Chaos Manor View, Wednesday, November 11, 2015
Armistice Day originally; 11/11/ at 11 AM
Steve is at a conference, and Jack Cohen was busy, so Niven and I used the morning to confer on details for our Avalon series novel: number three in the story of Earth’s first interstellar colony in a slower than light travel universe. The colony is forty years old, and without any warning a new ship is coming; there was no warning. Meanwhile they are exploring the mainland having become secure on their original island; and they are finding astonishing facts about the planet’s life forms.
We got sorted out who will write certain needed scenes and went to a very good lunch. Alas it’s pollen season in Los Angeles, and it has rained very little this fall. Ah well.
I watched the debates last night, and I was pleased to see that Carly Fiorina is more than holding her own. She kept to the theme that government has got out of control, and it is time for the American people to take back their government from the professionals. In particular, we must have Zero based budgeting: every dollar spent has to be justified, not just spent because it was spent last year. That would be the end of bunny inspectors and many other absurdities, and a reduction in the total size of regulatory agencies; nothing should be spared from scrutiny. I recall that Barrack Hussein Obama made a “laser fine” inspection of each item in the budget one of his primary goals upon taking office, but that never happened or was alluded to again.
Charles Murray, who is one of the few sociologists I can respect as a scientist, has an article: The Regulators’ Yoke, https://www.aei.org/publication/the-regulators-yoke/ which does a better job of telling why this is important than I can.
The de facto legislative power delegated to regulatory agencies is only one aspect of their illegitimacy. Citizens who have not been hit with an accusation of a violation may not realize how Orwellian the regulatory state has become. If you run afoul of an agency such as the FCC and want to defend yourself, you don’t go to a regular court. You go to an administrative court run by the agency. You don’t get a jury. The case is decided by an administrative judge who is an employee of the agency. You do not need to be found guilty beyond a reasonable doubt, but rather by the loosest of all legal standards, a preponderance of the evidence. The regulatory agency is also free of many of the rules that constrain police and prosecutors in the normal legal system. For example, regulatory agencies are not required to show probable cause for getting a search warrant. A regulatory agency can inspect a property or place of business under broad conditions that it has set for itself.
There’s much more, but it amounts to this: Regulatory agencies, or the regulatory divisions within cabinet agencies, operate as self-contained entities that create de facto laws that Congress would never have passed on an up-or-down vote. They then act as both police and judge in enforcing the laws they have created. It amounts to an extra-legal state within the state.
I have focused on the regulatory state because it now looms so large in daily life as to have provoked a reaction that crosses political divides: American government isn’t supposed to work this way.
There is a lot more, all good, and I commend it to you. And Mrs. Fiorina is one of the few candidates who seem to take such things seriously and – I think – she means it. All Republicans, and until recently most Democrats – recall Mr. Obama’s promise of a laser like inspection of each item in the budget – talk about making sure that each tax dollar goes for something we want done; but the country club establishment Republicans never did anything about it when they had the power, and the Democrats never took it seriously at all. Hope and Change always means bigger government; increasing the middle class means adding more higher ranking civil servants to the payroll. Little thought is given to those who must pay for it.
And another government instruction is education: why is it paid for by taxpayers? Why can’t it earn its own way? Well, because poor people could not afford it. But does it do anything you would pay to have it do if you looked at it seriously?
I stumbled across this interesting article from a venture capitalist’s point of view about what he sees wrong with our educational system. I thought you might enjoy this article.
Read this and think on it: if the students aren’t learning much, why do we pay to have then study it?
And the remedy to this starts with returning control of education to the states; better would be to local school district boards elected by local tax payers. Sure, that would result in some appalling school districts – although it is hard to get worse than we have now – but it also give us some good ones; and eliminating Federal institutions controlling education would be worth doing anyway.
I will repeat my offer: give me two divisions and the A-10’s with enough air supremacy forces to protect them, and I will eliminate the Caliphate within a year. By hat I mean of course I know generals who could do it if commanded to. The other factions in Iraq and Syria have not declared war on the US; ISIS has; and claims to be the legitimate ruler of the Moslem world, and the world in general. They need elimination, and we know who to give the conquered territory to. It would be costly, but not as costly as allowing Libya, Iraq, and Syrian to further down while ISIS grows and attracts recruits with successes.
License renewed? Air Force says it needs A-10 a bit longer, thanks | buffy willow
No comment needed, I think:
While we are looking at notions worth reading:
Soviet collapse due to fortunate Reagan-era error?
I came across a Professor Watkins who wrote that a budgeting mistake by the 1980’s OMB led to a greater increase in Pentagon spending than was originally directed by the Reagan’s administration.
As I don’t remember any reporting on this, I thought you might like to refresh us on this topic, especially if there’s anything to Watkin’s claims.
While economic stress on the Soviet Union was a key element in the Reagan strategy, it was deliberate; I had not heard that any part of it was accidental. Otherwise this is a reasonable account.
Long, interesting, and somewhat tragic.
“I do not expect this scroll will be read during my lifetime.”
You will see this here again after I have looked into it a bit; is the Cold coming? And when?
Cold Sun Rising.
Freedom is not free. Free men are not equal. Equal men are not free.