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06 April 2009

Steyn - The G-20 doesn't offer plenty

Mark Steyn has written a fun and insightful commentary in the 6 April 2009 Washington Times. He starts by describing how the Obama administration gave journalists covering the G-20 meeting in London a phone number to listen to Sec. of State Clinton give them a briefing. On calling the number "the gentlemen of the press were greeted by a honey-voiced seductress, presumably not Mrs. Clinton, offering them 'phone sex' and seeking their credit-card number if they 'feel like getting nasty'."

He notes that David Patterson, the NY governor, said that if he had known that his latest tax increase would drive Rush Limbaugh to sell his Manhattan apartment, he would have raised taxes earlier. But, Mayor Michael Bloomberg has recently pointed out that the wealthiest 1% of New York City dwellers pay 50% of the municipal revenue. So, Governor Patterson has very few rich people to drive out before NYC has a government crisis.

Meanwhile the G-20 is seeing to it that the wealthy have no tax havens to turn to. This is because they think this is at the heart of the financial crisis, right? Well, no, they are not really that dumb, but they do think that the non-elite people of all of these countries are dumb enough to be distracted from those realistic steps which the G-20 nations might take.

So, what are the real problems? Steyn notes that Japan, Germany, Italy, and Russia have shrinking populations and that the rate of population shrinkage is going to go up! So, unlike the United States, they can't run up the national debt and stick it to their kids and grandkids, because they don't have any kids and grandkids to stick it to. If New York is running out of rich people, Germany is running out of people, period. The Chinese and other buyers of western debt know that. If you're an investor and you're not tracking gross domestic product (GDP) versus median age in the world's major economies, you're going to lose a lot of money.
If government has a role in this crisis, it ought to be to reverse the combination of unaffordable social programs and deathbed demographics that make a restoration of real GDP growth all but impossible in many European nations.
So, instead, French President Nicholas Sarkozy said the conference gave a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to give capitalism a "conscience." He means a global regulatory regime to protect France's "sluggish, uncompetitive, protectionist, high-unemployment business environment whose best and brightest abandon the country in ever-greater droves, it obviously makes sense to force the entire planet to submit to the same growth-killing measures that have done wonders for your own economy." The IMF is being set up as the global central bank, with its Special Drawing Rights a kind of global currency.

He observes that too many of the profits in recent years in the United States and Great Britain have been in the financial industries. This is thanks to the government annexing too much wealth through income taxes and small-business regulations and much more. It is now much harder to "improve your lot by working hard, making stuff, selling it."

He concludes that instead of addressing the real problems of excessive government, the G-20 governments are "erecting a global regulatory regime to export their worst mistakes to the entire globe."
As they say on the State Department phone-sex line, it's going to get nasty.
We Americans have to become very aware that Obama's driving ambition is to make the United States after the image of France, Germany, and Italy. At least this is so when he is not dreaming of being Hugo Chavez and making the United States into Venezuela. Obama has very clearly signed on to growing this global regulatory regime and to placing its hob-nailed boot on the neck of every American!

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