OK, I am not an economist, but that doesn't disqualify me from commenting on the plans being cobbled together by the Obama administration to get the economy moving again.
After all, it has been said that if you laid all the world's economists end-to-end they still wouldn't reach a conclusion, a problem I don’t have.
Take this highly touted scheme to put out-of-job Americans to work by rebuilding the infrastructure — billions upon billions for roads, bridges, tunnels, and buildings in need of refurbishing.
To begin with, it's not a new idea. Adolf Hitler created a similar plan to put people to work. During the 1934 Nazi Party meetings in Nuremberg, several party officials reported on the progress of the program with one bragging, “At 51 places, although the work is in an early stage, 52,000 men are employed on the construction sites. A further 1 million are employed in supplying material, building bridges and other functions. We have only just started.”
A second speaker said, “Wherever building work is going on, valuable buildings are being improved and created. There has been major activity in the last year, and this activity will continue in the future.”
To make that point, tens of thousands of uniformed young party members marched through the Sportspalast armed with shovels or pick axes on their shoulders, instead of rifles.
It didn't help solve the unemployment problem until the shovels were replaced with rifles and the pick axes with bayonets and the road and building projects replaced with building Messerschmitts and Stuka dive bombers.
Another problem with the Obama approach to curing our economic woes lies in its reliance on giving tax reductions to vast numbers of people using so-called income tax rebates to people who don't pay a dime in federal income taxes while eventually raising taxes on people who pay the major share of the taxes.
The so-called rebates will could amount to $1,000 each. Just how far will that go to helping to revive the economy? Not very. As a one-shot payment, it will be spent and will be gone. And we'll be back where we started.
It seems to me that the most effective way to get the economy back on its feet would be to do everything possible to create incentives for the people who do the hiring — instead of punishing them.
Today Americans who run businesses large and small are hampered by the second highest capital gains taxes in the world, vast numbers of needless regulations that strangle initiative and make it impossible for them to compete with foreign firms, and a federal tax system that punishes success.
Our free enterprise system made us the wealthiest, most productive nation in world history. Through punitive taxation and mountains of rules and regulations, our government has fastened shackles around the very people who make the economic engine operate efficiently, create jobs and compete in the global economy.
Mr. Obama's policies and programs promise nothing but the same statist approaches that have brought us to the point of beggary and seeking the charity of less profligate nations.
His spending plans leave one gasping. Spending trillions upon trillions of dollars is supposed to revive the economy. But it gives not a thought to the mountain of debt that will be bestowed upon our grandchildren who will groan under the impossible burden and curse us.
In his inaugural speech, President Obama mentioned the so-called warming of the planet as something that must be addressed (translation: attacked with vast sums of money to reduce CO2 levels). Did he not look around him and discover that the people on his part of the warming planet were chilled to the bone?
He should listen to Dr. Kunihiko, chancellor of Japan's Institute of Science and Technology who says, "CO2 emissions make absolutely no difference one way or the other . . . Every scientist knows this, but it doesn't pay to say so." And he's not alone. Hundreds of his fellow scientists insist that CO2 has nothing — nothing — to do with warming the planet, which happens to be cooling in case you haven't noticed.
Somebody needs to remind the president that socialism, which is what he's planning to impose on us, doesn't work before it brings us to our knees.
Phil Brennan is a veteran journalist and World War II Marine who writes for Newsmax.com. He is editor and publisher of Wednesday on the Web (http://www.pvbr.com) and was Washington columnist (Cato), for National Review magazine. He is a trustee of the Lincoln Heritage Institute and a member of the Association For Intelligence Officers. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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