Free Money Is Rarely Free

Breitbart.com posted an article today illustrating the impact President Obama’s threats regarding the ‘bathroom’ (should be called ‘locker room’) bill. Even homeschoolers are worried.

The article reports:

Tina Hollenbeck, a homeschooling parent in Wisconsin, tells Breitbart News, “If homeschoolers take vouchers or any other form of government funding ‘help’ – even an ‘educational expenses credit’ on their taxes – they are enslaving themselves to government mandates.”

“And by choosing to entangle themselves, they jeopardize homeschooling freedom for all,” she adds. “That’s because of the very simple economic principle that ‘he who pays gets the say.’”

Hollenbeck – the developer of the Homeschool Resource Roadmap –explains that if homeschooling families accept any taxpayer funding from government entities at any level, the government then has the right to demand “accountability” from them.

“And it doesn’t matter if it’s merely a credit on their own taxes because the minute money makes its way into government coffers, the bureaucrats consider it to belong to the government and act accordingly with their rules and (unconstitutional) laws,” she asserts.

Karen Braun, an activist homeschooling parent who is the lead content writer for the Stop Common Core in Michigan website, observes the costs of accepting federal funding with an administration that “shreds local and state control.”

According to a website entitled Federal Education Policy History:

The U.S. established a Department of Education first in 1867.  This original department, however, was not a cabinet level agency, and within a few years was replaced with a bureau and then an office.

On October 17, 1979 President James E. Carter signed the Department of Education Organization Act (P.L. 96-88; 93 Stat. 668).  It replaced the Office of Education with a department proper, and installed a secretary at its head.

The Department of Education was made a cabinet position as a reward for the teachers’ union’s support of Jimmy Carter during the 1976 presidential election.

According to the 10th Amendment of the U.S. Constitution:

The powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the States, are reserved to the States respectively, or to the people.

We have come a long way from that concept, and our nation is failing because of that.

The article at Breitbart.com concludes:

Hollenbeck, however, asserts that parents’ right to provide that safe place to learn at home is compromised in our current political environment.

“Once bureaucrats get a foothold into controlling some homeschoolers, they’ll find ways to extend that to all,” she warns. “Thus, the only way to maintain all homeschoolers’ independence from government overreach into our homes is by everyone refusing any and all offers of government-sponsored financial ‘help.’ When we pay, we get the say – as it should be.”

Breitbart News reached out to Home School Legal Defense Association (HSLDA) to ask how the organization believes the Obama administration’s gender identity “decree” will affect homeschooling in the United States.

“We expect that this will drive up the numbers in homeschooling the same way that Common Core did,” responded Michael Farris, Jr. of HSLDA Media Relations. “Parents want to have the final say in their children’s education, not have the federal government do it for them.”

Once the camel gets his nose inside the tent, there is no telling where he will end up.

The Mess In Washington And Some Suggested Solutions

Today’s Washington Examiner posted an article about the eight worst federal agencies in Washington and how they could be fixed.

Here are some of the highlights. The article begins with the Department of Education. It has a 2016 budget of $79 billion. About 6 percent (250) of its employees are considered essential. It has existed for 36 years.

The article states:

McCluskey (Neal McCluskey, who directs the Center for Educational Freedom at the libertarian Cato Institute) said only two Department of Education activities can be justified: the Office for Civil Rights, to enforce the 14th Amendment, and Impact Aid, which gives federal funds to school districts that are burdened by nearby federal installations such as military bases or large science labs. Even then, the department doesn’t perform those two activities particularly well, McCluskey said, but at least they’re justifiable.

In the ideal world, McCluskey would simply get rid of the department. “What the federal government does in education, largely through the Department of Education, is unconstitutional. As important, we don’t have evidence it’s really helping. So why should it continue to do any of this?”

The next department the article lists is the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). The EPA has a 2016 budget of $8.14. About 7 percent (1072) of its employees are considered essential. It began operating in December 1970.

The article reports:

Ozone rules, the EPA’s new regulations for smog, also are a captivating force for lawyers looking to sue the agency. Greens are suing the agency because the regulations made law last year were not strict enough. Hailed as the most expensive regulations in history, industry is suing because they argue they are too strict. As a twist, industry groups have come to the EPA’s aid in the lawsuit by the greens.

Tom Pyle, director of the conservative American Energy Alliance, says in addition to the EPA’s far-reaching regulations that need to be reined in, “the whole agency needs to be reorganized.”

For example, his group has proposed a host of streamlining proposals in recent years targeting the National Environmental Policy Act review process, known as NEPA.

The NEPA review process has become a key target for critics who see it as an overly burdensome and duplicative process for permitting energy and infrastructure projects.

Another agency the article lists that are in need of reform is the Department of Health and Human Services. Payments to Medicare and Medicaid providers are not carefully scrutinized and fraud is a problem. Another issue in the Department is the Food and Drug Administration’s lack of speed in bringing new drugs to the market.

Other agencies listed are the Internal Revenue Service, Office of Personnel Management, the Secret Service, the State Department, and the Department of Veteran’s Affairs.

Please follow the link to the article to read the details in each department. We need someone in Washington who is not afraid to upset the status quo.

The Problem Is Not The Income

The Wall Street Journal posted an article yesterday about the amount of tax revenue the federal government collected for fiscal 2015. The good news is that the government collected a record amount of money–$3.249 trillion. That is an 8 percent increase in revenues for the year. The bad news is that the government still managed to spend more than it took in. The budget deficit was $435 billion–a decline of $48 billion. The article notes that although the decline is small, it is huge for the seventh year of what the government claims is an expansion. The article also notes that inflation is growing by less than 2 percent.

The article reports:

The reason for the small decline is that spending for the fiscal year climbed 5.2% to $3.685 trillion. That increase came even though defense spending fell $16 billion, or 2.7%, thanks to the drawdown in Afghanistan.

The spending burst included a 16.1%, or $49 billion, increase in Medicaid for the first full year of ObamaCare. Medicaid spending has climbed $85 billion to $350 billion in two years, and that’s with 19 states declining to join.

The Congressional Budget Office also cites a $30 billion, or 51%, spending increase for the Department of Education—“mostly because of an $18 billion upward revision in the estimated net subsidy costs of student loans and loan guarantees issued in past years.” Translation: Mr. Obama’s takeover of the student-loan business is costing far more money than advertised, probably due to growing defaults.

Let’s put these numbers together. Inflation is less than 2 percent. There was an 8 percent increase in revenues collected by the federal government. There was a $435 billion deficit. These numbers are unsustainable. They will assure the destruction of America. We need to elect people to Congress and the White House who will cut government spending. It is a national disgrace to have an 8 percent increase in revenues and still have a deficit. It is time for any rational members of Congress to demand a spending cut.

Laziness Is Not An American Problem

On Saturday, the Daily Caller reported that President Obama blamed America’s financial difficulties on laziness and stated that the cure is more central government. Huh?

He stated that America has been lazy in recent decades about attracting foreign investment.

The article reported:

In September, after saying the U.S. had lost its competitive edge, Obama also suggested the cure lies with Democratic policies. The country can recover its competitiveness, he said, because the country has “the best universities, the best scientists, and best workers in the world.” Many Democrats routinely say they support education, science and labor, and that Republicans oppose all three.

That is truly a spin on the truth. Republicans actually do support education, science, and labor–just not controlled by Washington, D.C. The cost of education was lower and SAT scores higher before the Department of Education was created. Education does better when it is controlled at the local level–less money is spent on administration and the needs of the individual community can be met much more efficiently. Science does very well when it is allowed to work under the rules of free enterprise. When government interferes in free enterprise, bad things happen (Solyndra, for example). Republicans do not oppose labor–they do oppose labor interfering with the rights of corporations to build plants and employ people wherever they choose (Boeing in South Carolina).

Americans are not lazy–they are being severely limited by over regulation. The intrusion of the federal government into the everyday lives of Americans has become totally ridiculous. The government has shut down the Central Valley in California to preserve a fish that may not even be a separate species. Because of that action, many more Californians are out of work and all Americans are paying more for groceries. The government is about to put regulations into effect that will increase the cost of electricity for every American by at least 10 per cent. The problem is not laziness on the part of Americans–the problem is government overreach.

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