December 24, 2005

Merry Christmas

Merry Christmas to all and especially to our troops who will not be home this Christmas and their families. - Sailor

I'll be home for Christmas
You can count on me
Please have snow and mistletoe
and presents on the tree

Christmas Eve will find me
Where the love light gleams
I'll be home for Christmas
If only in my dreams

I'm dreaming tonight of the place I love
Even more then I usually do
And although I know it's a long road back
This I promise you

Well, I'll be home for Christmas
You can plan on me
So please have snow and lots of mistletoe
And presents under the tree

Oh Christmas Eve will find me
Where the love life is
I'll be home for Christmas
If only in my dreams

You know Christmas Eve will find me
Where the love life is
Darling I'll be home for Christmas
If only in my dreams
Oh if only in my dreams

Posted by Sailor at 01:53 PM | Comments (12) | TrackBack

December 10, 2005

Democratic Implosion: Can the party of the people be saved from itself?

Who is the mainstream of the democrat party? Is it the Joel Leibermans or the Pelosi, Murtha, Kennedy, Dean and Kerry gang? The cut and run group has been very vocal in recent days, whining and moaning about how we cannot win in Iraq, that or military are terrorists or that there can be nothing more accomplished militarily in Iraq. Mind you, a repressive, murderous and dangerous dictator was deposed in three weeks and 25 million people ar no free of the yoke of oppression. Two elections have been held, with a third one coming in 5 days. Millions of Iraqis braved threats and violence to vote. Even the Sunni population is prepared to now join the electoral process. Victor Davis Hanson has some commentary on the democrat party and whether or not it can save itself. - Sailor

December 9, 2005
Democratic Implosion

Can the party of the people be saved from itself?

by Victor Davis Hanson
National Review Online

The idea that we are going to win this war is an idea that unfortunately is just plain wrong.

— Howard Dean

And there is no reason… that young American soldiers need to be going into the homes of Iraqis in the dead of night, terrorizing kids and children, you know, women, breaking sort of the customs of the — of — the historical customs, religious customs.

— John Kerry

The U.S. cannot accomplish anything further in Iraq militarily. It is time to bring them home.

— John Murtha

Howard Dean, the head of the Democratic party, assures us that we cannot win the struggle for democracy in Iraq. He predicts, as proved true in Vietnam, that the United States will inevitably fail. So it makes better sense to flee now, admit defeat, and thus lessen our inevitable losses.

To Dean, the constitutional evolution in Iraq and the growth of its democratic security forces follow the doomed model of Vietnamization — another sham transition bound to implode.

In this regard, irony is lost on Dean: After terrible sacrifices, mistakes, and government dissimulation, Vietnamization between 1971 and 1975 finally was working. The American military had largely rid the south of the Viet Cong; a peace treaty had established two sovereign nations; and American ground troops were withdrawn.
Dean has been trying to backpedal from his comment, claiming it was taken out of context. Several other dem/leftists have been trying to spin this as well. Seems every time Dean makes an asinine comment, he is being taken out of context.

Yet the war was later lost mostly because a partisan antiwar Senate, emboldened by Watergate and in hatred of a duplicitous Nixon, cut off most material and military aid to the south Vietnamese. That precluded as well American air support to deter an opportunistic conventional invasion from a calculating northern army that had quickly sized up the politics of the U.S. Congress.

Dean seems to evoke Vietnam without any inkling how close the United States was, after a decade of ordeal, to achieving many of the goals originally envisioned — something like a viable South Korean government that, unlike its Communist counterpart, might have a chance to evolve into a truly consensual society. Much less does he cite the millions who perished, were incarcerated, or sent into exile following the establishment of a cruel Stalinist regime, or the effect of that defeat on the security of the U.S. and its allies, as later demonstrated in Cambodia, Iran, Afghanistan, and Central America.

Not long ago, John Kerry was on a Sunday talk show. Without much of a warm-up, he was soon alleging that Americans were terrorizing Iraqis in their homes. Apparently such unproven criticism was meant as a critique of U.S. policy by a former (and future) candidate for president — but it unfortunately came just days before a critical election that may at last smooth the way for democracy in Iraq. One can imagine Sunni rejectionists hoping to derail the elections by proclaiming that even a former American presidential candidate admits that the infidels are “terrorizing our women and children.”

Here we go again with Kerry, always finding some fault with the military. He did this during Vietnam with totally false accusations in his Winter Soldier testimony before the Senate. From Kerry's comments, he is still totally lost on his policy for Iraq.

Like Dean, Kerry appears insensitive about the irony: He just lost an election in part because too many Americans recalled his Vietnam-era record of trying to score cheap political points by trashing brave American troops in the field, thanks to his own constant evocation of Vietnam on the campaign trail.

Kerry also called breezily for the resignation of secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld in the midst of the war. Unfortunately, Kerry’s subsequent exegesis of why the secretary should be sacked only proved why we are lucky to have Rumsfeld and not Kerry or Howard Dean in a position of administrative responsibility.

Despite the stentorian intonation, Kerry’s new suggestions for what to do in Iraq simply outlined what the United States is in fact already doing: training Iraqis, providing protection for the ongoing constitutional process, talking to regional neighbors, trying to get the Europeans involved in the Middle East, and hunting down terrorists on the Afghan borders. Kerry then admitted — though he did not during the election of 2004 when the war polls were more iffy — that he now regrets his vote authorizing the war against Saddam. All that was missing was a George Romney moment in which Kerry might have revealed that he had been brainwashed — and that almost came when he blamed the administration for giving him misleading intelligence briefings.

Sadder still for Kerry, not long after his embarrassing call for Rumsfeld’s resignation, the secretary of Defense offered a review of Iraq and answered questions at a televised news conference at the School for Advanced International Studies at John Hopkins. Where Kerry blamed others for his apparently now-embarrassing vote, Rumsfeld took responsibility for going to war. He pulled no punches in explaining its ongoing difficulty, and answered tough questions by explaining why and how we are winning.

Contrast the Democratic reactions to respective advice offered by Congressman Murtha and Senator Joe Lieberman. The former is a respected but not nationally known Democratic figure; the latter ran for the vice presidency of the United States. The Democrats gushed over Murtha’s bleak Dean-like assessment that the war is essentially lost and that we must leave as soon as possible. But then when a vote was called on the issue, they voted overwhelmingly not to follow the congressman’s prescription.

In contrast, when Lieberman returned from Iraq and gave a cautiously optimistically appraisal that our plan of encouraging elections, training Iraqis, and improving the Iraqi economy is working both inside Iraq and in the wider neighboring region, he was shunned by Democrats — who nevertheless by their inaction essentially agreed with Lieberman and so made no move to demand an immediate withdrawal. How odd to be effusive over the Democrat whose advice you reject while ignoring the spokesman whose advice you actually follow.

Howard Dean, John Kerry, and Congressman Murtha represent the Democratic mainstream. And that’s the problem. None of them can be characterized as embracing the Michael Moore/Cindy Sheehan fringe, and none are even prone to the wacky grandstanding of Jimmy Carter or Barbara Boxer.

Yet what we get from the national chairman, the former presidential candidate, and the new popular icon — on the verge of the third and final election in Iraq — is a de facto admission that we are losing and must leave.

In the background, old Vietnam-era themes provide the chorus for the growing antiwar sentiment: apparent disdain for the Iraqis, mirroring the way that liberals pooh-poohed anti-Communist Eastern Europeans, Cubans, and Vietnamese; endemic pessimism that does not match the rapidly evolving events on the ground; and political opportunity that an American embarrassment abroad might reverse a long-term and ongoing unfavorable political realignment at home.

When Saddam was removed in a brilliant three-week campaign, few anticipated that the subsequent effort to craft democracy in his wake would evolve into a conflict for the very heart of the Middle East. Most feared that postbellum Afghanistan would be the harder task — given the wealthier and more secular nature of Iraqi society.

Instead the war, as wars almost always do, has morphed into something quite different than expected — a regional referendum on Lebanon, the future of Syria, reform movements in the Gulf and Egypt, about-faces in Pakistan and Libya, and continued pressure on a soon-to-be-nuclear Iran. And despite the heartbreak of 2,100 deaths, we are not just winning in Iraq, but on the verge of something far larger, and more permanent: not a return to the ancient caliphate or another dictatorship, but the real chance for the birth of a new Middle East that takes its place at last among responsible nations.

All that was impossible to envision without the prior American removal of Saddam Hussein — now reduced to a pathetic deposed tyrant, railing against his victims and in his misery calling those “terrorists” who did not give him clean underwear. He plays the role of the dying thug right out the pages of Plutarch; all that is missing are Sulla’s worms.

Dean, Kerry, and Murtha are bright and good men who rightly worry that more Americans will die in a far-off place for a cause that they think is now hopeless. But to follow their apparently popular advice would lead to an abject national disaster as well as calamity for their own party. In short, they have become metaphors of why even Democrats are uneasy about voting for Democrats.

More importantly, the Democrats spent the last quarter century, following Vietnam and Jimmy Carter, trying to reestablish their lost fides on national defense (which were once unquestionable in the age of FDR, Truman, JFK, and senator Henry Jackson). If Joe Lieberman cannot save mainstream Democrats from themselves, perhaps the Iraqis who vote on December 15 can.

If the democrat party continues to stay on the left, they will eventually lose their viability as a political force. They continue to lose any credibility on national defense and security issues. Look for this gang to try and run a leftist candidate against Joel Lieberman. - Sailor


Posted by Sailor at 04:38 PM | Comments (9) | TrackBack

December 08, 2005

Oh, That Miserable Economy!

To hear the dem/leftists and their propaganda machine, aka the MSM, the title of this post fits. Let's not forget all the pundits and "experts", who have constantly looked long and hard to find any bit of negativity. Forget that those pesky things called facts do not quite jive with all that is being published and broadcast. Matthew Benjamin has some facts and commentary that will be sure to send the above mentioned into a spin frenzy. - Sailor


Oh, That Miserable Economy!

The strong data on jobs, growth, and even house prices belie the naysayers

By Matthew Benjamin

To paraphrase Bob Dylan, you don't need a Wall Street economist to know which way the economy is blowing. For weeks, the experts have worked themselves into a cold sweat worrying about inflation, aftereffects of the killer hurricanes, oil prices, avian flu, and the prospect of the red-hot housing market turning white cold. Rest easy. Things are nowhere near as bad as the worrywarts would have you believe, if recent bountiful economic data are any indication. Indeed, firms add-ed a rock-solid 215,000 jobs in November, the government reported last week. And estimates of third-quarter growth of gross domes-tic product were revised up from a healthy 3.8 percent to a blistering 4.3 percent. Improved figures on residential housing, business in-vestment, and personal spending fueled the new number. So, what else is there to worry about?


Gold, that favorite of inflation-phobes and doomsdayers everywhere, is on a roll, topping $500 an ounce, a level it last reached in 1987. The bullion bull market is 4 1/2 years old, which also coincides with a period of benign inflation and a recovering economy.

"Gold is a safe-haven hedge against global imbalances," like the trade deficit, a low savings rate, and high household debt levels, says Joe Foster, portfolio manager of the Van Eck International Investors Gold fund. Other metals are soaring, too--have you checked out platinum at $1,000 an ounce and counting? That's a 25-year high for the white metal; less-than-glitzy copper is also at record highs. "People are seeking some way of protecting their wealth in the event that some economic catastrophe does happen," says Foster. Ah, those doomsdayers.

But maybe there's another explanation. Growing wealth in regions of the world where consumers have long lusted after the metal--Asia and the Middle East, most prominently--is also bolstering gold's price. Also helping, perhaps, is a strong economy in America, where lovebirds still woo one another with fancy baubles.


Now here's something to really fret about. After all, you can sell the SUV if oil hits $100 a barrel or pawn the gold bracelet if you are laid off. But you still need a roof over your head, and lately it's been looking as if the roof may be springing a leak. Yet no sooner had the ink dried on the housing-boom-is-over stories when up popped a report showing a 13 percent jump in new-home sales in October. True, there was a slight 2.7 percent dip in sales of previously owned homes, and the supply of available houses rose to 4.9 months, from 4.3 months a year ago. As for prices, they are still rising: The median national price of an existing home is $218,000, 16.6 percent higher than a year ago. If there is still a dark cloud out there, it is that homes are becoming less affordable with the 30-year-fixed mortgage rate at 6.28 percent, more than a half percentage point above rates at the beginning of 2005. Add a rising price to a costlier loan, and home affordability is sinking like a rock. Maybe the gold bugs are on to something after all.


Job growth in November proved strong, with big gains in construction and services. Even manufacturing, long the weak link in the U.S. economy, added a net 11,000 jobs, and monthly job growth returned to its pre-Hurricane Katrina trend, a sign of the economy's resilience. The unemployment rate remained unchanged at 5 percent, though wages are still growing slowly. All in all, it was a solid report that did little to rattle the inflation-obsessed on Wall Street. Indeed, the Dow Jones industrial average has been flirting with 11,000 in recent days. Still, says Joseph Ellis, author of Ahead of the Curve: A Commonsense Guide to Forecasting Business and Market Cycles, "the employment rate shows you where we've been, not where we're going." He looks instead at growth in consumer spending as the primary indicator of the economy's health. Unfortunately, the profligate consumer of the summer months seems to have disappeared, with spending up a meager 0.2 percent in October.

Consumer confidence, however, rose briskly in November, amid falling gas prices. Some investors say that augurs a healthy return to the mall this winter by consumers. Bet the first place you'll find them is in all those jewelry stores.

Let's add to this the revised data on the last quarter's econmic growth, which stood at 4.3%. Those enlightened EU countries would die to have half of that growth. - Sailor


Posted by Sailor at 07:57 PM | Comments (25) | TrackBack

Is Ramsay Clark A Traitor?

NOTE: Until I am able to resolve the technical issues, this post is best read by click on the December 2005 Archives. - Sailor

Doc Farmer looks at Ramsey Clark and questions whether or not, Clark is a traitor. Ramsey Clark will defend and support any slime ball that is anti-American. As to whether or not Clark is a traitor, that is for you to decide. - Sailor

Is Ramsay Clark A Traitor? Duhhhhh....
Written by Doc Farmer
Wednesday, December 07, 2005

I don't like (bleep)ing lawyers. I've never liked (bleep)ing lawyers. Perry Mason was a lying wuss. LA Law should have been mowed down with .50 caliber automatic machine gun fire. Ally McBeal should have been force-fed Double Whopper™ sandwiches with cheese and extra onions until she exploded (I was about to suggest the McRib™, but there's a shortage and I'd rather save them for loyal Americans!).

A mass mailing of the Ebola virus to the complete membership of the ABA would bring a warm smile to me ol' heart. I still subscribe to this basic tenet of truth, that all (bleep)ing lawyers deserve a long, slow, painful, and humiliating death.

Now that you know my political position and bias on the subject of (bleep)ing lawyers, you'll understand why I assert that there should be a special place in hell for (bleep)ing lawyers who also act against America's interests and security, and as well as for those who violate the Constitution.

Scum such as Ramsay Clark should get a front row seat in that toasty tomb.

Why, you ask, does he
have such angst and hatred for a former (bleep)ing Attorney General of the United States? Well, maybe it has something to do with the fact that Clark is making a big show of coming to the defense of that poor, misunderstood guy, Good Ol' Uncle Saddam. A former A/G is actually defending a modern-day Hitler.

At times like this, I tend to find succor in the Constitution:

    Section 3: Treason against the United States, shall consist only in levying War against them, or in adhering to their Enemies, giving them Aid and Comfort. No Person shall be convicted of Treason unless on the Testimony of two Witnesses to the same overt Act, or on Confession in open Court.
Let's look at this closely. Adhering to their Enemies. Well, Clark seems to have Super-Glued his sorry ass to Saddam's defense team. Saddam's happy at that, after having to fire his
cheese-eating-surrender-monkey legal team (apparently, every time they'd go into a meeting, they'd immediately surrender). Giving them Aid. I'd say defending a murderous tyrant's life counts as "aid" (well, it's helpful to the enemy, that's for sure). And Comfort. Well, there's no evidence as yet that Clark has provided the former dictator with a bag of Doritos, I admit. But when Saddam asked his good buddy Ramsay to pass on a message to the American people, I'm sure Saddam got a warm fuzzy feeling inside. Which is good enough for me.

As to the two witnesses, does that mean a camera from CNN and from Al Jazeera? My guess would be a very loud affirmative, possibly preceded by a sexual vulgarity (but only if Mom's not listening....).

I'm sure there are a number of lib/dem/soc/commies who are cheering Clark, mainly because they believe he'll give Dubya a black eye. Sadly, they can't see
beyond their own obsession for power, and are willing to excuse treason (amongst a whole lot of other base acts). Those who aren't cheering are certainly not berating him. Indeed, some folks are actually saying that this is a heroic and patriotic act.

Well, some folks are stupid.

Then, there's the "Nuremburg" defense. We didn't prosecute our (bleep)ing lawyers who provided legal support to the Nazis. Granted, we didn't like them very much, but they weren't committing treason. Which, strictly speaking, is correct. Mainly because THE WAR WAS OVER when they were doing their distasteful duty. The enemy had already been vanquished. And, sadly, we weren't able to nail Hitler, due to his cowardice in taking his own life.

The stupid folks I mentioned before, however, (sorry, is that not PC enough? How
about dendritically challenged? Monosynaptic? A-cephalic? Congressmen?) tend to ignore that simple nuance. They cheer those who happily evacuate their bowels on our Constitution, our troops, and our very way of life.

Folks, I used to say for years that if given the chance any (bleep)ing lawyer would happily defend Hitler. Even Jewish (bleep)ing lawyers. People used to say that I was nuts to make such a claim. Well, when a former (bleep)ing Attorney General of the United States (albeit a lib/dem/soc/commie one) can come to the aid (and comfort) of an active enemy – the now former leader of a terrorist-fomenting nation – nothing can better support my position. Saddam may be Hitler-lite (only because he didn't have enough time to kill ALL the Jews) but the comparison remains accurate.

Some say "the rule of law" is the basis of our country. This from
the same people who defend the "right" of illegal aliens to invade our nation, who defend the "rights" of enemy combatants who kill our soldiers and even our civilians, who defend the "rights" of a murderous scumbag like Saddam and his cohorts in evil. Seems to be a very selective list of laws these jerks hold dear.

Adequate evidence, a strong legal basis (hell, it's the ONLY crime specifically mentioned in the Constitution), etc. As most (bleep)ing prosecutors would tell you, this is pretty much a slam-dunk. Sadly, none of them appear to work for the Department of (no) Justice. What is it with that ill-named department? There are a number of provable traitors walking amongst us. Jane Fonda. Tom Hayden. John Forbes Kerry. Nancy Pelosi. John Walker Lindh. Jim McDermott. Sean Penn. Jose Padilla. The AC(bleep)ingLU. That Cro-Magnon anti-war bozo captured last week by the terrorists he was trying to
"support." Now, they've got Clark dead to rights.

And yet, the Department of (no) Justice does nothing.

(bleep)ing Attorney General Alberto Gonzales, I have to ask this question. Why are you being such a wimp? Political influence must have NO influence on justice, if there is to be any justice. That should have been the first lesson in A/G 101. Were you sleeping through that lecture?

Back on the 20th of September 2001, I recall President Bush saying, "you're either with us, or you're with the terrorists." Well, I'm going to paraphrase Bush and say that you're either with us, or you're with the traitors. If you do nothing to stop them, if you do nothing to punish them, then you have given your tacit approval to their actions.

And if that's the case, what the hell are you doing in your
current job, Mr. Gonzales?

About the Writer: Doc Farmer is a writer and humorist who is also a moderator on ChronWatch's Forum. He formerly lived in Saudi Arabia and Qatar, but now resides in the Midwest. Doc receives e-mail at

This Article Was First Published In ChronWatch At:

Posted by Sailor at 04:48 AM | Comments (6) | TrackBack

December 03, 2005

Open Letter in Support of America's Armed Forces

If you support our men and women in uniform, sign this open letter to them. - Sailor

Sign Here

To America's Armed Forces:

We thank God for you, your courage, tenacity and vigilance.

Since the deliberate attack on our countrymen on September 11, 2001, you have been deployed around the world and have demonstrated that you can win both the war against global terrorism, and the peace in formerly inhospitable places like Iraq and Afghanistan.

The effects of the liberation you won in Iraq and Afghanistan are reverberating throughout the region: Afghanistan and Iraq successfully held their first democratic elections; the Saudis held municipal elections; the theocracy in Iran is in deep trouble from the liberation movement there; Jordan is accelerating market economic reforms; and Qatar is reforming education to give more choices to parents.

In short, you have given rise to the bright light of liberty in places where darkness has reigned for generations.

George Washington in his First Inaugural Address said: "The preservation of the sacred fire of liberty, and the destiny of the republican model of government, are justly considered deeply, perhaps as finally, staked on the experiment entrusted to the hands of the American people." Now you are passing on that sacred fire to Iraqis, Afghanis, and others throughout the region.

You Patriots -- American Soldiers, Sailors, Airmen, Marines and Coastguardsmen -- have plowed the ground for liberty. We remain the proud and the free because you have stood bravely in harm's way, and remain on post today. For this, we, the American People, offer our heartfelt thanks. We commit to pray for you and your families every day.


Posted by Sailor at 09:14 PM | Comments (3) | TrackBack

December 02, 2005

Pouting Pundits of Pessimism

If you get your economic news fromthe MSM, you would think the US is in the throes of a recession. Nothing could be further from the truth. Despite the the hurricanes, despite the spikein oil prices, the US economy continues to grow at a nearly 4% clip. Comapre that to some of the "enlightened" EU couuntries. Unemployment stands at 5%, (France currently has an unemplyment rate of 10% and Germany is also in double digits), and interest rates remain quite low. So where is all the pessimism coming from? Brian S. Wesbury looks into this in his OpinonJournal commentary.

Pouting Pundits of Pessimism
Every bit of good economic news gives them reason for despair.

Friday, December 2, 2005 12:01 a.m. EST

During a quarter century of analyzing and forecasting the economy, I have never seen anything like this. No matter what happens, no matter what data are released, no matter which way markets move, a pall of pessimism hangs over the economy.

It is amazing. Everything is negative. When bond yields rise, it is considered bad for the housing market and the consumer. But if bond yields fall and the yield curve narrows toward inversion, that is bad too, because an inverted yield curve could signal a recession.

If housing data weaken, as they did on Monday when existing home sales fell, well that is a sign of a bursting housing bubble. If housing data strengthen, as they did on Tuesday when new home sales rose, that is negative because the Fed may raise rates further. If foreigners buy our bonds, we are not saving for ourselves. If foreigners do not buy our bonds, interest rates could rise. If wages go up, inflation is coming. If wages go down, the economy is in trouble.

This onslaught of negative thinking is clearly having an impact. During the 2004 presidential campaign, when attacks on the economy were in full force, 36% of Americans thought we were in recession. One year later, even though unemployment has fallen from 5.5% to 5%, and real GDP has expanded by 3.7%, the number who think a recession is underway has climbed to 43%.

This is a real conundrum. It is true, bad things have happened. Katrina wiped out a major city and many people are still displaced. GM has announced massive layoffs. Underfunded pension plans are being handed off to the government. Oil, gasoline and natural gas prices have soared. Despite it all, the U.S. economy continues to flourish.

One would think that this would give pouting pundits reason to question their pessimism. After all, politicians who bounce back from scandal get monikers such as "the comeback kid." Athletes who overcome personal tragedy or sickness to achieve greatness are called "heroes." This is a quintessential American tradition, and the economy is following the script perfectly. The more hardship it faces, the more resilient it appears. The list of pessimistic forecasts that have been proved wrong grows by the day.

The trade deficit was supposed to cause a collapse in the dollar; but the dollar is up 10% versus the euro in the past eight months. The budget deficit was supposed to push up interest rates; yet the 10-year Treasury yield, at 4.5%, is well below its 2000 average yield of 6% when the U.S. faced surpluses as far as the eye could see.

Sharp declines in consumer confidence and rising oil prices were supposed to hurt retail sales; but holiday shopping is strong. Many fear that China is stealing our jobs, but new reports suggest that U.S. manufacturers are so strong that a shortage of skilled production workers has developed. And since the Fed started hiking interest rates 16 months ago, 3.5 million new jobs and $750 billion in additional personal income have been created. Stocks are also up, which according to pundits was unlikely as long as the Fed was hiking rates.

Sometimes I wonder what world some of these pundits live in. They keep spewing forth all sorts of doom and gloom, but they are very rarely correct.
So, where is all of the pessimism coming from? Some say that the anxiety is warranted. The theory goes like this: Globalization and technology are a massive force that levels the playing field. Because capital and ideas can move freely around the world, foreign wages will move up, while U.S. wages fall, until some sort of equilibrium is found. It's a compelling story. After all, real average hourly earnings in the U.S. fell 1.6% during the 12 months ending in October.

However, there are numerous reasons to believe that this statistic is not giving an accurate picture of the economy's health. First, history shows that when oil prices rise sharply, real earnings take a temporary hit. As a result, a snapshot of inflation-adjusted earnings data in the wake of Katrina is misleading.

Moreover, for the past 30 years, real average hourly earnings have declined by an annual average of 0.1%. But this can't possibly reflect reality. In the past 30 years, cell phones and computers have become ubiquitous. Home and auto ownership have climbed. More people dine out; travel; attend sporting events, movies and rock concerts; and join health clubs. Over those same 30 years, real per capita consumption has increased at an average annual rate of 2.3%. Hourly earnings data do not include tips, bonuses, commissions or benefits, and therefore will always lag actual increases in living standards.

Some observers of the current economy, such as New York Times columnist Thomas Friedman and former Clinton economic adviser Gene Sperling, argue correctly that globalization is inevitable and, in fact, good. Nonetheless, they focus on those who are hurt by the transitional impact and suggest that government intervene to offset any damage from plant closures or job losses.
But this has never worked. The history of economic progress is one of innovation and change. This "creative destruction" can never be a pain-free experience for every individual involved. The new must replace the old. Attempting to alter this fact of life, and create a utopia where no one experiences pain, has always led to more unhappiness than before. Germany's near 11% unemployment rate and the recent riots in France are the latest evidence of government's inability to successfully fight market forces.

One key reason the U.S. economy has outperformed other industrialized nations, and exceeded its long-run average growth rate during the past two years, is the tax cut of 2003. By reducing taxes on investment, the U.S. boosted growth, which in turn created new jobs that replace those that are lost as the old economy dies. Ireland is also a beautiful example of the power of tax cuts to boost growth and lift living standards. (Emphasis Sailor's)

Economic growth is the only true shock absorber for an economy in transition. To minimize the pain of technological globalization and address the anxiety that these forces are creating, free-market policies must be followed. While tremendous pressures are building to increase government involvement in the economy, it is important that the U.S. stay the course that brought it out of recession.

To meet the challenges that lie ahead, a vibrant, flexible and expanding economy is absolutely necessary. While it is tempting to think that government programs are necessary to address anxiety, in reality only the free market can successfully navigate today's rough waters. In the end, it will be the private sector, not the public sector, that quells all this anxiety and creates the opportunities so many desire.

Mr. Wesbury is chief investment strategist with Claymore Advisors LLC.

So many of these so called experts have been railling on and on about how tax cuts would not improve the economy. Looks like they were wrong. Perhaps I should become a pundit. After all, the law of averages says I should be correct more than they are. - Sailor


Posted by Sailor at 12:19 AM | Comments (7) | TrackBack