Saturday, July 14, 2018

The time is long overdue to abolish the FDA.

In the last several days I've had four different people in discussions about what is going on with cigar regulations. For whatever reason, this story has people talking. On the surface, that's great. The devastation that government regulation wreaks upon our society normally goes unnoticed.

But my answer to solve the problem is one that nobody ever considers: Abolish the Food and Drug Administration. And I know what thoughts people have in their minds because I can see the look of surprise on their faces: "But what about our food?" "what about drug safety?" These and other questions just like them only prove just how well progressives have embedded themselves within our culture. We simply do not need government controlling every aspect of our lives.

Yes, I said control, because that's the real reason why the FDA was invented in the first place. The early progressives are just like today's progressives. They didn't care about our food. What they saw was an opportunity. A crisis is a terrible thing to waste. They even admit it. All of this government usurpation of our food arguably got started with the book "The Jungle", by Upton Sinclair. Sinclair famously stated that "I aimed for the public's heart, and hit it in the stomach". Translation: I was malcontenting for ways to make government bigger and help out my union thug friends, and ended up creating a new kind of opportunity in the process. So I really don't need to hear from anybody that the progressives are oh-so-caring and just had our best interests at heart with their creation of the FDA.

And even if you're the kind of person who refuses to look at ideology, acknowledge the motivation that ideology has in people's lives - even if you would rather play hear no evil, see no evil, speak no evil about progressivism, the results of the FDA are just as obvious.

To the progressives, attacking industry is all that matters. That's why they use an organization originally put together for FOOD as a weapon against a non food maker. When is the last time you saw someone eating a cigar? Well the FDA doesn't care about that. They just care about their power. The FDA has proven to be untrustworthy.

And it's not like this is some lone isolated case. Cases like this happen routinely in whatever form they manifest themselves. And then there's the arbitrary roadblocks for experimental medicine. But these one-off examples are actually a distraction. If the progressives couldn't use the FDA for their attacks, they would probably use the ATF to get it done. For them, it's a big fat whatever. They know the media will cover for them anyways.

"But can't we just fix the FDA instead of some extreme measure like abolishing it?" What's broken about it, exactly? The FDA is doing exactly what the progressives designed it for in the first place. It's putting controls into society for the purposes of whatever goals the progressives have in any given month or decade. Oh you meant just fixing the FDA so that it only actually focuses in on Food and Drugs and nothing else? But that's not its true purpose. We have over 100 years of progressivism now to prove this. We have their words to prove it, in book after book after book. Progressives have only ever cared about control and the proof is also everywhere you look.

I would argue that the FDA was the progressive movement's first step toward government control of healthcare in the United States. When did we get the FDA? 1906. When did the progressives start calling for government healthcare? 1912. Anybody who understands progressivism knows that's not a coincidence. It only took them six years to "make progress" and move on to their next goal of usurpation. What about the D in FDA? Does that have anything to do with health or healthcare?

The FDA and the long road to government control of healthcare is actually a tale of progressive greed. Enough is never enough with these people. They simply check off a box, and move on to the next thing hoping to gain more control. They don't just say "We want to control your food, but just your food. After that we're done! We swear! Honest! We won't ask to control anything else, never dream of it! We honestly do not have any other ambitions in your private life." The fact is that the progressives just keep on plotting and scheming and intriguing over the next target.

You want to put a significant crater in the move toward socialized medicine? Then your top priority is the abolition of the FDA. Go right for the source, the foundation. Go for the jugular.

Wednesday, July 4, 2018

Benjamin Franklin was not referring to the Patriot Act, he was referring to Obamacare

"Those who would give up essential Liberty, to purchase a little temporary Safety, deserve neither Liberty nor Safety"

What does this quote mean? It doesn't mean anything, when it is disconnected with the full of its author's words. Franklin wrote this in his Reply to the Governor in 1755, but how many people even know that? His letter is less than 2000 words, so it is not a long read. I recommend everybody read the full letter, because that is to the detriment of progressivism.

So, what does this quote mean? It only, only means what Franklin himself meant at the time he wrote it. It does not mean anything else. Here is a large part of what Franklin wrote to the Governor, in 1755:

Our Assemblies have of late had so many Supply Bills, and of such different Kinds, rejected on various Pretences; Some for not complying with obsolete occasional Instructions (tho’ other Acts exactly of the same Tenor had been past since those Instructions, and received the Royal Assent;) Some for being inconsistent with the supposed Spirit of an Act of Parliament, when the Act itself did not any way affect us, being made expresly for other Colonies; Some for being, as the Governor was pleased to say, “of an extraordinary Nature,” without informing us wherein that extraordinary Nature consisted; and others for disagreeing with new discovered Meanings, and forced Constructions of a Clause in the Proprietary Commission; that we are now really at a Loss to divine what Bill can possibly pass. The proprietary Instructions are Secrets to us; and we may spend much Time, and much of the Publick Money, in preparing and framing Bills for Supply, which, after all, must, from those Instructions, prove abortive. If we are thus to be driven from Bill to Bill, without one solid Reason afforded us; and can raise no Money for the King’s Service, and Relief or Security of our Country, till we fortunately hit on the only Bill the Governor is allowed to pass, or till we consent to make such as the Governor or Proprietaries direct us to make, we see little Use of Assemblies in this Particular; and think we might as well leave it to the Governor or Proprietaries to make for us what Supply Laws they please, and save ourselves and the Country the Expence and Trouble. All Debates and all Reasonings are vain, where Proprietary Instructions, just or unjust, right or wrong, must inviolably be observed. We have only to find out, if we can, what they are, and then submit and obey. But surely the Proprietaries Conduct, whether as Fathers of their Country, or Subjects to their King, must appear extraordinary, when it is considered that they have not only formally refused to bear any Part of our yearly heavy Expences in cultivating and maintaining Friendship with the Indians, tho’ they reap such immense Advantages by that Friendship; but they now, by their Lieutenant, refuse to contribute any Part towards resisting an Invasion of the King’s Colony, committed to their Care; or to submit their Claim of Exemption to the Decision of their Sovereign.

In fine, we have the most sensible Concern for the poor distressed Inhabitants of the Frontiers. We have taken every Step in our Power, consistent with the just Rights of the Freemen of Pennsylvania, for their Relief, and we have Reason to believe, that in the Midst of their Distresses they themselves do not wish us to go farther. Those who would give up essential Liberty, to purchase a little temporary Safety, deserve neither Liberty nor Safety. Such as were inclined to defend themselves, but unable to purchase Arms and Ammunition, have, as we are informed, been supplied with both, as far as Arms could be procured, out of Monies given by the last Assembly for the King’s Use; and the large Supply of Money offered by this Bill, might enable the Governor to do every Thing else that should be judged necessary for their farther Security, if he shall think fit to accept it.

So, what is he talking about?

He is talking about wealth redistribution, in the context of the legislation itself. What was the Pennsylvania legislature doing at the time? Franklin describes how they were putting together "Supply bills". Supplying what, exactly? It was appropriating money and handing out guns to people who seemingly needed them to fight against the invading British French and Indians. But as Franklin made clear, the people in question not only left the responsibility to others to procure their guns, but they also left the responsibility of actively defending themselves to others.

Now I know a lot of you are going to be shocked to learn that an American government was using wealth redistribution as a means to hand out guns to some of the citizens, but Franklin makes it clear that they were not exactly bitter clingers here. They weren't interested in lifting a finger for themselves in this context. And we shouldn't have a government that redistributes money for guns. Franklin is correct here. Wealth redistribution is evil, and the object sought is completely irrelevant.

He does have a different context for this quote as well, it should be stated. He also means a reference to these people who were beneficiaries of the new colonies, but would not help defend those colonies. They sought safety and security instead with the British crown. But because the King did not represent Liberty and was not offering it either, these people deserved neither safety nor liberty. In this context its actually quite brilliant. To use a word, these people were punks. But I digress.

Let's compare the Patriot Act with Obamacare.

Does the Patriot Act redistribute wealth? No, it does not.

Does Obamacare redistribute wealth? Yes, it does.

Not only that, but a large portion of the arguments surrounding Obamacare are rooted in safety and security. The arguments sound a little like this:

"My family ...... safety and security ...... in times of job loss ...... "

"The evil corporations ........ keep raising their prices ...... we need to be safe from them ......"

We have heard them all and we have heard others as well. There's the constant caterwauling about people who can never afford any kind of healthcare, and are thus insecure. And then there's this: Gallup and other polling agencies are out there running polls from time to time about "healthcare insecurity"!

Well guess what Gallup. Those who would give up essential Liberty, to purchase a little temporary Safety, deserve neither Liberty nor Safety.

So then at the end of the day, by definition, Franklin could not have been referring to something like the Patriot Act. To claim as such, is taking him out of context.

Saturday, June 30, 2018

Herbert Hoover and the largest tax increase in American History

I like how the constant harping and carping about tariffs these days gets invoked together with fearmongering about Smoot Hawley and the Great Depression. What is missing? The Revenue Act of 1932. After the 1929 crash there was a small tax cut, but this was overshadowed by Smoot Hawley just months later. In the middle of bad economic times, you simply don't raise taxes, and yes, a tariff is a tax. But let's get to the meat of the numbers, shall we?

The Revenue Acts of 1918 and 1921 had a top tax rate of 73%.

The Revenue Act of 1924 reduced this to a top tax rate of 46%.

The Revenue Act of 1926 reduced this again to a top tax rate of 25%.

It was not raised from this number until The Revenue Act of 1932, which had a top tax rate of 63%. This was lower than the ninteen-teens tax rates of 73%, but considering the jump of 25% to 63%, this is over a 100% increase and it indeed was at the time the largest peacetime tax increase in American history.

But that is not what we received in 2017. For all its flaws, the 2017 Tax Cuts and Jobs Act does a reverse-Hoover by lowering taxes. I can explain; there is a certain formula here:

1929: poor economy, raising tariffs, largest tax increase in American history. (From what I can tell, they were not lowering burdensome regulations in 1929 either)

2017/2018: decent economy, raising tariffs, lowering taxes as well as lowering regulation.

See the stark differences here? Most of the time we hear that these tariffs should not exist and they will only lead to trade wars and other issues. But in reality it is the 16th amendment which should be repealed. The only thing they get correct when talking about this issue is that a mixture of income taxes and tariffs is a deadly combo. They should not be mixed. But it isn't the tariffs which should be eliminated, it is the income tax which should die a horrible and bloody death.

The Founding Fathers used tariffs as the only (or at least main) form of taxation, and that is probably the most proper way of taxation. The irony of tariffs is that they are in general taxes only on the rich - the problem is that it does not grant the kind of authoritarian domestic controls that income taxes bring, which is really what the progressives love and seek.

Even with taxes, the issue is not actually the issue. For progressives, control is the issue and control is always the real issue. Everything else is merely window dressing. It's always been about control and it has been this way going back to 1906 when income taxes were first proposed by the president in his SOTU that year. It's all about control.

Friday, June 8, 2018

Who was the first President to implement price controls?

The more I research progressivism to discover ways to use their history against them, the more I understand why nobody's ever really done this before. Nobody actually wants the answer to the question because it always leads back to Theodore Roosevelt.

In today's episode of erased history, or how American progressive historians have turned TR's legacy into the American version of a picture missing Nikolai Yezhov, we examine how price controls, contrary to popular belief, was not first implemented by Nixon, or Franklin Roosevelt, or even Woodrow Wilson as a part of the effort for World War I. But it was, naturally, the offspring of authoritarian progressivism. The first progressive is the one who gave us this nonsense. These progressives, they just couldn't wait to take control of everything.

You see, price controls were first implemented in the mix of Theodore Roosevelt's anti-capitalist efforts. Specifically, the war on railroads. The year was 1906. The act was the Hepburn Act. Judge Napolitano, a brave man for taking on TR's legacy and doing the job that most mainstream historians just do not want to do, describes it thusly:

The Hepburn Act gave the Interstate Commerce Commission(ICC) the power to set maximum rates for railroads

In other words, price controls. Which have never worked btw. Price controls are a guaranteed 100% failure of a policy and it was also a failure for TR. In the end, the railroad companies were so damaged by the totality of Hepburn that it gave rise to the modern trucking industry as we know it today.(I wrote about this about a year and a half ago, here) The FTC is quite proud of this legacy of price fixing, as they write here in a suspicious little footnote: (p. 19)

Most significantly, the 1906 Hepburn Act (different from the 1908 Hepburn Bill, discussed infra) empowered the ICC to replace existing rates, upon complaint, with “reasonable” maxima

Yeah right. If you like your railroad rates, you can keep your railroad rates. We know what the progressives consider to be "reasonable" and its never reasonable. But notice their play on words. To "replace existing rates". They could have just said price controls. Theodore Roosevelt even wrote in his own Autobiography, the following: (page 560)

I have always believed that it would also be necessary to give the National Government complete power over the organization and capitalization of all business concerns engaged in inter-State commerce.

Go ahead and show me any big time TR historian who has collected this information and presented the big-government progressive side of our 26th president. I've never seen it. The world has never seen this. We have been lied to on a grand scale by progressives.

As far as the progressive historians are concerned, Theodore Roosevelt was just a great guy. He was just an outdoorsman. Isn't that great? He was just almost assassinated, but nothing more. He even kept speaking! Wasn't he great? Strenuous lifestyle! Strenuous lifestyle! Strenuous lifestyle! In no way shape or form should you ever examine his substantive political record, in no way should you ever examine big government. Shame on you.

Well, shame on me anyways. And it's a shame I proudly wear. Sunlight is the best disinfectant and we've got ourselves a century's old outbreak of progressive bacteria to cleanse. You don't just mow a stubborn garden weed and then hope it goes away. You have to destroy the roots.

Saturday, June 2, 2018

Constitution? Not important.

In his book "Progressive Democracy" (1914), Herbert Croly wrote the following: (page 29)
As in the case of every great political edifice, the materials composing the American system are derived from many different sources, and are characterized by unequal values, both as to endurance and as to latent possibilities. The appearance of definiteness and finality which it derives from its embodiment in specific constitutional documents and other authoritative words is to a large extent illusory. Its real origin and meaning are very much more doubtful and complex than these words intimate. Historians are no more agreed as to the former than political theorists are to the latter.

So what do we take from this? The Constitution, well that's not important. It cannot be, if its authority is largely illusory. Additionally, the rise of the professional (progressive) historian brought disagreement, because they too didn't see anything worthy in the Constitution. This benefits political authors and journalists who also have a similar mindset, because now they don't have to point to a friend they work with, they can point to some "distant" "expert" who by only a surface-level examination appears to be unbiased. So wink wink, nod nod over here, wink wink nod nod over there, everybody is in agreement - the Constitution sucks. These are old, outmoded ideals and we should progress toward something which is clearly better. We should progress toward something which is more concrete and not an illusion. Three pages in, Croly clarifies:

Emphatic, however, as was this assertion of its direct control over its own political institutions by the primitive American democracy, its willingness to restrict its own effective political power was no less definite and insistent. It did not show the slightest disposition to translate this supposedly effective popular control over the institutes of government into active popular control over governmental behavior. The democracy abdicated the continuing active exercise of effective power in the very act of affirming the reality of its own ultimate legal authority.

So you see, the illusion is the contradictory assertion of direct control, but yet a restriction on its own power. You need full total control, nothing less! Without full total control, that's the illusion. It's an abdication of effective power, that's what he's saying. The Constitution is, in his view, not important because it's a joke.

People with a mindset such as this cannot understand governmental limitations. Government is force, and these were the people, these progressives, who were born to be our masters. Government should be big, it should be unlimited, and of course! it should be the progressives who are in power until eternity.

Wednesday, May 16, 2018

They're still lying and calling us anti-government. But we are Tea Partiers, and we love government

If you love the United States Constitution, then by definition you love government. That's what the Constitution does. It creates a government.

What we as Tea Partiers do not love is progressivism or any other movement and/or ideology that seeks to pervert the Constitution and build government that will control every aspect of our lives.

Loving government doesn't mean loving big government. We do not love big out of control bloated disrespectful government. But anti-government means anarchy, and Tea Partiers are not anarchists. Anarchists do not love the United States Constitution. This is ground where we cannot under any circumstances find a place to compromise. The Constitution is a hill worth fighting on, it is a hill worth dying on.

See the first ten words of this article. Garbage in, garbage out.

We are Tea Partiers, and we love the United States Constitution. It cannot, therefore, be stated otherwise: We love government.

Wednesday, May 9, 2018

The constitution and the second amendment: "It always has been up for reinterpretation"

Has it? In case you didn't notice, Representative Bill Foster believes in word substitution and the living and breathing constitutional doctrine. He said:
It always has been up for reinterpretation. The technology changes, and the weapons thought to be too dangerous to be in private hands change. A civil war cannon is frankly much less dangerous than weapons we are allowed to carry on the streets in many of the states and cities in our country today. This is something where technology changes and public attitude changes and both are important in each of the generations.

Of course, if one part of the Constitution is up for reinterpretation, the whole thing is. But that's less important than the fact that Representative Foster is disagreeing with his own forefathers here. He would have you believe that the Constitution has always been living and breathing - this is a common refrain with progressives. They want to push this ideal that what they believe, the progressives, that's how it has always been. Well, a historian worth his salt would see through this. His own founding fathers, in the early 1900s, sung a very different tune. As I pointed out in January, in 1912, the constitution was not "living and breathing". Here is a brief snippet of what the progressives' own founding fathers were saying:

Can a practically unamendable constitution, adopted in the conditions and under the influences of the political thought prevailing at the end of the eighteenth century, be adapted by judicial interpretation to the needs and thought of the twentieth century without causing us to lose the advantages which are commonly regarded as attached to a written constitution?

That's Frank Johnson Goodnow, who was at one point President of John's Hopkins University. Walter Weyl, who quotes (agreeing with) Goodnow in a different writing: (page 111)

According to Prof. Frank J. Goodnow, there are some measures " which many believe to be absolutely necessary either now or in the future . . . which we in the United States are probably precluded from adopting because of the attitude now taken by the courts towards our practically unamendable federal constitution."

Charles Beard, one of the first revisionist historians of progressivism, wrote the following: (page 56)

The new Constitution bound every state to an amendment, in case it was approved bv two-thirds of both houses of Congress and ratified by three-fourths of the states. Even this system, as events have proved, has required such extraordinary majorities as to make amendments by regular process well-nigh impossible.

The Progressive(Bull Moose) Party platform of 1912 laid out in its platform the necessity of easier amendment - the first plank! Additionally, Roosevelt talked about the importance of this, such as:

We propose to make the process of Constitutional amendment far easier, speedier, and simpler than at present.

Bill Foster believes it was always open to reinterpretation and change.

The original progressives did not believe it was always open to reinterpretation and whined that it was impossible to change.

Both cannot be correct.