RTCS

Views on the News

Views on the News*

February 2, 2019

 

Historically, societies tend to stratify themselves along economic or pre-ordained class lines.  The United States has long prided itself on the belief that class distinctions were no longer a part of a unique American culture.  However, the current social structure has evolved into a near impregnable three-tier categorization in which the ruling class, that sits astride the social order, has revealed, thanks to the election of Donald Trump, open and unabashed disdain for the two lower classes and the unleashing of a radicalized army of malcontents.  The citizens who provide the primary labor and resources that drive the economy constitute the second tier.  The third is comprised of those who have been betrayed by a self-serving education system and are conditioned to be totally dependent upon a government dominated by the ruling class.  Unlike any other period in the nation’s history, one stratum of society, the American elites by their control of education, entertainment, the media and politics, have totally dominated and overwhelmingly and negatively influenced the culture and national character.  This American aristocracy is now made up of those who have no recall or firsthand experience of the years of adversity prior to 1940.   Their entire point of reference is never-ending affluence and the pursuit of pleasure within an overall framework of world peace.  This assemblage is dominated by a few committed ideologues and so-called intellectuals who are dedicated to permanently altering the economy and American culture.  They have been very successful in attracting many others by appealing to their vanity and avarice.  Thus entrance into this class is not entirely a factor of birth or wealth but rather that of developing a mindset of superiority similar to the evolution of cliques within a high school setting.  This attitude is further reinforced and promoted in the incubator that is the college campus, wherein this mindset is further enhanced by the academic elites waxing eloquent about the failings of the United States and the ideal of a classless society, led by the pre-eminent elite class.  Once having left the university environment bubble, the majority of these same recruits, still influenced by their university experience and desirous of maintaining a standing within the circle, look to the anointed leaders in the mainstream media, the entertainment industry and politics to set the agenda and dialog.  Further, by being an accepted member of this class it is far easier to be ushered by the gate-keepers onto the path of making a substantial living be it in government, academia, Wall Street, the media or a myriad of non-profit advocacy groups.  To achieve and retain these benefits, it becomes paramount to retain membership within the congregation and do their bidding rather than question what the pronouncements and policies of their titular leaders would do to the culture and well-being of the country at large.  While proclaiming to be independent thinkers, no faction in American society is more acquiescent to groupthink and conformity.  The reality is the majority of those in the ruling class are mind-numbed eternal adolescents hell-bent on pushing the boundaries of ethical and moral behavior and viewing all political and policy issues as a war between their side and their mortal enemies (those who oppose the transformation of the nation into a socialist oligarchy, the concomitant erosion of liberty as well as unrestrained personal behavior).  There are a few comparatively independent thinkers within the group that do question the over-reaching of a powerful government, their opposition is muted and limited to a more gradualist approach as their concession to remain within the fold.  An all-powerful central government is vital to maintaining the elite’s power, income base and pre-eminent class status and must be protected at all cost.  In order to retain their supremacy, the tactics of outright lies, innuendos, and character assassinations, as well as exploitation of national tragedies to impugn their adversaries, have been utilized by those in the mainstream media, the political establishment and the entertainment industry.  The eight years of the Obama administration rudely awakened a sleeping populace.  Many of whom, also benefiting from the overwhelming economic growth and absence of national adversity over the past half-century, had consciously chosen to ignore what was happening to the culture and future well-being of the country.  The election of Donald Trump was in essence the revenge of the lower classes for not only the overbearing and condescending attitude of the elites but their ongoing success in transforming American society and culture.  Faced with the exposure of their agenda and the real prospect of losing their status and influence, the disdain toward the lower classes, which had always bubbled beneath the surface, burst forth in a volcanic eruption of uncontrolled vitriol, anger and absurdity.  The denizens of the ruling class unleashed their out-of-control foot soldiers on the citizenry, employing the tactics and weapons previously aimed at their political enemies. Today vast swaths of the American populace, whether they voted for Trump or not, are indiscriminately accused of being racists, misogynists, white supremacists, ignoramuses, religious zealots, xenophobes and malcontents.  Intimidation and threats of violence are no longer condemned so long as it is directed at those identified as a threat to the hegemony of the elites.  Various social media platforms are being hijacked and weaponized by the mindless and radicalized brain-dead army of elite wannabes, the ruling class chooses not to restrain, in order to terrorize and permanently cower those in the second tier of society, the citizens who provide the primary labor and resources for the economic engine of the country.  There is at present an undeclared and non-violent civil war being waged in this country.  The underlying factor of any civil war is an elite ruling class desperate to maintain power at odds with a majority of a population seeking change.   Also prevalent in most civil upheavals is the unleashing, by those determined to retain power, of the radicalized and ultimately uncontrollable dogs of war who more often than not devour their sponsors.  While the ruling class publicly obsesses over Donald Trump and denigrates the vast majority of the population, they have planted the seeds, by their actions, for a takeover of the country by a radical element that will turn on them as they are presently doing within the Democrat Party.  The American people must understand that the current ruling class will not willingly exit the stage or take on their mercenary army.  Donald Trump, while perhaps accomplishing a significant degree of change, cannot induce their demise.   This threat can only be marginalized through the determined utilization of political process which will encompass a number of political cycles and the long-term willingness to not be intimidated or cowed into submission, because the future of the nation as founded is at stake.    

(“The Ruling Class and an Undeclared Civil War” by Steve McCann dated January 31, 2019 published by American Thinker at https://www.americanthinker.com/articles/2019/01/the_ruling_class_and_an_undeclared_civil_war.html )

It may be hard for some to believe, but the Democrats today are interchangeable with the left, because there are no longer any moderate Democrats.  To disagree with the left has become heresy punishable by excommunication and often preceded by what has become their specialty, hatred accompanied by personal, political, and career destruction.  When Barack Obama became president with full control of both houses of Congress, the left was ecstatic.  Some were proud of their country for the first time, blissfully unaware that most Americans had always been proud of America.  It was clear to Democrats that citizens had finally agreed to give them the opportunity and power to realize their dream of a “fair” America of equal outcome with an unchecked government elite making all decisions for everybody in a socialist utopia where everyone can have everything they want, and no decisions or policies could ever be wrong and thus ever reviewable.  When voters began to realize that Obama wasn’t as moderate as he pretended to be to get elected, they began the eight-year trek away from the Democrat utopia.  First, Democrats lost the House, then the Senate, and 2016, they lost the presidency.  The left, which had become convinced they would never again be relegated to the minority, were not only surprised, they were outraged.  It can be said that Trump’s election was the point where the Democrats abandoned the deplorable bastards who stole Hillary Clinton’s presidency, but it had been coming for a long time.  When Barack Obama went on his worldwide apology tour, he wasn’t apologizing for America, he was apologizing for Americans.  To himself, He was America; and Americans were merely the evil people who refused to accept this higher truth.  It wasn’t America that cost him the House and the Senate, it was Americans who rejected the truth that his radical transformation of the United States of America was god’s plan.  Trump wasn’t the beginning, he was the last straw.  That’s what sanctuary cities, abolish ICE, open borders, DACA, amnesty, and a path to citizenship are all about.  These policies are nothing more than a means by which the left can switch out Americans for people who aren’t so depraved as to think they have a right to vote against them.  The left doesn’t stifle, bury, and ridicule conservative opinion in the media, Google searches, college campuses, and the public square because they won’t tolerate disagreement, they do it because they know that only they are on the side of all that is right and just and hence, any dissent is evil.  All dissenters are malevolent.  This is why it’s so easy for them to go to extremes to express their hatred for a Kavanaugh or a Covington kid, or lie and cheat to destroy a candidate Trump, or commit crimes to usurp his presidency, or investigate anyone ever involved with the man; these people are villainous, and hatred and extremism in the battle with evil is no vice.  This is also why everything Trump does is labeled racist.  He won’t agree with them and do as he is told; he also refuses to be quiet and accept a beating as all deplorables should.  Instead, he tries to implement policies that he believes are good for all us loathsome Americans.  This makes everything he does malicious and obviates the need for them to look at what he says or supports on an individual basis, we are wicked, and he is wicked and therefore, everything he espouses or tries to accomplish is wicked as well.  Democrats don’t want to destroy America, they want to destroy us, and in particular, Donald Trump.  Right now, they are in the process of replacing execrable Americans with people who they believe will be better for the country, for America.  Therefore, they can’t ever agree on funding for a wall -- a wall would only make that harder.  We should all beware of what they will do with us when replacement is no longer an option, since we already know what they are capable of -- they show us every day.  

(“The Left Doesn’t Hate the US; It Hates Usby William L. Gensert dated January 26, 2019 published by American Thinker at https://www.americanthinker.com/articles/2019/01/the_left_doesnt_hate_the_us_they_hate_us.html )

Democrats have lived in the anti-Trump #Resistance bubble for so long that they believe they’ve got golden electoral odds in 2020.  This has led a crowd of them, at various national, state and even local levels, to think they can successfully take on the president.  They also believe that if President Trump falls to impeachment or electoral defeat, the pendulum will swing far in the opposite direction, toward a fierce leftist progressivism. Each one of them wants desperately to ride that expected backlash and lead the new statist revolt.  Their gamble could pay off: the economy could falter, the special counsel and congressional investigations could result in Trump’s removal from office, or an external event could throw everything into turmoil.  Even if none of these materializes, they still think the deplorable Trump will be easy pickings, hence the stampede.  The one thing they’re overlooking, however, is Donald Trump.  With the exception of Hillary Clinton, none of them knows what it is to run against him.  Love him or loathe him, he is the best instinctual politician in modern U.S. history.  He crushed the formidable Clinton machine, the even more formidable Obama machine, the mainstream media, the Deep State and the permanent federal bureaucracy as well as the international “community,” all of which were deeply opposed to him.  His unorthodox style has come under heavy criticism, but he has demonstrated an organic command of mass communications, particularly television and Twitter.  During the 2016 campaign, he was the master of the fatal insult: With one Trumpian backhand, his opponents were flat on their backs, their candidacies over.  The more they tried to match him, the more they fell behind.  The same held true for his press coverage: The more the media savaged him, the more his poll numbers climbed.  His rallies drew tens of thousands of supporters, excited by the arrival, at long last, of a true fighter, for them.  No professional politician, on either side, can replicate what comes naturally to Trump.  Today’s Democrat Party is rooted in the far-left, of centralized control, re-distributionism and social justice.  It’s a party at war with the U.S. Constitution (specifically the First and Second Amendments), free-market capitalism, the rule of law, enforced borders, American sovereignty and individual liberty.  It is a revolutionary party, which is why there is the open embrace of socialism by new and old Democrats alike.  The progressive base is where the energy and activism reside, hence the headlong rush by the potential Democrat candidates to the far left on as many issues as possible.  The Democrats’ ideological lurch will be problematic in a general election.  They’ll also face an additional complication.  President Trump will have an astonishing record of success on which to run, from a stronger economy to a rebuilding military and more robust international U.S. position.  He’s accomplished all of this while under the cloud of a never-ending special counsel investigation and relentless assault by the media and assorted other domestic opponents.  Imagine what he’d be able to accomplish without the brutally unfair, dishonest and politically motivated attacks.  As the large field of Democrats basks in their anti-Trump virtue-signaling, they tell themselves that he will be a weak and vulnerable incumbent.  They clearly haven’t learned the lesson of 2016: Never underestimate Donald Trump.  It is possible that the backlash wave against Trump is so intense that it overwhelms the political flow he has masterfully directed since June 2015.  If that happens, no amount of Trumpian political brilliance will be able to stop it.  If it doesn’t develop, every Democrat who believes they can unseat him will need all the luck they can get, unless their ideological extremism, political blindness and hubris don’t do them in first.  

(“When hopeful contenders misjudge the president” by Monica Crowley dated January 30, 2019 published by The Washington Times at https://www.washingtontimes.com/news/2019/jan/30/how-the-democratic-candidates-are-getting-trump-wr/ )

 

All people may be equal, but all cultures are not.  The rise of Western civilization has led to the greatest progress in human history: giving the world democracy, freedom, affluence, equality before the law, the separation of church and state, and the notion of a sovereign state to protect it all.  No other civilization on the globe can make that claim.  Western civilization is the most prominent civilization because it is better than the others.  This point is lost on many of those among us.  Western civilization is more than a geographical area; it is more about the idea of inalienable rights and the intrinsic value of the individual.  From about 1600 until about 1970, Western civilization was exported from Europe to the Americas and other parts of the world.  The advances in science, manufacturing, and free enterprise were markedly different from those in Asia or Africa.  Closing the gap on these differences in recent years is a result of non-developed countries adopting Western practices.  Central to our civilization is the nation-state, which consists of people who inhabit a specified boundary, who rule their own government, and who hold a national identity.  Joined with the incentives and liberties of free enterprise, this paradigm has remarkably reduced poverty around the globe to levels never before thought possible.  Only the nation-state and its laws can protect citizens' liberty.  In America, this includes all races, religions, education levels, income levels, and political views.  America was founded on the idea is liberty.  The American Founding created divided representative government that avoids the dangers of autocratic or mob rule.  It is based on Judeo-Christian morality derived from respect for the individual.  The Constitution provides for limited government based on natural law and respect for property rights.  Today, we are confronted with people who seek the downfall of the nation-state. They seek removal of the borders that protect it.  Without borders, the nation falls into anarchy driven by people who would ruin the structure that has brought Western civilization to its current level of prosperity.  Once defenders of free speech, liberals now work to suppress opposing views in education, in entertainment, on the nightly news, in social media, and in academia.  They frequently do so by threats and intimidation.  The right to bear arms is also under ceaseless pressure from the left who know that an unarmed, submissive public is necessary for top-down state rule.  They believe that global government is the solution for what they view as a socially unjust America.  The leftist self-loathing Faustian bargain with radical Islam to defeat conservatism will not end well.  Together, these two groups would extinguish the essence of Western life.  Leftists will do to Western civilization what it has done to the universities, race relations, the arts, religion, and the moral fabric of America; they will destroy it.  Europe is floundering with low birth rates and a rising tide of socialism and sharia.  It may already be lost to these trends, and we should not follow the Europeans down this hole.  There is no substitute for the nation-state today, or for a long time into the future.  Progressives are pursuing the politics of disruption and division with the intent of overturning society.  Their politics are modeled on the tactics of Lenin, not on constitutional foundation of our country.  Their goal is to overturn the concept of America and Western Civilization with a global socialist state.  Some vague new world order would never be respectful of our sovereignty or responsive to our local needs.  It would bring with it socialism and economic breakdown, with its empty shelves, its lack of services, and the unintended devastation that happens when these leftists gain control of our lives.  It would have the same consequences for the West as it did in Soviet-dominated Eastern Europe.  A global bureaucrat in Brussels or Davos cannot be entrusted with permanent power and expected to use it for the common good.  It is not in the interest of women, blacks, Hispanics, or anyone else to embrace the privileged who are isolated from those they govern.  It's no exaggeration to say the left is engaged in an ideological war against traditional America.  As a result, a new cold civil war has settled in, where compromise seems impossible.  Though many middle-class people may not realize it yet, we are in a titanic struggle to maintain our way of life.  Health care, education, retirement, and other areas of American life are being socialized, and the opportunity and freedom we have known may soon be lost.  We live in an age where people like the idea of having rights as long as they do not have to pay the price. When it is time to defend those rights, they frequently run away.  Many conservatives wish to return to the days of civility but more and more find themselves surrounded by those who lack any notion of restraint.  When that's the case, we must toughen up and stand up to this nonsense; we must ignore their venom and reassert who we are as a civilization, and be proud of it.  

(“In Defense of Western Civilization” by Jeff Lukens dated January 26, 2019 published by American Thinker at https://www.americanthinker.com/articles/2019/01/in_defense_of_western_civilization.html )

 

Even though the president has agreed to a three week break in America’s longest running partial shutdown, shutdowns provide some unique opportunities.  Should some “unessential services” be permanently shut down or downsized? If something is non-essential, why is the government paying for it at all.  There are exceptional government employees and leaders who are very capable and do their jobs effectively.  What if they are good at doing a job that is not necessary for government to do.  We have a business man as a president.  He is fighting the swamp and “business as usual” in Washington.  Business as usual” is what has allowed the Washington swamp to grow and keep growing.  Automatic budget increases are expected and built into budgets.  You have to say “no” to that which is unnecessary to have the resources and the time to do what is absolutely essential.  This shutdown provides an opportunity to truly pursue a significant cut in government spending that hasn’t happened since government growth started exploding after World War II.  Many successful companies use zero-based budgeting.  Every year, each department has to justify its existence by defending their next year’s budget, and increases aren’t expected.  Decreases are common in non-essential areas.  Departments are closed and good employees are moved to where they are needed.  Zero-based budgeting is desperately needed in Washington.  After all, many government services are provided because they have always been done that way.  That is government on auto-pilot.  Without leadership and tough priority decisions, government just keeps growing.  Government departments could keep decreasing the service provided until public complaints reach a pre-established level.  Once a service is missed, that becomes the minimum level of service.  Then establish a level of service that avoids reaching that minimum.  Businesses work at investing money to make money, not to create perpetual deficits.  Government seems to work at spending money because citizens can vote in politicians who will give them what they want by taking other citizens’ money to pay for it.  Before another government shutdown is needed, it’s time for our politicians to negotiate a compromise illegal immigration plan that includes a barrier where our border guards suggest, a temporary status for DACA dreamers, and a start to crafting a comprehensive immigration plan enough in both parties can support.  While we are making the tough decisions, let’s take a stand for funding what is essential, cutting nonessential departments and services, moving good employees to where they can make the most difference, and let go those who should have been gone years ago.  

(“What is Essential?” by Terry Paulson dated January 28, 2019 published by Town Hall at https://townhall.com/columnists/terrypaulson/2019/01/28/what-is-essential-n2540228 )

 

While our fellow Americans are snoozing, or at least not as active or proactive as their counterparts, Muslims never deviate and never stop pursuing their goal of world domination.  They place their primary focus on non-Islamic lands, in this case, Europe and the United States.  Islam condones any and all means to achieve its goal.  The ultimate objective of Islam is the rule of the entire world under the Islamic Ummah.  Never mind that these soldiers of Allah disagree with one another regarding the Ummah itself and who is to reign over it, because that's a "family dispute" that they will resolve by their usual favorite method: brute force.  Like any organization and sub-organization, conflict exists within Islam.  Muslims do disagree with one another on several issues.  Each Islamic sect believes that it has the Prophet and Allah on its side and will prevail over the other.  There are countless instances that substantiate Muslims' "ends justifies the means" guiding principle.  This policy dates to Muhammad himself.  Muhammad repeatedly made peace covenants with his adversaries, only to violate them as soon as he was in an advantageous position.  Betrayal, deception, and outright lies are fully condoned in furthering the work of Islam.  In the present-day world, the work of Islam is defined by an entrenched and influential clergy who issue fatwas, rulings, that become directives and laws to the faithful.  As an example, Ayatollah Khomeini, the founder of the Iranian Islamic state, made extensive use of the fatwa.  Widely known in the west is Khomeini's fatwa condemning Salman Rushdie to death for his book The Satanic Verses.  A less known fatwa of Khomeini during the last Iran-Iraq War led to the slaughter of thousands of Iranian children.  Children, nearly all under 15 years of age, were given plastic "keys to paradise" as they were commanded to rush forward to clear minefields for the tanks to follow.  The Islamic murderers, in obedience to the fatwa of a bloodthirsty man of Allah, had no problem in deceiving the clueless lads with made-in-China plastic keys to paradise.  Islam is a rigid Stone-Age controlling system with a stranglehold over many of nearly one and a half billion people under its command.  A dangerous feature of the fascistic personality is the relative lack of independent thought, which makes believers highly amenable to manipulation.  The ideology of Islam is guilty of conditioning masses of people as easily manipulated instruments in the hands of influential figures.  One of the greatest subtle, yet important differences between the Muslim's thinking and that of the people in the West is the extent to which Muslims are fatalistic.  There is hardly a statement that a Muslim makes without being conditional on the will of Allah.  To the Muslim, Allah is on the job with his invisible mighty hand, literally does running everything.  If something happens, it is Allah's will; if it doesn't, it is Allah's will.  The rank-and-file Muslim has little will of his own, which absolves him of any and all responsibility. This mentality is in stark contrast with the "take charge" and "can do" mental characteristics of Americans and others.  In the Qur'an, itself, Allah gives these fellows their mandate: cleanse the Earth of all kefir (infidels), and help usher in the Golden Rule of Islam over a corrupt world.  This high-purpose strategic goal of Islamization legitimizes any and all tactics.  Qur'an 8:39: "Fight them until all opposition ends and all submit to Allah."  Allah leaves a bit of wiggle room for the unbelievers: those who refuse to convert or whose life is spared may live under the rule of Islam by paying poll taxes (jizya)."  While many Muslims work around the clock for their cause, such as infiltrating our schools, our law enforcement agencies, our health care system, and running for office with the help of our Democrats and some GOP officials, who provide them with necessary tools.  Regrettably, only a small number of Americans understand the real threat.  There is no doubt that Islam's goal is to religiously dominate the world, which involves complete control over all phases of society through the brutal means of sharia, with no distinction between mosque and state, between religion and liberties.  As Muslim organizations march through with their own crusade here in the United States, under our nose, I have not seen anyone stopping them.  

(“Islam’s Ambitious Mission” by Amil Imani dated January 30, 2019 published by American Thinker at https://www.americanthinker.com/articles/2019/01/islams_ambitious_mission.html )

For decades, the Democrat Party has shown by both words and deeds that they despise the U.S. Constitution while they bend over backward to embrace Islamists, illegal aliens, and anyone who hates America.  The left is interested only in power and nothing else, even if it means to sacrifice our national security and advocate open borders.  The liaison between American Muslims and the Democrat Party is frequently described as a marriage of convenience, where Muslims will ally with leftist politicians, who will gladly cede some of their power to this group of enforcers so conservative politicians and Christians who advocate self-defense and sane social policies are kept out of office.  While America is in hibernation, Muslim organizations with the help of Democrats have been busy, working "stealthily" to change America in what is called "soft jihad."  Soft jihad is practiced where Muslims are not strong enough to unsheathe the sword of jihad, where the true nature of Islam is exposed and when the public would likely stamp them out.  A critical tool of soft jihad involves penetration of the American educational system, such as Da'wa, the religious duty of each Muslim to convert non-Muslims and strengthen the Islamic Ummah.  America is on a precarious path to lose its freedom and American values we have cherished for over 200 years.  Many Americans are confused as to why Democrats back Islamic ideology, honor their holidays and customs, and promote Islam as "the religion of peace," knowing that Islam is not a religion of peace.  The answer is quite simple: the Democrat Party stands with anyone who dislikes America and the Republican Party.  History has proven that once Muslims reach close to 10% in population, they institute sharia law and adopt their own legal system, a government within a government.  Some self-appointed prima donnas cover themselves with the shield of academic freedom.  Academic freedom is like liberty, it can be abused often and abused greatly.  That is the price of freedom.  Yet these abusers of freedom, the far left, will be among the first to be buried under the rubble of a free society's collapse they work so doggedly to bring about.  Muslims love our liberal politicians and will happily ally with them, who then will gladly cede some of their power to this group of enforcers.  It is indeed urgent that we confront Islamic ideology and its expansionism, close all their chapters across America, and declare the Muslim Brotherhood and its affiliates a terrorist organization.  All of us must pressure our government, at all levels, to abandon the practice of "political correctness" and protect and safeguard it against a truly deadly assault that is Islamic ideology.  Sugarcoating Islam is universally practiced not only by leftist politicians and liberal media, but also by the self-described doctors of Islamic religion.  They keep ranting about the importance of accepting things on faith, denigrate reason, dangle carrots and sticks, and demand unconditional surrender in return for guaranteed bliss and salvation.  Use jihad of the sword when it can and use soft jihad until the sword can be unsheathed to finish the job.  Don't forget: the ends justify any and all means in Islam.  Regrettably, America's fortress is no longer safe.  We also need to keep in mind that the breach of "Fortress America" from the air on 9/11 is only the first installment of many more forthcoming heinous assaults, unless we abandon our complacency, stop relying on the invincibility of law enforcement agencies, and willingly make the sacrifices that will protect our way of life.  For as long as the leftist officials bend over backwards to protect Islam as an endangered species, Islam will thrive and flourish; and its long past time for our elected officials to wake up and stop their political correctness.  

(“The Democrats’ stealth jihad” by Amil Imani dated January 27, 2019 published by American Thinker at https://www.americanthinker.com/blog/2019/01/the_democrats_stealth_jihad.html )

 

The American policy debate is undergoing an important change.  Some influential Democrats no longer view welfare benefits as “work supports as they have done for the past generation, but instead, they view welfare benefits as ends in themselves, regardless of whether recipients work consistently or even work at all to receive them.  Meanwhile, the list of benefits that prominent Democrats think that government should provide, from payouts resembling “universal basic income” to “carbon dividends to free college tuition and free health care, is growing rapidly.  This twin shift reflects a rejection of the longstanding Democratic position on welfare reform and the biggest proposed expansion of the welfare state since at least the Great Society.  With the likely 2020 Democratic presidential candidates pushing many of the plans, they will be debated and possibly enacted in the years ahead.  The most dramatic departure from work support logic involves universal basic income, which is designed to “provide a sufficiently generous cash benefit to live on without other earnings.”  Inspired by fears of a dystopian future in which low income jobs are replaced by technology, the thinking among Democrats seems to be that if there is no work, there is no point in expecting people to work for benefits.  While some have cast universal basic income as replacing current welfare benefits, the new payments under discussion would be on top of Medicaid, housing, tax credits, food stamps, and other benefits for people with low earnings, piling onto the benefits that adults stand to lose if they work and earn more.  No federal legislation has proposed a full universal basic income yet, but variations of “handing people cash” have emerged from the possible Democrat presidential candidates.  This federal program would involve huge wealth transfers and are hardly targeted to restoring and strengthening the middle class.  As with the proposals to “hand people cash,” benefits would flow to those who cannot support themselves, but also to those who could and prefer collecting benefits over working or working more to earn their own way.  Still to come are new “carbon dividends” that would be needed to offset potential regressive effects of the “Green New Dealthat would raise energy prices. As the poor are forced to spend relatively more of their income on energy, some carbon tax proponents are proposing new spending programs to help the poor from sinking deeper into poverty.  Workers of the world, hold onto your wallets!  These sorts of massive benefit increases stand in contrast with the past two decades, when many liberals touted food stamp and Medicaid expansions as “work supports needed to increase work and earnings to help families escape poverty.  That “work supports” rhetoric seems long gone among Democrats, as most of the left has dug in its heels against extending work requirements to benefits like food stamps and Medicaid, deriding them as making recipients “sing for their supper.”  In 1996, following the lead of President Clinton, more than half of Democrats in Congress rejected that view and joined nearly all Republicans in supporting the “work first” welfare reform law.  Work requirements resulted in less poverty and welfare dependence precisely because it successfully promoted more work and earnings by low income parents.  

(“Endless welfare benefits are not the answer to ending income inequality” by Matthew Weidinger dated January 29, 2019 published by The Hill at https://thehill.com/opinion/finance/427475-endless-welfare-benefits-are-not-the-answer-to-ending-income-inequality )

 

There is so much published each week that unless you search for it, you will miss important breaking news.  I try to package the best of this information into my “Views on the News” each Saturday morning.  Updates have been made this week to the following sections:

·  Environment at http://www.returntocommonsensesite.com/dp/environment.php

 

David Coughlin

Hawthorne, NY

http://www.returntocommonsensesite.com/