It is 5am and I'm wide awake. I fell asleep hard and early last night. I wanted to stay up and process the battle report, but I just had to close my eyes, just for a moment.
My mind is turning and churning with various thoughts. Here's a rough draft which I plan on fleshing out later.
It must seem like I'm griping quite a bit on this blog, about the Federal Government that is (note that I have not taken issue with Utah State taxes nor even less with Spanish Fork City taxes-- benefits seems to be inversely proportionate with how far away the money is sent). I thought I would take a post and explain the positive direction that I would like to see taken in my beloved country:
1) Institution of Full Reserve Banking (and therefore the abolishment of the Federal Reserve)
The Federal Reserve is what allows for fractional reserve banking and all the nonsense on Wall Street (eg: 40:1 expansion of money). Fundamentally, it is the mechanism which allows one man (a banker, who has produced almost nothing) to eat food, wear shoes, live in a house while another man who has lost his job has no shoes, no food, no money to pay his bills, and is evicted from his home is out in the cold. The latter man doesn't understand that he lost his job because the business he works for is struggling to pay back loans, both the principle (which turns out is imaginary money that did not exist) and interest.
I believe that a system of Full Reserve Banking (or something close to it) would be much more equitable. It would prevent the defrauding of the common worker and bring and end to the bust and boom business cycle.
Bank "panics" are good. They keep the system honest. A bank that uses the full reserve system has no need to worry about people coming to get their deposits.
Central Banks also allow wars to drag on and on. Case in point: every quarter (or nearly every quarter) for the last eight years in the US there has been "emergency supplemental appropriations" for the wars (so-called, they were not declared by Congress). This means that the Federal Reserve provided funding for the wars which is paid for indirectly by the poorer classes later in the form of inflation.
The Federal Reserve is what allows the Federal Government to pass on the consequences of its actions four, eight or twelve years into the future.
2) Sound Money
I am a huge proponent of commodity money (where the paper note represents an actual commodity on hold somewhere). The fiat money that we are forced to use now allows the government (or it's contractors/employees) to get goods from the people that produce them at current rates and later crash into the edges of the economy (ie the common folk) in the form of higher prices. This invisible wave effectively sucks resources from the edge and into the middle.
3) Strengthening of States Rights
One size does not fit all!
It occurred to me after reading the comment about health care by my friend from Denmark that his country is roughly the population of Alabama. Concerns about centralization of power in the US must be taken much more seriously. We're talking about a world-dominating military juggernaut with the GDP of an entire continent. A State in the USA is the size of many countries. Even a po-dunk state like Utah has roughly the same population as Congo or Panama.
A Denmarkian health care program could be instituted at state level. I would be all right with that. It would be consistent with the US constitution.
The world looking on should be scared crap-less of centralization of power in the US. Seems to me. We've got nuclear subs prowling around the oceans of the world for pity's sake!
4) abolishment of the Income Tax
And replacing it with nothing. The various social programs (social security, medicaid) are essentially forced insurance. The government is not a good steward. The individual is a good steward.
Now I'm going to get a little schizophrenic and argue against myself.
against point 4) People can't be trusted to take care of themselves. The government is a good steward. I'm forty and have nothing saved for retirement. If it weren't for the Feds I'd be eating Alpo in my golden years. (What if) On the net, our little group of BTP workers gets back in benefits at least as much as we pay out in taxes, possibly more, so what am I griping about? (Not sure if this is right) I'm perfectly happy with my situation on the net. I have no ambitions to be super-rich, so those higher tax rates will never apply to me. If the business does as well as I hope, my main ambition is to just administer the money/resources back into the community.
Voluntary vs in-Voluntary
The real dichotomy here is that while arguing for individual liberty, and the de-centralization of power, I also voluntarily follow the path of a Mormon. This is possibly the most heirarchal, centralized-power theocracy on the face of the earth. I accept the infallible dictate of a Prophet of God. Holy crap. I tithe, paying 10% of my gross income to the Church, waaaaay more than I end up paying in taxes. I've paid it my whole life (well, since I was fifteen), and without fail for the last ten years. And not only that, but I spend 3-6 hours a week (conservatively five full working weeks a year) in church-related callings and activities. I spent two years of my young life in south america on a mission. I worked on the welfare (pear) farms every year as a youth in Oregon.
I'm happy as pie to do it, too. And no plans of stopping.
The reason is that my contributions to the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints (Mormons) is that it is voluntary! I like to do it. I have had an overwhelmingly positive experience with church programs. I believe in what the church is doing. I like how my tithing money is being spent. I trust local leaders (who I know personally) to be wise stewards of the community resources.
For example: I live in a ward, which is four blocks wide and three blocks deep. Every month everyone chips into a fund called "Fast Offerings". This gives the bishop (like a pastor) money to help out those that are having trouble. My wife and I always contribute the maximum we can and even then some. We have also gone to the bishop during rough months and had our needs immediately and fully met.
When I was a young man, there was a church building across the street from the high school. This was a safe haven from my youthful problems where I could get counseling and encouragement. Sister Gish, the secretary, would greet us with a smile and we could get a snack and sit in the library and read.
Sister missionaries who came to my house at age fifteen effectively saved me from becoming an alcoholic. And from the pernicious effects of promiscuity. This early intervention set the foundation for a very happy and secure life that I now live.
Surely now some reader is thinking "Shawn, don't government programs do this same sort of good work?" To which I say: blarg you haven't been paying attention. The difference is the element of free choice. Centralized power gained and maintained by force can be turned to evil purposes in an instant, and then there's no stopping it save through exceptional means. This is the huge-normous benefit of a voluntary system. Sure, some drek-heads that made themselves rich selling some crap on late-night infomercials might just waste it on hookers and blow but at least you don't have to pay them a congressional pension for the rest of their retired lives.
I know for myself that a voluntary program works. Government force is not needed to get people to take care of themselves.
I am absolutely convinced that our ward could handle everything, even big medical emergencies, locally. Especially if we had part of our Federal taxes re-routed to local programs.
I believe wholeheartedly in the power and wisdom of the common man, working locally. I think that a city government is the most likely to be wisely administered. And the most easily overthrown if it is acting contrary to the real interests of the populace.
I am very, very concerned about the centralization of power in the US. Once it starts, it's almost impossible to reverse. It happens through taxation, inflation, and debasement of the currency.
That's just me. Don't like Mormons? Think my world-view is whacked? Great! Feel free to donate to any cause you like. Feel free to go door to door and spread the word. Start a blog. Just as long as you do it (like me) on your own time and your own dime, and not someone else's.
More to come...
Posted by Blue Table Painting at 4:41 AM