the daily doyle


Open Letter to Hillary Clinton
August 7, 2016, 6:24 pm
Filed under: General stuff, Political stuff

July 10, 2016

Doyle Mills

Clearwater, Florida

727.871.0970

dmills_pb@yahoo.com

 

Mrs. Clinton

Presidential Candidate

USA

 

Dear Mrs. Clinton:

I congratulate you for getting as far as you have in this presidential race. Your success is truly a laudable achievement. Yet, at this juncture, I believe that you should consider withdrawing from the presidential race, and further, withdrawing from public service in general.

This is being written on the 10th of July 2016, less than one week after the FBI made public their findings in the investigation of your handling of emails. The list of errors you made, the gross negligence and general carelessness is certainly embarrassing for you, and for those who are supporting you as president.

It appears now, not surprisingly, that you will not be charged with any crime. I’m no attorney and have no opinion of whether your failings to follow the law, state department policies, and common sense actually reach the threshold of criminal activity. That’s for the experts to decide and they have spoken. Enjoy your freedom.

However, and this is the point of my open letter, I believe that you should immediately, voluntarily suspend your campaign for the presidency and subsequently remove yourself completely from all political activities on all levels.

My reasoning is this. While you have avoided prosecution, you are clearly guilty of negligent handling of highly important and sensitive government information. You have proven yourself untrustworthy by the fact that you (or attorneys under your direction) deleted over 2000 emails related to your job as secretary of state, this violating the letter and spirit of our vital Freedom of Information Act statutes.

Mrs. Clinton, please understand the situation this creates for our country. Tens of millions are shocked that your prosecution will not go forward. They are calling en masse for the justice department to reconsider. This situation has the appearance of favoritism, as if we live in a country where there are two sets of laws – one for the rich and powerful connected, and another for the common man. In a country based on the rule of law and fair treatment for all, this is unacceptable.

Perhaps you deserve prosecution and perhaps you do not. In either case, you apparently will not be prosecuted. To the common man, it appears you have cheated the system through your connections and power and money. This creates discontent and strife and I fear will lead to a degradation of the foundation of our country itself.

I see only one solution. While it may not be the most pleasant for you, and may be considered tragic by your supporters, this is the only way.

Mrs. Clinton, end your campaign for president and withdraw from public service. Retire. Do charitable work. Do whatever you want. But leave any and all positions of power. Do it for the greater good. It will be better for you too. I promise.

We need to begin to heal as a nation, not become more divided. You have it in your power to begin the healing process. Do it Mrs. Clinton.

 

Sincerely,

Doyle Mills

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The Debt Ceiling for Dummies
July 30, 2011, 2:13 pm
Filed under: Political stuff

Warning, political content. If you continue reading past this point, your high blood pressure, confusion, any action you decide to take, and your possible slide into deep apathy is all YOUR responsibility. You have been warned.

At the time of this writing, the biggest news in the USA is that our federal government has spent itself out of money. We now need to raise the arbitrary “debt ceiling” before August 2nd or risk some form of catastrophe.

There are many opinions floating around about this situation and what will happen if we don’t allow the government to borrow more money. Our president (that I did NOT vote for by the way) was telling seniors a couple of weeks ago that he couldn’t promise that their Social Security checks would go out. The latest fear-mongering is mainly that if we don’t get more money, the country will not pay our bills and we’ll lose our good credit rating, interest rates will go up, bad things will happen, etc.

So what IS the real story? Considering that I’m no expert in the field of government, politics or economics, you’re probably in the wrong place to find out the truth. But you’re here, and you’ve invested the time in reading the first four paragraphs, you might as well stay and at least find out my thoughts on it.

The first thing to know is that the United States government has a debt ceiling, a limit for how much the federal government can owe. It’s like a credit limit on your MasterCard, except it’s an arbitrary number, set by Congress. As I understand, it’s a federal law. So, actually, we could borrow more money, exceeding that limit, but everyone involved would be guilty of violating that federal law. Well, basically, the government already spent the money that we are not allowed to borrow. They didn’t have any money to spend but the expenditures are already approved in other bills. We will have to pay this money, sooner or later. The way I see it, we have a debt limit (federal law) and our legislature and president unlawfully committed the country to spend more than the limit. It seems to me they have already violated the law and should be rounded up and jailed.

At the time of this writing, we’re at a bit of an impasse. The Republican-led House of Representatives (my boys!) has passed a bill with a solution involving raising the debt ceiling but only if we have some specific spending cuts and if Congress passes a balanced-budget amendment. Basically the amendment would say that a government cannot spend more than it takes in. This bill died immediately in the Senate and most likely the Senate (Democrat-controlled, not my boys) will craft their own bill and pass it. Then let’s see if the house will accept it and pass it.

Isn’t it just astounding that our legislators have to be forced to limit their spending to the amount of money we actually have. It just really seems like that would be common sense.

In our current position, everybody claims to agree that we need to reduce spending. I say “claims” very carefully because I really don’t believe it when coming from many of the Democrats who have demonstrated that spending is their answer to any problem. I suspect they are simply saying what they perceive will be popular and will enable them to be reelected.

There is sort of a hard-right position on this, which is: NO debt limit increase. Cut spending drastically, now.

And a hard-left position, which is: Raise the debt limit, keep spending. Party on!

The vast majority of people, the public and politicians alike, are somewhere in between these two positions. Personally I’m pretty close to the hard-right, except I do think we have to borrow a bit of money right now.

The Republicans demand spending cuts, no new taxes and a balanced budget amendment.

The Democrat position seems to be that we definitely have to raise the debt ceiling, that’s key. And President Obama has specifically stated that he will not accept a short-term solution; he wants this problem to go away until after the 2012 election. That’s kind of an interesting admission that he cares an awful lot about getting reelected and that his Democrat colleagues in Congress get reelected. I’m ok with that admission though, at least it’s honest and transparent.

The two sides fervently disagree on one point. They can’t even agree on what to CALL it, that’s how differing the opinion is. I have been listening to political radio, left and right, all week and I’ve heard 100+ mentions, from Democrats about “raising revenue” in such phrases as “solving our debt problem will require both spending cuts and raising revenue”. From the right I’ve heard many mentions about “raising taxes”, such as “this is no time to raise taxes on the American people”. They are talking about the same thing, I suppose, though it’s a confused subject.

Raising taxes is pretty easy to understand. There is a 10% tax on whatever and the government raises it to 11%, that is a raised tax. Or if the government comes up with a new tax on something never before taxed, that’s an example. There is also a modification of the tax code to remove special tax breaks, derisively called “loopholes”. For example, one of the items in the news lately is that Obama wants to remove an incentive in the tax code that was designed to encourage people to purchase corporate jets. Basically it allows the jet purchaser to take the tax deductions of the purchase over five years rather than the usual seven years. The smaller deductions would mean that the corporation would be paying more in taxes, in theory. I saw an estimate of $3 billion increase in revenue over a 10-year period from this change alone.

However, as I said, this is a confused subject. Our educated and sophisticated political elite can be pretty stupid. Increasing a tax 1% does not necessarily mean that revenue increases by 1%. In fact, it’s quite often the opposite. Making the aforementioned changed to jet depreciation schedule could mean fewer jets sold, which means less profit/less tax from Gulfstream, Boeing and rest, plus all their hundreds of suppliers. It means fewer employees, which leads to less income tax revenue. It means some employees get laid off and end up with a government check. So our tax increase could be a net revenue decrease.

Ronald Reagan and George W. Bush proved that decreasing taxes INCREASES government revenue. In fact, reducing taxes has stimulated economic activity and increased the tax revenue every time it’s been tried.

If the Democrats want a “revenue increase”, ok, let’s do it. Let’s decrease the tax rates, make it easier to do business here, and we’ll all make money. But alas, that’s not what they mean.

So what happens if we do not raise the debt ceiling and the country defaults on some of the money we’ve promised to pay. Good question. And basically, I don’t know. As I mentioned earlier, the main thing we’re being told now is that interest rates will be going up. I suppose that means that, in the future, it will be more difficult for the government to borrow money. According to Ron Paul, that’s a good thing.

Also according to Ron, we are already in default, to the American people, “First of all, politicians need to understand that without real change default is inevitable. In fact, default happens every day through monetary policy tricks. Every time the Federal Reserve engages in more quantitative easing and devalues the dollar, it is defaulting on the American people by eroding their purchasing power and inflating their savings away. The dollar has lost nearly 50% of its value against gold since 2008.”

However this current situation is resolved, it’s a very good thing that “debt ceiling” has now become a household word. I hope that the public’s awareness is increasing, that we will be paying attention, will be electing more capable representatives and that a new day of freedom and prosperity is dawning for these United States of America.



Global Cooling, um, Warming, um, Climate Change
June 18, 2011, 5:13 pm
Filed under: Political stuff

Maybe global warming isn’t so bad. Have you heard about the potential for an upcoming ICE AGE, global cooling to the max?

Read this, from Newsweek:

“The central fact is that after three quarters of a century of extraordinarily mild conditions, the earth’s climate seems to be cooling down. Meteorologists disagree about the cause and extent of the cooling trend, as well as over its specific impact on local weather conditions. But they are almost unanimous in the view that the trend will reduce agricultural productivity for the rest of the century.”

Before you start to panic and stock up on canned foods, you should know that the above article was published in Newsweek in 1975. Yes, in 1975, according to Newsweek, Scientists were almost unanimous in their belief that global temperatures were about to take a nose dive, and we were about to be in danger of starvation because the Earth was going to be too cold.

It’s logical that cooling temperatures would cause great famine and disaster on a large scale. Food grows in the warmer months and grows more in hotter climates.

Now, in 2011, the narrative is that the Earth is about to become too warm. The impending disaster is a little harder to understand than what would happen with global cooling. Higher temperatures mean more food production usually; so global warming is not a matter of famine and starvation. The big scare in global warming is that the polar ice will melt, raising ocean levels and endangering coastal areas, and that we will be threatened with increasing levels of violent weather – hurricanes, tornadoes, floods.

Is any of this true? Former President Al Gore made a movie about global warming. A lot of people saw it and he made a lot of money from it. He won a Nobel Prize for his efforts to convince people that global warming is real and is caused primarily by man’s activities.

Al Gore is a politician, an extremely liberal politician, not a scientist. I’m a writer, not a scientist. Neither Al nor I approach this subject from a purely scientific viewpoint. He has his agenda. I have mine.

Al Gore is an example of many of today’s politicians who promote the issue of global warming and who are using it to attempt broad sweeping changes in the way people live.

The issue of global warming is generally split along party lines. People and politicians on the left (the Democrat party in the USA) are generally those who speak out about global warming and push for drastic government action. Those on the right (Republicans, Libertarians, etc. in the USA) tend to concentrate more on other issues, like increasing opportunity for prosperity and promoting freedom.

The drastic change desired by the politicians is essentially a reduction in what are termed “greenhouse gases”, any gas that is believed to rise to the upper atmosphere and serve to contain the heat of the sun, warming the earth. The big push lately has not been so much to reduce gas emissions directly but to have larger companies and countries pay more for their emissions.

And what do I want? What is my selfish agenda? I do have one. I want a clean planet that I can enjoy, along with my fellow human beings, my friends the animals, and the plants that we all enjoy to look at and to eat. Simple. I am a true environmentalist. However, I’m not in favor of the vast sweeping changes and restrictions and wealth redistribution desired by the left. I also want opportunity to grow, prosper and enjoy life to the fullest. I want the freedom to hop on a jet and go to Hong Kong if I want to. I value a clean, pretty planet. I value freedom. What’s the point of a nice environment if we have no rights to enjoy it.

There may be such a thing as global warming. We have evidently been in a warming trend for a couple of decades. However, the Earth has a long history of cyclic changes, related to solar activity, volcanoes and many other factors not caused by man.

History speaks of growing crops in Greenland, which is now too cold. The Earth has experienced many ice ages. It’s complete folly to look at the last couple hundred years of temperatures and decide that this should be the temperature from here on out.

I like to listen to this reading from Charleton Heston. It’s from Michael Crichton, author of Jurrassic Park. Heston read it on the Rush Limbaugh show some years ago, and I believe Rush plays it again every Earth Day. The message is essentially that the Earth has been here a long damn time and will continue to be here a long damn time, that our beliefs that we’re somehow going to destroy the Earth is illogical. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PGodDOLvBxw

Once upon a time, London (and just about every other city) was a dirty, sooty place. Coal, wood and oil were burned for heat. Now London is much cleaner, nicer place. What happened? Government intervention to limit emissions, which would have essentially created “cooling” in all the houses of London? No, it wasn’t the government. It was the free market, creating better solutions for heating and energy production.

So perhaps if the politicians wanted a cleaner planet, they’d look at what worked before, the free market. Perhaps what they really desire is more control, less growth and prosperity.

I have no quarrel with the idea of using energy more efficiently, as a personal choice. If you’re going down to the store on the corner for a quart of milk, ride the bike, don’t drive the Hummer. But even if you drive the Hummer around the block all day, just for fun, don’t let anybody tell you that the planet is falling apart and it’s your fault.

As an aside, “global warming” as a movement has changed to “global climate change”. Some data in the last couple of years seems to indicate that our warming period is coming to an end. But the movement still has an agenda.

Everyone, enjoy life, enjoy the planet, be smart with our resources but use all you need and want.

-Doyle



I Love Milton Friedman
June 17, 2011, 12:25 am
Filed under: General stuff, Political stuff

With such a definitive title, it’s pretty obvious this article isn’t going to be especially critical of Milton Friedman.

Anyone reading the title probably had one of the follow thoughts:

1. Yeah man, righteous, Milton was the grooviest.

2. What? He was the worst – wrong, wrong, wrong, and partially responsible for the bloodshed and violence of the Pinochet regime in Chile.

3. Who?

Those in category 3, who didn’t even know the name Milton Friedman, need a better education. Mr. Friedman was an economist and also a statistician, a Nobel Prize winner, from back in the day when winning a Nobel Prize meant something. He would be considered very, very conservative by today’s meaning of the word yet he often said, “I’m no conservative; I’m a liberal; I believe in freedom.”

For category 2 folks, you have even further to go. You have to UN-learn what you already know and then take a fresh look at the greatest economist of the modern era. I’m looking forward to comments from anyone in this category.

And category 1, we’re on the same page. You get it. In terms of economics, freedom, government and a true respect and love for people, Friedman had no peers.

Just to get the dry stuff out of the way, Friedman was born in 1912 and died in 2006. He was chiefly an economist and Professor of Economics, teaching at the University of Chicago for decades. He was an adviser to President Ronald Reagan.

“The only way that has ever been discovered to have a lot of people cooperate together voluntarily is through the free market. And that’s why it’s so essential to preserving individual freedom.” -Milton Friedman

He advocated free-market solutions to just about everything. He was opposed to almost all government intervention. As such, he strongly opposed the popular Keynesian view of economics, which advised that governments should borrow money and spend big to get the economy going in times of economic hardship. Those who call themselves “liberal” generally opposed and sometimes even hated Milton Friedman.

Friedman was involved in the economic recovery of Chile throughout the 70s and 80s. Through public talks of his own in Chile and through Chileans who studied under him at the University of Chicago, Friedman’s economic free-market principles worked their way into the culture there and led to a faster economic growth in Chile than any other Latin American country through that period. Unfortunately part of that time, Chile was ruled by a brutal military government and those who opposed Friedman have attempted to blame him for various acts of violence and human rights violations.

Though he’s gone, he left a legacy of his books and many writings. There are also many videos, from his many television appearances and lectures on college campuses. Many are available on YouTube.

If you’re in category 2 or 3 as described above, you can begin your education, or re-education, simply by searching for his name on YouTube.

Friedman definitely holds some controversial viewpoints such as legalizing drugs and (his critics’ favorite) eliminating the requirement that physicians be licensed. You’ll have to read his book Capitalism and Freedom, or listen to his lecture on the subject to understand why.

This short article is not intended to fully cover Friedman’s views, only to generate interest and to get the readers to look further into the subject, to find their own agreements and disagreements.

In the videos particularly and in books as well, one thing comes through very clearly. Friedman has a genuine respect and love for people. He has unending confidence that people will do the right thing if given the freedom to do so, a vast departure from the common belief among many today that man will only do good if forced by an oppressive government.

I encourage all readers to look further into the principles of this great man, Milton Friedman.

-Doyle



Principles Versus People
June 7, 2011, 1:13 am
Filed under: Political stuff

The problem with politics today is that there is far too much focus on the person, the candidate, the face, and a wanton disregard of principles.

Well, it is not THE problem, there are lots of problems. But this is certainly one of them.

Those who call themselves “liberals” hated George W. Bush with a vehement visceral passion we just haven’t seen for a long time.

The same group loved Barack Obama with an equal amount of passion.

We hear endless reports of PEOPLE in politics – Sarah Palin, Hillary Clinton, Ron Paul, Mit Romney, on and on and on. We hear little real discussion of the issues involved. The issues are mentioned but given scant attention.

In our last US presidential election, everyone knew in great detail about Sarah Palin’s wardrobe, her daughter’s pregnancy and the fact that she said she could see Alaska from her house (which she didn’t, by the way, that was Tina Fey on Saturday Night Live). However, think about it. Do you know, or did you ever know what Sarah Palin’s plan was to save Social Security, her position on securing the border, her policies to get the economy going. I’ll bet you don’t know.

Barack Obama promised hope and change and a new direction. But did he actually say what that direction was? Oh, he was specific about a few items, that polled well – “close Gitmo”, “get out of Iraq and Afghanistan”, “affordable healthcare”, but these were buzzwords, not concrete plans.

This is a problem across the board but I think there is a huge gap between Republicans (or more accurately conservatives) and Democrats on this one. As I see it, conservatives at large care a lot more about principles and less about the person. Democrats seem to care more about the people.

There was a fascinating radio segment during our last presidential election season, where “shock jock” Howard Stern sent one of his crew (Sal) out to interview Obama supporters. They went to a principally Democrat community where basically EVERYBODY supported Obama. But here’s the twist – the interviewer fed them John McCain’s positions, exactly opposite what Obama said he wanted to do and the people were all for it. It was proof positive that they supported Obama, the person, and were oblivious to principles. It’s quite entertaining. http://wizbangblog.com/content/2008/10/12/howard-stern-interviews-obama-supporters.php

In my experience, conservatives and to a large degree, Republicans (no, they are not quite the same thing) care about principles, doing what they believe to be right, not people. We don’t normally put our faith in people. Once in a while there will be a shining star that we revere but even then it’s never the person, it’s the fact that they embrace the principles we like. Reagan is the best example. We didn’t care about Reagan as a person, until we saw him apply the principles, then he’s been our golden boy ever since.

Obama, and the other side, Democrats and people who call themselves liberal, are a different story. The left embraced Obama before they had any idea if he had any principles at all, and they will go through all kinds of mental antics to try to make whatever he does somehow sound like a good idea.

So what’s important, the personality or the principle?



Trump Trumps Obama
April 28, 2011, 11:07 pm
Filed under: Political stuff

Are we in the presidential election season already?

It’s far too early to pick overall winners and losers, that’s for sure. But I think it’s safe to say that the first skirmish or battle has been fought. And the victory in this first battle goes to a man who isn’t even officially running for president, Donald Trump.

Mr. Trump started making noise a couple of months ago about President Obama’s birth certificate or lack thereof. Predictably he was painted as a kook, someone with no grip on reality but much of the media. But he sure got a lot of airtime, that in itself is a victory.

He called for Obama to release his birth certificate, just “why not release it?” That was his message. He didn’t even vaguely claim that Obama might not have been born in the country. Rather he just stated with some level of confidence that there must be something on that document that the president did not want the public to know. He stated that maybe Barack had a middle name that might raise some eyebrows, like Mohammed, or that maybe the person we’ve been led to believe was the father really wasn’t. You know the old saying, “mama’s baby is papa’s maybe”. Trump mused that perhaps the religion was listed as Muslim. None of these would have disqualified Obama from being president. Yet the nagging doubt of what might be there resonated with people. Victory number two, a minor one.

And then, this week, early one morning, the Obama white house drops the bomb. Unexpectedly, with no advance warning, Obama releases his birth certificate. And there is nothing really noteworthy on it. Oh there are some very nice inconsistencies for the “birther” people to seize on and keep the controversy going. See thesmokinggun.com for a list of the things that will keep the blogosphere abuzz at least until the next presidential election. Actually I suspect that maybe the Obama spin machine intentionally made the document look forged just to keep this controversy going and label anyone who questions the document a nut.

The news media that morning was of one voice, stating that Trump has been made to look like a fool, now that there really was nothing damaging on the document. Some mused that this issue was so key to Trump’s potential presidential campaign that he had lost all hope of being a contender. But Donald Trump doesn’t lose easily. He is known for saying, “I like thinking big. If you’re going to be thinking anything, you might as well think big.” -Donald Trump

As I understand the story, Mr. Trump was in his helicopter when he heard the news about the birth certificate. How cool is that to have a helicopter? Anyway, when he heard the story he called for a press conference immediately and delivered the press conference right at the airport with his helicopter in the background. And here is the real victory. He applied a classic Martial Arts move, taking his opponent’s momentum and adding to it. He thanked Obama for bending to his will and took full credit for what no one else had been able to do, get the president to release this document. This controversy started when Hillary Clinton called for him to release it when the two were bitter rivals in the Democrat primary. Trump was able to portray himself as the guy who could get it done. And just to carry it further, he then, in the same press conference, he planted this seed of suspicion, “what took him so long?”. He also asked President Obama to release his school records and transcripts and thus started a whole new round of “what’s in there that he doesn’t want us to see?” Obama finds himself in the same place as before, appearing to have something to hide.

The way I score it, that’s Trump 1, Obama 0.

If I had been advising Obama, I probably would have told him to release the document the first time the controversy came up. I absolutely would not have advised him to release it now. To do so under pressure just makes him appear weak, reactionary, not a leader. Obama’s message was that we have bigger problems right now than this, let’s move on. But, unfortunately for him, the controversy remains.

This is going to be an interesting presidential election.

Doyle