Today was the funeral of the United Kingdom's first female Prime Minister. She took over a nation that had an unbelievable inflation rate of 22% per year! She left office with inflation at 2%. Government spending was 48% of GDP. She left office with it down to 38%. With everything from housing to food more affordable and unemployment at 6% any outsider would look at her 11 years in office as amazingly successful.Yet today her funeral is being picketed and protested by tens of thousands in her country.
Photos: Getty Images
So why all the hate? The same reason many hated Reagan.
Photo: screengrab youtube
Conservatism, when done right, looks heartless to lovers of socialism. Thatcher whose dad ran a grocery store explained it like this in her book Path To Power.
For them [the critics] capitalism was alien and harsh: for me it was familiar and creative. I was able to see that it was satisfying customers that allowed my father to increase the number of people he employed. I knew that it was international trade that brought coffee, sugar, and spice to those who frequented our shop. And, more than that, I experienced that business, as can be seen in any marketplace anywhere, was lively, human, social, and sociable: in fact, though serious, it was fun.
But the purpose of the business is not to employ people, but rather make a profit. The more money it makes the more people it employs, but solely for the purpose of selling more goods. The employees and community benefit from the businesses success, but the biggest winner should be the owner. While things are growing everyone loves it. When (not if) the business comes upon hard times it fires employees. Liberals don't think that's fair. Some people have poured the better part of their adult lives into making that business profitable and it isn't right that they can be discarded so easily. There should be a rule preventing that. Hence the union. By forcing businesses to keep employees it hurts the business, which eventually will force it to close. That hurts the community far more than if a percentage of employees had been let go. Thatcher and Reagan both broke unions which helped their countries but also put good people out of work. And for that they will never be forgiven by lovers of socialism.
What socialists fail to recognize is that much like pruning a tree in order to help it grow, things periodically need to be cut. Things could be jobs, payrolls, inventory etc. If they are not cut then all parish trying to keep them alive. Life on earth has never been and never will be perfect. Once you accept that death, cheating, lying, stealing and overall sin is the condition we must navigate through this life, you can make a proper plan to do so. In capitalism the good of most is obtainable, but not assured. In socialism the survival of most is obtainable, but progress is defeated. In order for capitalism to work the government must set the safety net low. If the the net is too high people become comfortable without striving for success. There also has to be huge rewards for people who make it to the top. That encourages people to make tremendous sacrifices and risks in order to make it. Socialists hate the idea that so much of the worlds wealth is held by so few people. When they saw more wealth being created as it was in the 80's under Thatcher and Reagan, while the safety net being lowered to force people to struggle for work they saw it as cold and unfair. "The rich get rich while the poor get poorer" is the cry of the anti capitalist. But the vast majority of citizens are in neither camp. The question should be how are most people doing? And when conservative principals are applied most people do better, as demonstrated by the 11 year improvements under Thatcher discussed at the beginning of this blog and the turnaround Reagan and Bush1 oversaw.
Today's conservative leaders need to look to the outpouring of hate poured out on Thatcher and Reagan, even after their death, to see how socialists respond when confronted with conservatism done right. If you're not getting this kind of reaction, you're probably not doing it right!
Red Shirt Junior Cornerback Victor Hampton tweeted this photo of a tiger paw on the field at Williams-Brice.
They also struck the Cockabooses.
Does this mean war? Is the rock in jeopardy? I hope not. I am a gamecock fan and hope our fans don't drop to this level.
Imagine if your neighbors homes and or churches were being bombed similar to what happened yesterday at the Boston Marathon. But rather than an outpouring of support the mood seemed to be who cares. Police weren't actively investigating and dozens of such bombings happened without an arrest.
50 years ago today Martin Luther King Jr sat in a jail cell in Birmingham Alabama. Arrested with other civil rights leaders for disobeying a Judges order to stop picketing the police and city leaders who weren't doing anything to stop the killings.
8 white clergymen posted an open letter in the press labeling King and others he travelled with as outsiders and chastising them for breaking the law. In their letter entitled "A Call To Unity" they wrote;
We are now confronted by a series of demonstrations by some of our Negro citizens, directed and led in part by outsiders. We agree rather with certain local Negro leadership which has called for honest and open negotiation in our area. And we believe this kind of facing of issues can best be accomplished by citizens of our own metropolitan area, white and Negro, meeting with their knowledge and experience of the local situation. All of us need to face that responsibility and find proper channels for its accomplishment. Just as we formerly pointed out that "hatred and violence have no sanction in our religious and political traditions", we also point out that such actions as incite to hatred and violence, however technically peaceful those actions may be, have not contributed to the resolution of our local problems. We do not believe that these days of new hope are days when extreme measures are justified in Birmingham. We commend the community as a whole, and the local news media and law enforcement officials in particular, on the calm manner in which these demonstrations have been handled.
It was a very PC letter for the time, and was the mood of most American's in 1963. To recap blacks may have had a raw deal but things are getting better, thanks to whites compromises. But if blacks are going to cause unrest in our cities well they are only hurting themselves. So if you're black be patient and if someone suggests a protest understand that's going to hurt your community, not help it.
King responded with what would become an 11 page letter. He scribbled it out on the margins of newspapers since he was refused writing paper. He then had his lawyers smuggle it out and reassembled by another pastor. These 11 pages served as the founding documents for the modern civil rights movement.
King addresses the letter to "My Dear Fellow Clergymen". Then goes on to explain why he is not an outsider but even if he was he and all American's who love Jesus should be in Birmingham now because injustice is being done to God's people. He points out the hypocrisy of the clergy who are upset by the protests but not the conditions that brought them on. Here's a photo from the Sixteenth Street Church bombing.
Image: Birmingham Public Library
King talks about the need for Birmingham leaders to respond to these atrocities. Furthermore he addresses the fact that blacks are being prevented from making progress in Alabama. "There are some counties in which negroes are the vast majority, and not a single negro is registered to vote. Can any law enacted under such circumstances be considered democratically structured?"
King reminds the clergy that civil disobedience is taught in the bible. That when King Nebuchadnezzar passed certain laws God's people disobeyed. That America itself was built on civil disobedience in the form of the Boston Tea Party. "We should never forget that everything Adolph Hitler did in Germany was "legal" and everything the freedom fighters did in Hungary was "illegal". King struck a chord with Christians all over the world when he wrote "Is organized religion too inextricably bound to the status quo to save our nation and the world"?
Like the scales falling from the eyes of Paul millions of Christians were awoke. Right is right and wrong is wrong. When you play games to find "your truth" you end up in dangerous places like siding with city leaders who believe more harm will come to blacks if they began prosecuting the people killing them. Thank you Martin Luther King for making the sacrifice of imprisonment to help share God's word with all of us. And that sacrifice improved America for all of us.
Photo: Birmingham public Library
It's funny to talk to people who argue the point that our debt isn't a big deal. "Oh you weren't talking about debt when Bush was President" is a common retort from fans of our current President. The implication being that if you're raising concern about the debt growing by 5.8 trillion in Obama's first term, which far surpasses Bush's 4.9 trillion in 8 years, you're just a hater of Obama's. First I would say that there were some conservatives who were raising concerns about Bush's debt problems. But should those who missed the opportunity to sound the alarm then, remain silent now? If there was a fire in your attic and no one mentioned it, would you prefer them to remain mum when the fire crashes into the guest bedroom? There's still a chance to save the house, but something needs to be done quickly. The main problem now seems to be that the leader of our house was fully aware that we had a fire in the attic five years ago. He rightly warned us about it then, but since it's crashed into the guest room he has ignored it.
"But is it really even a fire that can burn our house down" is another question that people are asking. We've always had debt, and we've more than doubled our debt the past 10 years, and there's no real problems evident. This is on par with the person who discovers they have high blood pressure but refuse to alter their lifestyle. They feel fine but then "without warning" find themselves paralysed from a stroke. Our country is nearing a stroke and our government refuses to modify our lifestyle.
"Why is 16 trillion in debt so much worse than the 6 trillion we were in debt in 2001"? That question makes my head hurt because it refuses the logic of numbers. Why is 100lbs overweight worse than 20? Because more is worse!
Today the AP reports that foreign countries now own 5.66 trillion of our debt. China owns 1.2 trillion and Japan is a close second at 1.1 trillion. Common sense would once again force you to recognize that being in debt to other nations weakens ours. Why do foreign countries continue to invest in our debt? Because for 100 years America has told the world what to do. If you can buy us out then your country can tell the world what to do. If that happens I'm pulling for Japan as I don't think I'd look good in the hats favored by the sweatshops of China.
Photo: Getty Images
The Washington Post features an op-ed today entitled Obama Can't Blame Bush For Deficit's Any Longer. The point being the Obama excuse of "2 wars that weren't paid for" is no longer valid since we pulled out of Iraq 2 years ago and have dialed down Afghanistan to less than a quarter of what we were spending 4 years ago. "The worst economic crisis since the great depression" ended in June 2009. The new debt is caused by entitlement spending. Despite GDP rising and the percentage of GDP paid to the government rising from 18% to 18.9%, we continue to add to our debt because entitlement spending has risen from 7% of GDP in 2000 to 10.4% today,and is projected to rise to 17.4% within 3 decades.
This can't be about blaming Bush or Obama. Both leaders and both parties have screwed this up for a long time and like a snowball rolling down a mountain this thing is getting bigger and more dangerous every day. This has to be about fixing the problem. There's plenty of blame for both. The big question is who can we thank for fixing it?
Larry Grooms R-Berkeley, and aficionado of odd animals, sponsored another school choice bill in the senate yesterday. "10 years of patience is wearing thin" said Grooms. Here's what his bill offers. $4000 tax deduction for tuition and other costs associated with sending your child to a private school. $2000 tax break if they're home schooled. $1000 tax deduction if you choose to send your child to a public school in another district. To limit how much revenue this will cost the state, the tax credit is available on a first come first served bases up to 25 million per year. There's an additional 14 million set aside in tax breaks. Those would go to students with disabilities who would be eligible for up to 10 grand in scholarships and low income students could earn up to $5000 in scholarships.
I love school choice, but not this bill for the simple reason that parents should not receive tax breaks. Understanding that the people who are invested in public education are fighting to keep as much public money flowing in to the system as possible, when you tell them you are taking 39 million out, they see danger. And they will fight very hard. Part of their concern is legit. School choice benefits people who can afford to drive their kids to better school districts. Following the law of capitalism, those schools will flourish while their weaker competition starves. The poorer schools will get poorer while the richer schools will get richer. Most kids in the poor school district will be left behind because their parents can't get them out. This isn't a straight capitalism game either where a new business can jump in to the poor school district and take over like another business can. That's because all of the business is pre assigned to the public school. A private school will get no business because their customers don't have any money. You can give them a million dollar tax credit and it wouldn't make a bit of difference if they don't pay taxes.
School choice is a good thing because the schools that teach kids the best will thrive and more of our kids will be better prepared for the future. But life isn't fair. All kids can't go to the best schools. By definition most won't go to the best. By comparison our worst school today is far superior to the best school of 100 years ago.
Those whose parents have more money will have more opportunity. And kids who have an unusual gifting but little means will usually get scholarships to private schools. School choice works for the parents who can't afford a house in the good school district but can afford to have someone take their kid to school in the good school district. The good school district should be rewarded with more tax money because they will be gaining students, but it really shouldn't be more than a few percent. By throwing in tax breaks you're making the bill unpassable and hurting the thousands of kids who would benefit from school choice.
Photo: Getty Images