|To: ByGoneYrs who wrote (30085)||3/16/2019 11:47:10 PM|
|From: GROUND ZERO™|
|THE NINE STEPS FROM FREEDOM TO A SOCIALIST SOCIETAL BREAKDOWN|
Step 1. Massive Government Spending. Socialist states have government at the center of their economies and feature enormous spending programs.
In early 1990s Sweden often cited as a socialist state, government spending exceeded 70 percent of its economy. Under President Jefferson, government spending was approximately 2 to 3 percent of the economy. Today, we are at 36 percent. Sweden, now walking away from socialism, has reduced its spending share to just over 50 percent.
Government education, retirement, and medical care -- nearly cradle to grave spending -- are three cornerstones of future socialist states.
Obama once said you can create a governing majority of those dependent on government. Elizabeth Warren is now promoting “universal child care,” which would extend that dependence.
Step 2. Massive Tax Systems that Reduce Incentives. Increased tax burdens go hand-in-hand with spending. Throughout history, tax systems start out simple and wind up complex and burdensome.
By the end of Rome’s socialism under Diocletian, according to the historian Will Durant, taxation “rose to such heights that men lost the incentive to work or earn, and an erosive context began between lawyers finding devices to evade taxes and lawyers formulating laws to prevent evasion,” which led Romans to flee, seeking “refuge among the barbarians.”
We have a tax code so complicated and long that few can do their own taxes. Not satisfied, politicians threaten massive income tax hikes, wealth tax confiscation and penalties for those who want to leave the country.
Step 3. Reduced Growth Leading to Economic Stagnation.
Over the last 20 years, the European Union, which featured socialist and semi-socialist states, had almost zero economic growth. Over the last 60 years, while our governments grew to 36 percent of the economy and imposed trillions in regulation, our growth slipped from an average of 4 percent to 2 percent.
Step 4. Deficits. In semi-socialist Greece, once on the brink of being a failed state, government debt, as a percentage of the economy, is nearly 180 percent.
That would be like you having credit card debt nearly double your income. In the U.S., that debt ratio has exploded in the last decade, rising to nearly 106 percent.
Step 5. Governments Print Money.
Undeterred by deficits or debt, governments print money to pay for programs. Inflation is the result of governments increasing the money supply beyond the needs of economic growth. In socialist Venezuela, inflation is expected to be at least one million percent in 2019. In other words, its money isn’t worth the paper on which it’s printed.
Step 6. Government Fixes Prices and Declares When Goods Can be Sold.
Diocletian set wage and price controls for socialist Rome. In Venezuela, people can only shop on certain days and shopping malls can only be open two days a week. Free of that today, in the 1970s, we had gas rationing and double-digit inflation.
Step 7. Underground Economies Rise.
The more crushing taxation, spending, inflation, and regulations are, the larger the underground economy. People turn to a barter system because paper money becomes worthless. In Greece, the underground economy is said to exceed 20 percent of the economy. America’s, by contrast, is around 5 - 6 percent.
Step 8. Class Warfare Begins Tearing the Fabric of Society.
Historically, class warfare (the fight between classes of haves and have-nots) begins in earnest as economies stagnate. That reaches a dangerous apex during prolonged economic stagnation if accompanied by significant wealth inequality.
Of ancient Greece, Plato described “two cities . . . one the city of the poor, the other of the rich, the one at war with the other.” According to Durant, the “poor schemed to despoil the rich by legislation and revolution [and] the rich organized for protection against the poor.” Ancient Greece’s bitter class warfare included not only government redistribution, but a distrust of “democracy as empowered envy” – a certain outcome, in the U.S., if we abandon the Electoral College.
Step 9. Total Societal Discord. Also in ancient Greece, debtors, when the legislative ransoming of the rich’s wealth was not enough, murdered creditors as in Mytilene. Today, Venezuela is in near total societal breakdown as tens of thousands seek to flee the country amidst a socialist dictatorship, a growing police state, empty store shelves, little medicine, and even less order.
Those are the steps. They don’t necessarily occur in order, often occur in tandem and don’t have a timetable. While they take time to develop, the rush at the end can be quite rapid as we have seen in Venezuela.
All along the way, the power of government grows and rights correspondingly diminish. Often initiated by a seduced vote of the people, in time, socialism is maintained by force.
The United States is not, currently, a socialist nation. Our economic vitality remains greatly decentralized – a necessity for a stable republic. However, we have massive government programs. If spending increases, at the rate it has in the last 20 years, socialism will come into view. The adoption of “Medicare-for-all,” estimated to yearly cost $3.2 trillion, would push our spending as a percent of GDP well above 50 percent and explode our debt even more.
History, of course, is not a pre-determined straight line. Wise leaders have steered civilizations away from bad decisions – as they have in Sweden today.
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|To: GROUND ZERO™ who wrote (30199)||3/17/2019 7:30:57 AM|
|Yes, that's exactly right. It's a truly pitiful display by Honey Bee. What is also pitiful is how many people take her side, even when all the facts are on display for everyone to see. That shows you how people with mental instability and a little power can create a fear zone around themselves and then demand and secure loyalty through that fear. You see this in Dictatorships. Here's a quote that proves my point:|
In my study of communist societies, I came to the conclusion that the purpose of communist propaganda was not to persuade or convince, nor to inform, but to humiliate; and therefore, the less it corresponded to reality the better. When people are forced to remain silent when they are being told the most obvious lies, or even worse when they are forced to repeat the lies themselves, they lose once and for all their sense of probity. To assent to obvious lies is to co-operate with evil, and in some small way to become evil oneself. One’s standing to resist anything is thus eroded, and even destroyed. A society of emasculated liars is easy to control. I think if you examine political correctness, it has the same effect and is intended to. - Theodore DalrympleSo you see why I resist any kind of demand for conformity or bullying as if my freedom depended on it? Because it does. Your freedom does too. When Honey Bee threatened to ban you and me both, our first reaction was to fight. That's because we have a healthy sense of our freedom and the strength to push back. Our dignity demanded it. She seeks loyalty through fear. If you bow down to people like that, then you feel a fleeting moment of gratitude that you escaped the executioner, but then you feel humiliated and weak as well, although many people aren't introspective enough to diagnose it. I guarantee you every single one of those people who stopped posting to me or you out of this fake "loyalty" to Honey Bee are feeling uneasy about it on the inside. Some even know it is wrong to turn their backs, but their desire not to be singled out and banned overwhelms their courage to stand up and do the right thing. We saw that in Germany against the Nazis. My father's family saw that in Cuba when Castro took over. This happens in all Dictatorships. People lose their dignity and strength and freedom by degrees, just like the boiling of a frog, until nothing is left. No dignity, no freedom.
People don't realize how freedom of speech is so foundational to everything Scratch that. You do, but the weaker people that are parroting and patting Honey Bee on the back don't understand this concept very well. Loyalty because of fear is not healthy. Loyalty because of mutual respect breeds strength. Courage to stand up for what you know is right, even on the little and stupid things like on these threads with Honey Bee, shows the willingness and strength to stand up for the big things when they will really matter. This time around, only a few people with honor stood up and did the right thing and you were one of them.
I think if the Socialists keep taking over in this country, the big questions and issues will face us soon enough. We all just got a preview of how that will play out in this country when it happens and I'll tell you I am very disappointed. I've often noted that these threads are a microcosm of the macro world we live in. The left will put their jackboots on and come after the right in due time. About 80-90% of the folks on the right will either bow down directly in terror or will be ruled by fake conservatives, who are actually betrayers that come from the right. The Jews in Germany and the Cubans under Castro were shocked to see one of their own come after them. In the final days before my Grandfather finally left Cuba, it was one of his own family members who had joined the Castro regime, who came to take his big house and his remaining possessions away from him. It will absolutely shock and despair you what happens when all the chips are down. Lifelong friends won't have the courage to defend you. In the end, only a few will stand up for what is right and likely will pay a high price for it. That story has played out from Nazi Germany to Stalin's Russia to Mao's China to Castro's Cuba to Chavez and Maduro's Venezuela. It will keep playing out over and over again, until people learn the lessons of history.
So my friend, here's to you and to me and to those who live every day with courage, wonder, and internal power. To the true patriot in this country who lives and fights for the American Dream. And to Donald, who absolutely does what he thinks is right, with courage, despite all the odds. We are the true American Patriots!
Have a great week! My wife and I are going out of town, so my participation on these threads may be spotty and limited for a few days. Keep fighting the good fight!
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|To: Carolyn who wrote (30210)||3/17/2019 9:40:13 AM|
|In the last Dem Primary, Hillary committed massive fraud by colluding with the DNC head to defraud Bernie of a fair primary. Her crimes included getting the interview questions in advance of debates, so she would be better prepared, and funneling DNC cash to her own campaign. She was not elected by the Dem's in a popular primary vote. She cheated her way into it. Even when she was on her way to winning anyway, she just couldn't help herself. She had to cheat, because she's a career criminal. It is in her nature.|
Now I'm watching the field of Dem candidates and if you watch carefully, you can see who the ones are that the Dem establishment are going after to sideline them, so they can't compete against their anointed ones. The persona non grata so far are Schultz and Tulsi Gabbard. They want those two gone. Watch how the Dems are turning on Schultz. Watch how Colbert attacked Gabbard. The anointed ones so far look like Harris and Beto. Not too sure about Warren.
Anyway, the point I'm trying to make is that the Dem party is beyond redemption. It is a pit of vipers and a den of thieves. They are corrupted completely and it is plain for all to see in their Primary fights. The Republicans had a fair and honest election in their Primary. I'm convinced the GOP establishment wanted Bush, not Trump, to win the Primary. However, they let the Primary election play out anyway. I'm not a big fan of the neocon elements of the GOP, but at least there is still some modicum of decency left in the GOP. Trump is fundamentally changing the playing field and exposing the hypocrisies on the left and the right for all to see. He will be known as the great catalyst for what comes next. I just hope what comes next will be a resurgence of a more pure and stronger conservative base that has the legs to withstand the onslaught of Socialism and the persuasiveness to convince the next generations that Capitalism is the best system ever devised for enabling the prosperity for the greatest number of people and the only logical complement and precondition to Democracy and freedom.
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