Have Democrats Forgotten About American Workers?

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If you had asked Democrats a decade ago what the soul of their party was, most would have said the working class. They don’t say that anymore.

Liberals for years marketed themselves as advocates for the blue-collar worker with a high school education, a union job, and the American dream. Nowadays, the Left has become obsessed with the socialism movement of cultural Marxists and the destruction of capitalism. In essence, the Democrat Party has lost its soul to the radical fringes of its base. And nowhere else is this trend more clearly illustrated than the Democrats’ most recent attack on President Trump’s increased tariff imposition.

For a half-century, America has ignored a growing trade imbalance with almost every international trading partner. Since the 1970’s the US has seen imports trending higher compared to exports except for small trade surpluses in 1998 to 2001. In 2018, our nation’s exports were valued at $2.5 trillion while our imports were valued at over $3.1 trillion, a deficit of over $600 billion. That equates to 3% of our GDP.

Over $400 billion of that deficit is from our trade with China, up from $34 billion in 1990. The bulk of the rest is from the Canada, Mexico, and the EU. Most of these nations’ businesses enjoy government subsidies and low labor costs. All of them levy substantial tariff taxes on most American goods and services while we levy much less or nothing on theirs. Thus, America’s appetite for cheaper foreign goods and services, although satisfying consumers, is taking jobs and higher wages from our workers. The great economy we are currently enjoying would be even more robust without the imbalance in tariffs.

While the Left has been more than happy to ostracize the American worker by ignoring tariffs, the Trump Administration has taken the opposite approach. The president has embraced workers in domestic commerce, defending our nation’s manufacturing from the corrosive policies of our international trade partners. As a professor of economics, I have long advocated free trade on a global scale. However, when other nations establish barriers to free trade, the US must respond in kind to remain competitive. Temporary declines in exports and imports due to our increased tariffs are a short-term price worth paying for an eventual level playing field that benefits both consumers and employees.

Here is one example. In 2018, the president approved relief for the U.S. appliance industry, specifically washing machines. After an independent investigation by the U.S. International Trade Commission (ITC) found that “US producers had been seriously injured by imports,” the president took action. He announced tariffs on foreign-produced washers to protect domestic manufacturers and, in effect, American workers.

Liberals were quick to try to delegitimize the president’s efforts to buttress America’s labor force. Last April, a trio of academics released a study attempting to demonstrate the economic harm caused by the president’s washer tariffs. Unfortunately for academia, the study was full of holes. The authors overlooked many glaring flaws to arrive at their preferred conclusion that the tariffs were harmful. Not only did the authors fail to consider the thousands of manufacturing jobs saved and created by the tariff, but they also failed to account for the more than 15,000 jobs indirectly supported by the president’s action.

President Trump’s administration is succeeding exactly where liberals have failed: in protecting America’s vulnerable blue-collar sector. While Democrats are increasingly content to advocate for socialist policies designed to attract the dependent segment of society, the president has shown his willingness to fight for the jobs of all Americans. It’s clear that Democrats in their push for social experimentation have forgotten about the American workers. Thankfully, President Trump hasn’t.

Where Were You Then (if over 50)?

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Fifty years ago this week, three brave men aided by the greatest country in the history of mankind were on their way to the greatest human accomplishment in the history of mankind. My question is where were you at that anxious moment when Neil Armstrong proclaimed, “That’s one small step for man, one giant leap for mankind?” Here is my answer plus more interesting facts about this heroic event.

Coincidentally, on that Wednesday, July 16th, when the Apollo 11 crew of three blasted off, I was flying an Air Force training flight as a student at Vance Air Force Base in Enid, Oklahoma. In the program to become an Air Force pilot, I was as excited about flying jets as the two Air Force pilots and one former Navy pilot were about landing on the moon. I actually remember feeling a kindred spirit with mission commander Neil Armstrong, lunar module pilot Buzz Aldrin, and command module pilot Michael Collins. All three had once been where I was learning to master the challenge and joy of military flying that words can’t express.

Armstrong, Aldrin, and Collins lifted off at 9:32 EDT with the understanding that a thousand things could go wrong and with no guarantee of ever returning. Such a complex mission was not without extreme risk. We all learned two moon missions later just how easily things could turn south so unexpectedly when the Apollo 13 crew had to abort their mission due to an on-board explosion and almost didn’t make it back. Two years earlier, there had been the tragedy of the Apollo 1 crew who lost their lives in a prelaunch cabin fire. But this Wednesday, the adrenaline level of the three, knowing over 500 million people were watching, pushed fear aside. At 12:56 pm, in earth orbit, they separated from the Saturn Five booster rocket, rotated their command module (CM) “Columbia”, and docked nose-to-nose with their accompanying lunar excursion module (LEM), dubbed “Eagle” before departing earth’s orbit at 2:13 pm.

For about three days, they watched the moon grow in their windscreen as they sped toward it at speeds up to 25,000 miles per hour. Collins fired the burners to begin circling the moon on Saturday, July 19th at 1:21 pm. On Sunday morning, July 20th, Armstrong and Aldrin entered the LEM and tested all systems. At 3:08 pm, Aldrin fired the burners to separate the LEM from the CM and begin the decent. Thus far, this mission had been much like the two practice missions to the moon weeks earlier. But that was all about to change. This wasn’t a practice low approach in the LEM. This was real!

At 4:18 pm, Armstrong, having had to take manual control of the LEM due to unanticipated terrain issues and guidance computer failure, touched down with a cloud of moon dust on the moon plain called Sea of Tranquility. Armstrong generated a huge sigh of relief heard around the world with the words, “The Eagle has landed.” After about 6 1/2 hours of post-flight checks and well-deserved rest, Neil Armstrong donned his space suit and head gear, opened the LEM hatch, climbed down the ladder, and made that famous footprint as he voiced the proclamation almost everyone knows by memory. It was 10:56 pm on the east coast. Nineteen minutes later, Buzz Aldrin joined his history-making partner for a few minutes of exploration and photo ops. What a moment!

On Monday, July 21st, after about 21 hours on the moon’s surface, the two were back in the LEM, and Aldrin fired the launch rockets at 1:54 pm to blast themselves back into moon orbit. The rendezvous with a welcoming Collins was uneventful as he was more than ready to fly them back home. Splashdown was on Thursday, July 24th, at 12:50 pm 900 miles southwest of Hawaii. Mission accomplished! God bless America!

My wife and I drove from Enid to Oklahoma City on that Sunday to watch the incredible event with a couple who were dear college friends and classmates. I will never forget sitting in front of the TV, the four of us mesmerized by the minute-by-minute playing out of history. As I watched, I fantasized about becoming an astronaut. Maybe I would walk on the moon someday. Maybe mars! I must say this dream wouldn’t have been too far-fetched if America had kept up the momentum of space travel. I have been disappointed that our country has languished with the shuttle program.  Nevertheless, I still often relive in my mind that awesome July 20, 1969, when I was blessed to be part of the generation that put the first men on the moon.

Both Buzz Aldrin and Michael Collins are still alive and in relatively good health at age 89 and 88 respectively. All three crew members were born in 1930. Sadly, Neil Armstrong died in 2012.

Please reply with your whereabouts and any other pertinent information regarding your witness of the first moon landing. To my under-50 friends, sorry you missed it.

 

 

Work, Gift, or Theft?

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God created mankind with only three ways to personal gain: work for it, receive it as a gift, or steal it. The first two are moral; the third is immoral. Yet, American society has evolved over resent years toward sanctioning theft through our government programs. Let’s look from a biblical perspective at how our nation may be disregarding God’s economy.

The Bible has much to say about the virtue of labor and the sin of laziness. It also advocates generosity in giving. But it strongly warns against thievery. No scripture sums up these ideals more than Ephesians 4:28: He who steals must steal no longer; but rather he must labor, performing with his own hands what is good, so that he will have something to share with one who has need.

Physical and mental exertion rewarded by money or in-kind return is the foundation of God’s economy. Most of this return is to be used for life’s necessities and reasonable pleasures. Then, part of that return is to be shared willingly with those who need it for living or for the general good of mankind. According to the Bible, at least ten percent of it is to be freely given to the Lord’s work through the church. Any part of personal gain given up forcibly or unwillingly to others is theft. That may be through direct stealing, fraud, or forced giving. Thieves receive their personal gain not by work or gift, but by taking from others against their will. Work, gift, or theft. There are no other categories of personal gain.

In a perfect world, all needs of those who cannot work would be supplied as a gift by those who are able according to biblical teaching. Because of our greed and insufficient love, Americans and other capitalist societies agree to collectively meet those needs through assistance programs funded by taxes. We who work contribute willingly to the needy through government programs for health care (e.g., Medicaid), basic necessities (e.g., welfare), etc. through a portion of our taxes. Our willingness to contribute this way is expressed by our voting for lawmakers who enact such wealth distribution laws and policies. In Socialist societies, the government controls all work and personal wealth and redistributes the wealth as they deem necessary.

For several decades, America’s provision for the needy by the will of the majority through government taxation has worked reasonably well. The problem in recent years is with the majority of our lawmakers who are not following the will of the voters in their distribution of wealth. When those in charge spend our taxes on others against our will as a whole, we are being robbed–plain and simple. Nearly 60% of Americans oppose making government-provided health insurance available to illegal immigrants, according to a CNN poll released last week. Yet, when 10 Democratic presidential candidates in their last debate were asked for a show of hands of those in favor of such government spending, all 10 hands went up. The same betrayal is evident with government funded abortions as Democrats rally to repeal the Hyde Amendment.

Americans are the most benevolent people on earth. They willingly allow their Congressional representative to distribute some of their tax money to those deemed deserving of it. Those representatives would do well to not steal that tax money for those whom the majority of taxpayers deem undeserving. As you observe what politicians are advocating in their campaigns, put them to the test. Are they proposing to gift or steal your tax dollars?

 

 

 

 

Moms for America Rally for Freedom

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If you are a mom or know a mom who is concerned about the rapid deterioration of America’s freedoms and values that must be preserved for our children and grandchildren, become familiar with Moms for America. They will hold a rally with Gold Star Wives and Mothers at the U.S. Capitol on Thursday, July 4th. On behalf of the sons and daughters who have died for their country, the cry of these moms is, “We are not willing to sacrifice what they gave their lives for.” Let’s look at much more this organization is doing for the future of our children.

MFA is a national non-profit organization rooted in the principles of liberty and virtue upon which our nation was founded, and focused on promoting these principles in the home and family through the women and mothers of America. They are many faces in many places supporting and encouraging each other in the most important work they do–raising and nurturing the future of America. They are creating a national movement of moms to restore the republic, promote the principles of liberty, and reclaim their culture for truth, family, freedom and the U.S. Constitution.

Their “Declaration of Mothers” is as follows:

  • Our Rights come from God not government and the Constitution of the United States was created under the inspiration of Almighty God to secure our inherent rights and the liberty for all people.
  • We recognize the sacred role of mother as the heart of the home and home as the heart of society.
  • Mothers by their divine nature and intrinsic influence determine the future of a nation, mold its citizens, determine its institutions, and shape its destiny.
  • Parents are, first and foremost, the primary teachers and protectors of their children in a free society.
  • We affirm the self-evident truths that all men and women are created equal; endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable rights which include life, liberty, property, and the pursuit of happiness.
  • Freedom is a rare and prized possession which requires constant care and vigilance for its preservation. Each generation has a responsibility to instill a love of liberty and virtue in the hearts of the next generation.

MFA’s Director of Strategic Initiatives and Gold Star Mom, Karen Vaughn, in a recent national news interview said tKaren Vaughnhat one of her greatest concerns is the determined effort of our nation’s liberal leaders to embrace socialism. Socialism tickles of ears of the young, less mature Americans who don’t understand the consequences of its claims. Karen sees the critical role of moms in nurturing their children in the superiority of democracy and capitalism that made America great.

I believe mothers have been key to the direction of the history of all nations throughout civilization as they have shaped their sons and daughters for the next generation. Mothers of America will, in large measure, determine the principles and values of this nation’s next generation. President Ronald Reagan said, “Freedom is never more than one generation away from extinction. We didn’t pass it to our children in the bloodstream. It must be fought for, protected, and handed on for them to do the same, or one day we will spend our sunset years telling our children and our children’s children what it was once like in the United States where men were free.”

Moms, go to https://momsforamerica.us, now and consider becoming a part of this worthy organization. Also, watch for news coverage of the Rally for Freedom event in Washington, D.C. on the Fourth of July.

 

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