Posts Tagged ‘big government’

The Case for $350 Billion – New York Times Style

January 14, 2009

Here’s a very interesting “News Analysis” from the NY Times that reads more like a big government propaganda piece than an actual analysis.  It makes the case for giving banks more money, and how the TARP plan so far has pretty much done it’s job.

I started reading it, and a couple of paragraphs really got me going.  Here’s the first one:

The most glaring example that the banking system needs even more help is Citigroup. Though it already has received $45 billion from the Treasury, it is in such dire straits that it is breaking itself into parts

Huh?  That’s why the banking system needs to get fixed?  So what if it is breaking itself up?  It got into this mess by comingling their investment banking and commercial banking.  If they have to break up, then at least they can separate their good units from the ones that are strapped with bad debt and underperforming assets.  That’s a good thing!

Here’s another gem:

Even some of the bailout program’s harshest critics acknowledge that things most likely would be even worse without it, and that the bailout had accomplished its most important goal, which was to prevent a complete collapse of the financial system.

However, they don’t name any names or quote anyone here.  It’s just what these “news analysts” want to say.  You can’t definitively say that we’re better off after the bailout.  Maybe the banks are better, but you and me?  We’re still screwed.  The financial collapse didn’t happen overnight like it would have without a bailout.  Instead, we’re making it happen over months, and dragging the process out, leading to more hardship for all of us.

And here’s some pure comedy:

Regulators require banks to keep a healthy cushion of capital. But this time around, the banks are struggling to plug their deepening holes. Private investors are scarce. For all but a small group of healthy banks, bankers and analysts say, the government may be the only investor left.

Obviously, the authors of the article have no idea of how the US banking system works at all.  The first line is a dead give away.  Healthy cushion of capital?  You mean that 10% of all the money they loan out?  Fractional reserve banking does not require that much of a cushion.

This is an article full of stuff, but little substance.  It reads like an article trying to dumb down things enough to sway people to the views of the author, and it is not very persuasive.  The more I read the NY Times, the more I realize how their “analysis” is really written with a pro big government stance.  Please go out and educate yourself and read other sources of news and learn about our consumer based economy and our sham of a banking system.  Then you won’t be swayed by propaganda from news agencies like the New York Times.

Government Reform Obama Style

January 7, 2009

Today, in order to make government more efficient and reform our Medicare and Social Security programs, Barack Obama created the new position of Chief Performance Officer and named Nancy Killefer to the position.

Ironic, right?  More government to create less government.  What a joke!

Raising the Gas Tax?

January 2, 2009

Today, the National Commission on Surface Transportation Infrastructure Financing suggested to Congress to raise our taxes on gas and diesel by roughly 50%.  Currently, we pay about 18 cents a gallon on gasoline and 25 cents a gallon for diesel.  Read about it here.

According to the commission, the current taxes leave a shortfall of about $100 billion a year, which means road and bridge projects can’t get funded.

My main problem is that this panel was created by Congress.  They are not an independent party to analyze the entire infrastructure system and budget.  The easy way out is to just raise taxes.  What they really need to do is look at all the bureaucracy that exists and look at how much they can save if they streamlined their operations.  Nothing in this article suggests the government faced such an audit.

Also, I have a big problem with the taxes I pay going to Washington for them to dole out.  How do I know that my taxes will help build or repair roads in my neighborhood?  My money might go to build a bridge in Alaska or some high-ranking Senator’s home state.  This is one of the main reasons for the American Revolution and our Constitution in the first place.  They were fed up paying taxes to the British government, and then never seeing any returns on those dollars.

They should lower, or even abolish, the Federal tax and replace it with State or local ones.  That way, we would all see returns for our tax dollars.  If we did this, we would probably see lower taxes because there would be more efficient use of the dollars, resulting in less of a need for the tax.

The Federal government does fund some of the major Interstate highways, so they could either give the power to the states or they could use a portion of the tax dollars the states or local governments receive.

The entire system is backwards right now, where our money goes into a black hole, and we have no idea if we will ever see it.  We need to start at the local level, not at the Federal level.

Also, we should not be fooled into thinking this is for environmental reasons.  They say in the article that they need to “sell” it to us.  If they really had the environment in mind, they need to explore different fuel sources, electric cars and plug-in hybrids.  Raising the tax on gas does nothing to promote alternative forms of transportation.  Taxes to deter the use of something rarely work, if ever.

And finally, check out this paragraph from the article:

According to a draft of the financing commission’s recommendations, the nation needs to move to a new system that taxes motorists according to how much they use roads. While details have not been worked out, such a system would mean equipping every car and truck with a device that uses global positioning satellites and transponders to record how many miles the vehicle has been driven, and perhaps the type of roads and time of day.

Are you kidding me?  Talk about Big Brother!  The government has no right to monitor where or when you are driving.  Why is that their business?  Rather than tracking your every move, they should just set up toll booths on certain roads.  I know that their ideas are well meaning, but the last thing we need is the government monitoring our every move.

We need less Federal intervention in our road and infrastructure system, in order to really fix and address the problem.  The more power that is handed to local, state, or even private companies the better.  We have no way to hold Washington accountable for how they spend our tax dollars.  Locally, we can see the results of our taxes and can hold our politicians and policy makers accountable.