How Free Stuff Is Used To Addict The Urban Poor To Welfare

Lifeline is a federal program originally intended to provide low-income people with a free landline phone. Sensing a chance to get more poor people to vote for them, Democrats expanded the program to include free cell phones. To maximize the number of subsidized cell phone recipients, “free phone” vans patrol low-income areas of every Democrat-run city in America, a practice that has resulted in massive fraud.

The “free phones” van pictured above set up shop on a street in a predominately African American area of Baltimore. As revealed in this must-see report by the city’s Fox45 TV, within just three years of Barack Obama’s election, fraud exploded the number of subsidized phones in Baltimore from 6,000 in 2008 to 231,000 in 2011.

Baltimore isn’t the only place where Democrats have used free phones to addict the urban poor to government dependency. In a viral video that illustrates how readily poor people will vote for politicians who promise them free stuff, a welfare recipient in Cleveland, Ohio screamed at a TV reporter that minorities would be voting for Obama because he gives them free phones.

HOW DEMOCRATS DISINCENTIVIZED WORK

Prior to 1995, the federal government gave more money to states that increased their welfare rolls. The following year, President Bill Clinton signed into law major bi-partisan welfare reform that required those receiving public assistance to work in exchange for taxpayer-provided benefits.

Known as “The Personal Responsibility and Work Opportunity Reconciliation Act of 1996,” the new law changed the rules by instead rewarding states that decreased welfare rolls. The encouraging result was a sharp drop in both welfare dependency and child poverty.

Thirteen years later, Democrats eviscerated the 1996 welfare reform law. Written behind closed doors with zero bi-partisan support, the 2009 stimulus bill passed into law by President Obama and a Democrat Congress effectively ended the requirement that able-bodied adults perform work in exchange for government benefits.

As allowed by the stimulus bill, the Obama administration replaced actual work requirements with the following “work” requirements: Bed rest, personal journaling, motivational reading, smoking cessation classes, weight loss classed, personal care and helping others with household tasks.

Proving that these activities were actually performed was done through the honor system. Defining leisure activities as work enabled Democrats to mislead voters to think that welfare recipients still had to earn their government benefits.

Under the new rules, welfare recipients were disincentivized to transition toward self-reliance, resulting in a return to record levels of welfare dependency and child poverty. The Democrat message to the urban poor: Keep voting for us and we’ll see that you keep getting welfare, this time with no strings attached.

HOW OBAMA EXPLODED FOOD STAMP ROLLS TO RECORD LEVELS

No one minds helping the needy, but Democrats have turned food stamps into a way of life for millions of able-bodied people—under President Obama, 13 million more recipients were added to food stamp rolls. In a move that helped explode food stamp usage to all-time record levels, the Obama administration ran ads designed to lure more people to apply for federal food assistance:

● Obama USDA pamphlet suggested holding food stamp parties to increase participation

“Host a social event. Make it fun by having activities, games and food, and provide information about signing up for food stamps!”

● To expand food stamp rolls in rural areas, the Obama USDA ran ads that denigrated and discouraged self-sufficiency

A 2011 USDA pamphlet revealed that local food assistance offices were rewarded for “counteracting” the pride that many rural Americans have in being self-reliant.

● Obama USDA’s “outreach” used Spanish-language ads to boost food stamp use among legal & illegal immigrants

To prevent taxpayers who do not speak Spanish from discovering the content of the ads, the USDA website did not provide English translations. When the ads were exposed in conservative media, the USDA removed them from its website.

According to a report by the Congressional Research Service, food stamp usage among able-bodied adults doubled after the Obama administration suspended work requirements.

THE PLIGHT OF URBAN AMERICANS IS WORSE THAN EVER

Over the last half-century, trillions of dollars have been spent to help lift the black underclass, with a mother lode of anti-poverty funding having gone to blue state governors and blue city mayors. According to Bob Woodson, a former executive of the National Urban League, 70% of the $22 trillion in anti-poverty funding never reached the disadvantaged people it was intended to help. Instead, the lion’s share was siphoned off by high level elected Democrats, who perpetuated inexcusably wasteful bureaucracies that devoured massive sums of anti-poverty funding in ways that did virtually nothing to improve the plight of the inner city poor.

For six consecutive decades, residents of our inner cities have been economically consigned to communities ravaged by urban decay, rampant crime, rat-infested government housing, sorry schools, generational poverty and chronic hopelessness, with each election bringing a new round of empty promises from the party that that uses welfare addiction and the race card to win elections. While the black underclass faces a daily struggle just to survive, the Democrats they helped elect live in new homes, drive new cars and dine at exclusive restaurants.

WELFARE KILLS THE HUMAN SPIRIT

By the mid-1980s, it was apparent that giving on-going welfare to able-bodied people was a counterproductive policy that inflicted lasting harm on the urban poor. Using government benefits to help impoverished people get on their feet is one thing; knowingly habituating them to welfare as a means of securing their vote is a cruel and cynical thing to do.

By continually pushing welfare on those already addicted to the demeaning lifestyle of government dependency, the Democratic Party is guilty of an unconscionable crime against the most vulnerable people in our society.

Except on Election Day, Democrats couldn’t care less about the urban poor. One day, white liberals will be filled with shame when will realize the unmitigated carnage their vote has foisted on generations of impoverished black Americans.

©John Edison. All rights reserved.

The New York Times Reveals the Horrors of Capitalism—By Showing China’s State-Run Hospitals

If the Times had visited one of China’s many private hospitals, they would have found something quite different from the chaos depicted in China’s public health care facilities.


The New York Times released a 10-minute video last month entitled “How Capitalism Ruined China’s Health Care System.” The video attempts to blame capitalism for the many problems in China’s health care system.

“Under Mao Zedong the Communist state provided free health care for all,” the narrator tells us. “Decades later China adopted a unique brand of capitalism that transformed the country from a poor farming nation into an economic superpower. Life expectancy soared. But the introduction of capitalism and the retreat of the state meant that health care was no longer free.”

As a resident of China and a recipient of outstanding private health care here, I was confused as to why the Times would show us the horrors of a capitalist system without actually visiting a private health care facility.

All of the horrors depicted in the high-quality video—the long lines, the scalping, and the hospital fights—occurred at government-run health care facilities. If the Times had visited one of China’s many private health care facilities, they would have found something quite different.

I know first-hand how outstanding the care at private facilities is in China. Last year I had my appendix removed here. I accidentally walked into the public hospital directly across from the private hospital. The emergency room was filled with at least 100 Chinese patients.

Upon seeing my white European face, hospital staff directed me to the private hospital across the street, Shanghai United. I was welcomed by friendly staff who were fluent in English. The ER doctor was American. I had an ultrasound and CT scan performed within the first two hours. Eight hours after that, my appendix was removed, and I was high on morphine.

China’s private hospitals are the opposite of the chaos depicted in the Times’ video. Wait times are practically non-existent. You don’t have to bribe anyone to be seen.

The exceptional care that I enjoy here along with wealthier residents of China is, sadly, only a dream for most Chinese today. Why? Because it is precisely where you find the profit incentive restored and government regulation absent that you also find superlative health care.

In the video, the Times praises Chairman Mao’s introduction of “free” health care and claims that when capitalism was introduced into the country, the state retreated and care was no longer free.

Neither statement is true. First, health care was never free; it was paid for by tax revenues. Second, the state never retreated; rather, its regulatory apparatus became vaster and even more invasive. Out of sheer necessity, China allowed for the creation of private hospitals to ease the burden of the country’s heavily bureaucratic and deteriorating health care system.

The fact that the Times refused to visit even one private hospital or mention the higher cancer survival rates of patients receiving private care raises serious questions. At the very least, failing to feature a single private medical facility while blaming capitalism for the dysfunction of China’s public health system is intellectually dishonest.

The Times video begins with a man making drugs in his home for his elderly, cancer-stricken mother, a common practice among poor Chinese. He states that there are three kinds of drugs in China: expensive drugs from the West, smuggled drugs from India, and DIY drugs. However, there is a fourth category of drugs never mentioned: Chinese-developed medicine.

These domestic options aren’t sparse, either. China actually has the world’s second-largest prescription drug market. So why isn’t this man taking advantage of the cheaper, domestic option? The Times declines to investigate, but those of us who live here know exactly why he’s refusing Chinese medicine: the quality of the drugs is very poor.

Chinese doctors actually advise against taking Chinese prescriptions due to the lack of transparency on their ingredients, instead suggesting patients rely almost exclusively on Western medicine. (A Chinese pediatrician once warned me not to give my children a simple cough syrup developed in China.) So, while the Times contends that capitalism is killing the Chinese, it is the presence of capitalist-created drugs that allows the Chinese to survive.

The mystery ingredients of Chinese drugs don’t tell the full story, however. The entire pharmaceutical industry operates under contradictory procedures and policies, including price fixing.

In the 1980s, the government began divesting in public hospitals and relocated those funds to subsidize prescription drugs for the poor. Simultaneously, however, the government put price controls on the drugs, making it impossible to turn a profit selling them, which destroyed the incentive for developers. With a paltry investment and a near-zero profit policy, the drug industry is at a stalemate, producing garbage drugs that are unable to yield returns.

The Times video depicts the ungodly long line most Chinese face to see a physician.

“It’s about 5 a.m. and about 100 people have gathered in line in downtown Shangai,” the narrator says softly. “This isn’t the line to the movies or a holiday sale. It’s the entrance to the Shanghai Cancer Center at Fudong University. Those who are willing to lose a night’s sleep trying to try to get in line have one question in their mind: will I get to see a doctor today?”

It’s an appalling scene. We see sick people waiting in massive lines to receive medical attention. Scalpers are selling places in line to those most desperate. Some people are unceremoniously pulled out of line by security right before entering the hospital (presumably for cutting).

There’s just one problem. The Shanghai Cancer Center is a public hospital, not a private one.

The long lines, scalpers, bribes, and physical fights with hospital staff—all of these exclusively happen in the public, communist, government-run hospitals. These things do not happen at China’s private hospitals.

In an egregious bit of sleight-of-hand, the Grey Lady asserts that capitalism is ruining Chinese health care while presenting us with a hospital where capitalism is not practiced. What viewers are watching is the medical system created by central planners.

Along with income from the municipal medical schemes that citizens must pay into, the state hospitals depend on foreign-made drug sales and testing for their revenues. This makes hospitals fertile ground for bribes from pharmaceutical companies, unnecessary drug prescriptions, and excessive testing. The excessive testing is not only a giant waste of money, but in hospitals where doctors get less than three minutes with patients, it is a massive waste of time.

The government also heavily regulates reproduction programs due to the two-child policy, forcing hospitals to obtain a license from China’s Ministry of Health to perform fertility testing and treatments. Almost all of the licenses are only authorized for the state-run hospitals. Simply offloading the initial fertility testing to the private sector would take enormous pressure off the public system.

Market efficiencies are missing from China’s system because they were destroyed long ago by the tenets of communism. Private property and profit motive were replaced by a government-run system designed by central planners.

Sadly, the Times video ends with a quote from the now deceased elderly mother. She repeats what her doctor told her: “Your cancer is not yet severe, take some medicine and go home. You will be fine.”

That’s not the standard response one would expect after being diagnosed with a terminal illness, and viewers see why. The woman was denied treatment. Weeks later she was dead. There is a name for this: rationing.

Rationing can come in many forms, one being a dearth of primary care physicians (PCPs). In China, the government sets fixed salaries for PCPs, which are much lower than what one could earn in the private sector. Naturally, this attracts fewer professionals into primary care. In fact, less than 30 percent of medical school graduates choose primary care. Additionally, to ensure access to basic medical services for all, fees for services are set lower than costs at government-run facilities.

For the poor, this makes public hospitals appealing. Their inpatient treatment is usually fully or mostly covered by the government. And getting in isn’t always a problem. Chinese public hospitals often boast about the number of beds available — ranging from 1,000 up to 10,000 — in comparison to private hospitals, which usually have fewer than 500. The quality of the care is another story.

The absence of normal market forces creates a glaring problem: few doctors and many patients (particularly poor ones whose costs are fully covered). Hospitals simply can’t keep supply up with demand. Staffs are overwhelmed by the sheer number of patients, creating more stress in a high-pressure environment. Inevitably, people are denied care, hence the violence directed toward staff featured in the Times video. (In fact, stabbings and mob-style attacks have risen 23 percent a year on average since 2002, according to the China Hospital Management Association.)

The government also rations prescription medicine by simply excluding certain drugs from coverage, making prescriptions the largest out-of-pocket expense for patients. Even public emergency transport services are completely unreliable in China. Public ambulances simply don’t show up or are too busy, so patients often must take taxis.

The widespread dysfunction of China’s health care system depicted by the Times is not particularly unique.

The United Kingdom’s National Health Service is currently “imploding” as record numbers of patients are waiting 12 hours to get into emergency rooms. Last year, the BBC reported patients were literally dying in hospital corridors.

China’s experience is what inevitably results, sooner or later, from government-run medicine. The Times is correct to label it tragic. But it takes some real chutzpah to blame the tragedy on capitalists.

If the Times had wished to see capitalism in action, they had only to visit one of China’s private hospitals. I have been to the ER no fewer than six times in Shanghai at various hospitals. Each time I have been registered immediately and sent to a consultation room within 10 minutes of arrival.

And I even have the appendix scar to approve it.

COLUMN BY

Sarah Lilly

Sarah Lilly is an American expat and political writer living abroad in Switzerland. She blogs at Red State Abroad.

EDITORS NOTE: This FEE column is republished with permission. ©All rights reserved.

New Study Finds Electric Cars Cost More To Refuel Than Gasoline Powered Cars

Anderson Economic Group EV Transition Series: Report Comparison: Real World Cost of Fueling EVs and ICE Vehicles compared the actual costs of fueling normally asperated cars and trucks versus all electric vehicles. Read the full study here.

The Anderson study noted that Electronic Vehicles (EVs) are, “often presumed to be less expensive to fuel than their ICE counterparts. There is a rationale in physics for this: due to greater thermal efficiency, electric motors convert energy more efficiently than combustion engines. However, this cost is only one of five.”

For a complete picture, Anderson notes that we consumers must consider:

  1. Commercial and residential electric power/fuel costs.
  2. Registration taxes.
  3. Equipment (e.g., chargers) and installation costs.
  4. Deadhead miles incurred driving to a charger or fueling station.
  5. The cost of time spent refueling

The study found:

  • There are four additional costs to powering EVs beyond electricity: cost of a home charger, commercial charging, the EV tax and “deadhead” miles.
  • For now, EVs cost more to power than gasoline costs to fuel an internal combustion car that gets reasonable gas mileage.
  • Charging costs vary more widely than gasoline prices.
  • There are significant time costs to finding reliable public chargers – even then a charger could take 30 minutes to go from 20% to an 80% charge.

In the Anderson Economic Group’s October 21, 2021 column “Real-World Electric Vehicle Fueling Costs May Surprise New EV Drivers” they wrote:

6 months of independent research finds fueling costs for electric vehicles (EV) are often higher than for internal combustion engines (ICE)

East Lansing, MI–October 21, 2021: Anderson Economic Group released today the first in a series of analyses examining the transition from ICE vehicles to EVs.

This initial 36-page study is the culmination of comprehensive research comparing the “apples-to-apples” costs involved in fueling both EVs and ICE vehicles. AEG undertook this study after noting that many commonly cited figures did not account for the true costs associated with EV charging.

AEG calculated the cost of chargers, additional road taxes, commercial charging fees, and “deadhead” miles for three different EV driving scenarios and compared these with 3 analogous ICE vehicle scenarios. The research found that fueling an EV is often more expensive than fueling an ICE vehicle. It further found that fueling costs are far more variable for EVs. The authors go on to note the significant time costs imposed on EV drivers as a result of both inadequate infrastructure and wait times associated with fueling, which can be five to ten times the cost for ICE drivers.

According to study author Patrick Anderson, “These numbers may be surprising to those who haven’t relied upon an electric vehicle, but it’s important we safeguard the public from ‘charger shock.’ Before consumers can feel comfortable buying EVs in large numbers, they need to understand the true costs involved.”

Read the full article.

About the Authors

Mr. Patrick Anderson is Anderson Economic Group’s principal and CEO. His company is one of the most recognized boutique consulting firms in the United States, with years of expertise in the US automotive industry. The company has consulted for manufacturers that include General Motors, Ford, DaimlerChrysler, Honda, and others, along with nearly 200 automobile dealerships representing virtually every brand in the market.

Mr. Alston D’Souza works in Anderson Economic Group’s strategy and business valuation practice area, where he serves as senior analyst and data scientist. While at AEG, Mr. D’Souza’s work has focused on damages and market analysis. He holds a master’s degree in econometrics and quantitative economics from the University of Wisconsin-Madison, and a Bachelor of Technology degree from the National Institute of Technology Karnataka (India).

ABOUT THE ANDERSON ECONOMIC GROUP

Founded in 1996, Anderson Economic Group (AEG) is one of the most recognized boutique consulting firms in the United States. The company has offices in East Lansing, Michigan and Chicago, Illinois. The automobile industry is a primary area of specialization for the experts at AEG, who approach this critical automotive transition from a perspective that recognizes the role everyday consumer choices will play in driving EV market trends.

AEG’s automotive clients include manufacturers, suppliers, trade associations, and dealers and dealership groups.

©All rights reserved.

Why the Push Is on to Make Pandemic Life ‘Permanent’

COVID-19 is new. But the reaction to the crisis is starting to look familiar.


One year after Americans were ordered to close down society for “two weeks to flatten the curve,” Bloomberg columnist Andreas Kluth warned, “We Must Start Planning for a Permanent Pandemic.”

Because new variants of SARS-COV-2 are impervious to existing vaccines, says Kluth, and pharmaceutical companies will never be able to develop new vaccines fast enough to keep up, we will never be able to get “back to normal.”

“Get back to normal” means recovering the relative liberty we had in our already overregulated, pre-Covid lives. This is just the latest in a long series of crises that always seem to lead our wise rulers to the same conclusion: we just cannot afford freedom anymore.

Covid-19 certainly wasn’t the beginning. Americans were told “the world changed” after 9/11. Basic pillars of the American system, like the Fourth and Fifth Amendments, were too antiquated to deal with the “new threat of terrorism.” Warrantless surveillance of our phone, e-mail, and financial records and physical searches of our persons without probable cause of a crime became the norm. A few principled civil libertarians dissented, but the public largely complied without protest.

“Keep us safe,” they told the government, no matter the cost in dollars or liberty.

Perhaps seeing how willingly the public rolled over for the political right during the “War on Terror,” authoritarians on the left turbocharged their own war on “climate change.” Previously interested in merely significantly raising taxes and heavily regulating industry, they now wish to ban all sorts of things, including air travelgasoline-powered cars, and even eating meat.

Since Covid-19, however, even the freedom to assemble and see each other’s faces may be permanently banned to help the government “keep us safe.”

Assaulting our liberty isn’t the only characteristic these crisis narratives have in common. They share at least two others: dire predictions that turn out to be false and proposed solutions that turn out to be ineffective.

George W. Bush warned Saddam Hussein had “weapons of mass destruction” capable of hitting New York City within 45 minutes. He created the Department of Homeland Security and the TSA to prevent, among other things, a “mushroom cloud” over a major American city.

Twenty years later, we know there were no weapons of mass destruction in Iraq, the terrorist threat was grossly exaggerated, and the TSA has still never caught a terrorist, not even the two people who tried to set off explosives concealed in their shoes and underwear, respectively.

The only effective deterrent of terrorism so far has been the relatively calmer foreign policy during the four years of the Trump administration, during which regime change operations ceased and major terrorist attacks in the United States virtually disappeared.

Predictions of environmental catastrophe have similarly proven false. Younger people may not remember that in the early 1970s, long before Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez was born, environmentalists were predicting worldwide disasters that subsequently failed to materialize. In 1989, the Associated Press reported, “A senior U.N. environmental official says entire nations could be wiped off the face of the Earth by rising sea levels if the global warming trend is not reversed by the year 2000.” The same official predicted the Earth’s temperature would rise 1 to 7 degrees in the next 30 years.

Ocasio-Cortez is famous for predicting in 2019, “The world is gonna end in 12 years if we don’t address climate change.” But Al Gore had warned in 2006 that “unless drastic measures to reduce greenhouse gases are taken within the next 10 years, the world will reach a point of no return.” So, isn’t it too late anyway?

As with the war on terrorism, the war on climate change asks us to give up our freedom for solutions that don’t work. Assuming climate change proponents have diagnosed the problem correctly and haven’t exaggerated the threat—huge assumptions by themselves— implementing their proposed solution won’t solve the problem, even by their own standards.

Its proponents know this. The U.S. has already led the world in reducing carbon emissions without the draconian provisions of the Green New Deal. If you listen to them carefully, the Green New Deal’s proponents propose the U.S. give up what freedom and prosperity remain to them merely as an example to developing nations, whom they assume will forego the benefits of industrialization already enjoyed by developed countries because of the shining example of an America in chains and brought to its economic knees to “save the earth.”

Fat chance, that.

The latest remake of this horror movie is Covid-19. While undeniably a serious pathogen that has likely killed more people than even the worst flu epidemics of the past several decades (although this is hard to confirm since public health officials changed the methodology for determining a virus-caused death), the government and its minions have still managed to grossly exaggerate this threat.

Gone is any sense of proportion when discussing Covid-19. Yes, it is certainly possible to spread the virus after one has been vaccinated or acquired natural immunity. But how likely is it? Is it any more likely than spreading other pathogens after immunity?

If not, then why are we treating people with immunity differently than we have during more dangerous pandemics in the past? Similarly, it is likely possible for asymptomatic people to spread the virus—a key pillar of the lockdown argument—but again, how likely is it?

The theory Covid-19 could be spread by asymptomatic people was originally based on the case of a single woman who supposedly infected four other people while experiencing no symptoms. Anthony Fauci said this case “lays the question to rest.”

The only problem was no one had asked the woman in question if she had symptoms at the time. When it turned out she did, the study on her was retracted. A subsequent study “did not link any COVID-19 cases to asymptomatic carriers,” and yet another after that concluded transmission of the disease by asymptomatic carriers “is not a major driver of spread.” Yet, policies based on this falsehood, like lockdowns and forcing asymptomatic people to wear masks, remain in place.

Most importantly, none of the government-mandated Covid-19 mitigation policies work. No retrospective review conducted with any semblance of the scientific method has found a relationship between lockdowns, mask mandates, or social distancing and the spread of Covid-19. In fact, the most recent study suggests lockdowns may have increased Covid-19 infections, in addition to all the non-Covid excess deaths they caused.

Over and over, authoritarians overhype crises to scare the living daylights out of the public and propose solutions that have two things in common: they demand more of our freedom and they don’t work. It’s always all pain and no gain. One wonders how many repetitions of this crisis drill it will take before the citizens of the so-called “land of the free” finally think to ask:

Why is freedom always the problem?

This article was republished with permission.

COLUMN BY

Tom Mullen

Tom Mullen is the author of Where Do Conservatives and Liberals Come From? And What Ever Happened to Life, Liberty and the Pursuit of Happiness? and A Return to Common  Sense: Reawakening Liberty in the Inhabitants of America. For more information and more of Tom’s writing, visit www.tommullen.net.

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EDITORS NOTE: This FEE column is republished with permission. ©All rights reserved.

Why a Capital Gains Tax Increase Would Be a Massive Jobs [and Wealth] Killer

Although startups comprise less than one percent of all companies, they generate 10 percent of new jobs in any given year.


When discussing the economic growth of a post-COVID landscape, too often the role of angel investors is overlooked. Angel investors, or private investors who are often wealthy, finance small business ventures in exchange for equity. For small businesses, angel investors provide a much needed lifeline in the form of cash infusion that doesn’t have to be repaid, except in shared ownership. Private investment, most often through angel investors, is undoubtedly a driving force in technological advancement and job creation.

Unfortunately, angel investment has recently been threatened by the looming possibility of capital gains tax increases under the new administration. Long-term capital gains taxes are applied to assets, such as equity in business, owned for over a year when sold. As of now, long-term capital gains are taxed at 20 percent for wealthy investors. The White House is now calling for a 39.6% top federal tax rate, nearly double the current amount.

As Chris Edwards, director of tax policy studies at Downsizing Government, explains, “In biotechnology and other leading-edge industries, after-tax investor gains are often reinvested in the next round of risky startups, thus creating a virtuous cycle.”

One of the reasons that nearly all high-income countries keep capital-gains taxes low is to help ensure that investors and entrepreneurs are incentivized to take the risk of committing time and resources to relatively risky start-up ventures, typically reliant on the type of scientific and technical innovation that fuels job growth and progress in the long run.

According to Census Bureau data, although startups comprise less than one percent of all companies, they generate 10 percent of new jobs in any given year. The Kauffman Foundation’s Tim Kane pointed out that “without startups, there would be no net job growth in the U.S. economy.” In the same paper, he lays out the argument that “in terms of the life cycle of job growth, policymakers should appreciate the tremendous effect of job creation in the first year of a firm’s life.”

Wealthy angel investors have been behind many US corporations that have revolutionized their field and led to unprecedented growth and technological progress. Henry Ford, for example, received an infusion of cash from coal dealer Alexander Y. Malcolmson. The first investor in Apple was a millionaire retiree from Intel, Mike Markkula. Jeff Bezos obtained $8 million from Kleiner Perkins to build Amazon.

An increase in capital gains taxes would discourage such high-risk investments that provide much-needed seed money to startups, and induce investors to shift their investments to dividend-paying stocks or bonds. While safer, these avenues of investment do not produce the jobs or innovation that startups do, and would hinder entrepreneurship.

“Such tax increases would be a blow to startup investment and entrepreneurship,” Edwards writes. “People considering launching technology startups would instead stay in salaried jobs because earning a smaller after-tax gain from a startup would not be worth all the extra stress, risk, and hard work.”

This tax increase would also make it harder for startups to attract skilled workers. Three-quarters of Silicon Valley firms offer stock options to employees to lure them away from their salaried positions at large companies. A significantly higher capital gains tax would make that benefit much less appealing.

A capital gains tax increase would come as a huge blow to angel investors who fund the new technologies and ideas that we often take for granted. To ensure future growth and progress, it is imperative that we create and maintain an environment that allows angel investors to operate and thrive.

COLUMN BY

Aadi Golchha

Aadi Golchha is the author of “The Socialist Trap: How the Leftist Utopia Will Destroy America” and an independent political analyst.

EDITORS NOTE: This FEE column is republished with permission. ©All rights reserved.

WATCH: Unions Mostly to Blame for Supply Chain Shortages But Biden Thanks Them

The real cause of supply chain shortages are the Unions which provide Stevedores to unload ships and Warehouse Workers at our major ports.   Their contract exempts them from working on weekends and they already make well over $100,000 a year but have no fear – Beijing Joe Biden will influence them to start working 24 x 7 to clear up the backlog but, of course, with your tax dollars.

Biden Thanks Unions for Promising to Help Solve a Supply Chain Mess They Created

In the East Room of the White House last week, President Joe Biden announced the Executive Branch was taking decisive actions to resolve the supply chain issues plaguing the United States.

As media reports show, supply chain bottlenecks are leaving many people without essential goods, and are threatening to play Grinch with consumers this holiday season.

“I half-jokingly tell people ‘Order your Christmas presents now because otherwise on Christmas day, there may just be a picture of something that’s not coming until February or March,'” Scott Price, the international president for UPS, told the AFP wire service in September.

On Wednesday Biden announced he was addressing the problem of West Coast delays, saying the crucial ports of Los Angeles and Long Beach would soon be shifting to round-the-clock operations.

“After weeks of negotiation and working with my team and with the major union and retailers and freight movers, the Ports of Los Angeles announced today that it’s going to begin operating 24 hours a day, 7 days a week,” Biden said.

The president said that by moving to a 24-7 system, the US would be shifting to “what most of the leading countries in the world already operate on now, except us, until now.”

He then thanked union leaders shortly before his closing remarks.

“I particularly want to thank labor: Willie Adams of the Longshoremen and Warehouses Union, who is here today; the Teamsters; the rail unions from the Brotherhood of Railroad Signalmen; and the International Association of Mechan- — of Machinists; to the American Train Dispatchers Association; to Sheet Metal, Air, and Rail, and Transportation Workers Union, known as ‘SMART,’” Biden said.

There is little debate that the supply chain issues are a serious problem, and shifting to a 24-7 operation may indeed help alleviate some of the supply chain issues—though the problem is unlikely to be solved so easily.

The obvious question, however, is this: why weren’t these ports already operating around the clock “like most of the leading countries in the world”?

The answer can be found in the very unions Biden thanked.

As Sean Higgins of the Competitive Enterprise Institute (CEI) recently explained, there appears to be no state or federal regulation preventing around the clock work at these ports. It’s simply a union policy.

“The primary issue appears to be the unions, whose contract effectively dictates when work can be done,” Higgins explains.

It turns out that unions negotiated a sweetheart deal. It’s not just that, as the Los Angeles Times notes, union dock workers make $171,000 (plus free healthcare) a year on average. Or that union clerks do even better ($194,000 on average), and they themselves earn a far cry from foremen and “walking bosses” ($282,000). (Those fat compensation figures result in part from the fact that union bosses were able to negotiate holiday pay not just for federal holidays, but for everything from “Bloody Thursday” to the birthdays of union leaders such as Harry Bridges and Cesar Chavez.)

The wages are noteworthy, but the bigger problem for people depending on smoothly running supply chains are the restrictions on work hours the unions negotiated. Higgens notes the labor contract between the Pacific Maritime Association and the International Longshore and Warehouse Union (ILWU) creates an inflexible operating schedule:

[The] union contract limits the port to just three shifts in a day: two lasting eight hours and another lasting just five hours. All three go from Monday to Friday. These shifts overlap slightly but even if they didn’t, they would still only total 21 hours. Keeping the ports open for 24 hours would require the port to pay overtime every single day.

On top of that, the contract says that any work done on weekends or holidays is automatically time and a half too. So even if the port could offer shifts with a five-day work week that started on, say, Wednesday, it would have to pay those workers the equivalent of six days.

In other words, the contract makes it all but impossible for the port to remain operational for twenty-four hours a day and on weekends.

Now, the entire US supply chain problem doesn’t come down to the ports of Los Angeles and Long Beach, and the poorly negotiated union contract. But the importance of these ports is enormous.

Indeed, Biden himself notes that 40 percent of all shipping containers imported into the US come from these two ports—which have been idle some 60 hours every week during the biggest supply chain crisis in generations … because of a union contract.

To make matters worse, for years the union has blocked efforts to improve efficiency through automation.

“We were totally opposed to fully automated terminals and got the guarantees from our employers that they would not construct them during the life of our new package,” ILWU President Harrold Daggett noted two years ago after the union negotiated its contract.

This is known as “featherbedding,” a practice unions have perfected over ages that requires employees to implement time-consuming policies and procedures that increase labor costs and decrease productivity. As economist Henry Hazlitt once observed, these “make-work rules” reduce efficiency but “are tolerated and even approved because of the confusion on this point in the public mind.”

The reason the problem persists, Higgens says, is that people simply don’t want to create a political stir.

“You don’t even talk about that. You know, we don’t even try to influence that. But it’s really the root cause,” an anonymous carrier industry source reportedly told CEI.

There may be something to Higgens’s claim—if you’ve ever watched Martin Scorsese’s movie The Irishman, you know what I mean—but there’s a larger economic lesson to be learned.

As the economist George Reisman has observed, unions decrease productivity almost by their very nature.

[The] most serious consequence of the unions is the holding down or outright reduction of the productivity of labor. With few exceptions, the labor unions openly combat the rise in the productivity of labor. They do so virtually as a matter of principle. They oppose the introduction of labor-saving machinery on the grounds that it causes unemployment. They oppose competition among workers.

Granted, simply persuading ports to operate 24-7 around the clock (and no doubt covering the union costs) may solve some problems. But if Reisman’s observations are correct, Biden is seeking increased productivity and efficiency in the wrong place. Because of the incentive structure they operate under, unions are far better at leveraging power to negotiate sweetheart deals than boosting efficiency and productivity to improve the broader marketplace.

Indeed, just one day after Biden’s speech, union leaders were already making it clear they weren’t yet working around the clock—and had no timeline for doing so.

“It’s not a single lever we can pull today,” Gene Seroka, the Executive Director of the Port of Los Angeles, said in a media briefing. “There’s no timeline when suddenly we will wake up and everything will be 24/7.”

COLUMN BY

Jon Miltimore

Jonathan Miltimore is the Managing Editor of FEE.org. His writing/reporting has been the subject of articles in TIME magazine, The Wall Street Journal, CNN, Forbes, Fox News, and the Star Tribune. Bylines: Newsweek, The Washington Times, MSN.com, The Washington Examiner, The Daily Caller, The Federalist, the Epoch Times.

©FEE. All rights reserved.

Brigitte Gabriel ROASTS Empty Shelves Joe Biden! [Video]

Watch Brigitte Gabriel’s response to the Washington Post OP-ED telling Americans to ‘stop whining’, and ‘to not worry about short-staffed stores and supply chain woes’.

Wreaking a ‘Fundamental Change in the Economy’

Biden aims to complete Obama’s demolition of a free and prosperous America.

By Lloyd Boyd, Frontpage Mag

“The president wants to make fundamental change in our economy and he feels coming out of the pandemic is exactly the time to do that,” said White House press secretary Jan Psaki in an October 12 briefing. The reference to “fundamental change” recalls a statement from the composite character president David Garrow described in Rising Star: The Making of Barack Obama.

“We are five days away from fundamentally transforming the United States of America,” the composite character said in November of 2008. The United States of America was already a top-heavy welfare state from FDR’s New Deal and LBJ’s Great Society, so the candidate, formerly known as Barry Soetoro, must have had something else in mind. In 2021 it should all be evident.

In 2008, the United States of America was also a democracy, in which the people choose presidents as different as Jimmy Carter and Ronald Reagan. Under the composite character’s fundamental transformation, the outgoing president picks his successor and deploys the upper reaches of the DOJ, FBI and intelligence community to support the president’s pick and attack her opponent, even after he wins the presidency. This fundamental transformation was on full display from 2016 through 2020, with massive election irregularities.

Long before September 11, 2001, the United States of America recognized the threat from radical Islamic terrorism. The composite character president looked the other way at Islamic terrorism and regarded his domestic political opponents as the true threat.

For example, in 2009 Department of Homeland Security boss Janet Napolitano released Rightwing Extremism: Current Economic and Political Climate Fueling Resurgence in Radicalization and Recruitment. This document warned of “white supremacist” types that reject federal authority. This was code for anyone less than worshipful of the composite character, particularly those who value their constitutional rights.

In the United States of America, people have the freedom to choose those products and services that best meet their needs. The composite character wanted the American people to get only the health care the government wanted them to have. In one of his most famous lies, he told the people if they liked their health plan and their doctor, they could keep their plan and their doctor.

The United States of America has defined borders and laws governing immigration. On the composite character’s watch, caravans of “migrants” began arriving at the border. They were welcomed into the nation and released into the population while their case for “amnesty” was considered. On the composite character’s watch, U.S. troops only guarded the borders of other nations, not their own. Joe Biden was good with it.

In 2014, Joe Biden proclaimed that those who enter the USA illegally are “already Americans.” Once installed in the White House, Biden transformed the Department of Homeland Security into the Department of Human Trafficking, shipping in people from all over the world, even in the throes of a pandemic. The new arrivals are being moved all over the country but DHS boss Alejandro Mayorkas won’t provide details. After 14,000 Haitians showed up last month, the composite character decided to weigh in.

The situation, he told reporters, “is a painful reminder that we don’t have this right yet and we’ve got more work to do. As big-hearted as he is, nobody understands that better than Joe Biden.” Americans want to be compassionate, the composite character added, but “at the same time, we’re a nation state. We have borders. The idea that we can just have open borders is something that, as a practical matter, is unsustainable.” The big-hearted Joe Biden fails to understand.

Thousands of migrants continued to arrive in October, with no let-up in sight. Mayorkas remained as obstructionist as ever, even as members of Congress called for his resignation. Biden took no measures to tighten up the border, and even supported the fake story that Border Patrol agents were whipping the Haitians, like slavemasters of old.

What the composite character wants Biden to “get right” is massive human trafficking without the bad optics. Witness the Biden ban on drones filming thousands of Haitians at the border. The nation has been fundamentally transformed into a borderless Zone of Free Benefits for all comers.

As this plays out, Joe Biden is busy ramping up vaccine mandates that have already disrupted supply chains, travel, and product availability all over the country. As Psaki says, Biden wants to make a “fundamental change in our economy.” As it happens, our economy remains basically market-based, with Americans choosing products and services that best meet their needs. Like his composite character ventriloquist, Joe Biden wants Americans to get only what the government wants them to have.

Joe Biden is the also bobblehead for Rip Van Winkle communist Bernie Sanders and a squad of kindergarten socialists. If the Biden Junta has its way with the economy, scarcity, strife and misery are sure to follow. That will help complete the fundamental transformation the composite character proclaimed in 2008. Happy holidays everybody.

EDITORS NOTE: This ACT For America video is republished with permission. ©All rights reserved.

Biden Ditches Alaska Oil Drilling Project Which KILLS Thousands Of Jobs

There is one common thread running through every Democrat policy – it’s bad for America and Americans.

Biden Ditches Alaska Oil Drilling Project That Would’ve Created Thousands Of Jobs

  • The Biden administration abandoned an oil and gas drilling project in Alaska approved by former President Donald Trump, which it had previously defended.
  • “Today’s affirmation of our legal victory against the Willow project is a win for the climate and for an irreplaceable Alaska landscape,” Jeremy Lieb, an attorney for the group Earthjustice, said in a statement Wednesday. “We are glad to see that President Biden is taking positive steps in his commitment toward a cleaner energy future.”
  • While the administration chose against appealing a federal ruling that blocked the project, it previously vowed to defend the project and accused environmentalists of “cherry-picking” government records.

By: Daily Caller, October 21, 2021:

The Biden administration abandoned an oil and gas drilling project in Alaska approved by former President Donald Trump, which it had previously defended.

The Department of the Interior failed to file an appeal to a federal judge’s August decision blocking the multi-billion dollar Willow Project being developed by the Texas-based oil and gas firm ConocoPhillips. Judge Sharon Gleason of the U.S. District Court of the District of Alaska ruled that the federal government hadn’t adequately reviewed the emissions profile of the project, which she said would ultimately harm the environment and wildlife.

“Today’s affirmation of our legal victory against the Willow project is a win for the climate and for an irreplaceable Alaska landscape,” Jeremy Lieb, an attorney for the group Earthjustice, said in a statement Wednesday. “We are glad to see that President Biden is taking positive steps in his commitment toward a cleaner energy future.”

The Biden administration had until Tuesday to appeal Gleason’s decision.

While the administration chose against appealing the ruling – all but killing the project – it previously vowed to defend the initiative. In a May brief, the Department of Justice accused environmentalists of “cherry-picking” government records and said the Willow Project was in full compliance with relevant laws regulating such leases

“We hope the Biden administration’s choice to accept the federal court’s decision of halting ConocoPhillips’ Willow project is the beginning of the end of federal backing of fossil fuels,” Greenpeace USA senior research specialist Tim Donaghy said in a statement.

The Trump administration approved the project in October 2020 after an extensive review of its potential ecological impacts. Former Interior Secretary David Bernhardt said Willow was part of Trump’s pledge to increase “American energy independence.”

But several environmental groups joined a lawsuit challenging the project shortly after the Interior Department signed off on it.

The entire congressional delegation from Alaska – Sens. Lisa Murkowski and Dan Sullivan and Rep. Don Young – have been vocal proponents of the project, arguing it would produce 100,000 barrels of oil per day, lead to $10 billion in government revenue and create 2,000 construction jobs and 300 permanent jobs. They also applauded the Biden administration after its brief defending Willow in May.

“This decision won’t do one thing to help the environment,” Sullivan said in a statement following the August ruling. “To the contrary, it further delays one of Alaska’s most strategic energy development projects, which will benefit our adversaries that produce oil, like Russia, Venezuela and Iran, whose environmental standards are some of the worst in the world.”

“The Biden Administration needs to keep its commitment to the Alaskan people by continuing to defend the Willow project in court for the sake of American energy,” he continued.

Since July, oil and natural gas have hit multi-year highs across the world. The federal government recently projected that heating costs could increase 54% for Americans this winter and gasoline ticked up again Wednesday, reaching a national average of $3.36 per gallon, according to a AAA database.

The U.S. has also shown signs of returning to dependence on the Middle East and Russia for much of its oil and natural gas supply. The White House has repeatedly urged the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries to boost its output amid rising prices.

The Interior Department declined to comment on the administration’s decision not to appeal the ruling. ConocoPhillips didn’t immediately respond to a request for comment.

EDITORS NOTE: This Geller Report column is republished with permission. ©All rights reserved.

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‘Bracket Creep’: Voters in These 22 States Could See Direct Tax Hikes Due to Inflation, New Analysis Warns

Inflation is often described as a “hidden tax,” because it is driven by policy decisions and erodes citizens’ real purchasing power. But in 22 states, the high consumer price inflation observed over the last year could trigger direct tax increases as well, a new analysis warns.

The Tax Foundation’s Jared Walczak reports that 22 states and Washington, DC have at least one major provision of their state tax code that is not indexed for inflation. In 13 states, no major element is inflation-adjusted at all. These states are Alabama, Connecticut, Delaware, Georgia, Hawaii, Kansas, Louisiana, Mississippi, New Jersey, New York, Oklahoma, Virginia, and West Virginia, the Tax Foundation notes.

This leads to “bracket creep,” Walczak explains, because people wind up in higher tax brackets as their nominal wages are inflated but their actual, real, purchasing-power wage has not increased.

“The absence or insufficiency of cost-of-living adjustments in many state tax codes is always an issue, as it constitutes an unlegislated tax increase every year, cutting into wage growth and reducing return on investment,” Walczak writes. “During a period of higher inflation, however, the impact is particularly significant.”

He offers the example of a Delaware resident who earned $60,000 in taxable income in 2019, and now earns $64,000 in 2021. Given the more than 5.4 percent consumer price inflation observed over the last year, her real income—purchasing power—hasn’t actually risen. Yet Walczak explains that her taxes would increase by about $264 because that additional $4,000 falls into a higher tax rate bracket.

The above example is just a hypothetical, but it could soon be a reality for the millions of Americans who live in the 22 states with a tax framework that fails to completely account for inflation. This is, frankly, bad news. The last thing the public needs after a year-and-a-half of government-induced economic struggles and harmful inflation is a tax hike to boot. It’s even more concerning that this tax hike will likely go unnoticed by many of the people it affects because of its indirect nature.

Voters shouldn’t let policymakers pull a fast one. If government officials want to raise our taxes, they should, at the very least, have to vote on it and be held accountable. We shouldn’t stand for this kind of underhanded, behind-the-scenes tax hike and the concerning precedent it sets.

RELATED TWEET:

EDITORS NOTE: This FEE column is republished with permission. ©All rights reserved.

The Left’s Reconciliation Bill Would Raise Energy Prices and Erase American Jobs [+Video]

During a time in America when the price of basic household goods is rising and when employees across multiple sectors of the economy are facing a vaccine mandate or loss of their jobs, the Biden administration and progressives in Congress are now doubling down on making life even more difficult for the average American household. How? By making recklessly wasteful and counterproductive Green New Deal policies “the DNA” of the reconciliation spending bill that Democrats plan to push through by the end of October.

These Green New Deal policies will further drive up energy costs for those who can least afford it. They include forcing Americans to get 40 percent of their energy from wind/solar and other renewable resources within eight years. Not only would this policy dramatically increase the price for families to heat and power their homes, it could also potentially cost nearly 90,000 American jobs by increasing taxes on natural gas.

What’s more, the reconciliation bill also includes $222 billion in tax credits to pay for electric vehicles, which in reality turns out to be a tax credit for wealthy Americans, since they are mostly the ones who buy electric vehicles, which cost an average of $19,000 more than gas cars.

In addition, the bill includes eerily similar extraneous grants to what Obama did in 2011 when he gave a loan guarantee of $535 million to solar panel company Solyndra, which promptly went bankrupt. Biden’s bill includes $5 billion for “environmental and climate justice block grants” and another $100 billion in green energy special interest subsidies. It also includes $264 million for the EPA to conduct research with left-wing environmental justice groups on how to transition away from fossil fuels.

Other concerning aspects of the reconciliation bill include a push for Green New Deal policies in schools, including a $10 billion “environmental justice” higher education fund which is designed to indoctrinate college students. There is also an $8 billion grant to create a “Climate Conservation Corps” which would act as a kind of “climate police” in order to push far-left climate policies and programs.

To top it all off, the reconciliation bill includes an authoritarian Green New Deal forced compliance policy that punishes conservative states who fail to incorporate green provisions by mandating consequences for states that don’t meet green climate standards, while at the same time rewarding cooperating states with $4 billion in climate grants.

These are just some of the highly concerning and wasteful aspects of Biden’s “Build Back Better” reconciliation fiasco. For more on the ways in which Biden’s reconciliation bill undercuts families, be sure to read FRC’s new resource 6 Things to Know About Biden’s Anti-Family Budget Buster.

COLUMN  BY

FRC Staff

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EDITORS NOTE: This FRC-Action column is republished with permission. ©All rights reserved.

ACTION ALERT: Demand Visa Choose People Over Profit

In case you missed it, Mastercard is taking an important step to confront—and hopefully end—the horrific abuse on sites hosting pornography.

Their new policies have officially gone into effect as of October 15, 2021.

The new policies require banks connecting sellers of “adult content” (a.k.a. pornography) to Mastercard to ensure that the companies meet the following five standards:

  1. “Clear, unambiguous and documented consent”
  2. “Documented age and identity verification for all people depicted and those uploading the content”
  3. “Content review process prior to publication”
  4. “Complaint resolution process that addresses illegal or nonconsensual content within seven business days”
  5. “Appeals process allowing for any person depicted to request their content be removed”

This is a major step in protecting victims of rape and sex trafficking, child sexual abuse material, and those who are filmed or have content uploaded non-consensually.

Will you join us and tell Visa it’s not too late to reject profits from sexual abuse and exploitation, following Mastercard’s lead?


TAKE ACTION


EDITORS NOTE: This National Center on Sexual Exploitation column is republished with permission. ©All rights reserved.

The Mass Repricing Of Goods And Services

USA now under WAR TIME EMBARGO of food, medicine and fuel

“Your savings, investments, retirement, purchasing power, and the quality of life that you’ve spent a life time planning and working is being shredded.”

Are You Prepared For The Mass Repricing Of Goods And Services?

Authored by MN Gordon via EconomicPrism.com,

by Tyler Durden, Zero Hedge, Oct 17, 2021 – 09:20 AM

Rising consumer price inflation is not going away.  This, of course, is counter to the “transitory” argument made by Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell earlier this year.

Powell’s cohort, Atlanta Fed President Raphael Bostic, recently admitted inflation is not transitory.  This admission comes with assurances the Fed will properly manage it.  We have some reservations.

The media playback was aborted due to a corruption problem or because the media used features your browser did not support.

The effects of rising consumer prices range far and wide.  For one, the pinch rising prices put on consumers is extraordinarily disruptive.  It acts like a hefty tax…eroding family budgets that are already stretched.  In this ongoing stagflation, personal income gains lag far behind rising consumer prices.

Industrial materials and consumer goods companies also feel the pinch.  They can pass on some rising prices to consumers.  They can also absorb through lower profit margins some short term price increases.  But there are natural limits to what price increases can be absorbed and passed along.

When input costs, including raw material and labor, push the costs of the final manufactured goods above what they can readily be sold for the business motive breaks down.  Halting operations makes the most business sense.

One industry feeling the pinch of rising natural gas prices is the fertilizer business.  As we noted several weeks ago, several fertilizer plants in the UK have had to suspend operations because of soaring natural gas prices.  Here in the US we’re not aware of any fertilizer producers suspending operations.  But fertilizer prices are up, nonetheless.

In fact, the Green Markets North American Fertilizer Price Index recently soared to a record high, thus eclipsing the prior record set in 2008.  Sky high fertilizer prices will further raise the cost of food production for farmers.

According to the Food and Agriculture Organization’s global food index, food prices are already at a decade high.  Plus, when you factor in the grow season in North America doesn’t begin until late-March, the increased fertilizer input costs, could lead to persistent food inflation well into 2022.

But it’s not just food.  Here’s one instructive example of how price inflation discombobulates the economy…

Someone Gets Squeezed

The price of cotton just surged to a 10-year high.  Rising cotton prices translate into rising jean prices.  Levi Strauss has already raised the price of its jeans, thus passing some of the price inflation to consumers.

Levi Strauss is also realigning its business to account for higher input costs.  This includes aggressive negotiation with cotton suppliers and cutting out the middlemen.  Here are several details:

“In its earnings call, Levi said it has already negotiated most of its product costs through the first half of next year, at very low-single-digit inflation. For the second half of the year, it expects to see a mid-single digit increase. And Levi said it plans to offset that hike with the pricing actions it’s already been taking.

“Levi has been shifting its business from a predominantly wholesale to a mixed base that has a growing share of direct-to-consumer sales. And with strong consumer demand and tightened inventories, it’s been able to sell more products at full price.”

As noted above, the price of cotton is at a 10-year high.  Year to date it’s up 47 percent.  If cotton accounts for 20 percent of the cost to make a pair of Levi’s jeans, and the company was able to negotiate product costs at a very low-single-digit inflation, then someone in the supply chain is getting severely squeezed.

How long will it be before whoever that is cries uncle, and reneges on its obligations?

For a cotton supplier, that would presumably be when the input costs – land, fertilizer, labor, and processing – are greater than their contracted cost with Levi.

In this respect, Levi may have a plan to account for higher cotton prices, for now.  But will they really get a mid-single digit increase during the second half of 2022 as management anticipates?

How much more price inflation can they pass on to consumers?

Are You Prepared for the Mass Repricing of Goods and Services?

The answers to these and other related questions are being considered by management teams across all industries.  The simple fact is when the price of raw materials and labor inflate, it becomes very difficult to plan operations and production.  Hedging strategies may help manage for rapid, short-term price spikes, but they cannot ultimately prohibit a long-term repricing of materials.

In short, we believe a long-term repricing of materials, goods, and services, is now underway.  Certainly, prices will continue to rise and fall to meet supply and demand dynamics.  Yet this will take place in a range that is being repriced higher.  It has happened before and will happen again…

In 1960, for example, a gallon of gas cost $0.31 per gallon.  Similarly, in 1960 a gallon of milk cost $1.00 per gallon.  Currently, the average price of gas and the average price of milk are $3.28 per gallon and $3.68 per gallon, respectively.  That’s upwards of a 958 percent increase for gas and 268 percent increase for milk over the last 60 years.

Sure, the price of gas and milk could come down some from today’s prices.  However, there’s no way they’ll ever drop back to 1960’s prices.  They’ve been repriced higher for good.

Why?  Are gas and milk somehow more valuable today than they were 60 years ago?

We surmise these essentials have generally the same utility value they always have.  Yet the dollar has been greatly devalued.  Moreover, this great devaluation is the consequence of rampant dollar debasement policies executed in tandem between the Fed and Congress.

The recent debt ceiling histrionics in Congress – and the elevation of the debt limit for what we believe is the 79th time since 1960 – are merely another milestone in the great dollar debasement saga.

Remember, price inflation starts with expansion of the money supply.  These days the expansion of the money supply is conducted in tandem by the Federal Reserve and the Treasury.  In short, the Treasury sells new debt to the Federal Reserve, which the Fed buys using credit created out of thin air.

Congress, through its debt ceiling increases, provides the Treasury with an unlimited tab.  Congress then spends this limitless money into the economy via spending programs galore.  As this new money flows through the economy, prices adjust higher, as the supply of money increases much faster than the supply of goods.

The point is, through policies of mass dollar debasement, we’ve now entered the next stage of the mass repricing of goods and services in the economy.  The price of just about everything will adjust upward by several hundred percent – or much, much more – over the next decade.

Pre-pandemic prices are gone forever…

…and your savings, investments, retirement, purchasing power, and the quality of life that you’ve spent a life time planning and working for will be shredded.

Are you prepared?

EDITORS NOTE: This Geller Report column is republished with permission. ©All rights reserved.

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Will Ron DeSantis Save Christmas?

Last week, the Florida Ports Council put out a press release telling shippers that the state’s ports are open, staffed, and ready for business.

“Florida is where your success comes in, and our seaports are the solution to ensure the cargo shipping logjam doesn’t become the Grinch that stole Christmas,” said Florida Ports Council President and CEO Michael Rubin. He added, “With inflation growing, shipping and manufacturing industries can save time and money by calling on Florida ports. Why pay to moor off the coast of California, when Florida shipping lanes are open and serving as the gateway for getting goods to America’s market?”  

Thanks to Governor Ron DeSantis, Florida is well-positioned to serve as part of the supply chain solution.

Earlier this year, Governor DeSantis infused Florida’s 15 seaports with $250 million in stimulus relief to help offset the impacts experienced as a result of the pandemic. This stimulus is in addition to other port infrastructure and connectivity investments made in Florida to increase our capacity and ability to move cargo and passengers around the world – Florida continues to invest in the infrastructure to become the pier to the world.

Miami, Florida, has opened its arms to tech companies fleeing California. Residents of the Golden State flocked to Florida in 2020 in numbers not seen previously. Maybe cargo ships will be next. Governor Ron DeSantis made some real infrastructure investments to upgrade Florida’s ports.

Let’s see if they pay off and save Christmas for everyone.

EDITORS NOTE: This Defend Florida column is republished with permission. ©All rights reserved.

Ports Backed Up, Transportation Secretary Buttigieg Changing Diapers

Clown.

They could temporarily halt all transportation regulations and mandates to fix this but instead they do nothing. Democrats want chaos.

Transportation secretary acknowledges trucker shortage ‘issue’ as part of supply chain disruptions

Bret Baier presses Transportation Secretary Buttigieg on supply chain woes

By Angelica Stabile | Fox News October 15, 2021:

Buttigieg defends Biden’s plan to solve supply chain issues: A lot must ‘go right’

Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg acknowledges driver shortage and a supply chain bottleneck with a positive outlook following the president’s plan to keep ports open.

Supply chain disruptions across the U.S. have left shelves empty as the crucial holiday shopping period approaches.

President Biden announced Wednesday that the Ports of Los Angeles will remain open for 60 extra hours per week to feed in shipments to which “Special Report” host Bret Baier asked Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg, “Is it too little, too late?”

“The president said this has the potential to be a game-changer,” Buttigieg said. “It’s going to have to be part of a number of steps.”

BIDEN RESPONDS TO SUPPLY CHAIN CRISIS, URGES PRIVATE SECTOR TO ‘STEP UP’

“A lot of things have to go right but the announcement that these ports would go 24/7, that’s a big part of it.”

The secretary referenced a report that indicates the issue does not solely lie in open ports, but also in the availability of trucks and drivers.
Biden under fire as supply chain crisis worsens; blamed Trump for 2020 shortages Video

Buttigieg added there are also issues with different ports coordinating with each other, urging for the implementation of more data sharing.

When pressed by Baier whether the current situation could have been seen coming, the secretary admitted the administration did notice the supply chain backup approaching and had set for accommodations to be put in place to heighten urgency. Buttigieg mentioned that furthering these efforts includes pushing through the highly-debated infrastructure package that allocates $17 billion to U.S. ports.

Baier pushed the former South Bend, Ind. mayor on why that infrastructure bill remains on Capitol Hill despite its addressing of bridges and ports and having the backing of Republicans – the bill remains stalled as Democrats debate among themselves another, more progressive, bill.

“We very much push for this infrastructure bill,” he said. “I’ve worked hard on it. The president has worked hard on it. And the same is true for the Build Back Better agenda – things that most Americans agree on.” Buttigieg agreed that Republicans would indeed support infrastructure, but noted the GOP would vote against the Democrats on what has been dubbed “human infrastructure” such as child care, family leave, climate change and such.

With many wondering whether gifts will be in short supply this holiday season, Baier asked Buttigieg whether this should be of concern. Buttigieg noted, “Part of the reason we are where we are is that the president successfully brought this economy out of the teeth of a recession.

“People are buying more than ever before, we’re seeing record goods coming through our ports. The demand is there, which is great news. It represents a policy success. Now we’ve got to make sure those supply chains are there to support.”

“So, you’re saying that’s a high-class problem?” Baier asked.

“What I’m saying is that we are better off because the economy is growing,” Buttigieg said, “And the economy is growing thanks to the leadership of this president.”

EDITORS NOTE: This Geller Report column is republished with permission. ©All rights reserved.

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Biden’s Plan to “Help” the American Family Is to Tax Them More

How does the Biden administration intend to pay for its proposed $3.5 trillion “Build Back Better” plan? By taxing the same hardworking American families the plan claims to help. In addition to advancing a radical progressive agenda, the plan carries a hefty price tag that will affect Americans of all backgrounds, both present and future.

If passed, the Biden administration’s plan would usher in the largest tax increase in over 50 years. Despite Biden’s promise that families making under $400,000 will not see their taxes increase, the nonpartisan Joint Committee on Taxation has revealed that anyone making $30,000 or more would see their taxes go up. By 2027, taxes on families earning between $75K and $100K would go up by an estimated $3 billion. The Biden administration’s plan raises taxes on savings and investments as well as the death tax, which inhibits families from passing on property and inheritance to the next generation.

Although middle class taxes would increase under this plan, the majority of the new taxes are aimed at businesses, both large and small. These taxes on businesses would likely get passed on to the working class, impacting anyone with a 401(k), anyone who works for a business, or anyone who buys products from a business. In other words, everyone. Record rates of taxation will only undo the Trump administration’s work to bring businesses back to America and help rebuild communities hit hard by globalization. The Biden administration’s plan, in contrast, will incentivize businesses to move production overseas, benefitting countries like China that frequently abuse human rights for the sake of profit.

The taxes on businesses could also create even more job losses than the economy is already facing due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Interestingly enough, in the past three U.S. recessions, unemployment for professional workers only increased three percent, whereas unemployment for production and transportation workers increased 7.5 percent and construction workers nine percent. This is even further evidence that the Biden administration’s tax and spending plan hurts working-class families the hardest, not the wealthy corporations like it claims.

By pumping a dramatic amount of new spending into the economy in a short amount of time, this plan would likely force inflation even higher, raising the prices of everyday essentials from food and gasoline to shipping, lumber, and other transportation costs. Raising the costs of essential goods while simultaneously raising taxes on the middle class would be disastrous for many American families at a time when marriage and the birth rates are already at an all-time low. Families need more economic security and flexibility, not less, but this plan will only make it more difficult for families to get by.

Finally, the proposed $3.5 trillion in new spending comes on the heels of more than $5 trillion in COVID relief packages passed in the past 18 months. Add this to the $1 trillion in proposed infrastructure spending, and that’s $9 trillion added to the $28 trillion in existing national debt. Just this week, the Congressional Budget Office undercut Democrat talking points on the necessity to raise new taxes to make up for the deficit. In 2021, the government collected $36 billion more in tax revenue than expected — despite the 2017 Tax Cuts and Jobs Act signed into law by President Trump. The notion that tax cuts are what is causing the increase in the national deficit is simply false. Because the government has continued spending massive amounts of money on progressive priorities, there is no money available to spend on things that could truly help families, like a true expansion of the Child Tax Credit or expanding 529 education accounts to include homeschooling expenses. As Democrats attempt to sell the necessity of this tax-and-spend plan over the next few weeks, it is important to remember that America’s hardworking middle-class families will ultimately foot the bill.

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