Feb 27 2010

Liberal Ideology Is Creating Economic Madness

Incoherent madness.

That is what keeps running through my mind as I watch the last gasps of liberalism on display this year in DC. The far left has always tried to whittle away at the free market economy of America – which is based on the individual – and replace it with socialistic approaches where government takes control of most aspects of human life. Socialists like to hold back the individual and force everyone to the lowest common denominator. Free market capitalism unleashes the individual, and allows the dynamics of the human experiment to run more open loop, allowing it to flow naturally.

The left like to play God and the right like to watch God’s creations surprise and impress. This year Americans will pick one path and forever reject the other.

We do need to have rules and laws so that greed (or power-hunger) do not enslave the masses for the benefit of the few. For decades after the turn of the last century humanity was driven by a righteous concern about greedy business running amok – and hence support for many century old liberal concepts like unions and work rules and the end of child labor.

This led to boundaries on businesses and prioritized protecting the individual worker, ensuring they too participated in the success of exploiting resources, inventing new technologies, finding the next medical break through. It was the golden age for liberalism as women were finally allowed to vote and the laws of the land were to be applied equally to all, great and small. It was the right answer to the real problems of the day.

But that social adjustment has run its course now, a century later. Those changes are now embodied in our culture and psyche – never to be removed. Our concern now has turned into dealing with the modern center of human corruption and abuse - ideological government run amok:

Fifty-six percent of people questioned in a CNN/Opinion Research Corporation survey released Friday say they think the federal government’s become so large and powerful that it poses an immediate threat to the rights and freedoms of ordinary citizens. Forty-four percent of those polled disagree.

The survey indicates a partisan divide on the question: only 37 percent of Democrats, 63 percent of Independents and nearly 7 in 10 Republicans say the federal government poses a threat to the rights of Americans.

There are patterns starting to show up in lots of politically important numbers. In NJ, VA and MA we saw independents siding with small government GOP candidates by the same numbers as we see here – 60 to 40 percent away from Democrats. The repulsion with the liberal ideology being shoved through DC have made it so toxic anyone with a “D” is seen as the problem.

Not surprising when it is well established that D=Big Government Solution and R=Free Market Solution. President Obama’s politically stupid media stunt last week just cemented the stereotypes into place. He said we have our differences and we will take it to the voters. We now chose our path.

There is a role for government and there is respect for government. But those respectful roles (teachers, emergency workers, police, military, space explorers) are not the problem. These government roles protect or help or educate the people (teachers are on the verge of overstepping their mandate, but so far they have avoided creating a huge backlash).

The health care debate is now centered around this same basic question – the individual verses the power mad fools in DC. A recent Rasmussen poll exposes the basic fallacy of the liberal democrat approach to life:

If a company dropped its private coverage and their workers were enrolled in a government-run plan, 61% of GOP voters and a plurality (48%) of unaffiliated voters say that would be bad for the employees.

Democrats by a 46% to 29% margin say it would be good for the workers.

Democrats think it will be GOOD for the government to trash your current health plan and send you to a government doctor. Are they kidding? And which workers are they talking about?

The GOP scored huge points in the Health Care show by asking why some states got special treatment over others. Why do hundreds of thousands of Floridians get to keep Medicare Advantage and most other states will lose money for it? What makes them special Americans? Why are unions exempt from taxes on insurance premiums the rest of us have to pay?

What the Democrats in DC are doing is destroying lives. They failed miserably with their idiotic and impotent economic stimulus bill, where over 80% of the job creating money passed OVER  A YEAR AGO has yet to be spent creating (or saving) jobs. It was an old myth of liberal dogma that government spending can bolster an economy in a downturn, as well or better than tax and spending cuts (the tried and true method of Kennedy, Reagan and Bush). We now know this liberal fairy tale is false. We have a year of suffering and wasted opportunities to prove it.

Incoherent madness. The unfair playing field coming out of the liberal madness is unethical and illegal, but they swear it will be great for us all.

The stimulus bill was supposed to create or save millions of ‘shovel ready jobs’. That was the stated plan. So why is the administration planning on destroying tens of thousands of high tech jobs and the communities surrounding them?

Revised projections now show that about 23,000 workers at and around Kennedy Space Center will lose their jobs because of the shuttles’ retirement and the new proposal to cancel the development of new rockets and spacecraft.

There is not much around KSC but KSC. The communities, schools, fire departments and police will all suffer. And this is just one location that will see massive jobs lost due to President Obama’s short sighted plan to stop President Bush’s Constellation Program to take man back to the Moon. There are tens of thousands more jobs that will be lost around the nation because of this.

Jobs are at risk near Houston, TX (Johnson Space Center), Cleveland, OH (Glenn Research Center) and Pasaden, CA (Jet Propulsion Laboratory).  Peversely, there will large gains in Greenbelt, MD (Goddard Space Flight Center) outside DC, where the unemployment rate is incredibly low given the size of the federal bureaucracy here.

That is because Obama wants more satellites looking for global warming (which doesn’t exist so far this past decade). But we have so many up now it is hard to believe we need more. We have 19 operating and 6 in development, with many more under study. Why more? If more are needed, why kill all the manned space flight jobs? All this human carnage just to poke President Bush in the eye?

Here we have tens of thousands of jobs on  the line and Obama decides on a whim to just wipe them out. No one put this to a vote. No one tells you this is a fraction of the stimulus bill, which at 800+ billion is about 50 times larger than what is required to fund Constellation for ten years (assuming $4 billion a year, which is high). NASA’s entire annual budget is around $15 billion. That is less than 2% of the stimulus bill. If Obama wanted some more satellites why not buy them! They are only around $300 million per medium sized mission.

Incoherent madness.

How about those green jobs? Well, if you only calculate the jobs created and not the jobs lost it looks pretty good. But when you calculate the full impact of the green myth you find workers lose out in the end:

Let’s consider just one clean-energy sector, the smart grid, for its job-creation potential.

It typically takes a team of two certified electricians half an hour to replace the old, spinning meter. In one day, two people can install about 15 new meters, or about 5,000 in a year. Were a million smart meters to be installed in a year, 400 installation jobs would be created. It follows that the planned U.S. deployment of 20 million smart meters over five years, or 4 million per year, should create 1,600 installation jobs. Unless more meters are added to the annual deployment schedule, this workforce of 1,600 should cover installation needs for the next five years.

Now let’s consider job losses. It takes one worker today roughly 15 minutes to read a single meter. So in a day, a meter reader can scan about 30 meters, or about 700 meters a month. Meters are typically read once a month, making it the base period to calculate meter-reading jobs. Reading a million meters every month engages about 1,400 personnel. In five years, 20 million manually read meters are expected to disappear, taking with them some 28,000 meter-reading jobs.

Here’s the hard real math: jobs gained (1600) minus jobs lost (28,000) = net 25,400 jobs lost. Just like at Kennedy Space Center! It is a fact that US manufacturing jobs and labor based jobs have not really moved overseas, they have been taken over by robotic automation. The green foot print of a robot is much lower than that of a human being. Every green job in this example destroys around 15 existing none green jobs.

Incoherent madness.

And is ‘green’ really cleaning the Earth or scarring it? For example, wind farms are the biggest con ever perpetuated on America. They litter the landscape as bird killing eye sores, and yet many would be surprised to know many of those windmills are not doing a damn thing except (literally) spinning their wheels:

Some say that Ka Le is haunted — and it is. But it’s haunted not by Hawaii’s legendary night marchers. The mysterious sounds are “Na leo o Kamaoa”– the disembodied voices of 37 skeletal wind turbines abandoned to rust on the hundred-acre site of the former Kamaoa Wind Farm.

Cannibalizing parts from the original 37 turbines, Apollo personnel kept the declining facility going with outdated equipment. But even in a place where wind-shaped trees grow sideways, maintenance issues were overwhelming.  By 2004 Kamaoa accounts began to show up on a Hawaii State Department of Finance list of unclaimed properties. In 2006, transmission was finally cut off by Hawaii Electric Company.

The turbines installed in the first wind rush were not very reliable.  Some never worked at all.  As the years passed and the elements took their toll, downtime climbed ever closer to 100% and production dwindled to negligible amounts.  Developers often set malfunctioning turbines to “virtual” mode — blades spinning without generating electricity — in order to keep oil circulating inside the turbine drive.  Of course this habit also gives passing drivers an illusion of productivity.

“At that point the whole pyramid collapsed.  They are firing thousands of people.  BP closed down the two largest solar production plants in Europe.  They are firing between 25,000 and 40,000 people….”

It is a long but important history lesson about how foolish and destructive the simpleton ideology of the left is. The vaunted wind and solar energy sectors are collapsing due to exaggerated claims and impossible promises.

Liberal ideology is now demonstrating why the founding fathers of this nation architected limited government. They did so in order to protect against the madness of a few destroying the lives of many others.

The protections needed against big business running amok on greed in the last century were a critical step in our ascension to the pinnacle of human history. But the rot has set in on the offspring of those historic times, which exposed again the vanity and crassness of humanity when given too much power over others.

Right now, today, the American people understand that the federal government is a huge threat to their livelihoods and individual pursuit of happiness. They will not totally decimate government and throw out the respected roles we all admire and rely on. But it is time to shred the rest down to the bare bone. Cut the regulations and limitations and bored, watching bureaucrats. Time to remove the real impediment to America. Time to cut the federal government way back and return power to the states and communities.

It is time to pick the path. Will it be D=Big Government or R=Individual Initiative?

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