Friday, March 30, 2012

Video: Bob Murphy on the Minimum Wage

U.S. Personal Savings are down

(RTTNews) - With U.S. personal spending increasing at a much faster rate than personal income in the month of February, the Commerce Department released a report on Friday showing a notable drop in the personal savings rate for the month.

The report showed that personal spending rose by 0.8 percent in February following an upwardly revised 0.4 percent increase in January. Economists had expected spending to increase by 0.6 percent compared to the 0.2 percent growth that had been reported for the previous month.
U.S. Personal Savings Rate Falls To Lowest Level Since August 2009 || RTTNews

Sunday, March 25, 2012

Hurd on the Inevitability of Government damage to the economy

"Government is doing damage to the economy regardless of the budget situation. In fact, that’s the biggest rationale for cutting government spending: To curb the power of government. The balancing of the budget is a side benefit."
Michael J Hurd, Conservatives are killing freedom || Capitalism Magazine

Friday, March 23, 2012

Ron Paul on GOP House Budget Plan: It “doesn’t go far enough”

( – GOP Presidential candidate Ron Paul said Tuesday in response to the release of the House Republican’s budget plan, spearheaded by Rep. Paul Ryan (R-Wis.), that it doesn’t go far enough to fix America’s fiscal woes.

“Today, the House Republican leadership released a budget meant to be an alternative to President Obama's budget plan, which was filled with more debt, more deficits, and more taxing and spending,” Paul said in a statement Tuesday.

“Unfortunately, the House Republican proposal doesn't go far enough to address the extreme fiscal problems we face as a nation.”

Paul criticized the House GOP plan for not balancing the budget until 2040, adding billions to the U.S. deficit, and he claimed that it does not actually cut spending.

“In fact, this budget doesn't actually 'cut' any spending,” Paul said. “It only reduces assumed increases in spending - essentially playing the same game the Washington establishment has played for years with our hard-earned money.”

Paul contrasted the new Ryan Plan with his own presidential platform that proposes a $1 trillion cut in spending in year one of a Paul presidency and claims to balance the budget by fiscal year 2015.

“This is what a serious budget proposal looks like,” Paul said.

The “Path to Prosperity,” the House GOP budget plan, would cut $5 trillion relative to President Obama’s fiscal 2013 budget, and bring deficits below 3 percent of GDP by 2015.

In contrast to the $1.047 trillion spending cap achieved through the Budget Control Act debt deal last August, the House GOP budget plan proposed $1.028 trillion in discretionary spending.

Building on the progress of the Budget Control Act of 2010, the plan caps spending and scales back funding for certain budget agencies, and proposes to reduce the federal workforce by 10 through attrition and enacts a pay freeze until 2015.

It also repeals the President’s health care law, and among other things, allows consumers to purchase health insurance across state lines, enacts medical liability reform, and expands access to consumer-directed health care options.

Monday, March 19, 2012

Patrick Buchanan on Ron Paul in 2007: He is "no TV debater" but "was speaking intolerable truths"

Ron Paul is no TV debater. But up on that stage in Columbia, he was speaking intolerable truths. Understandably, Republicans do not want him back, telling the country how the party blundered into this misbegotten war.
Patrick Buchanan, But Who Was Right -- Rudy or Ron?

Sunday, March 18, 2012

Camille Paglia on Secularized Society

"Great art can be made out of love for religion as well as rebellion against it. But a totally secularized society with contempt for religion sinks into materialism and self-absorption and gradually goes slack, without leaving an artistic legacy."
Camille Paglia, quoted in To Hell With Secular Society

Kony: What Jason did not tell the Invisible Children - Opinion - Al Jazeera English

The LRA is a raggedy bunch of a few hundred at most: poorly equipped, poorly armed, and poorly trained. Their ranks mainly comprise those kidnapped as children and then turned into tormentors. It is a story not very different from that of abused children, who in time turn into abusive adults. In short, the LRA is no military power. 

Addressing the problem dubbed "the LRA" does not call for a military operation. And yet, the LRA is given as the reason why there must be a constant military mobilisation, at first in northern Uganda, and now in the entire region, why the military budget must have priority and, now, why the US must send soldiers and weaponry, including drones, to the region. But rather than being the reason for accelerated military mobilisation in the region, the LRA is merely the excuse for it.

The reason why the LRA continues is that its victims - the civilian population of the area - trust neither the LRA nor government forces. Sandwiched between the two, civilians need to be rescued from an ongoing military mobilisation and offered the hope of a political process.
Kony: What Jason did not tell the Invisible Children - Opinion - Al Jazeera English

Thursday, March 15, 2012

CBO: Health law could cause as many as 20M to lose coverage - The Hill's Healthwatch

As many as 20 million Americans could lose their employer-provided coverage because of President Obama's healthcare reform law, the nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office said in a new report Thursday.
CBO: Health law could cause as many as 20M to lose coverage - The Hill's Healthwatch

Ron Paul: Republicans are "over-the-top" for bashing Obama’s Quran apology

Editor's Note: This was written on 3/5/2012.

( -- GOP Presidential Candidate Ron Paul told CNN’s State of the Union host Candy Crowley Sunday that Republicans who criticized President Obama for apologizing for February’s Quran burnings by U.S. military troops in Afghanistan are “over-the-top” because George W. Bush in 2008 did the same thing.

“I think the Republicans who are condemning it are a little bit over-the-top, too, because in 08, some of our soldiers in Iraq took the Quran and used it for target practice,” Paul said. “You know, just, just to humiliate the Muslims in that country. Ronald Reagan apologized, and what is so terrible about that, it might calm things down.”

Paul obviously meant George W. Bush, not Ronald Reagan, and was referring to when Bush apologized to the Iraqi Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki for an American sniper’s shooting of a Quran in May 2008.

In that 2008 incident, George W. Bush’s apology to al-Maliki was preceded by top U.S. military officials—including Maj. Gen. Jeffery Hammond, the commander of U.S. forces in Baghdad, and Lt. Gen. Lloyd Austin III, the number two U.S. commander in Iraq at the time—expressing similar acts of regret and apology.

One U.S. officer kissed a copy of the Quran before presenting it to tribal chiefs in Radwaniyah, Baghdad back in 2008.

However, when Paul was asked whether he thought it was wrong for President Obama to apologize for the recent Quran burnings in Afghanistan, Paul said he didn’t think it was wrong but it was “pretty much irrelevant.”

“I’m personally more apologetic for invading countries who never did anything to us and occupying and disrupting and causing thousands of deaths of our own people and causing hundreds of thousands of refugees,” Paul said. “This is the thing that I feel sad about. What about the pictures of torture, weren’t they every bit as bad? I mean, this is what incites the hatred. This is what we have to try to understand.”

Paul recalled the tell-all memoir about the Vietnam War “In Retrospect” written by Robert McNamara, former Secretary of Defense under John F. Kennedy and Lyndon B. Johnson, and that he pointed to questioning the policy rather than issuing an apology.

“I thought McNamara was rather astute when they asked him after he wrote his memoirs about the mess that he caused in Vietnam because he had all these second thoughts and they said ‘don’t you think you should apologize? Or do you want to apologize you know to the American people and to the world’?

“He said ‘what good’s an apology? If you make mistakes and you see this and it’s stirring up trouble, why don’t we change our policy,’ that’s what he said,” Paul continued.

Paul also told CNN’s State of the Union host Crowley that if he were to sit down with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and was forced to give his personal opinion on whether Israel should bomb Iran, he said that it makes no sense to do such a thing right now.

Crowley asked: “If you were the President, and the Prime Minister sat down and said ‘I want you to know that we are prepared to bomb Iran because we want to keep them from developing the aptitude for having nuclear weaponry,’ what would your response be?”

Paul said: “Well first thing, I’d like to stay out of their business. I’d like to let them do whatever they want. I don’t want to interfere with what they need to do for their defense and I don’t want to interfere with Israel when they want to have peace treaties.”

He continued: “But if I were forced to give my personal opinion about it, I’d say it doesn’t make any sense to bomb a country that is no threat to anybody just because they might get a weapon and try to point out that containment worked pretty well with the Soviets and they had 30,000 and they were rather ruthless people.”

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

To the Kids from Abilene, Texas that I met today at Capitol Hill, Washington DC

It was really a pleasure to meet you all. You all had such good questions and gave me a lot of hope for the future.

I feel really great having met you.

I'd like to share with you a free book that you can download. It is the same book that started me off in my journey into economic studies and still helps me as a reporter.

To download it, click here.

Then I hope you go on to read my "7 Starter Blog Posts," follow me on Twitter, watch the movies I've posted or linked to in "7 Starter Blog Posts." Also, check out the column on the left "Books to Build Your Worldview."

Also, if you want to learn about economics much more in depth, and at a college level, absolutely for free, then check this link out.

Take your time with it. Don't become frustrated or discouraged. It's a lifetime-learning-kind-of-thing.

If you read something a million times but don't understand it, skip the passage, and then shoot me an e-mail detailing what you don't understand and include a question.

I will respond in a timely manner.

Both the "Books to Build Your Worldview" section of this blog and the "10 Books to Understand the Financial Crisis" section will be very fundamental in developing your understanding of the world.

Believe me, I'm young.

As I'm writing this, I'm only 24 and I'm still developing my view of the world, but those books have been very helpful in that regard.

And when you don't understand something, read it again or watch it again. Or shoot me an e-mail. After all, you have my card.

And for full disclosure, the materials on this site are in no way meant to be the end of your journey, or the only books you read but the opposite. They are your guide, an assistant in your journey through life.

I hope that whatever it is you all decide to do in life you will not only be good or great at it, but you excel at it.

Once again, it was a blessing to meet you.


"May the LORD bless you and keep you; the LORD make his face shine upon you and be gracious to you; the LORD turn his face toward you and give you peace." Numbers 6:24-26

P.S. As I've told you in person, I plan on starting my own business. Keep in touch for updates.

Wednesday, March 7, 2012

Republican lawmakers divided on Obama sending 100 Combat Troops to Uganda

**Editors Note: This story was written around October 18, 2011

( –
When asked whether he supports the President’s recent decision to send military advisors to Central Africa, Sen. John Thune says he hasn’t thought much about that—but added that he hopes it will be an “international, worldwide” commitment to address the problems in Uganda. asked Senator Thune (R-S.D.) on Capitol Hill Tuesday, “Do You support the president unilaterally sending 100 troops to Uganda?”

Thune said: “I have to say I haven’t thought a lot about that. I know that’s something some of my colleagues who are more familiar with the issue have been discussing.”

He continued: “But obviously there is some tremendous atrocities being committed that hopefully it will be an international, worldwide commitment to try and address and the United States clearly is always taking a leadership role and we’ll probably continue to do that. But I need to look more at the details and particulars of it.”

In an electronic newsletter sent Tuesday, Sen. Jim Inhofe (R-Okla.) wrote that he supported President Obama in sending military advisors to Uganda to assist in apprehending Joseph Kony and his Lord’s Resistance Army.

“This latest development is another step to bringing much awaited justice to the children and victims in Uganda devastated by the monstrous acts of Kony and the LRA,” Sen. James Inhofe (R-Okla) wrote.

“As the pioneer for this cause in Congress for the past decade, it is my prayer that Kony will be held accountable for the violent acts the LRA has committed against the youth of Uganda and throughout the continent of Africa” he continued.

However, several members of Congress in the Senate and the House of Representatives have warned against sending troops to a foreign country without congressional approval.

Rep. Michelle Bachmann (R-Minn.) said in a Friday Townhall in Iowa that she wasn’t very aware of President Obama’s recent action, according to CBSNews.

“I do not know enough about it to comment on it,” the report quoted Bachmann as saying. But she added “we will have to first demonstrate a vital American national interest” before sending troops overseas.

Referring to the president’s decision to aid pro-Democracy forces in Libya she is quoted as saying, “he did not get permission from Congress; he just did it unilaterally.” She added: “It just happened again.”

Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.) said this past Sunday in an interview CNN’s “State of the Union” that he thinks it’s appropriate to “do what we can to prevent and eradicate” the Lord’s Resistance Army. However, he added that he doesn’t have all of the details and that a slippery slope situation could happen in Uganda.

“We don’t know any of the details,” McCain said. “I remember Somalia. I remember Lebanon. We’ve got to be very careful about how we engage. This slippery slope thing could happen there. I think it’s mainly humanitarian in this case.”

Legal Scholar says Obama act impeachable, but far from most impeachable act

*Editors note: This story was written around October 18, 2011

( – President Obama’s recent decision to send 100 military advisors to Uganda to assist Ugandan forces to depose of the Lord's Resistance Army leader Joseph Kony is an impeachable act—but far from the most impeachable thing he’s done in his presidency, says a constitutional scholar.

“The thing is of course that we have many statutes outstanding giving the president all kinds of legal authority, some of which are conflicting, and so clearly you have to look into his formal statements about what authorizes him to do this before you can reach a conclusion” says Kevin Gutzman.

He added: “Just from what I know about this current action in South Central Africa, we don’t really know exactly whether it’s legal. We don’t know exactly what he wants these soldiers doing.”

“It’s hard to believe that people would make very much out of 100 troops when we’ve had weeks and weeks of American military involvement in Libya and nothing has come of it,” Gutzman said.

Last March, the President invoked the War Powers Act to conduct U.S. missile strikes against Libya's air-defense systems. Nine Democratic lawmakers, including Rep. Dennis Kucinich (D-Ohio) and Rep. Donna Edwards (D-Md.), raised objections to constitutionality of the president's actions, reports said back in March.

At the time, a non-partisan advocacy group, the War Powers Committee of the Constitution Project, called the continued U.S. military action in Libya "unlawful" since even the most generous interpretations of the War Powers Act can't stretch the time limit the Commander-in-Chief has to get congressional approval beyond 60 days.

“They consulted the Arab League. They consulted the United Nations. They did not consult the United States Congress,” one Democrat lawmaker reportedly said on the White House's decision to become involved in Libya.

“They’re creating wreckage, and they can’t obviate that by saying there are no boots on the ground. … There aren’t boots on the ground; there are Tomahawks in the air,” the Democrat lawmaker continued.

Under the War Powers Act, established in the president has to seek congressional approval within 60 days of committing U.S. troops abroad and inform Congress that troops will be deployed for military action.

“Consulting” congress has its origins in the War Powers Act, an act which Gutzman calls unconstitutional to the extent that it allows the president to deploy troops for months before seeking authorization from Congress.

“The bottom line is these things are supposed to be done after getting authorization from congress,” Gutzman said.

The pattern of presidents sending troops off to war without congressional authorization is a pattern that has become common after World War II, and is unlike precedents set by America’s earliest presidents like Thomas Jefferson and James Madison who both received congressional approval before sending ships off to North Africa to protect American ships there and defending American ships at sea by declaring war against Great Britain, respectively, Gutzman said.

“This pattern of behavior that we have in presidents now really comes from World War II, at least of basically doing whatever they want and then asking Congress ‘would you please approve it?’ is the opposite of what the Constitution contemplates,” Gutzman said.

Kevin Gutzman is professor of History at Western Connecticut University and co-author of Who Killed the Constitution?

Tuesday, March 6, 2012

Ron Paul: Federal Government Fails at Running D.C. School System |

( – Rep. Ron Paul (R-Texas) said Monday the federal government has proven ineffective at running an educational system, as evidenced by the D.C. school system, which spends $18,000 a student and is among the worst in the country. Paul is advocating getting rid of the Department of Education.

Ron Paul: Federal Government Fails at Running D.C. School System |

Saturday, March 3, 2012

I wish Ron Paul would adopt this: Stop Spending Billions overseas to Control Populations

Maybe he already does.

Reporter rejects GOP nominees because of world we don't actually live in--A world where GOP worships Rothbard

Last time I checked, most Republicans couldn't name an Austrian economist. So I have a hard time believing the GOP candidates are worshipping at the Temple of Rothbard, Mises, and Hayek.

From the National Catholic Reporter:
So, no, I can’t see myself voting for a Republican candidate anytime soon. Their party seems completely unalert to the vision of Catholic social teaching and such core concepts as the common good and solidarity. Their stances on particular issues like Iran are frightening. Their reading of history is tendentious. Their worship at the temple of the Austrian economists too thorough-going. Obama may no longer be my candidate, but the GOP is not my party either.
No, I'm Not Becoming a Republican || National Catholic Reporter

Friday, March 2, 2012

William F. Buckley and Ron Paul on 'The Firing Line'

Conservative Heavyweights William F. Buckley, Thomas Sowell, and Walter Williams are against the Drug War

William F. Buckley, pretty much the founder of the conservative movement, spoke about "emancipating ourselves from the superstition that that which is legal is for that reason something we approve of" in a 1988 ABC TV special, publicly debated liberal Congressman Charlie Rangel (D-N.Y.) in 1991 on drug legalization, then he argued before the New York Bar Association in favor of drug legalization, and then again in 2004 wrote for the National Review on marijuana legalization.

We have, at the very least, a span of 16 years of Mr. Buckley on record questioning the status quo in regards to the drug war.

Thomas Sowell, no conservative lightweight and quite the opposite, has argued in favor of drug legalization.

And finally, Walter Williams, another conservative intellectual, has argued in favor of the very same thing in The Freeman magazine.

All of these men are conservative giants.

And while people tend to place Thomas Sowell (he called himself a libertarian in a Salon interview) and Walter Williams (he said he's a Jeffersonian Liberal) in the libertarian tradition, which may be rightly deserved, no one can say that William F. Buckley is a libertarian (Well, except for Buckley himself).

*Skim over sentences for sources

Thursday, March 1, 2012

Video: Peter Schiff on Interest Rates

A 1-minute classic.

William F. Buckley--Icon of Conservative Movement--Was Against the Drug War

How soon we forget?
I HAVE spared you, even as I spared myself, an arithmetical consummation of my inquiry, but the data here cited instruct us that the cost of the drug war is many times more painful, in all its manifestations, than would be the licensing of drugs combined with intensive education of non-users and intensive education designed to warn those who experiment with drugs. We have seen a substantial reduction in the use of tobacco over the last thirty years, and this is not because tobacco became illegal but because a sentient community began, in substantial numbers, to apprehend the high cost of tobacco to human health, even as, we can assume, a growing number of Americans desist from practicing unsafe sex and using polluted needles in this age of AIDS. If 80 million Americans can experiment with drugs and resist addiction using information publicly available, we can reasonably hope that approximately the same number would resist the temptation to purchase such drugs even if they were available at a federal drugstore at the mere cost of production.
William F. Buckley, The War on Drugs is Lost

Ron Paul vindicated on the real rate of inflation

( -- A recent report by CBS vindicates what Rep. Ron Paul (R-Texas) said yesterday during an exchange with Federal Reserve chairman Ben Bernanke during a House Financial Services meeting--namely, that the inflation rate is much higher than what government statistics suggest.

While Paul was likely referring to the Congressional Budget Office's Consumer Price Index (CPI) or Bureau of Labor Statistics Data, the CBS article refers to the American Institute for Economic Research's everyday price index which says that prices are up 8 percent over a year--just one percent short of what Paul said during the hearing yesterday.

During the exchange yesterday, Paul told Bernanke: "Ok, so you’re aware of the prices, but you know this argument that the prices are going up about 2 percent, nobody believes it."

He continued: "You know in the old CPI says prices are going up about 9 percent so they believe this," he continued.

"People on fixed incomes – they’re really hurting, the middle class is really hurting because their inflation rate is very much higher than the government tries to tell them and that’s why they lose trust in government," Paul said.

Read the rest of the CBS article by clicking the link below.

Inflation: Not as low as you think || CBS News

Paul: "The Fed's going to self-destruct eventually anyways"

Rep. Ron Paul (R-Texas) took a break from his presidential bid to pursue one of his favorite pastimes — criticizing the Federal Reserve.

Paul returned to Capitol Hill on Wednesday to question Fed Chairman Ben Bernanke, who was appearing before the House Financial Services Committee to deliver his semiannual testimony.
I'm glad The Hill got this. But I reported on this a lot sooner--perhaps even first--on my own blog back in November and the story was technically published in December (due to a conflict).

Here's the relevant excerpt:
In his speech, Paul said that he would not end the Federal Reserve in one day because it will “eventually shut itself down” when it destroys the currency. Rather he will work to break the FED’s monopoly on issuing currency by legalizing sound money including gold and silver and repealing legal tender laws.
Paul returns to DC to assail Bernanke - The Hill's On The Money

WCF Chapter One "Of Holy Scripture" Sunday School (Sept.-Oct. 2021)

Our text for Sunday School (also "The Confession of Faith and Catechisms") Biblical Theology Bites What is "Biblical Theology...