Tag: America

America is Thinking

The vast majority of Americans have little interest in politics, but a great deal of interest in their daily lives. The US has historically averaged one recession every twelve years. Some of those recessions have been mild, while some have had quite a sting, but none have ever been declared a Depression since the granddaddy of them all back in 1929. It’s been 93 years since the last one. Like a major California earthquake, we would seem to be overdue.

I don’t believe we are looking at another 1929, but I’m not sure. Many structural changes have been made since then that have worked well to keep us from going completely over the cliff like the FDIC and a better understanding of how to blunt or prevent a depression by the Fed. What can cause a Depression?

  • Burdensome government regulations that reduce productivity and force bad choices
  • A Labor Participation Rate that is out of balance with the needs of the country
  • High Taxes that disincentive investment
  • Financial Contractions that encourage people to spend less and save more
  • Overly tight credit puts a brake on investment
  • Trade Restrictions that discourage business
  • A lack of confidence by our citizens leads to even greater uncertainty
  • Wages demands over what the market mandates
  • Energy cost and availability are out of balance with society’s needs

Where we are now:

  • Government Regulations, after a period of decline under Trump, are now accelerating to achieve desired social outcomes of this administration.
  • The Labor Participation Rate (LPR) is currently at 62.3%. vs. a historic average of approximately 66%. The LPR has been on a downward slide since 2008. We don’t yet have a good understanding as to why people are not working as much as they used to. There is no one single answer but we need five million more workers today.
  • Biden has promoted the theme of income inequality by using the ruse of wealthy individual’s tax rates should be greater than that of their secretary. What he never says is that the top 10% pay 71% of all Federal Income Tax and that the bottom 50% essentially pays nothing.
  • The issue of energy is scary. It would be desirable to have clean, economical, and reliable renewable energy sources vs. fossil fuels. But, we’re just not there yet. $60,000 electric cars (the average) make up less than 1% of vehicles. Wind and solar make up only 7% of our power. We are 20-30 years away from any semblance of the carbon-neutral world envisioned by President Biden. But his policies strangling fossil fuels today may collapse our economy in the near term.

The main lever that government uses to influence, direct, incentivize and punish is the U.S. Tax Code. As boring as the subject is, everyone should have an understanding of the importance of the Tax Code to their safety, prosperity, and freedom. I’ll try and be brief.

Ever hear someone say that you could do your taxes on a postcard if the only two lines were how much did you make and a number to multiply that to figure your taxes? The Federal Tax code is 74,608 pages. That is 187 times greater than it was 100 years ago. The primary driver of this growth in complexity is government meddling. Some meddling might be good, such as the encouragement of family-friendly tax incentives to achieve important societal purposes. However, beyond that, politics and specifically special interests have driven the tax code into something altogether different. Today, the tax code motivates or dissuades all kinds of actions and activities it has no business doing and frequently promotes anti-social values. And, once inscribed in the code, it stays forever! So, why haven’t we updated a tax code that is the brunt of jokes for its complexities and inequities for far too many? Because Congress wants it that way, that’s why!

Let’s talk about what the purpose of a well-written tax code should be. There are two major purposes as I see it:

A. Raise revenue to run the country
B. Encourage positive economic outcomes

The first is obvious, the second tends to be misunderstood. In a capitalist country, the government is largely supposed to step aside and allow a business to succeed or fail on its own merits. In attempting to achieve certain social outcomes through taxation we interfere with that primary focus. Here’s one example that bothers me at the moment. A Windfall Profits tax for the oil industry is being proposed by Biden. That’s government substituting its knowledge (or more likely, done for political gain) for that of the market. It is a distortion of the free exercise of capitalism. There are many examples of the tax code codifying advantages for some and creating barriers to entry for others.

You and I see the consequences of this not-so-subtle manipulation of free markets as artificial market volatility. This happens when people do things in finance, business, and investment primarily for its tax implications and not because it was/is good business. I used to be involved in apartment ownership. There was a time when tons of money was available to build unneeded apartments back in the 70s because of how owners could take down their losses in an accelerated manner. The law was changed and all of sudden, fewer apartments were built, leading to higher rental rates and a lot less construction of new units.

Government meddling in tax codes caused some of the worst recessions in recent memory:

“The last two recessions happened due to the bursting of two asset bubbles: first the dot-com stock market bubble in the early 2000s and then the housing bubble starting in 2006.”

Allan’s rule 19 is “that whatever you encourage or subsidize you get more of.” In the dot-com bubble tax codes favored quick write-offs which led to unwise investments:

“Capital Gains Taxes and Stock Return Volatility: Evidence from the Taxpayer Relief Act of 1997"

In the housing bubble, the apparent cause was that “debt grew quickest among borrowers with low credit scores” Why did lenders loan money to borrowers with no proven ability or means of likely paying back their mortgages? Back then it was the creation of a truly Frankenstein construct of financial derivatives called “Strips”. Here’s a great current example: Biden-⁠Harris Administration Announces Immediate Steps to Increase Affordable Housing Supply. Admirable goals, lamentable outcomes. This initiative includes no less than five tax incentives designed to get more people into homes. Great! But the result will be that quite a few of these homes will be lost due to foreclosure or will require additional public support to keep their owners in these homes. Over 11 million people spend more than 50% of their income on housing. That is unsustainable and is the norm, rather than the exception for people in so-called “affordable housing.” Nearly half of American workers cannot rent an apartment or own a home on their own. Manipulation of the tax code cannot change the calculus of housing costs outpacing income.

My conclusion is that a focus on tax codes to achieve good, but non-economic goals is a fool’s errand that invites gaming of the system and frequently never achieves the originally stated goals. Congress is ill-equipped to assess the ramifications of jiggering a system of taxation that ultimately promotes income inequality instead of fixing it.

Our inevitable conclusion is that governments cause recessions and depressions through their meddling in tax policy to achieve specific social, economic, and political goals more often than geo-political events. I don’t foresee Congress changing its stripes anytime soon. This virtually locks us into a boom-and-bust cycle that never ends. Is there a better system that would prevent this? No. But, there is one thing that could limit the meddling going forward.

Congress gets together in a truly bipartisan fashion on quite a few things. Then the horse-trading commences with various amendments tacked on that frequently have nothing to do with the bill and that’s the end of bipartisanship. You can also blame the use of omnibus legislation which was rare in the past and is now the norm and a rather stark difference in vision between the two parties, which I will characterize as Conservative vs. very Liberal. Yes, Democrats have changed the most in the last 60 years. Consider that President Kennedy today would undoubtedly be considered a Conservative Republican if he was alive today.

I think all of the foregoing as being both important to understand and to guide us as we make our political choices moving forward. Think long-term, not short-term. And, always be positive. And, vote!

God Bless America and especially Ukraine at this time of genocide and war that sees no end in sight.

Allan J. Feifer

Patriot

 

A Divided Nation

A Divided Nation and the Brite White Line of Truth

Hello Fellow Patriots:

America leads the world in both good and bad ways. American freedom, culture, literature, work ethics, technology, altruism, democracy, and other attributes do set the tone for the rest of the free world. Arrayed against us are several anti-democratic countries that find American values and power their existential threat and have become our natural enemies. I’d like to start with some statements of truth that some will argue are incorrect or at least debatable. Nevertheless, these truths do exist and are the bedrock that will see us through this turbulent time once more. Here we go:

1. The United States is the most powerful force for good in the world
2. The cohesiveness of our country is under threat through immigration dilution
3. Our traditional social mores are under attack
4. Our leaders are no longer stateman
5. Media and communications, in general, have become a massive threat to our society

These five issues/truths (I am sure you could add more to the list.) are:

The United States is the most powerful force for good in the world:

It seems almost obvious to me that there is no other nation as generous, admired, free, industrious, or pick your own metric and we either are number one or very close to the top. It’s no accident either! What makes a country great is its people and institutions. Pick your segment and we’re likely in the top five except for education. That’s a topic we’ve spoken about in the past and we’ll revisit it again at some future date.

If it is our people and institutions that keep us at the top, you could ask why that is so? Forget the detractors who might see it differently; our country attracts the best and brightest in large numbers. Except for China (and you might wonder about their propensity for theft of intellectual property), we issue more patents than any other country. In fact, if you look at Basic Patents, defined as a patent granted for an invention recognized as pioneering, unexpected, and unprecedented by the scientific community or industry, we are number one by far. All but 2 or 3 of the 15 basic patents that changed the world were American in origin. https://www.popularmechanics.com/technology/design/g20051677/patents-changed-the-world/ And, American generosity is unmatched, with America giving the majority of charity in the world. https://www.usnews.com/news/best-countries/articles/2019-12-20/the-worlds-most-generous-countries With all our faults and warts, a world without us would be much darker.

The cohesiveness of our country is under threat through immigration dilution:

If what makes a great country is its people and institutions, how does immigration fit in? Is it a plus or minus? Are all immigrants equal? It is an important and largely undiscussed series of questions that a sane nation needs to talk about. Leadership, to be discussed later in this article has completely failed us here. Have you wondered why there is no national discourse on the consequences of massive immigration and open borders? I have as well. The Biden administration states they have “complete control of the border.” Who believes that? Here’s one undeniable truth: “We are inviting the third world in against our national interest.”

Here’s my Power Statement of the Week: The roughly 50 million migrants in the country today have massively changed our country for the worse. To be clear, not everyone who comes here is an issue. Many of those individuals want the American dream, have the skillsets we need, and want to assimilate. However, many are not traditional immigrants.

Facing the truth, overwhelming, Mexico is the top origin country of the U.S. immigrant population. In 2018, roughly 11.2 million immigrants living in the U.S. were from there, accounting for 25% of all U.S. immigrants. This figure is now over 15 million. Lump in other Central and South American immigrants and that number climbs to over 40%. Many from these countries choose not to assimilate. That’s the problem and the challenge. How to encourage the right kind of immigration that benefits our country and curtail the rest.

From Pew Research: The U.S. foreign-born population reached a record 44.8 million in 2018. Since 1965, when U.S. immigration laws replaced a national quota system, the number of immigrants living in the U.S. has more than quadrupled. Immigrants today account for 13.7% of the U.S. population, nearly triple the share (4.8%) in 1970. https://www.pewresearch.org/fact-tank/2020/08/20/key-findings-about-u-s-immigrants/

There is no right, by law or by God that says anyone who wants to, should be able to come and live here. Eventually, our country will simply be overwhelmed with the social welfare demands of an ever-increasing invasion. How can we not see that? This is the Alinsky model writ large. https://bolenreport.com/saul-alinskys-12-rules-radicals/

Our traditional social mores are under attack

Whether through design or happenstance, our nation has accelerated a helter-skelter devolution of the traditions we held for our first 200 years. Are we better for it? It may strike most of our readers as a fact, not in dispute. But, millions of people think new liberal social mores make us a better country than we were previously. By what objective standard? That’s exactly the problem. Liberalism thrives on emotional arguments. I had a dear friend say to me today that when I asked by what objective standard, she thought something was right. Her clever answer was…because I am the Queen, that’s why! Unfortunately, when we throw out objectivity, we ultimately throw out personal freedom as well. Here are several bullets to become objective. From INC—I found the following:

A. Acknowledge and Compensate for Your Biases
B. Use Pro and Con Lists
C. Imagine Counseling a Friend
D. Strip Down Your Deciding Factors
E. Experiment By Reversing Your Line of Thinking
F. Create a Scoring System
G. Make a Decision and Live with It

The takeaway is simple. All of us have biases that tend to hold sway when we should strive to be objective in our thinking. If we want a nation of mamby pambies, we are well on the way. But, if we want solid, standup citizens that are honest, thrifty, and productive; there is a line to toe. It may be easier to go with the flow, but often that flow is going right over a waterfall. Strive to do what is moral and correct personally, and hold others to that same standard. Yes, we can. Realize that nothing in life is free and generosity can’t be standard, it must be available for the occasional situation, lest we create dependencies. Human beings, being who they are, can be conditioned to be weak and needy. Not the best aspirational standard for our population.

Finally on this subject…we have plenty of enemies that feed the current victim narrative so widely popular today. We can’t all be victims, can we? Ultimately, many of us, especially the young must be harnessed into productive work that benefits us all. Anything that works against our most cherished traditions is not only suspect, it’s likely to be an IUD directed at undercutting or even destroying our country. According to Federal Labor Participation Rate reporting, only about 52% of adults who could be working, are. This is startling low. In 2000 the rate was 64%. https://www.macrotrends.net/countries/USA/united-states/labor-force-participation-rate This rate, if to be believed, is even worse than it appears. During this period, the US experienced the highest rate of immigration in over 100 years. Think about that. This trend portends nothing good for the long-term stability of our senior citizens and the country as a whole. I have included this topic in our discussion of Social Mores because, at its core, the choice not to work is also a choice to game our system for its many benefits. I blame politicians, the media, and the school system for creating a bunch of entitled crybabies that have made ‘handouts’ standard operating procedures. This must end. Ethical individuals should not tolerate society destroying conduct. All of us must take a stand.

Our leaders are no longer statemen

Be it Biden or Trump, neither fits the statesmen mold as far as I am concerned. John Kennedy, Ronald Reagan, Margaret Thatcher, and even Franklin Roosevelt (I don’t have to like his politics to appreciate his presentation and presence) all wore the mantle of Statesmen. Statemen change the world. Politicians like we have today all lack the authenticity of the foregoing individuals. This does not infer that Trump, for instance, did not serve a great purpose. He changed the trajectory of our nation and should be appreciated for that alone. But he was not and is not a Stateman in the classical sense.

We need utterly great, charismatic, powerful, and effective statemen at least once in a generation or at other critical times (like now) in our nation’s history. We’ve been lucky that so many great men (and the occasional woman) stood that line against tyranny or other disasters, be it financial, social, or political. As far as I can see, I see no one standing in line to be that next great statesman and I am very circumspect of the real thing stepping up in the near future. I wonder why it’s been so long since we’ve seen the strength of backbone, purpose, and vision that a country as large as ours should possess.

What have we done as a country that seems to discourage the best of us from working in government? Far too often we see photogenic and well-spoken individuals in government who don’t know squat, rather than the Henry Kissinger types of cerebral and honest individuals that our country requires. Our press and political machines function sequentially as either cheerleaders or meatgrinders depending on which party is in power. How does anyone expect the largest and most complex government in history to function well with mediocre functionaries or dullard leaders? It simply can’t happen. God give us good leadership, please!

Media and communications, in general, have become a massive threat to our society:

As a follow on to our previous topic; now that we have bitten into the apple from the Garden of Eden, how do we reform and redeem ourselves? History is not comforting. In doing research for this article, I found that only truly earth-shaking events like war, revolution, or other major societal disruptions allowed for a major change in established systems.

Government is so grossly inefficient and unresponsive in responding to actual vs. perceived needs that I don’t see a way back. Just this morning I needed to speak to a department of the Federal Government. I called right on the dot when they opened and then again 15 minutes later only to receive the message that they were exceedingly busy right now and try again the next day. Did you know that up to 20% of Federal workers are still at home due to Covid! https://www.cnsnews.com/article/washington/susan-jones/rep-mccarthy-wants-answers-how-many-federal-workers-including We aren’t talking about telecommuting either; many simply are being paid to stay home. There’s just no imperative impetus to get value for the public’s money.

Why are there no media stories to expose this utter waste of our money? Why do we tolerate our elected officials, government employees, and contractors raking citizens over the coals financially? The answer is that we have become too detached from our government. We have an incredible ability to communicate the messages we want to send, but a horrible ability to message critical subjects. The reason is all too simple. Both a dummied down citizenry and imperial government at all levels are no longer responsive to the needs of its citizens, replaced by the new game of governmental war played out every day. This game is about power, longevity (theirs, not ours), and standing. Will it really require an actual war of some kind or a horrible natural disaster to reset the clock? Only time will tell.

Wrap-up:

I have painted a dire picture of what once was a shining star. Incrementalism got us to where we are today. If not some kind of societal dislocation; what would it take to reset our clock and achieve cooperative and effective government? Frankly, I don’t have that answer in hand. However, as Rahm Emanuel once stated while Mayor of Chicago…” Never waste a crisis.” Perhaps the next crisis can be one that does not benefit one political group or the other, but benefits all our citizens of what is still, warts and all, the greatest nation on Earth. Let’s hope so.

God Bless America and especially Ukraine at this time of extreme suffering.

Allan J. Feifer
Patriot

Turning Back America’s Clock

Turning Back America’s Clock

Hello Fellow Patriots:

I am 65 years old. Your age is an important determiner of what decade(s) you might have a particular
hankering to return to. For me, it was the 70s and 80s. By no means were these perfect decades. There
was the winddown of Vietnam, race riots, and much negativism you could easily point to. But it was also
a time of opportunity, family was still central to our values, people believed in God and our economy
was revving up as it does from time to time in a never-ending cycle that represents the normal ebb and
flow of ups and downs, but until lately, always trending upwards.

A lot has changed in how we view our special place. Let me ask you something. Have you ever looked at
the same picture filtered in numerous different ways? Same subject, but entirely different perspective.
It is the same way with America. Some see it as the promised land, while others see it as the devil’s
construct. We each have our own set of filters derived from our upbringing, life experiences, and where
we live, among many factors that helped us create the filters that allow different people to view the
same subject but with entirely different takeaways.

Let’s jump in and explore these eight filters in more detail:

 

Globalism

Of all the factors we present to you today, Globalism is one of the big three. Books are written on this
single subject, so we can only skim one or two high points. Globalism in America for our first 200 years
or so constituted two recurring themes.

a. Protection of American Commerce throughout the world
b. Becoming the dominant political force throughout the globe by promoting our theories of
democracy and capitalism

We largely accomplished these two imperatives. Our country entered this world in a fiery baptism but
emerged as more than just a new country, we set a tone for the entire world. An interlocking set of
beliefs set down in a largely new concept…our Constitution facilitated that. It was not long before our
fledgling nation set a small fleet of ships to Tripoli to fight the Barbary Pirates and in the process wound
up with a twofer…it both stopped the piracy for a long time and started a process that showed the world
what standing up to tyranny looked like. It was our debut as a kind of policeman to the world.

With two oceans protecting our shores we felt safe and secure. War would not come to our shores
(except for war with Great Britain in 1812 and Pearl Harbor in Hawaii) ever again. We now fought wars
preemptively to ensure commerce continued unfettered and to spread our ideals preventing fighting
adversaries on our beaches. This calculus all changed in 1957 when Russia tested its first ICBM and we
no longer could depend on a war warning to build up our forces. This changed us in many profound
ways and set us on the course we are on today, with engagement around the world necessary to ensure
we would not face a nuclear Pearl Harbor. Unfortunately, Globalism has led to many other
consequences, many of them counter to America’s interests. This is the natural lead into our next
subject.

 

America’s Role in the World

Think of the world as a crockpot with each nation contributing various ingredients. What results is
something distinctly different from any single ingredient in the pot. Sometimes it tastes good and
sometimes not so much. Good cooks and bad cooks. America has frequently been a good cook! We have
saved the world from despots, given the most comfort and support during times of natural and
unnatural disaster, flood the world with our innovations, medicines, and culture. I have traveled
throughout the world. One of the most memorable moments I experienced was when I was working
deep in the interior of Senegal on a construction project when I observed a dust cloud coming down the
road. When it passed me, I recognized the familiar logo of the Coca-Cola Company! America is truly
everywhere. Thinking back, that encapsulated, in a single moment the realization of the power of
American commerce, social acclimatization, and more. Anywhere you go in the world are American hats,

T-shirts, and music. People want to be Americans. Not all, but very many. It’s important to accept that.
For everyone who hates us, a hundred love us, aspire to be like us, or come here. We have, as a country
been the most successful force for good the world has ever seen! We must continue to engage and
encourage others who might aspire to be like us in their own country. That is both the message and the
imperative that we must never lose focus on.

The United States continues to be the most consequential arbiter of what’s good in the world. It’s only
in the last 40 years or so that our role has begun to change. Maybe we’ve been too successful. Perhaps
we gave away our moral mantle a bit at a time. But there continues to be an incredibly important need
for American leadership. There are only a couple of bullies that could realistically challenge our moral
leadership. We give up that role at our peril.

 

Family

There are tight-knit families throughout the world. It is the natural order of things to have loving parents
who commit to putting their children ahead of their own needs. Do I have to explain to my audience the
implicit benefits of a two-parent (male and female mind you) home? I despise anyone that promotes
non-nuclear families as equal to or even superior to the traditional family unit. It’s taken a generation
for that nonsense to somehow take hold and become at least partially accepted. The hubris in believing
that the foundational concept and implementation of what created the entire human race is somehow
wrong. More than hubris, the destruction, subversion, and promotion of alternative lifestyles has
undermined our entire belief system that now screams…no judgment, do your thing, marry a dolphin (as
someone did in France), just do whatever you feel like doing at the moment. Our government,
institutions, and too many dimwitted individuals now parrot the same nonsense without any
introspection or sense of history. Gender fluidity? Are you kidding me? You can’t allow yourself to be
sucked into a belief system that is fundamentally at odds with logic and evolution.

Family is everything! It is the Alpha and Omega. Yes, add God to that shortlist, but if you want to raise
smart, healthy, and productive children, give them a grounding that makes sense. Don’t create an
artificial construct that has no natural place in nature and defend it, as if you’re saying something is true,
makes it true. 1plus1equals2 is the fundamental logic that defines all things in life; including what
constitutes a family.

 

Patriotism

Many nations are patriotic. Nations that lose their patriotism are generally in decline. Patriotism and
Nationalism are closely linked. Globalism is the antithesis of Patriotism and the beginning of a one-world
government. Globalism seeks the extermination of Patriotism and Nationalism as not only being
redundant but in opposition to itself.

There are two forms of Patriotism. Natural and Fundamental. Natural patriotism is the type of
patriotism you get like rooting for your home team. Your team may not be the best in the world, but it is
your team. It works the same way in countries. Many, if not most people are loyal to where they were
born. That’s why some immigrants (we’ll talk about that later) come here but don’t ever choose to
assimilate; they never become patriotic, they’re here for the goodies. The other kind, what I term
fundamental patriotism is more like a religion, based on a series of truths, layered one upon the other.

American patriotism is that kind. Our beliefs in freedom, the equality of man, and that the fruits of our
labor should belong to no one except ourselves are the essence of being an American.
We are rightfully patriots, and we must be patriotic to defend our ideals and place in the world. Without
patriotism, we will slowly wither on the vine as we become less sure of who we are and why it is
essential not to stray too far from our foundational beliefs as we have begun to. Let’s amplify that a bit.
No one has anything coming to them. What was true in the past is not guaranteed in the future as our
government now “guarantees” more and more rights to people without requiring a countervailing set of
efforts and success from these very same people. The government has now institutionalized the concept
of “Big Brother.” There is no “Big Brother, it is a fantasy that only seeks to justify the taking of
somebody’s wealth to give to another and is antipatriotic at its core.

 

Big Government

God help us! Our Founding Fathers understood it. Conservative thinkers understand it. Humanists
understand it. Big Government is the greatest threat to our continued way of life and survival. Through
policy actions, the government creates the conditions for our success or failure. To the extent that policy
decisions are made for partisan reasons, we are condemning ourselves to not just mediocrity, but
extinction. Just look at issues like education, race, civil rights, immigration, climate change, and more
than not just can, but will change the world we live in ways that people never voted on, and are
powerless to effectively oppose.

We have allowed Governmental inertia, an entrenched politicized bureaucracy, and politicians whose
sole goal is to keep their seat at the table no matter what it takes, to contrive and cajole to maintain and
increase their power, regardless of the long-term effects on the people they ostensibly serve. Long
sentence to describe an insidious and unrestrained central government that exists largely for its own
purposes and is at odds with what is the correct strategy to maintain our position in the world and
promote our citizen's health and welfare. I continually say, “We get the government we deserve.” With
more and more people voting to take from those that have to transfer to those that demand, we are in a
continuous graveyard spiral. I don’t know what we can do to change this course without a revolution.

 

Technology

Let’s begin with the statement that technology is a double-edged sword. So many wonderful
technological breakthroughs have made our lives easier, fun, safer, and more productive. Ok. Now that
we got that out of the way…technology is strangling us in a manner that no one ever dreamt of. For
example:

a. I know of five-year-olds with smartphones. Why does a five-year-old need a cell phone? They should not be off on their own and there is just too much bad material on the internet. It is a parent’s job to teach their children foundational truths, not the internet. If you change that age from 5 to 12 I would say the same thing. A smartphone or other device in the hands of squishy little minds is an invitation to no good. Is your child mature enough to handle the awesome responsibility that having the entire internet as your babysitter implies? How does a parent’s role change when he/she is the last to know or be asked?

b. Social Media—if your child has access to a computer or a smart device, they more than likely
already have multiple Social Media accounts. Not only do they get to interact with other children, but they also get to interact with grown-ups acting as children for nefarious purposes. Add to that the psychological trauma many kids experience through online bullying, peer pressure, and shaming and you understand the profound effect social media has on your child. It is a direct line from people you don’t know into the brain of the child you love so much. The risk is unfathomable.

c. Remote Learning—here’s an oxymoron. Remote Learning is the greatest failure in American Education since the introduction of New Math. The vast majority of kids who were taught in this manner fell backward and did not advance in knowledge. https://www.foxnews.com/media/msnbc-panel-pummels-failure-remote-learning-wisdom

d. Work from home has had a huge effect on our productivity and creativity. Services like Zoom and others have made a fortune but are we really doing better as a people? I don’t see it. Only a minority of us are self-actualized. Most of us need to be around others and need bosses to review, observe and instruct us. Teams work better when you see each other eyeball to eyeball. https://www.theguardian.com/business/2021/apr/08/working-from-home-is-a-failed-experiment

These four categories of technology will have long-lasting negative effects on our children. It’s not in our
scope today to discuss solutions; just awareness and a bit of fear if you have a child and had not
recognized this threat, both to your parental control and your child’s development.

 

Social Mores

It’s not difficult for anyone who regularly follows the news to realize that there is a huge societal push to
redefine what is moral and correct. Whether you are discussing gender, race, economic equality,
religion, clean energy, incarceration, climate change, or myriad other topics that we have latched onto
as “the” most important imperative. All of the above and more infer your duty to comply with what
amounts to a quasi-religious adherence to the tenets and edicts of this or that orthodoxy.

Reminds me a lot of the Inquisition. All other cherished values are secondary to these demands to
acquiesce. Parents are virtually warned not to interfere with State and Federal Education mandates and
if they do, there are considered terrorists. How did we let this happen?

 

Immigration

Immigration has become a kind of Social More unto itself. But it is so huge, so diabolical in its
implementation, it’s just monstrous on its face. Does anyone care to give me the logical reasons as to
why open borders and mass migration of mostly uneducated, frequently violent, or frequently
unproductive individuals is a good thing for America? It isn’t. But what it does accomplish is three things:

1. It convinces more and more Americans that they have a government that is out of touch with
their wishes and that they are powerless to challenge.

2. Its sole function is the dilution of the current American population. There are currently more
than 22 million illegal aliens in the United States costing us more than $150 Billion. There will
likely be more than 30 million by the end of Biden’s first term.
https://www.fairus.org/sites/default/files/2022-04/Total%20Number%20of%20Illegal%20Aliens_2021.pdf
(Numbers revised upward by the author to account for the passage of time and new
information.)

3. American lives are lost through criminal activity, smuggled drugs that would not make it into the
country if not for lax border controls, vehicular accidents caused by both the interdiction of
illegals coming into the country and driving in our country without being legal to do so.

Add your favorite to the above list. There are other reasons as well. The major takeaway is that rampant
immigration was a choice, a decision by the current administration and Democrats. Heck, they want to
make it easier to come here, not harder.

If we want our country to be a reflection of how we were in the past that made us unique, special, and
happy; we must revisit what we did to so profoundly change who we are. There’s always a way back. It
takes guts and determination to buck authorities who see you only as some kind of nuisance or terrorist.
Too many of our leaders and those in the bureaucracy are not your friends and do not represent your
interests honestly and fairly. They work for what makes them more powerful and like some tick, they
burrow into our skin and suck our blood.

I love America as you do. Rather than give up or accede to Big Brother’s edicts on how you are to live
your life, don’t negotiate (that’s their way to keep you occupied.) Instead, do what they do not expect;
fight them everywhere and at every level. Set the terms of the debate and give no ground. We are
fighting for our very existence. I hope you believe it and take that to heart!

God Bless America and especially at this time of extreme suffering; Ukraine.

Allan J. Feifer
Patriot

Distorting the Truth that is America

Distorting the Truth that is America

Hello Fellow Patriots:

Confusion and Division. That’s where we are today as a country. There is so much on our plate, you need to be a rocket scientist to keep up with what’s going on and to weigh its significance to your everyday life. Has it always been this way?  I don’t think so. I think we’ve gradually seen an increase in the quantity and velocity of information and issues grow over the last 20 years or so. Is this by design or happenstance? And, has technology played a role in the current quagmire we find ourselves in? Finally, why is this even important to you and me? Let’s start with a partial list of what’s on our plate:

  • Covid
  • Political leadership issues
  • World events including nuclear war
  • Economic events like inflation
  • What the future looks like for our children and our elderly

Quite a bit in the above sampler that is by no means a complete list. Let’s run down the list, one by one, and put in perspective why these things should matter to all of us.


Check out our No OPM is not an Opiate Blog


Covid

Covid, for all the press its gotten and all the personal and economic hardship it has caused is just the first step in a longer process that is unfortunately just getting started. The United States got a slow start to an epidemic that you would have thought we would have been better prepared for. I am not enamored with much that we and the rest of the world did to try and contain Covid. We failed spectacularly, but not for trying. Should we have just let it run its course or just have tried to protect the elderly? I certainly don’t know why, but between bungled messaging, bad science and nearly destroying our economy and our children’s future; it was not our finest moment.

Yet, at the same time, America understood and acted on the reality that this is/was a world problem and to a greater extent than other nations, we led the world in research, donation of shots, (for better or worse) economic and other aid, not just for our own country but also for altruistic reasons. Kudos to us for trying to do the right thing. No one bats a thousand. I wish we had made better scientific, political, and other decisions, but we are where we are. Lessons (hopefully) learned.


Check out our Demonization of Wealth Blog


Political Leadership Issues

We don’t have fistfights in our high chambers like some other nations do and we don’t vote, in lockstep with whoever is leading our nation like say Russia and their Duma or China and their National People’s Congress. That’s a good thing!  The secret sauce that our Founding Fathers wrote into our Constitution was tension.  We call it debate and the process often looks like gridlock. That’s by design to ensure a certain continuity of thought and stability. Have we ever been as fragmented as we are now?  You betcha! In the runup to WWII, our nation’s leaders were very divided on how to react to the gathering war clouds in Europe. In the aftermath of the crash of the stock market in 1929, our leadership was divided on what to do. With people starving in the streets and the wealth of our citizens critically in peril, political divisions raged. In the runup to the Civil War, we were again divided and slow to react until Fort Sumter seemed to decide the issue for both sides. All these instances demonstrated a divided nation until certain events transpired, and in an instant, we coalesced on the right course.

Eventually, America always rallies to whatever challenges we face. Not necessarily so with other nations, as I have witnessed.  The system our Founding Fathers put in place all those so many years ago works. However, there have been more recent changes that threaten our legacy of finding solutions and making the frequently hard decisions needed to continue to be exceptional.

Our leadership has begun to stray from our core principles and beliefs as we adopt a multiculturalist view of the world that seeks to change who we are as a nation and as a people. Our core strengths stand in juxtaposition with terrible concepts being espoused and promulgated today. It’s as if someone or something is trying to drain our blood, our essence to make us no better, no worse than the rest of the world. We must resist this idea and fight those that attempt to bring us down using the tools and actions of division, implicit racism, rampant uncontrolled immigration, destruction of the nuclear family, and other insidious actions. Foreign nations and non-state actors hammer us constantly as they seek to control our communications and abet too many of our insincere political leaders.

Clausewitz: War as Politics by Other Means. If you want to understand how we have gotten to where we are, read about Carl Von Clausewitz and his famous quote. https://oll.libertyfund.org/page/clausewitz-war-as-politics-by-other-means In this case the opposite is just as true. We don’t have physical war; we have politics instead of war. People still die, there are winners and losers both economically and physically, but the stillborn fruit of our womb today are these new tools of societal destruction I’ve been talking about. They are just as deadly and dangerous as actual bullets and bombs but without the obvious destruction, which makes them all the more insidious. America is being maneuvered into a position which we will find difficult to extricate ourselves. Yet, like a pendulum swinging in the opposite direction, we will find our footing eventually and overcome our current predicaments and prevail once again. You must have faith in the good, the right, and in God. You must also accept that evil exists and must be confronted. You can’t hide from evil!


Check Out Our Inflation-Biden’s Choice to Destroy America’s Rich And Middle Class Blog


World Events and Nuclear War

There have been no world conflagrations for 77 years. The world has not seen the kind of carnage that existed in two major world wars for a long time. Was it because of MAD, an acronym for Mutually Assured Destruction that our nuclear doctrine is based upon? Or, was it something else? We don’t seem to focus anymore on how relatively peaceful our American world has been for so long.  I have not forgotten about Korea, Viet Nam or even the Gulf Wars and assorted other conflicts. They just don’t rise to the level of death that we have realized only three other times in our history.

Our government does a lot of things poorly. One thing they got right is the balance that was struck with world stability. Crazy as it might sound and to the horror of many, nuclear weapons have kept an uneasy peace in the world and have restrained would-be tyrants from starting up new World Wars. That balance is not absolute, however. I am reading a book right now…How the World Ends by Ron Rosenbaum, a tie-dyed pacifist, which I am not. He unveils a starkly scary history of close calls and near misses that wind up with the conclusion that someday there will be a miscalculation that starts a chain of events leading to an unprecedented world nuclear war, whereas, he states, “the survivors will envy the dead.” Really dark stuff. His book was written in 2011. I do agree that we need better control of our strategic deterrence than we do today. It can’t be one-sided though.

One of a series of possible flashpoints he mentions in his book is a nuclear exchange between India and Pakistan, Israel and Iran, and even Sunnis against Shia. He even mentions Putin and his calculation that limited nuclear war is not only possible, it is also likely and winnable. The key takeaway and this is the scary one, is that inevitably, even limited nuclear exchanges will suck in the rest of the world in an all-out nuclear exchange. The corollary to this is that the other side believes their threats of nuclear war will enable them to do their worst without a response in kind.  No easy answers here.

Ukraine is exactly the kind of flashpoint that can get out of control. Wargaming by our government and various think tanks have demonstrated the danger of people like Putin miscalculating and attempting a bridge too far where anything can happen. The danger of Ukraine is that it emboldens an all too sane individual like Putin who thinks he is some kind of modern-day Napoleon, except he isn’t. What happens when he goes too far and his territorial, economic and political aspirations are met with someone who vigorously disagrees? The world has seen before what happens when you don’t confront evil early. Putin is a rational egomaniac that believes Russia will lead a new world order. Where have we heard that before? What is different today is that Putin can destroy the world and his form of dictatorship is absolute. Nothing constrains him. That is the essential reason that we can’t let him have his way. He wants it all. Want some inside poker on Mr. Putin? Listen to this quote:

“…At a reception in 2015, I had a chance to ask Putin about his planning for the occupation of Crimea. “I was even surprised at how well it went!” he told me with a smile. The West must make sure he does not find it so easy this time…” As reported by Daniel Treisman in a CNN article on the 24th of February 2020.

Where this goes, I can’t quite predict. But I know that we will inevitably have to confront Putin and we will. The strategy we develop needs exceptional leadership that we don’t have today. For now, we will have to play for time. I’ll stay close on this issue. The stakes are simply just too high.


Check Out Our How Quickly We Forget our History Blog


Economic Events like Inflation

Depending on who you speak to on the causes of inflation, you’ll likely receive different answers. There is only one real truth though. Inflation is caused when there are too many dollars chasing too few goods. A juiced economy was created by efforts to fight the effects of Covid. The majority of those stimulus dollars were appropriated and are now being distributed by the Biden administration. There are plenty of conversations about inflation being a direct consequence of this kind of spending. To make a fine point, it was expected, at least temporarily by statements made by the Biden administration. They were wrong then and are even more wrong somehow believing that Build Back Better would somehow stem inflation. Look for the Federal Reserve to raise interest rates about 2% this year as a starting point. Inflation will hit the middle class more than any other sector of our people. Inflation is never good; it is punitive and disruptive and likened to a thief of your wealth. Inflation is always a choice rooted in poor economic planning.

What can we do, besides trying to cool off an economy that is not really as “hot” as claimed except by hiking interest rates and risking a recession? The most important thing we can and should do is to return to the energy independence we willingly gave away just 13 short months ago. Decisions made by the Biden administration have led to hundreds of wells and hundreds of drilling rigs have been idled by government fiat. This has directly led to both higher prices at the pump and for home heating, oil and ironically is forcing us to buy foreign oil including Russian crude right now. This is insane and is a nod to the power of the climate change lobby that would rather buy foreign oil from our enemies instead of producing it ourselves.

On the first day of the next revolution, these crazies will be tracked down and taken out, and shot for the harm they did to the American people. Russia gets 40% of its national income from oil. Europe gets more than 35% of its energy from Russia. There is a noose around the neck of a significant percentage of free people in our hemisphere. We have to realize that what is happening in Ukraine today is to a significant degree the result of decisions poorly thought out by our leadership. Mistakes, in my opinion, have certainly risen to the level of incompetence.

Inflation and energy are two sides of the same coin. Our current inability to understand that protecting the American dollar is the key to our continuing power and wealth. Spasmodic actions and loud rhetoric will not fix our energy or inflation problems. I do not know how events will work out under the current administration. Americans must wake up that their economic and ultimately their personal freedom is being bargained away in a quest to be something of dubious value. Our survival today depends on reasonably priced energy and spending within our means. Our internal discipline will be watched by the world more closely than any platitudes we espouse. Step one for all of us personally is to understand the economic issues and push for sane and accountable leadership. Elect people who understand the very basic issues at play here and don’t complicate it with feel-good issues that are specious at their core.  Spend less and control our sources of energy. It’s that simple. We’ll whip ourselves back into economic shape pretty fast if we take off the restraints and full-speed forward on these priorities.

But What if We Don’t Change the Current Arc?

https://www.theepochtimes.com/video-shows-ukrainian-tank-man-trying-to-block-russian-military-convoy_4303927.html?utm_source=News&utm_campaign=breaking-2022-02-26-1&utm_medium=email&est=RqCrebKCkU4EgSS%2FMed%2FNf4Ktk%2B5EO3zznQzKIoADssp5SZbRzbikNURz921tia8LYNKn4Lj8cQ%3D

After you view this video, just for a moment, please pause and reflect. Put yourself in this video. Imagine if this was your city, your hometown, your very street. What would your personal resistance be? would you be like this man, standing against rapidly moving tanks with nothing but his bare hands, or would you just go hide, conditioned by a generation of passivity into believing nothing more than happy thoughts while your basic freedoms and worldview occupy only the smallest part of your consciousness? Would you through up your hands and trust that the cavalry is coming to the rescue to restore your perfect world?

The reality is that this is a dangerous world and America has been on the decline for a long time. How we got here is now only tangentially important at this moment. What we do about it now, how we wake up and become engaged is everything.

Start today, by becoming what my good friend calls an “Engaged Citizen.” That’s a term used derisively by government officials for a citizen who won’t accept what he/she is told at face value, and who asks questions with an expectation of truthful answers from those that ostensibly work for us.

The world is neither benevolent nor evil. The world is much more akin to the weather. All weather happens as a result of localized heating of the earth by the Sun. This creates pressure differentials which in turn creates wind moving from areas of higher pressure to lower pressure. This is how the political world works as well. Putin sitting in for a metrological high pressure depending on other nations to be low pressure, or a better word, compliant and in fear of him. The United States has become feeble to a degree I could have never imagined. We do things against our self-interest like putting things like climate change, our economy, and feel-good social experiments above the reality that is our world. Putin and Xi Jinping laugh at us.

Friends, there is no safety through believing in unsupported and child-like happy thoughts. That’s where too many Americans are today. There is no Shangri-La for a reason…it just doesn’t exist. The threats we face today are very consequential. They can neither be wished away nor will go away by closing our eyes to what’s going on. What happens to one of us, happens to all of us.

I’d love to hear from you on your thoughts and particularly what, if anything, we can do personally to keep our great nation relevant and safe in a world that lurks with real Monsters.

God Bless America.

Allan J. Feifer