Raising the Debt; Lowering the Boom

Chuck_BaldwinArchived column:

http://chuckbaldwinlive.com/home/?p=3818

The big story this week is the decision of the US Congress and Senate to raise the debt ceiling. Did this really surprise anyone? Despite millions of pieces of communication from their constituents to the contrary, congressmen and senators voted by substantial margins to increase the debt ceiling by up to $2.4 trillion. The House vote was 269 to 161. The Senate vote was 74 to 26. Coincidentally, the amount of this increase to the debt ceiling is now the largest debt-limit increase in US history--all the rhetoric by politicians in DC that they are serious about “cutting” federal spending notwithstanding.
 
See Terence Jeffrey’s report at:
 
http://tinyurl.com/3z7l9p2
 
Here is a recent report regarding the debt-ceiling votes via C-SPAN:
 
http://tinyurl.com/3uctpg2
 
And here is the liberal NPR report with more details:
 
http://tinyurl.com/3ndjmfm
 
At this point, I think it is fitting to quote Congressman Ron Paul. Dr. Paul is one of the very few people in Congress that has consistently warned the American people about the foolhardiness of America living beyond its means. Here are some excerpts from Dr. Paul’s statement regarding the debt ceiling deal:
 
“This deal will reportedly cut spending by only slightly over $900 billion over 10 years. But we will have a $1.6 trillion deficit after this year alone, meaning those meager cuts will do nothing to solve our unsustainable spending problem. In fact, this bill will never balance the budget. Instead, it will add untold trillions of dollars to our deficit. This also assumes the cuts are real cuts and not the same old Washington smoke and mirrors game of spending less than originally projected so you can claim the difference as a 'cut.'
 
“The plan also calls for the formation of a deficit commission, which will accomplish nothing outside of providing Congress and the White House with another way to abdicate responsibility. In my many years of public service, there have been commissions on everything from Social Security to energy policy, yet not one solution has been produced out of these commissions.”

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Dangers of a Super Congress

WASHINGTON -- In order to shore up GOP support for a deal to raise the debt ceiling, Senate Democrats are exploring ways of giving the proposed "super Congress" even greater super powers, according to multiple news reports and congressional aides with knowledge of the plan.

Under the new proposal, if the new legislative body, made up of six Democrats and six Republicans from both chambers, doesn't come up with a bill that cuts at least $1.5 trillion by Thanksgiving, entitlement programs will automatically be slashed.

Under the reported framework, legislation the new congressional committee writes would be fast-tracked through Congress and could not be filibustered or amended.

The parties have been negotiating the particulars of cuts that would be enacted if budget-cutting legislation coming out of the super Congress could not get passed, deciding roughly how much in cuts would come from different parts of the federal budget, including defense spending and entitlement programs like Medicare.

According to sources and a number of reports, the parties were settled on an equal split between cuts to the defense budget and trims to Medicare providers, which in theory would spare Medicare beneficiaries.

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Romans 13: Setting It Straight

Chuck_BaldwinArchived link:
http://chuckbaldwinlive.com/home/?p=3798

There is absolutely no doubt in my mind that the biggest reason America is in the mess that it’s in today is directly due to the apathy and indifference of the American pulpit. I am reminded of what Charles Finney, the famed 19th Century revivalist, said: “If there is a decay of conscience, the pulpit is responsible for it. If the public press lacks moral discernment, the pulpit is responsible for it. If the church is degenerate and worldly, the pulpit is responsible for it. If the world loses its interest in Christianity, the pulpit is responsible for it. If Satan rules in our halls of legislation, the pulpit is responsible for it. If our politics become so corrupt that they very foundations of our government are ready to fall away, the pulpit is responsible for it.”
 
Our second President, John Adams, put it this way: “It is the duty of the clergy to accommodate their discourses to the times, to preach against such sins as are most prevalent, and recommend such virtues as are most wanted. For example, if exorbitant ambition and venality are predominate, ought they not to warn their hearers against those vices?  If public spirit is much wanted, should they not inculcate this great virtue? If the rights and duties of Christian magistrates and subjects are disputed, should they not explain them, show their nature, ends, limitations, and restrictions, howmuchsoever it may move the gall of Massachusetts?”
 
Martin Luther, the great Protestant reformer, was even more direct. He said, “If I profess with the loudest voice and clearest exposition every portion of the truth of God except precisely that little point which the world and the devil are at the moment attacking, I am not confessing Christ, however boldly I may be professing Christ. Where the battle rages, there the loyalty of the soldier is proved. And to be steady on all the battle fields besides is merely flight and disgrace if he flinches at that point.”

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Responsible Founders

Chuck_BaldwinFounders Without Whom America Would Not Exist

Archived column:  http://chuckbaldwinlive.com/home/?p=3718

As we enter another Independence Day weekend, I think it would be good to remind ourselves of who those men were that counted the cost and paid the price to bring this land of liberty into existence.

Unfortunately, the vast majority of Americans today seem to have very little--if any--knowledge and appreciation for the sacrifices that our Founding Fathers made in order to birth this great country. We can thank the vast majority of our schools (including the institutions of higher learning), major media, political institutions, and even churches for this egregious embarrassment. Accordingly, I think it fitting that today’s column will attempt to renew in our hearts the respect and reverence that these great men whom we call Founding Fathers so richly deserve.
 
George Washington
 
Called “The Father of His Country,” George Washington was, perhaps, the most important man of the founding era. Supernaturally spared during the Indian wars, Washington became the military leader who held the Continental Army together when it was virtually impossible for any man to do so. Without his leadership at Valley Forge and elsewhere, there is absolutely no doubt that the Continental Army would have fallen apart and the fight for independence would have been lost.
 
Equally significant is the leadership that George Washington demonstrated in the Continental Congress. Without question, Washington was the glue that held the political bodies of the colonies together.

Then add the fact that George Washington was America’s first President, whose leadership solidified the colonies into a new United States, and his value to the cause of American independence cannot be in any way overstated.
 
Think of it: George Washington was the commander-in-chief of the Continental Army. And he led that inferior army to victory over the greatest military force in the world at the time: Great Britain. Afterward, Washington rebuffed a strong effort to inaugurate him as America’s king, and led the fledgling nation to embrace republican government instead. Washington presided over the Constitutional Convention that drafted the US Constitution. He was America’s first President. Washington’s Farewell Address formed the compass and rudder of America for at least the next hundred years and, in my opinion, is the greatest political address ever delivered on American soil. Without George Washington, there would be no America.
 
Thomas Jefferson
 
Thomas Jefferson was the principal author of America’s birth certificate: the Declaration of Independence. In my mind, there is no greater document of liberty ever written by man. When it came to the understanding of human rights, individual liberty, State rights, and enlightenment philosophy, Jefferson had no peer.
 
President John F. Kennedy once held a dinner at the White House for a group of the brightest minds in the nation at that time. He made this statement: “This is perhaps the assembly of the most intelligence ever to gather at one time in the White House with the exception of when Thomas Jefferson dined alone.” He was probably right.

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Letter From an Agnostic

Chuck_BaldwinArchived column:
http://chuckbaldwinlive.com/home/?p=3699

I couldn’t count how many times I’ve heard a sincere Christian say to me, “Chuck, all we have to do is elect more Christians to public office.” I wish it was only that easy! The fact is we have been electing “Christians” to public office for decades. In fact, when is the last time you voted for someone who did NOT proclaim to be a Christian? Most everyone in public office claims to be a Christian.  In my whole life, I never remember a candidate for public office saying, “Vote for me; I’m an atheist.” Do you?
 
Richard Nixon claimed to be a Christian; Gerald Ford claimed to be a Christian; Jimmy Carter claimed to be a Christian (he even taught Sunday School and took alcohol out of the White House); Ronald Reagan claimed to be a Christian; Bill Clinton claimed to be a Christian (how many times did we see Clinton on his way to church with his giant-print Bible under his arm?); George Bush I and II claimed to be a Christian. Bush II held prayer meetings in the White House we are told.

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