Brad Causey
Brad Causey,
Editor and Publisher
Doug Helton
Montana
Kelly J. Logan
Virginia
R. Shannon Pollard
Tennessee
Kevin Sommers
Tennessee
David R. Wehry
Tennessee
Brian Bordwine
Tennesee
James E. Foy
Oklahoma
The Freedom Letter
v3n5
Presidential Thoughts
10/26/2004
At the time of this writing the 2004 Presidential Election is about a week away. Since I started this newsletter I have intentionally avoided partisanship and party politics. We do not plan to ever endorse a specific candidate. This is not to say that the Freedom Letter does not have a specific philosophy and common theme. We unapologetically believe in freedom of thought and expression, free markets unhindered by excessive government regulation, low taxes, the rule of law and a civilized society. We also believe our government should follow the limits the Constitution provides and should live by the words and wisdom of the Declaration of Independence.
In observing this year's Presidential campaign, apparently neither candidate lives up to these basic concepts. Unfortunately this has also been true, with rare exception, during the last 100 years.
Mr. Kerry has been a Senator for 20 years. Prior to that he served as Lt. Governor of his state and served a few months in Vietnam. After he returned from the war he filled out the proper forms to obtain 3 Purple Hearts and then promptly became an anti-war activist. How one goes from serving one's country on the front lines to protesting the very war he served in is certainly odd. Even more unusual is that of the 25 or so gentlemen he served with, only a single person is endorsing his candidacy. The others are openly supporting his opponent. Mr. Kerry is currently honored by the Vietnamese (communist) government as one of THEIR war heroes! He attended Yale, and has a law degree. He is married to his second wife, the former Teresa Heinz. She is originally from South Africa, and her net worth is estimated to be in the billions. He and his wife own a total of 6 houses in 4 different states.
Mr. Bush is the sitting President. Prior to being elected President he was Governor of Texas for almost 6 years. He is the only person in the history of Texas to be re-elected to consecutive terms as Governor. Before his political career, he was managing partner of the Texas Rangers baseball team and had various (mostly failed) ventures in the oil business. He is, of course, the son of a former President. He was in the Air National Guard for 4 years and was a highly rated pilot of the F-102 fighter jet. He graduated from Yale and has an MBA from Harvard. He is married to former school Librarian Laura Bush. They own a 1500 acre ranch in Texas.
Both Mr. Bush and Mr. Kerry are part of the current government. Mr. Kerry has a voting record which is on the decidedly left side of the political spectrum. In his time in the Senate he has voted against virtually all defense appropriations. He supports gun control and has publicly stated he wants to raise taxes. Mr. Bush has increased the federal budget (in annual percentage terms) more than than the last three Presidents combined. We must remember however, it is the Congress that actually appropriates the money. The President bears responsibility for proposing most of the increases and signing them when they come to his desk. This President has yet to veto a single piece of legislation; not a recipe for holding the line on a spendthrift Congress. Mr. Bush has been successful in passing three different tax reductions, two for individuals, and most recently on the business side.
The federal government today spends a total of 22% of the Gross Domestic Product. Its tax revenue exceeds 21%. In terms of total budget, as a percentage of the economy or in the amount of money spent and collected per capita, the federal government is larger than it has ever been. And it is growing by the year. Neither candidate has proposed reducing the budget. One actually thinks we do not spend enough! Neither candidate speaks of spending or taxing in terms of the Constitutional role of the federal government. Sad indeed!
Never once in the debates did I hear either man mention that most of the various programs discussed are not the constitutional responsibility of the federal government. The powers of Congress are listed specifically in Article one, section 8 of the Constitution. Provide for the common defense, post offices and post roads, coin money and regulate the value thereof, impose taxes and duties, borrow money, regulate commerce BETWEEN the states, promote the progress of science and useful arts, immigration and bankruptcy law, fix the standard of weights and measures, establish a federal court system and couple of other things related to the rest. The 10th amendment clearly states that the powers not assigned to the federal government are the responsibility of the states or, of the people. The powers of the President are even more brief. Article two, sections 2 and 3. Commander in chief of armed forces, receive ambassadors, appointments (with the advise and consent of the Senate), faithfully execute the laws, etc. Very little else. Our federal government was created by the existing states for the specific purpose of establishing a free trade zone and to make it easier to prosecute war. The founding fathers never intended for it to become so large it would dwarf the states and the largest of corporations. Why are these simple facts never brought up by any member of the major parties? Perhaps both parties have become so corrupt that a potential vote is worth ignoring their real responsibility to the Constitution and to their duty to the nation as whole.
Please keep these facts in mind when you cast your vote for a potential holder of national office. The one promising the most, is the one who values your money the least.
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