Michael D. Tanner — Going For Broke — Leviathan On The Right: How Big Government Conservatism Brought Down The Republican Revolution — Videos

Posted on October 16, 2016. Filed under: Articles, Blogroll, Books, Non-Fiction | Tags: , , , , , |

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Going for Broke: Deficits, Debt, and the Entitlement Crisis (Michael Tanner)

Michael Tanner – Going for Broke: Deficits, Debt and the Entitlement Crisis

‘We’re Broke’: Cato’s Michael Tanner on the Libertarian State of the Union

Michael D. Tanner

Media Contact:

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Cato Institute senior fellow, Michael Tanner heads research into a variety of domestic policies with a particular emphasis on poverty and social welfare policy, health care reform, and Social Security.

Tanner is the author of numerous other books on public policy, including Going for Broke: Deficits, Debt, and the Entitlement Crisis,Leviathan on the Right: How Big-Government Conservatism Brought Down the Republican Revolution, Healthy Competition: What’s Holding Back Health Care and How to Free It, The Poverty of Welfare: Helping Others in Civil Society, and A New Deal for Social Security.

Under Tanner’s direction, Cato launched the Project on Social Security Choice, which is widely considered the leading impetus for transforming the soon-to-be-bankrupt system into a private savings program. Timemagazine calls Tanner, “one of the architects of the private accounts movement,” and Congressional Quarterly named him one of the nation’s five most influential experts on Social Security. The New York Times refers to him as “a lucid writer and skilled polemicist.”

More recently Tanner has undertaken a major project to develop innovative solutions to poverty and inequality.

Tanner’s writings have appeared in nearly every major American newspaper, including the New York Times, Washington Post, Los Angeles Times, Wall Street Journal, and USA Today. He writes a weekly column for National Review Online, and is a contributing columnist with the New York Post. A prolific writer and frequent guest lecturer, Tanner appears regularly on network and cable news programs.

http://www.cato.org/people/michael-tanner

Cato Institute

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
For other uses, see Cato (disambiguation).
Cato Institute
Catologo.PNG
Founder(s) Ed Crane, Charles Koch, Murray Rothbard
Established 1974[1]
Mission To originate, disseminate, and increase understanding of public policies based on the principles of individual liberty, limited government, free markets, and peace.[2]
Focus Public advocacy, media exposure and societal influence
President (and CEO) Peter N. Goettler[3]
Chairman Robert A. Levy[3]
Executive Vice-President David Boaz[4]
Faculty 46
Adjunct faculty 70
Staff 100
Budget Revenue: $37.3 million
Expenses: $29.4 million
(FYE March 2015)[5]
Slogan “Individual Liberty, Free Markets, and Peace”
Formerly called Charles Koch Foundation; Cato Foundation
Location 1000 Massachusetts Ave. N.W.Washington, D.C., United States
Coordinates 38°54′12″N 77°01′35″WCoordinates: 38°54′12″N 77°01′35″W
Website www.cato.org

The Cato Institute is an American libertarian think tank headquartered in Washington, D.C. It was founded as the Charles Koch Foundation in 1974 by Ed Crane, Murray Rothbard, and Charles Koch,[6] chairman of the board and chief executive officer of the conglomerate Koch Industries.[nb 1] In July 1976, the name was changed to the Cato Institute.[6][7] Cato was established to have a focus on public advocacy, media exposure and societal influence.[8] According to the 2014 Global Go To Think TankIndex Report (Think Tanks and Civil Societies Program, University of Pennsylvania), Cato is number 16 in the “Top Think Tanks Worldwide” and number 8 in the “Top Think Tanks in the United States”.[9] Cato also topped the 2014 list of the budget-adjusted ranking of international development think tanks.[10]

Cato Institute building in Washington, D.C.

History

The institute was founded in December 1974 in Wichita, Kansas as the Charles Koch Foundation and initially funded by Charles Koch.[nb 2][11] The other members of the first board of directors included co-founder Murray Rothbard, libertarian scholar Earl Ravenal, and businessmen Sam H. Husbands Jr. and David H. Padden.[6][12]At the suggestion of Rothbard,[12] the institute changed its name in 1976 to Cato Institute after Cato’s Letters, a series of British essays penned in the early 18th century by John Trenchard and Thomas Gordon.[13][14]

Cato relocated first to San Francisco, California in 1977, then to Washington, D.C. in 1981, settling initially in a historic house on Capitol Hill.[15](p446) The Institute moved to its current location on Massachusetts Avenue in 1993. Cato Institute was named the fifth-ranked think tank in the world for 2009 in a study of think tanks by James G. McGann, PhD of the University of Pennsylvania, based on a criterion of excellence in “producing rigorous and relevant research, publications and programs in one or more substantive areas of research”.[16]

Activities

Various Cato programs were favorably ranked in a survey published by the University of Pennsylvania in 2012.[9]

Publications

The Cato Institute publishes numerous policy studies, briefing papers, periodicals, and books. Peer-reviewed academic journals include the Cato Journal[17][18][19] and Regulation.[20][21][22] Other periodicals includeCato’s Letter,[23] Cato Supreme Court Review,[24] and Cato Policy Report.[25] Cato published Inquiry Magazine from 1977 to 1982 (before transferring it to the Libertarian Review Foundation)[26] and Literature of Liberty from 1978 to 1979 (before transferring it to the Institute for Humane Studies).[27]

Notable books from Cato and Cato scholars include:

Web projects

In addition to maintaining its own website in English and Spanish,[28] Cato maintains websites focused on particular topics:

  • “Downsizing the Federal Government” contains essays on the size of the U.S. Federal Government and recommendations for decreasing various programs.[29]
  • Libertarianism.org is a website focused on the theory and practice of libertarianism.
  • Cato Unbound, a web-only publication that features a monthly open debate between four people. The conversation begins with one lead essay, followed by three response essays by separate people. After that, all four participants can write as many responses and counter-responses as they want for the duration of that month.
  • PoliceMisconduct.net contains reports and stories from Cato’s National Police Misconduct Reporting Project and the National Police Misconduct News Feed.[30]
  • Overlawyered is a law blog on the subject of tort reform run by author Walter Olson.
  • HumanProgress.org is an interactive data web project that catalogs increases in prosperity driven by the free market.

Social media sponsored by Cato includes “Daily Podcasts” (through iTunes and RSS feeds), plus pages on Facebook, Twitter, Google+, and YouTube.[31]

Conferences

Speakers at Cato have included Federal Reserve Chairmen Alan Greenspan and Ben Bernanke, and International Monetary Fund Managing Director Rodrigo de Rato.[32][33][34] In 2009 Czech Republic PresidentVáclav Klaus spoke at a conference.[35]

Ideological relationships

Libertarianism, classical liberalism, and conservatism

Many Cato scholars advocate support for civil liberties, liberal immigration policies,[36] drug liberalization,[37] and the repeal of Don’t Ask Don’t Tell and laws restricting consensual sexual activity.[38][39] The Cato Institute officially resists being labeled as part of the conservative movement because “‘conservative’ smacks of an unwillingness to change, of a desire to preserve the status quo”.[40]

In 2006, Markos Moulitsas of the Daily Kos proposed the term “Libertarian Democrat” to describe his particular liberal position, suggesting that libertarians should be allies of the Democratic Party. Replying, Cato vice president for research Brink Lindsey agreed that libertarians and liberals should view each other as natural ideological allies,[41] and noted continuing differences between mainstream liberal views on economic policy and Cato’s “Jeffersonian philosophy“. Cato has stated on its “About Cato” page: “The Jeffersonian philosophy that animates Cato’s work has increasingly come to be called ‘libertarianism’ or ‘market liberalism.’ It combines an appreciation for entrepreneurship, the market process, and lower taxes with strict respect for civil liberties and skepticism about the benefits of both the welfare state and foreign military adventurism.”[42]

Cato scholars Gene Healy and Tim Lynch were critical of the expansion of executive power under President George W. Bush[43] and the Iraq War.[44] In 2006 and 2007, Cato published two books critical of the Republican Party’s perceived abandonment of the limited-government ideals that swept them into power in 1994.[45][46] For their part, only a minority of Republican congressmen supported President George W. Bush’s 2005 proposal to partially privatize Social Security, an idea strongly backed by the Institute. And in the 109th Congress, President Bush’s immigration plan – which was based on a proposal by Cato scholar Dan Griswold[47] – went down to defeat largely due to the eventual opposition of conservative Republican congressmen.[48]

Some Cato scholars disagree with conservatives on drug liberalization,[37] liberal immigration policy,[36] energy policy,[49] and LGBT rights[38] – including the repeal of Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell.[39] Former Cato President Ed Crane had a particular dislike for neoconservatism. In a 2003 article with Cato Chairman Emeritus William A. Niskanen, he called neoconservatism a “particular threat to liberty perhaps greater than the ideologically spent ideas of left-liberalism”.[50] In 1995, Crane wrote that neoconservatives “have a fundamentally benign view of the state”, which Crane considers antithetical to libertarian ideals of individual freedom.[51] In 2004, Cato’s foreign policy team criticized neoconservative foreign policy,[52] albeit the opposition to neo-conservative foreign policy has not always been uniform.[53]

Objectivism

John A. Allison IV speaking at the 2014 International Students for Liberty Conference (ISFLC)

Further information: Objectivism and libertarianism

The relationship between Cato and the Ayn Rand Institute (ARI) improved with the nomination of Cato’s new president John A. Allison IV in 2012. He is a former ARI board member and is reported to be an “ardent devotee” of Rand who has promoted reading her books to colleges nationwide.[54] In March 2015 Allison retired and was replaced by Peter Goettler. Allison remains on the Cato Institute’s board[55]

Cato positions on political issues and policies

The Cato Institute advocates policies that advance “individual liberty, limited government, free markets, and peace“. They are libertarian in their policy positions, typically advocating diminished government intervention in domestic, social, and economic policies and decreased military and political intervention worldwide. Cato was cited by columnist Ezra Klein as nonpartisan, saying that it is “the foremost advocate for small-government principles in American life” and it “advocates those principles when Democrats are in power, and when Republicans are in power”.[56] Eric Lichtblau called Cato “one of the country’s most widely cited research organizations”.[57]

On domestic issues

Cato scholars have consistently called for the privatization of many government services and institutions, including NASA, Social Security, the United States Postal Service, the Transportation Security Administration,public transportation systems, and public broadcasting.[58][59][60][61][62][63][64][65] The institute opposes minimum wage laws, saying that they violate the freedom of contract and thus private property rights, and increase unemployment.[66][67] It is opposed to expanding overtime regulations, arguing that it will benefit some employees in the short term, while costing jobs or lowering wages of others, and have no meaningful long-term impact.[68][69] It opposes child labor prohibitions.[70][71][72] It opposes public sector unions and supports right-to-work laws.[73][74] It opposes universal health care, arguing that it is harmful to patients and an intrusion onto individual liberty.[75][76] It is against affirmative action.[77] It has also called for total abolition of the welfare state, and has argued that it should be replaced with reduced business regulations to create more jobs, and argues that private charities are fully capable of replacing it.[78][79] Cato has also opposed antitrust laws.[80][81]

Cato is an opponent of campaign finance reform, arguing that government is the ultimate form of potential corruption and that such laws undermine democracy by undermining competitive elections. Cato also supports the repeal of the Federal Election Campaign Act.[82][83]

Cato has published strong criticisms of the 1998 settlement which many U.S. states signed with the tobacco industry.[84] In 2004, Cato scholar Daniel Griswold wrote in support of President George W. Bush’s failed proposal to grant temporary work visas to otherwise undocumented laborers which would have granted limited residency for the purpose of employment in the U.S.[85]

The Cato Institute published a study proposing a Balanced Budget Veto Amendment to the United States Constitution.[86]

In 2003, Cato filed an amicus brief in support of the Supreme Court’s decision in Lawrence v. Texas, which struck down the remaining state laws that made private, non-commercial homosexual relations between consenting adults illegal. Cato cited the 14th Amendment, among other things, as the source of their support for the ruling. The amicus brief was cited in Justice Kennedy’s majority opinion for the Court.[87]

In 2006, Cato published a Policy Analysis criticising the Federal Marriage Amendment as unnecessary, anti-federalist, and anti-democratic.[88] The amendment would have changed the United States Constitution to prohibit same-sex marriage; the amendment failed in both houses of Congress.

Cato scholars have been sharp critics of current U.S. drug policy and the perceived growing militarization of U.S. law enforcement.[89] Additionally, the Cato Institute opposes smoking bans[90] and mandatory use ofsafety belts.[91]

Criticism of corporate welfare

In 2004, the Institute published a paper arguing in favor of “drug re-importation”.[92] Cato has published numerous studies criticizing what it calls “corporate welfare”, the practice of public officials funneling taxpayer money, usually via targeted budgetary spending, to politically connected corporate interests.[93][94][95][96]

Cato president Ed Crane and Sierra Club executive director Carl Pope co-wrote a 2002 op-ed piece in the Washington Post calling for the abandonment of the Republican energy bill, arguing that it had become little more than a gravy train for Washington, D.C. lobbyists.[97] Again in 2005, Cato scholar Jerry Taylor teamed up with Daniel Becker of the Sierra Club to attack the Republican Energy Bill as a give-away to corporate interests.[98]

On copyright issues

A 2006 study criticized the Digital Millennium Copyright Act.[99]

On foreign policy

Cato’s non-interventionist foreign policy views, and strong support for civil liberties, have frequently led Cato scholars to criticize those in power, both Republican and Democratic. Cato scholars opposed PresidentGeorge H. W. Bush‘s 1991 Gulf War operations (a position which caused the organization to lose nearly $1 million in funding),[15](p454) President Bill Clinton‘s interventions in Haiti and Kosovo, and President George W. Bush’s 2003 invasion of Iraq. As a response to the September 11 attacks, Cato scholars supported the removal of al Qaeda and the Taliban regime from power, but are against an indefinite and open-ended military occupation of Afghanistan.[100]

Ted Galen Carpenter, Cato’s Vice President for Defense and Foreign Policy Studies, criticized many of the arguments offered to justify the 2003 invasion of Iraq. One of the war’s earliest critics, Carpenter wrote in January 2002: “Ousting Saddam would make Washington responsible for Iraq’s political future and entangle the United States in an endless nation-building mission beset by intractable problems.”[101] Carpenter also predicted: “Most notably there is the issue posed by two persistent regional secession movements: the Kurds in the north and the Shiites in the south.”[101] Cato’s Director of Foreign Policy Studies, Christopher Preble, argues in The Power Problem: How American Military Dominance Makes Us Less Safe, Less Prosperous, and Less Free, that America’s position as an unrivaled superpower tempts policymakers to constantly overreach and to redefine ever more broadly the “national interest”.[102]

Christopher Preble has said that the “scare campaign” to protect military spending from cuts under the Budget Control Act of 2011 has backfired.[103]

On environmental policy

Cato scholars have written about the issues of the environment, including global warming, environmental regulation, and energy policy.

PolitiFact.com and Scientific American have criticized Cato’s work on global warming.[104][105] A December 2003 Cato panel included Patrick Michaels, Robert Balling and John Christy.[citation needed] Michaels, Balling and Christy agreed that global warming is related at least some degree to human activity but that some scientists and the media have overstated the danger.[citation needed] The Cato Institute has also criticized political attempts to stop global warming as expensive and ineffective:

No known mechanism can stop global warming in the near term. International agreements, such as the Kyoto Protocol to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change, would have no detectable effect on average temperature within any reasonable policy time frame (i.e., 50 years or so), even with full compliance.[106]

Cato scholars have been critical of the Bush administration’s views on energy policy. In 2003, Cato scholars Jerry Taylor and Peter Van Doren said the Republican Energy Bill was “hundreds of pages of corporate welfare, symbolic gestures, empty promises, and pork-barrel projects”.[107] They also spoke out against the former president’s calls for larger ethanol subsidies.[108]

With regard to the “Takings Clause” of the United States Constitution and environmental protection, libertarians associated with Cato contend that the Constitution is not adequate to guarantee the protection of private property rights.[109]

Other commentaries of presidential administrations

George W. Bush administration

Cato scholars were critical of George W. Bush‘s Republican administration (2001–2009) on several issues, including education,[110] and excessive government spending.[111] On other issues, they supported Bush administration initiatives, most notably health care,[112] Social Security,[113][114] global warming,[106] tax policy,[115] and immigration.[85][116][117][118]

2008 election campaign commentaries

During the 2008 U.S. presidential election, Cato scholars criticized both major-party candidates, John McCain and Barack Obama.[119][120]

Barack Obama administration

Cato has criticized President Obama’s stances on policy issues such as fiscal stimulus,[121] healthcare reform,[122] foreign policy,[123] and drug-related matters,[37] while supporting his stance on the repeal of Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell[39] and liberal immigration policy.[36]

Funding, tax status, and corporate structure

The Cato Institute is classified as a 501(c)(3) organization under U.S. Internal Revenue Code. For revenue, the Institute is largely dependent on private contributions. The Cato Institute reported fiscal year 2015 revenue of $37.3 million and expenses of $29.4 million.[5] According to the organization’s annual report, $32.1 million came from individual donors, $2.9 million came from foundations, $1.2 million came from program revenue and other income, and $1 million came from corporations.[5]

Sponsors of Cato have included FedEx, Google, CME Group and Whole Foods Market.[124] The Nation reported support for Cato from the tobacco industry in a 2012 story.[125]

Funding details

Funding details as of FYE March 2015:[5]
Circle frame.svg

Operating Revenue as of FYE March 2015: $37,319,000

  Individuals (86.0%)
  Foundations (7.7%)
  Corporations (2.9%)
  Program revenue (2.9%)
  Other income (0.5%)
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Operating expenses as of FYE March 2015: $29,352,000

  Program (73.8%)
  Management & General (7.9%)
  Development (18.3%)

Net assets as of FYE March 2015: $70,186,000.

Shareholder dispute

According to an agreement signed in 1977, there were to be four shareholders of the Cato Institute. They were Charles and David Koch, Ed Crane,[126] and William A. Niskanen. Niskanen died in October 2011.[127] In March 2012, a dispute broke out over the ownership of Niskanen’s shares.[126][127] Charles and David Koch filed suit in Kansas, seeking to void his shareholder seat. The Kochs argued that Niskanen’s shares should first be offered to the board of the Institute, and then to the remaining shareholders.[128] Crane contended that Niskanen’s share belonged to his widow, Kathryn Washburn, and that the move by the Kochs was an attempt to turn Cato into “some sort of auxiliary for the G.O.P…. It’s detrimental to Cato, it’s detrimental to Koch Industries, it’s detrimental to the libertarian movement.”[57]

In June 2012, Cato announced an agreement in principle to settle the dispute by changing the institute’s governing structure. Under the agreement, a board replaced the shareholders and Crane, who at the time was also Chief Executive Officer, retired. Former BB&T bank CEO John A. Allison IV replaced him.[129][130] The Koch brothers agreed to drop two lawsuits.[131]

Associates in the news

  • Cato senior fellow Robert A. Levy personally funded the plaintiffs’ successful Supreme Court challenge to the District of Columbia’s gun ban (District of Columbia v. Heller), on the basis of the Second Amendment.[132]
  • In January 2008, Dom Armentano wrote an op-ed piece about UFOs and classified government data in the Vero Beach Press-Journal.[133] Cato Executive Vice President David Boaz wrote that “I won’t deny that this latest op-ed played a role in our decision…” to drop Armentano as a Cato adjunct scholar.[134]

Nobel laureates at Cato

The following Nobel Memorial Prize in Economic Sciences laureates have worked with Cato:[135]

Milton Friedman Prize

Since 2002, the Cato Institute has awarded the Milton Friedman Prize for Advancing Liberty every two years to “an individual who has made a significant contribution to advancing human freedom.”[136] The prize comes with a cash award of US$250,000.[137]

Friedman Prize winners
Year Recipient Nationality
2002 Peter Thomas Bauer[138]  British
2004 Hernando de Soto Polar[139]  Peruvian
2006 Mart Laar[140]  Estonian
2008 Yon Goicoechea[141]  Venezuelan
2010 Akbar Ganji[142]  Iranian
2012 Mao Yushi[143]  Chinese
2014 Leszek Balcerowicz[144]  Polish
2016 Flemming Rose[145]  Danish

Board of directors

As of 2016:[3]

Notable Cato experts

Notable scholars associated with Cato include the following:[146]

Policy scholars

Adjunct scholars

Fellows

Affiliations

The Cato Institute is an associate member of the State Policy Network, a U.S. national network of free-market oriented think tanks.[147][148]

See also]

Notes

  1. Jump up^ Koch Industries is the second largest privately held company by revenue in the United States. “Forbes List”. Forbes. Retrieved November 13, 2011.
  2. Jump up^ Koch is chairman of the board and chief executive officer of the conglomerate Koch Industries, the second largest privately held company by revenue in the United States. “Forbes List”. Forbes. Retrieved November 13, 2011.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cato_Institute

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Will A Greece Default On Debt Trigger A World Recession? — Bubbles Bursting? — Greek Odious Debt Default On The Brink — Jump! — Greece Defaults! — Videos

Posted on June 30, 2015. Filed under: American History, Articles, Banking, Blogroll, Business, College, Communications, Constitution, Corruption, Crime, Crisis, Culture, Dance, Documentary, Economics, Education, Employment, European History, Faith, Family, Federal Government Budget, Fiscal Policy, Foreign Policy, Fraud, Freedom, Friends, government, government spending, history, Inflation, Investments, Law, liberty, Life, Links, Literacy, Macroeconomics, media, Monetary Policy, Money, Music, People, Philosophy, Politics, Press, Psychology, Radio, Raves, Strategy, Talk Radio, Tax Policy, Taxation, Taxes, Video, Wealth, Welfare, Wisdom, Writing | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

Project_1

The Pronk Pops Show Podcasts

Pronk Pops Show 495  June 29, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 494 June 26, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 493 June 25, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 492 June 24, 2015 

Pronk Pops Show 491 June 23, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 490 June 22, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 489 June 19, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 488 June 18, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 487 June 17, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 486 June 16, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 485 June 15, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 484 June 12, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 483 June 11, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 482 June 10, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 481 June 9, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 480 June 8, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 479 June 5, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 478 June 4, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 477 June 3, 2015 

Pronk Pops Show 476 June 2, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 475 June 1, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 474 May 29, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 473 May 28, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 472 May 27, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 471 May 26, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 470 May 22, 2015

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Pronk Pops Show 468 May 20, 2015 

Pronk Pops Show 467 May 19, 2015

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Pronk Pops Show 465 May 15, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 464 May 14, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 463 May 13, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 462 May 8, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 461 May 7, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 460 May 6, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 459 May 4, 2015 

Pronk Pops Show 458 May 1, 2015 

Pronk Pops Show 457 April 30, 2015 

Pronk Pops Show 456: April 29, 2015 

Pronk Pops Show 455: April 28, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 454: April 27, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 453: April 24, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 452: April 23, 2015 

Pronk Pops Show 451: April 22, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 450: April 21, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 449: April 20, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 448: April 17, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 447: April 16, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 446: April 15, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 445: April 14, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 444: April 13, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 443: April 9, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 442: April 8, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 441: April 6, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 440: April 2, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 439: April 1, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 438: March 31, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 437: March 30, 2015 

Pronk Pops Show 436: March 27, 2015 

Pronk Pops Show 435: March 26, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 434: March 25, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 433: March 24, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 432: March 23, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 431: March 20, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 430: March 19, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 429: March 18, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 428: March 17, 2015 

Pronk Pops Show 427: March 16, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 426: March 6, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 425: March 4, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 424: March 2, 2015

Story 1: Will A Greece Default On Debt Trigger A World Recession? — Bubbles Bursting? — Greek Odious Debt Default On The Brink — Jump! — Greece Defaults! — Videos

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euro zone EU-Unemployment-Comparison  Greekbanks  greek_debt_infographicpull out

Greece misses 1.5 billion euro IMF payment 01:12

Greece officially defaults 02:28

Greece defaults on $1.7 billion payment

Laura Branigan – Self Control

last chance

Donna Summer Last Dance

The History of Odious Debt

Not Much Difference Between U.S. and Greece

How Will Greece’s Default to the IMF Impact Europe?

Analysis: Who is to blame for Greece’s debt crisis?

Nightly Business Report — June 29, 2015

Greece’s Economic Disaster May Spread To Other Countries – Episode 704

SR381 – Why Greece Will Default

Keiser Report: Greece! Start Fresh (E777)

Keiser Report: IMF failed Greece long before bailout (E776)

Why Does Greece Have So Much Debt?

Greece Makes The First Move, Debt Is Illegal And Odious – Episode 694

Should Greece Answer The Debt Crisis By Pulling A Trump?

Greece and the Euro Breakup; Why the US Dollar Is Facing an Even Bigger Crisis

Ep. 89: Greece is a sideshow. U.S. is the Main Event.

Greek Economic Crisis: Three Things to Know

Parsons: Greece default will be ‘big time’ problem for U.S. banks

Greece on the Brink – Documentary [HD]

DONNA SUMMER – I feel love (1977) HD and HQ

Laura Branigan – Gloria [1982]

Forever Young Laura Branigan

Greece’s bailout expires, country defaults on IMF payment

By ELENA BECATOROS and DEREK GATOPOULOS

y to fall into arrears on payments to the fund. The last country to do so was Zimbabwe in 2001.

After Greece made a last-ditch effort to extend its bailout, eurozone finance ministers decided in a teleconference late Tuesday that there was no way they could reach a deal before the deadline.

“It would be crazy to extend the program,” said Dutch Finance Minister Jeroen Dijsselbleom, who heads the eurozone finance ministers’ body known as the eurogroup. “So that cannot happen and will not happen.”

(AP) An elderly man passes a graffiti outside an old bank in Athens, Tuesday, June 30,…
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“The program expires tonight,” Dijsselbleom said.The brinkmanship that has characterized Greece’s bailout negotiations with its European creditors and the IMF rose several notches over the weekend, when Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras announced he would put a deal proposal by creditors to a referendum on Sunday and urged a “No” vote.

The move increased fears the country could soon fall out of the euro currency bloc and Greeks rushed to pull money out of ATMs, leading the government to shutter its banks and impose restrictions on banking transactions on Monday for at least a week.

But in a surprise move Tuesday night, Deputy Prime Minister Yannis Dragasakis hinted that the government might be open to calling off the popular vote, saying it was a political decision.

The government decided on the referendum, he said on state television, “and it can make a decision on something else.”

(AP) A demonstrator waves a Greek flag during a rally organized by supporters of the YES…
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It was unclear, however, how that would be possible legally as Parliament has already voted for it to go ahead.Greece’s international bailout expires at midnight central European time, after which the country loses access to billions of euros in funds. At the same time, Greece has said it will not be able to make a payment of 1.6 billion euros ($1.8 billion) to the IMF.

With its economy teetering on the brink, Greece suffered its second sovereign downgrade in as many days when the Fitch ratings agency lowered it further into junk status, to just one notch above the level where it considers default inevitable.

The agency said the breakdown of negotiations “has significantly increased the risk that Greece will not be able to honor its debt obligations in the coming months, including bonds held by the private sector.”

Fitch said it now considered a default on privately-held debt “probable.”

(AP) People stand in a queue to use an ATM outside a closed bank, next to a sign on the…
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Hopes for an 11th-hour deal were raised when the Greek side announced it had submitted a new proposal Tuesday afternoon, and the eurozone’s 19 finance ministers held a teleconference to discuss it.But those hopes were quickly dashed.

German Chancellor Angela Merkel said she ruled out further negotiations with Greece before Sunday’s popular vote on whether to accept creditors’ demands for budget reforms.

“Before the planned referendum is carried out, we will not negotiate over anything new,” the dpa news agency quoted Merkel as saying.

Greece’s latest offer involves a proposal to tap Europe’s bailout fund — the so-called European Stability Mechanism, a pot of money set up after Greece’s rescue programs to help countries in need.

(AP) The word “NO”, referring to the upcoming referendum, is written in red paint outside…
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Tsipras’ office said the proposal was “for the full coverage of (Greece’s) financing needs with the simultaneous restructuring of the debt.”Dijsselbloem said the finance ministers would “study that request as we should” and that they would hold another conference call Wednesday, as they had also received a second letter from Athens that they had not had time to read.

Dragasakis said the new letter “narrows the differences further.”

“We are making an additional effort. There are six points where this effort can be made. I don’t want to get into specifics. But it includes pensions and labor issues,” he said.

European officials and Greek opposition parties have been adamant that a “No” vote on Sunday will mean Greece will leave the euro and possibly even the EU.

(AP) Demonstrators shout slogans during a rally organized by supporters of the YES vote…
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The government says this is scaremongering, and that a rejection of creditor demands will mean the country is in a better negotiating position.In Athens, more than 10,000 “Yes” vote supporters gathered outside parliament despite a thunderstorm, chanting “Europe! Europe!”

Most huddled under umbrellas, including Athens resident Sofia Matthaiou.

“I don’t know if we’ll get a deal. But we have to press them to see reason,” she said, referring to the government. “The creditors need to water down their positions, too.”

The protest came a day after thousands of government supporters advocating a “No” vote held a similar demonstration.

(AP) Demonstrators gather under the rain during a rally organized by supporters of the…
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On Monday, European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker made a new offer to Greece. Under that proposal, Tsipras would need to accept the creditors’ proposal that was on the table last weekend. He would also have to change his position on Sunday’s referendum.Commission spokesman Margaritis Schinas said the offer would also involve unspecified discussions on Athens’s massive debt load of over 300 billion euros, or around 180 percent of GDP. The Greek side has long called for debt relief, saying its mountainous debt is unsustainable.

A Greek government official said Tsipras had spoken earlier in the day with Juncker, European Central Bank chief Mario Draghi and European Parliament president Martin Schulz.

Meanwhile, missing the IMF payment will cut Greece off from new loans from the organization.

And with its bailout program expiring, Greece will lose access to more than 16 billion euros ($18 billion) in financial support it has not yet tapped, officials said. They spoke on condition of anonymity because talks about the program were still ongoing.

On the streets of Athens, long lines formed again at ATM machines as Greeks struggled with the new restrictions on banking transactions. Under credit controls imposed Monday, Greeks are now limited to ATM withdrawals of 60 euros ($67) a day and cannot send money abroad or make international payments without special permission.

The elderly have been hit particularly hard, with tens of thousands of pensions unpaid as of Tuesday afternoon. Many also found themselves completely cut off from any cash as they do not have bank cards.

The finance ministry said it would open about 1,000 bank branches across the country for three days beginning Wednesday to allow pensioners without bank cards to make withdrawals. But the limit would be set at 120 euros for the whole week.

 http://apnews.myway.com/article/20150630/eu–greece-bailout-26fc170deb.html

What happens if Greece defaults on its International Monetary Fund loans?

Cash-starved Athens has resorted to extraordinary measures to avoid defaulting to the IMF. But what would be the fall-out of a disorderly default?

No county has ever defaulted to the Fund in its 70-year history

The Greek government faces the prospect of becoming the first developed nation to ever default on its international obligations.

After a harrowing five months, and in a drama of soft deadlines, the cash-strapped government now faces a €1.55bn payment to the International Monetary Fund due at 11pm tonight.

With negotiations have broken off in dramatic fashion last week, a cacophony of voices on Syriza’s Left have vowed to prioritise domestic obligations unless creditors finally unlock the remainder of its €240bn bail-out programme. Greece only avoided going bust earlier this month after the government has asked for a Zambia-style debt bundling which will now be due on June 30.

The rhetoric is a far cry from February, when Greece’s finance minister pledged his government would “squeeze blood out of a stone” to meet its obligations to the Fund.

Greece owes €9.7bn to the IMF this year. Missing any instalment to the IMF would see the country fall into an arrears process, unprecedented for a developed world debtor.

Although no nation has ever officially defaulted on its obligations in the post-Bretton Woods era, Greece would join an ignominious list of war-torn nations and international pariahs who have failed to pay back the Fund on time.

What happens after a default?

In choosing to bundle up four separate June repayments, Greece avoided triggering an immediate default.

But in the event of a delayed repayment, according to IMF protocol, Greece could be afforded a 30-day grace period, during which it would be urged to pay back the money as soon as possible, and before Ms Lagarde notifies her executive board of the late payment.

However, with talks have broken down in acrimonious fashion between the country and its creditors, Ms Lagarde has said she will renege on this and notify her board “immediately”.

Having spooked creditors and the markets of the possibility of a fatal breach of the sanctity of monetary union, Greece may well stump up the cash if an agreement to release the country more emergency aid is reached (that’s looking increasingly unlikely however).

But should no money be forthcoming however, the arrears process may well extend indefinitely.

Greece’s other creditor burden would also start piling up, with the government due to pay another €6.6bn to the European Central Bank in July and August.

Stopping the cash

Although the exact process is uncertain, falling into a protracted arrears procedure could have major consequences for continued financial assistance from Greece’s other creditors – the European Central Bank and European Commission.

“If Greece defaults to the IMF, then they are considered to be in default to the rest of the eurozone,” says Raoul Ruparel, head of economic research at Open Europe.

The terms of Greece’s existing bail-out programme stipulate that a default to the IMF would automatically constitute a default on the country’s European rescue loans.

“Such a scenario would risk the European Financial Stability Facility (EFSF) cancelling all or part of its facility or even declaring the principal amount of the loan to be due immediately,” say analysts at Bank of America Merrill Lynch.

Should the EFSF take such a decisive move, it could activate a range of cross default clauses on Greek government bonds held by private investors and the ECB. These clauses state a default to one creditor institution applies to all.

The political and market damage that may ensue would be substantial. Popular sentiment in creditor nations would turn against the errant Greeks, while the position of the ECB in particular could quickly come under the spotlight.

The central bank has kept Greek banks on a tight leash, maintaining that it would only restore normal lending operations to the country once “conditions for a successful completion of the programme are in place”.

A wave of defaults may force the ECB into finally pulling the plug on the emergency assistance it has been providing in ever larger doses since February.

What would happen if Greece left the euro? In 60 seconds

Scrambling for funds

Whatever the outcome, Greece on many measures, is all but bankrupt.

In addition to the half a billion euros plus it owes the Fund this month, the Leftist government will still be paying back the IMF until 2030. In total, its repayment schedule stretches out over the next 42 years to 2057.

Greece makes new aid proposal, seeks debt restructuring

ATHENS (Reuters) – Greece has submitted to creditors a new two-year aid proposal calling for parallel debt restructuring, the office of Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras said on Tuesday, in what seemed like a last-ditch effort by Athens to resolve an impasse with lenders.

The statement came hours before Athens was set to default on a loan to the International Monetary Fund. It was unclear how creditors would respond.

“The Greek government proposed today a two-year deal with the ESM (European Stability Mechanism) to fully cover its financial needs and with parallel debt restructuring,” the government said in a statement.

“Greece remains at the negotiating table,” the statement said, adding that Athens would always seek a “viable solution to stay in the euro.”

http://news.yahoo.com/greece-makes-aid-proposal-seeks-debt-restructuring-134508038–business.html

If Greece defaults on its debt, it will be the biggest default by a country in history.
Greece is expected to miss a €1.5 billion ($1.7 billion) debt payment on Tuesday. That won’t be enough to put it in the record books yet, but it could eventually make Greece default on its entire debt load: €323 billion ($360 billion).

This isn’t the first time Greece has been on the brink. Greece already holds the record for the biggest default ever by a country from 2012 when it went into technical default and had to restructure about $138 billion of its debt. Back then, Greece was quickly bailed out by its European peers. That’s unlikely to happen now.
The Greek government pulled its negotiators from talks with European officials Friday after little progress was made on a debt payment plan and economic reforms. Greece has called for a referendum vote on July 5 on the latest proposal from Europe and the International Monetary Fund.

Greece already holds the record: Greece’s 2012 technical default shattered the previous record set by Argentina in 2001, when the South American nation defaulted on $95 billion in debt. While there are parallels between the two countries, experts say this potential Greek default could be much worse.
“Things are incredibly dire,” says Anna Gelpern, a Georgetown University professor. “For political reasons and market-confidence reasons, they need to deal with the debt…It’s not clear to me how they deal with it without defaulting on anyone.”

Greece won’t officially be in default right away. The International Monetary Fund generally gives countries a month after missing a debt payment before it declares a country in defaulted. However, the markets will most likely judge Greece to be in default by July 1.
Greece’s debt is spread out across the board. Greece owes money to the International Monetary Fund, Germany, France, Greek banks and several others.
But consider this: Whatever happens to Greece, it’s likely to be a long process. Argentina is still in default. But a key difference is that Greece has four times the debt load of Argentina — the next worst default — but Greece’s economy is only half the size of Argentina’s.
While Greece would be the biggest sovereign default, Lehman Brothers had over $600 billion in assets when it filed for bankruptcy in 2008. A Greek default would be smaller and unlikely to rattle the global financial system like Lehman, but it would have a long-lasting impact on the Greek people.
Here are some of the worst sovereign defaults since 2000.

1. Greece — $138 billion, March 2012. Despite going into a technical default, the Greek government is propped up by bailout funds from its European peers. Those bailout funds eventually lead to the current dilemma.
2. Argentina — $95 billion, November 2001. Argentina’s currency was “pegged” or equal to one U.S. dollar for years — a currency exchange that eventually proved to be completely inaccurate. Like Greece is doing this week, Argentina also clamped down on Argentines trying to take money out of the banks. It didn’t help. The country’s economy was nearly three times smaller just one year later, according to IMF data. In July 2014, Argentina went into a technical default after it missed a debt payment to its hold out creditors.
3. Jamaica — $7.9 billion, February 2010. Massive government overspending for years and rapid inflation pushed Jamaica into default five years ago. At the time, over 40% of the government’s budget went to paying debts. Its economy, which depends on tourism, suffered when the U.S. recession began in late 2008.
4. Ecuador — $3.2 billion, December 2008. Ecuador pulled a fast one on its creditors. With a debt payment looming, the Ecuardor’s government, led by President Rafael Correa, just said no to its creditors. He claimed the debt, some which was owned by American hedge funds, was “immoral.” Rich in resources, Ecuardor could have made debt payments, but intentionally chose not to.

http://money.cnn.com/2015/06/29/investing/greece-default-bigger-than-argentina/

Despite Lagarde’s initial reluctance, IMF on the hook for Greece

By Anna Yukhananov

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – As French Finance Minister in 2010, Christine Lagarde opposed the involvement of the International Monetary Fund in Greece.

Now as the country stands on the edge of defaulting on a 1.6 billion euro ($1.8 billion) payment to the Fund, Lagarde’s tenure at the head of the IMF since 2011 will be shaped by Greece, which holds a referendum on Sunday that could pave the way to its exit from the euro.

By its own admission the Washington-based institution broke many of its rules in lending to Greece. It ended up endorsing austerity measures proposed by the European Commission and European Central Bank, its partners in the troika of Greece’s lenders, instead of leading talks as it had done with other countries such as Russia and in the Asian financial crisis.

“I think the IMF has missed the opportunity (on Greece), because it has not fully leveraged the lessons it learned from the previous crises it was involved in, due to this asymmetric relationship within the troika,” said Domenico Lombardi, a former IMF board member.

That the IMF lent to Greece at the behest of Europe, which has nominated every IMF Managing Director since the inception of the Fund in 1946, may expose the institution to greater scrutiny, especially as it has $24 billion in loans outstanding to Greece in its largest-ever program.

“When it was clear that the Greek program was underperforming, they did not push back sufficiently against the euro zone, which had at the time a misguided policy emphasis on only austerity,” said Jacob Funk Kirkegaard, a fellow at the Peterson Institute in Washington.

The involvement of the Fund in Greece and its continued support for decisions driven by eurozone governments caused a deep split in the institution.

Some IMF economists had misgivings about lending to Greece in 2010 within the constraints of the so-called “troika” of lenders, where the Fund would be the junior partner to the European Central Bank and the European Commission.

IMF board members also protested the “exceptional” size of the program, as Athens did not meet the Fund’s criteria for debt sustainability, meaning it would have trouble repaying.

Yet swayed by the fear that contagion in Athens could spread to French and German banks, the IMF agreed to participate in a joint 110-billion-euro bailout of Greece with the Europeans.

“The Europeans have a third of the voting rights (at the IMF), and they have appointed the managing director since the beginning, so essentially it is the governance that has driven the Greek program,” said Lombardi who is now with the Canada-based Center for International Governance Innovation.

Later, the Fund admitted that its projections for the Greek economy had been overly optimistic. Instead of growing after a year of austerity, Greece’s economy plunged into one of the worst recessions to ever hit a country in peacetime, with output falling 22 percent from 2008 to 2012.

While the euro zone’s insistence on drawing a direct link between euro membership and Greece’s debt sustainability and the negotiating tactics of the Greek government have exposed both to questions of credibility, the Fund stands charged as well.

“The IMF’s reputation, too, has been shaken from widespread criticism of the Greek program, including its own admission of its failures,” said Lombard Street Research economist Konstantinos Venetis.

TEMPTATION TO GO BIG

If Greece does default on all $24 billion it owes to the Fund, that will dwarf previous delinquencies from countries like Sudan, Zimbabwe and Somalia.

While the IMF was worried about contagion when it made the loans, it also had institutional incentives for wanting to bail out troubled countries, said Andrea Montanino, a former IMF board member who left the Fund in 2014 after participating in reviews of Greece’s second bailout in 2012.

“The IMF is in a preferred creditor status; the more you lend, the more you earn,” said Montanino, now with the Atlantic Council.

The IMF’s heavy involvement in large bailouts for euro zone countries, which included Ireland and Portugal, have enabled it to build up its reserve buffers in recent years. It is now aiming to store away some $28 billion by 2018.

From interest and charges on the Greek program alone, the IMF has earned some $3.9 billion since 2010, according to figures on the IMF’s website.

“I think the Greek lesson is in the future, the IMF will be much more careful,” said Montanino.

https://ca.news.yahoo.com/despite-lagardes-initial-reluctance-imf-hook-greece-223005193–business.html

Greece lifelines run out as IMF payment looms

Greece is widely expected to miss a crucial payment to the International Monetary Fund (IMF) on Tuesday—hours before its bailout officially ends at midnight and the country is left with few, if any, financial lifelines.

Greek officials have already warned the country is unable to pay the 1.6 billion euros ($1.8 billion) due to the IMF by 6 p.m. ET, after reforms-for-aid talks with creditors broke down at the weekend.

Jeroen Dijsselbloem, the president of the Eurogroup, subsequently tweeted on Tuesday that there would be a teleconference to discuss an “official request” from the Greek government “received this afternoon” at 1 p.m. ET.
The Greek government on Tuesday proposed a new, two-year bailout deal with the European Stability Mechanism. This would be to “fully cover its financing needs and the simultaneous restructuring of debt,” according to a translated press release from the office of the Greek Prime Minister.

A protester waves a Greek flag in front of the parliament building during a rally in Athens, Greece, June 22, 2015.

Yannis Behrakis | Reuters
A protester waves a Greek flag in front of the parliament building during a rally in Athens, Greece, June 22, 2015.

This comes at a time when Greece’s financial future is in jeopardy. The country will potentially have no access to external sources of cash, once its funding from the European Financial Stability Facility (EFSF) expires at midnight.

Read MoreEFSF: CNBC Explains

Meanwhile, Greece’s banking system is being kept afloat by emergency liquidity assistance (ELA) from the European Central Bank, which is up for review on Wednesday.

Against a backdrop of uncertainty, Tsipras has called a referendum on July 5 of the Greek people on whether to accept the bailout proposals—and accompanying austerity measures—proposed by creditors.

Tsipras has urged the public to vote “no” to more austerity.

“The Greek government will claim a sustainable agreement within the euro. This is the message of NO to a bad deal at the referendum on Sunday,” the translated statement from the prime minister’s office said on Tuesday.

‘Running out of notches’

Meanwhile, credit ratings agencies are increasingly nervous about the country’s solvency.

Fitch Ratings downgraded Greek banks on Monday to “Restricted Default,” after Athens imposed capital controls to prevent an exodus of deposits from Greece.

In addition, Standard & Poor’s (S&P) lowered Greece’s credit rating to CCC- from CCC, saying the probability of the country exiting the euro zone was now 50 percent.

Moritz Kraemer, chief rating officer of sovereign ratings at S&P, told CNBC on Tuesday that the group was “actually running out of notches” for Greece.

“We have the rating at CCC- and that’s pretty much the lowest rung that we have on our scale,” he told CNBC Europe’s “Squawk Box.”

Default?

If Greece misses its payment on Tuesday, then the IMF will consider it in “arrears” – a technical term used by the IMF, which is similar to default.

If a country is in arrears to the IMF, it means it won’t get any future aid until the bill is repaid.

Read MoreIMF’s Lagarde on Greece: Next few days are crucial

Although the IMF payment is dominating headlines, S&P’s Kraemer said that Greece’s bailout program ending at midnight was just as significant.

“Basically after that we’re back to square one,” he said. “So even if there was to be a change of heart in Athens and they did decide to take the creditors’ offer, that’s legally no longer possible as the program would have elapsed.”

Greece’s debt crisis: It all started in 2001…

Yannis Behrakis | Reuters

Odious debt

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

In international law, odious debt, also known as illegitimate debt, is a legal theory that holds that the national debt incurred by a regime for purposes that do not serve the best interests of the nation, should not be enforceable. Such debts are, thus, considered by this doctrine to be personal debts of the regime that incurred them and not debts of the state. In some respects, the concept is analogous to the invalidity of contracts signed under coercion.[1]

History

The doctrine of odious debt was formalized in a 1927 treatise by Alexander Nahum Sack, a Russian émigré legal theorist. It was based on two 19th century precedents—Mexico‘s repudiation of debts incurred by Emperor Maximilian, and the denial by the United States of Cuban liability for debts incurred by the Spanish colonial regime.[2]

Sack wrote:

When a despotic regime contracts a debt, not for the needs or in the interests of the state, but rather to strengthen itself, to suppress a popular insurrection, etc, this debt is odious for the people of the entire state. This debt does not bind the nation; it is a debt of the regime, a personal debt contracted by the ruler, and consequently it falls with the demise of the regime. The reason why these odious debts cannot attach to the territory of the state is that they do not fulfil one of the conditions determining the lawfulness of State debts, namely that State debts must be incurred, and the proceeds used, for the needs and in the interests of the State. Odious debts, contracted and utilised for purposes which, to the lenders’ knowledge, are contrary to the needs and the interests of the nation, are not binding on the nation – when it succeeds in overthrowing the government that contracted them – unless the debt is within the limits of real advantages that these debts might have afforded. The lenders have committed a hostile act against the people, they cannot expect a nation which has freed itself of a despotic regime to assume these odious debts, which are the personal debts of the ruler.[3]

There are many examples of similar debt repudiation.[4]

Reception

Patricia Adams, executive director of Probe International, a Canadian environmental and public policy advocacy organisation and author of Odious Debts: Loose Lending, Corruption, and the Third World’s Environmental Legacy, stated: “by giving creditors an incentive to lend only for purposes that are transparent and of public benefit, future tyrants will lose their ability to finance their armies, and thus the war on terror and the cause of world peace will be better served.”[5] In a Cato Institute policy analysis, Adams suggested that debts incurred by Iraq during Saddam Hussein‘s reign were odious because the money was spent on weapons, instruments of repression, and palaces.[6]

A 2002 article by economists Seema Jayachandran and Michael Kremer renewed interest in this topic.[7] They propose that the idea can be used to create a new type of economic sanction to block further borrowing by dictators.[8] Jayachandran proposed new recommendations in November 2010 at the 10th anniversary of the Jubilee movement at the Center for Global Development in Washington, D.C.[9]

Application

In December 2008, Ecuadorian President Rafael Correa attempted to default on Ecuador’s national debt, calling it illegitimate odious debt, because it was contracted by corrupt and despotic prior regimes.[10] He succeeded in reducing the price of the debt letters before continuing paying the debt.[11]

After the overthrow of Haiti‘s Jean-Claude Duvalier in 1986, there were calls to cancel Haiti’s debt owed to multilateral institutions, calling it unjust odious debt, and Haiti could better use the funds for education, health care, and basic infrastructure.[12] As of February 2008, the Haiti Debt Cancellation Resolution had 66 co-sponsors in the U.S. House of Representatives.[13] Several organizations in the United States issued action alerts around the Haiti Debt Cancellation Resolution, and a Congressional letter to the U.S. Treasury,[14] including Jubilee USA, the Institute for Justice & Democracy in Haiti and Pax Christi USA.

See also

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Odious_debt

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Part 1 of 3: An American Renaissance, The Road To Peace and Prosperity: Faith, Family, Friends, and Freedom ~ First — Videos

Posted on June 10, 2015. Filed under: American History, Blogroll, Business, Communications, Constitution, Corruption, Documentary, Economics, Employment, Federal Government, Federal Government Budget, Fiscal Policy, government spending, history, IRS, Law, liberty, Life, Links, media, People, Philosophy, Photos, Politics, Press, Radio, Raves, Talk Radio, Taxation, Taxes, Video, Wealth, Welfare, Wisdom, Writing | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

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Pronk Pops Show 417: February 13, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 416: February 12, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 415: February 11, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 414: February 10, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 413: February 9, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 412: February 6, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 411: February 5, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 410: February 4, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 409: February 3, 2015

Pronk Pops Show 408: February 2, 2015

Story 1, Part 1 of 3: An American Renaissance, The Road To Peace and Prosperity: Faith, Family, Friends, and Freedom ~ First — Videos

fairtax

fair_tax_factst

FairTax: Fire Up Our Economic Engine (Official HD)

The FairTax: It’s Time

Flat Tax vs. National Sales Tax

Dan Mitchell Discussing Federal Tax Burden on CNBC

Eight Reasons Why Big Government Hurts Economic Growth

Dan Mitchell Explaining How Government Screws Up Everything

What is the FairTax legislation?

Cato Institute Senior Fellow Daniel J. Mitchell

How does the FairTax rate compare to today’s?

What assumptions does the FairTax make about government spending?

How does the FairTax rate compare to today’s?

Is the FairTax truly progressive?

How does the “prebate” work?

Will the prebate create a massive new entitlement system?

Wouldn’t it be more fair to exempt food and medicine from the FairTax?

Is it fair for rich people to get the same prebate as poor people?

If people bring home their whole paychecks how can prices fall?

How does the FairTax impact the middle class?

Why is the FairTax better than a flat income tax?

Is the FairTax rate really 23%?

Is consumption a reliable source of revenue?

How does the FairTax affect compliance costs?

Isn’t it a stretch to say the IRS will go away?

Can I pretend to be a business to avoid the sales tax?

How does the FairTax affect tax preparers and CPAs?

Are any significant economies funded by a sales tax?

How will the FairTax affect state sales tax systems?

Can’t Americans just cross the border to avoid the FairTax

How will Social Security payments be calculated under the FairTax?

Will the FairTax impact tax deferred retirement accounts like 401(k)s?

How will the FairTax® make the tax system fair for everyone?

What’s the difference between the FairTax® and the income tax?

How will the FairTax® help me save money?

Why Should Grandparents support FairTax®?

Congressman Woodall Discusses the FairTax

“The Case for the Fair Tax”

Freedom from the IRS! – FairTax Explained in Detail

John Stossel speaks to the Fair Tax Rally

Sen. Moran Discusses FairTax Legislation on U.S. Senate Floor

Mind blowing speech by Robert Welch in 1958

Robert Welch Speaks: In One Generation (1974)

comparison

GOP Taxonomy: The Flat Taxers and the Fair Taxers

by Aman Batheja

During his last run for president, Rick Perry often pulled a postcard out of his jacket pocket.

“The best representation of my plan is this postcard, which taxpayers will be able to fill out to file their taxes,” Perry said.

While Perry proposed an optional 20 percent flat tax on all income levels, the other Texan running that cycle, Ron Paul, wanted to get rid of the income tax altogether. The former Surfside congressman sometimes suggested replacing it and other federal taxes with a sales tax, a concept often described as the Fair Tax.

As the 2016 landscape begins taking shape, potential Republican candidates are suggesting an interest in being both flat and fair, embracing some version of Perry’s 2012 proposal as the first step toward reaching Paul’s ideal.

Take U.S. Sen. Ted Cruz, R-Texas, whose talk on taxes has sounded strikingly similar to Perry’s at times.
“We should let taxes become so simple that they could be filled out on a postcard,” Cruz wrote in a column for USA Today in October.

Yet while Cruz has called for converting the country’s progressive income tax system to a flat tax, his office confirmed that the Fair Tax is his long-term goal.

“The senator supports a Fair Tax, ultimately,” spokeswoman Catherine Frazier said. “However, the most immediate, effective way to implement comprehensive tax reform is to pass a simple flat tax — so simple that Americans can file on a postcard. This should be the starting point for reform, and once it’s in place we should pursue a Fair Tax.”

Another presidential contender, U.S. Sen. Rand Paul, R-Ky., has also voiced support for a flat tax, but still prefers the vision of his libertarian father, Ron Paul.

“I’ve never said I don’t support a sales tax,” Rand Paul told The Texas Tribune recently while in Dallas. He explained that he viewed moving the federal tax system to a flat tax as “an easier concept to get through a legislature because you’re modifying the existing code.”

More broadly, Rand Paul said he was interested in stimulating economic growth by reducing the federal taxes overall.

“We’ve kind of lost that argument in recent years because many Republicans, including many in Washington, now simply argue for revenue neutral tax reform, which stimulates nothing,” Paul said.

For former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee, those talking about the flat tax as a bridge to the Fair Tax are missing the point.
“Gov. Huckabee has said many times the Fair Tax is a flat tax, but it’s based on consumption rather than on punishing our productivity,” spokeswoman Alice Stewart said.

Another potential presidential contender, former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush, delivered a speech on taxes and income inequality this week in Detroit that reportedly included support for simplifying the tax code, but did not include specific policy proposals.

Critics of both flat tax and Fair Tax proposals dismiss them as regressive plans that would amount to tax cuts for higher-income households while increasing the tax burden on middle-class households. But conservatives argue that dramatically simplifying the tax code, or moving to a tax system focused more on consumption than earnings, would be more transparent, simpler and better for the economy in the long run.

Cal Jillson, a political science professor at Southern Methodist University, said discussion of flat taxes and consumption taxes works well politically with Republican voters, but described them as “pie-in-the-sky, no-way-in-hell” proposals that won’t ever muster enough support in Congress.

“When you talk about tax reform in an environment that is politically polarized as ours, it’s hard to see how you get majority support, let alone a bipartisan package that could be taken to the public by both parties,” Jillson said. “It’s a way of saying, ‘I have no sense of doing anything practical.’ ”

While Cruz and Rand Paul have already signaled their positions, Perry, who has been meeting with dozens of policy experts to prepare for a second White House run, may end up tweaking his earlier flat tax plan.

“He supports simplifying the tax code, lowering rates for working families, and closing loopholes,” spokeswoman Lucy Nashed said. “Gov. Perry is continuing to work on policy proposals and will announce specific ideas at the appropriate time.”

http://www.texastribune.org/2015/02/08/flat-tax-fair-tax/

National Review: The FairTax Makes a Comeback

by: Ryan Lovelace

Republican senator David Perdue of Georgia sounds an awful lot like President Obama when he describes his plan to overhaul the tax code, which would repeal federal taxes and replace them with a consumption tax known as the “FairTax.”

“[The FairTax] really levels the playing field in that regardless of who you are, where you are, you’ll pay your fair share, and it will be the same amount,” Perdue tells NRO. “It will be equitable.”

Perdue couches his description of the FairTax in rhetorical terms — “levels the playing field,” “pay your fair share,” “equitable” — that could’ve come straight out of Obama’s State of the Union address, and that’s no accident. Whatever the political prospects of the proposal — it has failed over and over again when proposed in the past, and it is expected to meet a similar fate this time around — it could allow the GOP to seize the mantle of economic populism from the Democrats, and, in so doing, to “win” tax reform in the eyes of voters. That’s important, because tax-reform legislation is one of the few big, ostensibly bipartisan efforts the new Congress is expected to undertake, and the scramble to take credit for it ahead of the 2016 presidential election will be fierce.
The FairTax legislation put forward in the Senate by Perdue, his fellow Georgia Republican Johnny Isakson, and their colleague Jerry Moran (R., Kan.), was written with 2016 in mind. Perdue says that on Tuesday, before listening to Obama announce his desire to raise taxes once again, he and Isakson discussed the importance of their work in influencing the debate on tax reform. Perdue — the successful manager known for his ability to turn around businesses and revive brands – says he hopes to help move 2016 GOP presidential candidates in the direction of the FairTax.

The proposal itself is relatively simple: It would eliminate all federal income, payroll, gift, and estate taxes, and replace them with a 23 percent national sales tax. In addition to making the U.S. economy more competitive on a global scale and putting people back to work, the plan would strip the IRS of its ability to interfere in the lives of ordinary Americans, according to the conservative freshman from Georgia. Other longtime proponents of the idea agree, and argue that by replacing a system that taxes an individual’s earnings with one that exclusively taxes that same individual’s spending, it would allow each citizen the freedom to determine his own tax burden.

Perdue’s hopes for 2016 notwithstanding, the FairTax has not been a winning issue in past Republican presidential primaries. A number of GOP primary candidates, from Mike Huckabee in 2008 to Herman Cain in 2012, have failed to win the nomination while championing the proposal. And it will still be a loser come 2016, says Ryan Ellis, the tax-policy director at Grover Norquist’s Americans for Tax Reform. “If this thing [the FairTax] was going to catch on as the next great hot thing, it would have,” Ellis says. “It’s not a practical tax-reform plan for governing, it’s something that people wish, aspirationally, they could put out there.”

The tax-reform proposals with the best chance of succeeding in Congress — and helping Republican candidates win in 2016 — are those that move incrementally toward the FairTax’s goals without overhauling the system in one fell swoop, Ellis says. Such proposals would likely combine some of the FairTax’s reforms — such as repealing the death tax and capital-gains taxes — with measures aimed at broadening the tax base of higher-income individuals. The winning formula to achieve fundamental tax reform, according to Ellis, is a plan that is pro-growth, pro-family, and “paid for by, as much as you can, rich guys.”

But those who warn that the FairTax lacks political viability only give more motivation to Rob Woodall (R., Ga.), the lead sponsor of FairTax legislation in the House of Representatives.

“That’s what I love about this bill: Washington hates this bill,” Woodall says. “There are all sorts of forces in town that discourage this kind of giant reform, but it’s being marketed at a grassroots level.”

Woodall’s Georgia district has a history of electing FairTax proponents to Congress. Woodall’s seat was previously occupied by John Linder, a tireless champion who first introduced the FairTax bill in 1999, and reintroduced it in each new Congress until he retired in 2011. He never succeeded in changing the law, but he did quite a bit to build support in his home state.

As Americans for Fair Taxation president Steve Hayes tells it, Atlanta-based radio talk-show host Neal Boortz is largely responsible for getting the idea off the ground. Boortz wrote The FairTax Book with Linder and trumpeted his support for the reform to a southeastern audience who readily took to the idea. Hayes’s organization works to garner more support for the idea across the United States.

The “power base” of the FairTax proposal has moved out of the Southeast and into the Midwest, Woodall says. Moran’s support as a lead co-sponsor has helped the idea gain traction in Kansas. A top Moran aide who worked on the FairTax bill tells NRO that Moran began laying the groundwork to lead on this issue last year, as former Georgia senator Saxby Chambliss was preparing to retire. Chambliss was a staunch supporter of the FairTax, and the aide says the two offices worked behind the scenes to ensure that the push for tax reform would live on. Woodall thinks the geographical shift in support will help the idea flourish in California and the Northwest. Moreover, he wants to gather supporters in key 2016 Republican-primary states and grow grassroots support in order to influence the GOP’s agenda.

But the effort to sell the FairTax primarily to devoted conservatives has left others in the dark as to its possible benefits. Laurence Kotlikoff, an economics professor at Boston University, has studied the FairTax and thinks it is a more progressive proposal than people realize. Kotlikoff says lawmakers’ lack of experience in public finance has led to a misunderstanding of the FairTax. He adds that he thinks Democratic minority leader Nancy Pelosi might even come around to the idea, if she realized that it would help some of the people she purports to care about most: workers.

After years toiling under former Senate majority leader Harry Reid (D., Nev.), some conservatives have grown excited by the Senate’s movement on this issue. The Moran staffer thinks a total of 10 or 11 senators may ultimately support the proposal, including new members and others who have changed their minds. The number of original co-sponsors of the FairTax in the House has increased during each of the last three Congresses, peaking this year with 57 total supporters.

Barring an unforeseen shift in Congress’s priorities, though, the FairTax appears doomed to fail yet again. Woodall knows the effort is ill-fated, and says he won’t look someone in the eye and tell them that a GOP-led Congress will put the FairTax on the president’s desk — or that the president would ever sign it. For the time being, his goal is more modest: He hopes to harness the relatively small but growing support for the proposal, and to take its message to voters across the country, showing his fellow Republicans that populist economic policies can win back the White House in 2016.

“This is a mission to change the way people think about the tax code,” he says. “It’s kind of a crazy idea until you look at it and you say, ‘Golly, why haven’t we done that already?’ Because we know that we can’t win Washington until we win the American voter across the country.” –

https://fairtax.org/articles/the-fairtax-makes-a-comeback

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Part 1 of 3: American People Leaving Both Democratic and Republican Parties In Search of A Party With Principles and Leaders With Integrity and Defenders of The United States Constitution — A New Direction For America — Videos

Posted on May 23, 2015. Filed under: American History, Articles, Babies, Banking, Blogroll, British History, Business, Communications, Constitution, Corruption, Crime, Crisis, Demographics, Documentary, Economics, Education, Employment, European History, Faith, Family, Federal Government, Federal Government Budget, Fiscal Policy, Foreign Policy, Fraud, Freedom, Friends, government, government spending, Health Care, history, Inflation, Investments, Law, liberty, Life, Links, Literacy, Macroeconomics, media, Monetary Policy, Money, Music, Natural Gas, Obamacare, Oil, People, Philosophy, Politics, Press, Programming, Psychology, Radio, Regulations, Religious, Resources, Science, Security, Speech, Strategy, Talk Radio, Tax Policy, Taxes, Video, War, Wealth, Welfare, Wisdom, Writing | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

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Story 1: American People Leaving Both Democratic and Republican Parties In Search of A Party With Principles and Leaders With Integrity and Defenders of The United States Constitution — A New Direction For America — Videos

Five Finger Death Punch – Wrong Side Of Heaven

[

Gallup: Partisan split at historic level

Gallup Poll: Americans Overwhelmingly Want GOP Congress to Set Country’s Agenda, Not Obama

Most Political Independents Ever In USA

How Are Conservative And Liberal Brains Different?

Poll Record High 42 Percent Americans Identify As Independents

Against the USA, Naked Communist Conspiracy Is Unfolding, NWO

1.U.S. acceptance of coexistence as the only alternative to atomic war.
2.U.S. willingness to capitulate in preference to engaging in atomic war.
3.Develop the illusion that total disarmament by the United States would be a demonstration of moral strength.
4.Permit free trade between all nations regardless of Communist affiliation
5.Extension of long-term loans to Russia & satellites.
6.Provide American aid to all nations regardless
7.Grant recognition of Red China. Admission of Red China to the U.N.
8.Set up East and West Germany as separate states under supervision of the U.N.
9.Prolong the conferences to ban atomic tests because the U.S. has agreed to suspend tests as long as negotiations are in progress.
10.Allow all Soviet satellites individual representation in the U.N.
11.Promote the U.N. as the only hope for mankind. Demand that it be set up as a one-world government with its own independent armed forces.
12.Resist any attempt to outlaw the Communist Party.
13.Do away with all loyalty oaths.
14.Continue giving Russia access to the U.S. Patent Office.
15.Capture one or both of the political parties.
16.Use technical decisions of the courts to weaken by claiming their activities violate civil rights.
17.Get control of the schools. Promote Communist propaganda. Soften the curriculum. Get control of teachers’ associations.
18.Gain control of all student newspapers.
19.Use student riots to foment public protests against programs or organizations which are under Communist attack.
20.Infiltrate the press. Get control of book-review assignments, editorial writing, policymaking positions.
21.Gain control of key positions in radio, TV, and motion pictures.
22.Continue discrediting American culture by degrading all forms of artistic expression. “eliminate all good sculpture from parks and buildings, substitute shapeless, awkward and meaningless forms.”
23.Control art critics and directors of art museums.
24.Eliminate all laws governing obscenity by calling them “censorship” and a violation of free speech.
25.Break down cultural standards of morality by promoting pornography and obscenity 26.Present homosexuality, degeneracy and promiscuity as “normal, natural, healthy.”
27.Infiltrate the churches and replace revealed religion with “social” religion. Discredit the Bible as a “religious crutch.”
28.Eliminate prayer or religious expression in the schools
29.Discredit the American Constitution by calling it inadequate, old-fashioned, a hindrance to cooperation between nations on a worldwide basis.
30.Discredit the American Founding Fathers.
31.Belittle all forms of American culture and discourage the teaching of American history
32.Support any socialist movement to give centralized control over any part of the culture; education, social agencies, welfare programs, mental health clinics, etc.
33.Eliminate all laws or procedures which interfere with the operation of communism
34.Eliminate the House Committee on Un-American Activities.
35.Discredit and eventually dismantle the FBI.
36.Infiltrate and gain control of more unions.
37.Infiltrate and gain control of big business.
38.Transfer some of the powers of arrest from the police to social agencies. Treat all behavioral problems as psychiatric disorders which no one but psychiatrists can understand or treat.
39.Dominate the psychiatric profession and use mental health laws as a means of gaining coercive control over those who oppose Communist goals.
40.Discredit the family. Encourage promiscuity, masturbation, easy divorce.
41.Emphasize the need to raise children away from the negative influence of parents. Attribute prejudices, mental blocks and retarding to suppressive influence of parents.
42.Create the impression that violence and insurrection are legitimate aspects of the American tradition; that students and special-interest groups should rise up and use “united force” to solve economic, political or social problems.
43.Overthrow all colonial governments before natives are ready for self-government.
44.Internationalize the Panama Canal.
45.Repeal the Connally reservation so the United States cannot prevent the World Court from seizing jurisdiction over domestic problems and individuals alike.

Mind Control, Psychology of Brainwashing, Sex & Hypnosis

Fit vs. UnFit, Eugenics, Planned Parenthood & Psychology, Mind Control Report

Yuri Bezmenov: Psychological Warfare Subversion & Control of Western Society

The Subversion Factor, Part 1: Moles In High Places

The Subversion Factor, Part 2: The Open Gates of Troy

G. Edward Griffin – The Collectivist Conspiracy

youtube=https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jAdu0N1-tvU]

The Quigley Formula – G. Edward Griffin lecture

Robert Welch in 1974 reveals NWO

Robert Welch Speaks: A Touch of Sanity (1965)

Robert Welch Speaks: In One Generation (1974)

CORPORATE FASCISM: The Destruction of America’s Middle Class

CULTURAL MARXISM: The Corruption of America

Countdown to Financial Collapse – A Conversation with G. Edward Griffin

WRCFresnoTV — G. Edward Griffin — The Federal Reserve, Taxes, The I.R.S. & Solutions

Rammstein “We’re all living in America” (HD) English Subtitle

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Labor force status:  Aggregated totals unemployed
Type of data:        Percent or rate
Age:                 16 years and over
Percent/rates:       Unemployed and mrg attached and pt for econ reas as percent of labor force plus marg attached

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WASHINGTON, D.C. — After reaching a more than two-year high in early 2015, Americans’ satisfaction with the direction of the U.S. continues to fall. Twenty-six percent of Americans say they are satisfied with the way things are going in the nation in May, down slightly from 32% in January and February.

Satisfaction With the Direction of the U.S.

The latest data are from Gallup’s May 6-10 poll.

Satisfaction jumped nine points in January to 32%, a promising sign that Americans’ moods were improving after a year of lower figures throughout 2014, ranging between 20% and 27%. Since February, though, satisfaction has dipped only slightly each month, but these small drops have resulted in a six-point decline since the beginning of the year. Satisfaction remains below the 36% historical average for Gallup’s trend dating back to 1979.

The drop in Americans’ satisfaction with the way things are going parallels the recent decline in economic confidence. Americans had a more positive outlook on the economy at the dawn of 2015, but these views, like satisfaction, have edged down in recent months.

Satisfaction With the Direction of the U.S. vs. Economic Confidence

Views of the nation’s direction have certainly been brighter in the past. Majorities of Americans were typically satisfied with the direction of the U.S. between 1998 and mid-2002 — including a record high of 71% in February 1999. But satisfaction declined steadily in the latter half of President George W. Bush’s presidency as the public grew disillusioned with the war in Iraq and the national economy suffered. This dip in satisfaction culminated in 7% of Americans, a record low, saying they were satisfied with the direction of the nation in October 2008 as the global economy collapsed and the U.S. stock market plummeted.

Satisfaction improved significantly during the first year of President Barack Obama’s term — reaching 36% in August 2009. It has not returned to that level since, ranging between 11% and 33% throughout Obama’s time in office.

Americans Still List Economy, Gov’t and Unemployment as Top Problems

Though the 14% of Americans who name dissatisfaction with government, Congress and politicians as the top problem facing the U.S. has fallen five points since April, it still remains the most commonly mentioned problem — a distinction it has held for six months.

The economy in general (12%) and unemployment (10%) have remained at the top of the list for several years. But mentions of these issues are down significantly from their recent peaks — the economy reached a high of 37% in 2012, and unemployment reached a high of 39% in 2011.

Trends in Top

Race relations and racism (8%), immigration (6%), a decline in moral, religious and family ethics (6%), the state of the healthcare system (5%) and terrorism (5%) were also among the most frequently cited problems facing the nation.

Most Commonly Named Problems in April 2015 vs. May 2015

Bottom Line

After years of dysfunctional government, the economy and unemployment dominating Americans’ mentions of the top problem facing the nation, fewer mention these problems now than in recent years. Still, these three problems remain at the forefront of Americans’ concerns, and may be driving Americans’ high level of dissatisfaction with the nation’s direction.

Although Americans’ confidence in the economy is higher this year than in recent years, it is still negative. And while fewer mention dysfunctional government as the nation’s top problem, Americans still strongly disapprove of Congress’ performance and remain divided on Obama’s.

Meanwhile, mentions of unemployment as a top problem have dipped as more U.S. workers report their workplaces are hiring and the unemployment rate as reported by the BLS declines. But unemployment still remains one of the most frequently cited problems.

Survey Methods

Results for this Gallup poll are based on telephone interviews conducted May 6-10, 2015, with a random sample of 1,024 adults, aged 18 and older, living in all 50 U.S. states and the District of Columbia. For results based on the total sample of national adults, the margin of sampling error is ±4 percentage points at the 95% confidence level. All reported margins of sampling error include computed design effects for weighting.

Each sample of national adults includes a minimum quota of 50% cellphone respondents and 50% landline respondents, with additional minimum quotas by time zone within region. Landline and cellular telephone numbers are selected using random-digit-dial methods.

http://www.gallup.com/poll/183248/americans-satisfaction-direction-wanes.aspx?utm_source=Politics&utm_medium=newsfeed&utm_campaign=tiles

Trend: Party affiliation in U.S. plus leaners

Story Highlights

  • Congressional job approval at 19%, essentially unchanged
  • Approval of GOP Congress similar among Republicans and Democrats

WASHINGTON, D.C. — Congressional job approval, currently at 19%, remains stuck near historical lows, despite a number of recent high-profile legislative achievements.

Congressional Job Approval Ratings: 2001-2015

Over the past month, Congress has confirmed the stalled nomination of Attorney General Loretta Lynch and both chambers passed a bill that was signed into law regarding Medicare. Bills that would authorize limited congressional oversight on any international agreement with Iran and help victims of human trafficking passed the Senate with little or no opposition. The uptick in activity, though hardly historic, is notable compared with the past two Congresses. Those Congresses, marked by divided control of the two chambers, were known for their entrenched partisan gridlock and few legislative accomplishments. And Americans didn’t care for their inability to agree — they gave Congress its lowest approval ever over this time period. Gallup found in June 2013, six months into the previous Congress, that gridlock and ineffectiveness were the most frequently cited reason for Americans’ disapproval of Congress.

Several months into this new Congress, the accomplishments that have been realized could give one the impression that the gridlock is softening, particularly over the past month. But these achievements have had virtually no impact on Congress’s job approval compared with early April (15%).

And, of course, Congress is far from working perfectly now, even if the pace of work appears to have increased. Most dramatically, the Senate failed to overcome a Democratic filibuster Tuesday afternoon that would give the president enhanced authority in negotiating trade bills, though the May survey was conducted before this occurrence. Legislation authorizing the use of military force in Iraq and Syria to fight ISIS, proposed by the administration and which many members of Congress support, remains stalled.

GOP Congress Has Low Approval Among Republicans

A key reason the current 114th Congress appears to be having more legislative success than the two Congresses before it is that the House and Senate are now under one party’s control. Unified GOP control of Capitol Hill should, at least in theory, boost Republicans’ overall approval of Congress. But the expected “Republican rally” for Congress has yet to materialize — 21% of Republicans and Republican leaners approve of Congress, not much different from the 18% of independents and of Democrats who approve. Nor is Republican support notably higher than the 15% it reached in 2014, despite the decided Republican tilt of this year’s legislature.

Congressional Job Approval, by Party Identification, May 2015

Bottom Line

After years of dysfunction, Congress is moving forward on key pieces of legislation. No longer shackled by split control — though still facing a president of the opposite party — the legislative branch is suddenly finding some areas of agreement. But even if it appears that the gridlock is easing, the overwhelming majority of Americans still disapprove of Congress. If Congress continues passing bipartisan legislation, more Americans might soften their stance. Still, it may be that Americans are largely not aware of or impressed by Congress’ recent legislative successes. Or it may be that the hit to Congress’ reputation over the last several years — evident not only in dismal job approval ratings, but also fallinglevels of trust and confidence — will take a long time to reverse.

Survey Methods

Results for this Gallup poll are based on telephone interviews conducted May 6-10, 2015, with a random sample of 1,024 adults, aged 18 and older, living in all 50 U.S. states and the District of Columbia. For results based on the total sample of national adults, the margin of sampling error is ±4 percentage points at the 95% confidence level. All reported margins of sampling error include computed design effects for weighting.

Each sample of national adults includes a minimum quota of 50% cellphone respondents and 50% landline respondents, with additional minimum quotas by time zone within region. Landline and cellular telephone numbers are selected using random-digit-dial methods.

http://www.gallup.com/poll/183128/five-months-gop-congress-approval-remains-low.aspx?utm_source=Politics&utm_medium=newsfeed&utm_campaign=tiles

Story Highlights

  • 31% say they are socially liberal, 31% socially conservative
  • This is the first time conservatives have not outnumbered liberals
  • Conservatives maintain edge on economic issues

PRINCETON, N.J. — Thirty-one percent of Americans describe their views on social issues as generally liberal, matching the percentage who identify as social conservatives for the first time in Gallup records dating back to 1999.

Trend: Americans' Self-Description of Views on Social Issues

Gallup first asked Americans to describe their views on social issues in 1999, and has repeated the question at least annually since 2001. The broad trend has been toward a shrinking conservative advantage, although that was temporarily interrupted during the first two years of Barack Obama’s presidency. Since then, the conservative advantage continued to diminish until it was wiped out this year.

The newfound parity on social ideology is a result of changes in the way both Democrats and Republicans describe their social views. The May 6-10 Gallup poll finds a new high of 53% of Democrats, including Democratic-leaning independents, describing their views on social issues as liberal.

Trend: Ideological Identification on Social Issues, Democrats and Democratic Leaners, 2001-2015

Democrats were more likely to describe their views on social issues as moderate rather than liberal from 2001 to 2005. Since then, socially liberal Democrats have outnumbered socially moderate Democrats in all but one year.

Meanwhile, the 53% of Republicans and Republican leaners saying their views on social issues are conservative is the lowest in Gallup’s trend. The drop in Republicans’ self-identified social conservatism has been accompanied by an increase in moderate identification, to 34%, while the percentage identifying as socially liberal has been static near 10%.

Trend: Ideological Identification on Social Issues, Republicans and Republican Leaners, 2001-2015

These trends echo the pattern in Gallup’s overall ideology measure, which dates back to 1992 and shows increasing liberal identification in recent years. As with the social ideology measure, the longer-term shifts are mainly a result of increasing numbers of Democrats describing their views as liberal rather than moderate. That may reflect Democrats feeling more comfortable in describing themselves as liberal than they were in the past, as much as a more leftward shift in Democrats’ attitudes on political, economic and social issues.

Conservatives Still Lead Liberals on Economic Issues

In contrast to the way Americans describe their views on social issues, they still by a wide margin, 39% to 19%, describe their views on economic issues as conservative rather than liberal. However, as on social ideology, the gap between conservatives and liberals has been shrinking and is lower today than at any point since 1999, with the 39% saying they are economically conservative the lowest to date.

Trend: Americans' Self-Description of Views on Economic Issues

Currently, 64% of Republicans identify as conservative economically, which is down from 70% the previous two years and roughly 75% in the early years of the Obama presidency. During George W. Bush’s administration, Republicans were less likely to say they were economic conservatives, with as few as 58% doing so in 2004 and 2005. The trends suggest Republicans’ willingness to identify as economic conservatives, or economic moderates, is influenced by the party of the president in office, and perhaps the types of financial policies the presidential administration is pursuing at the time.

Trend: Ideological Identification on Economic Issues, Republicans and Republican Leaners, 2001-2015

Democrats are also contributing to the trend in lower economic conservative identification. While the plurality of Democrats have consistently said they are economically moderate, Democrats have been more likely to identify as economic liberals than as economic conservatives since 2007. The last two years, there has been a 15-percentage-point gap in liberal versus conservative identification among Democrats on economic matters.

Trend: Ideological Identification on Economic Issues, Democrats and Democratic Leaners, 2001-2015

Implications

Americans’ growing social liberalism is evident not only in how they describe their views on social issues but also in changes in specific attitudes, such as increased support for same-sex marriage and legalizing marijuana. These longer-term trends may be attributable to changing attitudes among Americans of all ages, but they also may be a result of population changes, with younger, more liberal Americans entering adulthood while older, more conservative adults pass on. Gallup found evidence that population replacement is a factor in explaining changes in overall ideology using an analysis of birth cohorts over time.

The 2016 presidential election will thus be contested in a more socially liberal electorate — and a less economically conservative one — than was true of prior elections. Economically and socially conservative candidates may still appeal to the Republican Party base in the primaries, but it may be more important now than in the past for the GOP nominee to be a bit less conservative on social issues in order to appeal to the broader general electorate.

And while Americans are less economically conservative than in the past, economic conservatives still outnumber economic liberals by about 2-to-1. As a result, Democrats must be careful not to nominate a candidate who is viewed as too liberal on economic matters if their party hopes to hold the White House beyond 2016.

Survey Methods

Results for this Gallup poll are based on telephone interviews conducted May 6-10, 2015, with a random sample of 1,024 adults, aged 18 and older, living in all 50 U.S. states and the District of Columbia. For results based on the total sample of national adults, the margin of sampling error is ±4 percentage points at the 95% confidence level. All reported margins of sampling error include computed design effects for weighting.

Each sample of national adults includes a minimum quota of 50% cellphone respondents and 50% landline respondents, with additional minimum quotas by time zone within region. Landline and cellular telephone numbers are selected using random-digit-dial methods.

http://www.gallup.com/poll/183386/social-ideology-left-catches-right.aspx?utm_source=Politics&utm_medium=newsfeed&utm_campaign=tiles

AGAINST THE GRAIN
Democrats’ Vanishing Future

Hillary Clinton is not the only Democratic comeback candidate on the 2016 ticket. Senate Democrats are betting on the past to rebuild their party for the future.

BY JOSH KRAUSHAAR

One of the most underappreciated stories in recent years is the deterioration of the Democratic bench under President Obama’s tenure in office. The party has become much more ideologically homogenous, losing most of its moderate wing as a result of the last two disastrous midterm elections. By one new catch-all measure, a party-strength index introduced by RealClearPolitics analysts Sean Trende and David Byler, Democrats are in their worst position since 1928. That dynamic has manifested itself in the Democratic presidential contest, where the bench is so barren that a flawed Hillary Clinton is barreling to an uncontested nomination.

But less attention has been paid to how the shrinking number of Democratic officeholders in the House and in statewide offices is affecting the party’s Senate races. It’s awfully unusual to see how dependent Democrats are in relying on former losing candidates as their standard-bearers in 2016. Wisconsin’s Russ Feingold, Pennsylvania’s Joe Sestak, Indiana’s Baron Hill, and Ohio’s Ted Strickland all ran underwhelming campaigns in losing office in 2010—and are looking to return to politics six years later. Party officials are courting former Sen. Kay Hagan of North Carolina to make a comeback bid, despite mediocre favorability ratings and the fact that she lost a race just months ago that most had expected her to win. All told, more than half of the Democrats’ Senate challengers in 2016 are comeback candidates.

On one hand, most of these candidates are the best choices Democrats have. Feingold and Strickland are running ahead of GOP Sens. Ron Johnson and Rob Portman in recent polls. Hill and Hagan boast proven crossover appeal in GOP-leaning states that would be challenging pickups. Their presence in the race gives the party a fighting chance to retake the Senate.

(RELATED: What’s Next In the House Benghazi Committee’s Hillary Clinton Investigation)

But look more closely, and the reliance on former failures is a direct result of the party having no one else to turn to. If the brand-name challengers didn’t run, the roster of up-and-coming prospects in the respective states is short. They’re also facing an ominous historical reality that only two defeated senators have successfully returned to the upper chamber in the last six decades. As political analyst Stu Rothenberg put it, they’re asking “voters to rehire them for a job from which they were fired.” Senate Democrats are relying on these repeat candidates for the exact same reason that Democrats are comfortable with anointing Hillary Clinton for their presidential nomination: There aren’t any better alternatives.

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For a portrait of the Democrats’ slim pickings, just look at the political breakdown in three of the most consequential battleground states. Republicans hold 12 of Ohio’s 16 House seats, and all six of their statewide offices. In Wisconsin, Republicans hold a majority of the state’s eight House seats and four of five statewide partisan offices. In Pennsylvania, 13 of the 18 representatives are Republicans, though Democrats hold all the statewide offices. (One major caveat: Kathleen Kane, the Democrats’ once-hyped attorney general in the state, is under criminal investigation and has become a political punchline.) These are all Democratic-friendly states that Obama carried twice.

If Strickland didn’t run, the party’s hopes against Portman would lie in the hands of 30-year-old Cincinnati Councilman P.G. Sittenfeld, who would make unexpected history as one of the nation’s youngest senators with a victory. (Sittenfeld is still mounting a long-shot primary campaign against Strickland.) Without Feingold in Wisconsin, the party’s only logical option would be Rep. Ron Kind, who has regularly passed up opportunities for a promotion. Former Milwaukee Mayor Tom Barrett already lost to Gov. Scott Walker twice, and businesswoman Mary Burke disappointed as a first-time gubernatorial candidate last year. And despite the Democratic establishment’s publicized carping over Joe Sestak in Pennsylvania, the list of alternatives is equally underwhelming: His only current intra-party opposition is from the mayor of Allentown.

(RELATED: Hillary Clinton to Launch Her Campaign, Again)

In the more conservative states, the drop-off between favored recruits and alternatives is even more stark. Hagan would be a flawed nominee in North Carolina, but there’s no one else waiting in the wings. The strongest Democratic politician, Attorney General Roy Cooper, is running for governor instead. And in Indiana, the bench is so thin that even the GOP’s embattled governor, Mike Pence, isn’t facing formidable opposition. Hill, who lost congressional reelection campaigns in both 2004 and 2010, is not expected to face serious primary competition in the race to succeed retiring GOP Sen. Dan Coats.

Even in the two swing states where the party landed young, up-and-coming recruits to run, their options were awfully limited. In Florida, 32-year-old Rep. Patrick Murphy is one of only five House Democrats to represent a district that Mitt Romney carried in 2012—and his centrism has made him one of the most compelling candidates for higher office. The Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee quickly rallied behind his campaign (in part to squelch potential opposition from firebrand congressman Alan Grayson). But if Murphy didn’t run, the alternatives would have been limited: freshman Rep. Gwen Graham and polarizing Democratic National Committee Chair Debbie Wasserman Schultz being the most logical alternatives.

In Nevada, Democrats boast one of their strongest challengers in former state Attorney General Catherine Cortez Masto, vying to become the first Latina ever elected to the Senate. But her ascension is due, in part, to the fact that other talented officeholders lost in the 2014 statewide wipeout. Democratic lieutenant-governor nominee Lucy Flores, hyped by MSNBC as a “potential superstar,” lost by 26 points to her GOP opponent. Former Secretary of State Ross Miller, another fast-rising pol, badly lost his bid for attorney general against a nondescript Republican. By simply taking a break from politics, Cortez Masto avoided the wave and kept her prospects alive for 2016.

(RELATED: Newly Released Clinton Email Detail Benghazi Correspondence)

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This isn’t an assessment of Democratic chances for a Senate majority in 2017; it’s a glaring warning for the party’s longer-term health. If Clinton can’t extend the Democrats’ presidential winning streak—a fundamental challenge, regardless of the political environment—the party’s barren bench will cause even more alarm for the next presidential campaign. And if the Democrats’ core constituencies don’t show up for midterm elections—an outlook that’s rapidly becoming conventional wisdom—Democrats have serious challenges in 2018 as well. It’s why The New Yorker’s liberal writer John Cassidy warned that a Clinton loss next year could “assign [Republicans] a position of dominance.”

By focusing on how the electorate’s rapid change would hand Democrats a clear advantage in presidential races, Obama’s advisers overlooked how the base-stroking moves would play in the states. Their optimistic view of the future has been adopted by Clinton, who has been running to the left even without serious primary competition.

But without a future generation of leaders able to compellingly carry the liberal message, there’s little guarantee that changing demographics will secure the party’s destiny. The irony of the 2016 Senate races is that Democrats are betting on the past, running veteran politicians to win them back the majority—with Clinton at the top of the ticket. If that formula doesn’t work, the rebuilding process will be long and arduous.

http://www.nationaljournal.com/against-the-grain/democrats-vanishing-future-20150521

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Obama’s Cadillac Tax Crashes and Burns Killing Obamacare and Injuring MIT Professor Gruber — Rest In Peace — Obamacare Is Shovel Ready — Videos

Posted on November 15, 2014. Filed under: American History, Biology, Blogroll, Books, Business, Chemistry, College, Communications, Constitution, Crisis, Demographics, Diasters, Education, Employment, Federal Government, Freedom, government, government spending, Health Care, history, IRS, Law, liberty, Life, Macroeconomics, media, Medical, Medicine, Microeconomics, Monetary Policy, Non-Fiction, Obamacare, People, Philosophy, Photos, Politics, Press, Private Sector, Public Sector, Raves, Regulations, Science, Strategy, Talk Radio, Taxes, Unions, Video, War, Wealth, Welfare, Wisdom, Writing | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

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Story 1: Obama’s Cadillac Tax Crashes and Burns Killing Obamacare and Injuring MIT Professor Gruber — Rest In Peace — Obamacare Is Shovel Ready — VideosObama-lyingking )bamaObamaCare-CadillacTaxPPACA-Sec-9001-cadillac-tax-2120701-10-obamacare21-new-taxes-under-Obamacareexcise-tax-140820Cadillac-Tax-penetrationtax_apple_piecorrected_pie_graph_verticalObamacare taxes 1obamacare-warning-lights-on-the-job-training-political-cartoon130402-obamacare-cartoon-cadillac_taxpink_cazdillacCadillacJonathan-Gruber

jonathan_gruberGruberobamacare_shovel_

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Sen. Harry Reid (D-NV) in a December 2009 floor speech on Capitol Hill lauded Jonathan Gruber as one of the most “respected economists in the world” as Reid cited facts defending the Senate’s Obamacare bill.

Nancy Pelosi In 2009: Americans Should Read Jonathan Gruber’s ObamaCare Analysis

Nancy Pelosi In 2009: Americans Should Read Jonathan Gruber’s ObamaCare Analysis (November 5, 2009)

AHEC 2013 Conference

As part of the 24th Annual Health Economics Conference hosted by PennLDI, Mark Pauly and Jonathan Gruber were featured in the Plenary Panel discussing the role of economics in shaping (and possibly reshaping) the ACA. See below for the conference agenda with links to working papers. See the full AHEC agenda: http://ldi.upenn.edu/ahec2013/agenda

Jonathan Gruber at Noblis – January 18, 2012

The Noblis Technology Tuesday speaker series covers a broad spectrum of political, technical and innovative ideas. Noblis is a nonprofit science, technology, and strategy organization that brings the best of scientific thought, management, and engineering expertise with a reputation for independence and objectivity. The opinions expressed in this video are those of the speaker and do not necessarily reflect the views or opinions of Noblis.

Jonathan Gruber spoke to a Noblis audience on January 18, 2012 Few experts know more about America’s dire need of health care reform than Gruber. And of that short list, he is the only one prepared to enter the pages of a comic book to make the case. To be clear: Gruber is not an expert; he is “the” expert. An award-winning MIT economist and the director of the Health Care Program at the National Bureau of Economic Research, he was a key architect of the ambitious health care reform effort in Massachusetts and is a member of the Health Connector Board now implementing it; in 2006 he was named by “Modern Healthcare” as the nineteenth most powerful person in health care in the United States. In 2008 he was a consultant to the Clinton, Edwards, and Obama presidential campaigns. The national legislation passed by Congress in 2009 derives directly from Gruber’s insights learned during the Massachusetts health care debate.

Honors Colloquium 2012 – Jonathan Gruber

Dr. Jonathan Gruber is a Professor of Economics at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, where he has taught since 1992. He is also the Director of the Health Care Program at the National Bureau of Economic Research, where he is a Research Associate. He is an Associate Editor of both the Journal of Public Economics and the Journal of Health Economics. In 2009 he was elected to the Executive Committee of the American Economic Association. He is also a member of the Institute of Medicine, the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, and the National Academy of Social Insurance.

Dr. Gruber received his B.S. in Economics from MIT, and his Ph.D. in Economics from Harvard University. Dr. Gruber’s research focuses on the areas of public finance and health economics. He has published more than 140 research articles, has edited six research volumes, and is the author of Public Finance and Public Policy, a leading undergraduate text, and Health Care Reform, a graphic novel. In 2006 he received the American Society of Health Economists Inaugural Medal for the best health economist in the nation aged 40 and under. During the 1997-1998 academic year, Dr. Gruber was on leave as Deputy Assistant Secretary for Economic Policy at the Treasury Department. From 2003-2006 he was a key architect of Massachusetts’ ambitious health reform effort, and in 2006 became an inaugural member of the Health Connector Board, the main implementing body for that effort. In that year, he was named the 19th most powerful person in health care in the United States by Modern Healthcare Magazine.

BookTV: Jonathan Gruber, “Health Care Reform: What It Is, Why It’s Necessary, How It Works

Jonathan Gruber, economics professor at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and director of the health care program at the National Bureau of Economic Research, presents his thoughts on health care. Mr. Gruber a leading architect of Massachusetts’ health care reform also consulted with Congress and President Obama on the creation of the Affordable Care Act, signed into law by the President in 2010.

Obamacare architect Jonathan Gruber suddenly recast as bit player after uproar

Nancy Pelosi, fellow Democrats scramble to distance themselves from MIT professor, economist

For years, Massachusetts Institute of Technology professor Jonathan Gruber was deemed an architect of Obamacare and his economic modeling was cited regularly by the health care law’s defenders on Capitol Hill and in legal briefs defending the Affordable Care Act in federal courts.

But after tapes surfaced of the economist saying “stupid” voters needed to be bamboozled and the books cooked to get the legislation passed in 2010, Democrats are scrambling to reduce Mr. Gruber to a bit player — and raising questions about whether he needs to be expunged from their defense strategy as they face yet another Supreme Court review.

House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi, who as speaker in 2009 posted an Obamacare “myth buster” citing Mr. Gruber, vehemently distanced herself from him Thursday.


SEE ALSO: EDITORIAL: Jonathan Gruber’s payday


“I don’t who he is. He didn’t help write our bill,” she said, but added that Mr. Gruber’s comments were a year old and he had recanted them.

In the comments that have just come to light, Mr. Gruber said the health care bill was written in a “tortured” way to ensure the Congressional Budget Office didn’t score the individual mandate as a tax, even though the U.S. Supreme Court ultimately upheld the mandate as constitutional under Congress’ taxing power.

“Lack of transparency is a huge political advantage,” Mr. Gruber said at the time. “And basically, call it the stupidity of the American voter or whatever, but basically that was really, really critical to get the thing to pass.”

Mr. Gruber said this week that he regretted the remarks. But House Speaker John A. Boehner, Ohio Republican, said Thursday that American voters are “anything but stupid” and oppose the health care system’s overhaul for valid reasons.

Mitch McConnell, the Kentucky Republican selected as the next Senate majority leader, said Mr. Gruber made a classic “Washington gaffe — when a politician mistakenly tells you what he really thinks.”

However, Mr. Gruber’s explanation in 2012 of how Obamacare’s subsidies should be paid put the Justice Department in a tough spot.

In legal briefs submitted last year to a federal district court in Virginia, Obama administration attorneys cited Mr. Gruber in a case defending their ability to pay subsidies to enrollees regardless of whether they are part of state-run or federally run health care exchanges.

“According to the calculations of one health care economist, without the minimum coverage provision and subsidized insurance coverage, premiums for single individuals would be double the amount anticipated under the ACA,” the Justice Department wrote in a legal brief last November, citing Mr. Gruber’s work in a footnote.

The Supreme Court decided this month to take up the case, King v. Burwell, after the challengers lost to the administration in the 4th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals.

Neither the Justice Department nor the White House responded to questions about Mr. Gruber — who declined to comment for this story — and his role in their legal strategy.

But Sam Kazman, general counsel for the Competitive Enterprise Institute, which is funding the administration’s opponents in the King case, said Mr. Gruber’s 2012 remarks about subsidies bolster their own arguments.

Mr. Gruber at the time said subsidies would flow only to states that set up their own exchanges.

“What’s important to remember politically about this is if you’re a state and you don’t set up an exchange, that means your citizens don’t get their tax credits — but your citizens still pay the taxes that support this bill,” the economist told an audience.

That would mean consumers in most states wouldn’t be eligible for subsidies, which would puncture a big hole in Obamacare. The Obama administration has argued that even though the law says subsidies go to state exchanges, they also should include states that have opted for the federal exchange.

Mr. Kazman said the Gruber comments create a major problem for Mr. Obama.

“He’s not toxic to us,” Mr. Kazman said in an interview Thursday. “We may give him an award for public service.”

In a parallel case before the D.C. Circuit, the administration tried to downplay Mr. Gruber in its latest court filings. On Nov. 3, the Justice Department said in a footnote that “post-enactment statements by a non-legislator are entitled to no weight.”

“In any event, Professor Gruber has since clarified that the remarks on which plaintiffs rely were mistaken,” the attorneys told the D.C. Circuit, which has suspended its proceedings until the Supreme Court weighs in.

In the King case, Obama administration attorneys who cited Mr. Gruber in briefs at the lower court dropped him from their arguments to the Supreme Court, said Michael A. Carvin, an attorney for the health care law’s opponents.

He wasn’t about to let the justices forget.

“Tellingly,” Mr. Carvin said in a reply brief, “the government also ignores that Jonathan Gruber — the ACA architect whose work it cited in every brief below but is nowhere mentioned now — articulated the incentive purpose of [subsidies] as early as 2012.”

Mr. Gruber has made hundreds of thousands of dollars off Obamacare, serving as a consultant to the Department of Health and Human Services and to states that used health care grant money to pay him for his services.

Timothy Jost, a law professor at Washington and Lee University who closely tracks the health care law, said the controversy has been overblown.

“This whole thing just puzzles me,” he said. “He wasn’t a legislator. He didn’t write the bill. He didn’t vote on the bill.”

http://www.washingtontimes.com/news/2014/nov/13/jonathan-gruber-obamacare-architect-recast-as-bit-/

Transcending Obamacare: An Introduction To Patient-Centered, Consumer-Driven Health Reform

Today, the Manhattan Institute is publishing my 20,000-word, 68-page health reform proposal entitled “Transcending Obamacare: A Patient-Centered Plan for Near-Universal Coverage and Permanent Fiscal Solvency.” It represents a novel approach to health reform: neither accepting Obamacare as is, nor requiring the law’s repeal to move forward. And yet its ambition is to permanently solve our health care entitlement problem, while also expanding coverage for the uninsured.

As most Apothecary readers know, I’ve long been critical of Obamacare, the so-called Affordable Care Act. The law expands Medicaid, the worst health insurance program in the developed world. It significantly drives up the underlying cost of health insurance for those who shop for coverage on their own. And regardless of what John Roberts has to say about it, Obamacare’s individual mandate—forcing most Americans to buy government-certified health coverage—is an injury to the Constitution.

But I’ve also long supported the principle of universal coverage. Universal coverage, done right, is a core part of a conservative worldview that values equality of opportunity for the sick and the poor. If 10 of the 11 freest economies in the world can establish universal coverage, it’s not impossible for the United States to do so in a way that is consonant with economic freedom.

Switzerland and Singapore: Market-based health reform models

The most market-oriented health care systems in the developed world—those ofSwitzerland and Singapore—have much to teach us about how to achieve universal coverage in a way that spends far less than what the U.S. does. In 2012, U.S. government entities spent $4,160 per capita on health care. That’s more than twice as much as Switzerland, and nearly five times as much as Singapore.

OECD 2012 public expenditures

And that brings us right back to Obamacare. The vast majority of the law is misguided and misconceived. But a handful of its provisions can provide the basis of constructive health care reform: in particular, its use of Swiss-style means-tested tax credits to subsidize private health insurance premiums. Most importantly, those tax credits are applied to insurance plans that people shop for on their own, substantially expanding the market for individually purchased health coverage.

The Swiss system is far from perfect, as I have discussed on many occasions. But the basic idea in Switzerland is to offer premium subsidies to the people who really need them. In Switzerland, one-fifth of the population gets subsidized health coverage. In the U.S., around four-fifths do. That’s the difference between a safety net and an entitlement leviathan.

Conservative health reform after Obamacare

One of the fundamental flaws in the conservative approach to health care policy is that few—if any—Republican leaders have articulated a vision of what a market-oriented health care system would look like. Hence, Republican proposals on health reform have often been tactical and political—in opposition to whatever Democrats were pitching—instead of strategic and serious.

Those days must come to an end. The problems with our health care system are too great. Health care is too expensive for the government, and too expensive for average Americans.

In 2012, as the Romney campaign came to a close, Rich Lowry, the editor ofNational Review, asked me to write an article with my thoughts about the best path forward for conservative health care reform. I outlined a four-step plan to take the entire gamish of government health care programs and reform them into something consumer-driven and fiscally sustainable: (1) deregulate Obamacare’s insurance exchanges, including repeal of the individual mandate, while preserving guaranteed issue for individuals with pre-existing conditions; (2) migrate future retirees onto the reformed exchanges; (3) repeal Obamacare’s employer mandate; (4) migrate Medicaid acute-care and dual-eligible enrollees onto the exchanges.

“After these four relatively simple steps,” I wrote, “we would be left with a health-care system that would look a lot like Switzerland’s. Rises in premium subsidies could be held to a sustainable growth rate to ensure their long-term fiscal stability. And Americans might finally have the opportunity to purchase insurance for themselves, gain control of their own health-care dollars, and enjoy a wide range of low-cost, high-quality coverage options.”

A few months later, former Congressional Budget Office director Douglas Holtz-Eakin and I wrote a similar piece for Reuters, which elicited a broad range of responses from both the left and the right.

It became clear that I had to do more than write op-eds, that I had to develop this idea in detail, with credible fiscal and economic modeling.

Modeling market-based health reform

So, over the last 18 months, I’ve done just that. Stephen Parente, a health economist at the University of Minnesota, and his team modeled the fiscal and coverage impact of the bulk of my proposed set of reforms. (I then modeled the remainder, using analyses from the Congressional Budget Office, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, and the like.)

The Manhattan Institute for Policy Research, where I am a Senior Fellow, raised money to fund Parente’s work on this project. Steve and his team and I went back and forth for months, refining and tweaking the proposal until it met five non-negotiable goals. The end result had to:

  1. Reduce the deficit without raising taxes
  2. Expand coverage meaningfully above ACA levels
  3. Repeal the individual mandate
  4. Reduce the cost of private health insurance
  5. Improve health outcomes for the poor

Based on our modeling, the plan, over a thirty-year period, reduces federal spending by $10.5 trillion and federal revenue by $2.5 trillion, for a net deficit reduction of $8 trillion. We project that it will expand coverage by more than 12 million individuals over its first decade, despite the fact that it repeals the individual mandate. It reduces the cost of private-sector insurance policies by 17 percent for single policies and 4 percent for family policies.

But the most dramatic improvement, we estimate, is in the Medicaid population. A group that today receives substandard care and substandard access to care will see a dramatic increase in provider access and health outcomes, based on Parente-developed indices that measure these things.

Breaking free of the repeal-or-reform debate

Importantly, while this plan is compatible with “repealing and replacing” Obamacare, it does not require the repeal of Obamacare. To achieve the former, you would repeal Obamacare and replace it with a universal system of state-based health insurance exchanges. To achieve the latter, you’d reform the pre-existing ACA exchanges, and gradually migrate future retirees and Medicaid enrollees onto the reformed exchanges.

In this way, perhaps the plan can attract interest from both the right and the center.

We’ll soon find out.

http://www.forbes.com/sites/theapothecary/2014/08/13/transcending-obamacare-an-introduction-to-patient-centered-consumer-driven-health-reform/

Jonathan Gruber Embraced Misleading the Public About Obamacare Even While It Was Still Being Debated
Peter Suderman

In the week since video surfaced of Obamacare architect Jonathan Gruber saying that “lack of transparency” and “the stupidity of the American voter” were critical to passing the health law, two more videos of Gruber making statements with similar themes or tones have received attention.

Both clips reveal a gleefully dismissive attitude toward public concerns about the law, and offer a telling reminder of the attitude that played a crucial role in shaping and selling the law to the public.

In the first video, recorded in March of 2010, just a few days before the law would pass the House, Gruber argues that the public does not really care about the uninsured. What it cares about is cost control. Therefore, he says, the law had to be sold on the basis of its cost control.

Yet as Gruber admits in the video, the bill was not primarily focused on cost control—the bill “is 90% health insurance coverage and 10% about cost control.” Indeed, the problem with cost control, he says, is that “we don’t know how” to do it.

The primary quote. Via CNN:

“Barack Obama’s not a stupid man, okay?” Gruber said in his remarks at the College of the Holy Cross on March 11, 2010. “He knew when he was running for president that quite frankly the American public doesn’t actually care that much about the uninsured….What the American public cares about is costs. And that’s why even though the bill that they made is 90% health insurance coverage and 10% about cost control, all you ever hear people talk about is cost control. How it’s going to lower the cost of health care, that’s all they talk about. Why? Because that’s what people want to hear about because a majority of American care about health care costs.”

Elsewhere in the same speech, Gruber says:

“The only way we’re going to stop our country from being a latter day Roman Empire and falling under its own weight is getting control of the growth rate of health care costs. The problem is we don’t know how.”

Remember, this is what Gruber was saying as the law was still being debated. It didn’tpass in the House, the critical step before hitting President Obama’s desk, until more than a week later. And what Gruber was saying, even before the bill was law, was that supporters had intentionally emphasized parts of the bill that were relatively minor, and that were not certain to even produce their intended effects.

This is not lying, exactly; the bill did in fact include some attempts at cost control, although as Gruber said, it was unclear at the time if or how well they would work. And Gruber may well have been right that the public was more concerned with cost control than expanding coverage. But, especially in combination with the other video released this week, it indicates that Gruber believed that the law’s advocates were not being completely straight with the public, that supporters of Obamacare were telling the public what they believed the public wanted to hear instead of giving them the full story, and that they were doing so on the understanding that telling the full story would make the bill impossible to pass.

What it shows, in other words, is Gruber openly embracing a strategy of messaging manipulation and misleading emphasis even while the bill was still being debated. If the public understood the bill clearly, he believed, they would reject it. It was more important to pass the bill.

Another video, posted today by The Daily Signal, shows Gruber taking a similarly dismissive attitude toward public concerns about the bill.  At a meeting with the Vermont House Health Care Committee, Gruber is presented with a question about whether systems like those described in a report by Gruber and Harvard health economist William Hsiao, might result in “ballooning costs, increased taxes and bureaucratic outrages” as well “shabby facilities, disgruntled providers” and destructive price controls.

Gruber’s response begin with: “Was this written by my adolescent children by any chance?” The Signal quotes two-term Vermont state senator and Reagan-adviser John McClaughry as saying that the question had been submitted “by a former senior policy adviser in the White House who knew something about health care systems.”

Gruber’s response is intended as a joke, and it reveals little about the health care law (the reforms in question are specific to Vermont). But it says plenty about Gruber, and the flippant, arrogant way he treats concerns and criticism.

This is the person whom the White House relied on to help craft the bill; he was paid handsomely to model its effects (a fact he did not disclose, even when asked), and he was in the room when important decisions were made about how it would work. He claims to have helped write specific portions of the law himself. Gruber was not the sole architect of the law, but he was one of its biggest single influences on both its design and on how the media, which quoted him repeatedly, reported and understood the law.

The White House and its allies are desperately trying to distance themselves from Gruber right now by downplaying his role in the law’s creation. But the record of his involvement is clear enough: At The Washington Post, Ezra Klein has variously described Gruber as “one of the key architects behind the structure of the Affordable Care Act” and “the most aggressive academic economist supporting the reform effort.” The New York Times in 2012 described his role as helping to design the overall structure as well as being “dispatched” by the White House to Congress to write the legislative text. Gruber’s work was cited repeatedly by the White House, Democratic leadership, and the media.

So when he describes the thinking about how the law was crafted and sold to the public, it’s worth taking note. This is the posture of one of the law’s authors and chief backers. It’s part of the spirit in which the law was created and passed. Gruber’s ideas were embedded in the law’s structure and language, and so was his attitude.

http://reason.com/blog/2014/11/14/jonathan-gruber-embraced-misleading-the 

 

White House says Gruber’s wrong, attacks GOP

By LUCY MCCALMONT

The White House is denouncing comments from key Obamacare architect Jonathan Gruber that a lack of transparency and the stupidity of voters helped in the passage of the health care law and is instead pointing a finger at Republicans.
“The fact of the matter is, the process associated with the writing and passing and implementing of the Affordable Care Act has been extraordinarily transparent,” White House press secretary Josh Earnest said during a news briefing in Myanmar, according to a transcript provided by the White House.
Story Continued Below

“I disagree vigorously with that assessment,” Earnest responded when asked about Gruber’s claim that Obamacare wouldn’t have passed if the administration was more transparent and voters more intelligent.
He added, “It is Republicans who have been less than forthright and transparent about what their proposed changes to the Affordable Care Act would do in terms of the choices are available to middle class families.”
Earnest said the president “is proud of the transparent process that was undertaken to pass that bill into law.”
The response from the White House comes as a third video of Gruber criticizing the intelligence of American voters has surfaced.
“We just tax the insurance companies, they pass on higher prices that offsets the tax break we get, it ends up being the same thing. It’s a very clever, you know, basic exploitation of the lack of economic understanding of the American voter,” Gruber said in remarks from 2012 that aired Wednesday evening on “On the Record with Greta Van Susteren.”
Gruber has been causing headaches for the White House as conservatives have had a field day that began with comments the MIT professor made in 2013.
“Lack of transparency is a huge political advantage. And basically, call it the stupidity of the American voter, or whatever, but basically that was really, really critical for the thing to pass,” Gruber said at the time, according to one of the videos that has recently come to light.
In another video clip of a separate event, while talking about tax credits in the Affordable Care Act, he said, “American voters are too stupid to understand the difference.”
Gruber apologized for the comments during an appearance earlier this week on MSNBC’s “Ronan Farrow Daily”:
(Also on POLITICO: Ted Cruz out on a limb on Obamacare repeal)
“I was speaking off the cuff, and I was basically speaking inappropriately, and I regret having made those comments.”
Meanwhile, House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi dismissed Gruber’s role in Obamacare on Thursday, telling the press, “I don’t know who he is. He didn’t help write our bill.”
Many outlets were quick to point out that Pelosi cited Gruber in a “Health Insurance Reform Mythbuster” on her official website in 2009.
House Speaker John Boehner released a statement Thursday, slamming Gruber for his comments.
“If there was ever any doubt that ObamaCare was rammed through Congress with a heavy dose of arrogance, duplicity, and contempt for the will of the American people, recent comments by one of the law’s chief architects, Jonathan Gruber, put that to rest,” the top Republican said.
The statement continues, “The American people are anything but ‘stupid.’ They’re the ones bearing the consequences of the president’s health care law and, unsurprisingly, they continue to oppose it.”
http://www.politico.com/story/2014/11/jonathan-gruber-obamacare-voters-white-house-response-112856.html

 

Cadillac insurance plan

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Health care reform in the United States
Legislation
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Superseded
Proposed
Latest enacted
Reforms
Systems
Third-party payment models

Informally, a Cadillac plan is any unusually expensive health insurance plan, usually arising in discussions of medical-cost control measures in the United States.[1][2][3][4] The term derives from the Cadillac automobile, which has represented American luxury since its introduction in 1902,[1] and as a health care metaphor dates to the 1970s.[1] The term gained popularity in the early 1990s during the debate over the Clinton health care plan of 1993,[1] and was also widespread during debate over possible excise taxes on “Cadillac” plans during the health care reforms proposed during the Obama administration.[1] (Bills proposed by Clinton and Obama did not use the term “Cadillac”.)

The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (as amended by the Health Care and Education Reconciliation Act of 2010) imposes an annual 40% excise tax on plans with premiums exceeding $10,200 for individuals or $27,500 for a family (not including vision and dental benefits) starting in 2018.[4]

Criticisms of these plans generally center on the small or nonexistent co-pays, deductibles, or caps that encourage the overuse of medical care, driving the cost up for the uninsured or those on other plans, which some say necessitates aCadillac tax.[citation needed]

A study published in Health Affairs in December 2009 found that high-cost health plans do not provide unusually rich benefits to enrollees. The researchers found that only 3.7% of the variation in the cost of family coverage in employer-sponsored health plans is attributable to differences in the actuarial value of benefits. Only 6.1% of the variation is attributable to the combination of benefit design and plan type (e.g., PPO, HMO, etc.). The employer’s industry and regional variations in health care costs explain part of the variation, but most is unexplained. The researchers conclude “…that analysts should not equate high-cost plans with Cadillac plans, but that in fact other factors—industry and cost of medical inputs—are as important in predicting whether a plan is a high-cost plan. Without appropriate adjustments, a simple cap may exacerbate rather than ameliorate current inequities.”[5]

See also

References

External links

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cadillac_insurance_plan

 

How ObamaCare Taxes Affect You: New Taxes, Hikes, Breaks, Credits, and Other Changes

Here’s a full list of ObamaCare Taxes. The 21 new ObamaCare tax hikes and breaks impact us all, but which ObamaCare taxes will you actually pay? Find out how the tax related provisions in the Affordable Care Act (ObamaCare) will affect you, your family, your business, and your tax returns for 2013 and beyond.

Obamacare Taxes

The Bottom Line on the ObamaCare Tax Plan

The new tax related provisions in theAffordable Care Act(ObamaCare) include tax hikes, limits to deductions, tax credits, tax breaks, and other changes. While a few of the changes directly affect the average American, tax increases primarily affect high earners (those making over $200,000 as an individual or $250,000 as a family), large businesses (those making over $250,000), and the health care industry, while tax credits primarily affect low-to-middle income Americans and small businesses.

Here are some quick facts to help you understand how ObamaCare affects taxes:

• For the majority of the 85% of Americans with health insurance the percentage of income paid in taxes won’t change much, if at all. However, some of the changes may directly or indirectly affect specific groups.

• The majority of the 15% of Americans without health insurance will primarily be affected by the Individual Mandate (the requirement to buy health insurance), the Employer Mandate (the requirement for large employers to insure full-time employees), and Tax Credits (tax credits reduce premium costs for individuals, families, and small businesses).

• Many Americans will be affected by changes to new limits on medical tax deduction thresholds MSAs, FSAs, and HSAs.

• Small businesses will not be required to provide health insurance, but will gettax credits to reduce premium costs if they choose to offer group plans.

• Even if you won’t see higher taxes under the Affordable Care Act, it doesn’t mean there aren’t costs associated with the law. You’ll still need to buy health insurance, unless you qualify for Medicaid or an exemption, and that will cost you money.

• As a rule of thumb those who make less pay less and those who make more pay more, both in regard to health insurance costs and taxes under theAffordable Care Act.

• The Congressional Budget Office has shown that the revenue generated from the new taxes, along with cuts to spending, will help to pay for the Affordable Care Act’s many provisions, fund tax credits and lower the deficit by 2023.Learn More.

Why Does ObamaCare Create New Taxes?

ObamaCare includes many new benefits, rights, and protections including the requirement for health insurers to cover people with pre-existing conditions. It also expands access to affordable health insurance to almost 50 million low-to-middle income men, women, and children across the country by offering reduced premiums via tax credits and expanding Medicaid and CHIP. Expanding the quality, affordability and availability of health insurance (along with other aspects of the law) come at a high cost. Assuming all tax provisions remain in place, the revenue generated from these new taxes help to cover the costs of the program and reduces the deficit. Learn more about the new benefits, rights, protections offered by the Affordable Care Act.

A Quick Overview of Key Taxes in the Affordable Care Act

Before we get to the full list of taxes here is a quick overview of the key tax related provisions that may affect those without insurance, those who plan to go without insurance, and those who are struggling to afford insurance now.

Individual Mandate (new tax): Americans who can afford to must obtain minimum essential health coverage for 2014, get an exemption or pay a per month fee.

Employer Mandate (new tax): Come 2015 large employers must insure full time employees or pay a per employee fee. Over half of Americans get their insurance through work and the largest group of uninsured is currently the working poor.

Advanced Premium Tax Credits (tax break): Low-to-middle income Americans are eligible for tax credits which reduce the upfront cost of premiums on health insurance purchased through their State’s “Health Insurance Marketplace”.

Small Business Tax Credits (tax break): Small businesses may be eligible for tax credits of up to 50% of their cost of employee premiums through theSmall Business Health Options Program.

Taking all the tax provisions in the ACA into account ObamaCare technically provides the greatest middle class tax cut to healthcare in history.

Full List of All Taxes in ObamaCare / All Taxes in the Affordable Care Act

The following list of new ObamaCare taxes collectively raise over $800 billion by 2022. Here is a complete list of new fees and taxes contained withinObamaCare:

ObamaCare Taxes That Most Likely Won’t Directly Affect the Average American

• 2.3% Tax on Medical Device Manufacturers 2014

• 10% Tax on Indoor Tanning Services 2014

• Blue Cross/Blue Shield Tax Hike

• Excise Tax on Charitable Hospitals which fail to comply with the requirements of ObamaCare

• Tax on Brand Name Drugs

• Tax on Health Insurers

• $500,000 Annual Executive Compensation Limit for Health Insurance Executives

• Elimination of tax deduction for employer-provided retirement Rx drug coverage in coordination with Medicare Part D

• Employer Mandate on business with over 50 full-time equivalent employees to provide health insurance to full-time employees. $2000 per employee $3000 if employee uses tax credits to buy insurance on the exchange (marketplace). (pushed back to 2015)

• Medicare Tax on Investment Income 3.8% over $200k/$250k

• Medicare Part A Tax increase of .9% over $200k/$250k

• Employer Reporting of Insurance on W-2 (not a tax)

• Corporate 1099-MISC Information Reporting (repealed)

• Codification of the “economic substance doctrine” (not a tax)

ObamaCare Taxes That (may) Directly Affect the Average American

• 40% Excise Tax “Cadillac” on high-end Premium Health Insurance Plans 2018

• An annual $63 fee levied by ObamaCare on all plans (decreased each year until 2017 when pre-existing conditions are eliminated) to help pay for insurance companies covering the costs of high-risk pools.

• Medicine Cabinet Tax
Over the counter medicines no longer qualified as medical expenses for flexible spending accounts (FSAs), health reimbursement arrangements (HRAs), health savings accounts (HSAs), and Archer Medical Saving accounts (MSAs).

• Additional Tax on HSA/MSA Distributions
Health savings account or an Archer medical savings account, penalties for spending money on non-qualified medical expenses. 10% to 20% in the case of a HSA and from 15% to 20% in the case of a MSA.

• Flexible Spending Account Cap 2013
Contributions to FSAs are reduced to $2,500 from $5,000.

• Medical Deduction Threshold tax increase 2013
Threshold to deduct medical expenses as an itemized deduction increases to 10% from 7.5%.

• Individual Mandate (the tax for not purchasing insurance if you can afford it) 2014
Starting in 2014, anyone not buying “qualifying” health insurance must pay an income tax surtax at a rate of 1% or $95 in 2014 to 2.5% in 2016 on profitable income above the tax threshold. The total penalty amount cannot exceed the national average of the annual premiums of a “bronze level” health insurance plan on ObamaCare exchanges.

• Premium Tax Credits for Small Businesses 2014 (not a tax)

• Advanced Premium Tax Credits for Individuals and Families 2014 (not a tax)

• Medical Loss Ratio (MRL): Premium rebates (not a tax)

The link below provides a full list of ObamaCare Taxes by the IRS.

For a full list of taxes provisions from the IRS

Or see the latest publication by the joint tax committee on the Affordable Care Act.

Who Does ObamaCare Tax?

Let’s take a look at how ObamaCare’s taxes affect certain income groups.

ObamaCare Taxes for High Earners and Large Businesses

Most of the new taxes are on high-earners (individuals making over $200,000 and families making over $250,000), large businesses (over 50 full-time equivalent employees making over $250,000), and industries that profit from healthcare. Essentially those who will see gains under ObamaCare are required to put money back in the program via taxes.

FACT: Tax increases generally affect single filers with an adjusted gross income (AGI) above $200,000 and married couples filing jointly above $250,000. Some of the tax increases don’t kick in until single AGI hits $400,000 and married filing jointly AGI hits $450,000.

ObamaCare Taxes for the Average American With Health insurance

For most of the 85% of Americans with health insurance, making less than $250,000, most of the new taxes won’t mean much of anything although certain taxes below will affect specific individuals and families.

ObamaCare Taxes for the Average American Without Health insurance

The 15% of Americans without health insurance will be required to obtain health insurance (Individual Mandate) or will face a “tax penalty”.

The good news is that many uninsured will be exempt from the Individual mandate due to income, offered cost assistance through the marketplaceincluding Tax Credits (also available to small businesses), qualify for Medicaid, or will get insurance through work (the Employer Mandaterequires large employers to insure full-time employees by 2015). Adults who are under 26 will be able to stay on their parents plan as well, this will help to limit the number of young people who will pay the fee. Both the employer and individual mandates are part of our “shared responsibility” to expand the quality and affordability of health insurance in the United States as a trade for our new benefits, rights and protections.

ObamaCare Taxes for Small Businesses

Small businesses with less than 25 full-time equivalent employees will have access to tax credits to reduce premium costs of group plans.

ObamaCare Taxes for Specific Groups With Health Insurance

Here are a few changes that my affect specific groups of Americans with health insurance:

• Other tax provisions such as changes medical deduction thresholds, HSAs, MSAs, and FSAs may impact some Americans by limiting tax deductions.

• The Medical Loss Ratio (MLR or 80/20 rule) will mean that some Americans may get rebates if health insurance companies spend on non-healthcare related expenses.

• Tax provisions like the 10% tanning bed tax, taxes on drug companies, taxes on medical devices and taxes on health insurance companies selling insurance on and off the exchange may affect the amount of money we pay for some health care related goods and services, but will not have a significant impact on our daily lives.

• The employer mandate has caused some companies to cut down full-time workers to part-time to avoid providing benefits, however major employers like Disney and Walmart have actually increased their full-time workforce in response to the looming 2015 deadline.

• Overall the benefits tend to outweigh the costs for the average American as even those who pay a little more, get a lot more in return due to the increased quality of their health insurance.

Will I pay More Taxes and High Premiums Because of ObamaCare?

As mentioned above premium rates and the taxes you will have to pay are primarily based on income. Aside from income premium prices are based on which plan you choose, family size, age, smoking status and geography. Subsidies reduce the overall rate of your premiums (however smoking is calculated after subsidies). Come 2018 there will be a 40% excise tax on high end health insurance plans.

Aside from the tax provisions that require Americans to obtain insurance and subsidize it’s costs, ObamaCare also includes a few tax related provisions that work as consumer protections including requirements for better reporting and the Medical Loss Ratio.

ObamaCare Tax Rebates

Some consumers in both individual and group markets will see tax rebates due to ObamaCare’s Medical Loss Ratio (MLR). Health insurance companies will have to provide rebates to consumers if they spend less than 80 to 85% of premium dollars on medical care.

Medical Loss Ratio (MLR)

The Medical Loss Ratio (MLR) means that Insurance companies are now required to spend at least 80% of premium dollars (85% in large group markets) on medical care and quality improvement activities. Insurance companies that are not meeting this standard will be required to provide rebates to their consumers. The MLR isn’t a tax, but it does have implications in regards to filing taxes and rebates can be given in the form of reduced premiums. See our page on ObamaCare Health Insurance Regulations for more details.

ObamaCare Income Tax Penalty For Not Having Insurance “Individual Mandate”

Starting in 2014, most people will have to have insurance or pay a “penalty deducted from your taxable income”. For individuals, penalty starts at $95 a year, or up to 1% of income, whichever is greater, and rise to $695, or 2.5% of income, by 2016.

For families the tax will be $2,085 or 2.5% percent of household income, whichever is greater. The requirement can be waived for several reasons, including financial hardship or religious beliefs. If the tax would exceed 8% of your income you are exempt, also some religious groups are exempt. That tax cannot exceed the cost of a “bronze plan” bought on the exchange.

Many individuals who are exempt from the mandate to buy insurance will still be eligible for free or low-cost insurance through the health insurance marketplace.

While some states, including Alabama, Wyoming and Montana, have passed laws to block the requirement to carry health insurance, those provisions do not override federal law. Get more information on the ObamaCare Individual Mandate.

The Individual Mandate is officially called the “individual shared responsibility provision”.

What Are ObamaCare Tax Credits?: Advanced Premium Tax Credits

Premium tax credits are a form of cost assistance that reduce premium costs for coverage purchased on your State’s “health insurance marketplace” for individuals, families, and small businesses.

Advanced Premium Tax Credits for Individuals and Families

Individuals and families will have access to Advanced premium tax credits on the marketplace. Tax Credits are deducted from your premium cost by your health insurance provider and are adjusted on your Modified Adjusted Gross Income (MAGI). You can choose how much advance credit payments to apply to your premiums each month, up to a maximum amount. If the amount of advance credit payments you get for the year is less than the tax credit you’re due, you’ll get the difference as a refundable credit when you file your federal income tax return. If your advance payments for the year are more than the amount of your credit, you must repay the excess advance payments with your tax return.

Aside from premium tax credits individuals and families can also get lower cost sharing on out-of-pocket expenses like coinsurance, copays, deductibles and out-of-pocket maximums through the marketplace.

Eligibility for Tax Credits

In general, you may be eligible for the credit if you meet all of the following:

  • buy health insurance through the Marketplace;
  • are ineligible for coverage through an employer or government plan;
  • are within certain income limits;
  • file a joint return, if married; and
  • cannot be claimed as a dependent by another person.

If you are eligible for the credit, you can choose to:

  • Get It Now: have some or all of the estimated credit paid in advance directly to your insurance company to lower what you pay out-of-pocket for your monthly premiums during 2014; or
  • Get It Later: wait to get all of the credit when you file your 2014 tax return in 2015.

How Will Advanced Premium Tax Credits Affect My Health Insurance Costs?

Under the Affordable Care Act health insurance that costs less than 8% of your MAGI is considered affordable. Although the law doesn’t guarantee lower costs, premium tax credits help to ensure that more Americans will have access to affordable insurance.

s a rule of thumb most Americans will pay between 1.5% and 9.5% on their Modified Adjusted Gross Income (MAGI) when using tax credits to buy a basic Silver Plan on the marketplace.

If the lowest-priced coverage available to you would cost more than 8% of your household income are exempt from the individual mandate.

The amount you pay is on a sliding scale based on your income. Use the chart below to get an idea of what you and your family may pay for insurance purchased through the Health Insurance Marketplace. Make sure to check outObamaCare Subsidies for more detailed information on Premium Tax Credits.

The 2013 Federal Poverty Level Guidelines below are used to Determine if your percentage of the poverty level for both taxes and cost-assistance.

 Household Size

 100%

 133%

150%

200%

 300%

400%

 1

$11,170

$14,856

$16,755

$22,340

$33,510

$44,680

 2

15,130

 20,123

22,695

  30,260

45,390

60,520

 3

19,090

 25,390

28,635

  38,180

57,270

76,360

 4

23,050

 30,657

34,575

  46,100

69,150

92,200

 5

27,010

 35,923

40,515

  54,020

81,030

108,040

 6

30,970

 41,190

46,455

  61,940

92,910

123,880

 7

34,930

 46,457

52,395

  69,860

104,790

139,720

 8

38,890

 51,724

58,335

  77,780

116,670

155,560

 For each additional person, add

$3,960

 $5,267

$5,940

  $7,920

$11,880

$15,840

This following table is an example of how premium tax credits work. Please note that the numbers below are purely for example and don’t reflect your personal rates.

Health Insurance Premiums and Cost Sharing under PPACA for Average Family of 4
For “Silver Plan”
Income % of federal poverty level Premium Cap as a Share of Income Income $ (family of 4) Max Annual Out-of-Pocket Premium Premium Savings Additional Cost-Sharing Subsidy
133% 3% of income $31,900 $992 $10,345 $5,040
150% 4% of income $33,075 $1,323 $9,918 $5,040
200% 6.3% of income $44,100 $2,778 $8,366 $4,000
250% 8.05% of income $55,125 $4,438 $6,597 $1,930
300% 9.5% of income $66,150 $6,284 $4,628 $1,480
350% 9.5% of income $77,175 $7,332 $3,512 $1,480
400% 9.5% of income $88,200 $8,379 $2,395 $1,480
In 2016, the FPL is projected to equal about $11,800 for a single person and about $24,000 for family of four. Use the Kaiser ObamaCare Cost Calculator for more information. DHHS and CBO estimate the average annual premium cost in 2014 to be $11,328 for family of 4 without the reform. Source: Wikipedia

ObamaCare Employer / Employee Taxes

ObamaCare’s taxes mean large employers will have to provide health insurance to their employees and will see a raised Medicare part A tax, small businesses may be eligible for tax breaks.

Medicare part A Tax Hike for Employers and Employees

The Medicare part A tax is paid by both employees and employers who earn over a certain amount. ObamaCare’s Medicare tax hike is a .9% increase (from 2.9% to 3.8%) on the current total Medicare part A tax. This tax is split between the employer and employee meaning that they will both see a .45% raise.  Small businesses making under $250,000 are exempt from the tax. Employees making less than $200,000 as an individual or ($250,000) as a family are also exempt. Employers must withhold and report an additional 0.9 percent total on employee wages or compensation that exceed $200,000.

Tax Penalty for Not Providing Full-time Workers with Health Insurance the “Employer Mandate”

Employers with over 50 full-time equivalent employees must either insure their full-time employees or pay a penalty or “employer shared responsibility fee”. The penalty is $2000 per employee. If however, at least one full-time employee receives a premium tax credit because coverage is either unaffordable or does not cover 60 percent of total costs, the employer must pay the lesser of $3,000 for each of those employees receiving a credit or $750 for each of their full-time employees total.

Employers with under 25 full time employees, whose average income doesn’t exceed $50,000, can apply for tax credits of up to 50% for insuring their employees.

Tax Credits for Small Businesses

Small businesses with under 25 full-time equivalent employees with average annual wages of less than $50,000 can apply for tax breaks of up to 50% of their share of employee premium costs via ObamaCare’s Small Business Health Options Program (accessible through your State’s Health Insurance Marketplace). The credit can be as much as 50% of employer premiums (35% for not-for-profits in 2014). The credit is only available if the employer is paying at least 50% of the total premiums.

Small Business Health Options Program

Employers with 50 or fewer employees, you can purchase affordable insurance through the Small Business Health Options Program (SHOP) even if they don’t qualify for tax credits.

Reporting

Along with the new law there are new requirements for reporting.

    • Effective for calendar year 2015, you must file an annual return reporting whether and what health insurance you offered your employees. This rule is optional for 2014. Learn more.

 

    • Effective for calendar year 2015, if you provide self-insured health coverage to your employees, you must file an annual return reporting certain information for each employee you cover. This rule is optional for 2014. Learn more.

 

    • Beginning Jan. 1, 2013, you must withhold and report an additional 0.9 percent on employee wages or compensation that exceed $200,000. Learn more.

 

Other ObamaCare Taxes on Big Business

Aside from having to adhere to the “employer mandate” ObamaCare also imposes taxes and fees that are unique to big business. ObamaCare taxes some medical device manufactures, drug companies and health insurance companies. Beginning in 2013, medical device manufacturers and importers must pay a 2.3% tax on the sale of a taxable medical device. This raises $29 billion over a 10 years. However, many states are asking to delay the medical device excise tax to protect jobs in states that produce the devices. An annual fee for health insurers is expected to raise more than $100 billion over 10 years, while a fee for brand name drugs will bring in another $34 billion.

  • Employers that have employees who earn more than $200,000 will have to look at the potential for additional Medicare withholding due to the Medicare part A tax.
  • Employers that issued 250 or more W-2 forms in 2012 must report the cost of employer-sponsored health coverage for 2013 on the 2013 W-2 forms.

Medical Device Excise Tax

There is a 2.3% medical excise tax on medical device manufacturers and importers on the sale of taxable medical devices. Section 4191 of the Internal Revenue Code imposes an excise tax on the sale of certain medical devices by the manufacturer or importer of the device. The tax applies to sales of taxable medical devices after Dec. 31, 2012. You can learn more from the official IRS page on the Medical Device Tax.

What Increases Do the ObamaCare Taxes Include for The $200k/$250k Earners?

ObamaCare Medicare Part A Payroll Tax

Starting in 2013, individuals with earnings above $200,000 and married couples making more than $250,000 will see an increase in the Medicare part A payroll tax. It’s an increase of 2.35%, up from the current 1.45% ( a .9% Medicare part A payroll tax hike), on adjusted income over the threshold.

ObamaCare Unearned Income Tax

This group will also pay a 3.8% unearned income (capital gains) tax on interest, dividends, annuities, royalties, rents, and gains on the sale of investments over the threshold.

Taxable income under the $200,000 for individuals and $250,000 threshold for families is subject to the same benefits and tax cuts as those who make under the threshold.

ObamaCare Home Sales Tax / ObamaCare Real Estate Tax Increase

ObamaCare increases taxes on unearned income by 3.8% and this can add additional taxes to the sales of some homes, but many limitations apply which means it won’t affect most sellers. The 3.8% capital gains tax typically doesn’t apply to your primary residence. It also doesn’t usually apply to homes you have owned for over 5 years or on profits of less than $250,000 for individuals and $500,000 for couples due to a capital gains tax exclusion rule for sales of a primary home.

In short the ObamaCare home sales tax isn’t something that most of us will pay, it is a tax is aimed at those selling non-primary residences in short term periods for profit and not at the average American buying and selling their primary residence.

ObamaCare Medical Expense Deductions

ObamaCare increases the medical expense deduction threshold. Unreimbursed medical expense deductions will now be available only for those medical expenses in excess of 10% of AGI, which has been raised from 7.5%. There is a temporary exemption for individuals ages 65 and older and their spouses from 2013 through 2016.

ObamaCare “Cadillac” Tax

Starting in 2018, the new health care law imposes a 40% excise tax on the portion of most employer-sponsored health coverage (this excludes dental and vision) that exceed $10,200 a year and $27,500 for families. The tax has been dubbed a “Cadillac” tax because it hits only high-end “gold”, “platinum” and high-end health care plans not purchased on the exchange. The tax raises over $150 billion over the next 10 years.

New ObamaCare Taxes Summary

Going through the new ObamaCare taxes line by line is, in itself, taxing. The bottom line is that a majority of Americans will find themselves paying less for better healthcare, while higher-earners will pay tax rates closer to what they did in the Clinton years. ObamaCare pays for most of itself via the above taxes, reforms to Medicare, and health care as a whole, as well as cutting out billions in wasteful spending.

ObamaCare Taxes Moving Forward into 2014

We hope this helps you to understand the new ObamaCare taxes and how they work. Many of the ObamaCare’s taxes won’t be fully implemented until 2022, but most will be in effect by 2014. ObamaCare helps all Americans get access to quality affordable healthcare, and new benefits, rights and protections. Make sure to look out for ObamaCare tax breaks, credits, subsidies and breaks on up front costs moving forward into 2014. As we learn more we will update our full ObamaCare tax list.

 

ObamaCare Taxes: New Health Care Taxes

http://obamacarefacts.com/obamacare-taxes/

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Obama’s Era of Austerity is Over — Let The Big Spending Beginning — President Is Delusional Suffers From Spending Addiction Disorder (SAD) — Videos

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Story 1: Obama’s Era of Austerity is Over — Let The Big Spending Beginning — President Is Delusional Suffers From Spending Addiction Disorder (SAD) — Videos

 Congressional Budget Office’s newest reports

45086-land-Figure1

In the past few years, debt held by the public has been significantly greater relative to GDP than at any time since just after World War II, and under current law it will continue to be quite high by historical standards during the next decade. With debt so large, federal spending on interest payments will increase substantially as interest rates rise to more typical levels. Moreover, because federal borrowing generally reduces national saving, the capital stock and wages will be smaller than if debt was lower. In addition, lawmakers would have less flexibility than they otherwise would to use tax and spending policies to respond to unanticipated challenges. Finally, such a large debt poses a greater risk of precipitating a fiscal crisis, during which investors would lose so much confidence in the government’s ability to manage its budget that the government would be unable to borrow at affordable rates.

http://cbo.gov/publication/45086

Federal Budget Deficits Are Projected to Decline Through 2015 but Rise Thereafter, Further Boosting Federal Debt

posted by Barry Blom & Leigh Angres on february 20, 2014

CBO recently released The Budget and Economic Outlook: 2014 to 2024. In that report, CBO projects that if current laws remain in place, the federal budget deficit will total $514 billion in fiscal year 2014. That deficit will be $166 billion smaller than the figure posted in 2013 and down sharply from the shortfalls recorded between 2009 and 2012, which exceeded $1 trillion annually. At 3.0 percent of gross domestic product (GDP), this year’s deficit would be near the average experienced over the past 40 years and about 7 percentage points lower than the figure recorded in 2009.

Today’s post summarizes CBO’s assessment of the budget outlook over the next decade. Three more posts—to appear over the next several days—will provide more detail about the outlook for spending, revenues, and the economy. One more post will expand upon CBO’s economic forecast, explaining the reasons behind the slow recovery of the labor market.

Under Current Law, Federal Debt Will Grow to 79 Percent of GDP at the End of 2024, CBO Estimates

CBO constructs it baseline projections of federal revenues and spending over the coming decade under the assumption that current laws generally remain unchanged. Under that assumption, revenues are projected to grow by about 1 percentage point of GDP over the next 10 years—from 17.5 percent in 2014 to 18.4 percent in 2024. But outlays are projected to rise twice as much, from 20.5 percent of GDP in 2014 to 22.4 percent in 2024. The increase in outlays reflects substantial growth in the cost of the largest benefit programs—Social Security, Medicare, and Medicaid—and in payments of interest on the government’s debt; those increases would more than offset a significant decline in discretionary spending relative to the size of the economy.

Although the deficit in CBO’s baseline projections continues to decline as a percentage of GDP in 2015, to 2.6 percent, it then starts to increase again in 2016, reaching 4.0 percent of GDP in 2024. That figure for the end of the 10-year projection period is roughly 1 percentage point above the average deficit over the past 40 years relative to the size of the economy.

That pattern of lower deficits initially, followed by higher deficits for the remainder of the projection period, would cause debt held by the public to follow a similar trajectory (see the figure below). Relative to the nation’s output, debt held by the public is projected to decline from 74 percent of GDP in 2014 to 72 percent of GDP in 2017, but to rise thereafter, to 79 percent of GDP at the end of 2024. (As recently as the end of 2007, debt held by the public was equal to 35 percent of GDP.)

Federal Debt Held by the Public

In the past few years, debt held by the public has been significantly greater relative to GDP than at any time since just after World War II, and under current law it will continue to be quite high by historical standards during the next decade. With debt so large, federal spending on interest payments will increase substantially as interest rates rise to more typical levels. Moreover, because federal borrowing generally reduces national saving, the capital stock and wages will be smaller than if debt was lower. In addition, lawmakers would have less flexibility than they otherwise would to use tax and spending policies to respond to unanticipated challenges. Finally, such a large debt poses a greater risk of precipitating a fiscal crisis, during which investors would lose so much confidence in the government’s ability to manage its budget that the government would be unable to borrow at affordable rates. (For a discussion of the consequences of elevated debt, see CBO’s December 2013 report Choices for Deficit Reduction: An Update.)

Projected Deficits Reflect Substantial Growth in the Cost of the Largest Benefit Programs

Projected deficits and debt for the coming decade reflect some of the long-term budgetary pressures facing the nation. The aging of the population, the rising costs of health care, and the expansion in federal subsidies for health insurance that is now under way will substantially boost federal spending on Social Security and the government’s major health care programs by 2 percentage points of GDP over the next 10 years (see the figure below). But the pressures of aging and the rising costs of health care will intensify during the next few decades. Unless the laws governing those programs are changed—or the increased spending is accompanied by corresponding reductions in other spending relative to GDP, by sufficiently higher tax revenues, or by a combination of those changes—debt will rise sharply relative to GDP after 2024. (For a more detailed discussion of the long-term budget situation, see CBO’s September 2013 report The 2013 Long-Term Budget Outlook.)

Spending and Revenues Projected in CBO's Baseline, Compared With Levels in 1974

Moreover, holding discretionary spending within the limits required under current law—an assumption that underlies these projections—may be quite difficult. The caps on discretionary budget authority established by the Budget Control Act of 2011 (Public Law 112-25) and subsequently amended will reduce such spending to an unusually small amount relative to the size of the economy. With those caps in place, CBO projects, discretionary spending will equal 5.2 percent of GDP in 2024; by comparison, the lowest share for discretionary spending in any year since 1962 (the earliest year for which such data have been reported) was 6.0 percent in 1999. (Nevertheless, total federal spending would be a larger share of GDP than its average during the past 40 years because of higher spending on Social Security, Medicare, Medicaid, other health insurance subsidies for low-income people, and interest payments on the debt.) Because the allocation of discretionary spending is determined by annual appropriation acts, lawmakers have not yet decided which specific government services and benefits will be reduced or constrained to meet the specified overall limits.

The Budget Outlook for the Coming Decade Has Worsened Since May 2013

The baseline budget outlook has worsened since May 2013, when CBO last published its 10-year projections. A description of the changes in CBO’s baseline since May 2013 can be found in Appendix A of the report. At that time, deficits projected under current law totaled $6.3 trillion for the 2014–2023 period, or about 3 percent of GDP. Deficits are now projected to be about $1 trillion larger. The bulk of that change occurred in CBO’s estimates of revenues: The agency has reduced its projection of total revenues by $1.6 trillion, mostly because of changes in the economic outlook. A decrease of $0.6 trillion in projected outlays through 2023 partially offset that change.

Barry Blom is an analyst in CBO’s Budget Analysis Division and Leigh Angres is special assistant to the CBO Director.

how_congress_spends_your_money

Bar Chart Data Source: Monthly Treasury Statement (MTS) published by the U. S. Treasury Department. WE DON’T MAKE THIS UP! IT COMES FROM THE U. S. GOVERNMENT! NO ADJUSTMENTS.

The MTS published in October, reports the final actual expenditures for the previous FY. This chart shows FY2013 actual spending data. Here is the link to download your own copy from the Treasury Department web site.

The chart normally shows the proposed budget line for the next fiscal year (FY2014 started 1 October 2013), but the two-year deal for 2014-2015 signed in December 2013, has so few details that showing a “budget” for 2014 or 2015 is no possible. And now Congress has passed the Appropriations (spending) bill that funds the budget through end of FY2014. The details are in a 1500+ page bill that no one in Congress read. But you CAN read it. Here it is H.R.3547 – Consolidated Appropriations Act, 2014. (it’s a large pdf document … give it time.)

But we may have an option; we will use the historical tables published by the OMB, about mid-FY2014, take the data from the “estimated” 2014 column. Look for it later.

The Congressional Budget Office reported on the Federal Debt and the Risk of a Financial Crisis in this report on the non-budget.

Look at the bar chart to find items that are growing and items that are being reduced. The largest growth is at the Department of Agriculture; it handles Food Stamps (SNAP). You pay taxes, your money is paying for food stamps.

– – – – – – –

Here is a MUST SEE … The Budget in Pictures!

NDAC studies the Budget Proposals submitted to the U.S. Senate each year by the President of the United States and the House of Representatives. One of the documents that goes along with the budget proposals, “Historical Tables“, is published by the Office of Management and Budget (OMB). Our analysis is discussed on the home page of this web site.

http://www.federalbudget.com/chartinfo.html

Out-of-Control Spending Is to Blame for America’s Deficit Problem

Federal spending is projected to grow at a rapid pace beyond the 10-year budget window. Without reforms, spending on interest on the debt, health care programs (Medicare, Medicaid, Obamacare, etc.), and Social Security will reach unsustainable levels. As a result, these spending levels will cause exploding deficits as tax revenues will be at their modern average level (1952-2008).

americas-deficit-federal-spending-680

Where Does All the Money Go?

In 2012, the major entitlement programs-Social Security, Medicare, Medicaid, and other health care-consumed 45 percent of all federal spending. These programs, and interest on the debt, are on track to consume an even greater share of spending in future years, while the portion of federal spending dedicated to other national priorities will decline.

SHARE OF FEDERAL SPENDING IN 2012

where-did-your-tax-dollar-go-680

Entitlement Program Spending Is Massive

Annual spending on Social Security, Medicare, Medicaid, and other health programs is massive compared to other federal spending priorities. There is too much waste and inappropriate spending in the discretionary budget as well, but Congress will not be able to rein in spending and debt without reforming the entitlement programs.

ESTIMATED ANNUAL SPENDING IN 2014

spending-cuts-680

Publicly Held Debt Set to Skyrocket

Runaway spending on Medicare, Medicaid, and Social Security will drive federal debt to unsustainable levels over the next few decades. Total national debt comprises publicly held debt (the most relevant to credit markets) and debt that one part of the government owes to another, such as the Social Security Trust Fund.

national-debt-skyrocket-680

All Tax Revenue Will Go Toward Entitlements and Net Interest by 2030

In less than two decades, all projected tax revenues would be consumed by three federal programs (Medicare, Social Security, and Medicaid, which includes CHIP and Obamacare) and interest on the debt. Entitlement reform is a must.

entitlements-historical-tax-levels-680

What if a Typical Family Spent and Borrowed Like the Federal Government?

Families understand that it is unwise to repeatedly spend much more than they take in. But Washington continues its shopping spree on the taxpayer credit card with seemingly no regard to the stack of bills the nation has already piled up.

typical-family-spent-like-government-680

debt-limit-by-president-680

The Beatles – Taxman

How Obama could kill the Democratic Party

The Price of a U.S. Credit Rating Downgrade

U.S. deficit to decline, then rise as labor market struggles: CBO

Top 10 MILITARY BUDGETS

America : DHS preparing for possible Riots / Martial Law on Nov 1st over Food Stamps

With 2015 budget request, Obama will call for an end to era of austerity

By Zachary A. Goldfarb

President Obama’s forthcoming budget request will seek tens of billions of dollars in fresh spending for domestic priorities while abandoning a compromise proposal to tame the national debt in part by trimming Social Security benefits.

With the 2015 budget request, Obama will call for an end to the era of austerity that has dogged much of his presidency and to his efforts to find common ground with Republicans. Instead, the president will focus on pumping new cash into job training, early-childhood education and other programs aimed at bolstering the middle class, providing Democrats with a policy blueprint heading into the midterm elections.

As part of that strategy, Obama will jettison the framework he unveiled last year for a so-called grand bargain that would have raised taxes on the rich and reined in skyrocketing retirement spending. A centerpiece of that framework was a proposal — demanded by GOP leaders — to use a less-generous measure of inflation to calculate Social Security benefits.

The idea infuriated Democrats and never gained much traction with rank-and-file Republicans, who also were unwilling to contemplate tax increases of any kind. On Thursday, administration officials said that the grand-bargain framework remains on the table but that it was time to move on.

“Over the course of last year, Republicans consistently showed a lack of willingness to negotiate on a deficit-reduction deal, refusing to identify even one unfair tax loophole they would be willing to close,” said a White House official, speaking on the condition of anonymity to describe the budget before its official release. “That is not going to stop the president from promoting new policies that should be part of our public debate.”

Republicans said emerging details of the president’s budget prove he was never serious about addressing the nation’s long-term debt problems.

“This reaffirms what has become all too apparent: the president has no interest in doing anything, even modest, to address our looming debt crisis,” Brendan Buck, a spokesman for House Speaker John A. Boehner (R-Ohio), said in a statement. “The one and only idea the president has to offer is even more job-destroying tax hikes, and that non-starter won’t do anything to save the entitlement programs that are critical to so many Americans.”

The new budget request, due out March 4, comes during a relative lull in Washington’s lengthy budget wars. Late last year, Congress approved a two-year spending plan negotiated by the chairmen of the House and Senate Budget committees, Rep. Paul Ryan (R-Wis.) and Sen. Patty Murray (D-Wash.), that would ease automatic cuts, known as the sequester, that were eating away at agency spending. And this month, Congress agreed to forgo another battle over the federal debt limit, voting to suspend its enforcement until March 2015.

The lack of conflict is due in part to the collapse of the deficit as a political issue. While annual budget deficits remain high by historical standards, they have shrunken rapidly over the past few years as the economy recovered and Congress acted to cut spending.

The latest estimates from the nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office show the deficit falling to$514 billion this year and to $478 billion in fiscal 2015 — well below the trillion-dollar deficits the nation racked up during the recession and immediately afterward. But the CBO warned that deficits would start to grow again in a few years.

n recognition of that fact, Obama would retain some parts of his grand-bargain framework, including a proposal to require wealthy seniors to pay more for Medicare benefits than they do now. White House officials said the president continues to believe that entitlement programs such as Medicare and Social Security must be reformed to be sustainable.

Meanwhile, Obama would fully pay for proposed new spending in his budget request, administration officials said, including $56 billion for what they called “Opportunity, Growth and Security Initiative.” The package, which would be split between domestic programs and defense, will include fresh cash for 45 new manufacturing institutes; a “Race to the Top” for states that promote energy efficiency; new job training programs and apprenticeships; and expanded educational programs for pre­schoolers.

White House officials declined to say Thursday how they would fund the initiative. But Obama has in the past proposed limiting the value of income-tax deductions for wealthy households and closing a variety of corporate tax breaks.

A senior administration official said the budget would also propose new corporate tax rules aimed at preventing companies from moving profits overseas to avoid U.S. taxes. For instance, the rules will seek to limit a company’s ability to borrow domestically — and take large tax deductions on the interest — and then invest the money overseas.

Prohibiting corporations from gaming the tax code has been a popular issue among Senate Democrats and would help emphasize bread-and-butter themes in a year when Democrats will also be focusing on raising the minimum wage and other populist measures.

“President Obama’s budget will be a powerful statement of Democratic principles,” Senate Majority Leader Harry M. Reid (D-Nev.) said in a statement.

Senior administration officials said they decided to chart a more partisan, aspirational path after Republicans failed to respond to the olive branch offered last year. Then, after two years of near-misses on the budget in negotiations with Boehner, Obama still believed a deal was possible.

Now, they said, the president is not so optimistic. And he believes it is up to Republicans to make the next move.

At the same time, the nation’s debt problem has become markedly less urgent, they said, leading the president to back away from the most controversial part of his debt-reduction framework — the proposal to adopt a new measure of inflation known as the chained consumer price index, or chained CPI.

Although other cost-cutting proposals could yet cause tensions within his party, Obama’s decision not to include chained CPI in his budget request immediately won praise from Democrats.

“I applaud President Obama for his important decision to protect Social Security,” Sen. Bernard Sanders, the liberal independent from Vermont, said in a statement. “With the middle class struggling and more people living in poverty than ever before, we cannot afford to make life even more difficult for seniors and some of the most vulnerable people in America.”

Officials said Obama’s budget request will include other nuggets of note. For example, it assumes that an overhaul of the nation’s immigration laws will pass Congress despite deep divisions in Republican ranks. It also assumes that a sharp, but somewhat mysterious slowdown in health-care spending will continue throughout the next decade.

As a result, the White House projects that annual budget deficits will fall below 2 percent of gross domestic product by the end of the decade. That outlook is much rosier than CBO projections, which show the deficit rising to 4 percent of GDP in 2024.

http://www.washingtonpost.com/business/economy/with-2015-budget-request-obama-will-call-for-an-end-to-era-of-austerity/2014/02/20/332808c2-9a6e-11e3-b931-0204122c514b_story.html

Obama’s “End of Austerity” Budget Is Incoherent

Kevin Glass

President Obama’s legally-required but constantly-delayed official budget request to Congress will be on Capitol Hill soon. The Washington Post reportsthat “Obama will call for an end to the era of austerity that has dogged much of his presidency.” There is much wrong with this worldview.

The only coherent way in which “austerity” has defined much of President Obama’s presidency is one in which America faced a once-in-a-generation economic crisis that President Obama himself responded to by massively ramping up federal spending over the course of his first few years in office. That increase in federal spending was combined with below-average tax revenue to create massive budget deficits that everyone, including President Obama, agreed were a problem.

In accordance with the general principles of Keynesian economics, Barack Obama enacted policies that cut the deficit as we continue to climb back out of the 2008 recession. Now, though, President Obama thinks the deficit is no longer a problem – so it’s time to increase it.

If I were a self-absorbed “fact checker” I’d rate this claim half-true. We’ve largely tamed the medium-term deficit through a mixture of tax hikes and spending cuts. Taming the deficit doesn’t mean that it won’t be a problem in the future – and indeed, the Congressional Budget Office’s newest reports confirm that the deficit should still rate highly on the problems that policymakers should be looking to solve.

The CBO’s long-term budget report finds that the deficit will dip in 2014 and 2015 but then will start rising – and will never stop due to our increasing health and retirement obligations. The CBO reports on why that’s bad:

In the past few years, debt held by the public has been significantly greater relative to GDP than at any time since just after World War II, and under current law it will continue to be quite high by historical standards during the next decade. With debt so large, federal spending on interest payments will increase substantially as interest rates rise to more typical levels. Moreover, because federal borrowing generally reduces national saving, the capital stock and wages will be smaller than if debt was lower. In addition, lawmakers would have less flexibility than they otherwise would to use tax and spending policies to respond to unanticipated challenges. Finally, such a large debt poses a greater risk of precipitating a fiscal crisis, during which investors would lose so much confidence in the government’s ability to manage its budget that the government would be unable to borrow at affordable rates.

It’s absurd that anyone would need to have a refresher on this, but apparently it’s needed: more debt is worse than less debt!

The CBO also confirms what has become even more apparent in the wake of Obamacare: the federal government is becoming less of a traditional government and more of a social insurance state, as more and more spending will go toward health and retirement entitlements, as well as the mere cost of servicing debt:

As Jonathan Chait points out, as a practical political reality, fighting the rise of our retirement obligations has about a ten-year lag time. It’s impractical to change the structure of retirement benefits – both Social Security and Medicare – for current and near-future beneficiaries. We need to get started on reforms now.

President Obama may want to put an end to the “era of austerity,” but it’s an era that he explicitly pushed for through his rhetoric, his desire for tax hikes and his compromises on spending cuts. The medium-term deficit might be under control, but that doesn’t mean fighting future deficits should no longer be a priority for policymakers.

http://townhall.com/tipsheet/kevinglass/2014/02/21/obamas-end-of-austerity-budget-is-incoherent-n1798636

Obama budget declares end to … austerity?

Say, did you know that we are living in the age of austerity budgets in Washington? This year’s budget will spend more than last year’s $3.44 trillion, but not as much as Barack Obama requested for FY2014, which was an apparently austere $3.778 trillion. Nevertheless, the Washington Post reports that a newly-emboldened President will demandan end to an “era of austerity” that we haven’t seen in decades with his new FY2015 budget proposal:

President Obama’s forthcoming budget request will seek tens of billions of dollars in fresh spending for domestic priorities while abandoning a compromise proposal to tame the national debt in part by trimming Social Security benefits.

With the 2015 budget request, Obama will call for an end to the era of austerity that has dogged much of his presidency and to his efforts to find common ground with Republicans. Instead, the president will focus on pumping new cash into job training, early-childhood education and other programs aimed at bolstering the middle class, providing Democrats with a policy blueprint heading into the midterm elections. …

Republicans said emerging details of the president’s budget prove he was never serious about addressing the nation’s long-term debt problems.

“This reaffirms what has become all too apparent: the president has no interest in doing anything, even modest, to address our looming debt crisis,” Brendan Buck, a spokesman for House Speaker John A. Boehner (R-Ohio), said in a statement. “The one and only idea the president has to offer is even more job-destroying tax hikes, and that non-starter won’t do anything to save the entitlement programs that are critical to so many Americans.”

The new budget request, due out March 4, comes during a relative lull in Washington’s lengthy budget wars. Late last year, Congress approved a two-year spending plan negotiated by the chairmen of the House and Senate Budget committees, Rep. Paul Ryan (R-Wis.) and Sen. Patty Murray (D-Wash.), that would ease automatic cuts, known as the sequester, that were eating away at agency spending. And this month, Congress agreed to forgo another battle over the federal debt limit, voting to suspend its enforcement until March 2015.

So what will be the top-line number for the FY2015 budget that will end this “era of austerity”? Actually, the Post doesn’t report the top-line outlay number, and the OMB doesn’t have the budget request available on the White House portal yet. One presumes that ending austerity means a demand north of the $3.498 trillion that House Republicans proposed in their budget plan from late last year. It may just be an additional $56 billion over the actual FY2014 levels, which would make it far below his FY2014 proposed budget.

Let’s take a look at all that austerity in the Obama presidency, shall we? Heritage produced this handy graphic in the middle of last year, but it’s very useful now:

heritage-fed-spending

Outlays for FY2014 authorized in the recent budget deal are still a bit ambiguous in the reams of data from both Congress and the White House, but CBO estimates it at $3.54 trillion. At that level, we are spending 9.3% more in FY2014 than in FY2008, the last budget signed by George W. Bush (Democrats stalled the FY2009 budget with continuing resolutions until Obama signed an omnibus bill in March 2009 to complete that budget).If the new budget ends “austerity” by returning to Obama’s original top-line outlay demand of last year’s budget request, that will mean an additional increase of federal spending of 6.7% in just one year. If it’s just $56 billion more than the actual FY2014 outlays, then the notion that this ends “austerity” is doubly laughable.

The notion that we’ve been laboring under an “era of austerity” is as ridiculous and out of touch as … well, as most of Obama’s budget requests during his presidency. This one has just as much chance of being enacted, too. The Post suggests that Democrats can use this to beat up Republicans on the campaign trail, but the GOP can easily parry that with this question: “Do you really believe Washington deserves a 6.7% raise after ObamaCare?” Good luck winning on this issue.

http://hotair.com/archives/2014/02/21/obama-budget-declares-end-to-austerity/

Obama budget could be costly to Dems

By Chris Stirewalt

OBAMA BUDGET COULD BE COSTLY TO DEMS
The White House is teasing the president’s soon-to-be released blueprint for the next federal fiscal year. In a nod to his core liberal supporters, the president has dropped a prior nod to entitlement fixes, so-called “chained CPI,” a change in how to calculate the size of future increases to Social Security and other programs. The president is sucking up to his political base, the members of which consider the current trajectory for future hikes to be sacrosanct. That’s pretty good politics, especially since Obama did not seem particularly enthused about the idea before and that there is zero chance that this budget or any budget will be passed this election year. Republicans may be harrumphing about the president’s “unserious” approach to the debt, but it’s not like they thought otherwise before. Nor will the House GOP budget be anything more than pipe dreams. Poof!

You call that austerity? – Many pixels are being slaughtered to discuss the president’s irrelevant budget. Why? Partly, it’s because reporters salivate over anything that looks exclusive or new in a city where governing goes to die. Here in the great gridlock desert, this stuff may pass for news. But also because liberals are excited to see their champion drop the smokescreen of deficit concern. The prevailing Democratic wisdom is that deficits don’t matter and that Republicans ought to shut up about them. The WaPo enthused: “With the 2015 budget request, Obama will call for an end to the era of austerity that has dogged much of his presidency and to his efforts to find common ground with Republicans.” Austerity? The federal government continues to spend way more than it takes in and outlays in the Obama era have increased. From 2009 through 2012, the administration spent about $3.5 trillion a year. The approximate federal spending for the fiscal year that ended in October was $3.62 trillion. The estimate for the current year: $3.78 trillion. The Greeks would love to get some austerity like that.

Unicorns, rainbows and midterms – The WaPo goes on to say that instead of worrying about deficits, “…the president will focus on pumping new cash into job training, early-childhood education and other programs aimed at bolstering the middle class, providing Democrats with a policy blueprint heading into the midterm elections… The lack of conflict is due in part to the collapse of the deficit as a political issue. While annual budget deficits remain high by historical standards, they have shrunken rapidly over the past few years as the economy recovered and Congress acted to cut spending.” Wait. What? A Fox News Poll at the end of January showed that more voters said the federal deficit and Social Security outranked terrorism, foreign policy, guns and immigration as the most important issues for the government. Only the economy and health care were higher on the list of voter concerns. Nothing come close to those two, but do Democrats really think that they are off the hook for being the party of more borrowing and spending? Just because Republicans scampered away from the last debt limit lift fight doesn’t mean this isn’t potent stuff. If Democrats believe that borrowing more than half-a-trillion dollars can be turned into a political plus, they must be back to smoking Hopium. And remember, we haven’t even heard about all of the new taxes that the president will propose. Democrats are marching forward with the banner of bigger government aloft at precisely the moment Americans are fed up with ObamaCare the last big government initiative the Obama Democrats bequeathed them.

http://www.foxnews.com/politics/2014/02/21/obama-budget-could-be-costly-to-dems/

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Independent Party — A New Third Party To Challenge Both Democratic and Republican Parties — Price $10 Billion — Who Will Fund It? — American People — Videos

Posted on February 17, 2014. Filed under: Blogroll, Business, College, Communications, Constitution, Economics, Education, Federal Government Budget, Fiscal Policy, Law, liberty, Life, Links, media, People, Philosophy, Photos, Politics, Psychology, Rants, Raves, Talk Radio, Tax Policy, Taxes, Unemployment, Video, Wealth, Wisdom | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

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Pronk Pops Show 212: February 17, 2014

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Pronk Pops Show 165: November 12, 2013

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Story 1: Independent Party —  A New Third Party To Challenge Both Democratic and Republican Parties —  Price $10 Billion — Who Will Fund It? — American People — Videos

How the GOP Can Attract Young People: Rand Paul and Glenn Beck

Third Party Time? Donald Trump, Ted Cruz, Ben Stein, and Gary Johnson Weigh In

The State of the Two Party System

The Evolution of America’s Major Political Parties

Third Parties in America

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Pope Francis Attacks Unfettered Capitalism in Apostolic Exhortation or “The Joy of the Gospel” — Instead of Out of Control Government Spending and Government Failures — Videos

Posted on November 27, 2013. Filed under: Blogroll, Books, Catholic Church, College, Communications, Constitution, Economics, Education, Employment, Federal Government, Federal Government Budget, Fiscal Policy, government, government spending, Inflation, Language, Law, People, Philosophy, Photos, Politics, Press, Raves, Regulations, Religion, Resources, Talk Radio, Unemployment, Video, Wealth, Wisdom | Tags: , , , |

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Pronk Pops Show 176: November 27, 2013

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Segment 1: Pope Francis Attacks Unfettered Capitalism in Apostolic Exhortation or “The Joy of the Gospel” — Instead of Out of Control Government Spending  and Government Failures — Videos

‘This Week’: Pope Francis’ Economic Critique

Pope Francis on the joy of the Gospel

RCE: Sort out your financial empire – other topics addressed – glass house attitude !!!

Pope Francis unveils new vision for Catholics

Pope Francis: Unfettered Capitalism Is Tyranny

Pope Francis Goes Off On Capitalism

Is Pope Francis Anti Capitalism

Pope Francis Calls Unfettered Capitalism ‘Tyranny’

November 26, 2013

by Joshua Holland

Earlier this month, Laurie Goodstein reported forThe New York Times that Pope Francis’ softer rhetoric on hot-button social issues like abortion and same-sex marriage were causing conservative Catholics no small amount of chagrin.

It looks like they can expect more cognitive dissonance, according to this report in The Guardian

Pope Francis has attacked unfettered capitalism as “a new tyranny”, urging global leaders to fight poverty and growing inequality in the first major work he has authored alone as pontiff.

The 84-page document, known as an apostolic exhortation, amounted to an official platform for his papacy, building on views he has aired in sermons and remarks since he became the first non-European pontiff in 1,300 years in March.

In it, Francis went further than previous comments criticizing the global economic system, attacking the “idolatry of money” and beseeching politicians to guarantee all citizens “dignified work, education and healthcare”.

He also called on rich people to share their wealth. “Just as the commandment ‘Thou shalt not kill’ sets a clear limit in order to safeguard the value of human life, today we also have to say ‘thou shalt not’ to an economy of exclusion and inequality. Such an economy kills,” Francis wrote in the document issued on Tuesday.

“How can it be that it is not a news item when an elderly homeless person dies of exposure but it is news when the stock market loses two points?”

In a sense, the new pope is just grappling with the reality he faces. Polls show that American Catholics, at least, agree with the pontiff’s position that the church focuses too much on social issues. And Francis recently commissioned a survey of Catholics around the world to see where they fall on these questions.

Meanwhile, Dominic Barton, the Managing Director of McKinsey & Co., writes in today’s Wall Street Journal: ”In 2012, the top 1% of earners in the US collected 19.3% of the country’s total household income–an all-time high… The disparity is growing rapidly as well. Incomes of the top 1% grew by 31.4% from 2009 to 2012, compared to just 0.4% for the remaining 99%.”

http://billmoyers.com/2013/11/26/pope-francis-calls-unfettered-capitalism-tyranny/

Pope Francis’ new document, Evangelii Gaudium: 9 things to know and share

BY JIMMY AKIN

Pope Francis has just released a new document titled Evangelii Gaudium.

It is his first apostolic exhortation, and it is devoted to the theme of the new evangelization.

Here are 9 things to know and share . . .

1) What does “Evangelii Gaudium” mean?

It’s Latin for “The Joy of the Gospel.”

2) What is an apostolic exhortation?

It’s a papal document that, as the name suggests, exhorts people to implement a particular aspect of the Church’s life and teaching.

Its purpose is not to teach new doctrine, but to suggest how Church teachings and practices can be profitably applied today.

Some apostolic exhortations are devoted to the pastoral challenges faced in particular parts of the world (Europe, Africa, Asia, the Americas). Others are devoted to particular themes.

Previous apostolic exhortations include:

  • Paul VI’s Evangelii Nuntiandi (on evangelization today)
  • John Paul II’s Christifideles Laici (on the role of the laity)
  • John Paul II’s Redemptoris Custos (on St. Joseph)
  • Benedict XVI’s Sacramentum Caritatis (on the Eucharist)
  • Benedict XVI’s Verbum Domini (on the Word of God)

3) How much authority does an apostolic exhortation have?

It is one of the more important papal documents—more important, for example, than a Wednesday audience or a homily.

As it is of a pastoral nature rather than a doctrinal or legal nature, though, it is ranked lower than an encyclical or an apostolic constitution.

As with everything official that the pope writes, it is to be taken very seriously.

4) What leads a pope to write an apostolic exhortation?

Frequently, apostolic exhortations are written after a meeting of the Synod of Bishops.

The Synod of Bishops is a group that gathers selected bishops from across the world to discuss a particular subject.

At the synod, the bishops write a document making recommendations for the pope. It is then given to him for his reflection, and he may then write an apostolic exhortation based on the bishops’ recommendations.

Exhortations that come about in this way are called “post-synodal” apostolic exhortations because they are written after (“post-”) a meeting of the synod.

There does not have to be such an exhortation. Sometimes they hold a meeting of the synod of bishops, but no apostolic exhortation is released.

Also, not all apostolic exhortations are written after a synod, though. Sometimes the pope may decide to write one on his own, without a synod being held on the subject. This was the case with John Paul II’s Redemptoris Custos.

5) Why did Pope Francis write Evangelii Gaudium?

It was written in response to the most recent meeting of the Synod of Bishops, which took place in October, 2012.

It was devoted to the subject of the new evangelization, so that is the subject of Evangelii Gaudium.

This synod took place before Pope Francis was elected in March 2013.

It sometimes happens that a synod is held and the pope who presided over it leaves office before the exhortation is released. His successor may then choose to go forward with the project.

For example, the 2005 synod on the Eucharist was held under John Paul II, but he had passed on before an exhortation was released. Benedict XVI then took the document that the bishops had prepared and had an exhortation written.

(Usually, the pope does not draft the document himself, but it is drafted based on his decisions, and he has final approval over what it says.)

Pope Francis’s decision in this case is similar to his decision to release the encyclical Lumen Fidei, which was primarily drafted by Pope Benedict, but which he completed.

Unlike that case, though, Pope Francis contributed much, much more to this document.

With Lumen Fidei, he did not add very much to what Pope Benedict had written. Evangelii Gaudium, by contrast, is much more a “Francis document.” It regularly emphasizes the distinctive thought and themes of the new pope.

6) What is Pope Francis’ main message in Evangelii Gaudium?

As suggested by the name, the principal theme involves the need for a joyful proclamation of the Gospel to the entire world.

Archbishop Rino Fisichella, who presented the document at a Vatican press conference, summarized its main message this way:

If we were to sum up Pope Francis’s Evangelii Gaudium in a few words, we could say that it is an Apostolic Exhortation written around the theme of Christian joy in order that the Church may rediscover the original source of evangelization in the contemporary world.

Pope Francis offers this document to the Church as a map and guide to her pastoral mission in the near future.

It is an invitation to recover a prophetic and positive vision of reality without ignoring the current challenges.

Pope Francis instills courage and urges us to look ahead despite the present crisis, making the cross and the resurrection of Christ once again our “the victory banner” (source).

7) What particularly noteworthy things does the pope have to say in the document?

There is a mountain of them.

The document is 51,000 words long, which means that it is the length of a novel and takes at least 5 hours to read.

There are numerous important things that the pope says, some of which I will endeavor to unpack in future blog posts.

However, Archbishop Fisichella offers a summary of seven main themes that it covers:

The following seven points, gathered together in the five chapters of the Exhortation, constitute the fundamental pillars of Pope Francis’ vision of the new evangelization:

1.     the reform of the Church in a missionary key,

2.     the temptations of pastoral agents,

3.     the Church understood as the totality of the People of God which evangelizes,

4.     the homily and its preparation,

5.     the social inclusion of the poor,

6.     peace and social dialogue,

7.     and the spiritual motivations for the Church’s missionary action.

The cement which binds these themes together is concentrated in the merciful love of God which goes forth to meet every person in order to manifest the heart of his revelation: The life of every person acquires meaning in the encounter with Jesus Christ and in the joy of sharing this experience of love with others.

YOU CAN READ THE FULL DOCUMENT HERE.

8) Can you give a specific example of something notable he says?

Sure. It’s hard to pick just one!

Pro-lifers will be heartened to read what he has to say concerning unborn children and abortion:

213. Among the vulnerable for whom the Church wishes to care with particular love and concern are unborn children, the most defenseless and innocent among us.

Nowadays efforts are made to deny them their human dignity and to do with them whatever one pleases, taking their lives and passing laws preventing anyone from standing in the way of this.

Frequently, as a way of ridiculing the Church’s effort to defend their lives, attempts are made to present her position as ideological, obscurantist and conservative.

Yet this defense of unborn life is closely linked to the defense of each and every other human right.

It involves the conviction that a human being is always sacred and inviolable, in any situation and at every stage of development.

Human beings are ends in themselves and never a means of resolving other problems.

Once this conviction disappears, so do solid and lasting foundations for the defense of human rights, which would always be subject to the passing whims of the powers that be.

Reason alone is sufficient to recognize the inviolable value of each single human life, but if we also look at the issue from the standpoint of faith, “every violation of the personal dignity of the human being cries out in vengeance to God and is an offence against the creator of the individual”.

214. Precisely because this involves the internal consistency of our message about the value of the human person, the Church cannot be expected to change her position on this question.

I want to be completely honest in this regard.

This is not something subject to alleged reforms or “modernizations”.

It is not “progressive” to try to resolve problems by eliminating a human life.

On the other hand, it is also true that we have done little to adequately accompany women in very difficult situations, where abortion appears as a quick solution to their profound anguish, especially when the life developing within them is the result of rape or a situation of extreme poverty.

Who can remain unmoved before such painful situations?

9) Is there an extra significance to the document?

It will take time to fully process the significance of the document, but one this is immediately clear: This document is not something that Pope Francis delegated to others and allowed to be written on auto-pilot. It contains far too much of his own thought and themes for that.

This means that Pope Francis was closely involved in the writing of this document, and that shows that he cares—powerfully—about the theme of evangelization.

This demolishes the wrongheaded claims that Pope Francis doesn’t take the task of evangelization seriously.

On the contrary, it’s one of the highest priorities of his pontificate.

Read more: http://www.ncregister.com/blog/jimmy-akin/pope-francis-new-document-evangelii-gaudium-9-things-to-know-and-share/#ixzz2lszGOH94

‘Not to share wealth with poor is to steal’: Pope slams capitalism as ‘new tyranny’

Pope Francis has taken aim at capitalism as “a new tyranny” and is urging world leaders to step up their efforts against poverty and inequality, saying “thou shall not kill” the economy. Francis calls on rich people to share their wealth.

The existing financial system that fuels the unequal distribution of wealth and violence must be changed, the Pope warned.

“How can it be that it is not a news item when an elderly homeless person dies of exposure, but it is news when the stock market loses two points?” Pope Francis asked an audience at the Vatican.

The global economic crisis, which has gripped much of Europe and America, has the Pope asking how countries can function, or realize their full economic potential, if they are weighed down by the debts of capitalism.

“A new tyranny is thus born, invisible and often virtual, which unilaterally and relentlessly imposes its own laws and rules,” the 84-page document, known as an apostolic exhortation, said.

“To all this we can add widespread corruption and self-serving tax evasion, which has taken on worldwide dimensions. The thirst for power and possessions knows no limits”, the pope’s document says.

He goes on to explain that in this system, which tends to devour everything which stands in the way of increased profits, whatever is fragile, like the environment, is defenseless before the interests of a deified market, which has become the only rule we live by.

Shameful wealth

Inequality between the rich and the poor has reached a new threshold, and in his apostolic exhortation to mark the end of the “Year of Faith”, Pope Francis asks for better politicians to heal the scars capitalism made on society.

“Just as the commandment ‘Thou shalt not kill’ sets a clear limit in order to safeguard the value of human life, today we also have to say ‘thou shalt not’ to an economy of exclusion and inequality. Such an economy kills,” Francis wrote in the document issued Tuesday.

His calls to service go beyond general good Samaritan deeds, as he asks his followers for action“beyond a simple welfare mentality”.

“I beg the Lord to grant us more politicians who are genuinely disturbed by the state of society, the people, the lives of the poor,” Francis wrote.

A recent IRS report shows that the wealth of the US’s richest 1 percent has grown by 31 percent, while the rest of the population experienced an income rise of only 1 percent.

The most recent Oxfam data shows that up to 146 million Europeans are at risk of falling into poverty by 2025 and 50 million Americans are currently suffering from severe financial hardship.

“As long as the problems of the poor are not radically resolved by rejecting the absolute autonomy of markets and financial speculation, and by attacking the structural causes of inequality, no solution will be found for the world’s problems or, for that matter, to any problems,” he wrote.

Named after the medieval saint who chose a life of poverty, Pope Francis has gone beyond general calls for fair work, education, and healthcare.

Newly-elected Pope Francis has stepped up the fight against corrupt capitalism that has hit close to home – he was the first Pope to go after the Vatican bank and openly accused it of fraud and shady offshore tax haven deals.

In October, Pope Francis removed Vatican bank head Cardinal Tarcisio Bertone, after revelations of alleged mafia money laundering and financial impropriety.

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Only 106,185 Have Enrolled But Not Paid Premiums For Obamacare Plans — 396,261 Are Eligible For Medicaid! — Videos

Posted on November 13, 2013. Filed under: American History, Blogroll, College, Communications, Constitution, Demographics, Diasters, Economics, Education, Federal Government Budget, Fiscal Policy, government spending, Health Care, history, Inflation, Investments, Law, liberty, Life, Links, Literacy, media, Medicine, People, Philosophy, Photos, Politics, Radio, Rants, Raves, Regulations, Resources, Strategy, Talk Radio, Tax Policy, Unemployment, Video, Wisdom | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , |

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Fewer than 27,000 health care sign-ups through federal website; 79,000 more in state sites

Putting a statistic on disappointment, the Obama administration revealed Wednesday that fewer than 27,000 people signed up for private health insurance last month in the 36 states relying on a problem-filled federal website.

States running their own enrollment systems did better, signing up more than 79,000, for a total enrollment of over 106,000.

Still, that was barely one-fifth of the nearly 500,000 people administration officials had projected would sign up the first month of Obama’s signature program, a numerical rebuke to the administration’s ability to deliver on its promise. The 106,185 people who made it all the way through to selecting a plan represent just 1.5 percent of the 7 million people the administration hopes to enroll by next year.

Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius said things will get better, and quickly. “There is no doubt the level of interest is strong,” she said.

The administration said an additional 1 million or so applicants have been found eligible for government-subsidized private coverage in new state-level insurance markets, and about half are within sight of having their plans lined up for the start of next year. An additional 396,000 have been found eligible for Medicaid, the safety-net program that is shaping up as the health care law’s early success story.

The numbers landed amid a political storm on Capitol Hill. Democrats who had hoped to run for re-election next year on the success of the health care law are increasingly worried.

It’s not only the website woes, but a wave of cancellation notices hitting constituents whose individual health insurance policies don’t measure up to the law’s requirements. Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, D-Nev., has scheduled an all-Democrats meeting Thursday with White House health care officials.

The administration has staked its credibility on turning the website around by the end of this month. From the president on down, officials have said that HealthCare.gov will be running smoothly for the vast majority of users by Nov. 30.

Some outside experts are concerned. “People are starting to get nervous because there is not enough indication from the government that things are on track,” said Caroline Pearson, who runs the health reform practice at Avalere Health, a market analysis firm. “You wonder if there are still underlying programming problems that are causing the system to shut down when volume is high.”

Administration officials have not specified what “running smoothly” means, or what would constitute the “vast majority” of users.

On daily media calls, Health and Human Services department officials have described a situation where problems get fixed and then new issues crop up as consumers are able to venture further into the website. It’s a bit like traffic heading back to a city late on a summer Sunday: You get past one jam, and odds are you run into another.

There was a hopeful sign this Tuesday when Julie Bataille, HHS communications director for the rollout, said that 275,000 people who got hung up in the early days are being invited back to try to complete their applications. The administration is sending the email invitations in batches, so as not to risk any disruptions. White House chief technology officer Todd Park told Congress on Wednesday that system response times are much faster, and error rates have plunged.

http://www.washingtonpost.com/politics/congress/house-panel-investigates-whether-white-house-played-a-role-in-obamacare-technology-debacle/2013/11/13/e3b55fdc-4c3a-11e3-bf60-c1ca136ae14a_story.html

HHS reports 106,000 have picked health plans through ObamaCare exchanges

Published November 13, 2013

FoxNews.com

The Department of Health and Human Services reported Wednesday that more than 100,000 people have selected a health care plan through the ObamaCare exchanges — a number that, likely due to widespread website failures, falls far short of the administration’s goal.

The administration had originally hoped to sign up a half-million people in the first month of open enrollment. Now more than six weeks into the troubled launch of HealthCare.gov and other state-based exchanges, HHS announced Wednesday that 106,185 people had selected a plan as of Nov. 2.

The announcement had been highly anticipated, as lawmakers have been pressing the administration for weeks on official figures.

But even the statistic revealed on Wednesday might be inflated.

The administration said the figure counts all those who have selected a health care plan from state and federal exchanges, even if they haven’t yet paid a premium on those plans.

One source explained to Fox News that no one is really “enrolled” until the insurance company knows about it.

Still, the numbers announced Wednesday stand as the most definitive account to date from the administration of how many people have been able to wade through the problem-plagued website and pick a plan.

The administration says a total of 975,407 applied for coverage and received an eligibility determination, but have not yet selected a plan. In addition to the 106,185 who have selected a plan, another 396,261 have been determined as eligible for Medicaid or a similar government program for children.

http://www.foxnews.com/politics/2013/11/13/hhs-reports-106000-have-picked-health-plans-through-obamacare/

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Progressive President Problem — Warfare and Welfare State — Big Government Intervention In Economy At Home and Militarily Abroad — Government Dependency — Serfdom and Collectivism in The New World Order — They Have Won — The Solution — Freedom Force International– Videos

Posted on April 25, 2013. Filed under: American History, Blogroll, Business, College, Communications, Constitution, Crime, Demographics, Economics, Education, Employment, Federal Government, Federal Government Budget, Fiscal Policy, government, government spending, history, History of Economic Thought, Language, Law, liberty, Life, Links, Macroeconomics, media, People, Philosophy, Politics, Rants, Raves, Regulations, Security, Talk Radio, Tax Policy, Taxes, Technology, Terrorism, Video, War, Wealth, Wisdom | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

progressive_presidents

5_Living_US_Presidents

roundtables

Mind blowing speech by Robert Welch in 1958 predicting Insiders plans to destroy America

G. Edward Griffin: The Collectivist Conspiracy (Full Length)

An Idea Whose Time Has Come – G. Edward Griffin – Freedom Force International – Full

G. Edward Griffin Promotes Freedom Force International Part 1 of 2

G. Edward Griffin Promotes Freedom Force International Part 2 of 2

Capitalism Without Guilt – Yaron Brook on morals of capitalism.

Invisible Empire A New World Order Defined Full

George W. Bush breaks down at library dedication

Bill Clinton speaks of Carroll Quigley at 1992 Democratic National Convention

tragedy-and-hope

Hillary Clinton admits that the CFR runs the Government

Dick Cheney ex-director of CFR talks to David Rockefeller

Americans and Collectivism – TheBlazeTV – The Glenn Beck Program – 2013.04.26

Glenn Beck Predicts New World Order. Global Reset. U.S. Will Be A 3rd World State

Glenn Beck- ‘How Did Communism Become Cool?’

Super rich are in a conspiracy to rule the world – G. Edward Griffin

G. Edward Griffin The Dangerous Servant A Discourse on Government

The Quigley Formula – G. Edward Griffin lecture

tragedyandhope.3

“Legalized Plunder of the American People” – G. Edward Griffin

The Shadows of Power: The Council on Foreign Relations and the American Decline | James Perloff

Invisible Empire A New World Order Defined Full

[yotube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NO24XmP1c5E]

THE CREED OF FREEDOM

INTRINSIC NATURE OF RIGHTS
I believe that only individuals have rights, not the collective group; that these rights are intrinsic to each individual, not granted by the state; for if the state has the power to grant them, it also has the power to deny them, and that is incompatible with personal liberty.
I believe that a just state derives its power solely from its citizens. Therefore, the state must never presume to do anything beyond what individual citizens also have the right to do. Otherwise, the state is a power unto itself and becomes the master instead of the servant of society.

SUPREMACY OF THE INDIVIDUAL
I believe that one of the greatest threats to freedom is to allow any group, no matter its numeric superiority, to deny the rights of the minority; and that one of the primary functions of a just state is to protect each individual from the greed and passion of the majority.

FREEDOM OF CHOICE
I believe that desirable social and economic objectives are better achieved by voluntary action than by coercion of law. I believe that social tranquility and brotherhood are better achieved by tolerance, persuasion, and the power of good example than by coercion of law. I believe that those in need are better served by charity, which is the giving of one’s own money, than by welfare, which is the giving of other people’s money through coercion of law.

EQUALITY UNDER LAW
I believe that all citizens should be equal under law, regardless of their national origin, race, religion, gender, education, economic status, life style, or political opinion. Likewise, no class should be given preferential treatment, regardless of the merit or popularity of its cause. To favor one class over another is not equality under law.

PROPER ROLE OF THE STATE
I believe that the proper role of the state is negative, not positive; defensive, not aggressive. It is to protect, not to provide; for if the state is granted the power to provide for some, it must also be able to take from others, and that always leads to legalized plunder and loss of freedom. If the state is powerful enough to give us everything we want, it also will be powerful enough to take from us everything we have. Therefore, the proper function of the state is to protect the lives, liberty, and property of its citizens, nothing more. That state is best which governs least.


THE THREE COMMANDMENTS OF FREEDOM

The Creed of Freedom is based on five principles. However, in day-to-day application, they can be reduced to just three codes of conduct. These are The Three Commandments of Freedom:

INDIVIDUAL RIGHTS
Only individuals have rights, not groups. Therefore, do not sacrifice the rights of any individual or minority for the alleged rights of groups.

EQUALITY UNDER LAW
To favor one class of citizens over others is not equality under law. Therefore, do not endorse any law that does not apply to all citizens equally.

FREEDOM OF CHOICE
The proper function of the state is to protect, not to provide. Therefore, do not approve coercion for any purpose except to protect human life, liberty, or property.


THE THREE PILLARS OF FREEDOM

Another way of viewing these principles is to consider them as the three pillars of freedom. They are concepts that underlie the ideology of individualism, and individualism is the indispensable foundation of freedom.

For the rational and historical support for The Creed of Freedom, see The Chasm in the Issues section of his site. This 21-page document will take 10 to 45 seconds to load depending on the speed of your Internet connection.

Background Articles and Videos

Freedom Force International speaker for Liberty in Pittsburgh

Rare Carroll Quigley interview

Professor Carroll Quigley, Bill Clinton’s mentor at Georgetown University, authored a massive volume entitled “Tragedy and Hope” in which he states: “There does exist and has existed for a generation, an international network which operates, to some extent, in the way the radical right believes the Communists act. In fact, this network, which we may identify as the Round Table Groups, has no aversion to cooperating with the Communists, or any other groups, and frequently does so. I know of the operations of this network because I have studied it for twenty years and was permitted for two years, in the early 1960s, to examine its papers and secret records. I have no aversion to it or to most of its aims, and have, for much of my life, been close to it and to many of its instruments. I have objected, both in the past and recently, to a few of its policies, but in general my chief difference of opinion is that it wishes to remain unknown, and I believe its role in history is significant enough to be known.”

[1 of 5] Rare Carroll Quigley Interview

Carroll Quigley was the historian for the Council on Foreign Relations and author of Tragedy and Hope (tragedy is all the people who must suffer and die for the NWO, and the hope is the NEW WORLD ORDER )

Professor Quigley was a Globalist, he supported the idea NEW WORLD ORDER and wrote about it, he, unlike the elites, thought the people should know about it.

“I know of this network because I have studied it for twenty years and was permitted for two years in the early 1960s to examine its papers and secret records. I have no aversion to it or to most of its aims and have, for much of my life, been close to it and to many of its instruments. I have objected, both in the past and recently, to a few of its policies … but in general my chief difference of opinion is that it wishes to remain unknown, and I believe its role in history is significant enough to be known.” — Dr. Carroll Quigley, Tragedy and Hope

“The powers of financial capitalism had another far reaching aim, nothing less than to create a world system of financial control in private hands able to dominate the political system of each country and the economy of the world as a whole. This system was to be controlled in a feudalist fashion by the central banks of the world acting in concert, by secret agreements, arrived at in frequent private meetings and conferences…”

“The apex of the system was the Bank for International Settlements in Basle, Switzerland, a private bank owned and controlled by the worlds’ central banks which were themselves private corporations…”

“The growth of financial capitalism made possible a centralization of world economic control and use of this power for the direct benefit of financiers and the indirect injury of all other economic groups.” Tragedy and Hope: A History of The World in Our Time (Macmillan Company, 1966,) Professor Carroll Quigley of Georgetown University

“The Council on Foreign Relations is the American branch of a society which originated in England … [and] … believes national boundaries should be obliterated and one-world rule established.” Dr. Carroll Quigley

“As a teenager, I heard John Kennedy’s summons to citizenship. And then, as a student, I heard that call clarified by a professor I had named Carroll Quigley.”President Clinton, in his acceptance speech for the Democratic Party’s nomination for president, 16 July 1992

[2 of 5] Rare Carroll Quigley Interview

[3 of 5] Rare Carroll Quigley Interview

[4 of 5] Rare Carroll Quigley Interview

[5 of 5] Rare Carroll Quigley Interview

The Creature From Jekyll Island (by G. Edward Griffin)

The Creature From Jekyll Island
A Second Look at the Federal Reserve
by G. Edward Griffin

Recorded: 1994

Edward Griffin – The Subversion Factor

CFR – List of Members and Organisations Involved

Jimmy Carter Administration

President Carter (who became a CFR member in 1983) appointed over 60 CFR members to serve in his Administration:

  • Walter Mondale (Vice-President)
  • Zbigniew Brzezinski (National Security Advisor)
  • Cyrus R. Vance (Secretary of State)
  • W. Michael Blumenthal (Secretary of Treasury)
  • Harold Brown (Secretary of Defense)
  • Stansfield Turner (Director of the CIA)
  • Gen. David Jones (Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff)

Ronald Reagan Administration

There were 75 CFR and Trilateral Commission members under President Reagan:

  • Alexander Haig (Secretary of State)
  • George Shultz (Secretary of State)
  • Donald Regan (Secretary of Treasury)
  • William Casey (CIA Director)
  • Malcolm Baldridge (Secretary of Commerce)
  • Jeanne J. Kirkpatrick (U.N. Ambassador)
  • Frank C. Carlucci (Deputy Secretary of Defense)
  • William E. Brock (Special Trade Representative)

George H. W. Bush Administration

During his 1964 campaign for the U.S. Senate in Texas, George Bush said: “If Red China should be admitted to the U.N., then the U.N. is hopeless and we should withdraw.” In 1970, as Ambassador to the U.N., he pushed for Red China to be seated in the General Assembly. When Bush was elected, the CFR member became the first President to publicly mention the “New World Order” and had in his Administration nearly 350 CFR and Trilateral Commission members:

  • Brent Scowcroft (National Security Advisor)
  • Richard B. Cheney (Secretary of Defense)
  • Colin L. Powell (Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff)
  • William Webster (Director of the CIA)
  • Richard Thornburgh (Attorney General)
  • Nicholas F. Brady (Secretary of Treasury)
  • Lawrence S. Eagleburger (Deputy Secretary of State)
  • Horace G. Dawson, Jr. (U.S. Information Agency and Director of the Office of Equal Opportunity and Civil Rights)
  • Alan Greenspan (Chairman of the Federal Reserve Board)

Bill Clinton Administration

When CFR member Bill Clinton was elected, Newsweek magazine would later refer to him as the “New Age President.” In October, 1993, Richard Harwood, a Washington Post writer, in describing the Clinton Administration, said its CFR membership was “the nearest thing we have to a ruling establishment in the United States”.

  • Albert Gore, Jr. (Vice-President)
  • Donna E. Shalala (Secretary of Health and Human Services)
  • Laura D. Tyson (Chairman of the Council of Economic Advisors)
  • Alice M. Rivlin (Deputy Director of the Office of Management and Budget)
  • Madeline K. Albright (U.S. Ambassador to the U.N.)
  • Warren Christopher (Secretary of State)
  • Clifton R. Wharton, Jr. (Deputy Secretary of State and former Chairman of the Rockefeller Foundation)
  • Les Aspin (Secretary of Defense)
  • Colin Powell (Chairman, Joint Chiefs of Staff)
  • W. Anthony Lake (National Security Advisor)
  • George Stephanopoulos (Senior Advisor)
  • Samuel R. ‘Sandy’ Berger (Deputy National Security Advisor)
  • R. James Woolsey (CIA Director)
  • William J. Crowe, Jr. (Chairman of the Foreign Intelligence Advisory Board)
  • Lloyd Bentsen (former member, Secretary of Treasury)
  • Roger C. Altman (Deputy Secretary of Treasury)
  • Henry G. Cisneros (Secretary of Housing and Urban Development)
  • Bruce Babbit (Secretary of the Interior)
  • Peter Tarnoff (Under Secretary of State for International Security of Affairs)
  • Winston Lord (Assistant Secretary of State for East Asian and Pacific Affairs)
  • Strobe Talbott (Aid Coordinator to the Commonwealth of Independent States)
  • Alan Greenspan (Chairman of the Federal Reserve System)
  • Walter Mondale (U.S. Ambassador to Japan)
  • Ronald H. Brown (Secretary of Commerce)
  • Franklin D. Raines (Economics and International Trade).

George W. Bush Administration

  • Richard Cheney (Vice President, former Secretary of Defense under President G.H.W. Bush)
  • Colin Powell (Secretary of State, former Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff under Presidents Bush and Clinton)
  • Condoleeza Rice (National Security Advisor, former member of President Bush’s National Security Council)
  • Robert B. Zoellick (U.S. Trade Representative, former Under Secretary of State in the Bush administration)
  • Elaine Chao (Secretary of Labor)
  • Brent Scowcroft (Chairman of the Foreign Intelligence Advisory Board, former National Security Advisor to President Bush)
  • Richard Haass (Director of Policy Planning at the State Department and Ambassador at Large)
  • Henry Kissinger (Pentagon Defense Policy Board, former Secretary of State under Presidents Nixon and Ford)
  • Robert Blackwill (U.S. Ambassador to India, former member of President Bush’s National Security Council)
  • Stephen Friedman (Sr. White House Economic Advisor)
  • Stephen Hadley (Deputy National Security Advisor, former Assistant Secretary of Defense under Cheney)
  • Richard Perle (Chairman of Pentagon Defense Policy Board, former Assistant Secretary of Defense in the Reagan administration)
  • Paul Wolfowitz (Assistant Secretary of Defense, former Assistant Secretary of State in the Reagan administration and former Under Secretary of Defense in the Bush administration)
  • Dov S. Zakheim (Under Secretary of Defense, Comptroller, former Under Secretary of Defense in the Reagan administration)
  • I. Lewis Libby (Chief of Staff for the Vice President, former Deputy Under Secretary of Defense).

http://modernhistoryproject.org/mhp?Article=FinalWarning&C=5.3

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Theodore Roosevelt — Videos

Posted on March 10, 2013. Filed under: American History, Banking, Blogroll, College, Communications, Economics, Education, Employment, Federal Government, Federal Government Budget, Fiscal Policy, government, government spending, history, History of Economic Thought, Inflation, Law, liberty, Life, Macroeconomics, Microeconomics, Monetary Policy, Money, People, Philosophy, Politics, Rants, Raves, Security, Tax Policy, Technology, Wealth, Wisdom | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , |

theodore-roosevelt-color

Teddy Roosevelt: An American Lion

President Theodore Roosevelt Biography

The Century: America’s Time – The Beginning: Seeds of Change

The Century: America’s Time – 1914-1919: Shell Shock

The Century: America’s Time – 1920-1929 Boom to Bust

The Century, America’s Time: Seeds Of Change (1 of 3)

The Century, America’s Time: Seeds Of Change (2 of 3)

The Century, America’s Time: Seeds Of Change (3 of 3)

Judge Napolitano on How Teddy Roosevelt and Woodrow Wilson Destroyed Constitutional Freedom

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Let Obama Own The Tax Increases and Wrecking The Economy Leading To Great Depression–Videos

Posted on December 9, 2012. Filed under: Banking, Blogroll, College, Economics, Education, Federal Government, Federal Government Budget, Fiscal Policy, government spending, Inflation, Investments, Law, liberty, Life, Links, media, Medicine, Microeconomics, Monetary Policy, Money, People, Philosophy, Politics, Psychology, Public Sector, Radio, Raves, Strategy, Tax Policy, Taxes, Unemployment, Unions, Video, War, Wealth, Wisdom | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

Rand Paul: We Should Let Dems Raise Taxes And Then Let Them Own It – CNBC’s Kudlow Report

SEN. RAND PAUL: I have yet another thought on how we can fix this. Why don’t we let the Democrats pass whatever they want? If they are the party of higher taxes, all the Republicans vote present and let the Democrats raise taxes as high as they want to raise them, let Democrats in the Senate raise taxes, let the president sign it and then make them own the tax increase. And when the economy stalls, when the economy sputters, when people lose their jobs, they know which party to blame, the party of high taxes. Let’s don’t be the party of just almost as high taxes.

LARRY KUDLOW, CNBC: Some people have called that the doomsday scenario. Others have said, ‘Look, it’s a strategic retreat on the Republicans’ behalf.’ WWould you vote present for that in the Senate if that came up?

RAND PAUL: Yes, I don’t think we have to in the Senate. In the House, they have to because the Democrats don’t have the majority. In the Senate, I’m happy not to filibuster it, and I will announce tonight on your show that I will work with Harry Reid to let him pass his big old tax hike with a simple majority if that’s what Harry Reid wants, because then they will become the party of high taxes and they can own it.

Obama Runs Rings pt4 + Rand Paul Joins the ‘Let Democrats Raise Taxes and Own It’ Crowd 

Gregory Mankiw: The Fiscal Challenge Ahead

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Richard Duncan–The New Depression–Videos

Posted on December 9, 2012. Filed under: American History, Banking, Blogroll, College, Communications, Economics, Education, Employment, Federal Government, Federal Government Budget, Fiscal Policy, government, government spending, history, History of Economic Thought, Inflation, Investments, Language, Law, liberty, Life, Links, Macroeconomics, media, Microeconomics, Monetary Policy, Money, People, Philosophy, Politics, Public Sector, Rants, Raves, Security, Strategy, Tax Policy, Taxes, Unemployment, Unions, Video, War, Wealth, Wisdom | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

9781118157794.pdf

richard_ducan

The U.S. does not have a capitalist economy 

A new depression: Out of credit

Interview With Richard Duncan, Author of The New Depression 

Richard Duncan on Riding out this Depression on a Deflationary Debt Raft! 

    “The New Depression” Book w/ Glenn Beck & Richard Duncan

The New Depression: Richard Duncan | McAlvany Commentary 

Pt 1/5: Can governments end the crisis cycle? 

Pt 2/5: Can governments end the crisis cycle? 

Pt 3/5: Can governments end the crisis cycle?

Pt 4/5: Can governments end the crisis cycle?

Pt 5/5: Can governments end the crisis cycle?

Jim Rogers  New Recession/Depression Coming

Peter Schiff interviews Marc Faber on Schiffradio Oct 2012 

Why the global recession is in danger of becoming another Great Depression, and how we can stop it

When the United States stopped backing dollars with gold in 1968, the nature of money changed. All previous constraints on money and credit creation were removed and a new economic paradigm took shape. Economic growth ceased to be driven by capital accumulation and investment as it had been since before the Industrial Revolution. Instead, credit creation and consumption began to drive the economic dynamic. In The New Depression: The Breakdown of the Paper Money Economy, Richard Duncan introduces an analytical framework, The Quantity Theory of Credit, that explains all aspects of the calamity now unfolding: its causes, the rationale for the government’s policy response to the crisis, what is likely to happen next, and how those developments will affect asset prices and investment portfolios.

In his previous book, The Dollar Crisis (2003), Duncan explained why a severe global economic crisis was inevitable given the flaws in the post-Bretton Woods international monetary system, and now he’s back to explain what’s next. The economic system that emerged following the abandonment of sound money requires credit growth to survive. Yet the private sector can bear no additional debt and the government’s creditworthiness is deteriorating rapidly. Should total credit begin to contract significantly, this New Depression will become a New Great Depression, with disastrous economic and geopolitical consequences. That outcome is not inevitable, and this book describes what must be done to prevent it.

  • Presents a fascinating look inside the financial crisis and how the New Depression is poised to become a New Great Depression
  • Introduces a new theoretical construct, The Quantity Theory of Credit, that is the key to understanding not only the developments that led to the crisis, but also to understanding how events will play out in the years ahead
  • Offers unique insights from the man who predicted the global economic breakdown

Alarming but essential reading, The New Depression explains why the global economy is teetering on the brink of falling into a deep and protracted depression, and how we can restore stability.

http://www.wiley.com/WileyCDA/WileyTitle/productCd-1118157796.html

The New Depression: Richard Duncan’s prognosis of our economic ills and the answer to them

“… In a nutshell, his case is half-Austrian. Or indeed half-Keynesian. That is because whilst Duncan’s diagnosis of the current economic ills is very much in the Austrian school of economics, with its emphasis on the role of credit, his prescription for fixing the economy is large-scale borrowing to fund infrastructure work, all of which sounds rather Keynesian.

It is a more fiscally responsible version of Keynesianism than some, for Duncan argues that, “The U.S. government can now borrow money for ten years at a cost of 2 percent interest a year. If it borrows at that rate and invests in projects that yield even 3 percent … on a grand scale in grand projects … [our economy] could be transformed”. In other words, borrow massively to boost economic growth, but spend those funds on projects that will generate future returns which make the borrowing affordable.

Duncan has a particular set of target for his investment plans for the American economy – developing new industries to reduce the trade deficit and generate new tax revenues. In particular, he talks about renewable energy, arguing that massive investment will cut energy bills whilst also providing the sort of financial return that makes the massive spending of money on it a prudent rather than profligate move.

All that means there are three main bones of contention in the book: is Richard Duncan right in blaming the crash on credit conditions; is he right that massive infrastructure investment on projects which pay returns the answer; and if money is to be invested in infrastructure that pays returns, does renewable energy fit the bill? Although a book principally about the US economy and the policy choices faced by Americans, those three questions are very applicable to other countries too, even if his evidence tends to be centred on the USA.

As he mulls over these three questions, most readers will find at least one eye-catching piece of evidence to savour, such as when he describes how heavily the financial system became dependent on credit not going sour:

In 1945 [American] commercial banks held reserves and vault cash of … the equivalent of 12 percent of their total assets … By 2007, the banks’ reserves and vault cash [was] 0.6 percent.

He goes on to argue that

Economic progress was no longer achieved the old-fashioned way through savings and investments, but, rather, by borrowing and consumption … The new reality is that credit has displaced money as the key economic variable.

Hence the book’s subtitle, “The Breakdown of the Paper Money Economy”.

Each of the three main questions in themselves could sustain not merely one whole book but a mini-book publishing flurry of titles. To condense credible arguments over all three into one relatively slim and easy to follow volume is tribute to the Duncan, even if some readers may choose to agree with less than all three of the main points of his case. …”

http://www.libdemvoice.org/the-new-depression-richard-duncans-prognosis-of-our-economic-ills-and-the-answer-to-them-28981.html

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United Nations and International Telecommunications Union (ITU) Plans To Takeover The Internet at World Conference on International Telecommunications (WCIT)? or Google FUD?–Videos

Posted on December 2, 2012. Filed under: Blogroll, Business, College, Communications, Computers, Culture, Economics, Education, Entertainment, Federal Government, Fiscal Policy, Foreign Policy, Games, government spending, Language, Law, liberty, Life, Links, media, Movies, People, Philosophy, Politics, Regulations, Taxes, Technology, Video, Wealth, Wisdom | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

itu

wcitWCIT-Leaks

Anonymous   WORLD ANONYMOUS NOW

Greetings citizens of the world, the following is a very special message for all of humanity. Too long have we lived in fear, fear of greed, fear of corruption, fear of failure, fear that everything we’ve known turned out to be wrong.

No longer will we live in fear! It ends here and now, with you and me! We are brothers and sisters of humanity, the time has come for us to unite! We must forge a new beginning of peace and love, we must be the good we want to see in the world.

Humanity is still young, and for the first time ever in human history we have a real chance at true peace as a species. The internet has united us more than ever before, its time we use this gift to promote the unity of us all. Its time we stand up as a planet and declare we will no longer take part in a system based on fear, greed, corruption, and war.

Lets put everything into perspective for those of you that need more convincing, the United Sates alone has spent trillions of dollars on wars. War has claimed the lives of over 264 million people throughout the course of known human history, many of whom where civilians. Human progress has been halted by senseless wars.

While we fight amongst ourselves on Earth there’s an entire universe passing us by. There are an estimated 160 billion planets in our galaxy alone, many of which could potentially be home to carbon-based life as we know it. Stars go supernova, entire solar systems get destroyed, even whole galaxies collide while we argue and fight over small and pointless issues. We should be happy we have a planet to live on, not fighting over who owns the planet. In truth no individual or even an entire species owns it, because in truth all life on Earth owns this planet.

Someday soon humanity will venture to the stars, will we go into the unknown divided and fighting? Or will we say as one voice, as one species, “We the People of Earth, united as one, declare from this day fourth that no force, however big or small, shall ever divide the spirit of humanity again. United in our cause for peace, knowledge, and progress, we go forward into the unknown as brothers and sisters, as a species no longer divided by war, greed, corruption, and fear.”

The choice is yours to make, you are Anonymous, you are the future of Earth. You can either continue the wars and division of humanity, or you can try something new. You can give peace a chance, you can help secure a beautiful world of peace, knowledge, and progress for all generations to come.

You are Anonymous,
You are part of Humanity,
You should Forgive,
yet You should never Forget,
It’s time to Expect Yourself…Lets unite under WORLD ANONYMOUS NOW.

With your help, may one day the innocent never suffer and the brave never die, for on that day we’ll truly be free. United as one, divided by zero.

anonymous ITU and WCIT 3-15 december

New Trend: Governing the Internet 

TAKE ACTION for a FREE and OPEN INTERNET, Threat Wire Ep. 002

This week on Threat Wire, Darren and Shannon discuss the issues with the ITU and keeping the internet free and open for the world.

For a list of stories and links visit: http://hak5.org/threatwire/0002

U.S. Resists U.N.-controlled Internet 

The UN have apparently released details that they will to add certain levels of control on the internet, which would for one thing cause traffic from abroad to larger international websites based in the US (such as facebook or Google) to have to pay a tax,.

“”Proposals for the new ITU treaty run to more than 200 pages. One idea is to apply the ITU’s long-distance telephone rules to the Internet by creating a ‘sender-party-pays’ rule. International phone calls include a fee from the originating country to the local phone company at the receiving end. Under a sender-pays approach, U.S.-based websites would pay a local network for each visitor from overseas, effectively taxing firms such as Google and Facebook. ”

ALERT – United Nations To Seize Control Of Internet ?!?

The U.N. Threat To Internet Freedom
http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424052970204792404577229074023195322.html

United Nation Planning to Control The Internet – Alex Jones Tv

United Nations Seeks to Control the Internet – Thoughts & Opinions

Does the ITU threaten freedom of speech on the Internet? – Truthloader

Assange s prophecy  Govnts plan Internet takeover

Richard Hill at the EIF debate on WCIT and ITRs

The 193 member countries of the ITU will meet in Dubai 3-14 December at World Conference on International Telecommunication 2012 to revise the International Telecommunication Regulations (ITRs), a 1988 treaty-level document establishing policies governing international telecommunications services between countries. While some Member States of the International Telecommunication Union (ITU), as well as a few independent groups, are advocating for expanded intergovernmental powers over the Internet with respect to the Internet as well as wireless, IP-based, and next generation networks; other countries believe that the WCIT should adopt only minor changes to the ITRs as necessary to modernize the existing provisions of the treaty, and that new provisions and authorities are unnecessary.

Europe’s role and view will be crucial in the debate and to its outcome. In the dinner debate organised by the European Internet Foundation, representatives from the European Commission, European Industry and Civil society had been invited to exchange views on issues at stake and present their positions.

Perspectives from the International Telecommunications Union (ITU) were  presented by Richard Hill, Counsellor at the ITU

Vint Cerf on the ITU

Vint Cerf, Google’s Chief Internet Evangelist, shares a message with participants at the Big Tent Dublin on the importance of free expression. Vint also expresses his concerns about potential threats to an Open Internet in Internet governance reform at the International Telecommunications Union (ITU) conference in Dubai in December 2012.

YOUR INTERNET IS IN DANGER!!! 

Your internet is fine. I lied. But Google lied first, so I think it’s justified.

Links!
Google’s “Take Action”: https://www.google.com/intl/en/takeaction/
The International Telecommunications Union: http://www.itu.int/

International Telecommunication Regulations (doc): http://www.itu.int/ITU-T/itr/files/ITR-e.doc
Document leaks: http://wcitleaks.org/

Alex Jones Exposes Google’s Plan to Dominate the Internet 

Goodlatte speaks in opposition to UN control of the Internet 

ITU TELECOM WORLD 2012 – Highlights Video

Highlights video of ITU TELECOM WORLD 2012, Dubai, UAE.

ITU Telecom World 2012, 14-18 October 2012, Dubai International Convention and Exhibition Centre (DICEC).

Five days of pivotal discussion and debate on some of the hottest topics facing the ICT industry.

The world is changing faster than ever before in human history, thanks largely to the explosive growth of the ICT sector. New technologies, new industry players and new global trends is at the heart of debates in Dubai.

Hundreds of industry leaders came together with government ministers, regulators and manufacturers for five days of critical debate to shape the policies, regulations and competitive strategies of future communications.

ITU INTERVIEW @ WCIT-12: Paul Budde, Independent Analyst, BuddeComm

Interview with Paul Budde, Independent Analyst, BuddeComm at WCIT 2012
Dubai, United Arab Emirates, 3-14 December 2012.

The World Conference on International Telecommunications will review the current International Telecommunications Regulations (ITRs), which serve as the binding global treaty designed to facilitate international interconnection and interoperability of information and communication services, as well as ensuring their efficiency and widespread public usefulness and availability.

ITU Secretary – General Video Message: Dr Hamadoun I.Touré, S-G, ITU on WCIT – 12 

ITU Secretary General Video Message: Dr Hamadoun I.Touré, Secretary-General, International Telecommunications Union, speaking about the World Conference on International Telecommunications 2012(WCIT -12).

ITU will convene the World Conference on International Telecommunications (WCIT) in Dubai, United Arab Emirates, from 3-14 December 2012. This landmark conference will review the current International Telecommunication Regulations (ITRs), which serve as the binding global treaty designed to facilitate international interconnection and interoperability of information and communication services, as well as ensuring their efficiency and widespread public usefulness and availability.

FRANCE 24 Tech 24:      Who rules the Web? : ITU vs. ICANN

Internet at Liberty 2012: Plenary II –  Riz Khan, Gary Fowlie, Ben Wagner

Possible Internet Take Over By The ITU (UN) [HD]

 Spread the word, share & take action! :

*Sign-on Letter Opposing ITU Authority Over the Internet :

{https://www.cdt.org/letter/sign-letter-opposing-itu-authority-over-internet}

*ITU Advocacy Tools:

[Internet advocates all over the world are organizing around the upcoming ITU conference. On this page, we’ve collected a set of tools and resources to help interested groups and citizens get involved.]

{https://www.cdt.org/content/itu-tools-advocates}

*ITU Commentary by Global Experts:

{https://www.cdt.org/content/itu-commentary-global-experts}

*CDT Analyses of Key ITU Proposals:

{https://www.cdt.org/content/cdt-analyses-key-itu-proposals}

*ONLINE PETITION: Protect Global Internet Freedom (Organizations:924 – Countries Represented: 161) :

{http://www.protectinternetfreedom.net/}

Internet should stay free and open

Ivailo Kalfin (MEP, BG) argues in the European parliament that Internet should stay free and open, ahead of the WCIT meeting in Dubai in December. Internet is a very strong tool these days and there are many that would like to control it and the people, using it. For example by changing its business model and making it more expensive and less accessible. Some governments are even suggesting creating a “national internet”, which is an oxymoron, something that is against the nature of Internet itself, says Kalfin

Operation WCIT – Keep OUR internet Free

We love the internet.
And we’re guessing you do too. Think about all the awesome things it gives us: A vast communication network; innovative businesses; a platform to freely speak or challenge powerful governments; and hundreds and hundreds of hours of cat videos.

All this great stuff is available because the internet was designed in an open and inclusive way, with a multitude of voices being able to get a say on how it’s governed.
But the internet is in danger.

There’s a meeting between the world’s governments in a just a few weeks, and it could very well decide the future of the internet through a binding international treaty. It’s called the World Conference on International Telecommunications (WCIT), and it’s being organized by a government-controlled UN agency called the International Telecommunication Union (ITU).

If some proposals at WCIT are approved, decisions about the internet would be made by a top-down, old-school government-centric agency behind closed doors. Some proposals allow for internet access to be cut off more easily, threaten privacy, legitimizes monitoring and blocking of online traffic. Others seek to impose new fees for accessing content, not to mention slowing down connection speeds. Used as a pretext to internet pornography among other things as an excuse to censor sensitive material pages (note that there are too many cases of child pornography that are ignored by the police) In addition to paying for internet service, you’d also have to pay for visiting certain sites, such as YouTube. Your communications would be constantly monitored and archived, meaning the end of Internet privacy. This could potentially lead to individuals becoming victims of blackmail by malicious people who control the monitoring. The Internet is home to many organized social movements which fight for human rights worldwide. If we allow this, we will not be able to use the Internet to organize the defense of our rights…

If the delicate balance of the internet is upset, it could have grave consequences for businesses and human rights.
This must be stopped.

Only governments get a vote at WCIT, so we need people from all around the world to demand that our leaders keep the internet open.
Watch the video, and take action above to tell your governments to oppose handing over key decisions about the internet to the ITU. Let’s use the internet’s global reach to save it.

Watch the video here https://www.whatistheitu.org/?ref=an

Leaked documents here http://www.wcitleaks.org/

WebChat: http://webchat.voxanon.org/?channels=opwcit

We are the internet
We are anonymous
We are here to help you with your revolution

Background Articles and Videos

World Conference on International Telecommunications (WCIT-12)

“…ITU will convene the World Conference on International Telecommunications (WCIT) in Dubai, United Arab Emirates, from 3-14 December 2012. This landmark conference will review the current International Telecommunications Regulations (ITRs), which serve as the binding global treaty designed to facilitate international interconnection and interoperability of information and communication services, as well as ensuring their efficiency and widespread public usefulness and availability.

The treaty sets out general principles for assuring the free flow of information around the world, promoting affordable and equitable access for all and laying the foundation for ongoing innovation and market growth. The ITRs were last negotiated in Melbourne, Australia in 1988, and there is broad consensus that the text now needs to be updated to reflect the dramatically different information and communication technology (ICT) landscape of the 21st century.
The conference will consider a review (see PP-06 Resolution 146) of the International Telecommunication Regulations (ITRs), which define the general principles for the provision and operation of international telecommunications. …”

HISTORY OF ITU: “The International Telecommunication Union” – 1966 United Nations Film (Part 1)

HISTORY OF ITU: “The International Telecommunication Union” – 1966 United Nations Film (Part 2)

Related Posts On Pronk Palisades

Julian Assange–Cypherpunks: Freedom and the Future of the Internet–On Turnkey Totalitarianism With The Internet–Videos

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NSA–Now Spying on Americans: Big Brother Government Spying On Americans–Progressives Minding Your Business Without Warrants–Remotely Piloted Aircraft a.k.a.Drones–Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA)–Cyber Intelligence Sharing and Protection Act (CISA)–Videos

Posted on June 8, 2012. Filed under: American History, Blogroll, College, Communications, Economics, Education, Employment, Foreign Policy, government, government spending, history, Investments, Language, Law, liberty, Life, Links, media, People, Philosophy, Regulations, Resources, Taxes, Unemployment, Unions, War, Wealth, Wisdom | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

Mind blowing speech by Robert Welch in 1958 predicting Insiders plans to destroy America 

NSA Building Colossal New Data Center: Spying on Americans 

‘NSA are spying on the United States’

James Bamford: Inside the NSA’s Largest  Secret Domestic Spy Center 

Drones In America

Drones To Fly Over Midwestern Farms

Judge Napolitano Discusses Drones And Big Brother 

Judge Napolitano : 30,000 Drones In U.S. Skies to spy on you violates Constitution (May 14, 2012)

30,000 ARMED DRONES to be used Against Americans

Phantom Eye: Pentagon builds gigantic mega-drone

Attack of the Drones – USA 

The Drone War Coming to a Town Near You?

The Stream:      The future of drone technology

The Slow Decline of Liberty – The Plain Truth – Judge Napolitano – Freedom Watch

Total surveillance: Thousands of secret court orders allow government to spy on Americans

SOPA, CISPA, FISA

FISA: US under total surveillance

Is The Government Spying On You? FISA Continues 

Obama administration pushes to renew FISA

NSA under fire: Supreme Court to review Legality of Warrantless Wiretapping/Spying of U.S. Citizens

Big Brother spying on your car 

FBI Caught Spying on Student with GPS Tracking Device

Anonymous Big Brother’s All Seeing Eye For Your Safety

SOPA changes name to CISPA

CISPA going international?

US House passes CISPA

Cyber Intelligence Sharing and Protection Act

CISPA, the Cyber Intelligence Sharing and Protection Act, is picking up sponsors and it looks like the legislation will make it to the House floor for a vote next week. CISPA emerged from the House Intelligence Committee with an overwhelming vote of 17-1.
The bill, authored by Rep. Mike Rogers, a Michigan Republican, is supported by Google, the technology company in bed with the CIA and responsible for building the Great Firewall of China. Google is not alone in supporting CISPA. Corporate sponsors include Facebook, Microsoft, Intel, IBM, Verizon, the U.S. Chamber of Commerce and others, according to the House’s Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence.
The Electronic Frontier Foundation, long a champion of rights online, has signed on to two coalition letters urging legislators to drop their support for HR 3523. The coalition behind the privacy letter includes dozens of groups, including the ACLU, the American Library Association, the American Policy Center, the Center for Democracy and Technology, the Privacy Rights Clearinghouse, and many others, according to the EFF website.
The letter warns: CISPA creates an exception to all privacy laws to permit companies to share our information with each other and with the government in the name of cybersecurity…. CISPA’s ‘information sharing’ regime allows the transfer of vast amounts of data, including sensitive information like internet use history or the content of emails, to any agency in the government including military and intelligence agencies like the National Security Agency or the Department of Defense Cyber Command. Once in government hands, this information can be used for any non-regulatory purpose so long as one significant purpose is for cybersecurity or to protect national security

Cyber Intelligence Sharing Protection Act – CISPA –  More Insights, pls see video responses

SOPA changes name to CISPA 

CISPA: Another Fascist Takeover of the Internet. EMERGENCY ALERT! 

Anonymous – CISPA Worse than SOPA

Ubiquitous Computing: Big Brother’s All-Seeing Eye – Part 1

Ubiquitous Computing: Big Brother’s All-Seeing Eye – Part 2

Words to Avoid Online Unless You Want Government Snooping

Revealed: Hundreds of words to avoid using online if you don’t want the government spying on you (and they include ‘pork’, ‘cloud’ and ‘Mexico’)

  • Department of Homeland Security forced to release list following freedom of information request
  • Agency insists it only looks for evidence of genuine threats to the U.S. and not for signs of general dissent

By Daniel Miller

“…The Department of Homeland Security has been forced to release a list of keywords and phrases it uses to monitor social networking sites and online media for signs of terrorist or other threats against the U.S.
Read more: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2150281/REVEALED-Hundreds-words-avoid-using-online-dont-want-government-spying-you.html#ixzz1xDZrBiPm

NAPOLITANO: Big Brother’s all-seeing eye

Use of military surveillance drones overhead would be un-American

“…For the past few weeks, I have been writing in this column about the government’s use of drones and challenging their constitutionality on Fox News Channel, where I work. I once asked on air what Thomas Jefferson would have done if – had they existed at the time – King George III had sent drones to peer inside the bedroom windows of Monticello. I suspect Jefferson and his household would have trained their muskets on the drones and taken them down. I offer this historical anachronism as a hypothetical only, not as someone who is urging the use of violence against the government.

Nevertheless, what Jeffersonians are among us today? When drones take pictures of us on our private property and in our homes and the government uses the photos as it wishes, what will we do about it? Jefferson understood that when the government assaults our privacy and dignity, it is the moral equivalent of violence against us. Folks who hear about this, who either laugh or groan, cannot find it humorous or boring that their every move will be monitored and photographed by the government.

Don’t believe me that this is coming? The photos that the drones will take may be retained and used or even distributed to others in the government so long as the “recipient is reasonably perceived to have a specific, lawful governmental function” in requiring them. And for the first time since the Civil War, the federal government will deploy military personnel insidetheUnitedStates and publicly acknowledge that it is deploying them “to collect information about U.S. persons.” …”

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=a1UhF0apVhg

George Carlin – The Owners of This Country

Lying Politicians  And Words

Background Articles and Videos

Is the NSA reading your e-mail?

Spying on the Home Front 

Judge Napolitano ‘If Cops Don’t Have A Warrant Don’t Open The Door’

Obama’s secret drone war explained by Reuters’ David Rohde – Fast

Judge Napolitano – Obama Makes Free Speech A Felony!!!  BILL H.R. 347

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Arthur Brooks–The Battle: How the Fight Between Free Enterprise and Big Government will Shape America’s Future–Vidoes

Posted on April 13, 2012. Filed under: American History, Blogroll, Business, College, Communications, Economics, Education, Federal Government Budget, Fiscal Policy, Foreign Policy, government, government spending, Health Care, history, Inflation, Investments, Law, liberty, Life, Links, Macroeconomics, media, Microeconomics, Monetary Policy, People, Philosophy, Politics, Raves, Tax Policy, Unemployment, Wisdom | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

Arthur C. Brooks on the Battle Between Free Enterprise and Big Government

AIM: Bloggers Briefing Interview with Arthur Brooks 

Arthur Brooks speaks at the Chamber of Commerce 

Nick Schulz, editor of American.com, sits down with AEI president Arthur C. Brooks to discuss Mr. Brooks new book, The Battle: How the Fight between Free Enterprise and Big Government Will Shape America’s Future (Basic Books, June 2010).

Arthur Brooks on the New Culture War Over Free Enterprise 

Arthur Brooks: Why I Wrote “The Battle”

Arthur Brooks: 70% of Americans Favor Free Enterprise 

Arthur Brooks: Why Earned Success is so Important 

Arthur Brooks on Money and Happiness 

Book TV: Arthur Brooks “The Battle” 

 Arthur Brooks (10/25/10) 

Free Enterprise Versus Big Government: The Battle for America’s Future
Arthur Brooks, President, American Enterprise Institute; Author, The Battle: How the Fight between Free Enterprise and Big Government Will Shape America’s Future
Brooks outlines a new culture war — not the old struggle over guns or abortion or religion, but over two competing visions of America. In one, America continues as a unique and exceptional nation organized around the principles of free enterprise. In the other, the U.S. moves toward a European-style social democracy characterized by increasing bureaucracies, income redistribution and government control of corporations. Brooks argues that free enterprise is not merely an economic system but an expression of American values and American culture, and he makes the case that free enterprise is the system that delivers the greatest levels of prosperity to the greatest numbers of people.

Dr. Arthur C. Brooks at Toledo Law 

A Moral Debate: Why Capitalism is Best for America – CBN.com 

Does Capitalism Have a Soul? (Arthur C. Brooks vs Jim Wallis) 

FreedomFest 2011 Arthur Brooks “How To Win The Battle For Free Enterprise” 

Arthur C. Brooks

“…Arthur C. Brooks is the president of AEI. Until January 1, 2009, he was the Louis A. Bantle Professor of Business and Government Policy at Syracuse University. He is the author of ten books and many articles on topics ranging from the economics of the arts to applied mathematics. His most recent books include The Battle: How the Fight Between Free Enterprise and Big Government Will Shape America’s Future (Basic Books, May 2010), Gross National Happiness (Basic Books, 2008), Social Entrepreneurship (Prentice-Hall, 2008), and Who Really Cares(Basic Books, 2006). Before pursuing his work in public policy, Mr. Brooks spent twelve years as a professional French hornist with the City Orchestra of Barcelona and other ensembles.

Mr. Brooks is the author of the forthcoming book, The Road to Freedom, to be released on May 8th 2012.

Experience

  • Louis A. Bantle Professor of Business and Government Policy, 2007-2008; Professor of Public Administration, 2006-2008; Senior Research Associate, Alan K. Campbell Public Affairs Institute, 2003-2008; Director, Nonprofit Studies Program, 2003-2007; Associate Professor of Public Administration, 2001-2005; Senior Research Associate, Center for Policy Research, 2001-2003, Maxwell School of Citizenship and Public Affairs and Whitman School of Management, Syracuse University
  • Consultant, RAND Corporation, 1998-2008
  • Assistant Professor of Public Administration and Economics, Georgia State University, 1998-2001
  • Doctoral Fellow, RAND Corporation, 1996-98
  • Professor of French Horn, Harid Conservatory of Music, Lynn University, 1992-95
  • French Hornist, Barcelona Symphony Orchestra, Annapolis Brass Quintet, 1983-92

Education

Ph.D., M.Phil., policy analysis, Pardee RAND Graduate School
M.A., economics, Florida Atlantic University
B.A., economics, Thomas Edison State College …”

http://www.aei.org/scholar/arthur-c-brooks/

Arthur C. Brooks

“…Arthur C. Brooks (born May 21, 1964, in Spokane, Wash.) is an American social scientist and musician. He is the president of the American Enterprise Institute, a conservative think tank. Brooks is best known for his work on the junctions between culture, economics, and politics. Two of his popular volumes, Who Really Cares: The Surprising Truth about Compassionate Conservatism and Gross National Happiness: Why Happiness Matters for America—and How We Can Get More of It, explore these themes in greater depth. He is a self-described independent.

Early life and musical career

Brooks was raised in Seattle’s Queen Anne neighborhood. His parents were professors, and his upbringing has been described as “liberal.”[1][2][dead link]

After high school, Brooks pursued a career as a professional French hornist, serving from 1983 to 1989 with the Annapolis Brass Quintet in Baltimore, from 1989 to 1992 as the associate principal French hornist with the City Orchestra of Barcelona in Spain, and teaching from 1992 to 1995 at Lynn University’s Harid Conservatory of Music.[3]

Academia

Toward the end of his professional music career, Brooks began higher education with a bachelor’s degree in economics in 1994 from Thomas Edison State College in New Jersey, a public university that offers distance and nontraditional education programs to working adults. He received a master’s degree from Florida Atlantic University in 1995 before pursuing a doctorate at the Frederick S. Pardee RAND Graduate School, a public policy program located at the RAND Corporation, where he was also a doctoral fellow.[3]

After receiving his PhD in policy analysis in 1998, Brooks continued to be affiliated with RAND, for which he produced a number of studies (see bibliography below; his articles appeared in dozens of academic journals as well), mostly of arts funding and orchestra operations. But he began to dive into the junction of culture, politics, and economics that would come to be his trademark. “He kept his head down during the early years of his academic career, publishing the usual economics fare on philanthropy—such as how tax rates and government spending affect giving,” writes Ben Gose. Brooks himself said, “I made my academic career doing that stuff, but the whole time I knew I was missing something.”[1]

After a stint at Georgia State University, Brooks landed at Syracuse University in 2001. In 2005, he became a full professor, and he held the Louis A. Bantle Chair in Business and Government Policy from 2007 to 2008. At Syracuse, Brooks held joint appointments in the public affairs and management schools. …”

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Arthur_C._Brooks

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Books

Fouad Ajami–The Foreigner’s Gift–Videos

Robert Baer–The Devil We Know–Videos

Claire Berlinski–Why Margaret Thatcher Matters: “There Is No Alternative”–Videos

Michael Barone–Our First Revolution–Videos

Allan Bloom–The Closing of The American Mind–Videos

Philip Bobbitt–Terror and Consent–Videos

Ian Bremmer–The End of the Free Market–Videos

Arthur Brooks–The Road To Freedom: How To Win The Fight for Free Enterprise–Videos

Patrick J. Buchanan–Churchill, Hitler, and The Unnecessary War–Videos

Ron Chernow–Alexander Hamilton–Videos

Steve Coll– The Bin Ladens: An Arabian Family in the American Century; Ghost Wars: The Secret History of the CIA, Afghanistan, and bin Laden, from the Soviet Invasion to September 10, 2001 –Videos

Dinesh D’Souza–The Enemy At Home–Videos

Dinesh D’Souza–The Roots of Obama’s Rage–Videos

Thomas J. DiLorenzon–Hamilton’s Curse: How Jefferson’s Arch Enemy Betrayed the American Revolution – And What It Means for Americans Today–Videos

Cory Doctorow–Makers–Videos

Joseph J. Ellis–His Excellency: George Washington–Videos

Steve Emerson–American Jihad: The Terrorist Living Among Us–Videos

Bruce Feiler–Walking the Bible–Videos

Niall Ferguson–”The Ascent of Money–Videos

Milton Friedman–Capitalism and Freedom–Videos

Milton Friedman–Free To Choose–On Donahue –Videos

Burton Folsom Jr.–New Deal or Raw Deal–Videos

Brigitte Gabriel–Because They Hate: A Survivor of Islamic Terror Warns America–Videos

Brigitte Gabriel–They Must Be Stopped: Why We Must Defeat Radical Islam and How We Can Do It –Videos

Robert Gallately–Lenin, Stalin, and Hitler: The Age of Catastrophe–Videos

Nick Gillespie and Matt Welch–The Declaration of Independents–Videos

Jonah Goldberg–Liberal Fascism–Videos

David Goodwillie–American Subversive–A Novel

Malcolm Gladwell–Outliers–Videos

Victor Davis Hansen–A War Like No Other–Videos

Robert Higgs–Crisis and Leviathan–Videos

David Horowitz and Richard Poe–The Shadow Party–Videos

Peter Huber–The Bottomless Well–Videos

Chalmers Johnson–Blowback-The Sorrows of Empire–Nemesis–Videos

Donald Kagan–On The Origins Of War–Videos

David Kirkpatrick–The Facebook Effect–Videos

Michael Korda–Hero: The Life and Legend of Lawrence of Arabia

Stanley Kurtz–Radical-Chief: Barack Obama and The Untold Story of American Socialism–Videos

George Lakoff–Videos

Mark Levin–Liberty and Tyranny: A Conservative Manifesto–Videos

Hunter Lewis–Where Keynes Went Wrong–Videos

Michael Lewis–The Big Short: Inside the Doomsday Machine–Videos

John Locke–The Second Treatise of Civil Government–Videos

John J. Mearsheimer and Stephen M. Walt–The Israel Lobby and U.S. Foreign Policy–Videos

Gretchen Morgenson & Joshua Rosner–Reckless Endangerment–Videos

Barack Obama Cartoon Concisely Communicates What’s Wrong With Progressive Radical Socialism–Why Do We Need Jobs For?–A Hayek and Mises Moment!

Andrew C. McCarthy–Willful Blindness–Videos

Eric Metaxas–Dietrich Bonhoeffer–Videos

Kenneth Minogue–Alien Powers: The Pure Theory of Ideology–Videos

Ron Paul–End The Fed–Videos

Marshall Poe: A History of Communications: Media and Society from the Evolution of Speech to the Internet–Videos

Melanie Phillips–Londonistan–Videos

Melanie Phillips–The World Turned Upside Down: The Global Battle over God, Truth, and Power–Video

James Piereson–Camelot and The Cultural Revolution–Videos

Jim Powell–FDR’s Folly–Videos

Samantha Power–A Problem From Hell: America and the Age of Genocide–Chasing The Flame–Videos

Paul Rahe–Soft Despotism, Democracy’s Drift: Montesquieu, Rousseau, Tocqueville, and the Modern Prospect–Videos

Ayn Rand–Videos

Murray Rothbard–Economic Thought Before Adam Smith–Videos

Murray Rothbard–What Has Government Done to Our Money?–Videos

The Fountainhead, Atlas Shrugged and The Ideas of Ayn Rand

Yaron Brook On Capitalism and Atlas Shrugged–Videos

Leonard J Santow–Do They Walk On Water: Federal Reserve Chairman and The Fed–Videos

Eugen Maria Schulak and Herbert Unterköfler: The Austrian School of Economics: A History of Its Ideas, Ambassadors, and Institutions–Videos

Roy Spencer–The Great Global Warming Blunder: How Mother Nature Fooled the World’s Top Climate Scientists –Videos

Mark Steyn–America Alone: The End of The World As We Know It–Videos

John Stossel On Ayn Rand’s Atlas Shrugged

Daniel Suarez–Daemon and Freedom TM–Videos

Peter Robinson–Conversations With Authors–Videos

Murry Rothbard–For A New Liberty: The Libertarian Manifesto–Audio Book

Murray Rothbard– What Has Government Done to Our Money?–Videos

Michael Scheuer–Through Our Enemies’ Eyes–Videos

Amity Shlaes–The Forgotten Man–Videos

Thomas Sowell and Conflict of Visions–Videos

Thomas Sowell–Black Rednecks and White Liberals–The Missing Nobel Laureates–Videos

Thomas Sowell–Intellectuals and Society–Videos

Thomas Sowell On The Housing Boom and Bust–Videos

Nassim Nicholas Taleb–The Black Swan–Videos

Gillian Tett–Fool’s Gold–Videos

Marc Thiessen’s Courting Disaster–A Clear and Present Danger To The American People–President Barack Obama!

C. Bradley Thompson–Neoconservatism: An Obituary for an Idea–Videos

R. Christopher Whalen–Inflated: How Money and Debt Built the American Dream–Videos

David Wessel–In Fed We Trust: Ben Bernanke’s War On The Great Panic–Videos

Thomas E. Woods Jr.–Meltdown–Videos

Thomas E. Woods Jr.–We Who Dared to Say No to War–Videos

Samuel F. Yette–The Choice: The Issue of Black Survival in America-Videos

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John Stossel: The Battle for the Future –Video

Posted on April 13, 2012. Filed under: Blogroll, Business, College, Communications, Demographics, Economics, Education, Employment, Farming, Federal Government, Federal Government Budget, Fiscal Policy, government, government spending, history, Inflation, Language, Law, liberty, Life, Links, Macroeconomics, Microeconomics, People, Philosophy, Politics, Raves, Regulations, Tax Policy, Taxes, Video, War, Wealth, Wisdom | Tags: , , , , |

John Stossel: The Battle for the Future

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Gingrich Attacks Ron Paul As A Racist–Gingrich Is A Liar and Progressive Neoconservative Warmonger–Like Obama, Romney and Santorum–All Progressives And Fake Conservatives–Videos

Posted on February 26, 2012. Filed under: Banking, Blogroll, Business, Communications, Economics, Employment, Energy, Federal Government, Federal Government Budget, Fiscal Policy, Foreign Policy, government spending, Investments, Language, Law, liberty, Life, Links, Macroeconomics, media, Monetary Policy, Money, Natural Gas, Nuclear Power, Oil, People, Philosophy, Politics, Psychology, Public Sector, Rants, Raves, Regulations, Religion, Security, Strategy, Tax Policy, Taxes, Technology, Unemployment, Unions, Video, War, Wealth, Weapons, Wisdom | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

Ron Paul Doubles Down On War Stance

Ron Paul’s Racist Newsletters – An In Depth and Honest Look–James Kirchick–Gay Neoconservative!–The Hit Man Behind The Smear Attack On Ron Paul–Blacks, Jews, and Libertarians For Ron Paul Respond–Videos

Armed Chinese Troops in Texas!

Newt’s Nightmare Trifecta [Gingrich loves Teddy Roosevelt, FDR & Woodrow Wilson]

Glenn Beck – The Case Against Newt Gingrich

The Real Newt Gingrich 

Newt Gingrich: Selling Access

Newt Gingrich: Serial Hypocrisy

Ron Paul Ad – Betrayal

Rick Santorum a Progressive Conservative?

Rick Santorum on Illegal Immigration – NOT Conservative

Rick Santorum Doesn’t Believe in … Freedom? ( Freedom Watch Judge Napolitano 1-5-2012 )

Big Government Liberal Rick Santorum Exposed

Matt Welch Discusses Rick Santorum’s Anti-Libertarian Beliefs on Freedom Watch

Ron Paul OWNS Rick Santorum!

Mitt Romney: I’m Progressive

MITT ROMNEY eX- posed:The Great Flip Flopper and Fed Shill

Mitt Romney on Taxes, Guns, Abortion

Still Voting For ‘Mitt Romney’?

Ron Paul: Counterfeit Conservatives

Ron Paul: Absolutely “No Deal” with Romney

Ron Paul – “The one who can beat Obama”

No One But Paul — Can Beat Obama

My political philosophy is classical liberalism or what is commonly referred to in the United States as libertarianism.

Starting with Barry Goldwater in 1964 I have been a member of the conservative movement.

Today I am also a supporter of the tea party movement.

I consider myself to be a libertarian conservative, although I am comfortable with both traditional conservatives and national defense conservatives.

A limited constitutional government in scope, size and power with balanced or surplus budgets  is the number one issue with me.

Since 2006 I have been an independent.

Both the Democratic and Republican parties are not fiscally responsible.

I will never vote for a progressive and/or neoconservative whether Republican or Democratic.

SA@TAC – What’s a ‘Neoconservative?’

SA@TAC – The Great Neo-Con: Libertarianism Isn’t ‘Conservative’

SA@TAC – Daniel McCarthy on Neoconservatism

Ron Paul, the ONLY Constant Conservative

Big government progressive Republicans in the past include Theodore Roosevelt, Herbert Hoover, Nelson Rockefeller, Richard Nixon, Gerald Ford,  George H.W. Bush, Robert Dole, George W. Bush and John McCain.

Newt Gingrich, Mitt Romney and Rick Santorum are all big government progressive neoconservative Republicans.

The only true libertarian conservative  president that won two landslide victories was President Ronald Reagan.

Only one candidate would cut the U.S government budget by $1 trillion or $1,000 billion in fiscal year 2013, close five federal departments and balance the budget in three years–Ron Paul– a libertarian conservative.

Ron Paul Ad – Secure

Ron Paul Ad – Plan

This is what the conservative and tea party movements want most of all.

Only one candidate of either party has the wisdom, vision and courage to propose such a plan.

If you want another war, great depression/recession, escalating gas and food prices and food stamps–a warfare and welfare state– than vote for Gingrich, Romney, Santorum or Obama.

If you want a peace and prosperity economy and your freedom vote for Ron Paul.

I will support and vote for Ron Paul as a Republican or as a candidate on another party’s ticket.

I will never vote for any progressive and/or neoconservative in either political party.

Unfortunately, most voters including conservatives, vote for the candidate they like and identify with instead of examining a candidate’s political philosophy and position on the issues.

SA@TAC – Identity vs. Philosophy

Largely out of ignorance they fall for fake conservative candidates that are big government progressives and/or neoconservatives.

Gingrich, Santorum and Romney are undeniably big government progressive neoconservatives as evidenced by their own words and actions.

The American people are slowly but surely waking up to the fact that progressive politicians control both political parties in the United States.

Neither libertarian conservatives nor traditional conservatives will support big government progressive conservatives.

They will mostly stay home if the choice is between Obama, Gingrich, Santorum and Romney.

The conservative and tea party movements must rally behind Ron Paul.

No candidate is perfect, but Ron Paul is a consistent libertarian conservative and a man of character and integrity.

He is the best candidate the American people have for he truly understands how dire the economic situation really is and knows what needs to be done to avoid another Great Depression.

Joe Scarborough Credits Ron Paul for Predicting the Housing Bubble

Peter Schiff – “Remember, I Supported Ron Paul”

Peter Schiff – “Ron Paul Only Candidate I Trust”

Jim Rogers – none of the candidates have clue except Ron Paul

Support and vote for Ron Paul.

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