Friday, September 24, 2010

Federal Fascism in Minnesota

Glenda McGee just sent me a link to Twin's Mara Gottfried's coverage of FBI raids of political activists' homes in Minneapolis.  According to the article, the FBI forcibly searched the home of left wing activists Mike Kelly, Jessica Sundin and Meredith Aby, all of whom have organized a past anti-war protest and are planning a new one.  The three have traveled to the Middle East. The FBI confiscated Kelly's cell phone. No charges have been brought against them.  According to an FBI spokesman, Steve Warfield, the FBI was executing warrants that a federal judge had reviewed under a 1996 anti-terrorism law.  According to the article Warfield offered no public explanation of what the FBI was seeking.  According to Gottfried:

>Kelly, Sundin and Aby were organizers of a mass march on the first day of the Republican National Convention in St. Paul two years ago. They recently appeared at a news conference to announce plans for another protest if Minneapolis is selected to hold the 2012 Democratic National Convention.

Conservatives ought to be as concerned about this as libertarians are. The FBI is as likely to use overly aggressive laws against Tea Party protestors as against left-wing anti-war protestors. 

The action prior to the DNC makes one wonder whether the Obama administration had input to it. Republican Theodore Roosevelt founded the FBI under the name "Bureau of Investigation"  during the Progressive era a century ago to regulate interstate commerce under the Interstate Commerce Act.  Thus, the FBI is a classic illustration of Milton Friedman's thesis in Capitalism and Freedom that economic regulation leads to incursions on civil liberties.  Although the Bureau has performed stellar service in many areas, it abused Martin Luther King and other Americans involved in peaceful protest. As early as 1919, J. Edgar Hoover lead the then-called Bureau of Investigation in the Palmer Raids, targeting the Union of Russian Workers and labor activists in 1919 and 1920, eventually deporting a small percentage of the individuals investigated.  The methods used then involved a shotgun approach with little regard for ethics or constitutionality.  As well, Palmer and Hoover advocated a new Alien and Sedition Act.

America has gone through these suppressive outbursts during big government administrations. The first was the Federalists' passage of the Alien and Sedition Act.  The Republican administration of Lincoln also passed various suppressive laws such as the legal tender law and the draft.  Then, the Progressives engaged in the Red Scare.  Since then there have been intermittant applications of Federalist/Whig/Progressive suppression of individual liberty, including McCarthyism and Michael Bloomberg's recent claim that the Tea Party was responsible for a car bomb left in New York City.

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Good and Bad New Bills Proposed

The above video asserts:

-HR 6145 and S 3791 introduced by Tom Coburn would require Congressmen to pay their taxes.  S 3790, introduced by Tom Coburn, would make people who do not pay their taxes ineligible for federal employment.  It would kick Tim Geithner out of his job.

-S 510 introduce by Dick Durbin is a sneaky way to introduce world government.  S 3628, introduced by Chuck Schumer, would prohibit government contractors and foreign government is an attempt to silence freedom oriented activists.

-HR 6134 would provide for a 10% reduction of pay for Congressmen and to reduce labor costs of Congress.

It is not clear which of these bills is likely to pass. But rather than watch television news, a better use of your time would be to contact your Congressman and give him or her your opinion on these bills.

If You Are Profiting from Wall Street's Current Merger Boom, Then the US Government Works for You

The Democrats claim to be the party of the poor, but if you have been following my blog you know that is pap.  Since November 2008 the economy has done poorly for the average American.  According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, unemployment is 9.6 percent. Americans on Social Security saw no increase but local taxes increased, leaving them short.  Inflation, at 1.1 percent, has been modest, but people are beginning to suspect inaccuracies in the BLS numbers.  I hear complaints about food prices' going up.  In any case, there is no reason to think that anything will reduce the unemployment rate in the near future.

Thus, the stimulus and the bailout have failed to produce significant results.  This is not surprising. Keynesian policies failed during the Great Depression as well.  Pundits assert that as a result of the recent failure of the Bush-Obama policies (failure on paper, not in their intent, which is to help Wall Street, not to reduce unemployment), Larry Summers and Rahm Emanuel have handed in their resignations.

One of the Bush-Obama strategies has been to massively expand the monetary base and the money supply.   The argument for this policy is monetarist, and the monetarists don't differ much from Keynesians. Both believe that printing money can beneficially stabilize the economy.  Neither accedes that the new money is a wealth transfer device to Wall Street.

Forbes reports that the wealthiest Americans have gotten wealthier this year.  The wealthiest among them are Warren Buffett and Bill Gates, both of whom are Democrats.  According to the Los Angeles Times mergers and acquisitions are at an all time high.  A guest on Bloomberg radio today was saying that Wall Street has never had a better year.  Although this is never stated in the Wall Street-controlled media, Wall Street's economic flourishing depends entirely on the Federal Reserve Bank. It is not attributable to free markets and it is not capitalist.

The Wall Street investment banks and law firms are profiting handsomely due to the Fed's monetary creation and the Bush-Obama administration. The merger activity is directly due to the administration's new money.  It has had no hand in reducing unemployment, in improving the economy or making the public better off.  Rather, it serves to harm the economy by reducing competition and paying commissions to bankers and Wall Street lawyers for destroying rather than creating wealth.

If you have seen a commission check or have a salary that depends on the recent expansion of merger activity, the US government is working for you.  If not, you are its patsy.