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The Trump Transition: Away from Enormous, Terrible Top-Down Government

Seton Motley | Less Government | LessGovernment.org

Hopefully It’s Finally on Rollback

We are in the midst of what is referred to as the “transition” – the hand off of power from one president to another. God bless America – these conversions are peaceful. Even when the exchange takes place between presidents of opposing political parties, as is currently underway.

(Here’s hoping the Democrat Barack Obama Administration continues to handle this better than did the Democrat Bill Clinton Administration. On their way out, classy Clinton officials vandalized the White House to the tune of $15,000 in damage – including ripping the “W”s out of the keyboards – in protest of Republican George W. Bush succeeding them.)

The incoming Donald Trump Administration is shaping up to be a policy and procedural sea change – a completely new approach to what DC does and how it does it. Given the half-century-plus of top-down stagnation the city has foisted upon us – this is not a terrible thing.

Unless you are a creature of Washington. Which is much more a state of mind than of geography. Plenty of people – college professors aplenty, for instance – have never stepped foot in our nation’s capitol. But they think and act like lifers.

Trump, from all appearances, is not similarly addled. It’s not that he doesn’t care about how things in DC have always been done. It’s that he sees how anti-productive and stupid most of it is – and he intends to change it. More

New York State is Perfecting Governor Andrew Cuomo Cronyism

Seton Motley | Less Government | LessGovernment.org

Not So Okey Dokey for New Yorkers

Government corruption increases as the size of government increases. The bigger the government’s checkbook and regulatory hammers – the more people will try to bribe politicians to direct where the checks and hammers fall.

This is cronyism. You contribute to politicians – and ask for government beneficial treatment. You want government to reward you – and punish your private sector competitors.

You get breaks from the pernicious laws and regulations imposed by government. Your competitors get laws and regulations that apply to them – but not to you.

And you get checks cut directly to you from government coffers.

All of which brings us to New York state.

Governor Andrew Cuomo announced a unilateral mass expansion of government – in the name of fighting global warming…oops, I mean climate change: “The state’s Public Service Commission (PSC) earlier Monday passed a new set of standards that by 2030 is supposed to ensure that half of New York’s energy needs are met by renewable methods, ranging from solar and wind, as well as hydro and nuclear power.” More

Thanksgiving: For the Prospect of Less Government Cronyism

Seton Motley | Less Government | LessGovernment.org

Hopefully a Diminishing Word Search

Thursday is, of course, our day of Thanksgiving. Where food and football serve as an accompaniment to our gathering together to celebrate our blessings.

I will not bore you with all for which I am thankful personally (though that is much). Discussed here is something public policy for which I am most grateful – the end of the the Barack Obama Administration and its cronyism nightmare mess. For everyone generally – and Silicon Valley “Tech companies” specifically.

Where we can finally get back to equal protection before the law – and allowing the marketplace to evolve of its own accord. Pre-Obama, the Internet was a free speech-free market Xanadu. May it be so again.

First – we must briefly define terms. People say “Tech companies” – and they exclusively mean the Silicon Valley slate: Google, Facebook, Netflix and the like. Which is grossly unfair to the Internet Service Providers (ISPs): Comcast, Time Warner, Verizon, AT&T and the like.

The ISPs have developed and exponentially advanced the broadband network. The technology that, without which, the “Tech companies” would for all practical purposes not exist. Before you get to the wonder of Facebook or a Google search – you must travel the wonder that is the inter-web. And that wonderment survives and thrives – thanks to the ISPs. More

Trump Has Repeatedly Flirted with Ending the EPA. He Absolutely Should

Seton Motley | Less Government | LessGovernment.org

Yes, Please

The $4-trillion-per-year federal government works incessantly against the private sector. Likely no wing is more pernicious than the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).

On his way to prison for defrauding taxpayers out of more than $1 million, former high-level EPA official Jon Beale said that while at the agency he was: “working on a ‘project’ examining ways to ‘modify the DNA of the capitalist system.’ He argued that environmental regulation was reaching its ‘limits’…so he began working on his plan.”

Which, thankfully, was eventually scrapped. But how obnoxious is the EPA – and how much free time does it have – to even consider, let alone work on, such a plan?

Idle bureaucrat hands are the Devil’s playground. There are more than 800,000 federal government employees – that the employer its own self deems “non-essential.” Get that? The Feds have hired almost a million people – they themselves say are totally superfluous.

We have far too many bureaucrats – with nigh nothing to do. So they start looking for things to do – like trying to “modify the DNA of the capitalist system.”

Rather than assigning them things to do, or allowing them to go on these regulatory spelunking forays – how about we scrap their gigs? And while we’re at it – the agencies in which they work? Because if these agencies green light these sorts of regulatory search-and-destroy missions, they have no productive work to do – and thus shouldn’t exist. More

New York’s Government Needs to (Re)Learn: You Can’t Spend Your Way to Prosperity

Seton Motley | Less Government | LessGovernment.org

More Government
Success and Prosperity

During the passage of the inanity that was the Democrats’ 2009 $878 billion “Stimulus,” Vice President Joe Biden bizarrely uttered in its indefensible defense “People look at me and say ‘What are you talking about, Joe? You’re telling me we need to go spend money to keep from going bankrupt?’ The answer is yes, that’s what I’m telling you.”

Well, we spent the nigh $1 trillion on the “Stimulus.” But we didn’t have that much coin just laying around – we had to borrow it. So we’ve also spent the last seven years-plus (and counting) paying interest on it. Which we don’t have, so we have to borrow that too.

And how’d the “Stimulus” work – as far as keeping us from going bankrupt? Not very well. President Barack Obama has doubled the national debt – from $10 trillion to $20 trillion. He’s added more debt than all of his forty-three presidential predecessors combined. Ok, technically, we’re not yet bankrupt. But we are certainly exponentially closer to it – sent hurtling there by this man and his plan.

Well, at least the “Stimulus” helped our economy come roaring back, right? Not so much. President Obama will be the first president in our nation’s history to never have a year of even 3% Gross Domestic Product (GDP) growth. President Obama is our most anemic economy president ever.

So to say the “Stimulus” – as a part of this president’s “Spend Our Way to Prosperity” administration – was an abysmal failure is a titanic understatement. Our nation teeters on the brink of oblivion – driven there by government spending in the name of saving it. More

Want a Shortage of Something? Put the Government in Charge of Its Production

Seton Motley | Less Government | LessGovernment.org

Enjoy Shopping at
Government Grocery

The late, inordinately great man and economist Milton Friedman once rightly observed “If you put the federal government in charge of the Sahara Desert, in five years there’d be a shortage of sand.”

Where governments run things – shortages abound. Places with unbelievable amounts of natural resources – end up importing those very things when government controls their production.

Communist Venezuela has the world’s largest oil reservesand it imports oil. (From, amongst other places, the United States.) Why? “The nation’s late president Hugo Chávez often boasted the South American country regained control of its oil industry after he seized joint ventures controlled by such companies as ExxonMobil and Conoco. But nineteen months after Chávez’s death, the country can’t pump enough commercially viable oil out of the ground to meet domestic needs — a result of the former leader’s policies.”

Communist China used to be a huge rice exporter. Now they are the world’s largest rice importer – despite the population’s declining rice consumption. Why? “China’s agricultural sector is declining in competitiveness. Like some other Asian countries, China has implemented state-funded strategies that encourage rice cultivation by guaranteeing minimum purchase prices. After almost a decade of government increases to these prices, they are now well over international market levels.”

Asian countries aren’t the only ones stupidly engaging in price-skyrocketing, shortage-inducing price fixing. And government ownership of production. And many, many other stupid policies. We do a lot of it – and have for decades. Most agriculture-producing countries around the world do it. More

The Al Sharpton of Power Companies Set to Get a New York State Bailout

Seton Motley | Less Government | LessGovernment.org

We Have to Destroy the Economy
in Order to Save It

The Reverend Al Sharpton is famous. What he should be is notorious. He has many, many life lowlights. The one that pertains to our conversation here is the 2014 New York Times report that he was at that time $4.5 million short on his federal and New York state taxes.

That’s a lot. And it brings to mind many thoughts regarding the Reverend. None of which, for normal people, is: What this guy really deserves is a government bailout check.

Yet that is what New York state Governor Andrew Cuomo is on the verge of doing for Exelon Generation – the Al Sharpton of power companies.

Exalon was just on the wrong end of a U.S. tax court decision – and has been ordered to pay the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) $1.45 billion in back taxes, penalties, and interest.

What is Exelon? A New York state power company. A very successful New York state power company. Net profits in 2015? $2.2 billion. And they’ve been solidly profitable for years. $1.72 billion in 2013, $1.16 billion in 2012. And $2.7 billion each year all the way back in 2008 and 2009.

So they should have no problem paying their (back) taxes. We should all have a problem with New York’s state government writing them a check – for possibly up to $7 billion. More

Government Ignores Human Nature – and Warps the World with its Ignorance

Seton Motley | Less Government | LessGovernment.org

The Bigger the Government – the Bigger the Ignorance

Socialism doesn’t work because it tries to root out human nature. Capitalism works because it harnesses it.

We are capitalists, conservatives and federalists in part because we acknowledge and understand human nature. Its possibilities – and its limitations.

They are Socialists because they are Utopian fantasists. They think they can remake humanity and the planet into a Heaven on Earth. And the vehicle with which they attempt this intercontinental, multi-billion-person fundamental transformation – is government.

Faith in government is itself a failure to grasp human nature. For several reasons. One of them is the Wallet Rule:

If you go out on a Friday night with your wallet, and you go out the following Friday night with my wallet – on which Friday night are you going to have more fun? More

Here’s the Way to Finally End the Farm Bill

Seton Motley | Less Government | LessGovernment.org

Then as Now – No Need for Government.
Just Start Swapping

We less government types have loathed the Farm Bill – since there was a Farm Bill. Because we loathe government inanity – and the Farm Bill is full of it.

The Farm Bill is Franklin Delano Roosevelt-New Deal era central planning. Which means for coming up on ninety years – our farmers and their farms have been besieged by constricting, constraining government inanity.

And over that near-century, we have globalized the markets for nigh everything – including food. Which means our dumb domestic farm policy – has helped shape dumb domestic policies the world over. Which collectively became dumb international policy.

Our Farm Bill helped incept and foster an international regulatory arms race. A terrible multi-governments poker game – where farming nations everywhere saw and then raised everyone else’s taxes, tariffs and subsidies.

That’s a lot of governments – engaged in a lot of inanity. We less government types have tried to end the United States’ portion of it – in the exact same way, over and over again, for decades. More

The Road to Hell is Paved with Regulations. And Taxes. Take Note, New York

Seton Motley | Less Government | LessGovernment.org

Shovel Ready Jobs

We are nigh all familiar with the maxim: “The road to hell is paved with good intentions.”

I also like it in its original form – in the original French: “The saying is thought to have originated with Saint Bernard of Clairvaux who wrote (c. 1150), ‘L’enfer est plein de bonnes volontés ou désirs.’ ‘Hell is full of good wishes or desires.’”

Because it shows that not only do good intentions lay your road to Hell – they ensure you get there. Where you and your intentions can plot and plan for all eternity.

And nigh everyone gets this – save for Leftists. And unfortunately for the rest of us, their attempts at good intentions – via government – drag all of us down to Hell right along with them.

Which is ironic. Because what Utopian Leftists are attempting – is to create a Heaven on Earth. Oops.

Good intentions lead to Hell – because this ain’t Heaven. And here on Earth, Reality always, inexorably inserts itself – and disrupts and destroys even the best of intentions.

Exhibit A: New York state.

“‘The state’s Public Service Commission (PSC) earlier Monday passed a new set of standards that by 2030 is supposed to ensure that half of New York’s energy needs are met by renewable methods, ranging from solar and wind, as well as hydro and nuclear power.’” More