The Green Climate Deal

Guest Post by Willis Eschenbach

I see that Ms. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez and Mr. Bernie Sanders are pushing something called a “Green New Deal”, so I thought I’d take a look. The Hill has a piece entitled Progressives say dire climate reports point to need for ‘Green New Deal’,  and the Atlantic magazine has an article on it headlined The Democratic Party Wants to Make Climate Policy Exciting. Make climate policy exciting? Well, I guess so, but only if you consider economic suicide exciting …

Here are the details of the wonderful green climate deal, right from the horse’s mouth … oh, wait, vegans say we can’t use animal metaphors. So here are the details of the deal, right from the orange’s navel … it has “Four Pillars”, and the first Pillar is their “Economic Bill of Rights”.

Be clear that all opinions expressed below are my own, not those of Watts Up With That, of Charles The Moderator, or of anyone involved with the blog. So please don’t burn up their email with complaints—instead, put them in the comment section below. Ready? Hold your noses, put on your hip boots, we’re ready to wade in …

THE FOUR PILLARS OF THE GREEN NEW DEAL
I – THE ECONOMIC BILL OF RIGHTS

The Green New Deal begins with an Economic Bill of Rights that ensures all citizens:

1. The right to employment through a Full Employment Program that will create 25 million jobs by implementing a nationally funded, but locally controlled direct employment initiative replacing unemployment offices with local employment offices offering public sector jobs which are “stored” in job banks in order to take up any slack in private sector employment.

• Local communities will use a process of broad stakeholder input and democratic decisionmaking to fairly implement these programs.

• Pay-to-play prohibitions will ensure that campaign contributions or lobbying favors do not impact decision-making.

• We will end unemployment in America once and for all by guaranteeing a job at a living wage for every American willing and able to work.

End unemployment in America? Create 25 million taxpayer-funded positions?

Let’s look at that. In 2017, about 125 million people were employed in the US on a full-time basis. Ms. O-C and Mr. Sanders propose in their Green New Deal that those 125 million people pay the salaries of some 25 million workers … implying that if they are to get the average wage, all working Americans will have to pay an additions 20% tax on their income to fund the program. Oh, yeah, people are gonna totally be up for that … median household income is $62,000, so on average, each household will have to pony up $12,000 to employ those 25 million people.

Next, why are these people unemployed? We have more jobs in the US right now than people looking for jobs. The people left without jobs are folks with some kind of reason, valid or not, that they are not working—disabled, don’t need a job, untrustworthy, criminal, live with their parents, unreliable, trust-fund babies, lazy … not your ideal workforce.

Remember, the last time we had a New Deal we had thousands and thousands of hard-working people wanting jobs who couldn’t find a job. But now, to the contrary, we have thousands and thousands of jobs wanting people that can’t find people … hardly the same.

Next, what will these 25 million people do? Remember, we can’t have them doing what other people are already doing, because that will put existing workers out of a job. So we will have to invent new tasks for them … which they’ve done. Per Ms. Occasional-Cortex’s Green Nude Eel, as reported in the Atlantic:

It promises to give every American a job in that new economy: installing solar panels, retrofitting coastal infrastructure, manufacturing electric vehicles.

Look. If solar panels and windmills were economically viable, we wouldn’t have to subsidize them. There’s a reason that solar and wind, even with huge subsidies, haven’t made a dent in our electricity generation. They are hideously expensive, and you still need to build regular power plants for the times when the wind and sun don’t show up … putting people to work building them is just another kind of subsidy.

And “build electric vehicles”??? The US Government, which can’t make a profit from the Post Office, is going to go into the electric vehicle business by hiring a bunch of people who can’t find a real job and going head to head with Toyota? Oh, yeah, you gotta know that’s totally legit …

The madness continues:

2. Worker’s rights including the right to a living wage, to a safe workplace, to fair trade, and to organize a union at work without fear of firing or reprisal.

Now, Ms. O-C has tweeted the following:

It is unjust for Congress to budget a living wage for ourselves, yet rely on unpaid interns & underpaid overworked staff just bc Republicans want to make a statement about “fiscal responsibility.”

I see. Her House of Representatives salary is what she thinks of as a living wage … and how much will she be making?

ONE HUNDRED SEVENTY-FOUR THOUSAND DOLLARS PER YEAR PLUS BENEFITS AND A PENSION AFTER ONLY 5 YEARS.

That’s a “living wage” on her planet … and she thinks every worker deserves that.

Here’s the ugly truth. Some workers are not worth $5 per hour. Some are not worth $10 per hour. And no, I am NOT interested in pretending that those folks have a RIGHT to make a big salary or a living wage. You have to EARN your salary, you don’t have a “right” to anything like that. If you think that mandating a minimum wage helps people, please read Ending Poverty In America.

Finally, we already have laws about safe workplaces and union organization … and I have no clue what she means by “fair trade”.

Onwards …

3. The right to quality health care which will be achieved through a single-payer Medicare-for-All program.

This is the program which is estimated to cost 32 trillion for ten years, or 3.2 trillion per year. And if every other government program is any guide, it will cost much more than that. Now, we have 126 million people employed in the US. So on average, each employed person will have to pay about $25,000 per year in order to pay for Medicare For All. This is in addition to the $12,000 they’re already paying for the Full Employment Madness …. we’re up to $37,000 per worker already …

4. The right to a tuition-free, quality, federally funded, local controlled public education system from pre-school through college. We will also forgive student loan debt from the current era of unaffordable college education.

Could we start by not lying about “tuition-free” and call it by its real name, “taxpayer-paid”? Honesty is a good thing in politics, however rare it might be.

Next, there are currently some 17 million students in college. Tuition averages on the order of $20,000 per year. Of course, the poor suffering 126 million employed people have to pay for that as well. That works out to a mere $2,700 per year … plus the $37,000 per year they’re already paying, so we’re up to about $40,000 per worker already to pay for their green fantasies …

5. The right to decent affordable housing, including an immediate halt to all foreclosures and evictions. We will:

• create a federal bank with local branches to take over homes with distressed mortgages and either restructure the mortgages to affordable levels, or if the occupants cannot afford a mortgage, rent homes to the occupants;

• expand rental and home ownership assistance;

• create ample public housing; and,

• offer capital grants to non-profit developers of affordable housing until all people can obtain decent housing at no more than 25% of their income.

Can I tell you how tired I am of people inventing new “rights”? We’re just getting started, and already we’ve been told that people have the right to a taxpayer-paid job, a living wage, a safe workplace, a union, fair trade, taxpayer-paid healthcare, taxpayer-paid college tuition, and affordable housing … and they’re not done yet.

Here’s the truth. We have the rights given by the Constitution. We have the “inalienable rights” of life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness. We have the rights of freedom of speech, freedom of assembly, freedom from unreasonable search, and the other rights given in the Bill Of Rights.

And at this point, that is it. That’s all of our rights. And please note—NONE of those rights require the taxpayers to give us money. Not one of them.

We do NOT have a “right” to have the taxpayers put us through college, or pay our medical bills, or provide us with a job. We may indeed decide to do those things, or not do them … but they are absolutely not “rights”. That’s pompous posturing at the taxpayer’s expense.

With that out of the way, affordable housing is a tough nut to crack. To start with, as a builder myself and the son of an architect, I can assure you that here in California it is incredibly difficult to build a house. There is a dizzying array of zoning, building, environmental, septic, lot-size, and other city, county, and state restrictions on building. Each one of these restrictions pushes up the cost of building and contributes to the lack of affordable housing. And none of their high-sounding proposals, not one of them, even touches on any of those problems.

Next, “halt all foreclosures and evictions”? Have they lost their everlovin’ minds? If you make evictions impossible, PEOPLE WILL STOP PAYING RENT, duh. And the same is true if you make foreclosure impossible—people will stop paying their mortgages, and banks will stop loaning money.

The ignorance, it burns …

Next, “create ample public housing”? Please point out where that has worked. The public housing projects in New York and other major cities have been horrible crime-ridden failures.

Finally, “capital grants” for developers? … why do these good folks assume that to solve any problem all you have to do is throw money at it? Under their plan so far each employed person has to put up $40,000, and they now want to give grants of taxpayer money to developers … what could go wrong?

6. The right to accessible and affordable utilities – heat, electricity, phone, internet, and public transportation – through democratically run, publicly owned utilities that operate at cost, not for profit.

What is a “democratically run” business? Do all the employees vote on every business decision? And why would we assume that a government monopoly will deliver cheaper services than businesses in competition? The mind reels …

7. The right to fair taxation that’s distributed in proportion to ability to pay. In addition, corporate tax subsidies will be made transparent by detailing them in public budgets where they can be scrutinized, not hidden as tax breaks.

“Distributed in proportion to ability to pay”??? How on earth can we determine someone’s “ability to pay”? Someone could make a lot of money but be supporting both parents and children; another person makes money but spends most of it on women and boats and wastes the rest … while a third person scrimps so their living costs are very small. Which one has the greater “ability to pay”? I don’t even understand what they mean by that.

Next, what are “corporate tax subsidies”? If they mean the tax laws, how are they not transparent? They are written down so they can be enforced, they are totally transparent. Anyone can go online and look them up …

So that’s the First Pillar. The Second Pillar is “A Green Transition” …

II – A GREEN TRANSITION

The second priority of the Green New Deal is a Green Transition Program that will convert the old, gray economy into a new, sustainable economy that is environmentally sound, economically viable and socially responsible. We will:

1. Invest in green business by providing grants and low-interest loans to grow green businesses and cooperatives, with an emphasis on small, locally-based companies that keep the wealth created by local labor circulating in the community rather than being drained off to enrich absentee investors.

Oh, man, these folks learned absolutely nothing from the Obama green boondoggle. Remember Solyndra? Obama provided them with half a billion dollars worth of taxpayer money, and they went belly-up. And Solyndra was far from the only such waste of taxpayer money. The US Government has a horrible record of choosing which businesses to support. In Solyndra’s case, guess what? The owners were pals of Obama and his friends … surprising, I know. Go green!

This brings up another issue. The Founding Fathers were smart in that they didn’t trust anyone. That’s why we have three branches of government—so they can watch each other and keep each other straight.

Modern lawmakers, on the other hand, seem to think that everyone is a noble, upstanding citizen. So they propose things like “ending evictions” when a moment’s thought reveals that people will just scam that all day long. And the same is true with this kind of government largesse—it invites and encourages corruption.

And guess what?

If you invite corruption … it will come …

2. Prioritize green research by redirecting research funds from fossil fuels and other dead-end industries toward research in wind, solar and geothermal. We will invest in research in sustainable, nontoxic materials, closed-loop cycles that eliminate waste and pollution, as well as organic agriculture, permaculture, and sustainable forestry.

Fossil fuels are a “dead-end industry”? I want some of what these people are smoking … fossil fuels have lifted billions of people out of poverty. Fossil fuels protect us from the ravages of nature and enable our modern lifestyles. Far from being a “dead-end industry”, they are the basis and foundation of our modern world.

Anyone making that claim about a “dead-end industry” should be permanently banned from giving any kind of economic advice or making any economic decisions forever. These folks are happy to enjoy all that fossil fuels bring us, and then they work to kill what makes them wealthy. That kind of stupidity should not be rewarded.

Next, we have already subsidized wind and solar to the tune of billions and billions of dollars, and they are STILL not economically competitive. The idea that a few more billions spent on research will make it all come right is a sick joke.

3. Provide green jobs by enacting the Full Employment Program which will directly provide 16 million jobs in sustainable energy and energy efficiency retrofitting, mass transit and “complete streets” that promote safe bike and pedestrian traffic, regional food systems based on sustainable organic agriculture, and clean manufacturing.

My local town, Sebastopol, just did their best to “promote safe bike traffic” by closing half of the only through-town north-south street to automobiles, and reserving it for bicycles. Me, I love my mountain bike, I’m a dedicated rider … but in all the times I’ve gone through the semi-permanent new traffic jam caused by closing off half of the street, I have yet to see one single bike rider using the bike half of the street … not one.

And sadly, this is typical of these kinds of pie-in-the-sky green dreams. They are so concerned with green and renewable and good feelz that they don’t notice that they have jammed up all the traffic, 24/7/365, for absolutely no gain. Go green!

Then we have the Third Pillar of the Green New Deal, viz:

III – REAL FINANCIAL REFORM

The takeover of our economy by big banks and well-connected financiers has destabilized both our democracy and our economy. It’s time to take Wall Street out of the driver’s seat and to free the truly productive segments of working America to make this economy work for all of us. Real Financial Reform will:

1. Relieve the debt overhang holding back the economy by reducing homeowner and student debt burdens.

Huh? How do they propose to “reduce homeowner and student debt burdens”? Are they going to pay off the debt using taxpayer money? And if so, won’t that “hold back the economy” by impoverishing the workers?

People sometimes make stupid decisions, like taking a student loan to study Underwater Basket Weaving or getting a degree in anything with the word “Studies” in the title. Of course, when they graduate they can’t find a job, so they can’t pay off the loan for a long time.

It’s not clear to me how to fix that historical problem. They borrowed the money and they spent it. Unless they pay it back, somebody’s gonna lose …

What I would do going forward, on the other hand, is to restrict the use of student loans to people going into STEM studies (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Medicine), or going to technical schools to learn skills like welding. Those folks will get jobs and will be able to pay the loan back.

As to homeowners, if you can’t afford to pay the mortgage, sell the dang house! How complex can it be?

2. Democratize monetary policy to bring about public control of the money supply and credit creation. This means we’ll nationalize the private bank-dominated Federal Reserve Banks and place them under a Monetary Authority within the Treasury Department.

I don’t understand this one. “Democratize monetary policy”?? It simply makes no sense. Someone else will have to explain it, I can’t.

3. Break up the oversized banks that are “too big to fail.”

That one actually might be worth discussing.

4. End taxpayer-funded bailouts for banks, insurers, and other financial companies. We’ll use the FDIC resolution process for failed banks to reopen them as public banks where possible after failed loans and underlying assets are auctioned off.

They keep talking about “public banks” and “democratic banking” and such. Again, I don’t understand that.

Also, I’m glad the US bailed out the banks because it kept the global financial crisis from getting far worse. What I didn’t like was that after we bailed them out, we didn’t require them to pay back every penny … but bailing them out was the right move.

5. Regulate all financial derivatives and require them to be traded on open exchanges.

I thought that all financial derivatives were already regulated, but I could be wrong.

6. Restore the Glass-Steagall separation of depository commercial banks from speculative investment banks.

This is the first reasonable proposal that they’ve made. I notice that they didn’t mention that the Glass-Steagall Act was repealed under President Clinton … likely an oversight …

7. Establish a 90% tax on bonuses for bailed out bankers.

Second reasonable proposal. I didn’t like the CEOs of bailed-out banks getting bonuses.

8. Support the formation of federal, state, and municipal public-owned banks that function as non-profit utilities. Under the Green New Deal, we will start building a financial system that is open, honest, stable, and serves the real economy rather than the phony economy of high finance.

The “real economy” rather than the “phony economy of high finance”? What on earth does that mean? What is “high finance”? How is it not “real”?

And public-owned banks? I’m not seeing any advantage in that. People involved in private banks have skin in the game. If they fail, the owners lose money. But people involved in publicly owned businesses of any type have no skin in the game—if they fail, nobody gets fired, nobody gets demoted, nobody loses money.

And that is a recipe for failure.

Finally, we get to the Fourth Pillar of the Green Bad Deal …

IV – A FUNCTIONING DEMOCRACY

We won’t get these vital reforms without a fourth and final set of reforms to give us a real, functioning democracy. Just as we are replacing the old economy with a new one, we need a new politics to restore the promise of American democracy. The New Green Deal will:

1. Revoke corporate personhood by amending our Constitution to make clear that corporations are not persons and money is not speech. Those rights belong to living, breathing human beings – not to business entities controlled by the wealthy.

People are always shouting that the Citizen’s United decision allowing corporations to have and promote political opinions was a mistake. But consider—if that is repealed, the following groups will NOT be able to be involved in the political process in any manner whatsoever, because they are all corporations:

Unions

Newspapers

Charities

Political Action Groups

Radio and TV stations

Non-Governmental Organizations like Greenpeace or Save The Children

You sure that’s what you want?

Also, corporations are not persons—they can’t get engaged, get married, go to the bathroom, vote in elections, or do a host of things that people can do. They do have certain limited powers, to do things like sign contracts, to own property, to have employees, etc. This points out the one tiny problem with their proposal—getting rid of these person-like powers would destroy our entire economic system.

You sure that’s what you want?

Whoever put forward point number one above hasn’t thought this through.

2. Protect our right to vote by supporting Rep. Jesse Jackson, Jr.’s proposed “Right to Vote Amendment,” to clarify to the Supreme Court that yes, we do have a constitutional right to vote.

Mmmm … I’d never heard of it, so I went to take a look. Not impressed. Constitutional amendments need to be restricted to critically important things and should be crystal clear. To my eye, that one is neither.

3. Enact the Voter Bill of Rights that will:

guarantee us a voter-marked paper ballot for all voting;

require that all votes are counted before election results are released;

replace partisan oversight of elections with non-partisan election commissions;

celebrate our democratic aspirations by making Election Day a national holiday;

bring simplified, safe same-day voter registration to the nation so that no qualified voter is barred from the polls;

do away with so-called “winner take all” elections in which the “winner” does not have the support of most of the voters, and replace that system with instant runoff voting and proportional representation, systems most advanced countries now use to good effect;

replace big money control of election campaigns with full public financing and free and equal access to the airwaves;

guarantee equal access to the ballot and to the debates to all qualified candidates;

abolish the Electoral College and implement direct election of the President;

restore the vote to ex-offenders who’ve paid their debt to society; and,

enact Statehood for the District of Columbia so that those Americans have representation in Congress and full rights to self rule like the rest of us.

This is a mixed bag of mostly vague thinking. Some things are good. Paper ballots are good. Non-partisan election commissions are good. Making Election Day a national holiday is good as long as it is an unpaid holiday.

Other things are far too vague. “Full public financing” of elections sounds good, but the devil is in the details—who gets the money, and how much? And “free and equal access to the airwaves” … same problem. Does some American Nazi Party candidate with 735 followers get public funding and free access? If not … why not? Do we only fund politicians we approve of? Lots of thorny questions in there.

And some ideas are just horrible. Abolishing the Electoral College is one of them. It’s there for a very good reason. The Founding Fathers knew that if they had direct election of the President, the voters of the most populous state (Virginia at the time) would elect every single President, and the voters in the smaller states would never make any difference at all.

And the same considerations have stayed true through the years right up until today. Without the Electoral College, Abraham Lincoln would never have been President … very, very bad idea.

4. Protect local democracy and democratic rights by commissioning a thorough review of federal preemption law and its impact on the practice of local democracy in the United States. This review will put at its center the “democracy question” – that is, what level of government is most open to democratic participation and most suited to protecting democratic rights.

The “Federal preemption law” says that when Federal and State law conflict, the Federal law prevails. I’m not sure why these folks think that is a problem … always more to learn.

5. Create a Corporation for Economic Democracy, a new federal corporation (like the Corporation for Public Broadcasting) to provide publicity, training, education, and direct financing for cooperative development and for democratic reforms to make government agencies, private associations, and business enterprises more participatory.

“More participatory”? We’re going to spend billions of dollars to make businesses “more participatory”? What does that even mean? What is a “participatory” business? These folks are too much for me. They also want more cooperatives. I’ve been involved with a bunch of co-ops in my time, and my rule of thumb about co-ops is “For cooperatives to work, people have to … you know … cooperate …” Once they solve that, get back in touch, and we’ll discuss co-ops …

6. Strengthen media democracy by expanding federal support for locally-owned broadcast media and local print media.

The Public Broadcasting System in our area acts like a wholly-owned subsidiary of the Democratic Party. But the party’s not the point. It would be just as bad if it were a wholly-owned subsidiary of the Republican Party. Government media have been forces for propaganda as long as they’ve existed, and the PBS is no exception. Sorry, but I do NOT want more taxpayer support of the media. And once again, it’s not “federal support”, it is TAXPAYER SUPPORT! … you remember the taxpayer, the poor schlub that this green dream has already burdened with $40,000 per year in new costs? …

7. Protect our personal liberty and freedoms by:

repealing the Patriot Act and those parts of the National Defense Authorization Act that violate our civil liberties;

I’m OK with that.

prohibiting the Department of Homeland Security and the FBI from conspiring with local police forces to suppress our freedoms of assembly and of speech; and,

Huh? I have no clue what this is talking about. The people suppressing our freedom of assembly and speech these days are the fascists of Antifa …

ending the war on immigrants – including the cruel, so-called “secure communities” program.

There is no “war on immigrants”. This is the usual liberal technique of conflating “immigrants” and “illegal immigrants”.

Nor is there a war on illegal immigrants. They are here illegally, and people are enforcing the laws against that. That’s called “following the law”, not “war”.

8. Rein in the military-industrial complex by

reducing military spending by 50% and closing U.S. military bases around the world;

Mmmm … international diplomacy is never simple. I’m with Teddy—speak softly and carry a big stick.

restoring the National Guard as the centerpiece of our system of national defense; and,

Wait, what? When was the National Guard the “centerpiece” of our national defense?

creating a new round of nuclear disarmament initiatives.

I guess so, although I don’t see this as a huge priority.

Let us not rest until we have pulled our nation back from the brink, and until we have secured the peaceful, just, green future we all deserve.

A “just, green future”? Man, I have had it up to my back teeth with the word “green” being used as the ultimate in virtue signaling. This proposal has nothing to do with “green”. It is a liberal pipe-dream which would bankrupt the country and would do nothing for either the climate, the economy, or the environment.

Man, hacking my way through this colossal pile of bovine waste-material has angrified my blood mightily. Midnight. I gotta go outside and walk around some, see the stars, let the wind blow in my hair. Catch up with y’all later …

Best wishes all around,

w.

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330 thoughts on “The Green Climate Deal

  1. I’ll consider believing in global warming when people like Ms O-C, Mr Sanders, and Mr Gore have:
    a) given up half their income to their staff or donated it to the government (this calculated after they pay taxes. All of the above are rich so the rich should pay 🙂
    b) give up business flying on private jets, or in first class, or in business class
    c) give up all flying for vacations
    d) take public transit or ride bicycles
    e) live in one house. Sanders and O-C can share a two bedroom apartment while in DC.

  2. Willis, may I make two observations for you to consider? One we are not a Democracy yet many keep repeating it which continues the falsehood. You posted this which is not accurate either: “We have the rights given by the Constitution.” No, the Constitution’s ONLY role is to GUARANTEE that government respects and cannot violate those Natural/God given rights. It does not GIVE them tto us.

    The rest for me is dead on point! Thank you

    • kwg, I’d disagree. According to the authors of the Constitution, the ONLY God-given rights are the rights to “Life, Liberty, and the Pursuit of Happiness”. Per the Preamble, those are “endowed by the Creator”.

      The rest of the rights, those in the first Amendments to the Constitution usually called the “Bill of Rights”, are NOT said to be natural or God-given. They are given by the Constitution.

      Best regards,

      w.

      • The author of the Declaration of Independence, from when that language comes, was not even in the country when the Constitution was being framed.

        Jefferson’s Declaration did not limit natural/God-given rights. His phrase was “Among these are life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness.” This means that there are more than these listed.

        The Bill of Rights calls out others in this list, prohibiting the government from infringing upon them. And the 10th Amendment notes that there are still more, and that the fact that they aren’t mentioned by name doesn’t forfeit them.

        ===|==============/ Keith DeHavelle (@DeHavelle)

      • Willis what you stated is inaccurate. I will explain my disagreements and then my researched proof for your review.

        A) The Preamble:
        “We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness”

        “The Preamble was placed in the Constitution more or less as an afterthought. It was not proposed or discussed on the floor of the Constitutional Convention. Rather, Gouverneur Morris, a delegate from Pennsylvania who as a member of the Committee of Style actually drafted the near-final text of the Constitution, composed it at the last moment. It was Morris who gave the considered purposes of the Constitution coherent shape, and the Preamble was the capstone of his expository gift. The Preamble did not, in itself, have any substantive legal meaning. The understanding at the time was that preambles are merely declaratory and are not to be read as granting or limiting power—a view sustained by the Supreme Court in Jacobson v. Massachusetts (1905).” From the “Heritage Guide to the Constitution” (https://www.heritage.org/constitution/#!/articles/0/essays/1/preamble)

        These words from the Preamble in no way limit, or are legal, either for or against the Constitutions legal authority granted to what became our controlling document. The later addition of the “Bill of Rights” as was agreed to by the founders, came in order to be more specific about several issues of the “Rights” of we the people. The why is found in this articles quote with the link below it:

        “The Preamble was placed in the Constitution more or less as an afterthought. It was not proposed or discussed on the floor of the Constitutional Convention. Rather, Gouverneur Morris, a delegate from Pennsylvania who as a member of the Committee of Style actually drafted the near-final text of the Constitution, composed it at the last moment. It was Morris who gave the considered purposes of the Constitution coherent shape, and the Preamble was the capstone of his expository gift. The Preamble did not, in itself, have any substantive legal meaning. The understanding at the time was that preambles are merely declaratory and are not to be read as granting or limiting power—a view sustained by the Supreme Court in Jacobson v. Massachusetts (1905).”
        https://www.heritage.org/constitution/#!/articles/0/essays/1/preamble

        So yes the Preamble did not have legal authority, but I never stated that position. What I stated, was the fact, that the wording of the “Preamble” set the stage for the Constitutions purpose, which was to protect our God given rights and other concepts of the government they were forming which need expounding. The Bill of Rights, does more precisely define those “general” words from the “Preamble and in the Constitution, since it expounds upon them greatly.

        (B) Now on to your stated point; “The rest of the rights, those in the first Amendments to the Constitution usually called the “Bill of Rights”, are NOT said to be natural or God-given. They are given by the Constitution.”

        “During the Constitution’s ratification process, from 1787 to 1789, state ratifying conventions pointed out the lack of such fundamental guarantees in the Constitution and submitted lists of proposed constitutional amendments. The Federalists, who supported ratification of the Constitution, eventually conceded and promised to attach a bill of rights to the document. The leading contributors to the creation of these amendments—which came collectively to be called the Bill of Rights—were George Mason, Thomas Jefferson, and James Madison, with Madison serving as their principal author and sponsor on the floor of the U.S. House during the First Congress.”
        https://legal-dictionary.thefreedictionary.com/Bill+of+Rights

        “On September 25, 1789, 12 amendments to the Constitution were submitted to the states by the required two-thirds majority of Congress. Two of the amendments—which dealt with congressional pay and the Apportionment, or assignment, of congressional seats to the states—were voted down by the states. The other ten amendments were ratified by December 15, 1791.

        And this: “The first ten amendments to the U.S. Constitution, ratified in 1791, which set forth and guarantee certain fundamental rights and privileges of individuals, including freedom of religion, speech, press, and assembly; guarantee of a speedy jury trial in criminal cases; and protection against excessive bail and Cruel and Unusual Punishment. As a fundamental guarantee of individual liberty, the U.S. Bill of Rights (see appendix volume for primary document) forms a vital aspect of American law and government. It establishes many legal principles that have had a decisive effect upon law and society, including the functioning of the criminal justice system, the separation of church and state, and the exercise of Freedom of Speech.”

        The Bill of Rights, is not only part of our original Constitution as was required by the states before the states would first ratify that Constitution, but it has the additional effect of expounding upon what they, the founders new was a document not nearly specific enough when it came to our God given rights in that document. Thus the BOR within 4 years of the signing of the Constitution on September 17, 1787, December 15, 1791, were added just as the states expected to enumerate more specifically the “God Given/Unalienable rights” listed in the “Preamble” in general terms needing greater clarification.
        https://tenthamendmentcenter.com/2011/12/13/you-dont-have-constitutional-rights/

        • Sorry to bust your rant, but you started off with the wrong preamble.
          Most people often confuse the Declaration of Independence with the US Constitution.

          “We the People of the United States, in Order to form a more perfect Union, establish Justice, insure domestic Tranquility, provide for the common defence, promote the general Welfare, and secure the Blessings of Liberty to ourselves and our Posterity, do ordain and establish this Constitution for the United States of America.”
          ..carry on.

        • A nice recap of history, except that the keystone of your argument is the Preamble discussing unalienable rights.

          It does not. You’ve accidentally used text from the Declaration of Independence. The Preamble to the US Constitution is different:

          “We the People of the United States, in Order to form a more perfect Union, establish Justice, insure domestic Tranquility, provide for the common defence, promote the general Welfare, and secure the Blessings of Liberty to ourselves and our Posterity, do ordain and establish this Constitution for the United States of America.”

          It is the lack of clear acknowledgment of unalienable rights that led to the states demanding the inclusion of a Bill of Rights.

          But as you correctly point out, none of this “grants” rights; it simply acknowledges the existence of pre-existing rights upon which the US government cannot infringe.

          ===|==============/ Keith DeHavelle (@DeHavelle)

        • “https://legal-dictionary.thefreedictionary.com/Bill+of+Rights”

          Do not rely upon this site for:
          A) Honest portrayal of the Constitution, Bill of Rights, Amendments or Declaration of Independence!

          B) Definitive summation for any of the founding articles!

          There is a lot of ‘modernist’ revisioning throughout their writings, along with simplification of statements and gross assumptions for rationale.
          The same goes for quite a few other ‘online’ sites, both liberal and conservative.

          If you are going to cite beliefs and opinions behind much of these documents, read the Federalist Papers!
          To get the true background for why what was agreed and when, one really must read many historical tomes.

          C) Next time, use a ‘true copy’ of the Constitution before writing anything!

      • “The rest of the rights, those in the first Amendments to the Constitution usually called the “Bill of Rights”, are NOT said to be natural or God-given. They are given by the Constitution.”

        They’re categorized as “civil rights,” as opposed to natural rights.

      • The original Bill of Rights spelled out liberties.
        FDR’s “New Deal” Bill of Rights spelled out entitlements, and this “Green” one is no different.

      • The last Presidential campaign might not have been so strange, if the Democratic party nominee had actually read the Declaration of Independence, instead of merely glancing at it, thus believing that it enshrined the pantsuit of happiness.

        • She was not a democratic nominee, she was a Democrat nominee. Their foundation proves my understanding of what a Democrat is.

      • The Constitution does not give us any rights. We the People have all the rights and the Constitution is a document that outlines the limited authority we the People give to the federal government. It outlines how the government is to operate and what we the People allow it to do. The Bill of Rights was added to emphasize and to make clear what the government CANNOT do.

        • “The Constitution does not give us any rights.”

          1000% correct. Never forget that our rights are given to us by the United States Armed Forces, not the Constitution. While our Constitution is a remarkable set of rules to be governed by, the Government it created and the Rights that government must afford us are non-existent in most of the world. Freedom comes first and our freedom can’t be guaranteed by parchment.

      • Willis, the Declaration of Independence says that “they are endowed by their Creator with certain inalienable rights, AMONG THESE are life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness.” The three elaborated rights in the Declaration are a subset of all the rights endowed by the Creator.

        Furthermore, people in this thread are continually conflating the Declaration with the Constitution. With a literate as many are in climate here at WUWT, some need a refresher course on civic.

        • For years I have given people pocket copies of Declaration of Independence, Bill of Rights and Constitution. Apparently I need to order another case!

          • One of the more useful smallish paperback books I have contains:
            Magna Carta
            Declaration of Independence
            US Constitution
            Treaty of Guadalupe Hidalgo
            The Constitution of the State of California

            Interestingly, the first four documents only require about 30 or so pages while the last fills over 100. Seems like CA likes to torture its laws with inelegance.

      • Willis,
        All rights were considered to be natural rights. The preamble does not say that life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness were the only rights, it says that these are among them.
        A number of the founders were dead set against the Bill of Rights for the very reason you demonstrate. As a compromise, the Ninth Amendment was insisted upon, that just because some natural rights were enumerated, it was by no means an exhaustive list, and other rights not specified were still retained by the people.
        That being said, nothing can be a right if it infringes on the rights of another, thus, someone’s right to pursue happiness by having a place to live does not supersede the right of another to pursue happiness by retaining the fruits of their labor. You can’t steal from me to give my money to someone else, thus you cannot empower a government to do so.
        The only purpose of the Constitution was to authorize limited authority to a central government. It did not ‘give’ the people anything, it recognized what they already possessed and they gave that small authority to that government to act in their name so long as that government respected the contract.

      • Sorry, but that’s just plain wrong. The Bill of rights does not say “the people hereby have the right to…” It says things like “The right to…shall not be infringed”, “The congress shall pass no law respecting…”, things like that.

        The bill of rights does not create rights, it codifies restrictions on the government’s lawful ability to restrict already existing and recognized God given (or “natural” if you prefer) rights.

        • You don’t really have the “god given” or “natural” rights to anything. A tornado, hurricane, wolf, virus, can take away your life, and thus your right to life and anything else. If these rights were “god given”, then nothing could take them from you.

      • a couple things:
        The rights in the Declaration are “unalienable” meaning they cannot be taken away because they were not granted by a government or society. They are inherent in being human.

        The 10 rights in the Bill of Rights were written immediately after the Constitution to further delineate exactly what “life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness” mean. The “pursuit of happiness” is an archaic wording meaning “something that one does”, such as study of history(highly recommended), power, money, riding a horse, science research…. The Bill of Rights guarantees your freedom to try and be happy.

        You can work at being happy all you want, but you can’t infringe on someone else’s right to do the same.

        The constitution is built on the idea of a civil society where the large majority of folks are trying to make a living, do good, and get along with the others. People who aren’t part of civil society(criminals, power hungry politians, lazy bums) aren’t included.

        • Furthermore, happiness is not a right. As human beings, we have the right to pursue happiness, but there is no guarantee of it. The government has not the right to take away our right to pursue happiness in our own way, so long as we do not transgress others’ rights in the process. Likewise, being rich is not a right, and not everyone will achieve it; but we can try, by legal means, to gain wealth. While we all have the same rights, we do not all have the same abilities and capacities for work, rational thought, and other necessities. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez has the right to speak as she pleases, but she has no right to stop me from speaking back, or from doubting or laughing at what she says, especially concerning climate change. Facts are still facts, and neither she nor I, nor anyone else, can change them to suit our purpose. The longer I live, the more thankful I am that the Founding Fathers did what they did. There is nothing else on earth to match the Constitution of the United States.

      • Willis,

        Please focus on legislation that has a chance of enactment rather than proposals of Ocasio-Cortez and Bernie Sanders.

        I’m suggesting you turn your considerable powers of analysis to the Deutch Energy Innovation bill, which has actually been introduced into the current lame duck congress by a bipartisan group of congressmen.

        Larry Barden

    • I wish y’all would stop confusing the Constitution with the Declaration of Independence.

      Preamble of the Constitution of the United States:
      “We the People of the United States, in Order to form a more perfect Union, establish Justice, insure domestic Tranquility, provide for the common defence, promote the general Welfare, and secure the Blessings of Liberty to ourselves and our Posterity, do ordain and establish this Constitution for the United States of America.”

      First paragraph of the Declaration of Independence:
      “When in the Course of human events it becomes necessary for one people to dissolve the political bands which have connected them with another and to assume among the powers of the earth, the separate and equal station to which the Laws of Nature and of Nature’s God entitle them, a decent respect to the opinions of mankind requires that they should declare the causes which impel them to the separation.”

      Second Paragraph of the Declaration of Independence:
      “We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness. — That to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed, — That whenever any Form of Government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the Right of the People to alter or to abolish it, and to institute new Government, laying its foundation on such principles and organizing its powers in such form, as to them shall seem most likely to effect their Safety and Happiness. Prudence, indeed, will dictate that Governments long established should not be changed for light and transient causes; and accordingly all experience hath shewn that mankind are more disposed to suffer, while evils are sufferable than to right themselves by abolishing the forms to which they are accustomed. But when a long train of abuses and usurpations, pursuing invariably the same Object evinces a design to reduce them under absolute Despotism, it is their right, it is their duty, to throw off such Government, and to provide new Guards for their future security. — Such has been the patient sufferance of these Colonies; and such is now the necessity which constrains them to alter their former Systems of Government. The history of the present King of Great Britain is a history of repeated injuries and usurpations, all having in direct object the establishment of an absolute Tyranny over these States. To prove this, let Facts be submitted to a candid world.”

      • Yeah, after I wrote that I thought “Constitution? Declaration of Independence?” But it was after midnight, and my cranial safety valve was near to blowing.

        Anyhow, SMC, thanks for clearing that up, and for the long quotes. Amazing writing.

        w.

      • That to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed,
        I just thought that should be in bold.
        That is the conception of the United States.
        The Articles of Confederation were the first attempt to form a Government to achieve those ends.
        While it was too weak to usurp those rights, it was also to weak to defend them.
        The Constitution formed a Government that was strong enough to defend those rights but it was also strong enough to usurp them. It was not ratified until after The Bill of Rights was added to limit this new Government’s ability to usurp the rights of the individual.
        Over time, those rights have been eroded. Mainly by the Judges who forgot that they are to rule based on the Law of The Land and not their personal opinion or politics. But also by some of the changes to the original.
        A biggie is that Senators are elected via popular vote. Originally it was up to each state how its senators were selected. The Senate was to represent the States and their Governments so each state has an equal say. The citizens of all the states have their say in the House of Representatives.
        The Electoral College was an attempt (and a good one) to blend both ideas, that is, each individual has a vote in how their state will vote for the President.

        This Green Government Mess they propose would not secure the rights of the individual.
        Quit the opposite.
        (Aside from the fact that it’s just plain stupid!)

        PS SMC, as Willis said, thanks for clearing it up. I noticed but didn’t have the time at the time I noticed.

  3. Ms. Alexandria Occasional Cortex and Mr. Bernie (Crazy) Sanders’ “Green New Deal” contains 8 policy points which are all equally as deranged as you would come to expect from a pair of swivel-eyed loons. Thanks for the detailed assessment.

  4. Willis there are two items for your consideration. First is the fact that we are NOT a Democracy! We are a Republic. Big difference as I know you know. Secondly, the Constitution does not GRANT US OUR RIGHTS! The Constitution protects governments from denying them and removing them. Our rights are from our Creator as written by the founders in the Declaration of Independence!

    Thank you for all the rest of your work! I love it!

    • I may not be American but I believe the true categorisation of the USA is a Democratic Republic. The fact that the names are used to represent the largest parties does not mean they are a simple ‘either or’ choice, any more than here in the UK being Conservative, Liberal or Labour means that you are one but have no element of the other 2.

      Willis I’m with you – excellent rant! Hope the night air did you good.

  5. Willis, you have done a good job exposing the Green Raw Deal, you should take a bottle of liquid sustenance with you while you walk around and admire the stars. This is just socialism writ large, and is the formula for an economic disaster, even if they could implement 10% of it. The scary part for me is to eliminate the Electoral College and go to direct vote for President. The Electoral College initially was to facilitate the arrival of votes to DC when horses were transportation. However now it is a guard against illegal voting in centers where people agree with socialism. Don’t you find it strange that 99% of persons who manage to vote after they are deceased vote Democrat? The conversion they want to a Green Economy is to stop AGW and to sustain socialism. The birds and bats are obviously Republicans as they get no justice in any of these proposals. Tighten up your seatbelts, folks, we are in for a wild ride.

    • One small but important point, I happen to believe the wise Delegate from NJ WHO said something like, we are not going to accept being totally ruled by 1 large state after seeing the tyranny of being ruled by 1 person, the king.
      The electoral college was the compromise and think how bad it would be now if NY and California decided who is President

    • States are allocated electors based on population just like the House of Representatives plus two for each state just like the Senate. The states can decide for themselves how to allocate electors in the electoral college.

      Most states, but not all, allocate all electors to the popular vote winner of the state. If they want to start a real democracy they could allocate them based upon the percent of votes for each candidate in a state. Most states won’t do this because it would dilute the number of votes for the “winning” candidate. The two major parties would rather play the lottery of winning a state and especially the big states.

      I’ve used this argument with lefties who want to go to a popular vote. They suddenly realize that if they win a state by only one vote, they would only get half the electoral college votes in that state instead of all of them.

      They never seem to think that candidates would only concentrate on the states with over half the population when using the popular vote. The states like Delaware, New Jersey, Massachusetts, and Vermont wouldn’t even probably vote because what good would it do?

      Think back to the Civil War. At least some of the reason for the war was that the Northern States had the money, power, and population to basically ignore the needs of the Southern States. Slavery wasn’t the only reason for the war. Now think of how many years or decades it might take for a hatred of the large states by the really small states to boil over into another civil war. It could happen by going to a popular vote. Think of the children!

      • Slavery was the only reason for the Civil War. The reason the southern states were poor was slavery.

        Slavery was an extremely inefficient system. It consumed all of the available capital. It reduced the value of free men’s labor . It tied up huge amounts of resources to control the slaves and to capture the runaways. It benefited no one except the slave owner.

        The economies of the slave states were inversely proportional to the number of slaves. States such as Delaware, Maryland, and Virginia, which had a smaller percentage of slaves, had much stronger and diverse economies than states with higher percentages, such as Mississippi and Alabama.

        Secondary issues such as tariffs were also directly tied to slavery. The poor South wanted low tariffs, the wealthy North wanted high tariffs to protect its industry.

          • The expression “multiple reasons for the Civil War” might be arguable. But there was one reason only for the secession. Every single state, in its declaration of secession, focused on the attack upon the institution of slavery. An example:

            The people of Georgia having dissolved their political connection with the Government of the United States of America, present to their confederates and the world the causes which have led to the separation. For the last ten years we have had numerous and serious causes of complaint against our non-slave-holding confederate States with reference to the subject of African slavery.

            States’ rights, however, were the opposite of most peoples’ understanding: The slave-holding states objected to states asserting their rights to override the federal government, as Northern states were nullifying a federal law requiring the return of slaves.

            ===|==============/ Keith DeHavelle (@DeHavelle)

          • Again, since you clearly have comprehension problems, there were multiple causes of the American Civil War. Please do study the actual history, do not depend on the revisionist crap you get spoon fed by TV and movies. And damned sure do not believe anything out of NPR, those lying f**ks are not even honest about their own founding, much less American history.

          • “Every single state, in its declaration of secession, focused on the attack upon the institution of slavery.”

            That is not true. Most made no mention of slavery in their Ordinance of Secession.
            Of course it was a major issue of the time. Having a President and his Party campaign and win election on it, the Southern states had every reason to be alarmed and they stated as much in response. The Federal Government and Northern States had largely stopped enforcing laws and sections of the Constitution they disagreed with. Don’t we condemn that when it happens today?
            Seven states seceded as a result of the election, four of whom issued “Causes of Separation” documents in which the discussion of slavery figured prominently. Your quote is the first two lines of Georgia’s “Causes” document. You should read the remaining six pages or so to get a detailed understanding of the “other issues”, historical and Constitutional. Four states, those furthest north (Virginia, North Carolina, Tennessee, Arkansas), seceded in solidarity with the original seven after the war started.

            This remains a touchy subject, obviously, but it is informative to see how we react today to controversial topics where we condemn “the end justifies the means” tactics, which is exactly what the “good guys” back then were doing.

        • Martin Mayer, thank you for that comment. I had never considered in any depth the negative economic effects of slavery. On top of the obvious evil of the practise.

          Now I think of it the effect of devaluing labour would have been devestating to the poor, and with the inevitable result that wealth would have more rapidly gravities to fewer and fewer wealthy hands.

        • Martin Mayer…

          Wow, so wrong it could only be made up by someone that has no relatives on either side. I have both sides covered, and slavery was not why people went off to war.

          “The reason the southern states were poor was slavery.” The Southern states were not “poor” by any world measure. Comparisons to the faster industrializing Northern States, with more immigration are somewhat biased. Southerners certainly did not consider themselves poor.

          “Slavery was an extremely inefficient system. It consumed all of the available capital.” Really? The 95+% of non-slave holders in the South had zero capital? Created nothing? Had nothing? No companies? No trades? No assets? What are you smoking? and are you in Oregon now?

          “It reduced the value of free men’s labor .” Yes, just as all the illegal and legal immigrant farm workers reduce the value of free men’s labor in Kalifornia today, except that now we use the polite term that “those are jobs Americans don’t want”. Horse puckey.

          “It tied up huge amounts of resources to control the slaves and to capture the runaways.” Yes, and today we call that huge burden The Department of Homeland Security, Border Control and ICE.

          “It benefited no one except the slave owner.” Right, there were no cities, nothing to burn in Atlanta, no housing, no transportation, no railroads to tear up and destroy, no banking system, court system, law enforcement, military, no iron-clads, no factories or regular work anywhere at all except on the plantations. Cotton for clothing world wide, tobacco, and being the southern version of the Midwest breadbasket had nothing to do with anyone but the slave owners. As a northerner I still can’t eat half the “vegetables” they grow down there, but they sure like them.

          “The economies of the slave states were inversely proportional to the number of slaves.” Well, yes, agrarian economies would tend to have more poorly paid agrarian workers. Pretty astounding correlation you’ve noticed there. In a time known as “The Industrial Revolution”, early industry did enrich, and kill, and stuff into slums, more people than farming did. Most southerners wouldn’t have traded their life for the slums of NY. As a matter of fact, still wouldn’t.

          The tariffs, economy, slavery, were all important factors, as was State’s Rights. The United States was still referred to as “These United States”, with the states being most important, not the singular federal government name. Some northern states had taken to selectively enforcing some laws they didn’t like, sound familiar? Slavery was protected by the Constitution and couldn’t be abolished by federal law based on the simple fact that activists didn’t have the votes to do it. The US territories were a different story and provided the flashpoint. Had Jefferson Davis not fired on Fort Sumter, giving Lincoln a valid reason for fighting back, the seceded states would have had their own country.

          On the Scots (northern) side of my family we have a brevet Brigadier General from a New York City regiment who enlisted in May of 1861 (first battle was in July at 1st Bull Run) through May of 1864, wounded at Spotsylvania Court House in his last battle before mustering out. His regiment was one of “Fox’s 300 Fighting Regiments” of the Union Army, that did most of the fighting and suffered the heaviest casualties. His obituary was in the New York Times in Feb. 1896. He’s buried in Queens.

          On the Scots (southern) side of my family we have several privates and non-commissioned officers buried in the family cemetery about a half hour south of Tallahassee, FL.

          None of them fought to free the slaves. The war did not end slavery. The 13th Amendment did.

          • It is nice to see a solid Defense ovf the benefits of slavery. You make it sound very functional after all.
            😉

          • markx

            It is nice to see a solid Defense ovf the benefits of slavery. You make it sound very functional after all.

            I would point out that, without fossil fuels the ONLY energy available is slaves.
            Women.
            and animals.

            As we existed from 150,000 BC to the glories of the Industrial Revolution in England and NW Europe in the 1760’s and 1770’s.

            And England, then the United States, were the FIRST cultures in history to abolish slavery.
            Were, actually, the first to be ABLE to abolish slavery.

          • The salient point,”being able” to end slavery, is refused upon delivery by many people. Their absolute lack of actual knowledge of human history blinds them to the facts. Slavery existed in many different forms throughout human civilisation. When you point that out to them they get angry. They really get in a snit when you point out that they would most likely of lived out their lives in one or another of those forms of slavery had they been born 300 years ago.

          • I do not defend slavery in any way, shape, or form. Far from it. I merely point out to Martin that the issues were far more complicated than he implies. We grouse here on WUWT about the greenies wanting to tax and reshape our economy for no good reasons, while forgetting the very real similar threats felt by the Southern states. What were assets to many were to be given up for no compensation, like, say, taking over Exxon because greens don’t like what they do. The cost of the government freeing the slaves by “buying them out” was rejected due to the cost, yet would have been cheaper than the cost of the Civil War on the Union side alone, with no deaths.

            With few exceptions, those who fought the war did not fight over slavery. I know that from family records on both sides. My southern family owned no slaves. The Southern states just wanted to be left alone, and so seceded from a “treaty” they felt was no longer of benefit to them. They were not the first to consider secession. The “Hartford (Connecticut) Convention” considered secession by New England states upset over the War of 1812 with England. The federal government had no power to stop states from seceding, as they merely stopped cooperating with the federal government, removed their representatives (Andrew Johnson of Tennessee was the only member of Congress to stay in Washington from a seceded state, and became President upon Lincoln’s assassination), and had taken over every federal court house, customs house, fort, military base, post office, etc., peacefully as “federal” employees defaulted to “state” employees and ended their allegiance to Washington, D.C. All federal tax revenue, tariffs, customs, etc., went to the state instead. Only two federal forts remained in Union control and Fort Sumter was one of them. Had a decision to fire on that fort not been made it is entirely possible that the war would not have started in South Carolina and would instead have been “fought” in the individual territories out west (“bloody Kansas”) as those who would impose their social views on everyone else without passing laws democratically would continue to use the courts, selectively enforce the laws, and all other means to get what they wanted. Sound familiar?

          • It really is black and white with you.
            Something is either totally good or totally evil.
            Pointing out the errors in another persons claim is the equivalent of defending slavery.

            WHy not try growing up and deal with the real world for a change.

        • It is unfortunate that, as the Constitution was being ratified, an inventor was considering the problem of how to get the seeds out of cotton.

          Under the circumstances then in play, slavery was uneconomical and in the process of dying out. This allowed a compromise to be struck, and the Union to be formed by people strongly objecting to slavery. To them it was temporary.

          But a couple of years later, Eli Whitney’s figured out the seed-removal process, and his Cotton Gin suddenly made slavery profitable. And the Civil War became inevitable.

          ===|==============/ Keith DeHavelle (@DeHavelle)

    • No the biggest flaw is outlined in grandiose detail by this ‘Green Climate Deal’ as highlighted by Willis. It is as stated in the apocryphal quote – credited to Benjamin Franklin:

      When the people find they can vote themselves money, that will herald the end of the republic.

      This is precisely the dystopian future that is embodied in the ‘Green Climate Deal’.

      • Although I agree with the sentiment expressed , Benjamin Franklin never said that. It is one of the many popularly dispersed “fake” quotes of the founders.

        • Hence referring to the quote as “apocryphal quote”

          a·poc·ry·phal.
          [əˈpäkrəfəl]
          ADJECTIVE
          (of a story or statement) of doubtful authenticity, although widely circulated as being true.

      • Similarly:
        “The American Republic will endure until the day Congress discovers that it can bribe the public with the public’s money” -Alexis De Tocqueville

    • The biggest flaw in a Democratic system seems to be that people who have no grip on reality can be elected.

      The best argument against democracy is a five-minute conversation with the average voter.

  6. The United States already has a full employment program.
    Didn’t signorina Cortez declare that “everybody has two jobs”?

  7. “Democratize monetary policy” ?
    I think that means the government should only spend taxpayers dollars on things that only the Democrats like..
    Great post Willis.

  8. Socialism/Communism haven’t worked… yet. They just need to try harder … (with AK47)

    I’m not in the USA, so please someone more knowledgeable of the local politics, is Pres Trump has any chance?
    I mean, the Left just need to tolerate 2 more years… then what? Mr Trump is healthy and strong now, but over 70! He may not run, and then what? GOP is divided, and can’t see an other Trump line up who dare to take on the Left/media’s ‘rampage’ and distraction of society.
    To rebuild, need to start with education, but the teacher’s union refuse to teach history re socialism etc!
    Promoting stupid courses instead of engineering and science…

    Sorry about the rant … more to say, not enough English skill to do so.

    Thanks Willis for your contribution! Love your work 🙂
    Mick in OZ

    • “I’m not in the USA, so please someone more knowledgeable of the local politics, is Pres Trump has any chance?”

      Trump has a real good chance of being reelected. His favorability ratings keep inching higher. He’s up to 50 percent approval in some polls. His popularity with blacks and hispanics has increased from about 10 percent approval before the election to about 35 percent approval now And this despite the biggest smear campaign every carried out against a Republican president by the Democrats. Their only concern is about Democrat power, not about the welfare of the nation.

      If the U.S. economy keeps doing as well as it is doing now, and there’s no reason to think it won’t, then Trump should win reelection.

      The Democrats are trying their very best to smear and undermine Trump, but they have had no luck so far, and it doesn’t look like Trump is gulty of any crime, despite the enormous efforts made to pin a crime on him by the Democrats and the Deep State.

      If Trump does not get the southern border wall funded because of Democrat stonewalling, then we can count on the wall and illegal immigration taking center stage in the 2020 elections, and the Democrats are going to come out on the short end of the stick because the American people want that southern border secured and the Democrats will find that out come 2020.

      • And I might add, I don’t think “shutting down the goverment” is a good idea.

        Trump is threatening to shut down the goverment (which doesn’t mean what you think it means:) if the Democrats don’t fund his southern border wall, and Nancy Pelosi says she won’t and that the southern border wall is “immoral” in her estimation. So things don’t look too good right now, although Pelosi may be “pulling a Trump” and stating her most extreme position first, and then compromise later. We’ll see.

        But as to shutting down the government (all essential services are still working), I don’t really see how this helps Trump. I don’t see what pressure this puts on Democrats to make a deal. What funding would be stopped that would cause harm to Democrats in the shortterm? I don’t see anything.

        I think Trump should drop the shutting down the government threat and try to hit the Democrats hard in some other way because I don’t think shutting down the government hits the Democrats hard. All they will do is grin and blame Trump for any problems that occur.

        Trump should start right now personally lobbying against every Democrat that opposes the southern border wall. And that’s most of them. But I doubt any of them want Trump up on a stage detailing just how bad the Demcrat representative is to his district and to the country.

        • No, Democrat Party will shutdown the government, and DJT is laying that right on them. Shut. It. Down. Government will keep running, as it always does. Then list all the USG employees who were so un-necessary they need not show up for USG to function and pink slip them. Drain the swamp from both sides. They get 20 odd weeks of unemployment and a nice letter of recommendation for their resume to take to WalMart or Chik-Fil-A or the local garbage dump and they can move on with become actually productive with their lives.

        • With the Democrat Party taking the House of Representatives in January, if Trump doesn’t draw the line, there will be no border wall funding for at least 2 years.

      • DJT has the unique, to US Presidents, ability to communicate directly to Americans. Media and government entities are desperately trying to block and silence this and are failing miserably. He needs to up the game with weekly addresses which people can access electronically, via podcast format, smartphone app and the White House webpage. Every time a camera and microphone are pointed at him he needs to hammer this home with the American people. Another point, we need to end the editing on “news” broadcasts. This is one of the primary methods Fake News Inc is lying to people. Show every single second and every single word or show none of it.

    • Julian, almost 50% of actual U.S. workers pay no Federal income tax. In fact, with the Earned Income Tax Credit and other directly-refundable “tax” credits, many workers receive actual money from real taxpayers. Welfare writ large.

  9. There you have it. Wishfull thinking combined with innumeracy. Good intentions, roads,pavements, Hell and all that. Union of Socialistic America, here we come!

  10. For those of you that do not recognise it, this is the new “Communism”, the new world order, UN Agenda 21, Agenda 2030 and Sustainability.
    Welcome to 1984, this is BIG Government instead of small Government.

  11. They want America to become 1960’s Great Britain?

    The Poor Man of Europe – On steroids?

    Don’t these idiots ever look beyond their own puerile, idealogical stupidity?

    The UK was released from post war left wing ideologies many of them necessary because we had gone through two world wars we couldn’t afford to fight and had to come, cap in hand, to America for support.

    That would be a wealthy, industrialised and wholly privately run America which could afford to lend us money.

    Margaret Thatcher pitched up and told us we no longer needed to publicly fund wasteful, nationalised businesses like British Leyland, British Steel, British Coal, British Rail, Electricity, Gas, British Telecom. All run by unions, especially coal with whom the country had a bitter, pitched battle, literally, when people died and families were torn apart.

    She revolutionised the banking system and in very short time we became probably the second best banking economy, vying only with America to be the first, with enormous tax receipts for the government from the profits.

    But we were still paying America back for our war debt, quite rightly.

    Then we joined the Common Market. I mean, we only fought two wars to ensure the damn continent wasn’t swallowed up by fascism, and we had to borrow all that money from our friends in America to do it. Yet the Europeans didn’t want us to join their little club in the first place! Now we want to get out they are making it as difficult as possible and our cowardly, feckless government are conspiring with them to keep us in under the worst possible circumstances.

    Be warned America. Surrender your values to these ideological, left wing, maniacs and you will never see personal freedom again.

    Green deals are nothing to do with anything other than fascism. These people want to seize control of your governments and work with select businesses to subjugate your country so the elite have all the power and all the profit. You will have jack booted storm troopers patrolling your streets just as Germany did, Italy did and Oswald Mosley organised in the UK.

    It’s closer than you think and you must be vigilant. Unlike communism, it resides in your community, it walks your streets and presents itself as the saviour of the oppressed and poor whilst plotting to strip you of democracy. It presents a benevolent face whilst concealing its violent and oppressive intent.

    We can smell it’s stench in the UK right now and I would rather people made a mistake in fighting it than make the mistake of ignoring it. Some of have learned our lesson of appeasing Hitler, many haven’t.

    That’s why Brexit is important to the world, not just little Englanders, as we leave voters are smeared (despite me being a Scot). If the seat of civilised Western parliament, democracy and law falls, there will be serious consequences for everyone in the Western world.

    • >Don’t these idiots ever look beyond their own puerile, idealogical stupidity?

      Nope. Heck, I have them as in-Laws. They have a hard time looking beyond their current location, let alone reason about anything else.

    • “Be warned America. Surrender your values to these ideological, left wing, maniacs and you will never see personal freedom again.”

      Truer words were never spoken.

  12. Hmmm…. must said something wrong. My comment stuck in moderation. Or the spellcheck didn’t pick up my accent… again. Sorry mods.

    • Most of my comments do not appear when I first post them. My comments disappear for a while, but they will usually be there withn 5 or 10 minutes. If you refresh the page immediately, your comments won’t appear. It takes a little while and it seems like it takes 5 or 10 minutes. So be patient. I don’t think these posts are being delayed becuase they are being moderated, I think it is just a quirk of the current software.

      And then sometimes, my comments will appear immediately! But not often.

  13. So you’ve got around 125million employed now. Can you imagine how many of them would decide it’s time to snatch it and be unemployed to jump into a new Green Gummint job? Your tax sums are a wee bit optimistic for the remaining productive sector.

    • Welp- lets be honest: If those benefits were good enough, I’d stop work, raise my kids and play video games all day if I could.

      Why should I pay for others to slack off when I’m perfectly capable of slacking off my own self?

  14. The various maps available online of the 2016 election votes by county or precinct shows why the electoral college is needed – for example see http://i0.wp.com/metrocosm.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/11/election-2016-county-map.png?resize=600%2C386
    This is especially true when population imbalances are considered for example:
    The population of Los Angeles County alone at 10.6 Million exceeds the population of Montana, Wyoming, Idaho, North and South Dakota, and, Nebraska combined.

    This is why the presidential vote is by States through the electoral college.

    • Sorta, kinda. In a world of nation states it’s easy to lose sight of the originality of the American approach to group governance that involved the constitution (literally ‘standing together’) for certain limited common purposes of 13 separate colonies (you know, the flag stripes). Perhaps for us natives who so habitually sum it all to the apparent singularity of the U.S. or America, the literal equivalent in French (‘Etats Unis’) or Spanish (‘Estados Unidos’) can remind us of the founding arrangement. We really are a confederated representative republic composed of sovereign states, accounting for both the state oriented electoral college system for presidential election, as well as the two per state U.S. senatorial representation, no matter the disparate populations and orientations of those states. As the French revolution would soon prove, thoroughgoing democracy had a troubling sociological tendency to degenerate into the sweeping excesses of mob-ocracy.

  15. [Re: Corporations]
    This points out the one tiny problem with their proposal—getting rid of these person-like powers would destroy our entire economic system.

    You sure that’s what you want?

    Yes, that’s what they want:

    “Isn’t the only hope for the planet that the industrialized civilizations collapse?
    Isn’t it our responsibility to bring that about?” Maurice Strong 1992

    We are setting out to intentionally change the economic model that has been reigning since the Industrial
    Revolution. – Christiana Figueres, Executive Secretary – UN Framework Convention on Climate Change.

    • Weren’t those “person-like powers” just given a decade or so ago? I’m pretty sure we had an economy then.

      I think there should be less money in politics, not more. No PACs, none of that garbage. Elections shouldn’t be decided on who can make the snazziest attack ads.

      I also don’t think elected officials should be stumping for funds for their parties or anyone else.

  16. She sure is a zippy little thing, isn’t she? If those googly-eyes could open any wider, they’d pop right out of her head.

    I’m still trying to figure out what planet she’s living on, because it isn’t mine. Trade schools (aka vo-tech) are offering training with full paid tuition, and can’t find enough students. Companies are offering paid internships to high school students, some of whom are from my area. I don’t know where she gets the idea that people are in grinding unemployment, but she’s so completely out of touch with reality that it’s almost like she’s floating around on balloons or something.

    Her level of ignorance is beyond appalling. Lack of understanding about business overall is even worse. There is no such thing as a free ride. I know too many people who left the remains of the USSR behind and came here to start a new life and have succeeded nicely.

    She’s out of her teensy-weensy little mind. It’s a shame that a creaky old gasbag like Bernie has latched onto her as his Energizer Bunny. But we do need to know what this busy little bee is up to, so that we can see how little she understands about the real world.

    Thanks for posting the article and the analysis. And the United States of America is a republic, not a democracy. Let’s keep it that way.

    • Of course Willis chose the sleazy option of using unflattering images of his opponents to poison the well. Much like most of the media does. I guess I shouldn’t have expected him to take the high road.

      • Really? They are ugly people, inside and out, and should be shown as what they are. They should also be mocked, ridiculed, have derision heaped upon them and be the focus of laughter and finger pointing. That is how you drive such losers out of the public square. When that does not work tar and feathers should be liberally applied! And fetch a rail.

      • Gee whiz, Jeff, where have you been? Fishing?

        You don’t like those photos, eh? Well, sport, that’s exactly what both Sanders and Ocasio-Cortez look like. Her eyes nearly pop right out of her head in almost every photo of her. And Sanders is older than dirt and has looked half-asleep for about 15 years now.

        So, you see, your comment is not only invalid, but shows your lack of general information about those two people.

  17. Getting rid of the electoral college, which firewalls the vote counts in each state, would greatly incentivize vote fraud.

    • Getting rid of the Electoral College would end the Republic. There is no State outside of a handful with the highest populations that would accept giving up their voice in our Federal governance, if forced they would rightly cede from the Republic.

  18. People who believe in the founding principles of the USA, a free-market economy, and individual liberty should be very concerned about Ms. Ocasio-Cortez and Bernie Sanders and others who have similar thoughts. There are plenty of people in this country who think that the ideas in their Green New Deal manifesto will lead to prosperity for all as opposed to the financial ruin it will most certainly cause.

    Do not belittle their plans. Instead, counter them with facts, examples, and sound arguments, to the best of your ability. The political left have much of academia and much of the dominant media companies on their side. It is up to those who understand history and financial reality to influence those who are “in the middle”, who might read this document and think “hmm.. maybe it will work, let’s try it!”

  19. Great fun read, I just wish the subject being ridiculed wasn’t the preferred option by the advocates of Agenda 21.
    To borrow the words from Arnie, “they will never give up”.
    The maintenance of democratic freedom, demands constant vigilance.
    If the progressives as they like to see themselves, or more accurately describe themselves, are allowed to over step the democratic mark, the only recourse left to us is armed resistance. It is better to ridicule them and stop them before it gets to more serious methods.

    • Lots of folks agree with you. Some are suggesting divorce.

      Countries split and change hands. They do this for a myriad of reasons. Ours would be a major cultural shift toward the left and half the country refusing to go along with tyranny. link

      What surprised me when I went googling was the number of recent stories suggesting that America should break up.

  20. The only place where America, the richest most powerful country in history, has a problem mentioned by Sanders et al, is medical care. Americans should live longer than anyone on the planet. Instead, their life expectancy is about 31st in the world and it’s hideously expensive. As well, America has death panels. They’re called HMOs.

    I’m not saying Sanders et al have the right solution but at least it’s a real problem.

    • I don’t disagree with your main point, but the 31st rank for US life expectancy is from a WHO report which includes deaths by guns, suicide and car accidents. None of these have anything to do health care.

      • re. suicide

        Back at Dec. 1, 2015, my favorite Democrat blog posted this. The folks Hillary calls the despicables and Donald calls the forgotten people, are committing slow and fast suicide by smoking, drinking, and shooting themselves. For sure, they can’t afford decent health care and that stresses them. With decent health care, they would be somewhat less stressed but that wouldn’t solve their most important problem, decent jobs.

        The Democrats will blame the Republicans for all America’s ills but they are equally culpable. They have thrown the forgotten people under the bus. They ignore the problems of the forgotten people because the forgotten people are ‘privileged white people’. Only persecuted minorities deserve the compassion of the liberal elite.

        A few liberals understood why Trump would win. Michael Moore called it. Josh Marshall called it. Thomas Frank called it.

        You are right, the medical system per se is not the only reason for America’s relatively short lifespan. It is the fault of the Republicans and the Democrats. The forgotten people, not being stupid, elected President Trump. He, at least, is producing results. /rant

    • You forgot to mention that health care is a total mess precisely because of government meddling.
      And your solution is even more meddling?

      PS: Life expectancy depends on many, many factors. Only one of which is the quality of the health care system.
      Stop drug addicts from having babies and stop teenage gang bangers from shooting each other, and there will be a huge increase in average life expectancy.

      • I very carefully did not offer a solution. 🙂

        What we really need is real free market capitalism instead of a market where supply is artificially limited. If you want medical care to get cheaper fast, just abolish medical licenses of all sorts. Anyone should be able to hang out a shingle and compete in the free market. Also, requiring prescriptions to buy drugs is just a way to force people into the offices of MDs. Drugs are also way over priced. All those regulations about who can manufacture drugs and how they should do it should also be abolished.

        The free market is the answer for all of humanity’s ills.

        • Ha ha. Good points there CBob. All these guys who want a ‘Free’ capitalist system fail to understand that the system we DO have ONLY functions due to a myriad of rules and laws. Even the beloved capitalist concept of private ownership has rules to create and enforce that.

          Healthcare IS an area where government (OK OK, … taxpayer) funds should be wisely directed. Public medical systems work marvellously well in Australia, and I gather, also in the UK and many other countries.
          It’s a necessity for a functioning societ and creates useful employment which hugely adds to the cashflow and supporting industries in the private sector. It is most likely cash flow positive for any substantial community.

          • What is about socialists? Everytime someone says that there is too much government, they declare, you want no government.

            Then again, it’s not like socialists have ever actually thought through the problems they are demanding that others solve.

          • I think you are making the point, Mark W, that the correct amount of regulation lies somewhere in between having none and having the government control absolutely everything.

            And I would completely agree with you.

            Now, if we can just nail down that exact level it should be at, we’ll be fine.

          • It’s pretty obvious that we have way more than we need at present.

            I should also take a moment to point out the fallacy of the belief that only government is able to certify doctors and medicines.

        • commie, you are usually smarter than this.
          Are you actually going to argue that the answer to too much government is no government?

          When you want to have an intelligent conversation, let me know.
          If you want to keep lying about what I am saying, I’ll count you with the rest of the trolls for whom such tactics is the best they can do.

          • Michael Hlinka has commented on incontestable labor markets. Once you have a job, you have it for life, no matter how good you are. link His point is that incontestable labor markets are a drag on the economy. In that light, we have to ask about the extent to which a medical license works as an artificial barrier to entry rather than just serving to protect the public.

            Hlinka does think the role of government has to be scaled back, not eliminated. I haven’t heard him on the radio lately but here’s a link to some of his previous broadcasts.

            Hlinka has a rather clear eyed view of reality. As far as I can tell, he’s not a doctrinaire anything. I tried to catch his broadcasts whenever I could.

            Anyway … I was riffing on Hlinka’s comments on incontestable labor markets and exaggerating for emphasis. Also, I was only half kidding.

            Government regulation is definitely a two edged sword.

          • CommieBob.
            Economists do have the most interesting theories, and have the rare distinction of never being correct.
            There are very good reasons to have requirements for defined skills in certain tasks. One is ensuring it is done correctly, and the second is in allowing some form of responsibility and traceability.

            I spent more than 20 years in South East Asian environments where plumbers and electricians were often untrained, (or training which usually involved looking over the shoulder of an expert who was intent on NOT sharing his ‘specialist’ knowledge). The upshot was most things could be made to work, but not reliably, safely, or as expected, and trouble shooting was almost impossible. Electrical, plumbing, construction engineering, welding trades were all full of charlatans and fakes. There was not a roof that did not leak, barely an electrical circuit that would not trip out and had untraceable wiring systems because they were all the same colour, or a welding site which didn’t require extensive practical testing of applicants. It is really a nightmare.

            Medicos? Reasonalby well regulated and this is essential by a factor of 10X the above. Diagnostics, antibiotic and other treatments, vaccine programs, surgery, etc, must be carried out by accountable trained professionals.

            One area which could benefit from less regulations is the food industries of western countries. Adhoc restaurants and supply chains do provide remarkably cheap, good food at a very low cost, and do supply massive amount of ‘survival employment’.

            Of course, the downside of that is there is more likelihood of food poisoning outbreaks (partly relieved by a massively exposed and immune populace … and that is a whole other discussion) but it is still a big enough issue that you’d better be sure your medical systems work in a professional way.

            If you were only half kidding, best we first apply this deregulation to economics. I’ve got some pretty good theories I need to share.

          • markx December 9, 2018 at 2:29 am

            There are very good reasons to have requirements for defined skills in certain tasks. One is ensuring it is done correctly, and the second is in allowing some form of responsibility and traceability.

            I fully agree.

            I’ll give you a couple of examples.

            Engineers are licensed in order to protect public safety. Is it over regulation when the engineers’ licensing body brings charges against someone for using his engineering skills to inform public debate? link

            Often, regulations are at the behest of the industry to protect the entrenched players from competition. If that’s the only purpose of regulation then it’s wrong. When conditions change it can have perverse effects.

            I would propose a corollary to Parkinson’s Law that states that regulations expand to fill the time of the bureaucrats tasked with writing and enforcing them.

            Most people would agree that both over and under regulation are a problem. The balance is a matter of intense debate. The Texas system sounds attractive.

            The Texas legislature, for example, has a one-year session but dedicates the off-year to a thorough review of one agency to determine whether it is efficient and achieving its stated intended mission. If they find antiquated regulations and laws on the books, they repeal them the next session. link

          • Yes Bob, definitely a bloody unreasonable prosecution in the case of the retired engineer. But, what did he expect, getting between the government and its revenue source?

            And, you are correct on the state of the relentless expansion of bureaucracy.

          • Sounds just like Kashoggis’ situation. Don’t make enemies of evil people unless you are willing to defend yourself with deadly force. Pretty sure one of the apostles said that, or some random rabbi at some point.

          • markx December 10, 2018 at 3:36 am

            Seems relevant”

            Here’s a link to the presentation that goes along with the slide deck you linked.

            During the presentation, Pielke shows where the population explosion myth started. It was started by Lyndon Johnson in order to provide a market for American wheat and thereby increase prices for the farmers. So, if politics needs an expert, a compliant expert will present himself. Paul Ehrlich didn’t invent the population explosion but he sure found a way to cash in.

            Just as with CAGW, it’s amazing how experts lend their expertise to supporting a myth. It’s pretty craven actually.

  21. Green is the new Red.

    Check out the works of Cloward and Piven https://thefederalistpapers.org/us/is-the-cloward-piven-strategy-being-used-to-destroy-america I used to think this was pure right wing conspiracy theory but it makes perfect sense out of something that otherwise boggles the mind with its stupidity.

    The point of all this Santa Claus worship is to bankrupt the system and utterly collapse it. Then the elites can sweep in and finally do socialism right this time. If they ever got their way completely it would make Venezuela look like a worker’s paradise.

  22. “do away with so-called “winner take all” elections in which the “winner” does not have the support of most of the voters, and replace that system with instant runoff voting and proportional representation, systems most advanced countries now use to good effect;”

    Instant runoff voting, aka ranked-choice voting (or a variant, approval voting), is unfortunately not widely implemented. (In the U.S., Maine is the first state to implement it statewide, this year.) The only country employing it at the national level AFAIK is Australia. It has unfortunately allowed the votes of voters who rank only minority-parties to be assigned by that party to some other party, leading to a lot of inter-party intrigue and bad emergent phenomena. This malfeature should be eliminated.

    Proportional representation sounds great, but in practice it’s barely better than what we’ve got, as various studies by political scientists have documented. Again, the cause is unanticipated emergent phenomena.

    • If a person votes only for minor parties, then once those parties have been eliminated, that ballot should be counted as did not vote.
      If they are permitting the party to assign the votes, then that is a flaw in the implementation of the system.

  23. Willis, thank you for the thoughtful analysis. I find reading your missives on par with reading about history by David McCullough (currently reading Truman).

    Whenever I lament the naive and delusional rantings of politicians such as Sanders and Ocasio-Cortez, I simply look across the pond to France, and their dramatic lurching from left to right to appreciate the genius of our constitutional republic. Our form of democratic governance works, and has worked so well (relative to others) simply because it has evolved into finding a path forward that results in the least bloodshed, not the “best” solution (whatever that might be…). I like to think the US democratic process is like your thermal homeostasis hypothesis…whereby nasty, but very local, thunderstorms form and even things out. The electoral college (ie states) allow/facilitate the formation of the local thunderstorms, rather than some continent wide Armageddon as imagined by Hollywood. The ultimate target of the Sanders/Ocasio-Cortez crowd is the electoral college, fortunately, our founders knew this, and agreed on the super majority needed to amend the constitution. I have little fear that 2/3 of the states will hand over their fate to California and New York.

    Regards,
    Ethan Brand

      • Yes, there seems to be more to the problems in France than just the Carbon Tax. The demonstrations continue even after the tax has been taken off the table.

        There are reports of similar demonstrations breaking out in Belgium and the Netherlands. I’m not sure what their grievances are.

  24. In theory a “democracy” lets ordinary people have a say in government, gives each a stake in a civil society, and provides for political accountability. How it works in practice is to provide a mechanism for the most gullible and credulous persons in society to empower the very manipulative political elite, and immunize them from accountability.

    I can’t figure out yet whether Ocasio-Cortez belongs in the gullible or manipulative category, but she has gotten as far as she has partially through failure of the press to explain her utterances. Not one American in ten is likely to know who she is or what she proposes because the press embargo her stupidities. I have known about her for a while only because I read the Manhattan Contrarian. There are probably dozens more loons like her in Congress who I know nothing about.

    We are not a democracy for as long as we can maintain the sensible, and I might say conservative in the sense of prudent, institutions of a republic. The long term trend looks pretty bad right now.

  25. In such a society I would have no reason to ever anything. I would never start a business, I would never employ anyone. I would have no reason to get an education or improve my self or my property. I would never invest in the stock market. I would never buy a property, so I’d never rent it out, to some bum who would never pay the rent or get tossed out for it.

    Sounds quite a lot like what I imagine Cuba would be like to ‘live’ in.

  26. I attempted to wade through this pile of steaming crap when a friend linked it to me from green party webpage. Sweet bleeding Jeebus, what more could you expect from a college grad who can’t run a cash register or explain basic economics and a multi failure “socialist” con artist(my apologies to actual con artists who are at least proficient at their chosen profession) who was too stupid to understand he was being screwed by his own party twice. The sad part is generation snowflake will gobble this up like a tofu salad.

  27. The average wage in DC is over $70,000 dollars. Ocasio-Cortez announced she is paying her aids $15.00 or LESS THAN HALF that amount. That’s all you need to know. This is about shafting you and never touching her.

  28. Good post, Willis. What would dominate such a word salad system would be Pournelle’s Iron Law of Bureaucracy, that the only useful skill would be playing the system, not in actually doing anything otherwise considered productive.
    It might even make Venezuela or the old Soviet Union seem functional.

  29. replace partisan oversight of elections with non-partisan election commissions

    Useful only if you can guarantee non-partisan commisioners.

  30. From the article: “Next, why are these people unemployed? We have more jobs in the US right now than people looking for jobs. The people left without jobs are folks with some kind of reason, valid or not, that they are not working—disabled, don’t need a job, untrustworthy, criminal, live with their parents, unreliable, trust-fund babies, lazy … not your ideal workforce.”

    We should add another category to those not looking for a job for some reason: Illegal immigrants. A study reported on yesterday said about 63 percent of illegal aliens currently in the U.S. are collecting welfare payments from the American taxpayers. And the longer the illegal aliens have been in the U.S., the more likely they are to be on welfare and not working.

    When you hear promoters of illegal immigration say all the immigrants want is a chance to work, don’t believe it. The illegal aliens know where the Gravy Train is and here they come to take advantage of it and the American taxpayers. And our socialist politicians are doing everything in their power to bring as many illegal aliens into the U.S. as possible.

    Democrat politicians consider them future Democrat voters and they may be correct since most of these people came from socialist countries to begin with, and most of these people are going to be depending on the U.S. government to give them money, so naturally they would lean towards voting for the Party of the Big Giveaway, the Democrats Socialists.

  31. Well said, w., and I agree with you essentially 100%.

    When the term “democratic” is used in the Green Climate Deal I think AOC and Bernie mean controlled by the democratic party/liberals/leftists.

    Bernie and AOC should read “The Gulag Archipelago” to see how the Marxist-Leninists implemented and enforced the very programs that are advocated in the Green Climate Deal. It wasn’t pretty.

    Unfortunately, about half the country just loves the idea of free stuff controlled by government. And too many of this 50% think all the government has to do is print more money. They also fully support taxing “the rich,” which generally means anyone making more money than they do.

    With more and more people being elected like Bernie and AOC, I’m increasing happy I’m 82 years old and won’t be around to see how this story ends.

  32. Excellent analysis Anthony. Thank you. My disheveled brain reads thru it and all I can do is laugh and cry.

    My biggest takeaway however is terror. Literally. There are people, lots of them, that read thru this slapped together bit of nonsense and believe it, support it and want to see it happen, now. It’s terrifying that our society has reached this level of ignorance and selfishness.

    What has happened to our critical thinking skills, deductive reasoning, civility and independence? This is a document that says I will give up everything if you promise to wrap me up in a warm blanket.

    Go try to have a discussion with anyone of the millions who support this idiocracy. It will break your heart and numb your soul.

    • Talking to leftists is a waste of time, you are not going to move them from their deeply held religious beliefs. You can convince a person who thinks, you can’t convince a person who feels.

  33. While I agree with most of Willis conclusions one bit hit me early on. Windmills. On a river cruise a few years ago I got tour a area of windmills not far from Amsterdam. It was explained how the windmills were used to constantly pump water out of the fields which were below sea level and into the Rhine beyond the dykes. Of course, these windmills were only for tourists and we were shown the massive electric pumps that now keep the water flowing into the river. The electricity is powered by COAL. And the 1000 year old technology if windmills is no longer part of the mix. Just a thought brought on by the renewable bit early in the diatribe. Good work Willis, as usual.

    • When there was no alternative windmills were a solution. Those days are long dead, killed by coal, buried by hydro, urinated on by nuclear and bulldozed over and turned into a parking lot by gas.

  34. Yikes. It’s enough to make Joseph McCarthy not only turn in his grave, but stand up, dance a jig, and whistle Dixie.

  35. Thank you for your systematic studied point by point unraveling of this “Road to Venezuela.”

    It is one our Nation should never travel on, as it leads to national oblivion!

    Thank you (just keep repeating)!!!

  36. Would it be reasonable to say that if we follow the Green New Deal, we will become like Venezuela? I couldn’t read the entire post, my stomach couldn’t take it, but what I did read was excellent analysis. Thank you!

  37. Great and valuable work, Willis. The next couple of years will be filled with air heads selling this crp. Your work is a great place to start to refuting them.
    and this:
    “…What I would do going forward, on the other hand, is to restrict the use of student loans to people going into STEM studies (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Medicine), or going to technical schools to learn skills like welding. Those folks will get jobs and will be able to pay the loan back….” I would add “federal grant dollars” to the list, and give this to POTUS to enact, asap.

    • Fantastic, George!

      French commoners using a symbol of government overreach to protest another symbol of government overreach.

  38. I’m conflicted……I can’t determine if this nonsense is more closely aligned with the Communist Manifesto or the The National Socialist Program (NSDAP).

  39. The AOC Marxist Manifesto looks to be just plagiarism of U.N. and Obama Regime documents available on Wikipedia.

    Give an idiot enough rope and she’ll hang herself.

    Ha ha

  40. Of course to bring is all about there is a need for ‘progressive green dictatorship’ has the people do not known what is ‘good for them ‘ and needless to say the usual suspects see themselves leading it , ‘for the good of the planet ‘ of course .

  41. Willis,

    Thanks for wading through this cesspool to show us what types of excrement it actually contains. I too am angered that these ridiculous ideas get even minimal traction in our country’s political dialogue.

    One that particularly irks me is:

    “7. The right to fair taxation that’s distributed in proportion to ability to pay.”

    This means that if you are stupid and lazy “we” will give you everything you need, and if you are smart and industrious and productive “we” will take everything from you except what “we” think you need.

    We are already sliding so far down this slippery slope that we have already passed the “democratic” tipping point where the recipients of the public largess outnumber the producers of wealth and prosperity, and will be mired in the cesspool of equality of outcome.

    I find it all quite depressing, but thanks again for all your efforts, both on this topic and all your others.

  42. I have never understood the necessity of making Washington, DC, a state. It has a land mass smaller than Baltimore, with slightly more population. If residents there feel they need to be in a state, why don’t we just give it back to Maryland? Maryland already has two very capable “D” U.S. Senators who would do an outstanding job of representing the additional DC residents in the “progressive” way. Carve one U.S. House seat out of California, toss it Maryland’s way and call it good.

  43. Under this plan, Solar would provide some of the power needed for the southern 1/2 of the nation but produce little power for the northern 1/2 of the nation, especially little during winter, and produce virtually no power at night. We would far too dependent on the wind for power at night – no wind and most of the lights go out. These nuts haven’t given any consideration to what powers transportation, industry, and heating – less trucking, less car travel, no freight trains, less industry, and many houses will be cold.

    The Socialist agenda would destroy the American economy. Macron’s fuel tax is a walk in the park compared with this destructive plan. The riots in France would also be a walk in the park compared to the riots you would see in the US if this brainless plan by (Weekend at) Bernie Sanders and Ocrazio-Cortex would be put in place. Democrats need to distance themselves from these fools and help shut this ruinous movement down.

  44. Marxist or Communist ideology, as we have seen throughout history, has mostly been practiced with the tools of oppression and totalitarianism. Remember the Soviet Union and its East European satellites. We fought a Cold War to defeat it. China, Cuba, North Korea and other nations today still demonstrate the totalitarian nature of it as it has traditionally been practiced.

    From my perspective, what we have here with the “Green New Deal” is an attempt to take Marxist or Communist ideology (with its history of oppression) and Americanize it, to give it a “democratic” appeal and flavor. Ms. Ocasio-Cortez and Mr. Sanders are trying to make a modified version of it palatable in the American mind despite the Cold War still being quite fresh in the memory of the post-WWII Baby Boomer generation (including myself).

    Meanwhile, the effort to “sneak Marxism in the back door” of the environmental movement by adding a “green energy” game plan to this “New Deal” only demonstrates to this Baby Boomer how the far left keeps trying to devise ways to sell their ideology to the American people. Blending together Marxism with environmentalism (“What do we want? Climate and environmental justice! When do we want it? Now!”) was an an idea that no doubt easily came to mind among the far leftists in the years after the collapse of the Soviet Union.

    On the surface, there is nothing wrong with wanting to work communally to make society a more egalitarian place. However, with free market capitalism showing how it is the only economic system that really works, making that society as egalitarian as Ms. Ocasio-Cortez and Sen. Sanders would like is far easier said than done. I suggest here that communal efforts are best done on a voluntary basis, not forced on society by the power of government. Would the Social Security system still be in place today if it were voluntary? The only reason I am accepting benefits from it is because I was forced to pay into in much of my life as were my employers—and I want a return on that money.

    If this Green New Deal were analytically and properly subjected to the disciplines of science, engineering, economics, finance and mathematics, it would probably be poked full of enough holes to the point where it would look like a block of Swiss cheese. As such, I seriously doubt that this New Green Deal is going to get anywhere. Even if it does get out of the House and makes its way to the Senate, it will likely die there with the Republicans still in charge.

    Ocasio-Cortez, Sanders and Bill McKibben (who is also cheer leading for this “Deal”) will likely never understand just how far off the mark they are with something like this. It is a waste of time and effort trying to get them to understand. This “Deal” represents the illiteracy in science, engineering and the other disciplines that unfortunately infects the voting populace that put Ocasio-Cortez and Sanders in Congress in the first place. The effort that would be required to fix that is beyond my comprehension.

    • CD, there is no way even a minor part of this manifesto could make it through (even a Democrat Party controlled) U.S. House of Representatives, much less the Senate.

  45. There is also the Twilight Amendment, which includes rights emanating from a penumbra, or rites discovered at and for the twilight fringe (logic, ethics, and customs), which are notable for violation of civil and human rights, denial of scientific facts (e.g. spontaneous human conception and “wicked solution”), denial of equality in favor of political congruence (the other “PC”), protection of monopolies and practices, and redistributive change for the 0.1%ers, foreign and domestic, and to subsidized high-density population centers.

  46. “Some things are good. Paper ballots are good. Non-partisan election commissions are good”

    Paper ballots are not “good”. LBJ stole his first congressional win here in Texas when the Sheriff of Duval County “found” a ballot box with enough votes for LBJ to win. Same with Al Franken’s senatorial race and the recent “vote harvesting” in California.

    Non-partisan election commissions are probably impossible to come by, especially in Democrat controlled jurisdictions.

    I have been a polling location supervisor (legally a “judge”) here in Texas since 2007. The county I live in has been fairly conservative and the election mechanism has been run in a non-partisan manner. Yes, there is voter fraud, but it seems to be by gaming the system. Especially since a Democrat federal judge basically gutted our voter ID law. The fraud seems to be mostly in the voter registration process and the absentee ballot process. For instance the recent conviction in Virginia of the college student that was registering dead people. I has also happened in Houston. If you can get a name and Social Security number of the deceased, then you can submit a registration application for that person with a phony address.

    • Actually, paper ballots are not the problem, the honesty of those running elections is the problem. Swift, severe and loudly public punishment would solve that problem, then we could go back to simple, basic, non-corrupt elections.

    • Thanks, Jon. I should have been more clear. Paper ballots are better than hackable, unauditable electronic voting machines. However, any system can be gamed …

      w.

    • Wow, theres an opportunity for one of AOC’s gov jobs. Cross checking voter rolls with death registrations. Jon’s happy voter fraud is down, AOC’s happy someone’s got job. Sounds like a win win to me!

  47. Two things:

    Socialism is the intersection of the incapable and the incompetent.

    Socialism is for everyone but the socialist. Bernie Sanders has spent over $300,000 on private jets in the last year or so. You fly coach, or better yet, walk.

    • Bernie and his wife also have two houses. They got a 3rd house through inheritance…so they sold one house and put some of the proceeds towards adding-on to the 2nd house they kept.

  48. So student loans get forgiven. If you paid off your loans, even if it meant accruing other debt to do so, you get nothing.

    Same thing goes for houses…if you accrued debt to keep paying off your house, you get nothing. But people in trouble now get gov’t relief.

    And who pays for it? The people who are getting nothing and who already paid.

  49. She supposedly has a degree in economics. She should sue to get her money back.

    I do disagree on paper ballots. The mess in Florida was caused by paper ballots. Not only were there “found” ballots but there were “corrected” ballots.

    Oh, and as far as bankers and wall street go. Remember that the Obama and Holder were the ones that didn’t bother to send anyone of the top people to jail when they had dead to right cases for fraud.

  50. Willis: I agree with you on almost every point. But your sagacity is questionable for a big reason. Why in Hell do you still live in California?

  51. “When was the National Guard the “centerpiece” of our national defense?”

    1799. In 1812 the British invaded the United States and burned down the White House. Policies changed after that.

  52. A point not touched yet Willis. This idiot idea of cutting the military by 50% and relying on the N.G.
    since when have we not?
    https://www.nytimes.com/2005/01/08/nyregion/69th-regiment-mourns-death-of-its-fourth-soldier-in-iraq.html
    perhaps Occasional Cortex should learn the history of the state of New York’s own N.G.
    Also a bit closer to home for you Willis is the 194th California N.G. tank battalion nationalized and and sent to the Philippines in 1941. It was part of the death march.

    Perhaps since the military did not answer the progressives call for a coup they think reducing the regulars and relying on the N.G. which is normally under the control of the state governors will get them any army

    michael

  53. As convenient mathematically as it is to assume that every person’s health care cost can be calculated as a tax equal to the number of recipients times the assumed tax, this properly should be offset by whatever the cost that are being paid in while under the present system. Real costs are those above and beyond what it is costing us at this point. Uh we have government funded education up to college already. Used to and still do have government subsidized college. California had free college education until Reagan came along. I would argue that society gets as much or more out of an educated citizenry as any citizen does himself, so education being paid for by that society is in its own self interest. If this were properly recognized, perhaps society might mandate that some of what it pays for or at least those classes it pays for had some tangible content. These argument are applicable in some degree to several other listed points.

    • ” education being paid for by that society is in its own self interest. ”

      The education that we’re paying for now (K-12) is, at least in theory, determined by the people. Not the case with colleges which have proliferated useless courses and majors. The gentry that run them would be screaming “how dare they!” if we actually demanded accountability from them. They want to determine what is taught (indoctrinated) that is counter to the beliefs of the majority of the country but they want the rest of us to pay for it.

    • Correct, CMS.
      Education and healthcare are of huge value to any society.
      In fact, that is where we can solve the world’s climate change ‘problems’ which, whether they are harmful or not, are primarily a result of overpopulation.

  54. I hereby apply for a position of a Chief Science Advisor for the The Green Climate Deal.

    The Deal stresses the need for research. While there is some research in solar and wind technologies, all that research is totally misdirected. What is the main issue with solar and wind? They don’t provide a reliable supply of power. Therefore, under my direction, we will find ways to make wind blow when and where needed, and to make the sun shine all day long.

    If this obvious research direction did not occur to you, you have not fully grasped the Deal.

  55. A political system generally requires huge sums of money to maintain itself. Socialism needs the most money to operate since paying everybody regardless of whether they produce anything is their goal. They get the money from taxation or appropriation from “rich” people. They forget that, in the modern world, the rich got “rich” by providing goods and services that improved people’s lives to the point where those people were willing to pay their hard earned money for that improvement. Guess what happens to “improvement” when the rich are no more?

  56. “repealing the Patriot Act and those parts of the National Defense Authorization Act that violate our civil liberties;

    I’m OK with that.

    Don’t be. She means to repeal all the parts that protect you from terrorism.

    Think of that old saying… “Hire a teenager, while they still know everything.

  57. There is one common thread running through all their proposals. And it has to do with basic macroeconomics. All transactions have two parties. A supplier and a recipient of that which is supplied, usually called a consumer. The value that is placed on what is supplied is called demand. Price is the point where suppliers and consumers reach a “point of equilibrium”. If the demand for anything you want forces the price higher, more suppliers want to produce it. If low demand pushes price down, less suppliers want to produce it. If the government mandates it costs less, a shortage will occur. Demand will exceed supply. It is a “self-balancing” system, as long as suppliers are not breaking laws in order to produce at a lower cost, or breaking laws to sabotage the production of their competitors.
    Their proposals all concentrate on the consumer, because they want the consumer to get more stuff and pay less or even nothing. All that comes at the expense of the supplier who gets less, or gets nothing, or has his business taken over by the government. All three scenarios are untenable because the first two result in shortages, people like to get paid for their work, and the last one has the “means to production” owned by the least efficient method of production.
    We are wealthy as a country, only as long as we “COMPLETELY REJECT” this foolishness. Wealth comes from suppliers competing for customers, and making ever better products in an effort to win over more customers and be able to charge more for products of “higher demand”.
    People get wealthy by building successful businesses and hiring capable people. There will always be inequality in a system that produces greater wealth for those that are successful.
    These proposals are a prescription to destroy what works, and replace it with what will not work, and can never work. They find fault with the “inequality” of capitalism, but the only way to make things equal is to make everyone equally poor. Except the political class. They will now have the power and the public will become subservient to the owners of the “means to production”. The Bill of Rights was designed to prevent the Federal Government from doing this. The public demanded the Bill of Rights because they knew that power in the hands of some, creates the inevitability of an “inequality” that cannot be overcome except through Revolution. They had just endured that with a remote adversary, and did not want to have the new government using the same policies on them.
    The shopping list of freebies for consumers can never actually happen, because more than half the country, must work for less than they are worth, to provide it. Do we really want “your heart surgeon” earning the same as a kindergarten teacher? Do we want a bureaucrat deciding who gets what based on political factors? Because if the market doesn’t decide based on demand for what they “supply”, then politics must decide.

  58. Interesting to contemplate that Ms Occassional Cortex has a degree in ECONOMICS! Is there any purpose at all in having universities now?

  59. Willis,
    From Australia, a great read.Thanks.
    And over at Katowicz Poland, we have another Green Climate Deal not dissimilar to AO-C and Bernie.
    That 15 year old sage Greta Thunberg, the face of the world student strike for climate wants-
    No private car ownership,
    Rationed air travel,
    Cessation of eating meat,
    Immediate phasing out of fossil fuel usage.
    While the MSM treat her more reverentially than Mother Theresa, the truth is that she is a clueless juvenile totalitarian.
    She is described by her minders as a “sixth sigma person”meaning she is six standard deviations above average climate science knowledge.
    Strewth!
    Maybe you and Anthony could get her to write a few guest posts for WUWT!
    Sometimes I am tempted to despair but I am heartened by the fact that Kyoto, Paris and Katowicz are failures. The reason is that ultimately self interest indeed self protection will defeat the Green Blob.
    As an Australian PM once noted,
    “In the horse race of life, always back the horse called Self Interest.At least you know it is trying.”

  60. just bc Republicans want to make a statement about “fiscal responsibility.”

    When HER Democrats were in power, they didn’t do anything about this?

    Regardless, she sure just get a kick out of giving away other people’s money.

  61. there are currently some 17 million students in college

    Once college education becomes “free”, that number will go up by a huge amount.

  62. Hi Willis, “Nude Eel” indeed.
    Let us hope that the fun of Spoonerisms helps offset the dreary task of criticism of idiots.
    Sadly, very sadly, we now have school children here in Australia being force-fed junk like this.
    Our 7 y.o. grandson is reciting some most offensive ‘challenges’ to his parents and their ideals.
    Small examples from last week “Our Arts teacher says we are not to say that pink is a girls’ colour and blue is for boys.””People cannot cut down trees because they make oxygen. They are the lungs of the Earth.”
    Leave our youngsters alone. These verbal assaults are as bad a concept as child pornography. Geoff.

  63. “Distributed in proportion to ability to pay”

    The top 10% of income tax payers already pay about 80% of all taxes, while the bottom 50% pay about 1%.

    I’d say we’ve already achieved that goal in spades.

      • It may be fair, or it may not be fair. That is for philosophers to debate. The real question is: is it wise. It is only wise if we think the government spends that money more efficiently than the people who earned it would. And by efficiently I mean does the most good for society. If we look at what the federal government does with the money, it goes to: Defense, Entitlements, Discretionary Spending.
        If we look at what the public does it is: Invest, Save, Spend.
        A good case can be made that when the public uses the money they make, it promotes more growth in the economy, than when the government takes that money and uses it for its own agenda. There are many ways to look at this, and there is always a debate about which is better.
        But “economic incentive” is always the key driver to what the end result of various policies will be. When people do what is in their own best economic interest, it not only benefits themselves, but benefits the wider community. The reason for this is the requirement to produce something that is economically viable. Meaning someone else values it enough to CHOOSE to sacrifice or risk, the money earned in their own labor.
        When government policies create a dis-incentive for people to engage in productive work, in favor of receiving entitlements for not working, it creates chaos in the wider community. Being poor has become a “position” that competes with employers for unskilled labor. It has helped drive those productive positions off shore. And those pockets of poverty are a breeding ground for criminal activity that requires more tax money spent on insurance, police, lawyers, judges, and prison facilities.
        People that earn their money through work tend to be more careful on how it is spent, than people that get money based on their circumstances. And government is no different. They get tax revenue based on the work done in the private sector and spend it on policies that will result in re-election. Those policies are not always an incentive to be more productive in the private sector, and frequently are based on “need” not performance.

          • Correct. I should have said “entitlements, defense, and non-defense discretionary spending”. I try to minimize words where I can, and still maintain the meaning of the thought.

          • Ron Manley December 8, 2018 at 5:01 pm

            No.
            It is required in the constitution. See how defense spending bills are to be handled, they are very specific unlike anything else.
            michael

          • Any and all spending for defense is done with a appropriation bill. Therefore it is discretionary.

          • Ron Manley December 8, 2018 at 9:06 pm
            section 8. is what you are looking for.
            Wikipedia is not the Constitution. don’t waste people’s time and your own with it.
            where did you study Constitutional Law? Me, NAU &ASU .

            michael

          • Morlock, defense spending bills are appropriations. If they are not passed, you don’t get to spend the money. Not the same as Social Security which does not require an appropriation bill. There is not a yearly Social Security spending bill passed. Your reading of the Constitution is flawed.

  64. Second reasonable proposal. I didn’t like the CEOs of bailed-out banks getting bonuses.

    If you want to make sure that troubled banks are run by people who don’t know what they are doing, this is a great policy.

    • Mark, they already were run by people who didn’t know what they were doing—that’s why they failed.

      Should they have gotten bonuses for that?

      w.

      • Willis, once again you are acting on assumptions, not data.
        1) Are you actually going to argue that everyone in management is equally responsible for a bank failing?
        2) Are you going to argue that all bankruptcies are the result of incompetence management, not changing government regulations, not mistakes, not gambles that didn’t pay off?
        3) Should those who have been hired to replace those who made mistakes also be penalized?

          • Jealousy makes you so much smaller and does nothing to anyone who is better, more intelligent and vastly more successful than you are. Guess that is why you are.

          • A particularly dishonest Democratic Party talking point. Trump is a real estate developer, and set up each project, very nearly every building, as a separate corporation. As he had on the order of 500 separate corporate entities, having five or so go bankrupt is not a bad record.
            Each project had differing sets of investors, and the overall company was providing construction management and management of the completed project, but each hotel or condo was separate. The failures were Atlantic City casinos, where most other investors also failed eventually.

          • When he went bankrupt, ALL of his endeavors were in the toilet. Additionally Trump University was a fraud.

          • You can have 20,000 separate corporate entities, and when you can’t repay the loans you have, it doesn’t matter.

          • Paying over $100,000 for a one night stand with a porn star shows that this guy doesn’t have any clue as to the value of a dollar. He could have gotten his dick wet for a heck of a lot less.

          • Morlock……Trump inherited his wealth, he did not earn it, so tell me how you can insist he’s good at “business” when all he does is file for bankruptcy multiple times?

          • Morlock, people that are good at “business” don’t get sued (and lose) for fraud, like Trump did for Trump University.

          • Ron Manley December 8, 2018 at 8:25 pm
            Weak on corporate law too I see.
            You can’t co-mingle funds from one corporation with another especially with separate investors.
            Bankruptcy law is written this way for a reason. You may want to look into that.

            michael

          • And that is an outright lie, sweety. Just on his physical assets any bank would happily go a deal with him, and use it in their advertising to expand their business.

          • Hahahahahahahahahahahaha!!!!!!!!!! Says the dirt poor groober with no multi-million dollar properties or any successful businesses. Keep the laughs coming!

          • Your hatred of the man tells us more about you than it does about The Donald.

            1) Bankruptcies happen for many reasons. Your assumption that it proves anything about anyone just proves that you care more about feelings than facts.
            2) Why bring Trump into this conversation?

          • And yet, the couple of pages of his tax-returns that MSNBC managed to get a hold of don’t back up your claims. There were actually rather unimpressive and certainly not anything anyone would be “embarrassed” about. Much like Obama’s birth certificate, withholding it makes it look like there’s an “issue” there but when one actually gets to see it (Obama releasing his BC after years of refusing to do so, MSNBC getting a hold of one of Trumps returns) there is no there there.

        • Thanks, Mark. I must say, whenever someone starts out by saying “once again you”, I tend to discount what they say bay about 50%. If you are going to claim I did something before, at least have the polpette to point out and link to exactly where I did it before.

          Next, per your questions:

          1) Are you actually going to argue that everyone in management is equally responsible for a bank failing?

          Nope. But I will argue that when a bank fails it should NOT be rewarding its upper management.

          2) Are you going to argue that all bankruptcies are the result of incompetence management, not changing government regulations, not mistakes, not gambles that didn’t pay off?

          Nope. But I will argue that if a company goes bankrupt for any reason, they should not be patting the upper management on their economic backs …

          3) Should those who have been hired to replace those who made mistakes also be penalized?

          Don’t think that, never said that, that’s all you.

          w.

          • Once again, you are assuming that the reason the bank failed was because of the upper managment.

            Your the one who wanted to punish all of upper management with no regard as to when they were hired.

          • MarkW December 9, 2018 at 8:01 pm

            Once again, you are assuming that the reason the bank failed was because of the upper managment.

            Never said that. I said that if a business crashes and burns for ANY REASON, you shouldn’t be rewarding the management. They were hired to prevent that, and they didn’t—the reason is immaterial. I don’t care if it was bad actions or bad luck. THEY FAILED.

            Your the one who wanted to punish all of upper management with no regard as to when they were hired.

            Again, never said that. How about before you claim something about what I wrote you provide us with the actual words that I wrote? I’m tired of your bogus accusations.

            w.

          • MarkW: 3) Should those who have been hired to replace those who made mistakes also be penalized?

            Willis: Don’t think that, never said that, that’s all you.

            Actually it’s kind of implied in the following from your article:

            Manifesto: 7. Establish a 90% tax on bonuses for bailed out bankers.

            Willis: Second reasonable proposal. I didn’t like the CEOs of bailed-out banks getting bonuses.

            you response singles out CEOs of bailed-out banks, saying nothing about when those CEOs were put in place. If a new CEO is hired to get the bailed-out bank back on track, your statement implies that they don’t deserve a bonus even if they succeed in getting the bailed-out bank back on track because of the failing of their predecessors. Now that may not be what you meant, but it’s certainly what your blanket statement would include.

          • In your opinion then, no business should ever take chances?
            No business should ever go out on a limb on a new product or process unless they have a rock solid guarantee that the process or product will be successful?

            I really do love it when people who haven’t even run a lemonade stand consider themselves experts at running multi-national corporations.

          • MarkW December 9, 2018 at 8:02 pm

            In your opinion then, no business should ever take chances?
            No business should ever go out on a limb on a new product or process unless they have a rock solid guarantee that the process or product will be successful?

            Say what? markx said nothing of the sort, nor anything near that. He said “Gambles which don’t pay off are mistakes” … which they absolutely are.

            I really do love it when people who haven’t even run a lemonade stand consider themselves experts at running multi-national corporations.

            Don’t know about markx, but my last job was Chief Financial Officer for a business with $40 million dollars in annual sales … and you?

            w.

          • Ha ha..yes, a good topic indeed! My last major role (up until 2 years ago) was as GM, then COO of a South East Asian Ag company making the equivalent of about US$76 million/ year in sales.

            Mind you, it was not always profitable, or easy. And we made a lot mistakes, and had some great successes, over the 20+ years I was involved in various roles!

      • The banks failed in 2007 because they were doing what the government told them to do 10-15 years earlier…loan money to people who could not repay it. Responsibility for the real estate recession of 2007 belongs primarily with Democrats like Bernie Frank. It is also the reason few, if any bankers were prosecuted for the debacle. Any trial would have revealed the true criminals, many of whom were still sitting in Congress.

        The new Green Deal appears to be orders of magnitude more economically stupid than the Fair Housing Laws of the 1990’s.

        Thanks, Willis, for an enlightening, but terrifying journey into the ‘New Green Deal’!

        • The government did not tell the banks to bundle sub-prime mortgages into the CDO’s that they were selling. When the credit default swaps on the CDO’s went underwater, it wasn’t the fault of the government. Funny thing is it was the LACK of government regulation that let the banks go wild causing the collapse of the credit markets.

          • You are deliberately neglecting the Community Reinvestment Act, which required the banks to make dubious loans. While it would have been much more honest to defy the government, the banks did not, and tried to hold off on a bad situation they did not cause.

          • 1) The CRA did not require the banks to make dubious loans.
            2) The CRA was enacted in 1977. You have to be out of your mind to think that something enacted 30 years before the Great Recession was it’s cause. If you think the CRA was the cause, I have a bridge over the East River near Manhattan that I can get you a great deal on.
            ….
            You really need to study facts instead of parroting right-wing talking points regrading financial history.

          • The actual enforcement of a law can change over time, and the behavior of the various regulators definitely did change, with fierce resistance by the Democrats to any change during GW Bush’s second term. You do seem to have all the talking points down pat.

          • And you should actually listen to mortgage/lending professionals and tax professionals who know what happened and who caused it to happen, step by step, beginning with manipulations of Freddie&Fannie and continuing with CRA. The bundling of bad mortgages was created by the regulation and oversight of USG banking regulators and those of the States, severally, New York and California particularly.

          • Congress enacts laws, such as the CRA. Enforcement of laws is the province of the executive branch of government. Since Bush was in charge of enforcing laws when the Great Recession hit, then according to your logic and argument, the Great Recession was Bush’s fault

          • If you truly believe that Bush controlled Fannie and Freddie, or had sufficient control over the banking system particularly after the Democrats took the House, you are even more of a partisan than I am.

          • LOL @ Halla

            Bush had more control over Fannie and Freddie than Congress did.

            The Federal Reserve controls the banking system, something which you seem to be unaware of.

          • The Bush Administration could easily have issued banking regulations via the SEC and Treasury department with an executive order. Congress has no such authority.

          • Hahahahahahahahahahahahahaha!!!!!!!!! You just get more gooder and more gooder. You should take this comedy routine someplace you can get paid for it.

          • 2hotel9 says, “The bundling of bad mortgages was created by the regulation and oversight of USG banking regulators”
            ….
            NOPE, CDO’s based on bundled mortgages were created in 1977 by Salomon Brothers.

          • Keep telling yourself that, sweetheart. That scheme was knocked down, then Democrats picked it up and forced it on banks/mortgage companies in the ’90s. Never let a good grift be taken out by people finding out! Democrats just submerge for a bit then resurface and push it again, with a slightly changed name and new shysters selling to the rubes. You got burned, otherwise you would not be defending Democrat Party c*nts who f**ked America.

          • The government told the banks to make bad loans. BUndling them into CDOs and other instruments was an attempt to make those loans less toxic.

          • While it is true that the first passage of CRA was in 1977, but you are once again ignoring the role Clinton played in dramatically increasing the scope and power of the CRA.

            And yes, the government did tell the banks to make bad loans, when it demanded that loan volume had to “racially balanced”.

          • Ron, are you really as clueless as your posts make you sound?
            Yes, the executive branch enforces laws, but there are millions of employees in the executive branch, the vast majority of whom career employees who stay in their jobs regardless of who is president.
            Secondly, your desire to blame a crisis that was decades in making on the man who was in office when it finally blew up just indicates how desperate you are to avoid dealing with the true causes of this crisis.

        • Ron Manley December 8, 2018 at 8:54 pm
          The below link should help a bit. The federal (ir)regulates were overseeing all the banks to see they they complied with the regulation. The banks were require to make the loans. Should they have reported the regulates for their poor judgment? Yes. Was it their (the banks) responsibility? Unknown.
          https://www.federalreserve.gov/consumerscommunities/cra_about.htm

          michael

          p.s. stop trying to sell my bridge.

          • Morlock …… I suggest you read the link you provided. Please note the words “to encourage financial institutions.”
            It does not say require

            Please point me to the exact passage in the CRA where it REQUIRES a bank to make a loan.

            Thank you in advance.

          • Ron, you really are cute when you get desperate.
            To the beaurocracy, the two phrases are identical in affect.

        • That was Barney Fwank. Freddie Mac and Fannie Mae, destroying communities and ruining lives where banks refused to. Fannie Mae actually worked for a very long time, in the ’70s it became increasingly controlled by Kleptocrats of both parties, Freddie was problematic from its start. The 1980s is when they really went off the rails. During the early ’90s some in Congress tried to rein it all in, they got steamrollered by the senior Democrats who populated the financial committees in both sides at that time. And never forget Frank-Dodd. Oy vey!

  65. The vast majority of the so called fixes for the election system are designed to make sure that the party of government will have permanent control of government.

    Non-partisan councils? No such thing. Everybody is partisan, sometimes you know about it, sometimes it’s hidden. Non-partisan is a great way to make sure partisanship is hidden from the voters.

    Government funding of candidates. Great way to make sure that only those candidates that are approved of by the government is able to run.

    Direct election of president. Great way to make sure that the party that cheats the most always wins.

  66. It is quite a few decades since I read “Atlas Shrugged” but this concoction brought to mind the dysfunctional system envisaged by Ayn Rand.

  67. Wow, theres an opportunity for one of AOC’s gov jobs. Cross checking voter rolls with death registrations. Jon’s happy voter fraud is down, AOC’s happy someone’s got job. Sounds like a win win to me!

  68. Not if they were given say $15 per vote they received in the previous election. Clinton got 66mil votes, next time dems get $990mil to spend on 2020 presidential election. Sounds alot but it was 2.4bill combined in 2016. Same thing could be done for all the diffrent races. Might encourage candidates/polices to inspire people to turn up and vote.

    • It would encourage candidates/policies to offer people even more “free stuff” in order to get them to vote for them. Wouldn’t do anyone any good (as that “free stuff” gets paid for out of the taxpayers pockets).

      Besides which, it’s based on a flawed premise. This is not a democracy, it’s a republic. And the reason it’s a republic is the founders didn’t trust the rule of the mob and put in place a system to constrain such mob rule (the Electoral College, the Senate, Judges appointed to Supreme Court not elected by the people, etc).

  69. Pfffft finding 25 million jobs is an easy thing to do , just get 25 million exercise bikes and 25 million alternators .

  70. I agree that the green party policies are totally unrealistic, but to be fair I think we can give them some points:

    Firstly, you cannot just multiply the number of new jobs with an average salary to get the cost. Those 25 million must live of something today and many of them live on some form of welfare already. You must subtract that.

    Secondly, it is said that there are more jobs in the US right now than people looking for jobs, but that only counts the official unemployment rate. If we add discouraged workers who want a job, but have stopped looking or one, and those working part-time because they could not find full-time employment, we get a much higher number. Some think it is above 20%, such as this site: http://www.shadowstats.com/

    /Jan

    • The only jobs that are created by government decree, are government jobs. Government jobs require tax dollars to fund salary and benefits. Those tax dollars come out of a tax payers gross pay, giving them less net pay. The only reason to increase government payrolls, is to process more government work. As we saw with the Obamacare Web Server, government workers are hopelessly inefficient compared to private sector workers. They don’t have to compete in a competitive environment, which has created a bureaucratic system that produces very little for the money spent on it.
      Most of the people that can’t find work are unskilled labor. And many of the unskilled labor jobs are done in China, India, Mexico, etc…
      No government program is going to increase unskilled labor jobs, without raising substantial import tariffs on goods that are using unskilled labor as a large component of production costs.
      These plans are political propaganda designed for people that don’t understand economics. It has no “real-world” examples of it working. It is as if Hugo Chavez wrote this manifesto. And we all know how well that worked out.
      From Forbes:

      In 2018 Venezuela’s GDP is expected to contract by double digits for the third straight consecutive year. Economic output in Venezuela fell by 16% in 2016, 14% in 2017, and is expected to drop by 15% this year. Meanwhile, after jumping from 112% in 2015 to 2,400% last year, inflation in Venezuela is expected to hit five-digit levels in 2018.

  71. Whilst the proposals are obviousy the usual SJW agitprop, I caution too much ridicule.
    The USA does have serious problems that the proposals purport to solve:

    * Ludicrously expensive healthcare (more than the NHS in the UK, and that’s going some)
    * A huge mismatch bertween vacant positions and available people. Caused by a certain extent by:
    * A broken education system that treats good education as a luxury good, not a national asset.
    * A broken free-market system that allows corporations more power in the administration of the State than people (the FCC being a prime example – how’s your choices for internet service going on there?)
    * A broken “free trade” system (corporations again) that simply imports poverty from other countries by allowing local labour to be supplanted by cheap overseas labour. Not just H1B’s but the importation of subsidised manufactured goods, pricing the local workers out of a job

    Not surprisingly, this blatant finger on the scales of life is wont to cause resentment, and a fertile environment for the strident “smash the rich” crowd.

    The Austrailans have a term. Everybody should get “a fair go”. I don’t think many Americans in poor States in the USA get one.

      • Or, as our founding fathers would have put it, tar-feathers-rope. They disliked crooked lawyers just as much as everyone else does.

    • Well said, Right-Pondian.
      The power of corporations is the biggest issue.
      It is they who peddle the concept that everything can be done better and cheaper by big corporations.

      The cheaper only lasts as long as it takes to strangle the competition.

      • The cheaper only lasts as long as it takes to strangle the competition

        and will return once they start misusing their “competition free” power to the point that new competition sees the opportunity to provide a comparable product/service cheaper. You can strangle the competition in the short run, but not forever unless you are perpetually undercutting the price of any potential competition (in which case cheaper will perpetually last) or using the power of government to block the competition (which is a whole other debate topic) otherwise, once you raise your prices too high, new competition will seize on the opportunity to make a buck.

      • It is they who peddle the concept that everything can be done better and cheaper by big corporations.

        And they have a point. Economies of scale do tend to favor big corporations in making things cheaper (better on the other hand is a bit more subjective). On the flip side, the bigger the corporation, the bigger the corporate bureaucracy. Big bureaucracies (whether they be governmental or corporate) tend to make things less efficient and less efficiency adds expense. Which is why no matter how big a company gets (or precisely because they get too big), eventually a smaller upstart comes along to do something better, quicker, differently and/or cheaper and the big company find itself too slow in reacting to the change in the business landscape.

      • Two issues. It is the power of government, to twist regulations and tax code to favor businesses, that is the issue. Were they not capable of determining that run from on Caribbean island has a tariff, but rum from a neighboring island does not, there would be nothing for businesses to lobby for.

        Business cannot lobby for or purchase favors that lawmakers cannot give.

        Second, the business about “low prices only last until they have a monopoly” is not how history has worked out. The “robber barons” (a media-instilled-envy term) actually did bring prices down dramatically, for gasoline and steel and other commodities. And corporations who were competition to government-created monopolies, from railroads to steamship tickets, did very well without taxpayer funding.

        Corporations are not evil. Cronyism is, and that is people buying favors that lawmakers have empowered themselves to sell.

        ===|==============/ Keith DeHavelle (@DeHavelle)

    • Whilst the proposals are obviousy the usual SJW agitprop,

      as is your post.

      * Ludicrously expensive healthcare (more than the NHS in the UK, and that’s going some)

      Which Obamacare only made worse. You can keep your Doctor & policy my @$$

      Also, as Gunga Din pointed, out tort reform would go a long way to fixing some of the problems.

      * A huge mismatch bertween vacant positions and available people.

      yes, we currently have more positions than workers to fill them, and that’s a problem but a better problem than too many workers and not enough positions which is what would happen should the SJW agitprop solutions ever get implemented.

      * A broken education system that treats good education as a luxury good, not a national asset.

      the education system has problems, but that’s the least of them. The biggest problem is that traps poor kids in terrible schools. School choice can help with that, but even that can only do so much.

      * A broken free-market system that allows corporations more power in the administration of the State than people (the FCC being a prime example – how’s your choices for internet service going on there?)

      My choice of internet service is the same it’s always been since long before the Obama admin forced Net neutrality rules on the public and Trump’s admin revoked it. thanks for asking.

      The FCC is not a corporation, nor should it have taken it upon itself the power to regulate an industry without express congressional approval to do so.

      * A broken “free trade” system (corporations again) that simply imports poverty from other countries by allowing local labour to be supplanted by cheap overseas labour.

      That’s not “broken” that’s how free markets work, companies seek to minimize costs. Making use of the cheapest labor possible is one way to do that. Think about how you spend your money. If you have a choice between two items and the major difference between the two is price, are you going to buy the much more expensive item or will you go with the cheaper item that provides you the same utility as the more expensive model? well, that’s exactly what business do when deciding on the costs of doing business, they choose the cheaper options where possible.

      Government can discourage such actions by artificially inflating the cost of over seas production (via tariffs and taxes).

  72. FDR’s New Deal was based on firstly the Glass-Steagall banking Act (which Clinton repealed in 1999). Then the nearest thing to a National Bank – the RFC, Reconstruction Finance Corp (later the idea for the Marshall Plan). Since the repeal it has been one crash and bailout after another.
    Today the latest technologies of fission, fusion must be the New Deal, not a green travesty.

    Ironically China has grasped FDR’s New Deal, called it their new BRI Belt and Road Initiative on a massive scale for today. The Dem’s “new deal” has become parochial, a sideshow.
    The USA can add to the BRI on the international stage, and get an infrastructure bill as collateral. This is Trump’ stated intention – the parochial neocons propose a pathetic “alternative”. These neo’s are really making the USA look like a has-been. Not good.

    • Really? China is using BRI to f**k everyone they can con into accepting it, and trying to use International Court to force people to pay them for f**king them. And you think this is a great idea. Wow. Just, wow.

  73. TL;DR version

    1. Enact communism.
    2. Destroy any remnants of capitalism.
    3. Double check #2.
    4. ???

    Also, ‘democratization’ seems to be code word for ‘socialize’.

    • Indeed. They have to use codewords because if they came out and admitted what they really mean, most people are sane enough to want to have nothing to do with their idiotic ideas. It’s only through obfustication and lying that they have any shot at getting the power to enact their socialist nightmares on the rest of us.

      • The DEMS are coming in January – yes they are – to take over the House – God save America. Blessed be those who are prepared to block any more febrile legislative initiatives emanating out of the White House. And then there is Big Bob M’s final report that will really rescue the country from any further destruction to the country by the NY real estate salesman.

        • They will get nothing done, just more gridlock, which will save America from the mentally ill crap pouring out of leftists like you.

      • Eating too much meat in your diet – particularly red meat – causes many health disorders. The meat portion you eat should be no bigger than your hand. And I said LESS not NO meat.

        • Again, just get yourself euthanized so all of us can move on from your idiotic moronicy Yes, I had to create a word to describe you, all others simply don’t convey the total picture.

        • Eating too much meat in your diet

          eating too much of *anything* in your diet is bad for you. There’s this thing called “moderation”, just because you don’t know how to eat in moderation doesn’t mean everyone else should be deprived to prevent you from over indulging.

      • Less meat = less cattle = less methane emissions = less warming of the earth’s atmosphere = less climate change = less healthcare costs owing to less meat-eating related diseases.

        • Nonsense and drivel.

          and even if it’s was somehow true that less meat = less warming of the earth’s atmosphere that would a reason that we should eat *MORE* meat as it’s the cold that kills. warm is good.

          • God I am fed up with this absurd sceptic argument that “it is cold that kills.”
            You live on the continents of Africa, Latin America, Asia and Australia and it is heat that kills. Not everyone lives in the northern hemisphere – THINK!
            Take Africa – climate change is drying out increasing areas of land through exacerbated droughts, forcing increasing numbers of people off land which can no longer support their crops and livestock.

          • God I am fed up with this absurd sceptic argument that “it is cold that kills.”

            I can’t help that you are fed up with the truth. that’s your problem.

            You live on the continents of Africa, Latin America, Asia and Australia and it is heat that kills.

            The world over, cold kills more than heat. Both cold and heat would kill a lot less with the availability of cheap, reliable energy. Yet your obsession with the little CO2 molecule would see those people prevented from having that cheap reliable energy – THINK. and that is just down right evil – their deaths are on the hands of people like you.

      • Because ivanski is a very sick individual filled with self-loathing and self-hatred who takes those issues out on all around it. Needs to be heavily medicated and kept in a secure location.

        • It’s quite simple really – measures have to be taken to reduce CO2 emissions.

          Now let’s compare Poland – where I live – with the US. Poland is heavily reliant on coal for energy YET its government has acknowledged that the country needs to transition its energy mix towards more renewable energy sources. It does not have to do this because of the EU – it goes against the EU on its migration policies and it could easily do so on energy if it wanted to, but it doesn’t. Why? Because it realizes that AGW is a reality and action needs to be taken (COP24 in Katowice, Poland) to mitigate its effects..

          Compare this to the USA. Under Trump – who is a first class certified moron – the country is moving in the opposite direction by renewing its dependency on coal at the cost of new investment into clean, green energies. Moral of the story? Well, I mentioned moron earlier…

          • It’s quite simple really – measures have to be taken to reduce CO2 emissions.

            no they don’t. You’re premise if flawed at the outset, all else that follows from it is meaningless.

          • Co2 is plant food, more Co2 means more plants means more oxygen means healthier planet. Once again, since your reading comprehension has clearly not improved over the last 6 months, climate changes, constantly, humans are not causing it and can not stop it.

          • Compare this to the USA. Under Trump

            the US has been reducing it’s greenhouse emissions while other countries (that remain in the Paris accords), have been increasing theirs.

          • And DJT is going to cut the chain Obama locked around coal producers and users necks! God Bless America and God Bless Donald Trump! (there, that will really set ivanski off, get some popcorn and enjoy!)

    • [Snip. Unacceptable. Refrain from comments such as this in the future or you’ll be placed in the permanent moderation queue. -mod]

          • There is hope! His name is Donald J Trump, and he is driving you right over the edge and I am loving watching it. Well, kids, its been a slice, my document printouts are finished and I got places to be, people to seeing and leftist bubbles to burst. Laterz!

        • Not wishing him dead, telling him to seek out the medical treatment he so desperately needs. He refuses to get the corrective treatment he needs so he has only one option open. Since he supports it he should avail himself of it. What I wish is he would stop espousing all this insane leftist drivel.

          [Ideas are fair game for commenting on…individuals are not. Keep your comments restricted to the topics and ideas, and leave your personal invectives off this site. -mod]

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