Before the month of September is over, many expect the Federal Reserve to begin another bond-buying program. Their motivation, they say, is the weak labor market.
Conservative economist Martin Feldstein, thinks it’s a bad idea, and our economic problems are beyond the Federal Reserve’s ability to fix. Feldstein thinks any benefits to this policy would be minimal. Yet, they appear hardheaded and want to press on.
Our economic problems, including high unemployment, are cultural in nature; along with fiscal disorder, leadership indifference, and enormous repair work from bad decisions early in this century and prior years. In other words, a lot of political problems.
Here in the South the politicians pander 2nd Amendment rights. They do elsewhere as well. During a campaign, most serious candidates rarely forget to tell the voters they will defend their right to own and carry weapons. The Supreme Court has solidified the individuals right to bare arms. It is settled law ! Politicians still pander. Yet, reason must prevail and truth must emerge.
In the Colorado tragedy, and like mass shootings, there’s usually an outcry for tighter gun controls. I heard today(July 23) Mayor Bloomberg on New York wants to ban semi-automatic weapons. Well mayor, there is often other factors in these deranged shooters that eclipses easy access to weaponry. If you think it is the weapon more than the person; you have some explaining to do. What about alcohol as a weapon ? If a drunk driver causes a fatal accident; is this reason to remove alcohol commercials from sports events on television ? Same principle, Mr. Mayor ! Movies and television incite violence of all kinds. Should we police those more too ?
While I don’t agree with Bloomberg on the semi-automatic weapons ban; I do advocate looking at everything to prevent the next tragedy of the Colorado type. There is legitimate questions about mail order ammunition, and also the quantities that are shipped out.
For all the politicians benefit, the 2nd Amendment does have some borders. I cannot use a howitzer in my back yard for random shooting. There exists much weaponry that is unsafe and unsuitable for individuals to use.
I think when you explore these deranged minds you often find various motivations fro such tragedies. Associates have responsibilities to alert authorities when they perceive a seriously troubled person. I also think we can reasonably police a lot of violence and unsocial behavior from the likes of movies, video games, alcohol advertising, and television.
The great loss and bereavement of those Colorado families implore us to do something besides wait for the next one.
Today(July 25) Sandy Weill, former chairman of CItigroup and Sheila Bair, former chairperson of FDIC both say the time is right to break up the big banks. Weill wants to divide them up, along the purpose of Glass-Steagall, by investment activity. That may not be far enough to return the banks to their basic mission of efficiently funding the economy. It may take some sub-cuts to restore the utility and integrity of the banking system.
If we didn’t have all this concentration, it might be hard to find the rationale of 2300 pages of regulation, as in the Dodd-Frank. If you have concentrated businesses, you need a big government. They go together.
Of course, the big problem; the Congress is way behind Weill and Bair.
It does seem to be about Europe, that is, our condition as a nation. But, it is not about the economy of Europe; it is about the European model. The model of Europe is a welfare state that is unsustainable, and has left the continent in a state of decay, or worse.
While the European economy is consuming itself; it is only a symptom of the broader cultural disintegration. Among the cultural downgrades is the rise of a very secular union. Faith, other than the Islamic, and remnants of Catholicism in some areas, is noticeably silent in Europe. The absence of faith has corollary effects such as; hope and a bright future outlook, wiliness to sacrifice, and commitment to hard work. All ingredients to a virile state. Nowhere does the cultural changes show up as much as the low birth rates of the continent.
We are starting to resemble Europe, and also in a state of decay. We are only a step or two behind. We have expanded our welfare state through both Democrat and Republican administrations for about four decades. Each four years the politicians produce more largess, that further expands and adds layers to our welfare state. We have come to expect more entitlements. We have whole constituencies that defend their “rights” to the good life that their neighbor enjoys.
There are components to our general malaise, that is not common throughout Europe. Likewise, our society is not near as secular as the European continent. That could well be what is keeping us afloat. Yet, it is our likeness to Europe that is scary. Europe is a mature dependency state, that is now crumbling before our eyes. We are a four-decade old growing dependency state.
One in seven Americans qualify for food stamps. Registration is promoted in the electronic media by the Agriculture Dept. The big rise in food stamp participation has been in this current administration. Food stamps is not just for the poor anymore.
Sen. Sessions of Alabama tried to pass reasonable legislation in the Senate to curb abuses, with a federal asset test. Who could oppose such a measure ? All the Democrats in the Senate, but one !
Democrats give more solid evidence that they are as “political” as the Republicans.
Wonder how all these food stamp enlistees will vote? No doubt, many will need a free ride to the polls. Democrats can work that out too. Maybe, a new transportation entitlement.