Looking For Benefits?

For some time now, President Obama and his PR department (the mainstream media) have contended that our nation’s biggest problem is inequality.  Not unemployment, not lack of GDP growth, not the national debt and deficit, not the growing number of people on food stamps and other government assistance.  The most important problem, according to them, is the gap between the rich and the poor.

Defining rich and poor is subjective and difficult.  Most often lately, “rich” has been defined as a couple who earns more than $250,000 per year.   Presumably the threshold is lower for singles.

“Poor” is almost never really quantified.   Some of us are old enough to remember the television ads showing skinny Appalachian kids leaning on stick-built porches, wearing rags and sad faces.  I’m not saying those were the good old days, but times have sure changed.  Kids on food stamps today are, as often as not, obese.   Recipients of federal disability payments has increased by 50% in the last ten years.  Since January 2009, the number of individuals on food stamps has skyrocketed from 31.9 million to the current record high 47.1 million. By comparison, in 1969 just 2.8 million Americans received food stamps.

If you are reading this, I’m pretty sure you have never seen the federal government’s “Benefits” website (see graphic above).   The banner headline is:  “Looking For Benefits?”  Apparently plenty of people are – 70% of federal spending in 2010 went to “dependence-creating” programs, compared to 28% in 1962.  Our Secretary of “Labor” (see Hilda Solis’ statement above) now promotes benefits, not labor.

According to the 2012 Index of Dependence on Government:

The great and calamitous fiscal trends of our time—dependence on government by an increasing portion of the American population, and soaring debt that threatens the financial integrity of the economy—worsened yet again in 2010 and 2011. The United States has long reached the point at which it must reverse the direction of both trends or face economic and social collapse.

Programs considered “dependency-creating” are federally paid housing, health care and welfare, retirement, federal payments for higher education, and agricultural subsidies.  One could argue that retirement is not a benefit, because it is supposedly self-funded.  Or that agricultural subsidies are not a benefit – but much of that budget is food stamps, and the rest is mainly farm subsidies to large corporations, both of which cause dependency.  I can think of other spending that creates dependency too, like corporate bailouts and other government investments in chosen industries. In any event, we are looking at the same spending categories from 1962 to 2010 – and they jumped from 28% of the budget to 70%.

We can argue until the subsidized cows come home about what is fair, or whether taking property from one American to give it to another is even constitutional.

But anyone who thinks we can continue our current spending habits, or continue to encourage the use of government benefits – regardless of how much tax is paid by the “rich” –  is dangerously ignorant.

Tom Balek – Rockin’ On the Right Side

I hope you hear inside my voice of sorrow
And that it motivates you to make a better tomorrow
This place is cruel no where could be much colder
If we don’t change the world will soon be over
Living just enough, just enough for the city.

Living For the City – Stevie Wonder

Economics for Blondies

The 20-something bubbled-headed blonde Democrat jiggled and grinned on my television screen.

“We’re going back to the economics of the Clinton administration,” she cooed.  “We want to raise taxes back up to where they were during the wonderful Clinton years!”

“But things are different now,” the seasoned  Fox Business analyst replied.  “We have a $16 trillion debt.  We have 8% unemployment.  We have no economic growth.”

“Oh, we will just tax the rich!  Like we did under (giggle, giggle – fake eyelashes fluttering) Biiiiill Clinton!”

“Now wait a minute,” the Fox guy shot back.  “The economy improved only when the Republicans took over Congress, and Clinton agreed to reform welfare, trim the budget and cut the capital gains tax . . .”

“Biiiiiill Cliiiiinton!  MMMmmmm!” purred the little blonde Demo-kitten.  I mentally pictured her voting for the first time, dreaming of her new boyfriend Barack, and . . .

My wife muttered on her way to the kitchen.  “I’d go for the tax rates from the Clinton years – if we had the same SPENDING as the Clinton years!”

I guess I’m not quite ready to give up on women yet.  Just the ones who want more, more, more.

Tom Balek – Rockin’ On the Right Side

Baby you know my love for you is real
So take me where you want to
Me and my heart you steal
More, more, more!
How do you like it?  How do you like it?
More, more, more!
How do you like it?  How do you like your love?

More More More – Andrea True (disco porn star)

Marriage – Gay and Otherwise

We hear so much talk about gay marriage.  It was a major election issue.  Three more states approved it and others are working on it.  Many votes were based solely on a candidate’s position on gay marriage.

Before I go any further, let me go on the record.  My official position on gay marriage is:  I don’t care.  If two men or two women want to commit to each other, I think it’s great.  Is a law required?  I don’t know.  I do worry about kids without fathers, but that’s a separate issue.

With all the airtime, bandwidth, and hand-wringing over gay marriage, one would think it must be something important to the future of our nation.  Is it?  How many gay couples are clamoring to get married, anyway?  A thousand?  Ten thousand?  What impact does gay marriage have on our floundering economy, our national security, or our crushing debt?

Here’s an issue that has a HUGE impact on our floundering economy, our national security, and our crushing debt.  Heterosexual marriage. 

It is statistically undeniable that married couples and their children enjoy many advantages over singles.  And it is no accident that as the proportion of Americans who are married continues to decline, so does our economy.  As our economy declines, so does our national security.  And as individual economic performance declines due to the missing support structure of marriage, personal debt and dependence on government increase – resulting in seemingly unstoppable national deficits and debt.  Not to mention the other ills of poverty:  substance abuse, violence, undereducated and poorly-raised children.

Most married people are wealthier, healthier, happier and more productive than single people, especially single moms.  Most children from married families have a better life and future than single-parent kids.  I don’t even have to bore you with the statistics because it’s common sense and you know it’s true.

Our political leaders and entertainers either avoid or deny the importance of marriage.  In fact, our society has decided that cohabitation and single motherhood and the absence of commitment is just fine for heterosexuals.  But it is critically important that gays are married.

Enough already about gay marriage – why don’t we ever talk about the importance of MARRIAGE?

Tom Balek – Rockin’ On the Right Side
(thanks and hugs to my bride of 39 years)

Going to the chapel, and we’re gonna get married
Going to the chapel, and we’re gonna get married
Gee I really love you, and we’re gonna get married
Going to the chapel of love

Going To The Chapel of Love – the Dixie Cups

Obama – The Six Trillion Dollar Man

Overheard from Obama’s debate prep team:  “We have the technology – we have the capability to make the world’s first bionic president.  Better, cooler, smarter . . .  Oh wait, we already spent six trillion on that, it didn’t work.  Never mind.”

“The Six Million Dollar Man” (Lee Majors) could run like the wind and crush an anvil with one hand.  Fortunately, he was a force for good, not evil.

We spent SIX TRILLION DOLLARS on our current president – that’s how much our debt has increased under his watch.  And we can expect another bill of at least that much if he is re-elected.

Six Trillion Dollars ago, President Obama said he said he would cut the deficit in half.  Didn’t quite happen.

Six Trillion Dollars ago, the President said the rest of the world would respect us once again.  Umm, not so much.

Six Trillion Dollars ago, he said his would be the most transparent government in history.  Mr. President, what happened in Benghazi?  Can we see the Fast and Furious documents you hid, invoking executive privilege?  What’s the big secret about your college records?  And what the heck happened to that 7-layer Photoshopped birth certificate?

Six Trillion Dollars Ago, the President said,  “The Democratic Party has won a great victory tonight, we do so with a measure of humility and determination to heal the divides that have held back our progress.”  Mr. President, inside the beltway they say you don’t even talk to your own party leaders, much less anybody from across the aisle.

Six Trillion Dollars ago President Obama promised, “When there is a bill that ends up on my desk as the president, you the public will have five days to look online and find out what’s in it before I sign it.”  Nope.  He said, “I have done more to take on lobbyists than any other candidate in this race. I don’t take a dime of their money, and when I am president, they won’t find a job in my White House.”  Nope.  And he said, “When I’m president, I will go line by line to make sure that we are not spending money unwisely.”  Nope, nope, nope.

Too bad we didn’t get a warranty when we bought the Six Trillion Dollar Man.  Maybe we could get our money back.  For sure let’s not spend another Six Trillion on this same defective model.

Tom Balek – Rockin’ On the Right Side

Have a good laugh and enjoy some great R&B too.
Click the music link below and think Obama –

My man is smooth like Barry and his voice got bass
A body like Arnold with a Denzel face,
He’s smart like a doctor with a real good rep
And when he comes home, he’s relaxed with pep
He always got a gift for me, every time I see him
A lot of snot nose, ex-flames couldn’t be him

Whatta Man – Salt ‘N Peppa

They Don’t Talk about “The Children” Any More

Remember when the favorite justification for every liberal idea was “the children”?  We would hear countless public service announcements on radio and TV, extolling the virtues of this government program or that, in the ubiquitous deep, oh-so-sensitive PBS voice – stretching out that first syllable – “the CHILLLLLdren.”  It didn’t matter if the latest big-government program had anything to do with children – it could be providing free socks for desert toads –  you could still count on hearing that it must be done for “the CHILLLLLdren.”

Something changed.  In recent years you seldom hear “the children” invoked by the left.  Could it be because any rational person knows that a 16 trillion dollar debt is really not so good for the children?

I became a grandpa when my twins grandbabies were born a couple of years ago.  And, while I have known for some time that we are screwing things up pretty royally for future generations, it really hit home when I realized that one of those future generations includes my own precious twins.  Now I see everything in a broader context.  It makes political activism real for me. I feel compelled to do whatever I can for the future of my grandkids.

If you are still reading at this point, you should meet Lydia, the apple of Grandpa’s eye!  I write and record songs for the kids, and here’s one I did for her – along with a video.  By the way, if you remember “the Jetsons”, chances are you have grandkids to worry about too.  We can’t let them down.  Here she is!

Tom Balek – Rockin’ On The Right Side

I Wanna Dance With Lydia! – Tom Balek