Friday, August 26, 2011

Fwd: Sounds familiar :)


From: <larry.r.trout

'William Wollaston's 1722 book The Religion of Nature Delineated describes the "truest definition" of "natural religion" as being "The pursuit of happiness by the practice of reason and truth.'

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Life,_liberty_and_the_pursuit_of_happiness


Re: FW: Proper Role of Government

From: Coston, Cory P

Doug,   

The attached essay explains the foundation of my political viewpoints:

Rights only come from God.  Rights include life, liberty, and property (or stewardship over the earth).  We are authorized to defend our life, liberty and property with force, even lethal force should it be absolutely necessary.  Proper government is simply an institution whereby the governed delegate the protection of these rights to their government officials.  Dept. of State, Dept. of Defense, and the Federal Court System are clearly the type of institutions that fit the role of a proper government.

Collective action has no moral authority.  What is wrong for 1 person to do is still wrong for 300 million people to do.  If it is wrong for me extort money from another with the threat of force, then it is wrong for my government to do the same.  Government taxation to pay for anything other than protecting our God given rights is immoral.  Endowment for the Arts, Food Stamps, Unemployment, NASA, Welfare, Medicare, and too many others to list do not protect rights.  If the funds collected to pay for this charitable giving were optional then that would be fine.  However the IRS extorts money from people every day to pay for these programs.

Charity is an individual responsibility which will yield blessings from God.  We do not receive benefits when compelled by force to be charitable.

Thanks,

Cory


From: John Coffey 

To say that Rights come from God is to say that we know what God wants.  I claim that we can't know that, nor can we be sure that God exists.  I see very little in the Bible that supports rights, instead quite the contrary.  

Therefore the concept of Rights is largely a human construct.  I prefer to live in a society that respects my life and my property and my freedom, and so does everyone else.   Therefore it is to every one's mutual advantage to form a compact to maintain such a society.

However, that opens the door to for people to interpret what is a right.  One person might think that he has an absolute right to property while another person might think that he has an absolute right to eat even if he can't provide that for himself.  In practice, society defines rights.

If there were such a thing as a natural right then I think that it would be the Libertarian principle:  Everyone has a right to do what they want so long as they don't interfere with the same rights of others.  i.e. My right to swing my fist stops before it gets to your nose.   Even that can be a little vague.  The reason why I think that there is a natural right is because humans for the most part have a strong desire to be free.  

However, as Milton Freedman said, I don't think that freedom is the natural state of man.  Most of the human experience has been some form of oppression.  I think that we are experiencing some form of oppression right now.  This doesn't necessarily have to be limited to the government.  It can happen if some people become too powerful and have too much control over other people, but for the most part I think that government is the culprit.

Best wishes,





From: Larry Trout


I do believe it is governments role to protect property rights.

'The Fifth Amendment and Fourteenth Amendment to the United States Constitution declare that governments cannot deprive any person of "life, liberty, or property" without due process of law.'

Unfortunately governments can deprive us of happiness without due process J




From: Larry Trout


'The seventeenth-century cleric and philosopher Richard Cumberland wrote in 1672 that promoting the well-being of our fellow humans is essential to the "pursuit of our own happiness."[2] John Locke, in his 1689 "A Letter Concerning Toleration," wrote that "Civil interest I call life, liberty, health, and indolency of body; and the possession of outward things..." Locke wrote in his 1693 Essay Concerning Human Understanding that "the highest perfection of intellectual nature lies in a careful and constant pursuit of true and solid happiness." [3] Locke never associated natural right with happiness, but in 1693 Locke's philosophical opponent Gottfried Wilhelm Leibniz made such an association in the introduction to his Codex Iuris Gentium.[4] William Wollaston's 1722 book The Religion of Nature Delineated describes the "truest definition" of "natural religion" as being "The pursuit of happiness by the practice of reason and truth."[5] The 1763 English translation of Jean Jacques Burlamaqui's Principles of Natural and Politic Law extolled the "noble pursuit" of "true and solid happiness" in the opening chapter discussing natural rights.[6]

The first and second article of the Virginia Declaration of Rights adopted unanimously by the Virginia Convention of Delegates on June 12, 1776 and written by George Mason, is:

    That all men are by nature equally free and independent, and have certain inherent rights, of which, when they enter into a state of society, they cannot, by any compact, deprive or divest their posterity; namely, the enjoyment of life and liberty, with the means of acquiring and possessing property, and pursuing and obtaining happiness and safety.

Benjamin Franklin was in agreement with Thomas Jefferson in downplaying protection of "property" as a goal of government. It is noted that Franklin found property to be a "creature of society" and thus, he believed that it should be taxed as a way to finance civil society.[7] The United States Declaration of Independence, which was primarily drafted by Jefferson, was adopted by the Second Continental Congress on July 4, 1776.'





Rove calls Sarah Palin 'enormously thin-skinned'

http://www.miamiherald.com/2011/08/26/2375673/rove-calls-sarah-palin-enormously.html

U.S. distances itself and NATO from Gaddafi manhunt

http://mobile.reuters.com/article/idUSTRE77O6TA20110826?irpc=932

Jesse Jackson slams Tea Party at MLK event

http://www.usatoday.com/news/nation/story/2011-08-25/Jesse-Jackson-slams-Tea-Party-at-MLK-event/50142272/1

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

The Flash Mob Mentality of Scientific Inquiry

This is how religion leads to false scientific thinking ...

http://www.humanevents.com/article.php?id=45747

Interesting how she refers to Dawkins as an idiot. He is one of the
most learned people I can think of. It is not such a good idea to
tie religion to politics.

There are two basic facts for which the evidence is overwhelming ...

1. The earth us very old.

2. Simpler lifeforms came before more complex ones.

No matter how impossible people say that evolution is, based on these
things we know that it happened. So if it really is impossible i.e.
if we can't explain how it happened (we can), then we would have to
assume that God made evolution happen. I would prefer to look for a
more scientific explanation rather than assume that a miracle
occurred. The purpose of science is to explain how things happen and
not assume that magic made it so. You could assume that at the time
of creation God made the laws of physics, but everything that happened
after that has a mechanism that usually can be determined by science.

Best wishes,

John Coffey

Fwd: taxes


From:
larry.r.trout

'Honest analysts know these facts. But politicians ignore them in favor of sowing suspicion of the industry. The latest "solution" they offer is to reduce supposed tax-code "subsidies" to Big Oil.

In fact, the energy industry is hardly undertaxed: It pays an effective tax rate of 41.1 percent, compared with 26.5 percent for the rest of the S&P Industrials.

More important, this is no subsidy. When a business -- any business -- incurs expenses, it deducts those expenses against its revenues at tax time. In the case of the oil and gas industries, those expenses are overwhelmingly the costs of exploration and production. Some "subsidy."

So the real-world effect of a politically motivated tax penalty on energy companies will be reduced exploration and extraction. Of course, that would be just fine for the green ideologues. For them, the less drilling the better, and the more subsidies for green energy, the better.'

http://www.nypost.com/p/news/opinion/opedcolumnists/turning_off_america_lights_FJ1wJTvOxjWxdZFcZoilkO

What if Obama isn't so smart? |

http://washingtonexaminer.com/opinion/columnists/2011/08/what-if-obama-isnt-so-smart

Monday, August 22, 2011

Re: nihlism

Good article, but one does not have to accept false and evil religions blindly to have values.  Most atheists I have known have a strong sense of values.  I tend to believe that our values choose our beliefs and not the other way around. 


Sent from my iPhone

On Aug 22, 2011, at 10:44 PM, Larry Trout <utahtrout wrote:

Friday, August 19, 2011

Re: economics

There is a half truth to this because the unemployed are most likely to spend the money they get.  The question that is never answered or even asked is who pays for it?  Where does the money come from?   Why doesn't the money taken from somewhere else hurt the economy?

The answer is that liberals believe that the cause of the Great Depression was too much money in the hands of the rich people (who by the theory hoard it) and not enough in the hands of the poor people who will spend it to keep the economy buzzing.  However, this was not the real cause of the Great Depression;  Horrible monetary policy caused the Great Depression.  Maybe one could make the case that in today's economy that there are too many people sitting on cash, but that is because there is too much economic uncertainty.  I am not against emergency funding of people who are dire straights, but the real solution is not to increase the burden of government in the typical Keynesian fashion, but to get the government out of the way.  


Sent from my iPhone

On Aug 19, 2011, at 9:46 AM, larry.r.trout wrote:

'Consider what happened last week when Laura Meckler of this newspaper dared to ask White House Press Secretary Jay Carney how increasing unemployment insurance "creates jobs." She received this slap down: "I would expect a reporter from The Wall Street Journal would know this as part of the entrance exam just to get on the paper."

Mr. Carney explained that unemployment insurance "is one of the most direct ways to infuse money into the economy because people who are unemployed and obviously aren't earning a paycheck are going to spend the money that they get . . . and that creates growth and income for businesses that then lead them to making decisions about jobs—more hiring."

That's a perfect Keynesian answer, and also perfectly nonsensical. What the White House is telling us is that the more unemployed people we can pay for not working, the more people will work. Only someone with a Ph.D. in economics from an elite university would believe this.

I have two teenage sons. One worked all summer and the other sat on his duff. To stimulate the economy, the White House wants to take more money from the son who works and give it to the one who doesn't work. I can say with 100% certainty as a parent that in the Moore household this will lead to less work.'

http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424053111903596904576514552877388610.html

Stephen Moore: Why Americans Hate Economics

http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424053111903596904576514552877388610.html

Thursday, August 18, 2011

Fwd: The Federal Budget


Subject:  The Federal Budget
 
• U.S. Tax revenue: $2,170,000,000,000
• Fed budget: $3,820,000,000,000
• New debt: $ 1,650,000,000,000
• National debt: $14,271,000,000,000
...• Recent budget cut: $ 38,500,000,000
............

Now, remove 8 zeros and pretend it's a household budget.

• Annual family income: $21,700
• Money the family spent: $38,200
• New debt on the credit card: $16,500
• Outstanding balance on credit card: $142,710
• Total budget cuts: $385

Sorta brings the issue "home" doesn't it.

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

Toomey on future spending cuts


'Toomey, a former House member who was elected to the Senate last year with Tea Party backing, is the only member named so far who voted against the legislation that created the committee. At the time, Toomey said he was "concerned that the long-term cuts over the next decade will not materialize."

"All Congress has to do to override this bill's spending restraints in the future is pass another law that overrides them," Toomey said. "If Congress is truly serious about cutting spending, it would mandate serious spending cuts in next year's budget — the only year in which cuts are actually guaranteed."'

http://www.google.com/hostednews/ap/article/ALeqM5hkJTysa-vzkikHUZs747hZThchIg?docId=755b7d728cff4a36a047d2ca26dedfdb

Sunday, August 7, 2011

2012 Presidential polls

If the country in general says that they are more willing to vote for a Republican than Obama, but all the individual candidates fall short in the polls against Obama, then this tells me that we have a bunch of lousy candidates.  

Romney is probably the man, but has too much baggage with Romneycare and needs to address that.  I think that he should come up with an alternative to Obamacare.   Maybe Romney's religion won't be an issue, and I have got nothing against Mormons, but something like 22% of the country say that they will not vote for a Mormon.  Compare that to 3% who won't vote for a black candidate.

I like how well Rick Perry speaks, and I would vote for anyone running against Obama, but I don't like how eager he is to mix religion with politics.  He seems like he is on a religious crusade and not a political campaign.  It is possible that he could soar if the religious conservatives back him, but I think that it is more likely that he will only get partial support.  Is Michele Bachmann any different?

Herman Cain is my favorite, but he is so far down in the polls that he seems like a lost cause.  Nobody knows who he is.  Maybe he could get a VP spot.

A Romney-Perry ticket might have the best chance of winning.

http://www.realclearpolitics.com/epolls/2012/president/president_obama_vs_republican_candidates.html

GOP Presidential Race Snapshot

GOP Presidential Race Snapshot

Tuesday, August 2, 2011

The end of Keynes

http://www.jewishworldreview.com/0811/lowry080211.php3

Enforcing cuts




Little economic impact from US debt deal:

http://www.google.com/hostednews/afp/article/ALeqM5iUwLWfSarOtGdcClSlTofAmPbBdg?docId=CNG.f34dce87aeb4423295dfefc4df61a363.a81

Boehner Repeals Murphy's Law

http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424053111903520204576482441462317576.html

This sounds nice on paper, but I think that the debt deal was a victory for the big spenders.

Tea Party Hobbits | The Hobbits win!

http://dailycaller.com/2011/08/01/the-hobbits-win/

Feel the Austerity

http://streetlightblog.blogspot.com/2011/07/feel-austerity.html

How the debt deal will squeeze the states, in one infographic

http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/ezra-klein/post/how-the-debt-deal-will-squeeze-the-states-in-one-infographic/2011/08/01/gIQAN6pvnI_blog.html?wprss=ezra-klein

Debt ceiling: losers

http://ftalphaville.ft.com/blog/2011/08/01/639781/debt-ceiling-losers/

Debt ceiling: winners

http://ftalphaville.ft.com/blog/2011/08/01/639521/debt-ceiling-winners-and-losers-part-one/

The Associated Press: Questions and answers about the debt-deficit deal

Q. Will this solve the nation's deficit and debt problems?

A. Not by a long shot. The deal calls for the savings of more than $2 trillion over the next decade. But with the government currently racking up deficits — the difference between spending and revenues every year — of more than $1 trillion a year, the prospects for achieving a balanced budget in the near future are dim. 





Liberal Debt Deal Revolt

http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424053111903520204576482183758684442.html

Democrats face backlash over debt deal

http://m.guardian.co.uk/world/2011/aug/01/us-democrats-backlash-debt-deal?cat=world&type=article

Debt ceiling: What's the excuse for voting 'no'?

http://opinion.latimes.com/opinionla/2011/08/debt-ceiling-excuse-voting-no.html

Debt ceiling deal: Obama and the GOP's squandered opportunity

http://www.latimes.com/news/opinion/opinionla/la-ed-debt-20110802,0,5408505.story

Monday, August 1, 2011

Military budget cuts


From: larry.r.trout

'The debt ceiling deal struck by the nation's top lawmakers includes $350 billion in cuts to the defense budget over the next decade, according to the White House.

And the deal's second round trigger -- a penalty if lawmakers are unable to get their act together -- would slash another $500 billion over 10 years.

Of course, it might not come to that. What is guaranteed is the initial $350 billion in cuts, which experts say the Defense Department can weather.'

http://money.cnn.com/2011/08/01/news/economy/debt_ceiling_defense_cuts/index.htm?iid=Lead

Debt Deals and the Long Game

http://www.humanevents.com/article.php?id=45248

Triumph of the Big Spenders

http://www.humanevents.com/article.php?id=45240

Boehner Reacts to Debt Deal: It Meets Our Principles

http://www.humanevents.com/article.php?id=45233

AFP: Little economic impact from US debt deal: analysts

http://www.google.com/hostednews/afp/article/ALeqM5iUwLWfSarOtGdcClSlTofAmPbBdg?docId=CNG.f34dce87aeb4423295dfefc4df61a363.a81

The Bill Clinton Budget Act of 2011

http://www.humanevents.com/article.php?id=45242

Party Leaders Corral Support for Debt-Limit Deal Ahead of Votes

http://www.foxnews.com/politics/2011/08/01/congressional-leaders-to-pitch-debt-reduction-compromise-to-caucuses/

The Ground Has Shifted Under Obama's Feet

http://www.humanevents.com/article.php?id=45234&s=rcmp

What 'Big Deals' Did to America

http://www.humanevents.com/article.php?id=45175&s=rcmp

9 Reasons to Oppose Boehner 4.0 Debt Deal

http://www.redstate.com/dhorowitz3/2011/08/01/9-reasons-to-oppose-boehner-4-0-debt-deal/

Why there is no left-populist movement

http://www.redstate.com/moe_lane/2011/08/01/why-there-is-no-left-populist-movement/

Triumph of the Big Spenders

http://www.humanevents.com/article.php?id=45240

Top 10 Examples of Government Stupidity

http://www.humanevents.com/article.php?id=45194

Obama Lies About Mom, Networks Yawn

http://www.humanevents.com/article.php?id=45025

The Hate-GOP Machine

http://www.humanevents.com/article.php?id=45138

Debt-Ceiling Deal Hinges on Senate, House Votes

http://abcnews.go.com/m/story?id=14203804

Biden heads to Capitol Hill to sell Democrats on debt deal

http://www.washingtonpost.com/politics/biden-heads-to-capitol-hill-to-sell-democrats-on-debt-deal/2011/08/01/gIQAlqvOnI_story.html

Fwd: The results of this poll shocked me


From: "Larry Trout"
'You FAVOR raising the debt ceiling only if Congress

takes action to reduce by trillions of dollars the

amount the government owes 45%

You OPPOSE raising the debt ceiling even if Congress

takes action to reduce the amount the government owes 36%

 

 

In another proposal, Congress would raise the debt ceiling only if a balanced budget amendment

were passed by both houses of Congress and substantial spending cuts and caps on future spending

were approved. Would you favor or oppose this proposal?

July 18-20

2011

Favor 66%

25. Would you favor or oppose a constitutional amendment to require a balanced federal budget?

July 18-20

2011

Favor 74%'

http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2011/images/07/21/rel11b.pdf