by George Landrith
The question Left of center is, “How do you feel about it?” How do you feel about ObamaCare? How do you feel about gun violence? Do you feel that the rich pay their fair share? Feelings are legitimate, but they apply to relationships and people, not public policy issues. I love my family. But I think about public policy.
Sadly, too many Americans “feel” about public policy issues which unfortunately “liberates” them from thinking. As a result, more and more people are becoming unaccustomed to rational analysis and thought.
I don’t visit the doctor to hear how he feels about my health, nor a plumber to learn his feelings about my leaky pipes. We want expertise, not feelings. Read more
by George Landrith
With a long history of federal overspending and the recent explosion of more federal debt, it is obvious that the federal budget must be cut back to a reasonable size. We need an intervention. But the Budget Control Act — which would force an “automatic sequester” of $500 billion in across-the-board defense spending cuts over the next decade, in addition to the $487 billion in defense cuts already scheduled — is not a good solution to our spending crisis. Read more
by George Landrith
With the budget and fiscal crisis facing the United States and difficult economic times surely ahead for the foreseeable future, President Barack Obama has vociferously argued that Republicans must agree to tax increases. He argues for what he terms are modest tax increases on the wealthiest Americans that are equal to the tax rates during President Bill Clinton’s time in office. Why is Obama only interested in Clinton era tax rates, but not Clinton era federal spending rates?
There is one correction that must be made from the outset — despite Obama arguing that he wants to return to Clinton era tax rates, Obama’s tax proposal is actually substantially higher than the Clinton era tax rates. Read more
by George Landrith
President Barack Obama repeatedly chided Mitt Romney’s budget plan during the presidential campaign on at least two grounds: (1) it lacked detail, and (2) the math didn’t add up. Perhaps, we should use these two standards to see how Barack Obama’s plan stacks up. There is more than a little irony in Barack Obama criticizing others for not providing details or for their math not adding up. Obama has always been short on details and his math has almost never passed even the straight face test, much less actually adding up. Read more
Securing the Blessing of Liberty to Ourselves and Our Posterity
by Scott L. Vanatter
The things of politics and public policy are of deep import. It takes time, experience, and careful and ponderous and even solemn thoughts to inform whether and how we act. Politicians, by their words or policies, either expand or contract the frontiers of our freedoms. We, The People, need to encourage and benefit from its progress, or mourn and suffer its decline.
The more we as citizens stand informed and aware, then the better able we will be to advocate for those principles which will tend to the greater public good. Then we can act with confidence in this great undertaking. As Lincoln called it, the last best hope of mankind. Read more
“The ability of the American people to watch the ['Fiscal Cliff'] sausage made and [to] read the contract before signing is a better guardian of our future than the hurried endorsements of the Washington establishment based on private assurances of politicians.”
by Grover Norquist
On January 1, 2013 three things happen:
First, the 2001 and 2003 tax cuts lapse along with a number of temporary tax reductions that have been extended so many times they are collectively known as “the extenders.” (Note to self: possible name for female rock band.) This collection of tax hikes total $500 billion in 2013. The $1,000 per child tax credit drops to $500. The Obama Social Security tax holiday ends again. The bottom tax rate jumps from 10 percent to 15 percent and the top personal income tax rate jumps from 35 to 39.6 percent — plus Obamacare’s new 3.8 percent surtax: total for top rate 43.4%. (Do be sure to add 10.3 percent for the state income tax if you live in California, 5.75 percent in Maryland or 8.82 percent in New York.) Read more
Dr. Miklos K. Radvanyi
On January 20, 2013, the United States of America will either have Barack Hussein Obama for four more years or will have a new president, the Republican Willard Mitt Romney, with a new House of Representatives and a new Senate. Be that as it may, the continuation of the Obama presidency, or alternatively the transfer of power to the new Romney administration, will be accompanied by many challenges, presenting the old, or the new president with a difficult agenda. Read more
What we learn from the U.S. Supreme Court’s decision on Obamacare …
First, the individual mandate is not constitutional under the commerce clause. So ruled the Supreme Court. This was always obviously and self-evidently the case. But in a bizarre twist of events the Court upheld the healthcare mandate on grounds that Congress has broad powers under the Constitution to tax and that as a tax the individual mandate is constitutional.
However, one problem with that line of reasoning is that President Barack Obama and Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid and then Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi and literally hundreds of other Democrats in Congress steadfastly denied that the mandate was a tax during the debate and before the vote. President Obama repeatedly looked into the camera to make “eye contact” with the American people and said it was not a tax. Obama did not want to be seen as raising taxes so he and his allies vociferously and steadfastly said it was not a tax and that they were acting solely under their power to regulate interstate commerce. And the law itself said that it was not a tax, but simply a regulation under the commerce clause. Read more
By George Landrith & Miklos Radvanyi
The Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms (ATF), which is part of the Department of Justice, ran the Fast and Furious “gun-walking” operation in which government agents purposely facilitated the sale of thousands of guns to the Mexican drug cartels. Hundreds of those Fast and Furious guns have been used in a long litany of drug-related murders along both sides of our southern border. On December 14, 2010, U.S. Border Patrol Agent, Brian Terry, was killed in a shootout in Arizona with drug cartel members who had guns provided by the ATF. Over 200 Mexicans have been murdered with Fast and Furious guns and to make matters worse, hundreds of Fast and Furious guns are still in the hands of Mexican drug cartel thugs.
by: Ricardo Inzunza, PhD
Passage of “the 1986 Immigration Reform and Control Act” or “IRCA” as it was euphemistically called, and its companion legislation, “The Immigration Act of 1990”, or “IMMACT 90” brought talk about immigration reform in America to a screeching halt. After years of give and take, on both sides of the issue, legislation was finally in place, which would solve our immigration woes, or so most of us believed. Yet, two and a half decades later debate on Capitol Hill has again turned to immigration reform. How can this be? Read more