Friday, July 1, 2016

July, 2016, Part 2, Political Class Insanity: A Four Year Old On the No-Fly LIst, a TRILLION Dollar Plane, A Mountain of Debt, and More

It is the beginning of another month which means it is time again to review the latest political class insanity from the American political class. Each month it takes us multiple posts to cover the wasteful spending, incompetent government organizations and employees, government programs that usually make a problem worse than resolving it, inane and idiotic politician comments, etc. In fact, last month we set a record, needing ten full posts to cover it all.

To review past posts on this insanity and idiocy, just click on the first few posts in each month listed to the right of this page. After reviewing just a handful of these insanity posts we think you will agree that we are currently being served by the worst set of American politicians ever to hold office in our entire history.

It looks like our politicians have been especially insane over the past month or so let’s get started with the latest insanity from today’s American politicians:

1) Reason magazine is a great magazine if you treasure freedom. The first several pieces of insanity today come from recent issues of Reason starting with a gun control related piece. A lot of Democrats, liberals and Obama are all hot to trot again for more gun control after the Orlando night club terrorist shooting. One of their inane ideas is to make it illegal/impossible for someone on the Federal government’s “no-fly” list to legally buy a weapon.

Now, a lot of people are against this rule for a number of very rational reasons. First, there has never been an incident where someone on the no-fly list purchased a weapon legally and went on a rampage. Thus, this is a solution looking for a problem. Second, just because someone is on the no-fly list in the future, who wants to go on a terrorist rampage, does not mean he could not purchase a weapon illegally. Criminals and drug cartels are more than happy to sell weapons and make a profit doing so regardless of what the no-fly regulations are.

But the best reason not to adopt this proposal is the serious flaws in the no-fly list itself. It is almost impossible to get off the list once you are placed on it and it is unclear what the procedures and processes are for putting someone on the list. In theory, once this idea was law, Obama could put everyone on the list and accomplish his goal of shredding the Second Amendment. 

Don’t believe me that this list is a farce? Consider the plight of a four year American boy from Alameda, California. For the court records he is referred to as “Baby Doe.” He is one of many Americans who have gone to court to get their names off of the no-fly list. Baby Doe is a prime example because he is, get this, four years old, and he has been on the no-fly list since he was seven months old. Thus, for over three years his family has been trying to get him off the list since, obviously, he is not a terrorist but have not been successful. 

Thus, the Federal government interviewed and tracked the Orlando night club terror shooter at least twice before he shot up the night club and came up with nothing and let him go on with his life but they place a four year old toddler on the terrorist no-fly list. We are doomed.

2) Veronique de Rugy, writing for Reason in their August, 2016 issue, pointed out one of the worst examples of Federal government spending EVER: 

  • Lockheed Martin started the development of a nuclear capable jet fighter, the F-35, in 2001, 15 years ago.
  • Today, in 2016, the jet is still not fully operational despite already going over its developmental budget by 100%.
  • Its development is likely to cost over $1.5 TRILLION, that’s trillion with a “T” in front of it.
  • However, the F-35 has turned out to be slower than an F-14 from the 1970s, has less than half the range of a 40 year old A-6 jet, its sustained turn performance is comparable to a 1960s F-4 jet, and its performance was embarrassed when it went head to head with a decades old F-16 in a mock dog fight.
  • Thus, on average, every American household spent $8,600, about $570 a year for 15 years, of its own wealth to finance this single failed Federal government operation.
Well over a TRILLION dollars and really nothing to show for it. Want to bet that no one anywhere in the Federal government got fired, demoted, or reprimanded for such waste? This is what happens when you get to spend, and waste, over people’s money, there is no accountability.

3) Besides the F-35 debacle, Ms. de Rugy’s article also talked about how out of control our annual Defense Department spending is. According to her, we currently spend about $585 billion a year just on the Defense Department. This is more than the military budgets of China, Russia, Saudi Arabia, France, Britain, and India ...COMBINED. On average, this comes out to over $5,000 per U.S. household per year.

I will let you decide whether or not you are getting over $5,000 a year’s worth of value for from the Defense Department. Given how we have previously reported on how our armed forces personnel are cannibalizing existing weapons and planes and helicopters just to keep their machinery operating, I would certainly say no, we are not each getting $5,000 worth of value. Maybe it is time save money and stop stationing hundreds of thousands of U.S. troops around the world, many of whom are fighting with inferior equipment despite an annual budget of $585,000,000,000.00.

4) The same issue of Reason magazine pointed out how insanely out of control government spending has been over the years, so much so that our Federal government national debt is over $19.2 TRILLION. Some sad facts about this overwhelming pile of debt:

  • On average, every American is on the hook for $59,400 worth of Federal government debt.
  • You would have to confiscate and liquidate Bill Gates entire fortune and then multiply that amount by 240 times to pay off the $19.2 TRILLION, a reality that is obviously impossible.
  • If the current debt was frozen at $19.2 TRILLION and then paid down by a dollar per second, it would take over 600,000 years to pay it off.
  • The Federal debt is about equal to about 105% of the nation’s annual GDP, a troubling rise just in the past seven years ago since when Obama came into office the debt was only about 60% of the annual GDP.
The numbers are insanely mind boggling. What is also mind boggling, we as a society and nation have very little to show for this out of control spending. Our nation’s infrastructure is breaking down, our public schools do not educate, our military does not have enough spare parts to function at peak efficiency, our borders are not secure, etc. A lot of debt and not a lot to show for it.

5) The following instances of government out of control are from around the world but they aptly illustrate how politicians everywhere, including this country, promise roses but usually end up only delivering expensive thorns. Reason took a look back at previous Olympic games countries and cities to see what happens to these government/taxpayer funded and politician endorsed spectacles after the athletes leave town. The results are not good:

  • For the Olympics in Athens, Greece went 60% over budget, it is considered by many as the precursor to the near collapse of the Greek financial markets and economy, Greece lost 70,000 jobs in the three months after the Olympics ended, and 21 of the 22 Olympic venue sites are either abandoned, in a state of disrepair, or underused.
  • The Olympics in Sarajevo,Yugoslavia went over budget by 173% and the entire Olympic infrastructure was wrecked during the Bosnian War with the ski venues still littered with landmines, the podium used to award medals became useful for executing enemy combatants, and all of their Olympic venues are also in disrepair.
  • The Olympics in Montreal were heralded by the city mayor at the time with the quote: “The Olympics can no more lose money than a man can have a baby.” The mayor did not realize at the time, or maybe he did, that the budget for those Olympics in 1976 would come in almost ten times higher than promised, $2.3 billion vs. $250 million, and that the debt and costs incurred to put on those Olympics in 1976 were not paid off for thirty years in 2006.
Yes, politicians are the same everywhere, either economic dunces who do not understand the realities of the world when it comes to budget or con men that lowball government expenditures fully knowing that they are bogus from the start. In either case, the taxpayer always gets stuck paying more than promised and get less than promised.

That will do it for today’s insanity: political Olympic promises that cost much more than promised, out of control debt, a TRILLION dollar jet, and a four year American toddler on the no-fly list. More original insanity tomorrow.

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