Monday, June 29, 2009

Cap and Tax

The House passed a “Cap and Trade” bill on Friday. The Wall Street Journal calls it the largest tax ever. Obama claims it will only cost the average tax payer the price of a postage stamp a day, yet it will fight global warming and create millions of new “green” jobs. Obama is lying through his teeth. The point of cap and trade (besides granting Democrats even more control of your lives) is to artificially make energy derived from coal or gasoline so expensive that using alternative energy sources becomes more economical. Increasing the taxes by pennies a day isn’t enough to force the average consumer to change. In the beginning, the Heritage Foundation estimates that the bill (should it pass the Senate) would cost the average family of four $1,870 a year. In 2035 it will cost the average middle class family nearly $7,000 a year.

Obama may give you some of the money back through tax credits for living your life in leftist approved ways – for example, by driving an Obama approved car and living in an Obama approved house. One provision of the bill stipulates that in order to sell your house, it must first be inspected by a government bureaucrat. If your house doesn’t have energy efficient windows and appliances you can’t sell your house. I’ll guess that means we’ll all be living in Obama approved housing before too long.

Obama claims this will create (or save?) lots of “green” jobs. Of course it will. It’s not hard to create a job. You could take a billion in tax dollars and pay 20,000 people $50k a year to dig ditches and then fill them in again. You just created 20,000 jobs, but you destroyed many more than that because of the billion dollars you took out of the private sector.

Cap and trade will dramatically increase your heating bill, your electric bill, and your transportation costs. Every product you buy will become more expensive because the energy used to create it and ship it to you will be more expensive. The green industry will make out like bandits, but your quality of life will decline dramatically. Forget that vacation or college savings account – your extra money is going to cap and trade.

House Republicans tried to submit amendments that would suspend the program if gas hit $5 a gallon, or if electricity prices rose 15% or if unemployment hit 15%. The Democrats defeated them all. Here's John Boehner on this disastrous legislation:

“Americans need real solutions to create jobs, lower energy prices, and clean up the environment, but Speaker Pelosi’s national energy tax is a recipe for driving up prices for middle-class families and small businesses and shipping more American jobs overseas. The President repeated his claim that this bill will create jobs, but independent analysts suggest it’s a job killer, while one of his prominent supporters, Warren Buffett, calls it a huge, regressive tax.

“Republicans believe there is a better route to more jobs, reliable energy, and a cleaner, healthier environment. Our all-of-the-above plan will increase American energy production in an environmentally-safe way, encourage the use of alternatives such as nuclear and clean-coal energy, and promote new technologies and efficiencies. Unfortunately, Democrats in Congress and the Administration have chosen to go it alone with their costly, jobs-killing national energy tax scheme. Middle-class families and small businesses struggling during this recession won’t support it. It’s time for Democrats to work with Republicans on real solutions to create jobs and pave the way for a cleaner, more reliable energy future.”

Obama, Chavez and Castro Vs. the People of Honduras

Why is Obama siding with Chavez and Castro against the Honduran people? Read more from the WSJ on how Honduras is attempting to defend its democracy over the objections of Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama.

Sunday, June 28, 2009

Youth Pastors

Stuff White Christians Like #32: Youth Pastors

This guy is a real youth pastor - thanks Google images!

Sunday, June 14, 2009

The Failed Stimulus Package

Joe Biden told Meet the Press this morning that "everyone guessed wrong" about the impact the $787 billion stimulus package would have on job numbers. He stated that economists used standard formulas project the job growth the stimulus package would create - the reason they were wrong is that the economy was much worse than everyone feared.

I beg to disagree. Every Republican in the House and almost all the Republicans in the Senate voted against the bill - arguing that the historic spending would not efficiently cause job growth (and that much of the spending was just plain wasteful pork headed for favored Democrat constituents). Hundreds of noted economists came out against the bill and the overall concept that massive government spending could bring us out of recession. Apparently, Biden means that "the Democrats guessed wrong."

There are several reasons why the stimulus package hasn't worked and won't work. Every dollar the government spends must come from somewhere. Specifically, from one of three places: taxes, borrowing, or by printing money and causing inflation. If the government had not passed the trillion dollar stimulus ($787 plus interest), that trillion dollars would have gone somewhere else. It would have been invested in businesses or it would have been spent. Both spending and investment create jobs, but much more efficiently than the projects thought up by the economic wizards leading the Democratic Party: Nancy Pelosi, Harry Reid, Joe Biden and Barack Obama.

A second problem is that the market (free people making decisions about what to do with their time and money) knows that Obama's massive spending will mean much higher taxes in the future. Higher taxes slow down economic growth because government spending is less efficient than allowing free people to spend their own money, but also because it decreases the incentive to be productive in the first place. If the government takes 75% of the money you earn and provides free housing, food, education, health care, a GM car, and your retirement, it matters a whole lot less how hard you work or how high paying your job is.

The failure of the stimulus package is a surprise only to Democrats.

Combined Summer Services

Stuff White Christians Like #30: Combined Summer Services.

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

Avalene Claire

I'm proud to announce the arrival of Avalene Claire! She was born yesterday at 8:03 am - 6 lbs. 3 oz. and 19.5 inches long. Baby and mom are doing great. Grandma and Grandpa VanderPlas were here yesterday and Grandma and Grandpa Bos are coming tomorrow. 

Sunday, June 07, 2009

Bon Iver

Bon Iver's album, For Emma, Forever Ago is one of my favorite albums of the last year. Here's a live performance on Letterman. The MP3 album is on sale for only $5 on Amazon this month. 

Stuff White Christians Like #29 Puppet Ministry

It has been said that there are two things that separate us from the animals: souls and opposable thumbs. Well, both of these items are on prominent display with the 29th white Christian like: Puppet Ministry.

Wednesday, June 03, 2009

Sowell on Sotamayor

Excellent column from Thomas Sowell on judge Sotamayor. Sowell notes that "the very idea that a judge's 'life experiences' should influence judicial decisions is as absurd as it is dangerous. It is dangerous because citizens are supposed to obey the law, which means they must know what the law is in advance - and nobody can know in advance what the 'life experiences' of whatever judge they might appear before will happen to be."

The media is outraged that notable figures on the right like Newt Gingrich and Rush Limbaugh would say she is racist. However, they have not disputed the charge, they have complained about the "tone." There is no doubt that if a white male had said that being white made him a better judge than a Latino he would have zero shot at being on any court, let alone the highest court in the land. The left claims that minorities can't be racist, since they are not in power, so they should not be held to the same standard. This is preposterous at any time, but especially now, considering we have a black president and the fact that Sotamayor is being considered for one of the most powerful positions in this country.

Republicans don't have the votes to stop her confirmation, but they need to let the American people what kind of judge Obama has nominated. Sotamyor is up for a life time appointment to the Supreme Court where she will have the power to impose her views on every American.

Tuesday, June 02, 2009

Government Motors

"Government Motors" has become a popular moniker for the restructured General Motors. Obama denies this charge, saying "What I am not doing, what I have no interest in doing, is running GM.... They, and not the government, will call the shots and make the decisions about how to turn this company around."

Ha! Firing the CEO, forcing bond holders to take 10 cents on the dollar, big give-aways to the union and passing legislation making some of their most competitive vehicles illegal, is not exactly a hands-off approach. Obama won't run the company, he'll hand it over to the UAW and hand picked executives, while the taxpayers foot the bill to the tune of $50 billion. What exactly is the difference? 

Surprise, surprise, Obama's selection for CEO supports the new legislation making many of the cars you and I would like to buy illegal. By 2016, the average car must get 39 miles per gallon, up from the current 27.5. This will make cars more expensive, make domestic auto companies less competitive, and limit your freedom to buy a car that is right for you and your family. Worst of all, carmakers will have to sacrifice safety, making cars smaller and lighter in order to improve fuel efficiency. Thousands more people will die in traffic accidents because of this legislation. Driving a more fuel efficient car sounds great, but the free market (AKA the independent decisions of free people) will strike a better balance between fuel costs, maintenance, retail price, safety, and utility of a car or SUV than having President Obama decide what car is right for you.

The best thing for GM would have been to go bankrupt without a huge government "investment" and renegotiate its union contracts. This would allow them to get their costs in line and become competitive again. Obama refused to allow this to happen to his union supporters. Instead, we will dump billion after billion in tax payer money supporting the unions and a company that may never make a profit again.