Thoughts from a Paleo Conservative Mind

Hello Friends,

I'm Jamal Greene. I have a passion for politics, both domestic and international, and this blog is dedicated to that passion. In my blog I cover US politics, the Economy, matters of National Security, and International Relations. I am, as my title suggest, a Conservative, Classically Liberal. Think Goldwater, not Bush.
Progressives are trying to dramatically transform this country into something our Founders would not recognize as the America they sought to establish. I believe it is time for the citizens of this great nation to stand up to those who seek to encroach on our freedoms; its time to stand up and be heard. Be Silent No More.

Thursday, January 20, 2011

A Constitutional Conservative Case for Same Sex Unions

"The enumeration in the Constitution, of certain rights, shall not be construed to deny or disparage others retained by the people"

Ninth Amendment, US Constitution

“No State shall make or enforce any law which shall abridge the privileges or immunities of citizens of the United States; nor shall any State deprive any person of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law; nor deny to any person within its jurisdiction the equal protection of the laws”

Fourteenth Amendment. US Constitution

“Full Faith and Credit shall be given in each State to the public Acts, Records, and judicial Proceedings of every other State. And the Congress may by general Laws prescribe the Manner in which such Acts, Records and Proceedings shall be proved, and the Effect thereof. “

“The Citizens of each State shall be entitled to all Privileges and Immunities of Citizens in the several States.”

Article V, Sections 1 & 2. US Constitution

Last year I given the opportunity to participate in a town hall panel discussion on the Tea Party movement at a local university here in Pennsylvania. During a course of the two hours long dialogue with students we discuss a variety of issues, from the current economic crisis to the coming entitlement crisis; there were even questions on Globalization and the War on Terrorism. So needless to say, we had a thorough dialogue. After the town hall several students from the university stopped me to further probe my thoughts on issues ranging from the legalization of marijuana to the deficiencies of our criminal justice system. During the discussion we moved from the topic of incarnation rates to social issues, and it was at this point that I gave an answer that shocked the young undergrads. I told them that while I am Pro-life, based on current medical science, I’m also “Pro” equal rights and protections for gay and lesbian Americans. One of the students said he was stunned by my answer and that he thought all conservatives were anti-gay. I assured him he had been misinformed and that many conservatives and most libertarians, are actually proponents of equal rights for the gay community. Polls show increasingly that young conservatives are more prone to support same sex unions than their parents’ generation; as time progresses that number will only increase. If all men are created Equal, and Liberty and Justice is truly for all, why then are so many Americans denied their right to individual liberty when choosing who to share their life with?

In 1967 a similar argument was debated and litigated in the country. During that time the debate was as to whether or not a man and woman, of different races, could legally marry. Then, as it does today, the US Constitution stands on the side of individual rights, not elected officials interpretation of ancient Hebrew scripture. As Americans we must remember the US Constitution was not adopted to restrict the natural and individual rights of Americans; it was ordained to empower, and yet restrain, a federal government. The Freedom to choose is one of the things that makes America the nation we have all come to love, a truly Exceptional Nation. Restricting individual choice and freedom, particularly with something as personal as marriage, is counter to the founding principles of this nation, regardless to whether the issue is of interracial or same sex unions. The Founder of this nation believed in Lock's theory of Natural Rights. Natural rights, the unalienable rights; rights that are vested in our very humanity and confirmed by the simple fact that we own ourselves. As owners of our own bodies and minds, we have the right, under both natural and constitutional law, to enter into any contract or association of our choosing as long as both parties willingly consent. In a amicus brief filed in the recent Virgina suit against the Obama Administration's unlawful healthcare act, a "friend of the court" argued that the federal government did not possess the lawful power to force individuals to enter into contracts against their will. The argument was sound because here in United States of America we have freedom of contract. The government cannot force an individual into a contract and neither can it deny individuals the right to willing enter into a contract of their own accord.

In June 1958, two residents of Virginia, Richard Loving, a white man and Mildred Jeter, a black woman, were married in the District of Columbia because the laws of Virginia, specifically the Racial Integrity Act, outlawed marriage between individuals of different races. Shortly after their marriage, the Loving’s returned to Virginia and established a life for themselves in Caroline County. Shortly thereafter the local police received word that the two were a couple and immediately set out to arrest them for violating state law forbidding unions ( contracts of marriage) between interracial couples. The police raided the Loving's home in the middle of the night and arrested them. The Loving’s were charged with violating Virginia's ban on interracial marriages. On January 6, 1959, the Loving’s plead guilty to the charge and were sentenced to one year in jail; however, the trial judge suspended the sentence for a period of 25 years on the condition that the Loving’s leave the State and not return to Virginia together for 25 years. The Judge wrote in his opinion: "Almighty God created the races white, black, yellow, malay and red, and he placed them on separate continents. And but for the interference with his arrangement there would be no cause for such marriages. The fact that he separated the races shows that he did not intend for the races to mix." Does it strike anyone as odd that the Bible and God were routinely invoked doing the debate over interracial marriage, just as they are today in the debate over same sex unions? Later, in 1965, a three judge district court allowed the Loving’s to present their case to the state’s Supreme Court of Appeals, but in time it came as a setback to their cause as the Appeal’s Court upheld both the lower court’s ruling and criminal convictions.

In upholding the constitutionality of these provisions, the Virginia Court of Appeals referred to its own 1955 decision in Naim v. Naim as its basis for supporting the lower court’s decision. In the Naim case, the state court concluded that the State's legitimate purposes were "to preserve the racial integrity of its citizens," and to prevent "the corruption of blood," "a mongrel breed of citizens," and "the obliteration of racial pride. The State of Virginia argued that the meaning of the Equal Protection Clause was that state penal laws containing an interracial element as part of the definition of the offense must apply equally to whites and blacks in the sense that members of each race are punished to the same degree. Thus, the State contends that, because its miscegenation statues punished equally both the white and the black participants in an interracial marriage, these laws, despite their reliance on racial classifications, do not constitute an invidious discrimination based upon race. In order words, the High Court of Virginia found that the fourteenth amendment's Equal protection clause did not apply to interracial couples; thus denying them the right to marry. They interpreted the clause to mean that as long as both parties, the black woman and white man, were giving "equal" treatment, meaning penalties, under the law, that they were afforded their rights under the Constitution. However, the US Supreme Court rejected the ruling of the Virginia Appeals court and ruled UNANIMOUSLY Virginia's racist laws were in violation of the Fourteenth Amendment and the Equal Protection Clause. The majority opinion stated: marriage is one of the "basic civil rights of man, fundamental to our very existence and survival. To deny this fundamental freedom on so unsupportable a basis as the racial classifications embodied in these statutes, classifications so directly subversive of the principle of equality at the heart of the Fourteenth Amendment, is surely to deprive all the State's citizens of liberty without due process of law. The Fourteenth Amendment requires that the freedom of choice to marry not be restricted by invidious racial discrimination. Under our Constitution, the freedom to marry, or not marry, a person of another race resides with the individual and cannot be infringed by the State".

In light of the Loving case, the question that must be asked is whether or not states, and the Federal government, are in violation of the 14th Amendment, 9th Amendment (natural law theory), the Good Faith and Credit Clause,and the Equal Protection Clause, when denying same sex couples the right to marry? Does DOMA, the Defense of Marriage Act, signed into law by Clinton to prevent same sex unions performed in one state from being recognized in another, violate the US constitution? In my opinion it does. Its my belief that when, not if, a case goes before the US Supreme Court challenging the constitutionality of state and federal bans on same sex unions, the high court will have no choice, under the US constitution, but to find such laws unconstitutional. Citizens of one state cannot be denied the basic rights and privileges afforded to citizens of another state simply because some individuals may not like it. Some opponents of same sex marriage may point to citizen’s objection to same sex unions in certain states as justification for denying some the most basic of fundamental rights. Regardless of state ballot initiatives, like Prop 8 in California, the founder's founded a republic, not a pure democracy; and in a constitutional republic a majority cannot vote away the natural and unalienable rights of a minority. I’d point out that during the 1950s and 60s, when segregation was the law of the land in many states, a lot of American’s opposed desegregation.

The Warren court rightfully found, in the 1967's landmark case, that marriage is one of the most basic civil rights, a right that is fundamental to man's very existence. According to the US Supreme Court, the fourteenth amendment "requires freedom of choice in the case of marriage or legally recognized unions. The freedom to choose who we enter into contract and covenant with, regardless of public opinion, is a civil right, constitutional right, and most importantly a natural right that we all are imbued with.

Tuesday, June 8, 2010

On Israel and Palestine: Separating Fact from Conspiracy

After posting a YouTube video on the recent events occurring near the Gaza involving Israel and the Flotilla, I have been berated with messages about the content of the video. Most of the messages have been positive and supportive, but some have quite over the top in my opinion and will be addressed in this writing.

At the heart of the Flotilla incident lays the outgoing Israeli-Palestinian/Arab conflict; a conflict that’s been fought for many with no end in sight. The Jewish people believe Israel to be their ancestral homeland and therefore gives them the right to return and claim what was historical theirs. The Palestinians and Arabs, who populated the land in the absence of the Jews for nearly 1300 years, believe the land is theirs. Both sides have validity to their claims and this is why I support a two state solution to the crises, although I’m not so sure one will ever materialize. The Case for the Jewish state is simple: They were there first. Let me start by saying that I am in no way shape or form a dispensationalists or believer in Eschatology, religion or religious teachings play no part in my reasoning. It is a fact of secular history that in 1480 BCE Tuthmosis III became ruler of Egypt; he reigned from 1480 BCE until 1426 BCE. During his reign he conquered many of the areas in and around the modern state of Israel, formerly the land of Canaan. After his victory over the inhabitants of the land it is believed by historians that he enslaved around 90,000 of them, taking them into Egyptian captivity. After many centuries of Egyptian captivity, the number of years is still an ongoing debate, the Semitic people who had been taken out of the land in and around Canaan, modern Israel, now sought to return there. Secular history testifies to the existence of the Kingdom of Israel, Judah included, with Saul being its first king and David being its most famous. King Saul began his reign around 1020 BCE and David assumed the thrown years. After David, his son Solomon assumed the thrown and built the first of two Jewish temples in Jerusalem. The first temple was destroyed by the Babylonians around 586 BCE; the second was destroyed by the Romans in 70 CE during the siege of Jerusalem. A reading of history confirms the existence of such temples, and if there are still any doubts all anyone has to do is look to the Western Wall, all that’s left of the temple, for validation. From the time of the Kingdom of David until around the beginning of the 7th century CE, the Jewish people had a constant and lasting presence on the land of modern day Israel. For example, even after the Kingdom of Israel split after Solomon’s death into the kingdoms of Northern Israel and Judah, the Jews remained on that land. Even after the Northern Kingdoms fell to Assyria around 722 BCE, the Jews remained. When the first temple was destroyed by the Babylonians around 586 BCE and many Jews were led into Babylonian captivity, some Jews remained. After the Babylonians were defeated around 539 by Cyrus of Persia the Jews were permitted to return to the land of their forefathers, which many of them did. The Jewish people erect the second temple around 515 BCE and maintain their presence on the land during Persian, Greek, and Roman occupations. The Jewish presence in their historic homeland begins to wade in and around the years of the Crusades as they were driven out by Christian and Muslim fighters.
From that time on the Jews begin to disperse from one part of the world to another. The Jews left their ancestral homeland and sought refuge throughout Europe, with some making homes for themselves as far away as China, yes China. There are Chinese Jews and Hispanic Jews, even Black Jews due to the diaspora; the Jewish people have come to have a diverse and multicultural presence throughout the world.

In the case of the Palestinians/Arabs, as stated earlier, from around 638 CE, beginning with the siege of Jerusalem under the caliphate of Umar, Muslims began to claim sovereignty over the land. Muslims, like Christians and Jews, believe Jerusalem to be a special city, a holy city. It was from Jerusalem, according to Islam, and at the site of what is called today by Muslims Al-Aqsa Mosque, that the prophet Muhammad ascended into heaven. From 638 CE until present day, there is nearly 1300 years of Arab occupation of what they came to call Palestine. So I understand the claim made by the Arabs that it’s their land; even though I would disagree with it. After the end of WWI and the defeat of the Ottoman Empire, the holy land fell to the control of Western Powers and under a League of Nations mandate, the British Government obtained rule over what was Palestine. It was the world powers that decided to recreate a Jewish state on their ancestral homeland, and they had every authority and right to do so. Some may call that imperialism and say they stole the land from the Arabs and gave it to the Jews. Well, in 638 CE when the Muslims conquer Jerusalem and took control of the holy land, where they stealing it from the Eastern European Christian empire already there? The Arabs obtained it the same way the Byzantine Empire (Eastern Europeans) did, as did the Greeks before them, which was through war. Land and territory acquisition through war is replete throughout world history. Throughout history war has gains and consequences, winners and losers. In the case of WWI the Ottomans lost and due to that lost consequences ensued; the consequence was that they lost control of what they called Palestine, among other territories.

So today we stand at a point when neither of the parties, the Israelis nor Palestinians are ready to make any real concessions on the issue of land. The Palestinians and some of their sympathizers claim that they are under a type of South African like apartheid, by which they are trapped in ghettos and cut off from the rest of the world by Israeli security checkpoints. Is this true? The Apartheid no, the vast security check points yes. The Apartheid in South Africa was based solely on racial hatred; the same claim cannot be made about Israel’s security policies. After all, if the Israelis truly hate Arabs why do hundreds of thousands of them (Arabs) live in the state of Israel? Yes, hundreds of thousands of Arabs actually live in Israel and live there by choice. Israel doesn’t have a racial problem, it has a security problem. For example, in 2007 during the month of August 81 rockets and 101 mortar bombs were fired from Hamas controlled Gaza into Israel. To Hamas and Free Gaza sympathizers, what would any sovereign nation’s response be to 81 rockets and 101 mortars being shot across their border besides a dramatic increase in security? In this case the Israelis know where the attacks are coming from so they simply isolate and target that area; that’s good security policy not apartheid. In September 2007, 70 rockets and 132 mortar bombs were fired into Israel from Gaza; in November and December of 2007 178 rockets and 209 mortar bombs were fired from Gaza; and in 2008 alone 1,750 rockets and 1,528 mortar bombs were fired from Hamas controlled Gaza into Israel. The problem in Gaza isn’t Israel, the problem is Hamas and its declaration to see the state of Israel destroyed through holy war. How can Israel make peace, a true and lasting peace, with a government that has in its official charter a mandate to see them annihilated?

Lastly, as far as the conspiracy theories go regarding the Jews and their control of the world’s money supply, I don’t read too much into conspiracy because they aren’t easily proven; of course if they could be they would be conspiracies. Do I believe the Jewish Rothschild family, among others, are involved in an international scheme to control the world financial systems and the state of Israel plays apart in their plans? No. Although conspiracy theories make for good books and interesting conversation, they are not reliable sources of information and are often used as tools of propaganda. Remember The Protocols of the Elders of Zion?

Thursday, April 15, 2010

Election 2010: A Standard for Conservatives, Tea Party Patriots, and Commonsense Democrats

On Candidates

For Starters, I don’t believe that Tea Party members and other conservative/libertarian grassroots organizations should spawn off into a third party movement; going the third party route would split the Conservative/Republican/Libertarian vote and by default re-elect Nancy Pelosi as Speaker of the House and Harry Reid as Senate Majority Leader. Conservatives and Libertarians, those who seek commonsense solutions to this nation’s problems, should seek to enter the Republican Party, the Original home of Conservatism, and retake it. In Republican Primaries, conservatives should throw their support behind candidates that advocate the principles of limited government and fiscal sanity at both the State and Federal level. Conservatives, Tea Party Patriots, and Commonsense Reagan democrats must remember that although Republicans have made mistakes in the past, they are the country’s only hope at the moment in turning back the tide on President Obama’s Statists agenda. When Republicans become RINO’s, republicans in name only, conservatives should run primary challengers against them; if the conservative wins the party’s conservatism will be strengthened. Even if the RINO wins the primary, the conservative running against him forces him to the Right on many positions away; a perfect example of this would be John McCain’s new found conservative stance in his primary fight with J.D. Hayworth.

On Energy and Jobs Policy

Conservatives should develop a platform by which to judge candidates running for elected office; the platform should include our positions on a variety of policy issues. On energy the concerned Americans should endorse an energy strategy, both national and at the state level, that seeks to cut our dependence on foreign energy sources by more than half. A promising reform would be to transform the way we use energy in America. Today, depending on the estimate, the US spends around $400 billion a year to import energy from nations that don’t have our best interests at heart. The United States, particularly States like Pennsylvania and Alaska are rich in domestic energy resources like oil, natural gas, and coal and by unleashing those resources the US could unleash a booming economic recovery. Candidates running for state wide offices and seeking grassroots conservative support should embrace a plan in which business tax rates are dramatically cut from their current rates; the state of Pennsylvania has a Business tax of nearly 10%, almost double the rate of Florida. The State of Florida has a flat corporate tax rate of 5.5%, providing more incentive for business development within that state and as a result Florida was able to attract a lot of new businesses to the state. Once tax rates are cut, energy rich states would have put themselves on the path to major investment in the state’s natural resources by investors looking to help America diversify its energy portfolio and lessen our dependence on foreign energy. Oil Tycoon Boone Pickens devised a plan in which America would use it vast natural gas resources to fuel and heat its vehicles and homes. For example, there are 18 million tractor trailers (trucks) traveling up and down the interstates of America delivering goods and services; these huge trucks use diesel fuel. Pickens’ estimates that by converting these trucks from Diesel (imported energy) to Natural Gas (domestic), the US could reduce its energy imports by half, bringing that money back home to reinvest in America. Pennsylvania, for example, could embark on a natural gas revolution, bringing hundreds of millions of dollars in revenue to the state and employing thousands; Pennsylvania could become a catalyst for the Nation on true energy Independence. Nationally, Conservatives should seek and embrace candidates that pledge changing the way this country uses energy by diversifying into Natural Gas, Liquefied Coal, and Nuclear power.

On The Economy

Conservatives and Tea Party activists should embrace a policy stance of across the board tax cut for individuals and businesses, allowing individuals and businesses to keep more of what they earn. State and Federal officials should convene a series of meetings with leading Business owners and Business Associations to discuss the best way forward on job creation. Candidates should pledge to seek a major reduction in corporate and investment tax rates; these tax reductions should be temporary and only re-enacted if credible job gains are posted. Tax cuts are great, but all tax cuts must be accompanied by spending cuts as well; we can no longer afford to cut taxing while increasing government spending; this leads to deficits. Those running for Congress should pledge to support conservative measures for cutting federal spending. There are those who advocate cutting federal spending in half, and under normal circumstances I’d agree with that. But in understanding our dire financial situation I feel deeper cuts are necessary; however cutting spending in half is a productive start. There are measures currently being presented by Republican members of the House in which spending is capped at 20% of GDP; once again good start but capping spending at 17-18% would be better. Candidates should advocate providing tax incentives to businesses and investors willing to invest in the Manufacturing business. We need to revive manufacturing jobs in America. We should support candidates who believe in the 10 Amendment; candidates who advocate the States taking a lead role in areas such as education, transportation, emergency management, and agriculture; this would drastically reduce the need for federal spending in these areas, saving the American Taxpayer billions.

On Entitlements

The Tea Party and other concerned Commonsense America should support candidates who tell the truth about the state of our entitlement programs and who are willing to make the tough decisions regarding reform. The current recession will only pale in comparison to the coming entitlement crisis due to hit this country in just a few short years. The United States has a national debt of more than $12 Trillion and growing and on top of that staggering figure is one even direr. The WWII generation produced the Baby Boom generation, those born between WWII and the early 1960s, and this population of over 70 million Americans is beginning to retire in record numbers; the tidal wave of retirees is due to put severe strain on both Social Security and Medicare. For the next two decades, 10,000 baby boomers will retire everyday leaving the US taxpayer on the hook for more than $50 Trillion worth of promised benefits to these individuals; these are benefits promised that the government does not have the money to pay. Social Security and Medicare in their current form are unsustainable and the current system requires a total transformation. It’s time for financial well-being and medical care to be put back into the hands of the individual. Those 50 years and older, if they choose, may remain a part of a smaller version of the current system (with some reforms) if they feel they may not have enough time to save for retirement due to age. The Heritage Foundation has some tough but effective ways in which to transform this nation’s retirement system:

• Raise the retirement age (currently set to rise to 67 by 2030) by two months each year until it reaches 70, which would allow future seniors an average retirement of 17 years.

• A second option would income-adjust benefits to target needy seniors more effectively. This could be accomplished through "progressive indexing," which would index initial benefit levels for middle-income and upper-income families to price inflation rather than wage growth, eliminating much of the increased Social Security costs driven by higher benefits. This would also target more benefit growth to lower-income retirees. If accompanied by an increase in the retirement age, progressive indexing could eliminate the entire Social Security shortfall.

• Personal accounts by themselves do not reduce the taxpayer liabilities to current seniors. However, if Congress slightly pared back the growth rates of benefits for upcoming retirees and allowed workers to direct a portion of their payroll tax savings into personal retirement accounts, workers could har¬ness enough long-term investment growth to do much better than they can under today's system. This is the most realistic way to fund two genera¬tions of retirement on one generation's payroll tax. Millions of Americans with 401(k) plans and IRAs already understand how even safe investments can grow significantly over several decades

• Congress should reduce the massive Medicare Part B and Part D subsidies for upper-income families. These programs are not social insurance: Enrollees did not earn their benefits with payroll taxes. Rather, they are large subsidies from taxpayers.

• Long-term fundamental reform will likely involve bringing more choice and competition into health care, such as moving Medicare from a defined-benefit system to a defined-contribution system. The Federal Employees Health Benefits Pro¬gram (FEHBP) has held down costs by creating a voucher-type system for fed¬eral employees to purchase coverage from competing health plans that offer differing coverage and costs. By creating more choice and competi¬tion, the FEHBP has held down cost increases and may serve as a model for Medicare reform.

This election year Americans must be willing to hold candidates to the fire on this nation’s most dire issues. We must not fall for business as usual or the talking points and propaganda from the mainstream media. We must be informed and well able to challenge candidates and politicians on a variety of issues that concern us. If the American voter enters the 2010 election armed with commonsense and reason, America may just witness a rare political phenomenon not witnessed since 1994 Republican Revolution and the Reagan landslides: A Conservative Sweep. America would be the better.

Obama’s America: The Change “We The People” No Longer Believe In

Since entering office in January 2009, President Barack Obama, has done everything in his power to fundamentally transform the United States of America. America is a nation that was founded on the principles of individual freedom and liberty, personal responsibility, free market capitalism, and the idea that men were inherently free and imbued with certain rights that government can never take away. If this was what America was founded upon and Barack Obama is intent on fundamentally transforming America, then the question needing to be asked is what is he changing us into? All indicators seem to point to a Western European Social-Welfare state.

After entering the White House in 2009, the Obama Administration quickly moved to pass what we know today as the “Stimulus”. With this stimulus, or so they called it, the Administration promised the nation that unemployment would not rise above 8% and that 3-4 million new jobs would follow. Unfortunately for the president and his democrat party nothing could be further from reality. Since Barack Obama took office in January 2009 the United States has lost more 6 million jobs and “created or saved” nothing. In recent days, due to the March jobs report, the Obama Administration has been touting the 162,000 jobs created as if that were a measure of success on his jobs report card. For starter’s, 48,000 of these “new jobs” are temporary US Census jobs meaning these workers will terminated as soon as the Census is completed. For arguments sake let’s say that all 162,000 jobs were created in the private sector as a result of Obama’s spending, that would mean that on average the administration spent, or more accurately the American people spent, nearly $5 million per every job created last month. So what did the stimulus actual accomplish? A lot according to the administration and so I’ve decided to list a few of those great accomplishments. $850 million for Amtrak; $150 million for producers of honeybees; $7.6 billion for rural community investment programs (ACORN?); $400 million for global warming research; $6.2 billion for weatherization assistance; $350 million for computers for the Dept. of Agriculture; $600 million to convert federal vehicles to hybrids; $4.2 billion for neighborhood stabilization activities (ACORN?); $1.2 billion for youth summer camp; $650 million for digital converter coupons; $90 million to educate “vulnerable populations” about digital television; $3.4 million for a turtle tunnel. I need not go on, I’m sure you get the picture. What does any of this have to do with reviving a bad economy and creating jobs? And for this the President believe he deserves a “solid B” for his job as president. Mr. President, the American people would beg to differ. The unemployment rate stands at nearly 10%, as it has for a few months now, with the underemployment rate well over 20% and this President wants us to believe he is going about the people’s business? This President and his democrat congress seem to have little concern for what the people think or say; it’s as if they disdain ordinary Americans and the values they cherish.

The United States faces a debt crises unseen by past generations and as days go by that crisis worsens. The United States’ current debt on unfunded liabilities alone stands at $108,260,117,865,917 and is ticking upward by the second. For those of you looking at this number trying to figure out exactly what it is, it’s over $108 Trillion. In a breakdown of this figure we have Medicare’s unfunded liability over $75 trillion; Social Security Liabilities over $14 trillion and prescription drug liabilities over $18 trillion. The US national debt stands at $12.8 trillion and counting, with foreign powers owning an ever increasing portion of it. The nation of Japan owns $765 billion of our debt; China owns $755 billion; OPEC owns $218 billion; the United Kingdom owns $206 billion; Brazil owns $169 billion; Russia owns $124 billion. The Federal budget is on course to run a record $1.6 trillion deficit in 2010 with trillion dollar deficits following for the next 10 years. The Federal Budget, President Obama’s Budget, is also projected to add an additional $13 trillion to the national debt and to have dire effects on the economy at large. The President’s Budget would raise taxes on all Americans over the coming decade to the tune of nearly $3 trillion while simultaneously dumping on us an additional $74,000 in debt per household. This nation’s fiscal house is on fire and the President and his liberal allies in Congress are running in with gasoline instead of the water hoses.

Is the world a safer place now that Obama is President? Has his doctrine of “smart power” produced any real results? Have our adversaries grown stronger while our allies are weaken? The truth of the matter is that the world is not a safer place with Barack Obama as President, and judging from his determination to continue his failed policies I fear the world will get a lot more dangerous before it gets better, if it ever gets better. Does the Obama administration truly care rather or not the Islamic Republic of Iran acquires nuclear weapons? Or are they more concerned with the State of Israel building settlements on land everyone acknowledges will be Israel’s in any future peace settlement? Is the Obama Administration more interested in appeasing the Russians for votes they’ll never get on the UN Security Council than insuring the US maintains its arms superiority and nuclear deterrent? What are the crowning successes of this administrations foreign policy that warrant the nation’s approval? The President’s recent summit on Nuclear security produced great photo oops for the president, well except for that one of him bowing to the President of China, but what else is there to show for all the fan fair? Mexico, Canada, and Ukraine agreed to dispose of highly enriched uranium and China agreed to come to the UN Security Council table on Iranian sanctions and in the words of the President “participate”. Addressing the last point, what does it mean for China to agree to “participate” at the Security Council? The White House quickly tried to spin this into news as if China had agreed to impose sanctions on Iran; China agreed to no such thing. Most of the time when the UN Security Council meets all permanent members, meaning the US, United Kingdom, France, Russia, and China “participate” in the deliberations but that doesn’t mean they vote in favor of the motion. The United States repeatedly over the past attended Security Council meetings with resolutions on the table reprimanding Israel but the US has never voted for any of them; the US was there for the sole purposes of vetoing such resolutions. With both China and Russia having lucrative trade deals with Iran totaling in the hundreds of billions, and with Russia in talks with Iran to create a Natural Gas cartel similar to OPEC, why does anyone in the White House believe they will vote to sanction Iran? Unfortunately the “successes” of smart power extent well beyond the Persian Gulf. In Eastern Europe, the nations of Poland and the Czech Republic were stunned to learn Obama decided to pull plans to install anti-ballistic missiles systems in both country’s leaving them vulnerable to Russia’s aggression. Ukraine is moving into a closer relationship with Russia as they see that the Obama Administration has no interest in helping them protect their freedoms. And the nation of Georgia, a staunch US ally, is left to fight the powerful Russian army because the President want to “reset” relations with Russia.

What’s happening to America and is our decline inevitable? America stands at a pivotal moment in time when we can either except the decline the Left in this country has sought for decades or we can retake and then remake this nation back into the image of our Founders. I believe America will choose the latter course and that a new constitutionally conservative revolution will sweep the nation as people continue to see the fruits of the destructive policies of the liberal welfare state and today’s democrat party.

Thursday, January 14, 2010

The Recovery that Wasn’t

The Recovery that Wasn’t

By Jamal R. Greene


Mr. President, I think it’s time for a tutorial in Business and Economics. During the 2008 Presidential campaign, then Senator Obama, promised to repair the American economy, create millions of new jobs, fix the healthcare system, control spending, and cut the national debt. While sitting down for a serious policy interview, with Oprah (it’s come to this), the President was asked to give himself a grade for his handling of the Presidency; the President gives himself a B. Isn’t a rule of thumb not to grade one’s self? Nevertheless, most Americans, and I’m included in that number, wouldn’t give the President a B; heck he wouldn’t even get a passing grade. The President deserves a “D-“, and I’ll explain why it is not an “F” later.

For a few weeks, the story line in most mainstream media outlets was: The US Economy is in Recovery, a slow Recovery but still a Recovery. Unfortunately my fellow Americans this assumption couldn’t be further from the Truth. Last month’s jobs report, the underlying problems with home values, sky rocketing debt, low consumer and investor confidence, and Washington’s hostile business environment all give me cause to pause on the so called Recovery.

Looking at the real barometer of an economic recovery, Employment, or in this case unemployment, the US department of Labor has reported truly disheartening statistics. For the month of December the US Economy shed 85,000 jobs and the national unemployment rate remained at 10%. One of the odd things about this report is that most economist, and I’m sure the Obama Administration, were not expecting such a dismal analysis; many of them are still under the delusion that the $787 billion so called stimulus bill actually accomplished anything good. As bad as the numbers were reported by the government, they still paint a rosier picture than reality. In reality, the job crisis is far from over and this jobs report shows that on Main Street, where it counts, the recession is far from over. The Obama administration and its media allies continue to report on the unemployment figure of 10%, while ignoring the reality that the true unemployment figure is much higher. According to the report some 661,000 people left the workforce last month; these are not people who retired, these are people who have given up hope in finding a new job. Now that these 600,000 plus people are no longer looking for employment or reporting to the unemployment system, they are no longer counted. Let me say that again. Those 661,000 people who left the workforce due to the lack of opportunities are no longer being counted by the government in the unemployment figures. If these unemployed people were counted the national unemployment rate would have risen last month to 10.4%, instead of remaining at 10. The most alarming of the report was that the real unemployment rate, this is the number of unemployed plus the number of underemployed, which stands at 17.3%, up from 17.2% the previous month. Even so, the 17.3% real unemployment figure still does not take into account the 661,000 who left the workforce last month. When those people are counted the Real Unemployment rate is actually around 22%.

Back in January of 2009, President Obama and his administration claimed that the massive stimulus bill they were preparing to pass would “save or created” over 3 million jobs and that the unemployment rate would not rise above 8%. I regretfully report to the President that his plan has not succeeded. As stated earlier, the Real unemployment rate in this country stands at nearly 22%, while government statistics report the figure at 10%. Either way, both figures are higher than what that President and his team promised it would be. The president promised to create millions of jobs, but since passing his stimulus bill the United States has lost more than 3.5 million jobs. This President and this congress haven’t the slightest idea on how to create jobs in the private economy, most likely because none of them ever had to. Well for the President and his brilliant team of economic advisors, this is how jobs are created. A steady and productive economic climate is fundamental for job creation in America. Businesses and individuals are not going to invest in new business ventures when they have to deal with a federal government that is doing everything in its power to suppress growth. If you want to promote job creation, lower both personal and corporate income taxes so that people have more disposable income to save and invest. When businesses are able to keep more of the revenue they generate, the business can expand, and when business expands it hires more workers. More people working equals more tax revenue to the government.

Unfortunately the political leaders of the day, specifically the liberal ones, still chose to follow the broken economic practices of the past. Our government is lead today by those who believe in the failed economic policies of economists John Maynard Keynes. Keynes believed that the government could stimulate economic growth and job creation through spending massive amounts of money, mostly borrowed, on infrastructure and public works projects and this would somehow “jump start” the economy. This theory has been proven folly time and time again but for the sake of those unfamiliar, I’ll do it again. The problem with this theory, called Keynesianism, is that in order for the government to spend money via a “stimulus”, it first must take it out of the private economy through taxation, borrowing, or inflating the money supply. Remember, the government operates on the money tax payers pay into the treasury every year. Keynesianism is basically robbing Peter to pay Paul. The Obama administration has chosen to borrow and tax to pay for its reckless spending. During his first year, the President shattered all previous spending records for past Presidents spending an astonishing $3.5 trillion dollars with a $1.4 trillion dollar budget deficit that followed. The United States, because of the massive amounts of spending under Obama, is now projected to run Trillion dollar deficits for years to come and this is not an amount of debt any nation can sustain. Because of the massive spending, initiated by the Bush Administration, and kicked into overdrive by the Obama administration, the value of the US dollar has been put in serious jeopardy as the world’s reserve currency. When a country expands its money supply without demand first coming from the free market for those new dollars, we experience inflation. This occurs when we have too many dollars chasing too few goods; this also results in higher consumer prices. At present, the US dollar stands as the sole currency in which oil is traded on world markets and when our dollar is weak, the price of oil rises. For months there have been calls by foreign governments, most notably the Chinese and Russians, for a new world reserve currency; to abandon the US dollar. Our foreign investors and debt holders are becoming ever more alarmed at the levels of US debt and the amount of red ink already on our books. There is even talk about the US losing its AAA credit rating; this would not be a good thing. The Obama administration campaigned on a promise of no new taxes on the middle class but just recently endorsed a plan to tax the healthcare benefits of middle class to pay for his Health plan. The Obama administration also plans to raise taxes on Energy, causing energy prices for consumers to skyrocket. They plan to levy heavy taxes on corporations and small businesses, which of course is a backwards policy since businesses are the job creators in America. The Obama administration plans to increases taxes on capital gains from investments at a time when they should be cutting taxes to encourage investment. After all, businesses need people to invest capital in order for them to grow and then in turn create jobs. The President and his policies will not create the prosperity he has promised; if his policies don’t change soon I’m afraid he’ll be remembered as the President that Triple the nation’s debt and saw national unemployment rise to the levels not seen since the Great Depression.


The root of the financial crisis that erupted in the fall of 2007 was the bursting of the housing market bubble; after the bubble burst it bleed over into the financial markets causing the US Economy to seriously hemorrhage. But how did we get here? In short, it wasn’t the “policies of George W Bush”, as democrats and certain media outlets would have the American people believe. The creation of the bubble and the resulting burst were both planned and orchestrated by the Federal Reserve Bank. For those who don’t know what the FED is, in short it is America’s central bank. It is not a government owed entity as many think; the Federal Reserve is a private bank that controls the nation’s money supply through its monetary policies. The Federal Reserve regulates and controls the money supply, and therefore large sectors of the Economy, by controlling interest rates. The two key rates the FED regulates are the Federal Funds Rate and the Discount rate; these are the rates that banks charge one another to borrow money. When the Federal Reserve raises interest rates banks borrow less because it is more expensive. When banks borrow less and save more it decreases the nation’s money supply. When the Fed lowers interest rates banks borrow more and when banks borrow more they lend more to consumers. In order to attract consumers, banks lower their rates and qualifications for credit and as consumers borrow more the nation’s money supply expands. The Federal Reserve, back in 2001, begins to lower interest rates at a dramatic pace to curve that year’s recession and the economic aftershocks of 9/11. In what they claimed was an effort to strengthen the economy, the Fed kept interest rates at historic lows for years causing banks to have a massive amount of credit to lend. The banks, with the full knowledge of the Federal Reserve, devised a way to pull the US out of its recession; they decided to create a housing boom. Banks begin to encourage non-prime or sub-prime level borrowers to apply for risky sup-prime and adjustable rate mortgages with the added carrots of low to no down payments. This caused home sales to soar resulting in the intended boom and other sectors of the economy soon begin to benefit from the nations new source of wealth. The crises in the housing market begin when the Federal Reserve, seeing signs that the economy was starting to overcook, begin to raise interest rates. During this time those individuals in sub-prime and Adjustable Rate Mortgages saw the interest rates on their mortgages balloon; leaving many with mortgages they could no longer afford. Many of these sub-prime mortgages securities were sold, sliced and dice, repackaged, and then re-sold. Let’s just say that this created many situations where many investors own a single mortgage. When borrowers begin to default on their loans and home foreclosures rose, the mortgage securities banks and investors were holding became worthless and trillions of dollars were eventually lost.

In order for the Housing market to heal, the government must allow the market to correct itself by allowing housing prices to continue to fall and then bottom out. The Current, and Previous, Administration has sought to do the exact opposite. They have appropriated billions of dollars to help homeowners in default stay in their homes. History has shown us over and over again that government intervention helps exacerbate a problem, not fix it. After the so called “Housing market bailouts”, more than half of delinquent homeowners whose mortgages were modified ended up re-defaulting within six months. Home prices are still artificially to high and as a result existing home sales are down; people are not buying because prices are too high for them to risk an investment in this still shaky market. Mr. President and Fed Chairman, reflating the housing bubble is not the answer; it’s how we got in this mess in the first place.
Finally Mr. President, the nation’s debt, for years, has been spiraling out of control, and since you’ve enter office a year ago you’ve added upwards of $1.7 Trillion to the debt with economic forecasters predicting you will more than double the national debt to more than $20 Trillion. When accounting for the outstanding promised benefits from Social Security, Medicare, and Medicaid, the US is on the hook for an astounding $56 Trillion, $56 Trillion that we don’t have. Mr. President you shouldn’t be trying to create another entitlement program when the 3 largest currently operating are in serious crisis and due to go bankrupt in the coming years. There are simple and free solutions, market solutions, to address the high cost of healthcare. Allowing individuals to buy health insurance across state lines would dramatically increase competition among the 1300 insurance companies across American and drive down cost. Medical malpractice reform, or Tort reform, would bring down the cost doctors charge patients since they would no longer need to carry expensive malpractice insurance to protect themselves from frivolous lawsuits. The President could also move to reform our 3rd party payer medical system and encourage individuals to purchase insurance directly from insurance companies instead of going through the employer, which would be cheaper since employers add fees to healthcare cost. Health services can be delivered to low income individuals at a fraction of what Obamacare would cost through the expansion of free clinics to treat everyday illnesses, and providing tax credits to help low income individuals purchase policies. So why not give the President an “F" on his job performance? Because he hasn’t sunken the country into complete depression, and I suspect he won’t be able too. However, Americans should not be overly optimistic about America’s economic recovery in the near future. It’s possible that the Trillions of dollars the government and the Fed are pouring into the economy will cause a slight bounce in our fortunes, but if it occurs, it’ll be short lived, and we will be headed for a “double dip recession”.

Tuesday, December 29, 2009

The Rebirth of Islamic Terrorism

The Rebirth of Islamic Terrorism

By Jamal Greene

You would have had to be living under a rock over the Christmas Holiday if you haven’t heard by now that there was an attempted hijack of a Northwest Airlines plane by a Nigerian Islamists by the name of Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab. The suspect, western educated and according to media reports, living the good life, boarded the flight going to Detroit, which by the way has the largest Muslim population of any American city, in an attempt to detonate an explosive device and take down the plan along with its 300 passengers. Luckily, the plot was foiled, not by the Obama Administration, but by a courageous passenger on board. This incident, along with the terrorists acts of Fort Hood, leave me to believe that in this “age of terrorism”, we are more vulnerable, not safer, under the watchful eye of the Obama White House. Say what you will, but after the 9/11 attacks, President Bush and his national security team put measures in place to protect America, both domestic and our international interests. President Bush understood the nature of the threat we faced and he was determined that it would not happen again on his watch, and it didn’t. There were no more domestic terrorist’s attacks that occurred on Bush’s watch because of the robust, and often controversial, remedies he put in place. The creation of the Department of Homeland Security, the Terror surveillance programs, enhance terrorists interrogations, the Wars in Afghanistan and Iraq, and the detention of terrorist in Guantanamo Bay are all measure put in place to keep American safe; all of which have been undermined by the current administration.

Since President Obama took office in January of this year, the nation has had to deal with the tragedy of Ft Hood, the first executed Terror attack on this country since 9/11, and a kind of complacency from the President in the war against Terror. President Obama and his team would benefit from studying the history of the Fundamentalists Islamic Movement and the ideals that guide them.

At times I find it hard to believe that this movement is fueled by only a small sect of Islam, and that the overwhelming majority of Muslims are peace loving disciples of the Prophet; the evidence tends to point to the contrary. The Origins of the Contemporary Fundamentalists Islamic movement has it genesis in the 18th century, in what is now modern day Saudi Arabia. In the 1700s, there was a man by the name of Mohammad Ibn 'Abd al-Wahhab, who after studying in the Iraqi city of Basra, came to the conclusion that Islam had become too modern and this modernity was not what the Prophet had intended. He preached a puritanical version of Islam which called for a return to Fundamentals and strict interpretation of the Sharia, or Islamic Law. Originally this version of Islam was rejected by the inhabitants of Arabia because most of them were pagans and had no concept of the “one God”; this doctrine was foreign to them. Wahhab’s fortune changed after meeting Muhammad Ibn Saud; the two formed an alliance in which they would retake Arabia by both the Sword and Quran. Saud would become the head of state and Wahhab the architect of social society; that state would become known as The Kingdom of Saudi Arabia. Saudi Arabia, a stated US ally, is also one of the leading state sponsors of terror around the world; after all 15 of the 19 9/11 hijackers were from Saudi Arabia. Saudi Arabia’s oil revenue routinely goes to fund racial madrasahs, or religious schools, where anti Americanism is preached and hatred against Israel and Non-Wahhabi Muslims is nurtured. Many of the Saudi princes and oil Sheiks regularly invest in the proselytizing of non-Fundamentalists and non-Muslims throughout the Muslim world and Europe. However, the man credited with the modern rise of radical Islam is an Egyptian by the name of Sayyid Qutb. Qutb, an Egyptian born writer and later political prisoner, who after spending time in America and learning of American democracy and civil society, decided that it was because of Classical Liberalism that the world was in decay and that a return to fundamentalists Islam was necessary. In what some consider to be his master work, Milestone, Qutb articulated the need for a reemergence of Jihad, or Holy War; no longer would it mean the inner struggle against personal demons, Jihad became the war cry of Extremists throughout the Muslim world. Libya, Saudi Arabia, Pakistan, Afghanistan, Iran, and now Yemen are some of the biggest sponsors of terrorism on the planet and Anti Americanism isn’t receding in some of these countries, it’s increasing.

The history of contemporary Islamic terrorism is something that every free man should be cognitive of, after all, those who forget the lessons of History are due to repeat its failures. The US government must realize that these are not people that can be persuaded or negotiated with. Islamists see their only mission and purpose in life is Jihad; and no amount of incentives will convince them to change their minds. The Islamists sees their mission as divinely order and orchestrated; and believe it or not, they fear the eternal retribution of Allah more than the AK-47’s carried by Western forces. Just a few of the attacks are as follows:

November 1979 - Hostages taken at the U.S. Embassy in Tehran
April 1983 - Bombing of U.S. Embassy in Beirut
October 1983 - Bombing of Marine barracks in Beirut
December 1983 - Bombing of the U.S. Embassy in Kuwait
June 1985 - Hijacking of TWA Flight 847
December 1988 - Bombing of Pan Am Flight 103
February 1993 – World Trade Center Bombing
August 1998 – African Embassy Bombings
December 2000 – USS Cole Bombing
September 2001 – 9/11 Attacks

This list is a very short list when chronicling the thousands, over 9000 since 9/11, terror attacks throughout the world. Everyday Radicals are planning the demise of America and our way of life. To defeat this enemy we must remain of the offensive; we must seek out and destroyed terror cells worldwide targeting them both financially and militarily. Under President Bush, the Treasury began to track, freeze, and seize assets under American jurisdiction that was found to be aiding terrorism and thankfully President Obama has continued some of these policies. However if the President wants to avoid another situation like the attempted Detroit bombing or even worse, another 9/11, he would be wise to embrace more of the Bush/Cheney national security policies implemented after 9/11; after all they worked. Terrorist surveillance programs should be increased, faster location and seizing of Terrorist assets is needed, along with a policy to deal aggressively with nations that support and harbor terrorists. The US must not lose heart in this, the epic battle that will determine the future of Western Civilization as we know it. The US must defeat the Taliban in both Afghanistan and Pakistan and deny them a safe haven anywhere on the planet. This is not something the US can do alone; we need support: economically, diplomatically, and militarily from our allies, after all their way of life also hangs in the balance. We must remember that Freedom and Liberty are fragile things and are never more than one generation away from extinction.

Saturday, December 19, 2009

2010 Predictions

2010 Congressional Race Predictions

As of this moment I'm looking over the latest poll from Battleground, a truly Bipartisan polling group, and the results are very promising for Conservatives, and if the GOP stays to its conservative ideals, it promises to be a great year for them as well. In the latest Battleground Poll, 63% of Americans now consider themselves "somewhat" to "very" conservative. Compared to 33% who self identify as "somewhat" or "very" liberal. And for all the Republicans who think the GOP should be a "big tent" party and compromise conservative ideals for "moderates", the Poll reports that only 1% of Americans consider themselves Moderate. No the GOP must be the place where conservatism, both Fiscal and national security matters, is the prevailing ideology. The Battleground Poll, for the first time in a long time, has the GOP leading democrats on Generic Ballot match ups. Several other polling houses have also released polling showing the GOP winning on the generic congressional ballots, Rasmussen has the GOP up by 7. Dick Morris predicts the GOP could take as many as 100 House seats and 11 senate seats; that would be the biggest earthquake in moderate political history.. And Rove sees 8 or 9 senate seats for the GOP. I think the GOP will hold all their seats in the House and gain 55-60, making John Boehner Speaker of the House and giving the GOP at least 232 seats. I predict the GOP will hold its current Senate seats and gain 8 seats. The GOP will win Arkansas, Delaware, North Dakota, Connecticut, Pennsylvania, Nevada, Colorado, and believe it or not New York ( yes, Hillary's seat). I call NY because it all the polling I've seen, Gillibrand is a weak candidate, she doesn't even have the support of the democrat liberal base in NY. Rudy Giuliani beats Gillibrand hands down in the polling I'm looking at. Rep. Peter King (R) also polls very well against Gillibrand.

House Seats: 55-60
Senate: 8

But I hope Dick Morris is right and the GOP wins 100 House seats and 11 senate seats..