The Horse Sense Blog compares the nonsense in today's news with good ol' fashioned horse sense


“…I shall speak forth my sentiments freely and without reserve.… It is only in this way that we can hope to arrive at truth, and fulfill the great responsibility which we hold to God and our country. Should I keep back my opinions at such a time, through fear of giving offense, I should consider myself as guilty of treason towards my country, and of an act of disloyalty toward the Majesty of Heaven, which I revere above all earthly kings.” - Patrick Henry, March 23, 1775


"The further a society drifts from truth the more it will hate those who speak it." - George Orwell

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Monday, February 25, 2013

Ignore Sequestration, It Isn't The Real Problem


Here's the Nonsense:  The sequester must be dealt with immediately or America is going to suffer damage like we cannot imagine.  The President is right that our politicians must get together and solve this crisis by the end of the week before it's too late.

Here's the Horse Sense:  The sequester is not the big issue that people make it out to be.  The bigger issue is the Continuing Resolution coming up before the end of March, and bigger yet, is the budgeting process altogether.  That is the only way to fix our economic problems once and for all.

While everyone's talking about sequestration, the real issue is far bigger and lurking right around the corner.  The politicians in Washington will have to deal with a government shutdown by the end of March that is a much bigger issue.  While the sequestration will cause some minor cuts in the increases in spending, the Continuing Resolution needed by the end of March will have much bigger implications and impact. 

The GOP thinks this could be a benefit for them but we have to remember that these are the people who think they get a good deal from Obama when they give him what he wants.  

First, let's understand that the Continuing Resolution that they will have to pass will only carry through September, so it's not like this is any kind of long term solution to our spending problems.  Second, just like sequestration, this will only be about cutting the rate of growth in spending, not about cutting actual spending.  I'm sure it will do NOTHING to cut spending.

While there has been pressure on Republicans to leave sequestration alone and then for them to demand cuts on spending in the Continuing Resolution, the real issue is if they can stand up to the games the president plays.  

Right now President Obama has successfully painted a picture of the Republicans as being at fault for all that is wrong in America economically.  Does anyone think that Americans will see through his smoke screen and recognize him for what he is?  Does anyone think that the Republicans are actually capable of being able to turn a light on his phony claims and actions and get the American public to see the truth?  And remember, the mainstream media is busy carrying the water for the Democrats so it's not like they're going to help get the message out there.  

Many Republicans are hoping that Friday will come and the sequester will kick in and when not much really happens that they'll be able to point to it as an example of how the president cries wolf.  But unlike the little boy who cried wolf and wasn't believed, this president is believed and not even questioned.  The media, and by extension the American people, don't seem to care whether what he says is true or not. They want someone to blame for their economic ills and the Democrats and their media (that's the mainstream media) have screamed louder and longer than the Republicans can resist and thereby won the argument by default.

The Democrats will continue ridiculous arguments like that reported by Hotair.com about Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood talking to Candy Crowley on CNN last week:  "Air travel will go haywire if the sequester cuts take place, LaHood warns, but Crowley notes that (a) even with the sequester, the FAA will have more money in this year’s budget than last year’s, (b) the cuts bring the FAA back to their 2008 funding level in real dollars, and (c) the level of domestic flights has dropped by 27% since 9/11."   

The fact is that the media buy the administration's stories and unquestioningly support and repeat them as fact.  No one questions them, or only when (as Rush Limbaugh correctly says) someone commits a random act of journalism.  

America's economic problems will never be fixed until we all learn to question what we're told, demand answers and accountability, and elect leaders who will serve the American citizens and replace our baseline budgeting system with a zero based budgeting system.  

For those unfamiliar with zero based budgeting, the term simply means that each year when you do a new budget every item must be justified. No item
is exempt and no item is automatically accepted as being funded under the new budget. This is the way that you make sure you are spending your money wisely. 

Congress does not do this. They use a system called baseline budgeting that was put into effect through the Congressional Budget Act of 1974 and amended in 1987 when Congress changed the baseline to automatically keep pace with inflation. In using baseline budgeting Congress automatically assumes that every item in the federal budget will be an expenditure again the subsequent year. And ironically, they also assume that every item will get an increase in expense, so their decision isn’t whether or not the expense should continue. In fact, it’s not even whether or not the expense should be increased. They assume it will be an expense and that it will be increased. Their decision each year is how much to increase it. When they talk about spending cuts, they are really talking about how much less they will increase the expense than they had planned, not about actually reducing the amount of current spending.

Our elected political leaders know nothing about cutting spending.  The politicians in Washington who support the baseline budgetary process (which is most of them) and don't demand that a zero-based budgeting process be implemented should be fired by the voters and replaced with true leaders.  Until and unless we do we will continue to see the demise of America's economy which will ultimately result in the collapse of the United States… and it's not too far away.


Sunday, February 17, 2013

The Left Once Again Proves They Are Either Stupid Or Evil


Here's the Nonsense:  Politicians like Sen. Tom Harkin and Rep. Alan Grayson are so wise in their (respective) analyses that we don't have a spending problem and that President Obama is practical.  These are the kinds of people we need leading us out of the darkness we are in.

Here's the Horse Sense:  In reading what Harkin and Grayson each said recently I find that their views are either stupid or evil.  Either way, we shouldn't have people with such ideas in leadership.  They represent why America's politicians are out of touch with logic, reality, and common sense.  Leaders like this are why America is on its last legs.

With people like Senator Tom Harkin and Representative Alan Grayson as leaders in our elected government, we are in critical shape and there is no hope for the future without change that removes people like them from leadership.  The ideas they express should be enough to make us run from the room screaming.  It's time we replace our elected leaders with true leaders and get rid of the riff raff we have allowed into those positions because the ideas they express are either stupid or outright evil.  

In case you hadn't noticed, America is in so much trouble that it's likely we will never pull out of it.  We still have a chance, but the task to turn things around is monumental and will take every bit of effort we can muster to accomplish it.  But putting up with the ridiculous ideas we're seeing come out of Washington today is nothing but foolishness on our part as voters.  This blog talks about common sense, or what I like to refer to as horse sense.  I can tell you that my horses have more sense than most of those who've been elected as leaders.

Recently CNSNews wrote about Senator Harkin saying, "We're the richest nation in the history of the world.  That kind of begs the question doesn't it?  If we're so rich, why are we so broke?"  He went on to say, "Is it a spending problem?  No, it's because we have a misallocation of capital, a misallocation of wealth."  What kind of nonsense is that?  A family in financial trouble where they spend far more than they earn doesn't have a misallocation of wealth problem.  They have a spending problem.  Their problem isn't that they have put their wealth in the wrong place, it's that they spent more than they had.  If you make $50,000 a year and spend $80,000 your problem isn't that you put the $50,000 you earned in the wrong places, it's that you spent more than you made.  Yet the U. S. government is doing exactly that and no one seems to be demanding accountability.  Even President Obama says we don't have a spending problem (I guess his admission on Jay Leno's show that he's lost in math beyond the 7th grade level shows.).

If Sen. Harkin is really serious about what he said then he's either too stupid to understand the most basic of economics, or he's evil and wants the U. S. to overspend itself into financial collapse.  It's that simple.  There's no other excuse.

But, not to leave you thinking that he's the only one in Washington with these kinds of notions, we must look at what CNSNews also reported Rep. Grayson recently saying, too.  He said that President Obama's hallmark is "being practical."  Yes, you read it right.  If there's anything President Obama isn't it's being practical.  Grayson cited Obama's recommendation of at least 29 new government programs such as raising minimum wage to climate change as practical ideas.  

If Grayson is serious about how practical Obama's ideas are, then he, too, is either stupid or evil for the exact same reasons I pointed out regarding Harkin. 

The fact is that there's nothing practical about raising minimum wage.  If the solution to peoples' income problems were to raise the minimum wage, then we should just raise it to $100,000 a year and everyone would be fine.  But what is never addressed by the left is the fact that when you raise minimum wage you hurt business and thereby cut the number of jobs available.  Businesses only have so much money to work with.  If they have to increase wages they have to cut somewhere else.  That means quality, service, and most of all number of jobs are sacrificed because their expenses have gone up.  Free markets without minimum wages actually allow competition to drive incomes.  If you look at North Dakota where the oil fields are booming and growth is phenomenal you find a very low unemployment rate and jobs starting at $14 and $15 per hour in places like restaurants.  That's what a free market capitalist economy does when it can prosper.

His other ideas are just as ridiculous.  For example, pretending we have a climate change problem and planning on pouring trillions of tax dollars into fixing a problem that is, at best, unproven and, at worst, proven to be a fraud is foolishness.  And when you plan on it when we are already spending more than we have it's crazy.  

You do not fix debt by going further into debt.  If you could, why wouldn't they be recommending that every American in debt go as far into debt as possible because then it would get them all out of debt?

The sad part is that people listen to this drivel and don't question it.  We need citizens to step up and accept our responsibility to our nation and question this kind of nonsense.  For if these leaders really believe this stuff, then we're allowing in elected leadership people who have no common sense and that will destroy what's left of our nation.  

And if these people don't believe this but are truly planning on the destruction of the American economic system, then as citizen patriots we have an obligation to replace them with people who truly will work for the best outcomes for America.  

While only one senator, Bernie Sanders, is shown to be a member of the Congressional Progressive Caucus, there 5 or 6 dozen representatives who are members, and Alan Grayson is one of them which you can see here on their website.  And while Harkin may not have an official affiliation, he may embrace their viewpoints, we really don't have documented proof.

The progressives have taken control of the Democrat Party and while not all progressives are members of the Congressional Progressive Caucus, there are more of them in our government than we are aware.  

Many progressives, such as our president and our recently resigned secretary of state are followers of the teachings of Saul Alinksy.  His plan was to infiltrate government and then overthrow our capitalist economic system and replace it with a system that was socialist/marxist in its design.  And one of the major steps in that process is to so overload the U. S. economic financial system with spending we cannot afford that it will collapse the system and allow them to replace it.  One of their plans to accomplish this was to get our society so hooked on government programs and spending that voters would keep demanding more and more "stuff" from government and it would result in spending ourselves to demise.

This is exactly what is happening today.  It is time to wake up and start demanding that we live within our means.  It is time to replace these types of leaders by electing leaders who are committed to fixing America's problems…and that starts with our spending problem.  Contrary to what people like Rep. Grayson and President Obama say, we do have a spending problem and it's time to face it.  If we don't we won't have an America anything like what we have known.

  

Monday, February 11, 2013

Sequestration: Will It Show Us Leadership We Are Desperately In Need Of?


Here's the Nonsense:  Cuts to the defense budget cannot be allowed.  We will weaken our military and put American security at risk.  We must support our military by supplying whatever they request.  Those who do are the leaders we need for our nation.

Here's the Horse Sense:  Even the most sacred of cows can have fat that needs to be lost.  While the military has legitimate needs, many of those could be met if monies they have were spent responsibly.  How our leaders handle this problem is a good way to see who is really fit to lead.

As a devout conservative it's considered sacrilege by many to even mention the idea of defense cuts.  And if a Democrat wants it, then the feeling is that it must be a bad idea.  But that view, in and of itself, is one of the main reasons we have a problem.  No agency, department, or any area of government can be given carte blanche with money and be expected not to overspend.  The military is no different.  And the way our politicians handle something this critical is a good guide in determining some of their true leadership qualifications.

I have worked with the military on contracted projects and I can tell you that there is often an attitude of carelessness because "it's not our money" or "if we don't spend it, we'll lose it" that pervades when purchases are made.  The purchasing system in the military certainly leaves a lot to be desired.  In many ways it reinforces these very attitudes.  But the fact is that even if the system does encourage those attitudes, it is no excuse to allow it to go on.

Right now we are facing sequestration, which is the automatic cuts in spending because Congress didn't do their job.  While it's no shock that they didn't do their job, it is a reality we must face.  Contrary to what the politicians in Washington want us lowly voters to think, we really do have a spending problem.  Spending in our government is out of control.  If you or I were spending so much more than we make we'd be scrambling to find ways to stop the outbound flow of money and get things under control.  

To put that in a little better perspective, let's say your family makes $50,000 a year.  And let's say you spend $75,000 a year to cover your living expenses.  But that's not enough, let's add to that the fact that you have over $400,000 in credit card debt.  That is a very rough proportionate comparison of your hypothetical family's situation to what our government is doing.  You can't go on very long before all that will collapse on you.  Getting additional credit is, at best, a limited option because one day soon the creditors will quit loaning you money.  With that much debt at that level of income you'd be hard pressed to ever pay the debt off with interest accruing on it.  The fact is that your only real option is to stop spending so much.  You would need to get your spending down below $50,000 a year and learn to live on less than that amount.  And remember, that $50,000 would also need to include payments to pay off that debt, too.  

With over $16,500,000,000,000 (that's $16.5 trillion) in debt, the U. S. government has a very similar situation and there is no effort being made to cut spending, let alone pay off the debt.  In fact, Congress uses a budget methodology that allows for automatic increases each year and when they tell us that they are cutting spending what they are really cutting is the amount of increase.  That's even true in the sequestration debate that's going on.  Senator Rand Paul spoke out about it this week.

The spending cuts that will occur automatically under sequestration will be $1.2 trillion for the Defense Department over 10 years.  But according to Sen. Paul their budget will automatically go up $9 trillion without the sequester and almost $8 trillion with the sequester.  With sequestration they would not be receiving a cut.  They would be receiving less of an increase.

CNSNews.com reported about Sen. Paul's discussion on CNN's State of the Union program last Sunday.  It's reported that he said to host Candy Crowley that the sequester is a "pittance" according to Tea Party people.  He went on to say, "One trillion dollars, and we're increasing spending $9 trillion.  So really, even with the sequester, spending goes up $7 trillion or $8 trillion over the next 10 years.  We're not getting close to scratching the surface of the problem."

Sen. Paul understands that the problems we face are being driven by our economy and our economy is being driven by our debt.  The debt is costing us more than a potential sequester that will cut some spending.  The debt is costing us jobs and the futures of families nationwide in record numbers.  Sen. Paul told Crowley, "I think the debt is the number one [issue].  I think the debt is costing us a million jobs a year.  The economy slowed in the last quarter.  I really think we have to do something about how enormous government is.  And the way tea party folks see this is, we see it like our family budget.  I have to balance my budget at home, why shouldn't government?"

A few weeks ago in the Benghazi hearings Sen. Paul was the one who had the guts to stand up and say the hard words to Sec. Hillary Clinton when he told her that if he were president he would have fired her over what happened in Libya.  Now he has the nerve to stand up and say the difficult words about a sacred cow for the right.  A man who speaks like that is showing a courage that is found in true leaders.  We should be keeping an eye on him because he may be a serious consideration in future elections for an even higher position than the one he currently holds as senator.



Monday, February 4, 2013

GOP More Dangerous Than Democrats


Here's the Nonsense The GOP needs to better choose their candidates so they can win.  Karl Rove, the Architect of Bush's successes, is the guy who can do it.

Here's the Horse Sense:  The establishment GOP is trying to destroy true conservatives and Karl Rove is leading the way.  They will drive the final nail into the GOP's coffin if they're allowed to get away with it.

Do we never learn our lessons?  It seems not.  The establishment GOP architect of failure, Karl Rove, has decided to attack the true conservatives of the Tea Party.  He can't accept that his horrendous failures in the last election should send him a message that his ideas aren't what Americans want.  Instead, he has decided that he will pretend to be a conservative and force feed his ideas down our throats while trying to destroy true conservatives in the process.  He thinks that that will create a winning future for the GOP.  His kind of Republicans are more dangerous than the Democrats because all they do is divide America and produce losing elections for the right.

Karl Rove and his friends in the establishment GOP have brought us the rise of Barack Obama.  How?  Because they have brought losing candidate after losing candidate to races in recent years that lose, lose, lose.  Mitt Romney wasn't the only one.  And even their winning candidate they claim was so great, George W. Bush, while being a nice guy who loves America, has been the cause of more condemnation for the GOP than anyone can remember.  In fact, Bush's wins weren't really as great as they claim.  After all, running against Al Gore and John Kerry is nothing.  If you can't win against two snores like them, then you are really in bad shape.

Anyone who's paying attention has heard conservatives complain that they are no longer being represented by the GOP.  Yet Rove acts like only he knows what's best for the GOP.  He actually wants his organization to decide which candidates are right and wrong for the party.  He'll pick people who are wishy washy moderates.  And moderates rarely win because they are nothing more than Democrat-lite.  The American people want a choice between the garbage being offered by the Democrats and a person who will take a stand for principle regardless of the cost.  Only true conservatives offer that choice.  Yet Rove pushed the idea during the last election that only Romney could win.  The fact is that Republicans lost their chance to win by not promoting a candidate who offered a clear and decisive choice against the Democrats. 

Grover Norquist, in an article about what Rove is up to published by Breitbart, is noted as pointing out that what Rove is doing is "nonsense" when they write:  

"'People are imagining a problem that doesn't exist,'  said Norquist.  'We've had people challenge the establishment guy and do so swimmingly.'  In truth, conservatism wins elections so long as the messenger doesn't implode.  Rove's view, however, is that conservatism takes a back seat to the best quasi-conservative messenger."

What is needed if we're going to turn this country around is for someone to rally together all the true conservative groups like the Tea Party groups and others and get them to speak as one voice.  The GOP needs to be told that they must embrace true conservative values and candidates or they will get no support from those of us who are true conservatives.  Then, and only then, will the establishment in the GOP realize that they have a life or death decision to make.  After all, they cannot survive without our votes, but if we don't take a stand they will continue to ignore us and treat us with disdain unless we do their bidding.  It's time that true conservatives stand up to the system and demand to be part of it, not just a token for our votes.