Tag Archives: FDR

On Government

UPDATE: This was not from Honest Abe.

You cannot bring about prosperity by discouraging thrift.

Lax credit and easy spending policies are products of both Democrat and Republican leaderships in years past. The conservative movement has recognized the failures of this more so than their compatriots in the liberal movement. Calls for the privatization of Fannie and Freddie, two of the main contributors to the whole system of easy credit, are not likely to be heeded by the current elected leadership in Washington D.C. And Fed Chairman Bernanke believes such easy credit is the best policy, despite it’s contribution to the economic failures of the last several years.

You cannot strengthen the weak by weakening the strong.

Political correctness is losing favor across the ideological aisles. This false equality of outcome which relies on enforced restrictions on true equality, that is, the equality of potential, has been a pernicious evil in our country. But other perniciously evil policies continue to thrive here. Policies that drag down those who have achieved in order to not unnecessarily burden those who will not achieve with that natural and good desire to become something other than the abject failures. Except that’s not right, you can only fail if you’ve started at something. Many of these haven’t started anything and therefore aren’t failures but worse. Any system that encourages people in any way to remain nothings is evil for it robs them of their humanity as surely as Nazi extermination program robbed so many of their humanity.

You cannot help the wage earner by pulling down the wage payer.

In that iconic moment when Joe the Plumber‘s question drew out then Senator Obama‘s statement that we need to spread the wealth around, it revealed a misunderstanding of economic systems that time has not changed. If you want to grow jobs, you make it easier for companies to make and keep money. If you take what they make for your own wealth redistribution programs and to “spread it around” you hurt not just the business you wanted to stick it to, but all its employees and potential employees as well. This isn’t rocket science.

You cannot further the brotherhood of man by encouraging class hatred.

Ever since FDR, liberal leaders have been adept at pitting class against class. There is no inherent nobility in the individual man whose mind and heart must be won. There is only the group, the LGBT, the blacks, the whites, the lower class, the middle class, the upper class, the “them”, the “us”, the hispanics, the wage earners, the corporations, the haves, the have-nots. Targeted fiscal policy meant to assuage the ire of a particular class are unconstitutional as they do not benefit every American equally, which is a requirement of federal policy. It’s vote-buying and favor peddling. And the result is a torn and fragmented society beset by such tensions within it cannot unify to address situations without.

You cannot help the poor by destroying the rich.

The poor will always be among us. This doesn’t free us from a responsibility to assist them. Instead it requires we develop consistent and repeatable patterns of assistance with several criteria. There must be a filter that prevents moochers and freeloaders from taking resources that would be better appreciated and taken advantage of by those deserving poor. And the money for such charity must be given willingly, not taken without recourse. A rich man who does not give to charity only illumines the shallowness of his own soul. He does not deserve theft of his goods, only the scorn of society.

You cannot keep out of trouble by spending more than you earn.

This is a failure of nearly everybody in leadership in Washington D.C. and a result of an uncareful electorate who do not take real pains to determine the true character of the candidate or who believe that character doesn’t matter.

You cannot build character and courage by taking away man’s initiative and independence.

Just as by helping a butterfly escape it’s chrysalid prison you doom it to a short, painful life and quick, ugly death, by taking away the responsibilities of a person or natural societal group, you end up with stunted and immature people who will continue all the ills aformentioned.

You cannot help men permanently by doing for them what they could and should do for themselves.

There are few things more evil than to do for someone else what they are capable of doing themselves. Particularly when they are not in dire need and what they need to accomplish is a task that would encourage or build in them traits of character not already full-fledged in their being.

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Government Economy: Ignoring Facts

In our increasingly government-controlled (-manipulated, -throttled, -ridden) economy, we get to see how people who do not believe in the free market expect the engines of American capitalism to run.

It’s not like we haven’t been able to see this before. After all, the 20th century is littered with the corpses of Command and Control Economies.

But this is the first (second: FDR tried really hard too with the alphabet soup of government agencies he successfully wielded to lengthen the Great Depression far beyond what it should’ve been) time we get to see what happens when our own beloved economy is ridden by the government to extremes we’ve not seen before.

Exhibit A is GM. Now bankrupt and after accepting huge loans from the government, the government will shortly own a majority of this company.

And now the revisionist history begins.

Today’s Bloomberg report on the bankruptcy, paragraph 1:

General Motors Corp. won court approval on its first day in bankruptcy to sell assets as soon as next month after collapsing under $172.8 billion in debt and failing to adapt to consumer demands for smaller cars.

All well and good except for one thing: Consumers are not necessarily demanding smaller cars.

Google “best selling cars” and you get a pretty consistent picture: trucks are selling well, and so are full-size sedans. The only compact cars in the top 10 of any list are the Honda Civic and Toyota Corolla, and they’re in the middle of the list. In the worst 10 selling lists are bloated SUVs such as the Hummer. No surprise there.

Green machines (hybrids and ultra-compacts) have always been a lethargic segment of the auto sales and they’ve suffered as much as anybody else with the economic issues.

The Bloomberg article was reworded shortly after initial press this morning and has dropped the bit about demand for small cars. (you can still find the original wording at this splog (spam blog) site that rips headlines to create content for itself. Not actually linking to prevent follow spam: http://itsp.info/index.php/2009/06/02/gm-bankruptcy-judge-approves-asset-sale-on-first-day-bloomberg.html).

One of the major plans of the now government owned GM is to increase production of one of the most lethargic segment of vehicle: ultra-compacts and small hybrids. FromĀ  Bloomberg again:

One idle GM facility in the U.S. will be retooled to make small, fuel-efficient cars as part of an agreement with union workers, GM said May 29.

Now what kind of business is run by making cars for which there currently isn’t a real market?

Especially for a company emerging from bankruptcy, this kind of action is pointless and worse.

Unless the leadership of that company is aware of changing market conditions well beyond the awareness we’ve seen to date, or they know something we don’t.

Unfortunately for what appears to be the deepest desire of most the leadership in the Obama administration: you cannot control demand so long as there is choice.

The only way communist countries control demand is by controlling the entire market. And even when presented with only one option, they still usually get to choose whether or not to take it.

Because the government will very likely own 60% of GM, they will be very interested in one or both of these two options: running the company according to the ideology, and making a return on their investment.

The ideology of the current government makes those two options almost completely exclusive. You cannot control the market and demand in what is still, essentially, a free market.

My prediction: GM will continue hemorhaging money. Lots of money.

Our tax dollars will continue to be poured into the black hole of stagnating demand segments and poorly made vehicles.

Until the price fixing monopolistic unions are torn free and GM is free to hire talent at wages the market supports…

Until GM recognizes the necessity of meeting the market where it is instead of where it ought to be according to some Command Economy wet dream…

Until the free market is allowed to destroy those who do not adapt and innovate…

…We will continue to be force to send good money after bad. And we’ll be told we like it.