Monday, June 26, 2017

John C. Calhoun: Nationalist turned champion of states rights

John C. Calhoun was one of the most influential Senators of all time.  He began his career as an ardent war hawk and nationalist. However, he ultimately became an ardent supporter of slavery and states rights.

He was tall, towering over even Andrew Jackson. He was a great speaker and orator. He was an individual thinker, and he was ambitions. This set him up nicely for a career as an American statesman.

He would become one of the most influential men in American history. He would serve as a U.S. Representative, U.S. Senator, Secretary of War, Secretary of State, and Vice President. This means that he, at varying times in his political career, held five of the six more powerful positions in the nation.

U.S. Representative

His first electoral victory came in 1810 when he was only 29 years old. He was elected as a U.S. State Representative from the state of South Carolina. He was a democratic-republican.

At this time, Britain was refusing to accept American shipping rights. Among his first acts was to call for the unprepared nation to go to war against them.

He, along with Speaker of the House Henry Clay, championed for war with Britain to preserve American honor and republican values. Among their anti war opponents was Kentucky Senator Daniel Webster.

This would lead to the War of 1812, which lasted until 1815, when, at the Battle of New Orleans, Andrew Jackson and his troops would utterly defeat the British. This lead to Americans celebrating what they would refer to as the "Second War of Independence." These events would also make a hero out of Andrew Jackson.

He was also a leading supporter of the Second Bank of the United States. The charter for the First Bank of the United States expired in 1811. The bank was meant to be a repository for federal funds, along with being an agent for when the government needed loans. Among the reasons for supporting the bank was to pay the war of 1812.

Supporters of states rights hated the bank, and so would champion against it. The issue of the bank would come up later in Calhoun's career, and is discussed in my post on Andrew Jackson.

Secretary of War

In 1817, James Monroe was the unanimous choice to become President. After being elected, he wanted to create  a cabinet that well represented the nations. He named John Quincy Adams as Secretary of State and John C. Calhoun as Secretary of War. He named Benjamin Crowninshield as Secretary of the Navy, William H. Crawford as Secretary of Treasury, and William Wirt Attorney General. He offered this job to Speaker of the House Henry Clay, but he declined. Unlike previous presidents, Monroe often sought the advice of his cabinet.

In 1818, Andrew Jackson took a couple thousand troops into Spanish Florida after Seminole Indians burned an Indian village on U.S. territory. Seminoles massacred a bunch of men, women, and children in the process. Monroe ordered Jackson into Florida, and Jackson took over two Spanish forts and had two British men hanged. This was seen as an attempt to occupy Spanish Florida and was seen as a horrible act of terror.

Calhoun was upset not so much by the act of terror, but because Jackson communicated with the President and bypassed him. So, he worked behind the scenes with Crawford and Clay to get President Monroe to censure Jackson, but Monroe refused. Keep in mind here that Jackson did not know about this at the time. Keep this in mind, as it will play a role later in this history.

Other than this event, this era in our history is often considered the "Era of Good feelings." This is mainly because the Federalists were in decline, and the democratic-republicans were the main party, lead by Monroe. By having members of varying opinions in his cabinet, he was essentially able to adapt key ideas from both parties, and this essentially eliminated partisanship. It also lead to a high degree of nationalism, which means that Americans believed they were superior over other nations (not better than, just superior). It also means a strong and powerful central government and a powerful military

Unfortunately, this era would only last until the end of Monroe's terms, or about 8 years.

Nationalist

At this point in his career, Calhoun was a nationalist. By this, he was an ardent supporter of a strong central government, beginning with the strengthening of the military. He saw that, while victorious, the military was quite inept at fighting against Britain. He wanted to create a permanent military system that would make the U.S. the most powerful and most respected and revered nation in the world. This was good. The best way to make America a secure and independent nation is by our military strength. Or, as Ronald Reagan would later chime, "Peace through strength."

He also wrote a bonus bill that earmarked certain funds of the Second Bank for an internal improvements fund that would create roads across the nation, allowing for easy transportation for settlers across the country. This would be proposed by various Presidents, including John Quincy Adams. The problem with this is that many people believed this violates states rights, and it's the job of states to build infrastructure. Proponents of this believe that states cannot agree on where to put roads, so only the Federal government can organize this and get it done.

This was essentially proven during the Eisenhower administration, where a series of highways were built across the nation. Donald Trump proposes a similar plan to rebuilt roads, bridges, and tunnels. And the debate today is the same. Hence, we ask the question: is a large central government program needed from time to time to get things done. The problem is that this may segue into too much governmental power and control. So, a balance is needed.

Okay, back to Calhoun.

James Monroe was a states rights advocate, and so he believed the states should decide where roads should go. For this reason, he vetoed Calhoun's bonus bill. This would not be the end of this idea, however, as other influential statesmen, including Henry Clay and John Quincy Adams, supported the idea.

Calhoun also called for a permanent system of taxation, so that income to pay for Federal government programs would constantly be flowing in (up to this time, taxes were only instituted to pay for wars). He also called for a Second Bank of the United States, something I discussed in my John Quincy Adams post. These are both scary programs in that they grant too much power to the central government.

Calhoun was Monroe's fifth choice to be Secretary of War, as four others turned it down before him. This was because it was in such poor shape. Calhoun's nationalistic view of the military made him ideal for this post.

So, as you may have suspected yourself, Calhoun's nationalism, with the exception of involvement in the military, sounds a lot like the former Federalism and the current liberalism. This would be true.

But he would change his tune.

Vice President 

When his second term was coming to a close, Monroe announced he would follow in George Washington's footsteps and not run for a third term. However, he also said he would not support any candidate for President in 1824, and the main reason here was that the leading candidates were members of his cabinet, including Calhoun, William H. Crawford, and John Quincy Adams.  And, of course, another candidate was an outsider from Kentucky by the name of Andrew Jackson who was a Commander in the U.S. Army under Monroe.

Another candidate was then Speaker of the House Henry Clay. Monroe had tried to bring him into his cabinet, although he failed. This was mainly because Clay was a harsh critic of Monroe, and this allowed him to continue to be a critic. He was the only candidate not to be influenced by Monroe.

Of course, as you can see, many of the above names, although mostly of the same party, were of varying opinions in regards to what path to take the nation on. This lead to much bickering, which formed the basis for the formation of new political groups.

Calhoun would make an effort to become President, although his efforts would fail. In fact, he would not even gain the endorsement of the South Carolina legislature. John Quincy Adams would become President. He was chosen by the House of Representatives after none of the leading candidates received a majority of the votes. John C. Calhoun was named Vice President.

Adams would in turn select Henry Clay as his Secretary of State. This was part of the deal in which the House selected Adams to become President, even though Jackson won the popular and electoral vote. Calhoun was unhappy with this deal, and so this would cause friction between Calhoun and the duo of Adams and Clay.

States Rights

In 1828, he was initially in favor of the higher tariffs. However, he was later convinced to oppose it on the grounds that it benefited Northern industries at the expense of the south. This would spearhead a complete transformation by Calhoun from a nationalist to a states rights advocate.

By this time it was well known that Calhoun owned slaves. He was a good slave owner, so they say. But his ownership in slaves changed him. He now believed that a strong central government would have the power to abscond from the southern states the rights to own slaves. Hence the shift in political beliefs.

In fact, he would go so far in his championship for states rights and in opposition to the tariff that he drafted for the South Carolina legislature his Exposition and Protest. In this he championed for original sovereignty, or the right of the states to govern themselves. He also championed for nullification, the right of states to nullify (refuse to obey) any federal mandate it didn't like, or that they felt to be unconstitutional. For instance, if the Federal government mandated freeing the slaves, the states didn't have to comply. Or, in this case, if the federal government authored a tariff that benefited the north at the expense of the south, the bill could be ignored.

So, Calhoun was opposed to Adams idea of raising tariffs, and this was good (from a conservative perspective). Regardless, the tariff of 1828 went into law. This would set up a series of events that would forever change Calhoun and American politics.

Calhoun, still second in charge in Washington, now opposed President John Q. Adam's view of increasing the size and scope of the federal government, such as his plan to create a public transportation system across the U.S. This was a huge change in thinking, but Calhoun now saw nationalism as a huge strain on states rights. This would put him in disagreement with both Adams and Clay.

Calhoun and Andrew Jackson were never good friends. However, Calhoun thought that Jackson's policies would put an end to the large central government and anti-states rights policies of the Adams administration. This would set up the election of 1828, which saw Andrew Jackson become President.  Calhoun was once again elected to be vice president, becoming only the second person to be vice president under two different presidents (the other was George Clinton, who served under Jefferson, Monroe and Madison).

But this "friendship" would be short lived. While Jackson was also an ardent supporter of states rights, he opposed the idea of nullification and secession. So, this lead to conflict between Calhoun and Jackson. This relationship was further hampered when Jackson learned that Calhoun had surreptitiously attempted to have Jackson censured for his actions in Spanish Florida. (You can read about that here). The discovery that this happened must have really ticked Jackson off.

So he literally almost went to war with Calhoun's South Carolina.  In 1828 (as noted) and again in 1832, Congress voted, and the president signed, bills to increase tariffs.  John C. Calhoun was his vice president, and many thought he would go on to succeed Jackson.  However, he was a strong critic of the high tariff passed by Congress in 1828 because it helped northern merchants at the expense of southern planters. They thought it was unfair because they sold goods to Europe in return for payment, and that payment was highly taxed.

Calhoun, using the concept of nullification, believed that South Carolina could refuse to accept the high tariff. He went as far as to tell South Carolinian's not to collect tariffs. He even went as far to suggest that a state could secede from the union. In response, South Carolina's State legislature voted to nullify the tariffs of 1828 and 1832.

Jackson was irate about this idea, and his old warrior intuition was sent into action.  He believed this was treason, and wrote a letter notifying officials in South Carolina that their action was illegal and might lead to war.  He ordered U.S. Navy ships to Charleston, South Carolina's harbor, with orders to fire upon the rebels if necessary.  He also said he was willing to negotiate a deal to save the union.

A compromise was brokered by Henry Clay that had Congress voting to lower the tariff over the next ten years.

Another incident that caused conflict between Calhoun and Jackson was the Pettcoat Affair. This began when Calhoun accused the wife of Secretary of War John Eaton -- Peggy Eaton -- of having an affair. Calhoun organized the wives of cabinet members (hence the term Petticoat) against the actions of Peggy Eaton. After this incident there were no further friendly relations between Calhoun and Jackson, who sided with the Eaton's.

U.S. Senator 

This was a time when the vice presidency was considered to be a boring job. This, and probably coupled with his tensions with the sitting President, inspired Calhoun to run for a seat on the U.S. Senate during the midterm elections of 1832. He won, and effectively resigned the vice presidency.

Even though he became Senator from South Caroline, his popularity on a national level remained low, mainly due to his views of nullification and his feuds with Jackson. He also had no party to identify with. This inspired a group of people who despised Jackson, and this included Calhoun, to organize what became known as the Whig party.

A problem here is that the Whigs believed in a strong central government, and this included the federal government building a transportation system across the country. Calhoun was now an ardent supporter of states rights, and he believed a strong central government violated states rights. So, for this reason, sometimes he affiliated himself with the Whig party and sometimes he did not, and thereby remained an independent voice in the Senate.

In 1837, Jackson pretty much allied imself with new President Martin van Buren, who was in essence, like Jefferson and Jackson before him, a supporter of a limited government and states rights. The Whigs supported a large national bank. Calhoun, also like Jackson and van Buren, believed a large central bank gave the Federal government too much power over businesses.

Bankers joined the Whig party in support of a large national bank. Calhoun supported the democrats, and was in support of an independent treasury.  For this reason, and because he might impose high tariffs, Calhoun opposed Whig William Henry Harrison's bid for the presidency in 1840. His opposition did not stop Harrison from winning the office of the President.

Calhoun resigned the Senate in 1843 in an attempt to win the Presidency. He just could not gain any support, and would end up giving up this effort.

Secretary of State

After William Henry Harrison died, former democrat John Tyler became President.

Calhoun was an ardent supporter of the Annexation of Texas. He supported it because he supported slavery, and believed the addition of another slave state would benefit Southern States. Tyler supported it, although on the grounds that it would be to the benefit of the nation as a whole. Plus, Tyler believed if the U.S. didn't annex Texas, that the British or some other country might gain interest there. So, this lead to the annexation of Texas.

After Tyler was banned from the Whig party in 1844, he named Calhoun to be his Secretary of State. This meant that Calhoun had held each of the top positions in Washington -- President, Vice President, Secretary of War, Secretary of State -- except for the presidency. (You can read more about Tyler here.)

Calhoun put in writing what was promised by his predecessor -- Abel P. Upshur, that the U.S. would defend Texas against Mexico if that was ever needed. Calhoun then signed papers to annex Texas. This was all done in secrecy. When it was discovered, this angered democrats who were anti-slavery and anti-annexation of Texas.  Calhoun would write a letter claiming that the annexation of Texas was necessary for the well-being of the southern states.

By linking the annexation to slavery, many who would have otherwise supported the annexation were now opposed to it.

Because of Calhoun's letter, democrat Martin van Buren denounced the annexation of Texas when he ran for the Presidency in 1844. This made van Buren unpopular in the south. Tyler, scarred by the letter and rejected by both parties, would end up having to drop out.

This created an environment that allowed James K. Polk -- an expansionist dark horse candidate -- to sneak into the presidency. this would bode well for Calhoun. Lame duck Tyler managed to get the annexation issue before Congress once again. President elect Polk supported this.  This time it passed.  So, before Tyler's term was done, Texas was annexed.

Senator 

In 1845, Calhoun was re-elected as U.S. Senator from South Carolina. As a states rights advocate, he opposed going to war with Mexico. He believed this made the U.S. too much like an empire, and that victory would come at the expense of states rights. So, when the issue of going to war with Mexico came up on May 13, he refused to vote on the issue.  He also was opposed to California being admitted to the union as a free state.

In 1846, as a pro-slavery Senator, he opposed the Wilmot Proviso. This was a proposal by Pensylvania Representative David Wilmot to ban slavery in any newly acquired territory. This would have made Texas a free state. Calhoun did not want this. The provision passed the House, but could not gain muster in the Senate, which was evenly divided between slate and anti-slave Senators.

At this time, the Oregon Territory consisted of British Columbia, and the current states of Washington, Oregon and Idaho. Due to an increasing number of American migrants to the area, a dispute arose as to the border along the border with Canada. American expansionists used the slogan: "54-40 or fight." Calhoun, President Polk, and Secretary of state (and future President) James Buchanan worked on a treaty to resolve this issue. It resulted in drawing a line at the 49th parallel that allowed Canada to keep British Columbia, and the U.S. to keep the rest.

The status of slavery in the territories continued to be a big issue at this time. Henry Clay and Stephen A. Douglas devised what would become the Compromise of 1850. Calhoun was ardently opposed to it.  In response, Calhoun organized a Nashville Convention where discussions about the South seceding the nation were begun. He also wrote speech attacking the compromise and that mentioned the possibility of southern secession. He was too sick to give the speech, so it was given by Virginia Senator James Mason.

This is often sited as Calhoun's greatest speech. He died a week later, at the peek of his career, at the age of 68, of complications of tuberculosis.

Conclusion

John C. Calhoun may not be considered a great statesman for the simple fact he was a slave owner who became mired as the voice of the pro-slavery movement. But this does not take away the fact that he was a powerful figure in Washington who had great sway as to the direction of the nation. For 39 years he stood tall as one of the most influential figures of the first half of the 19th century.

Further reading and references:

Monday, June 19, 2017

Robert A. Taft: The Senator who saved capitalism

Senator Robert A. Taft was the son of former President William Howard Taft. He was elected to the Senate in the 1938 Republican landslide lead by Republican efforts to stop the expansion of FDR's New Deal. A bill he would later write is often credited as saving capitalism in the United States.

He was a conservative, and actually went as far to speak the truth about the New Deal, referring to it as, "Socialistic." He was the leader of the "Conservative Coalition" that controlled Congress from 1939 to the 1960s.

Most people may not realize this, but Thomas Dewey was a liberal republican. For lack of a better way of describing it, he was the republican version of John McCain in the 1940s and 50s. Taft ran against him for the republican nomination in 1948, although he lost. Taft ran again in 1952, but lost to Dwight D. Eisenhower. However, to gain Taft's support, Eisenhower promised to curve back spending and to continue the fight against socialism.

After the death of FDR, he effectively became known as the arch nemesis of Harry S. Truman. It was often said that nothing made it through Congress without his stamp of approval, so this type of power would thwart much of Truman's domestic agenda. He ultimately worked to prevent Truman from advancing his liberal agenda, and that was a very good thing.

Among his best achievements was writing and getting passed through Congress what became known as the Taft-Hartley in 1947.

At the end of WWII, labor unions controlled about 25% of the work force. They had a lot of power. They promised not to strike during the war as not to disrupt the war effort. However, after the war they wanted higher wages.

But, President Truman, decided to continue on with FDR's price controls in an effort to ease the transition from a war time to a peace time economy. In August of 1945, in an effort to ease the transformation from a war time to a peace time economy, Truman decided to continue on with FDR's price controls.

This gained the ire of producers, who refused to sell products at artificially low prices. It gained the ire of labor unions, who wanted wage hikes. Since producers could not afford wage hikes, labor unions were unhappy. This lead to a series of strikes in the steel, coal, auto, and railroad industries. They involved over 800,000 workers, the largest in American history.

Consumers were opposed to the strikes. So to were Conservatives, who wanted to conserve capitalism in America. So, this is what inspired Taft to work with republican Representative Fred A. Hartley Jr. to work the Taft-Hartley Act through Congress. They succeeded.

But, Truman called it the "Slate Labor Act," just prior to vetoing the bill.

Fortunately, Congress succeeded at overriding Truman's veto.

This was a huge achievement for capitalism. The bill significantly limited the influence of labor unions in politics, and thereby conserved capitalism in the United States. Democrats to this day hate this Act, and have made various failed efforts to overturn it.

He was taciturn, and a relatively poor speaker. He was also an isolationists, and even opposed entry into WWII. He also opposed the draft and NATO. During his years as a Senator, he was often referred to as "Mr. Republican."

In 1953, he was selected as the Senate Majority leader. However, shortly afterwords he succumbed to cancer. He was honored in 1949 as one of the "most significant" Senators of all time.

Monday, June 12, 2017

Harry S. Truman: The Fair Deal, or the Liberal Deal

Initially, after becoming President, Truman followed the FDR domestic agenda. His goals were to lead the U.S. to victory in WWI, and then to lead the nation from a depression-time and war-time to a peace-time economy. He ultimately would set his own agenda by creating what would become "The New Deal." 

In order to get through the depression, and to win the war, FDR used his executive mite, and his New Deal Policies, to create a large central government. You had rations on what people could purchase, and you had the government ordering the transformation of factories to the production of goods and services to the production of war goods. 

So, the government had a scary amount of power over the American people. It was almost totalitarian-like, socialistic-like, fascist-like powers. Okay, it was not good. Truman's role was to transform America away from this type of a system and back to a system that put consumers back in power. He would transform America away from a government run economy to a consumer-run economy. 

So, he decided he needed to sway from the New Deal agenda Or, actually, to build upon the new deal. He decided he had a mandate, and decided to be aggressive with his new agenda. He therefore, in January, 1949, during his State of the Union Speech,  presented 21 points to Congress. It would become known as the Fair Deal.  It essentially involved 21 points, including:
  • An Expansion of Social Security. Passed in 1950. 
  • Full Employment Program. It passed as the Employment Act of 1946, but it failed to gain any traction and was a failed program. 
  • Permanent Fair Employment Practices Act.  He failed. 
  • Public Housing and Slum Clearance. Passed in 1949. 
  • New Public Works Programs.  He failed. 
  • A Higher Minimum Wage.   Passed through Congress. 
  • Extension of the Fair Employment Practices Committee. A wartime committee that worked to prevent against discrimination of African Americans in government and military. He failed to extend it. 
  • National Health Insurance System. He failed. 
  • Liberal immigration policies. He failed
  • Repeal of Taft-Hartley. He failed. 
  • Brannon Plan. Meant to help provide income support for family farmers. Failed. 
As you can see, the Fair Deal was pretty much a failure. Truman didn't have the mandate he thought he did.
This was mainly due to pressure from conservative democrats in the south (who would 35 years later become Reagan democrats), and republicans in the north, did not want any more liberalism. They did not want any more power to be given to the government. They had had enough. 

This is similar to what happened in the election of 1920, where Americans had simply had enough of rules and laws and taxes They wanted smaller government, less government, less regulations, and a simpler approach to government. They wanted more power to the people. They wanted a return of liberties. They wanted a return to a capitalistic economic system.

In 1949, they economy took a step back, and unemployment rose while inflation rose as well. This made people think the post war economic boom had ended. Truman set high post-war taxes, which remained around 90%. This was in an effort to balance the federal budget. This, as economics 101 teaches, does not bode well for a good economy.

He did, however, attempt to limit spending, with any surplus going to pay off the national debt. After several months of worsening economic numbers to begin the year, he gave up on his efforts to balance the budges and allowed for some tax cuts to go through.

This set the stage for Eisenhower to become President in 1952. Although, that was two years away. In the meantime, Truman got the United States involved in another war. 

Monday, June 5, 2017

Harry S. Truman: Squeaking past Dewey

The Chicago Tribune was a notoriously republican newspaper.
It's writers had previously referred to Truman as a "nincapoop.
Printers had been on strike protesting the Taft-Hartley Act.
And a new printing method made it so the paper had to
go to print seven hours before publication.
A combination of these factors lead to the error,
of which Truman touted during a train ride
back to Washington on November 3, 1948. 
After WWII was finally over, Truman had the goal of transforming the U.S. economy from a wartime economy to a post wartime economy. He also had to work with different factions of his own party to keep together the democratic dynasty that FDR had built. This would prove very difficult for Truman.

Republicans in the north and Southern Democrats would post problems for the liberal President. However, labor and unions, two factions that traditionally sided with democrats, gave Truman even more trouble than republicans and conservatives.

The war was expensive, so Truman wanted to cut back on military spending as soon as possible. Of course, a problem here was that the country had just gotten over a depression (or so the media would have us believe. Conservative historians speculate that the depression never really ended until the post-war boom. Based on the evidence I've seen, this is what I tend to believe). So, there was hesitation regarding anything that might impact the economy.

There was no consensus what to do with the American economy. Further complicating matters was thatTruman would have to deal with conservative democrats in the south and republicans in the north.

After the war, there was a housing shortage, labor conflicts, and inflation. Inflation in one month had hit a whopping 6 percent.

Truman's efforts to convert from a war-time to peace-time system were also slow, and resulted in many of the products consumers yearned to start purchasing again, things they had sacrificed during war-time, were slow to get on the shelves. Some products, such as meat, were so costly in 1946 (inflation) that they weren't even worth buying. So, this earned the ire of consumers.

So, this made consumers unhappy, and it also made labor and unions unhappy. This lead to price controls. Complicating matters is that labor wanted wage increases.

In August of 1945, Truman said he decided he would continue price controls. But, labor still sought wage increases. This prompted a series of strikes to occur in the steel, coal, auto, and railroad industries. These strikes involved over 800,000 workers, the largest in American history. Truman's stark efforts to end these strikes earned the ire of unions and the labor industry. I will get to this in a moment.

Add to this that consumers were opposed to the strikes, producers were unhappy with price controls, and producers were unwilling to sell their products at artificially low prices. Farmers, for instance, refused to sell grain for several months in 1945-46 until they were able to get paid better for their product. This was despite the fact that consumers really needed the grain that was being withheld.

To end the railroad strikes, Truman took them over. Despite this, two railroad unions went on strike anyway. This shut down the entire railroad industry. Consumers were really upset by this. Over 175,000 passengers stood without transportation.

What did Truman do? He wrote a letter to Congress calling for them to call on veterans to form a lynch mob to destroy union leaders.

Um, not good.

Even his own staff was stunned by this and tried to tone it down. But the damage was done.

To make matters worse, democrats in the Congress actually wrote a bill in response to this. However, and thankfully, it was killed in the Senate by Truman's arch nemesis (a man I plan on studying and writing about in the  near future) Robert Taft.

The striking did subside quite a bit, although some continued until the end of his presidency. Truman's popularity plummeted from 82% to 52%, and the democrats lost Control of Congress during the 1946 mid-term elections.  (Here we have the first time election of republican Congressmen Joe McCarthy and Richard Nixon).

Before the election, his popularity had plummeted to a pitiful 32%. There were actually calls from one fellow democrat (William Fulbright) for him to resign. These calls, of course, were rejected by Truman.

Okay, so not only did he have southern democrats and republicans opposed to him, he also had traditional democratic factions such as labor and unions opposed to him. 

So, for this and other reasons, it was expected that Truman would lose the election of 1948. Republicans thought he would lose, and so too did Democrats. Nearly every poll had New York Governor Thomas Dewey defeating the incumbent President.

In fact, it was this belief that lead to the Chicago Tribune accidentally publishing the famous headline, "Dewey Defeats Truman." (see photo)

However, on election night, it was learned that Truman won 28 of 48 states, and won 303 out of 531 electoral votes.

How did he win? Well, according to what I have read, he kind of used the above failures to his advantage. As noted, during the mid-term elections, Republicans took control of Congress. In his State of the Union address in January of 1947, he said a resolution needed to happen regarding labor unrest and strikes. He offered no solutions, and left that to Congress.

Congress passed the Taft-Hartley bill, which limited union intervention in politics and thereby limited their power. Truman vetoed it, and Congress overrode this veto. (This bill was good, by the way. By his veto, along with some of the stupid, socialistic things mentioned above, Truman moves down our ranking of great presidents. Sorry, but sometimes when you read history you learn the truth about people not taught in schools). People should not have to join unions, especially when they support politics that the people do not support).

They also approved "right to work laws" which made it so labor workers did not have to sign up for unions. This made labor and unions mad at republicans.

There was still inflation in 1947 and 8, although not as much as in 1946. Truman called for a return to price controls and rationing, knowing Congress would disapprove of this. They did reject the idea. However, they did pass a price control and rationing bill, although it was vetoed by the president because he believed it was not enough.

So, once again, even though Truman was guilty of causing the problem, republicans in Congress were to blame.  To make matters worse, of the republican bill regarding price controls and rationing, Truman's arch opponent, Senator Robert Taft, said, Americans should "eat less mean, and eat less extravagantly."

In a speech, Truman purposefully misquoted him, saying, "Eat less." So, in this way (which is typical of liberals to misinterpret and misquote for their own political gains) Truman managed to make Taft look like the guilty party here, when it was him. Truman made it look like inflation was the fault of Taft and republicans.

He rejected republican tax cut bill (it was a good bill). He rejected republicans tariff bill to raise tariffs on wool (it as also a bad bill). Truman said the tariff bill was "isolationist."

So, with republicans taking some of the blame for the problems in the nation -- well, it still didn't look good for Truman's prospects in 1948.

He was still the underdog going into election day. Republicans and Democrats alike thought he would lose. John Dewey was even, at one point, declared the winner.

However, Dewey was a very liberal republican, and Truman used the Power of the Pulpit to go on a last minute jaunt across the country. He took a train tour across the country. It was called a "Whistle Stop tour."
and came out a winner. His victory is still used to this day as inspiration for underdogs. 

References and further reading:

Monday, May 29, 2017

Harry S. Truman: A good wartime president

Harry S. Truman was a liberal democrat. And this makes sense, considering he was Vice President to FDR, among the most liberal Presidents we ever had. But I thought it was neat to learn, that while he was liberal on domestic issues, he was very conservative when it came to foreign policy.

I also found it very iinteresting to learn that he apparently had no knowledge of the Manhattan Project, or that the world's best scientists were working to develop an atomic bomb. Some say this was because he had basically no contact with President Roosevelt during the short time he served under him. However, it may also be a testament to the secrecy of the project, and the success of the nation amid a war to keep it a secret.

He also was unaware of what was happening inside the Soviet Union regarding their development of weapons and their development of a socialist government. So, two of the most significant markers of the Truman administration evolved around events Harry S. Truman was not even aware of prior to becoming President: The nuclear bomb and the Cold War.

On April 12, 1945, shortly after becoming the only President to be inaugurated President for a fourth term, Roosevelt died as a result of a stroke, and Truman became the 33rd President. A few months later, on May 8, 1945, victory in Europe was declared. Britain and the United States celebrated, and this day became known as Victory in Europe Day, or V-E day.

War with Japan was coming to a close, please were sent to the Emperor of Japan to surrender, and the alternative was "complete and utter destruction."  The Emperor ignored the pleas, and so the war in the Pacific continued. The United States and Britain were preparing for a very costly invasion of Japan.

This prompted Truman, under the direction of his advisers, and with the permission of the British, to drop atomic bombs on Japan's military cities. After papers were dropped on the cities warning the people of what was going to happen, giving them plenty of time to get out, the bombs were dropped. On August 8, 1945, Little Boy was dropped on Hiroshima.

Truman issued another warning for Japan to surrender, or a ruin will fall from the sky like no other seen in history. Japan still refused to surrender. So, on August 9, 1945, Fat Man was dropped on Nagasaki. There were orders for two more bombs to be dropped if necessary, but this wasn't needed, as Japan finally got the message.

The effects of the bombings were huge. Around 90,000-146,000 were dead or dying in Hiroshima, and 39,000-80,000 were dead or dying in Nagasaki. This is not even to mention all the other damage to Japan made by these horrendous bombs. This time Japan finally got the message, and on August 15, 1945, the Prime Minister offered Japan's complete surrender.

The majority of Japanese were happy the war was over, because they had suffered much loss and suffering. However, there were reports of some Japanese warriors continuing the fight in the Philippines and other places.

According to David Powers, the Japanese Emperor made his first broadcast to the Japanese people on August 15, 1945. He never spoke of "surrender" or "defeat," and so many soldiers would keep on fighting. This was testament to the importance of using the atomic bombs. If they had not been dropped, it would have come at grave costs to the United States and its allies.

In retrospect, many people still criticize Truman for dropping the bomb. They say it was a senseless act of terror on many innocent civilians. However, we must also consider the fact that the people are responsible for the people ruling over them. Truman later said that attacking Japan saved thousands of both American and Japanese lives. Estimates had a war on mainland Japan lasting over a year, and costing 250,000 to 500,000 American lives

So, the war was over. There was much celebrating. But there was also a lot of destruction caused by the war and rebuilding to do. Of course, there as also the fact that the Russians had created the Soviet Union and were pent on spreading Communism around the world. Hence, this began the reconstruction of both Europe, Japan, and the Cold War.

References and further reading:

Saturday, May 27, 2017

Obama Was Only President To Never Sustain 3% Economic Growth

In my article, "Obama: The Abysmal Statistics," I shared with you the following economic statistic: 
"First president not to see a single year of 3% economic (GDP) growth. This makes Obama the forth worst on record. This is sad, because "The rate of real economic growth is the single greatest determinate of both America’s strength as a nation and the well-being of the American people."
So, every U.S. President from George Washington all the way to George W. Bush saw an economic growth of 3%. Obama kept telling people how many jobs he created. He kept telling people how well the economy was doing. And people accepted this.

Think of it this way. People with jobs who are under the age of 30 have never had a job in a booming economy. So, to them, it was easy to accept what Obama said. Because, to most people, history starts the day they are born. So, when you tell these people the economy is doing great, even when it isn't, they don't know any better. So they accept what they are told.

People who lived through the 1980's saw real economic growth and prosperity. Even people who lived through the 1990's and through the Bush tax cuts in 2000 saw it. And many of these folks tend to accept Obama's statistics: they are told that this is the new normal.

We are told this is the way it is in a progressive world. That in a world where you have to fight global warming with high taxes and regulations, this is the new normal. That is a world where you have to create needy people and solve their problems so that you can be seen as loving and caring so you can get re-elected, this is the new normal.

Trump came along and said it doesn't have to be this way. His economic plan is to get the economy running at the 3% clip again. This is not to say that GNP needs to increase, it's saying that economic growth should be running at a 3% clip, at least once in a while.

When this happens -- when we get to 3%, it will mean that the economy increases by 100%. When this happens, every person living in the U.S. will see it. Businessmen and entrepreneurs will have an incentive to take risks, because there will be a good chance at getting a return on their investment. You will see businesses expanding, you will see new businesses going up. You will see jobs, jobs, jobs and jobs galore.

You will also see wage and salary hikes. During the Obama years, much like the economy, wages were stuck in stagnation. They did not increase. In fact, they didn't even increase to keep up with inflation. So this meant that the value of the dollar decreased. For instance, a dollar could have been used to buy one loaf of bread in 2000, but now a dollar will only buy you a half of a loaf. I'm not saying those were the actual prices, I'm just giving you an example to explain the value of the dollar.

This would explain why our grandparents and parents were able to get by on just my dad working, or just my grandpa working. They also lived in huge houses. Today, I have to work and my wife has to work just to afford to live in a small run down house.

You can't just blame this all on Obama, but there were quite a few people in Washington, both republicans and democrats, who let him get away with it. There were no efforts by republicans to fight Obama's budget increases. I mean, they said they would do it when they ran for office, and they were voted in because they said they would do it. But once they got into office they never did anything.

And this is why Trump was elected.

Friday, May 26, 2017

There are no budget cuts in Trump's proposed budget

So, I have friends emailing me left and right, or texting me, or Facebooking me, telling me how they are going to lose their jobs, or how we will lose libraries, or how the environment will become polluted, if Trump's tax cuts go through. Here is my response to all of them.
You know (so and so), the media kind of blows this out of proportion. Trump's budget doesn't cut anything. There are no budget cuts. It's just cuts in the rate of growth. The way the government is run, budgets increase every year (unlike how businesses are run, where the rate is determined by income). So, labor might get an increase of 2% as opposed to 6%. And, by the way, that's the cutest baby I ever saw.
I don't tell people this, but my friends who tell me they are afraid they are going to lose their jobs. What I want to say it, "Millions of people sacrificed their lives for our country." But, in our politically correct world, in a world full of snowflakes, I'm not sure they would be able to handle that.

But it's true. My grandma, my mom's mom, could have collected Social Security if she wanted to. In fact, she earned it if anyone did. And I asked her about this once, and she said, "I put my country before myself."

We don't seem to have people like that anymore.

I get tired of the media blowing things out of proportion. I think they hate Trump so much they that they have gotten lazy in their reporting. They have gotten emotional. Seriously. Even Fox.

It's almost as though one person says something and everyone else repeats it without doing any fact checking. I quit watching the news because I started thinking: "If everyone is saying the same thing, then no one is thinking."

If I wrote the same thing as everyone else on my blogs, no one would have an incentive to read my stuff. I want to be different. I want it to be factual, but unique. I think this is why media ratings are so low. If I said the same thing you did on my blog, no one would go there either.

One of my friends sent me a picture of his baby. He did this as if to show me that it's my fault her daddy might be out of a job; to make me feel guilty. If these people truly want to be mad at someone, they should be mad at the people who created the spending problem (democrats) and the people who did nothing to stop it (republicans).

Trump is trying to fix the problems of the previous administrations. And, of course, someone is going to have to lose a job. I'm sorry, but that's the way it has to be. It's no different than if you are running a business. If you are operating under the red line, you have to make cuts. 

Thursday, May 25, 2017

Radical Islamist Terrorism: The Enemy In The War On Terror

We have been in a war with terrorism for 16 years now, and we are not even close to victory. The reason is because, when you are at war, you have to change your perspective.

For one thing, you have to recognize who you are at war with and call them for what they are. And, for some reason, nations run by progressives -- which most western nations (France, England, the U.S. before Trump) are, refuse to do.

Why? Because they are afraid to offend Muslims.  For some reason, they are under the guise that Muslim is the religion of peace. If this is true, if Muslims are peaceful, then why are we so afraid to offend them?

I actually got that quote from Rush Limbaugh from his May 24, 2017, show. The full extent of the quote is this:
I have a question, ladies and gentlemen. If Islam is so peaceful, why is everybody so damn frightened of offending them? And on the other hand, if Christianity is so violent as people like Whoopi Goldberg and others tell us, why is nobody afraid to offend Christians? People laugh at, make fun of, and mock Christians all day long with no fear whatsoever. But you so much as think anything offensive about Islam, and they descend on you and they accuse you of violating political correctness and they beg you to shut up.
After the terror attack in the United Kingdom, the Mayor of London said that terrorists were nothing more than a nuisance, or "part and parcel" to living in a big city. That they will just have to learn to deal with. Suck it up!

This is poppycock! Tell that to the people who died as a result of this terrorist act. Tell that to all the people who died in the many, many, many acts of terror perpetrated by Muslims over the past 16 years. It's ridiculous.

Here is another example of the ridiculousness of how the left responds to terror. In an act of solidarity to the victims of terror, the French turned out the lights in the Eiffel Tower one night a few days ago. This is the extent to their war on terror, an effort to show solidarity to all those who died due to the effects of terrorism, of which they refuse to admit is caused by Radical Islamist Terrorists, by the way. They can't do it.

They can't say those words due to political correctness. And they are so intent on being politically correct that they have no ideas for solving the problem. That is why there are so many acts of terror. It's because we aren't doing anything to stop. Of course, until Trump comes along.

Then you have people like Trump actually calling them out on it, actually blaming them for the acts of terror they commit, and he is scalded. Trump. You know why they get mad when we speak the truth about Radical Islam. Because in their minds, they somehow see the United States, the west, as the bad guys. Rather than blaming Islam for acts of terror caused by Islamists, they blame the United States.

In fact, they just blame us. Progressives don't want to credit Muslims for their terror acts, they blame us. They blame us. They say we are too arrogant. We are too successful. So, they believe that if we open our borders and let in more Muslims, they will like us more. If we appease them, they will like us more. That is the whole premise behind open borders. That is the whole premise of their political correct policies to these "random acts of terror," as they call them.

So, we have had 16 plus years of open borders. We have had a massive influx of Muslims in to western nations. We have been politically correct to them for 16 years. What has been the result? Less terrorism? No. It's more terrorism. And worse, many of these their heinous acts are insidious: done right side the walls of western nations. Terrorism from within.

Do you want to know the safest country in the world? Do you want to know what country has had zero acts of terror? It is Poland. Poland has a no-Muslim policy, because it has acknowledged who the enemy is. Nearly all the acts of terror are within country's that openly admit Muslims. No offense, but it's just true. It's a fact. And if you don't want to hear the truth, you are a snowflake.

This is not racist to say that. The people who say you are racist for admitting the truth, for stating a fact, are simply politically correct idiots. They are snowflakes.

We know full well who the terrorists are. Nearly 100% of the time they are Muslims. Liberals are afraid to say who they are for fear of being seen as racist. But it is not racist to say that 100% of the acts of terror on U.S. soil were the result of the works and evil deeds of Muslim people.

That is not to say that all Muslims are evil people. Okay? It is saying that some Muslims planning acts of terror against western nations, and they must be stopped. It doesn't even matter why they are doing it: they are. It's a fact. They, for some stupid sick reason, want to kill people. It's not random acts of terror, like Obama said. They are not random. They are planed in cold blood. They are all done under the name of Allah.

The part of this that really boggles my mind is: why don't you ever hear peaceful Muslims speaking out against the acts of terror. Truly, the true radical Muslim's are those who don't speak out. It's obvious that only a few Muslims are evil. So, I ask, why don't the ones who are peaceful stand up and speak out against their brethren?

We are at war. This is not criminal action. When you are at war the rules of engagement must change. You must create border security to keep radical Muslims out. This is not racist: it is smart.

And face it, world leaders beside for Trump do not want to face radical Islamist terror. They don't want to do it. They have no balls. And that is why terrorists continue to get away with it. 

Friday, May 19, 2017

Tax cuts for the wealthy? Busting The Myth

You hear a lot from democrats about how unfair it is to give tax cuts for the wealthy.  One thing that is interesting about this is that most wealthy people do not even pay taxes. You have men like Bill Gates and Warren Buffet chiming that they don't think tax cuts for the wealthy do anything to stimulate an economy. Yet they don't pay taxes, so they don't care if taxes stay high.

Isn't that interesting? And this entire premise that tax cuts are for the wealthy is poppycock to begin with, considering you cannot tax wealth.

Let's use Buffet and Gates as our examples. They do not have jobs, per se. They have their money invested in various places, such as the stock market. That's where they make their money. They do not receive pay checks. In this way, they do not make income. Therefore, they do not pay taxes.

What they do is they collect capital gains. They are affected by the capital gains tax. But they are in no way affected by the income tax.

So, you see, the wealthy, like Buffet and Gates, got wealthy because they made good investments. They did not get wealthy because they were paid a huge salary or wage. So, you can raise the income tax to 90% on the top income bracket -- which is where it was before the John F. Kennedy and Ronald Reagan tax cuts --, and it will have no effect on the truly wealthy.

So, given our economics 101 lesson here, you can see clearly that there is no such thing as tax cuts for the wealthy. Wealth cannot be taxed. They might make some income, but the majority of it is accumulated wealth which cannot be taxed.

So, people that are wealthy, like the Kennedy's, like Warren Buffet, like Bill Gates, they champion for higher taxes, or at the very least don't argue against them, because they don't have to pay taxes anyway. They believe in social justice, where you solve problems by spending other people's money, not their own.

Interestingly, say Donald Trump gets his tax cuts through Congress. It won't be a tax cut for the wealthy. It won't even be a tax cut. What it will be is a tax rate cut. Anyone who pays taxes will see a cut. We discussed how tax cuts increase revenue to the government, they do not decrease revenues in my last post.

If Trump cut taxes, it would not be on the wealthy, unless you consider the 48% of people in this country who actually pay taxes to be wealthy (and, by the way, that's not even possible).

Further Reading:

Monday, May 15, 2017

Tax Cuts Do Not Cause Reductions In Federal Income -- They Increase Revenue

In order to put people back to work, Donald Trump has proposed legislation that would drastically cut taxes for both individuals and businesses. But democrats, and some republicans too, say this might backfire as it will also reduce income to the Federal government. Where did this rumor that increasing taxes increases Federal revenue come from anyway? It's a fallacy.

Rush Limbaugh gives a perfect example of how lowering taxes generates more government revenue thatn tax increases. He said,
"If it’s hard to understand lowering tax rates and increasing revenue, let me ask you this. Have you ever seen a store put things on sale? Obviously you have. Why do they do it? Why do they lower the cost of certain things to entice you to come in and buy them? Well, because they’ll sell more of it. The lower the price of an item, the more likely people are to buy it, and the more people that buy it, the more are sold, by lowering the price. When airlines are feeling the heat of competition, what do they do? They lower fares. If one airline lowers ’em, they all have to on the same routes. Or they’ll throw you off, right, or kill your rabbit, but don’t confuse me here.
On a government-run transportation system, what happens? When the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey is in a crunch and it’s not collecting enough money, what do they do? They stupidly raise fares. They do not try to get more people riding; they rip off the people who still are by charging them more. Does it ever work? Why don’t they reduce fares? Why don’t they lower the price of going across a bridge or getting on the subway? They never do. Well, I can’t say never. But you know as well as I do that mostly those costs increase. When a business raises the price of an item that you’re used to paying X for, are you more likely to go out and buy it again, or less likely, maybe look for someplace else to get something like it, something close to it? 
Look, this is simple math. It’s not even arguable. The Democrats have so corrupted our understanding of economics and productivity that lowering tax rates is now considered to be some kind of sop to the rich. I mean, it’s just profound to me, the damage inflicted on this country by the Democrats in their pursuit of perpetual power.
So true.

References and further reading:

Monday, May 8, 2017

Free College Will Not Work

Bernie Sanders has proposed making college free.  He says, per his website, that no one should be denied a college education due to lack of ability to pay. And no one should leave college with a mountain of debt. Then Hillary Clinton jumped on the bandwagon.

I would like to contend, that while this sounds nice on the surface, a further inspection reveals that it would not work, and would essentially make your education worthless.

First off, let us assume that the supply of teachers stays the same. It is already hard to get qualified people to teach, so if the number of students increases, the number of teachers should also increase. If the number of teachers increases somehow, there's a likelihood you will be watering down the education people get, and it will be worthless on that face alone.

Assuming the supply of teachers stays the same, and the demand for sitting in a class with these teachers increases (which it will, because it's free), then going by economics 101, the price will increase. Schools need to make a profit, and if they see there is an unending supply of students, then they will simply make those who do attend their schools pay more. This is just how it is in a capitalistic society.

Now, on the other hand, say Bernie or Hillary decides to solve this problem by setting price controls for schools. If this happens, professors won't make as much money, and the incentive to become a teacher will be eliminated. Now no one will want to be a college professor.

Assuming the most qualified professors are already on the job, and other qualified professors choose some other higher paying job (or just stay put where they are), that means Universities and Colleges will be forced to hire less qualified professors, thus diminishing the quality of education, making it worthless.

If you're saying colleges won't raise the cost of education, just consider the states that have already provide "free college."  If you think college is free, then wait until you get the tax bill. Do your own research here and let me know what you learn.

All these aside, there is yet another reason free college would make your education useless. One of the reasons you get paid what you do is because the supply of those seeking to do what you do remains relatively low. However, if there is an influx of people wanting to become what you are or want to be, this will cause employers to lower the price.

This is economics 101 here. If the supply goes up, the price will go down. Your college education will be useless. You might as well just skip college and get the best paying job you can that doesn't require a secondary education.

If the progressives get their way, everyone should make the same wage anyway, as this is the entire premise of socialism -- equality for everyone. They see it as if everyone is equal then everyone is a winner. However, the reality of it all is, if everyone is equal, then everyone is also a loser. If everyone is equal, then everyone gets paid the same and everyone will end up in poverty. Worded another way: if everyone is equal, everyone is poor.

And there you have socialism. In a nutshell. This is another example of how socialism fails everywhere it's tried. It looks good. It sounds good. It probably even feels good. But it never works. It has never worked, and I'm certain it will never work.

So, if you think you don't get paid enough already, just wait until the price to become what you are drops. And if any or all of this happens, what's the point of getting an education?

Monday, May 1, 2017

FDR: How he kept getting re-elected

FDR raised taxes to unprecedented levels. He ordered Americans to sell their gold or face prosecution. He jailed people who spoke out against his policies. He put Japanese Americans in Concentration camps. He threatened businessmen with even higher taxes if they didn't support his programs.

Utterly said, despite what we learn in schools, FDR was a scary President. And many people knew he was scary, and knew his programs were making the economy worse rather than better. Despite this, he kept getting re-elected. How?

I have the answers:
  1. He used the IRS and FBI to prosecute people who did not agree with him, and therefore many Americans were simply too scared to oppose him
  2. Many Americans were afraid if they opposed him they would have their federal relief funds taken away.
  3. Many business men were threatened with higher taxes if they opposed him and he won, and therefore they were threatened to vote for FDR.
  4. FDR pushed up his opposition and therefore the people were unable to learn about the fact FDR's policies were contrary to improving the economy.
  5. He created his programs to buy votes, and used his programs to shut up those who spoke out against him. By doing this, he won re-election three times.
  6. Local political opponents of FDR had to keep quiet lest FDR hunt them down with the IRS or FBI or cut other programs to their liking.
  7. He used subsidies and political capital, money and tools to get re-elected. He was first to buy votes with the very programs he created. So, however, unpopular his programs were, he kept getting re-elected.
  8. He also used political subsidies to punish enemies and reward friends.
  9. Special Interests who lobbied in favor of FDR got special subsidies and were favored for government loans.
  10. FDR used government expenditures to persuade voters. He was the best at doing this.
  11. In 1936 before the Presidential election, FDR added 300,000 to the work relief program (WPA). In the months following the election, 300,000 were removed from the WPA.
  12. Work Relief expenditures increased sharply -- 268% increase from fall of 1935 to the fall of 1936 -- the biggest increase of 3,663% was in Pennsylvania, a swing state that Hoover had carried in 1932, and FDR specially targeted in 1936.
  13. A plan was in place to make sure the Soil conservation Service checks arrived in Farm households before the election of 1936 to ensure votes for FDR -- 4 farm states were in the balance.
  14. Alf Landon said "If he (FDR) did not have $5 billion (of WPA money to dole out) his election would be very much in doubt.
  15. FDR ran on this issue with signs saying, "Relief for Votes," subtitled "will the American people accept the imputation that their votes can be bought with relief money." Another leaflet said, "If we don't stop the New Deal the nation will go bankrupt.
  16. Funny thing, Landon tried to win votes by denouncing government programs, but he had to do it without alienating the increasingly large number of voters who had Federal jobs, or hoped to have them. In this sense, republicans couldn't get re-elected even though FDR's programs were unpopular.
  17. Landon hailed before cheering crowd at Madison Square Garden that it was bad to use "public money for political purposes" as FDR was doing. He said, "I am against the principles of the AAA and... the concentration of power in the3 hands of the Chief executive."
  18. Republican problem since 1936 was that they risked offending the 10,000 voters working in federal programs if they hailed for cutting government programs to balance the budget. (this is actually a problem that is ongoing to this day). This is also why many republicans get caught in the trap of increasing government programs to buy votes.
  19. He got people excited about voting who normally don't vote, such as young people and blacks
In a sense, the progressives of Teddy Roosevelt and Woodrow Wilson and FDR started a slippery slope that resulted in an Obama Presidency with our Trillions of dollars in debt and so many government programs we have to borrow from China to pay for it.

Quite often the Presidency is not won by character alone as it was in the past. Now, once elected, a president can buy votes by creating and doling out subsidies.
Material for the above posts came from the following sources:

Further reading and references.

Monday, April 17, 2017

What is federalism?

What is Federalism? Because "Fed" is in federalism, many people think that it means a large government. It's a system where people in Washington decide what's best for the people. What is being defined here is liberalism. What is being defined here is fascism.

What is Federalism really? It's actually the opposite of a large government. It's a system where the people closest to a problem solve the problem. If you have a spill in your house, the people most capable of knowing how to remedy the problem is not a person sitting at a $1,000 desk in Washington. It is the person overlooking the spill. It's the person living in the house.

So, Federalism is a system where the communities closest to a problem solve the problem. This is why local communities do a vast majority of things. They decide where stop signs go. They decide where city parks go. They decide what rules should be in the park, and what signs should be up. They decide opening hours for parks. They decide closing hours. They decide how many workers there should be. They decide wages. When there is a problem, they solve it.

If you relied on Washington to solve problems, you have to go through all the red tape. You have to go through all the bureaucrats. By the time the problem gets solves, all these bureaucrats will have to have learned about it. They would have to get paid. And this takes time. So, the non-Federalist problem costs twice as much money and takes twice as much time.

But you want your water spill cleaned up right now. So you do it yourself. That's called Federalism. It's solving most problems locally.

It's a system where the people closest to the problem directly see it, deal with it, repair it.

The founding fathers understood the importance of this. That is why they made it so hard to create a large government. They wanted the smallest government as possible. That is why the 10th amendment says, "All that is not covered in this Constitution is reserved to the states (which is the people)."

They wanted the federal government should be limited, small, and uninvolved in local events.

What is the role of the Fed, then? The Federal government is only supposed to do what the States cannot do, and the best example of this is wage war. The states cannot wage war. They can't because they would never decide what to do in a timely manner. There would be disputes. So, this is where Congress, and the President, have to make quick decisions based on the facts they have on hand.

The states also wouldn't have been able to decide on and organize an interstate highway system. So this had to be organized by the Feds. The Feds are responsible for keeping the nation safe, for securing the borders, and for creating a good economic environment where the people can prosper. That is it.

The states decide on abortion, education, healthcare, welfare, bathroom laws, etc. That's Federalism. The powers not delegated to the government is left up to the states to decide. Those who rule otherwise are "liberally" defining the Constitution and the Founding intentions.

Monday, April 10, 2017

Why trump's tariffs may not work

There are a lot of people who don't like free trade agreements because they work to the disadvantage of Americans. American companies move their factories to other countries where labor is cheaper, and then they sell their products to Americans at a lower price. Trump said this strategy has resulted in the loss of over 70,000 U.S. industries, and many jobs to boot. His plan is to raise the tariff to, I think, something around 30%.

This sounds like a good idea, but it probably won't work. The reason is because industries don't pay taxes; corporations don't pay taxes. If a tariff is imposed, companies would put some of that tariff into the price of the product. They would put some of it at wholesale price, some of it in retail price, and some of it out of their marketing budget. They might write the check to pay the tax (the tariff), but the money is going to come from the consumer at the end of the line. 

Then, if this results in a price of air conditioners that are too high, then the product won't be sold in America. However, if Trump can use this threat to get companies to stay in the United States, all the power to him. And so far this seems to be working. So far, Ford is staying, and so is Carrier, an so are other companies Trump has negotiated with. So long as he continues to succeed at keeping such industries in the U.S., then there will be no tariff.

And this might be his plan all along. Trump is not stupid. He knows that high tariffs won't work. He has to know that. He has to know it because I wrote about it before right here

Monday, April 3, 2017

Common Phrases Often Misused

Liberalism is very unpopular. So, one method liberals often use is to create happy names for unhappy and unpopular phrases. Here are a few good examples.

1.  Global warming theory is real. They say global warming to make the theory look like a fact. What they really should say, to be accurate, would be "Man-made global warming." In fact, there hasn't been any rise in global temperatures since the mid-1990s. Global warming isn't even a real theory. What it really is is an excuse for liberals to raise taxes and increase regulations to advance their agenda.

2.  Climate change is real. Conservatives have been chiming for years that the climate is always changing.  So, when global temperatures quit rising, they changed the name of their theory to "Climate Change." Again, what they really mean to say is "Man-made climate change." So they poll people, and they say, "Do you believe in climate change?" Most people are going to say "yes" to this. A more accurate question would be, "Do you believe in man-made climate change." A majority of Americans do not.

3.  The term liberal. Liberal used to be about human liberty and its gradual progression. It was about freedom and limited government. It was about the progression of freedom and liberty. It was about limited government. Nearly every President from Thomas Jefferson to Grover Cleveland were considered liberals.  This all changed with the progressive movement of the early 20th century. . When word got out that progressives were the American version of fascists or communists, the term progressive soured. So, when FDR was president, they changed their name -- or abducted the term -- liberal. Ironically, fascism is the antithesis of freedom and liberty. But, this didn't matter, as the name stuck. This forced historians to start referring to liberals like Thomas Jefferson and Grover Cleveland as classical liberals. Modern liberals (of the true sense, that is) refer to themselves as either libertarians or conservatives. Read "What is fascism?"

4.  The U.S. is a democracy. The founding fathers understood that most democracies ended up run by tyrannical dictators. This is because, in order for a true democracy to be effective, all the people must stay up to date on all the issues, and they must all participate in debates and voting. Usually, with ancient Greece and Rome as our best example,, most people are too busy to participate, and so this creates an environment for a dictator -- like Caesar -- to take over. The founding fathers did not want that to happen in the U.S. In fact, they didn't like democracies. So, they chose to form a republic in the U.S. That said, we are a republic, not a democracy. Read: "America is a republic, not a democracy."

5.  Donald Trump and his proponents are anti-immigrant. He is not anti-immigrant. This is just a phrase used by liberals and the media to make Trump look worse than he really is. Trump, and most Americans, are anti-illegal immigrant. They want to keep illegal aliens in an effort to keep our nation safe and secure.

6.  The Affordable Care Act is Necessary. The affordable care act was named to make something that no one wanted sound good. The truth to the matter is that it is not affordable. Premiums for most people have skyrocketed since the advent of the ACA. In fact, premiums are so high, deductibles are so high, that most people with insurance can't even use it.

7.  Russians hacked the election. The Russians did not hack the election. They hacked emails. They tried to hack emails at the republican national committee headquarters and failed. They tried to hack emails at the democratic national committee headquarters and succeeded. However, they did not hack the elections. This is impossible. It's impossible because the polls, polling booths, are not connected to the Internet. So, it's impossible for polls to be hacked. It's impossible for the American election to be hacked. This is the exact reason voting is not done on the Internet.

The bottom line is that liberals cannot tell you the truth. They cannot refer to something as it actually is, because they would never be able to advance their agenda if they did. In order for liberals to advance their agenda, in order for liberal candidates to become elected, they have to pretend to be conservatives. This is what FDR did. 

Wednesday, March 15, 2017

Joseph McCarthy was right after all

Joseph McCarthy
Joseph McCarthy was a U.S. Senator who stormed into office during the 1946 mid-term elections which saw the republican party take over Congress for the first time since 1930.

He would become famous in 1950 for claiming that he suspected there were over 50 Soviet/ Communist sympathizers in the FDR and Truman White House. Considering that liberals had control of much of the country, and the minds of millions of Americans, he was laughed at and scorned to an early death.

The media still talks about McCarthy in a negative way, even though he has essentially been vindicated. Unfortunately, he would not be vindicated for another 41 years, or until the Soviet Union fell.  Once this happened, the U.S. released secret documents it didn't want to release during the Cold War for fear of hurting any efforts of winning the Cold War. These secret documents were the Vinova Accords.

In 1991, after the fall of the Soviet Union, the U.S. released secret documents it didn't want to release during the Cold War for fear of hurting any efforts of winning the Cold War. These secret documents were the Venona Files.

The Venona Files showed (proved) that not only was McCarthy right about there being 50 soviet spies working for the FDR/ Truman administrations, there was over 300 spies.

Still, you don't hear much about this outside the conservative sphere. You will never learn this in the liberal public school systems. You will never learn about this by the liberal media. For this reason, many people still view McCarthy as a bad man who falsely accused people of being Communists. When, in truth, the evidence, if we so choose to check it out, shows that McCarthy was right.

In effect, we should consider McCarthy a hero rather than a villain. He would go on to serve as a Senator until 1957, until he died an untimely death. Some say he was ridiculed so much that he was driven to alcoholism, and died of hepatitis.

Tuesday, March 14, 2017

Democrats out of touch with reality

The best way to describe democrats is by saying they are out of touch with reality. Here are some examples.

1.  Muslim Ban. They call Trumps ban on immigrants from seven countries a "Muslim ban." It's not a Muslim ban: 80 terrorists have come into our country from those countries. So, it's about security. It's a temporary ban on immigration from those countries until we can come up with a strategy for properly vetting these people to make sure terrorists are not going to enter our country. There are 40 other countries that are about 50 Muslim nations, and this is only seven, so there's no way you can call it a Muslim ban. If anything, it's a terrorist ban.

2.  Travel ban is unconstitutional. They are activist judges. Rather than deciding on the Constitutionality of the travel ban, they made their decision based on their opinion. They decided the morality of the ban, rather than the Constitutionality. This is not what they are supposed to be doing here. They aren't supposed to use any information other than the law. Is the law (or, in this case, executive action) legal or illegal? It cannot be illegal in this case, because the Constitution only applies to American Citizens. The people coming (or trying to come) into our country from other nations are not even citizens. So, it's impossible for the travel ban to be unconstitutional. Plus, by holding it up, terrorists are entering our nation and putting our nation at risk. Do democrats not care? Do democrats want terrorists to enter our great nation?

3  Taxing wealth. Democrats talk often about taxing wealth. They say that the wealthy "need" to pay their "fair share." But you cannot tax wealth. The only thing you can tax is income, and many wealthy people do not make income. This is why they want Trump to release his tax forms, because they will probably find that he doesn't make income, and they will tromp on this. They will say, "See, he's a greedy rich person who doesn't pay taxes; he doesn't pay his fair share." That's what democrats do, they twist the truth to their own benefit.

4  Public schools. They keep talking about how our public school system is getting worse because we aren't funding it well enough. "What we need to do is throw more money at it," they say. Well, prior to the 1960s, hardly any federal funds went toward education, and the U.S. had the #1 educational system in the world. Since the progressives took over the school system under the guise of, "We have to do something," we have gone from #1 in many areas to as low as 17. And no one calls them on this. The truth is that taxpayers put forth $536 billion per year just to fund Kindergarten through 12th grade, and this is more than is spent on national defense, according to the Department of Education. From 1991-91 to current, the federal share of K-12 spending increased from 5.7-8.3%.  Despite this increase, Education in our country has not improved. According to CBS News, the U.S. spent $15,171 per student in 2010, which is above every other developed nation. As, per example: Switzerland spent $14,922, Mexico spent $2,993. The average was $9,313 per student. As a percentage of GDP in 2010, the U.S. spent 7.3% on education, higher than any other developed nation. The average is 6.3. While it might make people feel good to keep increasing this funding, it has not resulted in better education. The problem is the system is broken. You keep throwing more money at a broken system and nothing improves (money just gets wasted).

Russians hacked the election. The Russians hacked emails of democrats like John Podesta. they hacked his emails and they ended up on Wikileaks. They made the democrats look really made. They made the people aware of how crooked they are. There were CNN reporters giving Hillary questions prior to the Clinton-Trump debates, for example. The Russians did not hack the elections. In fact, it's impossible for them to hack the elections, because the polls are not even connected to the Internet. There has not been a shred of evidence to prove this story. In fact, even the media admit that the leaks coming from Washington were so juicy they had to go with it, despite a lack of evidence. If anything, this proves media bias. They did not drop this story until Trump called their bluff and claimed that Obama tapped the trump tower. If true, this would be the biggest scandal in U.S. history. However, if proved false, would prove the story of Russian hacking to be nothing more than a hoax. So, the media had no choice but to drop this story.

6 They believe there is a limited supply of money, and if one person (or country) is rich, it comes at the expense of everyone else.  For example, if Donald Trump gets rich, hundreds or thousands of people are trapped in poverty as a result. If the United States is the wealthiest nation, it comes at the expense of other nations. It is under this belief that they think the U.S. is the cause of the world's problems, not the example of exeptionalism. This is why they believe it's important to take from the wealthy and give to the poor (redistribute wealth). This is why they want to keep our borders open, to allow the impoverished from other nations to come in and get a piece of the pie. The problem is this is not true. The truth is, prior to the United States, 98% of the people of the world were impoverished. The United States (and this is what American Exceptionalism is) showed the world that, when natural rights are protected, when the government is limited, EVERY person has a chance make something of their dreams. The U.S. Constitution, therefore, created an environment where any person can rise up and become something. Every person has an opportunity to get rich. However, they are going to have to make the effort, they are going to have to dream and dream big, and they are going to have to be willing to relocate. It's not guarantee that they will succeed, but at least it's the only system ever created whereby anyone can become rich. Of course, democrats will say it's an unfair advantage, but even the poor can rise up if they are willing to make the effort.

7. History begins the day you are born. This is how many millennials think. This is a direct result of liberals controlling our public school systems. They do not teach about what life was like prior to the founding fathers. Sure, they teach history, but they don't teach about American exceptionalism. So, as a result, most young people today think history began the day they were born. This gives them a warped view of history, causing them to miss out on many of the lessons that have already been learned.

8.  They want diversity, but they don't want diversity of thought. They love colleges like the University of Michigan, where you will see people from many nations together in one place. That's fine. The problem is that they are opposed to free thought. The reality is, if you are, say, a Trump fan, and you speak up, you will be mocked and ridiculed. You will be an outcast. The reality is that there is very little diversity in their world at least not if you have an opposing view. 

9. Choice. They are all for choice. They want you to be able to choose to kill an unborn baby, they want you to be able to choose what sex you are, they want you to be able to choose to marry someone of the same gender, they want you to be able to choose to live with your parents until you are 40 years old. But, you are not allowed to choose anything that opposes their political stance. You cannot choose to pray in public schools. You cannot choose to accept vouchers to send your kids to the best schools (assuming the schools in your area are not acceptable to you). You cannot choose to not have healthcare (thanks to Obamacare). The reality is, while they say they are for choice, they are actually opposed to it.

10.  They say they are for free speech, while directly opposing it when the free speech comes from those who disagree with them. If you oppose global warming, they mock you. They say things like, "Do you  believe in gravity?"  If you want to reform social security to assure that it will be around for another 100 years, they say things like, "Do you want to throw grandma off the cliff?"  If you attack their programs, policies, or beliefs, they call you names: "Racist, homophobe, offensive, hateful." The reality is that conservatives want to help the poor and down trodden just as the liberals do, but conservatives have a different approaches to doing so.  Conservatives trust in the free market, for one thing. Conservatives believe people are smarter, closer to the problem, and better capable of making the best decisions than elites in Washington.

11.  Taxes make more money for the government. Democrats believe the best way to fund government programs is to raise taxes. However, the reality is, at least according to the Laffer Curve, raising taxes makes money for the government up to a certain point. Once this point is crossed, revenue from taxes starts to decline. Here's an example. If taxes are 20%, rich people say, "Fine. I will just pay it. It's not worth the trouble to not pay it." Now, if taxes are 40%, they start to say, "Let's see if we can find ways to get around paying it." Here's some more evidence. Harding/ Coolidge, Kennedy, Reagan, and Bush all cut taxes, and the result of all four instances was a near doubling of the national income over the ensuing 10 years. This never once even came close to happening when taxes were elevated (i.e. when taxes were 90% after WWII).

12.  Trump is the only person to impose travel bans. It's not true.  Even Obama did this. Obama banned people from Iran from coming here. Many presidents have banned immigrants from entering the U.S. Obama did it 10 times. Clinton did it 12 times. They requested bans because they decided they could not guarantee those coming in from certain countries were not terrorists. They needed time. they needed help. The best example was a complete ban on immigration from the 1920s to the 1960s. In the 1920s, Coolidge signed a bill banning all immigrants from entering the U.S. This ban stood until Johnson became president in the 1960s. The ban was in place because there was a massive uptick in immigration from the 1880s to 1920s, and we wanted to make sure they had time to assimilate. It was also done because terrorists were coming into our country from Europe. They were radical, left wing socialist terrorists. So, it has been done before, and it is Constitutional. That is the reality.