Several years ago, a 67-page book by Princeton University philosophy professor Harry G. Frankfurt was a New York Times bestseller. ON BULLSHIT begins with these words: “One of the most salient features of our culture is that there is so much bullshit. Everyone knows this…Most people are rather confident of their ability to recognize bullshit and to avoid being taken in by it.”
Now that the Congress has passed and President Obama has signed a bill calling for a $2.1 trillion debt ceiling hike and a plan to reduce budget deficits over ten years, Frankfurt’s insights about our political culture are on display.
There are no spending cuts over ten years. The projected federal budgets will increase at a slightly slower rate than was previously forecast. In short, instead of spending approximately $45 trillion over the next ten years, the federal government’s projected spending because of the ‘deal” will be only $43 trillion.
Politicians keep asserting and the media keep reporting that the federal budget will be cut in the future. That is bullshit. Federal government spending will be higher every year for as far as the eye can see. Journalists have now become an outlet for the federal government’s bullshit.
Joe Nocera, New York Times op-ed columnist, wrote this the other day, “These last few months, much of the country has watched in horror as the Tea Party Republicans have waged jihad on the American people. Their intransigent demands for deep spending cuts, coupled with their almost gleeful willingness to destroy one of America’s most invaluable assets, its full faith and credit, were incredibly irresponsible. But they didn’t care. Their goal, they believed, was worth blowing up the country for, if that’s what it took (emphasis added).
Nocera’s statements are beyond bullshit, they are outright lies and slanderous. To assert that political activists are the same as terrorists who commit violence against innocent people is outrageous. No one in Congress called for “deep spending cuts,” reductions that would have lowered spending from one year to the next. In fact, deep spending cuts are exactly what is needed to end crony capitalism and phase out the federal government’s Ponzi schemes—Social Security, Medicare, and Medicaid, the three largest frauds ever perpetrated by government. In addition, the federal government defaulted on its obligations to redeem dollars for gold 40 years ago. Its “full faith and credit” was discredited decades ago. Ending the last link between gold and the dollar unleashed both deficit spending and currency debasement under both Republicans and Democratic presidents.
Finally, Nocera asserts that the Tea party was willing to blow up the country to achieve its goal. No Joe, the big government types in both political parties are “blowing up the country” because they have spent recklessly for decades, borrowed more than $13 trillion in the past three decades, regulated the life out of the productive sector, taxed everything in sight, debased the value of the dollar, and invaded illegally other countries. In short, we are witnessing the horrific consequences of decades of statism. Nocera and others of the same ilk want to pin the statist tail on the Tea Party donkey. That is more bullshit.
So many Americans—individuals and businesses–as well as state and local governments are dependent on federal spending that any resemblance of our economy to a free enterprise society is coincidental. We have become so “dependent on D.C.”—the title of Charlotte Twight’s outstanding book—that any hint of slowing down government spending is viewed as a dagger into the economy’s heart. That is how “socialistic” our economy has become.
Even “radical” Rep. Paul Ryan, head of the House Budget Committee, said. “We are actually cutting spending…That’s cultural, that’s significant, that’s a big step in the right direction.” Another bullshit statement from someone who should know better about the budget’s trajectory.
Ending the bullshit in D.C. ASAP is necessary to restore our economy and eliminate the federal government’s burden on the business sector. Otherwise, a more painful readjustment will occur to restore liberty and reduce the size and scope of the federal government so the productive sector—individuals, families and businesses—can be unleashed to do what it does best, meet people’s needs.