Audit the Fed.

 

A renewed effort to legislate an audit of the Federal Reserve is underway. Believe it or not, Lynn Woolsey was a supporter of this proposal when it was introduced previously. I applauded her for that stand. Unfortunately, various backdoor efforts to change and water down the bill in the Senate caused it to lose the wide backing it had garnered in the House, and no bill was passed. Now, the House version of this bill (H.R. 459) has 162 cosponsors and happily again Rep. Woolsey is among that number! I hope every politician in Congress, regardless of party, will support this necessary tool for getting our fiscal house in order in Washington D.C. At this website Americans can sign the petition urging Congress to make it happen this time.

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Dan Roberts to run for Congress in 2012

The first person to declare serious intention to run as a Republican candidate for Congress in Sonoma/Marin is Dan Roberts. The Marin Independent Journal listed him as a potential candidate in a recent article that also mentioned the many Democrat declared and considering contenders (Jarod Huffman, Norman Solomon, Tiffany Renee, Susan Adams, and others). Today, he posted on WSC, indicating his plan to move forward, although as yet I see no report of his having filed official papers (and I trust that in the future he will post with proper capitalization rather than all lower-case letters). However, he does have a campaign website which I urge all to peruse. Mr. Roberts has run previously as an American Independent. His published platform is as follows:

Platform:

  • Pursue fiscal soundness i.e. demand a Balanced Federal Budget.
  • Less government: Ronald Reagan “government is the problem not the solution.”
  • Allow the private sector to succeed.
  • Benign foreign policy: no wars of adventure.  Stop nation building.
  • Fairness in tax policy: “all pay some, not some pay all.”
  • Strong support of Israel.  No nuclear proliferation in the Middle East.
  • Follow dictates of U.S. Constitution and Bill of Rights.

These are solid American values, and we sorely need them to be fully represented in Congress. I am encouraged to hear of Mr. Roberts’ intention to run.

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More people calling themselves “conservative” — Gallup

 

A new poll by Gallup reports

If this pattern continues, 2011 will be the third straight year that conservatives significantly outnumber moderates — the next largest ideological bloc. Liberalism has been holding steady for the past six years, averaging either 21% or 22%, although notably higher than the 17% average seen in Gallup polling during the early to middle ’90s.

Conservatives can be Republicans, Democrats, Libertarians, etc. It isn’t a matter of what political party one joins so much as what core beliefs one espouses and puts into practice. It is time that conservatives in our area participate more openly and strongly in the political process here. Just because there are more Democrats here doesn’t necessarily mean that the majority of people here approve of the uncontrolled spending of the progressives/liberals or of some of the other big-government, big-interventionist policies they try to force down our throats. So, no matter what party we belong to, let’s find, support and vote for candidates in the next election who will represent us and a more conservative political perspective!

Lynn Woolsey is retiring. She does not have to be replaced by a clone of herself. It is time for real CHANGE in 2012!

 

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Never gonna cap that red ink gusher, are they?

From this link.

 

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Democrats on meaningful debt reform: “No.”

The Washington Examiner published an editorial today that takes the Democrats to task for their obstructionist approach to the debt ceiling debate. In “Democrats create theater of the absurd on debt ceiling,” no words are minced:

What is really outrageous about the Democrats’ arguments, however, is that they can all be boiled down to one word: no. No, to meaningful entitlement reform. No, to actually reducing the total number of tax dollars and borrowed money spent by the federal government. No, to credible caps on future federal spending. No, to a constitutional amendment requiring a balanced federal budget. No, to fiscal sanity.

These “no” choruses are coming from our congresswoman too. Lynn Woolsey doesn’t want to bite the bullet and solve the tough issues. She just wants to keep raising the debt ceiling and keep those TRILLIONS flowing. This is outrageous behavior from a person who has sworn an oath to protect the interests of our country. Rep. Woolsey and the rest of Congress (whatever their party) MUST stop pretending that we can just continue business as usual. We can’t. Congress has gotten into the unforgivable habit of outrageously overspending. NOW, it must stop. It MUST change its destructive habits. Lynn Woolsey, instead of issuing her ridiculous attacks against the Republicans, should understand the necessity of everyone in Washington working for real reform, real fiscal sanity.

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The One Cent (or 1%) Solution

Gaining traction is Rep. Connie Mack’s national debt solution. See the details here…and sign the petition and donate. Under this plan, we could balance the national budget in eight years. It is a simple plan and would make reductions on a common sense basis — 1% of the total federal budget (one penny out of every budget dollar) would be reduced each year for six years. Then the plan would cap spending to 18% of GDP beginning in 2018 and beyond.

We must balance the budget. We must get our federal spending under control. This plan can do it. Support it.

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“$4 Trillion or Bust — Even If It Takes Us Two Tries”

Lynn Woolsey continues her fruitless finger-pointing at Republicans regarding the debt ceiling process. Her latest remark: “…it is ‘time for the Republican majority to grow up and support a long-term debt ceiling increase that protects Social Security, Medicare and Medicaid.’ ” She has never understood how these are structured and the very real need to reform them in order to keep them functioning. She also looks at our federal fiscal situation as simply a gravy train that should, in her view, continue indefinitely to increase payouts. That is the reason she has said several times that she supports a debt ceiling increase (see, for example, this previous post of mine). Note that she doesn’t couple that insistence on raising the debt ceiling with any cuts in spending. She has no understanding of the real value of money.

Unlike our congresswoman, The Committee for a Responsible Federal Budget does know the dangers to our country if we just raise the debt ceiling, period. On July 25, 2011, this organization released a paper entitled, “$4 Trillion of Bust — Even If It Takes Us Two Tries.” The president of The Committee for a Responsible Federal Budget, Maya MacGuineas stated,

“We’re down to the wire, so it is reasonable for lawmakers to focus on a two-part approach which raises the debt ceiling and enacts a down payment on deficit reduction, while putting in place a credible process to achieve additional savings…”

The paper recommends:

Enact a strong down payment. 

 While agreement on the larger reforms necessary to achieve significant savings may not be possible in the time available to reach an agreement, lawmakers should include as much in savings as possible in the down payment.

Focus on debt to avoid gimmicks.
 
The ultimate goal of a fiscal plan must be to stabilize and reduce our debt as a percentage of the economy. Baseline gimmicks can artificially inflate savings, so policymakers should set explicit debt targets to ensure any deal is achieving its mission. Any plan that falls short of stabilizing the debt as a percentage of GDP — no matter how big it is described in terms of savings– would not be enough to get the job done. The Peterson-Pew Commission on Budget Reform has recommended a debt of 60 percent of GDP level by the end of the decade.
 
Keep everything on the table.
 
In order to be credible a process to achieve further savings, it must be accompanied by an explicit commitment by both parties to keep all options on the table for potential savings. The work of the Gang of Six, the Bowles-Simpson Fiscal Commission, and other bipartisan efforts to reduce the deficit have demonstrated that reaching agreement on a serious long-term fiscal plan will require tackling tough choices in all parts of the budget, including healthcare, Social Security, and revenues. If any areas of the budget are placed off limits for further savings, the process will justifiably be viewed as a recipe for gridlock and inaction.
 
Enforcement, Enforcement, Enforcement.
 
Any deal will require a mechanism to ensure future savings targets are achieved, and any two-part deal will require a way to ensure the second part is actually enacted. An enforcement mechanism must require both parties to “have skin in the game” to provide an incentive for negotiators to reach an agreement on a plan. CRFB has advocated across-the-board spending and tax expenditures cuts (or a tax surcharge) to be automatically triggered if debt stabilization goals are not projected to be met. We also support a short-term increase in the debt ceiling to ensure promised savings are realized.

 

These are measured recommendations that avoid partisan accusations. Note too that the text says that healthcare and Social Security cannot be held exempt from this process.

This approach does not include discussion of the balanced budget amendment, which I support, but that aside, it does represent balanced advice for the politicians. It would be immensely helpful if our congresswoman could also join in the process from constructive and realistic standpoint. I suggest she and her staff read this paper and try to adopt some of its recommendations.

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