Sydney Kendall Says

Thinking in public about anything that matters.

Category: Economics (page 2 of 2)

Why I say “no” to Barack Obama

In my previous post, I gave a list (which will continue to grow) of articles that I recommend reading regarding the present economic crisis. Now I want to add to that some articles related to the coming American elections.

Economics is not the only issue, but right now we need a president and a congress who have some grasp of why a free market is the answer to our economic plight, rather than the cause of it.

I don’t love McCain. Among other reasons, he’s not a real free-market champ. But I find Barack Obama to be far scarier, especially if he’s backed up with a majority of Democrats in both the House and Senate.My reasons for dreading an Obama presidency are numerous. Let’s start with the economic sphere:

This first article is by Gerard Jackson. Although the article points out in the first paragraph that Obama’s policies are very similar to Herbert Hoover’s, most of the article doesn’t address Obama at all, but the causes of the Great Depression, and how Hoover’s policies – not at all free market ones, but simply precursors to FDR’s NewDeal policies – were, together with FDR’s, responsible for making the Great Depression so great.

This is information I’ve known for over 20 years from reading economics books and articles, butover those years I’ve run into a number of people who seem to think Hoover was a laissez faire man, and that it was the free market that caused the Great Depression. So I can’t urge you enough to read the following article and pass the link onto your friends if you find it of value.

Why Obanomics = Hoovernomics

Then read this one by Edgar K. Brownin

Obama’s economic agenda: This is change?

And then there are issues other than economic soundness:

From Thomas Sowell:

Whose “Special Interests”? “We take it for granted that a vote means a secret ballot but it was not always that way. Moreover, it will not remain that way for workers who vote on whether or not they want a labor union, if legislation sponsored by Congressional Democrats and endorsed by Senator Barack Obama becomes law.”

The Real Obama “Jeremiah Wright, Father Michael Pfleger, William Ayers and Antoin Rezko are not just people who happened to be at the same place at the same time as Barack Obama. They are people with whom he chose to ally himself for years, and with some of whom some serious money changed hands. ”

The Real Obama Part II“Seemingly unrelated things can give important insights into someone’s outlook and character. For example, after the Cold War was over, it came out that one of the things that caught the attention of Soviet leaders early on was President Ronald Reagan’s breaking of the air traffic controllers’ strike.

“Why were the Soviets concerned about a purely domestic American issue like an air traffic controllers’ strike? Why was their attention not confined to “the real issues” between the United States and the Soviet Union?”

The Real Obama: Part III “Surely education is a real issue, with American school children consistently scoring below those in other countries, and children in minority communities faring worst of all.

“What about Senator Obama’s position on this real issue? As with other issues, he has talked one way and acted the opposite way.”

The Real Issues: Part IV “Barack Obama’s supporters often try to sidestep questions about his character and judgment by saying that we should stick to what they arbitrarily define as “the real issues.” But Senator Obama’s record on specific issues is as bad as his record of repeatedly allying himself over the years with people who make no attempt to hide their hatred of America. ”

Obama and McCain “Not since 1972 have we been presented with two such painfully inadequate candidates. When election day came that year, I could not bring myself to vote for either George McGovern or Richard Nixon. I stayed home.

“This year, none of us has that luxury. ”

More later.

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Financial Crisis 2008

It has hit the fan. (And the fred.)

And I’ve been reading up. I thought it would be helpful if I posted links to the articles I’ve been studyingas I read, so that someone else might benefit from finding access all in one place. If you have good links on the financial crisis to recommend, please post them in comments.

Economics writer, and Prodos’ and my friend, Gerard Jackson,wrote an article back in 2004 predicting a recession for the USA in 2008. For his reasons read:

US economy: storm clouds ahead

More recent articles by Gerard Jacksonon the actual financial mess we’re in now, center on monetary policy, rather than on Fannie Mae or Freddie Mac, unlike manyarticles by others I’ve read. (And don’t look to Jackson for dubious theories of capitalist greed underlying the crisis. Leave that to Kevin Rudd, our Australian Prime Minister.) Here are some of those monetary policy articles:

The US economy and the world wide monetary disorder

The US is definately in recession

Why the congressional bailout won’t solve the credit crisis

I have a lot more links to articles from other writers, including those addressing Fannie and Freddie – those scoundrels! But that will have to wait until later.


It is now later!

Here are some columns from one of my favorite commentators, Thomas Sowell:

Do Facts Matter?

Bankrupt Exploiters

Bankrupt Exploiters Part II

A Political Solution Part I

A Political Solution Part II

Bailout Politics

From Bailout Politics: “Neither do the voters deserve to be deceived on the eve of an election by the notion that this is a failure of free markets that should be replaced by political micro-managing.

“If Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac were free market institutions they could not have gotten away with their risky financial practices because no one would have bought their securities without the implicit assumption that the politicians would bail them out. ”


But WHO in the world would imagine this crisis to be caused by a “failure of free markets”? If you’ve been reading newspapers on the mortgage crisis over the past weeks, you’ll have seen plenty of that. And it’s not just in the USA. Here’s the Prime Minister of Australia, Labor’s Kevin Rudd, blaming capitalist greed:

The children of Gordon Gekko

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The FairTax

I just have a few pages to go before I finish reading “The FairTax Book: Saying Goodbye to the Income Tax and the IRS”. It’s by syndicated talk show host, Neil Boortz and Congressman John Linder.

As I read this bookI can feel a fresh breeze blowing through my hair and my muscles relaxing, as if a decades long unremitting strain has dissolved! I feel a revitalized inspiration to go out and make mounds of money and save and invest! Unnecessary, imposed complications fall away from plans for the future and a vibrant creative energy radiates from my soul!

I don’t run a business and I barely make enough money to pay taxes, plus I’ve never been in trouble with the IRS, so I guess just the IDEA of getting into the tangled world of big taxes has, possibly, been holding me back financially. Prodos, also. We are not people who enjoy spending time on paperwork. We have real avoidance problems there. The passion to be writing, performing, creating art or music or jewelry or something else delightful makes us happy to be alive and stokes our furnace, keeps us energized.

But all that tax junk sucks the life out of us. So far, however, it’s not the paying that does it since, as I said,wehave to pay a fairly small tax. It’s what we have to do to pay it that makes us want to run away.

Yet, compared with people who earn a more taxable bundle, and especially those who run a business, we’ve got it really easy. And I’m thinking that there’s more than a little wealth avoidance going on with us because of the tax worries and compliance duties that wealthÂwould bringwith it.

So, given how refreshed I feel as I read this book, imagine how you’ll feel ifyou create a big income and then struggle with the complications of the tax code in your business, have to consult with accountants and lawyers about the effect of that code regarding every potential business decisions you’re considering, spend a large sum just complying with the code, or have even run into a bureaucratic nightmare because you or your tax accountant or the IRS has made an error on your taxes.I imagine this book will have you bathing in a heavenly light of ecstasy!

I only hope that all the book’s information is accurate, that the tax would work as the writers claim because, as far as I’ve thought about it at least, it looks like a reasonable plan for bringing us as close as today’s realities could allow to a voluntary tax system. Oh, you’ll have to pay your taxes, alright, because Continue reading

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Sacre Bleu.

France has really had a hard time of late. It seems rather riot-prone, no?

This time the trouble is that the youth – many of whom attend elite universities – have a major case of ignorance when it comes to the principles of economics. Are their schools failing them? Are they failing their schools? Or is it just that they haven’t gotten to Economics 101 yet?

Here’s an easy-to-follow piece by Thomas Sowell. If you know any elite French students who are willing to read English, pass this on: The French Student Riots by Thomas Sowell

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