Taxation without consideration

The Wall Street Journal reports on another Congressional jam down:

Every time Congress has taken a serious look at proposals to boost Internet sales taxes, it has rejected them. That’s probably why pro-tax Senators are trying to rush through an online tax hike with as little consideration as possible.

As early as Monday, the Senate will vote on a bill that was introduced only last Tuesday. The text of this legislation, which would fundamentally change interstate commerce, only became available on the Library of Congress website over the weekend. And you thought ObamaCare was jammed through Nancy Pelosi‘s Democratic House in a hurry.

. . .

Mr. Enzi’s Marketplace Fairness Act discriminates against Internet-based businesses by imposing burdens that it does not apply to brick-and-mortar companies. For the first time, online merchants would be forced to collect sales taxes for all of America’s estimated 9,600 state and local taxing authorities.

New Hampshire, for example, has no sales tax, but a Granite State Web merchant would be forced to collect and remit sales taxes to all the governments that do. Small online sellers will therefore have to comply with tax laws created by distant governments in which they have no representation, and in places where they consume no local services.

. . .

The drivers of this rush to tax are Wal-Mart and other big retailers that can more easily absorb the costs of collection than can smaller competitors. Also supporting the bill is Internet giant Amazon, which coincidentally now sells its own tax compliance service to other merchants. Adding to the lobbying muscle are state and local governments. The politicians believe they’ll collect tens of billions of dollars in taxes that are already owed by shoppers on remote sales but rarely paid.

So big business and big government are uniting to pursue their mutual interest in sticking it to the little guy. Any Internet seller with more than $1 million in annual sales would be forced to serve all of the nation’s tax collectors.

Which is pretty much what Adam Smith predicted in Wealth of Nations.  I’m sure that the taxing agencies will collect more tax dollars, but at the expense of driving small internet based businesses out of business.  I wonder if the added cost of government support for bankrupt business owners and employees is more or less than the projected increase in tax revenues, never mind the actual increase in revenues.

Plague

In the 1340’s Asia, India and the Middle East were swept by a great pestilence that reached Europe in 1347.  From as single point of contact, the city of Genoa, the disease spread across Europe where it was known as the Black Death.  It killed approximately 20,000,000 people, between 25 to 30 percent of the population.  It nearly destroyed Western civilization, it did shatter its soul.

The disease was caused by a bacillus called Yersina pestis, transmitted by fleas, carried by rats and other mammals, including humans.  At that time the germ theory of disease was still more than 500 years in the offing, people had no idea what what was causing it, still less how to control or remedy it.  But because causation is built into the human mind, they started inventing causes: sin, Jews and witches being perennial favorites.  Consumed by horror and terror, guided by ignorance and desperate conviction, they flailed about applying a wide variety of utterly useless cures and solutions to an evil they could not see, only name.  Nothing worked.  Nothing could work as all solutions were absolutely unconnected to the real causes.  Thus ended the Medieval Christian civilization in Europe, it would be 100 years before the depleted and scarred descendants of the survivors would begin to rebuild, and when they did it was with a fearful eye cast back on the catastrophe that was the Black Death.

Like our distant ancestors, priest, peasant and noble alike, whose understanding was limited by their ignorance of the microbial world, our own incomprehension of the crippling ills that afflict our nation, culture and civilization are unknown to our intelligentsia, media and political elites.  Political Correctness is the Yersinia pestis of our time, a  mental parasite derived from Marxis pestis that has evolved and multiplied and spread widely through our civilization, culture and nation.  Probably the most virulent strain is Alinskyis pestis whose most insidious symptom is that those infected by the disease are prevented by the disease from recognizing their own infection and the infection of others so afflicted.
Other symptoms are moral inversion, intolerance of common sense, rejection of the principles that created, elevated and sustained Western civilization, loathing of what is good, true and beautiful, tolerance for and championing of what is vile and destructive, a drive to capture and exercise despotic power by enslaving populations under their control through false compassion and dependency, a commitment to a monolithic diversity and an invariant propensity to call those who promise death and destruction ‘friend’ and those who promise amity and peace ‘enemy.’

Examples abound.  We are no longer allowed to think of Islamists or militant Islam, references to which have been carefully purged from the FBI’s training manuals.  Certainly it was not part of the lexicon when Major Nidal Hassan committed ‘workplace violence’ when he shot up Fort Hood while yelling “Allah akbar!”  We are not allowed to say “illegal alien”, but must say “undocumented American.”  That there are people who seriously believe this claptrap is hard for the sane to believe, but there are, and lots of them.

These are the people who hoped and prayed that the perpetrators of the Boston bombing would turn out to be “White Americans,” Tea Party members or some other right wing bête noir of the Loony Left, and were surprised and disappointed when reality set in.  All the while there was no evidence that was the story, or rather, the narrative; they were free to broadcast their mental disease to the world, and once the facts killed the dream, well, on to the next one.  But facts not withstanding, they continue to believe that right wing, Tea Party, Republican, white, gun toting, Bible thumping Americans are the problem.

For some, no amount of cognitive dissonance can break the hold the PC memes have on their minds.  Some, yes, will be ‘mugged by reality,’ but because the indoctrination has been so pervasive for so long it takes an awful lot of reality moving very fast to make a dent.  Left to itself any parasite will multiply until it consumes the host and both perish.  Usually some hosts organisms survive this crash because they develop an immunity and pass that resistance on to their progeny; the species survives, though the majority of is members die.  Our culture, saddled as it is with so many in positions of authority infected with Alinskyis pestis, is likely to experience such a crash.  At that point the majority of survivors, having been slammed by implacable reality, will develop a belated immunity.

Richard Fernandez over at The Belmont Club says, “We have to wise up. Why have we not until now? Because we have forgotten common sense; unlearned the idea that to win means waging mental strife so that the sword can sleep in your hand. That we can’t fight the enemy by “law enforcement”. Why did we miss something so plain?  Because it required the recovery of old idea: if you are trying to kill me then you are my enemy. And if you are my enemy I will fight you.”  Which calls to mind Napoleon’s maxim that in war the moral is to the physical is as three is to one.  I have long been of the opinion that in all things the spiritual is the the physical as three is to one.  Alinskyis pestis removes the spiritual from the equation.  Or, more accurately replaces one kind of spirituality, the liberating spirituality that hopes for life and joy and love, with a totalitarian spirituality of fear, death and despair.

Margaret Thatcher’s granddaughter Amanda’s reading at Mrs. Thatcher’s funeral highlights the fact that we are at war, who and what the enemy is and who our allies really are.  Whether Christian, Jew, agnostic or any other persuasion, the facts are the same.  Alinskyis pestis has no medical, psychological or intellectual cure, for it is at root a spiritual disease and admits of only a spiritual cure.  Whatever other tactics, weapons or means may be employed in its defeat, it is in the field of the Spirit that the battle rages, win or lose, the stakes for which we contend are precisely those of the soul.

Logic defied

There are more people on Welfare in Illinois than there are  people working.

Chicago pays the highest wages to teachers than anywhere else in the U.S. averaging $110,000/year.

Their pensions average 80-90% of their income. You can’t blame that on republicans because there aren’t any.

Wow, are Illinois and Chicago great or what?

Be sure to read till the end. I’ve never heard it explained better.

Perhaps the U.S. should pull out of Chicago ?

Body count: In the last six months 292 killed (murdered) in Chicago .
221 killed in Iraq AND Chicago has one of the strictest gun laws in the entire US.

Here’s the Chicago chain of command:

President: Barack Hussein Obama
Senator: Dick Durbin
House Representatives: Jesse Jackson Jr.
Governor: Pat Quinn
House leader: Mike Madigan
Atty. Gen.: Lisa Madigan (daughter of Mike)
Mayor: Rahm Emanuel
The leadership in Illinois – all Democrats.

Thank you for the combat zone in Chicago . Of course, they’re all blaming each other. Can’t blame Republicans; there aren’t any!

Chicago school system rated one of the worst in the country. Can’t blame Republicans; there aren’t any!

State pension fund $78 Billion in debt, worst in country. Can’t blame Republicans; there aren’t any!

Cook County ( Chicago ) sales tax 10.25% highest in country. Can’t blame Republicans; there aren’t any!

This is the political culture that Obama comes from in Illinois . And he is going to ‘fix’ Washington politics for us???

George Ryan is no longer Governor, he is in the big house. Of course he was replaced by Rob Blajegovitch who is…that’s right, also in the big house. And Representative Jesse Jackson Jr. resigned a few weeks ago. That is because he is fighting being sent to…that’s right, the big house.

The Land of Lincoln , where our governors make our license plates.

But you know what?

As long as they keep providing entitlements to the population of Chicago , nothing is going to change, except the state will go broke before the country does.

“Any man who thinks he can be happy and prosperous by letting the Government take care of him better take a closer look at the American Indian.”  — Henry Ford —

You will know a prophet

You will know a prophet is a true prophet if his words prove true.  I seems that those who prophesied that Obamacare would be a disaster are being proved right.  The American Spectator has a piece laying out the details of the disaster in progress.

[T]he President’s apparatchiks squandered three full years during which they should have been hard at work preparing for the advent of these insurance “marketplaces.”

Not only has the go-live date for the insurance exchanges been pushed back a year, a wide variety of the law’s other key provisions have either been delayed or simply abandoned. The most conspicuous of the latter category was the Community Living Assistance Services and Supports (CLASS) Act. This program was so badly designed that Kathleen Sebelius admitted HHS couldn’t pay for it and one of its own administrators speculated that it might collapse. It was repealed in January.

Another moribund provision of Obamacare is the “Basic Health Plan,” included in the law to give states the flexibility to provide coverage for low-income residents unable to afford employer coverage or qualify for Medicaid.

Even the much-touted Obamacare provision that we were told would eliminate the “pre-existing condition” scourge is proving to be a bust. According the Heritage Foundation, the Obama Administration estimated that 375,000 people would enroll in the pre-existing conditions insurance plan (PCIP). “But as of January 2013, over two-and-a-half years since the plan began, only 107,139 were enrolled—less than 29 percent of original projections.” And yet the program is running out of money, forcing the HHS bureaucrats to suspend enrollment.

It hardly needs saying that this failure, like everything else associated with Obamacare, is incredibly expensive: “In a 2012 report, the Administration conceded that claims’ costs had been 2.5 times greater than they had anticipated.” This is of a piece with the “Affordable Care Act” in general. When Obamacare was first shoved down our throats, we were told that it would cost $898 billion. Now the projected cost is $1.6 trillion. Meanwhile, many of its taxes are now in effect and it is forcing health insurance premiums through the roof.

What we are left with, then, is a big-government vampire that will drain our personal and public coffers without delivering on its most important promises.

When increasing numbers of Socialist Democrat supporters of the bill are angry and disappointed with it and it’s implementation it is clear that what is needed is complete repeal.  To all those who are now saying “I told you so,” yes you did.

More bull by the tail

Race is a taboo subject – unless you are Black speaking to  non-Blacks, Hispanic speaking to non-Hispanics, Asian speaking to non-Asians or a Democrat speaking to anyone at all.  If you are not in any of the categories just mentioned, or worse, White, shut your pie hole and cast down your eyes because you, yes YOU, are a racist oppressor – by tautology.

The accusation of racism is a political cudgel used to discredit anyone not a member of these favored groups, an accusation which once made need never be proven  and can never be disproved.  The accusation itself comes complete with its own facts, its own judgement and its own sentence; it nullifies any defense, including any counter accusation for only the chosen non-categories above are entitled to make it.  A white can never make the accusation of a non-white for if he does the stigma applies to him in the same way as if any non-white had made the accusation first.  Because none of these favored non-white categories are, were or could ever be racist, which leads to the absurd but widely believed idea that race determines who can be racist.

Once the term ‘racism’ meant “a belief that human races have distinctive characteristics that determine their respective cultures, usually involving the idea that one’s own race is superior and has the right to rule others.”  The march of progress subsequently deleted the idea of culture from that definition and focused on only the most superficial physical characteristics; multiculturalism means that all cultures are equal, another patent   absurdity.  Finally in our own enlightened age the accusation of racism has come to mean, “You are committing thought crime by not repeating the approved politically correct nostrums and I don’t like it.  Since I am unable to rationally and logically refute your points I will call you names until you either change you position and toe the PC party line (either because no such refutation is logically possible or because I don’t have the intellectual or rhetorical skills to do so), or I make you cry and you shut up and go home.”  Strangely, this is not bullying, but that is one of the new rules of racism.

Nor should it go unremarked that there is no little irony that the accusation of racism is almost exclusively a weapon used by the Democratic Party, which supported enslaving the blacks and opposed the abolitionists, to blacken the Republican Party which was founded by abolitionists and successfully prosecuted a policy of racial equality.  The Left has brought about a world of Orwellian moral inversion, which deserves examination at another time.

Racism, real racism, not the political weapon masquerading as racism, is alive and well in the United States.  It is growing, in no small part precisely because it has been used as a political weapon.  The Left and the Democratic Party have sought and successfully obtained political advantage by inflaming racial passions.  By so doing it has set before the victims their own policies have created, abetted and enlarged the idea that their troubles were rather the result of racist enmity by the Democrats’ political enemies.  It has pounded that drum unceasingly, has created a whole race baiting industry proclaim racial blame from the rooftops, has relentlessly fanned the flames of racial discord, it has protected and bankrolled the race mongers, it has hysterically marketed such white-on-anybody-that’s-not-white violence as it can find to both further diminish the self confidence of the racially neutral and inflame the rage of the victim’s racial group and finally it has hidden the racial violence that it has fomented.

That racial violence has increased to the point where it can no longer be successfully contained or covered up, though it is not yet widely known.  Divide and conquer has become divide and destroy.  The problem has become so great, in my opinion, that a simple political fix is no longer possible.  It is not yet politically possible to even talk about this openly, much less devise and implement a solution.  It may be that it will never be possible to openly discuss this before an explosion creates such fear and animosity that discussion is not possible.

One of the great unpalatable and therefore seldom mentioned truths is that responsibility is with the one who sees.  Knowledge is power, but only if acted upon.  Here responsibility is distinguished from mere blaming, which is the antithesis of responsibility.  There is a tendency in the perceived absence of viable solutions to avoid opening cans of worms, especially when it is well known that blame will be leveled both for opening the can and for the existence of the worms.  Still, the discussion must be opened, and done in such a way that there is accountability, correct understanding of the problem and many minds working together to devise and implement workable solutions on many fronts.

Will the Republican Party, with its noble tradition of racial equality, be equal to the task before it?  How should we begin?  Your ideas solicited in the comments.

Gosnell – the meaning

Richard Fernandez over at The Belmont Club has an essay in which he absolutely knocks it out of the park.  Not only is the essay on point, The thoughtful and knowledgeable discussion in the comments is excellent, as it always is over there, and well worth your attention.  Here is the conclusion.

Though 3801 Lancaster Street seemed to stand on a major Philadelphia street in the apparent blaze of day  its doorways were really guarded by a spell that guaranteed that no one inquired into what happened within because everyone knew what was happening already. A knowledge not only that infanticide was practiced within but that most of us, in small or big ways, had tacitly given our imprimatur to it.

For the House guarded one secret that has not been touched upon in the cultural debate. That the real purpose of abortion is to make it impossible, once we have acceded to it, to object to anything else.

To understand 3801 Lancaster street maybe we should go back to  Moloch rather than to  the system of industrial execution that flourished 70 years ago. “Child sacrifice — “the ritualistic killing of children in order to please, propitiate or force a god or supernatural beings” was long practiced by the Incas, Aztec, many cultures in the Middle East, North Africa and in pagan Europe.  The question is: why?  What was its purpose that Moloch should be worshipped thus in his many names?

One theory is that child sacrifice was a sacramental device used to kill what we used to call “God” Himself.  Moloch’s problem was how to get everyone to belong to him and to no other. His answer was to arrange a radical crossing over, an extreme commitment, a journey beyond the pale so shocking that to embark upon it was to go beyond point of no return. There was no going back to God after that.  And once you had offered your child to Moloch there was no point refusing him anything else.

Killing your own child  – just as acquiescing to killing the Jews was to the German public — was a form of enlistment by complicity. It is the last and most decisive step in the extinction of freedom. Though apparently practiced upon the child the real target of abasement is the mother. And by extension it is all of us. That is the shame the conservative pundits felt. Not the shame of sexual guilt. It is the shame of having gone along. By consenting to be an accomplice in the destruction of her own child she binds herself mystically to the doctrine of Moloch. “You are nothing but meat. So take this child and eat. Do this in memory of you.”

And that is the reason why there can be no truce on these issues.  Any society that is so compromised at the core would no longer be a the United States of America, no matter if we do achieve fiscal responsibility.

Countering the MSM non-narrative on the Gosnell trial – updated

Media Row at the Gosnell trial

The trial of Philadelphia abortionist Kermit Gosnell is popping up all over the place – except the MSM – and they’re being called on it.  Walter Russell Meade notes that the people are speaking, and it now appears that the MSM is might just be forced to listen, and report what it wants to hide.

Much of the speculation has been about why so many news outlets ignored the story. But perhaps the real story here is the way the trial became a national story without the help of the MSM—and arguably even despite its best efforts to ignore the trial. In the last century, there were a few central news gatekeepers who controlled what stories Americans heard. The internet and social media have changed all that; the people have swept aside the gatekeepers and ripped the gates from their hinges.

The MSM is no longer in control; anyone and everyone now has the tools to call the media out and if the story is hot and compelling enough (and the trial of an accused multiple baby killer passes that test with ease), it will force itself into the national conversation.

Good.

Good indeed.  The conventional wisdom tells us that you can’t beat the MSM because they control the narrative and there’s no way to break in.  Even buying another media outlet would simply result in the MSM isolating it and rendering it virtually useless.  But it appears that, as has been predicted by various pundits elsewhere, alternative media has opened up a new front in the culture wars.  One which the armies of the Left have yet to successfully counter.  Which is not to say that they don’t use these same weapons effectively, they do.  What has changed is that they can no longer control it.

Please, may I have more?

Repealing the 13th Amendment

Recently an addle brained MSNBC commentator proposed the idea that the “community” (read STATE) rather than parents ought to bear the primary responsibility for the care and raising of children.  In the video below Zo gets it exactly right, what is being proposed is  slavery.  Only it is a higher form of slavery because now the slaves are not privately owned but are owned by the government.  If the Left had their way we would all be Gulag bait.

Grand theft Cyprus coming to a retirement account near you

Obama’s proposed (and hopefully soon to be disposed) budget informs us that some people are saving ‘more than is needed’ for their post-employment future.  Naturally the President generously offers to relieve these people of that burden.

According to advance reports, the administration’s budget due out on Wednesday will propose a cap limiting the amount of annual return a retirement account can create to $205,000. If that proposal were enacted today, that would mean retirement accounts would be limited to $3 million in assets. The White House estimates that caps on the tax-preferred accounts would generate $9 billion over 10 years.

According to a new analysis from the Employee Benefit Research Institute, only around 0.06 percent of total IRA account holders had $3 million as of the end of 2011, and 0.0041 percent of 401(k) accounts had $3 million as of the end of 2012.

“I think a lot of what people are missing about this is this is most likely going to be very, very difficult from an administrative complexity standpoint for employers to deal with this,” says Jack VanDerhei, research director at EPRI.

PDA 10 (2)That’s a no squidder.  But there’s a simple solution.  Create a federal bureaucracy to handle the problem!  And once the American sheeple get used to the idea that the government can take care of our retirement accounts, it would be unfair to limit that care to the wealthy.  Lower the upper limits gradually so that the middle class and then everybody can share in the wonderful Centralized Retirement Assistance Plan (CRAP).  They’ve done so well with Social Security, after all.