Question…If millions of Americans can survive on far less income than they are accustomed to receiving, can America survive with less?
This week I stood in a client’s front yard discussing business. As we talked, he pointed out that the owners of the house directly across the street had just experienced a foreclosure. Next, he pointed to the house two doors down and said that they had also been foreclosed upon. By the time we had finished our conversation, he had pointed out three additional houses whose mortgages had been foreclosed. These five houses were built of brick, were less than ten years old, were located in an upscale neighborhood, had nice lawns, and enjoyed a spectacular view of a nearby mountain.
What did these people have in common?
· They have experienced devastating losses in 2010.
· They have serious financial problems. (Two of the owners had lost their jobs; one had mismanaged his money, and the other two had purchased homes that exceeded their ability to pay.)
· They have moved out of their dream homes.
· They have experienced devastation and have lessened senses of optimism.
· They are living on less but surviving financially.
Five friends of mine have experienced layoffs, business slowdowns, or cutbacks and are living on approximately 70%, 55%, and 25% of their 2009 incomes. I know one business owner, who, in his struggle to keep his business afloat, has not received a single paycheck from his company in all of 2010.
What do these personal friends of mine have in common?
· They have experienced devastating losses in 2010.
· They refuse to see themselves as victims of a devastating recession.
· They struggle to meet their financial obligations but are meeting them.
· They have made drastic cuts in discretionary spending within their personal budgets.
· They are living on less but surviving financially.
Constitutionally, what is the role of Government in the lives of the ten families mentioned above? The answer is short, simple, and to the point. But first,
Should the United States Government…
· Step in and bail out those who have lost their homes?
· Offer the business owner a check to make up for his 2010 annual income of $0.00?
· Supplement the incomes of those who are now living on far less than they did in 2009?
· Offer free or greatly reduced housing to those who have experienced foreclosures?
· Provide jobs for those who are unemployed?
Constitutionally, what is the answer to the question “What is the role of Government in the ten situations mentioned above?” is very simple, and possibly very surprising to some.
Constitutionally, the Government has no role to play in any of the situations outlined above.
The constitution wasn’t intended nor written to protect the jobs, incomes, mortgages, money management, or spending practices of the American people.
The constitution was written to state that our inalienable individual and collective human rights were granted by God, and that our God-given rights should be preserved and protected. They should be protected from any enemy, domestic or foreign, and that they should be protected from intrusion into our lives by the United States Government.
Should there be a financial “Safety Net?”
Morally, no one should be opposed to various governmental agencies and entities stepping in to assist people in times of need. There are perhaps dozens of programs, ranging from food stamps and welfare to Social Security that exists to help people who need specific financial assistance. This is good. The problem comes when these programs are abused, mismanaged, fraud laden, and administered by people who are corrupt. In addition to government programs and agencies, there are literally thousands of private and religious programs across America that help provide for people in need. This is good.
Question…If millions of Americans can survive on far less income than they are accustomed to receiving, can America survive with less? Yes she can.
What would happen if Federal spending were cut by 10%?
· America would cease to exist.
· America’s economy would collapse.
· America would experience bankruptcy.
· America’s citizens would overthrow the government.
· America’s dollar would fall precipitously.
· America would become the laughingstock of the world.
· America’s politicians would be blamed for being irresponsible.
All of these assertions are false. None of them would happen. In fact, just the opposite of all of these assertions would be expected to happen.
Cutting Federal spending by 10% would be a major step forward toward gaining control of our wreckless out-of-control spending. Today, many of the citizens of France are rioting in the streets because the French Government, that is in grave danger of running out of funds, is proposing raising the retirement age by two years.
Will the same be happening in America in 2015 or 2020? Rioting? Who knows? Raising the retirement age or cutting monthly benefits? Most likely.
Christians, put your trust in God. Refues to place your trust in your government, Social Security, your 401(k)s, your IRAs, your real estate, your savings, or anything or anyone else.
A baby screams because her mother refuses her demands to be picked up at bedtime.
A toddler has a tantrum because his mother refuses to allow him to drink Mountain Dew.
A twelve year old rebels because her mother refuses to allow her to get her first tattoo.
A teen pouts because his father refuses to buy him a new Corvette for his 16th birthday.
A husband pouts because his wife refuses to give in and OK his purchase of a new boat.
A wife is cool toward her husband who refuses to buy her an expensive diamond ring.
A coach is fired because he refuses to allow a wealthy tyrant’s son to start the big game.
A teacher is terminated because she refuses to remove her Bible from her desk.
A soldier is overlooked for promotions because he refuses to play political homage.
A boss is demoted because he refuses to rehire a recently terminated employee.
A professor is denied tenure because she refuses to teach her university’s liberal policies.
A professional golfer loses a major tournament because she refuses to bend the rules.
A physician faces a lawsuit because he refuses to perform useless elective surgery.
A City Councilman is defeated because he refuses to approve special interests’ demands.
A Governor receives death threats because she refuses to submit to teachers’ unions.
A Congressman is stripped of his leadership position because he refuses to compromise.
A United States President squanders her chance for reelection because she refuses to cave in to the majority party’s unconstitutional legislation.
A Holy God is rejected by many because he refuses to compromise his attributes of Righteousness, Justice, Holiness, and his Word.
Why do heroic individuals take courageous stands for that which is right while knowing that their actions are guaranteed to produce negative results?
It is principle, conviction, philosophy, courage, commitment, faith, and leadership and standing for and doing what is right without regard for the consequences.
Today, America stands at the principled, convictional, philosophical, courageous, faith, and leadership crossroads. A majority of her citizens are demanding that their leaders return to the principled basis of her foundation…a healthy fear and respect for God and her Constitution.
The question is simple. Does government exist to bestow upon its citizenry the basic human needs of food, clothing, shelter, money, and a job? Or, does government exist to serve her citizens and to provide them with fertile, unfettered, opportunities for the rights to seek life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness without government interference?
Over the next few years the contention may be within the Republican Party, with a few conservative Democrats, and several mandated Tea Partiers who are facing being forced to choose between taking the unpopular stance of saying no and doing right things, or compromising their convictions by joining the siren songs of what is popular.
Many have just realized that this movement is not exclusively a Republican, a Democrat, or even a Tea Party movement. It is a mandate from the citizenry to return to the US Constitution. This once in a lifetime grass-roots movement is a rare but truly populist movement that sprang up spontaneously from among peoples of all walks of life, races, political persuasions, and socio-economic strata.
Credit goes to members of the loosely organized Tea Party for voicing a stomach-pitting knosis that something was desperately wrong within America and for insisting that those who caused the problems be held accountable. Their millions of voices refused to be silenced. They gained momentum, respect, popularity, popularity, and vociferous hatred as the movement continued to spread.
It is becoming clearer than ever that the majority of Americans rejects the “Nanny State” mentality, and abhors the intrusions of big government interference being injected into ever-increasing areas of their private lives. Sick of these unending regulations, unelected and unsupervised Tsars, looming threats of a liberal dominated Lame Duck Congressional session, bills drafted by outside interest groups, midnight votes, and congressional bills being passed that were never read, America is ready for change.
The changes most are craving are simple…
1. Stop out-of-control spending and balance the federal budget.
2. Refuse to allow the Fed to print more money and live within our financial means.
3. Reduce taxes. (Take a serious look at John Linder’s Fair Tax plan.)
4. Dilute the influence of a power-crazed congress. (Term limits are being imposed over the next few elections.)
5. Reduction of both the size and influence of Government within the private lives of her citizens.
6. Pay down the deficit.
7. Elected officials must serve at the true will of the American people.
8. Tell the truth and stop lying to the American people.
9. Only enact common-sense legislation that genuinely is for the good of America.
10. Return to the God of your Founding Fathers.
These simple cravings are being met with opposition. The opposition has consisted of Liberal Republicans, Liberal Democrats, Liberal Bloggers, many members of the media, and a vociferous minority of American citizens.
It is time to refuse and refute liberalism and its destructive policies that have carried America to the brink of moral, financial, spiritual, societal, and institutional destruction.
Now is the time for brave patriots to step up and claim their new heritage and to return to and repair the foundations of America. Yes, it is time to Learn to Say No. Consequences of failure are dire. America, like the Greek and Roman empires of old will face the risk of failure.
It is gut-check time!
Elections have the potential to impact everything from your marriage to your paycheck and from your career to your ability to earn a living. They can affect things like healthcare, immigration, carbon credits, bank accounts, employment, success or failure of small businesses, banks, and corporations, retirement accounts, and many other things as well. Elections matter.
Sadly, many voters approach an election with but one thing in mind:”voting the party line.” The late President John F. Kennedy’s famous inaugural statement has changed. It has evolved from: “Ask not what your country can do for you, Ask what you can do for your country,” to “Ask what your country can do for you, Ask not what you can do for your country.”
Unfortunately, many refuse to think before voting. Others wish to be told for whom to vote. Though it is hard work, one should seek to know their favorite candidates before going to the polls to cast their all-important ballots. In some cases it has become harder to discern many candidates’ views because they deliberately conceal their past. However, with some research, you can discover many things about them before you cast your vote.
Some things you may wish to understand before voting for your favorite candidate…
Do their views align with your views on major issues? Sometimes it can be hard to tell. Why? It is becoming harder to discern candidates’ true views because so many are disingenuous if not deliberately deceptive. Media, campaign commercials, and political handlers are complicit in deception because they sometimes push an agenda that obscures a candidate’s views in order to see him elected. In other cases, they can be guilty of deliberately misrepresenting (or openly lying about) an opposing candidate’s views to prevent him from winning an election.
2. Voting Records
Have your favorite candidates’ votes aligned with the will of their constituents, or have they voted without little to no regard for the wishes of their people? Have their votes aligned with your principles, character, and commitments?
What are their philosophies about governing, earmarks, money, the economy, taxes, deficit spending, and other important issues?
Are voters held in contempt as “ill-informed vassals,” or, are voters respected as "well-informed citizens" whose views and concerns actually matter?
5. Entitlement Programs
How do they view Social Security, Medicare, and Medicaid? Do they wish to privatize, eliminate, or revise these programs?
Most politicians are accused of “Never meeting a tax that they didn’t like.” Is he / she a "Tax-and-Spend"
candidate or a “Fiscally Responsible” candidate?
7. Controversial Issues
Many avoid issues like Abortion, Social Security Reform, or Term Limits. It is unfortunate but true that approximately 98% of politicians’ primary goal is that of their own reelection. Are they there to grab power or to serve their constituents?
8. Special Interests
Are they are there to serve or are they there to advance causes of the American people or the causes of special interest groups?
9. American Issues
Where do they stand on critical issues facing America?
Jobs and Unemployment
Cap and Trade
10. http://www.christianretirement.com would never ask you to vote for a certain party or candidate. We would however ask you to be informed as you cast your ballot. Government is the servant of God. Pray for the Lord's guidance as you discover more about your favorite candidates and cast your ballot.
Rep and Dem were independently wealthy and headed a corporation that employed 50 partners, and a myriad of additional employees. In addition to providing employment for their partners, the corporation’s responsibilities included providing for all employees’ education, healthcare, safety, retirement, and general well being.
Neither Rep nor Dem was concerned about spending due to their gigantic trust funds and extravagant corporate income. Everyone gloried in their success, security, and enjoyed the superb benefits of living comfortable lives in large suburban estates. Their corporation was the envy of sister corporations. Their holdings were vast…they owned thousands of office buildings, fleets of vehicles, airplanes, and ships, and seemed to have an unlimited supply of other assets. Though they received hundreds of billions in annual revenue, they had several weaknesses including: an out of control spending problem, a bad habit of borrowing astronomical amounts of money, a cash-flowing into the corporation problem, and had accumulated neither normal operating expenses nor rainy day funds for future contingencies.
Though weakened severely, they still enjoyed an incessant stream of income that allowed the corporation to live life large. Department heads spent lavishly on big ticket items like additional office buildings, bases, hospitals, airports, new machinery for the corporation, shipyards and new craft for their fleets, spacecraft, computers, big screen TVs, the latest laptops, tons of new furniture, and often indulged in extravagant company-wide picnics, outings, and vacations.
One day Rep and Dem received the surprise of their lives when their trust fund managers informed them that they were quickly running out of funds. Both loved their jobs and had planned on long careers heading up the corporation. However, due to the severe economic downturn, increased healthcare and retirement costs, the lack of new clients, the fact that their funds were nearing exhaustion, and jobs migrating overseas, Rep and Dem realized that their corporation was in danger of toppling, falling into serious disrepair, or even the unthinkable…bankruptcy. Heavily invested in employee retirement accounts, the board of directors lent the funds to the corporation to spend on corporate needs and private personal projects. They also approved massive borrowing programs from sister corporations to insure that the lifestyle they were accustomed to could continue.
Suddenly the corporation was confronted with the shocking reality of a massive reduction in revenue while corporate debt continued to grow exponentially. Several partners recounted stories of two corporations that faced bankruptcy a few years earlier. One had survived and the other had failed. The survivor had implemented the changes of a Back To Basics plan, while the failed corporation maintained a Business As Usual plan.
Back To Basics Plan
1. Froze all spending and instituted immediate budget cuts of 10% for all departments
2. Severely limited further growth of the corporation
4. Returned to the pay-as-you-go system
5. Ceased borrowing money from all creditors
5. Incentivized owners of small businesses to create jobs by providing tax cuts and other positive incentives
6. Reduced prices for all
7. Sold many of their large office buildings and other assets
8. Destroyed all their credit cards
9. Modeled sound financial principles for all its partners and other employees
10. Did everything in its power to enable the corporation to survive the terrible financial tragedy it had brought upon itself
Business As Usual Plan
1. Spent all the cash they had on hand
2. Added numerous new assets to their corporation
3. Borrowed as much money as possible from other corporations, and drastically raised prices, fees, and taxes to their friends, neighbors, fellow employees, and relatives
4. Raided employee retirement funds
5. Printed millions of $100 bills
6. Increased all departmental budgets by 10%
7. Purchased several car dealerships
8. Loaned many banks vast amounts of money
8. Handed out cash to anyone who had their hand out
9. Hired many crews to construct or remodel many office buildings, build lavish swimming pools, resurface parking lots, and provide lavish landscaping
10. Took lavish vacations and bankrolled brothers-in-law’s family vacations to the Super Bowl.
Americans are calling for a new approach to governance. While no one knows the plans our leaders will ultimately choose, most likely it will include some of the options listed above as well as many others. With that result in mind, please consider the following...
Government is God-given. "Everyone must submit himself to the governing authorities, for there is no authority except that which God has established. The authorities that exist have been established by God." Romans 13:1
Government is not perfect. Since government is made up of imperfect people it is not perfect.
Government is not God, and therefore cannot provide all answers for all problems.
Governing leaders deserve our honest and sincerest prayers.
Governing leaders owe God and their fellow countrymen a just, honest, and fair approach that is both above reproach and that governs impartially. Your future retirement, finances, economic well being, career, and other aspects of your life will be impacted by decisions and policies being enacted now and in the future. Pray that our leaders make wise decisions.
Should America expect tough times in her future? Yes, but with God's help we will not only survive, we will live to see a better America in the future.