(Nancy Dallas) – Joseph Tatner is running for the Congressional District 1 seat, currently held by Democrat Shelley Berkley. You can learn more about Joseph’s background and political positions at www.tatner.com
• Please write a brief summary of your professional and political history. Define your political philosophy.
I am a strong Pro-Life Constitutional Conservative who is alarmed at the reckless spending by Congress and blatant power grab by our president. We are following the policies of the Jimmy Carter years with the same predictable results.
Professionally, I have worked in the entertainment, convention and hotel industries, so I understand the core nature of Las Vegas businesses. I have a broad, in-depth understanding of business in multiple sectors of the economy, because for years I was one of the top Business Systems Analysts in the United States. Prior positions include: Communications Strategist for Kaiser Permanente (for the entire state of California) and for Southern California Edison; business analyst for California Veteran’s Hospital, Barstow; Cedars-Sinai Medical Center where I trained doctors and nurses on the new medical order entry system; Four different Ritz-Carlton hotels, Green Valley Ranch and others providing audio/visual and computer support services; technical director and producer for press conferences and public hearings in Washington DC; and producer and promoter of numerous entertainment charity and civic events (for which I have received a dozen commendations from government officials including our governor, mayor, both senators, and Congresswoman Shelley Berkley). Shell Oil sent me to 3 different countries with full authority to implement their entire computer infrastructure and realign all business processes.
Politically, I worked on Mary Bono’s and B-1 Bob Dornan’s campaigns. I was a Legislative Analyst and Customer Advocate for AARP in their Washington DC headquarters and Marketing Specialist for SEIU in their New York headquarters. Both positions were before Obama turned them into his private army. As a Conservative Republican, I didn’t last at either place long because they didn’t want to know the truth, they wanted to use my skills to force their opinion on their members, which I refused to do. However, I gained invaluable, unique experience learning how they operate from the inside out, and I know how to use their techniques against them. They are NOT interested in compromise and any attempt to bargain or make peace with them by a Republican leader is foolish.
The leaders of these organizations are true ideologues. I have been involved with the Clark County Republican Party since February 2009, long before any current candidates were around, and I helped the current leaders get elected. I also helped drive many Conservatives to the CCRP, which now numbers around 800 versus only 200 a year ago. I also am the true TEA Party Candidate, having promoted or spoken at nearly every one, again when no other candidates in my race were around. While others are trying to jump on the TEA Party bandwagon, I am one of the ones who helped put it on wheels and gave it a push. That’s why Michael Patrick Leahy from the National TEA Party movement has endorsed me. I worked with him on a couple of campaigns getting our Conservative message out.
• While you have quite a varied background, you have no past political experience. Why are you running for a Congressional position, and not a state legislative or local governmental position? Do you have a campaign team in place? Will you be using your own money to fund your campaign? If so, to what degree?
On the contrary, I am the only candidate in my race who does have any political experience. I am also the ONLY candidate who has actually written proposed legislation as part of my Contract with America 2010 (see my website www.tatner.com). I lived and worked in Washington DC where I was the technical director for public appearances by Newt Gingrich, Al Gore, Haley Barber, Hillary Clinton, Arianna Huffington (when she was still a Republican), and many other notables. I personally heard Carol Browner lie to a meeting of businessmen about what she intended to do as head of the EPA on one day, and tell the truth about her intentions the very next day to a meeting with the Sierra Club and other environmentalist groups. As mentioned before, I worked in the belly of the beast as a Legislative Analyst and Customer Advocate for AARP when I thought they wanted to help seniors (we all know better now). This was during the Hillary Care era, and I saw all of this about Government Health Care before at that time. When I moved to New York, a friend worked at SEIU and said it was a great place to work. This was before they became the Brownshirt Thugs of the Obama administration, but they were incredibly radical event then. I kept my mouth shut to learn what I could, and I was literally shocked by what I saw and experienced. They paid for my training to get my marketing credential and were understandably less than thrilled when I didn’t use it the way they wanted: to try and brainwash their own members or to “persuade” new members into joining.
I am running for Congress because I know Congress and the major players and I know how it works. I know how to be effective without compromising my principles. I have several skills the Republicans desperately need. I have a Master’s Degree in National Security Studies with a thesis in Antiterrorism. I will be a loud voice against telling terrorists they have the right to remain silent and against court marshaling Navy Seals for doing their job. I will speak out against the current rules of engagement (or non-engagement) in Afghanistan. I will ensure our troops are fully supported to do their job or bring them home so they aren’t human targets with no chance of success. I also am a skilled communications strategist, and we desperately need a Republican James Carville. We have been floundering with no message or a lame message for too long. My press background gives me valuable inside experience on getting our message out during those rare opportunities given to us by the Dominant Media.
I don’t have a lot of money to put into this race, but I am giving it everything I have. Although other candidates currently have much more of their own money than I do, I am still in the top ranking simply because of who I am and what I stand for. My message is clear: the PEOPLE are the leaders of this party, not the self-appointed money men at the top. They don’t like that message, but the People do. If I go to Washington DC, it will be to represent the People, not some pointy headed Party bureaucrat. If I make it through the primary, I know how to make this a statewide and national race – something that has never been done before in CD1, and I will have more than enough money to take on Berkley – and WIN. Chuck Muth once told me not to run because, “You have no name and you have no money.” Well, you can build a name and you can raise money. I’ve built a name, now I’m working on the money.
Because of my education and experience, I will not be benched on the sidelines like most newly elected representatives are for a year or so while the Party sums them up and they learn the game. I will hit the ground running, strengthening the Republican Party from within and getting us on message and on target. I cannot be bribed, flattered or intimidated when I go to Congress. They have nothing I want – except my country back!
• Opponent Michele Fiore entered the CD-1 race just prior to the filing deadline and received the Rule 11 letter indicating endorsement from the three members of the NvRNC, marking her as their preferred Republican candidate in this race. Was this a serious setback to your campaign? How do you answer to those who ask why you did not receive this endorsement?
Let me be clear: Anyone has a right to run anywhere they want. I supported Michele highly in State Senate 9, and now I support Elizabeth Halseth in that race. What we all object to, however, is the secret backroom deals that were timed at the last minute to prevent anyone else from changing races. There is no legitimate excuse for that fact.
Chris Comfort got the ball rolling for Michele and he had to resign because of it. Michele originally bragged about being recruited by Comfort to several different people, including once right in front of me. Now she denies it, but still claims to be the choice of the Party. I have a different philosophy. I believe the Party is the People and they will make their choice in the primary. Chris Comfort is not the Party – and he was forced to resign because he forgot that.
I have contacted former governor Bob List’s office to arrange a meeting, which I believe is only fair in light of how they interfered in this race, but so far they have not set up a meeting. They did not meet with any other candidates prior to the Rule 11 letter so NO ONE had a chance. This was in no way an open, fair or informed decision. Chris Comfort met with many candidates behind the scenes playing Kingmaker, including trying to get Craig Lake and me to drop out of the race – this was before Michele came onto the scene so she was not a factor at the time. He was not interested in any dialogue. When I didn’t fall for his smarmy approach, he became abusive and bullying and I told him to shove it. I still have text messages between us in my phone.
Bottom line: the PEOPLE will choose their candidate during the primaries. I have always encouraged Conservatives to fight for their candidates, and to support whoever wins. We MUST beat Shelley Berkley in 2010 or she will be SENATOR BERKLEY in 2012. Every Democrat dollar from around the USA will flow into Berkley’s war chest if she’s undefeated when she attacks John Ensign’s seat in 2012. It’s called payback, and it’s predictable, especially when we retire Reid and Titus this year. She will make Harry Reid look like a pauper. The thought of Senator Berkley chills my blood. I am focused on beating her and restoring Congress to the People, nothing else.
• You have seven (7) opponents in the Republican Primary. Why do you feel you are the best candidate. How do you respond to those who assert you do not have the political experience and/or credentials to have a realistic chance of winning the Primary, let alone the General election for the CD-1 seat?
Actually, I am the only candidate in the race that does have any political experience, or the credentials and skills to be a successful Congressperson. I was president of the Voice of the People Political Action Committee prior to running for Congress, promoting Conservative values. Besides, it’s not just about winning the primaries or even beating Berkley. It’s about what are you going to DO when you get back there? We are in a literal and figurative war right now. Jihadists are trying to kill us and socialists are trying to conquer us from within.
Our own leadership in the Republican Party cannot be trusted to know what to do or to stand for our principles. We blew several opportunities to kill the Health Care Bill. We need a warrior who knows tactics, strategy, can persuade, unite the Party and get the message out. I can capitalize on the new group of Conservatives who will be elected this year and help unite them into a powerful force – just as I did helping Conservatives take over the CCRP. Bernie Zadrowski and Richard Scotti, former CCRP chairmen, both supported and promoted me speaking out on Conservative values, but there were others in the CCRP who had to be opposed and I did so successfully, with the help of others. I don’t pretend that I can do it all and I don’t take credit for everything when others helped as well, but I have a proven record of working with different Republicans and helping the Party to move forward. That’s called teamwork.
Specifically, I know how to write legislation and I know how to get out message out in a Liberal-Dominated Media. I am also a powerful motivational and persuasive speaker, and that is a large part of a Congressman’s job. You speak at breakfasts, lunches, dinners, public events, town halls, and on the House Floor. You have to be able to take whatever is thrown at you and turn it around in a millisecond. I can do that. No matter how nice or well-intentioned the candidate may be, this is not the time to send someone with no advanced education, no training and no political experience to the snake pit that is Washington DC, where the Democrats are on the warpath and our leaders have been largely ineffective.
Congress is NOT like running a business. I’ve run my own businesses and advised others on running theirs. It’s an entirely different skill set. We need someone who knows the game, knows how to play it, but is willing to kick over the table when appropriate and necessary. We need a true leader. I am running because I haven’t seen anyone with that skill set, and because I am too alarmed for my country to sit on the sidelines waiting or hoping for someone else to do what needs to be done.
• What do you feel are the most pressing issues facing residents within this Congressional district? How do you intend addressing these issues?
9.3 million people lost their jobs in the US last year. That is unacceptable. I was an IT recruiter helping people get jobs in the area when Obama was elected. The company laid off everyone except 4 people (one of the two partners even left). Now I write for a company that helps veterans get jobs by creating their resumes and application packages for government positions. I also write books such as “Autism: A New Hope” with world renowned brain therapist Dr. Cheri Florence, and I edited the Opus Americana, a beautifully crafted book on American history and government. I get to work from home, but others have not been so fortunate.
Thousands of people have fled Las Vegas, one of the cities hit worst in the country by this recession. We have a real unemployment rate of around 20% and our leaders tell us we are in great shape because fewer people lost their jobs this month than last month. Fewer people losing jobs this month is still MORE lost jobs! We are a travel and tourism town, and our president has bashed us twice, then he made a joke about it instead of apologizing. Meanwhile property values are plummeting, our one source of revenue has been decimated, and any chance of bringing new businesses to broaden our economic base flew out the window when our State Legislature passed new taxes on businesses, removing our one major advantage to businesses fleeing California, which are not passing through us to Texas.
I lived in California, where I saw how an out of control government could destroy a robust economy. I am old enough to remember the Carter years, gas lines and gas rationing, and Reagan’s economic explosion in the 1980’s. We have a clear roadmap to success based on historical record. If we restrain government, reverse the spending, and unleash the potential of our businesses, our economy will come roaring back. It’s happened before.
• Should individuals be allowed to contribute unlimited amounts of money to Federal candidates? Would you support a law requiring immediate disclosure of large contributions via the internet?
Yes, and yes. I also support removing the gag order that prevents 501(c)(3) organizations from endorsing or supporting candidates. Free Speech is supposed to be free speech. This country was founded by people speaking their mind and publishing pamphlets and gathering in the town square. Debates were heated between like-minded patriots then – just as they are today. If George Soros gives a million dollars to a candidate, let’s KNOW that instead of dividing it up among his surrogates. Sometimes too much money from the wrong person can kill a campaign. As a Business Systems Analyst and IT geek, there’s no reason NOT to publish on the Internet – and that goes for proposed legislation as well. Finally, McCain Feingold did nothing to stop corruption. There is not a law you can pass that someone won’t find a way around. Whether it’s Buddhist Temples or some other source, all the current law does is hide the true source of the money. Let’s get everything out into the open.
• Our national debt is growing at an astronomical rate (to $1.4 trillion this past year). Do you support a ‘balanced budget’ amendment to the Constitution? If so, specify your plan to create an annual balanced budget.
I’ve already written a Balanced Budget Amendment as part of my Contract with America 2010, based on the one attempted in the first CWA. I am the only candidate in my race with real legislation and real solutions. I also have legislation to stop the anchor babies and to reduce government spending at every level by changing the dynamic. I also encourage a reenactment of the Glass-Steagall law that separated investment banks from insurance companies, etc. The repeal of that bill and the Uptick rule did a lot to help our economy collapse with no firewalls in place to limit the financial devastation.
I always introduce myself saying I’m running to stop the bankruptcy of the United States and the shredding of the Constitution. Do you know why gas prices are going up? Because our dollar is being devalued – as many of us predicted all year long – against the Euro. It costs more American dollars to buy the same barrel or oil. As someone who has worked and travelled repeatedly in Europe and Asia, I understand this all too well.
My proposed legislation on fiscal responsibility would change the way Washington works. Currently, if you have unspent budget money at the end of the year, that money is taken away from your budget the following year. Some bean counter figured that would save the taxpayers money, but it has the opposite effect. This is what I constantly refer to as the Law of Unintended Consequences that I understand so well and others don’t. This has resulted in the “Use it or lose it” mentality, where bureaucrats spend every dime at the end of the year on stupid, unnecessary items like replacing year-old carpet, repainting walls for the third time, buying furniture they don’t need, etc. My bill would replace that with an incentive to save by offering supervisors at every level a 5% bonus (I’m still working on a solid number) for all the money they save UNDER budget. They will still have to spend enough to keep their operations running smoothly or they will lose their job, but they would now scrutinize every dime to see if it’s really necessary. The government would RECOUP 95% of this cost and the savings would be directly applied to reducing the deficit by removing the appropriated money that wasn’t spent from the books.
• Do you support the current U.S. military rules of engagement in Afghanistan? Explain.
Absolutely not! As a military veteran and National Security expert, I find this to be one of the most alarming and insidious affronts to come out of this current administration. In particular, if a terrorist shoots at you then throws his weapon down, you can’t fire back, even if he’s close to the same weapon or another that he could pick up. This causes our military members to hesitate, and a soldier who hesitates can end up dead! If you capture a terrorist you have to read him his rights. We joked about this only 2 years ago thinking it would never happen. You are also prevented from attacking a terrorist if there is an innocent civilian around. While this sounds humanitarian, what it does is incentivize the taking of hostages and the basing of military operations in hospitals and schools – so you end up getting more of the very thing you are trying to prevent!
We won the Viet Nam War three times militarily, but each time the North sued for peace and US politicians sat down at the bargaining table. We sought a peace agreement, NOT surrender. Each time, they rebuilt and resupplied their military and attacked us again. Look up Operation Linebacker and the Tet Offensive on the Internet for a start. The definition of insanity is when you do the same thing over and over again expecting a different result. With all due respect to my fellow candidates, these are issues that are far beyond most people’s understanding – even those who are currently in Congress. I completed a 2 year intensive Master’s course on these issues in one year, so I understand this better than anyone, and we need that understanding to have a loud voice in Washington DC right now on behalf of our military and our safety.
• Nevada’s unemployment rate is one of the highest in the nation. What, if any, steps should be taken by the Federal government to specifically address the state’s unemployment concerns?
First, unemployment insurance is a crock. The entire system needs to be reconstructed. I have paid into unemployment all my life – it’s part of my salary that I never see because my employer is forced to pay it to the state – yet if I am not unemployed, I LOSE all that money that was set aside for me. If I work for 15 years and get laid off, I am only entitled to a portion of what I made in the previous YEAR, based on the last QUARTER, for a limited time. Where did all that extra money go? To the general fund! Can you imagine if that money had been put into a private fund that I could only access at the end of a job, how much money would be in there after 10 or 20 years compounded with interest? Can you imagine if the same money was available to help pay for a catastrophic illness? All with NO government involvement and without risk of being spent as part of the general fund?
To a certain extent, the federal government owes the states because this recession is the direct result of federal policy, but repeatedly extending unemployment is not the answer: allowing businesses to create jobs without penalty is. Government cannot create a single job; it can only create more bureaucracy. By sucking money out of the economy, printing money out of thin air, and borrowing billions from the Chinese, combined with draconian legislation that demonizes successful businesses all come together to kill our economy. If we do extend unemployment funds, we should use some of the $200B already appropriated for the failed “stimulus bill” that has not been spent yet. And while we’re at it, what’s the harm in auditing the Fed so we actually have a clue where we actually stand???
• What would be your priorities in resolving the concerns related to the increasing dependency of the United States on foreign oil? What measures would you propose at the Federal level to help alleviate Nevada’s high energy costs? Do you support nuclear energy? How do you propose we resolve the dilemma of dealing with nuclear waste?
I am the only candidate who has worked for two energy companies and an oil company: Pacific Gas & Electric (PG&E), Southern California Edison (SCE) and Shell Oil. I also worked for the Las Vegas Valley Water District, by the way. We need to drill here, drill now, everywhere we can do so in an environmentally safe manner – and that includes ANWR and Bakken. I highly support nuclear power as clean, safe and environmentally friendly. We have the technology (which is constantly improving) to reprocess and recover nearly 95% of the current spent fuel rods. Nuclear material has travelled on our highways every single day for 30 years without incident. As an Air Force supply officer in the Strategic Air Command, we stored nuclear material. We power our battleships and submarines with nuclear reactors. Even France and India have nuclear power plants and reprocess the rods.
The only reason we don’t reprocess fuel rods is because Jimmy Carter issued an executive order in 1977 banning it. Reagan reportedly lifted the ban, but Clinton reinstated it. This is one of those issues (like the chance to repeal the Community Redevelopment Act that eventually destroyed the housing market) where the Republicans dropped the ball when we had power. There are pebble bed reactors and other technology available now as well. There is no reason why we can’t turn Yucca Mountain into a fuel rod reprocessing center. When companies can recoup 95% of the energy from such a costly and rare fuel source, it will be cost effective for them and a great boost to our economy here by diversifying our economy.
Here is why wind and solar cannot work for energy companies. They provide enough power at times for an individual citizen to install on their own property or for a group of citizens – such as in a housing complex – to install to reduce energy bills, but that’s it. Power is not like water – it doesn’t sit in the pipe waiting for you to turn on the spigot, it must be constantly generated. If you don’t use it while it is being generated, it’s GONE. So a power source must be two things: 1) Constant, and 2) Reliable. Solar and wind are neither.
The sun doesn’t shine at night, and the wind doesn’t always blow. This means that when designing power for a city across an energy grid, you MUST build a power plant or group of plants capable of constantly generating the same amount of power required to meet the needs of a city AS IF NO OTHER POWER SOURCE WAS AVAILABLE. You cannot simply turn off a power plant like turning off your car to switch to solar or wind mode. You have to keep the turbines running! So spending millions of dollars on any system that is unusable more than 50% of the time is completely a waste of money! You can build wind and solar in addition to conventional or nuclear power plants, but not in place of them, meaning you have the same number of plants built anyway, making the wind and solar systems irrelevant!
• Is there a Federal department/cabinet position you would support eliminating? Explain.
Nearly a year ago, when I was first toying with the idea of running for office, Richard Scotti asked potential candidates at a CCRP meeting to give ideas on saving money at the federal level. I was the first person at the time to publicly suggest eliminating departments and I received a great round of applause. It’s not a terribly original idea, but it is a critical one. The Third Principle of my Contract with America 2010 ends with, “…and to reduce or eliminate government bureaucracies wherever possible and reasonable.” These bureaucracies are excuses for Congress to not do its job, and they cost literally billions of dollars each year to produce precious little results of questionable value. When I worked at SCE and PG&E, we constantly had mandates from the Department of Energy telling us how to tell our customers NOT to use our product! A product we GENERATED and they paid us to provide! The Department of Education does not educate a single child, and our test scores in this country have plummeted ever since its inception. I hold a teaching credential and taught K-12 and adult education in 3 California counties, so I am equipped to deal with education issues. At a minimum, I would reduce or eliminate the Departments of Education, Commerce, Energy and the EPA. That’s a good start anyway. I would also eliminate the IRS, but due to the 16th Amendment, that is going to be much more complicated and involved.
• Should the Federal government be involved in the regulation of our nation’s public school education system? If so, to what degree? Are you satisfied with the “No Child Left Behind” law? Explain.
Again, I was a credentialed school teacher who taught K-2 and Adult Education in three different counties in California. Our children have already been left behind! About HALF of Nevada school children DROP OUT! Only in Washington DC do you throw billions more dollars at a failed program. I didn’t work, it interferes with state’s rights – scrap it! The federal government should insist only on that which is within its purview. For education, that means setting minimum mandatory standards of education on genuine American History including the Founding Fathers and Constitution, American Government and Citizenship. Although I am very careful in quoting the General Welfare clause of the Constitution, understanding well the potential for abuse by politicians, it does seem to me that in this case, the education of America’s citizens in these limited areas of knowledge on what it means to be an America is proper to the federal government, but not the wholesale takeover of public schools.
In fact, the entire public school system needs to be reviewed in the light of state’s rights with less government control. I’ve taught in public schools and that’s why I send my daughter to private school. I pay less than $4000 a year compared to a real dollar value of $13,052 annually spent per pupil in Nevada (source Nevada Policy Research Institute). I believe in school choice, a breakup of the school districts, and school vouchers or tax credits. Most of these, however are state issues, not Congressional.
• The inclusion of apparently wasteful, foolish “pork” and “earmarks” in Federal legislation is a historical practice – the public and many elected officials decry this practice, but with no one wanting to left off the gravy train, it seems impossible to curtail. As a U.S. Congressman, what will you do in regards to this issue?
They have said the line item veto is unconstitutional. Not true. They didn’t apply the constitution correctly. They focused on the “line item” instead of the “veto.” The president cannot veto lines in a bill, he/she must veto the entire bill. HOWEVER, a smart president could strike out the line items he/she does not like and veto the entire bill, with the understanding that if each house of Congress passed the same bill as amended by the president, as a new bill on its own, there would be no need for reconciliation and the bill would be signed without objection. Usually, of course, Congress thumbs its nose at the president no matter what he/she might say.
As a practical matter, the toughest choice Conservatives face is when something horrible is attached to the Defense Spending bill, such at the recent Pedophilia Protection Bill (so called Hate Crimes legislation) that Shelley Berkley voted for when it passed the House. They couldn’t get it through the Senate, so they put it in the Defense Spending bill. No Republican wants to vote against that bill, so this is done all the time. I would have my staff maintain a copy of the ORIGINAL Defense Spending Bill and make modifications to it as amendments were passed – keeping out the offensive, stupid, or pork barrel amendments. I would then be happy to vote against any such bill, publicly offering MY version of the bill (which I would have posted on the Internet) as an alternative. This would in many cases steel the resolve of many Conservatives in Congress to vote down bad, pork-laden bills and vote for an alternative.
This is called LEADERSHIP, and it’s how you play the game in Congress. Would they try to load up the bill again with pork the second time around? Sure, but with less momentum and less success. Would it take longer to pass legislation? YES! And that’s exactly what the Founding Fathers wanted! READ the Constitution! It’s supposed to be tough to pass laws because we don’t want the government regulating everything in our lives on a whim! The Congress would have to focus on the important stuff instead of the pork and ideological stupidity. That’s how you change the dynamic in Congress!
• Should the United States support Israel in their efforts to protect their nation’s security and safety of its citizens?
Absolutely! They are our one ally in the region and we have treated them shamefully! Where was Shelley Berkley, supposedly a supporter of Israel, when the rockets were falling endlessly on Israel? Where was she screaming on the House Floor? She was on TV saying how important it was that “people are hurting” in Nevada and how we “need jobs” but then she did nothing to actually help with that either. Where was she when General McChrystal asked for 60,000 troops (not 40,000 – that was the bare minimum number to avoid risk of failure) and received only 30,000? I searched her website and found one good speech against the evils of Hamas – dated in 2006! And how dare anybody suggest (as they did) that if Israel sends bombers to take out Iran’s nuclear facilities, that America should blow their planes out of the sky? This is outrageous.
Israel is on the front lines in the war on terror. We are largely able to sleep at night relatively unworried about terrorist attacks in our country because they face terrorist attacks every day in theirs. They are a target of Jihad and armed forces. Although there have been occasional tensions between our intelligence communities and operatives, we are on the same side of the terror was and the very survival of both our nations depends on continued cooperation.
• How would you propose to reform the Social Security program?
Bill Clinton proudly declared that Social Security was safe because it was in a “lock box.” That was a lie even then. The good news is that we are turning the corner on Social Security. The baby boomers are in retirement age so there will be fewer and fewer people seeking retirement benefits over the next several decades. The bad news, of course, is that that still leaves us with less people paying into the system as birth rates drop than people taking money from the system. It’s a Ponzi Scheme that’s run its course.
We have an obligation to those who have come to depend on it, but future generations must be given options. Most of us don’t believe it will be around in the future anyway, either because the system (or worse, our entire government) will be bankrupt. If that happens, EVERYONE will lose Social Security – forever. I won’t get into the socialist aspects or unconstitutional aspects of it or FDR, etc. here. I could write a book. But for now, it is in place, the government did make promises, and people will be devastated if it isn’t corrected. So we must meet those obligations while weaning people off the system. There have been Conservative plans put forth before that would solve the problem. We don’t need to reinvent the wheel, we need the guts to get it done before everybody loses!
If you have a paycheck, take a look at your FIT (Federal Income Tax) then look at your FICA, SS, SSWT or OASDI. This is what you pay in Social Security taxes. Even if you owe NO federal income tax, you must pay for Social Security and Medicare. There were times in my paycheck where the combined Social Security and Medicare taxes were double my FIT! If I had saved all that money since I started working in the entertainment business at age 9 until my retirement age, I would have over a million dollars in the bank! I could easily live off the interest alone – even after this recent market crash (markets crash and luckily they come back up). Of course, we would need to guard against market crashes, etc., but the system we have now is broke.
Clearly, we need to raise the retirement age for the future generations and restructure the payment system. Frankly, by reducing the inefficient government bureaucracy associated with the SSA, we could help restore the program to solvency. Once all this is done, we do need to examine the constitutional and moral issues involved. By the way, for those who call us Conservatives hypocrites for fighting Socialism yet supporting military hospitals, etc., there is a big difference between Socialism and taking care of those who have offered military service to their country!
• Is there an issue I failed to address that you would like to comment on? Go for it…..
Is there anyone still reading after all this? Seriously, these are complicated issues, and glib one-line answers are a dime a dozen. It’s easy to spout off a slogan, it’s quite another to develop a real solution. That’s why I wrote the Contract with America 2010. Seven principles we can all agree on: Democrat, Republican and Independent, with real legislation and real solutions (and more to come).
Although many people want to blame Barrack Obama or George Bush for the economy, it is Congress that makes the laws (such as the failed bailouts) and spends the money (that we don’t have). The economy was fine under George Bush until the last two years of his term. What happened just before then? The Democrats took over the House and Senate. The housing market collapse was caused my Democrat legislation that the Republicans failed to repeal when they had the chance (see the video about this on my Video Page). It was made worse by the bailouts. Of course, the same leaders that were in power then are in power today – only they are more emboldened and reckless.
This is why I reach out to all my Democrat and Independent friends. We are AMERICANS! When this economy collapsed, we all suffered. We all agree 70 to 80% on issues that are conservative, and that are defined in the Republican Party platform. The only party that has a chance of getting enough people elected to take the majority away from the Democrat leaders that have destroyed our economy is the Republican Party. Our Party failed us all before, but the Democrat leaders are failing us now in a much bigger way.
The new crop of Conservatives running as Republicans in Nevada are not the Old Guard. Support us, so we can represent YOU. For this election at least, let’s put aside our differences and focus on what unites us. Send a message. Vote Conservative. Vote Republican. Help us take our country back, and let us all prosper as a result!