Capitalism: A Hate Story, Part I

The discussions the last few days around the “Occupy Wall Street” crowd has resulted in some interesting thoughts coming out on all sides. A few weeks ago (months ago?) Mr. Stella claimed that I must know that Capitalism is a failed enterprise because I refused to answer Noam Chomsky’s claim that capitalism would not survive for five minutes without government. A claim that tonight I call nonsense. And I will tell you why, Mr. Stella. It is because in the first place, what Chomsky refers to as capitalism in most of his “intelligent” discussions is actually nothing more than a convenient manipulation of the definition of capitalism in order to fit his argument.
Let’s Get Chomsky Out of the Way, Then we can Deal with Capitalism

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Guest Commentary: Part II From James Adams

This morning I offer Part II of the three part series from James Adams, author of Waffle Street: . Many of you last week found James’ first installment interesting and offered some insightful comments to his article. I imagine that this will be the case again this week. Part III will follow next week as James will wrap up the series with some practical application. Don’t forget that you can order his book via the link to his page over on the right hand side of the SUFA home page. As I said previously, it is an entertaining and enlightening book that I highly recommend. I will do my best to participate in the discussions throughout the day as I find all the talk about economics fascinating as well as extremely important. So I now turn the floor over to James Adams for his second installment on economics…
Part II from the author of Waffle Street

Guest Commentary: James Adams on the Economy

Today I am excited to offer another new guest commentary provider here at Stand Up For America. Mike, a good friend of mine, a year or so ago recommended to me that I pick up a book written by a friend of his, “Jimmy.” Knowing my passion for politics and my lambasting of federal economic policy over the years, he posited that I would enjoy the book, and insisted that he wasn’t just saying so because he was friends with the author. Those who know me are aware that I am an avid reader. But I have been burned on book recommendations from friends in the past. So I was skeptical, to say the least. But Mike wouldn’t relent…
Economic Thoughts from an Economics Guy

Capitalism… Day Two

I have to tell you all how disappointed I was to not have time to participate in the discussions around the “Capitalism vs. Communism” article last week. Work intervened and I have failed over the last few weeks to maintain that work/life balance thing they way I should. But today I offer article number two around the idea of capitalism and do so with a caveat. I promised a short article that explained where I think capitalism falls short. And that is what I will offer. At the same time, in the comments below, I will try to offer some answers and replies to the comments from the previous article. There were some good points made, and there were also some ridiculous points made. I will attempt to offer what I can to both. So first, A few thoughts from me around where capitalism is falling short.
Click Here to Read More

Horse Thieves

Why do words matter?  I have corrected people several times about Nero fiddling while Rome burned.  False statement in all aspects, fiddle was invented a thousand years later, Nero was not in Rome during the fire, even rushed back and was the driving force behind the recovery. He housed and fed the homeless at his personal expense, and required brick homes to be built as part of a fire prevention policy from that day forward.

Seems funny to me that Nero, who should be given the highest praise, is remembered as an un-caring elitist.  So why does it matter today?  A hero from a thousand years ago is commonly believed to have been an uncaring scumbag.
How Does Nero’s Story Compare to Modern Day Storylines?

If Not Now…. When?

I don’t know about the rest of you, but I watched the countdown to the potential government shutdown last week with a jaded eye. I can touch on what I wanted to happen in a bit, but what I was watching for was to see how much further we would watch the talking heads go in demonizing their opponents and using emotional rhetoric to sway public opinion. I must say, I was not disappointed. As was true with every major policy debate in the political spectrum over the last few years, each side spouted more nonsense than could be fathomed. It’s just proof to all of you: When you set the proper expectations for those in the political landscape, they are very capable of meeting or exceeding your expectations. And BF has the audacity to say that politicians can’t meet our expectations…
There is No Good Time to Fix Things

More Red Causes Far Less Green

Perhaps after watching the abysmal game between North Carolina and Kentucky, some of you may have stayed on the channel and watched the 60 Minutes report on companies that have taken their operations out of the United States and deposited them in more tax friendly countries. I listened to the report with interest. As many of you know, I have for years been saying that the United State’s insistence on raping corporations in tax rates is one of the primary drivers of unemployment and fiscal difficulty in our country. True to form, the side supporting the such tax rates immediately fell back to an emotional appeal. But it falls on deaf ears in my case as I ask myself, “When will the United States Government wake up and realize that they cannot control the world and that they are committing suicide by continuing to arrogantly think that they can?”
The US Needs to be Placed on Suicide Watch

Public Unions Have to Go

You all knew that I wasn’t going to sit on the sidelines while this whole thing went down and be silent, right? Tonight I write to weigh in on the struggles going on in Wisconsin, Ohio, and Indiana. The bottom line is that the governments in those states are making a stand against the public unions. Of course, the unions are panicking. Facing already dwindling membership in the private sector unions, the public sector unions are kind of where they figured they were safe. But they aren’t. And they shouldn’t be. Look, I don’t have a problem with the concept of a union. But I sure have a problem with what the big unions have become. They are no longer a tool for the protection of vulnerable employees (nor do they need to be). They have become a drain on the American economy and they do more harm than good in many cases. And in order to gain support, they are simply liars about what the situations are and what the consequences are without them. It is time to set the record straight and talk about why the public unions should simply go away…
We Have No Need for Dinosaurs

Friday Morning Open Mic for February 18, 2011

I thank all who offered me “get well” wishes over the last few days. I have to tell you, on Wednesday I felt like a bus had run over me and backed up to do it again. I was a little better Thursday. Now thursday night, I am still stuffy and congested in the head and chest, but I feel like the worst is behind me. At least I sure hope so. While I am better, I am still not well. My head is still a little fuzzy and I will be trying to get to bed earlier again tonight in the hopes that I can work in my office tomorrow instead of another day of working from the house. But I do want to throw out an article or two for open mic. The first is an economics article. A friend sent it to me with the note saying, “as it turns out, hyperinflation isn’t just around the corner.” So I share the article to get the opinion on it from some of our more economic minded folks. I will try to add another article or two throughout the morning on Friday.
Read a bit of Open Mic Economics!

The Taxation Contradiction

I was reading through some different articles over the weekend, hoping to find something interesting to comment on, when I happened to stumble upon a series of several articles in a row dealing with taxation. The articles had nothing to do with one another. They just all happened to have taxation in some form or another as the main topic. Each taken on its own painted a picture in support of this plan or that. And all were, in general, the intentions or sales pitches from the Democrat point of view. But my random order of articles revealed to me a disturbing double standard in from the White House in their message. No, double standard isn’t correct. Contradiction fits better. Two articles that I read back to back in particular drew my attention to the contradiction, which I am ashamed to say that I never put together before. It seems that the White House, specifically the President, believes that we should reward the wealthy who conduct business in the US, while at the same time stating that those who are wealthy in America should be taxed higher than they are…
More of Politicians Talking Out of Both Sides of Their Mouth

Robert Reich Lashes Out Falsely Again

Tonight I reach once again into the bowels of the Huffington Post for an article that I will systematically address, as I am sometimes prone to do. What caught my attention in the headline was the social darwinism part. As most of you know, I am not opposed to social darwinism. I think in many cases it is the proper thing. There are exceptions, but by and large, the survival of the species, according to evolutionary dictates (which I thought Democrats worshiped), demands that we allow the weak to be weeded out of the gene pool. Tonight’s target is Robert Reich. As many of you are aware, Reich served as the US Secretary of Labor and is also a professor at the University of California, Berkeley. I find him to be generally wrong on many things, and his partisan bias is evident in his economic advice. Because he is a strong believer in Keynes principles, I feel he is lost. But when he writes such drivel as below, I feel compelled to call him out on it. For the record, I think that it is authors such as Reich (along with Cesca and Johann Hari) that have rendered the Huffington Post somewhat damaged goods. For every good author and article there will be a clearly partisan and off base one like this.
Reich Uses Emotional Appeal, False Comparison, and Pure BS to Sell His Agenda

Guest Commentary – In the Summer of 2010

For tonight’s guest commentary, we have the return of a contributor that offered us an article a couple of weeks ago, Ron Holland. You may remember Ron’s previous offering, “Walking the Peaceful Path of Ludwig von Mises,” which you can go back and read HERE if you missed it. Ron, who is also a regular contributor on Lew Rockwell’s site, is an internationally known financial & marketing consultant & author of 3 books and over a hundred  articles, a leading speaker at financial conferences in the US and abroad and editor of several internet based news sites. Although from North Carolina, Ron has lived and worked in Geneva, Switzerland and traveled all over Europe and North America. He is a contributing editor to the Swiss Mountain Vision Newsletter and Swiss Confidential published by Appenzeller Business Press. For today’s topic we have Ron’s thoughts on the idea of smart big money folks leaving the US for safer shores. It seems to be a concept that fans of Atlas Shrugged believe will come to fruition as a regular occurrence. While I make that comparison, I respectfully ask that we save the discussions of Atlas Shrugged for another day (next week…. an article I am working on defending Atlas Shrugged and Objectivism). For today let’s stay focused on what Ron has offered, and whether the conditions he discusses are actually true.
Click Here to Read Today’s Guest Commentary

Cities Searching for New Ways to Take Your Money

I thought I would take a night and talk about the local level decisions and their impact on the members of their society. We often focus on the bigger picture here at SUFA, with discussions on National and State level politics. This certainly makes sense as discussing local politics really only matters to those who are, well, local. The readers here obviously come from all over the country, and in some cases even outside the country! But I felt like a discussion around local politics was warranted as the disease of deficit spending has spread to many local municipalities and towns. In the end, SUFA faithful, all politics are local. And the only place that most of us are able to make a difference are in our local spectrums. Unfortunately, while many of us follow the political scene, there are very few who are involved at a local level. That must change if we are going to start to find ways to survive the inevitable crash that we are racing towards. When things get bad, it is the local level of politics that are going to matter to you. The federal and state governments are going to be limited in the ways that they can help. Simply put, the higher you go, the more partisan bullshit gets in the way of helping. Likewise the bigger the city, the more difficult it is to have a serious impact. But we must try.
Why We Must Get Involved Locally

Tuesday Night Open Mic for June 1, 2010

I hope that everyone is sufficiently rested after a long holiday weekend for Memorial Day. Allow me to here say again thank you to all who have chosen to serve their country, and to pay a small tribute to those who gave the ultimate sacrifice for what they believed in. For this week’s open mic we have some interesting topics. Our first topic involves yet another anti-christian ruling in Connecticut. We are also delving into the flawed tactics of the census and how it is being used as a tool of manipulation rather than to accomplish its actual purposes. Add to that yet another jackass California local government entity deciding that they will ignore reality and boycott Arizona, while the leader of the country says nothing. Finally, we will hopefully get some input from the economically literate folks at SUFA as to why the Federal Reserve wants to stop regulations protecting small businesses but not consumers.
Open Mic

Spend, Tax, Cut, Save, or Give Up?

Not OutragedI was thinking yesterday about the statement made to me that I needed to understand Keynes and his macro-economic model in order to understand why spending is what the government must do in order to get us out of trouble. I have always whole-heartedly disagreed with that statement. As I often have acknowledged, I am not an economic guru, but I think I am a pretty smart fellar. I am well educated (as far as formal schooling) and well read (my friends all say I spend too much time with my head in a book). I try to take a realistic look at the situation and see where it makes the most sense to make a move. Now, our invited guest, who yesterday for some reason did not come and reply back to what I had written, obviously thinks this makes me dumb. But I think on a “macro” level, we might all benefit from having this conversation. I am not going to research out the wazoo for this, I am going to simply say what is on my mind, and let everyone have at it.
Take Off Your Partisan Flag and THINK

A Promise Broken… but Only for a Night!

I know that I told everyone that tonight I would offer the second part of the reason and values article. And I really tried to make it happen. Mrs. Weapon needed a little extra of my time tonight. I then started to get to work and found that I was rushing through in order to finish it tonight. As a result I ended up with a rant that had no coherent thought. I erased it all and started over. But I cannot finish it tonight without ending up with something I would not be comfortable posting. So I will push it to tomorrow and offer something quick this evening.
A Little Global Warming to Start the Week

Health Care Part 3: The President’s “Plan”… Taking Things Too Far

Health Care SymbolAs the next section of the health care series I wanted to take a moment and touch one of the the three promises that President Obama made during his joint session of Congress “Infomercial” the other week. I remember watching the speech, and thinking to myself that the man really is such a gifted speaker. If only he had something worth saying, these speeches wouldn’t be a complete waste of my time. But, alas, he often doesn’t have anything to say, but he sure does say nothing far more eloquently than the other politicians out there do (although it was fun watching him get punk’d by George Stephanopolous on the Sunday morning infomercial circuit today). What struck me the most about that speech to Congress was the reaction the next day from many of my liberal friends to a few key things that the President offered as cornerstones to the “plan”. Because I don’t see them as valid positions to take, at least not in a free society.
Overstepping the Bounds of Freedom

Defining Socialism… and Our Discussions

socialism1I have been intrigued a bit to watch the debates unfold between several folks from the left and several folks from the “no government” perspective. What intrigues me is the opportunity to see things from the perspective of someone who believes that socialism is the way to go. It isn’t just an argument that health care, or a single issue, should be one way, but an actual claim that what we have doesn’t work so they are willing to give socialism a shot because they think it would be better for the American people. For those that believe differently, which is a large portion of the readership, I don’t think it is fair to simply say “socialism is bad”, so I think some discussion should follow as to what flaws have led people to that conclusion. Allow me to be clear that I believe that nothing could be further from the truth than the idea that socialism is a good way forward. Socialism is NOT a good idea, and I am going to discuss why….
Why Socialism is NOT the Way Forward

Warren Buffet on Growing Mountain of Debt

warren-buffetWheeewwww! Taking a moment to exhale here. I have been working on the blog all night long at this point. About 7 hours thus far. I am working on my promised series on health care. To say that there is a lot to read and research is an understatement. With all the political games being played on this issue, you literally cannot take anyone at their word on either side of the aisle. So every statement requires some research. Tonight included the reading for two hours of a UN report on population (life expectancy, mortality, fertility, population growth, and factors). Boring read but essential to actually understanding the staggering numbers politicians throw at us. I had thought tonight would be the night I posted the first part to the series. After working all night on it, I have realized there is no way I can finish part one tonight. So it gets pushed to at least tomorrow. And instead of writing a nothing article with no coherent thought (which I am sure that some of you think all my articles are), I figured I would offer up a little bit of someone else’s thoughts that I found interesting.
Warren Buffet Writes an Op-Ed

So How Much is that Old Rusted Government Worth?

Cash for Clunkers SignGood Evening All! I apologize for the unplanned evening off last night. I am currently down with my son visiting my father and grandmother. It is a trying time here. My grandmother is quite ill. We are down to that time when she can go anytime, and where every minute spent with her is precious. She had not seen my son (her great grandson) in 3 years. At the rate he is growing, that means she hasn’t seen him in about a foot and 40 pounds! She was amazed to see how big he has gotten (only 3 inches shorter than his dad now). Needless to say, this week is all about her. When she is up and lucid, I am there. That is not a plea for pity. Believe me there is no need to pity me. I have had my grandma for 40 years, and that is more than many get. And I have never missed an opportunity to see her or to tell he that I love her. So I have no regrets on my relationship with her. But it is meant to help you all understand why writing may be hit or miss the rest of this week.
Another Failed Government Program

In a Return Appearance….

blackflagsymbolguest-commentaryOK, a couple of weeks ago I gave my forum over to one of my biggest opponents on the issues, Black Flag. He had written a very good post about economics that I thought was relevant and good for everyone to read. The response to his article was very positive. The discussions that ensued were respectful and productive. One of the things that I have realized over the last couple weeks is that Black Flag has a very good grasp on economic discussions and always adds insight that is productive and thought provoking. So I have asked him to make a return appearance as a guest commentator. And he graciously accepted the invitation and took the time to write another article.
Guest Commentary from Black Flag

Industrial Economy vs. Knowledge Economy

money-toilet-paperThis is going to stray a little bit from the regular focus on pure politics for us. But I was sitting around thinking about this tonight and I wanted to get some of you smart folks to add your thoughts on where my head is at. As many of you know I am a full time student as well as the fabulous author of this blog, which means that I split a lot of my time between here and work and schoolwork (but only for 11 more days… another degree almost finished!!!). So my head is in the world of business for school a lot. In a lot of the writing I have been doing for school I have put forth the premise that we have begun the switch away from the industrial economy that made us a world power in terms of economies…
Is the Current Shift Bad for the US Economies Future?