Steve G.

Posts Tagged ‘Federal Reserve’

A House Majority for Federal Reserve Audit

In Austrian Economics, Corruption, Economics, Libertarian, Media, Personal Responsibility, Press Release, Ron Paul on June 11, 2009 at 8:56 pm

In a March 10th speech on the House floor, Ron Paul said, “I have introduced a bill, it’s called H.R. 1207, and this would remove the restriction on us to find out what the Federal Reserve is doing.  Today, the Federal Reserve under the law is not required to tell us anything.”

Earlier today, Paul’s Federal Reserve Transparency Act of 2009 (H.R. 1207) received its 218 cosponsors in the House of Representatives.  The significance of this number is that it represents a majority of House representatives.  The 218th co-sponsor, according to a press release released today by Dr. Paul’s congressional office says that the 218th co-sponsor was none other than Paul’s friend Dennis Kuchinich.

“The tremendous grass-roots and bipartisan support in Congress for H.R. 1207 is an indicator of how mainstream America is fed up with Fed secrecy,” said Congressman Paul.  “I look forward to this issue receiving greater public exposure.”

As do we all.  The Federal Reserve board was created in 1913 by an act of Congress to help big bankers do what they could not do on a free market: cartelise the banking industry.  The Fed today sets the interest rates instead of allowing the market to set the interest rates.  It also lowers the reserve ratio required for banks to 10%.  This means that banks are given the statist luxury of lending out up to 90% of the money you put into it.  The Fed uses these controls to encourage or discourage lending at its own discretion—a discretion that is always inevitably tainted by politics.  The Austrian school of economics holds that this manipulation of the money supply is the prime, if not the sole, cause of the business cycle.

Anti-Fed sentiments have been on the rise ever since the Fed-created housing bubble burst in 2008.  For more on this, see Dr. Thomas E. Woods’s excellent book Meltdown.  For a basic overview of the Fed itself, see the Ludwig von Mises Institute’s fantastic documentary 42-minute Money, Banking, and the Federal Reserve. (Don’t be scared by the title, the documentary really is fascinating!)

Right now, the number of co-sponsors on Paul’s bill is up to 222.  Hearings on Federal Reserve transparency are expected within the next month, “as part of the Financial Services Committee’s series of hearings on regulatory reform.”  This is the same committee chaired by the notorious Barney Frank.  Despite some clear flaws on his part regarding Fanny and Freddie, he has been a critic of the Federal Reserve system.

An identical bill, titled the Federal Reserve Sunshine Act of 2009 (S. 604), was introduced on March 16th in the Senate by the independent from Vermont, Bernard Sanders.  Thus far, the Senate version has no co-sponsors.

—Alexander S. Peak

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The Powers to Raise and to Spend Taxes (Liberal Libertarians Discussion Topic #01)

In Boston Tea Party, Charles Jay, Congress, Corruption, Democracy, Economics, Fraud, History, Law, Libertarian Party-US, Libertarian Politics, Politics, Pork, Spending, Taxation, Thomas L. Knapp, US Government, War on April 15, 2009 at 7:29 pm

The single greatest factor behind the rise and development of the English Parliament was taxation. What very quickly developed, and what lasted until the British Monarchy lost its functional power as a part of government and became a marginalized figurehead position (which happened over the course of the 1800s) was that the power to SPEND tax money was separated from the power to RAISE tax money. Under that system, only Parliament could RAISE tax money but only the Monarch could SPEND tax money. If the Monarch wanted to spend anything (for wars, his houses and mistresses, public building projects, anything) they had to convince Parliament to raise the necessary tax monies and give those money to him 9or her). Likewise, if Parliament wanted money spent on anything in particular, they had to convince the Monarch to agree to spend raised money in such ways. The inherent conflict within the system required negotiation and compromise from both sides. Sometimes one side would be more powerful than the other and would dictate to the other. Likewise, Kings would often not actually spend money as they agreed to. THOSE situations would lead to further conflicts in the future. Sometimes the Monarchs would simply get sick of their Parliaments and would dismiss them and not call another to replace it, but then the King could not raise any money. In those situations, the losers would usually be the common people who were hurt by both sides.

One of the main sources of conflicts between Monarchs and Parliaments (as in ALL nations) was the exorbitant costs of the wars which the Monarchs would want to fight. Because of the unique circumstances of both WWII and the Viet Nam war, Americans now think that wars create profit. They do not. Wars are and always have been burdensome drains on the public coffers. Monarchs want wars for various reasons, but those wars HAVE to be paid for… even in a dictatorship… and, historically, most wars bankrupt their nations as well as the other nations involved. Look at the current situation with our undeclared wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. Let’s not even get into the cost to human life or to property, let us just look at the actual fiscal cost to fight them, clean them up, care for our veterans afterwards, intelligence… all of it. The problem is, in America, because of the way the power to raise and spend tax monies is allocated, the dialogue is usually focused on questioning the patriotism of those who disagree with one side; on attempts to gain power by individuals, parties, factions, ideologies or branches of government; or is hurting our ability to deal with OTHER national priorities by saying we can’t question the money we spend on our wars so we cut the pennies in order to be able to keep throwing away the dollars.

So… in all of the discussion we hear these days about taxes, we are still simply talking about the ‘symptom’ of actual taxation rather than trying to explore the root causes of the actual problems. To ME, the issue is not whether or not taxes are too high, or if they are properly spent, it is that there is no incentive or system in place to DISCOURAGE spending OR raising tax money. If you give the people who have the power to SPEND your money the additional power of determining how MUCH of your money they can take you have the fox guarding the hen house. To me, before we talk about the very real issues of tax codes and policies in America, we need to talk about the basic powers involved in the fundamental issue of taxation.

Here is my personal idea, to start the ball rolling:

01.) ONLY The House of Representatives should have the power to RAISE tax monies. The functions of government which deal with raising and accounting for the expenditures of those monies should be placed under the authority of The House… the people’s house of government. I think that the IRS is the wrong organization for our nation but before it can be dismantled, we need to figure out something to take its place because its ROLE is, and will be necessary. We can NOT destroy something which has such a key role in the operation of our government (whether it SHOULD or should NOT HAVE that role is irrelevant… it does and it must be dealt with as a reality). The House should be completely in charge of our nation’s checking and savings account. This would result in Representatives keeping THEIR jobs in large part based on how they keep taxes low.

02.) ONLY the Senate should have the power to SPEND tax monies. The functions of government which deal with purchasing, contracting, supervising, etc. the expenditures of those monies should be placed under the authority of The Senate. The Senate should be completely in charge of our nation’s checkbooks, passbooks, and ATM cards. This would result in Senators keeping THEIR jobs in large part based on how much swag they can send back home.

03.) The President should be the mediator that coordinates the efforts of the two house of Congress and makes the deals. The President would also be the one who would make sure that all agreements between the two houses on both the raising AND the spending of tax monies would be followed to the letter. The President would be the one who makes sure that every side is honest with the other. The President would also be the one who signs off on all agreements (budgets) and certifies them as satisfying all sides and being in the best interest of the American people.

04.) All three parties involved (The House, The Senate and The Executive Branch) would have complete and unrestricted access to all records, notes, documents, EVERYTHING made or kept by any of the other parties regarding ANY issue regarding or relating to taxes. Further, all finalized, ratified and signed budgets and expenditure agreements shall have full force as LAWS for their durations and any violations of any parts if those agreements and budgets can be prosecuted as such, with the individuals responsible for those violations… ALL individuals at ALL levels up and down the ‘food chain’… being PERSONALLY accountable and liable for those violations (whether it is a Senator, the members of a specific committee, or a clerk who signs a check… EVERYONE is accountable and THUS has the motivation to be honest and above board about all actions and decisions regarding taxes).

05.) All three parties involved (The House, The Senate and The Executive Branch) would create a non-partisan, non-governmental committee or board, to which they will all appoint an equal number of members, which has the power and authority to review and mediate all agreements and violations and to make final and binding non-partisan decisions regarding the same when there are ANY questions about or challenges to finalized agreements or budgets which deal with tax monies and their expenditures. Each state would also get to choose one or two members of this board. Obviously all of the exact details would need to be carefully studied and worked out.

06.) SOMEHOW, The Federal Reserve and The National Bank (and any other such relevant entities) would be brought back under full federal control and incorporated into this who system… somehow.

No matter what our own personal and unrealistic idealistic vision of our government is, taxes are real, they are not going to go away and they ARE necessary. What WE need to do is to try to figure out how to make the system work better and fairer so that it can be a positive factor in our society rather than one which puts us at each others. throats.

Ok, those are my initial thoughts. What can anyone else contribute? How can anyone else make these ideas better or give us different ideas which are better? What can we do with this?

Recommended Readings for people interested in this topic are:

1.)For Good and Evil (Second Edition): The Impact of Taxes on the Course of Civilization
By: Charles Adams (Tax Scholar and Historian, Cato Institute Fellow) http://www.amazon.com/Good-Evil-Second-Impact-Civilization/dp/1568332351/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&s=books&qid=1224912619&sr=1-1

2.)Those Dirty Rotten taxes: The Tax Revolts that Built America
By: Charles Adams (Tax Scholar and Historian, Cato Institute Fellow) http://www.amazon.com/Those-Dirty-Rotten-taxes-Revolts/dp/0684871149/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&s=books&qid=1238470625&sr=1-1

Rhys M. Blavier
Romayor, Texas

© 2009 by Rhys M. Blavier

Thank you for reading this article. Please read my other articles and let me know what you think. I am writing them not to preach or to hear myself think but to try to create dialogs, debates and discussions on the nature of our government and how we can build upon and improve it based on what we have seen and learned over the course of the 225 years of The American Experiment.

To discuss this topic, the discussion thread is going on here: http://blavier.newsvine.com/_news/2009/04/15/2688338-the-powers-to-raise-and-to-spend-taxes-liberal-libertarian-discussion-topic-01

U.S. going the way of Soviet Union (in more ways than one)

In Libertarian on September 17, 2008 at 3:00 pm

An article I wrote for Amateur Economists:

First, Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac were seized—Communist style—by the federal government. Then Lehman Brothers—which was worth $45 billion as recently as November—announced plans to file for bankruptcy. And now AIG, formerly one of the largest companies in the world, has been taken over by the Federal Reserve.

In 2000, American International Group, an insurance giant, was worth $250 billion. As late as August of 2008, the market set the battered company’s value at $80.4 billion. But following heavy losses on “Black Monday” (September 15, 2008) and the following day, AIG’s market cap now stands at just $10 billion—down over 94% for the year.

What Austrian Economists Knew All Along

These losses may be unprecedented, but they’re not unpredicted. Theorists from the Austrian school of economics have been prognosticating the implosion of the fiat-money-fueled financial system for decades. And according to Cato Adjunct Scholar Dr. Robert Higgs, we haven’t seen anything yet.

Higgs, who’s also a Senior Fellow at the Independent Institute and an Adjunct Scholar at the Ludwig von Mises Institute, predicts that many more financial dominoes will fall, with the end game being the collapse of Social Security and Medicare. “The question is not whether they will fail, but when,” Higgs says, “and then how the government that can no longer sustain them in their previous Ponzi-scheme form will alter them to salvage what little can be salvaged with minimal damage to the government itself.”

Higgs compares what he sees as the impending collapse of the U.S. financial system to what happened to the Soviet Union. And he points out that Keynesian economists—such as textbook king Paul Samuelson—didn’t see the Russian collapse coming, just like they didn’t see the collapse of Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac. Austrian theorists, however, did.

Read the rest.

Federal Reserve taking over troubled insurance giant AIG

In Libertarian on September 16, 2008 at 8:34 pm

According to the New York Times, the Federal Reserve is close to a deal bailing out insurance giant AIG.  In exchange for an 80% stake in the company, the Fed will provide AIG with an $85 billion loan.

Best libertarian speech ever

In Libertarian on September 4, 2008 at 12:57 am

Heroic speech about the Federal Reserve by Tom Woods. Less than excellent quality, but definitely worth watching.

Still think people ‘don’t care’ about the Federal Reserve?

In Libertarian on September 2, 2008 at 5:02 pm

Then I guess you aren’t watching the Rally for the Republic today, where mentioning its abolition has provoked unmatched levels of enthusiasm several times.

The first time the Fed was mentioned, there was a long standing ovation and chants of “end the Fed!” The same thing has happened virtually every other time the subject has come up, and guess what: The Rally for the Republic has drawn a crowd around twenty times the size of the pitiful “Libertarian” National Convention, whose delegates were so stupid and unprincipled as to nominate a CIA operative drug warrior. The Rally for the Republic libertarians are about 1000 times smarter and more dedicated than the 49% in Denver who sold out to Barr.

For the Libertarians who, for whatever reason, want to believe the Fed issue is not a popular one; you’re wrong. For those who don’t think it’s important, watch Thomas Woods’s speech. I’ll post it here as soon as it’s up on YouTube.

New anti-Fed novel equally entertaining, educational, and heroic!

In Libertarian, Media on August 28, 2008 at 5:49 pm

The Flight of the Barbarous Relic puts, in novel form, virtually everything every American needs to know about the Federal Reserve, fiat-money central banking, and monetary history, and it does so following an unadulterated Austrian line, without any conspiracy mongering or Antisemitism — two curses that plague the Honest Money movement. Author George Ford Smith is unique among popular Fed critics in his understanding that the Fed is not bad because it’s a “private bank” that generates “windfall profits” for its “shareholders” — the Fed is bad, truly evil, because it is a government institution designed to provide a blank check for the unbridled growth of the federal government at the expense of liberty.

Oh yes, there has been a conspiracy — but it’s not a “theory,” it’s historical fact. George F. Smith reveals this indisputable truth throughout the course of this 274-page, impossible-to-put-down thriller, and also clearly demonstrates how the Federal Reserve redistributes wealth from the poor to the rich, all within the context of a gripping plot.

The story focuses on a gold-loving, free-market economist who seemingly “sells out” and joins the mainstream, eventually rising to the position of Fed chairman. But his “sell out” was false — he only put on Keynesian/Monetarist (as if there’s a difference) garb in order to infiltrate the Fed so that he could expose and destroy it! I’m not giving anything away here since this happens very early in the book. The heart of the book is how the government reacts to having its deception exposed.

George Ford Smith’s knowledge of monetary history, the nature of government, and the unfortunate ignorance and apathy of the American populace is truly peerless. This book should be heralded by the Mises Institute, LewRockwell.com, and the Ron Paul R3VOLution as the first of hopefully many great works of fiction exposing the truth about the Federal Reserve and the government it sponsors by secretly stealing from the productive class. Five stars are not enough for this heroic effort!

New anti-Fed rap song

In Libertarian on August 24, 2008 at 6:13 pm

Unsigned rap artist Tahir Jahi recently added an anti-Fed song, “Man Make Da Money,” to his MySpace page.

Verse 1
If you don’t know where this nation is headed
our nation is controlled by a system of credit
Woodrow Wilson is the one you can thank
birthed the federal reserve a privately owned bank
took cash and signed that like he never knew
gave control of the states to a chosen few
each dollar bill includes interest from lender
got rid of gold, paper is legal tender

Verse 3
The Fed produces currency for the nation
they control the money, interest rates, and inflation
What I can give in this song is just a fraction
banks owed the gov since the days of Andrew Jackson
make it rain on that stage, claiming you are paid
but you owe interest on those dollars that was made
no Constution, will use our little clause
control the nation’s money who cares about its laws

Tahir Jahi is the fiance of Donyell Jones, a 2006 finalist on So You Think You Can Dance, the most pro-individualist show on network TV.

Although Tahir is clearly more influenced by the Aaron Russo “conspiracy” wing of the anti-Fed movement, his stance reveals the under-the-surface anti-statism, pro-individualism, and pro-capitalist entrepreneurialism of hip hop that is often obfuscated as far Left figures co-opt the “movement” and libertarians do nothing to reach out.

Below is interview footage of Prodigy of the legendary Mobb Deep, in which the interviewer tries to steer him into saying something positive about Obama, but Prodigy insists that Ron Paul is his candidate.

One of Mobb Deep’s album covers prominently featured the dollar bill’s “Illuminati pyramid.”

Also: Prodigy is currently confined in a government animal cage for the “crime” of “unlawful gun possession.” Since it was his “third strike,” he faced 15 years, but plea-bargained to serve 3.5. Conveniently, this has silenced him and his questions about 9/11.

From Freedom To Fascism

In Civil Liberties, Constitutional Rights, Libertarian, Libertarian Party-US, Media on July 29, 2008 at 5:08 pm

I saw Aaron Russo’s “America: From Freedom to Fascism” for the first time the other night. Russo was my second choice for the 2004 Libertarian presidential nomination, and a lot of people had recommended the film, so I was eager to see it at last.

I had mixed feelings about it. In many ways it was several short films glommed together, and Russo seemed to make only a modest attempt to tie it all together. The first third was largely about the history and legality (or lack thereof) of the federal income tax; the second third about the rise of the Federal Reserve; and the final part about radio frequency identification tagging, the move toward mandatory national identification, and the loss of privacy. There was also a clip from Lou Dobbs about the “North American Union” that even the film itself says was just kind of thrown in there.

On the income tax matter, Russo makes a pretty strong case for the argument that no law exists compelling individuals to pay. He is careful to point out that corporate income taxes are indeed legal, but that even the IRS is unwilling or unable to point to any law passed by Congress and affirmed by the Supreme Court that requires mandatory taxation as it now exists. While the argument presented is pretty one-sided, to be fair to Russo that is only because the “other side” refused to offer a rebuttal. The clearest summary of the situation came from Rep. Ron Paul, who in an interview with Russo said that while there is no written income tax law, there is a de facto law in that the government expects you to pay up, the vast majority of the populace is willing to do so, and big guys with guns will haul you off and take away everything you and your family own if you do not.

I thought the film’s segment on the Federal Reserve was its strongest portion, primarily because the Fed is a subject I know next to nothing about. The history of its creation and impact is told in some detail, but Russo did not convince me that I was getting the full story. He did make me want to learn more about the subject for myself, though, and I intend to do so.

The portion on privacy, RFID tagging, and the like dealt with the subject I am most familiar with, and I don’t feel like I learned much that is new. I consider the Democrats’ capitualition on FISA, the entirely predictable abuse of the PATRIOT Act in the investigation of allegations having nothing to do with terrorism, and similar post-9/11 abuses to be a bigger (though obviously related) pressing matter. But Russo’s look at the privacy issue is an important one. I’ll deal with that in my next post.

The Fed’s massive redistribution of wealth today

In Libertarian on July 12, 2008 at 2:05 am

“Freddie Mac” — aka the Federal Home Loan Mortgage Corporation (FHLMC), a government-sponsored enterprise (GSE) that trades on the New York Stock Exchange — closed at $8 a share on Thursday. This morning, it opened at $4.26 a share and fell to an intra-day low of $3.89. Then Ben Bernanke made it known that the Fed would “lend” money to Freddie and its sister Fannie Mae, and the stock rebounded to close at $7.75.

Big deal, you say?

Consider this: The swing from $3.89 to $7.75 represents $2.5 billion in market capitalization (company value). All based on a few words from the Fed’s Fuhrer.

Oh, and Fannie Mae (the Federal National Mortgage Association)? Its one day swing from $6.68 to $10.25 represented even more money, nearly $3.5 billion.

Today, billions of dollars were lost by investors who finally gave in and sold these junk stocks. But they were suckers. They should have known the fascist Fed would offer to bail them out. The “smart guys” did, and they bought up the stocks and turned billions in profits.

Hmm… Do you think it’s impossible that some people knew in advance what Bernanke would say? No, the government would never do something like that for the benefit of private individuals, would it?

The system is crashing. Both Freddie and Fannie are down by more than 80% for the year.

The Austrian/Monetarist split as a proxy for the rift within the LP

In Economics, Libertarian Party-US, Libertarian Politics on July 8, 2008 at 5:52 pm

From Amateur Economists:

“Libertarians are Republicans who smoke pot.” So goes the saying. And most Americans know little else about the Libertarian Party, America’s third largest, or the libertarian political philosophy. So when former Republican congressman Bob Barr announced his candidacy for the LP’s presidential nomination on May 12, the mainstream media assumed he was a shoo-in. After all, he was a Republican and now lobbies for the Marijuana Policy Project—how could someone better fit the popular definition?

But what the media failed to recognize is that many party members don’t consider libertarianism to be a branch of conservatism but, instead, its diametric opposite. These libertarians refused to embrace Barr and, instead, rallied behind the candidacy of party stalwart Mary Ruwart during the Libertarian National Convention on May 25. It took six ballots before Barr was finally able to win the party’s nomination with just over 51% of the vote, and the rift now between the “reformers” who backed Barr and the “radicals” who supported Ruwart is bitter—and largely economics related.

Read the whole article.

Foreclosures of the Rich and Famous

In Personal Responsibility on July 8, 2008 at 5:45 pm

From Amateur Economists:

The bursting of the housing bubble has not only hurt middle-class and semi-affluent Americans (who thought they were more affluent than they were!), but also the rich and famous. Everyone has heard about Ed McMahon’s troubles – his wife sharing how she’s been so degraded that she now shops at (gasp!) Target of all places – but he’s not the only one.

The article highlights the troubles of Latrell Sprewell, Evander Holyfield, Jose Canseco, Michael Jackson, and Aretha Franklin, before concluding with:

The housing bubble and its subsequent burst were caused by the Federal Reserve’s fiat-money central banking. On the one hand, people such as McMahon, Sprewell, and Franklin should be held responsible for the bad financial decisions they’ve made — just as the heads of all of the middle- and lower-income families have been. But on the other hand, whether it’s Michael Jackson or my parents (who lost their home of nearly 30 years), it must be recognized that the Federal Reserve System obfuscates and sends false signals to market participants. When politicians talk about “helping” the people under the distress of a housing market turned upside down, they cannot be taken seriously unless they first recognize the entity that causes booms and busts: The Federal Reserve.

Read the full article here.

Bob Barr on the Fed: Not encouraging

In Libertarian Party-US, Libertarian Politics on June 13, 2008 at 2:44 pm

Here’s what Bob Barr said on the Glenn Beck radio show in response to a question about the Fed:

If I could wave a magic wand and the Federal Reserve Bank would disappear tomorrow, I would do so. It’s a group of unelected governors that are not answerable to or accountable to the people of this country and yet they wield considerable influence over the economy by basically setting rates at which banks and other financial institutions can loan money. And they have built up, you know, huge reserves themselves that they can then dole out as they’re doing — as they did recently with Bear Stearns to prop up as failing, what they see as failing investment houses, for example.

What we’re on the verge of right now, Glenn, through this federal government monkeying around with the mortgage business, both directly and indirectly, is to have the federal government now set a “One size fits all” mortgage criteria for the country. That would be disastrous. It would stifle risk-taking, it would stifle the independence of small mortgage houses and mortgage banks and would simply create further problems down the road. What we need to be doing is tackling government spending. That is the root of all evil, so to speak. We need to get a handle on federal spending, we need to start reducing the economic footprint and, you know, all the other footprints of the federal government if we want to talk about them, and get the federal government out of running our economy. It was never intended to be the job of the federal government to run the economy.

Let’s take a look at the statement:

“If I could wave a magic wand and the Federal Reserve Bank would disappear tomorrow, I would do so.”

You don’t need a “magic wand.” You just need Congress to pass a law repealing the Federal Reserve Act of 1913, and then you, as president, need to sign it. What’s with the “magic wand” talk? You’re much more likely to need a “magic wand” to repeal the 16th amendment, which would not take away Congress’s ability to assess an income tax, contrary to Barr’s understanding. In fact, only a “magic wand” could do that.

This one sentence basically tells me all I need to know about Barr, RE: the Fed, but I’ll continue.

“It’s a group of unelected governors that are not answerable to or accountable to the people of this country and yet they wield considerable influence over the economy by basically setting rates at which banks and other financial institutions can loan money.”

This “unelected governors” talk — as if it would be okay to have a fiat-money issuing central bank cartel if only its governors were elected by the people — is B.S. In fact, the central bank’s “independence” is actually better than the alternative. What is Barr saying here, that he thinks the government, instead of its proxies at the Fed, should have even more control over the money supply?

And what does he mean that they “basically” set the rates at which banks and other financial institutions can loan money? The Fed sets the discount rate and if they really want to set the federal funds rate, they can do that too. There’s really no “basically” about it.

“And they have built up, you know, huge reserves themselves that they can then dole out as they’re doing — as they did recently with Bear Stearns to prop up as failing, what they see as failing investment houses, for example.”

The Fed doesn’t need to have “reserves” — it has the legal authority to create money out of thin air! To the extent that they have “build up reserves,” I guess that’s good, since at least they’re not inflating by creating more money.

“What we’re on the verge of right now, Glenn, through this federal government monkeying around with the mortgage business, both directly and indirectly, is to have the federal government now set a ‘One size fits all’ mortgage criteria for the country. It would stifle risk-taking, it would stifle the independence of small mortgage houses and mortgage banks and would simply create further problems down the road.

This reminds me of the embarrassing LP press release saying that “for the first time” the government was enacting price controls on food. The government has been “monkeying around” with the mortgage business towards “one size fits all” since the creation of the FHA, Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac, etc. This is nothing new.

“What we need to be doing is tackling government spending…”

Yes, change the subject. Mr. Beck’s question was about the one institution that makes all of that government spending possible. If you want to curb government spending, then look to the Fed! Don’t divert the question about monetary policy to an answer involving fiscal policy — that’s like saying “we need to do something about this heat!” when asked about fixing the air conditioner.

Bernanke admits, celebrates connection between fiat money and war-making

In Uncategorized on June 12, 2008 at 7:01 pm

While dedicating the new Kansas City Fed building, Bernanke said:

“Considering the Federal Reserve’s history, this location is a most appropriate site for a Federal Reserve Bank, with its new neighbor being the National World War I Museum at Liberty Memorial. Those who have an appreciation of U.S. history know that the Federal Reserve played an important role in support of the funding of the First World War and that the war forced the early Federal Reserve to contend with an uncertain global environment with wide-ranging monetary and economic ramifications.”

For once, a truth teller at the Fed.

Six plank suggestions for the Boston Tea Party

In Constitutional Rights, Libertarian Party-US on June 5, 2008 at 12:14 am

The Boston Tea Party seems to have found its ticket — Charles Jay and Tom Knapp — and it is working on a platform. I recently joined the BTP and offered six suggestions on constitutional and monetary issues. Your feedback is appreciated.

  1. The Boston Tea Party acknowledges that the 14th amendment was never properly ratified, is illegitimate, and all ensuing legislation based upon the 14th amendment, including the Supreme Court’s “incorporation doctrine,” is null and void.
  2. The Boston Tea Party calls for the repeal of the 16th amendment, and a new amendment to the Constitution limiting the scope of Congress’s powers of taxation to proportioned taxes assessed to the states.
  3. The Boston Tea Party calls for the repeal of the 17th amendment, which gave us the direct election of senators. U.S. Senators should be elected by their state legislatures in order to best represent the interests of the individual states versus the federal government, as the framers intended.
  4. The Boston Tea Party calls for a Free Trade Amendment to the Constitution, revoking Congress’s powers to assess tariffs, duties, or other taxes on imports, and barring embargoes, sanctions, quotas, and other restrictions on free trade absent a formal declaration of war against the named country. This amendment would render all current trade agreements null and void and prohibit the negotiation of new ones, henceforth.
  5. The Boston Tea Party calls for the abolition of the Federal Reserve, and the liquidation of the Federal Reserve System and all federal-government assets, excluding those few necessary for legitimate constitutional functions, for the purpose of paying off the national debt and redeeming all outstanding Federal Reserve Notes, pro-rata.
  6. The Boston Tea Party calls for the full legalization of competing currencies and the abolition of unconstitutional legal-tender laws. Under the Constitution, only the states may declare legal tender, and they are limited to choices of gold and silver.

Note: Membership in the Boston Tea Party in no way excludes someone from membership in the LP, nor does it preclude support of the LP presidential ticket. I do like having the BTP as a back-up option for a write-in vote that will be counted, though. And I think it will be fun to help fashion a truly libertarian platform, without the statist “reformers” raining on our parade.

Does ‘Joe Six-Pack’ care about the Federal Reserve System?

In Media on May 8, 2008 at 1:45 am

Over the course of the past two days, I have been in online discussions with our fearless leader, ElfNinosMom, and LFV newcomer, Jeff Wartman, about whether “Joe Six-Pack” — alias John Q. Taxpayer, etc. — cares about the Federal Reserve. Well, as luck would have it, CNN.com took a break from its riveting coverage of female bathroom habits and ran a story about a recent survey concerning the Fed.

Americans skeptical of Fed

Poll shows that majority of respondents are unsure about the central bank’s ability to improve the economy.

The findings:

  • 17% of Americans are “not confident at all” that the Fed can stimulate the nation’s “shaky economy”
  • 34% “not very confident”
  • only 8% were “very confident” in the Fed’s abilities

Of course, it is the 8% that are most likely correct — the Fed almost certainly can “stimulate” the economy, just as a shot of heroin can stimulate a junkie. But, to me, these numbers show the nation does not have confidence in the cabal of central economic planners running the money system, and they’re starting to catch on to the scam.

Thanks to government intervention, Joe Six-Pack’s six packs now cost what a case did a few years ago, and he’s mad as hell about it. Now is the time for Libertarians to champion honest money and economic liberty — not to cower from these “complicated” issues that “don’t matter to regular people.” People are being robbed on a daily basis, and they care plenty.

A Conversation With Mike Gravel

In Civil Liberties, Congress, Constitutional Rights, Courts and Justice System, Crime, Democracy, Democrats, Drug War, Global Warming, History, Iraq War, Law, Libertarian, Libertarian Convention, Libertarian Party-US, Medical Marijuana, Politics, Presidential Candidates, Second Amendment, Taxation, US Government on March 28, 2008 at 1:21 am

Mike GravelEarlier today, I had an opportunity to speak by telephone with Senator Mike Gravel, a presidential candidate who has switched from the Democratic Party to the Libertarian Party. Senator Gravel welcomed my questions, and I had a very positive impression of him. He is extremely well spoken, and quite passionate about many of the issues near and dear to the Libertarian Party.

My purpose, of course, was to ascertain why he decided to switch parties, and whether he truly holds Libertarian views as opposed to only conveniently holding libertarian views in order to get the LP nomination. I quickly discovered that his most basic belief, which he has provably held for over 30 years, is thoroughly libertarian: the right of the American people to bypass and even overturn Congress and the President, when those elected officials act in contradiction to the will of the people.

Senator Gravel believes that “the American people are not empowered to do anything, and this is wrong.” He therefore believes Americans should have the ability to directly make laws through federal ballot initiatives. At present, many states allow citizens to present laws directly through initiatives which, if supported widely enough, will be placed on the ballot to potentially become law; an example of this is Proposition 215, which legalized medical marijuana in California. Senator Gravel believes citizens should be able to do the same thing on the federal level, under his National Initiative For Democracy.

The government is a tool, the people can use it. But if the people have the direct power to use it, then you’re going to see the government as a real tool, not the tool you have when the special interests determine how the tool of government is handled, by the lobbyists, who pay for the campaigns, who manipulate you to vote for them. That’s the process that has to change.

When he says that the government has the duty to release information to the public, so they can make sound decisions, he is not blowing smoke, nor is he promoting something he hasn’t already done himself. During the Vietnam War, Senator Gravel released the Pentagon Papers, reading thousands of pages into the Congressional Record, so that Americans would finally know the truth behind that war; and his defiance, by informing Americans of information which was previously viewed as classified, was a pivotal moment in American history.

Under his National Initiative For Democracy we, as citizens, could end the war, end the federal income tax, or pass a federal law allowing Americans to carry guns openly; we could make any law we want, as long as there is sufficient citizen support for it. Senator Gravel says that “the real power in this country does not lie with the leadership, with Congress or with the President; it lies with you, the American citizen”. This program would in fact become an important part of the checks and balances system, which Senator Gravel believes should have been in force from the beginning, so citizens could more easily keep Congress and the President in check.

Of course, when he was running for President in the Democratic Party, the Democrats weren’t very happy with that idea. I asked the Senator whether they oppose it because it threatens their power, or if they oppose it because they believe the average American is unable to make sound legislative decisions. He immediately replied, “Both.” He went on to explain that “the average person in Congress believes they are more intelligent than the average American, and there are a few in Congress who are very intelligent; but at the same time the average American is smarter than the average Congressman, and perfectly capable of making sound decisions.”

His suspicion of the leading presidential candidates was made clear when he said, “Don’t trust anyone who says they have all the answers. Nobody has all the answers; I don’t have all the answers. But the American public knows what is best for them, and I trust them to make those decisions.”

Talking war with Senator Gravel, for someone my age who lived during Vietnam, is like getting into a time machine, and going back to the last destructive war this country faced, when he forced a filibuster to end the draft, and thus end the Vietnam war. Senator Gravel was a maverick, and he defied Congress again and again.

As you may recall, even before we sent troops to Iraq, he warned the American public that there were no WMDs in Iraq. I asked him why, in his opinion, President Bush lied about the presence of WMDs. “Oil. He wanted to get control of the oil, and it’s all just more American imperialism and the military-industrial complex.” He went a step further, and agreed that Bush and Cheney should not only be impeached, but that they should face trial for war crimes. “Americans must stop thinking we’re above the law,” he stated. He believes that the United States should stop getting involved in foreign conflicts altogether, and “stop being the world’s policeman”.

Senator Gravel is completely against the War on Drugs, which he categorizes as a failure. “We spend 50 to 85 billion dollars a year on a drug war that does no good to anybody other than criminalizing people who shouldn’t be criminals. We have 2.3 million people in jail right now, and half of them shouldn’t even be in jail …. if you want marijuana, why not go to a package store? A fifth of gin will do more damage to you, to your health, than will a pack of marijuana. As for the rest of the drugs, why not legalize them and regulate them? We put addicts in jail when they aren’t criminals, but there they learn to be better criminals, to steal and commit crime to feed their habit. It’s a public health problem, and we need to solve it as a public health problem, and save all this money we’re spending to keep people in jail for drugs, $30,000 a year for each of them.”

He is therefore in support of decriminalizing and regulating all drugs. “If you need to get some coke, go to a doctor and get a prescription. If you’re an addict, you’ll have to register so we can help you. But the way we do it now, we catch you with drugs, we throw you in jail, and you don’t get any help.”

With regard to whether legalizing all drugs would increase addiction, he states, “That’s what they told us about alcohol, during Prohibition. Alcohol is more addictive than marijuana. Should you go to jail for having marijuana, when you don’t go to jail for having whiskey and alcohol? It’s a stupid policy, it’s gutless, and it’s damaging our inner cities. Seventy percent of the people in jail are African-Americans, and most of it is for drugs. It’s gutless on the part of our leaders to not solve this, to not treat it as a public health problem rather than a criminal problem ….. For those who say we have a drug problem, yeah, we have a problem, and it’s with stupidity at the highest levels of our government.”

As for those in prison for drug offenses, he would educate nonviolent drug offenders – whether it’s a college degree or technical training – then grant them a full pardon so they can not only be released from prison, but also have the tools they need to immediately become fully productive members of society.

He is for Second Amendment rights, saying “I have a weapon, and I’ll fight to keep it.” Insofar as how openly Americans should be able to carry weapons, he referred me back to the federal ballot initiative, saying that the American people should decide that issue.

When I asked him about reducing the size of government as well as its spending, he agreed that it has gotten completely out of hand, and that severe cutbacks should be made. The first steps would be dismantling the IRS (which would no longer be needed with his national sales tax program), and the “War On Drugs” arm of the DEA (since all drugs would be legalized). He also believes that “if we empower the people to make laws, they will shrink the government.”

I could actually hear the thrill in his voice when one question pointed out that libertarians are, by and large, for open borders. He believes that we have so many illegal immigrants here because our own laws caused them to not have work available in their own country; he states that 1.3 million farming jobs were lost in Mexico when NAFTA was passed. For that reason, he believes repealing NAFTA would cure most of the illegal immigration, as more jobs are created in their home countries. As for those who are already here and don’t want to leave, he wants to simply “put them on the path to citizenship.” He believes that we should create completely open borders, similar to what is in place in Europe, whereby citizens could cross into or from Canada or Mexico, with no questions asked.

It is undeniable that the federal government is deeply in debt, and must raise revenue. Senator Gravel, however, is opposed to the income tax, since it over-taxes the poor and middle-class, and grossly undertaxes the wealthy. He therefore proposes dismantling the IRS altogether. He would replace the income tax with a 23% sales tax, and give a rebate each month to every American family to pay for necessities. Senator Gravel believes that this would allow the poor and middle class, who spend mostly on necessities such as food and housing, to have far more disposable income. He believes this program will create the same amount of federal revenue, but in a manner which is far more fair to the poor and working class.

“I don’t know whether it’s a step to end taxation, but at this point it is a good way to fund needed revenue. Right now we tax income and investments, and investment income is taxed at a lower rate than income. We don’t tax the wealthy, and that’s what’s wrong with our system.” He again reiterated that the American people could make the final decision regarding whether federal taxation should eventually end, through his ballot initiative program.

Senator Gravel believes that Social Security funds should be left alone, rather than used by the government for other purposes as is now the norm. At this point, most Americans have already paid into Social Security. He wants everyone’s Social Security funds invested in the free market, and he wants everyone to get an accounting of their money and interest earned, just as if they had invested it with a bank; and if they die before spending what they have invested and earned, he believes that the surplus in their Social Security account should go to their heirs.

As for private investments, he believes his sales tax program with refunds for necessities will give the average American the additional funds needed to save in an IRA or other investment vehicle, as additional retirement savings to supplement what they have already put into Social Security.

He is aware that many libertarians are against Universal Health Care, but believes his plan will meet libertarian standards. He came up with the idea of a Healthcare Security System 30 years ago. Senator Gravel pointed out that he knows the healthcare system “up front and personal”. One year, he ended up with over $150,000 in healthcare costs, and went bankrupt as a result.

He believes the Democratic health care plan, wherein businesses are forced to provide health insurance for their employees, is “the wrong way to go, because it is not the responsibility of businesses to provide healthcare; their job is to be competitive in the global marketplace.” So instead, he wants to enact a Universal Single Payor Voucher plan, similar to the plan which the Veterans Administration has in place. Every American would be given a health care voucher. The vouchers would have a very modest co-pay, and a very modest deductible. Americans would have their choice of hospitals, their choice of doctors, and a choice of five or six plans. There would be no exclusions for preexisting conditions.

He doesn’t think we need to raise taxes in order to provide health care for all Americans; we just need to make our healthcare system considerably more efficient than it is at present. He believes that if we computerize healthcare records, it will streamline the system, because he says 30% of healthcare cost is in paperwork. He intends to provide every American with basic healthcare services, and if they want more or different coverage, they can choose to buy additional or supplemental plans in the free market.

He is aware of Ron Paul’s belief that the Federal Reserve is responsible for the inflationary effects which are harmful to poor and middle-class Americans. Senator Gravel wants to reexamine the Federal Reserve, and study the gold standard with an eye toward a global monetary system, which will better protect the value of our money in a global marketplace.

Senator Gravel was pivotal in shepherding the Alaska Pipeline though Congress, but at this point he would oppose any effort to drill for oil in the Alaskan Wildlife Preserve. He states that instead, he wants us to end our dependence upon oil within five years. His goal would be to replace oil with alternative energy sources.

I asked Senator Gravel if there was any one moment – a light bulb moment, if you will – in which he realized that he was a libertarian. He stated, “Not really. It’s an awareness that goes back 30, 40 years, that the best way to to change things was from inside, within the power structure. Now, it’s time for a change. I am joining the Libertarian Party to become its presidential nominee. I can take the Libertarian Party to a level they’ve never been before. I am against war, I am against taxing income, I am against the war on drugs. I am for smaller government, open borders, and the ability of the American people to self-govern. I am a libertarian. I scored seven out of seven on Reason’s “Seven Ways To Win Votes” – I am for internet gambling, for medical marijuana (but I go much further than that, by decriminalizing all drugs) …. so I’m more libertarian than Ron Paul, because he scored lower. And I will work very hard as the Libertarian Party’s candidate, I will get the libertarians the national playing field they need to grow. And not just libertarians, either. I will raise the playing field for all third parties.”

All in all, Senator Gravel impressed me as sincere, intelligent, and passionate about libertarian issues. I did not at all get the impression that he is a pseudo-libertarian; I think he’s the real deal, because his actions even decades ago indicated that he is a libertarian. He left the Democratic Party because he realized that they are not receptive to his ballot initiative plan, and are not in agreement with his healthcare plan, his opposition to the War on Drugs, and many other issues. He has the presence, he has the speaking ability and dynamic personality, and he has the name recognition and contacts to place us on a more even playing field.

The Democrats’ loss may very well be our gain.

Senator Gravel suggested that those interested in more information about his views read his book “Citizen Power: A Mandate For Change”, which can be ordered online here. It is also available on Amazon.com, but their new book price is actually several dollars higher than the price on his website. Amazon’s description of the book is as follows.

As author of Citizen Power in 1971, Senator Mike Gravel determined that much of what he wrote then is apropos in America today; hence, the release of Citizen Power: A Mandate for Change that reflects the accuracy of his evaluation of problems then, his current position on a number of issues facing America now, and the process that Americans can undertake to become empowered as lawmakers in partnership with their elected officials. Most chapters of Citizen Power: A Mandate for Change present material from the original book, as well as new information and revised positions. The exceptions are Chapter 2: The National Initiative, and Chapter 7: The War on Drugs. All other chapters cover similar topics in both books, but with the senator’s fresh insights for today’s world. Each chapter ends with how the National Initiative, once enacted, could help solve the problems presented in that chapter. The Table of Contents is as follows: Chapter 1 – Now It’s the Citizen’s Turn Chapter 2 – The National Initiative Chapter 3 – America’s Failure in Education Chapter 4 – Tax Reform – The Fair Tax Chapter 5 – The Health Security System Chapter 6 – National Environmental & Energy Policy Chapter 7 – The War on Drugs Chapter 8 – Crime & Punishment Chapter 9 – The Shroud of Secrecy Chapter 10 – American Imperialism Chapter 11 – Global Governance Chapter 12 – Who Stole the American Dream?

All three customer reviews give the book five stars. There is a “look inside the book” feature, and based on that material and given that it was originally written in 1971, then updated recently, I don’t think there is any real question whether Senator Gravel is a libertarian. Based upon his statements in that book, it appears that he was a libertarian even before there was a Libertarian Party.

Here are the reviews:

It’s all about lawmaking!,

February 25, 2008
By Goodrich (Dearborn, MI USA) – See all my reviews

Those who still want Mike Gravel’s original Citizen Power, but can’t afford to pay over $200 for the few rare copies that are available, will be pleased with the new Citizen Power: A Mandate for Change. In some chapters, Senator Gravel has incorporated substantial excerpts from his original book and then updated his thoughts on each issue, often admitting that his position on a certain issue in the 1970s was naive and that he now views that issue with a mature mind. This is a refreshingly candid look at a presidential candidate’s positions on key issues facing the American people today. Most importantly, however, is Chapter 2 and supplemental appendices about the National Initiative, which Senator Gravel and some of the nation’s top constitutional scholars crafted to empower citizens as lawmakers; after all, lawmaking is the cornerstone of democracy. All subsequent chapters address how the National Initiative for Democracy (NI4D)would work to alleviate problems, such as healthcare and education.

From ending the war on drugs to restructuring the UN,

March 8, 2008

Senator Gravel has produced an engaging book! He presents complex and difficult issues facing the US and the world in understandable prose and proposes solutions that call for transformational change. In response to a legislative process controlled by corporations and special interests Gravel proposes the National Initiative on Democracy that would empower the people to legislate through direct democracy in national referendums on issues. In response to ineffective global governance Gravel calls for a restructuring of the UN including an end to veto powers for the permanent members of the Security Council. I was delighted to see his position on American exceptionalism. Granted that we are #1 in the world in the numbers of people in our prisons, on many key measures such as education, healthcare we are far from being the best in the world. I was most pleased by the optimism of Mike Gravel’s vision for the future of America in the world. He sees solutions to problems such as global warming, energy, and national security through greater cooperation with other countries. The beginning of his space policy statement on page 59 is particularly encouraging: “SPACE REPRESENTS A LIMITLESS FRONTIER for humankind. Laws modeled on the Law of the Sea need to be agreed upon to make energy, natural resources, and knowledge available in a manner that fosters greater cooperation, rather than greater competition, among all nations. In keeping with this spirit, space must not be militarized.”

Gravel’s Populist Manifesto,

March 19, 2008
By D. Douglas (California) – See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)

An eloquent and lucid political manifesto by an increasingly refreshing, honest and prudent politician.
Citizen Power showcases a myriad of power-to-the-people proposals, and sways from your politics as usual demagoguery, while Gravel’s prose is filled with solemnity and earnestness, contrary to his political opponents.
The book’s motif is the National Initiative for Democracy, a populist program that will enable ordinary citizens to become legislatures, moreover eliminating large bureaucracies and big government lapdogs.
An emphasis is brought upon the military-industrial complex and its draconian, unproductive results. Suggesting the ultimate disintegration of the latter, if not grave consequences will ensue
Gravel’s proposals on education is most interesting, and offer an ingenious subsidiary, if utilized in orthodoxy, to our failing educational system.
The War on Drugs chapter was dismaying at least, and produced a sharp contempt for the activities our government continues to perpetuate.

I have probably forgotten important topics of this book, and my review is ultimately asymmetrical and lackluster. I can only recommend this fine book, so you can make your own judgments and discoveries.

Senator Gravel was kind enough to state that, if any of our readers have additional questions, I can phone him again to get those answers. Therefore, if you have any questions which aren’t answered here, post them and in about a week I will give him another call to get your answers for you.

Candidates Gone Wild: Presidential Wackjob Edition

In Barack Obama, Children, Congress, Crazy Claims, Daniel Imperato, George Bush, Humor, Immigration, Iraq War, Libertarian, Lies and the lying liars who tell them, Politics, Presidential Candidates, Shine on you crazy diamond, US Government, War on March 22, 2008 at 10:08 pm

We’re all familiar with John McCain, Hillary Clinton, and Barack Obama. However, have you ever wondered what other presidential candidates are out there? Are you longing for a presidential candidate who is really and truly different? If so, one of these guys just might be your man.

Michael Jesus ArchangelUnlike most mainstream presidential candidates, God The Great Holy Spirit Saint Michael Jesus The Archangel doesn’t think he is God. He knows he is. This also ends the debate about the true name of God, since he quite clearly denotes his name as “Mike”. That’s a much easier name to spell and remember than “Yahweh”, for sure.

Apparently God/Mike runs a “modeling agency”, and if his website claims are to be believed, it’s quite successful as models literally flock to him. I’m not sure how lucrative that endeavor has become for him, but that’s okay because he also makes his own money. By that, I don’t mean that he works and makes money. No, I mean that he quite literally makes money, which he calls “Heavenly Banknotes”. Are you against the Federal Reserve? He’ll take care of that problem too, and replace it with his own “Cosmic Reserve Bank”.

Apparently God/Mike is an Old Testament kind of Creator, because he wants to arrest abortion doctors, judges who ruled abortions legal, and women who have had abortions, and execute them all within a year. He also thinks that smokers are both suicidal and homicidal, and he plans to arrest and execute, without representation or trial, all of the “tobacco lords”. He also has a problem with gay marriage, because the Bible (which he refers to as “My Holy Word”) speaks against it; for that reason, he plans to execute all gays and lesbians. On the other hand Mike/God is not quite so completely violent as it would appear, since he also thinks that nations should settle conflicts with a paintball war.

If you’re interested in contacting God/Mike, you can do so by telephone or email, since both are listed on his website. However, you can’t send him a fax, since his fax is listed as “CIA Top Secret Ultra-Grade.”

Like any other non-mainstream candidate, God/Mike has run into some difficulties during his campaign. Most notably, he was charged with attempted murder, undoubtedly while “at war with the homosexual Satan and his leftist queer devils and demons”. That’s okay, though, because since he’s God, he has the power of prophesy. To that end he says, “I prophesy that I will win by a crushing landslide.”

Jonathan The Impaler SharkeyOn the other end of the spectrum Jonathan “The Impaler” Sharkey may not be a Papal Knight, a Knight of Malta, or a Knight of the Orden Bonaria like Daniel Imperato; or God, Jesus, or the Holy Ghost like Mike, but he is an ordained Satanic Priest. Not only is he a Satanic Priest, but a quiz on his MySpace profile declared that he is Satan, so it must be true. He also promises to murder (by impalement, of course) certain people with his own hands as soon as he takes office; that list includes Osama bin Laden, George Bush, O.J. Simpson, and even Mike Tyson.

Jonathan is also a “Satanic Vampyre” as well as a “Hecate Witch”, and has some very serious military experience as a “Commanding General” of a vampire regiment known as the “Death Dealers”. He also has a great deal of previous political experience, having run for Congress in multiple states, for President during the last election as well as the present one, and he once also ran for Governor (of Minnesota). His campaigns have been unsuccessful, undoubtedly due to the media’s bias against third party candidates.

On the downside, he must be one of those shapeshifters David Icke warns us about because, while in Florida, he assumed the name “Kathleen Sharkey” and claimed that he is is his own half-sister, and also his own pagan wife. He sent a notice to the FEC under the Kathleen persona, implying that Jonathan is dead.

Not surprisingly, The Impaler does have an arrest record, including a record for stalking a former girlfriend, but for those who wish to support The Impaler, that could be easily spun into his being far more loyal than most people will ever be. He was also ordered to undergo psychiatric care since he believes himself to be a vampire, and of course that could be spun as his having had his right to practice his religion denied by the government. Despite The impaler’s shortcomings, there is always a way for a politician to spin anything into something positive.

John Taylor BowlesThen again, if God and Satan aren’t quite down-to-earth enough for you, there is also John Taylor Bowles. Bowles claims to be “the White People’s Candidate”. Dressed like a Neo-Nazi storm trooper, Bowles claims that it is “time for the white people to put a real white man in the White House”; apparently he believes that previous presidents weren’t really white.

Bowles wants to give us lower taxes, lower food prices, free health care, zero unemployment, no outsourcing of jobs, forgiveness of all credit card debt so all white people start with a fresh slate, a 5% flat tax on income with all other taxes abolished, no more foreclosures, and interest-free mortgages (though together those last two items are equivalent to free housing on a first-come first-serve basis) ….. but only after he has deported all non-whites in a “humanitarian” manner. He plans to give all non-whites a one-time stipend of $30,000 to make their involuntary move more palatable.

Bowles also wants to bring the white soldiers home, at which time he will position them at the southern border to help “stop the invasion”. He also believes that birth control is an invention of those who wish to destroy the white race, and to that end he suggests that whites take over the country by having as many children as possible (though if he deports all non-whites, we would have no need to out-breed anyone to maintain control). White families who produce four or more children will have their mortgage debt forgiven, though again, it doesn’t matter if the debt is forgiven, if there are no more foreclosures.

I’ve heard this particular line of thinking before. Former wacky Libertarian candidate Gene Chapman suggested that libertarians out-breed the non-libertarians, and even offered to store his sperm for any women interested in bearing his children. He also mentioned that both he and his webmaster Doug Kenline were single. Big surprise there.

So who gets to stay in the United States, and who will be forced to leave? According to Bowles, a white person (which he refers to as “Aryan”) is defined as “wholly of non-Jewish, non-Asiatic European ancestry, descendants of the autochthonous Peoples of the contemporary states of Austria, Belarus, Belgium, Britain, the Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Iceland, Ireland, Latvia, Lithuania, the Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Russia, Slovakia, Slovenia, Sweden, Switzerland, and Ukraine. Many persons of Albanian, Bulgarian, Croatian, Georgian, Greek, Hungarian, Italian, Portugese, Romanian, Serbian, and Spanish heritage also qualify as Aryan, their ancestors being pioneers of Aryan communities in those lands.”

Now that we’ve reviewed the candidates, here is the interesting question. Given that the mainstream parties limit our choices to only three candidates at this point, soon to be only two candidates; and given that many Americans do not agree with any of the mainstream candidates on the issues …. if these were the only candidates from which you could choose, who would you choose, and why?