Archive for the For Free Trade Category

Kansas State Budget

Posted in For Free Trade with tags , , , on June 9, 2017 by cavalier973

The government-worshipping thieves are crowing about recent developments concerning the Kansas State Budget, since “moderate” Republicans overrode Governor Brownback’s veto of a tax increase. The narrative is that the theory of “supply-side” economics has once again been shown to be a failure, since the State of Kansas is projected to have a budget deficit in 2019.

Perusing the recent articles that discuss the subject of the Kansas budget (here is an example), I see little to no actual numbers being discussed, beyond the amount of the projected deficit and the amounts allocated to departments in the Kansas government. It would be nice to have information stating something along the lines of: The Kansas state budget from FY 2015 to FY 2016 showed that state government revenues were $6.5 billion and $6.0 billion, respectively (showing an actual decrease in revenues), while expenditures for the same Fiscal Years were $6.4 billion and $6.1 billion, respectively (showing that the state’s expenditures were actually decreased).

According to a chart at the Kansas Budget Department’s site, it looks like state revenues did decrease after the 2012 “supply side” tax cut, from $6.412 billion in 2012 to $6.341 billion in 2013, and $5.653 billion in 2014. In 2015, revenues increased to $5.928 billion, and were projected to increased further in 2016 to $6.171 and to $6.326 billion in 2017.

Expenditures in 2012 were $6.098 billion, in 2013 they were $6.134 billion, in 2014 $5.982 billion, in 2015 $6.237 billion, in 2016 $6.322 billion, and in 2017 $6.398 billion.

This is from the FY 2017 Comparison report, which was published in August 2016, so the 2016 and 2017 numbers are estimates.

Notice, though, that while revenues dropped each year from 2012 to 2014, and increased thereafter, spending increased every year from 2012 to 2017, excepting for a drop in 2014 (and which by 2015 was higher than expenditures in 2013).

Something else about the Kansas Budget: courts declared that the state wasn’t funding schools equitably, and ordered the government to increase its spending in that area.

So, we have tax cuts, followed by decreases in revenue for a couple of years, followed by increases in revenues. Expenditures, however, continued to grow, in part due to a court system that compels the government to spend more than it otherwise would.

But  “supply side economics” is to blame. Riiiiight.

It would be interesting to see what all the State of Kansas spends its money on (I’m not interested enough to actually research it, however). A spokesman for the Transportation department complained about cuts to that department’s budget to pay for other expenditures. I wonder what items supersede spending on roads.

Usually what politicians do, when they are faced with a voting populace who wants to keep more of their money, is cut spending to schools, roads, and police, and then when people complain, say, “Hey, you wanted tax cuts; this is what you get for being greedy.” Meanwhile, a lot of unnecessary spending that is hidden in the esoteric elements of the budget are protected and increased. Stupid stuff that keep the politicians in office. When people knuckle under, and agree to let the politicians abscond with their earned wealth so that they can have police and schools again, the politicians double down, raise taxes, raise spending even more, and brag about how “fiscally responsible” they are.

There is a group of people; I can’t determine if they are in on the scam, or if they are just that stupid, who defend politicians’ lying, thieving ways. It only ends when the government runs out of other people’s money; when the makers get tired of being robbed by the takers, and leave the state.

What we need is something I call the “stupid people tax”. Anyone who says we need to raise taxes should automatically have his tax rates increased to 50% (not progressive; a flat tax of half their income). If he continues to maintain a need for  increased taxes, then his rate goes to 75%. If he still agitate for tax increases, then he gets hit with a 50% wealth tax in addition to the income tax.

Here is an article from a year ago that claimed that the tax rates were a success.

Here is another article from earlier this year, that includes an interview with Governor Brownback, in which he gives his theory why tax receipts are down. He claims that it is the sales tax revenues that are down, due to low commodity prices, while tax revenues from the lower personal income taxes are actually higher.

And here is yet another article that kind of puts things in perspective. An excerpt:

 

…from 1998-2012, “Kansas ranked 38th in private-sector job growth, according Bureau of Labor Statistics data crunched by the Kansas Policy Institute. In 2013—the first year after the tax reform—the state climbed to 27th place, and in 2014 it moved to 21st, placing it in the top half of states.” Also: ” In the second half of 2014, hourly wages in Kansas grew 3.5%, according to BLS data, far faster than the national average of 1.9%.”

I decided to see if the above statement can be verified. The closest I can find is this article describing each of the 50 states and the jobs growth since 2007.

In the grand scheme of things, the economic considerations with regard to taxes are secondary to the moral considerations. It is immoral for someone to covet someone else’s wealth and/or income, even for the purposes of “helping other people”.

Stuff Going On — 06/08/2017

Posted in For Free Trade, For God with tags , , , , , , , , , , on June 8, 2017 by cavalier973

Former FBI Director James Comey testifies before Congress, and lets them know that President Trump made him feel uncomfortable, and that Trump’s stated reasons for firing him are lies.

ISIS “Fighters” have shot hundreds of civilians, including women and children, in the Iraqi city of Mosul, trying to keep said civilians from fleeing. ISIS needs civilians to act as human shields. I would think that they could carry that sort of evil on for only so long, before they run into desperate people who decide that, if they are going to die, anyway, they might as well take some of the ISIS monsters with them.

Senator Bernie Sanders tries to impose a religious test on a political appointee.

When Chinese take jobs from Americans.

Stuff Going On — 06/07/2017

Posted in For Free Trade with tags , , on June 7, 2017 by cavalier973

♠ Trump selects a new FBI Director

♣ Speaking of FBI Directors, Former FBI Director Comey did not notify a member of management that he was being pressured to not do his job.

♥ Speaking of people being pressured to do things, WaPo anonymous officials say that President Trump pressured NSA director Coats to lean on FBI Director Comey to get Comey to not do his job. Coats says that’s just not true. Really, I’m almost willing to lay down actual money that the WaPo’s sources hate the WaPo, and want to make the paper look ridiculous and not credible.

♦ Trump launches another salvo in his war on American consumers.

Stuff Going On — 06/06/2017

Posted in For Free Trade, For God with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on June 6, 2017 by cavalier973

Some employee of a government contractor managed to get some classified information, which she then mailed to a news publication. She got arrested. The information appears to show that Russian agents managed to hack a voting services company. Julian Assange, of WikiLeaks, appears to be defending her.

♣ Jesus said that it would better for someone to have a millstone placed around his neck and that he be thrown into the sea, than that the someone harm a child. Politicians in Canada are disregarding the Son of God’s warning. They will learn to their eternal sorrow that ignoring Jesus is a bad idea.

For leftist-progressives, child abuse is a regular way of life. If they can’t slaughter children in the womb, they will use a child’s natural instinct to trust to twist that child’s mind and ruin his life. They are the most evil people alive. They will writhe in the torment of their own shame for eternity.

Fortunately for them, there is an escape: Jesus took upon Himself the shame of us all, satisfying God’s wrath against us for our sin and making it possible for us to enjoy eternity doing interesting work for the glory of God.

Darwinoids can’t decide of evolution occurs by external natural phenomena effecting changes in organisms (the traditional view), or if organisms have a “plastic” genetic code that allow them to move into different environments on purpose.

Listening to the Darwinoid narrative, one can get the idea that “Natural Selection” is a driving force, but Natural selection is just a description of what happens; the concept has no agency.

For example, one gets the idea that, supposing that there is an island populated with dogs, a permanent climate change toward colder temperatures would “cause” dogs to develop long-hair characteristics. Darwinoids don’t really posit this; it just seems like it from listening to them. What Darwinoids say occurs in the above example is that, when the climate changes on the island, the dogs with longer hair tend to live longer, can acquire greater amounts of food–making them healthier–and are more exuberant maters, producing more offspring with the long-haired gene, until eventually the short-haired dogs can no longer find mates to breed. If the climate changes to a warmer one, the process reverses, and short-haired dogs become dominant.

The question that Darwinoids seem to avoid is, why do any of the dogs (or any mammal) have hair at all? Which developed first, male sexual organs, or female sexual organs–did they develop at the same time? I’m sure there’s some fru-fru talk about gender-bending “bacteria” (or some population of “simple organisms”) that became hard-coded with one gender or the other because Natural Selection meant that hard-coded gender bacteria was able to produce more offspring in populations than bacteria that could switch genders and just shut up and gives us more government funding, you Creatard.

Robots are going to take over our jobs, and then the robots will have everything, and live in big mansions, and drive big cars, and take our womenfolk, and we’ll have nothing.

Stuff Going On — 06/05/2017

Posted in For Free Trade, For God with tags , , , , , , , , , , on June 5, 2017 by cavalier973

Several Arab nations–Saudi Arabia, The United Arab Emirates, Dubai, Egypt–have moved to isolate Qatar. They have blocked flights into and out of the country, and told Qatari citizens to leave. This seems to be in response to President Trump’s visit to Saudi Arabia, where he urged the Arab leaders to take a stronger stance against terrorism. Qatar tries to sit the fence between the Saudis and the Iranians, who hate each other.

British police are still investigating a terrorist attack in London last Saturday evening. Three men ploughed through a crowd of people, then exited the van and began slashing people in the throat with knives. Seven people were killed, and forty-eight injured. Twenty-one of those injured are reported to be in critical condition.

The above link doesn’t mention it, but people fought back with chairs, bottles, and other items they had at hand. It seems that five more people were arrested, with one of those trying to make an escape.

The citizens of the United Kingdom suffered a bombing attack at a concert in late May, and an attack in March, in which a terrorist used a van to run people over.

The citizens are also headed to the election polls in three days, and Prime Minister Theresa May’s Tory party has had its lead in the polls eroded from around twenty points to around one.

Trump got in on the story, by tweeting about the need for his Travel Ban to prevent such an occurrence in the U.S. He also misquoted the London Mayor in an attempt to show the mayor taking a benign view of the attacks. The mayor urged Londoners to “not be alarmed by the increased police presence”, but Trump left out the part about “police presence”, making it seem that the mayor was urging people to not be alarmed about the terrorist attack.

Also, Trump received criticism for calling it a terrorist attack before the local government or media had labeled it so.

Ten chain restaurants that are no longer with us. I’ve eaten at the Casa Bonita (in Little Rock), the Pancho’s (in Texarkana), and at the Steak & Ale (in Memphis). The Casa Bonita and the Steak & Ale were intriguingly decorated, though in different ways. Casa Bonita was an all-you-can-eat restaurant, but you didn’t go to a buffet bar. It had a little flag on a pole at your table. When you were ready for more food, you raised the flag, and the waitress would get your order. Pancho’s had a similar gimmick. The Steak & Ale had really good dark brown bread they served while you were waiting for your order.

The laziest argument against Free Trade, ever. By Don Boudreaux.

Protectionists and neo-mercantilists hate private property almost as much as communists do.

Self-Determination

Posted in For Free Trade, For God with tags , , on June 3, 2017 by cavalier973

An article at mises.org.

Science Denial 101

Posted in For Free Trade, For God with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , on June 3, 2017 by cavalier973

This is derived from something I wrote on Twitter. It includes ideas that I have discussed on this blog before.

It doesn’t matter if the leftist-progressives are hypocrites when it comes to “man-made climate change”, if climate change is true. Their hypocrisy, however, shows that they do not actually believe in “man-made climate change”.

It’s no good shouting “Science Denier!”, when by your actions you also deny “Climate Change”. There are people who are true believers in the idea that man’s activities are causing drastic changes in the earth’s climate, and which outweigh such natural phenomena as the Sun, but there are many, many people who only promote the “Climate Change” theory for personal gain.

Included in this latter group are extremely wealthy people who like to lecture others about “Carbon footprints” and “renewable energy”, but who are not themselves willing to forgo even a little of their luxurious comforts to “save the environment”. I am describing people like Al Gore, Leonardo DiCaprio, and Hillary Clinton (these people are usually leftist-progressives, for some reason). They live in extravagantly large homes, have multiple automobiles, fly in private jets around the world AND I AM HAPPY FOR THEM!!! “The prettiest sight in this fine, pretty world is the privileged class enjoying its privileges.” ~McCauley Conner, from The Philadelphia Story.

I would like to be wealthy, too, and enjoy such luxury; I made other choices. But I digress.

The problem with people like Al Gore, DiCaprio, and their ilk is that they cannot be content with being wealthy. They suffer from a strange form of narcissism, which prevents them from enjoying their “privileges” if they think that too many other people have access to said privileges. It’s not enough to enjoy a big bowl of ice cream if the guy at the next table is also enjoying a bowl of ice cream. As an aside, the agitation that some in the media showed at President Trump getting “two scoops of ice cream” when everyone else only got one scoop is strange when considering their disinterest in the size of Al Gore’s house. Anyway, these wealthy narcissists seem to have a primal need to be seen as a “Very Important Person”. It is life and breath to them. One of the marks of the VIP is that he enjoys stuff that most people can’t–the luxury hotel room, the SUV limousine, the private jet–even though using these things create an outsized “carbon footprint”. THEY get to enjoy these things because they’re Important People. Again, I do not begrudge them their lifestyle; I wish (sometimes) that I moved in the same strata. I would not, however, work to keep other people out.

This need for being perceived as aristocracy explains, I think, their opposition to Free Market Capitalism. Capitalism does a tremendous job in raising people from poverty, and further, satisfying wants as well as needs. Capitalism commodifies luxuries, and the Wealthy Narcissist VIPs hate that. So, they try to circumvent the benefits of the Free Market through government regulation–with this “Paris Climate Agreement” being a fine example.

The U.S. doesn’t need an international treaty to lower its “Carbon Emissions” or CO2, or whatever it’s supposed to do to “save the environment”. The nation can, and has, lowered it’s pollution levels dramatically over the past few decades. Treaties, such as the Paris one, are there, not to do anything about man-made climate change, but to rig the system against those who might benefit from Capitalism. The treaty is there to provide cover to the Wealthy Narcissists who want to make themselves seem important by destroying people’s livelihoods and the ability to acquire a modicum of economic comfort.

“No, no; you can’t enjoy the things I enjoy. It’s the law! Now shut up, and eat your beans. After you watch me eat this steak.”