About This Blog

Ludwig von Mises (1881-1973) was the greatest economist of my time. His greatest works can be accessed here at no charge.

Mises believed that property, freedom and peace are and should be the hallmarks of a satisfying and prosperous society. I agree. Mises proved beyond a shadow of a doubt that the prospect for general and individual prosperity is maximized, indeed, is only possible, if the principle of private property reigns supreme. What's yours is yours. What's mine is mine. When the line between yours and mine is smudged, the door to conflict opens. Without freedom (individual liberty of action) the principle of private property is neutered and the free market, which is the child of property and freedom and the mother of prosperity and satisfaction, cannot exist. Peace is the goal of a prosperous and satisfying society of free individuals, not peace which is purchased by submission to the enemies of property and freedom, but peace which results from the unyielding defense of these principles against all who challenge them.

In this blog I measure American society against the metrics of property, freedom and peace.

Tuesday, October 9, 2012

Monday, October 8, 2012

TIMELINE: Obama's "Romney Is A Liar" Routine

8/9/11 - POLITICO: Obama plan: Destroy Romney
“Unless things change and Obama can run on accomplishments, he will have to kill Romney,” said a prominent Democratic strategist aligned with the White House.
9/6/12 - POLITICO: Verdict is in: Obama levels more personal attacks
— Obama’s campaign has suggested Romney is deceitful or corrupt. Deputy campaign manager Stephanie Cutter, highlighting inconsistencies in Romney’s explanation of his departure from Bain Capital, suggested that Romney is “misrepresenting his position at Bain to the SEC, which is a felony.” The alternative, she said, is Romney was lying to the American people. Last weekend, Cutter said that Romney and Paul Ryan think “lying is a virtue,” judging from the factual misrepresentations of the GOP convention.
10/4/12 - HUFFINGTON POST: Obama Campaign: Romney Won Debate Because He Lied
Democratic surrogates in the cable TV spin rooms Wednesday night seemed to have trouble explaining President Barack Obama's weak debate performance. By Thursday morning, however, the Obama campaign had settled on a explanation for why their guy lost: Mitt Romney lied. ...

... The campaign has a good point: Romney's policy explanations, particularly about how he was going to pay for $5 trillion in tax cuts, were vague, misleading and riddled with falsehoods. But he delivered them with conviction. Obama supporters will probably be asking themselves how their candidate failed to rebut Romney during the debate, rather than after, until the next meeting between the two on Oct. 16.
10/8/12 - DAILY CALLER: Obama’s staffers changed election strategy during Denver debate
According to the Times’ account, Obama did not participate in the top-level call because he was still on the stage.

The call included his top campaign advisors, David Axelrod and David Plouffe, as well as Jim Messina and Stephanie Cutter, his campaign manger and deputy deputy manager.

However, the Politico account says the new anti-Romney strategy was developed by Obama and his aides the day after the debate.

“He huddled with his inner circle — David Axelrod, David Plouffe, Valerie Jarrett, Anita Dunn, Ron Klain and Jim Messina — and settled on the theme they hammered all of Thursday [Oct. 4] — a direct attack on Romney that accused him of out-and-out lying on his tax-cut claims and portrayed the former Massachusetts governor as a two-faced imposter willing to say anything to win.”

In the meantime, how about these REAL Obama lies:

Her ominous and frightening message was gleaned from years of covering our wars in the Middle East. She arrived in Chicago on the heels of her Sept. 30 report, “The Longest War.” It examined the Afghanistan conflict and exposed the perils that still confront America, 11 years after 9/11.

Eleven years later, “they” still hate us, now more than ever, Logan told the crowd. The Taliban and al-Qaida have not been vanquished, she added. They’re coming back.

“I chose this subject because, one, I can’t stand, that there is a major lie being propagated . . .” Logan declared in her native South African accent.

The lie is that America’s military might has tamed the Taliban.

“There is this narrative coming out of Washington for the last two years,” Logan said. It is driven in part by “Taliban apologists,” who claim “they are just the poor moderate, gentler, kinder Taliban,” she added sarcastically. “It’s such nonsense!”

Logan stepped way out of the “objective,” journalistic role. The audience was riveted as she told of plowing through reams of documents, and interviewing John Allen, the top U.S. commander in Afghanistan; Afghan President Hamid Karzai, and a Taliban commander trained by al-Qaida. The Taliban and al-Qaida are teaming up and recruiting new terrorists to do us deadly harm, she reports.

She made a passionate case that our government is downplaying the strength of our enemies in Afghanistan and Pakistan, as a rationale of getting us out of the longest war. We have been lulled into believing that the perils are in the past: “You’re not listening to what the people who are fighting you say about this fight. In your arrogance, you think you write the script.”
Via The Weekly Standard: Princeton Economist: Obama Campaign Is Misrepresenting My Study on Romney's Tax Plan
Last night, the Obama campaign blasted out another email claiming that Mitt Romney's tax plan would either require raising taxes on the middle class or blowing a hole in the deficit. "Even the studies that Romney has cited to claim his plan adds up still show he would need to raise middle-class taxes," said the Obama campaign press release. "In fact, Harvard economist Martin Feldstein and Princeton economist Harvey Rosen both concede that paying for Romney’s tax cuts would require large tax increases on families making between $100,000 and $200,000."

But that's not true. Princeton professor Harvey Rosen tells THE WEEKLY STANDARD in an email that the Obama campaign is misrepresenting his paper on Romney's tax plan:
I can’t tell exactly how the Obama campaign reached that characterization of my work.  It might be that they assume that Governor Romney wants to keep the taxes from the Affordable Care Act in place, despite the fact that the Governor has called for its complete repeal.  The main conclusion of my study is that  under plausible assumptions, a proposal along the lines suggested by Governor Romney can both be revenue neutral and keep the net tax burden on taxpayers with incomes above $200,000 about the same.  That is, an increase in the tax burden on lower and middle income individuals is not required in order to make the overall plan revenue neutral. 
You can check the math that shows Romney's plan is mathematically possible here.

 'Nuff said.

Sunday, October 7, 2012

Why Obama Lost The Last Debate And Will Lose The Next One, And the Next One, And The Next....

Listen carefully to this YouTube video of young Mr. Obama and see if you can make sense of it. A transcript below is provided by "edricle," the person who uploaded the video.

OBAMA: I think the trick is figuring out how do we structure government systems that pool resources and hence facilitate some redistribution because I actually believe in redistribution, at least at a certain level to make sure that everybody's got a shot. How do we pool resources at the same time as we decentralize delivery systems in ways that both foster competition, can work in the marketplace, and can foster innovation at the local level and can be tailored to particular communities.

Mr. Obama seems to be searching for some kind of "trick" which would make the concepts of "private property" and "public property" have exactly the same meaning.

When an individual's mind is incapable of comprehending the principle "A is A," then no intellectual "trick" seems impossible. Then, literally, anything goes.

The problem is, when such a mind is confronted by reality, for example, by a clear-thinking opponent in debate...blank out!!

John Galt, Atlas Shrugged:
Whatever you choose to consider, be it an object, an attribute or an action, the law of identity remains the same. A leaf cannot be a stone at the same time, it cannot be all red and all green at the same time, it cannot freeze and burn at the same time. A is A. Or, if you wish it stated in simpler language: You cannot have your cake and eat it, too.

Are you seeking to know what is wrong with the world? All the disasters that have wrecked your world, came from your leaders’ attempt to evade the fact that A is A. All the secret evil you dread to face within you and all the pain you have ever endured, came from your own attempt to evade the fact that A is A. The purpose of those who taught you to evade it, was to make you forget that Man is Man.

Friday, October 5, 2012

Don't Allow Yourself To Be Caught Up In The Thick Of Thin Things

There is a talk show host where I come from that likes to warn his listeners not to get caught up in the thick of thin things. By this, he means, don't get sucked into a debate about insignificant but sexy issues and then lose sight of the really important ones.

This is especially good advice in the political campaign season because politicians and their handlers love to find a sexy molehill and then spin it into a mountain. A case in point is Mitt Romney's wealth (Breaking: Mitt Romney Still Filthy Rich) or Ann Romney's horseback riding (MS and Romney's Horse). These are "thin" issues meant to attract you and then distract you from the critically important issues in this race: Barack Obama's progressive policies and his economic obsolescence.

In Wednesday night's debate President Obama tried to suck the country into a debate about Romney's economic plan which, according to the President, lowers taxes on the wealthy, raises taxes on the middle class, blows up the deficit and cuts "critical" investments in education and biofuels. 

This is from a man who has no economic plan at all, who couldn't pass a budget in Congress, who presided over trillion dollar deficits each year of his Presidency and engineered the greatest total increase in public debt in American history.

Moreover, although he keeps reminding us that he inherited "the worst financial crisis since the Great Depression" from George W. Bush, Obama eagerly re-appointed the man who presided over that financial crisis, Bush's Federal Reserve Chairman, "Helicopter" Ben Bernanke.

All this noisy speculation about the arithmetic of Romney's economic plan is a sideshow meant to distract us from the really important issues of this campaign: Barack Obama's failed Keynesian economic policies and progressive ideology.

This is not to say that Mitt Romney is an Ayn Rand-like advocate of the free market. His comment that free economies need to be regulated is oxymoronic. Still, Romney doesn't hitch his wagon of economic recovery to a retread promise of hiring 100,000 new government workers, or creating two million more "slots" in government schools, or converting pond scum into diesel fuel.

The thrust of Romney's rhetoric is economic growth in the private sector. The thrust of Obama's rhetoric is government growth, following the pattern he set in his first term.
In 2009 Obama signed a near trillion dollar Stimulus package that stimulated the pockets of Democratic Party special interests but little else.   

In 2010 Obama signed the monstrous ObamaCare act that will serve as a prelude to a single payer, government-run health care system unless it is repealed.

In 2011 Obama proposed a second Stimulus package of $447-billion, this time labeling his effort to expand the size of government a "Jobs" package.

In late December, 2011 Obama told 60 Minutes that his first Stimulus package should have been "even larger."

In an interview with the Daily Caller Congressional Democrat Mike Honda of California and the Congressional Progressive Caucus summed up the Keynesian economic ideology that drives him and, no doubt, the President and his administration:
“We know that if we invest money into this economy and get cash into people’s hands, they’ll spend it and once they start spending the money, it starts to circulate through our economy and it’ll stimulate the economy and we’ve done this other times before. It [The 99 Percent Act] will increase our deficit but we need to increase our deficit right now to make that investment and make that place so that we can get this thing started.”
This is the kind of obsolete and addled economic reasoning that over the last hundred years has gotten us into the mess we're in. This is the kind of economic policy we've had for the last four years. This is the economic policy that Barack Obama promises to continue the next four years.

Don't allow yourself to get caught up in the thick of thin things and lose sight of this simple but critically important truth.

Thursday, October 4, 2012

MUST READ! Debbie Schlussel: "Study Shows Female Economists Exceptionally Stupid (& Very Far-Left)"

Debbie Schlussel is not a shrinking violet.

I've been reading her blog for years and, frankly, I'm a fan. She says what she thinks and usually her thinking is sound. Yeah, every now and then she posts something sorta off the wall. She's always controversial.

[By the way, she is also the most reliable, informative and honest movie critic around. Her timely and prodigious movie reviews have saved me the price of admission many times over.] 

Her latest post: Study Shows Female Economists Exceptionally Stupid (& Very Far-Left) is no exception.

She begins with this paragraph:
If women were not allowed to vote, the better candidate would usually win the Presidential race. That’s because women are more liberal, more likely to be Democrats, and in poll after poll, more clueless and unlikely to know what they are talking about with regard to Presidential and Vice Presidential candidates, the candidates’ backgrounds, and their positions on issues. And so it goes with female economists, where the gender gap is a gender chasm. A University of Nebraska-Lincoln study shows that female economists are stupid (which probably has a lot to do with affirmative action for chicks in math and sciences, every step of the way from education to career) and far to the left.
Whoa! I told ya, she's no shrinking violet. But does she know what she's talking about?

The meat of her article is in this graph:

The data is from the University of Nebraska-Lincoln study she refers to above.

According to the source article in USA Today:
"As a group, we are pro-market," says Ann Mari May, co-author of the study and a University of Nebraska economist. "But women are more likely to accept government regulation and involvement in economic activity than our male colleagues."
This acceptance of government regulation blows my mind, as do the results in the table above regarding both genders. Since when is it the job of an economist to speak in terms of "should?" And the "minimum wage hikes" item is completely unanswerable by any economist without knowing if the "hike" is above, at, or below the market wage rate which would otherwise obtain.

The USA article also states:
The biggest disagreement: 76% of women say faculty opportunities in economics favor men. Male economists point the opposite way: 80% say women are favored or the process is neutral.

To which Ms. Schlussel declares:
The few male economists who said the process favors men are the ones who surrendered their testicles a long time ago.
Fair warning. Schlussel has a pair. If you're going to use any of the material in her blog, you had better give her credit, as I have done. If you don't, she'll let you know about it. She's a lawyer by trade.

Obama From Last Night's Debate: "It's -- it's math. It's arithmetic."

Monday, October 1, 2012

Pat Caddell: Media Have Become An "Enemy Of The American People"

I've always liked Pat Caddell. I believe he was a pollster for Bill Clinton. But even then when I saw him on TV interviews I was impressed by his willingness to tell it like it is regardless of whose ox is gored.

The headline above is from a story in Real Clear Politics. Watch the video.

Do you think Pat Caddell is exaggerating? Take a look at the headlines below. You and I know about them because they appeared on either the Drudge Report or Weasel Zippers. Little or no mention in the mainstream media.

Now ask yourself: If these headlines were about a Republican incumbent or a Republican administration, would they appear in the mainstream press, or not?

Obama Admin Offers To Reimburse Defense Contractors For Severance Costs If They Wait Until After Election To Send Layoff Notices…

Shocking Video Of Joe Biden In 2007: America “Reaping What We Have Sown” On Katrina, Virginia Tech Massacre, Darfur Because Of The GOP…

Report: Eric Holder Participated In Radical Black Group’s “Armed” Takeover Of Columbia University ROTC Office While A Student…

Univision report connects Operation Fast and Furious scandal to murders of Mexican teenagers

WaPo Poll: OMG! Obama Up 11 Points In Swing States! Race Is Over! – Reality: 160 People Surveyed, 8-Point Margin Of Error…

Now, giving credit where credit is due. The following headlines DID appear in the MSM:

Huge tax increase looms at year-end 'fiscal cliff'

Obama Supporters' Dirty Tricks to Win the Catholic Vote

WaPo Fact Checker Destroys Obama’s Claim That The Bush Tax Cuts Led To The Economic Crisis…

That's commendable. But you can be sure these stories won't be discussed on MSNBC.

Sunday, September 30, 2012

Scary!...Democrat Wish List For 2nd Obama Term

From The Hill via Drudge:

“The critical issues will be revenue generation …"

"Honda, meanwhile, wants Obama to return to healthcare reform...We've got more to do."

"...achieve one-third of the goal of reducing carbon emissions by 80 percent by 2050."

"Whatever we go after first has to be a bipartisan issue, whether it's cyber-security, whether it's payroll tax, whether it's the doc fix in Medicare, whether it's the jobs bill – whatever it is – we've got to do it together."

That last quote is the scariest.

Saturday, September 29, 2012

"Steven Rattner Is Basically an Asshole" And A "Lying Scumbag"

Whoa!! That's not me saying those nasty things about Mr. Rattner. I'm just your dutiful reporter telling it like it is, as a preamble to my commentary on Mr. Rattner's ObamaCare editorial in the NY Times.

John Cook in an article at Gawker is responsible for the first half of the headline above, and somebody pseudonymed "suyts" in an article on a blog named "suyts space" is responsible for the second half.

Apparently, Mr. Cook is put off by Mr. Rattner's supposed money and power-grubbing style:
Why wouldn't you like someone who decided, when he was a reporter at the Times, that he deserved the status, power, and money that had been acquired by the idiots he covered?
As for suyts, well, he or she is upset by Mr. Rattner's hypocritical and envious attitude about Mitt Romney's investment prowess. It seems Mr. Romney socked away up to $100-million in a tax-free IRA account and that struck a nerve with Mr. Rattner.

Speaking on CNN as a "private equity insider," Mr. Rattner complained that neither he nor any of his investment equity pals "had even known this was a possible trick" and that "Americans would find that pretty distasteful." Suyts, employing a rather crude nickname, said of Mr. Rattner:
Can you imagine anything as stupid as what Rat is suggesting?  You take your taxes to a CPA or even H&R block.  They get done with them but they failed to get you all of the tax breaks and refunds available.  And, when you ask for an explanation, they’ll say “that Americans would find this distasteful.”  How stupid is that?
Well, anyway, that explains my headline. It's their bad, not mine.

In point of fact I actually rather admire Mr. Rattner, President Obama's former "Car Czar" and current NY financier, NY Times Op-Ed writer and MSNBC analyst who manages NYC Mayor Michael Bloomberg's "personal and philanthropic assets," who reportedly resigned from the Obama administration in the midst of a scandal and SEC investigation alleging kickbacks "involving officials with New York state's pension fund" and who has reportedly settled with the SEC by paying "more than $5 million in fines to the federal agency" and by accepting "a ban from the securities industry for several years."

Such a long and varied history of honorable public and private service commands admiration.

Anywho, some probably biased critics -- like the minions at the Boston Globe -- refer to Mr. Rattner's famous "Cash for Clunkers" program as "classic government folly." They allege the program encouraged American consumers to "take 'free' money to make a purchase most of them were going to make anyway, while simultaneously wiping out productive assets that could provide value to many other consumers for years to come." The spurious Globe report concludes: "By any rational standard...this program was sheer folly."

Moreover, a recent study concludes that the program was slightly less effective than running in place:
The government's "cash for clunkers" program boosted auto sales by 360,000 during the two months it was in place...But in the seven months that followed, sales were down by 360,000 compared with what they would have been without the program.

None other than President Obama has referred to Mr. Rattner's signature achievement in government as "successful beyond anybody’s imagination."

The truth, as always, is probably somewhere in the middle.

Anyway, back to the matter at hand, a NY Times Op-Ed piece written by Mr. Rattner entitled: "Beyond Obamacare," in which Mr. Rattner argues that the new healthcare law of the land kinda, sorta needs "death panels:"
Well, maybe not death panels, exactly, but unless we start allocating health care resources more prudently — rationing, by its proper name — the exploding cost of Medicare will swamp the federal budget.
Given Mr. Rattner's competence and expertise both inside and outside of government, I think the country should take his counsel seriously. I won't go into the specifics of Mr. Rattner's exact plan because I haven't read the ObamaCare law, much less the Medicare law, so I'm operating strictly on information contained in Mr. Rattner's Op-Ed piece and, frankly, I haven't finished that either.

However, near as I can tell, Mr. Rattner wants the ObamaCare law to have more "teeth" in it when it comes to "reducing the cost of treating people in the last year of life." Like Willie Sutton the bank robber, Mr. Rattner suggests that's where the money is and, if Medicare and ObamaCare are to be saved, that's where we ought to get the savings.

Some might object that Mr. Rattner isn't talking about rationing at all, but is in fact recommending a kind of ObamaCare Star Chamber that sits in judgement of all our geezers and decides which of them needs putting down.

I doubt that's what he has in mind. His language is so fluent and his tone so tender...well, contrary to John Cook who writes that "everyone thinks Rattner is an arrogant prick," I happen to believe Mr. Rattner has a sympathetic soul and the best interests of all Americans at heart.

The details of Mr. Rattner's plan to save Medicare and ObamaCare are not the point! As he says himself, there are plenty of model health care systems in the world to draw upon, such as the National Health Service in England "which provides universal coverage with spending at proportionately almost half of American levels."

The point is ObamaCare has taken the power of healthcare decision-making out of the hands of individual Americans and has put it in the hands of selfless, imaginative, public servants like Mr. Rattner. Now is not the time to criticize these folks who literally have the lives of the rest of us in their hands. Now is the time to support and celebrate them, and to draw upon their singular expertise and exemplary moral character.

Without advisers like Mr. Rattner we would have to make healthcare decision on our own! We'd be lost like babes in the wood!

Besides, it irks me that we're talking about ObamaCare as if it is flawed and in need of reform before it has even kicked in! We need to give this wondrous new health system a chance! 

We need to allow the experts, like Mr. Rattner, to figure out what is in our best interests. Isn't that why Congress passed ObamaCare in the first place?

Of course there will be bumps in the road. That's understandable. As Mr. Rattner declares in his Op-Ed, Medicare is bankrupting the country. Still. Despite the ObamaCare fix. Without creative ways to cut costs, Mr. Rattner says the healthcare "spending target looms impossibly large."

Mr. Rattner is positive the cost problem boils down to that pesky and expensive "last year of life" which Medicare and ObamaCare continue to subsidize to the hilt. He explains:
No one wants to lose an aging parent. And with price out of the equation, it’s natural for patients and their families to try every treatment, regardless of expense or efficacy.
I don't know about you, but he has a point, doesn't he? I'm excited to have Mr. Rattner on the job helping us out of the quagmire the administration he served created. He's truly an out-of-the-box thinker. And you know what? I think I know where he's heading with his Op-Ed.

I think Mr. Rattner sees ObamaCare and Medicare being saved by a program similar to "Cash For Clunkers." You know, the government would give young folks free money -- a stipend of a few hundred dollars -- to withhold million-dollar medical treatment from their elderly folks during their last year of life.

In turn, the government would stipulate that these young folks must use their stipend to procreate new models. For instance, they could rent a sexy, but otherwise unaffordable, bridal suite at the Ritz Carleton.

You get my drift. Society benefits all around.

Another Good Idea That Doesn't Stand The Chance Of An Ice Cube In Hell

Congressional Reform Act of 2012

1. Term Limits.
12 years only, one of the possible options below:
A. Two Six-year Senate terms
B. Six Two-year House terms
C. One Six-year Senate term and three Two-Year House terms

2. No Tenure / No Pension.

A Congressman collects a salary while in office and receives no pay when they are out of office.

3. Congress (past, present & future) participates in Social Security.

All funds in the Congressional retirement fund move to the Social Security system immediately. All future funds flow into the Social Security system, and Congress participates with the American people.

4. Congress can purchase their own retirement plan, just as all Americans do.

5. Congress will no longer vote themselves a pay raise. Congressional pay will rise by the lower of CPI or 3%.

6. Congress loses their current health care system and participates in the same health care system as the American people.

7. Congress must equally abide by all laws they impose on the American people.

8. All contracts with past and present Congressmen are void effective the day this is signed into law.

The American people did not make this contract with Congressmen. Congressmen made all these contracts for themselves.

Serving in Congress is an honor, not a career. The Founding Fathers envisioned citizen legislators, so ours should serve their term(s), then go home and back to work.

If you agree that the Act as described above just might be a good start at bringing this country back to its roots, click here and sign the petition to Congress.

Petition2Congress Logo

Friday, September 28, 2012

Is Europe The Canary Dying In The Mine Shaft?

How can anyone read the latest headlines describing what is going on in Europe and not be alarmed?

GREECE -- On Wednesday Greek workers began a general strike "backed by the country's biggest private sector force, the General Confederation of Greek workers (GSEE), the union of civil servants (ADEDY), and militant unionists attached to the KKE communist party."

According to reports, Greece accounts for "about 2 percent of the eurozone's total economy." The country is in it's fifth year of recession and it's unemployment rate is "above 24%."

Greek policemen fleeing protesters' "gasoline bomb"
Greece's nearly four-month old, conservative party coalition government is surviving "on billions of euros in two rescue loan packages from other eurozone countries and the International Monetary Fund." To appease its creditors the government has "slashed salaries and pensions and hiked taxes." To secure another round of bailout money the government is proposing more spending cuts and "improved tax collection." This "austerity" is what has the unionists upset:
While the demonstration began peacefully, a couple of hundred protesters broke away to smash paving stones and marble facades to use as missiles against riot police, leading to clashes that petered out after about an hour.

Eight policemen were injured, including one hit by a gasoline bomb, and 21 people were arrested, police said. At least two demonstrators were also injured.

Government spokesman Simos Kedikoglou said the limited violence and what he called a smaller turnout than opposition parties had hoped for showed that "Greek society understands what the government is doing is the only possible solution."

SPAIN -- On Thursday the Spanish government announced "a crisis budget for 2013." Spain accounts for about 9% of the total eurozone economy. Spain's economic downturn has persisted for at least three years and its unemployment rate is about 25%.

Protesters in Catalonia demanding secession
Spain's "center-right" government, in power for less than a year, projects spending will be down 7.3% in 2013 "not including social security and interest payments." Central government revenue will rise 4% in 2013 because of a 15% increase in Spain's VAT "tax take."

These "austerity" measures are all mere proposals, of course, and the country is still awaiting required budget cut proposals from Spain's 17 "autonomous regions." One wealthy region, Catalonia, is already experiencing "anti-austerity protests" and is threatening "secession."

The Spanish government's budget projections hinge on a rosy prediction of its near-term growth rate and on cuts in government pensions which "are likely to fuel further street protests, which have become increasingly violent as tensions rise and police use force to disperse crowds."

Possible investors in Spain "fear Madrid cannot control its finances." Currently, the government "is talking to EU authorities about the terms of a possible aid package" in order to "ease Spain's unsustainable funding costs."      

FRANCE -- Today the French government announced the country's "toughest single belt-tightening in 30 years" including a new 75% tax on the "super-rich."

France accounts for about 16% of the total eurozone economy. France has experienced at least a year of economic stagnation and has a record unemployment rate of 10.2%.

French health workers in 2011 protesting austerity measures
The recently elected, socialist French government announced that two-thirds of its "austerity" belt tightening would come from "tax increases on households and companies" and one-third from a "freeze on spending."  The new "temporary" tax on the super-rich is expected to bring in a relative pittance. The bulk of the tax revenue increase will come from higher tax rates "on dividends and other investments" and "cuts to existing tax breaks."

Reportedly, the new budget "dismayed business and pro-reform lobbyists." Given the tax-heavy budget, they feared France would fall short of its growth rate target for next year which stands at a meager 0.8%! The new taxes also prompted fears of "an exodus of top talent." A few weeks ago France's richest man declared "he had applied for Belgian nationality - but stressed he would continue to pay taxes in France."

CONCLUSION -- Readers may draw their own conclusions about where all this economic turmoil is heading, and what implications it holds for our own country. What I find most interesting are the efforts by these welfare state government to fix their problems by extracting more and more resources from their non-public economies. So many individuals in these countries are so deeply invested in government jobs, pensions and welfare payments that any slight cut in spending triggers protests, some of them violent.

Consequently, while politicians label their new budget solutions courageous and austere, they are top heavy in new taxes aimed at defusing public anger and continuing a "comfortable" welfare state status quo. But how can any sane economist believe that increased taxes on investment will spur growth?

What's needed is a meat-axe approach to budget cuts and a corresponding lowering of taxes on business and capital investment.

These countries will never be able to tax their way out from under the mountain of debt they've created for themselves. Neither will they be able to get out from under this debt by implementing "comfortable" cuts in spending. The only way out is to dissolve the welfare state completely. Which means taking control away from central government planners, bankers and politicians and returning liberty of action and property to individuals in a free and private market.

Of course, the odds of such a thing happening are zero. So, as my mother used to say, sometimes you have to learn your lessons the hard way.

EPILOG -- As an aside, I also take the opinions of private brokers and investors quoted in the referenced articles above with a huge lump of salt.


Consider the mentality of equity brokers and investors in our own American markets. Did anyone else see this headline Tuesday: "Dow drops 100 after Fed official's warning?" 

According to Yahoo! Finance:
A quiet day on Wall Street turned into the worst sell-off in three months after a Federal Reserve official said he doubted the bank's effort to boost economic growth would work.
Are you kidding me? Are Wall Street brokers really that stupid, economically illiterate and impressionable? Did they sell off because they honestly thought the Fed's QE3 would "boost economic growth?" Or did they sell off because they knew QE3 was a con job and because the Fed official had just spilled the beans to their clients?

Who puts their investment money in the hands of morons like these?

I guess the answer is everyone who is invested in the stock market.

Good luck to those folks.

Thursday, September 27, 2012

In The Garden Of Slick Willies

Lately I've been traveling coach cross-country on Delta Airlines. I took the opportunity to read In The Garden of Beasts by Erik Larson. Told from the perspective of a naive, American ambassador and his family, this exceptional, historical novel documents Hitler's ascent to power in Nazi Germany circa 1933. The question always on my mind as I read was: "Could it happen here?"

A fair answer to that question requires that we put aside politics for a moment. No matter how greatly we as conservatives detest the President's policies, Mr. Obama is no Hitler and the United States is not pre-WWII Germany.

Yes, there are similarities of a sort. Germany's economy was in a shambles. Unemployment was high and the official numbers were fudged by the government. German debt owed to foreigners was crushing. The German people, who emerged from WWI battered and beaten, felt victimized. A great portion of them easily bought into government propaganda that insisted racism -- "the Jewish problem" -- was responsible for the country's misfortunes.

But the differences are significant. Germans were for the most part passive citizens, used to relying on a strong, autocratic government to maintain order and give direction. Most accepted militarism as a legitimate means of restoring national pride and the country's rightful standing in the world order.

Hitler, Goring and Goebbels were made to order for the time and place. They were ideological nationalists willing to use whatever means necessary to seize power and impose their glorious vision of the Third Reich. They were brutal and seemingly without conscience, expertly employing terror to dominate.

The infamous SA Storm Troopers -- a semi-trained gang of punks, bullies and malcontents under the leadership of Ernst Rohm, a personal friend of Hitler -- acted as Hitler's civilian national security force. The SA thugs terrorized the German citizenry, coercing it into conforming to the Nazi ideology of nationalism, socialism and racism.

On June 30, 1934, when the SA's usefulness was at an end and its very existence threatened Hitler's ambitions, he and Goring embarked on a bloody purge, personally leading loyal SS and Gestapo agents in Munich and in Berlin on a savage sweep of their foes in and out of government. They killed hundreds, if not thousands in cold blood, including some who were mere public critics of Hitler and his Nazi  Party.

The nation was stunned, but acquiesced in silent fear. One night of butchery had effectively given Hitler dictatorial power over the German state. In a speech afterwards, framing those murdered as political insurrectionists and the murders themselves as crisis management, Hitler declared:
"Only a ferocious and bloody repression could nip the revolt in the bud... ...If someone asks me why we did not use the regular courts I would reply: at the moment I was responsible for the German nation; consequently, it was I alone who, during those twenty-four hours, was the Supreme Court of Justice of the German People... ...I ordered the leaders of the guilty shot. I also ordered the abscesses caused by our internal and external poisons cauterized until the living flesh was burned. I also ordered that any rebel attempting to resist arrest should be killed immediately. The nation must know that its existence cannot be menaced with impunity by anyone, and that whoever lifts his hand against the State shall die of it."
That was Germany in 1934. This is the United States in 2012. Today in our country such barbarism would be roundly condemned and forcefully resisted almost universally. No matter what our political disagreements, Americans are at heart a peaceful, moral and self-reliant people, primarily interested in building a more comfortable life for themselves and their families.

Although a microscopic percent of Americans both on the left and the right advocate violence to get their way, violence will not succeed here. It doesn't have to. For in the 21st century those among us who wish to gain autocratic power over individuals have learned the politically correct art of patience and finesse.

Modern dictatorial wannabees have learned to democratize and politicize even the most trivial of issues, thereby insuring that we, as individuals, will turn against ourselves and, in final desperation, agree for the sake of harmony and community to settle our differences at the ballot box. However, this naive political solution amounts no less to our public acknowledgement that we believe the government has authority to rule every aspect of our life.

Virtually nothing in America is currently beyond the reach of politics. What and where we smoke. What we eat and drink. Where and how we live. What we say and write. Whom we marry. These and so many other trivial and individual actions have now become grist for the political mill, have now become subjects which pit neighbor against neighbor in nationally televised debate where no one -- whether a disputant or not -- is shy of an opinion or a vote.

With literally everything at stake, is it any wonder that the government collective in this country has ballooned out of all necessary proportion? That lobbyists on one side or another overwhelm our politicians with promises of jobs and payoffs? That we are deluged 24/7 with advertisements and media pronouncements advocating this or that position on this or that "critical" issue, such as whether or not individuals should have the liberty to drink a sugared beverage of a certain size?

Of course, our modern, enterprising politicians have also learned the subtle power of crisis management, demagoguery, obfuscation by complexity, mendacity, media management and the not too subtle persuasive power of celebrity endorsement. Ambitious politicians like President Bill "Slick Willie" Clinton no longer have to cut the throats of their opponents to gain and keep power, they merely have to spin the truth and smile or scowl into the camera.

Politics now is about impugning the motives of political opponents as racist, ridiculing their faith, wealth or personal appearance, distorting facts or simply making them up, interpreting every gaffe as a window into their "real" soul and employing popular celebrities to stir the pot in ways the politicians themselves would not dare.

Recently, according to CNN, Samuel L. Jackson "entered the political fray...urging Americans to 'Wake the F*** Up' and vote for President Barack Obama." Jackson's efforts, according to the news article, were funded by the "Jewish Council for Education and Research, a super PAC supporting President Barack Obama."

I do not share Jackson's political or social philosophy, but I can certainly understand his frustration, if not the point of his outburst.

Over the years, we in this country have made every individual action a subject for legitimate political debate and lawmaking. We beg our politicians to rule in our favor and when they don't we disparage them. Either way, they rule us as surely as despots. Oh, they are not butchers like Hitler. We in America do not live in the garden of beasts. We sleepwalk in the garden of Slick Willies.

If Americans want their individual liberty back, there is only one way to have it back.

In the words of Samuel L. Jackson, they must: "Wake the F*** UP!"

Monday, September 24, 2012

A Weekend In Obama Country...NEW MEXICO!

The photo below was taken Saturday at the Farmers' Market in Santa Fe, New Mexico.

The larger sign on the car is hard to read, but it says "OBAMANOS! GOTTA VOTE."

I saw "Obamanos!" yard signs throughout the Albuquerque, Santa Fe and Taos corridor. I didn't see a single Romney sign. I saw numerous Obama supporters registering voters everywhere I went.

Last time I checked, Obama was leading Romney in New Mexico by 10 percentage points. This is in a state where Gary Johnson was a wildly popular, two-term Republican Governor from 1995 - 2003. Johnson is polling about 9% in New Mexico.

Friday, September 14, 2012

"Is It Because He's Black?"

Thank God for Jesse Washington, the "race and ethnicity writer" for the Associated Press!

According to the AP, race and ethnicity writers serve a vital purpose:
Few subjects permeate every corner of American life -- and can expand our understanding of America -- more than issues of race and ethnicity. 
Ever eager to expand my understanding of America, I dive head first into Jesse Washington's latest article: "Does racial bias fuel Obama foes? How to tell?" I expect the article will shine a clarifying light on all the accusations of racism that are being flung around like horse manure in this current presidential election.

As I begin to read, I am immediately disappointed.

Three sentences into his article Washington writes that racial bias against Barack Obama is "an accusation almost impossible to prove."

Shoot, I wonder. Should I continue reading? I mean, how can even a skilled race and ethnicity writer explain something that is "almost" impossible to prove?

Nevertheless, that pesky word "almost" persuades me to continue reading. And, boy, am I glad I do!

Just a few sentences later Washington quotes Susan Glisson, director of the Institute for Racial Reconciliation at the University of Mississippi:
"...I am...quite certain that there are others who object to the president because of his race, because they have a fear of blacks that is embedded in our culture.
Whoa! I'm white! Could I be an Obama foe simply because fear of blacks is somehow "embedded" in my psyche by American culture?

A few words later and I have my answer. Washington explains that Glisson's "conclusion is based on something called 'implicit bias'- prejudices that people don't realize they have."

There you have it. I am indeed a victim of implicit bias, which must be something like colon cancer because I don't feel any symptoms. I begin to wonder if maybe I need the cultural equivalent of a colonoscopy. I should nip this implicit bias stuff in the butt before it gets out of hand.

...Naw. After a few minutes of reflection, I reconsider. Washington and Glisson are probably exaggerating. There's nothing to worry about. Besides, I don't think Blue Cross/Blue Shield covers a cultural colonoscopy. ObamaCare probably does, but it hasn't fully kicked in yet.

Washington's next paragraph seals the deal. It's got me sweating bullets:
Studies show that due to longstanding negative stereotypes about African-Americans - which give such false impressions as most black people are dangerous, unintelligent or prefer welfare to work - many people harbor anti-black biases yet don't even know it.

Read more here: http://www.kansascity.com/2012/09/09/3805331/does-racial-bias-fuel-obama-foes.html#storylink=cpy
"Studies show!" Those are the two most fearsome words in the English language. And if that isn't bad enough, Washington quotes an expert! Gail Christopher, vice president of program strategy for the W.K. Kellogg Foundation, which has "funded research" on bias, says:
Our [American] history has created...unconscious bias. Now we need to create safe places to discuss and educate people about unconscious bias, where we are not blaming and shaming them.
Fear now is pushing me over the edge. Unconscious bias sounds a whole lot worse than implicit bias. Although, I must admit, it's a bit of a relief to know that having unconscious bias is nothing to be ashamed of. Maybe it's like picking up something from a toilet seat in a public rest room. How can I be blamed for that?

Then I focus on something else Washington says that goes off like a bomb in my head:
Such unconscious biases, the studies show, are present in people of all backgrounds, not just whites.
Unbelievable! Not just whites like me, but Latinos and Asians can catch unconscious bias too? Even blacks?

Well, that tidbit of information puts a whole different light on things! If blacks can have unconscious bias, why does Washington's article dwell on white unconscious bias against Obama? Maybe he should have written about black unconscious bias against Romney.

I mean black unconscious bias against whites must exist too, don't you think?

Take, for instance, former San Francisco Mayor Willie Brown. He recently went on a rant about "Tea Party types." He said they wanted "to push voters away from the polls," and that "they don't want racial minorities to vote at all."

It's now obvious to me what's going on here. Brown's embedded, implicit bias is making him assume that "they" -- all the Tea Party activists -- are white. And his unconscious bias against whites is making him believe that whites don't want blacks to vote. 

Which, when you think about it, is not altogether bat-crap crazy either. Maybe blacks have way more unconscious bias than whites and should be prevented from voting. I mean, in 2008 43% of whites voted for a black guy while only 5% of blacks voted for a white guy.

But then again that kind of thinking might be due to my own, disturbing unconscious bias against blacks.

You know, I'm so confused I don't know what to think... ...Wait a minute! Wait a minute!! I wonder what color Jesse Washington is...?

Jesse Washington
Sure enough. A Google search proves that Washington is black. Which means he is most likely afflicted with black unconscious bias against whites. Which is why his whole article is about white bias against blacks. Which is impossible to prove...

...On the other hand, if unconscious bias does exist, then I might have white unconscious bias against Jesse Washington, the black race and ethnicity writer.

Darn! This unconscious bias stuff can tie you into knots so bad you don't know whether you're coming or going.

...However, I do know one thing for sure. Jesse Washington ain't much of a race and ethnicity writer.

His article sure doesn't serve a vital purpose by expanding my understanding of America.

Jesse Washington makes the issue of racism about as clear as a pile of horse manure.

Obama Is In The Catbird Seat

On March 2 of this year I posted this: Events May Determine Obama's Fate, an article which outlined several possible events that could tip the coming Presidential election either to Obama or to Romney.

First on my list of events that would favor Obama is "A Well-Timed QE3." Yesterday, Ben Bernanke announced that the Fed would begin buying $85-billion worth of debt every month until further notice beginning today.

This is bad news for America, but good news for the President. Anyone who believes the Fed operates independent of the administration and of politics is a fool. Whether this infusion of new money into the financial system is "well-timed" is yet to be determined. I had predicted a June QE3.

Yesterday, the stock market exploded upward at the news. Expect the administration to announce the economy has rebounded. In the next two months, expect the media to publish many stories about new economic activity in the private sector which will generate new jobs. Expect the CEO's of large corporations to announce new plans for expansion and/or to cancel planned retrenchment activities.

Of course, the timing of this QE3 will prohibit any of this propaganda from being verified by official government statistics. Perhaps that's why it happened now rather than in June.

Another advantage of doing QE3 now is that its primary negative effect -- a surge in price inflation -- will not be noticed by consumers until after the election. The dollar will eventually fall against rival currencies, but rival governments are sure to print their currencies as well, thus mitigating the dollar's fall in value against them. Any action by the Chinese, Russians or others interested in ending the dollar's reign as the world's reserve currency would also occur after the election.

By the way, the only remaining "event" on my list that could benefit the President is "A Well-Timed National Emergency." This event is still possible should QE3 disappoint the President's reelection campaign by not exhibiting the expected effects -- or by exhibiting unexpected adverse effects. The possibilities are endless. War in the Middle East is always on the table. Another financial "crisis" can always be manufactured. And, of course, urban violence of one sort or another may flare up at just the right moment. Coincidentally, ABC News reported today that the "FBI Warns of Violence in America Over Anti-Islamic Movie."

Stay tuned.

By the way, the events I outlined that could benefit Romney seem unlikely to occur prior to the election. Although economic activity is still stagnant, Obama and the media are effectively papering over the bad news that too many Americans are sick and tired of hearing. There seems no chance in hell that birther issues or Obama's college records will injure him. The truth about Bin Laden's death is trickling out but there are no bombshells. Fast and Furious has been defused. The Solyndra story has no legs.

The bottom line is Obama is perched in the driver's seat -- or should I say the catbird seat -- and Romney can do nothing about it except spit into the wind. 

The advantages of incumbency and a sympathetic media cannot be overestimated.

Saturday, September 8, 2012

Attention: Austrian Economics Nerds!

There is an interesting discussion in progress over at Cato Unbound called "Theory and Practice in the Austrian School."

Steven Horwitz kicked the debate off with an article titled: The Empirics of Austrian Economics.

Essentially Horwitz argues that Austrian economics has been given a bum rap by mainstream critics. Austrians, Horwitz says, are not all merely armchair theorists. Some Austrians actually do empirical research, he states, and in many cases do it better than mainstream economists.

In a post at The Circle Bastiat, Daniel James Sanchez contributes his two cents worth writing:
Horwitz’s error is to think that, if you introduce assumptions to your theorizing because of experience, that makes the result “empirical” or “applied theory”.  But that is not the case.  For the truth of a theory, it makes no difference why it was constructed the way it was (that is to say, why it includes the assumptions it does).  A self-contained theorem is true or false based on its logical structure, regardless of whether the assumptions are introduced because of experience, because of pure fancy, or for any other reason.
Bryan Caplan takes a completely different tact in criticizing the Horwitz article. He claims that the Austrians Horwitz cites as doing empirical research are really doing mainstream economics using Austrian lingo:
But if Austrians can translate their empirical insights into mainstream language and sell them to a broad audience, why don’t they use mainstream language in the first place? Austrian contributions will continue to be undervalued as long as they continue to spend most of their time talking to each other in their own eccentric dialect.
Though they do empirical research, Caplan asserts, Austrians contribute no insights to this research that are "uniquely Austrian."

On Monday, George A. Selgin will weigh in. On Wednesday, Antony Davies has his say. 

This Is Why I'm Not A Scientist...

William M. Briggs is "a meteorology-trained statistician and former associate editor of the Monthly Weather Review." 

That description is at the bottom of this article: SOON AND BRIGGS: Global-warming fanatics take note, Sunspots do impact climate."

Briggs has an interesting website where I found the article referenced. Briggs was all the rage back in April when Bill Whittle made the video below claiming Briggs had posted the "Greatest sentence ever written" on his website.

Briggs regularly debunks statistical errors and claims. I recommend his website highly. I regard him as a scientist with integrity, a truly open mind and a love of truth. Consider this bit of Briggs' wisdom:
When and if a theory describes reality without error it is no longer a theory but truth. If a theory does not describe reality perfectly, then it is not true. To love a theory over truth is the mark of madness. Or of Enlightenment. Or, nowadays often, of tenure.
But I digress. Here is why I'm not a scientist.

In his sunspots article, Briggs reproduces the following graph with the following description:

"Consider the accompanying chart. It shows some rather surprising relationships between solar radiation and daytime high temperatures taken directly from Berkeley’s BEST project. The remarkable nature of these series is that these tight relationships can be shown to hold from areas as large as the United States."

The graph shows almost an exact correlation between solar radiation and daytime high temperatures.

What? Am I wrong or is this graph simply an illustration of the obvious, i.e., it gets hotter when the sun's out?

God bless Briggs for being a scientist and being interested in and writing about the apparently obvious. I couldn't do it.

The worst part is the global warming "scientists" Briggs is criticizing don't see and don't believe in what's obvious to the rest of us.

How does Briggs maintain his cool, scientific detachment in the face of such idiocy? 

Do you think the global warming "scientists" will change their mind after Briggs took the time to spell the truth out for them in words and a picture?

My bet is "no," because of the truth contained in Briggs' greatest sentence ever written:

The love of theory is the root of all evil.

Thursday, September 6, 2012

I Had Always Wanted To Do This...

...Now someone has. An anonymous editor has made a video that turns Maximum Leader Obama's words and promises against themselves, exposing him as the two-faced, cheap politician he really is!

You have to watch this video. Send it to your Democrat friends. Send it to your undecided friends. Help it go viral.

The video is called "Words Matter." [via Pat Dollard and The Blaze]


Saul Alinsky Lives...In Charlotte, NC

LD Jackson over at Political Realities has posted a great article today asking: "How Did We Survive Before Barack Obama?" LD summarizes the point of his post as follows:
In short, the Democrats have absolutely lost their grip on reality. They are making all kinds of outrageous claims against the Republicans.
That got me thinking. I posted the following comment:
I hate to be trite, but the Democrat strategy is straight out of the Saul Alinsky playbook: demonize and ridicule your "enemy," advocate simple-minded policies within the "experience" of the party base, always "push a negative hard and deep," execute an "anything goes" strategy while pressing the enemy to live up to his own "book of rules," and "cause confusion, fear and retreat."

An example? How's this? The Democratic Party platform calls for an "All-of-the-Above Energy Policy." Anyone with half-a-brain knows Obama has tried to kill coal production, has squelched the Keystone pipeline, prevented oil exploration on shore and has made drilling off shore almost impossible. The fine print in the platform specifies the party will pursue an all-of-the-above "clean" energy policy.

No matter. The goal is simply to confuse the issue in the voter's mind. And remember, the Democrat appeal is to those with less than half-a-brain.

As for the Democrats' "outright lies?" It is important to remember that lying is a vice only in our rule book. In the Saul Alinsky rule book lying is a virtue. This is why creatures like Debbie Wasserman Schultz are able to lie continuously and shamelessly. Her less than half-a-brain rationalizes her actions as those of a good soldier. She's convinced the ends justify the means.
By resorting to Alinsky tactics the Democrats are playing with fire. It's easy to light an emotional fire by demonizing, ridiculing and confusing. But fires are more easily set than put out.

LD Jackson asks: How did we survive before Barack Obama? I'm asking: How will our society survive the coming presidential election in the face of such manufactured hate and fear?

You want proof that the Democrats are playing with matches? Here is a sampling of headlines coming out of the Democratic National Convention in Charlotte over the past few days courtesy of the Drudge Report:

Obama Lies While Accusing Romney Campaign of Lying...

Top Dem. Compares Paul Ryan to Nazi Goebbels...

Dem chair apologizes for calling Scott Brown 'girl'...

DEM SEN: Eastwood 'old angry white man'...

Another Delegate Compares GOP To Hitler...



SC Dem Chair Compares Nikki Haley To Hitler's Mistress...

Florida DNC Boss: Christians Want Jews Slaughtered...

And these headlines, courtesy of Weazel Zippers:

Rep. Keith Ellison (D-CAIR): GOP “Basically A Bigoted Party”…

Death Threat From DNC Delegate: “Mitt Romney… I Would Like To Kill Him!”..

Sandra Fluke At DNC: Paul Ryan “Would Allow Women To Die In Emergency Rooms”…

Former Dem Gov. Ted Strickland: GOP Criticism Of Obama Gutting Welfare Reform “Not So Subtle Racism”…

Democratic Women’s Caucus: Republicans “Want To Relegate Women To The Back Of The Bus”…

Harry Reid Fear Mongers At DNC: “We Must Stop The Tea Party Before The Senate Falls Into The Hands Of Extremists And Ideologues”…

Monday, September 3, 2012

Three Movies They Won't Be Showing In Charlotte This Week

The Fountainhead Ayn Rand's powerful and inimitable novel -- celebrating individualism and private property -- brought to the screen. Starring Gary Cooper as Howard Roark and Patricia Neal as Dominique Francon.

McLintock! A 1963 film celebrating rugged individualism, private enterprise and good, old fashioned American values. Starring John Wayne as George Washington McLintock and Maureen O'Hara as his headstrong wife.

Apartment For Peggy A film celebrating the spunk and spirit of a young American wife and mother. Starring Jeanne Crain [who, by the way, was a Republican] as the optimistic and unflappable Peggy Taylor, William Holden as her struggling husband, Jason, and Edmund Gwenn as the unforgettable Prof. Henry Barnes.

[Entire movie is available in 10 Parts on YouTube. Enter "Apartment For Peggy" in the YouTube search engine and follow the links.]

Saturday, September 1, 2012

What Up, Moon Pie?

Gary Johnson is a self-made millionaire and nerd. He was a wildly successful business owner and entrepreneur.

From Wikipedia, about Johnson's entrepreneurship:
While in college, Johnson earned money as a door-to-door handyman.[19] His success in that arena encouraged him to start his own business, Big J Enterprises, in 1976. When he started the business, which focused on mechanical contracting, Johnson was its only employee.[20] His major break with the firm was receiving a large contract from Intel's expansion in Rio Rancho, which increased Big J's revenue to $38 million.[16] Over-stretched by his success, Johnson enrolled in a time management course at night school, which he credits with making him heavily goal-driven.[16] He eventually grew Big J into a multi-million dollar corporation with over 1,000 employees.[21] By the time he sold the company in 1999, it was one of New Mexico's leading construction companies.[22]

Gary Johnson, Libertarian Party candidate for President, was a wildly successful and popular governor of New Mexico from 1995 to 2003.

From Wikipedia, about Johnson's first term:
He [Johnson] entered politics for the first time by running for Governor of New Mexico in 1994 on a fiscally conservative, low-tax, anti-crime platform.[3] Johnson won the Republican Party of New Mexico's gubernatorial nomination, and defeated incumbent Democratic governor Bruce King by 50% to 40%. He cut the 10% annual growth in the budget: in part, due to his use of the gubernatorial veto 200 times during his first six months in office,[2] which gained him the nickname "Governor Veto".[4][5]

From Wikipedia, about Johnson's second term:
Johnson sought re-election in 1998, winning by 55% to 45%. In his second term, he concentrated on the issue of school voucher reforms,[6] as well as campaigning for marijuana decriminalization and opposition to the War on Drugs. During his tenure as governor, Johnson adhered to a stringent anti-tax and anti-bureaucracy policy driven by a cost–benefit analysis rationale, setting state and national records for his use of veto powers:[2] more than the other 49 contemporary governors put together.[7][8] Term-limited, Johnson could not run for re-election at the end of his second term.
Voters in New Mexico know -- and have loved -- Gary Johnson better than any candidate running for President in 2012. They've experienced Johnson's popular and able libertarian leadership.

If Gary Johnson has any chance in hell to carry any state in the Union for the Libertarian Party, that state should be New Mexico.

Yet, according to Real Clear Politics, President Obama leads Governor Romney by 10% in New Mexico. Rasmussen Reports has 9% of likely voters preferring "some other candidate."

What up, Moon Pie????