Thursday, September 08, 2005


Amid the constant negative whining and criticism coming from the Left via the media, we hear almost nothing about what to do next in hurricane-hit areas -- except of course calls for even more bureaucracy. So Jack Kemp's thinking is refreshingly constructive. Excerpt below:

"There are a few simple things Congress could do immediately to facilitate the rebuilding effort in the private sector. For example, the entire storm region could be turned into an enterprise zone, suspending burdensome federal regulations, such as the Davis-Bacon Act and the Jones Act. Also, onerous regulations imposed by the Federal Trade Commission, the Federal Communication Commission and the Environmental Protection Agency could be suspended.

Certain taxes, such as gasoline taxes, telephone taxes and others could be suspended for the duration of the emergency. Individuals living in the storm-affected region and companies doing business there could be relieved of the outrageously complex and economically destructive federal tax code.

For example, the individual income tax and the death tax could be suspended for people living in the storm region. Rules relating to retirement accounts could be relaxed to give people access to capital.

Small businesses could be relieved of payroll taxes, and companies in the region subject to the corporate income tax could be relieved of the most economically damaging features of the current corporate tax code. They could, for example be allowed to write off all investment spending (e.g. spending on plant, equipment, structures, machinery and technology) immediately rather than having to depreciate it over a period of years. In fact, now would be an ideal time to allow companies to choose to be taxed under a simplified reformed system of taxation, the blueprints of which are well developed and could be enacted into law in short time. To further increase access to capital, the capital gains tax could be eliminated.

Displaced individuals could be given education vouchers they could use to enroll their children in schools anywhere in the country. Similarly, vouchers might be used to transform low-income and public housing to give people property rights and pride of ownership in their dwellings. Housing vouchers, for example, could be used not only for homeowners whose houses were destroyed but also for renters and Section 8 housing residents to make a down payment on a house anywhere in the country.... "

"Marginal Revolution" also has two posts on privatising flood prevention and FEMA (the Federal Emergency Management Agency). See here and here



An excellent point: "New Orleans's Mayor Ray Nagin is up for re-election in February 2006, Gov. Kathleen Blanco and Lt. Gov. Mitch Landrieu in November 2007, and Sen. Mary Landrieu in November 2008. All four are Democrats. When they point the finger at the federal government for whatever went wrong in the Katrina response, remember that they are fighting for their political lives."

If you have not seen it already, read Brad De Long's posting about the "plan" for dealing with a hurricane disaster that the State and local Democrat representatives for New Orleans had ready. The "plan" consisted of telling the poor: "You're on your own". But only the Mormons were in fact ready to look after their own. So that makes it all George Bush's fault, of course. There is more on that here.

A realistic black guy's take on what happened in New Orleans. Excerpt: "The pictures I have been seeing are of people - black people - stealing shoes, diapers, and television sets. Not food and definitely not water. Not unless the armfuls of clothing, shoes, and appliances I see people wading through the streets with count as food and water. Now, if all the looters were looting out of desperation, how desperate were the guy and girls I saw toting several boxes of size 13 Nikes? How desperate was the fellow with the stack of diapers? What, is it that he has several babies at home suffering from loose bowels? .... Desperation? Yeah, right. I am beginning to believe that black people, no matter where in the world they are, are cursed with a genetic predisposition to steal, murder, and create mayhem. The entire firearm department at a Wal-Mart department store, for example, was cleaned out and the looters used the stolen weapons to rob people. How low is that? Everybody is suffering and the black people would seek to rob people who are suffering just like themselves."

Some wise words from Thomas Sowell: "During good times or bad, the police cannot police everybody. They can at best control a small segment of society. The vast majority of people have to control themselves. That is where the great moral traditions of a society come in -- those moral traditions that it is so hip to sneer at, so cute to violate, and that our very schools undermine among the young, telling them that they have to evolve their own standards, rather than following what old fuddy duddies like their parents tell them. Now we see what those do-it-yourself standards amount to in the ugliness and anarchy of New Orleans. In a world where people flaunt their "independence," their "right" to disregard moral authority, and sometimes legal authority as well, the tragedy of New Orleans reminds us how utterly dependent each one of us is for our very lives on millions of other people we don't even see. Thousands of people in New Orleans will be saved because millions of other people they don't even know are moved by moral obligations to come to their rescue from all corners of this country. The things our clever sophisticates sneer at are ultimately all that stand between any of us and utter devastation.

Rebecca Hagelin has similar observations. Excerpt: "Why do we as a nation produce and embrace a pop culture that glorifies rap and hip-hop music, that teaches men to prey upon women and engage in senseless violence, and that is now, according to the Kaiser Family Foundation's recent survey on media and youth, the number-one music choice of teenagers from all races and every socio-economic status? .... Why is it not only common knowledge but also accepted practice that organized crime and gangs hold much of the power and control much of the commerce in New Orleans? Will New Orleans return to business as usual? Or will you uplift the entire community by throwing out the thugs and their vile wares for which New Orleans is infamous? When you think about it, the values of the thugs involved in the post-Katrina crime wave really weren't all that different from those that have flooded sections of New Orleans with societal sewage for years."

For more postings, see EDUCATION WATCH, GREENIE WATCH, POLITICAL CORRECTNESS WATCH, GUN WATCH, SOCIALIZED MEDICINE. Mirror sites here, here, here, here and here. And on Social Security see Dick McDonald


Practically all policies advocated by the Left create poverty. Leftists get the government to waste vast slabs of the country's labour-force on bureaucracy and paperwork and so load the burden of providing most useful goods and services onto fewer and fewer people. So fewer useful goods and services are produced to go around. That is no accident. The Left love the poor. The Left need the poor so that they can feel good by patronizing and "helping" them. So they do their best to create as many poor people as possible.

The Big Lie of the late 20th century was that Nazism was Rightist. It was in fact typical of the Leftism of its day. It was only to the Right of Stalin's Communism. The very word "Nazi" is a German abbreviation for "National Socialist" (Nationalsozialistisch)

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