"He will put the sheep on his right and the goats on his left."
Matthew 25:33

Saturday, January 30, 2010

DFL Party's plan for new jobs: tax breaks

When I first read the title, I thought hell had froze over. That was until I read the fine print.

First in a three part series in the House effort to put jobless to work by Bill Salsbury at the Pioneer Press leading up to the 2010 session.

Minnesota House Democrats on Friday unveiled a package of 10 tax breaks they intend to pass quickly in the 2010 legislative session to spark job creation.

The legislation would provide tax credits for investments in high-tech, manufacturing and green businesses, give cities and counties more flexibility in using local tax incentives for economic development and egg on the Mall of America's Phase II expansion.

The chief architect of the package, House Tax Committee Chairwoman Ann Lenczewski, DFL-Bloomington, said it was designed to put building contractors and construction workers back to work.

"It's what we can do at a very scarce time in the economy," she said.

The plan would offer incentives for private-sector investment by providing $10 million for "angel investment credits" and "historic rehabilitation credits." The money would come from closing what Lenczewski called a real estate investment tax loophole.

The legislation also would relax state restrictions on "tax-increment financing," which allows local governments to use the additional tax revenue from a business development to help pay for the project.

The Mall of America and Bloomington would get more flexibility to use local taxes generated at the giant shopping center to help finance a nearly $2 billion expansion on 42 acres of vacant land just north of the mall.

The mall would not get any state funds or local property tax dollars, Lenczewski said. "To pay those taxes, you would have to shop there," she said.

House Speaker Margaret Anderson Kelliher, DFLMinneapolis, said the tax breaks are one of three parts of a Democratic strategy to "put thousands of Minnesotans back to work again." The other two elements are a $1 billion public works bonding bill that will be introduced next week and an economic development initiative that is still being fleshed out. Kelliher said a bipartisan House jobs task force that she appointed in August generated the ideas.

The leading House Republican, Minority Leader Kurt Zellers, of Maple Grove, said the DFL package was a "good starting point" but a relatively small one that is "not quite enough to get us over the hump."

Lenczewski said the proposals were developed in consultation with Republican Gov. Tim Pawlenty's tax commissioner and DFL senators. She predicted quick agreement on them.

"We are working in the world of the doable. This is not fantasy legislation," she said.

The angel credit is for individuals who invest in start-up companies. It would provide a 25 percent tax credit for investments in businesses with fewer than 100 employees and less than $2 million in gross receipts.

"It will make Minnesota competitive with our neighboring states and states across the country, it will help to build and reinforce the culture of entrepreneurship and it will leverage investments that Minnesotans make each and every year in the University of Minnesota," said Rep. Jim Davnie, DFL-Minneapolis, chief sponsor of the angel investor bill.

The university generates innovative ideas, but the state has fallen short in moving those ideas into businesses and jobs, Davnie said. The tax credit would help transfer those ideas into new enterprises.

The governor likes that tax break, as long as it comes in a clean bill.

"Gov. Pawlenty has long championed an angel investment tax credit and hopes the DFL will break from their pattern of including it in a bill that gets vetoed, because it also has a truckload of other job-killing tax increases," Pawlenty spokesman Brian McClung said in an e-mail.

The historic rehabilitation incentive would piggyback on an existing 20 percent federal tax credit for restoring historic buildings. The state would provide another 20 percent credit for a combined 40 percent tax break.

Mall of America spokesman Dan Jasper said in a statement that mall officials have not seen Lenczewski's proposal for their project but are eager to learn the details. He said they are exploring the possibility of moving the second phase from a single-phase construction project to multiple phases in order to complete it in a "still difficult economic environment."

"We are encouraged by the announcement today and hopeful that it can help us get started on the first phases of expansion," Jasper said.

The tax-increment changes would allow cities and counties to help finance projects that can't get bank financing. Local governments also could use that tax tool to revitalize housing in blighted areas and encourage "transit-friendly dense development" in areas such as the proposed Central Corridor light-rail line between St. Paul and Minneapolis.

Another piece of legislation would allow cities and counties to issue industrial revenue bonds to finance green buildings. A separate bill would let business owners ask a city to levy special assessments on their property to pay for making them more energy efficient.

These are nothing but token efforts on the part of the democrats. The construction jobs that will be created by the DFL's efforts target only those workers that are union. Any big commercial construction job is totally union controlled. Only 15.1% of Minnesota's workforce is union and those are the people who would get jobs under this phony, minuscule attempt at government controlled job creation. What about the other 84.9% of the Minnesota workforce? Nearly 85% of us will get nothing from this, but the unions who helped get the liberals elected are sure going to get taken care of.

The "angel tax" does not even come close to putting our state on equal footing with neighboring states. Wisconsin gives a 25% tax write off for the first four years in business.

And a billion dollar 'public works' bonding bill on top of all of this. Again targeted toward the unions and not the workforce as a whole. Why don't they call it the Minnesota stimulus bill for shovel ready jobs? This is nothing but a cheap copy of Obama's failed stimulus bill. We have seen how successful that was.

I would also like to point out that this 'bipartisan jobs task force' was hardly bipartisan as it was made up of 24 democrats and only 8 Republicans. And as for input from business, there was little if any.

If this passes, watch them all pat each other on the back and tell the voters how wonderful they are. Of course they are attempting this in an election year. Bet they are all shaking in their boots worried about their jobs this November.

Friday, January 29, 2010

Brod backs Emmer

Here is Laura's statement which will be posted on her Facebook later today.


These are difficult and challenging times for our state and our nation.

Now, more than ever, we need strong, determined leadership that will focus on the issues that matter most to our citizens.

Today, our friends, our neighbors and our families are concerned about their jobs, about their mortgage and about the future of their children.

There are no simple solutions. No trite slogans will solve our problems.

But, fearless leadership is demanded in these most anxious of times.

From the moment Governor Tim Pawlenty said he would not seek re-election, Minnesota Republicans began an important conversation about who could best carry the banner of conservative fiscal ideals and common sense government throughout the state.

Many of you were so kind to offer encouragement to me to consider a statewide campaign for Governor. I thank you for your support. As honored as I have been about that encouragement and that possibility, I have decided this is not the year for me to run for statewide office.

Before us stand many good candidates for Governor in our party.

Each and every one of them I consider to be a friend, and each and every one of them I believe carries with them the promise of a better tomorrow for our state.

I have been honored to serve with Marty Seifert when he represented our GOP Caucus in the House and also with David Hann and Bill Haas. I believe them all to be sincere and dedicated public servants.

I have been honored to serve with Tom Emmer, as well.

And, I believe Tom best represents our hopes for continued conservative Republican leadership for our state's future as Governor of Minnesota.

Tom Emmer has the heart of a warrior, but he has the soul of a common-sense Minnesotan who stands for the best of who we are as a state.

Tom Emmer represents the fearless leadership that is demanded in these most anxious of times.

He knows that lower taxes and responsible spending is a catalyst for strong economic growth and job creation.

For Tom Emmer, government is not the enemy of the people - nor is it the solution for every problem we face.

Minnesotans need jobs. Our neighbors need hope. Our communities need the promise of a better tomorrow.

Minnesota needs a leader who can inspire, not just with words and passion, but with action and accomplishment. Tom Emmer is that kind of leader.

We need a leader who can stand with those who wish to move our state forward.

A leader who will stand up against those who want to move it backwards.

A leader who knows that every Democrat, every Republican and every Independent who wants to make Minnesota a better place to live, work and raise a family must have a voice in our state's future.

I believe our future needs Tom Emmer.

There may be many issues we cannot ever find complete agreement upon.

Yet, there is far more that brings us together than drives us apart.

I intend to campaign with all my heart for the endorsed candidate of our party.

And, my hope is that Tom Emmer is that candidate.

With Tom at the top of our ticket, we will see a strong, determined voice who will not be afraid to put forward his commitment to fiscal responsibility at every level of government and in all parts of the state.

With Tom at the top of our ticket, we will see an individual who understands that lower taxes, responsible spending, and partnerships with the public and private sector are crucial to restoring our economic vitality.

With Tom at the top of our ticket, we will see someone who can and will reach out to both the businesses owners on Main Street as well as the Houses of Labor and let the men and women who fuel our economy and build our future, know that Republicans are the party of economic growth, of prosperity and of jobs.

With Tom at the top of our ticket, small business and big business will know they are not the enemy - but they are key partners in finding solutions to the economic challenges facing our state.

Business. Labor. The public sector. The private sector. Minnesotan citizens.

Tom Emmer will have a seat at the table for every one of them as we seek to ensure our state gets back on track toward prosperity. We are all in this together.

This election and the implications of it for the next four years comes down to this basic question: Which candidate, and which party, is best equipped to restore the economic engine of our state and get job creation going again for the people of Minnesota?

When it comes to the candidate, I am confident the answer is Tom Emmer. And when it comes to the party, the answer is the Republican Party, with Tom Emmer at the top of its ticket.

I ask you to join me in supporting Tom Emmer for our next Minnesota Governor and in working hard to come together to ensure our endorsed Republican candidates win in November.

Laura Brod says no to Marty Seifert

From Politics in Minnesota

Gubernatorial candidate Rep. Marty Seifert (R-Marshall) asked Rep. Laura Brod (R-New Prague) to be “considered on his short list” to be his Lt. Gov. running mate.

Brod said no, accordingly to several impeccable sources.

Read more here...

Sunday, January 24, 2010

Seifert Continues to Stretch the Truth

Despite being confronted on his claim to have been the chief author of the Woman's Right to Know legislation, Marty Seifert and his campaign continues to deceive both voters and delegates with this boast, leaving them with a false impression. On a recent lit piece to Republican Party activists that hit our mailboxes on Friday, January 22nd, Marty again makes the claim that he was the chief author.

Representative Mary Liz Holberg is well known and respected for this landmark legislation. She worked endless hours on this legislation and introduced four different bills to accommodate all the cosponsors to Woman's Right to Know. To take the credit for her work is a poor form of disrespect to legislative perspective.

Marty Seifert has been traveling throughout the state since announcing his candidacy for governor making the claim that he was chief author. After being confronted on this issue, he has done little more than acknowledge Rep. Holberg for her work as chief author of the Woman's Right to Know legislation. Despite the fact that his campaign has promised to drop this issue from future lit pieces as claimed on Wednesday, January 20th, "Marty had the Woman's Right to Know stricken from his new lit piece out of respect for you," he is continuing to take credit for the work of others.

Another claim Marty makes on this piece is "Chief Author, Minnesota Sovereignty (10th Amendment) Bill." Marty can lay claim to his bill, HF997 which is nothing more than a resolution reaffirming states rights under the 10th Amendment of the US Constitution. Tom Emmer authored HF998, which is virtually identical to HF997, but, Tom Emmer takes it one step further with the introduction of HF 2376, known as the Firearm Freedom Bill,

(1) The tenth amendment to the United States Constitution guarantees to the states
and their people all powers not granted to the federal government elsewhere in the
Constitution and reserves to the state and people of Minnesota certain powers as they were
understood at the time that Minnesota was admitted to statehood in 1858. The guaranty
of those powers is a matter of contract between the state and people of Minnesota and
the United States as of the time that the compact with the United States was agreed upon
and adopted by Minnesota and the United States in 1858.

Tom Emmer also authored HF171, which is known as the Freedom of Choice in Health Care Bill. This bill calls for a vote on a new amendment in our State Constitution that would declare all Minnesotan citizens right to freely choose the health care they desire. This too is a bill aimed at our 10th Amendment rights under the US Constitution.

One other claim on this lit piece of Marty's that I must point out, it was Tom Emmer who was the chief author of HF2579 which would require that voters present a valid picture ID to vote. Marty Seifert was not even a coauthor on this bill so I fail to see his support for this.

As a delegate, and a conservative activist, I will keep a close eye on all claims made by candidates leading up to the November election. Honesty and integrity are top priority to win my vote this Fall.

Friday, January 22, 2010

Wednesday, January 20, 2010


Self-Admitted Failure, One of America’s Worst Senators, Big Tax Hikes


Dayton Graded Own Senate Performance An “F.” If U.S. Sen. Mark Dayton, D-Minn., was to grade himself on his accomplishments in Congress, it would be an ‘F,’ he told students Thursday at the Renville County West High School in Renville.” (Tom Cherveny, "Senator Says He Gives Himself An ‘F,’” West Central Tribune, April 21, 2006)

Time Magazine: Dayton One Of America’s Five “Worst Senators.” "When he was elected in 2000, Minnesota Democrat Mark Dayton seemed well prepared, having worked as an aide to Walter Mondale in the 1970s. But he has exhibited erratic behavior since then: in October 2004 he shut down his office for almost a month, citing an unspecified terrorist threat." ("America's Worst - Mark Dayton: The Blunderer," Time, April 14, 2006)

Time: Dayton “Passed Few Bills,” Tried To Create A Department Of Peace & “Confounded His Colleagues.” “Inside the Senate, Dayton has passed few bills partly because some are too liberal for the Republican-controlled body, including one that would have created a Department of Peace and Nonviolence. He has confounded his colleagues by complaining about basic facts of the job, such as his limited power in a chamber where authority derives from seniority.” ("America's Worst - Mark Dayton: The Blunderer," Time, April 14, 2006)

Associated Press: Dayton Brings Brings A Lot Of Baggage” To Governor’s Race. “But he brings a lot of baggage to the race. With his Senate term set to expire after 2006, Dayton opted against running for re-election amid faltering poll numbers and fundraising difficulties. The department store heir had sunk $12 million into his 2000 campaign, and had no plans to dig that deep again. He left with a jaded view of the Senate and his place in it.” (Brian Bakst, “Ex-Minn. senator seeks revival in governor's race,” Associated Press, December 31, 2009)

  • “He called Washington a ‘cesspool’ and told a group of students that Congress, including himself, deserved ‘an F for results.’ Outsiders graded him just as harshly: Time magazine labeled him ‘The Blunderer’ on a list of ineffective senators, citing his widely criticized decision in 2004 to temporarily close his Senate office over fears that terrorism endangered his staff and visitors.” (Brian Bakst, “Ex-Minn. senator seeks revival in governor's race,” Associated Press, December 31, 2009)

Minnesota State University, Mankato Political Science Professor: Dayton Faces “Real Obstacles.” “Yet Dayton could have trouble turning the debate from his senatorial struggles, said Joseph Kunkel, a political science professor at Minnesota State University in Mankato. ‘He's singularly lacking in charisma. By his own admission, his term in the Senate was not too successful. He's not a new face on the scene. He's been around a long time,’ Kunkel said. ‘Those things are going to be real obstacles.’” (Brian Bakst, “Ex-Minn. senator seeks revival in governor's race,” Associated Press, December 31, 2009)


Dayton Only Member Of Congress To Shut Down Office Over Hypothetical Threat

Dayton Shut Down His Washington Senate Office Over Theoretical Terrorist Threat. “When Senator Mark Dayton shut down his Washington office last week, ostensibly out of concern for his staff's safety, many on Capitol Hill wondered if the Minnesota Democrat knew something everyone else didn't. The answer, it turns out, is far from it. Dayton last month received the same briefing as his fellow Senators about a CIA worst-case scenario involving simultaneous terrorist attacks across the country. Yet he apparently took the hypothetical threat as an imminent one. ‘Most people who heard the briefing,’ sniffs an intelligence official, ‘understood the context. It was theoretical.’” (Elaine Shannon, “Why Didn't 99 Other Senators Close Up Shop Too?” Time, October 25, 2004)

Star Tribune Rebuked Dayton For Shutting Office. “We join the Capitol Hill security chief, the Homeland Security leadership, the mayor of Washington and, apparently, every other member of Congress in scratching our heads at Mark Dayton's preemptive shuttering of his Senate office. What can he really be thinking?” (Editorial, “Dayton's alarm; A self-defeating take on terror,” Star Tribune, October 14, 2004)

  • “It's simply impossible to take Dayton's alarm seriously in the absence of any other lawmaker or security official, so far, coming to a similar conclusion. Take it as political theater, it is farcical - and counterproductive. The vulnerability of this nation and its institutions to terrorism is an urgent and vital subject, one that is generating too much sloganeering and too little scrutiny in this election season. If Dayton's purpose was to underscore a legitimate issue of national security - how much remains to be done to ensure Americans' safety from terrorist attack - he could have chosen many a better way of making the point. Indeed, it's difficult to imagine a worse way. Instead of pointing out the emperor's startling nakedness, Dayton has cast himself as the lone little chicken who claims the sky is falling.” (Editorial, “Dayton's alarm; A self-defeating take on terror,” Star Tribune, October 14, 2004)

Roll Call: Dayton’s Actions “Irresponsible.” “Sen. Mark Dayton (D-Minn.) has done himself, his staff and Congress no good by shutting down his Senate office through the election period because he fears a terrorist attack. His action seems panicky and based more on speculation than information. Thankfully, not one other Member of Congress has followed Dayton's example.” (Editorial, “Irresponsible,” Roll Call, October 21, 2004)

Delegate Eleanor Holmes Norton (D- D.C.) Blasted Dayton Decision To Close Office. ‘I regret that any office in the Capitol would be closed today,’ Norton said. ‘Such action is particularly perplexing,’ she said, ‘in light of the briefing of House and Senate Members that occurred two weeks ago. I have been unequivocally assured by security officials this evening that there was no specific intelligence concerning a risk at the Capitol two weeks ago and there is none today. Like every Member of Congress, I would never put any of my staff or constituents in danger. The Capitol is in a residential neighborhood where I also reside. At the same time, we have an obligation to avoid signals of alarm to the public when there is no evidence to support increased danger.’” (Press release from Eleanor Holmes Norton, “Del. Norton Says No Evidence or Inlelligence Of Risk To Personnel At Capitol,” October 12, 2004)

Other Minnesota Democrats Kept Offices Open. “Mary Kerr, a spokeswoman for Rep. James L. Oberstar, D-Minn., said that her office had checked with the office of the House Sergeant at Arms , and was advised not to do anything differently…’My staff and I rely on the sound professional judgment of U.S. Capitol Police to keep us informed and safe. At this time, our office has not received any notice of a heightened threat,’ said a written statement from Rep. Betty McCollum, D-Minn. ‘My congressional offices in Washington and St. Paul will remain open for business.’” (Allison Stevens, “Sen. Dayton Closes Washington Office, Citing Security Concerns,” Congressional Quarterly Today, October 12, 2004)

D.C.’s Democrat Mayor Puzzled By Dayton’s Decision. “‘I'm literally scratching my head, trying to figure out what frequency he's on,’ Anthony Williams, Washington's Democratic mayor, told reporters. ‘This is a safe city. I just think this is a very strange aberration.’ (Fred Frommer, “Dayton defends decision to close office,” The Associated Press, October 13, 2004)

D.C. Residents Questioned Dayton’s Move. “In addition to mocking responses from city leaders and congressmen, Mr. Dayton's decision was greeted with outrage yesterday from D.C. residents, including hot dog vendor Imam Lete. ‘I think he's selfish,’ said Miss Lete, 49, at her hot dog cart on C Street NW near Capitol Hill. ‘He's rich, he can afford to stay home. If I stayed home, I wouldn't eat. I'd be broke and I'd be homeless.’” (Tarron Lively and Charles Hurt, “Leaders in D.C. mock Dayton,” The Washington Times, October 14, 2004)

Dayton Attacked South Dakota

Dayton: Mayo Clinic “Worth A Hell Of A Lot More Than The Whole State Of South Dakota.” “The Mayo Clinic, which is in Rochester, Minn., was opposed to a South Dakota--based company's plan to expand its railroads into Rochester because it would mean dozens of trains passing by the clinic each day. Dayton told FORTUNE magazine the Mayo Clinic is ‘worth a hell of a lot more than the whole state of South Dakota.’" ("America's Worst - Mark Dayton: The Blunderer," Time, April 14, 2006)

  • “Thune, R-S.D., who lobbied for the railroad while campaigning for the Senate in 2004, condemned the comments Tuesday, calling them ‘unconscionable, offensive and wholly unbecoming of a United States senator.’ ‘Unlike Senator Dayton, we may not all be millionaires in South Dakota, but we understand the value of hard work and appreciate real-world experience,’ he said.” (Aaron Blake, “Dayton apologizes for dig at S. Dakota,” Star Tribune, March 1, 2006)

Dayton Sued By Former Staffer

Former Dayton Staffer: I Was Fired Staff Because Of Medical Condition. “Sen. Mark Dayton, D-Minn., has been sued by a former aide who alleges he was illegally fired after developing a heart condition. Brad Hanson, who served as Dayton's Minnesota office manager until last September, said Dayton fired him after he met with the senator to discuss the need for an operation to correct his cardiac arrhythmia. In the lawsuit, filed last week in U.S. District Court in Washington, Hanson claims the dismissal violated the Family and Medical Leave Act, the Americans With Disabilities Act and the Fair Labor Standards Act. He is seeking his old job back, with back pay, and unspecified monetary damages.” (Staff Report, “Dayton faces suit by a fired aide”, Pioneer Press, June 4, 2003)

Barney Frank Filed Friend Of The Court Brief On Behalf Of Former Dayton Employee. “Retired Sen. Mark Dayton has been trying to shield himself from a lawsuit by a former congressional aide by using a legal defense so unusual that it has alienated his former colleagues and been scorned by the courts…After the senator left office last year, he changed legal tactics by arguing he could no longer be sued for conduct that occurred when he was an elected official. That argument was rejected by a federal court last month, but not before Reps. Barney Frank, Massachusetts Democrat, and Christopher Shays, Connecticut Republican, filed a friend-of-the-court brief in support of the former employee. Granting Mr. Dayton immunity because he had left office ‘would render the protections [granted by the Congressional Accountability Act of 1995] wholly illusory and defeat the goals of the [law],’ the two lawmakers argued. The Senate Legal Counsel's Office also filed a brief in the case, saying Mr. Dayton should not be allowed to escape liability just because he had left office.” (Tom Ramstack, “Ex-senator’s legal tactics spurned”, The Washington Times, March 6, 2008)

Other Lowlights From Dayton’s Senate Term

Dayton Boycotted Visiting Foreign Leader. Sen. Mark Dayton boycotted the congressional address of Iraqi Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki Wednesday, saying the visiting leader had unfairly blamed Israel in its standoff with Hezbollah in Lebanon…’I further believe that addressing Congress should be a rare honor, one accorded to historic international leaders, such as Winston Churchill or Nelson Mandela,’ Dayton added.” (Fred Frommer, “Dayton boycotting Iraqi Prime Minister’s speech,” The Associated Press, July 26 2006)

Dayton: “Giving A Bible To A Politician Is Akin To Giving A Blowtorch To A Pyromaniac.” “In addition to being un-American, this amendment is also Un-Christian. I hesitate to bring religion into this debate. I am highly skeptical of politicians who do so. Giving a Bible to a politician is akin to giving a blowtorch to a pyromaniac.” (Mark Dayton, Congressional Record – Senate, S5467, June 6, 2006)


After Spending $12 Million On 2000 Senate Run, Dayton Promised He Wouldn’t Self Finance Another Campaign. “Sen. Mark Dayton, D-Minn., who spent nearly $12 million of his personal fortune on his 2000 campaign, said Wednesday that he is not planning to finance his 2006 reelection bid out of his own pocket. ‘I can not either politically or financially afford to finance my campaigns in the future the way I have in the past,’ Dayton said… In financial records disclosed last year, Dayton listed assets of between $14.4 million and $65 million, with a checkbook balance in the range of $5 million to $25 million. He also has millions in a blind trust.” (Todd Milbourn, “Dayton says he won’t finance reelection bid”, Star Tribune, February 28, 2002)

Dayton Will Spend Own Cash On Gubernatorial Campaign. “It took Mark Dayton two tries and many millions from his personal fortune to win one of Minnesota's U.S. Senate seats...Mark Dayton's name recognition and personal wealth make him a legitimate contender for the Democratic nomination. Dayton has said he will contribute to his own campaign, though he hasn't said how much. He plans to run in the summer primary even if party activists endorse another candidate at their April convention; most in the race say they'll drop out without that earlier seal of approval.” (Brian Bakst, “Ex-Minn. senator seeks revival in governor’s race”, The Associated Press, January 1, 2010)


Hard Left Dayton Attacked Governor Pawlenty For Refusing To Tax Raises. “That Pawlenty won't raise taxes ‘even one penny,’ Dayton said, ‘is a disgrace.’” (Brad Swenson, “Beltrami County DFL fundraiser: Gubernatorial candidates blast budget,” The Bemidji Pioneer, February 17, 2009)

Dayton: “The Foundation Of My Platform Is That We Will Raise Taxes On The Wealthiest 10 Percent Of People In The State.” “Former Democratic U.S. Sen. Mark Dayton said he would tax the wealthiest Minnesotans. ‘The foundation of my platform is that we will raise taxes on the wealthiest 10 percent of people in the state,’ Dayton said.” (Jason Hoppin, “In first bipartisan debate, gubernatorial candidates offer their solutions to hunger, poverty,” Pioneer Press, October 14, 2009)

Dayton’s Number One Priority: Raise Taxes. “Asked what bill they would want passed first if they were elected governor, Gaertner said the main thing is to balance the state's budget. Former U.S. Sen. Mark Dayton said he would increase funding for public education and ‘link it to progressive tax increases on the wealthiest people, who can afford it.’" (Bill Salisbury, “700 turn out to hear 11 DFL governor hopefuls make case,” Pioneer Press, November 24, 2009)

Dayton Wants Rich Taxed More. “During a state AFL-CIO forum in Bloomington attended by 11 announced or potential 2010 Democratic-Farmer-Labor gubernatorial candidates, former U.S. Sen. Mark Dayton called for increasing income taxes on the wealthiest 10 percent of Minnesotans to pay for more state aid to schools. ‘Read my lips: Tax the rich; they can afford it. I know that,’ said Dayton, the wealthy heir to a department store fortune.” (Bill Salisbury, “DFL gubernatorial hopefuls call for tax hikes to fund education,” Pioneer Press, October 1, 2009)

Dayton “Vocal” About Raising Taxes. “Dayton and Marty were the most vocal about increasing taxes on Minnesota's wealthiest people. At one point, Dayton addressed the GOP camera and said he would increase taxes on 10 percent of the wealthiest earners in Minnesota.” (Charley Shaw, “DFL candidates seek the competitive edge for 2010 Minn. gov race,” The Legal Ledger, August 31, 2009)

Dayton: Tax The Rich. “Mark Dayton has a simple foundation for his campaign to be Minnesota's next governor -- tax the rich.” (Linda Vanderwerf, “Dayton talks gov. run during Willmar visit, says richest pay more taxes under his plan,” West Central Tribune, December 17, 2009)

Revenue Department And Other DFL Candidates Call Dayton’s Plan Unrealistic. “[Tom] Bakk, the chairman of the Senate Tax Committee, says Minnesota can't realistically tax the rich enough to erase the state's projected $5.4 billion deficit in the next biennium and can't afford to pump a boatload of new money into schools when the state is awash in red ink… The Revenue Department's [Paul] Wilson told Minnesota Public Radio that Dayton's proposal would require a 40 percent income tax increase on those top earners, raising their rate from 7.85 percent to around 13 percent. That would be by far the highest income tax rate in the nation… Bakk called Dayton's plan unrealistic… Bakk said he isn't trying to pick a fight with… Dayton. But he said all the candidates should stop suggesting easy but out-of-reach solutions to the state's budget problems. He said it's going to be ‘really tough medicine’ to take. ‘But we should tell them the truth.’" (Bill Salisbury, “Tax the Rich? Is it that simple?”, Pioneer Press, December 12, 2009)

Dayton Suggested Taxing Emails. “Sen. Mark Dayton (D-Minn.) believes lawmakers ought to go after spammers' wallets… ‘I think it's worth looking at some very, very small charge for every e-mail sent’.” (John Goff, “Re: That Spam I Sent You”, The Economist, June 12, 2003)

Dayton: Senate Might Need To Consider Taxing Emails. “If Congress is going to stop unsolicited commercial e-mail from swamping computer users, Sen. Mark Dayton says legislators might need to consider ‘a minuscule tax’ on e-mail. ‘It's difficult to prevent the use of spam when there's no cost associated with sending thousands, tens of thousands or even millions of e-mails,’ Dayton, D-Minn., said in a recent conference call with reporters.” (Elizabeth Dunbar, “Dayton: Tax may be spam remedy”, Star Tribune, November 19, 2003)

Dayton Voted Against Repealing Death Tax. (Congressional Record – Senate, Page S5434, Roll Call #151, June 12, 2002)


Dayton Used Fortune To Donate To Radical Causes. ”Between government jobs, Dayton managed his fortune, dabbled in civic activities and became legendary as a generous donor of his department-store family fortune to charitable and political causes. He gave hundreds of thousands of dollars to the Democratic Party, its candidates and many liberal and even radical causes, including the Black Panthers legal defense fund.” (Bill Salisbury, “Dayton again picks up thread of life of public service,” Pioneer Press, November 1, 2000)

Dayton Supports Gay Marriage. "’I'll vote against it, speak against it, do everything I can to convince people that this is one of the fundamental tests of a democracy: the ability of people to accept individual differences,’ said Democratic Sen. Mark Dayton. He said the amendment is not necessary because Congress in 1996 passed a law banning gay marriage.” (Rob Hotakainen, “Bush ignites new fight to try to ban gay marriage”, Star Tribune, June 6, 2006)

Dayton Voted Against Ban On Partial Birth Abortion. “Marking a milestone in the nation's abortion wars, the Senate approved a bill that prohibits doctors from performing the procedure, which opponents call partial-birth abortion. The bill bars doctors from committing an "overt act" designed to kill a partially delivered fetus…"Does it appear that we're avoiding something? Well, we are," Sen. Mark Dayton, D-Minn., said on the Senate floor. He voted against the ban…Public opinion polls show 70 percent support for a ban on the procedure.” (Rob Hotakainen, “Senate votes to ban late-term abortion method”, Star Tribune, March 14, 2003)

Thursday, January 14, 2010

"Quite disturbing"

I have heard rumors before that the federal government might try to "force" retirees to invest in T-bills. I dismissed this because I was sure that the american electorate would never permit it. It is outrageous and tyrannical.

Read this.

They describe it as "quite disturbing". I agree. Options have a tendency to turn into incentives, which turn into mandates. Soon you have no choice.

This is the stuff of third world dictatorships and petty dictators. It is not possible in the land of free citizens.

More commentary here and here and here and here.

Very disturbing.

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Our government imposes on us, much as the British government once imposed upon us

Today we have the 111 Congress actively imposing on us a great many taxes on virtually all aspects of our lives. Our businesses face an overabundance of regulations and taxes. Our school districts are no longer "Independent School Districts," but are over burdened with federal and state mandates. We, the residents of these school districts, no longer have a say in what is taught our children. The rights of the states, once recognized under the Tenth Amendment, have been trampled on by the federal government. The Fifth Amendment has lost its meaning. We are no longer secure in our possessions, citizens continue to lose our property to government entities through unsavory eminent domain practices.

Today our elected officials are busy picking which business will succeed and which will fail. Banks and auto manufacturers are a couple of examples. Next in line is our health care. Doctors, drug manufacturers, and insurers will be told they must succumb to the wishes of our government. And while this is happening, we will be told that it is for our own good. Meanwhile, our taxes go up, our pay goes down or we lose our jobs, and inflation devalues our currency because of the policies of the nanny state.

Three hundred years ago, our country was founded by immigrants who sought freedom in a new land. By the time the colonies were well established and many of the cities grew large and prosperous, they became the victims of a nanny state. Not one of their own making, but that of an overbearing government bent on maintaining an empire. The British government imposed excessive taxes and levy's on imported goods to the colonies. The production of items such as glass and nails was prohibited within the colonies in an attempt to protect businesses in England at the expense of our own people. Foreign troops were quartered in our homes. British ships blockaded our ports.

In 1774, Ben Franklin was living in England representing the interests of the colonies. After the Boston Tea Party, Franklin argued for the compensation to the East India Company as a kindly gesture, but as the British government was insisting, he changed his mind and insisted against it. To a Boston merchant he said something quite prophetic.

"If you should ever tamely submit to the yoke prepared for you, you cannot conceive how much you will be despised here, even by those who are endeavoring to impose it on you. Your very children and grandchildren will curse your memories for entailing disgrace upon them and theirs, and making them ashamed to own their country."

Because of these words from one of our greatest Americans, we are reminded of our duty to defend our liberties against another tyrannical government. This time within our own borders. Witness the disdain with which our officials see us. We are looked down upon as the ignorant masses. We are seen as incapable of comprehending that which they decide for us. No longer are the cameras allowed in hearings. They are working behind closed doors to decide our future while we are kept away. We cannot stand by idly while our government runs up an unpardonable deficit to be paid by our descendants. Can we look our children or our grandchildren in the eye when they ask us what we did as we lost our liberties? Will our descendants tell tales of pride or disgrace and shame when they speak of us? The responsibility for that is ours. The time is now.

Republican Party of Minnesota Applauds Fines Against Kelliher, DFL Party

St. Paul- Republican Party of Minnesota Chairman Tony Sutton and Deputy Chairman Michael Brodkorb today issued the following statement after the Minnesota Campaign Finance and Public Disclosure Board fined DFL gubernatorial candidate Margaret Anderson Kelliher $9,000 and the DFL Party $15,000. The Board’s ruling was in response to a Republican Party of Minnesota complaint filed in December.

“Today’s ruling vindicates our belief that Margaret Anderson Kelliher deliberately circumvented Minnesota’s campaign finance laws to benefit her campaign for governor. Along with R.T. Rybak, Kelliher is now the second DFL gubernatorial candidate to have been involved in a scheme to get around Minnesota's campaign finance laws. Kelliher and other Democrats are wrong to think they don't have to play by the rules. These sort of schemes demonstrate Kelliher does not have the judgment to lead our great state.”

Sunday, January 10, 2010

The Shape of Things to Come

Economics is may be the "dismal science", but some economic laws are a lot like gravity. The laws of supply and demand are ironclad.

We have learned over the last 100 years, in repeated experiments, what happens when governments ignore this, and try to dictate market outcomes. In Cuba, the Soviet Union, and even in the 1970s in the USA when President Nixon imposed wage and price controls, we have learned that trying to engineer economic outcomes against markets is a fool's errand.

In most cases, these market interventions are simply failures, resulting in long lines, and/or wasted resources. If the governments are more determined to impose their will, the result is much more severe. In some cases it has been mass starvation and death, as in Pol Pot's Cambodia, and Stalin's Ukraine in the 1930s.

Our next lesson is unfolding in Venezuela. Mr. Chavez is unhappy with the way the economy is going. You can read about his current situation here.

The people of Venezuela have allowed someone who neither understands, nor supports markets and private property to gain power. Mr. Chavez is showing a willingness to bypass legal protections and process and to use force to impose his agenda.

We have seen where this leads. Mr. Chavez will fail to force the markets to bend to his will.

Ultimately, Mr. Chavez will back off, and the markets will do their work. If brute force is used to try to impose Mr. Chavez's will on the Venezuelan people, it will do great damage to the nation, but not change the economic outcome much.

The USA recently elected a new government that has limited respect for markets and private property, and a zeal for enacting its agenda over the objections of some citizens.

We need to watch Venezuela carefully, because it could be a preview of things to come.

America Rising Video, An Open Letter to Democrats

This is a powerful video, a must see,

Wednesday, January 6, 2010

NPR - your tax dollars at work

Dig the following video, posted by NPR here.

This is an editorial, and as an editorial, it is reasonable for NPR to publish it, even though I find it pretty insulting and distasteful. That said, when NPR's request next comes before Congress, I will be reminding my representatives that I don't appreciate my tax dollars going toward efforts to insult and demean me.

This sort of thing reminds us why organizations like NPR should be funded by donations, not tax dollars.

Tuesday, January 5, 2010

Transparency and Process

The Hill has an article here about the White House ducking questions about a C-SPAN request for access to the negotiations on health care "reform".

Mr. Gibbs is quoted in the article as saying that "I don't think there's anyone who would say there hasn't been a thorough, robust debate on healthcare," and adds "I do not believe the American people have lacked for information on what's in these bills."

These bills weigh in at over 2000 pages each, and various members of congress have admitted not reading them, not understanding them, and not feeling that they even have an obligation to read them. (here, and here) When asked about constitutionality, Speaker Pelosi famously asked "are you serious?".

Many of the provisions in Senate bill were written into a "manager's amendment", that was only revealed to the Senate hours before the final vote. The public analysis of this legislation has barely started, much less been completed.

(See Harry Reid comment on "managers amendments" here)

No one understands these bills, or their consequences. The CBO estimates their cost, but it is generally agreed that this is little more than a guess. The Senate bill is estimated to spend $1 Trillion dollars, and raise taxes an equal amount. That's a LOT of money.

We should support the C-SPAN request for access. Process matters.

Benjamin Franklin is said to have replied that we have a republic "if you can keep it". Now is the time. Write your representatives. Both the legislation being considered, and the process that is being used to pass it should be condemned by every responsible citizen.

THE RUKAVINA RECORD Pointless Personal Attacks, Kucinich Style Liberalism, Tax Increases


Rukavina “Wanted” To “Slap” Patricia Anderson. “A simmering feud between State Auditor Patricia Anderson and DFL state Rep. Tom Rukavina of Virginia grew hotter Monday over a Rukavina quote in a magazine profile about him. … The magazine mentions an incident last session where Rukavina called Anderson ‘Osama Bin Awada’ (Anderson had the last name Awada before a recent divorce). ‘I don't apologize for that,’ Rukavina said. ‘I wanted to slap her around a bit for what she's done up here.’” (“State auditor objects to Rukavina remark,” Associated Press, April 12, 2004)

  • “The decline of civility in America is a concern felt by many people these days. It's impossible to quantify, but rather it's a sense one gets in our personal lives and through the media, especially in the world of politics, that people aren't as nice to one another as they once were. Still, most of us expect those elected to be our leaders to set an example for the way we treat one another, whether we agree with them or not. That is why it is disappointing to hear of the strident -- even rough-and-tumble -- remarks by Minnesota Rep. Tom Rukavina, DFL-Virginia, in a totally uncalled for feud with Republican State Auditor Pat Anderson.” (Editorial, “Lawmaker Should Cease Making Uncivil Remarks,” Duluth News-Tribune, April 14, 2004)
  • “Asked this week about using the words ‘slap around,’ Rukavina said he didn't mean it literally, adding, ‘If she can't take a joke, it shows she's even goofier than I thought she was.’ Rukavina needs to simmer down and temper his remarks. He's sent to St. Paul by his northern Minnesota district to help his constituents improve their lives, not insult state officials with whom he disagrees -- state officials whose cooperation he might need to achieve his legislative goals. It's not only uncivil, it's impolitic.” (Editorial, “Lawmaker Should Cease Making Uncivil Remarks,” Duluth News-Tribune, April 14, 2004)

“Because Of His Style And Sometimes Politically Incorrect Cracks, He’s Not Seen As A Serious Candidate By Many.” (Doug Grow, “17 candidates on the long march: Sizing up Minnesota's crowded governor's race,” Minn Post, January 4, 2010)


Rukavina Voted To Raise State Gas Tax, Metro Wide Sales Tax And License Tab Fees. (H.F. 2800, February 25, 2008)

  • “Minnesotans will see their first state gas tax increase in 20 years as part of an ambitious $6.6 billion transportation plan... The legislation would increase the state gas tax 5 1/2 cents by fall and then by up to another 3 cents; 3 1/2 cents of the 8 1/2 cents would be in place until bonds authorized under the plan are retired.” (Mike Kaszuba & Mark Brunswick, “House, Senate Override A Pawlenty Veto For The First Time,” Star Tribune, February 25, 2008)
  • “Under another provision, a quarter-cent sales tax increase would occur in the seven-county Twin Cities metro area without a referendum, with all proceeds going to transit projects.” (Mike Kaszuba & Mark Brunswick, “House, Senate Override A Pawlenty Veto For The First Time,” Star Tribune, February 25, 2008)
  • “The sales tax would raise an estimated $1.1 billion over 10 years. In Hennepin County, the state's most populous, it would generate more than half of that amount, or $606 million.” (Mike Kaszuba & Mark Brunswick, “House, Senate Override A Pawlenty Veto For The First Time,” Star Tribune, February 25, 2008)
  • “The legislation also will increase license tab fees on vehicles, particularly luxury cars…” (Mike Kaszuba & Mark Brunswick, “House, Senate Override A Pawlenty Veto For The First Time,” Star Tribune, February 25, 2008)

Rukavina Backed Gas Tax Hike For Years. “State taxes on gasoline would increase 6 cents a gallon by mid-2007 under a bill approved Friday by the Minnesota House Taxes Committee. The vote to raise the gas tax came despite a run-up in gas prices that has left motorists paying about $2.75 a gallon for fuel that a year ago cost just over $2. … Rukavina's amendment would raise the current 20-cents-a-gallon gas tax by 3 cents July 1 and another 3 cents July 1, 2007.” (Patrick Sweeney, “House panel approves 6-cent gas tax increase,” Pioneer Press, May 6, 2006)

Rukavina: “I Am Going To Tax Everybody In This Room.” “Tom Rukavina did not mince words in Minnesota’s first gubernatorial forum featuring candidates from both major parties. ‘I am going to tax everybody in this room,’ the Virginia Democratic state representative declared. He promised that if elected he would raise taxes on the richest Minnesotans more than others, but all Minnesotans would pay an income tax surcharge.” (Don Davis, “Minnesota governor's race: Democrats willing to raise taxes,” Forum Communications, October 15, 2009)

  • “Bakk said he is telling voters the ‘unpleasant truth’ that it will take both tax increases and spending cuts -- plus tax incentives to spark job creation -- to erase the deficit. He has proposed an across-the-board income tax increase and a new top rate for wealthy taxpayers to raise $2.2 billion to help balance the budget. The Senate approved his plan last spring, but it died in the House. Rukavina and a third candidate, Sen. John Marty, support similar plans.” (Bill Salisbury, “Tax the rich? Is it that simple?” Pioneer Press, December 12, 2009)

Rukavina Maintains There’s “Not Much Fat Left” In State Government. “One student asked if the Legislature could look for areas of waste in state government. ‘There's not much fat left,’ as budgets have been cut for years, Rukavina said. ‘We haven't had any new spending.’” (Linda Vanderwerf, “Rukavina talks state budget at Ridgewater,” West Central Tribune, November 4, 2009)


Rukavina is House Co-Sponsor Of John Marty’s Far-Left Health Care Plan. “Of course, Marty is known more as a visionary liberal than as a pragmatic politician. But his bill has now acquired 71 co-sponsors in the Legislature and has been passed by two Senate committees. You'll find more on the plan, which Marty named The Minnesota Health Plan, here. Legislative support for the plan is definitely growing. It's crazy, but not completely crazy, to think that such a bill could pass. (It is important to note that there is no specific plan at present for raising the revenue to pay for the plan. Marty argues that the revenue should not be called ‘taxes’ but ‘premiums.’ But they will look and feel a lot like taxes. He argues that most Minnesotans will end up paying less than they pay now in health insurance premiums.) … State Sen. Tom Bakk of Cook and state Rep. Tom Rukavina of Virginia are co-sponsors of the Minnesota Health Plan.” (Eric Black, “Surprising support: 6 of 10 DFL candidates for governor back single-payer state health plan,” MinnPost.com, December 22, 2009)


Rukavina Backed Far-Left Dennis Kucinich For President. “Reps. Mike Jaros, DFL-Duluth; Mary Murphy, DFL-Hermantown; Bill Hilty, DFL-Finlayson; and Tom Rukavina, DFL-Virginia, all say U.S. Rep. Dennis Kucinich is still their man. ‘I don't think he has a chance, but there's just something about short, articulate Croatians,’ Rukavina said.” (Scott Thistle, “DFLers Are Split Over The Race For President,” Duluth News Tribune, March 1, 2004)

Monday, January 4, 2010

No Rise of Airborne Fraction of Carbon Dioxide in Past 150 Years, New Research Finds

ScienceDaily (Dec. 31, 2009) — Most of the carbon dioxide emitted by human activity does not remain in the atmosphere, but is instead absorbed by the oceans and terrestrial ecosystems. In fact, only about 45 percent of emitted carbon dioxide stays in the atmosphere.

However, some studies have suggested that the ability of oceans and plants to absorb carbon dioxide recently may have begun to decline and that the airborne fraction of anthropogenic carbon dioxide emissions is therefore beginning to increase.

Many climate models also assume that the airborne fraction will increase. Because understanding of the airborne fraction of carbon dioxide is important for predicting future climate change, it is essential to have accurate knowledge of whether that fraction is changing or will change as emissions increase.

To assess whether the airborne fraction is indeed increasing, Wolfgang Knorr of the Department of Earth Sciences at the University of Bristol reanalyzed available atmospheric carbon dioxide and emissions data since 1850 and considers the uncertainties in the data.

In contradiction to some recent studies, he finds that the airborne fraction of carbon dioxide has not increased either during the past 150 years or during the most recent five decades.

The research is published in Geophysical Research Letters.

Friday, January 1, 2010

Don't Cry For Me, America

In the early 20th century, Argentina was one of the richest countries in the world. While Great Britain's maritime power and its far-flung empire had propelled it to a dominant position among the world's industrialized nations, only the United States challenged Argentina for the position of the world's second-most powerful economy.

It was blessed with abundant agriculture, vast swaths of rich farmland laced with navigable rivers and an accessible port system. Its level of industrialization was higher than many European countries: railroads, automobiles and telephones were commonplace.

In 1916, a new president was elected. Hipólito Irigoyen had formed a party called The Radicals under the banner of "fundamental change" with an appeal to the middle class.

Among Irigoyen's changes: mandatory pension insurance, mandatory health insurance, and support for low-income housing construction to stimulate the economy. Put simply, the state assumed economic control of a vast swath of the country's operations and began assessing new payroll taxes to fund its efforts.

With an increasing flow of funds into these entitlement programs, the government's payouts soon became overly generous. Before long its outlays surpassed the value of the taxpayers' contributions. Put simply, it quickly became under-funded, much like the United States' Social Security and Medicare programs.

The death knell for the Argentine economy, however, came with the election of Juan Perón. Perón had a fascist and corporatist upbringing; he and his charismatic wife aimed their populist rhetoric at the nation's rich.

This targeted group "swiftly expanded to cover most of the propertied middle classes, who became an enemy to be defeated and humiliated."

Under Perón, the size of government bureaucracies exploded through massive programs of social spending and by encouraging the growth of labor unions.

High taxes and economic mismanagement took their inevitable toll even after Perón had been driven from office. But his populist rhetoric and "contempt for economic realities" lived on. Argentina's federal government continued to spend far beyond its means.

Hyperinflation exploded in 1989, the final stage of a process characterized by "industrial protectionism, redistribution of income based on increased wages, and growing state intervention in the economy."

The Argentinean government's practice of printing money to pay off its public debts had crushed the economy. Inflation hit 3000%, reminiscent of the Weimar Republic. Food riots were rampant; stores were looted; the country descended into chaos.

And by 1994, Argentina's public pensions - the equivalent of Social Security - had imploded. The payroll tax had increased from 5% to 26%, but it wasn't enough. In addition, Argentina had implemented a value-added tax (VAT), new income taxes, a personal tax on wealth, and additional revenues based upon the sale of public enterprises. These crushed the private sector, further damaging the economy.

A government controlled "privatization" effort to rescue seniors' pensions was attempted. But, by 2001, those funds had also been raided by the government, the monies replaced by Argentina's defaulted government bonds.

By 2002, ".government fiscal irresponsibility. induced a national economic crisis as severe as America's Great Depression."

In 1902 Argentina was one of the world's richest countries. Little more than a hundred years later, it is poverty-stricken, struggling to meet its debt obligations amidst a drought.

We've seen this movie before. The Democrats' populist plans can't possibly work, because government bankrupts everything it touches. History teaches us that ObamaCare and unfunded entitlement programs will be utter, complete disasters.

Today's Democrats are guilty of more than stupidity; they are enslaving future generations to poverty and misery. And they will be long gone when it all implodes. They will be as cold and dead as Juan Perón when the piper must ultimately be paid.


A tear for Argentina's pension funds;
ARGENTINA'S experience with private pensions offers a sobering lesson. Four years of recession and its worst financial crisis in history have brought Argentina, the world's sixth richest country in 1902, to its knees a hundred years on.

A quarter of the Argentine population is unemployed. Over half the population is now officially below the poverty line. Rioters loot supermarkets. A people, once proud of eating the best beef in the world, now fight over carcasses of cows when cattle-trucks overturn. The exchange rate has gone from one peso to one US dollar — fixed for over a decade under the convertibility law — to over three pesos to the dollar: Argentines' savings have been cut by two-thirds in five months. The government has defaulted on its $150-billion debt. Bank deposits have been frozen since December and the government now proposes to give depositors long-term peso-denominated government bonds in lieu of their US dollar deposits.

Inflation in Argentina;

For most of the last fifty years, Argentina has vied with other South American countries and a few countries in other parts of the world for the dubious honor of having the highest inflation rate in the world. As is always the case with rapid inflation, the price increase in Argentina was fueled by rapid expansion of the money supply. The seigniorage earned from monetary expansion served the needs of the government as a method of taxation that was difficult to avoid and politically easy to enact.

Argentina, like many other chronic-inflation economies, went through repeated cycles of hyperinflation followed by attempts at stabilization. A typical cycle in such an inflationary economy begins with acceleration of money creation to accommodate the government's budgetary needs. As inflation accelerates, political pressure to reduce inflation builds, leading to an eventual "monetary reform." Such reforms usually include the introduction of a new currency (which is convenient since inflation has usually moved the nominal prices of goods and services into the thousands, million, billions, or even trillions of units of the old currency) and promises on the part of the government (which is in charge of the budget) and the central bank (which is in charge of issuing money and is often under direct control of the government) to follow rules leading to slower monetary growth in the future.

The United States of Argentina
Could it happen here? The U.S. certainly has very different political traditions from Argentina and more barriers to a populist-driven rape of the economy. On the other hand, events in some regions would make Juan Perón smile wistfully. California runs on particularly high taxes, uncontrollable deficits, and overregulation with a vastly swollen bureaucracy while the hegemonic power of organized labor prevents any reform. Thankfully, the state has no power to devalue its currency, still less to freeze bank accounts or seize pension funds, and businesses can still relocate elsewhere. But in its social values and progressive assumptions, California is close to the Democratic mainstream, which now intends to impose its ideas on the nation as a whole. And at over 60 percent of GDP, U.S. public debt is already higher than Argentina’s.

Kudos to Jews for the Preservation of Firearms Ownership.

Global Warming - From John Coleman, Founder of the Weather Channel