Something You Are Not Likely To Hear From The Mainstream Media

Yesterday Breitbart posted an article quoting statistics on firearms homicides over the past 25 years. The numbers are not what you might expect.

The article reports:

Despite endless gun violence reports put forward by the establishment media, the dirty little secret is firearm homicides have plummeted over the past 25 years.

Yet most Americans, particularly Democrats, believe firearm murders have risen period.

When you consider the fact that the media chooses what it covers and what it doesn’t cover, the fact that most Americans are misinformed about gun violence is not a surprise.

The article includes some of the statistics:

But the reality is that the high water mark for firearm murders was 1994 while 2017, the most recent year with complete data on incidents, shows a sharp drop. There were “16,136 [firearm murders] in 1994” but only “10,982” in 2017.

And if looked at in terms of the murder rate, instead of simply the raw murder numbers, the drop in firearm homicides is even more evident.

For example, the FBI calculated “6.2 firearm murders per 100,000 people” in 1994, while the murder rate in 2017 was 3.38. And the murder rate was even lower than 3.38 in 2014.

An interesting correlation with the drop in firearm murders is the incredible expansion of private firearm ownership. In other words, the number of privately-owned firearms was increasing at the same time that the number of firearm murders was plummeting.

On December 4, 2013, Breitbart News reported a Congressional Research Service study showing “gun ownership climbed from 192 million firearms in 1994 to 310 million firearms in 2009.” At the same time, the “firearm-related murder and non-negligent homicide” rate was cut in half over a roughly 17-year time period.

There are a few things at work here. First of all, criminals do not like to commit crimes in places where people are likely to be armed. Second of all, by providing wall-to-wall coverage of any mass shooting for days on end, the media puts the idea in our heads that these are common occurrences. The media is much less likely to cover events where an armed citizen protects himself or prevents a mass shooting.

I really don’t understand why the media aligns itself with the gun-control left. Do they not realize that they too will be left defenseless?

Consequences Of Some Small Print In ObamaCare

CNS News reported today that the U. S. Treasury has released data stating that the outstanding balance for all of the direct student loans the federal government has issued topped $600 billion in April.

The article reports:

In January 2009, when Obama was inaugurated, the balance was $119.803 billion and has since increased more than fivefold.

The $480.654 billion increase since January 2009 in what is owed to the Treasury in direct student loans represents a climb of about 250 percent in just over four years.

What happened?

The article explains:

Before Obama’s first term, federally guaranteed student loans were made both by the government directly and by private lenders using their own capital through what was called the Federal Family Education Loan program. Language inserted into the the Obamacare law signed in March 2010, however, abolished the latter type of federally guaranteed student loan, giving the U.S. Treasury a monopoly over those loans.

As the Congressional Research Service has described it, this Obamacare provision made the U.S. Treasury the exclusive “banker” for federally guaranteed student loans. Thus, U.S. taxpayers essentially own these loans.

This is the housing bubble played out in student loans. The American taxpayer is the lender in these loans.

The article reminds us:

If the students who have borrowed the current outstanding balance of $600 billion in federal direct student loans default on those loans–or if Congress forgives them their debts–the burden of that $600 billion loss will fall on U.S. taxpayers.

This is not pocket change. This could well be our next financial crisis.

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Added To The Fiscal Cliff…

The Washington Post reported on Wednesday (notice that it was not reported before the election) that President Obama may pass a carbon tax in order to cut the deficit.

The article reports:

A tax starting at $20 a metric ton of carbon dioxide equivalent and rising at about 6 percent a year could raise $154 billion by 2021, Nick Robins, an analyst at the bank in London, said today in an e-mailed research note, citing Congressional Research Service estimates. “Applied to the Congressional Budget Office’s 2012 baseline, this would halve the fiscal deficit by 2022,” Robins said.

The article further reports:

The tax would not necessarily add to the economy’s total tax burden, according to Elliot Diringer, executive vice president of the research group. Such a tax may free up space for reductions in company taxes that dissuade employment, for example, Diringer said in an interview from Arlington.

“We have lots of need for new revenue to address our challenges,” which include priorities for conservatives such as extending tax cuts, avoiding deep defense cuts, reducing the corporate tax rate, reforming tax territoriality, and deficit reduction, the group said today in an e-mailed statement.

There are more than a few problems with this idea. Someone is going to have to pay this tax. If corporations pay it, the price of whatever they produce goes up, and the already beleaguered consumer pays higher prices. If the average American pays the tax, the standard of living in America, which has already fallen in the past four years, falls lower. This is an ideal way to create more poverty in America. Also, note the comment that ‘we have lots of need for new revenue.’ There is no recognition of the fact that we are overspending. In order for the American economy to thrive, government spending needs to be about 18 or 19 percent of the gross domestic product (GDP). The problem with the Obama Administration is that their goal is to make it closer to 25 percent. That difference is largely responsible for the increases in the deficit under the Obama Administration.

Intellectualtakeout.org posted a chart showing the growth of government spending in relationship to the GDP. Please follow the link to see the chart.

Until we decrease spending to below 20 percent of the gross domestic product, the economy will not grow. We also need to remember that if interest rates go up (which they eventually will), our interest payments will be the biggest part of our budget. You can’t run a country on a maxed-out credit card.

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