By Cireal Americanus
A far cry from the 1773 Boston Tea Party, the political landscape of the Republican Party has been expanded to include the emergence of an extreme right faction known as the Taxed Enough Already Party or Tea Party. Although, both the 1773 and the 2009 movements originated as a result of frustrations over what was believed to be unjustified, unfair and over taxation levied by “Government”, their final impact, however, on their overall causes is turning out to be very different.
Today’s Tea Party, consisting of a large coalition of small groups, is more primarily focused on “fiscal responsibility, limited government, and free markets”, while deliberately avoiding the more traditional conservative social philosophies such as banning Gay Marriage and Abortion. This dramatic move from the parties more traditional social focus is an attempt to attract/retain potential allies found in the younger Republican, Independent and disenfranchised Democrat voters. Party leaders justify their break in tradition on the basis that social issues hold little value when faced with the threat of passing on enormous debt to future generations.
The Tea Party’s emergence, however, does not come without a cost to the GOP, i.e. Matthew 12:25 (amplified) “…..no city or house divided against itself will last or continue to stand.” Many Republican Incumbent candidates seeking election have found that fear of this movement has forced them to take positions far to the Right of the same fiscal values that initially got them into elected office.
While recent elections held on June 8th found Tea Party backed candidates to be the victors in some of the GOP Primaries, i.e. Meg Whitman ( Gubernatorial Candidate CA), Susana Martinez (Gubernatorial Candidate NM), Nikki Haley (Gubernatorial Candidate SC), and Sue Lowden (Senate Candidate Nevada), political analyst have expressed concerns that these same candidates may have now alienated essential voting demographics necessary for them to secure sought after offices in November, thus providing dramatically weakened opposition to their Democrat opponents.
Although the Tea Party started out with a lot of steam, the final impact may result in a great bit of fizzle. Only time will tell………..
by Cireal Americanus
“I am as mad as hell and I am not going to take it any more.” This is a famous line from the 1974 movie “The Network”, which chronicles the life of a washed up News Reporter who announces he will kill himself on live TV. Although the announcement is more than a bit extreme, for those who are diligent Savers, the sentiment of the statement is something we all can share.
For those who have been watching, you know the Consumer Price Index (CPI) has risen about 1.4% in the last 12 months. Given this figure you don’t have to be a mathematical genius to determine if inflation is approximately 2%, your savings are being slowly eaten away. This is counter to our Communities focus and “hand-me-down” financial advice of Save, Save, Save.
For the astute, there are three strategies you can use to subvert this tragic effect.
First, we should save as much as possible Tax-Free. This would mean maxing out IRA contributions, education funds, and any other investments that shield as much of your holdings from the taxman’s bite as possible. Caveat – be sure to get a clear understanding of the potential tax implications should you decide/need to draw on these accounts.
- Second, we can put our money outside Bernanke’s reach – in foreign markets. The European Central Bank (ECB) at least mildly cares about savers, and has pursued a more careful policy than the Fed. Within the EU, Germany is recovering nicely, partly because it had very little fiscal stimulus, and has almost no inflation. Outside the EU, Japan and Korea are both recovering nicely, and are worth a look.
- Finally, we savers can engage in the ultimate Bernanke protest, and buy gold, silver or shares of mining companies. Once the Fed reverses its policy, these will be rotten investments. But it’s pretty clear that the Fed is not going to give savers an even deal any time soon. In that case, if the Fed doesn’t reward us, gold and silver will. The dollar will decline, and gold and silver prices will continue to rise, until eventually the Fed is forced to act.
Knowledge, Diversification and Action are the key. As there is a change in times, so should there be a change in our mind-sets and strategies. I realize that these actions will not necessarily make one financially free but you will not be financially free unless we take an action. The simple trick is keep much more than you spend.
With the narrative of Larry the Loophole, we are given a basic overview of the tax loopholes that were put in place during the Bush Administration and the impact of these loopholes on the average American household. These are the same loopholes that have allowed the burden of infrastructure maintenance and upkeep , i.e. power generation and distribution, highways and bridges, state facilities and parks, etc, to fall upon the taxes collected from the average American. Ironically, the founding fathers never intended taxes to be collected on wages earned but on products we buy and land we owned. Larry provides a fundamental understanding of the overall impact of the loophole systems that are in place as well as insight into some of the practices that created the current financial crisis. Check-out http://www.warongreed.org for more links to provide help in understanding systems and practices that have been put in place that continue to expand the separation between the “Haves and the Have nots”.
Ironically, it is the Right-wing GOP that personifies this now famous phrase. The Lobbiest, Medical Industry Leaders and various leaders of the GOP will use smoke and mirrors to distort the “Average American’s” point of view while not restricting any aspect of the revenue generated by Health Care or the Medical industry.
6 minutes and 52 seconds of disturbing truth
Former Governor Sarah Palin quit on her state, her supporters, and more importantly herself. For all the ish she fires out of her pie hole about being an athlete, sportswoman, and tough gal she should know better. No athlete (present or former) would ever step up to the microphone and give such a lame statement as she did last Friday.
A lot of Republicans have even weighed in on this move by Palin.
And she needs to stop playing the “the liberal media is picking on me” card too. Look for Palin to get paid by doing a reality show, talk show or radio program.
“So we have a choice to make. We can remain one of the world’s leading importers of foreign oil, or we can make the investments that would allow us to become the world’s leading exporter of renewable energy. We can let climate change continue to go unchecked, or we can help stop it. We can let the jobs of tomorrow be created abroad, or we can create those jobs right here in America and lay the foundation for lasting prosperity.” -President Obama, March 19, 2009
As an increasing number of households in China, India and other advancing overseas economies join the world’s middle class, they’ll start making such basic purchases as electronic goods, houses – and automobiles. The fact that China’s oil imports jumped 18% in one month is evidence enough that this is happening. And the fact that leading India automaker Tata Motors Ltd (TTM) has unveiled a $2,500 dollar car, the Nano, underscores that international carmakers are looking to recruit a whole new group of motorists. Couple these facts with the U.S.’ consumption of 21 million barrels of oil per day and the net result is not only the accelerated depletion of a valuable finite natural resource but an exponential increase/advancement of carbon emissions and other destructive “Greenhouse” gases.
To meet the challenge of an ever increasing Demand juxtaposed to an ever decreasing Supply, President Obama has recently called for higher fuel efficiencies, i.e. 35 mpg for some of the 2011 car models sold in the U.S., as well as further exploration of alternative sources of energy and fuel. U.S. Entrepreneurs and the Government are stepping up to the challenge by exploring alternatives such as Wind Energy to off-set our insatiable consumption. One Such Entrepreneur from Texas, proposes to build an experimental Wind Energy power plant (in Pampa, Texas) that will serve as an initial model for the next evolutionary step in Energy generation. This plant will not only produce/generate approximately 4,000 Mega Watts (MW), which is enough energy to power 1.2 Million U.S. homes, but will also result in the creation of thousands of “Green Collar” jobs.
Why Wind energy? The U.S. Department of Energy has indicated that Wind energy can provide in excess of 20% of our overall energy needs, approximately the same percentage of energy production provided through the use of Natural Gas. With Wind substituting Natural Gas as an energy fuel, Natural Gas can solely be used as a transportation fuel. This would reduce our need for Imported Oil by nearly 40%, a reduction of approximately $300 Billion dollars in annual Foreign Oil consumption. In addition, the use of Wind generated energy provides a “clean” alternative to the use of carbon emitting fossil fuels.
For the economy this would mean lower prices at the pump as well as additional revenue streams from newly created jobs in the area of Power generation, Facility/Community retro-fitting, alternative vehicle production, and Wind Mill/Generator manufacturing. Thus solving a new and increasing problem using an old and “Sustainable” alternative