What I Believe

I can’t help but feel so discouraged that my generation votes based on dishonest rhetoric and a few social issues they feel obligated to fight for.. yet ignore issues that are orders of magnitudes more important–

I believe that every human being has a right to life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness– with the caveat that we enjoy those freedoms so long as it doesn’t impinge on the rights of others to do so. These were the beliefs the Founding Fathers wrote about in the Declaration of Independence. That same document says that “all men are created equal”. Created. Not born equal, not carried-to-viability equal.

We’ve traded 50,000,000 babies’ right to life, for their mothers’ pursuit of happiness. Conservatives have been demonized for wanting to strip away “womens’ rights” when, in fact, the issue is much different. Conservatives fight for the rights of the unborn. Conservatives fight for the first-amendment rights of faith-based organizations to not be forced to provide prescription birth control waivers in their health care coverage.

We’ve bought the lie that the rich are to blame, yet they’re the answer to our financial woes. Yes, lets make them pay their fair share (50%+ in taxes) so that those who live off the welfare system can continue to do so.

We’ve traded financial stability for entitlements.. enjoying free money now while leaving behind $16,000,000,000,000 in debt to the generations that follow. The fall of just about every great empire was preceded by a corrupt government that sought to appease the masses and spent uncontrollably.

We complain how government is broken, yet we elect the same broken people over and over again

Essentially, we want to repaint the house but never mind the foundation that is crumbling and about to give way.

“A democracy cannot exist as a permanent form of government. It can only exist until the voters discover that they can vote themselves largesse from the public treasury. From that moment on, the majority always votes for the candidates promising the most benefits from the public treasury with the result that a democracy always collapses over loose fiscal policy, always followed by a dictatorship. The average age of the world’s greatest civilizations has been 200 years.”

“America is great because she is good. If America ceases to be good, America will cease to be great.”

“Americans are so enamored of equality, they would rather be equal in slavery than unequal in freedom.”

“What good does it do me, after all, if an ever-watchful authority keeps an eye out to ensure that my pleasures will be tranquil and races ahead of me to ward off all danger, sparing me the need even to think about such things, if that authority, even as it removes the smallest thorns from my path, is also absolute master of my liberty and my life; if it monopolizes vitality and existence to such a degree that when it languishes, everything around it must also languish; when it sleeps, everything must also sleep; and when it dies, everything must also perish?

There are some nations in Europe whose inhabitants think of themselves in a sense as colonists, indifferent to the fate of the place they live in. The greatest changes occur in their country without their cooperation. They are not even aware of precisely what has taken place. They suspect it; they have heard of the event by chance. More than that, they are unconcerned with the fortunes of their village, the safety of their streets, the fate of their church and its vestry. They think that such things have nothing to do with them, that they belong to a powerful stranger called “the government.” They enjoy these goods as tenants, without a sense of ownership, and never give a thought to how they might be improved. They are so divorced from their own interests that even when their own security and that of their children is finally compromised, they do not seek to avert the danger themselves but cross their arms and wait for the nation as a whole to come to their aid. Yet as utterly as they sacrifice their own free will, they are no fonder of obedience than anyone else. They submit, it is true, to the whims of a clerk, but no sooner is force removed than they are glad to defy the law as a defeated enemy. Thus one finds them ever wavering between servitude and license.

When a nation has reached this point, it must either change its laws and mores or perish, for the well of public virtue has run dry: in such a place one no longer finds citizens but only subjects.”
– Alexis de Tocqueville


Occupy Wall Street – The Great Non-Sequitor

No doubt, by now you’ve heard about the Occupy Wall Street movement..

..the collection of (mostly) young people protesting against banking corporations in Manhattan. This movement started September 17th and has spread to 70 major cities in the US and 900 cities world-wide. OWS focuses on three aspects: social/economic inequality, corporate greed, and political lobbying by the financial sector. If you want more facts, feel free to check out the wikipedia entry, as it’s really a waste of my time and yours to regurgitate it all here.

Last night, a very appropriate special was on PBS, entitled “Free or Equal”. This one-hour show took a look at Milton Friedman’s economics and, specifically, the series he hosted in 1980 called “Free to Choose”. For those that don’t know, Friedman was the economic advisor to Reagan and received the Nobel prize in 1976. He was a very smart man that influenced nations and individuals. In this special last night, the host, Johan Norberg, visited the places that Friedman had influenced in the 70s and 80s and took a look at what they are now. Honk Kong, Chile, and Estonia (directly, to name a few) have all benefited greatly from the free market capitalism that Friedman brought with him. In the case of Chile, the new freedoms in the marketplace directly translated to a yearning for more freedom in society and politics. Within a short time, the dictator, Augusto Pinochet, was forced to resign and a democratically-elected president took his place.

Hong Kong, however, met a different fate. Soon after Friedman’s work there, it fell under Chinese rule. Seeing the great prosperity by what was once a refuge town, the Chinese adopted a laissez faire attitude towards Hong Kong economically. Hong Kong was free to trade internationally without restriction, tariffs, and government interference. In turn, it would be silly to lobby or appeal to the government, as it held no control over the market.

Estonia was also a victory for the free market, as a poverty-ridden former-USSR state was transformed into the wealthiest country that resulted from that breakup.

So let’s back up a little..

Free market capitalism, by definition, is free from governmental interference. Trade is conducted locally, nationally, and internationally, without penalty or restriction. Competition becomes fierce and companies/individuals must rely on innovation, competitive pricing, or tremendous customer loyalty to succeed. Those who do, turn a profit. Those who don’t, lose money and have to refactor what they are doing. This naturally forces advancements in almost all business sectors and increases the demand of producers in a system. Costs go down and both the buyer and the seller, ultimately, win. Granted, that’s a simplified overview, but this is, after all, a blog.

Tying this in to OWS..

1) social/economic inequality. Friedman made a very keen observation that what some people (in this case, OWS-ers) want is an equal finish line.. this is a wrong mentality to have. The equality should be the starting line. He argues that in a system, freedom and equality are not necessarily one and the same. By its very definition, freedom will allow some to succeed and others to fail. Both those who fail and those who succeed have an incentive to win. In an “equal” (economically) system, there is no incentive to do anything, as the successes are split with the losses. You might ask.. “Doesn’t that sound like socialism?” Right you are, my friend. This is exactly the direction that a country takes when it’s leaders decided to start redistributing wealth.

2) corporate greed. If a company makes money, it has the right to spend it how it wills. Breaking the down a little bit– if the owner of a company decides to take a massive paycheck at the expense of his workers, that is his/her prerogative. Employees are free to leave and work for a different company and, before long, that first company will drown by the owner’s own greed. The successful company will be one that balances and moderates itself. You and I should feel no claim to the profits any company claims unless that company is owned by us. How is demanding banks repay our loans for us any different then the greed they display themselves? If they are greedy, so be it. If it’s their money, they have a right to it.

3) political influence. If you remember back to the example of Hong Kong, in a truly free market economy, the government has so say, so lobbying has no effect. Once government interferes with tariffs, subsidies, restrictions, subsidies, penalties, subsidies, taxes, subsidies, and employment meddling (gender/race quotas, etc), companies and industries are free to lobby for their benefit.

So you see..

By saying, in essence, “down with capitalism”, you’re making a stand against your own point. You rally against an economic philosophy that benefits everyone as a general populous, incentivizes everyone to succeed by their own hands, and increases quality of life… the very economic philosophy that eradicates the negatives you list..

What it Means to be King

Two hundred years ago, our forefathers hated, condemned, and swore off everything that the monarchy stood for. The rule by one person invariably leads to oppression, social classes, and the economic ruin of a nation. Kings ruled with iron fists, commanded their armies out to war, and taxed their citizens into poverty. The hostility of a king towards his rivals was matched only by his anger. The king used various ways to crush insurrection from his people.

Thankfully, future-king William will have none of these powers.

But our President does.

Let’s Just Get This Out Into The Open…

People are being stupid right now, so let’s just reiterate the facts and touch on some things we should take away from this (sources inline). Continue reading Let’s Just Get This Out Into The Open…

This Far and No Further!

**Warning: Due to the nature of this post, the links may include content that may not be suitable for all viewers. Use your discretion**

What started out as a series of posts on twitter has prompted me to write a blog post! You know things are srs when a blog post is produced!

The Issue

Words cannot express how outraged I am at the TSA’s actions over the past few weeks- the government sexually assaulting young and old, and most disappointingly, the president behind it all, condoning and encouraging these actions. Continue reading This Far and No Further!