The impulse to tell you what to do with your money is strong with Democrats. They do not trust you. What you want is not as important as what they want. Why would you want your money so that you could run your business as you see fit, when they are willing to tell you what is fit? And they're willing to do so for free! Well, with your money. But not theirs!
While 180,000 look for work, Democrats raise taxes on small businesses
Salem, OR – A bill that will make Oregon families and small businesses pay $96 million more in taxes passed the Senate floor Thursday, 17 to 13. The bill is being heralded as a ‘job killer.’
“The end result of this bill is that Oregon businesses and families will pay $96 million more in taxes,” said Senator Ted Ferrioli (R-John Day), the Senate Republican Leader. “While Oregon hemorrhages jobs and families wonder where they will get the next paycheck, Democrats are putting a rush order on tax increases for employers and families. This isn’t just a disconnect from the federal tax code, this is a disconnect from Oregonians who are hurting and looking for work.”
House Bill 2157 disconnects the state from the federal tax code, a technical maneuver that mutes the effect of federal tax relief for businesses and families in Oregon. The bill would eliminate several job creating provisions in the American Recovery and Reinvestment Tax Act, the federal stimulus package currently in Congress, such as:
Extending bonus depreciation for businesses to 50% write-off of capital expenditures made in 2009
Write-off for small businesses for up to $250,000 of capital expenditures made in 2009
The bill also allows the state to tax unemployment compensation.
Senator Frank Morse (R-Albany) read from his Chamber of Commerce list for five minutes on the Senate floor, highlighting the local, small businesses that will be hurt by the tax increase.
“We should be focusing on creating jobs, not killing them,” said Senator Chris Telfer (R-Bend), a Certified Public Accountant. “Oregon small business say this is going to cost them jobs. If a business in Oregon was thinking of using these tools to expand, invest in new equipment and hire new workers, they are going to have to think again. With over 180,000 Oregonians looking for work, this bill is disconnected from reality.”
House Bill 2157 passed on a party line vote in the House of Representatives last week. The bill, House Bill 2157, was fast-tracked to the Senate Floor in order to avoid constitutional voting requirements required for raising taxes.
Imagine having a budget to promote tourism in Oregon.
And you do a study. And you find that most visitors in Oregon come from California.
So you spend millions in advertising. In New York. Illinois. Texas. And what is the message of your advertising?
A reasonable man might say that this is a foolish expense. Why would you spend millions of dollars to promote a visit to California when your goal is to promote a visit to Oregon?
The tourism manager will point out his study. He has facts. This type of silly thinking is expressed best by bills before the Oregon legislature. Whether it's increasing taxes, increasing spending, increasing "green" energy, Oregon's policy has been to spend million on a Visit California campaign.
You want cheap, affordable, dependable energy? You're not going to find it chasing "green" energy programs. Coal and nuclear? Could be on-line in years. Affordable, dependable electricity. Lower energy costs translate into higher productivity.
But Oregon's official energy policy is to increase the cost of electricity. Note to Oregon legislators: Visit California.
(click on pic for full bio.) Dickens was a gifted writer.
Reading "A Tale of Two Cities" is a quite different experience than watching the movie. You get a much fuller sense of the horror involved in the French Revolution.
1789 was a turning point.
What we had accomplished with our war of revolution had an impact upon Europeans well beyond the direct impact of our declaration of independence from England. In 1789 Europe was ruled by kings. In America, we ruled ourselves. First, under the Articles of Confederation. Then, with it's adoption in 1788, by our Constitution.
What we were doing here was setting up rules for self-governance. The men engaged in this process were well-schooled in the fundamentals of rationalism and empiricism. Philosophy wasn't just a word used to describe some sort of thinking. If you meet a kid today, chances are that anyone who can string together twelve words in a clearly written sentence deserves the title "philosopher." Today, just for giggles, ask the folks around you--at home or at work--who their favourite philosopher is? And share your results in the comments. I'd also like to know who is your favourite philosopher.
You cannot know the meaning of "American" without some sort of grounding in the development of the major schools of philosophy. And without this sort of grounding, you're tempted to believe that America's Constitution was just a piece of paper that a bunch of grumpy white guys put together to protect themselves. And, if you visit your local public school, you will be presented American history in just this way. Pathetic really. In the rush to present a more politically correct version of American history, union teachers have been reduced to reciting cant.
American history is nothing if not full of religion. And religious belief. But religion qua religion wasn't determined to be avoided at all costs until the late 1960's or early 1970's. Removing prayer from school? We can argue on that one. But the issue here is not one of mandatory prayer--or even voluntary prayer--the issue is one of taking an issue, school prayer, and using it to excise religion from the classroom. And yet here we are, today, facing an enemy that grounds its war against us in religious terms. And our public schools are determined to excise religion from public instruction on grounds that fail to live up to any test of intellectual robustness.
Religion and philosophy both spring from the same font: Man.
So few of us have a substantial enough grounding in religion and philosophy to appreciate how these two schools have walked, while not always hand in hand, at least down the same path at the same time. Can we teach religion in our schools? I think we must. And I think it's fine to teach that when Washington prayed to God, he really was praying to God. And at the same time it's important that Washington was a member of the Church of England, not the Catholic church. But that might involve teaching our kids something about the history of England. And what about those Presbyters involved in writing our Constitution? That might involve teaching our kids something about John Knox.
Which would lead to a discussion of Calvin.
And, step-by-step, our children could learn that the foundations of our country were set about by the discussions and rules promulgated by these religious leaders. And, that step-by-step, those to whom we today apply the label "philosopher" were engaged in a discussion that used the elements of rationalism and empiricism that lead to the development of a wonderful document: our Constitution.
In other words, our children would be taught to think.
Instead, what we have adopted as a model for education in this country--and especially in this county--is a model that pre-supposes outcomes based upon emotionally robust "visions". There is no exegetical analysis in promulgating these visions. The fundamental belief that it is man's nature to enquire into his existence has been expunged. Education today is expressed as a process, as steps to a career. The fundamental purpose of education has been replaced with a system that currently demonstrates what job you will occupy as you get older. You don't really need a high school education to change sheets or bus dishes. Some employers will want you to have a high school education to drive a truck. Or, answer a phone.
But if you want entry into the elite, you'll need a college education. But how many young minds of young boys have we lost by the time they qualify for admission into higher education? Four more years of parroting crap? For what? Is higher education really higher education? Or simply, more indoctrination? The mind tires after relentless hectoring about what "your really should believe."
Which returns us to Madame Pelosi. And the image of Madame Defarge. The grandmother knitting. Watching as the socially criminal are brought to the guillotine. And don't forget the symbolic value of the Storming of the Bastille. (And far be it for me to point out that our "modern" Bastille lies somewhere in Cuba.) Most of what passes for modern political thought is based upon the French expressions derived from French Revolution. How can you decry the status quo without reference to the ancien regime? Again, a fulsome interrogation into the development of French political thought, both ante and post would be instructive. But we use cartoon methods of teaching European history. We see the heroes that stormed the Bastille with the same excitement we teach the uprising at Attica. Failing to remember that both institutions really did hold criminals.
And then throw in the characters from the Paris Commune. Jump ahead about a hundred years, and what do you get? Change!™ It's easier to describe what's happening in America with an understanding of what happened in Paris of the 1870's. Any reading of the event leads one repeatedly to the same, shop worn phrases with which the Left treats those it disregards. From Wikipedia:
"Communists, left-wing socialists, anarchists and others have seen the Commune as a model for, or a prefiguration of, a liberated society, with a political system based on participatory democracy from the grass roots up."
Any of these phrases seem familiar? From whom do these expressions get stated? Let's try some names: Obama? Reid? Waters? Schumer? Frank? Our own Senators Wyden and Merkley? Our governor? Your state representative?
There is currently no effective defense of what these folks view as the ancien regime. The fundamentals of governance and economics is being replaced in whole cloth by a "new" model, which is really quite an old model.
So, when the President of the United State of America gets up before the television cameras of the world for about an hour last night, and says "how can you criticize what we're trying to do, we haven't even tried it yet?", I guess the question is asked and answered. I doesn't matter that it has been tried elsewhere and failed. We haven't tried it "here".
Now, if it worked, it would still be in vogue in places that previously adopted the principles of socialism. You know...like the USSR and Soviet China. But just as the tools for rigourous intellectual investigation have been rooted from our schools, so too today is the general populace unequipped to perform the simplest intellectual test of contrast and compare. How is a state mandate of energy development "not like" the command economies of the FSU and Soviet China? How is government ownership of major industries and banks "not like" the command economies of the Soviet Union or Soviet China? How is the intent of our leaders, Obama, Pelosi, Reid, et. al., "not like" the intent of the leaders of the Soviet Union or Soviet China?
The simplest test, compare and contrast, fails. And the evolution of modern philosophy and polity are reduced to the level of 19th century cant.
How can you say its going to fail? We haven't even tried it yet.
As an attendee, you will be assigned to one of the discussion roundtables on the floor of the Seaside Convention Center. There will be around ten to twelve others at your table with one of your number designated as Discussion Leader. During the course of the event your table will engage in discussion of six issues; four on Saturday, two on Sunday. If you have an opinion and have never found a forum where you are comfortable sharing it, you will fit in fine at Dorchester. Imagine, a place--a friendly place--where you can begin to hone your discussion skills.
We are, as Republicans, too often too courteous to take advantage of the obvious weakness of what passes for argument in this state. We don't get involved. We keep our mouths shut.
Come to Dorchester and express yourself. You will find yourself excited again about politics.
If you live in Clatsop or Tillamook county, this should be an easy three days. No one is there taking attendence, so if you can't make all the sessions (golf on Sunday?) you don't get a note from teacher. If you live out of the area and want help with finding a cheap place to stay, let me know in comments. There are a couple of cheap motels where you won't get bit that I'd be happy to check for reservations. Or, maybe you want to park your RV. Let me know. I'll do what I can.