It looks like someone linked you here to our printer friendly page. Please make sure you go Back to Safehaven.com for more great articles just like this one!

Budget Farce Suggests Term Limits Needed

By: John Browne | Monday, December 10, 2012

Put simply, the fiscal cliff debate is an illustration of staggering political cowardice. Politicians of both parties are unwilling to ask voters to pay for all of the big government promises that they made on the campaign trail. They would rather risk the country's long term future than risk losing the next election. As a former elected legislator, I can assure them that their offices are not worth the price they are asking us, the voters, to pay.

Big government is hugely expensive. Beyond the costs in money, the regulations and political intrusions of an all-controlling nanny-state government create economic disincentives. Already, the fiscal cliff debates have inflicted severe damage on the U.S. economy by magnifying an existing general sense of uncertainty. In addition, they have delayed any prudent curbs on taxation and debt, which has led to the loss of America's prized triple 'A' credit rating. Another political pantomime that exhibits a massive lack of political will and integrity will only further diminish America's leadership.

The Democrats have proposed tax increases that would drain a further $1.6 trillion out of a sputtering U.S. Economy. Breaking their agreement with their supporters, even some moderate Republicans appear ready to agree to taxation increases of some $800 billion. At the same time, they have refused to put any specific spending cuts on the table. Out of fear of taking ownership of any potentially unpopular proposals, both sides refuse to make the first move.

When America was growing ever more prosperous, politicians acted more from a sense of duty than agenda, as politics was not seen as a lucrative career path. Today it offers a substantial career accompanied by very considerable wealth and great privilege. For example, Congress has encumbered ordinary Americans in an Obama health system, which is not at all likely to deliver the promised services and low cost, while retaining their own separate and privileged health system.

Given the entrenchments created by a two party system and revolving door lobbying industry, it appears impossible to persuade politicians to put the country before their privileged political careers. The only logical alternative would be to foreclose on the possibility of re-election by amending the Constitution to require single term limits for all politicians. This would finally encourage politicians to think about something beyond politics... posterity perhaps? These decisions are too important for career politicians to make. We must send citizens to Washington instead. However, turkeys do not vote for an early Thanksgiving. As such, the institution of term limits likely will not come from within the Congress as presently constituted.

Knowing that their politicians are abusing their democratic power and enslaving them potentially in abject poverty, it falls to American citizens to stand up for themselves. They should not demand details such as a freeze on tax increases or spending cuts, but a general overall demand for single term limits. Without cause to fear retribution at the polls, legislators could perhaps place the interest of the country ahead of their own personal careers.

Big government is the culprit. It will not be reduced effectively without term limits that will require concerted grass roots action to implement. Hopefully the resentment likely to be felt from an increasingly massive transfer of private wealth to the state can engender citizen anger sufficient to force such a change. It would provide a turning point not only for the United States but would also set an example for many democracies around the world.

 


Subscribe to Euro Pacific's Weekly Digest: Receive all commentaries by Peter Schiff, John Browne, and other Euro Pacific commentators delivered to your inbox every Monday!

Order a copy of Peter Schiff's new book, The Real Crash: America's Coming Bankruptcy - How to Save Yourself and Your Country, and save yourself 35%!

 

Author: John Browne

John Browne, Senior Market Strategist
Euro Pacific Capital, Inc.

John Browne

John Browne is the Senior Economic Consultant for Euro Pacific Capital, Inc. Mr. Brown is a distinguished former member of Britain's Parliament who served on the Treasury Select Committee, as Chairman of the Conservative Small Business Committee, and as a close associate of then-Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher. Among his many notable assignments, John served as a principal advisor to Mrs. Thatcher's government on issues related to the Soviet Union, and was the first to convince Thatcher of the growing stature of then Agriculture Minister Mikhail Gorbachev. As a partial result of Brown's advocacy, Thatcher famously pronounced that Gorbachev was a man the West "could do business with." A graduate of the Royal Military Academy Sandhurst, Britain's version of West Point and retired British army major, John served as a pilot, parachutist, and communications specialist in the elite Grenadiers of the Royal Guard.

In addition to careers in British politics and the military, John has a significant background, spanning some 37 years, in finance and business. After graduating from the Harvard Business School, John joined the New York firm of Morgan Stanley & Co as an investment banker. He has also worked with such firms as Barclays Bank and Citigroup. During his career he has served on the boards of numerous banks and international corporations, with a special interest in venture capital. He is a frequent guest on CNBC's Kudlow & Co. and the former editor of NewsMax Media's Financial Intelligence Report and Moneynews.com. He holds FINRA series 7 & 63 licenses.

Copyright © 2008-2014 Euro Pacific Capital, Inc.