Thursday, March 08, 2007

Government Grants?

When I glanced at my blog today I noticed that the advertisement said "Free Government Grants". I considered, in that moment, emailing Google to complain about the obvious disassociation from the nature of my content. Instead, I think I'll educate my readers (if there are any) on the reason I disagree with government grants. That's right, I don't want those people who want to start businesses getting grants from the U. S. Government.

First, however, I think it is appropriate to analyze loans as a whole. Loans, by nature, permit someone to borrow money they don't have but need or want. In exchange, the person recieving the money has to pay it back within a specified time period with interest (extra money for the person they borrowed it from based on how long before they paid it back). Loans are extremely easy to obtain for any individuals because that is how banks make money and banks need lots of money to cover the interest they pay their patrons. Isn't that a cool little system? All that started without any government intervention.

Now, grants are also given out by the free market. Don't believe me? Do a scholarship search on google. There are millions of scholarships in existence for college students, and many more grants and charitable organizations that pay cash. Grants, by definition, are money that is given out freely with no need to pay it back, and no interest.

Now what about those Federal Government Grants. Millions of these exist also. In fact, so many of these exist that the .gov websites don't even contain information on every one. But the free market does. As it should be obvious from that little web ad, somebody has collected a list and detailed information about every Federal Government Grant in existence. He then charges you a fee to use his search service and find a government grant that fits you, so that you can get this "money that is given out freely with no need to pay it back, and no interest". Sounds like a nice system right? WRONG!

In order to understand where I'm coming from, we have to return to our old lessons. First, where does the government get its money? From taxation. Who gets taxed? Everyone not in the U. S. Government (ironically enough). So the government gets its money from you. These grants come from you, WITHOUT YOUR PERMISSION. Heck, the government cares so little about getting your permission that you have to pay guys like the above ad just to see a few of the ones that are out there! We went over the separation of charities before. Here's an example of government charity. There are literally millions of charities in the U. S. Do we really need to add the federal government to that list? (don't let me forget to discuss dispersement of charitable funds, the major argument for Federal charity)

So, quite frankly, these grants are Theft. Moreover, if you remember from our much earlier lessons, they are not listed in the U. S. Constitution and are, therefore, breaking our social contract. Anyhow, I was just a little flustered by that. I bet this post will incite more government grant ads, and people searching for information on government grants might read it and learn a little. But that might be wishful thinking.


Giving money and power to government is like giving whiskey and car keys to teenage boys. – P.J. O'Rourke

I believe that every individual is naturally entitled to do as he pleases with himself and the fruits of his labor, so far as it in no way interferes with any other men's rights. – Abraham Lincoln

Thursday, February 22, 2007

Discrimination Laws Discriminate?

For a while I thought I was moving at a reasonable pace, but it is occuring to me that what we have gone over so far is so extremely basic that we still haven't really gotten anywhere yet. So, we understand government theft. We understand how welfare recipients are associated with that, but we have not established an essential immorality of the people, simply of the system. Why? Because people are not inherrently immoral.

Today, I think it would be good to analyze discrimination, that terrible word. I suppose a definition is relevant, since so many people misuse the term. Until modern verbiage changed the term (much more recently than you think) it meant:

discriminate - to note or observe a difference; distinguish accurately

So discrimination is something you do every day. You pick out your car in a parking lot. You are discriminating right now at the difference between this word and the next. Quite simply, to discriminate is only the act of observation, not of action. Now, the word has recently been noted to mean:

discriminate - to make a distinction in favor of or against a person or thing on the basis of the group, class, or category to which the person or thing belongs rather than according to actual merit; show partiality

Thus, discrimination has come to mean an action, specifically, treating someone different based on the observation made. This is because of politics, but I'm not going to get into that right now. Instead, we understand that there can't be anything wrong with noticing that there is a difference in skin color between two people, let's analyze whether or not there is something wrong with treating them differently based on that observation.

In the formally ethical sense, ABSOLUTELY NOT. In my personal opinion, ABSOLUTELY NOT. Even the law currently says ABSOLUTELY NOT. I'd bet that most of you feel exactly the same way. But how would a government legislate such actions? It seems very difficult to monitor the observations people make without a camera in their heads. So what does the government do to stop people from making decisions based on observations?

There are thousands of ways that politicians have found. Among the most popular of which are "wrongful termination" and "affirmative action". The direct result of these has not, however, been the elimination of discrimination, but the expansion of it. Let me reiterate:

Discrimination laws increase, not decrease, discrimination.

That doesn't make sense? Of course it does. In order to identify what people are thinking, the government must first discriminate (observation) which people are in which categories. Then, it must discriminate (treat differently) and tell their employers either to hire them or not, based on solely the color of their skin. However, it goes much deeper than that. Discriminating practices on the part of the government have increased the discrimination involved in employment. Employers, afraid of government interaction, discriminate on their own and avoid not hiring, or firing employees who are of specific characteristics lain out by the government. At the moment, I'll leave the specifics on those characteristics for another post because that discussion will be lengthy.

In any case, the major thing to take away from this post is that discrimination laws do not minimize discrimination,but necessarily maximize it.


It is not the business of government to make men virtuous or religious, or to preserve the fool from the consequences of his own folly. Government should be repressive no further than is necessary to secure liberty by protecting the equal rights of each from aggression on the part of others, and the moment governmental prohibitions extend beyond this line they are in danger of defeating the very ends they are intended to serve. – Henry George

Thursday, February 08, 2007

How do you view God?

What is it that people around me think about our creator. I've noticed that it's not what's on the surface. Most religions claim a loving, caring God. This is the God I believe in. What, I ask do you believe in? Now, hold on, don't answer yet. I've got more to study first.

When you see someone on the street, apparently homeless, and looking all-and-all down on his luck, what do you think? Me, personally, I think that he needs to get a job. But hey, I'm not always a nice guy. Does that mean I wouldn't give him money? Not necessarily, but it does mean that I will be handing him a business card and inviting him to apply for a job where I work. What do you think? How tragic? Hardly.
Beggars make more money than I do! And it'ts all tax free! These people make more than enough on the street to find reasonable clothing, get a job and a basic apartment.

So what do you think when you see that someone's house was destroyed by a hurricane on the news? This is obviously more close to home here in the states with Florida and Louisiana lately. A lot of people think "that's so sad! Somebody should do something" and they choose to do nothing themselves. They are "too busy" or "can't afford" or something to help. Is that how things go with you? Do you get depressed when you see that? I think that they should move and shouldn't be living on a coastline in the first place.

What do you think when you see thieves entering your house? It seems the rationale changes here. Often people get upset, or even angry at this. Most of the time there is a risk that someone (homeowner or thief) will be shot as a result of such an incident. I know that I get angry, but I also understand that he is just another form of that beggar we saw above.

If you responded to the above much like everyone else does, then you might want to pause to think about what that means about your God. If those people that are disheveled are there by a stroke of bad luck, then your God is not just. If those people who's houses are destroyed because they live on a fault line need federal aid, then your God is not merciful. If your God is not just or merciful, he is not loving and caring, but cruel. The God that punishes those who are undeserving is not a God at all, but Satan himself. God is just and loving, so God gives people lemons from time to time to return to them the sense of humble acknowledgement that we all need to remember. If that thief deserves a bullet in his leg and not the money in his pocket, why do these others who recieve money that is stolen by force (welfare and FEMA in this case) deserve anything less? Think about how you really view your deity.


One of the greatest delusions in the world is the hope that the evils in this world are to be cured by legislation. – Thomas B. Reed (1886)

The more corrupt the state, the more it legislates. – Tacitus

Thursday, January 25, 2007

How do you make people do stuff?

The desire to help others is a major part of everyone's concept of morality. I support anyone who would like to see wonderful things done in society. People often say things to me like "I want to protect the environment" and I smile in agreement. I want to help the environment like everyone else. I want to see other people help the environment, just like you do. The environment is one of my favorite reasons that people argue a need for government intervention. "Look at those poor kittens being killed in China!" Yes, it is disgusting.

In fact, I agree with every one of you in almost every way you want to help others. I don't have a desire to cause others anguish. Quite the opposite. The reason I espouse Libertarian philosophy is because I don't want to see others in anguish. The simple fact of the matter is that there are two ways to convince people to stop doing things they shouldn't be or start doing things they should. The question I present to you all today is "which one do you support?".

What are these two ways? Let's see, hypotheticals are fun for this. Let's say you want a friend to be your designated driver this evening. Often, you appeal to them on their emotional level "PLEASE!!!" but this isn't always effective, especially if you don't know them very well. The easiest way to convince them is to offer them money. "I'll fill up your tank!" This is the first way to convince someone to do something they don't want to do.

The second scenario involves someone attempting to rob you. When a man comes up to you in a mask asking for your money, what does he use to persuade you? He uses fear, through the initiation of force. He will hit you, point a gun at you, or hold a knife to your throat. This is the second way to convince someone to do something they have no desire to do.

There are no other ways to convince someone to do something they do not want to do. There is offering them value (money) and threatening force.

So, the question I leave with you all today is, "Which do you support?"


One of the greatest delusions in the world is the hope that the evils in this world are to be cured by legislation. – Thomas B. Reed (1886)

Government is not reason; it is not eloquence; it is force. Like fire, it is a dangerous servant and a fearful master. – George Washington

Wednesday, August 30, 2006

Government Mandated Charity

So I promised a deeper study of charity. Since it's been a while, I suppose I kind of owe you. We're going to look at charity in the form of welfare. Well, let's stop for a second. That's a funny word, welfare, because of where it comes from. The word "welfare" originally had nothing to do with charity. In fact, the definition is essentially the equivalent of that of well-being. A parent would provide for his/her family's welfare. Providing for their well-being, not their charity. The term welfare is used for the government charity in the US because of its association with a clause in the Constitution.

Article I, Section 8.

The Congress shall have power to lay and collect taxes, duties, imposts and excises, to pay the debts and provide for the common defense and general welfare of the United States

In fact, by using this term in this manner, many people have come to think it reversed. They believe the term as it is written in the Constitution is a direct advocation of government charity, as opposed to the term being used afterward to refer to charity. If you read the clause without the charity mind-set surrounding it, it takes on a different tone. Try it, trade well-being for welfare in the sentence.

The Congress shall have power to lay and collect taxes, duties, imposts and excises, to pay the debts and provide for the common defense and general well-being of the United States

In fact, the whole of Section 8 is rather extensive. This is not it's entirity. It is only the opening clause. There are 17 other clauses, or sub-clauses, following it, not including the second half of the clause that I have omitted for our purposes.

Now that we have clarified the proper reading of this particular clause, we see no specific mention of charity anywhere in the Constitution. Now, whether there is an implied mention of it somewhere is a debate we'll set aside for a time. It is, largely irrelavent. No specific mention of charity exists in the Constitution, so the government's choice to give out charity, if not downright unconstitutional, is not mandated.

So, let's analyze the logic behind government charity. First, this is your money. It is not the government's money. This is something that needs to be perfectly clear to begin with, because it is so often forgotten. Government cannot give money it doesn't have. Instead, it takes tax dollars and gives them out as charity. So, this is your money, your neighbor's money, my money, and everyone else in the country. Unlike money you donate to the Red Cross, these are not voluntary contributions. If you don't pay your taxes, you will be arrested and jailed...after all of your things are confiscated to "pay back taxes".

So, let's examine how the government decides to give out this money. Well, this could take months (on this blog at least) to fully examine. You can get all the details at government websites though. The basics are "need-based". The government gives money to those who don't have it, or at least, those who the government thinks don't have it.

"between 1 July 2004 and 30 June 2005[...] There were 3446 convictions for welfare fraud involving $41.2 million in debts."

So, now we know that the government also does a bad job at it. The government is "trying" though. Isn't that the point? Wait, the government doesn't have to try! We've been over this. There is no mandate for charity in the Constitution. Therefore, the government could stop taking my money and giving it to the wrong people and not be doing anything wrong! On that note, I think we'll leave this topic for now. This can continue to expand, so I will come back to it. Anywho, next tiime we'll try and close up something else and get us moving in a new direction.


There is no virtue in compulsory government charity, and there is no virtue in advocating it. A politician who portrays himself as "caring" and "sensitive" because he wants to expand the government's charitable programs is merely saying that he's willing to try to do good with other people's money. Well, who isn't? And a voter who takes pride in supporting such programs is telling us that he'll do good with his own money – if a gun is held to his head. – P.J. O'Rourke

One of the greatest delusions in the world is the hope that the evils in this world are to be cured by legislation. – Thomas B. Reed (1886)

Saturday, August 12, 2006

Religious Quiz

I haven't had a whole lot of free time (ok, I've had next to none) lately so I figured I'd drop something a little different this time. Bravo to whomever created this quiz. It's impressively accurate. Rare for religious quizes. Yes, this is my religion of choice, and contrary to popular belief regarding Libertarians and Capitalists, I am a DEEPLY religious person. It is because I am so deeply religious that I stand so firmly behind the principles of Liberty in my everyday life. I think everyone would benefit from a little religion now and then.

You scored as Buddhism. Your beliefs most closely resemble those of Buddhism. Do more research on Buddhism and possibly consider becoming Buddhist, if you are not already.

In Buddhism, there are Four Noble Truths: (1) Life is suffering. (2) All suffering is caused by ignorance of the nature of reality and the craving, attachment, and grasping that result from such ignorance. (3) Suffering can be ended by overcoming ignorance and attachment. (4) The path to the suppression of suffering is the Noble Eightfold Path, which consists of right views, right intention, right speech, right action, right livelihood, right effort, right-mindedness, and right contemplation. These eight are usually divided into three categories that base the Buddhist faith: morality, wisdom, and samadhi, or concentration. In Buddhism, there is no hierarchy, nor caste system; the Buddha taught that one's spiritual worth is not based on birth.



















Which religion is the right one for you? (new version)
created with

Sunday, June 25, 2006

An analysis of Money

Giving money out freely is, more or less, the American way today.  We, who are more prosperous than most, find ourselves obligated to give money to those in need.  Organizations like the American Red Cross, the Salvation Army, thrift stores, and many others have been built around this concept of charity.  In fact, many for-profit organizations have found that they have to give to charity to keep themselves looking positive in the public eye.  So let's do some analysis of this.

In 2005, Americans gave a total of 260.28 BILLION DOLLARS in charity contributions.  In fact, this is not unusual.  There was no boost from Katrina despite all its news, instead it just was a beneficiary.  Americans are very generous, and I have more proof. Within just 1 month of September 11th, Americans gave, to New York alone, over 1 BILLION dollars.  These are massive charitable contributions, even when today we have over 8.4 TRILLION dollars in national debt.

It's interesting to me that people look at these numbers and can even concieve of them as "small".  Therefore, the rest of this post is to explain the actual amount of money that we are dealing with.  Let's start with 1 billion dollars.  This is more money than most of you will ever see in your life.  Let's look at it more detailed.  The vast majority of this country will not make this amount of money if you put together every dollar they've made in their entire lives.  In fact, if you take 500 people's lives, odds are they're combined total income from birth to death will not equal 1 billion dollars.  That's considering the increased income of today.

What about that $260.28 billion?  Well, now that you understand the $1 billion, let's try and concieve of the above, which is just one single year's contribution total.  Let's look at it in more reasonable numbers.  Let's assume that a family of 4 buys about $100 per week in groceries.  In this case, 1 million families could be fed for over 50 years.  That's feeding the entire population of the Kentucky for half of a century, and having food left over!!!  That's a LOT of money!

Now that 8.4 trillion is my favorite of the numbers, because the US government has been trying like crazy to talk it down and find ways to make it sound smaller.  Note, first, that this is only the actual debt.  This is not how much we owe, but how much we owe to other countries after calling in ALL debts owed to us.  This doesn't include how much is owed internally for purchasing things like military technology from companies like Lockheed Martin, or how much is owed assuming we don't call in debts from other countries (who may or may not be able to pay those debts).  What's so fantastic about this number is that most Americans have no idea how big this number is.  So let's try to view things from a more effective perspective.

First, to help analyze this, consider this.  If you were to try to count to 8.4 trillion, you would die first.  In fact, you would die several times over first.  It is so massive that it is hard to percieve, so let's try to examine it differently.  Let's try something everyone can understand, houses.  Let's assume that the average house costs $100,000.  Now, this is somewhat of a low number, but it's close enough for our studies.  So, let's divide this debt into houses.  That's 84,000,000 houses, 84 million!  Ok, so a million's a big number too and that still may not quite be clear.  So let's clarify it further.  Assuming 1 person per house (Yeah RIGHT!!)  if we were to pay off that debt tomorrow, we would make 84 million people homeless, or about 1/3 of the ENTIRE population of the US.  That's right, and consider that I'm lowballing here!  In order to pay off that national debt (again just the excess export debt) we would have to make 1/3 of the entire US population homeless.

Next time we'll study charity from a different angle.


One of the greatest delusions in the world is the hope that the evils in this world are to be cured by legislation. – Thomas B. Reed (1886)

Giving money and power to government is like giving whiskey and car keys to teenage boys. –
P.J. O'Rourke