The Practical Philosopher's Blog

Using the practical application of timeless wisdom to address modern issues

Will Obama Get it? Pre-SOTU Comments

Will Obama get that the country’s private sector, free market economy is held back by his collectivist attitude and policies or will our rookie President continue to run the most anti-business, anti-American values administration in recent history?

My guess is he won’t get it. Unless his rigid adherence to discredited collectivist ideas changes, he will still push to spend more (grow the government) and use the government to ‘create’ (or save) jobs like he has been unsuccessfully doing now for 2 years.

Pundits suggest (I think accurately) that he will talk a good game of going to the center, but will not do anything of substance to back it up- just like the campaign rhetoric that got him elected. They say he will use focus-group tested political marketing for the mentally dim like ‘investment’ instead of spending and tie these distorting terms to feel-good topics like education or jobs. So, if we hear tonight that we need to ‘invest’ in our schools and jobs for our economy to grow, we’ve just gotten more rhetorical blather to cover up that he will try the same failed approaches again and hope for a different outcome.

Reality and human nature are such harsh courts of appeal when it comes to collectivist and utopian theories. I wonder how many repetitions it takes before the outcome not matching the theory shows that certain theories don’t work? You don’t need to be smart to get this- you need to be wise.

The big question is: Will our book-smart and world-dumb President finally grow in wisdom? Will he finally start to support American founding values like smaller central government, individual liberties and freedoms, and get government out of the way so our private, free market will function again?

While he threatens us with whole-scale ‘transformation’ to the fascism of collectivism and the degradation of individual effort and reward, we will go nowhere economically and socially.

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Filed under: American Values, Business, Economy, Philosophy, Politics, , , , , , , , , , ,

Obama and Dems are Book Smart and World Dumb

There are Liberals that think they are fundamentally smarter than the average American and therefore entitled to make decisions for the rest of us whether they work or not. No where is this more evident than the statements on we still hear on health care bordering on the delusional (we’ll pay for 30 million to have great health care and won’t add a penny to the deficit) and the inability to adapt this plan and approach that has been judged flawed by the collective wisdom of the American people:

In short, as with Tiger Woods and his woman problem, Barack Obama and his liberal allies have a superiority problem. Liberals/progressives really do see themselves as “entitled” to make decisions for everyone else. They really do believe, as did Tiger, that the rules do not apply to them. Why? Because they are addicted to the idea they are smarter than everyone else.

This crowd belongs…nay, is passionately devoted, to what could appropriately be called a cult of cultural and intellectual superiority. Who cares if Obama is running the Democrats and the country into the ground? He’s just so damn smart! (Article Source)

Americans still oppose rather than favor Congress passing a government healthcare bill.

This ‘intellectual superiority’ condition includes the President. As an elected official however, he is entitled to make decisions for America. Unfortunately, that doesn’t mean what ever he comes up with will be good decisions or ideas that will work.

But what is clearly evident with Obama and his mind set is the problem of intelligence vs. wisdom. They are two very different things. One deals with the ability to learn, remember, and apply abstract concepts. The other is to learn, remember, and apply experiences of the realities of human nature and what works in that sphere. This is human philosophy and its understanding is what we call wisdom (the same objective realities exist in the material world and what we call science today used to be called natural philosophy). A doctor, a rocket scientist, and yes, even a President can be smart as a whip and completely clueless on how to raise a family, act socially, or understand people like the majority of Americans do.

So what happens when we elect a leader with little or no practical experience of human nature and what works? We get theoretical solutions that don’t work in the real world. Collectivist theory hates the employer, but seeks the approval of the employee. Their issue is to create jobs but they are rigidly anti-business! The Collectivist theory hates individual choice of American’s over their bodies so they seek to supplant it with Government dicates by attempting to pay for it. Nobody and no government on earth can afford all of the health care that everyone would ultimately want to save their life! The Collectivist theory has cloaked itself in green environmentalism and hates the cheap, reliable energy that comes from fossil fuels and that constitutes the basis for our modern, energy-intensive society. Instead we get an attempt to create massive change to expensive, unreliable ‘green’ energy and society-destroying taxation (Cap and Trade energy tax) for an alarmist problem (‘global warming’) that does not even exist! None of the above ideological-theoretical approaches will work or ever could work. They just don’t create wealth or freedom for anyone except for political cronies and chosen grievance groups. 

The most rank-amateur of responses when this theory-reality disconnect persists is the projection of ones own failures onto others or external factors. After giving more interviews and speeches than any other President in recorded history on a topic, President Obama claims that he ‘just hasn’t explained his (collectivist) plan slowly and clearly enough to us (dumb) Americans.’ We get it, Mr. President. It’s just that we reject it as counter to American principles and objectively unworkable.

Today’s current drive to ram something through with health care by the President and the Dems despite the messages sent to these politicians is the worst example of moral cowardice and the inability to correct and adapt their worldview according to the ultimate court of appeals: reality.

Filed under: American Values, Energy, Environment, Global Warming, Health Care, Philosophy, Politics, , , , , , , , ,

Common Sense Health Care Solutions

Here is an excellent YouTube articulation of my own postings on the simple solution for health care- the free market:

How to Fix Health Care: Lasik Surgery For The Medical Debate

Interestingly, Lasik eye surgery is not covered by insurance and is completely a free market offering. Over the last 18 years, it has gotten cheaper, the care around delivery is driven to be excellent to get customers, and the technology has gotten better.

Contrast this with the increasingly government-controlled or health ‘insurance’ distorted current health market. Prices are sprialing out of control and quality is falling.

Do we need to send one or more generations back to school to learn the basics of free market economics that drive the majority of the rest of our prosperity (food, clothing, shelter)?

At the base of it, there is a lack of understanding of human nature (read: lack of wisdom) and how the free market unleashes the most good for the most people by matching up with the reality of individual human nature.

Filed under: Economy, Health Care, Philosophy, Politics, , , , , , , , , ,

The Coming Economic Wages of Obama’s Collectivism

Obama’s rigid adherence to collectivist policies will have devastating effects on our economy. There are no jobs right now because of his assault on the free market concept in the form of threatened, super-expensive health care mandates, energy taxes (cap and trade), and further tax hikes on businesses by letting the Bush tax cuts expire. He is one of the most anti-business Presidents in the history of our country. Business owners will continue to sit on expansions and hiring until they have some idea what damage Obama and the Democrats are going to do to the marketplace they have to compete in. You cannot hate and attack the employer, but ‘love’ the employee. Newsflash to Obama and the Democrats: employers CREATE the jobs! Not you, the Government. Not from some magic place that just makes jobs ‘appear’.

Here’s a predictive outlook for an economic nosedive in 2011:  The Coming Crash of 2011

After reading and analyzing this article, I would put money on this outcome occurring unless the 2010 elections clean Democrats out of the House and Senate and Republicans (hopefully) put up an effect blocker to Obama\Reid\Pelosi collectivism.

Even then, it still might be too late to avoid much of the effects of multiple tax raises, nationalization/collectivization of our economy, and more deficit creation from our Roman emperor who just wants to spread bread and circuses to placate the masses (like when he was a community ‘organizer’).

Filed under: American Values, Economy, Philosophy, Politics, , , , , , , , , ,

Like Atlas, America Shrugged in Massachusetts

In Ayn Rand’s famous, philosophy-based book “Atlas Shrugged”, she detailed what would happen to our free society if it was ever overcome at some point by a drive toward the tyranny of collectivism. An intellectual herself that fled the Soviet Union, she described with great accuracy, and past experience, the economic and social breakdown we would experience in this negative transformation.

But she took it a step further and brought up an interesting question. What would happen to the society-destroying collectivists if the hard working and educated class of American citizens withdrew themselves from society and the collectivist’s grasp? From that point on, it’s a gripping and enjoyable story of hysterical collectivists unable to loot the fruits of free-market Americans for their own benefit and ambitions.

What’s not so enjoyable is how chillingly prophetic that book is in describing today’s radical political environment of attempted transformation of America by Obama and a core of Democrats.

I’ve often wished that we could do the inverse of Rand’s story and put all these eager collectivists we currently have to suffer out onto an island away from us. Then we could let them experience the economic and social breakdown their ideology will always bring. That way, the rest of us with individualistic, free-market American values could go back to having productive lives, a high standard of living, and most important- a full measure of individual freedoms!

Instead of dreaming about the above scenario, I realized while watching the Brown-Coakley election unfold that Americans in Massachusetts did ‘shrug’ last night. They threw out the Leftist-oriented Democrats that have held power for decades and voted against government-run healthcare and the general unworkability of collectivism.

It happened in Virginia, in New Jersey, and now in Massachusetts. There is no place more liberal than that state, so all political spin that it was somehow was a loss caused by some vague ‘bad environment’ factor is wrong and dishonest. Massachusetts has government health care today and, as a consequence, pay the highest premiums in the country. They’ve seen it doesn’t work and showed their understanding of this reality at the voting booth. 

Americans business owners will hopefully continue to ‘shrug’ economically and not invest and not expand, and therefore not create jobs until Obama and the far-left Democrats learn they cannot keep destroying our free market with collectivism or are fired and thrown out of office. We must keep showing the same strong voting fortitude and voice until government-run health care is killed along with the horrible cap and trade schemes and any other collectivist take over of our society. Live free.

Filed under: American Values, Economy, Philosophy, Politics, , , , , , , , , , , ,

The American Form of Government- A Primer

America is in crisis now not only because of Obama’s current drive towards tyrannical control of our lives by the government, but because of decades of neglect in teaching our children about America and the exceptionalism that lay behind our great politic experiment.

Men who were wise to the objective reality of existence and the constants of human nature created for us a Republic based on the rule of law. This is in stark contrast to the post-modern subjectivists and collectivists that populate the White House and our Congress today.

To better understand the tyrannical path that this country is on, I beseech you to take 10 minutes from your busy day and and watch this primer on what our American is, and has been, since its founding. This is a quick, but key piece of wisdom and civics that should have been taught to all students before they graduated from our school systems,  joined the ranks of adults, and assumed the burdens of citizenship in our communities and this country:

The American Form of Government

It is even more relevant today, given the state of society and our country.

Filed under: American Values, Philosophy, Politics, , , , , , , ,

Another Massive Failure of Climate Alarmist ‘Science’

This is how ‘settled’ the ‘science’ is when the IPCC is involved: “Glacier’s are melting! Alarm! Especially the big ones in the Himalayas! We heard it from a guy who telephoned another guy who made up a speculative response on the fly.”

Now THAT my friends, is good, settled science from the IPCC, a political entity pretending to be a scientific one.

When this shoddy and flimsy claim was actually scrutinized, the comment was admitted to be without any formal research and was based on only part of the Himalayan glaciers, not the whole massif.

Yet, amazingly, this became the primary source (you know, in the authoritative IPCC report on Climate Change) of the outrageous claim that not only would all the Himalayan glaciers be possibly gone by 2035, but it was of a 90%+ surety:

When finally published, the IPCC report did give its source as the WWF (World Wildlife Fund) study but went further, suggesting the likelihood of the glaciers melting was “very high”. The IPCC defines this as having a probability of greater than 90%.

The report read: “Glaciers in the Himalaya are receding faster than in any other part of the world and, if the present rate continues, the likelihood of them disappearing by the year 2035 and perhaps sooner is very high if the Earth keeps warming at the current rate.”  (article source).

It’s also an interesting coincidence that this is exactly the same ‘surety’ that underlies the overall (and political) claim by the IPCC that man is the primary cause of global warming, even though it ceased 10+ years ago. How long, and with how many failures like this will we have to endure before this biased, political entity is denounced as a fraud?!

My god, this is the basis for radical, economy-devastating legislation being foisted on us like Cap and Trade, the recent bogus EPA ‘endangerment’ finding on CO2, and the reason billions have been wasted on ‘green’ boon-doggles like Cash for Clunkers? What kind of people have we put our country in the hands of?

Virtually everyone pushing anything ‘environmental’ in our Government should be fired. Then a complete top-to-bottom legal review should be done to sue for a return of our wasted tax dollars. What an Orwellian joke Obama and his administration are in their claim that they will make a false ‘green economy’ (that will create jobs!) and ‘restore science to its rightful place.’ What a mockery of reality and rationality!! Everything they do or say is the exact opposite of its actual outcome or reality.

The poetic justice of reality slamming and disproving these Collectivist/Leftist fancies is only exceeded by finding the quote noted above in the New Scientist, the publication that carried the bogus claim of glacier melting alarmism in the first place (dated 20Jan2009):

So, the 44th president of the United States has spoken. And what he said will please many supporters of science. Likewise, without explicitly mentioning the environment, president Barack Obama made it clear in his inaugural address today that the US needs to tackle global warming and switch to renewable sources of energy.

But the nod to open science will be most welcome, given the political and ideological interference of his predecessor, who obstructed stem cell research and only grudgingly accepted that humans are driving climate change.

“We will restore science to its rightful place, and wield technology’s wonders to raise health care’s quality and lower its cost,” said Obama. (article source).

I am finding it hard to heap enough disdain on this naïve rookie of a politician. He would have never been elected President if the electorate was required to cite any credible past national political leadership experience or exercise any critical thinking in examining his qualifications to hold this office. This blog noted that lack of credentials and his record of far Leftism in its very first post. I have to say I am not really happy to prophetically right on this topic given the price our country is having to pay.

Filed under: Environment, Global Warming, Philosophy, Politics, , , , , , , , , , , ,

Obama is a Slow Learner on Jobs

After passing a three quarters of a trillion ‘stimulus’ bill that hasn’t created (not ‘saved’) any jobs, Obama and his administration are trying the same thing again with another ‘stimulus’ plan to pour an additional $75 billion of our money down the drain.

Most wise people will tell you that doing the same thing over and over again and expecting a different outcome is the definition of insanity. We have, in fact, entered the realm of the delusional (also called Leftism/Collectivism/Socialism) with Obama, his administration, and most of the Democrat party.

The issue is reality. Reality is the objective state/truth about something , some situation, or the way it things actually work (not how we wish they would).

Analysis shows that states/regions that received the most government subsidizing of road building programs have ended up with the same unemployment rates as other states/regions? No problem! Try more of the same thing that didn’t work the first time.

The same mentality is evident in Government health care ‘reform’. The Medicare and Medicaid government programs are collapsing under the weight of exploding costs in the trillions and are victims of millions in fraud each year? No problem! Let’s take something that doesn’t work on a small scale and implement it on a national scale.

The reality is that the Government cannot create jobs in a private economy. The Obama/Democrat approach is a failure of the leftist ideology to align with this reality and how jobs are really created. Unfortunately, they continue to hold that it can’t be their ideology that is wrong, so it must be a problem with realty. This is where the problem starts. Reality must bend or change to accommodate their flawed theories. The world can’t be the way it is, it has to be the way they want it to work and wish it would work.

Because this behavior won’t work and can’t work, we in the military coined the realist bit of wisdom long ago: ‘Hope is not a strategy’. Not when lives were at stake. This was around long before the young and naïve Obama came into office.

I have a new slogan I’d like to suggest for the Obama administration: “If at first you don’t succeed trying to command the economy to recover, then fail, fail again.”

Friends, they will continue to fail us and our country until we vote them out of office!

Full article on continued Obama anti-stimulus: “More Stimulus? Analysis Finds Funds for Roads, Bridges Has Had No Impact

Filed under: Economy, Philosophy, Politics, , , , , , , ,

A 2-Minute Primer on Free Enterprise

Why is capitalism good? Why is it the main-stay of our American ideal of free enterprise?

Below is a brief, but eloquent explanation by Milton Friedman of this wise and prosperity-building concept on YouTube.  Hear his great responses to the slanted questions of Phil Donahue:

YouTube: Milton Friedman – in Defense of Capitalism

Filed under: Economy, Philosophy, , , , , , , , , , , ,

The Values Gulf Between Left and Right

Most people wonder at the sharp differences that separate people politically in the United States today. Those political differences are largely illustrated in the differences between the Democrat and Republican parties.

Instead of varying only on the methods of how to further American values and leadership, it has devolved into a range of Socialism to Communism with Democrats and partial to total free-market Capitalism for Republicans. Socialism and Communism run completely counter to the American ideals of individual liberties, financial freedoms, and property rights.

If you think this depth of moral/cultural value-gulf doesn’t exist, examine the below anecdote of an interaction with a typical liberal product of our modern academic/collegiate system:

In a recent column, Dennis Prager argues that American students know next to nothing about the evils of Communism and do not recognize the terrorist threat we face today. The column was inspired by an encounter with a UC Santa Barbara student who told Prager that Communism was never a real threat, and neither is terror now. Observes Prager, “I suspect this young woman represents many college students. If one wants to understand what left-wing dominance in university social sciences departments produces, one merely had to meet this young woman.” 

No doubt this ‘normal’ student voted exhultantly for Obama in the last election and likely sees no issue with his leftist policies negatively impacting our country today. As I haved blogged in the past, I think young adults should have to pass an American values competency test before they are allowed to vote.

Filed under: Academia, Philosophy, Politics, , , , , , , , ,

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