The Daily Switch

Posts Tagged ‘Socialism’

New Era of Obama = Same Old Politics

Posted by maker on December 18, 2009

As much as this characterizes our government, it is also becoming a universal sentiment of an entitled society.

Last week, President Obama lashed out at the financial institutions on Wall Street, again.

When the President of the United States flippantly refers to private citizens and their businesses as ‘fat cat bankers on Wall Street’ there is a problem with the president. When the public sees nothing wrong with this, there is a larger problem with the public itself.

The irony of this particular instance of class warfare populism exhibited by Barack Obama, is that as he delivers these remarks, we learn that government employees are much better paid than private workers. This may seem unrelated at first glance, however, the president petulantly proclaimed these so called ‘fat-cats’ the architects of our current recession, seemingly excusing the federal government of any and all responsibility in the matter. I won’t get into all the intricacies and arguments here, but suffice it to say this is a more than generous revision on the president’s part. So the age old question ‘cui bono?’ does not reflect well on those ‘fat cats’ in D.C. if we understand their role in the unraveling of our economy compared to their ever increasing compensation.

The cycle is a vicious yet convenient one: Support and push policies that loudly proclaim help for the helpless while quietly destroying the free market, which action directly creates more ‘helpless’ to promise more for while also creating the circumstances in which people will more likely cede power to ‘the only people’ who can fix things. Oh, and they need to be better compensated for all the extra work of saving us.

In fact, USA Today reported the following:

  • On average, federal employees earned $71,206 per year, compared to $40,331 in the private sector.
  • From December 2007 through June 2009, average federal employee salaries increased by 6.6 percent, while average private-sector salaries increased by 3.9 percent. Federal employees at the top of the pay scale received pay increases of 8.6 percent during that period.
  • Federal employment is getting top-heavy. Federal employees making more than $100,000 increased from 14 percent to 19 percent of total government employment. In fact, the number of federal employees making more than $100,000 has more than doubled in less than two years. There are now more federal employees making more than $100,000 per year than $40,000 per year.

How could anyone say no to this face?

In light of these facts, how can any government employee begrudge any private citizen their salary? The fact is that these ‘fat cats’ on Wall Street are creating something. They are creating jobs and wealth for millions. The ‘fat cats’ in Washington are best known for creating hurdles for those that would create jobs and wealth.

Worse still, Obama warns that the ‘fat cats’ had better stop opposing government control of their pay and strict oversight of their day-to-day operations because, basically, they owe him for the bailout, which coincidentally many of them have paid back and others have been deterred from paying back.

Obama’s ignorance seems only matched and perhaps exceeded by his unmitigated arrogance. These comments were made just before the president was to meet with said ‘fat cats’ to persuade them to comply with his wishes.

Who says this guy isn’t smooth?

Posted in Capitalism, Conservatism, Culture, Economics, Liberalism, Liberty, Obama, Politics, The Daily Switch, War on Business | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment »

Quick Links

Posted by maker on November 12, 2009

Some useful reading… Unintended consequences are fine as long as our intentions were good, right?

 

 

  • Stephen Spruiell on the SEIU

 

 and viewing…

 

 

Health-care…

 

 plus

 equals an

 that will prove

 

 

Posted in Capitalism, Conservatism, Economics, Health care, Liberty, Obama, Politics, The Daily Switch, War on Business | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

Health-Care as Marriage

Posted by maker on November 9, 2009

Health-care is to marriage as...

Can either marriage or health-care reasonably be labeled a right?

I’ve recently been involved in a few debates over at a liberal blog called meoutsidethebox . The irony of the name is made clear by hopelessly captive thinking which permeates each leftist-talking-point-turned-article on the site. Regardless of the slant, the editor doesn’t shrink from a good debate, no matter how much he may avoid answering a direct question.

The latest article on the site poses the question ‘Is health insurance a right?’ . The obvious answer is, ‘no’ with the reason being, ‘because it’s not.’ But for people who might need a little more hand holding let’s explore it a bit further.

First, let’s clarify that there is a difference between health care and health insurance, the latter simply being one of many means of providing the former. I think that the title of the article is a bit misleading because what is subsequently discussed is care, not insurance. So let’s focus on the care.

 In the resulting arguments surrounding this issue, a constant analogy seems to be that the Constitution does not directly grant the right to marriage, but that over time we have confirmed marriage to be a right and recognize it as such. Thus, we should follow the same track for health care. Despite the analogy’s gaping holes I am fine with it. Let’s agree that healthcare should be treated as a right just as marriage is.
 
 
Is anyone proposing that the government should pay the financial, not to mention the emotional, costs of marriage? Should the government pay for the wedding? Or even the engagement ring? Should the government be tasked with finding someone willing to marry you, despite any baggage you might have? And if unwilling should the government impose regulations forcing a spouse to accept a marriage despite any and all baggage? Should this right be forced on everyone so that the singles of our society must pay a penalty for not acquiring the right of marriage? Should any man be made to marry Nancy Pelosi?
 

‘That’s ridiculous’ you might say, to which I’ll respond, ‘we are finally beginning to agree’. Let’s call it a right if that makes for a more amiable starting point. Now that we agree on the labels we still have the solution to flesh out.

Good news for America's divorce rate, bad news for growing old together.

Government run health-care means 'til death do us part may not seem so long.

Calling health-care a right does not mean we suspend our knowledge of history or our tendency toward logic. The idea that determining health-care a right automatically translates to support for this ruinous and ignorant proposal is embarrassingly short-sighted. As some people are painstakingly thorough to claim, ‘we are all in this together’, so let’s figure out what works so we don’t screw things up for everyone. Does history tell us anything about socialized medicine? Do economics tell us anything about incentives, or competition? Where quality is paramount, can we afford to eliminate these considerations?

Perhaps, as with marriage, government should more appropriately leave well enough alone so as to allow the American people to pursue their rights, and the ensuing costs, as they see fit.

Posted in Capitalism, Conservatism, Culture, Economics, Health care, Liberty, Politics, Socialism, The Daily Switch, War on Business | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , | 18 Comments »

It’s been a while…

Posted by maker on November 6, 2009

Enraged Eloquence

In response to our current government or The Daily Switch for their long absence?

Things have been crazy and we’ve been away for far too long. The Daily Switch has an official stance on the matter: We apologize. This does not mean that we will be able to keep up the near heroic pace our readers had previously become accustomed to. We will, however, do better.

Let’s kick things off with some essential reading…

http://jewishworldreview.com/cols/sowell110309.php3

http://jewishworldreview.com/cols/sowell110409.php3

http://jewishworldreview.com/cols/sowell110509.php3

http://jewishworldreview.com/cols/sowell110609.php3

If you don’t know Sowell, you’ve got no soul, or so the saying goes now that I’ve said it.

Also, our friends over at TruPolitics have been going strong and even experienced a political victory in a local election. Congratulations Matt!

http://trupolitics.net/2009/10/16/freedom-bureaucracy-and-healthcare/

Guest author Edward Mahee has added a great tone to TruPolitics.

A nice summation of Obama’s actual successes…

http://article.nationalreview.com/?q=YzYzZTY2ZmM1MjFmNGU3MjhmZmIxZjJmOTNiYjU0ZDg=

Victor Davis Hanson has become for me as essential a read as anything out there. He doesn’t mince words nor seemingly miss a thing.

Anyway, that should keep you busy for a few minutes. Thanks for your patience and continued interest. ‘Til next time…

Posted in Conservatism, Economics, Health care, Liberty, Obama, Politics, The Daily Switch | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

Fun with Pictures – The Obama Edition

Posted by maker on May 5, 2009

I’ve been collecting images as I come across things that are particularly hilarious or indicative of a tide of propaganda. Here are some of the results for your enjoyment.

 

"Obama: I'm not a miracle-worker."  Don't be so modest.

"Obama: I'm not a miracle-worker" Don't be so modest.

 I’m sure everyone has seen this one, but its suggestiveness is worth noting. My fear here is for those that think it more than mere opportunistic propaganda or coincidence.

 

 

Does Obama approve of vigilante justice?

Does Obama approve of vigilante justice?

Which comic was W. featured in? It’s an honest question. I can’t recall any, but am open to correction. Do you think being wrapped in a web and hung from a street light could be considered torture? What about the Green Goblin’s civil liberties?

 

 

Not at all racist.

Not at all racist.

This is just unfortunate. But how else should Germany have responded to that rousing speech Obama delivered to the world from their soil? And what’s the deal with the curry dip?

 

 

Action for action's sake

Action for action's sake

More Obama and Superfriends. Is this portending assassination attempts? Seriously? The news didn’t hype Obama’s being a target enough that it had to bleed into comic book fantasy?

 

 

Should be mandatory accessory for dashboard of all GM cars.

This should be a mandatory accessory for the dashboard of all GM cars. The price is even Union ready.

 

Is there anything that says you’ve made it more than having your very own bobble-head? The pop-culture overtones are obvious, but the physical action indicating yes, yes, yes may be the most telling.

 

 

German engineering at its lowest.

German engineering at its lowest.

This may be the most disturbing simply for the lack of effort. Is this doll not a child? It comes off as a hurried instance of white babe in black-face. The Germans should probably stick to cars, beer and fantasies of EU domination.

 

 

ikea-obama1

Change Everything

 

What the heck?!?!?

 

If you have any images worth sharing please email them to me. My email is listed on the ‘About’ page under maker.

Posted in Culture, Liberalism, Media, Obama, Politics, Socialism, The Daily Switch | Tagged: , , , , , , | 1 Comment »

Creative Destruction & Failure

Posted by Ender on April 18, 2009

Schumpeter

Schumpeter

The term Creative Destruction was coined by Joseph Schumpeter in 1942. Creative destruction is the process where old established companies or technologies are destroyed by new or more efficient ones. Schumpeter argued that creative destruction “is the essential fact about capitalism. It is what capitalism consists in and what every capitalist concern has got to live in…” (Schumpeter) What he means is that creative destruction drives capitalism, which makes sense. Capitalism is the only economic theory that encourages innovation and efficiency. With innovation comes the necessity of ridding yourself of the old. Out with the old in with new, if you will. Seems right, why would we want to keep the horse and buggy industry alive when we have cars, right?  With industries constantly evolving and improving lagging companies and technologies will be left behind.

History is rife with examples of creative destruction. Even the youngest of our readers are witnessing creative destruction as we speak. The music industry is a perfect example we have gone from records to 8 tracks to cassettes to CDs to MP3s. This is creative destruction at its finest replacing costly, low quality, inefficient products with cheap, high quality, efficient products. Other examples include iron to steel, Polaroid to digital camera, warehouse sized computers to the iPhone. One generally can’t complain about these advances.

In my opinion there is another branch of creative destruction that is usually poorly received. This type of creative destruction is the failure of businesses. The media, politicians and consumers in general decry the failure of business. But to be good citizens we must reject this urge and ask “why do businesses fail?”

At the most basic level businesses fail because a.) they are not satisfying the consumer and/or b.) they are using resources ineffectively. We should view this failure as a triumph of the free market because a.) who wants to keep a company around that is making warehouse sized computers these days? And b.) inefficient companies failing frees up valuable resources for efficient companies. Both good things.

Walmart is a good example of this second type. Walmart discovered a way to use its resources more efficiently thus lowering the cost of its products for the consumer, which in turn drove inefficient companies like KMart or various mom and pops out of business. The failure of these other businesses benefited the consumer. Unfortunately, failure of business is fought to the inevitable death (of the business) by politicians looking for votes. All this fight does is waste the taxpayers money and delay the inevitable.

Watch this video for a debate on GM going bankrupt.

In the video Gillespie tells us why we need to let GM fail. They are not too big to fail. He really summed it up perfectly in the opening minute when he says [to paraphrase] “that GM and Toyota sold about the same amount of cars worldwide, GM lost $38B and Toyota made $19B.” Clearly, there is something fundamentally and systemically wrong with the way GM runs its business. It just cannot compete in today’s economy. We need to let creative destruction or failure take place to free up resources for the better companies. Gillespie brings up several other good points about GM and bailouts in general. He also has to defend a cheap pot shot from his counterpart when he says something to the effect that the free market only works on paper.

Let these companies fall into bankruptcy, restructure their business and come back with the ability to compete.  Don’t spend taxpayer money on corporate welfare.  Don’t throw good money after what is clearly bad.  Don’t follow the politicians and drones in the media down the path of state run economies and massive systemic failure.  Rejoice that the free market separates the wheat from the chaff.  Appreciate creative destruction.

Posted in Capitalism, Economics, Socialism | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , | 3 Comments »

Fighter of Inflation

Posted by Ender on March 31, 2009

Proponents of the Federal Reserve say that you need the Fed to control monetary supply and inflation. In our series on the Federal Reserve we argued that the Fed itself creates inflation. So, in light of recent events it appears that the Fed is doing its best to “control” inflation. Here is how they are doing it; by spending or lending $12.8 trillion of cash/credit. Yes, that is a TRILLION. Let’s put that into perspective:

1. That is about forty two thousand dollars per individual living in the US. That’s a good thing right?

2. It equals about 90% of the US’s GDP (2008). (GDP is the total amount in dollars of everything produced in the entire country.) That’s a good thing right?

Inflation?  Not on his watch

Inflation? Not on his watch

So, how does this fight inflation? Don’t look at me for an answer because I don’t have one. My question is, are they done destroying our currency and economy? “FDIC Chairman Sheila Bair warned that the insurance fund to protect customer deposits at U.S. banks could dry up because of bank failures.” Oh…well I guess we can all take respite that the Fed is there to control this kind of stuff.

Posted in Capitalism, Economics, Socialism, The Federal Reserve | Tagged: , , , , , , | 2 Comments »

War on Executive Pay

Posted by Ender on March 22, 2009

We are going to be starting a new segment on The Daily Switch.  It will be exclusively devoted to covering Obama’s War on Business.  All of the articles will be filed under that category “War on Business” on the left.

This week’s article is from the New York Times, the title pretty much says it all “Administration Seeks Increase in Oversight of Executive Pay.”

Obama’s new plan, which will be revealed this week, will give the Government the role of oversight of executive pay at “[ALL] banks, Wall Street firms and possibly other companies as part of a sweeping plan to overhaul financial regulation, government officials said.”  Not only that but it will seek to give the Fed more power than it already has.  (Learn More Here) The Fed will “oversee large companies, including major hedge funds, whose problems could pose risks to the entire financial system.”

I was and always have been against any Government control over parts of the Free Market, including salaries.  Salaries are a private contract between the individual and the employer.  The Government is lacking two things in this area:

1.  The right to take part in this contract and…

2.  Any knowledge of how the business works and how much anyone should be paid.

If anyone would like to debate either of these two points leave a comment.

Can anyone explain to me how controlling executive pay will help the economy?

Making calls to cap your pay

Making calls to cap your pay

This action will only accomplish one thing.  It will drive the best and the brightest away from these positions.  Is that what we should do during a economic crisis?  Strive to put second rate executives in charge of banks and investment firms?  Like it or not, executives work for money and they are going to want to get paid like the best that they are.  They want the American dream just like you and I, they want to strike it rich in the most prosperous nation in the world.  They are shooting for the stars and are not going to settle for whatever amount the Government says they should be getting. How long until it’s not just executives anymore?

But maybe that’s the point, maybe Obama wants to drive the top tier executives away so that these institutions fail and the Government can step in and expand its power.  Devious…

Posted in Capitalism, Economics, Obama, Politics, War on Business | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , | 11 Comments »

Healthcare Liz Lemon Style

Posted by Ender on March 10, 2009

One show that I watch is 30 Rock.  It’s usually pretty funny if you can set aside the ridiculous left leaning digs at Republicans, Capitalists, Christians and Conservatives.  I’ve watched the show since the first season but it seems as if this season, which I believe is season 3, is blatantly drifting more towards the left.  The jokes on the right are getting more frequent and more obnoxious.  The show is also guilty of outright lies.

30 Rock Cast

30 Rock Cast

In the episode about the Flu Shot, Liz Lemon (Tina Fey) declines a flu shot that was only being given to the actors and management while the crew does not get one.  She says something to the effect that she is tired of rationing health care in this system.  Unfortunately, I don’t think the whole episode is online but the recap is here.

After she said this I did a double take. What? Really, running out of jokes so you need to make things up? Countries with Socialist or Universal Health Care are the ones who are rationing health care.

In the following BBC article, it is revealed that of doctors surveyed 16% said patients have died as a result of rationing. Over 50% said that patients have suffered due to it. “Doctors said more debate was urgently needed over what should and should not be rationed.” This is scary. The debate isn’t over how to stop this rationing from occurring, but which products and treatments to ration.

Back to the show: Liz says, “Two tiered health care is a crime. You know in Cuba everyone gets equal health care.” To the show’s credit Jack Donaghy (Alec Baldwin) responds with wow, you’ve seen the Michael Moore movie. Liz responds with “Wrong again, I saw the trailer when I went to see The Chipmunks.” Which is funny AND true of most socialist health care supporters. She is wrong on at least three counts:

1. Whatever she means by “two tiered health care” is not a crime. I can only assume that she is calling the US system two tier. Who should go to jail for this crime Liz? Should we send the doctors or the patients to jail? I can only imagine her going down this thought process “Who is responsible for this mess? Wait, the People created this? Well, who are they to get in the way of what I, yes I, deem a right for everyone?”

2. Everyone in Cuba does not get equal health care. It’s funny because there are exactly two types in Cuba. The kind the ruling elites have and everyone else.

3. Clarification on number 2. The poor get no health care, but at least they’re covered!

Dr. Michael Dixon, chairman of the NHS Alliance said this “Rationing is the great unspoken reality…The only people who refuse to mention the ‘r-word’ are the media and the politicians, who continue to want to promise everything for everyone in order to win elections.” How strange, only the media and the politicians. Well, like Liz, the politicians and media can’t let silly facts get in the way of their ideology.

Posted in Capitalism, Culture, Economics, Health care, Socialism | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment »

Hunger Insurance?

Posted by Ender on February 24, 2009

I read an interesting article awhile ago by Joseph Blast called What Hunger Insurance Could Teach Us About Health Insurance.  In the article, Blast discusses what would happen if your job started offering Hunger Insurance.  It might sound goofy to you but I think it is an easy way to teach an important lesson.

Blast describes the impact on Consumers, Providers, Insurers, the Uninsured and Elected Officials.

Consumers- So, what would you do if your company offered this?  You would start to eat the nicest, most expensive food you could find because it isn’t costing you hardly anything anymore.  Personally, I’d dine on steak and lobster for every meal.  “Some of us would stop checking prices before we ordered food, just as we don’t check prices when we ask for medical treatment.”

Steak and Lobster

Steak and Lobster

Providers- Two things would happen.  First, all grocery stores would start to only stock high priced, high quality foods.  If all stores had the same expensive food how would they attract customers?  They would start to upgrade their facilities even if it wasn’t necessary.  Then they would pass the cost along to the insurers.  Second, “What if you were a lousy grocery store manager who just couldn’t keep costs down and quality up? Before hunger insurance came along, you would be forced out of the market by stores managed by sharper people able to cut costs without sacrificing quality.”  If you are the bad businessman you get to pass along your inefficiencies to the insurer.  The price of food would skyrocket.  Does that remind you of anything else you know of?  (Hint:  Health Care Costs in real life)

Insurers- The initial premiums charged to businesses would be very inaccurate given that they were calculated on historical eating habits.  Business would not respond well to the eventual increase in premiums and look for ways to lower costs.  The insurance companies would start deciding what is (and isn’t) necessary for its consumers.  Is this sounding familiar?

The Uninsured- Would experience the rising prices, but not receive the benefit of insurance.  They would also see the cheaper products disappearing from the shelves because there is not as much demand for them anymore.

Elected Officials- Blast writes “What would happen to our elected officials if hunger insurance existed? Civil rights activists and well-meaning people without much understanding of economics would campaign against for-profit hunger insurers, denouncing them for being heartless in their discrimination against people with eating disorders. They would condemn them for profiting from the provision of something so fundamental to human life as food. ‘Food is a right, not a privilege,’ they would say. ‘The high administrative costs of the hunger insurers are what is causing the problem. We should abolish private hunger insurance companies and replace them with a single provider of food.’”  That seems pretty far fetched, right?  What’s that you say?  You say that is what’s happening with Health Care?

Now, imagine all of the above scenarios, but change the fact the people were still paying something for the insurance in their paycheck to the government providing Universal Hunger Insurance.  Now, other people pay for you to eat.  It would get worse.

Blast goes into more detail on each of these scenarios in his article and offers a solution.  His solution goes hand in hand with the point I wanted to make: Personal Responsibility is an absolute necessity in Health Care and in Free Societies.  In Health Care, we can see the effects lack of personal responsibility has on it everywhere.  The Health Savings Account that Blast recommends is a great idea.  In order to drive cost down people need to take responsibility for their health.  In the current system this does not occur.  It is like renting a car: when you rent a car and buy the insurance you treat the car poorly because you won’t have to pay to maintain, clean or use further down the road.  Health insurance affects people the same way.  Why should I live healthier if my employer will foot the bill for expensive surgeries and treatments?  The HSA solution is a step in the right direction.  Blast suggests that we use it to wean people off of the insurance system.  This would help lower Health Care costs and more importantly drive people to live healthier lives.

Personal responsibility is essential to the survival of Free Societies.  If people do not take an active role in society we will end up in a tyranny.  Look at how easy it is to create a program that may sound good or right to people that has disastrous consequences down the line.  When people shirk personal responsibility by giving the government that same responsibility it diminishes their freedom.

Posted in Capitalism, Health care | Tagged: , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments »