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California Elections November 2010 Print E-mail

Dr. Kennedy I am not sure anyone cares about my opinions regarding the elections which are coming up and the initiatives we will be voting on November 2. However, in case you are interested, allow me to make a few comments.

I am an independent voter, not aligned to any political party. My impression of the political parties in recent years is that both have failed the country - and our state - in the following ways. They have promised, and actually passed laws promising, much more than can be delivered. While the entitlement programs (Medicare, Medicaid, Obama Care, and the myriad give-aways to this and that group) appear very attractive, the simple fact is that in the long-run they cannot be paid for.

Politicians are not stupid. They can do the math. Why do they promise so much when they all know it cannot be delivered? Obviously, they want to appear generous to voters so they will be re-elected. While they line their pockets from special interests in exchange for special favors, they send our economy to the dumpster and therefore many more people into property. Right now, one out of every seven households in the U.S. is below the poverty line. It would be wonderful if Big Brother could bail everyone out, but that cannot happen. We must create a country which produces value rather then a country which consumes value. Production must exceed consumption or we are doomed. Paradoxically, that is the only real way to lift people out of poverty.

I find it useful to draw the analogy of a family living on credit cards. In a way we are a family, and we have credit cards in the form of other countries (notably China, but not only China) which buy our treasury bills at interest. More and more of our income as a family-country is going toward paying the interest on these credit card loans. Not the loan itself, but the interest.

Here is the national debt clock; take a good long look at this: National Debt Clock

The time is fast approaching when we will no longer be able to pay the interest on our national debt. What happens then? The only thing which can happen is that we "monetise" the debt. What does that mean? That means we print money in massive amounts and pay off the debt, or at least the interest. What is the effect of that? As the supply of money goes up, the value of money goes down. So, although you will still have X dollars in your pocket, they will no longer be worth X dollars. They will be extremely devalued. In effect, monetising the debt means a severe tax on every person, and every person equally, affecting low income citizens most because they area already close to the edge. In fact, this monetisation of the debt has already begun. It leads to run-away inflation.

Has this ever happened before? Absolutely, many times. The clearest example would be the German Weimar Republic of the late 1920s, early 1930s. Saddled with the unfair requirement to pay the losses suffered by other countries in World War I, they did the only thing they could do: the printed money. At one point the paper money required to buy a loaf of bread was larger than the loaf of bread itself. Money lost its meaning and people went hungry and undernourished. The outrage over that situation led to the rise of Hitler and the Nazis. Can that happen here? Of course it can. Do we believe it can happen here? No, we do not. However, we are on exactly the same road which led to the Democratic Socialist Republic of Germany (the Nazi Party). When you see run-away inflation in America, hold your breath, because someone will then appear promising to "take care of the problem." If this is hard for you to believe, just know it was hard for Germans to believe where they were headed in 1920-30s.

If we do not wish to go down that path, we must do a course correction now. Although our form of government is terrible, it is better than the alternatives. We live in a "republic" not a democracy. In a democracy the people rule directly. That works when the country is small enough so that everyone can meet together in the same stadium. We elect people to go the "stadium" and represent us, so we must elect the right people. I will be voting for the most fiscally conservative candidates I can find in this election because I believe the health, and perhaps even the very existence, of our country depends on it. Tax and spend liberals will not have my vote this time even if they do have pleasing personalities.

If you have a different point of view, I want to hear it. The free exchange of ideas has made our country worth living in. Please think through the matter and try, as I have, to avoid emotional influence on your opinions.

As to the legalization of marijuana...

As a libertarian, I want the most freedom for individuals which is possible without endangering others. So, I struggle over this issue, because MJ is a plant after all; what right has the government to regulate the cultivation and consumption of a plant? The argument which can be made for this falls in the area of public safety. If a person wants to get high and it is safe for that person to do so, I have no problem with it. However, when that person leaves his or her home intoxicated in any way, public safety becomes an issue. You can't tell me that people are not going to die in car crashes caused by marijuana. From my point of view, if only one person dies, it will not have been worth it and you simply cannot argue that there will not be drivers on the road who are affected with MJ. If we did not have a wonderful medical marijuana system in California, I would have to vote for Prop 19, but we do have this system. It does not guarantee that no one will smoke and drive, but at least everyone is counseled against it. My other concern is that marijuana will come closer to children and more available to them. Many citizens already think that is no problem, but in point of fact we have no idea what may be the effect of MJ on the developing nervous system. And, yes, I know alcohol is legal and making it illegal did not work. That does not erase the tremendous damage done by alcohol on our highways and in the families of people who are not genetically equipped to handle alcohol. Maybe we are too stupid to adequately regulate either substance, but I hope not. Does putting another legal intoxicant on the table - or on the road - a good idea just because there is already one there Are two better than one, or worse?

If you see all this in a different way, I respect your opinion, but in case you care how I see it, there it is. They say one should never bring up politics or religion, but I did bring up politics in a roundabout way. I hope this discussion is useful for you. It has been useful for me and, as always, my mind is still open to new ideas.

Ron Kennedy



The information in this article is not meant to be medical advice.�Treatment for a medical condition should come at the recommendation of your personal physician.

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