Obama vs. Mathematics

Obama vs. Mathematics
Health care plus entitlements plus higher taxes only on the “rich” equals disaster.

By Jagadeesh Gokhale & Kent Smetters

Even a popular president like Barack Obama cannot win arguments against two forces: God and mathematics. While the president has openly shared his reverence for the former, he has decided to take on the latter. It’s a fight that he will lose.

Upon taking office, President Obama decided to postpone his campaign promise to implement a true cost-saving reform of Social Security and Medicare. Instead, he’s trying to expand the nation’s entitlement offerings with massive new government spending on health care.

The Congressional Budget Office’s mid-July “score” of the main House health-care bill puts the price tag at about $1 trillion over the next decade; the Blue Dog Democrats managed to shave off only about $100 billion. But ten-year budgets, as even the CBO has warned in the past, are not reliable for assessing entitlement programs. Most of the spending in the House plan is phased in over several years, making the ten-year cost look deceptively small. Extending the budget window by just three years doubles the program’s cost to over $2 trillion.

And that’s just a start. The most comprehensive view of a program’s projected shortfall comes from calculating the present value of all of its future outlays and subtracting any new revenue sources. The House plan has a present-value shortfall of $13.6 trillion. That’s the amount of additional money that must be set aside, in today’s dollars, to put this program on a sustainable course. This estimate optimistically assumes that health-care costs will eventually grow with the general inflation rate (they’re currently growing much faster).

This enormous shortfall is equal to about 1.6 percent of all future projected GDP, or 3.5 percent of all future payrolls subject to Social Security taxes. From those numbers, this additional burden might actually seem manageable. But President Obama promised that he would raise taxes only on those in “rich” households.

That’s where the arithmetic gets especially interesting. Funding the new health-care plan on the backs of households making $200,000 or more per year would require permanently increasing their annual total tax payments by about 50 percent. So, for example, a household that currently pays $50,000 in federal income taxes would need to pay another $25,000. Remember, however, that Social Security and Medicare already face enormous shortfalls. Shoring up these programs — another Obama campaign promise — would require collecting 328 percent more tax revenue from the rich. No, we didn’t forget a decimal point: That is three hundred and twenty-eight percent.

Most households making between $200,000 and $500,000 per year would not have enough money to pay their federal, state, and local tax bills, much less eat. Rich households in California or New York would not be able to pay their tax bills regardless of their incomes. And a family of four living in a low-tax state (South Dakota) would need to gross almost $900,000 per year to have enough income left over to reach the poverty line. In fact, there is no mathematical configuration of taxes on the current rich alone — including additional levies on the “super-rich” making more than $1 million per year — that is compatible with putting the nation’s entitlement programs and the new health-care plan on a sustainable course.

U.S. federal income taxes are already very progressive. The top 10 percent of income earners pay the majority of federal income taxes. The top 1 percent of income earners pay a quarter of all taxes.

But can’t we expect the rich to pay even more? Maybe for a few years — but not without disastrous consequences to America’s future.

A major tax increase causes the tax capacity of the rich to shrink gradually as two factors kick in. First, many of the households falling into Obama’s “rich” definition are married couples in which both partners are working professionals. When tax rates rise, the lower-earning spouses in these couples tend to work less. Often, they quit work entirely. Second, many of the “rich” are budding entrepreneurs and small-business owners. They finance their operations using their own after-tax income, or with after-tax resources from family and friends. Small-business innovation is the fuel for long-term economic growth. In fact, many of the largest companies in the United States today were either small or nonexistent just 25 years ago. Killing small business kills the American economy.

We cannot allow federal health-care subsidies — mainly Medicare and Medicaid — to continue to grow faster than inflation indefinitely. The challenge is to find ways to make the nation’s commitments to retirees and others sustainable without harming economic growth prospects. In this regard, the Obama administration is charting a course in the wrong direction — expanding entitlements on the backs of our nation’s job creators. The math will work against the Obama administration and, eventually, against us all.

Jagadeesh Gokhale is a senior fellow at the Cato Institute. Kent Smetters is a professor at the Wharton School and a visiting scholar at the American Enterprise Institute.


National Review Online – http://article.nationalreview.com/?q=ZjdmN2JkNDIyNjQ5ODM5MzNmNTlmMzMyZDY4NmZjOTM=

House provides $200 million for gov’t VIP jets

House provides $200 million for gov’t VIP jets
Aug 6 05:06 PM US/Eastern
By ANDREW TAYLOR
Associated Press Writer

WASHINGTON (AP) – The House is ordering up three Gulfstream jets to fly Pentagon and other top government officials—including members of Congress—around the globe in conditions far cushier than coach class.The almost $200 million appropriation to buy three C-37 jets, the military version of the Gulfstream 550, is buried in a $636 billion Pentagon budget passed by the House last week. It’s not as fancy as the version sold to private customers, but still is a very nice ride.

The Pentagon asked for only one of the $65 million planes as part of an ongoing effort to replace aging jets such as the C-20, an older Gulfstream Aerospace Corp. plane that costs about $6,100 an hour to operate, compared with less than $2,700 for the C-37, according to department figures.

The move raised eyebrows from some Congress-watchers since the planes are sometimes used to ferry lawmakers on overseas trips. And the House measure directs that two of the aircraft be located at Andrews Air Force Base in the Washington suburbs—a favored departure point for congressional trips.

“Congress decided, ‘No, no, you’re going to buy two more—and those two are going to go to those units right here at Andrews,'” said Steve Ellis of Taxpayers for Common Sense, a budget watchdog group.

“The Air Force is planning to replace these planes,” said House Appropriations Committee spokesman Ellis Brachman. “The question is whether to do it sooner rather than later.”

Among the members of Congress who fly on the planes is House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, who generally flies Pentagon aircraft between Washington and her home in San Francisco. The Pentagon began supplying the planes to her predecessor as Speaker, Dennis Hastert, R-Ill., as part of beefed-up post-Sept. 11, 2001 security steps.

But Pelosi generally flies commercial on political and personal travel such as a trip Thursday between San Francisco and Denver in which she flew first class, accompanied by a security agent.

The Pentagon describes the mission of the planes as flying “worldwide special air missions for high-ranking government and Defense Department officials.”

According to Appropriations panel spokesman Brachman, members of Congress have been responsible for just one in seven of the flights, with Pentagon brass, White House officials and other Cabinet executives taking up the rest.

The planes are made in Georgia by Gulfstream, a subsidiary of General Dynamics. Rep. Sanford Bishop, D-Ga., wrote the Appropriations panel to request $70 million for one of the planes. But the panel did not report this under disclosure rules since Congress was simply expanding an existing program.

The purchase of the planes was reported Wednesday by the Capitol Hill newspaper Roll Call.
Copyright 2009 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

White House: ‘War on terrorism’ is over (‘Jihadists’ and ‘global war’ no longer acceptable terms)

White House: ‘War on terrorism’ is over (‘Jihadists’ and ‘global war’ no longer acceptable terms)
The Washington Times ^ | August 6, 2009 | Jon Ward

Posted on Thursday, August 06, 2009 9:56:08 AM by jazusamo

It’s official. The U.S. is no longer engaged in a “war on terrorism.” Neither is it fighting “jihadists” or in a “global war.”

President Obama’s top homeland security and counterterrorism official took all three terms off the table of acceptable words inside the White House during a speech Thursday at the Center for Strategic and International Studies, a Washington think tank.

“The President does not describe this as a ‘war on terrorism,'” said John Brennan, head of the White House homeland security office, who outlined a “new way of seeing” the fight against terrorism.

The only terminology that Mr. Brennan said the administration is using is that the U.S. is “at war with al Qaeda.”

“We are at war with al Qaeda,” he said. “We are at war with its violent extremist allies who seek to carry on al Qaeda’s murderous agenda.”

Secretary of State Hillary Clinton said in March that the administration was not using the term “war on terror” but no specific directive had come from the White House itself. Mr. Obama himself used the term “war on terror” on Jan. 23, his fourth day as president, but has not used it since.

Mr. Brennan’s speech was aimed at outlining ways in which the Obama administration intends to undermine the “upstream” factors that create an environment in which terrorists are bred.

The president’s adviser talked about increasing aid to foreign governments for building up their militaries and social and democratic institutions, but provided few details about how the White House will do that.

(Excerpt) Read more at washingtontimes.com

Obama’s Enemies List

Obama’s Enemies List

July 25, 2009 10:02 am R.D. Walker Cartoon -

Investment Bankers: They invest in “risky” ventures and must be taxed heavily to prevent this risky behavior. Never mind that a lack of risk taking and investment right now is a big part of the ongoing recession. This week he criticized the absence of “change in behavior and practices” among bankers and indicated that the government would force them to change their activities.

CEOs: They have too much power and make too much money. Their activities must be controlled, regulated and punished through increased taxation and regulation.

Insurance companies: They also are too profitable. This week when insurance company profits were mentioned Obama asked with disdain. “What’s the constraint on that?” Their success must be constrained.

Oil companies: He has complained that they make too much money and, of course, are causing sea levels to rise and polar bears to go hungry.

Physicians: This week he accused them of putting profits ahead of patients and, for example, unnecessarily removing the tonsils of children to increase revenues.

White cops: They are closet racists who racially profile and would likely “shoot” him if they saw him trying to force his way into the White House. White police officers need do nothing inappropriate to be accused of racism by Obama.

Republicans: Of course. According to Obama they want to do nothing about anything and live to hold America back.

Israel: The oppressors of Palestinians and cause of most of the trouble in the Middle East.

The constitutional government of Honduras: Not leftist enough.

Rush Limbaugh: This one is legitimate.

Clearing The Smoke On Obama’s Birth Certificate

Clearing The Smoke On Obama’s Birth Certificate

August 6th, 2009 Posted By Pat Dollard.

obamashreddingconst

Western Journalism:

Western Journalism’s Editors Note: In December ‘08 a retired CIA officer commissioned an investigator to look into the Barack Obama birth certificate and eligibility issue. On July 21, 2009 westernjournalism.com obtained a copy of the investigator’s report. Here is an unedited version of the report.

June 10, 2009 Report, updated July 18, 2009

The Territorial Public Health Statistics Act in the 1955 Revised Laws of Hawaii

I think that I now understand the legal background to the question of where Obama was born.

Let’s begin with the statement that Dr. Chiyome Fukino, the Director of the Hawaii Department of Health released on October 31, 2008. The television and print media used this statement as a reason to prevent and treat with contempt any investigation into whether Barack Obama was not born in Hawaii. But the language of the statement was so carefully hedged and guarded that it should have had the opposite effect.

“There have been numerous requests for Sen. Barack Hussein Obama’s official birth certificate. State law (Hawai‘i Revised Statutes §338-18) prohibits the release of a certified birth certificate to persons who do not have a tangible interest in the vital record. Therefore, I as Director of Health for the State of Hawai‘i, along with the Registrar of Vital Statistics who has statutory authority to oversee and maintain these type of vital records, have personally seen and verified that the Hawai‘i State Department of Health has Sen. Obama’s original birth certificate on record in accordance with state policies and procedures.”

It is understandable that after such an apparently definitive statement most news outlets, whether conservative or liberal, would accept this as sufficient grounds to relegate the controversy to the status of a fringe phenomenon. Unless they happened to take the trouble to look into the “state policies and procedures” as laid down by the relevant statutes. If they had done so, they would have seen that Dr. Fukino’s press release was carefully hedged and “lawyered” and practically worthless. But the media in general should not be faulted. The statement seems to roll out with such bureaucratic certainty and final authority. I believed it to be significant until a Honolulu attorney mailed me the relevant statutes. I was so surprised that I laughed out loud.

Here is a summary of Hawaii’s “state policies and procedures” in 1961.

In the State of Hawaii, back in 1961, there were four different ways to get an “original birth certificate” on record. They varied greatly in their reliability as evidence. For convenience, I’ll call them BC1, BC2, BC3, and BC4.

BC1. If the birth was attended by a physician or mid wife, the attending medical professional was required to certify to the Department of Health the facts of the birth date, location, parents’ identities and other information. (See Section 57-8 & 9 of the Territorial Public Health Statistics Act in the 1955 Revised Laws of Hawaii which was in effect in 1961).

colb

BC2. In 1961, if a person was born in Hawaii but not attended by a physician or midwife, then all that was required was that one of the parents send in a birth certificate to be filed. The birth certificate could be filed by mail. There appears to have been no requirement for the parent to actually physically appear before “the local registrar of the district.” It would have been very easy for a relative to forge an absent parent’s signature to a form and mail it in. In addition, if a claim was made that “neither parent of the newborn child whose birth is unattended as above provided is able to prepare a birth certificate, the local registrar shall secure the necessary information from any person having knowledge of the birth and prepare and file the certificate.” (Section 57-8&9) I asked the Dept of Health what they currently ask for (in 2008) to back up a parent’s claim that a child was born in Hawaii. I was told that all they required was a proof of residence in Hawaii (e.g. a driver’s license [We know from interviews with her friends on Mercer Island in Washington State that Ann Dunham had acquired a driver’s license by the summer of 1961 at the age of 17] or telephone bill) and pre-natal (statement or report that a woman was pregnant) and post-natal (statement or report that a new-born baby has been examined) certification by a physician. On further enquiry, the employee that I spoke to informed me that the pre-natal and post-natal certifications had probably not been in force in the ‘60s. Even if they had been, there is and was no requirement for a physician or midwife to witness, state or report that the baby was born in Hawaii.

BC3. In 1961, if a person was born in Hawaii but not attended by a physician or midwife, then, up to the first birthday of the child, a “Delayed Certificate” could be filed, which required that “a summary statement of the evidence submitted in support of the acceptance for delayed filing or the alteration [of a file] shall be endorsed on the certificates”, which “evidence shall be kept in a special permanent file.” The statute provided that “the probative value of a ‘delayed’ or ‘altered’ certificate shall be determined by the judicial or administrative body or official before whom the certificate is offered as evidence.” (See Section 57- 9, 18, 19 & 20 of the Territorial Public Health Statistics Act in the 1955 Revised Laws of Hawaii which was in effect in 1961).”

[In other words, this form of vault birth certificate, the Delayed Certificate, required no more than a statement before a government bureaucrat by one of the parents or (the law does not seem to me clear on this) one of Barack Obama’s grandparents. If the latter is true, Ann Dunham did not have to be present for this statement or even in the country.]

BC4. If a child is born in Hawaii, for whom no physician or mid wife filed a certificate of live birth, and for whom no Delayed Certificate was filed before the first birthday, then a Certificate of Hawaiian Birth could be issued upon testimony of an adult (including the subject person [i.e. the birth child as an adult]) if the Office of the Lieutenant Governor was satisfied that a person was born in Hawaii, provided that the person had attained the age of one year. (See Section 57-40 of the Territorial Public Health Statistics Act in the 1955 Revised Laws of Hawaii which was in effect in 1961.) In 1955 the “secretary of the Territory” was in charge of this procedure. In 1960 it was transferred to the Office of the Lieutenant Governor (“the lieutenant governor, or his secretary, or such other person as he may designate or appoint from his office” §338-41 [in 1961]).

obama-birth-certificate1

In 1982, the vital records law was amended to create a fifth kind of “original birth certificate”. Under Act 182 H.B. NO. 3016-82, “Upon application of an adult or the legal parents of a minor child, the director of health shall issue a birth certificate for such adult or minor, provided that the proof has been submitted to the director of health that the legal parents of such individual while living without the Territory or State of Hawaii had declared the Territory or State of Hawaii as their legal residence for at least one year immediately preceding the birth or adoption of such child.” In this way “state policies and procedures” accommodate even “children born out of State” (this is the actual language of Act 182) with an “original birth certificate on record.” So it is even possible that the birth certificate referred to by Dr Fukino is of the kind specified in Act 182. This possibility cannot be dismissed because such a certificate certainly satisfies Dr Fukino’s statement that “I as Director of Health for the State of Hawai‘i, along with the Registrar of Vital Statistics who has statutory authority to oversee and maintain these type of vital records, have personally seen and verified that the Hawai‘i State Department of Health has Sen. Obama’s original birth certificate on record in accordance with state policies and procedures.” If this is the case, Dr Fukino would have perpetrated so unusually disgusting a deception that I find it practically incredible (and I greatly doubt that anyone could be that shameless). On the other hand, if the original birth certificate is of types 2, 3, or 4, Dr Fukino’s statement would be only somewhat less deceptive and verbally tricky. I only bring up this possibility to show how cleverly hedged and “lawyered” and basically worthless Dr Fukino’s statement is.

Sections 57-8, 9, 18, 19, 20 & 40 of the Territorial Public Health Statistics Act explain why Barack Obama has refused to release the original vault birth certificate. If the original certificate were the standard BC1 type of birth certificate, he would have allowed its release and brought the controversy to a quick end. But if the original certificate is of the other kinds, then Obama would have a very good reason not to release the vault birth certificate. For if he did, then the tape recording of Obama’s Kenyan grandmother asserting that she was present at his birth in Kenya becomes far more important. As does the Kenyan ambassador’s assertion that Barack Obama was born in Kenya, as well as the sealing of all government and hospital records relevant to Obama by the Kenyan government. And the fact that though there are many witnesses to Ann Dunham’s presence on Oahu from Sept 1960 to Feb 1961, there are no witnesses to her being on Oahu from March 1961 to August 1962 when she returned from Seattle and the University of Washington. No Hawaiian physicians, nurses, or midwives have come forward with any recollection of Barack Obama’s birth.

The fact that Obama refuses to release the vault birth certificate that would instantly clear up this matter almost certainly indicates that the vault birth certificate is probably a BC2 or possibly a BC3.

It is almost certainly a BC 3 or even a BC 4 if the “Certification of Live Birth” posted on the Daily Kos blog and the fightthesmears.com website by the Obama campaign is a forgery. Ron Polarik has made what several experts claim to be a cogent case that it is a forgery. There have been a couple of attempts to refute his argument and Polarik has replied to the most extensive of them. I do not claim expertise in this area, but I think it would be best for journalists and politicians to familiarize themselves with the arguments on both sides before they casually dismiss Polarik’s position without taking the trouble to understand it.

Here are 2 of Polarik’s websites: http://bogusbirthcertificate.blogspot.com/

http://bogusbithcertificate.blogspot.com/

Because the disputants know far more about this subject than I do, I am an agnostic about Polarik’s argument. However, the likelihood that this computer-generated “Certification of Live Birth” was forged, is, I believe, increased by the fact that it has been pretty clearly established that Obama “either didn’t register for the draft or did so belatedly and fraudulently. The documents indicate that it’s one or the other.” http://www.debbieschlussel.com/archives/004431print.html The forgery of Obama’s selective service registration was necessary, because according to Federal law, “A man must be registered to be eligible for jobs in the Executive Branch of the Federal government and the U.S. Postal Service. This applies only to men born after December 31, 1959.” http://usmilitary.about.com/cs/wars/a/draft2.htm)

It is also very strange that Dr Fukino’s statement in no way attested to (or even addressed the issue of) the authenticity of the “Certification of Live Birth” (and the information that appears on it) that the Daily Kos blog and the Obama campaign posted on line. Dr Fukino merely stated that “I as Director of Health for the State of Hawai‘i, along with the Registrar of Vital Statistics who has statutory authority to oversee and maintain these type of vital records, have personally seen and verified that the Hawai‘i State Department of Health has Sen. Obama’s original birth certificate on record in accordance with state policies and procedures.”

If there is no hospital or physician record in the vault birth certificate, then he wasn’t born in a hospital in Hawaii. And a home birth or non-hospital birth can then be ruled out for the following reason.

When someone has a home birth or is not born in a hospital, this becomes a part of his family’s lore and is now and again spoken of by his parents. He and his siblings grow up knowing that he was born at home or his uncle’s house, etc. The fact that someone in the campaign told a Washington Post reporter that he was born in Kapioliani hospital and his sister said he was born at Queens hospital indicates that there was not and is not any Obama/Dunham family memory of a home birth or non-hospital birth in Hawaii.

And if there is no hospital record in the original vault birth certificate, then he was not born in a hospital in Hawaii.

Instead of the birth certificate on file at the Hawaii Dept of Health, the Obama campaign posted on the Daily Kos blog and the Fightthesmears website a “Certification of Live Birth”. The Certification of Live Birth is not a copy of the original birth certificate. It is a computer-generated document that the state of Hawaii issues on request to indicate that a birth certificate of some type is “on record in accordance with state policies and procedures”. And there is the problem. Given the statutes in force in 1961, the Certification of Live Birth proves nothing unless we know what is on the original birth certificate. There are several legal areas (involving ethnic quotas and subsidy) for which the state of Hawaii up until June 2009 did not accept its computer-generated Certification of Live Birth as sufficient proof of birth in Hawaii or parentage. Why should the citizens of the United States be content with lower standards for ascertaining the qualifications of their President?

If you combine an awareness of what the Certification of Live Birth posted on the internet really is with 1) a knowledge of the relevant statutes in 1961 and 2) Obama’s stubborn refusal to permit the release of the real birth certificate and his determination to fight any legal actions that would compel him to do so, it becomes clear that there is no logical explanation for Obama’s refusal without taking into consideration the relevant statutes. Then his behavior becomes clear. The Territorial Public Health Statistics Act in the 1955 Revised Laws of Hawaii is the missing piece of the puzzle.

Most people think of a birth certificate as a statement by a hospital or midwife with a footprint, etc. (That may be why some main-stream journalists have straight out lied about this. Jonathan Alter, senior editor at Newsweek magazine, for example, told Keith Olbermann on MSNBC on Feb 20, 2009 that “They [the Republicans] are a party that is out of ideas so they have to resort to these lies about the fact that he’s not a citizen. This came up during the campaign, Keith. The Obama campaign actually posted his birth certificate from a Hawaii hospital online.” But it is Alter who resorted to lying to the American people on television. “The Obama campaign” never “actually posted his birth certificate from a Hawaii hospital online.” On July 17, 2009 CNN’s Kitty Pilgrim lied when she stated that the Obama campaign had produced “the original birth certificate” on the internet and that FactCheck.org had examined the original birth certificate; whether it was forged or not, the Certification of Live Birth that was posted by the campaign and FactCheck.org is not, and by definition, cannot be the original birth certificate or a copy of the original birth certificate. There were no computer generated Certifications of Live Birth in 1961, the year Obama was born. Obama’s original birth certificate (whether it was filed in 1961 or later) was a very different document from the Certification of Live Birth on FactCheck.org. On the FactCheck.org web site, the claim is made that “FactCheck.org staffers have now seen, touched, examined and photographed the original birth certificate.” So FactCheck.org is lying about this as well.

FactCheck.org gets its prestige from a reputation for objectivity. Why would those who run this site choose to tell so obvious a lie and so endanger the site’s reputation? The answer is in the date of the posting, August 21, 2008. It was in mid-August that questions about the Certification of Live Birth began to reach a critical mass and threaten to enter the public discourse. The mostly pro-Obama television and newspaper/magazine media had to be given an excuse and cover for their collective decision to dismiss or ignore the substantial questions about whether Obama met the qualifications for the office set forth in Article II section I of the Constitution. And those reporters and editors who were not in the tank for Obama had to be deceived. After Labor Day the swing voters would begin to pay attention to the Presidential campaign. The truth had to be killed. And with its lie about “how it examined and photographed the original birth certificate“, FactCheck.org killed it.)

Most people would not consider a mailed-in form by one of his parents (who could have been out of the country or whose signature could have been forged by a grandparent) or a sworn statement by one of his grandparents or by his mother or even a sworn statement by himself many years later to be sufficient evidence (when set next to the statements by his maternal grandmother and the Kenyan ambassador that he was born in another country). Unless the American people are shown the original birth certificate, all of these are possibilities. And if Obama refuses to allow the state of Hawaii to release the original birth certificate, it begins to look like he was not born in a Hawaii hospital or at home with the assistance of a doctor or midwife. A reasonable person would acknowledge that there are serious reasons to doubt that Barack Obama was born in the United States. This is especially true because, if Obama was born in a foreign country, his family had a compelling reason to lie about it.

In 1961 if a 17 year old American girl gave birth in a foreign country to a child whose father was not an American citizen, that child had no right to any American citizenship, let alone the “natural born” citizenship that qualifies someone for the Presidency under Article II, Section 1 of the Constitution.

In 1961, the year that Barack Obama was born, under Sec. 301 (a) of the Immigration and Nationality Act of 1952, Ann Dunham could not transmit citizenship of any kind to Barack Obama.

“ 7 FAM 1133.2-2 Original Provisions and Amendments to Section 301

(CT:CON-204; 11-01-2007)

“a. Section 301 as Effective on December 24, 1952: When enacted in 1952, section 301 required a U.S. citizen married to an alien to have been physically present in the United States for ten years, including five after reaching the age of fourteen, to transmit citizenship to foreign-born children. The ten-year transmission requirement remained in effect from 12:01 a.m. EDT December 24, 1952, through midnight November 13, 1986, and still is applicable to persons born during that period.

“As originally enacted, section 301(a)(7) stated: Section 301. (a) The following shall be nationals and citizens of the United States at birth: (7) a person born outside the geographical limits of the United States and its outlying possessions of parents one of whom is an alien, and the other a citizen of the United States who, prior to the birth of such person, was physically present in the United States or its outlying possessions for a period or periods totaling not less than ten years, at least five of which were after attaining the age of fourteen years: Provided, That any periods of honorable service in the Armed Forces of the United States by such citizen parent may be included in computing the physical presence requirements of this paragraph.”

The Immigration and Nationality Corrections Act (Public Law 103-416) on October 25, 1994 revised this law to accommodate “a person born outside the geographical limits of the United States and its outlying possessions of parents one of whom is an alien, and the other a citizen of the United States who, prior to the birth of such person, was physically present in the United States or its outlying possessions for a period or periods totaling not less than five years, at least two of which were after attaining the age of fourteen years”.

But in 1961, if Barack Obama had been born outside of the country, the Dunham family had no way of knowing that in 1994 Congress would pass a law that would retroactively make him a citizen. At that time, the only way to get citizenship for him would be to take advantage of one of the loopholes in the Territorial Public Health Statistics Act.

People can debate the meaning of the term “natural-born citizen” as long as they like but this is clear: If, in 1961, 17 year old Ann Dunham gave birth to a child on foreign soil whose father was not an American citizen, then the Immigration and Nationality Act at that time denied Barack Obama any right to American citizenship of any kind. Therefore if at the time of his birth Obama was ineligible for American citizenship of any kind, then he cannot be a “natural-born citizen”. This is true even if the Immigration and Nationality Act was changed 33 years after he was born. Even if the law was retroactively changed to grant citizenship (but not “natural-born” citizenship) to some of those who had at birth been denied it. If a person is not at the time of his birth an American citizen, he cannot be a natural-born citizen. Therefore, that person is ineligible under Article II, Section1 for the Office of President of the United States.

It is only by examining the 18th century usage and definition of a term that we can ascertain its meaning in the Constitution. In the 18th century, and at the time of the framing and ratification of the Constitution by the states, the term “natural-born” subject or citizen was always used or defined in such a way as to exclude the child of a British or American girl or woman when that child was born in a foreign country and that child’s father was a foreign citizen. No 18th century jurist would have thought the term “natural-born” citizen or subject could have been extended to the child of a British or American girl or woman when that child was born in a foreign country and that child’s father was a foreign citizen.

Here is Blackstone’s classic exposition in 1765 of the legal meaning of the term from the Commentaries on the Laws of England.

William Blackstone, Commentaries 1:354, 357–58, 361–62

1765

“Natural-born subjects are such as are born within the dominions of the crown of England, that is, within the ligeance, or as it is generally called, the allegiance of the king; and aliens, such as are born out of it.. . .

“When I say, that an alien is one who is born out of the king’s dominions, or allegiance, this also must be understood with some restrictions. The common law indeed stood absolutely so; with only a very few exceptions: so that a particular act of parliament became necessary after the restoration, for the naturalization of children of his majesty’s English subjects, born in foreign countries during the late troubles. And this maxim of the law proceeded upon a general principle, that every man owes natural allegiance where he is born, and cannot owe two such allegiances, or serve two masters, at once. Yet the children of the king’s embassadors born abroad were always held to be natural subjects: for as the father, though in a foreign country, owes not even a local allegiance to the prince to whom he is sent; so, with regard to the son also, he was held (by a kind of postliminium) to be born under the king of England’s allegiance, represented by his father, the embassador. To encourage also foreign commerce, it was enacted by statute 25 Edw. III. st. 2. that all children born abroad, provided both their parents were at the time of the birth in allegiance to the king,…might inherit as if born in England: and accordingly it hath been so adjudged in behalf of merchants. But by several more modern statutes these restrictions are still farther taken off: so that all children, born out of the king’s ligeance, whose fathers were natural-born subjects, are now natural-born subjects themselves, to all intents and purposes, without any exception; unless their said fathers were attainted, or banished beyond sea, for high treason; or were then in the service of a prince at enmity with Great Britain.” [The italics are Blackstone’s]

The irresponsible confirmation in the Senate of the irresponsible tallying of votes in the Electoral College does not supersede the clear meaning of Article II, Section 1. If it is allowed to stand, disregard of the Constitution by all branches of the government would be openly established. To all who believe that the Constitution is the government’s basic law, that the Constitution is the only instrument that gives the enactments of Congress and the commands of the Executive validity, it will be clear that the rule of law in the United States is a fiction.

Journalists and politicians complain that we must avoid a Constitutional crisis, but there already is a Constitutional crisis. It has been caused by Obama’s refusal to take the simple step to clear the matter up. The power of the Executive branch has been compromised. Its right to collect taxes and sign Congressional enactments into law, in fact all of its powers, have become problematic. Since their validity under Section I is now doubtful, they depend on the illegal exercise of force. Since officers of the American military take their oath on commissioning to the Constitution and not the President, their obedience to the Commander-in-Chief has lapsed and, if they challenge or resist his authority, any courts-martial will also be an illegal exercise of force. The only way out of the present Constitutional crisis is for Obama to do as McCain did when he was confronted by far less pressing doubts about the circumstances of his birth. He must disclose his vault birth certificate. Since the document has been so suspiciously withheld for so long, it should be subjected to rigorous forensic tests. Then whatever is on it should be judicially assessed together with the claims that have been made that Barack Obama was born on foreign soil.

It should be added that “Obama’s top terrorism and intelligence adviser, John O. Brennan, heads a firm that was cited in March for breaching sensitive files in the State Department’s passport office, according to a State Department Inspector General’s report released this past July.

“The security breach, first reported by the Washington Times and later confirmed by State Department spokesman Sean McCormack, involved a contract employee of Brennan’s firm, The Analysis Corp., which has earned millions of dollars providing intelligence-related consulting services to federal agencies and private companies.

“During a State Department briefing on March 21, 2008, McCormack confirmed that the contractor had accessed the passport files of presidential candidates Barack Obama, Hillary Rodham Clinton, and John McCain, and that the inspector general had launched an investigation.

“Sources who tracked the investigation tell Newsmax that the main target of the breach was the Obama passport file, and that the contractor accessed the file in order to ‘cauterize’ the records of potentially embarrassing information.

“ ‘They looked at the McCain and Clinton files as well to create confusion,’ one knowledgeable source told Newsmax. ‘But this was basically an attempt to cauterize the Obama file.’

“At the time of the breach, Brennan was working as an unpaid adviser to the Obama campaign.

” ‘This individual’s actions were taken without the knowledge or direction of anyone at The Analysis Corp. and are wholly inconsistent with our professional and ethical standards,’ Brennan’s company said in a statement sent to reporters after the passport breach was made public.

“The passport files include ‘personally identifiable information such as the applicant’s name, gender, social security number, date and place of birth, and passport number,’ according to the inspector general report.

“The files may contain additional information including ‘original copies of the associated documents,’ the report added. Such documents include birth certificates, naturalization certificates, or oaths of allegiance for U.S.-born persons who adopted the citizenship of a foreign country as minors.”

“The State Department Office of Inspector General (OIG) issued a 104-page report on the breach last July. Although it is stamped ‘Sensitive but Unclassified,’ the report was heavily redacted in the version released to the public, with page after page blacked out entirely.”

http://www.newsmax.com/timmerman/brennan_passport_breach/2009/01/12/170430.html

The following may be relevant:

http://www.washingtontimes.com/news/2008/apr/19/key-witness-in-passport-fraud-case-fatally-shot/

Key witness in passport fraud case fatally shot

Saturday, April 19, 2008

“A key witness in a federal probe into passport information stolen from the State Department was fatally shot in front of a District church, the Metropolitan Police Department said yesterday.

“Lt. Quarles Harris Jr., 24, who had been cooperating with a federal investigators, was found late Thursday night slumped dead inside a car, in front of the Judah House Praise Baptist Church in Northeast, said Cmdr. Michael Anzallo, head of the department’s Criminal Investigations Division.

“Cmdr. Anzallo said a police officer was patrolling the neighborhood when gunshots were heard, then Lt. Harris was found dead inside the vehicle, which investigators would describe only as a blue car.

“Emergency medics pronounced him dead at the scene.

“City police said they do not know whether his death was a direct result of his cooperation with federal investigators.

“We don’t have any information right now that connects his murder to that case,” Cmdr. Anzallo said.

“Police say a “shot spotter” device helped an officer locate Lt. Harris.

“A State Department spokeswoman yesterday declined to comment, saying the investigation into the passport fraud is ongoing.

“The Washington Times reported April 5 that contractors for the State Department had improperly accessed passport information for presidential candidates Sens. Hillary Rodham Clinton, Barack Obama and John McCain, which resulted in a series of firings that reached into the agency’s top ranks.

“One agency employee, who was not identified in documents filed in U.S. District Court, was implicated in a credit-card fraud scheme after Lt. Harris told federal authorities he obtained “passport information from a co-conspirator who works for the U.S. Department of State.” “

There is a possibility that the breaches of the passport files associated with the “credit-card fraud scheme” were a cover for or associated with the breaches of the passport files by the employee of Brennan’s Analysis Corp. This certainly at least should be looked into.

July 11th Addendum to Report

1. Until June 2009, the reasonable doubts about where Obama was born could have quickly and finally been resolved if he had authorized the release by the Hawaiian Dept of Health of his original birth certificate or else applied for it himself and released it to the media. But as these doubts have increased and reached the point where they are no longer a “fringe” phenomenon, the Hawaiian state govt has recently taken certain steps that would create procedural and possibly legal barriers to a resolution of the controversy. Given the slipperiness that characterized the statements of Chiyome Fukino, the Dept’s Director, and Janice Okubo, the Dept’s spokesperson, to the media on this issue, it is, I think, also reasonable to regard these steps with suspicion.

A family that I am acquainted with has a child who was born in Hawaii 6 months ago. They filled out and mailed in a form to the Dept of Health, as did their doctor. In return the Dept sent them in the first week of June, 2009, the same abbreviated computer-generated form that last year on the Daily Kos and subsequently on the Obama campaign web site was called a “Certification of Live Birth”. The form that this family received this year is identical in format to the Certification of Live Birth on the Daily Kos web site with one exception: the title at the top of the form.

On June 12, 2008 the title for this abbreviated form was Certification of Live Birth. The title for the form that this family received in the first week of June 2009 is Certificate of Live Birth. I called The Dept of Health and confirmed that the title of the form had been changed. The bureaucrat that I spoke to said the change had been made “recently”, but could not or would not tell me when. Sometime between June 12, 2008 and the first week of June 2009 the Hawaiian Dept of Health changed the title of this abbreviated form from “Certification of Live Birth” to “Certificate of Live Birth“. Why?

The use of the word “Certificate” rather than “Certification” makes the form feel somewhat more like a traditional birth certificate than the “Certification of Live Birth” that the Daily Kos website and subsequently the Obama campaign posted on the Internet even though, like the “Certification“, it also lacks any information about the hospital, doctor, or midwife. There is no footprint etc. This renaming of the document will be very convenient for the Hawaiian Dept of Health in future stonewalling should any legal pressure be brought against them to produce Obama’s “Certificate of Live Birth”. Instead of producing the original “Certificate of Live Birth”, they will produce the abbreviated “Certification of Live Birth” form that the Dept of Health has now renamed a “Certificate of Live Birth” and claim that they are doing so “in accordance with state policies and procedures” in the words of the Dept’s Director, Dr. Chiyome Fukino.

But whether it is called (as it was last year) a Certification or (as it is now) a Certificate of Live Birth this abbreviated document provides none of the probative information that was or wasn’t on Barack Obama’s original Certificate of Live Birth. Unlike the Certificate of Live Birth of the time when Barack Obama was born, this new Certificate of Live Birth provides no real evidence of where a child was born or indication of where such evidence might be found. It provides no information that would demonstrate to the people of the United States whether there is convincing evidence that he was actually born here or whether a relative or two (or possibly even Barack Obama himself) just made a statement to that effect to a low level bureaucrat. (As is permitted under Section 57-40 of the Territorial Public Health Statistics Act in the 1955 Revised Laws of Hawaii.)

2. On June 7, 2009, a spokeswoman for the Hawaii Department of Health told a rather obvious lie (or engaged in a pretty transparent verbal deception) in another attempt to discourage further investigation into the issue of whether Barack Obama was born on Oahu. “The state Department of Health no longer issues copies of paper birth certificates as was done in the past”, said spokeswoman Janice Okubo. “The department only issues ‘certifications’ of live births, and that is the ‘official birth certificate’ issued by the state of Hawaii, she said. ” [Honolulu Star Bulletin] http://www.starbulletin.com/columnists/kokualine/20090606_kokua_line.html

This statement was false or deliberately very misleading. Here, from a Hawaii state document that was posted on June 10, 2009, is a description of how to apply for “the original Certificate of Live Birth” (the original birth certificate) as opposed to the Certification of Live Birth:

“In order to process your application [to prove native Hawaiian ancestry], DHHL [Department of Hawaiian Homelands] utilizes information that is found only on the original Certificate of Live Birth, which is either black or green. This is a more complete record of your birth than the Certification of Live Birth (a computer-generated printout). Submitting the original Certificate of Live Birth will save you time and money since the computer-generated Certification requires additional verification by DHHL.

“Please note that DOH [Department of Health] no longer offers same day service. If you plan on picking up your certified DOH document(s), you should allow at least 10 working days for DOH to process your request(s), OR four to six weeks if you want your certified certificate(s) mailed to you.”

http://hawaii.gov/dhhl/applicants/appforms/applyhhl

Ms. Okubo’s statement gave the false impression that Obama could not gain access to or release “the original Certificate of Live Birth”, and that it was the DOH’s policy rather than his own reluctance that was responsible for the holding back of this Certificate. This was an obvious deception. The document at the Department of Hawaiian Home Lands website indicates that at the time she made this statement it was false, and that a procedure was in place for application for “the original Certificate of Live Birth.”

Only the information on the original birth certificate, “the original Certificate of Live Birth”, can demonstrate to the people of the United States whether there is convincing evidence that he was actually born here or whether a relative or two (or possibly even Barack Obama himself) just made a statement to that effect to a low level bureaucrat.

3. On July 8, 2009 the web site World Net Daily reported that “The state, which had excluded the controversial document [the Certification of Live Birth] as proof of native Hawaiian status, has changed its policy and now makes a point of including it.”

http://www.wnd.com/index.php?fa=PAGE.view&pageId=103408

Here is the new statement on the Department of Hawaiian Home Lands web site [July 8, 2009]. “The Department of Hawaiian Home Lands accepts both Certificates of Live Birth [original birth certificates and the recently renamed abbreviated computer printouts] and Certifications of Live Birth [as the abbreviated computer printouts were up till recently called] because they are official government records documenting an individual’s birth… Although original birth certificates (Certificates of Live Birth) are preferred for their greater detail, the State Department of Health (DOH) no longer issues Certificates of Live Birth. When a request is made for a copy of a birth certificate, the DOH issues a Certification of Live Birth.”

http://hawaii.gov/dhhl/applicants/appforms/applyhhl

The web site theobamafile.com picked up this significant change in procedure on the Dept of Hawaiian Homelands website on June 18, 2009. http://www.theobamafile.com/_BogusPOTUS/20090608.htm#HawaiiRuleChange

Sometime between June 10, 2009 and June 18, 2009 the State of Hawaii changed its rule on what documents and data were necessary to prove Hawaiian ancestry, thereby upgrading the apparent status of the abbreviated Certification of Live Birth which it had formerly regarded as insufficiently probative. Why?

4. On June 6, Janice Okubo, the Dept of Health spokeswoman, also told the Star Bulletin that “The electronic record of the birth is what (the Health Department) now keeps on file in order to provide same-day certified copies at our help window for most requests.” There is a troubling ambiguity in this statement. A sophisticated forensic investigation would probably be able to determine whether the original paper Certificate of Live Birth was forged, altered, or authentic. But if the data from the original paper Certificates of Live Birth has been transferred to an electronic record and then the original documents were discarded, part of the data could easily have been changed in the transfer or subsequently altered.Why did the Hawaiian Dept of Health wait until June 6, 2009 to announce to the world that the original paper Certificates of Live Birth had been destroyed (presumably in 2001)? Shouldn’t this have been part of Dr Fukino’s statement on October 31, 2008 (right before the November election), a statement which deceptively implied the contrary:“Therefore, I as Director of Health for the State of Hawai‘i, along with the Registrar of Vital Statistics who has statutory authority to oversee and maintain these type of vital records, have personally seen and verified that the Hawai‘i State Department of Health has Sen. Obama’s original birth certificate on record in accordance with state policies and procedures.”We know from a document posted on June 10, 2009 on the Department of Hawaiian Homelands website that, up until very recently, either the original paper Certificates of Live Birth or (as is now implied) scanned images of those paper certificates were maintained by the Dept of Health, and copies of them were provided to confirm claims of Hawaiian ancestry. But if in June 2009 the Department of Hawaiian Homelands has decided that it will no longer require the original Certificate of Live Birth as proof for special privileges and the Department of Health spokesman says firmly that they will no longer provide copies of these original certificates, is it possible that, in the midst of the controversy over where Barack Obama was born, the Hawaiian state govt has destroyed the original paper certificate of live birth? This seems almost incredible to me, but the authorities have been so deceptive and evasive on this issue, that it cannot be dismissed as impossible.

4. On June 6, Janice Okubo, the Dept of Health spokeswoman, also told the Star Bulletin that “The electronic record of the birth is what (the Health Department) now keeps on file in order to provide same-day certified copies at our help window for most requests.” There is a troubling ambiguity in this statement. A sophisticated forensic investigation would probably be able to determine whether the original paper Certificate of Live Birth was forged, altered, or authentic. But if the data from the original paper Certificates of Live Birth has been transferred to an electronic record and then the original documents were discarded, part of the data could easily have been changed in the transfer or subsequently altered.

Why did the Hawaiian Dept of Health wait until June 6, 2009 to announce to the world that the original paper Certificates of Live Birth had been destroyed (presumably in 2001)? Shouldn’t this have been part of Dr Fukino’s statement on October 31, 2008 (right before the November election), a statement which deceptively implied the contrary:

“Therefore, I as Director of Health for the State of Hawai‘i, along with the Registrar of Vital Statistics who has statutory authority to oversee and maintain these type of vital records, have personally seen and verified that the Hawai‘i State Department of Health has Sen. Obama’s original birth certificate on record in accordance with state policies and procedures.”

We know from a document posted on June 10, 2009 on the Department of Hawaiian Homelands website that, up until very recently, either the original paper Certificates of Live Birth or (as is now implied) scanned images of those paper certificates were maintained by the Dept of Health, and copies of them were provided to confirm claims of Hawaiian ancestry. But if in June 2009 the Department of Hawaiian Homelands has decided that it will no longer require the original Certificate of Live Birth as proof for special privileges and the Department of Health spokesman says firmly that they will no longer provide copies of these original certificates, is it possible that, in the midst of the controversy over where Barack Obama was born, the Hawaiian state govt has destroyed the original paper certificate of live birth? This seems almost incredible to me, but the authorities have been so deceptive and evasive on this issue, that it cannot be dismissed as impossible

ObamaCare and me

ObamaCare and me

By Zane F Pollard, MD

I have been sitting quietly on the sidelines watching all of this national debate on healthcare. It is time for me to bring some clarity to the table by explaining many of the problems from the perspective of a doctor.

 

First off, the government has involved very few of us physicians in the  healthcare debate. While the American Medical Association has come out in favor of the plan, it is vital to remember that the AMA only represents 17% of the American physician workforce.

 

I have taken care of Medicaid patients for 35 years while representing the only pediatric ophthalmology group left in Atlanta, Georgia that accepts Medicaid. For example, in the past 6 months I have cared for three young children on Medicaid who had corneal ulcers. This is a potentially blinding situation because if the cornea perforates from the infection, almost surely blindness will occur. In all three cases the antibiotic needed for the eradication of the infection was not on the approved Medicaid list.

 

Each time I was told to fax Medicaid for the approval forms, which I did. Within 48 hours the form came back to me which was sent in immediately via fax, and I was told that I would have my answer in 10 days. Of course by then each child would have been blind in the eye.

 

Each time the request came back denied. All three times I personally provided the antibiotic for  each patient which was not on the Medicaid approved  list. Get the point — rationing of care.

 

Over the past 35 years I have cared for over 1000 children born with congenital cataracts. In older children and in adults the vision is rehabilitated with an intraocular lens. In newborns we use contact lenses which are very expensive. It takes Medicaid over one year to approve a contact lens post  cataract surgery. By that time a successful anatomical operation is wasted as the child will be close to blind from a lack of focusing for so long a period of time.

 

Again, extreme rationing. Solution: I have a foundation here in Atlanta supported  100% by private funds which supplies all of these contact lenses for  my Medicaid and illegal immigrants children for free. Again, waiting for the government would be disastrous.

 

Last week I  had a lady bring her child to me. They are Americans but live in Sweden, as the father has a job with a big corporation. The child had the onset of double vision 3 months ago and has been unable to function normally because of this. They are people of means but are waiting 8 months to see the ophthalmologist in Sweden. Then if the child needed surgery they would be put on a 6 month waiting list. She called me and I saw her that day. It turned out that  the child had  accommodative esotropia (crossing of the eyes treated with glasses that  correct for farsightedness) and  responded to glasses within  4 days, so no surgery was needed. Again, rationing of care.

 

Last month I operated on a 70 year old lady with double vision present for 3  years. She responded quite nicely to her surgery and now is symptom free. I also operated on a 69 year old  judge with vertical double vision. His surgery went very well and now he is happy as a lark.  I have  been told — but of course  there is no healthcare bill that has been passed yet — that these  2 people because of their age would have  been denied  surgery and just told to wear a patch over one eye to alleviate the symptoms of double vision. Obviously cheaper than surgery.

 

I spent  two year  in the  US Navy during the Viet Nam war and was well treated by the military. There was tremendous  rationing of care and we were told specifically what things the military personnel and their dependents could have and which things they could not have. While I was in Viet Nam, my wife Nancy got sick  and got essentially no care at the Naval Hospital in Oakland, California. She went home and went to her family’s  private internist in Beverly Hills. While it was expensive, she received an immediate work up. Again rationing of care.

 

For those of you who are  over 65, this  bill in its present form might be lethal for you. People in England over 59 cannot receive stents for their coronary arteries. The government wants to mimic the British  plan. For those of you younger, it will still mean restriction of the care that you and your children receive.

 

While 99% of physicians went into  medicine because of the love of  medicine and the  challenge of helping our fellow man, economics are still important. My rent goes up 2% each year and the salaries of my employees go up 2% each year. Twenty years ago, ophthalmologists were  paid $1800 for a cataract  surgery and today $500. This is a 73%  decrease in our  fees. I do not know of many jobs in America that have seen this sort of lowering of fees.

 

But there is more to the story than just the lower fees. When I came to Atlanta, there was a well known ophthalmologist that charged $2500 for a cataract surgery as he felt the was the best. He had a terrific reputation and in fact  I had my mother’s bilateral cataracts  operated on by him with a wonderful  result. She is now 94 and has 20/20 vision in both eyes. People would pay his  $2500 fee.

 

However, then the government came in and said that any doctor that  does  Medicare work cannot accept  more than the going rate ( now $500) or  he or she would be  severely fined. This put an end to his charging  $2500. The government said it was illegal to accept more than the government-allowed  rate. What  I am driving at is that those of you well off  will not  be able to go to the head of the line under this new  healthcare plan, just because you have money, as no physician will be  willing to go against the law to treat  you.

 

I am a pediatric ophthalmologist and trained for  10 years post-college to become a pediatric ophthalmologist (add  two years  of my service in the Navy and that comes  to 12 years).A neurosurgeon spends 14  years post -college, and if  he or she has to do the military that would be 16 years. I am not entitled to make what a neurosurgeon makes, but the new plan calls for all physicians to make the same amount of payment. I assure you that medical students will not go into neurosurgery and we will have a tremendous shortage of neurosurgeons. Already, the top neurosurgeon at my hospital who is in good health and only 52 years old has just quit because he can’t stand working with the government anymore. Forty-nine percent  of children under the age  of 16 in the state of Georgia are on Medicaid, so he felt he just could not stand working with the bureaucracy anymore.

 

We are being lied to about the  uninsured. They are getting care. I operate  at least 2  illegal immigrants each month who pay me nothing, and the children’s hospital at which I operate charges them nothing also.This is true not only on Atlanta, but of every community in America.

 

The bottom line is that I urge all of you to contact your congresswomen and congressmen and senators to defeat this bill. I promise you that you will not like rationing of your own health.

 

Furthermore, how can you trust a physician that works under these conditions knowing that he is controlled by the state. I certainly could not trust any doctor that  would work under these  draconian conditions.

 

One last thing: with this new healthcare plan there will be a tremendous shortage of physicians. It has been estimated that  approximately 5% of the current physician work force  will quit under this new  system. Also it is estimated that another 5% shortage will occur because of the decreased number of men and women wanting to go into medicine. At the present time the US government has  mandated gender equity in  admissions to medical schools .That means that  for the past  15 years  that  somewhere  between 49 and 51% of  each entering class are females. This is true of private schools also, because all private schools receive federal funding.

 

The average  career of a woman in medicine now is only 8-10 years and the average work week for a female in medicine is only 3-4 days. I have now trained 35  fellows in pediatric ophthalmology. Hands down the  best was  a female that I trained  4 years  ago — she  was head and  heels above all  others I have trained. She now  practices  only 3 days a week.

Page Printed from: http://www.americanthinker.com/2009/08/obamacare_and_me.html at August 06, 2009 – 11:59:40 AM EDT

The Assault on American Business

The Assault on American Business

By Chris Banescu

The message from Washington is clear and getting louder by the day.  If you run a successful business you face excessive government regulations and higher levels of taxation for years to come.  The more productive and profitable you become, the more you will be forced to pay for the privilege of operating in this country.  This threat is real and it appears that many companies and business owners are taking steps to protect themselves.

President Obama’s anti-business and anti-competitive campaign messages made executives and business owners apprehensive even before the January 2009 presidential inauguration and the Democrats obtaining control of Congress.  Coming in the midst of one of the worst financial crisis and economic recessions in recent memory these promises had predictable results: businesses aggressively cut expenses, decreased their capital expenditures, drastically reduced their payrolls, and hunkered down to weather the current crisis and deal with the long-term consequences of  punitive government actions.

 

What are the messages that businesses have been receiving from Obama and a vast majority of the Democrats in Washington even before the November 2008 elections? 
  • We will raise your income taxes.
  • We will raise your capital gains and dividends taxes.
  • We will increase regulations and impose further restrictions on your economic activities and personal freedoms.
  • We will take over the private heath care system, dictate coverage and prices, and add a permanent surtax on upper-income individuals and businesses to pay for it all.
  • We will tax your carbon dioxide emissions and force you to justify your energy consumption.
  • We will dramatically increase energy and raw material prices via a convoluted and oppressive cap and trade tax and regulate scheme.
  • We will radically expand government deficit spending and bureaucracy.
  • We will add trillions of dollars to the national debt and virtually guarantee very high inflation, drastic weakening of the US dollar, diminished prospects of new jobs creation, and reduced economic activity for the foreseeable future.

 

Five Threats

 

There are at least five different specific promises and initiatives from the current administration that threaten the future competitiveness and success of American businesses and the prosperity of individuals who dare to succeed and earn more.  These combined threats have played an important part in further depressing economic activity in the US and signaling to all company owners to remain defensive and cautious in the face of a business unfriendly political environment at least through the end of Obama’s term (only one, we hope) in office.

 

Threat #1 – Higher Income Taxes

 

Beginning with 2011 the Obama administration promises to raise income taxes on married couples earning more than $250,000/year and singles earning more than $200,000/year.  This would mean that the two highest federal income tax rates will rise from 33% and 35%, to 36% and 39.6%, respectively.  Furthermore, the White House seeks to phase out the personal exemptions and limit deductions allowed for these taxpayers.  Many businesses are usually started and run by families and individuals with gross incomes in those ranges.  This guaranteed 9% to 13% tax increase (likely much higher due to tax exemptions limits and planned healthcare surtaxes) on their yearly incomes will reduce cash flowing into the economy (via investments or purchases) and seriously hinder economic growth. 

 

Threat #2 – Higher Capital Gains Taxes

 

President Obama also pledged to raise capital gains and dividends taxes from the current 15% to 20% starting in 2011.  This represents a 33% tax increase on all businesses and individuals who realize a capital gain on the sale of stock, real estate, or other assets, and those that receive qualified dividends from stocks in their personal portfolios, retirement accounts, or pension funds.  This enormous tax increase will punish not only the highest income earners, but all hard-working taxpayers and retirees.

 

Threat #3 – Government-Run Health Care/Socialized Medicine

 

The current administration is actively working to create a government-run health care system that will cost approximately $1.6 trillion over 10 years, as reported by the Congressional Budget Office  , and will only remove “16 million from the 46 million uninsured.”  

 

The Wall Street Journal reports that House Democrats want to implement a package of surtaxes from 1% to 3% on all families making $350,000 or more in order to raise an additional $540 billion in taxes over the next decade.  So any small to medium-sized business earning at least $250,000 or more will see its tax rate increase from 35% now, to 39.6% to 42.6% come 2011, and possibly as high as 44.6% in 2013 when these health-care surtax rates are scheduled to rise to 2-5%.  These business owners can now look forward to a massive 13.1% to 27.4% tax increase on their earnings.

 

Furthermore, Investor’s Business Daily details that the latest Senate version of this plan would include “a $750-per-worker ‘annual fee,’ $375 for part-time workers on companies with more than 25 employees that do not offer coverage to employees.”  This represents yet another additional tax on small businesses.  As the IBD article correctly points out, “if you’re a small business seeking to expand beyond 25 workers, you have quite a bit to think about. That’s sure going to help job growth.”

 

Threat #4 – Cap and Trade, Significantly Higher Energy Prices

 

Another fiasco in the making is President Obama’s obsession with reducing and regulating carbon dioxide emissions by businesses and individuals, despite the solid research and objections of thousands of scientists that attest that carbon dioxide (CO2 is only 0.037% of the earth’s atmosphere) is not a pollutant and does not contribute to global warming or “climate change” of any kind.  Dubbed “Cap and Trade” this legislation threatens to bring about enormous government regulation and taxation of energy production and usage across every single industry in the US.

 

A recent Investor’s Business Daily outlines the inevitable consequences of such an intrusive scheme:

 

A major reshaping of our nation’s energy policy will include massive new taxes, mostly on businesses, and cause our economy to crater. Most depressingly, despite taxing businesses and consumers to the hilt, the Waxman-Markey climate stabilization act will not remove one ounce of carbon from our atmosphere over the next decade.

 

Waxman-Markey is nothing but a huge scam that will bankrupt any business that relies heavily on energy, boosting fuel prices by 22 cents a gallon and socking the average family with an $1,800 a year tax hike.

 

Threat #5 – Runaway Government Spending, High Inflation and Weakened Dollar

 

The countless government bailouts of bankrupt financial institutions and many incompetently managed companies, runaway borrowing and spending by the federal government (currently running $1 trillion yearly deficits, for at least another 10 years), and warnings from China, Russia, and India who are rapidly losing confidence in the US dollar and are threatening to dump it, are setting the stage for future hyper-inflation; another potential tsunami of financial devastation for all Americans.  Under such conditions companies will continue to be increasingly risk-adverse, be very stingy with their cash reserves, steer clear of US-based capital expenditures that require a long-term financial commitment, and remain guarded with any expansion and hiring plans that would unnecessarily endanger the enterprise in the event of high inflation rates. 

 

Staying the Course on Anti-Business Initiatives

 

Obama’s current anti-free market initiatives have been consistent from the beginning of his candidacy and throughout his first six months in office, and he’s aggressively making good on his promises with legislation that’s implementing them.  Businesses understand what is happening and have tried to make adjustments.  Like a living organism that has been attacked (imagine an octopus that’s drawing its tentacles closer to its body to protect itself from an intruder or another predator) business has contracted and retreated to avoid disaster and survive.  Company owners and managers have taken on a defensive stance to deal with the worsening economic downturn and the coming higher taxes, increased regulations, and future hostile economic environments they will face even when the current recession subsides.

 

Consequences for the US Economy

 

The consequences of business activities contraction worsened by Obama’s multiple threats are devastating.  Economy activity reduction, as measured by GDP numbers,  reached -6.3% in the fourth quarter of 2008 and -5.5 % for the first quarter of 2009.  Our economy has shrunk by almost 12% in the last 9 months and the US unemployment rate has peaked at 9.5% as of June 2009.  Since January of this year 2.7 million private sectors jobs have been lost, despite the so-called $787 billion “stimulus” plan that was supposed to keep unemployment rates below 8%.  To date only $43 billion of this “stimulus” act has actually been infused back into the $14 trillion US economy; a miniscule and insignificant drop in a huge bucket that most likely did little to help an economic recovery.  Yet President Obama insists that it “has worked as intended.” 

 

The Investor’s Business Daily article reveals yet more alarming statistics regarding the US economy:

 

Shrinking GDP has crushed investment. First quarter gross private domestic investment – a proxy for business investment – plunged 20%, or nearly $450 billion, annually. The outlook is grim.

 

Worse, the June jobs data mark a milestone of sorts: Our unemployment rate equals that of the no-growth Eurozone nations.

 

What the Future Holds

 

As far as the eye can see President Obama and the Democrats are preparing to implement multiple significant tax increases, layer upon layer of new government regulations and restrictions on business activities, and massive and wasteful government borrowing and spending for at least the next decade. There is nothing coming out of this White House that would signal to American businesses that it is willing to change course and let the private sector – the only real engine of value and job creation in a free-market economy – do its job and bring our country out of this recession. The assaults on American business and entrepreneurship continue unabated and the negative consequences of these actions are already rippling through our economy and impacting our lives. Things are getting worse not better! At a time when a normal recessionary cycle should be coming to an end and the economy should be stabilizing and begin recovering, US business activity continues to contract, with hundreds of thousands of jobs (467,000 lost in June 2009) still being lost every month. We’re heading down a dangerous path that will virtually guarantee reduced long-term economic growth, higher unemployment and inflation rates, lowered living standards, and an erosion of our individual freedoms and liberties for the foreseeable future.

 

Chris Banescu is an attorney, entrepreneur, and university professor.  He regularly blogs at chrisbanescu.com.

Page Printed from: http://www.americanthinker.com/2009/08/the_assault_on_american_busine.html at August 06, 2009 – 11:57:30 AM EDT