Monday, September 21, 2009

Federalism and the Surrendering of our Strength

I often wonder what makes American unique. Is it the sheer size of this country? Or is it the immigrant nature of the population? Maybe our geographic isolation is what helped?

Perhaps it is because, as a country, we have a system of government that, unlike anywhere else in the world, continues to experiment on a vast scale. We have 50 states and 50 experiments in government and the ultimate mobility to choose between them.

What should we do to raise revenue during an economic downturn? New York and California think they should raise tax on the rich, while Texas Florida and Alabama think tax incentives for businesses is the way to go. Are unions good for the middle class? Michigan says yes, Tennessee says no. Are guns dangerous? Utah and New York have different opinions. It is physically impossible to build a new road in Connecticut, while Alaska is willing to pave over the whole state if necessary.

People, companies and products can vote with their feet as to which system works best for them. In the first half of the twentieth century people moved to the northern states in droves in search of economics opportunity. Now the reverse is happening, with most Northern and Eastern States experiencing declining populations (hint – it ain’t the weather that’s driving people south).

It’s that flexibility that has allowed us to reinvent ourselves repeatedly over the last 200 years. Keep that in mind as you watch the Federal Government grow and take over sector after sector of our economy ‘streamlining’ laws into a cookie-cutter one size fits all.

We shouldn’t surrender our strength so readily.

Friday, September 18, 2009

Waking up to a nightmare

This maybe unfair, and I might still regret this rush to judgment, but it seems that the longest election night has ended with a nightmare.

A vast majority of the population is experiencing a pleasant dream tuned dark. A post-partisan, post-racial promise revealed as a hoax. A supremely eloquent and confident leader that is deeply insecure and not so presidential. An outstanding campaign political machine that is made up of amateurs unable to adapt to the role of governing.

This might be an unfair assessment. But either way, the night is over and we now know what we have picked. So, the centrist turns out not to be so much so. Was it a popular mandate or faute-de-mieux?

Faute-de-mieux, cowboy up America.

Thursday, September 10, 2009

Healthcare Reform Simplified

I've tried to reduce the complex health care issue into a single slide while removing all the lies/distortions that have crept into the dialogue (including last night's Presidential Speech). Here's what I have:

Democrats are selecting "Universal Coverage" and perhaps "Cheaper Premiums" over "Deficit Neutral". Republicans are picking "Cheaper Premiums" and "Deficit Neutral". Libertarians like me are simply interested keeping the government from getting involved in making the choice