Wednesday, December 25, 2019

The Coming New Year Boom Economy

Our economy is now taking off. Here is the logic. Remember back to WWII, the rest of the world was destroyed and the US supplied the product that everyone needed. Filling the orders from the rest of the world in 1946, created full employment for the U.S.

This time around, we have told the rest of the world to take a hike, we don’t need them to produce our products. We will produce it ourselves. This demand for product previously produced overseas is stimulating our economy while putting the skids on everyone else’s economy.

It was cheaper to produce products in the third world, but the middlemen costs were beginning to take too big of a slice of the pie. The evaded tax consequences of offshore production were a big loss for our government.

In the past, the American manufacturer went to China and made shirts for a dollar apiece. He then sold them to a wholesaler, who happened to be his wife. The wife sells them to an importer at $15 apiece and the shirts hit the shelves at $35. The only American making money is the “Manufacturer.” $14 a shirt tax free. It is still going to cost about $12 a shirt to make them in the US. Most of it going to labor and production costs. In this case the return for the manufacturer (one person) is a lot less, but the benefits of onshore production stimulate our economy and create jobs.

Notice that this production out of country was considered “Globalism.” It literally wiped out industry in the United States. We could not compete on a labor or regulation basis. Their quality was good as was the price. Right now, heavy industry is returning. We still have a long way to go, much of the consumer goods manufacturing is still offshore.

So, for the coming new year what do we have? Some things will do better, I see unemployment down for the year. Manufacturing should go up. I can’t do much for predicting the stock market, I was never any good at reading chicken entrails. At McDonalds, you may have to push the start button to get your Big Mac. (I wish they would go back to their old coffee instead of trying to copy Starbucks. And while we are at it, give us the old French fries with animal fat—they were so delicious).

I think there will be some blowback on environmentalists. The low flush toilet has to go, as well as the restricted flow shower head. The government needs to get out of our lives. If they want to tell someone what to do, let it be the homeless. Taxpayers have a right to expect better government services than the deadbeats who pay no taxes.

I can stop stockpiling the old incandescent light bulbs, Government regulations have been dropped, so companies can keep making them now. I used one of the new ones over the kitchen table and the food looked absolutely horrible. I think we can expect many more government regulations to fall by the wayside.

Here's hoping everyone had a Merry Christmas (ie the kids got what they wanted for Christmas). Here's hoping that everyone reading has a Happy New Year.

Saturday, December 21, 2019

Precious metal "The Buy of the Century"

If we go back in history, we see gold and silver as the universal medium of exchange. Usually it was in a ratio of 15 to 1: silver to gold. Put another way, a day’s wages were an ounce of silver, a week’s wage was an ounce of gold. Not sure it has kept up to its historic norm.

The big thing to remember is that the medium of exchange got spent. Gold or silver, it was gone by the end of the month; laborers were waiting for the new payday. Some savings was occurring. But it wasn’t something that would have made the precious metals more valuable, and make them worth more. The system had no inflation. A silver dollar was a dollar.

In today’s world, gold and silver float in a commodity’s market. The currency systems of the world are all about paper currency; no gold is necessary. Inflation is a function of printing more currency instead of taxing the people.

Is our currency as good as gold? The answer is no. Inflation (a disease of paper money) will eat the perceived value of the dollar alive. The price of gold and silver over time will reflect the inflationary effect of government spending and printing of currency.

The big thing about buying gold and silver now is that it costs very little to retain ownership over time. it used to be that you got 8% interest on your savings. Now you only get .05%. There isn’t much reason to put your money in the bank anymore. Buy gold, it doesn’t comprehend inflation.

Inflation is a tax on old people, not the young. Retirees have saved a lifetime and many can no longer work. They are stuck with what they have saved over the years. The extremely low interest rates on savings have literally ruined retirement plans for many of the elderly. An 18-year-old buying a pack of cigarettes for $8.00 today, has no idea that they costed 25 cents a pack 40 years ago. Mix the mindset of the young person with that of the retiree. It takes a lifetime to realize that you have been ripped off silently.

The real problem right now is not the scarcity of gold silver or platinum. The problem is the perceived value of the government currency. If too much currency is printed, the buying power of one million dollars may in the near future, only buy one hundred thousand dollars’ worth of goods.

What we are looking at here is an option that most have overlooked. There is no investment loss on buying precious metals. The banks cannot even match the yearly inflation rate loss of 7 percent; they’re paying .75 percent interest. So, I am suggesting that people 20 years away from retirement, put their savings in gold and silver. The Hell with an IRA. Congress created the IRA so they could borrow more money; not enough people were saving the dollars that Congress desperately needed to borrow, to fund government spending.

You are not buying gold as an investment; you are buying precious metals as a backup for a government induced inflation. It cost you nothing at the present bank interest rates. In fact, the whole retirement IRA scheme falls apart at these low bank interest rates. There is no incentive to save dollars today for consumption 20 years in the future.

Reflect back, with an interest rate of 7 percent, your nest egg will double in 10 years. With and interest rate of .75% your money will double in in 95 years.

Imagine if a politician told retirees that they are taxing everyone’s savings at 7% a year and keeping the interest rates extremely low, they would be voted out of office. The funny thing is that the retirees can’t do much about it. Inflation and interest rates are not parts of a party platform for reelection. Inflation is a little like sex, as you get older—you get too much of one and too little of the other.

The thing to realize here, is that all of your savings in a 401K or in the bank are an entry on a ledger. If through no fault of your own if the currency becomes worthless, precious metals in your possession have a basis of worth. You have to ask one question. Can this deficit spending go on forever? Or is there a limit? So far the answer is that it can go on forever. Common sense suggests that limits imply responsibility. There is no responsibility, so hold on to your hat.

Thursday, November 28, 2019

A Common Sense View of Congress

Once a Congressman gets elected to Congress, they begin to worry about getting reelected. In today’s world, it takes about 6 million to run an election campaign. So, who do they listen to when in office? Answer: The special interest groups and lobbyist’s in Washington. Most of these groups want to increase their profits and or power over the populace.

Pharmaceutical lobbyist’s want to increase the profit margins of the companies they represent. The school teachers lobby wants to keep their union strong. No Congressman has any real incentive in lowering prescription prices or getting rid of teachers who can’t teach.

We have Congressmen that will promise the world to the voter, without the will to follow through on their promises, (it doesn’t get them cash for reelection). They will bring up items to vote for that have to do with protecting women and children or protect minority rights. There won’t be anything in there for the average voter to benefit from, like lower drug prices or lower taxes.

So, if a bill comes up to lower drug prices and that Congressman just got 50K from the drug lobby, he votes “yes” after he adds a rider on the bill to give free health care to non-citizens. Net effect, the bill goes down to defeat and he looks good.

The basic realism about Congress, is that if they do nothing, they have a very good chance of getting reelected. Do something, like irritate the wrong person, and you will be out of office. They try to pass bills that help the poor, women and children, car safety, oppressed groups etc. Any legislation like a tax break, sunsets in 5 years, so they have to vote on it again; looks good but that tax cut has probably been passed again and again over a span of 50 years.

So, when it is election time, the politician promises the voter the world, higher minimum wage, health care, free college. It doesn’t matter what it is, the man running for election knows it has no chance of becoming law. Why? There isn’t a lobbyist that represents the voter. There is no money put in their pocket for reelection by representing what the American voter really wants. The one thing that hides this concept is the unwillingness of the Democrats and Republicans to get together and pass the necessary bills by any more than a simple majority in one house and have it die in the other.

The special interest groups don’t have to bribe half of either party to get a bill passed. Bribing or giving “a campaign contribution” to only 10% will get the job done.

This is why President Trump doesn’t fit in. He doesn’t need the money, he earned his billions before he ran for President; the special interest groups can go fish. And of course, the special interest groups aren’t going to drop any dollars on a Congress that can’t perform as desired. The coffers of many a Congressmen are very lean from the lack of contributions. Blame it all on Trump, he isn’t going to sign anything into law that increases big businesses’ cut on the average citizen.

It is not business as usual; the special interest groups, the unions the lobbyists and entrenched bureaucrats want their power back. These groups want a President who will listen to them. They know what is right for America. “Make America great won’t get them reelected;” but a large election kitty just might. The problems they want to solve are the ones they create, not the ones they overlook.

So, as the holidays lumber along, remember that in the past, it didn’t matter who you voted for; the Republicans and Democrats never got much done in Congress. It used to be that Thanksgiving and Christmas dinner was all about football and the kids, now it’s a political argument. Admittingly the directions of the two parties are different, but for the first time in many years, one party is doing what they promised to do. And it’s not as impossible as it was perceived to be, before the election.

Remember your Congressman’s first priority is to raise money to get reelected. And you as an individual don’t have the coin to help him get that done. So, President Trump could be your next best chance to get something done.

This Blog in the past has been politically neutral on politics. But after seeing how the media is after Trump and his actions defy every doom prediction, I stand by the guy. The people in the media think that they speak for the whole country, and I disagree, they don't.

Happy Thanksgiving to all, enjoy the moment

Saturday, November 09, 2019

Government Retirement Theft in Progress

Let’s see, If I retire tomorrow, I can live off of the interest on my savings. What is wrong with that assumption? 40 years ago, the interest rates were 7 to 10 percent. And if you wanted to take some risk, you could get 18% on triple D bonds.

Remember the rule of 72 for interest rates? Divide the interest rate into 72 and that gives you the number of years it takes for your principle to double.

Take a retiree with one million in the bank right now. At 2% interest they are getting 20,000 a year in interest to live on. At 6% interest they would have 60,000 to live on. I can remember when I was starting my 401K, 8% or 80k was enough to do almost anything.

One could ask the question of why interest rates haven’t gone up; the government has been printing dollars like crazy. And there should be inflation. The only inflation I see is in health care costs, government services and property taxes.

Examine retirement plans like CalPERS that are claiming 6.7% returns on investments. They haven’t been getting that sort of return since the year 2000. The return for the last 15 years has been less than 4% if you average it out. The factor here is the rule of 72. Retirement plans pay through the nose if their rate assumptions are wrong long term. In this case, the state of California has to make up the shortfall. The trouble is, politicians can overlook the problem and pass it on to the next elected administration. Even 4%, doubles your principle every 18 years. A declared interest rate of 6.7 implies a doubling every 10 years. There is a problem here, that no one is pointing out. Of course if you are running for office in California, the problem is more than 4 years out, so there is nothing to worry about. keep quite and enjoy your term in office.

So, with 22 Trillion in national debt, what is the interest on that? At 4% it is 880,000,000,000. At 8% it is 1.7 trillion. Do you get the feeling that we as a country, can't do much more than pay the interest on the national debt? It kind of suggests that we will never pay the debt off. Which is a very interesting concept. Borrow until you can no longer afford to pay the interest demanded.

The problem here is that there is a mental separation between debt of government and obligations of citizens toward that debt. The government owes the debt, let the government pay it. Sounds logical for all the wrong reasons.

In a gold-based economy, most people hold very little gold. It is all spent paycheck to paycheck, no different than it is today. But savings are a different issue. In a gold economy, there is accountability for savings in the system. The irritating thing is that gold earns no interest. Investments currently make returns, but the returns are extremely low. The 1.5 percent interest return from the bank, won’t cover inflation, whereas a precious metals investment, probably will long term.

Many people may decide to put more of their savings into a non-productive investment like gold, as an insurance policy. Our current valid inflation rate is somewhere between 7 and 12 percent. This reflects the inflation created by our government spending. The reduced interest rate payed by the banks of 1.5 percent minus the inflation factor of say 10 percent reflects the taxes paid surreptitiously of those retired people with savings. A retiree with one million in the bank at 1.5 percent interest, is being taxed at (10-1.5) 8.5 percent, about 85 thousand dollars a year.

The tax is invisible. The interest rates are artificially low. The retirees do not understand the concept of interest manipulation by the Treasury Department. They are being robbed blind by government financial policy. Basically, there is so many printed dollars in circulation and very little demand for loans in relation to the size of dollars available. The Key thing, everyone is saving like mad to have a great retirement. This keeps inflation low, because it is not being spent.

At some point there will be a problem. Why save if there is no incentive? I think we are at that point and don’t realize it. Credit cards offer money back on purchases, and it is more than current bank interest rates. Something is upside down here. The logic is backwards. The real losers in all of this are the retirees. That is where most of the saved money is.

So the next time you hear that the price of gas went up or prescription drugs cost more. Think about it for one minute. The same gasoline sold for 25 cents a gallon 50 years ago. People will claim "That's just inflation." But as you move into retirement, the real world of government financing eats at your savings with lousy interest rate returns on your savings. And then there are the general yearly inflation price increases.

So what can we glean from all of this? If you are at retirement age, it might not be the retirement you expected. Growing old is not something that happens to government, it happens to people. The unfortunate thing is that health care problems are what pop up at retirement age.

The real problem is the government. The retiree is confused, trying to comprehend why the money he saved for retirement was not enough to satisfy his retirement dreams. And sadly it wasn't even his fault.

Saturday, August 31, 2019

Tariffs, the Impact on the USA

Listen to the radio and TV, the average family will spend $1,400 on tariffs from China this year. Kind of hard to figure their math, if you buy “Made in USA.” These are real news sources spouting this crap. The announcer seems to be satisfied with continuing to buy from China; Trump is the problem. The whole purpose of a tariff is overlooked, to make you buy from some other source.

The real problem is that we buy everything from China and are dependent upon them for what we need. This needs to stop. We don’t need to pay China 500 billion a year to produce what we should be producing here. “Buy products made in the USA” is what President Trump is saying with the tariffs on China.

These news announcers that claim tariffs will be paid by us, don’t consider that fact that people price shop. Do the math, the Chinese put tariffs on our cars. They do it, to keep their consumers from buying them. We don’t sell many cars in China. Rewrite the headline on their side and it would read “Chinese paying $3000 extra on Chinese tariffs of American Goods.” Point of fact, they are not buying them, they are more expensive than cars made in China. The real question, why do we have a 500 billion dollar deficit with them? What did they buy from us? The answer could be “nothing.”

The whole world has been sucking us dry by producing what ever we wanted. Congress made the legislation and tax laws that forced business overseas. If we can bring them back, we might just have a second chance to turn our economy around. In the past, when we taxed the hell out of manufacturers, they voted with their feet and moved to other countries.

The real problem is the mentality of the legislators in Congress. They think if they double the tax rate, they double taxes coming in. This concept failed miserably during the Great Depression; taxes collected, dropped off of a cliff.

The people in Congress have good intensions, but they have so little business acumen that the real solution are not the most obvious ones. A $15 dollar an hour minimum wage when the rest of the world gets $15 dollars a week, shows how brain-dead Congress has gotten. By god, a family can’t live on a 15 dollar an hour job in the US. Raising the minimum wage moves our jobs to people in other countries. Where you could have had an $8 dollar an hour job, now you have nothing.

So far, the tariffs have been attacked politically as a tax on the American consumer. And raising the minimum wage forces our jobs overseas. Business pass the cost of labor onto the price of the product for sale. It is the consumer that determines whose product they buy. The Tariffs level the playing field; it gives American businesses a better chance to compete with foreign imports.

What we need to realize, is that China, a communist country, does not support any investment in research, there is no incentive for doing so. As a people, they can profit by stealing what we create, and selling it back to us. A lot of the prescription pills in our system like Viagra are counterfeited in their county for sale in our country. The going joke is that they use drywall to make the pills.

We can avoid the tariff issue if we buy “Made in USA.” And that is probably too simple for the democrats running for reelection. Go figure.

China is laughing at us; Trump may set them straight. They are like a bad car mechanic that needs to make a fast dollar, and the US is the patsy. The reality, the next medical cures will not come from China, they have no money for that sort of thing.

Saturday, August 24, 2019

Trump, China and Tariffs

There is a tariff war going on and a lot of people have it all wrong. If China stops buying soybeans from the U.S., that does not put the American farmer out of work. Grains are an international crop. If there is a shortage from one country you buy from another. The price is determined by whether there is a shortage or overabundance worldwide. China can buy soybeans from a country that doesn’t even grow soybeans. All that country has to do is go on the international market and purchase soybean contracts for delivery and then turn around and sell it to China. The soy beans delivered to China do not have a “made in Country” label. You cannot change the prices on the commodity exchange by buying or not buying from a selected country; soybeans don’t have a country.

Most American farmers select what crops to plant in the spring. Usually it reflects what had high prices last year. So, this year is not a soybean year, but you never know, especially if everyone decides to plant wheat. China could face a real soybean shortage next year because of their cute little tantrum.

China right now is selling us 500 billion more than they purchase from us. This has to stop. It is like a tax we have to pay to China. If they cannot buy as much as they sell to us, we are being ripped off. It has to be one for one on trade. Plus, they copy everything we have them produce for us and then they flood our market with knock offs of the original product.

The major thing about a tariff, is the fact that it raises the price of the item being imported. Common sense suggests that the consumer will not buy the higher priced item. Democrat politicians suggest that this is a tax on the consumer. The tariff makes the Chinese goods more expensive than those offered from other sources. The consumer doesn’t really pay the tariff, the foreign producer suffers from the lack of consumer consumption. You don’t order more of a product that just sits on the shelf.

Our country, in its first 100 years, depended on tariffs to foot the bills. There was no income tax. In modern times, after World War II ended, most of the world’s productions capacity had been destroyed. We became the main supplier of product and prospered.

Most of our production has moved out of country in the last 20 years. If production moves back to this country, it will be a second boom similar to the WWII scenario. The return of production here will stimulate our economy. The one thing we need to understand is why it moved out of country? And that has to do with the bottom line. The Entrepreneur asks one question, where can I maximize profits? We need to make it a better deal, to make it in the USA, rather than in China.

Off shore production has benefits. The entrepreneur who makes his product in a foreign country takes advantage of very cheap labor. It might have cost him $1.00 to produce, and he can show a fictitious cost of $12.00 and pay very little income tax in the country of import. There are no social security wages to pay or unemployment or retirement or health care. You kind of have to wonder, passing all of these laws to protect workers, only forces producers to move their production out of country.

A legislative body can pass a law setting the minimum wage at $15 dollars an hour, it sounds great. The jobs that paid $7 to 14.99 are now gone. Intelligence is not a prerequisite to run for public office. New business are so plagued with bureaucratic red tape that the only ones that are successful are those that start out of a garage.

We need to realizes that the real problem is our legislative laws and government restrictions. The people elected mean well, but they do not have the business experience necessary to solve the issues. Plus, a lot of the yes or no votes have lobbyist money behind them.

I think that President Trump can solve the China and Europe import/export problem. We are not going to like if for a while, but the jobs will come back. A “Made in USA” tag has always been a quality product. Sadly, everything in my house says “Made in China.” And that is the real problem we need to address.

Saturday, June 29, 2019

The Unwritten California Homestead Program for the Homeless (Hopeless)

California has been indirectly pursuing a new Homestead program for the homeless including the illegal immigrants. Rumor has it that the State of California is going to license good locations for begging and panhandling on street corners. Any fees will be waived if you are on food stamps or are an illegal alien. The average panhandler makes about 24 dollars an hour. Well above the minimum state wage of $15 for flipping hamburgers, and it is not taxable. Someone is usually suppling free hypodermic needles and food locally.

Camping permits have been waived for most cities in California. The weather is great, and a good tent costs about $35. Plus, California has been declared a Sanctuary state. So, most crimes are a misdemeanor (if you keep it under $1,000). So, breaking into a car to steal a laptop computer is a two-man job. One guy breaks the window --cost $600 and the other steals the laptop $800—no one goes to jail. A concealed handgun is a misdemeanor; you will not get deported.

In college I can remember the guy down the hall with a poster that said “Ski Kansas” (the state is flat as a pancake). I think there is an invisible employment poster in the other 49 states that says “Panhandle California.” You won’t see the poster displayed on a wall, but you might just see the bus fare to get you there, in the palm of your hand. Colorado winters on the sidewalk are a bitch!

Rumor has it that the state is currently looking for “Panhandler Facilitators” that can help educate the massive influx of new residents, to fit into their new retirement vacation environment. Applicants need to have taken the following courses: “Advanced Cardboard Sign Painting 102, “Aggressive Begging 103” and “Shopping Cart Selection 101.”

The state is warning the homeless not to eat the rats, they may have been poisoned. If you have body lice, the state considers YOU the problem, NOT the lice. From my point of view, poisoning the homeless, is a one-step approach to getting rid of the Rats, lice, excrement and dirty IV needles. My solution works for all of the wrong reasons, the trouble is, the solution in place does not work.

Question: I am a homeowner and if I don’t pay my property taxes, they will take my home away from me. But a guy camping in down town LA that is in the country illegally, has more rights than I do and pays no taxes.

Looks like we either get used to the abuse or try to change it, when the next election rolls around.

Sunday, May 26, 2019

Congress: The Short Bus to Nowhere

A lot is going on in the economy, that is winding up like a clock spring.

We have our elected officials who spend our taxes and have absolutely no training in basic economics. Deficit spending is considered Ok because there are no consequences. If we can’t pay for it, push the bill into the future (i.e. to when they are out of office). Plus, it’s not their money so they can be generous and buy a few votes for reelection.

There are two types of people, those who responsibly save for their future or those that are irresponsible and live on the fringe; enjoy now, the Hell with tomorrow. The government has a real problem with the second group, that’s why they take your taxes out of your paycheck before you get it. FDR proposed Social Security to keep retirees from dumpster diving (they had just had the worst financial bank failure that wiped out millions of peoples savings).

The basics of finance haven’t changed over the ages. If you borrow money, you pay it back to redeem the debt. There is a problem with governments, borrowing money. The saver has no say-so on who borrows his savings. The full faith and credit of the government is usually good enough for government to access and acquire the funds needed.

Notice how banks are needed to keep the operation of loans going. This is why the banks were not allowed to fail in the 2008 debacle, this was the government’s piggy bank. Right now, the government owes 22 trillion dollars to “parties unknown.” If the current treasury rate went to 8 ½ % the US government could not pay the interest on the national debt from the taxes collected. The 22 trillion dollars is probably a lot more than the total savings of everyone in the United States.

Now we have Democrats that want to have Single Payer health insurance and a living wage for all. Where will the money come from to pay for all of this? The reply heard from some Congressmen is “Tax the Rich.” How do you get rich? Save your hard earned (already tax paid) dollars for 40 years. Now the government wants to go after your bank account not your wages.

I remember back 50 years ago when cigarettes were 24 cents a pack and today, they are $6 dollars a pack. Government inflation has eaten into long term savings. With the coming election, some of our elected officials (democrats) want to give us more in return for our vote to get them reelected.

Our problems are real, our elected representatives are out of some fairy tale book. Their solutions to our problems are way out of touch. It reminds me of the Obama “Cure for Hemorrhoids,” a gasoline enema, with the warning “Don’t fart when you light the match, you’ll burn the hair off of your ass.” The warning gives the user the false sense of security that the caregiver knows what they are talking about.

Saturday, April 20, 2019

Future Government Taxes

Government Think Speak:
“If you are rich, we need to redistribute your wealth”
“If you are poor, we need to give you more to make you whole”
“America the country where you can rise from poverty to wealth”

What is wrong with this vison?

The real vision: poor people have no money; they spend everything they earn. They hate “Rich People.” The only difference between poor people and rich people is that if you can save $100 dollars a month for your whole life you will get rich.

Through out history people always got old by accident. They didn’t start saving for retirement until it was too late. Getting old is a very slow gradual process.

A basic fact of life is that most people want to enjoy life now, whatever the cost, and pay for it later. This will leave the worker with zero savings. It is no surprise that the Federal Government employs the same philosophy. And we have a 22 trillion-dollar deficit to prove it.

As we approach retirement, not everyone ends up poor. Some people decided early to save money and over time and became rich. Many people reach retirement with savings. Now back in the 1960’s the government needed more money to borrow and they created the 401K retirement program. This program was not for the average citizen to save more for retirement as everyone assumed, rather it was a plan to make more money available for the government to borrow.

Government Social security is a false hope for many. Why save for retirement when you have Social Security? I think many who retire now realize that Social Security is not enough to pay the bills.

So, the rant “Tax the Rich,” makes sense. The government needs more money to fund all of its programs. It used to only tax earnings and investment income. The government has pushed that to its limit. The big reason the government reduced the top income tax rate from 90% was because it generated no income. As a taxpayer, when you get to the 90% tax rate, why work an hour at say $100 and only get to keep $10 of it? Tell me that the people passing the laws understand economics.

Now to tie this all together, Big government needs more income in some form of Tax. They need real money not printed dollars. The only place that can provide the money is from people who have saved up over time; the retirees. These are the rich people, and notice that you can only tax their income as they earn it. Once the tax is paid, they owe no more. So, at that point, how do you tax the rich? The government already taxes their toys.

I really have no answer as to how government will get its hands on the money. The democrats have murmured about a wealth tax of 12%. The government could link your private pension in some way with Social Security—i.e. no social security if your pension is over 50K a year. Government mandated health insurance could bring in $5,000 a year per person (people age 18 to 65). A retirement tax of say 30 percent on your pension (I really see this one working) (people would be too old to complain) (government is in line before the rest home costs). A non-citizen tax of say $10,000 per year per family could be a real good one (pay or face deportation).

The thing we need to be very aware of is that the country is going broke. And it cannot be blamed on the Rich. They pay most of the taxes. What we as a people need to realize is that any money raised by the government has to come from people who haven’t spent it yet. We are just about there. Visible assets are taxable. If you have money, the government wants it, you do not have to be rich to have it taken away by them.

Gold, Silver and Platinum appear to be three ways to hide your wealth right now. Interest rates are so low, that they are meaningless. Holding precious metals is not much of a risk considering that inflation has not truly reflected the ridiculous amount of printed money in circulation. I am not really trying to plug precious metals, but there are ways to transfer your wealth when you die to avoid probate and taxes. Precious metals in a safety deposit box is one of them. Forming a living trust for your home is another. You need to be aware of how the government wants to claim a tax on what you have worked your whole life for.

Remember one thing “Tax the Rich,” can be rewritten “Tax the wage earner.” The real rich don’t work so they don’t have any income taxes to pay. Anybody can get rich if they save their dollars, the trouble is, it takes planning for the future and many don't think that far ahead.

Saturday, March 09, 2019

Surviving in Congress

Sadly, surviving to get reelected in Congress means you do nothing. If you successfully get a bill passed, you have alienated half of the electorate who didn’t care for it. Get two bills passed and you alienate a different 50 percent. From that point you will not get reelected. Sit on the fencepost and do nothing, everyone is happy.

The big thing you need to realize is the issues the voters want fixed are a great item to run on at election time. Get elected and forget about them and dig them up to run on next election. That is probably why Congress is in such a tizzy over Trump. He treats his political platform as a “Bucket List” of things to accomplish.

The odd thing about President Trump is that he is a Democrat. The Republicans know he is not one of them and the Democrats kind of recognize that he represents the party they once pretended to be. He is a true businessman and his first question on most things is “How much will it cost.” Most people in government don’t care about costs, “It’s not their money.”

Right now, there is a tremendous amount of political fervor in the country. Alex de Tocqueville toured this country in the 1850’s (170 years ago) and notice some shortcomings in the US. Here are a few quotes from “Democracy in America.”

The American Republic will endure until the day Congress discovers that it can bribe the public with the public's money.

I know of no country in which there is so little independence of mind and real freedom of discussion as in America.

In the United States, the majority undertakes to supply a multitude of ready-made opinions for the use of individuals, who are thus relieved from the necessity of forming opinions of their own.

In other words, a democratic government is the only one in which those who vote for a tax can escape the obligation to pay it.

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

Democracy and socialism have nothing in common but one word, equality. But notice the difference: while democracy seeks equality in liberty, socialism seeks equality in restraint and servitude.

The real problem that Congress fails to address is the National Debt. It is too big to ever pay off. The common man will never understand the implications of that. As a child, you understood the concept, when you came home from school, and the refrigerator was empty and you were hungry.

Congress can perpetuate their reelection by doing nothing, they did the impossible when they printed us out of the latest “Great Depression.” This allows both political parties to blame each other for the current mess and the voter is none the wiser.

Congress is seriously entertaining the Ocasio-Cortez ideas on cow farts and radical socialism which boggles my mind. The thing that bothers me, is that most in Congress must think that “Bovine Flatulence” is some sort of carbonated health drink. The new Left's credo, “Save a tree and kill a cow.” Of course I have always maintained that there is way too much lead in the drinking water in Washington DC.

Thursday, January 31, 2019

The Possible Trump “En passant”

Let’s see, no wall for Trump after he opens the government for three weeks. Pelosi said the government had to be open for any discussion of the border wall. It doesn’t look like she is open to any sort of border wall negotiations after the government was reopened.

What if Trump decides to build the wall by using his emergency powers? And then tells Congress to pass the budget with two thirds vote, because his signature is not forthcoming. He can claim that what ever they pass will have the blessing of the American people. And it will be up to Congress to accept the guilt for any foot dragging in coming to an agreement. If Congress truly represents the people, this will come to be, at some point in time. Its about time for them to pass a budget that has a firm support from both sides.

Congress needs to be shown that the real world, looks at what you have accomplished, not what you stand for. Many of these Congressman have dreams that elude reality. Practicality and pragmatism are what we need.

Compromise will build unity.

Tuesday, January 15, 2019

The Power of Presidential Executive Directives

Most people think that the laws of this country are passed by the Congress and State legislatures. That is not the case. In most cases, a Government department is created and funded by Congress. The head of that department is responsible for writing the code of laws. If the traffic department wants to write a law that has a fine of $300 for sneezing at a stop sign, you pay the fine or hire a lawyer for $1,000. Mind you, if you don’t pay the fine or obey the restriction, the bureaucrats activate the next line of enforcement which is the police. And as you saw in the BLM cattle feed charges of a few years ago, they had the FBI out there trying to enforce their edicts. The laws had been changed by bureaucratic proclamation.

So, what is happening? We have a President that is starting to eliminate a lot of these directives that gave these agencies regulatory authority over us. The EPA has lost about 770 employees and they are not being replaced. It was those people claiming that the car companies were getting better gas mileage due to their regulations. The truth was, the increased mileage was due to the forced production of more fuel-efficient economy cars than high performance models. By averaging the overall mileage as a group, you got the desired result. You could still buy both, but you paid more for the gas guzzler. Get rid of ethanol additive to your gas, and you might even see an extra 4 miles a gallon.

Basically, the President enforces the laws. He can help validate a future law if it has less than a 2/3 majority vote for it and at least a 50 % approval. As chief enforcer, he can write Executive directives to define how a department functions and can issue directives on how to execute the law, like forget it. Obama did this with the border guards.

Obama’s presidency was fraught with executive directives for everything. These were bureaucrats deciding what was right for you to do or not do. If you didn’t march to their drummer, you were fined or jailed.

We are slowly emerging from this Obama fiasco of government regulations for everything, to one of less government regulation. The Trump administration brings anticipation of less supervision and more economic freedom.

Let’s ring in the new year and forget that we are Democrats or Republicans. Of course, with Congress it is very hard to forget what Obama did with health care. He taught the Republicans that he didn’t need them for anything. Attitudes matter and I think the Democrat's party is going to get pay back in the coming new year. Hopefully less government regulation will turn the economy loose.