Art Laramee’s Comments on General Vallely’s Presentation and Various Issues
Thank you very much for your excellent presentation last night. I am on the Surprise Tea Party Leadership Council and have some comments on your StandUpAmerica website version of America at a crossroads. My comments are bolded…
We are also alienating a substantial portion of our populace with such a sterile message. Remember, every communication consists of the envelope and the message. If the envelope is so bombastic that it hides the message, you are not communicating. There are a lot of Hispanics that are conservative and devout Christians who are good and desirable people. Many of them are legal citizens and some of them are illegal. Yes there are bad Hispanics as there are bad Caucasians but we throw the baby out with the bath water by not crafting our messages on the border and illegal aliens in a way that shows sensitivity to the feelings of these good citizens. You should remember that they wouldn’t be here if there wasn’t massive employment opportunities and don’t kid yourself, they are doing jobs that are not attractive to non-Hispanic citizens. We’d go begging for lettuce for example without them. The reality is we have a dysfunctional immigration policy and administration bureaucracy and fixing them is how to get rid of the illegal immigrant problem. For example a guest worker program would eliminate the illegal border crossings by non-terrorist, non-spy, non-drug dealing and non-arms trafficking crossers. Every time I try to have a rational discussion of this someone plays the amnesty card like the democrats who play the race card to shut off discussion. That isn’t rational.
- Homeland Security – The DHS and FEMA have both grown far beyond the intentions of reasonable and responsible leadership control. Law enforcement shall be a state, county, or local function only. The DHS will be disbanded and certain functions will be merged into other departments more suited to the task. I had friends involved with DHS when it was first formed. It was stacked with an army of unqualified party hacks. It’s purpose to solve the stovepiping of inter-agency communications has not been accomplished. But it has introduced a lot of politics and bureaucracy. If we disband the DHS we still need to solve the turf-oriented communication problems. FEMA’s role was expanded by the media who hyped the failure of FEMA to solve the hurricaine \Katrina problems in a manner where no one was harmed physically or financially. Bush and the rest of the politicians didn’t have the backbone or the stomach to straighten out everyone’s irrational expectations. Their response was unorganized and fear driven. Disgusting!
- Energy – The Department of Energy must be abolished and certain specified oversight functions would be moved to the Department of Commerce and/or to the States. No more ‘crony green capitalism’ and ‘junk science’ fear tactics that enrich charlatans. You should also be aware that there Are Federally Funded Research and Development Centers that funnel billions to energy with no appreciable results. All federally acquired land should be returned to the states and the states should be allowed ot benefit from energy production related to state land. Offshore territory should be under state control again with allowed financial benefits to energy production. I see you express a similar sentiment under federal property.
- Education – The Department of Education must be abolished (Along with “Common Core” or any other foreign born design) and its functions and all funding responsibility will be returned to each individual state, territory and the District of Columbia. This is a dangerous group of people who have contributed substantially to the excessive expenditures in education while our educational results have plummeted. They have become propaganda arms of the progressives.
- EPA – The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) must be abolished with responsibilities and functions to revert to each individual state. Conflicts will be resolved at the Department of Commerce while working with the states. “Regulation Nation” must end because the law of diminishing returns is crushing our economy. Amen! I have always been an environmentalist as I feel unfettered commerce ignores its impact on the environment. But OI have never subscribed to the extremists views of the Sierra Club and their ilk. There is a place for environmental protection but it should not be a tool of ideological politics.
- Federal Agency Locations – Selected Agencies will be moved from the ‘beltway’and disbursed into the interior for cost-effective and long-term security reasons as well as seeking more diversified hiring of highly qualified civilians.
- Federal Property – All unused or unneeded federal facilities must be re-purposed in the redistribution of agencies to the interior and special attention must be paid to areas in decline. All other facilities shall be sold to the highest bidders. All federal lands will revert to the state except for the park systems, national security, and military bases.
o ObamaCare – The partisan and destructive Patient Protection and Affordable Health Care ACT (PPACA, aka ObamaCare) will be repealed and replaced with a market based system that crosses state borders. Tort reform shall be a priority. Also allow HSAs with accompanying catastrophic insurance policies.
o Medicare and Medicaid will revert to pre-2009 status. I don’t know what this means. There is no communications here. I do know that these programs are heading for a crash and unless we reform them they will crash as the cities that ignored funding of their retirement programs are now crashing. Medicare may need to have a larger contribution during the working years and becoming a participant at 65 should have some means testing. George Soros does not need Medicare.
o Social Security – Necessary changes and revisions will be made to the existing Social Security System to ensure self-funding. This is a vague statement when it doesn’t have to be… The Chilean example is the best I’ve seen in terms of approach and results.
- Public Service Employee Unions – The Executive order that allows unions to exist in government will be rescinded. Government unions must be made illegal through Legislative action. This will never happen due to their voting power as a bloc. Getting rid of retirement pay and substituting 401s is a good modification that we should seek. Passing a law that forces all retirement programs to meet minimum funding requirements is another. We must choose battles that we believe we can win in the short term and allocate the more difficult ones to a long term goal/strategy category. Otherwise we appear to be paper tigers.
- The United Nations – The United States must reduce its funding levels commensurate with an egalitarian system. The US should then work to move the UN to another nation and consider withdrawal in full. Right On!!!
- Department of Defense – Begin a systematic process to reorganize the Department of Defense into an organization of National Security that can prepare us for today and tomorrow with “forward strategies” that secure America. Redundancies must be removed, reunification of branches must be investigated, and all security aspects of Foreign Service protection shall fall back into the DoD. How about purchasing policies reform?
We need to address the invasion of the US by China. There are many initiatives at state levels to integrate native Chinese with our citizens. But the Chinese are doing it in an insular fashion so we don’t corrupt them. The have established a bank network in our banking system. They have purchased property and businesses all around our country including marina in Michigan that has import/export licenses via lake superior. They are sucking the knowledge in our industries out to bring back to china and sending students here to learn ho3w and why we are so innovative. They are very smart and have patience and a long term view.
We need to review our foreign aid policies. We are bribing nearly all the countries of the world and that is a bad approach to foreign policy as it does not work reliably and avoids real diplomacy development.