Thursday, September 15, 2016

September, 2016, Part 9, Political Class Insanity: Defeat In Afghanistan, Food Stamp Fraud In New York, Chicago Violence, and More

It is the beginning of another month which means it is again time to review the latest political class insanity from Washington and around the world. Political class insanity takes many forms including the wasting of taxpayer wealth, criminal fraud within government programs, inane and stupid political quotes and actions, the inability to create and implement effective and efficient government programs, stupid and ill performing economic policies and strategies, and other forms of insanity that continue to evolve and surprise and shock us.

The current monthly record for the number of days needed to cover one month's worth of insanity is ten. We almost equaled that record last month when we needed nine days to cover one month’s worth of political class insanity. There is a very good chance that the ten day record could fall this month since as we get closer and closer to the election, the volume of ineptness grows almost exponentially. 

But today and for all of the posts this month, let’s start off with a welcome piece of honest political dialog. It comes from a State Department spokesperson.Mark Toner, who is about to start the daily State Department press briefing. In a joking matter, he makes the following quote: "Welcome to the State Department. I think we have some interns in the back. Welcome. Good to see you in this exercise in transparency and democracy." 

He then burst out laughing at his own quote, indicating he also knew what a joke the Obama administration has been, especially Mr. Toner’s State Department, when it comes to cover ups, lack of transparency, denial of Freedom of Information Act requests, the prosecution of whistleblowers, etc. But at least it was a little refreshing to finally hear some actual honesty out of Washington as we see from the actual clip of the news conference:

Let’s continue on with this month’s political class insanity, Day 9 for September, 2016:

1) It seems every month, we find we need to talk about the runaway violence that is happening in Chicago. Every week there are dozens and dozens of shootings which always ends up in some number of deaths as a result of those shootings. Last week we covered the shooting results from a single weekend in August. As drug cartels and other criminals take over the city’s streets, civilians are often left defenseless since Chicago has some of the strictest gun control laws in the country. It seems politicians never understand that criminals are not going to heed gun control laws, that is why they are criminals.

Well, this month we are going to cover two weekends of Chicago gun violence and the deadly results. MRCTV, in an article written by Brittany Hughes, highlighted what happened in the city over the Labor Day weekend and the carnage was not good:
  • 65 people were shot and 20% or 13 died as a result of Chicago gun violence over the holiday weekend.
  • Victims included Crystal Myer who was nine months pregnant.
  • Allen Smith, a retired pastor, was killed outside of a nursing home.
  • According to the Chicago Tribune, this was the deadliest Chicago holiday weekend of the year, by far.
  • Police attributed much of the violence to gang activities.
  • The 90 murders in Chicago in August was the highest monthly number since 1996.
Out of control gun and other violence despite having the toughest gun control laws in the country. And the political class both in the city, state , and Washington have no idea, or no desire or will, to do anything about it. If one of the basic, primary functions of government is to protect its citizens, than that function is failing very badly in Chicago with no help or end insight.

2) The United States has been fighting a war in Afghanistan since 2001, immediately after the 9-11 attacks. Thousands and thousands of American troops have died or been wounded and the American taxpayer has easily spent hundreds of billions of dollars, often wastefully, in the country. In fact, more money has been spent and more lives lost and ruined by wounds since Obama took over than during the Bush regime and despite the fact that Obama promised to have us out of the country by 2014.

One would have hoped that for this pain, dying, and suffering, human and financial, that we would have something to show for our efforts. But again, hope is never the right word to use when describing any endeavor run by the American political class.

Because according to Jack Davis, writing for the Western Journalism website on August 24, 2016, The American University Of Afghanistan, located in the capital city of Kabul in Afghanistan, recently came under heavy attack by Taliban militants last week. Early reports from CNN reported that at least a security guard had been killed and 21 students wounded. The attack started with a car bomb explosion and then a breach of the security walls of the university.

After fifteen years of taxpayer spending and military efforts have left thousands of our soldiers dead and wounded, our major enemy in the country, the Taliban, can still waltz into the center of the capital of the country and rain havoc and violence down on students? Seems like an insane waste of military, financial, and human resources, courtesy of the American political class.

3) Last week we discussed the arrests of over a dozen individuals in the Baltimore area that had defrauded the Federal government and the American taxpayer via the Federal food stamp/food assistance program. Fourteen people were arrested and accused of stealing at least $16 million from the food assistance program. $16 million from one gang in one city, which gives you an idea of how bad this problem likely is nationwide.

Recently, another food stamp scam was uncovered in northern New York. An illegal immigrant was arrested for using his owned grocery store to change food assistance credits into cash and then using the cash to restock his store. The charges were serious enough for a $2 million bail to be assigned to him so this is not considered by the judge to be some kind of petty theft.

But what is interesting is how his family reacted to his arrest and bail, basically saying that America should go f*&% off and giving local news people the finger after the bail hearing. Yes, illegal immigrant breaks the law, steals from the American taxpayer and America should go f*&% itself. It is an insane world we live in, as witnessed by the following videotape report on the crime:

4) Wages and household incomes for the American middle class and poor have basically been flat and stagnant for the entire run of the Obama administration. But one entity within the country has seen its income grow steadily in the face of the rest of us getting by with less. And that entity is the Federal government:
  • The Congressional Budget office (CBO) recently reported that the Federal government took in a record high haul in tax receipts through July, 2016, a whopping $2.679 TRILLION.
  • And yet despite stealing a record number of dollars from Americans in 2016, the Federal government will likely run a budget deficit of $600 billion, an increase of $56 billion from the last CBO estimate for 2016 and increase of $161 billion from the 2015 full year budget deficit.
  • Even more distressing, despite receiving a record amount of tax receipts, the New York Analysis of Policy and Government organizations points out, based on the analysis it has done, that the Federal government is still underfunding important functions like national security, infrastructure improvement, hardening the national electrical grill, and other problem areas.
  • And the shortfalls in these areas are in addition to the impending financial collapse of Social Security, Medicare, and Medicaid.
Like an addict, no matter how much the political class takes in from taxes on hardworking Americans, the more they need without getting anything constructive done. As we recommended in our book, “Love My Country, Loathe My Government,” we need to make government smaller and smaller, stripping it down to basic government functions in order to give the government a chance of doing something, anything, effective and efficient. Because right now, government and the politicians and bureaucrats that operate it are trying to do everything and getting nothing done efficiently and effectively.

More insanity tomorrow, when we will tie the monthly record for most posts under the theme. “Political Class Insanity.”

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