Tuesday, February 24, 2009

"Not because I believe in bigger government, I don't." - Obama

As many of you know, Obama made his first address to Congress tonight. This address was concentrated nearly entirely on the economy. He started out by talking about the sorry state of our economy, and how it is affecting everyone either directly or indirectly. He reiterated the point that America will prevail and recover. I don't doubt that we will prevail and recover, but not because of Keynesian economic policies that the Democratic Party is implementing. Not because of the spending, bailing out, and intervention of the Federal Government.

He criticizes CEO's for taking taxpayer money and then flying in private jets and padding their balance sheets. He said that those days are over. Instead of applauding a governmental plan that will now limit the spending of the top executives of companies, we should be asking: Why are these banks getting taxpayer money anyway? And how can the federal government expect a company to change its ways when they have just set a precedent of bailing out any failing bank as long as they are 'too big to fail?' Instead of trying to control these companies and giving them taxpayer money, the free market would force them to make changes or simply fail. Instead of having a job as a CEO, they will be out looking for jobs with the rest of the employees who have lost their job. The top executives and board of directors should answer to stockholders (the owners of the company) instead of the federal government who is fatally inefficient and ineffective.

He rejects the notion that government's role does not include intervening to bring the country out of a recession. He is basically saying, I reject supply-side economics and I approve of Keynesian economic policy. When has Keynesian economic policies ever worked? It prolonged the depression of the last 20's into the 30's, and it will prolong this depression as well.

A few comments concerning the address:

Obama said we need to 'take responsibility for our future once more.' How is spending money that we surely cannot pay back for years to come taking responsibility of our future? Think about it: we just passed a spending bill that cost nearly a trillion dollars even though our nation is deeply in debt. We are the biggest debtor nation in the world. Our country is deeply in debt, and instead of drastically cutting spending we are drastically increasing it.

"We import more oil today than ever before" - Drill Alaska and offshore, that would help us move towards a more independent America.

Our schools are not preparing our children to compete in the global economy - School vouchers would give parents choices for their children, increase competition, and therefore increase the quality of our education. Why not give it a chance? Clearly our current system is not working effectively.

Energy Policy - He wants to put a cap-and-trade system on carbon emissions. This is not going to help promote business, but make business more expensive. As if our extremely high corporate tax isn't enough to drive business out of the country, this will surely make America even less attractive for business.

Higher Education - He said he wants every American to go to at least one year of higher education. This simply is not possible. Not everyone needs to go to college; it does not make sense for everyone to go to college. I point to Michael Powell's article "College is Overrated," where an argument is made against higher education. Also, he foreshadowed the inevitable push we will see within the next two years where service for school is going to be grandfathered in, eventually resulting in mandatory service for all 18-25 year olds.

"Not because I believe in bigger government, I don't." - Ironic. How can he say that? Most everything he supports results in bigger government.

After listening to this address, the sharp contrast between Obama's policy and true conservative policy could not be more clear. There was very little I heard during this address that I truly agreed with. The liberal agenda is in very sharp contrast to the cause of liberty. Though the current policy of the Federal Government is in such opposition to the cause of Liberty, I see hope in the message of liberty. The message of liberty is popular. The message of liberty is growing. Above all else the message of liberty offers true hope and change. President Obama, you can pursue your policies, grow the size of government at a rapid pace, and even increase government intervention in the free market to an all-time high, but I will choose to align myself with the cause of liberty, limited government, and the free markets.

3 comments:

Zack Tamble said...

David I like whet you're doing here.
"We import more oil today than ever before" - Drill Alaska and offshore, that would help us move towards a more independent America.

Just one note, why not save the destructive drilling of our beautiful ANWR and promote more renewable energy. The petrol in ANWR, if we can get at it efficiently, will only help US out for a maximum of about 5-10 years. We need to move toward independence with our energy use. Renewable Energy will be the best option for us, it may be expensive now but in the future there will be a lowering of price due to gov't incentive and R&D advances.

DC said...

Thanks for the comment Zack.

In response to your comment, first I'm not sure if you knew this but the 'footprint' left by the drilling is as low as the size of a large airport (see under supporting views) such as LAX, and as more technology is developed this has become smaller and smaller. This technology will also allow companies to do extreme resorative work to bring the area nearly back to its natural beauty, and really it would not be that distinguishable before and after to the average human. I think the affect drilling would have on wildlife is grossly overstated.

"The petrol in ANWR, if we can get at it efficiently, will only help US out for a maximum of about 5-10 years."
I would be interested where you got this figure from, and also you missed the second part of my statement where I said Drill Alaska AND offshore. Offshore drilling has such huge potential, yet its the Dem's who continuously block us, then complain about foreign entanglements over oil. I find that slightly ironic. I would like to point to an article which basically states the truth about oil in Alaska: nobody can accurately assess the amount of oil there.

"We need to move toward independence with our energy use. "
I don't think there is any debate about this, I think both sides agree. But like I said before, drilling offshore could potentially make us energy independent.

"Renewable Energy will be the best option for us, it may be expensive now but in the future there will be a lowering of price due to gov't incentive and R&D advances."

Here is a question I pose to you: HOW will renewable energy be the best option for us? This is the fundamental difference between liberals/Keynesians and Free market advocates. I think everyone agrees that 'clean' energy is the desireable way to go, but how do we get there? Do we allow the free market to pursue these new energy sources, who will necesarily do this the most efficiently versus the government? Or do we allow the government to intervene despite the fact they are without fail inefficient and wasteful of the resources they are given?

Just one example of a totally botched attempt by the government: E85 fuel. They mandated that a certain % of corn be used for ethanol, which caused corn prices to rise. I think you can see how the rising price of corn caused many other food prices to rise. Also, even if every single acre of corn in the United States was put towards ethanol production it would supply only 12% of motor fuel. Don't forget that billions of dollars was subsidized by the US government to make ethanol production profitable. Not to mention all the other 'unclean' fuels needed to process the corn into ethanol.

"...may be expensive now but in the future there will be a lowering of price due to gov't incentive and R&D advances." Stop and think a second: if renewable energy was cheaper due to government incentive (i'm guessing you are talking about subsidization and spending) how is that any cheaper for us? You have to realize any dollar that the government has to spend or subsidize is taken directly out of our pockets. The government does not produce, they take money out of the private market and then spend it. So no it is not any less expensive, it is in fact more expensive because the government is necessarily inefficient when it comes to spending.

This brings us to your very last point, that renewable energy will become less expensive through R&D advances. Exactly. This is why the private market needs to be the ones who innovate and create business through renewable energy, not the government. For-profit companies are more productive, since they cannot simply take money from people and spend more, instead, they must be profitable. Instead of watching the government tax and control the private market through cap-and-trade carbon taxes and massive spending and subsidization, the free market will 'fix' the energy problem much more efficiently than the government could ever dream of.

I'll leave you (and anyone else who spent the time to read this long comment with this): What is the proper role of government? Is it to control the free market? Is it to make artificial demand for certain energy and fuels, nationalize banks, and take trillions of dollars out of the free market and attempt to spend it more efficiently? I think it truly is a sad situation to see how big our government has become and how far it has overstepped its boundaries. Their attempt to 'fix' the energy situation and put all sorts of regulation and controls on the private market is just one example of hundreds of the government simply making situations worse.

-DC

Zack Tamble said...

DC-

Petrol is a non-renewable resource. Once it is taken from the ground, there simply is no way to restore it. The wildlife, I could care less about, I don't think I'll ever be going up to admire the frozen tundra anytime soon.

The U.S. in its entirety consumes 20,680,000 barrels of oil per day. (25.1% of world production and 24.3% of world consumption) Both numbers are on any given day.. So the link you mentioned contains claims that there is a safe mean estimate of 10.4 billion barrels in ANWR, MAYBE. Alright lets take that 10.4 billion divided our daily use.. It gives us about 483 days of oil consumption, not going to lie, I pulled the 5-10 year claim out-of-my-ass. So even if we drill and take the resource that took millions of years to create, we would only give ourselves a year and a third of oil independence. As far as I can say, its obvious that I do not favor drilling, even offshore drilling. Drilling offshore, or drilling in general will only give us so much, its the oil that we need to cut back on as individuals. It isn't up to the Gov't to see where our dependence on oil is, its up to the people because we are all using this oil in ways that we aren't even aware of. I don't see offshore drilling as getting us anywhere near to energy independence.

Ethanol is kind of a joke. I believe people thought it was going to be so great, and this gave so much hope for it. Most people don't understand that it's not that much cheaper, like you said it isn't viable, and mostly I feel like it was just a way to get people to be motivated about cleaner, more sustainable energy.

*Air fueled autos are absolutely killing it in India right now BTW.


Sure, the Gov't takes money from us but there are a lot of people out there shielded by this and don't see exactly how thier taxes are taken. This is mostly because people are too lazy too care or do anything about their situation.

The gov't does what it should, stay out, and among the free market, Google and other companies with god-like amounts of money will make renewable energy happen.
There must be some regulation. There will always be some kind of regulation with the Gov't, I just don't agree with the Gov't telling me whether or not I can plant a tree X feet from water, or whatever.
Leave the renewables to the people that desire them, we will build the best machines and develop the best systems to get the efficiency where it needs to be. Then, since the Gov't is the largest owner of buildings in the US, they will adopt these solar panels and wind turbines. Yes they will be costly, but thats where I'd like to see my tax money go, not to weapons development and all this useless shit.

Money is treated as if its fake. There will never be a fully repayment to the Debt. Not even our kids kids kids kids.. etc.. Will ever pay off the US debt.

-Zack