Obama Following In Hitler’s Footsteps

Watching the nonstop commentaries on television about the debt ceiling debate only reinforces the reality that most people — including many perceived conservatives — still don’t get it. If they did, they would not allow themselves to be diverted by a political circus.

It amazes me how the vast majority of conservatives — both inside and outside of the media — still take Barack Obama seriously and believe he is desperately trying to save the United States from economic disaster. Don’t get me wrong. Obama wants to do what is right for America, but his vision of “right” is wealth redistribution on a massive scale carried out by an all-powerful Federal government.

As Obama continues to toy with Republicans over raising the debt ceiling, he is well aware that the continuation of his policies will destroy the U.S. economy beyond repair. I believe his strategy from the outset has been to follow the Saul Alinsky model: Win the Presidency through a semi-legitimate election, then tighten your grip over everything and everybody, move swiftly to create economic chaos, and use the chaos you’ve created to establish a dictatorship.

Now don’t go giving Obama too much credit for originality. He’s really just a slick and clever copycat. Getting elected and then using your powers to eliminate all competition is an old trick used by power-hungry thugs throughout history.

Of all the dictators over the past hundred years, I believe Obama’s rise to power mirrors that of Adolf Hitler’s more than anyone else. I know, I know… I can practically hear readers chuckling. Enslaved people throughout history have a propensity for chuckling — until they wake up one morning and find themselves in chains. So, by all means, feel free to chuckle — but do hear me out.

Though most people don’t realize it, Hitler was legitimately chosen to be chancellor of Germany in 1933 by President Paul von Hindenburg. At his swearing-in ceremony, Hitler faithfully repeated the oath of office: “I will employ my strength for the welfare of the German people, protect the Constitution and laws of the German people, conscientiously discharge the duties imposed on me, and conduct my affairs of office impartially and with justice to everyone.”

Nice words… similar to those uttered by Obama when being sworn into office. Hitler was a charming, eloquent speaker who carried on incessantly about change. (Sound familiar?) Then, once elected, he moved quickly to establish a dictatorship, accomplishing that seemingly impossible feat in 52 days. Obama moved swiftly as well, but opposing forces in America made it impractical to establish a quick dictatorship.

The upstart Nazi Party (which was the commonly used name for the National Socialist German Workers’ Party… repeat, Socialist) staged a slobbering love affair between Hitler and the German people. (Sound familiar?) When Hitler spoke for the first time as chancellor, it was said that he “was greeted with an outpouring of worshipful adulation unlike anything ever seen before in Germany.” (Sound familiar?)

In The Road to Serfdom, F.A. Hayek explained the way countries travel the road from democracy to dictatorship:

It is important to remember that, for some time before 1933, Germany had reached a stage in which it had, in effect, had to be governed dictatorially… Hitler did not have to destroy democracy; he merely took advantage of the decay of democracy and at the critical moment obtained the support of many to whom, though they detested Hitler, he yet seemed the only man strong enough to get things done.

Under the Articles of Confederation, the central government of America was very weak — which was a good thing. It was true then, and it’s true now: You can have a strong government and a weak people, or a strong people and a weak government — but you cannot have both. Today, we have a draconian, out-of-control government and a very weak people.

Arguably, democracy in this country started to break down in 1787 when the Constitution created a strong Federal government. It got worse — much worse — under the fascist policies of Woodrow Wilson’s reign from 1912 to 1920. Then, beginning in 1932, FDR’s failed socialist policies took away even more individual freedom from American citizens. And the final disintegration of true democracy in the U.S. was catalyzed by the left-wing revolutionaries of the 1960s.

So if you’re wondering how Obama and his Marxist cronies have been able to violate the Constitution as though it didn’t exist, the answer is that they are merely taking advantage of the decay of democracy in the U.S. that was already present when they came to power. While Americans have been busy focusing on sports, reality TV, eating out three nights a week and trying to pay their mortgages, the fascistic socialists in Washington have been quietly working to establish a dictatorship based on the ruins of our democracy (which actually began as a republic).

Get it? I hope so. Because if a vast majority of everyday folks don’t get it soon, it will be too late. As I have repeatedly said, the debt ceiling debate is nothing more than a distraction from the real, underlying problem we all face: We are losing our freedom.

Our focus should be on stopping Barack Obama and his Marxist allies in Washington from establishing a communist dictatorship — politely referred to by conservative media commentators as an “imperial presidency.” But regardless of what one calls it, the important thing to understand is that under a dictatorship, everything else becomes irrelevant — including the debt ceiling “crisis” that political junkies are spending so much time fretting about.

To be forewarned is to be forearmed.

–Robert Ringer

Sticking It To The Grandkids

I think by now everyone who is halfway honest and has an IQ above 32 realizes that the claim that the U.S. will default its debt if the debt ceiling isn’t raised by Aug. 2 is just another shameless Democratic canard.

Thanks to cable TV, talk radio and the Internet, the facts are well known:

First, while the exact amounts vary from month to month, the government brings in, on average, about $200 billion a month from (mostly unwilling) taxpayers and pays out, on average, about $20 billion in monthly interest charges. That’s a tenfold coverage.

Second, Social Security and Medicare, at least right now, are easily covered by government revenues each month. There’s no nice way to say it: Barack Obama has been blatantly lying about Social Security and Medicare payments being in jeopardy, as has the rest of the Democratic leadership.

Third, there would also be enough money available to meet our current military obligations (though we need a good debate about how much military we really need in order to defend our country).

Fourth, everything that’s left (about 30 percent of scheduled expenditures) can be prioritized, with the only question being who should make the decisions as to what goes at the top of the list and what goes at the bottom. Not doable, says Turbo Tax whiz Timothy Geithner. Turbo Tim insists that prioritizing government payments won’t work because it would “spur deep cuts in other disbursements and still cause investors to shun U.S. Treasury securities.”

No question about it, it definitely would cause deep cuts in other disbursements, but that’s a good thing. It’s a forced solution to government’s spending addiction. And the notion that cutting spending would cause investors to stop buying U.S. Treasuries is questionable, at best. On the contrary, the rest of the civilized world has made it clear that it is gravely concerned about rapidly increasing U.S. spending and debt.

Continued out-of-control spending is far more likely to cause investors to pull their money out of U.S. Treasuries than a fantasy default. Geithner, who was wrong on the Troubled Asset Relief Program (even though TARP was his predecessor’s creation), wrong on the “stimulus,” and wrong on his own taxes, said: “Ultimately, the notion of ‘prioritizing’ payments is futile because the debt limit must be increased regardless of which spending path is adopted. There is no credible budget plan under which a debt-limit increase can be avoided.”

Wrong again, Timmy. There most certainly is a creditable budget plan to avoid raising the debt ceiling. It’s called: Cut spending. That’s right, just cut spending enough, and you don’t have to raise the debt ceiling one dime.

And once that’s accomplished, a new House, Senate and President in 2013 could start making serious cuts in the budget, with the litmus test being whether a given program or expenditure is constitutional. Such a litmus test would make it possible to dramatically reduce taxes, borrowing and fiat-money creation.

Geithner warns that because the United States now borrows about 40 cents of every dollar it spends, prioritizing payments without raising the debt ceiling would force the U.S. to cut 40 percent of all government expenditures. Darn. And here I was hoping to see spending cuts more in the area of 80 percent of current expenditures.

Finally, Geithner got to the heart of America’s impending financial doom when he said that such spending cuts “would have painful implications for people in every walk of American life.” He included military families, veterans and government employees — all commonly referred to by politicians as voters.

The military families and veterans obligations can be whittled down over a period of time by closing most of our 700 overseas military bases and staying out of nation-building wars. For a fraction of current costs, we can bring our troops home and have them focus on defending our own porous borders rather than bombing, then rebuilding, countries on the other side of the globe that have no interest in establishing a democratic form of government.

As to government employees, do you know anyone who would be unhappy with getting rid of as many “public servants” as possible?

Those who insist that not paying for programs and employees already on the books is just as much of a default as not paying interest on the national debt are, in effect, saying: “Even though we have to go deeper into debt to pay for these government programs, which assures that default is only a matter of time, we have no choice because we’ve already made those commitments to people.” What great logic.

Sorry, but if Congress passes unConstitutional legislation to implement unConstitutional programs, it is not your obligation to pay for them. On the contrary, it is Congress’s duty to repeal all such legislation, because, first and foremost, members of Congress made a commitment that trumps all other commitments — the commitment to uphold the Constitution!  I’m feeling a bit lonely wondering about how many other people even care about this little inconvenient truth.

But let’s get real here and face reality. The U.S. will ultimately default on its debt obligations regardless of what deal Congress strikes. Every halfway honest person with an IQ below 32 knows that. All Democrats and most Republicans are doing is playing politics in an effort to prolong the inevitable so our children and grandchildren will be left holding the bag of hyper-inflated currency when the U.S. does finally default on its debt. Lots of luck, kids.

Our problem is not how to deal with the debt ceiling. It’s much bigger than that. Our real, underlying problem is that we have lost our moral compass.

–Robert Ringer

Raising The Bar For Guilty Verdicts

I thought Aphrodite Jones summed it up best on Hannity when she said that the jurors in the Casey Anthony trial had taken the concept of “reasonable doubt” and extended it to “shadow of a doubt.” If you look up the word “reasonable” in the dictionary, you find: “not exceeding the limit prescribed by reason; not excessive.” In this case, the jurors clearly exceeded the limit prescribed by reason.

In his closing remarks, Jose Baez turned reasonable doubt on its head and convinced the jurors they were obliged to convict only if they had no doubts. In other words, he successfully misled them as to the intent of the law.

If the bar for conviction is any doubt rather than reasonable doubt, we’re likely to see more verdicts like O.J. Simpson’s and Casey Anthony’s in the future. Based on F. Lee Bailey’s wild theory that Mark Fuhrman rolled up one of O.J.’s socks in his pant leg, I guess you could argue that it justified some doubt about O.J.’s guilt. But if the doubt is one in 10 million (which are the odds I would ascribe to Bailey’s totally unsubstantiated theory), that would exceed the limit prescribed by reason.

The fact is that O.J. was clearly guilty beyond a reasonable doubt. And, don’t kid yourself, Johnny Cochran, F. Lee Bailey and all 12 jurors knew it. So did attorney Robert Shapiro, which is why he resigned from the case.

Let me be clear that I never want to see an innocent person put in prison, let alone executed. But it’s happened in the past and it will happen again, because — sorry, liberals — life isn’t perfect. It has often been said that it’s better that 99 murderers go free if it means saving the life of one person falsely accused of murder.

Perhaps. But what about 1,000 murderers going free in exchange for saving the life of one innocent person? Or 10,000 murderers going free in exchange for saving the life of one innocent person? Where do we draw the line? Answer: where the evidence is beyond a reasonable doubt.

If you set the bar for conviction so high that defense attorneys know that it’s just a game of throwing enough legal excrement against the wall, they can always raise some doubt. But that’s not where the bar is supposed to be. The law clearly states reasonable doubt.

Set aside the chloroform; set aside the duct tape; set aside the claimed childhood sexual abuse; set aside George Anthony’s supposed affair. All these are secondary issues. The three key issues that are indisputable — and that represent evidence that makes Casey Anthony’s guilt beyond a reasonable doubt — are:

First, in the history of the world, no mother, no matter how good or how bad she may have been in the past, ever went partying for 31 days after her child disappeared, never calling the police and never displaying any concern about her. To say this was just her way of dealing with emotional distress is not a reasonable conjecture.

All the DNA evidence in the world can’t stand up to common sense. Casey Anthony’s behavior was overwhelming circumstantial evidence that made her guilty beyond a reasonable doubt.

Second, in the history of the world, no one ever sat in a prison cell for three years, claimed she didn’t know what happened to her child (in this case, after her Zanny-the-nanny tale was exposed), then, at her trial, told her attorney to tell the court that the child died as a result of a drowning accident. (I’m assuming here that Jose Baez didn’t make up this story on his own and subject himself to criminal prosecution.)

Again, you don’t need DNA here. If you blatantly lie about your child’s cause of death, it’s beyond a reasonable doubt that you killed her.

Third, in the history of the world, no mother, after finding her child drowned, ever decided not to call the police and instead wrap the child in a plastic bag and throw her in the woods. There is no reasonable explanation for even a world-class idiot turning a drowning accident into a potential death-penalty homicide. To believe someone could have done this is to go far beyond a reasonable doubt.

As a side note, if I learned anything from this case, I guess it’s that I will never again get suckered into believing that a quick jury verdict implies a conviction. How well I remember when the jury came back with a verdict in the O.J. trial after just three hours of “deliberation.”

At the time, Jeffrey Toobin, now a legal analyst for CNN, opined that such a quick verdict had to mean a conviction. He was so naïve that he didn’t realize that the jurors had decided they were going to acquit O.J. before the trial had even begun.

While I didn’t buy into Toobin’s opinion in the O.J. circus, I have to admit that in the Casey Anthony trial I did believe that the quick verdict meant a conviction. With such overwhelming evidence against her, there was no way the jury could arrive at an acquittal without many days of deliberating. This time around, I guess I proved to be just as naïve about juries as Toobin.

The reason one cannot draw any conclusion from a quick verdict is because the hype about how jurors, on the whole, are intelligent, deep-thinking people who carefully weigh the evidence is just another self-delusive example of American feel-good talk.

No doubt, some jurors are intelligent and well informed. But the politically incorrect reality is that a significant percentage of jurors are totally unqualified to make sound and honest judgments based on the law. Perhaps professional juries in high-profile cases are a possible alternative to some of the dolts who now sit on juries and insist on ignoring evidence that is beyond a reasonable doubt.

That said, the guy who should be really mad about the outcome of the Casey Anthony trial is Scott Peterson. He had much less evidence against him than she did, but, thanks to Mark Geragos’ obnoxious arrogance and puffery, Peterson ended up on death row.

In closing, I would also opine that the biggest giveaway to guilt is the one thing that Casey Anthony, O.J. Simpson and Scott Peterson all had in common: None of them showed a lick of grief or sorrow at any time.

Defense attorneys are fond of saying that no one can predict how he might act if he were under indictment for a murder he didn’t commit. Hokum, I say. Any person who’s had a loved one (or even an ex-spouse, as in the case of O.J.) murdered would be grief-stricken — and would show it. I wouldn’t say this one piece of circumstantial evidence demands a guilty verdict beyond a reasonable doubt, but I’d wager that the emotionless person on trial would be guilty in 99 percent of the cases.

Final thought: Casey Anthony should work on repressing her laughter, because what lies ahead for her is a life of overwhelming problems and unhappiness. She’ll probably make a few million dollars quickly, but her story is likely to have a tragic ending.

There’s a part of me that almost feels sorry for this emotionally disturbed young lady, but the thought of how her 2-year-old daughter’s life ended makes that an impossibly high bar to clear.

–Robert Ringer

The Avaricious Progressive Homo Sapiens

Americans are easy prey when it comes to political distraction debates. The National Labor Relations Board’s outrageous attempt to block Boeing from opening a new plant in South Carolina is a distraction. Proposed card-check legislation is a distraction. Our obsessive meddling in Middle Eastern countries is a distraction.

All these are important issues, but they are merely subcategories of the foundational issue that Americans should be focused on: loss of freedom. In a truly free society, none of these issues would even arise, because they are outside the scope of human freedom.

Unfortunately, we are being cleverly engineered into social-justice automatons by left-wing zealots who run Atlas Shrug-like bureaucracies such as the Environmental Protection Agency, the NLRB and the Department of Education, to name but a few of our worst enemies from within.

The antithesis of freedom is communism. Karl Marx and his lackey benefactor, Friedrich Engels, firmly believed that violent revolution was the only way to bring about pure communism, and that such a revolution was possible only where capitalism existed. Capitalism, they insisted, was necessary in order to create a large financial disparity between workers and the privileged class.

I’m still baffled as to why Marx and Engels would want to increase the income disparity between the classes, only to rectify the disparity through violent revolution. It sounds like angry, left-wing mischievousness to me. Perhaps it was based on their knowledge of the utter failure of the French Revolution, which had led only to mob violence, unthinkable human carnage and, ultimately, a Napoleonic dictatorship.

The fact is that there has never been a communist revolutionary threat in capitalistic societies such as Japan, Taiwan or Hong Kong (before it came under the rule of mainland China). The most notable communist revolutions have occurred in Russia, China, Vietnam and Cuba, none of which could have been considered capitalist countries at the time. Thus, Marx and Engels would have considered the United States to be a perfect crucible for testing their convoluted class warfare theories.

Of course, only naïve dreamers believe in the communist fairy tale that under communism, the State will eventually “wither away,” because there will be so much of everything for everybody that government will no longer be necessary. But I do believe that Marx and Engels were onto something in their belief that socialism would precede communism. In fact, they referred to socialism as a “transitional stage of society” between capitalism and communism.

Nevertheless, here in the United States, we have long suffered from the delusion that “European-style socialism” is a nice, peaceful, cradle-to-grave compromise between capitalism and communism. Over the past several decades, elitists on both the right and the left have come to believe that European society was static, and that so long as European countries kept their redistribution-of-wealth programs finely tuned, capitalists would go right on producing enough to support the parasitic masses.

What they did not take into account, however, was a crucial factor known as human nature. Homo sapiens — particularly its progressive subspecies — is, by nature, an avaricious creature. Worse, the more goods and services a man acquires without work, the more avaricious he becomes. In fact, the human appetite for wealth without work is insatiable.

The result is that when producers can no longer create enough wealth to appease the voracious appetites of the masses, those on the receiving end become increasingly upset. That’s why the riots we have witnessed in Greece, Spain, Portugal and Italy are not mysterious events. On the contrary, they were predictable decades ago.

If a man has spent his whole life believing it is his right to retire at age 58 and someone else’s obligation to support him in his retirement in the lifestyle to which he has become accustomed, he is incapable of comprehending that he must work until — Gasp! — age 60.

It was just as predictable that the rioting would come to the United States. Madison, Wis.; Indianapolis; Columbus, Ohio; and other State capitals are but a mild preview of what the United States can expect once the invisible depression becomes visible even to those who are still in a Keynesian coma.

With the coming debt-ceiling increase, no cutbacks in store for Social Security or Medicare, and a majority of politicians unwilling to make serious spending cuts in other unConstitutional, redistribution-of-wealth programs, my view of what’s on the near horizon is pretty clear. I see the (admitted) unemployment rate at 25 percent or more, housing prices collapsing at least another 50 percent, the Dow Jones industrial average free-falling several thousands of points in a single day and inflation rising to 30 percent, 40 percent or perhaps even higher.

All of which would set the stage for the cherished uprising Marx and Engels so passionately longed for — and that Barack Obama and his Marxist pals believe they are near to achieving. The reason the United States has been able to avoid violent revolution until now is because even through the eras of the most left-leaning Presidents and Congresses of the past 100 years, there was always enough pushback to keep capitalism alive. But that pushback has been rapidly declining, and now comes from only 50 percent or less of the population.

Ironic, isn’t it? Marx and Engels believed capitalism was necessary in order to create more wealth disparity. And they were right. Capitalism does create disparities in wealth. But the nature of the system is that it creates more wealth for those on the lowest rung of the income ladder than any other system, so income and wealth disparities (while interesting phenomena for academic eggheads to ponder) are irrelevant. The only thing that’s relevant is how well off each individual is in absolute terms — not in comparison to others.

The bottom line is that without capitalism, there is no such thing as prosperity for the masses. And without freedom, capitalism, by definition, cannot exist, because it is nothing more than a subcategory of freedom. Capitalism is the freedom to trade goods and services with others without interference from government.

If you agree with most of what I’ve said here, you should make it a point to vote only for those office seekers who you are convinced truly understand that our main threat is our loss of freedom. My pessimistic vision of the future would change substantially if pro-freedom types were able to win the Presidency and overwhelming majorities in both houses of Congress in 2012.

The optimistic side of me hopes it will happen, but my realistic side keeps reminding me that history has not been kind to those who put their trust in politicians.

–Robert Ringer

Slavery To Continue At Walmart

In a June 20 ruling, the U.S. Supreme Court struck a note for liberty when it overruled Federal courts in San Francisco that had allowed all women who worked for Walmart since December 1998 to join in a single, nationwide suit seeking back pay. I say struck a note for liberty, because this was about far more than Walmart’s winning out over a bunch of high-priced litigators who represented a group of ungrateful Walmart employees.

The court ruled that the 1.5 million women at 3,400 Walmart stores in the United States had too little in common to allow a class-action lawsuit to move forward. In the court’s opinion, there was no proof that Walmart employed a general policy of “systemic discrimination.”

What makes the Supreme Court’s decision especially delightful is that the law firm of Cohen Milstein Sellers & Toll lost roughly $7 million in pursuing this classic deep-pockets case. It’s enough to make one fantasize about how different our court system (and our economy) would be if attorneys who lost frivolous lawsuits would be required to pay the winners’ legal fees.

But let’s get back to Walmart’s employees. Forget that Walmart is the No. 1 employer in the country, employing 1.4 million Americans in 4,424 stores. (Worldwide, Walmart employs more than 2.1 million people in 9,198 stores.) Forget that Walmart saves consumers billions of dollars each year on retail purchases. Forget that its employees, on average, earn about double the minimum wage. It doesn’t matter how much good Walmart does, the raw-meat crowd continues to call for beheadings. Bring on the Jacobins!

The word from some disgruntled employees has long been that Walmart doesn’t treat its employees “fairly” — whatever that’s supposed to mean. But, definitions aside, this is your lucky day. Because if you think Walmart is “unfair,” guess what? You don’t have to shop there.

Wow! What a novel idea: shopping with your feet. If you don’t like the fact that Walmart carries too many products made in “sweatshop” countries, shop with your feet. If you believe Walmart puts smaller retailers out of business and you’re unhappy about that, shop with your feet.

Nevertheless, to make it easy on the social-justice crowd, let’s assume there is such a thing as absolute fairness. And let’s further assume that Walmart does, indeed, treat its employees unfairly. That, of course, begs the question: What in the world can be done to protect Walmart’s paid slaves?

More good news: In a truly free society, unfair treatment of employees would never be an issue, because workers would be free to sell their services for the highest possible wages in the open market. If someone chose to work at Walmart, he would do so only because he believed, consciously or otherwise, that it afforded him the best opportunity to be adequately compensated for his skills, his experience and his efforts.

An employer doesn’t ask a job applicant to present a list of his job requirements when he submits his application. On the contrary, the employer lets the applicant know, in advance, what the company’s conditions of employment are.

If those conditions call for 15-hour workdays, minimum-wage pay and no paid sick leave, so be it. How can I say such a dastardly thing? Because an employee not only does not have to take such a job, he also has the right to quit his job at any time.

Furthermore, since an unhappy employee is free, he can apply for another job anywhere he chooses. No permission needed. On the other hand, if he chooses to stay in his present employment situation, he is making a clear statement that he believes it’s the best position he can hope to obtain at that particular time. If this were not true, he would be insane, or perhaps masochistic, to remain in his present job.

It doesn’t take a Ludwig von Mises to explain it. In a free market, everything works smoothly because both employers and employees are free to make their own choices. It’s only when government bureaucrats or labor thugs (aka labor unions) enter the picture that freedoms are violated.

All government intervention between employers and employees results in infringements on the rights of one or the other — or both. The same goes with labor unions. The actions of most labor unions are fundamentally immoral and in violation of the Constitutional rights of both employees and employers.

The so-called union shop is a violation of the natural rights of every employee who is forced to join a union against his will — even without the new card-check legislation being proposed by the National Labor Relations Board. And, worse, it is a violation of the rights of an employer to hire whomever he wants, whenever he wants, for whatever reasons are important to him.

Unfortunately, that’s not reality in today’s People’s Republic of America. After decades of artificially high wages and benefits, job-protection schemes and government-mandated safety standards, spoiled American workers demand still more.

I would make the case that an excellent investment for Walmart would be to spend mega-millions of dollars to educate its employees about the morality and efficacy of liberty and laissez-faire economics. It would be a lot less expensive than the draconian legal fees it is certain to continue incurring in the coming years.

Now that we’ve come face to face with the ugly realities of Marxism in the United States, it’s time for corporate leaders to man up and start educating their own employees, as well as the public at large, about the wonders of capitalism. History has clearly taught us what to expect if good men do nothing.

However, educating muddled minds does not begin with the worker; it begins with big business. If corporate America does not truly believe in laissez-faire capitalism, why should its workers? And if it does believe in laissez-faire capitalism, but is unwilling to suffer “mortification of the flesh” (in the words of Frank Chodorov) in presenting the truth to the public, then the case for free enterprise is lost.

In the meantime, it’s up to each of us to become proactive and not wait for corporate America to come to our rescue. Take every opportunity you can get to extol the virtues of capitalism; when you do so, you extol the virtues of freedom. It’s true that you are but one person in a sea of millions, but it is completely within your power to be part of the solution to America’s ills rather than part of the problem.

If the Supreme Court can rule in favor of liberty, anything is possible.

–Robert Ringer

Remembering The 25¢ Hamburger

It’s funny how seemingly small or fleeting incidents stick in your memory throughout life. Hyperinflation, aka runaway inflation, is becoming a very real possibility to millions of Americans who heretofore clung to their weekly visits to Outback Steakhouse and the feel-good mantra of “American exceptionalism.” Considering this, my memory takes me back to my teenage years.

Growing up on the east side of town, the Towne House Drive-In was a real-life “American Graffiti” hangout for cool and hungry teens who loved burgers, fries and milkshakes. I thought nothing of having a midnight gorge of two double cheeseburgers, a large order of fries and an extra-large shake. I don’t think I ever heard the words “cholesterol” or “saturated fat.” Had I, I doubt it would have phased me.

The Towne House Drive-In did a bang-up business in those days. But just two blocks west, on the same side of the street, was a less-popular eatery, the Eastmoor Drive-In. I went to the Eastmoor every now and then, but was never particularly impressed.

Then, one day, it happened. The Towne House Drive-In raised the price of its hamburgers from 25 to 30 cents. The thought had never crossed my mind that the price of anything in my little cloistered world would ever increase. For me, not only was the universe static, but so was my hometown, my house, my life and the people I hung out with.

Shortly after the Towne House’s earthshaking announcement that it was raising the price of its burgers, one of my friends happened to mention he preferred the Eastmoor Drive-In to the Townhouse. When I asked how he could possibly prefer the Eastmoor to the Towne House, he responded: “Because, as matter of principle, I would never pay 30 cents for a hamburger when I can get one for 25 cents at the Eastmoor.”

I thought about my friend’s comments all these years later when my wife and I recently visited a newly opened mid-priced restaurant. I didn’t particularly like anything on the menu, so I decided to be daring and order the “gourmet” hamburger. Price: $10! I consoled myself by recalling that in New Orleans, a restaurant called Luke features a $16 burger on its menu. Granted, the Luke burger is a mix of brisket and sirloin and is delectable, but it’s still $16.

In any event, as it turned out, the $10 burger wasn’t anything special, but that’s beside the point. The question is: How can the price of a hamburger rise from 25 cents to $10 with the passage of time?

The answer is monetary inflation. In truth, the increased cost of a burger over the past 50 years is a delusion. It’s just a symptom of the real problem: a decrease in the value of the dollar. As a result of this decrease in value, it takes a lot more money for someone to buy what he did one, 10 or 50 years ago.

I was first introduced to this reality by Harry Browne, through his 1970 classic How You Can Profit from the Coming Devaluation. Browne was a legendary teacher and master of simplifying complex issues. In his book, he confidently predicted that then-President Richard Nixon would be forced to devalue the dollar, at a time when Nixon was pledging to the American public that he would never do such a thing.

But within a matter of months of Browne’s book coming out, the most powerful man on the planet, the President of the United States, was forced to do precisely what he swore he would never do — and what a relatively unknown author had said the President would have to do — devalue the dollar and sever its ties to gold.

That made it possible for government to simply print whatever it couldn’t borrow in the open market or steal from working Americans (through “taxation”) in order to expand its vote-buying entitlement programs and outrageously wasteful spending on politicians’ endless pet projects.

By the late 1970s, I, along with a handful of other writers who understood the inflation con, began predicting that runaway inflation was just around the corner. After all, Jimmy Carter, probably the second-worst president in U.S. history (don’t ask), had the (admitted) inflation rate roaring at 18 percent. In an article on March 24, 1980, even Time magazine noted: “Usually confident businessmen and bankers have begun talking of Latin American-style hyperinflation, financial collapse, major bankruptcies, a drastic drop in the American standard of living.” Does that sound familiar?

The hyperinflation didn’t happen, and neither did the drastic drop in the American standard of living. Through a combination of optimism, tax-rate reductions, “controlling” the money supply, deregulating business and the economy, and reducing government spending, President Ronald Reagan came to the rescue, spurred economic growth and temporarily staved off financial Armageddon.

In fact, after Reagan left office, Americans felt so good about things that even those who should have known better let their guards down and forgot Thomas Paine’s warning: “Government, even in its best state, is but a necessary evil; in its worst state, an intolerable one.”

Comforted by artificial prosperity and distracted by wars, sex scandals and brain-dulling TV fare, Americans hardly noticed the gradual increase in prices. In fact, when George W. Bush took office in 2001, the dollar had lost only about one-third of its value since the end of Ronald Reagan’s second term in office.

Of course, in 1980 the Bureau of Labor Statistics removed the two most frequently purchased items — food and energy — from the Consumer Price Index in an effort to delude the citizenry and prolong the inevitable. But now, the day of reckoning is at hand.

With House Speaker John Boehner playing lovefest rounds of golf with President Barack Obama, the debt ceiling is sure to be raised again, most likely without a corresponding reduction in government spending. As a result, the misery index (the unemployment rate plus the inflation rate) is also sure to increase at an accelerating pace as millions of people are torn between filling their gas tanks and putting food on their tables.

I find it interesting that my introduction to inflation began so innocently with that nickel rise in the price of a hamburger at the Towne House Drive-In five decades ago. But, at the time, I was clueless — as were most Americans. After all, it had nothing to do with girls or basketball.

By the way, that friend of mine who balked at the nickel increase later became a Bobby Kennedy “social reform” groupie. I wonder what he thinks of the steak-like price of a good hamburger today, and if he has any idea that the price is a direct result of those compassionate social-reform programs (entitlement programs) that his beloved Kennedy so aggressively pursued.

Robert Ringer

Judgment Day For Obama?

A recent CNN/Opinion Research Corporation poll shows 48 percent of Americans believe the U.S. economy is headed for another depression within a year. This is great news, because it means nearly half of all Americans are starting to awaken from their slumber and realize President Barack Obama and his media allies have been lying about the existence of a nonexistent recovery.

I say “starting,” because I have no way of knowing how many of these people truly understand the underlying causes of the depression they believe is on the way. (I hasten to add that, in truth, we have long been in an invisible depression — a depression shielded from the public by easy credit and excessive money creation. But that’s a story for another day.)

There’s another piece of good news to go with CNN’s 48 percent figure. In a recent Allstate/National Journal poll, 47 percent of Americans said they “would definitely or probably” not vote for Obama. The 48 and 47 percent figures sound like a winning combination — or, put another way, a losing combination for Obama.

The bad news is Mitt Romney is the early front-runner for the Republican nomination, with the Tea Party candidates stuck at the back of the pack. Nevertheless, if Romney does end up winning the nomination, I believe he will make Obama look and sound like a fumbling, stumbling high school kid in head-to-head debates.

So what’s the problem? If Romney becomes President, probably the best we can hope for is that he will be another George W. Bush. Yes, I’m talking about the same George W. Bush who, just as Herbert Hoover did for Franklin Delano Roosevelt, gave Obama the Presidency with his big-spending policies. And the worst that might happen to the United States, courtesy of the guy who created the model for Obamacare, is too bad to even contemplate.

Another piece of bad news offsets the 48 and 47 percent anti-Obama figures. The CNN/Opinion Research Corporation poll also shows 75 percent of Americans approve of Obama “personally.” Huh? What planet do these folks live on? They obviously know little or nothing about Obama’s upbringing, his past and current associations, his debt and spending policies, and his endless, ongoing lies that everyone can easily witness on television and the Internet on a daily basis.

Obama will obfuscate, lie and spin the truth thousands of times over the next 17 months. He will unmercifully smear whoever his opponent may be. That’s the problem. It isn’t hard to imagine Obama swinging enough voters over to his side to dramatically reduce the 47 percent figure (people who say they won’t vote for him) and, in the process, win re-election.

Once he is out of campaign mode, you can be sure Obama will go right back to putting the redistribution-of-wealth throttle on full thrust in an attempt to finish the job he was taught to do by his radical mother, his proud-to-be-a-communist father (his mother’s words), his ideological mentor Frank Marshall Davis, his spiritual mentor Reverend Jeremiah Wright, community-organizing guru Saul Alinsky, American-hating terrorist Bill Ayers, Frances Fox Piven (of “overwhelming the system” fame), etc. The list is endless, ugly, Marxist and lethal.

Clearly, the Republicans need a Presidential nominee who is willing to be bold and aggressive in exposing the truth about Obama, his background, his allies, his ideology, his policies and his vision of America as a model collectivist state. What will not work is the make-nice stuff like Jon Huntsman’s self-righteous statement, “I believe we ought to have a civil discourse in this country.” The Republican Party needs to nominate a Tea Party type.

Unfortunately, another poll — this one by Rasmussen Reports — makes it clear the Tea Party folks are going to have a huge hill to climb to get one of their own nominated. The poll found only “16 percent of all voters now consider themselves members of the Tea Party movement, down from 21 percent at the end of last year.” That is not good news.

So the big problem Republicans now face is how to find and nominate a candidate who believes, deep down in his or her heart, in Ayn Rand’s tenet: “Judge and prepare to be judged.”

The Master of Misdirection has had nearly 2½ years to show us what he meant by “fundamentally transforming the United States of America.” Now it’s time for him to be judged — candidly and harshly — for bringing America to its moral and financial knees. It’s time for his free pass to come to an end.

But if Romney is the guy who ends it, don’t get your hopes up that we will see smaller government, lower taxes, less regulation and more freedom. I could be wrong, but … in any event, stay tuned. Things are likely to change every week. Let’s just hope the changes are for the better. We have already found out the hard way that change can also result in our worst nightmare.

(On that note, please keep in mind that this article was submitted Monday morning, prior to the CNN Republican Presidential debate Monday evening.)

–Robert Ringer

Our Most Dangerous Enemy

While some conservative commentators are on the right side of most issues, they are careful to stay “in bounds.” The last thing in the world any political pundit wants is to be seen as an extremist by his colleagues.

Recently, I watched a panel of think-tank experts debate how best to solve our country’s fiscal problems. What caught my attention was that no one — not even the free-enterprise spokesmen from the ultra-conservative Heritage Foundation and the Free Enterprise Institute — so much as alluded to the unConstitutionality of any of the myriad government programs that have caused these problems.

What does this mean? Simply that the far left in this country has, for all practical purposes, already succeeded in fundamentally transforming America, regardless of who the next President is. The problem is that even though many conservatives are experts when it comes to debating the factual side of fiscal issues, they seem to accept — by default — the false premise that government transfer-of-wealth programs are Constitutional.

At least one motivating force behind this sad situation is pragmatism. For example, both Dick Morris and Donald Trump have opined that Republicans are committing suicide with Paul Ryan’s proposed plan to overhaul Medicare. And they could very well be right.

Morris is a strategy genius when it comes to elections, so it’s no surprise that his opinion is based on what he believes is necessary to win the next election. I get it.

But if conservatives fear that Ryan’s addressing the single biggest fiscal problem facing the U.S. will result in re-electing a Marxist President, it says a lot about the decline of America as a virtuous nation. More to the point, it means most voters are so addicted to our redistribution-of-wealth culture that they will vote against anyone who dares to threaten that culture.

Thus, the question of Constitutionality increasingly appears to be off the table when it comes to debating major fiscal issues such as the deficit, the debt ceiling, unfunded Medicare and Social Security liabilities, and redistribution-of-wealth programs ranging from unemployment benefits to food stamps.

I was again reminded of this while watching another recent debate on the aforementioned Medicare issue, this one between Ryan and Democrat Chris Van Hollen. These two men know the numbers on Medicare inside and out, but Ryan’s approach to solving the Medicare crisis is based on free-market solutions, while Van Hollen believes in government solutions.

I have great respect for Ryan, but I was disappointed that he didn’t address the question of whether Medicare is even Constitutional. It’s as though the default position in every debate is that the program being discussed is Constitutional — even if it’s not.

Put another way, regardless of how conservative any particular participant may be, political debates are almost always based on the false premise that the Constitution is irrelevant. And as polling numbers regarding Ryan’s Medicare proposal demonstrate, more than half the nation’s voters agree with that false premise.

But there’s another subject that is avoided even more than the question of Constitutionality. In fact, it is virtually never mentioned by politicians or commentators. The subject I am referring to is dictatorship. Even if some members of Congress are knowledgeable enough about world history to be concerned about the dangers of a dictatorship befalling the U.S., they dare not mention the word out loud for fear of being labeled an alarmist or conspiracy nut.

And yet, as President Barack Obama and others on the far left know full well, that is precisely what unsustainable debt and a collapsed economy can lead to. One of the surest ways to bring about a dictatorship is through runaway inflation, which is caused by massive increases in the money supply (popularly referred to inside the Beltway as “quantitative easing”) in a frantic effort to continue paying for unsustainable government programs.

Ultimately, people become panicked, and anarchy and chaos result. The government then “has no choice” but to resort to strong-armed totalitarian measures to “restore order.”

When pundits and politicians say things like “Barack Obama will have no choice but to start dramatically cutting back on spending,” “the President is going to have to come to grips with the reality that market forces always prevail,” etc., they ignore the fact that a dictatorship can override reality with an iron fist.

For example, under a dictatorship, oil prices can be whatever the dictator (or oligarchy) wants them to be. And anyone can own a house if the government mandates that others give it to him free of charge. Just about anything is possible through the use of force.

Roll your eyes if you wish, but do yourself a favor and stay alert for a possible drastic change in the American way of life as we continue to move briskly down the road to financial ruin. Do not be deluded into believing America is immune to the same consequences that have destroyed so many other nations.

Having said this, I hasten to add that Obama and his progressive allies are not our biggest threat. In fact, they would be as hapless as were Karl Marx and Friedrich Engels if it were not for the avarice of benefit-addicted voters who have no desire to compete in the free market for their livelihoods. With this in mind, I would argue it isn’t so much that people get the government they deserve. Rather, they get the government that reflects their own values. If a majority of Americans are willing to ignore the Constitution and demand that their transfer-of-wealth largess remain intact no matter how obvious the cataclysmic long-term consequences may be, they will vote for politicians they believe are most likely to keep the government redistribution-of-wealth machine well-oiled and running.

Thus, instead of complaining about corrupt politicians, Americans need to take a good look in the mirror and start thinking long and hard about their own tainted morals, as well as what kind of nation they want to leave their children and grandchildren. While the far left is certainly an enemy of freedom, if Americans are willing to look in the mirror, they might just recognize that (to put a twist on comic-strip character Pogo’s famous quotation) the most dangerous enemy is us.

–Robert Ringer

The Truth About The Israeli ‘Occupiers’

Now that our dear leader has again shown his contempt for Israel and his sentimental attachment to radical Muslims, Israelis are feeling the heat from Jew haters worldwide more than at any time since World War II.  Obama’s modern-day version of the final solution is for Israel to simply cooperate in its own suicide by giving up the Golan Heights, the West Bank and the Gaza Strip. (Predictably, he has since fudged a bit on the issue for political purposes.)

In exchange, the Israelis would get… you guessed it… absolutely nothing! The Muslims don’t even need the West Bank or the Gaza Strip. If Israel just gave the Golan Heights back to Syria (whom, we are reminded by Hillary Goofus, is ruled by a “reformer”), it would cease to exist in about a month. There’s nothing like looking down on your enemies from above and having the luxury of choosing the most efficient way to destroy them.

In 1967, after years of threatening to “wipe Israel off the map,” Egypt and other Arab countries finally mustered the courage to attack. They huffed and they puffed and… well, they blew their own house down, humiliating themselves and the entire Arab world in the process. Israel’s superior military forces crushed the puff-prone Arabs in six days, from whence came the name “Six-Day War.”

Since then, land annexed by the Israelis following that war has been referred to by the Muslim world and progressives in the Western world as “the occupied territories.” But what those who rail on about “Israeli occupation” of these territories either don’t realize or fail to acknowledge is that immediately following the Six-Day War, the Israeli government, in a gesture of goodwill, offered to return the Golan Heights to Syria, the Sinai peninsula to Egypt and most of the West Bank to Jordan in exchange for peace.

The defeated Arab nations responded to Israel’s offer by arrogantly declaring “no peace with Israel, no recognition of Israel and no negotiations with Israel.” Hmm… not a whole lot of incentive for Israel to try to please their attackers.

An important fact of life that no one ever seems to mention when it comes to the Israeli-Palestinian land dispute is that when you win a war, you take whatever pleases you (unless, of course, you’re the United States of America). When a bunch of lunatics who spend their lives focused on death and destruction threaten to kill you and then attack you, why in the world would they expect you to give back their land after you crush them? It’s simply not the way life works.

Here’s a tip to nations around the globe who harbor fantasies about hegemony: If you don’t want your land taken from you, don’t attack another country. Period. The Arab world needs to man up and take responsibility for the consequences of its actions. I think most Americans have passed the point of compassion fatigue when it comes to the Arab victimization game.

But there’s yet a harsher reality. Even if someone attacks you, and you lose, history teaches us that you’re still likely to have to give up some or all of your land. After the Normans invaded England in 1066 A.D., they didn’t negotiate with the Anglo-Saxons. They simply took over. And today, nearly 1,000 years later, no one questions the legitimacy of the British Royal Family.

It all comes under the heading of the Kick-Butt Reality of War, which is a subheading of life’s No. 1 rule: Life isn’t fair. Thus, it’s not surprising that neither the Maoris in New Zealand nor the Aboriginals in Australia ever got their lands back from the English. Although they are now independent nations, the descendants of their English conquerors pretty much run things Down Under.

The Maoris aren’t naïve enough to believe they are ever going to get New Zealand back, nor do the Aboriginals believe they are going to be handed the keys to Australia. Instead, the Maoris have pretty much fit into the Western way of life, and even the Aboriginals, who were treated much more shabbily than the Maoris, are making significant strides in acclimating to Western culture.

What makes the so-called Palestinian situation unique is that the Jews were already in old Jerusalem as far back as 6,000 years ago. But who got there first is a moot point, at best, because the city has been destroyed twice and changed hands 44 times over the millennia.

Furthermore, the Jews insist God gave them the land, and that’s a pretty strong debating point to overcome, even if you don’t agree with it. The truth is that the situation is so complex no one knows all the facts, and, worse, most of the loudest voices (such as those in Hollywood) know almost none of the facts. But some things are crystal clear:

Israel took a virtual wasteland and built it into a modern, democratic, wealthy nation that has given the world incredible breakthroughs in medicine, science and technology.

The so-called Palestinians have spent 64 years painting themselves as victims, living in poverty as a result of corrupt leaders (such as Yasser Arafat, who diverted billions of dollars in foreign aid to his personal bank accounts abroad), failing to engage in entrepreneurship and dissipating their energies by focusing on their hatred of Israelis.

Thousands of wars throughout history have left millions of people unhappy. Again, life isn’t fair, and the Kick-Butt Reality of Life always prevails, regardless of whether it displeases some people. (Think American Indians.) What I’m saying here is that the so-called Palestinian displacement is not unique. It’s time for Arabs to get over it and start focusing on living productive lives.

The “Mideast peace process” is a myth. When TV talking heads use a cliché like “jumpstart the Mideast peace talks,” you have to wonder if they are serious. The reality is that there will never be peace between Muslims and Israelis. How can you have peace when the stated goal of one side is to exterminate the other?

To make matters worse, we now have a U.S. President who encouraged the removal of one of our strongest allies, Hosni Mubarak, which opened the door for his beloved Muslim Brotherhood pals to take power. This, in turn, will likely lead to the abrogation of Egypt’s peace treaty with Israel.

Having said all this, I will make an unequivocal prediction right here and now: If Israel is ever destroyed and the Jews are banished from the Holy Land, nothing will change for Mideast Muslims. Nothing!

In other words, the fact that Jews now control Israel is a red herring. If Israel disappeared tomorrow, radical Muslims would start a frantic search for a new devil to blame for their dysfunctional lives. Nothing will change for the so-called Palestinians until they start acting like responsible adults and hold themselves accountable for their own failures.

They need to understand that when you continue to do the same thing over and over again, you are going to get the same result. Muslims worldwide need to start getting up every morning and focusing on constructive pursuits rather than spending all their time plotting new ways to kill Jews. To use a well-worn cliché, they need to get a life.

–Robert Ringer

Reflections On The Osama-Obama Saga

Of all the revealing things President Barack Obama has said throughout his career — in print, audio, video, and live — perhaps the most revealing of all was something he wrote in Dreams from My Father:

“Eventually a consulting house to multinational corporations agreed to hire me as a research assistant. Like a spy behind enemy lines [my emphasis], I arrived every day at my mid-Manhattan office and sat at my computer terminal, checking the Reuters machine that blinked bright emerald messages from across the globe.”

Why would Obama, who was by then a grown man (not a philosophically confused college kid), feel like a spy behind enemy lines when he was working in the corporate world? There are differing opinions as to what he meant by these words, but to me the only explanation that makes any sense is the one that is… well, self-explanatory.

Though he has gone to a great deal of trouble and expense to destroy the paper trail leading to his radical past, what we do know about this mysterious son of a Kenyan Luo tribesman is that the essence of his being is a belief in redistributing wealth and, in the process, destroying both capitalism and the Western way of life.

Thus, when it was reported that Obama himself gave the order for a team of Navy Seals to kill Osama bin Laden, it raised the question: If Barack Obama is still the same left-wing radical he was when he was close pals with Reverend Jeremiah Wright, Bill Ayers, “Marxist professors” in college, et al, why would he order a hit on bin Laden?

The question proved to be rhetorical for many, as polls showed that anywhere from 2 percent (Rasmussen) to 11 percent (New York Times/CBS News) of Americans changed their opinion of Obama and gave him a favorable rating after the purported Osama bin Laden assassination in Pakistan. (Amazingly, some people even decided they liked his handling of the economy immediately following the bin Laden story! Don’t ask.)

Assuming, for the sake of argument, that Osama bin Laden actually was killed as per the government’s description of the event (no hard evidence of what took place has been made available to the public), those who see it as a sign that Obama is a genuinely patriotic American are confused. Even if the facts the government has disseminated about bin Laden’s death are accurate, the event is totally unrelated to Obama’s obsession with “fundamentally transforming America.”


  • First, never forget that the No. 1 mantra of the Left is that the end always justifies the means. As Left-wing radicals are fond of saying, in revolutions, innocent people get killed. In other words, the deaths of innocent bystanders is just one of those things — an unfortunate sacrifice for the greater good. That said, if the Left isn’t bothered by the deaths of innocent people, why would Obama care about Osama bin Laden getting a bullet through the eye?
  • Second, can you name me a Left-wing leader, at any time in history, who was averse to killing either friend or foe? The Left has a history of employing violence. Nothing new there.
  • Third, Obama has repeatedly demonstrated that he doesn’t give a second thought to turning on anyone who gets in the way of his main objective. Why would he care about Osama bin Laden when he didn’t care about his own “spiritual mentor,” Reverend Wright? Or Hosni Mubarak, one of America’s staunchest allies in the Middle East?

Those who now give Obama a favorable rating for supposedly ordering the killing of Osama bin Laden still don’t understand that Obama is the Master of Distraction. The whole event was simply a distraction from his ongoing destruction of the American economy.

When he recently visited the southern border (for the first time in his presidency!), it, too, was nothing more than a distraction ploy. Ditto his campaign speeches when he danced on the graves of the shooting victims in Tucson and those who died at Ground Zero.

Perhaps Osama bin Laden really was killed on May 2. So what? America’s real problem — Barack Obama — is alive and well and continuing right on with his Marx-Alinsky-Piven plan to complete the fundamental transformation of America into a redistributionist hell. Of course, he and the Queen of Anti-obesity will continue to eat caviar and lobster, but… hey… the leader of a revolution has to be comfortable and well fed. After all, under Marxism, some animals are more equal than others.

Obama is a highly disciplined individual, so rest assured that he has not lost his focus on the dreams he got from his communist father. His obsession with destroying entrepreneurship, capitalism, the economy, the dollar, free speech and, above all, the Constitution is stronger now than when he first gained entrance to the White House, courtesy of the mainstream media’s running interference for him.

C’mon, now… do you really believe Obama has banned drilling in most oil-rich areas because he wants to make America great again?

Do you believe he refuses to enforce existing laws on illegal aliens and border security because he wants to make America great again?

Do you believe he enriched the unions at the expense of the bondholders and propped up General Motors with your money because he wants to make America great again?

Do you believe he has appointed scores of radicals to important government posts because he wants to make America great again?

Do you believe he’s added $5 trillion to the national debt since taking office because he wants to make America great again?

The list is endless, and it continues to grow on a daily basis.

The Master of Distraction knows how important it is that he continue to distract the pudding heads who are anxious to give him a boost in the polls every time he makes a smart-aleck crack about tea baggers or moats or alligators. The truth is, he doesn’t give a damn about Osama bin Laden — or anyone else who isn’t integral to his revolutionary goals.

If it takes a bullet in someone’s eye to distract the American public, so be it. That said, I’d like to propose a national moratorium on the gushy applause for Chairman Obama for his “gutsy call.” Please, enough already with the naiveté.

–Robert Ringer

Drill Nowhere, Drill Never

Since the Obamaviks descended upon the nation’s capital in January of 2009, the government has dramatically improved its ability to carry out its two main functions — redistributing wealth and creating crises. However, lest you give them too much credit for their remarkable success in these areas, remember that much of that success was made possible by past actions on the part of progressive Republicans, philosophically confused Republicans and RINOs.

The redistribution-of-wealth issue is almost at the point of no return, even though a number of principled Republicans are actually threatening to make a serious attempt to stop it by refusing to raise the debt ceiling. The odds against their succeeding, however, are about as long as the odds against Osama bin Laden’s showing up in Times Square tomorrow.

Just ask their leader, Boohoo Boehner, who keeps going out of his way to let the enemy know the Republicans have no intention of cutting up the Democrats’ Capital One card. We will soon get the answer to the debt-ceiling increase, so let’s set aside that Obamanation for now and turn to government function No. 2, crisis creation.

The crown jewel of the Obamaviks’ crisis-creation strategy is the skyrocketing price of gasoline, resulting almost exclusively from the government’s heavy-handed, unConstitutional regulation of the petroleum industry.

A recent example was the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s ruling to withhold air permits from Shell Oil, which, in essence, forced the company to drop its long-planned exploration project in the Arctic Ocean off the northern coast of Alaska. The result is that Shell wasted five years and roughly $4 billion in preparation for the project. The EPA’s excuse for their latest “drill nowhere, drill never” ruling is that Shell’s exploration would have been too close (70 miles) to a 1-square-mile village named Kaktovik, Alaska, a booming metropolis of 245 residents.

Needless to say, far-left groups like Earthjustice, Center for Biological Diversity and the Alaska Wilderness League were wetting their pants with joy at their latest victory over evil oil companies who are trying to improve the lives of Americans. No big deal — just another 27 billion barrels of oil that have been left to sit underground indefinitely. When the news reached Riyadh, Saudi Arabia, they must have started celebrating and passing out cookies in the streets.

Notwithstanding this latest attack on fossil fuels, many in the media arm of the White House (ABC, CBS, NBC, MSNBC, The New York Times, etc.) are concerned that if gas prices continue to rise, it will hurt Obama’s chances for reelection. But their concern may be unwarranted, because one of Obama’s greatest talents is his ability to deflect attention from his own economy-killing actions and attack the good guys in Alinsky-like fashion.

So how can the anti-progress progressives have their no-gas cake and eat it, too? The fact is that when it comes to high gas prices, finger-pointing is a piece of cake — greedy speculators and greedy oil companies… case closed.  It is, of course, pure nonsense, but the Homer Simpson crowd doesn’t have a clue.

Notwithstanding Bill O’Reilly’s constant drumbeat about evil oil speculators, most experts agree they have very little bearing on the price of gasoline. Remember, a smart speculator can make just as much money when gas prices go down as when they rise.

As to greedy oil companies making billions of dollars in profits, almost everyone who watches or reads the news knows the profit margins in the oil industry are relatively small compared to, say, technology companies such as Facebook, Google and Microsoft.

All other things being equal, the chief cause of rising oil prices is the continuing decline of the dollar. That ties the artificial oil crisis to the equally artificial debt-ceiling crisis, because when you raise the debt ceiling — as Congress has been doing nonstop for decades — it makes it possible for the government to spend more, in turn causing the dollar to decline.

It’s somewhat tragedy and comedy that redistribution of wealth is perhaps the chief reason for skyrocketing gas prices. I say tragedy and comedy because those who benefit most from the government’s redistribution-of-wealth policies have to give an increasingly larger percentage of their largesse back in the form of government-created higher fuel costs.

If I were king (the only government position I would ever accept), I could solve the artificial energy crisis overnight. My plan would be simple:

  • Close down the Department of Energy and the EPA, and get the government completely out of the energy business.
  • Make oil and gas drilling legal everywhere — in the Gulf, off both coasts, in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge, even in your back yard — no restrictions and no exceptions.
  • Remove all restrictions on coal mining and shale-oil extraction, except for reasonable safety standards.
  • Forget arguing about tax breaks and tax credits, and just cut taxes to zero on all oil, natural gas and coal-producing companies.
  • Remove all taxes on gas at the pump for consumers.

I would announce all of the above (and many more pro-growth ideas that I could come up with by then) the day of my coronation, and I guarantee you that energy prices would quickly fall through the floor.

This would result in hundreds of billions of dollars in increased profits for gas, oil and coal companies, which in turn would result in:

  • The creation of hundreds of thousands of new jobs (and millions more indirectly), which, unfortunately, would actually increase tax revenues for those greedy guys who roam the halls of Congress.
  • Energy companies increasing, rather than decreasing, exploration and production, which would put the U.S. on a fast-track to becoming energy independent.
  • Energy companies paying higher dividends to their shareholders, most of whom are pension funds and mutual funds that represent middle-class Americans. Increased dividends would mean more money for shareholders to spend, which would be good for the economy.

The United States has at least 100 years of natural gas reserves and 200 years of coal reserves. And if I became king, I would wager that should all restrictions be lifted, we would discover we have much greater oil reserves than we now believe. The amazing truth: We are the world’s most energy-rich nation!

Congressman Dan Boren of Oklahoma — a Democrat! — summed it up succinctly when he said recently: “President Obama is completely uninformed about the oil and gas industry. … If the President doesn’t want to stand up and be a leader, then his silence would be appreciated from people who are trying to find solutions.”

Fat chance. The odds of silencing the Master of the Monologue, who is steadfastly focused on collapsing the U.S. economy, are right up there with the odds of Osama bin Laden’s showing up in Times Square.

Is Obama Really In Over His Head?

I wish Republicans would stop saying that President Barack Obama is not serious about the budget deficit.  It’s simply not true.  He’s very serious about it.  In fact, he is determined to increase it to the point that it brings about a total collapse of the United States economy.

Destroying capitalism in the U.S. is a “dream” that Obama got from his now-deceased father — the alcoholic polygamist and communist from Kenya who once touted the idea of a 100 percent income tax.

The conventional wisdom of the conservative media is that “Obama is in over his head.”  Whenever I hear this — which is pretty much every day — I wonder what planet these guys are living on.  Do they read?  Have they researched his background at all?  Are they not just a bit suspicious about his never-ending appointments of anti-capitalist radicals to high positions in government?

Do they believe that the nonstop lies, the childish, nasty smear tactics and the smart-aleck lectures this make-believe President engages in day in and day out are simply business-as-usual political theater?  When I say smart aleck, I’m talking about a guy who:

  • Calls raising taxes on the rich a “spending cut.”
  • Talks about the “extension of the Bush tax cuts” as though the money people are allowed to keep really belongs to the government.
  • Wants to appoint a commission to investigate oil and gas speculators when he knows full well that the main reason for escalating oil prices is the decline of the dollar — caused by his own class-warfare spending agenda! 
  • Says that “we have to stop playing politics with the deficit” even as he applies ever-larger doses of politic gamesmanship to the subject.
  • Continues to cavalierly state that, thanks to his “stimulus plan,” the United States “escaped a bullet” and is “now recovering.” 

… ad nauseam.

As to the infamous recovery that the media also continually alludes to, forget about it.  It’s an illusion.  We are, and have been for decades, in an invisible depression made possible by monetary inflation, easy credit and artificially high wages.

It’s time to get real and admit that Obama is not just another ultra-liberal President cut in the mold of Bill Clinton.  It’s time to stop tiptoeing and pretending.  It’s time to say it:  We have a communist in the White House!  Say it out loud.  Say it clearly.  Say it with conviction:  communist

It’s just a matter of getting over that little truth-resistor hump in your brain that thinks of America in terms of what it was in bygone days.  I’m sorry to be the bearer of bad tidings, but that America no longer exists.

The major question of our time is:  Will the bad guys win and build a new America where people will be prevented from creating wealth and where freedom will be virtually nonexistent, or will the good guys prevail and rebuild an America that is based on our founding principles, but with harsh safeguards put in place to prevent collectivism, in any form, from ever again gaining a foothold?

The United States is hanging onto the edge of a financial cliff by its economic fingernails.  And Obama and the progressives in Congress know that all it will take to loosen that fingernail grip is to have more and more debt piled on top of it.

Obama’s objective from day one has been to punish those who are prosperous and transfer their wealth to those he deems to be the “exploited” class.  As he has made it clear throughout his adult life, it’s all about “fairness” to him.  And he is so close to pushing the U.S. over the financial edge and into the abyss that he can taste it.  He’s come too far, too fast, to allow anyone slow him down now.

Which is why he will be the first President in U.S. history to spend 95 percent of his time during the last year and a half of his first term in office campaigning for his re-election.  And he’s smart to do it.  After all, he accomplished things in his first two years in office that no one thought was possible in such a short period of time.

As a result, the fundamental transformation of America has already happened.  It’s just a matter of cementing it permanently into place.  And to do that, Obama needs another four years.

The reason so many people — not just conservative media types and Republicans, but conservative and independent voters as well — are living in gaga land when it comes to Obama’s true intentions is because of a phenomenon known as “normalcy bias,” a mental state that causes people to not take seriously the possibility of a crisis that is outside their normal, day-to-day experience.

Most people don’t see an Obamaclysm as a serious threat, because they have never experienced an angry, anti-American President whose life’s dream is to destroy the Western way of life.  Thus, they downplay it in their minds and refuse to see it as a crisis.

The normalcy bias has taken the lives of millions of people throughout history and wreaked misery on millions more, which is why it is up to each and every one of us to awaken as many people as possible from their normalcy-bias slumber before the 2012 election.  Four more years of a communist in the White House will be quite sufficient to permanently cement the fundamental transformation of America into place.

Warning:  Do not lose sight of the fact that if Republicans make the mistake of selecting a candidate who is nothing more than a progressive in conservative’s clothing, even if he defeats Chairman Obama, America will still continue to move toward a collectivist, totalitarian government — just at a slower pace and thus far less noticeable to millions of walking-dead voters.

It’s important to give Obama the boot, but it’s just as important to replace him with a true conservative—or, better yet, a true libertarian-centered conservative.  If Republicans are foolish enough to select as their Presidential candidate another “compassionate conservative” who insists that “in government, you never get everything you want,” we’re all going to end up getting the government they deserve.

Keep this in mind when the hoopla starts over the new crop of Republicans candidates, lest a John McCain think-alike sneaks in again — in which case we’d probably be better off to just let BHO go ahead and finish off the job quickly.

–Robert Ringer

Van Jones And The American Dream

As I watch events unfolding in Wisconsin, Indiana, Ohio, et al, I wonder how many Americans realize that government employees are demanding rights that exist only in their progressive minds. They have been led to believe that their desires are rights, and that includes the right to have the government take someone else’s property and give it to them simply because they want it.

In Wisconsin, the protesters keep insisting that Governor Scott Walker is trying to destroy their "collective bargaining rights." I give Walker an A thus far for his courageous stand on this issue. But I stop short of giving him an A+ because he has not made it clear that there is no such thing as a right to collectively bargain. Only individuals have rights, and, whether a religionist or atheist, any honest, rational person knows that these are rights that are self-evident and inherited at birth.

In fact, the right to life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness really comes down to a single right: The right to liberty — to be free to live your life as you please, so long as you do not violate anyone else’s right to do the same.

If one truly believes in the fundamental right to be free, then he is obliged to agree that an employer has a right to establish the rules regarding anything he owns, which includes banishing unions from his premises.

The problem with public-sector unions is that the employer is the government, so there’s an inherent conflict of interest. As Democrats have realized for decades, agreeing to the suicidal demands of public-sector unions can keep them in power.

The raucous protests in Wisconsin and elsewhere have emboldened the 30 percenters — the loud and foul Left that has fundamentally changed America from the land of the free to the land of soft socialism over the past 100+ years.

A good example of this was a column in The Huffington Post last week by that paragon of social justice, Van Jones. What got my attention was the title of the article: "Introducing the ‘American Dream’ Movement."

Below is a reprint of a part of that article where Comrade Jones listed "the steps needed to renew and redeem the American Dream."

  • Increase revenue for America’s government sensibly by making Wall Street and the super-rich pay their fair share.
    [My note: The term fair share is a meaningless, abstract, subjective term that is impossible to define. And nothing could be further from individual liberty than the belief that government revenues should be increased.]
  • Reduce spending responsibly by cutting the real fat — like corporate welfare for military contractors, big agriculture and big oil.
    [My note: I’m all for cutting corporate welfare, but the actual numbers make it clear that what needs to be cut even more is welfare to individuals and groups via hundreds of transfer-of-wealth programs.]
  • Simultaneously protect the heart and soul of America — our teachers, nurses and first responders.
    [My note: Teachers, nurses and first responders are not the heart and soul of America. Their jobs are important, to be sure. But the heart and soul of America is entrepreneurship — individuals willing to take risks and do whatever it takes to succeed. Entrepreneurs produce products and services that people want and, in so doing, create jobs and stimulate the economy — which is what makes it possible to pay teachers, nurses, and first responders.]
  • Guarantee the health, safety and success of our children and communities by leaving the muscle and bone of America’s communities intact.
    [My note: Guarantee success? Really? The rest is unintelligible rhetoric — kind of like "hope and change."]
  • Maintain the American Way by treating employees with dignity and respecting their right to a seat at the bargaining table.
    [My note: Employees do not have a "right to a seat at the bargaining table." However, every individual has a right to negotiate with any employer who, of his own free will, chooses to negotiate with him. In other words, a worker is free to sell his services in the open market — absent union or government coercion.]
  • Rebuild the middle class — and pathways into it — by fighting for a "made in America" innovation and manufacturing agenda, including trade and currency policies that honor American workers and entrepreneurs.
    [My note: To Van Jones’ credit, he does allude to entrepreneurs, but the rest of his statement is unintelligible. Who has the moral authority to "build the middle class" — and what does it even mean? How do you fight for a "made in America" innovation and manufacturing agenda?]
  • Stand for the idea that, in a crisis, Americans turn TO each other — and not ON each other.
    [My note: Again, meaningless babble, though I admit that it might be a good idea to lecture progressives on cutting back on their hatemongering toward Tea Partiers, those who are financially successful and just about anyone who doesn’t agree with their strong-armed tactics to bring about a redistribution-of-wealth society.]

Honesty compels me to admit that if communism is the American Dream to Van Jones, he has a right to define it that way. However, my own definition of the American Dream gets back to that one unalienable right I mentioned earlier — liberty — nothing more and nothing less. The problem with the Van Jones American Dream is that it requires that the liberty of some people must be violated in order to satisfy the desires of others. By contrast, in my American Dream, liberty must always be given a higher priority than all other objectives.

It is impossible to reconcile these two philosophical views, which is why it is imperative that the State governors and the 70 percent majority of citizens not compromise in the showdown that is now playing out across the nation. It is the first of many showdowns to come over the next two years, and, from a psychological standpoint, I believe that winning the first one is extremely important.

–Robert Ringer

It Feels So Good

In response to a discussion of a deflationary depression versus an inflationary depression, readers often ask me if a “soft landing” is possible. I guess the answer to that question depends on how you define soft landing.

If by soft landing, you mean we will somehow muddle through, things will calm down on their own and we will not experience a great deal of pain, the answer is no. But if your definition of soft landing is an economy that declines slowly, without violent revolution, I would say such a scenario is possible.

There are a number of complex factors at play here, but let’s begin with the most obvious one: Human nature. I believe it was Groucho Marx who told the joke about a man standing on a street corner, hitting himself over the head with a hammer. When asked why he would inflict such pain on himself, the guy answered, “Because it feels so good when I stop.”

Groucho’s joke reminds me of just how adaptable human beings are. After all, Americans have been hitting themselves over the head with a financial hammer for decades, but they’ve become so used to it that they are immune to the pain. Human beings seem to have an uncanny ability to adapt to discomfort.

Which is why, in the past, most producers continued to create wealth even when their taxes rose to draconian levels. During World War II, the top tax rate reached 94 percent, and it remained at 91 percent until 1964. With such astronomical tax rates in effect, it’s amazing that we managed to survive — but we did.

So, yes, I believe people could get used to the lower living standards that are on the horizon once resignation sets in — provided the drop isn’t too fast. But since President Barack Obama and his progressive pals took control of things in Washington, we’ve experienced a dramatic drop in living standards in a very short period of time, and that has gotten people’s attention.

Many are talking about postponing retirement, or not retiring at all; cutting back on — or completely eliminating — vacations has already started; dining out four nights a week is becoming a thing of the past; and soon people won’t be able to afford to buy those high-priced tickets to sporting events that fill sports stadiums and arenas from coast to coast.

In this respect, Obama’s fake move toward the center could be the best thing that ever happened to his spread-the-wealth agenda. To the extent government infringements on individual rights are spread over a longer period of time, Americans are more likely to adapt to a progressively lower standard of living. It’s not really muddling through; it’s muddling downward — in stages — one step at a time, and giving people a chance to adapt to the next lower standard.

If you’re thinking gradualism, you’re right. It has worked like magic for the U.S. government for at least a hundred years, and it could once again protect politicians against outright rebellion. By contrast, a quick and total deflationary collapse would not be peaceful because, unlike 1929, a huge percentage of today’s population has a deeply ingrained entitlement mindset.

But what about producers? Won’t they stop producing? Not at first. I believe that, at least for a while, producers will keep producing even as they have to share ever-larger pieces of their pie with non-producers.

At some point, however — and no one knows exactly when that point will be reached — producers will escape to Galt’s Gulch. It may not be a physical place, as in Ayn Rand’s Atlas Shrugged, but, one by one, they will stop producing. And if things get too bad, many will simply expatriate.

Which brings me back to a soft landing. It may be hard to accept, but a gradual lowering of the living standards of most Americans would be more harmful over the long term than a rapid and complete collapse of the U.S. economy.

As an analogy, immediately after 9/11 a vast majority of Americans were fighting mad and the general tone of the public was patriotic. Today, the radical Islamic threat is far greater than it was right after 9/11, but because there have been no major attacks on U.S. soil, the “war on terror” is no longer a high priority in most people’s minds. Americans have gotten used to the idea that terrorists are spread throughout the U.S. pretending to be everyday citizens, so they have mentally adapted to the threat.

The point is that everything, no matter how damaging it may be to our well-being, becomes normal to us over a period of time. An abused woman comes to believe her situation is normal. A kid who is bullied in school comes to believe his situation is normal.

My concern is that if we keep hitting ourselves over the head with the hammer of a slow collapse of our economy, Americans will gradually get used to a step-by-step lower standard of living, the result being that they will come to think of each new level as normal. No rebellion — just a nice, soft landing.

Which is why, if it’s important to you that your children and grandchildren live better than you’re living today, you should pray for things to unravel quickly — followed by a successful counter-revolution in the form of educating the public about both the morality and practicality of freedom and free enterprise.

The truth no one wants to face up to is that we cannot start rebuilding America until we hit bottom and admit that we no longer have a republic, that our government is corrupt and out of control, that our Constitution has become irrelevant to our rulers and that our debt can never be repaid. As I have said so often, most people do not love truth; instead, they try to make true that which they love.

Speaking for myself, investing the time, energy and discomfort involved in fighting for freedom trumps a slow and peaceful slide into servitude any day of the week.

To learn more about what has transpired in our country and how we can return to a freer and more prosperous nation, I urge you to take advantage of this limited-time offer to receive my new book, Restoring the American Dream: The Defining Voice in the Movement for Liberty, for free. Just click here to learn how to get your autographed copy.

— Robert Ringer

Obama the Chess Master

Thomas Paine said that “Government, even in its best state, is but a necessary evil; in its worst state, an intolerable one.” With decades of increasing criminality in all three branches of government, it would be pretty hard to argue with one of the great libertarian thinkers in our country’s history. And with Congress’s approval rating at a stunning 13 percent, it doesn’t appear that many people disagree with Paine’s analysis of government.

Now, with a new Congress in session, many are excited about the possibility that the accelerating, anti-Constitutional power of government over its one-time employers (now passively transformed into citizen serfs) will be reversed. But what is the likelihood that it will really happen?

In an outgoing flurry of legislation and attempted legislation (e.g., the infamous omnibus bill that Harry Reid was forced to pull the plug on), Democrats and progressive Republicans — especially the lame-duckers — flipped one last gigantic bird to American Main Streeters. Some were shocked at their audacity, but those of us who have endured decades of political sewage pouring out of Washington have become cynical to the point where politicians’ contempt for voters doesn’t even raise an eyebrow.

Having said this, the big question is, will the Republicans be able to start turning things around between now and 2012? I believe the answer to that question lies in how successful they will be at cornering President Barack Obama into no-win situations. Politics, you say? Yes, of course! Do you believe these fire-breathing, anything-goes political animals are going to respond positively to reason? BHO’s entire adult life has been one big, ongoing game of political one-upsmanship. And, giving him his due credit, he happens to be despicably good at it.

For example, regardless of which way the economy appears to be going on the surface, BHO will be prepared to take the high road. (I say on the surface, because the bowels of the economy are already rotted to the point where a total collapse is inevitable.) If the tax compromise produces a temporary, illusory effect on the economy, he will, without a hint of embarrassment, claim that he turned things around by endorsing a tax cut for all Americans.

On the other hand, if the illusion of a turnaround does not come about, his position will be, "To show bipartisanship, I decided to give Republicans a chance and go along with their insane idea to give billions of dollars away to the wealthiest Americans, and, predictably, it didn’t work. Now we’re going to get back to doing things my way so we can grow this economy." That will give him a perfect excuse for returning to policies that are based on a system that all straight-thinking people realize has never worked: Socialism.

So, as much as I hate to say it, I believe the tax-compromise legislation that came out of the lame-duck session is a bad sign of things to come. And keep in mind that two of the really good guys in the House — Paul Ryan (R-Wisc.) and Ron Paul (R-Texas) — voted for it.

In all fairness, Ron Paul’s explanation of why he voted for the bill had merit. Being a strict anti-tax, anti-regulatory, Constitutionalist, Paul took a principled stand and said he would never vote for a tax increase on anyone, no matter how much bad stuff he had to swallow.

Ryan was not as clear, saying only that if taxes go up, “that’s going to harm the people I represent.” Which was true. But he also said, “A lot of people are making these political arguments, which are, ‘What is the proper political chess move against Obama?’ And that is not the way we should be thinking right now when it comes to jobs and economy.”

Were it not for the fact that the U.S. Government has become the intolerable evil that Thomas Paine alluded to, I would agree with Ryan. But the reality is that ours is a criminal, Constitutional-hating government, a government headed by an angry young Marxist intent on bringing the United States down to the level of third-world countries around the globe. Sorry, but it’s a chess game whether Republicans like it or not. And if they refuse to play, they will get checkmated all over the board by default.

That said, I have to agree, at least to some extent, with Charles Krauthammer, who believes that Obama snookered Republicans on the so-called tax-compromise bill. However, to me, the most important reason Republicans should not have gone along with the tax compromise is that it was a continuation of their decades-old habit of acquiescing to Democratic blackmail — and blackmail doesn’t work! With each new blackmail success by the Dems, the country moves further into debt, further to the left, and further into the tar pit of tyranny.

The Republicans should have checkmated the chess master in the White House on this one. By letting taxes go up on Jan. 1, they could have boxed Obama into a no-win situation: Lower taxes on everybody, no estate taxes and no extension of unemployment benefits. (I italicized the latter, because it was the real heart and soul of the blackmail, yet most pundits mentioned it only in passing, if at all.)

In this scenario, if Obama caved in and went along with a Republican version of a tax-and-spending reduction bill in January, he not only would have found himself with one or more primary challenges for the 2012 Democratic nomination, he very well might have lost. Which is why, in the final analysis, I don’t believe he would have given in to the Republicans.

More likely, he would have fought against them to the bitter end, even while the economy was moving toward the Greatest Depression. Then, he would have unashamedly blamed the economic holocaust on higher taxes — and Republicans could have had a field day campaigning on a promise to lower taxes on everyone.

It would have been a close call at election time because, let’s face it, Obama has 35 percent to 40 percent of the electorate locked up regardless of what he does. But he would have had to convince at least another 10 percent of the walking dead that higher taxes and spending would ultimately lead to something-for-nothing nirvana.

Either way, if Republicans make the mistake of running the wrong candidate (remember, the best they could come up with in 2008 was super-progressive John McCain!), they’re toast. But with a fearless tax-cutting, anti-spending libertarian-centered conservative, they could win.

Bottom line: I never worry about Democrats. With few exceptions, they are hopelessly lost souls. Trying to proselytize them is an enormous waste of the number of heartbeats one has left in his life.

I worry about Republicans, who seem eternally destined to giving in to Democratic blackmail because they believe they “have no choice.” Actually, strike the word eternally. If Republicans don’t man-up soon, the job of fundamentally transforming the United States of America into a left-wing dictatorship cannot be more than a few short years away.

–Robert Ringer

The TSA, Beetles and Ecstasy

Since the Transportation Security Administration began its Barney Frank Anti-Terrorist Fondling operation, a whole lot of people who heretofore had appeared to be immune to the Tea Party virus have begun to awaken from their Oprah slumber.

By “Oprah slumber,” I’m referring metaphorically to the Orwellian scene that occurred when Oprah Winfrey told a recent audience that each of them would be receiving a new Volkswagen Beetle. As the omnibenevolent queen of mass-audience hypnotism shrieked the good news to her adoring flock, both men and women went into a frenzy that made the reaction to the 1964 U.S. invasion of the singing Beatles seem like a church outing by comparison.

On hearing the news, the lucky folks who had come to the studio thinking they were in for nothing more than a standard dose of mind-numbing talk-show chatter began screaming, laughing, hugging, waving their arms wildly and, yes, crying. Some even got down on their knees, apparently to praise the almighty Goddess of Stuff who giveth free Beetles to total strangers.

After viewing Oprah’s version of Brazil’s Carnival on YouTube, I expressed my bewilderment to a friend, only to have him say, "Hey, I can understand people getting excited about being on the receiving end of a new car. Nothing abnormal about that."

Alas, he missed the point. I, too, can understand why a person would get excited about someone giving him a new car, but what I witnessed was way beyond mere excitement. It was something akin to C.S. Lewis’ pure joy. It was the kind of ecstasy one might expect to see in people who have just been informed that the Messiah has returned to earth.

In other words, neither excitement nor happiness was the issue. The issue was that the reaction was way out of proportion to the news. It bothered me because it was yet another reminder that Americans — and most of what is left of the so-called civilized world — have lost their way (and, one might justifiably argue, their minds).

It was right up there with sports fans wildly cheering multimillionaire athletes, movie buffs worshipping Hollywood actors who appear as experts before Congress and the walking dead who camp out in front of Best Buy for the privilege of purchasing "stuff" as early in the morning as possible.

Following the show, Volkswagen of America CEO Jonathan Browning unwittingly gave an excellent insight into the madness when he issued a statement that said, in part, "Oprah Winfrey and the Volkswagen Beetle are two American icons, so when the Oprah show approached us with this incredible opportunity to share her Beetle experience with deserving viewers, we instantly wanted to be a part of it."

Question: What the hell is a "deserving viewer?" Is every viewer deserving? Of what? Why? The reason an intelligent CEO of a major corporation would say something so eminently silly is that the masses must be constantly told they are deserving… they are entitled… they are, above all, "hard-working Americans" — even if they’re receiving unemployment benefits.

There’s no question that children respond well to this kind of reassurance. The only problem is that these were not children. They were adults!

The whole thing was reminiscent of a scene from Aldous Huxley’s Brave New World when Mustapha Mond, the supreme government power holder, said to the awed and confused Savage from the Indian reservation, "The optimum population is modeled on the iceberg — eight-ninths below the water line, one-ninth above."

"And they’re happy below the water line?" asked the Savage.

"Happier than above it," replied Mustapha Mond.

Those shrieking people in Oprah’s audience are below the water line — way below. And when you’re below the water line, your mind is filled with thoughts of free stuff, today’s reality-show lineup and the latest rumors that Brett Favre will soon be forced into a nursing home. These are the kinds of blissful thoughts that make for a happy savage.

Which brings me back to the TSA’s Barney Frank Anti-Terrorist Fondling operation. When the reality that a Marxist had moved into the White House began setting in with people, millions spontaneously rebelled and became part of a new Tea Party movement.

But millions more refused to come to grips with what was happening before their very eyes. They rejected the notion that Barack Obama was anything but a personable chap who had, bless his youthful heart, simply flirted with far-left ideology as a college kid. Van Jones, Anita Dunn, John Holdren, Mark Lloyd, Cass Sunstein, et al were simply figments of Glenn Beck’s imagination.

Now, however, as a result of the TSA’s police-state tactics, I believe a second wave of people are ripe prospects for the Tea Party rebellion. And it may not be a peaceful rebellion if the Feds don’t reign in the perverts who are molesting our wives, our mothers, our children and our grandchildren.

At the recent New Orleans Investment Conference, I participated in the "Summit on America’s Future" panel discussion with Charles Krauthammer, Newt Gingrich and Dick Armey. When the moderator, Gary Alexander, asked if we thought America’s decline as a great civilization was inevitable, Krauthammer summed it up perfectly: "Decline is a choice. It’s not inevitable."

Meaning, in the end, it’s strictly up to us. We can continue to be the United States of Stuff, with our minds below the water line, or we can wake up, grow up and push back hard against an oppressive government. At the end of the day, it’s a clear choice between submission and all-out resistance in an effort to re-establish the foundations of our once free and proud republic.

Beetles be damned, if we could accomplish the latter, that would be a legitimate reason for being ecstatic.

–Robert Ringer

The Missing Story

The biggest story about the midterm elections is one that seems to have escaped most conservatives, to wit:

While it’s true that slightly more than half of those who voted sent a signal to Washington that they want government to drastically decrease spending, taxes and regulation, the painful reality is that slightly less than half of the voters cast their ballots in favor of Democratic candidates who, with just a few notable exceptions, want to increase spending, taxes and regulation.

I would thus caution overly exuberant Republicans that reports of the death of the progressive movement in this country have been grossly exaggerated. Many Republican victories, such as John Kasich’s win over George Strickland and Pat Toomey’s victory over Joe Sestak, were by razor-thin margins. Even where a race was won by as much as 15 points, that still translated into more than 40 percent of the voters giving their stamp of approval to President Barack Obama’s ultra-progressive agenda.

So, what does this all mean? First, and most obvious, it means that if those people (especially the shameless swing voters, most of whom are driven by that great human defect known as instant gratification) who voted for winning Republican candidates are disappointed by what happens in Washington over the next two years, many of them might very well vote for the hope-and-change stuff again in 2012. Hmm… seems I once read something about what happens to those who do not remember the lessons of history.

I get concerned whenever I hear media talking heads blather about the need for the two parties to "come together" and show a willingness to compromise so they can "get something done." Talk about not getting it. The true Tea Partiers don’t want Republicans to "come together" with their Democratic counterparts who want bigger government, more spending, more taxes, more regulation  —  and less liberty.

They don’t want the people they just voted into office to slow the growth of government spending; they want government spending drastically cut. They don’t want the "Bush tax cuts" extended; they want more tax cuts. They don’t want closer oversight of the Environmental Protection Agency; they want the EPA defunded — or, better yet, eliminated. No need to go on… you get the idea.

But won’t this kind of attitude on the part of Republicans cause gridlock? Yes! It will cause beautiful, progressive-stifling, liberty-protecting gridlock. Those who propelled Tea Party candidates into office don’t want the government to "get something done" if that means enacting more laws and finding new and more devious ways to increase taxes (e.g., Cap-and-Trade and huge increases in the money supply).

The only thing they want politicians to do is repeal all unConstitutional laws already on the books, get out of the way of entrepreneurs and the private sector and focus on protecting the lives and property of all United States citizens. Whether a citizen happens to be "rich" or "poor" is irrelevant — and, quite frankly, none of the government’s business. While the concern of some politicians for the perceived hardship of any particular group may make for an interesting sociological or philosophical discussion, it does not give them the right to forcibly redistribute the assets of others.

Keeping all this in mind, I have to give credit to establishment Senator Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.), who demonstrated that he understood perfectly the message of the electorate when he said that his party’s number-one objective is to make Obama a one-term President. This, of course, brought about feigned indignation from the left.

But McConnell stuck to his guns in a speech to a Heritage Foundation audience when he said, "… if our primary legislative goals are to repeal and replace the health spending bill, to end the bailouts, cut spending and shrink the size and scope of government, the only way to do all these things is to put someone in the White House who won’t veto any of these things."

Why in the world wouldn’t your number-one objective be to get rid of the big dog who’s calling the progressive shots from the White House? It’s an over-arching objective that should begin immediately and continue, in full-court-press fashion, over the next two years.

In the meantime, as part of this over-arching objective, quick passage of a bill to repeal Obamacare should be front and center, followed by an all-out war against the Cap-and-Trade scam. And let’s not forget Representative Michele Bachmann’s (R-Minn.) main focus: "I think that all we should do is issue subpoenas and have one hearing after another, and expose all the nonsense that has gone on." As I have previously written, I interpret her word nonsense to be a euphemism for blatant criminal activity.

Those who would argue that investigating congressional wrongdoing over the past two years is a waste of taxpayer money are wrong. If there are no consequences to criminal activity in government, felonious politicians have no incentive to change their ways. It’s very important that there be a bloodletting that politicians will remember for decades to come.

I could go on and on, but, in the end, what the midterm elections were really all about was freedom. Clearly, though I doubt most people realize it, freedom is what underlies most of the economic problems that dominate the daily news. And if a staunch Marxist is allowed to hold the reins of power much longer, Americans might just lose forever what’s left of their rapidly shrinking supply of that most precious of all commodities.

That said, McConnell is right. Let’s all make a commitment to bring to an end the hope-and-change nonsense in 2012.

–Robert Ringer

The Celebration of Class Warfare

The weather was perfect — 72 degrees and sunny — for the "One Nation Working Together" rally at the Lincoln Memorial on Oct. 2. I was determined to go with an open mind because I wanted to try to understand what would motivate someone to attend an event sponsored by unions and self-proclaimed socialist and communist groups.

The first time I heard about the rally the thought crossed my mind how embarrassing it was that union bosses and their counterparts in a wide variety of extremist, left-wing organizations would put on an event to counter one sponsored by a television commentator, Glenn Beck. It was like a third-grader trying to one-up a popular rival on the playground.

Of course, the organizers would now deny they were responding to Beck’s 8/28 Restoring Honor event, but that in itself would be embarrassing given that they’ve been talking about it being their answer to his hugely successful rally since they first came up with the idea. On Saturday, I only heard bits and pieces of a few speeches, but at least one of the speakers shouted, "Somebody tell Glenn Beck there are more people here than at his event."

The rally started at noon and, as planned, I arrived in Washington just before 2:00 p.m. As I entered D.C. from the Virginia side, the first thing I noticed was that people were walking away from the rally site in droves. Not a good sign for an event that was scheduled to last until 4:00 p.m.

As I stopped at the first light after coming across the Teddy Roosevelt Bridge, I glanced to my left and was surprised to see a number of vacant parking spaces on 23rd Street — something unheard of in a city where you can drive around for an hour in search of a parking spot. I did a quick left onto 23rd and promptly backed into one of the available spaces.

My wife and I then started walking toward the Lincoln Memorial, an easy trek compared to the exhausting walk we had endured for the 8/28 Restoring Honor rally when the closest parking we could find was at the Willard Hotel on 14th Street. As we walked toward the Lincoln Memorial, people wearing T-shirts emblazoned with logos and wording in keeping with the theme of the rally continued streaming by us in the opposite direction.

On arriving at the site the first thing I did was try to estimate the crowd size, which I’ve become pretty adept at. This particular case, however, was unusually difficult because of the nonstop flow of people leaving the event early. At any given time, however, I estimated that the density of the crowd ranged from one-fifth to one-tenth that of the Restoring Honor gathering.

At the Beck rally it was strictly shoulder-to-shoulder, virtually impossible to walk in most places. That crowd was no less than 500,000 — and perhaps as high as 750,000. But one of the many differences with the 8/28 event was that virtually everyone stayed until the rally was officially over. They were there by choice.

To be as fair as possible, I generously factored in the large number of people who had departed two hours or more before I arrived at the One Nation rally and came up with a crowd estimate of between 75,000 to 150,000 — far more than the 30,000 to 50,000 I had guessed might show up. Clearly, I had underestimated the power of union bosses handing down mandates to their rank and file to attend.

But to me the crowd size didn’t really matter, because they were two totally different events. Beck is just one individual — a radio and television personality — who produced a rally (primarily using his own money) with a theme of restoring honor to America and to honor fallen U.S. soldiers. By contrast, the 10/2 event was a political rally sponsored by a wide array of well-funded, far-left organizations.

The big question is not who had the largest crowd; that wasn’t even close. The more important question is why rally organizers like Al Sharpton would be so focused on trying to show the public they could outdraw a media personality.

To the crowd’s credit, though the signs and rhetoric were brazenly anti-freedom and anti-free market, people were generally well behaved, though clearly lacking in enthusiasm. To their discredit, however, trash was everywhere, which I have found to be a trademark of those on the left — especially the environmental crowd.

Again, by contrast, it was hard to find any trash on the ground at Beck’s 8/28 event. There are many conjectures I could draw from this observation, but due to space limitations, I’ll leave that psychological endeavor up to you.

Tabloid-size "newspapers" were all over the place. One was called The Militant, which featured the headline: "Public education is a birth right, not a corporate profit."

Another one, Challenge: The Revolutionary Communist Newspaper of Progressive Labor Party, sported a logo that read "Fight for Communism." Mind you, this was a rally called "One Nation Working Together" — in the capital city of the United States of America!

Then there were the signs:

  • "Wages that are rightfully ours."
  • "We demand $$$ for jobs and education."
  • "The American Dream promises a free education."
  • "Black Is Back."
  • "Capitalism is failing. Socialism is the answer."

At one of the many tables where books were being sold I wrote down such titles as Bolshevism, What Is Marxism, The Communist Manifesto, Four Marxist Classics and Black Liberation and Socialism. Quite an array of reading material for an event titled "One Nation Working Together."

Then there were the pamphlets, with such patriotic verbiage as:

  • "Fight for a Two-Year National Moratorium to Halt All Foreclosures and Evictions."
  • "Jobs for All! Public-Works Program Now!"
  • "Make the bosses pay for their crisis!"

I could fill a book with what I saw at the rally, but to me the bottom line is this: The Oct. 2 "One Nation Working Together" event was simply a celebration of that age-old disease, class warfare. Unwittingly, the hate peddlers who promoted it provided a public-service by letting us know they are still out there, alive and well. And they are poised and ready to bring down the American way of life — especially freedom and the free-market system.

As I walked back up 23rd Street after my short stay at the rally, the little security guard inside my brain whispered to me, "This was a reminder that America is irrevocably split into those who want to put a stop to the government’s policy of redistributing wealth and those who demand that the government use force to give them even more of other people’s wealth.

The latter group (which I estimate at nearly one-third of the current U.S. population) is fully prepared to sell their souls to a totalitarian regime in exchange for the "stuff" they think they deserve. I’m not sure how they define deserve, but it matters not. What does matter, sadly, is that they are nothing more than pawns in a power game that has existed probably since the Neolithic Age.

These pawns have long been referred to — by everyone from George Orwell to Alvin Toffler to Saul Alinsky — as the Have-Nots. This is what the "One Nation Working Together" rally was all about, nothing more and nothing less. It’s an old theme that will continue to be with us until the last breath of humankind has been extinguished.

And the truth that many people do not want to believe is that there is no solution to the problem. The only hope is containment. Right now, a majority of Americans are poised to push back and try to contain the radical left from bringing down the curtain on capitalism and individual sovereignty. But no matter what happens on Nov. 2, no one should be deluded into believing the war is over. The war will never be over.

Start preparing your mind now for what’s coming after Nov. 2, and teach your children what Ronald Reagan said back in 1964:

"Freedom is never more than one generation away from extinction. We didn’t pass it to our children in the bloodstream. It must be fought for, protected, and handed on for them to do the same."

After what I saw and heard in D.C. on Oct. 2, I can vouch for the Dutchman’s words.

—Robert Ringer

Representative Steve King (R-Iowa) Talks With Robert Ringer

Representative Steve King (R-Iowa)Representative Steve King (R-Iowa) is a Constitutional conservative and advocate of the Tea Party. Robert Ringer recently interviewed King as part of his Liberty Education Series. In the interview King talks about President Barack Obama’s economic philosophy and his (Obama’s) lack of respect for entrepreneurs and small business owners, and King’s efforts on the small business committee to try and reign in the over-regulation of the government. King believes the Administration wants to nationalize Fortune 500 companies. King says there is a small but good core of Constitutionalists in the Congress now, but believes a new wave will come in with the November elections. The interview is about 15 and a half minutes long. Click above to listen to the entire interview.

A Minority of One

As President Barack Obama continues to transform the United States into a socialist hell, yet another poke in the eye is the National Mediation Board’s recent proposal to make it easier for airline and railroad workers to unionize.

For 75 years the rule has been that in order for any class of workers (e.g., pilots) employed by an airline or railroad to unionize, a majority of all employees in that class have to vote for unionization. But the proposed new rule would require only that a majority of employees who actually vote on the question of unionization would be needed to unionize.

All Democrats love unions; Republican progressives love unions; and even many conservatives believe that a worker should be allowed to join a union voluntarily, so long as those who do not want to join the union are not forced to do so.

Which probably makes me a minority of one. Why? Because not only do I believe that workers do not have a right to unionize a company through tyranny of the majority, I don’t believe that any worker has a right to join a union without the consent of his employer.

It is a basic tenet of libertarian-centered conservatism that without property rights, no other rights are possible. Unfortunately, most people do not understand this fundamental concept. They view property only as inanimate matter, separate and apart from a person’s life. They cannot seem to make the connection between the two.

In actual fact, they are so connected that one is virtually an extension of the other. How can one separate a person’s life from his property? If you took everything that an individual owned, the fact is that he would not own his own life because whenever he attempted to create something for his personal gain, the fruits of his labor could again be confiscated.

The same is true of purchasing property. The money used to make a purchase presumably was earned through the purchaser’s efforts. That makes the money an extension of his life and, therefore, the same would be true of anything purchased with that money. No matter what the circumstances, when a person’s property rights are violated, his freedom is violated.

A libertarian-centered conservative (i.e., a true conservative) believes that no one has a right to any other person’s property, which includes both his body and everything he owns. Once this concept is understood it would be proper to say that, in reality, all crime is based on trespassing on the property of an owner.

When people make “humanitarian” statements about human rights being more important than property rights they are, in a sense, correct. That’s because human rights include property rights, as well as all other rights of man.

A man has the right to dispose of his life and his property in any way he chooses, without interference from others. By the same token, he has no right to dispose of any other person’s life or property, no matter what his personal rationalizations may be.

As explained in The Fundamentals of Liberty by Robert LeFevre, there are only three possible ways to view property:

  1. Anyone may take anyone else’s property whenever he pleases.
  2. Some people may take the property of other people whenever they please.
  3. No one may ever take anyone else’s property without his permission.

It is self-evident to anyone who believes in individual liberty that the only morally valid way to view property is No. 3. Likewise, no one has a right to tell a property owner (property being land, buildings, a business or anything else that a person may own) what he can or cannot do with his property.

Take a business, for example. It belongs to the owner, whether he started the business himself or bought it from someone else. No one has a right to take any part of someone else’s business, nor do they have a right to tell him what he can and cannot do with his business.

If a business is a public company, it is the property of a large number of people (shareholders). Thus, size is irrelevant when it comes to property rights. When property rights are violated against a multinational corporation as opposed to a mom-and-pop business, it simply means that far more people become victims of government aggression. It is a moral absurdity to believe that bigness validates aggression.

Therefore, as a minority of one, I am compelled to say that regardless of the size of a business, the only way unionization is morally valid is if the owner of that business voluntarily agrees to it. Why? Because it’s his business! It’s his property! And it is his human right to set the rules for his own property!

In a truly free society, a worker has one inalienable, overpowering right with regard to his job: He can quit at any time. He is not a slave, so his employer cannot chain him to his work. If he wants to belong to a union he is free to search for employment with a company that allows workers to unionize.

The fact that many people reading this article will find my comments to be extreme speaks only to how far down the road toward socialism we have traveled. We no longer respect property rights, especially when the property is a business. Generations have been brainwashed into believing that abstract notions such as “the good of society” and “social justice” are more important than private ownership.

The proposed new ruling by the National Mediation Board opens a debate over the issue of whether 75 percent of the overall majority of workers in a given class should be required to unionize an airline or railroad, or just 75 percent of those who actually participate in voting on the question. But, in reality, the debate is nothing more than a distraction. The real debate should be over whether or not employees should be allowed to unionize at all without the consent of the owner.

This is precisely the kind of issue that has caused conservatives to lose their way over the years. Until politicians have the courage to confront an issue such as unionization head on and stop buying into debates about whether to move further to the left or stick to what has become the status-quo left, America will continue its acceleration toward total collapse — both morally and economically.

It will be interesting to see if anyone reading this article has a strong enough belief in the absolute sanctity of property rights to agree with what I’ve said here. That would be nice, because it would instantly elevate me to the status of being part of a minority of two.

–Robert Ringer

Senator Jim DeMint (R-S.C.) Talks With Robert Ringer

Senator Jim DeMint is one of the most effective conservative leaders in Washington. He is a strong proponent of smaller government, individual liberty, a strong national defense and traditional values. Author Robert Ringer recently interviewed DeMint as part of his Liberty Education Series. They discussed the future direction of the Republican Party, the role of government, the Tea Party movement, the Arizona immigration law and what’s in store for the November elections.

Ringer’s interview with DeMint demonstrates that there are conservatives in Congress who understand the role of government and have pledged to work toward reigning in government abuses. The interview is about 14 minutes long. Click above to listen to the entire interview.

The Great Pretender

The Marxmeister in the White House now says he takes full responsibility for ending the oil mess in the Gulf. He also says he wants to “know whose ass to kick,” that he “can’t suck it up with a straw,” and… well, you know… the ongoing narcissistic spiel—“I, me, my… blah, blah, blah”… day after day, week after week, ad nauseam.

Watching his recent performances on the Gulf oil disaster made me think about a monster hit The Platters had in the 50s called “The Great Pretender.” Little did they know that the champion Great Pretender wouldn’t even be born until 1961—probably in Kenya… but, then, no one is really sure about that because no one is allowed to see his birth certificate.

Everyone but (1) those on the far left, (2) Bill O’Reilly, and (3) the loons (O’Reilly’s word) who have yet to return from lunch realizes that The Great Pretender has had a Marxist agenda since even before his pot-smoking days at Columbia. Names like Wright, Ayers, Lloyd, Dunn, Sunstein, Holdren and Jones (both Jeff and Van) are well known to those who have taken the trouble to learn about The Great Pretender’s agenda.

As ever more people come to realize that the country has been hijacked by this angry young Marxist, many would argue that a better title for him might be The Great Reactor. Obama listens to the news—especially Fox News—then reacts to his critics by saying or doing whatever they accuse him of not saying or doing, or by changing his tune regarding something he’s said or done that offends too many people. Sort of humorous to watch—if the fate of an entire country were not at stake, that is.

Perhaps I’m getting soft with age, but I almost feel sorry for The Great Pretender. His flipping and flopping and spinning and twisting and contradictions have become downright embarrassing. He’s Abbott and Costello and Laurel and Hardy all rolled into one. I admit it—I’m truly embarrassed for him.

Now, of all people, Mike Huckabee—continuing his swift turnabout in an effort to make voters forget about his slobbering interview of Michelle Obama (who, he tried to convince us, wakes up every morning frantically worrying about childhood obesity)—has succeeded in making The Great Pretender look like an incompetent, arrogant boob.

Hopefully, you saw The Huckster’s show several weeks ago where he paraded out one guest after another—entrepreneurs, inventors, engineers and chemists—to present remarkable solutions for cleaning up the oil in the Gulf. It truly was amazing to watch the simplicity of the methods presented, as contrasted with The Great Pretender’s spending his time talking about kicking ass, wagging his finger at everyone and bending over and picking up a lonely tar ball on the beach in his daily photo ops.

Was the oil spill really just an accident? Probably. BP America Chairman and President Lamar McKay recently said that it was caused by “a failed piece of equipment.” I’ll buy that, at least for now. But it doesn’t matter. Rahm never said that you have to create a crisis. He already knew there are crises popping up all the time. All he said was that you should never allow a good one to go to waste.

In the case of the BP oil accident, it was a slam-dunk. More to the point, it was like unlocking the door to the Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA’s) cage. Obviously—surprise, surprise—offshore drilling is now out of the question, right?

So it puts a few hundred thousand people out of work (ripple effect)… so what? The progressive must do what he must do to protect “the people,” even if it means taking away their jobs and giving them higher gas prices to boot. What in the world would we do without government to protect us? (Hmm… I think John Stossel has repeatedly answered that question for us over the years.)

So, yes, the BP crisis will not be wasted if it results in an end to offshore drilling. Nevertheless, I think The Great Pretender is going to have to come up with another crisis—or two—before November to pull off a number of miracles for the Demagogic Party.

The Dems, of course, would have us believe that they can win because so-called moderates will pull away from Republican candidates affiliated with the Tea Parties. If they really believe that, it would be wonderful. But, quite frankly, I don’t think they’re that stupid.

So I, for one, I’m still thinking crisis. A manufactured crisis is much better than an unforeseen one, of course, because you can have a prefabricated “solution” prepared in advance. You don’t have to do anything that actually helps make things better for people. All you need are a few talented individuals to put the right words on your teleprompters and be good at pretending you’re making things better.

As I said in my article ”The Ghost of FDR,” Obama has been following the dictatorial Franklin Delano Roosevelt’s playbook to the T. In his 1937 inaugural address, at a time when unemployment was still rising (15 percent on inauguration day), FDR bodaciously said, “Our progress out of the depression is obvious.”

Sound familiar? It should. With the economy on the verge of total collapse, The Great Pretender continues to look his teleprompters in the eye and tell Americans how he’s saved the country from a depression and that “the worst is now behind us.”

He always sounds so darn convincing when he says these things, but I hear through the White House grapevine that on at least one occasion after slinging this kind of B.S., he was overheard singing to himself in the Oval Office:

Oh yes, I’m the great pretender,
Pretending that I’m doing well.
My need is such, I pretend too much,
I’m lonely but no one can tell.

Lacking a really great crisis, The Great Pretender, hopefully, is going to feel a lot lonelier starting next January.

—Robert Ringer