Missouri's 7th District, U.S. House of Representatives
Bringing LIBERTY to Capitol Hill -- 2010 OZARKS VIRTUAL TOWN HALL
Saturday Morning, April 17th, 2010, 10:30am
A Discussion of The President's Saturday Morning Radio Address
Click here to listen to the April 17th, 2010 Ozarks Virtual Town Hall
Notes and Summary of the President's Weekly Radio Address:
Holding Wall Street Accountable
The White House Press Office: – In his weekly address, President Barack Obama said that in the wake of the economic crisis Wall Street reform is too important an issue for inaction. The plan moving through Congress will end bailouts, hold Wall Street accountable, and protect consumers, taxpayers and the economy from the kind of abuses that helped bring about the economic crisis. Every day without reform, those abuses, and the system which allowed them, remain in place. It is time to move forward with real reforms for Wall Street. (continued
America's Founders envisioned the American people, acting as businessmen, humanitarians, and missionaries, engaging in commercial and charitable activities around the world, bringing peace and receiving the admiration of the world.
"The great rule of conduct for us, in regard to foreign nations is in extending our commercial relations to have with them as little political connection as possible."
— Washington, Farewell Address (1796) [Washington’s emphasis]
"I deem [one of] the essential principles of our government, and consequently [one] which ought to shape its administration,…peace, commerce, and honest friendship with all nations, entangling alliances with none."
— Jefferson, First Inaugural Address (1801)
Bush's unconstitutional military invasion of Iraq has destroyed Christianity in that country.
Under Saddam Hussein's secular government, Christians in Iraq had greater freedom than in most other Arab nations, and one of the largest Christian populations in the Muslim world was in Iraq.
Iraq is now an Islamic theocracy under Sharia law. The Christian population has been destroyed. Christian Churches are burned and terrorized with impunity.
Obama is following in Bush's unconstitutional, anti-Christian footsteps.
There were many causes of the turmoil that ripped through our economy over the past two years. But above all, this crisis was caused by failures in the financial industry. What is clear is that this crisis could have been avoided if Wall Street firms were more accountable, if financial dealings were more transparent, and if consumers and shareholders were given more information and authority to make decisions.
Investors could have known all they needed to know. They should have known more about the investments they were making. Personal responsibility, not a government nanny, is the answer to failed investment.
But that did not happen. And that’s because special interests have waged a relentless campaign to thwart even basic, common-sense rules – rules to prevent abuse and protect consumers. In fact, the financial industry and its powerful lobby have opposed modest safeguards against the kinds of reckless risks and bad practices that led to this very crisis.
The consequences of this failure of responsibility – from Wall Street to Washington – are all around us: 8 million jobs lost, trillions in savings erased, countless dreams diminished or denied. I believe we have to do everything we can to ensure that no crisis like this ever happens again. That’s why I’m fighting so hard to pass a set of Wall Street reforms and consumer protections. A plan for reform is currently moving through Congress.
Here’s what this plan would do. First, it would enact the strongest consumer financial protections ever. It would put consumers back in the driver’s seat by forcing big banks and credit card companies to provide clear, understandable information so that Americans can make financial decisions that work best for them.
Next, these reforms would bring new transparency to financial dealings. Part of what led to this crisis was firms like AIG and others making huge and risky bets – using things like derivatives – without accountability. Warren Buffett himself once described derivatives bought and sold with little oversight as “financial weapons of mass destruction.” That’s why through reform we’d help ensure that these kinds of complicated financial transactions take place on an open market. Because, ultimately, it is a marketplace that is open, free, and fair that will allow our economy to flourish.
"Derivatives" were derived from mortgages. But those mortgages would not have existed if the Federal Reserve had not created them out of thin air.
Further, the derivatives would not have been as attractive to investors if there were not an implied promise from the Federal Government to back them up.
The recession was created in Washington D.C., not Wall Street. To the extent Wall Street is corrupt, the corruption has spread from Washington D.C.
We would also close loopholes to stop the kind of recklessness and irresponsibility we’ve seen. It’s these loopholes that allowed executives to take risks that not only endangered their companies, but also our entire economy. And we’re going to put in place new rules so that big banks and financial institutions will pay for the bad decisions they make – not taxpayers. Simply put, this means no more taxpayer bailouts. Never again will taxpayers be on the hook because a financial company is deemed “too big to fail.”
Obama makes it sound like bailouts just happen unexplainably; that "reform" is needed to prevent these crazy things from happening. What hypocrisy! Passing a law prohibiting the passing of laws that the government just got through passing! Is there anything left that hasn't already been bailed out?
Finally, these reforms hold Wall Street accountable by giving shareholders new power in the financial system. They’ll get a say on pay: a vote on the salaries and bonuses awarded to top executives. And the SEC will ensure that shareholders have more power in corporate elections, so that investors and pension holders have a stronger voice in determining what happens with their life savings.
Now, unsurprisingly, these reforms have not exactly been welcomed by the people who profit from the status quo – as well their allies in Washington. This is probably why the special interests have spent a lot of time and money lobbying to kill or weaken the bill. Just the other day, in fact, the Leader of the Senate Republicans and the Chair of the Republican Senate campaign committee met with two dozen top Wall Street executives to talk about how to block progress on this issue.
Lo and behold, when he returned to Washington, the Senate Republican Leader came out against the common-sense reforms we’ve proposed. In doing so, he made the cynical and deceptive assertion that reform would somehow enable future bailouts – when he knows that it would do just the opposite. Every day we don’t act, the same system that led to bailouts remains in place – with the exact same loopholes and the exact same liabilities. And if we don’t change what led to the crisis, we’ll doom ourselves to repeat it. That’s the truth. Opposing reform will leave taxpayers on the hook if a crisis like this ever happens again.
UPDATE 1-Obama pushes bank reform, lashes out at Republicans | Reuters
"It's especially disappointing for the president to attack Senator McConnell for raising concerns about the bailout loopholes in the bill when just last night the White House agreed with Senator McConnell and its own treasury secretary and asked Senate Democrats to remove the $50 billion fund," McConnell's spokesman, Don Stewart, said on Saturday.
So my hope is that we can put this kind of politics aside. My hope is that Democrats and Republicans can find common ground and move forward together. But this is certain: one way or another, we will move forward. This issue is too important. The costs of inaction are too great. We will hold Wall Street accountable. We will protect and empower consumers in our financial system. That’s what reform is all about. That’s what we’re fighting for. And that’s exactly what we’re going to achieve.
“Why Americans Should
365 Days a Year”
The word "Christ" means "King." The Message of Christmas and the Principles set forth by the Christ (the Messiah) who came that first Christmas are the real solution to America's problems. The Federal Government is at war with Christmas and "The Way of Peace" announced by the Prince of Peace. The Government should be on His shoulders (Isaiah 9:6-7). Abolishing a Messianic State is the only appropriate way to honor the Messiah.
Otherwise Christmas becomes mass hypocrisy.
John the Baptist prepares the way for the Messiah, as prophesied of Elijah.
As you read the Gospel accounts, ask yourself how you would react if you knew these accounts were really true. Not just true in some "religious" sense, but reported in the New York Times, proven in a court of law, or acknowledged by your personal hero. (How do you know something is true? Do you even have any "heroes?") How should you change your life if your Creator became a human being? How should Washington D.C. react if this human being claimed to be the true Ruler?
The Prophet Micah predicted that the Messiah would be born in Bethlehem. Jesus' parents lived in Nazereth. Therefore God predestined Caesar to issue a decree (probably relating to taxes) that would bring Joseph and Mary to Bethlehem before Jesus was born.
Bush claims the same global power of confiscation and migration as Caesar did. Thousands of Christians have been forced to move out of Iraq to make way for Bush's Islamic Theocracy.
An army of angels announces the birth of the Messiah, saying,
“Glory to God in the highest,
And on earth peace to those with whom He is pleased!”
Man's chief end is to glorify God and live in peace. The Bush Administration's chief end is to erect a "wall of separation" between God and government so that the State gives no glory to God, and to wage war, thereby "stimulating the economy."
When Herod got word of the birth of a rival king, he behaved in a perfectly logical way (for someone who wants to protect his power): he massacred all male babies the age of Jesus. Herod recognized that Jesus was a threat to Herod's power.
Every day in America 4,000 unborn babies are murdered. These babies must threaten something.
Millions of Americans who call themselves Christians, on the other hand, are no threat to tyranny. None of them are being killed. Bush has killed a thousand times more human beings than Herod did, and confiscated a billion times more wealth than Herod did.
Herod's son Antipas played a small role in the execution of Jesus Christ. But Jesus rose from the dead, was enthroned on the throne of David at the right hand of God, and assumed the rightful role of King over all nations.
Hello. I’m House Republican Whip Eric Cantor and I have the great privilege of representing the hardworking people of Virginia’s 7th District.
This week, Americans from coast to coast sent their tax payments to Washington. Your government continues to spend more and more, and that means your taxes are more and more. This has to stop – and you can help stop it.
The challenges and situations faced by families, small business people, and young workers have no doubt made this tax day particularly painful. But as painful as it was, the truth is that the actions taken by Speaker Nancy Pelosi, Majority Leader Harry Reid and the Obama Administration are going to make the ‘tax days’ of the future much much worse.
President Obama has signed 25 tax increases passed by the Democratically controlled Congress into law that will cost families and small business people more than $670 billion over the next 10 years.
Many of these break the President’s campaign promise not to raise taxes on families making less than $250,000 a year. In the House, Speaker Pelosi and her majority have passed legislation that would result in more than a trillion – that’s with a T – dollars in net tax increases.
But tax increases are the symptom. Runaway spending is Washington’s disease.
The Democrats control every lever of power in Washington and they’ve never met a tax they didn’t like or found a dollar they couldn’t spend. Their economic plan? You pay, they spend, your children owe. You deserve better.
Speaking of your children, the deficits left in the wake of President Obama's agenda now stand at $1.5 trillion and will add $11 trillion to our national debt over the next 10 years.
One non-partisan study reveals that to keep up with this spending, the government would have to find about half a trillion dollars each year in new revenue. That means that the tax rates on families earning slightly more than $200,000 would skyrocket to well over 70 percent.
That’s right, 70 PERCENT!
Democrats have already made clear that more tax increases on income, capital gains and dividends are on the way. Some, including the President himself, refer to this as letting the “Bush tax cuts” expire. But no matter how he spins it, it means you’ll be paying more and more.
At the end of this year, Americans will face the ‘Obama tax increase,’ and it will be the largest in history. As if that wasn’t enough, others, including Speaker Nancy Pelosi and Obama Economic Advisor Paul Volcker support a European-style value-added tax (VAT).
Higher taxes, reckless deficits, unsustainable debt and a bleak future for our kids and grandkids. We must not leave our children a country more in debt and worse off than we found it. It is our moral obligation to act now to put a stop to this.
America is at a critical point of decision making. We are a nation at a crossroads. It is up to each of us to determine what kind of country we want to be.
Down one path is the Democrats’ a trillion dollar health care overhaul, a stimulus law that failed to meet expectations for job creation, the taxpayer funded bailouts of private companies, and a cap-and-trade policy that will impose a massive energy tax upon all Americans.
All are costly policies that seize more control over the economy and of our lives. The goal? To remake America in the image of Europe.
But take hope. Down the other path is responsible, adult leadership, focused firmly on job creation and economic opportunity. We believe in a Congress that will once again listen to the people and return America to the country they know and love.
We believe in a limited but effective government that provides a safety net for those who need it most, but sets no limits on opportunity or achievement. We believe that it’s not enough just to talk about ending government waste.
You have to take action so that we can begin to erase our deficits and free our children from our debt. And rather than putting the squeeze on our nation’s job creators and entrepreneurs, we believe in a pro-growth strategy to create jobs and empower the American entrepreneur and small business people to thrive.
This is our choice.
I’m Eric Cantor, and on behalf of my Republican colleagues, please know that we hear your concerns and we’ll work hard to get Washington working for you once again. Thank you.
If you take nothing else with you from today's "Virtual Town Hall," remember this:
Third, the purposes for which today's government uses taxes
are destructive of civilization itself.
What Would America's Founding Fathers Do?
The men who threw tea into the Boston Harbor over a tax of 3 pence per pound would not be happy with a tax ten times greater on every gallon of gas. Those who took up muskets over a total tax burden of less than 3% would not be happy with the fact that the federal government now takes more than half of everything you earn.
Today it is illegal for public school teachers to teach their students that the Declaration of Independence is really true (and not just an outdated historical document). The federal government is clearly at war with everything the Founding Fathers stood for.
America's greatest Americans would abolish today's federal government.
Muskets are Not an Option
There are two reasons why we should not take up arms to pull off the violent overthrow of the federal government, even if America's Founders would surely do so. First, the feds have nukes. Second, violent revolution is unChristian and unBiblical. We must beat our swords into plowshares and use persuasion to abolish tyranny. This is time for a revolution of ideas.
Revolution Won't Come in a Day
John Adams once wrote that the American Revolution began in 1761, when Massachusetts attorney James Otis began legal challenges to the Writs of Assistance. He lost the case, but "American independence," Adams wrote, "was then and there born." Now do the math. That means it took 15 years to convince the rest of America to declare Independence
(1776). Then another seven years of war was required before a Peace Treaty was signed (1783), and then six years before the Constitution was finally ratified (1789). That's almost 30 years. (And Jefferson said we shouldn't go 20 years without another rebellion!) How can we hope to convince Americans to fight for principles they were never taught in government schools? We need to be in this battle for the long term. "Eternal Vigilance is the Price of Liberty."
Every great athlete has a coach.
If you want to be a great American you need a coach.
If you want to achieve great things for your country, you need a coach.
Imagine what you could do if George Washington, "the Father of his Country,"
could travel through time and be your personal coach.
The results could be extraordinary.
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Help End the Mexican Civil War
Black-market profits caused by drug prohibition fund a civil war in Mexico that's threatening to spill over our borders. Drug profits also fuel the terrorists who are killing U.S. soldiers in Afghanistan. It's time to dry up the black-market profits. It's time to end drug prohibition.
Make Congress Read Their Bills Before Voting
Make Congress read every word of every bill they create before they vote on it.
Urge your Representative and your Senators to sponsor DownsizeDC.org's “Read the Bills Act” (RTBA).
End the FED
The Federal Reserve System constantly inflates and deflates the supply of money and credit, causing booms and busts. It's time to get off this roller-coaster. It's time to end the Fed.
No government money, whether borrowed or taxed, should ever be used to bailout private financial interests. If you agree, please send Congress a message telling them so.
TWIC - A Backdoor Real ID Card
Real ID is dying. But the Department of Homeland Security has a new plan to subject every American to a national ID card anyway. They plan to pick off one occupational field at a time, starting with the maritime industry. One man is fighting back. Meet him, and help stop this backdoor Real ID plan.
Stop the Killer Horse Hormones
The FDA "outlawed" the use of Estriol, an estrogen medication that's bio-identical to human estrogen. Doctors must now prescribe animal-derived estrogen instead. Are bio-identical hormones dangerous, while animal-derived hormones are safe? No. The practice of medicine is moving to chemically identical to human hormones and away from animal hormones. Learn why the FDA decided to endanger women's health in this way, and take action.
End Asset Forfeiture
If the government suspects you used your house or car in a crime, they can take it and sell it at auction. They don't even have to prove your guilt. They call this practice civil asset forfeiture, but it's really theft. It violates the 4th, 5th, 6th, 8th, 9th and 14th Amendments. It also encourages law enforcement to put profits before justice. Tell Congress to end civil asset forfeiture.
Support an Iraq Referendum
Americans keep debating when, how, or if to leave Iraq. Maybe we should ask the Iraqi people what they want. After all, it's their country. Tell Congress to request that the Iraqi government hold a public referendum on the U.S. occupation. Learn more »
Make Congress read every word of every bill they create before they vote on it.
Urge your Representative and your Senators to sponsor DownsizeDC.org's “Read the Bills Act” (RTBA).
Unelected bureaucrats create tens-of-thousands of new dictates each year. Making rules is the job of Congress, not bureaucrats.
DownsizeDC.org has drafted the “Write the Laws Act” to end bureaucratic “legislation without representation.” Click here . . .
"Cap and Trade" is not the way
The politicians seem to be unifying around "cap and trade" as a way to cut CO2 emissions. If they take this step it may be the largest increase in the size, scope, and intrusiveness of government since the creation of Medicare. Worse still, it may not even achieve its purpose. Please tell Congress to oppose "cap and trade." Learn more »
Big government prospers through failure. Each new failure is used to justify more spending and new powers. Wasteful spending in Iraq is the latest example. One way to change this is to hold government accountable. A new bill in Congress seeks to provide some of the needed accountability. Please support it. Learn more »
Stop the War for Terror U.S. policy has inflamed the Middle East. It has made terrorism more likely rather than less. We seem to be fighting a war for terror, rather than on terror. This policy must stop. The place to start stopping is with Iran. We must not attack Iran. War with Iran would devastate our economy, disrupt world oil supplies, and recruit more terrorists. Click here to stop this war before it starts.
Click herefor a replay of this edition of the Ozarks Virtual Town Hall