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Jimmy Carter followed Obama’s plan to destroy the US economy in four years. He grew government, increased government spending, added regulations,  increased taxes, and initiated a timid foreign policy. Those of us who remember watched the rise of pessimism about the future of America.

Here’s the comparison. Only twice since WW II has unemployment gone over 10%. In 1982, under Carter, and in 2009, under Obama. In just over 4 years, the Reagan recovery added 7.8 million jobs. In just under 4 years,  Obama has lost 4 million jobs. Under Reagan, household income grew by $3,380; under Obama it has dropped by $4,000.. Under Reagan, people on food stamps dropped by 3 million. Under Obama that number has grown by  20 million.. Under Reagan, Medicaid grew by 535,000. Under Obama it has grown by 11 million.

How did Reagan turn it around. He just undid what Carter had done. He lowered taxes, reduced regulations, cut government spending(except military where he added a trillion dollars), and sent a foreign policy message that America was once again serious.

Based on this  comparison, can you even envision what four more years of Obama’s policies would do to this country?

Does it matter if Romney put his dog on the car or cut another kid’s hair in prep school? Does it matter that he’s rich or a few people were laid off at Bain? Or that he’s a little stiff?

All that matters is very,very clear. Romney will follow the Reagan road that fixed the Carter economy. Obama will continue the Carter/Obama path that destroys the economy. We only gave Carter 4 years to break everything. If we give Obama 8 years it may be broken beyond repair.

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I am not a collector. But, I had two items I kept and cherished through the years. The first has been lost. It was a golf scorecard from a round I played with Neil Armstrong. I was paired with him at a golf outing in Florida. He signed the scorecard. I showed it to my Mother, who I visited in Florida after the round. Her comment was priceless. She said, “it’s like having something signed by Christopher Columbus”. I asked her if she wanted it. She said yes, and it was always displayed in her home. When she passed away and her effects were packed up it got tossed.

The second, which I still have, is a picture of my wife and me with Ronald Reagan, the greatest president in my lifetime. He was a speaker at a business conference we attended and we had the opportunity to not only hear him in person, but to meet him and have a picture taken.

The author with President Reagan

As this Independence Day is here, I think a lot about President Reagan. He talked a lot about liberty and independence, reminding us of the greatness of America and what makes it great.

One of his quotes is “we are a nation that has a government and not the other way around.” It’s only been 26 years since he said that, but today one wonders if it’s more  or less true.

Here are some of his other quotes as well.

this excerpt from his 1985 inaugural address:

“We are creating a nation once again vibrant, robust, and alive. There are many mountains yet to climb. We will not rest until every American enjoys the fullness of freedom, dignity, and opportunity as our birthright. It is our birthright as citizens of this great republic.”

Or this excerpt from his 1981 inaugural address:

“It is not my intention to do away with government. It is rather to make it work — work with us, not over us; stand by our side, not ride on our back. Government can and must provide opportunity, not smother it; foster productivity, not stifle it.”

And finally, savor his positive characterization of the beauty of the free enterprise system:

“We who live in free market societies believe that growth, prosperity and ultimately human fulfillment, are created from the bottom up, not the government down. Only when the human spirit is allowed to invent and create, only when individuals are given a personal stake in deciding economic policies and benefitting from their success — only then can societies remain economically alive, dynamic, progressive, and free. Trust the people. This is the one irrefutable lesson of the entire postwar period contradicting the notion that rigid government controls are essential to economic development.”

It bothers me a great deal that we have strayed from the path Reagan took us back down. Every day I see government playing a bigger and bigger role in the lives of Americans. Telling us how much we need more government. Telling us what size drinks we can drink. Pushing us, our children, and our grand children into the path of government dependence.

Who is here today to once again remind us of the lessons of Reagan? Who speaks to us with such conviction. It wasn’t just Reagan’s words that stirred this nation, but the feeling he was just telling us the truth. Telling us what he really believed, not what some poll told him would get votes.

He was a true leader and it was easy to follow his lead.

We, as a nation, seem to be at a fork in road. We can go back to feeling good about our country and what made it great, or give up and stick our hand out and wait for our government to put something in that hand. A trade off for giving up another freedom.

The upcoming election will decide what path we take. I  pray to God it will be the path of liberty and back to a country that has a government not a government that has a country.

 

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Forbes recently ran an article showing the Reagan recovery plan. The highlights of that article are shown below:

 

President Reagan campaigned on an explicitly articulated, four-point economic program to reverse this slow motion collapse of the American economy:

1.  Cut tax rates to restore incentives for economic growth, which was implemented first with a reduction in the top income tax rate of 70% down to 50%, and then a 25% across-the-board reduction in income tax rates for everyone.  The 1986 tax reform then reduced tax rates further, leaving just two rates, 28% and 15%.

2.  Spending reductions, including a $31 billion cut in spending in 1981, close to 5% of the federal budget then, or the equivalent of about $175 billion in spending cuts for the year today.  In constant dollars, nondefense discretionary spending declined by 14.4% from 1981 to 1982, and by 16.8% from 1981 to 1983.  Moreover, in constant dollars, this nondefense discretionary spending never returned to its 1981 level for the rest of Reagan’s two terms!  Even with the Reagan defense buildup, which won the Cold War without firing a shot, total federal spending declined from a high of 23.5% of GDP in 1983 to 21.3% in 1988 and 21.2% in 1989.  That’s a real reduction in the size of government relative to the economy of 10%.

3.  Anti-inflation monetary policy restraining money supply growth compared to demand, to maintain a stronger, more stable dollar value.

4.  Deregulation, which saved consumers an estimated $100 billion per year in lower prices.  Reagan’s first executive order, in fact, eliminated price controls on oil and natural gas.  Production soared, and aided by a strong dollar the price of oil declined by more than 50%.

These economic policies amounted to the most successful economic experiment in world history.  The Reagan recovery started in official records in November 1982, and lasted 92 months without a recession until July 1990, when the tax increases of the 1990 budget deal killed it.  This set a new record for the longest peacetime expansion ever, the previous high in peacetime being 58 months.

During this seven-year recovery, the economy grew by almost one-third, the equivalent of adding the entire economy of West Germany, the third-largest in the world at the time, to the U.S. economy.  In 1984 alone real economic growth boomed by 6.8%, the highest in 50 years.  Nearly 20 million new jobs were created during the recovery, increasing U.S. civilian employment by almost 20%.  Unemployment fell to 5.3% by 1989.

Now, by comparison, let’s look at Obamanomics.

1. Raise taxes

2. Print more money

3. More government spending

4. More regulation

It’s  the mirror image of what worked so well when Reagan ran the show. It follows what Carter was doing to get us where we were when Reagan stepped in and started fixing things.

If you want to try the Carter/Obama/Western Europe/California/Illinois/Stockton plan for four more years, vote for Obama.

Prefer what worked with Reagan, vote for Romney.