist in nature than our own country and the standard of living in these countries is arguably better than that found here.”

      Your conclusion has shown us that you believe slavery to be a “better” standard of living that freedom.

      You believe slavery is a “better” standard of living than liberty.

      I hope you enjoy your chains.

      • Again, I honestly do not believe that providing welfare and benefits programs for people is slavery in any sense of the word.

        Could you point out some of my inaccuracies? I may not be online later in the day, but will try to better explain myself and my positions next chance I get.

        Thanks for the input!

        • Jaybee:

          You do not believe it is slavery because you either do not grasp or want to ignore the full weight of what welfare means.

          First and formost it requires the government to take wealth from one class of citizens against their will, and then give that wealth to another. Thus making the government selected “donors” of this charity “slaves”. And should the donors not comply the government uses its “monopoly to initiate force” to impose “GOVT” will.

          You fail to grasp that “welfare” is nothing more than Govt. owned and operated charity. Thus by definition it is socialism.

          As to one of your errors in logical argument lets start with this:

          “You argue that by expanding welfare and provding a real safety net for people this country is marching towards socialism and, as a result, our standard of living will inevitably drop.”

          You immediately link “welfare” and “providing a real safety net” as the SAME thing.

          They are distinctly different in how they have been applied. But this is one of the great tricks of the socialists and progressives these past many decades. They always link the two in their discussion because most people like the idea of “safety net” for the less fortunate. By linking the two I can not reject welfare without rejecting “safety net”.

          There is a form “fallacy” name for this which I do not recall at the moment. But it is a false premise at the beginning which renders the rest of your argument as fallacy as well.

          Your next error is not recogizing that Mr. Obama has in fact imposed several “socialist” programs or decisions since taking office. Thus you make a false statement to justify your conclusion again a fallaceous argument.

          By the way, prior to Mr. Obama the Federal Govt owned and operated the Charity of welfare and education. After Mr. Obama the Federal Govt now owns and operates hundreds of banks, AIG, General Motors, and has exerted control through threat over many more financial and business institutions, and is proposing take over of health insurance.

          So you may be correct if you claim Mr. Obama is not a socialist. For he has shown a desire to mix socialism with fascism and mercantilism. But to this date, his proposed programs are VERY MUCH socialistic in there nature.

      • Also, how would you define ‘standard of living’?

        • Jaybee:

          It was you that claimed the standard of living was better in those socialist countries.

          So you must be the first to define the term so that we may fully understand your argument.

    • JayBee,

      In my opinion, there should be a “safety net”. From above, “I recall most of the VDLG “members” support limited welfare and assistance. Bill Clinton would have gone down in US history for the passing of 1996’s welfare reform act.” Did I mention President Obama in the article? Nor do I base my thoughts on Rush or Beck.

      http://www.heritage.org/Research/Welfare/Test031501b.cfm

      “The War on Poverty created an expensive welfare system that encouraged dependence and penalized work and marriage. Until very recently, most liberal welfare experts argued that the flaws of the welfare system were unavoidable: Employment for most welfare recipients was seen as impossible; swollen welfare budgets and high levels of dependence were inevitable. Even the most aggressive reforms, it was argued, could reduce welfare caseload by only a few percentage points and would cost more than the existing system.

      In last few years, these liberal myths about the impossibility of reducing dependence have been shattered.21 In the mid 1990’s states began significant work-related reforms; this process was greatly accelerated by the passage of national reform in the summer of 1996. Coinciding with these changes was an unprecedented drop in AFDC/TANF caseload, which has declined some 60 percent from its peak level in March 1994.

      Once it became indisputable that the AFDC/TANF caseload could drop enormously without a social catastrophe, liberal welfare experts retreated to another line of defense, claiming that the declines in caseload were the result of economic conditions rather than welfare reform.”

      My opinion is welfare reform was showing measurable positive results. Pelosi has reversed that, and as a result, the poverty level will increase.
      Conversely, work-related reform give people a path to independence and improved prosperity. In a two person household, 70% of them could raise themselves above the poverty level, if just one of them worked 40 hours a week, or both combined worked 40 hours. How hard is it to get a job at Wendy’s? A significant portion of those living on government assistance
      could get a job, but CHOOSE not to.

      On the other countries, “the standard of living in these countries is arguably better than that found here.” I would like to discuss that, as I think it is incorrect, but should save it for another time.

      • LOI:

        Lets address what “safety net” might mean for the VDLG party.

        Rather than try and define it first I propose we establish a range of acceptable options.

        The sideboards if you will from which we can determine if an idea is acceptable.

        From the purest and IDEAL position the one end of the scale would be ABSOLUTELY NO WELFARE WHAT SO EVER, provided by Government of any kind. All efforts to provide a “safety net” would be by private charities and funding. This is the trully MORAL position on this issue.

        Now lets look for the other bound of the scale. How do we know what it might be using our philosophical calculators. First and foremost support for the program must be voluntary. For we can not allow a Government to “take” from innocent people without their “permission”. So what type of limitation would enough Americans support that would cause them to willingly give up money for its operation?

        I propose that this would include support for ONLY the inferm. Those people who absolutely can not sustain their own “lives” without assistance. This would include the physically and mentally challenged who can not care for themselves. Note, I used the term “lives” not “livlihood”.

        How’s that for a start?

        • JAC,

          An excellent start. I doubt we would have to adopt any standard. Churches, private charities do a good job of identifying deadbeats and con artists on their own. And there are companies that rate the effectiveness of private charities. The NRA’s charity division has one of the highest ratings available, something like 98% paid out to gun safety or education. So, just like a free market, if you get the government out of the way, the charities will decide who and how much support to offer. People will then choose which charities to support, same as market driven economics, it will set its own level.

        • I always interpreted a “safety net” to mean unemployment insurance. Employers are taxed for unemployment insurance and during a serious recession the government must kick in money for the system to work.

          For VDLG, why not have the employee pay voluntarily for unemployment insurance. They could choose to purchase the insurance or take the risk of losing their job with nothing to fall back on except their savings, family and friends. The employer may, as a benefit, elect to contribute some amount of money for the insurance but that would be up to the employer.

          As far as Welfare goes, I wouldn’t go any further than what you suggested.

  5. The leadership vacuum in the Black community has not done anything to help these people. Jesse and Sharpton only want to enrich themselves. What’s sad is that the people don’t understand that they are becoming slaves all over again, sold out by their own people (again).

    • True, but most are willing slaves. If given enough, they don’t object to how the nanny tells them to live. They will grumble about the tobacco and sugar taxes, but still vote for those who reward them.

  6. Sleeping in

  7. Well thought out, LOI. Great article and, I feel, spot on. I have problems with even a limited safety net…but that is my personal issue. I think I would want to define what a safety net is and who is eligible.

    I do understand that there are specific needs that should be doled out on an as needed basis but with definite restrictions and guidelines. I have never seen a welfare state that has been successful where freedoms are concerned. As mentioned earlier by Jaybee where Great Britain, France, and Sweden are mentions as “robust”. I think that all three are great examples of what NOT to do….especially France. I have no doubts that government enslaves its populace with more giveaways (and that is all they are). It is no secret that it robs incentive and your example of New Orleans is perfect. Remember that I was there with a military contingent where we could have housed 5,000 with food, water, dry beds, medical, and sanitation but were turned down by the New Orleans authorities who kept the populace in a sports dome that had none of that. We had transportation and everything arranged and were on station 24 hours after the hurricane. We would not bribe the officials, I guess. There is leadership, that was not federal and not GW Bush nor FEMA, that disallowed the outside help. It was that local crap that is pervasive. Created a dependency on the local gov’t who then blamed the Feds.

    This is a great country and left alone will be just fine. I am convinced that there are those that want to keep the masses dumb and under thumb with these type of giveaways. France was used as an example…hell, they rioted over guaranteed vacation where th gov’t was going to reduce them to put people back to work. Geez.,….

    Great article, sir.

  8. Warning #249

    http://www.canadianbusiness.com/markets/market_news/article.jsp?content=b291772219&utm_source=markets

    Holy Crap.

    The first one – and its a big one – to give up on low gold prices.

    This is why I am wary of gold producers – Barrick is not the only one who sold gold in the ground at these low prices – these guys are just the first to pay for their stupidity.

    But if they’ve give up, it will start an avalanche of others.

    • You’ve sent out 249 warnings so far? This is the first time I noticed the bold black warning label.

  9. Random cut and past from:
    http://www.andrewbernstein.net/articles/7_welfarestate.htm

    In 1960, there were three practical objections to receiving welfare: too little money, no way to supplement it and no chance for couples to live together. By 1970, all three impediments had been removed. If a woman was pregnant, her AFDC payments were now significantly higher, and she received Medicaid, as well. The law had been amended so that she could now add to her income by working if she chose. Further, by Supreme Court ruling, the presence of a man in the house could not be used as a reason to deny a woman benefits. As long as a couple was unmarried, a woman could receive benefits and the man was free to work when and if he chose. Many poor individuals have, and have always had, strong moral objections to going on welfare – but by 1970, the government had removed any financial ones. It had made welfare and illegitimacy a superior short-term financial alternative to marriage and minimum-wage employment.2

    The government’s post-1960s policies must be examined in their cumulative effect. The state made welfare a more lucrative short-term option than full-time minimum-wage employment. It made chronic illegitimacy a superior financial alternative to marriage and self-supporting family. It increasingly refused to discourage unruly behavior in school. By promoting even those who failed to learn, it undercut the motivation to study and get an education. By permitting disruptions and undermining motivation, it made learning as difficult as possible in the urban public schools. By decreasingly punishing youthful offenders, it encouraged crime. Governmental policies have encouraged indolence, illegitimacy, lack of family structure and supervision, disruptive school behavior, diminished education and crime.

    The effects have been predictable. The American historian, Clarence Carson, has referred to such paternalistic policies as “a war on the poor.”6 His assessment is accurate, and because American blacks were the government’s principal target, it is they who have borne the brunt of the assault. Consider the consequences regarding four major issues: marriage and two-parent families, labor force participation (LFP), upward economic mobility and crime.

    During the Depression, the marriage rate for black Americans was higher than for whites, though blacks were considerably poorer. Through the 1940s and 1950s, unemployed black men were as likely to marry as were their unemployed white counterparts. Greater than 80 percent of black families in New York in 1905 were headed by the father. In 1925, only 3 percent of black families were headed by a woman under twenty. As of 1950, the percentage of black families that consisted of husband-wife households was 78 percent; as late as 1967, the ratio hovered in the range of 72 to 75 percent.All of this changed in the post-1960s period. Between 1950 and 1963, the illegitimacy rate rose from 17 percent to 23 percent of all black births. As early as 1965, facts such as these prompted Daniel Patrick Moynihan to claim in his famous report, “The Negro Family: The Case for National Action,” that disintegration of the family was the single greatest problem confronting black Americans. But concerned people such as Moynihan had seen nothing yet.7

    By the late 1960s and 1970s, the welfare system was in place, and its effects were fully felt. In many cases, families never formed, as AFDC payments allowed men to reject marriage and full-time employment. In New York City in 1970, 600,000 children belonged to welfare families, of whom 445,000 had no fathers in their lives. By 1980, 48 percent of black babies were born to single mothers, compared to 17 percent in 1950. In that same year, 82 percent of all children born to black girls aged 15-19 were illegitimate. By 1998, the illegitimacy rate for black children stood at a staggering 70 percent.8

    the Second Great Migration of rural blacks from the south to northern cities during World War Two. With millions of men away at war, factory jobs in the northern cities opened up. Blacks moved north, taking those jobs and receiving the higher wages they offered. Their children now attended northern schools, which were superior to the segregated schools of the south. The 1940s saw the start of a dramatic increase in the education levels of blacks. In terms of income, the results of the migration were stunning. In 1940, 87 percent of black families lived below the official poverty line. In 1960, the number was 47 percent. In 1970, it was 30 percent. This upward economic movement represents an enormous and far-too-rarely-mentioned achievement on the part of black Americans. Still, in 1970, blacks were disproportionately poor. Then came the welfare state.4

    After decades of rapid economic progress, culminating in the 1970 figure of a 30 percent poverty level, the black movement toward prosperity significantly slowed. In 1980, 29 percent of black families still lived below the official poverty line; in 1995, the figure was 26 percent. It is significant that economic progress slowed so drastically during the era in which governmental paternalism was at its height.11

    The government’s effort to help the black urban poor has resulted in reduced employment, diminished economic progress and soaring rates of illegitimacy and crime. Conservatives have long pointed out one level of causation. If the government financially encourages indolence, illegitimacy and the decline of two-parent households, and if it adopts a more permissive attitude toward disruptive behavior in the schools and criminal behavior in the streets, then it makes a direct assault on the ethics of personal responsibility necessary for individuals to lead a productive life.

    • Interesting info here and it helps to understand why so many welfare families are headed by mom only – this was the incentive program put in place by our government! Don’t get married, have more kids, we will increase your pay. How pathetic.

  10. Agree. Welfare as sanctioned by the US Government sort of indicates a GO. This should not be a GO, thumbs up Program. As one of the first posters put it in a nutshell,,,it brings us down. We all know exactly what he means. And today, in 2009, how is that Welfare Thing working out for America??

    • It’s creating a society that is happy to be dependent on the government for everything. No more “if I work really hard, maybe some day I’ll be fabulously wealthy”.

  11. The harsh reality is Pelosi and her ilk are keeping and expanding a group of people who are willing to be dependent on the government, and to help the Democratic party to remain in power.

    I think this is a bit off kilter (paranoid) but it doesn’t offend GreaterGoodscs (that bum) … because Pelosi and her ilk aren’t close to what GG proposes (which is pure socialism—something much closer to the ideal than what you describe later (below)).

    GreaterGood feels 304 million Americans are looking for a government to set our rules and provide for us. I do not see that. Three quarters of us are able to function very well without depending on the government. I think the 25% looking for the government to provide for them would drop to six to eight percent if we reversed the trend of the government will provide back to those values of self reliance that created this country.

    I’m not sure where you get three-quarters from, but even if I were to accept it, I don’t see it as a credible way to fix what is clearly broken.

    Those who shout out for us to cast aside the values that made this the greatest nation in the history of the world are ignoring history and reality. How many millions died for the “greater good” under communist China and the USSR?

    I’m not sure we’re the greatest nation in the history of the world. We’re certainly a great nation with a ton of potential to be even greater but comparing it to the likes of the totalitarian socialism/communism examples you gave isn’t fair at all. It would be just as easy for me to point out to you how hypocritically “democratic” the greatest nation in the history of the world is today when some of its citizens cannot marry and/or adopt because of the sexual preference (not to mention how for more than half its existence (when it was in the process of becoming GREAT, people of color were either slaves or couldn’t vote). Pure democracy is an ideal (as is pure socialism or pure communism).

    But you tell me how great our democracy is if you (who I’m sure wasn’t for the bailouts—neither was GG or myself (that other bum)) couldn’t do a damn thing about OUR money being given to Wall Street, et al, without our collective permission and/or without any stipulations protecting workers (not just companies)? How great was that?

    GG (or myself), by the way, are big proponents of common welfare (you neglected to use those quotes). We’re fine and dandy with the Clinton reforms and see where they could be enhanced. We aren’t big fans of capitalism, however and the disparity in wealth it must enhance to survive. We don’t understand how anyone could need so much money (the 1% of wealth in the US that represents more than the remaining 95% of its collective cash). He thinks it should be distributed enough (not fully) so that those WILLING TO WORK HARD are rewarded for it (and not shafted).

    As for individual success stories, we commend you and your family, LOI … but remember that for every one of your stories, there are countless others with much less than the desired effect.

    Go Phillies! Go Bills!

    • Hiya Charlie,

      Hope you are having a good weekend. I was pleased to see you are considering leaving the big city. I did the morning commute for a few years, can’t understand why we would want to live like that.

      Pelosi and her ilk, lets think about a few things.

      Education, charter schools & vouchers work, but who will not allow this?

      Welfare, Clinton’s reforms were not only working, there was a measurable decrease in poverty levels. And who undid that?

      Health care, even if you support their present plan, the common sense things that we know would work, they will not allow. Tort reform, offering coverage across state lines.

      Their opposition to proven measures and support of policies that create a dependent class demonstrate an indefensible agenda driven ideology.

      3/4 comes from:“When 75 percent of New Orleans residents had left the city, it was primarily immoral, welfare-pampered blacks that stayed behind and waited for the government to bail them out. This, as we know, did not turn out good results.” – Rev Jesse Lee Peterson

      Also look at the mid-west flooding the next year, almost all of the citizens took care of themselves, and assisted their neighbors as needed. FEMA was a spectator.

      I am pleased you support welfare reform, happy to give the devil(sorry charlie) his due.LOL

      Have twisted your words a bit….
      “the 1% of richest people in the US control 95% of its wealth). It should be distributed so that those WILLING TO WORK HARD are rewarded for it.” (take a look at my #9 post)

      When the 2nd Black Migration’s unintended consequences were the natural improvement in blacks poverty levels, what happened? “The GOVERNMENT’s post-1960s policies must be examined in their cumulative effect. The state made welfare a more lucrative short-term option than full-time minimum-wage employment. It made chronic illegitimacy a superior financial alternative to marriage and self-supporting family. It increasingly refused to discourage unruly behavior in school. By promoting even those who failed to learn, it undercut the motivation to study and get an education. By permitting disruptions and undermining motivation, it made learning as difficult as possible in the urban public schools. By decreasingly punishing youthful offenders, it encouraged crime. Governmental policies have encouraged indolence, illegitimacy, lack of family structure and supervision, disruptive school behavior, diminished education and crime.”

      Now how do you think that same government will make things “more equal”? Does the government reward those willing to work? NO, just the opposite. They reward those who do not work. They reward single mothers, but penalize married mothers. How many years has this gone on? Do you really think its not intentional? 34 years after expanding our welfare society, a reform passed. Eight years after that, it was overturned, buried in a spending bill.

      No question I do not agree with your position on any government taking what it decides is fair, and giving to those it feels are deserving.

      A separate issue I challenge you to consider, those who will
      administer this income re-distribution. Have they shown themselves to have any more integrity than Lenin or Mao?
      How many years can they NOT fix education, welfare, government housing, etc before you start to wonder, are they trying to “fix” it, or keep it broken, so they can keep “working” on the problems?

      • LOI, I’d like to add to that challenge. I challenge anyone to name one government program, intervention, or any name you wish put towards it, that actually “fixed” any problem.

        G!

        • G!,

          Should not have asked me that. NASA put a man on the moon. The Postal Service did deliver, thru rain,snot and snow.

          So there has been good done by government. But the P.O., for example, should be phased out. History has likely caught up and passed it. I would be OK with selling it to private companies, but the economics should decide its fate.

          And an economic ruler should be applied to all government actions. Cost effective is reality, and then there’s the government, that doesn’t worry about cost, because they still have checks in the check book. That government has spent $30 million looking for an Ivory Billed Woodpecker in my state. If the damn bird is not extinct, it’s not because of anything the government did or didn’t do. It was probably that idiot that shot himself in the balls using a .22 shell for a fuse, made it all up. He who laughs last…

          Damn, did I just rant? Sorry, overall I agree with you on the challenge.

        • Too bad there arent more of these guys at all levels of Govt. So of course THIS is the FIRST time Ive heard of him !

          How did this happen? It happened because I was willing to be unpopular.

          Your vote can curb spending

          Paul R. LePage

          Waterville used to be a town just about like every other town in Maine. Yes, a couple of our elected officials served time or got into legal hassles, and yes, we suffered more from industrial job loss than most cities in Maine, but things went along as usual most years, and taxes rose every year.

          In Maine, local spending fueled by property tax increases has risen 58 percent since 2000 and Waterville used to be no exception. Taxes rose in Waterville more than 20 percent from 2000 to 2003. A lot of Maine towns have seen double digit increases in spending over the last eight years. Many people believe nothing can be done about this.

          I know that something can be done, because since I became mayor of Waterville in 2003, taxes have declined (yes, gone down) 13 percent. Services were not cut. Capital spending increased. Cash reserves went up 670 percent. Our bond rating improved from an A- to an A+. There was no revaluation. So over the last eight years, when average property taxes were rising 58 percent in Maine, taxes in Waterville went down 9 percent.

          How did this happen? It happened because I was willing to be unpopular.

          Those who claim we do not need TABOR to restrain spending could point to me as an example of why we do not need TABOR. If you just elect the right local officials, spending can be restrained. But that is not true. Nobody wants to serve in public office in order to be hated. Nearly everyone who shows up at the meetings is there to demand more spending. Not a single elected official in Bangor spoke in defense of the taxpayers when it came time to debate TABOR, and who can blame them? There were more than 100 people in the room dedicated to more spending and they made it clear that anyone who voted for TABOR would face their wrath at the polls.

          The system is skewed in favor of the special interest groups that want more spending from Augusta right down to every local community. Those who oppose TABOR do not represent the hardworking people of Maine. They are special interest groups such as the Maine Municipal Association that get their revenue stream off the backs of Maine taxpayers. They will outspend the supporters of TABOR this year by 5-1 (and some of that money is your tax dollars) and their efforts are organized to protect their lifestyle. They truly have no passion for the prosperous future of our state.

          Some naysayers think Maine’s position is hopeless and that we cannot turn this state around. They are wrong. There is actually precedent for reform, right here in New England. When the Citizen’s Initiative Prop 2½ passed with 60 percent of the vote in 1980, Massachusetts had the highest per capita tax burden in the U.S. From that point on, citizens got to vote on tax increases above a certain rate. That measure, plus a conservative Democrat House speaker working with three consecutive GOP governors, reduced spending and taxes to the point where Massachusetts was 28th in taxes. This took 20 years of hard work.

          If TABOR passes with a substantial margin and a new Republican governor takes office in 2011, and has my kind of backbone, we will prosper.

          We need a new mechanism to give the taxpayers a direct say in how much government should spend. Is TABOR perfect? No. TABOR only allows a vote of the residents when spending increases sharply. We need to reduce taxes and spending, but TABOR is a long overdue start.

          Voting Yes on 4 does not cut spending, but it might limit future spending increases, depending on what the voters choose. There is absolutely no reason not to vote yes.

          Paul R. LePage is the mayor of Waterville and a Republican candidate for governor.
          http://www.bangordailynews.com/detail/126716.html#at

          Then if you;re interested:
          Last evening, the Bangor GOP Committee hosted a Republican gubernatorial candidate forum at the Dyke Center for Family Business on the campus of Husson University. From 5:30 – 7:30, I had the opportunity to sit amongst an audience of approximately 70 and listen as our Republican choices for governor responded to questions offered up from the moderator, of which included 6 or 7 questions submitted by the audience.

          There they sat, in order from left to right, Matt Jacobson, Peter Mills, Paul LePage, Bruce Poliquin and Les Otten as they each responded to the questions posed. I sat towards the back of the room and observed. Of course, they all seemingly agreed to some of the basic core values of the GOP; fiscal restraint, the need to bring more businesses to Maine and lower taxes. The Social Issues were not broached except for one about education, which allowed for Senator Mills to not answer for his voting record and left a bit of a gap in knowing where these folks stand.

          One man’s answers just stood out over the rest, as did the applause and the occasional chuckle from the room; Mayor Paul LePage. While the other 4 spoke about the government needing to create more jobs, Mayor LePage answered with, “The government does not create jobs, unless its creating more government jobs.”

          Although Jacobson received loud applause for, “Kill DIRIGO” and Poliquin spoke strongly for Charter Schools, with good reception of course, and Senator Mills deceptively spoke of conservativism as if he can ignore being the only Republican to vote for the Tax Reform Bill now subject to a Peoples Veto and one of the very few who voted for Gay Marriage, Mayor Paul LePage just continued to nail it.

          Besides the fact that this man has successfully been elected and re-elected in an area that sports more Democrats and Independents than Republicans by far, the results in Waterville of decreased tax burdens and actual growth are LePage’s record of accomplishment. The statements not heard from the others, but originating from LePage himself were numerous. He spoke passionately against unfunded mandates, a subject not addressed by the other candidates. He spoke specifically to the absolute need for residency requirements with regard to welfare- also not addressed by the other candidates. Mayor LePage’s unequivocal support for vouchers, charter schools and support of homeschooling was refreshing as was his unapologetic reference to the over-regulating, over-legislating activities of Augusta, “If you’re going to bring me a bill to sign into law, you’d better have one to repeal along with it.”

          Before the candidates issued their ending statements, they were asked something to the affect of, “On the 101st day of being in office, what would they say about their accomplishments?”

          LePage’s answer? He’d be proud to personally take a chain saw to that sign on the highway in Kittery that says ‘Vacationland’, cut it down and replace it with one that says, “Maine: Open for Business.”

      • Please don’t ever refer to “Clinton’s welfare reforms”. He vetoed these reforms twice (or was it 3 times?) before signing them because he wanted to get reelected. If there is one author of welfare reform, it was probably Gingrich.

        Clinton’s talk of “ending welfare as we know it” was just that, talk. He had not intention of real reform.

      • I think Judy helped make some of my point below (about the burden of the country being put on the backs of the middle class). I don’t see why the top 1% couldn’t contribute more.

        I also had a typo in my response (I am NOT a big proponent of welfare–i think I left out the “not”).

        I’d argue that several gov’t programs did work but that would cause a debate I don’t have time for today (the NIRA (everything under the new deal, social security) until they were abused and/or ruined but …

        Again, whatever Pelosi is after isn’t enough. I’d require both major parties obliterated (not Mao-like obliteration, although sometimes the though to that pleases me) but at least voted out of office. Now, I’d prefer a true socialist victory at the ballots but I’d take a libertarian one just as easily (but ONLY because I’d like to see this Democracy act like one and do away with the puppets of big business both major parties have become). At least if the libertarians won and if they got carried away with themselves (abusing workers again), we’d be closer to a genuine workers revolution. I don’t see that happening so long as we have enough toys to spoil us … so, on second thought (after analzing that last sentence) you may well be right about this government intentionally keeping people dependent on welfare (spoiled with enough toys to do nothing for themselves).

        • Charlie,

          I will let Judy answer for herself, if she feels inclined, I suspect she will not agree with you.

          Agree, there have been some government programs that worked, but many have grown beyond their intended purpose.

          “whatever Pelosi is after isn’t enough.”
          (OH, what a statement!!!Rage building!!!
          But then you end with)
          “you may well be right about this government intentionally keeping people dependent on welfare”

          You need to decide which you think is correct. If Pelosi has not gone far enough, the education “reforms” will be government control of pre-K, for starters. Thirteen years just isn’t enough for them to today.
          Funny, my grandfather learned Latin in public school in the early 1900’s, why CAN’T
          the current government run education system
          do today, what was common 100 years ago?

          She has no intention to reform education, which leads to prosperity and freedom. Nor will she allow health care, public housing, or any entitlement programs to be “fixed”.
          The extreme liberals are building a power base that will leave them in complete control. Be rewarding their supporters, they buy their re-election. Was “cash for clunkers” a sound financial program? Economically, did it help the country? How many of those who used the program will vote Democrat in 2010?

          I do appreciate that you are considering all we discuss here, and assure you I also think about what you, Ray, and others have to say.
          But when you put it all together, big government, and maybe big business, end up
          trampling the rest of us.

          Very Damn Little Government will give you wings, everything else will be a collar and chains.

          • I was using Judy’s line (without her permission:) but I think she inadvertently made my point.

            You’re right, I had to reassess what I wrote earlier. My issue is with capitalism (in general). Right now I’d settle for either of these parties dumped (voted out completely). I’m not sure this country will ever get there (certainly not in my lifetime) but it’s nice to dream.

            I’m voting for the socialist party in Jersey for Governor (which is probably an inadvertent vote for the Republican, Christie). I think Christie is the bigger of the two evils (him and Corzine) but there’s not enough difference (for me) between both major parties to support either one of them. If the corrupt tub of lard (Christie) wins, so be it. If Corzine wins, so be it. I won’t support either.

            • Hi Charlie

              And what line might that be that you used without my permission? I don’t mind, I have don’t copyright on it, please feel free anytime.

              BTW, how you doing lately?

              Hope all is well with you.

              Judy

              • Hey, Judy. All is good (except for my beloved new york state buffalo bills–crushed again).

                I used the line where you said the middle class is getting burdened by carrying the load for everyone. I agree (but probably want a different solution).

                Age is catching up to me … a pinched nerve in my right shoulder is putting a quick end to my weightlifting days I’m afraid …

                Oh, well, there’s always climbing out of bed in the morning (talk about lifting weight …)

                Hope all is well by you.

                Gotta root for the Phillies tonight. My son is torturing me with his skankies.

              • Okay, the blond is coming out, What’s a skankie?

                Charlie, I don’t know what the solution is, but I do know, it’s not the government taking control of everything, and taking care of everybody. People that can work should, providing they can find work. I can’t for the life of me see how people can be lazy and not do anything for themselves, except to depend on government and everybody to take care of them.

                My sister is damn close to losing her house, and is doing everything she can to keep it. Her hours got cut at work which means a
                cut in pay by some $800 a month. Her bank won’t work with her to lower her payments, so she has to decide which comes first. Naturally, the house does, but she is like 3 months behind, doing all she can, even looking for a second job which she cannot find. She is a beautician by trade, but can’t find anything in that line of work. She will not take anything from this government, she calls them thieves in the night.

                When I lost my job last week, I have been looking for another job, but no luck just yet, but I’m not giving up, something’s out there somewhere for me, but if it takes a while, then so be it. I’m not sure if I even want to collect unemployment, because it’s taking something from the government.

                But, with these people who don’t want to even put an effort into it, well, I’ll be damned if and when I do find work, I want to pay for them just sitting on their butts.

                Sorry for the lengthy answer there, but you asked.

                Outside of that things are going pretty good. Not into football, or baseball really, so it doesn’t matter to me who wins.

                Sorry to hear about your pinched nerve, I know what that’s like. Pulled a lombard disc out a couple years ago, took me 9 months to get better. I know what a pain in the neck is, it’;s my 2 son’s when they come over.

            • Charlie,

              Something to consider, unintended consequences. When welfare, great society, etc were started, there was no intent to create a dependent class.
              Unintended consequence.

              Why does Hong Kong have such a high standard of living, compared to the rest of China or India?
              Economic freedom and capitalism will always outperform rigid government control. The resulting rise in the standard of living was not planed, nor relevant to the greedy business owners.

              Unintended consequence.

              Let every worker see that they can improve their position in life, most will. Let every worker see the government will support you, many will choose not to work.

              Self interest
              +
              Self reliance
              =
              Greatest Good

  12. Greetings! Home from a wonderful week in the Pa mountains. Rifineing those hunting skills, allthough with no kills to report, my first full week of bowhunting in decades ws a success in many other areas. The learning never stops, and I learned some valuable lessons.

    On to the subject at ahnd. LOI, I salute you and your article! I have said often that I despise welfare and those that choose to live off of it, when they are capable of supporting themselves. To me, it’s more of a city problem than a country one. My radical thinking would lead me stop all welfare payments and let the chips fall where they may, but that would harm many who otherwise would not get harmed, so I pull back abit, and regroup my thinking.

    Hope today finds everyone well!

    G!

  13. LOI, good job on the article and sources, (although waiting for the conclusion on how your sister turned out…….)

    Why is it so hard to understand that growing welfare rolls isn’t helping anyone, but is in fact a war on the poor, by keeping them down at that level? If only someone like Rev Jesse Lee Peterson could have been the first black President, what a difference it might have made.

    • Kathy,

      Sis works like me, very independent, kids, etc…

      Rev. Patterson, Rice, Powell, yes there were/are some good people out there, politics just doesn’t seem to favor the good.

  14. Hey All and Happy Halloween

    Good post LOI

    I would like to say that I think the more the government does for people, the more they expect from them. Why should anyone get a job or look out for them selves if they know government will take care of them. I heard on the news last night about this health care bill, and it looks like Piglosi got her way, didn’t she. Now it just has to pass, right. And just when does it suppose to take affect? Next year, 3 years, 10 years when?

    This thing with the flood that happened in New Orleans and how they couldn’t/wouldn/t leave on their own, what a waste of money and buses, waiting for the government to take care of everything when they had a mayor and governor right there to help. And what about that money all those people got to help them with cloting, finding another place to stay or for food. I heard some of them used that money for boob implants, partying, getting their teeth fixed, but not what it was intended for. Another waste of money.

    This might not have anything to do with the topic of today, but I’m going to say it anyway.

    I lost my job this past week, not because it was downsizing or anything, it was because I worked for my brother in law and he wanted to retire, so he sold his business. He sold it to his cousin and he wanted to hire someone else to do the jobs that me and my husband did. Yes, he lost his too, but not fully. He is going to stay on as an over seer to make sure that his cousin isn’t going to screw things up. In other words, his cousin is paying him and my brother in law is in turn paying his brother, my husband to make sure things run smooth. If for any reason his cousin misses any payments the lab goes back to my brother in law. But because of me losing my job, I will now go look for another one, I won’t depend on the government for anything.

    It might take me awhile, it might only take a matter of days, who knows, but I’ll be damned if I just sit on my butt waiting for a hand out. Things might be a little tight for awhile, but I have learned how to squeeze a penny and look for the bargains.

    And just where are all those jobs at that good old Obama said he created? Wait, let me guess, they’re in Washington. Just where are those 650,000 jobs. According to Reid, he himself said he’s created jobs here in Nevada, ah, the last time I looked, NO. Could that be why there is still so many here looking for work, still losing their homes, not being able to afford much, because of all these wonderful jobs that are suppose to be available. Yea, right.

    This government is making more and more people so depended on them it’s not funny. We are turning into a socialist country with all the take overs they are doing, now they’re taking over our lives and everything in it, from where we do our banking, to what doctor to go see. I see a dictatorship coming, and we are going to be in a world of hurt.

    This country used to be the land of the free, but I’m beginning to see it fade away. People who come here from all parts of the world to make a better life for them selves might as well stay where they are because I don’t see where it will be better for them unless of course they are going to depend on the government to take care of them. I see us becoming the minority now, and everybody else being taken care of by the government so they don’t have to take care of them selves. Those who work there butts off to make a better life for themselves and families are now paying for those who don’t. I really feel sorry for this country, especially now with those who are running it and what’s going to happen in the future.

    • Hi Judy! Sorry that your last day at work came and is now a reality. You certainly have the right attitude about it, keep on fightin, you’ll win in the end.

      I was thinking about today’s subject, and wonder how the ancestors of the welfare rats feel about them (if they could). I could not imagine what a now deceased ex-slave would think of todays black society in the cities. Not mention those brave people who fought for civil rights.

      I also wonder when someone is going to step up and say “Look, there was salvery, it’s been long overwith. Being mad at the white Americans for it is misguided, maybe you should be mad at the black Africans who sold them into slavery.”

      Just some thoughts to ponder.

      G!

      • Hey G

        Glad to see you back, missed ya.

        Well, it’s not going to do me any good to bitch about losing my job, something I’m sure will come up eventually. Just going to play it by ear, what else can I do. Not sure too look now, or wait until after the first, or lose my mind , whichever comes first.

        I am so sick and tired of race being included in everything, I could just scream. Reparations because of slavery, please give me a break, not all blacks were slaves, and not all Americans owned them, mine certainly didn’t have any. I’m with you though on what they would think of today’s black society, but then who knows, ya know. I’m just fed up with everything and the way things are turning out.

        Hope you had fun hunting.

        Judy

        • Had a blast huntin, always do! Being with nature from sun up to sun down is very relaxing. The things I saw most people will never get to see in person, but must see it on TV.

          G!

          • Oh, if only I could have been there too. I love seeing nature and all the animals, except for bears. Saw a couple close up when we went to Yosemite years ago, and it was too close for me thank you.

            Sorry you didn’t get anything, but as long as you had fun, that’s what counts, right. And of course the relaxing part.

            So, do you go back to work on Monday? Or are you still off?

            • Back to work monday, till Thanksgiving, then off for 11 days, more hunting, this time with the highpowered rifle. Should have success then, as my scouting has been spot on.

              Nature is a wonderfull thing to see, even the bears that we see, which don’t bother anyone, but are fine looking animals and fun to see.

              I wish I had time to take pictures this week in the woods, they would be remarkable, but they are only fond memories now.

              G!

              • Sorry for not getting back sooner, but it was dinner, and I made homemade chicken noodle soup, and I just had a rees’es peanut butter cup, dark chocolate, had to have one before we give out candy. Matthew made me eat one, so I had too. LOL

                How is it you get so much time off? Wait, you saved up for it, right?

                Oh, I get a lot of time off now, not thrilled about it, but what the hay. I just hope I can find something in the line I do, which is secretarial work.

                Matthew said there’s always job listings at the university at all different places around there, so maybe I’ll go check it out and see what they. But, first, I have to renew my drivers license. Been 5 years since I renewed it, got it for 5 last time, and they sent me a postcard saying it was time for me to renew it in person and get a new picture taken. Oh, I’m just thrilled with waiting forever since they closed the express DMV here.

                Okay, got to go clean up the kitchen now. be back. Maybe you can do some DJ for me tonight, I missed that while you were gone.

                But give me time to clean up, the kitchen is a mess.

              • going below, too squishy

    • And then I get to read my personal email from James Carville

      Remember all those socialist-hollering, Glenn Beck-worshiping, tea party wing nuts from this summer’s town hall meetings? If Sarah Palin gets her way, one of them could soon be a member of Congress.

      …… …. …. … …

      I’ve been getting calls all week from media pundits asking me if Palin’s fundraising means that all those tea partying members of the right-wing fringe finally have the upper hand in their fight to bring back the George Bush days of disaster.

      NEW SLOGAN ::

      Bring Back Bush – Bring Back 5% Unemployment (Not 10 % )

    • fight to bring back the George Bush days of disaster.

      • Someone I was talking to the other day mentioned cigars, thongs and blue dresses and vast right-wing conspiracies. Remember when those were our only problems?

        Now I do realize things were more serious than that, but at the time, it seemed that the definition of “is” was the only thing that mattered.

        Those were the days……

  15. >Thought I’d put some funnies up since it’s Halloween
    >

    Proofreading is a dying art, wouldn’t you say?
    >
    >
    >
    > Man Kills Self Before Shooting Wife and Daughter
    > This one I caught in the SGV Tribune the other day and called the Editorial Room and asked who wrote this. It took two or three readings before the editor realized that what he was reading was impossible! They put in a correction the next day.
    >
    > I just couldn’t help but sending this along. Too funny.
    >
    > Something Went Wrong in Jet Crash, Expert Says
    > No crap, really? Ya think?
    > —————————————————————————-
    > Police Begin Campaign to Run Down Jaywalkers
    > Now that’s taking things a bit far!
    > ———————————————————–
    > Panda Mating Fails; Veterinarian Takes Over
    > What a guy!
    > —————————————————————
    > Miners Refuse to Work after Death
    > No-good-for-nothing, lazy so-and-so’s!
    > ——————————————————
    > Juvenile Court to Try Shooting Defendant
    > See if that works any better than a fair trial!
    > ———————————————————-
    > War Dims Hope for Peace
    > I can see where it might have that effect!
    > —————————————————————-
    > If Strike Isn’t Settled Quickly, It May Last Awhile
    > Ya think?!
    > ———————————————————————–
    > Cold Wave Linked to Temperatures
    > Who would have thought!
    > —————————————————————-
    > Enfield (London) Couple Slain; Police Suspect Homicide
    > They may be on to something!
    > ————————————————————————
    > Red Tape Holds Up New Bridges
    > You mean there’s something stronger than duct tape?
    > ———————————————————-
    > Man Struck By Lightning: Faces Battery Charge
    > He probably IS the battery charge!
    > ———————————————-
    > New Study of Obesity Looks for Larger Test Group
    > Weren’t they fat enough?!
    > ———————————————–
    > Astronaut Takes Blame for Gas in Spacecraft
    > That’s what he gets for eating those beans!
    > ————————————————-
    > Kids Make Nutritious Snacks
    > Do they taste like chicken?
    > ****************************************
    >
    > Local High School Dropouts Cut in Half
    > Chainsaw Massacre all over again!
    > ***************************************************
    > Hospitals are Sued by 7 Foot Doctors
    > Boy, are they tall!
    > *******************************************
    > And the winner is…
    > Typhoon Rips Through Cemetery; Hundreds Dead
    >
    > Did I read that right?

  16. Bottom Line says:

    “WHEN THE LEVEE BREAKS” – Led Zeppelin – 1971

    If it keeps on raining levee’s going to break
    If it keeps on raining levee’s going to break
    When the levee breaks have no place to stay

    Mean old levee taught me to weep and moan
    Mean old levee taught me to weep and moan
    Got what it takes to make a Mountain Man leave his home

    Oh, well; oh, well; oh, well.

    Don’t it make you feel bad?
    When you’re trying to find your way home you don’t know which way to go?
    When you’re going down south and there’s no work to do
    And you’re going on to Chicago

    Crying won’t help you, praying won’t do you no good
    Crying won’t help you, praying won’t do you no good
    When the levee breaks, mama, you got to go

    All last night sat on the levee and moaned
    All last night sat on the levee and moaned
    Thinking about my baby and my happy home

    Going – going to Chicago
    Going to Chicago
    Sorry, but I can’t take you

    Going down – going down, now
    Going down – going down, now
    Going down
    Going down
    Going down
    Going down

    Going down – going down, now
    Going down – going down, now
    Going down – going down, now
    Going down
    Going dow-, dow-, dow-, dow-, down, now

  17. Q:
    How many women with MENOPAUSE does it take to change a light bulb?
    Woman’s Answer: One!
    ONLY ONE!!!! And do you know WHY? Because no one else in this house knows HOW to change a light bulb! They don’t even know that the bulb is BURNED OUT!! They would sit in the dark for THREE DAYS before they figured it out.

    And, once they figured it out, they wouldn’t be able to find the #&%!* light bulbs despite the fact that they’ve been in the SAME CABINET for the past 17 YEARS!
    But if they did, by some miracle of God, actually find them, 2 DAYS LATER, the chair they dragged to stand on to change the STUPID light bulb would STILL BE IN THE SAME SPOT!!!!! AND UNDERNEATH IT WOULD BE THE WRAPPER THE FREAKING LIGHT BULBS CAME IN!!! BECAUSE NO ONE EVER PICKS UP OR CARRIES OUT THE GARBAGE!!!! IT’S A WONDER WE HAVEN’T ALL SUFFOCATED FROM THE PILES OF GARBAGE THAT ARE A FOOT DEEP THROUGHOUT THE ENTIRE HOUSE!!
    IT WOULD TAKE AN ARMY TO CLEAN THIS PLACE! AND DON’T EVEN GET ME STARTED ON WHO CHANGES THE TOILET PAPER ROLL !!

    I’m sorry. What was the question?

  18. A couple was invited to a swanky costume party. She got a terrible headache and told her husband to go to the party alone. He being a devoted husband protested, but she argued and said she was going to take some aspirin and go to bed, and there was no need of his good time being spoiled by not going. So he took his costume and away he went.

    The wife, after sleeping soundly for about an hour, awakened without pain and, as it was still early, decided to go the party.

    Since her husband did not know what her costume was, she thought she would have some fun by watching her husband to see how he acted when she was not with him. She joined the party and soon spotted her husband cavorting around on the dance floor, dancing with every nice chick he could, and copping a little feel here and a little kiss there. His wife sidled up to him and being a rather seductive babe herself, he left his current partner high and dry and devoted his time to the new babe that had just arrived. She let him go as far as he wished, naturally, since he was her husband.

    Finally, he whispered a little proposition in her ear and she agreed, so off they went to one of the cars and had a little bang. Just before unmasking at midnight, she slipped away, went home, put the costume away and got into bed, wondering what kind of explanation he would make for his behavior.

    She was sitting up reading when he came in, and she asked what kind of a time he had. He said, “Oh, the same old thing. You know I never have a good time when you’re not there.” “Did you dance much?” “I’ll tell you, I never even danced one dance. When I got there, I met Pete, Bill Brown, and some other guys so we went into the den and played poker all evening. But you’re not going to believe what happened to the guy I loaned my costume to.”

    Bet you did not see that one coming. LOL

  19. Here’s a song from Heart:

    • That was okay, but not really my style. Don’t think I’ve heard of them. Are they from the 70’s?

      So, how was it at your dad’s? Enjoy the visit with him?

      • BTW Thank you for the birthday card from you and your dad. I really appreciate it very much. You’re too kind.

        Judy

      • I’m a little out of the music pickin thing tonight, too much hunting still on the brain. Your welcome, that was Dad’s idea, he’s good about things like that. Had a blast at Dad’s , always do. Love being up there, but still have things at home to deal with, like a daughter, dogs and a job. Someday, I’ll find my way in life, just not sure what I’m here for yet, reckon I’ll find out when it’s time.

        G!

        • Judy, this might be better for ya! Kinda like this when I heard it :

        • There’s a reason why we’re all here G, and I’m sure we’ll find out what that is. I wonder the same thing about myself. But, then I see my boys and what they’re doing with their lives, that could be why I’m here, I don’t know. But I have mom now and taking care of her, maybe that’s it too, who knows.

          But I figure she’s done her job for me, now it’s my turn to do for her, after all she is 87 and who knows how much longer she’ll be here, so I do all I can to make her comfortable and happy and I know she loves being here and doesn’t want to go back to that house she lived in for over 40 years. After my dad died, she was a very lonely person even though my sister still lives there. She loves being around people and going places that we have gone.

          And for my boys and what they’re doing. Maybe it was my purpose to bring them into the world so they can do their job to make this world a better place, I don’t know. But with Matthew going to med school and Christopher doing all he can to better himself in the military, maybe that what’s I was meant to do. I really don’t know and can’t say. But I know I couldn’t have done what I have done without the help of Jim and what he has brought me, love, happiness and being there for me when things were not going good for us, for him or for me.

          I think my job is just doing what I have been doing, and you know what, I wouldn’t change a thing, good or bad.

    • Interesting to see that this site is being read by many who may be our enemies. Good catch! I’m going to forward amn e-mail to USW that has some good pictures as to corrolate with this post, however, this is not a surprise to me.

      PEACE!

      G!

    • Good catch Frank….I never thought about going back and reading old posts for something like that. Very interesting. Especially the part about Israel.

  20. WELL ONLY MAKE ONE COMMENT, I DO NOT THINK AMERICA WILL BE AROUND IN 2010, JUST MY OPINION, BUT AT THE RATE HE IS DESTROYING ALL THE MONEY AND FREE SPEECH, NOW HATE SPEECH, NEXT GUNS WILL GO. WHATEVER.

    • Goldie, Not as long as me and others like me are still breathing. The vets will stand tall when they are needed, and that time may be coming. Have faith in those that followed you!

      G!

  21. Alot have forgotten why we are fighting in Afghanistan, this is a reminder:

    • That too was a great video, but G, there are those who still think it was inside job, and I will not, and cannot believe that for as long as I live that it was.

      Thank you for doing what you have done tonight, and I’m very happy that you are back, safe and sound. And with that I am going to say good night.

      Have a good night G and will talk with you again soon.

      Take Care

      Judy

      • Night Judy! I leave one last song, for Goldie, she earned it, and may she and all those who post here enjoy:

        G!

  22. Good article LOI….I once had a very bleeding heart liberal government professor tell our class “If you are down and out and need a hand out go to a Democrate, if you want a hand up go to a Republican”. It is so true.
    Hand outs are a form of slavery, a very harsh form. Anytime a person is dependent on some one else for their health care, home, food or anything else they are a slave, owned in full by the person holding the purse string. The government tells them what kind of house they can live in, what kinds of foods they can eat, how warm they can stay, who their Doctors are….ect.
    They lose their freedom by accepting what they think is free. Welfare is not free. It comes with horrible strings that binds the reciepant in massive ropes allowing the government to keep them under their thumb.
    Yes anyone could at sometime or another need help….it is the perpetual circle of welfare that needs to be broken. As socialist as it may sound I would rather see government open factories and mills and give people the opportunity to work than to see them hand out money and enslave people.
    Another thing that seemed to happen when welfare hit the streets is that neighbors seemed to quit helping each other…use to be we made sure the elderly lady down the street had a way to the store, and that her roof was patched. We made sure the kids next door had coats and shoe when their dad got hurt and could not work. But now these people are expected to go to the government because the government has taken all our extra money (robbed it from us) an given it to people we don’t even know.

    • Amazed1,

      Glad you liked it. When it was created, I do not think they intended welfare and the assistance programs to end up being a class of our society, that generations would spend most of their life being supported by the government. I do think the Democratic party has known this for quite a while now, and will do anything to keep their beholden voter base. And they are intent on adding the illegal aliens in the near future.

      • SK Trynosky Sr. says:

        Actually you are quite correct. Several years ago I read a book written in the early ’60’s and full of comments and articles by those who started in government in the ’30’s. One talked of a meeting at the White House where it was proposed that the administration need not create programs like the CCC. The comments were that it would be easier and cheaper just to send out a check.

        No less a liberal than Harry Hopkins strenuously opposed this idea. His reasoning was that it would sap the strength and will of the American people. Hopkins went on that the depression would end one day and at that time he wanted the people, with their sense of honor and self respect intact to go back to work with the same pride they had before the depression hit. That was the greatest generation he was talking about.

        Since I read this, I have often wondered who and when those who merely wanted to send a check got in the ascendancy. It was Daniel Moynihan, liberal from New York and very poor boy from Hells kitchen during the depression who pointed out over and over how destructive and demeaning welfare was. Yet, this is conveniently forgotten over and over again.

        The end of welfare reform in January was noted by few. It was a poorly attended funeral for a program that helped so many.

  23. Thoughts have consequences

    If every anyone doubts the power of an idea – I post these.

    95 Theses …. and the entire world changed ….

    He made no money. There was no copyright. It became the World’s first “Best Seller”.

    We live in the world that was created by this simple document – hammered on a church door on b?

    Disputation of Doctor Martin Luther
    on the Power and Efficacy of Indulgences
    by Dr. Martin Luther (1517)

    Out of love for the truth and the desire to bring it to light, the following propositions will be discussed at Wittenberg, under the presidency of the Reverend Father Martin Luther, Master of Arts and of Sacred Theology, and Lecturer in Ordinary on the same at that place. Wherefore he requests that those who are unable to be present and debate orally with us, may do so by letter.

    In the Name our Lord Jesus Christ. Amen.

    1. Our Lord and Master Jesus Christ, when He said Poenitentiam agite, willed that the whole life of believers should be repentance.

    2. This word cannot be understood to mean sacramental penance, i.e., confession and satisfaction, which is administered by the priests.

    3. Yet it means not inward repentance only; nay, there is no inward repentance which does not outwardly work divers mortifications of the flesh.

    4. The penalty [of sin], therefore, continues so long as hatred of self continues; for this is the true inward repentance, and continues until our entrance into the kingdom of heaven.

    5. The pope does not intend to remit, and cannot remit any penalties other than those which he has imposed either by his own authority or by that of the Canons.

    6. The pope cannot remit any guilt, except by declaring that it has been remitted by God and by assenting to God’s remission; though, to be sure, he may grant remission in cases reserved to his judgment. If his right to grant remission in such cases were despised, the guilt would remain entirely unforgiven.

    7. God remits guilt to no one whom He does not, at the same time, humble in all things and bring into subjection to His vicar, the priest.

    8. The penitential canons are imposed only on the living, and, according to them, nothing should be imposed on the dying.

    9. Therefore the Holy Spirit in the pope is kind to us, because in his decrees he always makes exception of the article of death and of necessity.

    10. Ignorant and wicked are the doings of those priests who, in the case of the dying, reserve canonical penances for purgatory.

    11. This changing of the canonical penalty to the penalty of purgatory is quite evidently one of the tares that were sown while the bishops slept.

    12. In former times the canonical penalties were imposed not after, but before absolution, as tests of true contrition.

    13. The dying are freed by death from all penalties; they are already dead to canonical rules, and have a right to be released from them.

    14. The imperfect health [of soul], that is to say, the imperfect love, of the dying brings with it, of necessity, great fear; and the smaller the love, the greater is the fear.

    15. This fear and horror is sufficient of itself alone (to say nothing of other things) to constitute the penalty of purgatory, since it is very near to the horror of despair.

    16. Hell, purgatory, and heaven seem to differ as do despair, almost-despair, and the assurance of safety.

    17. With souls in purgatory it seems necessary that horror should grow less and love increase.

    18. It seems unproved, either by reason or Scripture, that they are outside the state of merit, that is to say, of increasing love.

    19. Again, it seems unproved that they, or at least that all of them, are certain or assured of their own blessedness, though we may be quite certain of it.

    20. Therefore by “full remission of all penalties” the pope means not actually “of all,” but only of those imposed by himself.

    21. Therefore those preachers of indulgences are in error, who say that by the pope’s indulgences a man is freed from every penalty, and saved;

    22. Whereas he remits to souls in purgatory no penalty which, according to the canons, they would have had to pay in this life.

    23. If it is at all possible to grant to any one the remission of all penalties whatsoever, it is certain that this remission can be granted only to the most perfect, that is, to the very fewest.

    24. It must needs be, therefore, that the greater part of the people are deceived by that indiscriminate and highsounding promise of release from penalty.

    25. The power which the pope has, in a general way, over purgatory, is just like the power which any bishop or curate has, in a special way, within his own diocese or parish.

    26. The pope does well when he grants remission to souls [in purgatory], not by the power of the keys (which he does not possess), but by way of intercession.

    27. They preach man who say that so soon as the penny jingles into the money-box, the soul flies out [of purgatory].

    28. It is certain that when the penny jingles into the money-box, gain and avarice can be increased, but the result of the intercession of the Church is in the power of God alone.

    29. Who knows whether all the souls in purgatory wish to be bought out of it, as in the legend of Sts. Severinus and Paschal.

    30. No one is sure that his own contrition is sincere; much less that he has attained full remission.

    31. Rare as is the man that is truly penitent, so rare is also the man who truly buys indulgences, i.e., such men are most rare.

    32. They will be condemned eternally, together with their teachers, who believe themselves sure of their salvation because they have letters of pardon.

    33. Men must be on their guard against those who say that the pope’s pardons are that inestimable gift of God by which man is reconciled to Him;

    34. For these “graces of pardon” concern only the penalties of sacramental satisfaction, and these are appointed by man.

    35. They preach no Christian doctrine who teach that contrition is not necessary in those who intend to buy souls out of purgatory or to buy confessionalia.

    36. Every truly repentant Christian has a right to full remission of penalty and guilt, even without letters of pardon.

    37. Every true Christian, whether living or dead, has part in all the blessings of Christ and the Church; and this is granted him by God, even without letters of pardon.

    38. Nevertheless, the remission and participation [in the blessings of the Church] which are granted by the pope are in no way to be despised, for they are, as I have said, the declaration of divine remission.

    39. It is most difficult, even for the very keenest theologians, at one and the same time to commend to the people the abundance of pardons and [the need of] true contrition.

    40. True contrition seeks and loves penalties, but liberal pardons only relax penalties and cause them to be hated, or at least, furnish an occasion [for hating them].

    41. Apostolic pardons are to be preached with caution, lest the people may falsely think them preferable to other good works of love.

    42. Christians are to be taught that the pope does not intend the buying of pardons to be compared in any way to works of mercy.

    43. Christians are to be taught that he who gives to the poor or lends to the needy does a better work than buying pardons;

    44. Because love grows by works of love, and man becomes better; but by pardons man does not grow better, only more free from penalty.

    45. 45. Christians are to be taught that he who sees a man in need, and passes him by, and gives [his money] for pardons, purchases not the indulgences of the pope, but the indignation of God.

    46. Christians are to be taught that unless they have more than they need, they are bound to keep back what is necessary for their own families, and by no means to squander it on pardons.

    47. Christians are to be taught that the buying of pardons is a matter of free will, and not of commandment.

    48. Christians are to be taught that the pope, in granting pardons, needs, and therefore desires, their devout prayer for him more than the money they bring.

    49. Christians are to be taught that the pope’s pardons are useful, if they do not put their trust in them; but altogether harmful, if through them they lose their fear of God.

    50. Christians are to be taught that if the pope knew the exactions of the pardon-preachers, he would rather that St. Peter’s church should go to ashes, than that it should be built up with the skin, flesh and bones of his sheep.

    51. Christians are to be taught that it would be the pope’s wish, as it is his duty, to give of his own money to very many of those from whom certain hawkers of pardons cajole money, even though the church of St. Peter might have to be sold.

    52. The assurance of salvation by letters of pardon is vain, even though the commissary, nay, even though the pope himself, were to stake his soul upon it.

    53. They are enemies of Christ and of the pope, who bid the Word of God be altogether silent in some Churches, in order that pardons may be preached in others.

    54. Injury is done the Word of God when, in the same sermon, an equal or a longer time is spent on pardons than on this Word.

    55. It must be the intention of the pope that if pardons, which are a very small thing, are celebrated with one bell, with single processions and ceremonies, then the Gospel, which is the very greatest thing, should be preached with a hundred bells, a hundred processions, a hundred ceremonies.

    56. The “treasures of the Church,” out of which the pope. grants indulgences, are not sufficiently named or known among the people of Christ.

    57. That they are not temporal treasures is certainly evident, for many of the vendors do not pour out such treasures so easily, but only gather them.

    58. Nor are they the merits of Christ and the Saints, for even without the pope, these always work grace for the inner man, and the cross, death, and hell for the outward man.

    59. St. Lawrence said that the treasures of the Church were the Church’s poor, but he spoke according to the usage of the word in his own time.

    60. Without rashness we say that the keys of the Church, given by Christ’s merit, are that treasure;

    61. For it is clear that for the remission of penalties and of reserved cases, the power of the pope is of itself sufficient.

    62. The true treasure of the Church is the Most Holy Gospel of the glory and the grace of God.

    63. But this treasure is naturally most odious, for it makes the first to be last.

    64. On the other hand, the treasure of indulgences is naturally most acceptable, for it makes the last to be first.

    65. Therefore the treasures of the Gospel are nets with which they formerly were wont to fish for men of riches.

    66. The treasures of the indulgences are nets with which they now fish for the riches of men.

    67. The indulgences which the preachers cry as the “greatest graces” are known to be truly such, in so far as they promote gain.

    68. Yet they are in truth the very smallest graces compared with the grace of God and the piety of the Cross.

    69. Bishops and curates are bound to admit the commissaries of apostolic pardons, with all reverence.

    70. But still more are they bound to strain all their eyes and attend with all their ears, lest these men preach their own dreams instead of the commission of the pope.

    71. He who speaks against the truth of apostolic pardons, let him be anathema and accursed!

    72. But he who guards against the lust and license of the pardon-preachers, let him be blessed!

    73. The pope justly thunders against those who, by any art, contrive the injury of the traffic in pardons.

    74. But much more does he intend to thunder against those who use the pretext of pardons to contrive the injury of holy love and truth.

    75. To think the papal pardons so great that they could absolve a man even if he had committed an impossible sin and violated the Mother of God — this is madness.

    76. We say, on the contrary, that the papal pardons are not able to remove the very least of venial sins, so far as its guilt is concerned.

    77. It is said that even St. Peter, if he were now Pope, could not bestow greater graces; this is blasphemy against St. Peter and against the pope.

    78. We say, on the contrary, that even the present pope, and any pope at all, has greater graces at his disposal; to wit, the Gospel, powers, gifts of healing, etc., as it is written in I. Corinthians xii.

    79. To say that the cross, emblazoned with the papal arms, which is set up [by the preachers of indulgences], is of equal worth with the Cross of Christ, is blasphemy.

    80. The bishops, curates and theologians who allow such talk to be spread among the people, will have an account to render.

    81. This unbridled preaching of pardons makes it no easy matter, even for learned men, to rescue the reverence due to the pope from slander, or even from the shrewd questionings of the laity.

    82. To wit: — “Why does not the pope empty purgatory, for the sake of holy love and of the dire need of the souls that are there, if he redeems an infinite number of souls for the sake of miserable money with which to build a Church? The former reasons would be most just; the latter is most trivial.”

    83. Again: — “Why are mortuary and anniversary masses for the dead continued, and why does he not return or permit the withdrawal of the endowments founded on their behalf, since it is wrong to pray for the redeemed?”

    84. Again: — “What is this new piety of God and the pope, that for money they allow a man who is impious and their enemy to buy out of purgatory the pious soul of a friend of God, and do not rather, because of that pious and beloved soul’s own need, free it for pure love’s sake?”

    85. Again: — “Why are the penitential canons long since in actual fact and through disuse abrogated and dead, now satisfied by the granting of indulgences, as though they were still alive and in force?”

    86. Again: — “Why does not the pope, whose wealth is to-day greater than the riches of the richest, build just this one church of St. Peter with his own money, rather than with the money of poor believers?”

    87. Again: — “What is it that the pope remits, and what participation does he grant to those who, by perfect contrition, have a right to full remission and participation?”

    88. Again: — “What greater blessing could come to the Church than if the pope were to do a hundred times a day what he now does once, and bestow on every believer these remissions and participations?”

    89. “Since the pope, by his pardons, seeks the salvation of souls rather than money, why does he suspend the indulgences and pardons granted heretofore, since these have equal efficacy?”

    90. To repress these arguments and scruples of the laity by force alone, and not to resolve them by giving reasons, is to expose the Church and the pope to the ridicule of their enemies, and to make Christians unhappy.

    91. If, therefore, pardons were preached according to the spirit and mind of the pope, all these doubts would be readily resolved; nay, they would not exist.

    92. Away, then, with all those prophets who say to the people of Christ, “Peace, peace,” and there is no peace!

    93. Blessed be all those prophets who say to the people of Christ, “Cross, cross,” and there is no cross!

    94. Christians are to be exhorted that they be diligent in following Christ, their Head, through penalties, deaths, and hell;

    95. And thus be confident of entering into heaven rather through many tribulations, than through the assurance of peace.

  24. Don’t know if this has already been put up here, but it’s worth watching. And I hope it works on here.

    You will see why when you watch the video…………..

    Ok,this is worth every MINUTE (ONLY 4) to watch this!

    THIS HITS IT OUT OF THE BALL PARK ! AND IT ONLY has HAD 24,048 views

    It was taken inside Congress with a Congressman.. YOU HAVE TO WATCH THIS and YOU MUST PASSTHIS ON!!!

    THIS IS IMPERATIVE EVERYONE SEE THIS!! IT WAS TAKEN OFF THE VIDEO TAPES OF THE FLOOR OF OUR NATIONAL LEGISLATURE.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch_popup?v=G44NCvNDLfc

  25. An Open Letter to Nancy Pelosi and Robert Gibbs

    There’s no case suggesting that the individual mandate you seek in your health care legislation is constitutional. You and the president have both sworn to support and defend the Constitution. The oaths you took do not grant you a right to do what you please, or even what you think is right. It is to do only what the Constitution allows you to do.

    Dear Speaker Pelosi and Mr. Gibbs:

    On Oct. 20, Politico published my column in which I explained how the individual mandate in the health care bill is unconstitutional, since there is no constitutional provision authorizing such legislation and it falls outside the scope of the Constitution’s Commerce Clause.

    Then on Oct. 23, a CNS reporter asked you, Speaker Pelosi, which provision of the Constitution authorized the individual mandate. Your response was, “Are you serious?” You refused to answer the question, and your press secretary later confirmed that you will not answer because you truly think it’s “not a serious question.”

    To answer your question: Yes, Madame Speaker, I am serious. So was that reporter. So are millions of Americans.

    Also on Oct. 23, Erwin Chemerinsky, who is not only a top legal scholar but also a liberal lion who believes the Constitution gives Congress vast powers to do all sorts of things, wrote a piece setting forth how a liberal interpretation of Congress’ power to regulate interstate commerce could allow the Obamacare mandate.

    While I agree that a stridently-liberal interpretation would lead to such a result, I explained in my Oct. 28 Politico follow-up piece why Professor Chemerinsky is likely incorrect as to what the Supreme Court would do. The current Supreme Court is moderate, not liberal (though not conservative, either). I cannot see how the same Court that struck down the Violence Against Women Act (VAWA) in 2000 on Commerce Clause grounds would accept the limitless federal power represented in the individual mandate.

    Also on Oct. 28 you, Mr. Gibbs, were asked the same question as the Speaker. You responded that: (1), you are not a constitutional scholar, (2) there are no Supreme Court cases to back up the idea that the mandate is unconstitutional, and (3) the argument that the mandate is unconstitutional is false.

    Two out of three isn’t bad, Mr. Gibbs. First, you are absolutely correct that no one will mistake you for a constitutional scholar. Second, there are no cases proving that this mandate is unconstitutional.

    But that’s the problem, because there’s also no case suggesting that this mandate is constitutional. There are no cases either way, because this mandate is absolutely without precedent in our nation. This point has been clearly made by the well-respected and nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office and the Congressional Research Service.

    And for the reasons I explain elsewhere, this mandate is grossly unconstitutional.

    The key here that no one refutes is this: When the Court struck down VAWA in the case U.S. v. Morrison, at least there was an action (a violent act against a woman). And in every case where the Court has upheld a law under the Commerce Clause, it has involved an economic action, even in the 1942 case Wickard v. Filburn that set the outermost limit of Congress’ power to regulate interstate commerce.

    Here, there is no action. The federal government would penalize — and perhaps prosecute — people who are doing nothing at all. Regulating an action is different from coercing an action. If the justices would not allow violent acts against women to be a federal issue, they are not likely to allow people sitting peacefully in their homes to be subject to federal power. It would be a radical expansion of federal law into people’s lives.

    Also on Oct. 28, The Washington Times carried a piece about how this issue (of whether the individual mandate — which is the essential provision of your legislation — is constitutional) has become fodder for a serious debate among legal scholars. They all seem quite serious to me.
    With all due respect, what I find most troubling about your response, Madame Speaker, is that it seems as though you reject the idea that the Constitution places any real limits on the power of the federal government. It seems as though you thought it silly for someone to suggest that President Obama and Congress are not empowered to do whatever you want.

    Your oath of office, Madame Speaker — and President Obama’s, Mr. Gibbs — is to support and defend the Constitution. It is not do what you please, or even what you think is right. It is to do only what the Constitution allows you to do.

    The concept of limited government was serious to the Founding Fathers. That’s why the Constitution is a written document, so that we all know what it allows and what it commands.

    Any federal law that violates the Constitution is null and void.

    I respectfully recommend for your consideration a bill proposed by Sen. Tom Coburn and Rep. John Shadegg, the Enumerated Powers Act. It would require every piece of federal legislation to specify which constitutional provision authorizes such legislation. The Heritage Foundation published an excellent analysis of how this proposed law would require Congress to answer this question that you deem unworthy of a response.

    For the reasons set forth in my Politico columns, the individual mandate is unconstitutional. Should the Democratic-lead Congress pass a bill with this mandate and President Obama sign it into law, a court challenge is probable.

    I believe the Supreme Court would strike it down, although you might prevail early on in the lower courts. Should you insist on passing a law penalizing — or even making it a crime — for people not to buy insurance, then Congress and President Obama run the risk of a stern judicial rebuke.

    If you and President Obama refuse to abide by the limits that the Constitution places on your power, then the Supreme Court may have to do it for you.

    Please spare the nation from such an ordeal.

    Sincerely,

    Kenneth A. Klukowski, Esq.

  26. Off topic. Some economic news on the commercial real estate problem:

    http://online.wsj.com/article/SB125709781695721315.html?mod=rss_Today's_Most_Popular

    And something else along the lines of what Black Flag has been saying:

    http://www.ft.com/cms/s/0/9a5b3216-c70b-11de-bb6f-00144feab49a.html

    Mother of all carry trades faces an inevitable bust
    By Nouriel Roubini

    Published: November 1 2009 18:44 | Last updated: November 1 2009 18:44

    Since March there has been a massive rally in all sorts of risky assets – equities, oil, energy and commodity prices – a narrowing of high-yield and high-grade credit spreads, and an even bigger rally in emerging market asset classes (their stocks, bonds and currencies). At the same time, the dollar has weakened sharply, while government bond yields have gently increased but stayed low and stable.

    This recovery in risky assets is in part driven by better economic fundamentals. We avoided a near depression and financial sector meltdown with a massive monetary, fiscal stimulus and bank bail-outs. Whether the recovery is V-shaped, as consensus believes, or U-shaped and anaemic as I have argued, asset prices should be moving gradually higher.

    But while the US and global economy have begun a modest recovery, asset prices have gone through the roof since March in a major and synchronised rally. While asset prices were falling sharply in 2008, when the dollar was rallying, they have recovered sharply since March while the dollar is tanking. Risky asset prices have risen too much, too soon and too fast compared with macroeconomic fundamentals.

    So what is behind this massive rally? Certainly it has been helped by a wave of liquidity from near-zero interest rates and quantitative easing. But a more important factor fuelling this asset bubble is the weakness of the US dollar, driven by the mother of all carry trades. The US dollar has become the major funding currency of carry trades as the Fed has kept interest rates on hold and is expected to do so for a long time. Investors who are shorting the US dollar to buy on a highly leveraged basis higher-yielding assets and other global assets are not just borrowing at zero interest rates in dollar terms; they are borrowing at very negative interest rates – as low as negative 10 or 20 per cent annualised – as the fall in the US dollar leads to massive capital gains on short dollar positions.

    Let us sum up: traders are borrowing at negative 20 per cent rates to invest on a highly leveraged basis on a mass of risky global assets that are rising in price due to excess liquidity and a massive carry trade. Every investor who plays this risky game looks like a genius – even if they are just riding a huge bubble financed by a large negative cost of borrowing – as the total returns have been in the 50-70 per cent range since March.

    People’s sense of the value at risk (VAR) of their aggregate portfolios ought, instead, to have been increasing due to a rising correlation of the risks between different asset classes, all of which are driven by this common monetary policy and the carry trade. In effect, it has become one big common trade – you short the dollar to buy any global risky assets.

    Yet, at the same time, the perceived riskiness of individual asset classes is declining as volatility is diminished due to the Fed’s policy of buying everything in sight – witness its proposed $1,800bn (£1,000bn, €1,200bn) purchase of Treasuries, mortgage- backed securities (bonds guaranteed by a government-sponsored enterprise such as Fannie Mae) and agency debt. By effectively reducing the volatility of individual asset classes, making them behave the same way, there is now little diversification across markets – the VAR again looks low.

    So the combined effect of the Fed policy of a zero Fed funds rate, quantitative easing and massive purchase of long-term debt instruments is seemingly making the world safe – for now – for the mother of all carry trades and mother of all highly leveraged global asset bubbles.

    While this policy feeds the global asset bubble it is also feeding a new US asset bubble. Easy money, quantitative easing, credit easing and massive inflows of capital into the US via an accumulation of forex reserves by foreign central banks makes US fiscal deficits easier to fund and feeds the US equity and credit bubble. Finally, a weak dollar is good for US equities as it may lead to higher growth and makes the foreign currency profits of US corporations abroad greater in dollar terms.

    The reckless US policy that is feeding these carry trades is forcing other countries to follow its easy monetary policy. Near-zero policy rates and quantitative easing were already in place in the UK, eurozone, Japan, Sweden and other advanced economies, but the dollar weakness is making this global monetary easing worse. Central banks in Asia and Latin America are worried about dollar weakness and are aggressively intervening to stop excessive currency appreciation. This is keeping short-term rates lower than is desirable. Central banks may also be forced to lower interest rates through domestic open market operations. Some central banks, concerned about the hot money driving up their currencies, as in Brazil, are imposing controls on capital inflows. Either way, the carry trade bubble will get worse: if there is no forex intervention and foreign currencies appreciate, the negative borrowing cost of the carry trade becomes more negative. If intervention or open market operations control currency appreciation, the ensuing domestic monetary easing feeds an asset bubble in these economies. So the perfectly correlated bubble across all global asset classes gets bigger by the day.

    But one day this bubble will burst, leading to the biggest co-ordinated asset bust ever: if factors lead the dollar to reverse and suddenly appreciate – as was seen in previous reversals, such as the yen-funded carry trade – the leveraged carry trade will have to be suddenly closed as investors cover their dollar shorts. A stampede will occur as closing long leveraged risky asset positions across all asset classes funded by dollar shorts triggers a co-ordinated collapse of all those risky assets – equities, commodities, emerging market asset classes and credit instruments.

    Why will these carry trades unravel? First, the dollar cannot fall to zero and at some point it will stabilise; when that happens the cost of borrowing in dollars will suddenly become zero, rather than highly negative, and the riskiness of a reversal of dollar movements would induce many to cover their shorts. Second, the Fed cannot suppress volatility forever – its $1,800bn purchase plan will be over by next spring. Third, if US growth surprises on the upside in the third and fourth quarters, markets may start to expect a Fed tightening to come sooner, not later. Fourth, there could be a flight from risk prompted by fear of a double dip recession or geopolitical risks, such as a military confrontation between the US/Israel and Iran. As in 2008, when such a rise in risk aversion was associated with a sharp appreciation of the dollar, as investors sought the safety of US Treasuries, this renewed risk aversion would trigger a dollar rally at a time when huge short dollar positions will have to be closed.

    This unraveling may not occur for a while, as easy money and excessive global liquidity can push asset prices higher for a while. But the longer and bigger the carry trades and the larger the asset bubble, the bigger will be the ensuing asset bubble crash. The Fed and other policymakers seem unaware of the monster bubble they are creating. The longer they remain blind, the harder the markets will fall.

    The writer is a professor at New York University’s Stern School of Business and chairman of Roubini Global Economics

    • Wow Judy. That was depressing. What as waste the stimulus money is. It doesn’t even help those folks in the article. All they got was 8 temporary jobs. How sad.

  27. Todays DCCC email notice !! 5 hours ago !! Comments?

    Subj: Breaking News: GOP Chaos Erupts in Special Election

    Pamela–

    Late yesterday news broke that the moderate Republican Assemblywoman Dede Scozzafava, candidate in the hard-fought special election in New York’s 23rd Congressional district, had been driven out and the Republican party was throwing their weight behind the Palin/Limbaugh/Glen Beck endorsed radical tea party candidate instead.

    Today, the moderate Republican threw her support behind our proud Democratic candidate Bill Owens.

    It has never been clearer that the Republican Party has been hijacked by extreme right wing ideologues with a radical agenda that would effectively dismantle Social Security and Medicare, and are out of step with a vast majority of Americans.

    Eight extreme right wing groups spent more than $1 million on this campaign including the Minute Men, Club for Growth and the Family Research Council.

    This means your work and your continued support and dedication have never been more critical as we face our one-year-out reporting deadline and this election on Tuesday.

    We are up against a well-funded extremist GOP who will stop at nothing to win and whose agenda could quite literally take us backwards to the days of Bush-Cheney.

    But, you and I can’t let that happen. I will continue to keep you posted on news of this race continues and thank you again for standing with us. We will need you now more than ever.

    Thanks,

    Jon Vogel
    DCCC Executive Director

    Paid for by the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee.
    430 South Capitol Street, S.E. Washington, D.C. 20003
    (202) 863-1500 – http://www.dccc.org
    Not authorized by any candidate or candidate’s committee.

    BTW – I have no idea who Pamela is !! LOL

    • Frank, I’ve been following the developments here for a few weeks and it has been interesting. Briefly, this Dede candidate was selected by the Republican party, however in many cases her views were even more left than the Democrat in the race. At town halls and debates people started calling her out on her views. Another candidate, Doug Hoffman, calls himself the conservative candidate and it was behind him that conservative thinking people started backing, including those radical tea partiers and that rogue herself, Sarah Palin.

      Basically the message is that just because you have an R behind your name, don’t expect people to blindly vote for you – maybe that was the old, accepted way, but no more.

      Well all hells broken lose on it this weekend as Dede suspended her campaign and is putting her support behind the Dem – this after, of course, accepting a lot of money from the RNC. Supposedly she got a phone call from Rahm also, and there is speculation on what she was offered.

      Michelle Malkin’s site has been reporting on it regularly – you might want to check there for additional info.

      I love how the DNC is spinning this in this email to Pamela – who ever she is!!!

  28. A few days late, but I think this adds points to my conclusion. And a good article on its own merit. from the Bobo Files

    Last month the U.S. House of Representatives passed another 13-week extension of unemployment benefits on top of the current California maximum of 79 weeks. And just last week, Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D‐Nevada) introduced a proposal to extend unemployment insurance by up to 14 additional weeks for jobless workers in all 50 states. The proposal would also extend benefits for an extra 6 weeks in high unemployment states.

    Assuming these provisions survive and eventually get signed into law by President Obama, it means qualifying individuals in California will be eligible to receive unemployment benefits for up to 99 weeks.

    http://lenpenzo.com/blog/id793-its-time-unemployed-people-start-working-for-free.html/comment-page-1#comment-1625

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