Monday, December 31, 2012

Cliff Hanger: A House Divided

Do you remember the TV Soap Opera Dallas back in the 1980’s?  It was the story of an uber-rich, Texan family that, despite their wealth, was completely dysfunctional.  At the end of the season, the producers would end with a “cliff hanger” plot line.  The most famous one, of course, was “Who Killed J.R.?”  The segment that asked this question was entitled “A House Divided”. Probably the second most famous episode was when they resurrected the Bobby Ewing character by claiming all of the 1985-1986 season was simply an extended “dream sequence”. This one shocked, delighted and angered fans because, while they were happy to have a favorite character “return from the dead”, the implausibility of this plot line was just too much for some.

Today in America, it is also a "season finale".  We too, face a “cliff hanger” ending.  The title for this one could also appropriately be called “A House Divided” with the question being “Who Killed America”?  Like Dallas fans, maybe we are praying for a miracle ending where this will all turn out to be a bad nightmare from which we will soon wake up.  But, like that episode, it’s highly implausible.

This season wastes no time getting started.  We barely turn the calendar page before we hit the ramifications of the Debt Ceiling IMMEDIATELY on January 1st.  It is best explained by this article plucked directly from a major news organization just a few days ago on December 27th:

Geithner warns US would hit debt ceiling Dec. 31, taking steps to avoid limit

Geither sent a letter to Congress that said the department would begin taking “extraordinary measures” to allow the government to save $200 billion beginning Jan. 1. However, since the government borrows close to $100 billion a month, the moves made by the Treasury department would only buy the government a handful of weeks to get its fiscal house in order or default on its debt.

Read that again:  Just a handful of weeks before our government faces defaulting on its debt.  What do you think this will do to our bond ratings?  How about our global relationships?  When we start defaulting on our debt—no one should be upset, right?  What’s a few trillion dollars amongst friends?

Well…this can’t possibly happen, you may say.  Yep, you’re right temporarily.  We will probably switch over immediately to “Plan B”—crank up those printing presses.  Just print some more money.  Obama has already been doing that under the nice sounding name of “Quantitative Easing”.  TODAY in the news I saw a prediction that milk will climb to $8.00 per gallon soon.  This is what happens when you devalue money.  Everything will cost more exponentially.  But, of course, remember that Obama is for the “little guy”.    

The VERY NEXT DAY, January 2nd, 2013 we hit the “Fiscal Cliff”.  As of the writing of this blog, (New Year’s Eve 2012), it looks like we are headed over in some way.  Oh yes, I know…There may be some concessions and “patches” that extend unemployment benefits, for instance, but they are truly named appropriately.  They are the equivalent of putting a Band-Aid “patch” over major trauma.  Expect the patient to come down with complete systemic failure soon.

Now, what exactly is the “fiscal cliff” and what can we expect as we go careening off the edge?  A recent poll of Americans shows that most people can not accurately describe what this is and what the results will most likely be.  Here's some scenarios:

-88% of Americans will see their taxes go up an average of $3500 per year (so much for “taxing the rich”). This will easily set off another major Recession as we have a whiplash counter-reaction in decreased spending and a sharp decline in consumer confidence.  Expect the Recession to resume with a vengeance.    

-Unemployment benefits will immediately cease for more than 40% of the 5 million unemployed Americans who have exceeded the benefit level.  Unless, “patched over”, THEY WILL HAVE NO INCOME STARTING NOW.   The other 3 million unemployment recipients will not be far behind. Expect a huge rush to our social services/welfare programs.  Please remember we are already $16.4 TRILLION in debt.  The United States has the questionable position of having a HIGHER PER CAPITA debt than GREECE!  Each and every American citizen (adult AND child) carries a federal debt burden in excess of $51,000 EACH.  This is higher than the much scorned “spendaholics” in the European Union who are tottering on the edge of financial collapse.  In this statistic, we are the WINNERS, by far.    

-The Capital gains rate will increase from 15% to 20%.  So what…you say?  This will put a HUGE damper on stock market investments and real estate investments.  Expect to see damage in both markets very soon.  ALREADY the stock market is on its fifth straight day of downturn just in ANTICIPATION of this cliff.  How do you think it will react when we go OFF the cliff? 

-How about “High income” earners:  Those who make over $200,000 will see their tax brackets rise from a low of 33% to a potential high of 39.6%.  In addition, Obama”care” tacks on another new surtax of 3.8% on capital gains for “wealthy” Americans.  Expect high end real estate to take a nose-dive and further stock declines, further divestment of business investments, further loss of jobs, further unemployment.   

So maybe you are thinking…phew!  I’m one of those people who TAKES from the government…So you don’t care, right?  Here’s what government programs will have an automatic cut of substantial amounts on January 1st:

Military (We don’t need to bolster that now...The world is so peaceful.)
Schools (They are doing incredibly well anyway.)
Infrastructure (Does the word “crumbing” mean anything to you?)
Public Health (Plagues anyone?)
Homeland Security (The radical Islamists just love us now…No need to worry!)
Medicare (I KNEW those death panels would come in handy!)

They SAY Social Security won’t be cut.  But it’s already functionally bankrupt.  And we KNOW how correct they have been about everything else, right?  I think we should just TRUST them…don’t you? 

January 22nd 2013 is shaping up to be a monumentally bad day.  I personally believe it could possibly be the worst day ever symbolically in American history for several reasons.  For starters, it is the official first day of Obama’s second term as President.  It signifies the first day that Americans, fully knowing what his agenda is, selfishly re-elected him into office.
Here’s his very first priority:  On Jan 22nd (he can barely wait for the swearing in to be over)…he is shipping (20) F-16’s and (200) tanks to Egypt’s Muslim Brotherhood leader, President Morsi.  We will also be sending American military over there to TRAIN THEM on how to use this deadly equipment. 

On January 22nd, we also hit the “moral cliff”—the 40 year anniversary of Roe v. Wade.  We are approaching almost SIXTY MILLION abortions in the United States.  This is TEN TIMES the Jewish Holocaust in Nazi Germany. 
In the Supreme Court, 2013 is shaping up to be a nightmare for Conservative Values and Constitutional Rights.  There are several MONUMENTAL court decisions that are expected to be decided.  Just to list a few:

1)      Religious Freedom (HHS Mandate)
2)      Redefinition of Marriage (expected to hit courts by Summer of 2013)
3)      Possibly a challenge to our 2nd amendment is in the making (gun rights)

In 1938 Hitler was named “Time Person of the Year”.  It was also the year he earnestly began gun restrictions and gun confiscations.  The very next year, World War II began.

This year, in 2012, Obama was named “Time Person of the Year”.  It is also the year he vowed to assault our 2nd amendment gun rights.  Hmmmm….are we due for a repeat of history?

What will 2013 bring?  I’m not sure, but today on Dec 31st, 2012, we are certainly watching an epic, nail-biting “cliff-hanger”.   

Will we just continue to tune out or wake up in the middle of a nightmare?

It’s almost time…Ten, nine, eight, seven, six, five, four, three, two, one…

Happy New Year?

Every kingdom divided against itself will be ruined, and every city or household divided against itself will not stand.
~Matthew 12:25

When the Lamb opened the seventh seal, there was silence in heaven for about half an hour.
~Revelation 8:1


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