From the Apollo Program to the Fiscal Cliff

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by Bob Pappas, USMC (Ret.), ©2012, blogging at Gulf1

(Dec. 15, 2012) — Fox News Channel recently featured the story of the Apollo program that put Americans on the Moon, hosted by Fox News’ Neil Cavuto. The Apollo program was a magnificent albeit an expensive achievement at the height of the Vietnam War. What makes is particularly significant was the fact that it was visionary and a test of American Scientific prowess. It was the elixir that quieted fears of Soviet dominance while providing a psychological boost to the nation mired in an unpopular war. Among other things, it resulted in the development of an array of technologies that enabled unprecedented economic expansion, and ushered in the “hi-tech” era. It benefited all Americans and the world by technology spin offs and improved virtually everyone’s economic well being. America had vision during those days, but the light was dimmed by politics, and with the rise of Obama has been all but snuffed out.

The space program was expensive and so social planners and social justice advocates and their political surrogates argued that money could be better used to advance the “plight of the poor.” Poor, that is, who nowadays own two TVs, cell phones, automobiles and live better judging from their average girth, than well-to-do people in many other areas of the world. In the absolute sense, spending funds on the Space Program could have been used for social programs. So, given no continuing vision, poor articulation and leadership for the Space Program’s benefits, in the end, sociologists and Democrats won the argument because both were government programs; and social programs bought the most votes.

Clinton worked to expand social programs and President Bush built on them, causing one to wonder why Democrats so detest him. After all, Bush 43 successfully promoted more and greater social justice programs than Clinton.  In fact, Clinton’s was a classic Republican economic achievement with relatively moderate social justice expansion. Exactly the opposite of what one would expect.

Now the Nation is confronted with a so-called “Fiscal Cliff” brought on by years of overspending on social justice, and no doubt with the trillion dollar outlay for the War on Terror. But the real cause of the 2008-9 recession was the sub-prime mortgage debacle sponsored by Chris Dodd (D) Senate, and Barney Frank (D) House. The undeniable and irrefutable facts are that the Sub-Prime Mortgage Program was directly responsible for the collapse of the housing market and through the domino effect nearly collapsed the entire U.S. economy.

One can argue whether or not it would have been better to allow banking institutions to go into bankruptcy, but at this point that argument is academic. Both Presidents Bush and Obama took major steps to shore up the financial industry. That alone is not problematic…what is problematic is the obscene spending by the Obama Administration that has resulted in the ongoing Federal economic emergency. We have repeatedly asserted here that from the outset Obama’s intent was and remains to collapse the economy and thereby assert Federal control over all economic activity in order to “save the nation.”  Not to be too pushy, but, “Read my lips!”

The United States Government borrows nearly fifty cents of every dollar it spends, and frequently from Governments and people who historically do not have U.S. interests at heart. Funds that are not borrowed are created out of thin air, paper and ink by “Quantitative Easing.” QE is the acronym used to describe turning on the printing presses, no different than a counterfeiter with stolen plates, except it has legal sanction since it is done by the government. But, like soup, when water is added without additional ingredients, it dilutes the quality of the soup for everyone. The net effect of QE is inflation, or stated another way devaluation of the U.S. dollar, it harms everyone but especially low income Americans.

It is argued that given the results of the recent election Mr. Obama is entitled to have his way. I strongly disagree because the American people also voted for split government with the zipper to the nation’s purse belonging to the people…i.e., the House of Representatives, of which the majority is Republican. No doubt, a coalition of socialists, ignorant, and totally naive voters re-elected Obama and, at the same time voters voted to rein in spending. Senator Rand Paul has a very interesting recommendation.  It would be for Republicans to put forth a fiscally sound budget, and then, given that the Democrat Senate would block it, vote “present” on a Democrat alternative that raises taxes.  The undeniable fact is, increasing taxes on the so-called “rich” will not solve the fiscal monstrosity brought into being by Democrats, and even some half-lucid Democrats admit that. So, he argues, “let Democrats own the Fiscal Cliff, tax increases and the results.”

We’ve come a long way from the glorious days of the Apollo program, of American leadership in world affairs, economic strength, and technical advancement. Now, under Obama’s leadership (if that’s what it can be called) too many Americans have retreated into self-criticism, loss of confidence, self-pity, entitlement syndrome and national depression; and that is precisely what Obama wants.

Congress should not cave, conservative members should fight him every step of the way, use every known tactic to frustrate him and the 20% of Americans who voted him in to office. Or, is this going to be another case of the vocal and vicious minority walking all over the rights of the vast majority? Some may not care; some may like it; I care, don’t like it one whit and urge anyone who is like-minded to contact your U.S. Representative and Senators!

Semper Fidelis, and Peace

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