Review of “Real Dissent” by Thomas E. Woods Jr.

Real Dissent by Tom Woods

Tom Woods’ book Real Dissent draws a sharp distinction between authentic and insignificant political discourse. His central thesis in the book is that the opinion-molders in the media have narrowly defined the “legitimate” debate in this country to being between the positions held by the popular Republican and Democratic candidates. Those who suggest radical change or question fundamentals in the functioning of the system are mocked and ridiculed for being outside the acceptable range of opinion. These are those that dare say something that’s not on the 3×5 card of allowable opinion, the metaphor Woods uses to describe the perceived … Continue reading

Ron Paul Tackles the Phony Budget Debate in DC

Former Texas congressman Ron Paul publishes a multi-page report once a month through his F.R.E.E. (Foundation for Rational Economics and Education) organization called “Ron Paul’s Freedom Report”. In the current April 2014 issue, he takes on the phony debate that happens every year in Washington over the budget and the so-called budget cuts being proposed. As Paul explains, these alleged cuts are nothing of the sort:

The budget does not cut spending at all, and in fact actually increases spending by $1.5 trillion over ten years. The Republicans are using the old DC trick of spending less than originally planed and calling that reduced spending increase a $5.1 trillion cut in spending. Only in DC could a budget that increases spending by 3.5% per year instead of 5.2% per year be attacked as a “slash-and-burn” plan.

The budget also relies on “dynamic scoring”. This trick is where the budget numbers account for increased government revenue generated by economic growth the budget will supposedly unleash. The claims are dubious at best. Of course, reducing government spending will lead to economic growth. But real growth requires real cuts, not this budget’s phony cuts.

As explained above, the cuts being proposed are merely reductions in planned budget increases. Republicans and Democrats are equally unwilling to suggest any real cuts. For Republicans, the problem is that they will not cut military spending under any circumstances. While Democrats refuse to consider any cuts to welfare or entitlement spending. A type of gridlock ensues over these issues and they get into a useless debate involving tiny decreases that still grow government spending overall (in this case, 3.5% instead of 5.2%).

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