Government Discouraging Self Reliance

There is a wealth of information available from the U.S. Government to help you become more self reliant…unfortunately there is another narrative…this newer narrative is the government actively discouraging self reliance and encouraging dependence.  I see this new narrative as a growing trend with more and more messages like this one highlighted by the Washington Examiner:

More Americans rely on their families for assistance than the government, so federal officials have undertaken an effort to help people to apply for federal assistance.

“Given that only 15 percent of you turn to government assistance in tough times, we want to make sure you know about benefits that could help you,” USA.gov announced today. The ”government made easy’ website has created a “help for difficult financial times” page for people to learn more about the programs.

The government got that statistic from a poll asking Americans what helps them the most during tough times. Here are the results:

  • Savings 44%
  • Family 21%
  • Credit cards/loans 20%
  • Government assistance 15%

via Feds: Too few Americans ‘turn to government for assistance’ | WashingtonExaminer.com.

CNN provides another example of this message of dependence being broadcast from our nation’s leaders:

More than one in seven Americans are on food stamps, but the federal government wants even more people to sign up for the safety net program. (more…)

Government Solutions

 

Government Solutions www.prepography.com

Why Prep, Part 2 Historical & Current Examples

This entry is part 2 of 3 in the series Why Prep

Note from Andrew: The complete Why Prep Series has now been consolidated HERE.

Last week in Why Prep, the Introduction we briefly discussed the fragility of the status quo and clarified that preparedness is not about getting ready for the ‘end of the world’… it’s about building the skills, resources and resilience to endure the transition periods following dramatic financial, environmental, societal or individual life changes.  If you haven’t read the introduction yet, I recommend that you read it before continuing by clicking on the hyperlink near the start of this paragraph..

Today we’re going to take a look at some current and historical situations and events that are/were much more survivable (financial and otherwise) for those that took the time to prepare.  For brevity’s sake I have chosen a small sampling of the historical examples available and have chosen not to include many areas of perpetual warfare (Cyprus, Rwanda, Sri Lanka, Palestine/Israel, Northern Ireland, etc.).

Note:  The links included go to articles or preselected internet searches (to make results more timely) in case you’re interested in doing additional reading on that subject.  For convenience, these examples are listed by continent although many of the events/situations spanned multiple continents. (more…)

REALITY CHECK The Government Didn’t Build That Either!

Note from Andrew:  Today I’m pleased to present the second article in a periodic column by my friend Roger Reality.  Roger has been a key mentor in my life particularly with regard to critical thinking and analysis, and as you will see…he speaks with passion.  Enjoy.

President Obama has been actively and correctly bludgeoned for his passionate, bold and philosophically accurate (for him) statement in Roanoke, VA claiming that businesses are not built by those that start, own, manage, build, expand, sell and/or fail at them but rather by “somebody else”, by which the President meant, in context, the government.  This claim is truly and staunchly held by the President and virtually all other Socialists, Communists, Collectivists, and the various in-bred philosophies that they have spawned.  At their core, these philosophies are fixated on a massive, bloated, inept “governmental apparatus” collecting from its subjects (money, liberty, self-reliance, guns, etc.); monitoring its subjects (speech, religious views, electrical consumption, carbon footprints, “inappropriate” political views, medical care, etc.); and dictating to its subjects (how much and to whom “charity” is provided, the property you can own, who provides medical care, and many thousands of other aspects of life through laws, regulations, and policies designed to give Government control over virtually every facet of life).  I will defer an examination of that Reality for a future column but it is germane to grasp how automatically and convulsively President Obama extolled his belief that government, not business owners, not “hardworking people” as he called them “built that”.

What surprises, baffles, and angers me about the fierce media debate and advertising melee that ensued is that no one that I have seen or heard has properly framed the actual fatal flaw in Mr. Obama’s statement and thus logic!!  Mr. Obama’s claim is as ludicrous as it is disrespectful!  The traditional media have utterly and probably intentionally missed the point!!  The Reality is that even the “roads and bridges” that the Obama Administration and campaign ultimately pointed to in order to explain the President’s comments WERE NOT BUILT BY THE GOVERNMENT!!

(more…)

President to Newspeak @ Blackwhite Stadium

In his book, 1984, George Orwell described a despotic society so controlling that it modified the English language to make ‘thoughtcrime’…unthinkable.  The language Orwell described as ‘Newspeak’ was based on English but pared down to the absolute minimum with all words used to describe politically incorrect ideas removed.

…two emails from the DNC host committee referring to the Charlotte venue where President Obama will speak as “Panthers Stadium.”

It’s the place where the Panthers play, but it’s actually called Bank of America stadium.

via Welcome to ‘Panthers Stadium’ (UPDATED) – POLITICO.com.

The Democratic National Committee (DNC) seems to be engaging in a bit of ‘Newspeak’ of its own.  It seems that all the money Bank of America (BOA) spent to have the stadium named after the company wasn’t good enough for the DNC to call it by…its name.  Maybe if Bank of America didn’t fit into the ‘evil bankers’ dialog they wouldn’t have had their (named) stadium renamed by the DNC.  Yes, BOA has been at the center of mortgage transfer scandals…but this is just one example of the spin and massaging of the dialog that has become more and more commonplace recently.  For further examples just look at how many entitlements are now being described as ‘rights’ by Democratic politicians.

In case you think I’m unfairly targeting one party let me assure you that the Republicans massage the language as well…imagine how hard it would have been to pass the “Trade a Bunch of Your Freedoms in For a False Sense of Security Act” during the Bush presidency.  Doesn’t ‘The Patriot Act’ sound so much more appealing…if less accurate.

Blackwhite– The ability to accept whatever “truth” the party puts out, no matter how absurd it may be. Orwell described it as “…loyal willingness to say black is white when party discipline demands this. It also means the ability to believe that black is white, and more, to know black is white, and forget that one has ever believed the contrary.”

Newspeak – The official language of Oceania. Newspeak is “politically correct” speech taken to its maximum extent. Newspeak is based on standard English, but all words describing “unorthodox” political ideas have been removed. In addition, there was an attempt to remove the overall number of words in general, to limit the range of ideas that could be expressed.

via Newspeak Dictionary

Andrew’s Note:  As of 9/15/2012 the Newspeak Dictionary Website has been down for a couple of weeks.  I’ll keep the link active for now in the hopes that it’s a temporary situation.

Also check out our Newspeak dictionary that focuses on the reality of Newspeak in the world today.  We call it Newspeak, A Modern Political Dictionary.  Do you have a Newspeak term you’d like us to highlight on Prepography?  If so, use Submit A Prep Tip.

The Biggest U.S. Political Scandals of the Last 40 Years

The mainstream media thrives on stories about politicians who have trouble keeping their pants on, staying out of the wrong beds, or fathering the occasional ‘love child.’  If the political scandal being reported doesn’t revolve around sex than it likely involves some type of influence peddling for profit.  Politicians are people too (all evidence to the contrary)… so they reflect all of our foibles and because they operate in an environment with incredible temptations (big money, big power, and big libidos apparently) and incredible visibility…we get lots of front page news.

I propose to you that for all the ink and digits that go into reporting on the types of political scandals above the biggest U.S. political scandals involve issues that are much less base and much more heinous.  The real ‘political’ scandals involve clandestine operations to further the ideological goals or illicit retention of power.  Based on this definition, the three biggest political scandals of the last 40 years are:

  1. Watergate Scandal:  Republican President Richard Nixon was implicated in a break-in that took place 40 years ago last month at the offices of the Democratic National Committee.  This property crime was perpetrated with the goal of influencing the President’s reelection chances.  Instead, it resulted in his resignation in disgrace.  This scandal resulted from an attempt to retain power through illicit means.
  2. Iran/Contra Scandal:  This complex scheme involved the sale of arms to Iran (which was under an arms embargo at the time) through Israeli intermediaries to fund anti-Sandinista (read that as anti-communist) rebels in Nicaragua.  The Sandinista Regime under the former bank-robber turned President, Daniel Ortega was opposed by several groups that were loosely referred to as ‘Contras.’  The Contras received U.S. government support until Congress outlawed the practice.  At that point several members of President Ronald Reagan’s Republican administration came up with the Iran/Contra scheme to further the administration’s ideological goals of financially supporting anti-communist rebels.  It’s interesting to note that although the Sandinistas lost power in 1990, their President, Daniel Ortega was reelected to that post in 2007.
  3. The Fast & Furious Scandal:  Details of this scandal were still being discovered up until the point where President Barack Obama invoked the seal of executive privilege.  Here is the rough outline.  A U.S. Government Accountability Report to Congress incorrectly stated that 87% of the guns seized from criminals by Mexican authorities came from the U.S.  The statistic was incorrect in that it didn’t refer to the percent of weapons seized by Mexican authorities that originated in the U.S., it actually referred to the percent of seized weapons that the Mexican authorities asked the U.S. to trace, that the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms (ATF) were able to trace. that were of U.S. origin.  For more details read Mexico’s Gun Supply and the 90 Percent Myth | Stratfor.  This incorrect 87% statistic quickly made the rounds in government circles and was soon spouted as gospel on the talk show circuit.  It fueled calls for increased regulation of firearms and a push for increased gun legislation at a time when the people and States were beginning to more freely embrace firearms freedoms.  There is some speculation that the desire to point to legitimate ‘smoking guns’ of U.S. origin, at Mexican crime scenes prompted the U.S. Justice Department under Attorney General Eric Holder to encourage over 2,000 U.S. guns to illegally cross the border into Mexico.  These guns have been tied to over 300 murders to date including the murder of U.S. Border Patrol Officer Brian Terry in 2010.  With President Obama’s comments on pushing gun control “under the radar” and Attorney General Holder’s comments encouraging us to “brainwash people into thinking of guns in a vastly different way” there certainly is a defined ideological goal.  Operation Fast and Furious was the clandestine Department of Justice operation that appears to have been designed to further that ideological goal by providing illegal firearms to criminals in a friendly, neighboring country.  Bill Whittle of PJTV refers in his video on the subject, to this scandal as “”Watergate with 300 dead people lying on the ground.”

The biggest U.S. political scandals of the last forty years certainly don’t bode well for our future unless we insist that our public servants to take the moral, ethical and legal requirements of their duties more seriously.  We started this run of scandals with a property crime but have now progressed to providing weapons to supporters of terrorism and criminals.

(more…)

Top 10 Inactions That Will Be Taxed Next

In it’s recent decision on the constitutionality of the Patient Protection & Affordable Care Act AKA Obamacare the Supreme Court seems to have granted government the power to assess taxes for not taking action.  In this case, a tax penalty for not purchasing health insurance.  With government now granted this new power I stopped to ponder what other ‘inactions’ the government may decide to tax.

  1. Not Recycling:  You could be taxed $50 for any week you elected not to participate in curbside recycling.  Subsequent violations would lead to inspection of your garbage cans with a tax of $5 per recyclable item not properly placed with other recycling in the appropriate bin.
  2. Not installing compact fluorescent light bulbs:  It’s getting harder and harder to find incandescent light bulbs now that most of the U.S. factories that manufacture them have fled to greener pastures (financially, not environmentally green).  Perhaps we’ll be taxed $10 per light fixture not equipped with an appropriate environmentally correct bulb.
  3. Not buying a hybrid car:  When my wife told me she wanted a hybrid car all I could think of was bleeding edge technology pricing and more to maintain.  My solution was to buy her a traditional vehicle that was $10,000 less than the hybrid she wanted and was rated at 45 Miles Per Gallon (MPG) vs. the 35 MPG that her hybrid of choice was rated for.  In a future where the government can tax my ‘wrong’ decision I might end up having to pay that $10,000 anyway as a tax for not making the correct car purchasing decision.  We could even put a ‘Cadillac Tax’ on… Cadillacs and other large automobiles.  Have a Suburban to haul your six kids…get ready to pay up!
  4. Not eating my vegetables:  Maybe Mayor Bloomberg and the Bloomberg wannabes will go beyond the proposed limitations on sugary drinks now that there’s precedent for taxing the things that we don’t buy.  In the future no trip to the grocery store or restaurant will be the same when you have to pony up $10 per person for each trip without purchasing the appropriate amount of vegetable matter.
  5. Not buying smoking cessation gadgets:  I’m not sure how those of you who live and work in the cities can still smoke…is there even anywhere legal for you to light up anymore?  Well in a future U.S., the taxman won’t be happy just taxing you $3.68 per pack for your cigarettes, he’ll also tax you $25 for each month that you don’t purchase at least one smoking cessation gadget, pill, lollipop (uh-oh…sugar), etc. (more…)

There’s No Such Thing As A Jobs Bill

With unemployment stuck above 8%, congressional Democrats and Republicans blasted each other Friday for blocking legislation that would help create new jobs and spark stronger economic growth. Both parties have a number of proposals on the table, but with the campaign now in full swing neither side expects anything to pass before Election Day.

via Analysis: Where are the jobs bills? – CNN.com.

It’s time for both parties to realize that there’s no such thing as a jobs bill.  Yes, Congress can appropriate money to spend on government jobs or hire contractors to perform services…but those jobs don’t add to the Gross National Product or are temporary (respectively).  The only way to get private enterprise to take the risk and hire is to provide us with a stable regulatory, tax, legislative and judicial (if possible) environments.  Government schemes to give sweetheart deals, create artificial markets (like France’ recent requirement for drivers to provide their own breathalyzers), redistribute drive wealth to special interests or cater to policy lobbies robs us of our liberty and economic opportunity.

Occupy ‘National Gathering’ in Philadelphia Spawns Anti-Police Tweets | ‘Nazi Pigs’ |

“Against the system we rail, until our comrades are out of jail!” 3Rhinos tweeted.  “Release the political prisoner!” the individual continued.

…The eclectic crowd also seems to love the word “Orwellian,” which they often attribute to the police officers but not the ever-expanding federal government.

via Occupy ‘National Gathering’ in Philadelphia Spawns Anti-Police Tweets | ‘Nazi Pigs’ | Video | TheBlaze.com.

You can’t make this stuff up folks… if you’re an Occupier pay attention to the following:

  1. The Occupy movement is a Progressive (AKA Socialist) movement…if in doubt review your movement’s ‘demands’ and notice your use of the word “comrades.”
  2.  As a Socialist movement calling someone a “NAZI pig” is using a German acronym to call someone a ‘National Socialist pig’…isn’t your goal to instill Socialism on a national level?
  3. George Orwell’s books Animal Farm & 1984 (Orwellian) were warnings against Socialism & Communism.

Don’t get me wrong folks…I am anti-crapitalism (Crapitalism is as anti-capitalist as Socialism in my opinion) which is also an Occupy Movement goal…but it scares me to think that all these folks have to do is register to vote and their voice (at the polls) counts as much as mine.

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