LTE – reply regarding “trickle down”

Re “Trickle-down just doesn’t work” (Robert A. Davitt, Monitor letter, Sept. 21):

Davitt repeats all the tired excuses for the inexcusable actions of the Left. One wonders when his side will ever admit that its policies have not worked; they have only made things much worse. The so-called stimulus programs have been utter failures. The bailouts did nothing but reward the politicians’ friends.

Davitt suggests that spending, spending, spending is the cure to all our economic problems. The simple truth is that you cannot keep spending money you don’t have. The federal government cannot keep borrowing hitherto unimaginable sums. It cannot add thousands of pages of regulations costing tens of billions of dollars without hurting the small businesses that are the creators of jobs.

Federal regulations are at an all-time high of more than 81,000 pages. More than 4,200 more regulations are currently in the works; 845 of those affect small business.

All together, federal regulations cost our economy nearly $1.8 trillion just in compliance costs.

Want jobs?

With a stroke of the pen, President Obama could sign an executive order opening our vast energy resources for drilling and mining. That would create tens of thousands of high-paying jobs – most estimates are more than 100,000 jobs – and would immediately cause a lowering of gas prices.

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An armed society is a civilized society

In the last week or so, I have come across two essays as to how an armed citizenry makes for a more civilized society. The first (http://munchkinwrangler.wordpress.com/2007/03/23/why-the-gun-is-civilization/) has been traveling all over the internet. Marko Kloos, coincidentally a New Hampshire resident, explains that “Human beings only have two ways to deal with one another: reason and force. If you want me to do something for you, you have a choice of either convincing me via argument, or force me to do your bidding under threat of force. Every human interaction falls into one of those two categories, without exception. Reason or force, that’s it.

“In a truly moral and civilized society, people exclusively interact through persuasion. Force has no place as a valid method of social interaction, and the only thing that removes force from the menu is the personal firearm, as paradoxical as it may sound to some.

“When I carry a gun, you cannot deal with me by force. You have to use reason and try to persuade me, because I have a way to negate your threat or employment of force. The gun is the only personal weapon that puts a 100-pound woman on equal footing with a 220-pound mugger, a 75-year old retiree on equal footing with a 19-year old gangbanger, and a single gay guy on equal footing with a carload of drunk guys with baseball bats. The gun removes the disparity in physical strength, size, or numbers between a potential attacker and a defender.”

He closes by saying “When I carry a gun, I don’t do so because I am looking for a fight, but because I’m looking to be left alone. The gun at my side means that I cannot be forced, only persuaded. I don’t carry it because I’m afraid, but because it enables me to be unafraid. It doesn’t limit the actions of those who would interact with me through reason, only the actions of those who would do so by force. It removes force from the equation…and that’s why carrying a gun is a civilized act.”

The second essay (http://corneredcat.com/Why_I_Carry_a_Gun/) is by a woman who carries a gun almost all the time. Does she carry it because she lives in constant fear? Quite the contrary. She explains, “Because I know I could cope with the worst that could happen, I am free to go about my regular business without a lot of that low-level, back-of-the-mind feeling of vulnerability that most women experience on some level in their daily lives.”

She describes when her car broke down. “So there I was, a woman alone with two young boys, with no cell phone, on a deserted stretch of two lane highway just before dark. “Was I worried? About the car, yes. But I wasn’t worried about our physical safety. I knew I had both the training and the tools to protect myself and my children even in the unlikely event that a human predator came along.”

When a car pulled over and the man driving it asked if she needed help, was she worried about his intentions? “Nope, I was relieved to see him. I didn’t have to worry about him or what he might do, because I knew I could protect myself if he turned out not to be the good Samaritan he appeared to be. Having the means to defend myself allowed me to be friendly and confident in talking to a stranger in what could have been dangerous circumstances.”

When the tow truck showed up did she worry that the tow truck guy could be a rapist of opportunity? “Not a bit. I knew I had the means to take care of myself and my kids if I needed to. Because I had that confidence, I was able to be friendly and forthright.”

Because she was confident in her ability to take care of herself and her family, “I was able to be outgoing and friendly rather than frightened or churlishly suspicious in dealing with other people, even in what I considered to be risky circumstances.”

She carries a gun all the time because “I really liked having that feeling of calm confidence which came from being prepared to cope with the worst life could possibly throw at me, and I wanted to keep feeling it.”

The cost of regulations

http://www.discoverthenetworks.org/viewSubCategory.asp?id=1505 has a very good summary of the cost of federal regulations. Some highlights:

  • compliance costs are $1.8 trillion. And that doesn’t even begin to count the lost opportunity costs.
  • there are more than 81,000 pages of regulations.
  • almost 4,000 new regulations are added every year.
  • “Of the 4,225 regulations now in the pipeline, 224 are ‘economically significant’ rules wielding at least $100 million in economic impact.”

The article has many links to related info.

The high, mostly hidden, costs of regulations are a reason why I work at the state level to reduce or eliminate regulations.