Florida Conservative

A Conservative Take on Florida and U.S. Politics

Real Issues

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Remarks about putting people in chains, tax returns, and other nonsense obscure the real issues facing Americans today.  If America is to continue its golden age, our leaders must face reality head-on and make decisions that will be painful in the short term but beneficial in the long term.  Sticking our collective head in the sand and hoping our problems will go away simply ensures they won’t.  In my view, the most important issues are:

Economic Growth – Policy uncertainty, complex regulations, and an anti-business culture are killing any hope of quick recovery from the Great Recession.  The obvious antidote to all three is to stop changing the rules during the game (politicians love to do this but rarely consider unintended consequences) and to level the playing field.  Fewer tax brackets means less behavior-modifying tax considerations. 

National Security – The US needs to stop caring what the world thinks, especially the left-leaning world media.  Instead, we should be working with our allies to bring peace and freedom to those who welcome it.  Interestingly, the terrorist-friendly cultures that hated George W. Bush still hate Barack H. Obama just as much.  We haven’t gained friends, we’ve just offended allies in recent years.  We need to work together with our European allies (especially England, Germany, and Poland) as well as Israel, Japan, India, and many others to ensure peace and prosperity.  Peaceful, prosperous nations don’t create terrorists.

Personal Freedom – If I were smarter than everyone else, it would be tempting to run a benevolent dictatorship and enable everyone to be happy, but such governments never work in practice.  People yearn to be free of the shackles of oppression, even in the United States.  We should be free to buy what we want, say what we want, and worship who we want. 

Immigration – The United States should welcome immigration, but only the legal kind.  Starting off a life in the America by breaking the law perhaps isn’t the most promising sign.  In order to stem the tide of illigal immigration, we should allow more legal immigrants (especially from Latin America) and create harsher punishments for illegal immigrants.  Here’s how I would fix it:  Starting January 1, 2014, physical presence in the United States without authorization becomes a felony (currently a misdemeanor) punishable by immediate deportation (no fine or jail time) with no provision to ever return.  That’s a great deterrant.  Beginning July 1, 2013, illegal immigrants can register with the government and pay back taxes plus a fine equal to $500 times the number of years in the United States.  This can be arranged via payment plan payable for up to 10 years.  If payment is missed or not made, such individuals become immediately subject to the felony/deportation/permanent ban.  Those who chose may return to their home country and apply legally.  Children brought to the United States illegally by their parents are not subject to any penalty provided they remain arrest-free until age 25 or graduate from high school.  Families will be “split up” if they don’t follow the rules.  The choice is theirs.  Most importantly, military service immediately qualifies immigrants and their immediate families (parents, spouse, and children only) for citizenship after four years on active-duty.

Education – Public schools are underfunded, understaffed, and in most cases don’t really challenge students.  The funding issues can be dealt with by delaying expensive textbook updates to new editions, DECREASING the use of technology in classrooms, and requiring that school districts pay for all school supplies/activity fees/etc.  Each of these is controversial, but decreasing the use of technology sounds crazy until you really think about it.  What’s the purpose of public schools?  To teach kids to use technology?  Hardly.  They can teach the teachers.  Schools should teach kids to read, write, and think.  Math, reading, history, English, science, economics, art, etc. are important.  Technology is not.  Most elementary schools would do fine with a single computer lab to introduce some kids to computer usage while middle schools should have a few that teach students to type and use basic software (e.g. Microsoft Word).  If we teach kids to learn, they can teach themselves technology on their own at a much faster pace than public schools ever could. 

Poverty – There are a lot of people who are poor.  Unfortunately, we keep trying to solve the symptoms rather than the underlying problems.  Those without food don’t need food given to them, they need a parent with a job.  Kids with discipline issues who are more likely to drop out of high school, join gangs, and become homicide statistics don’t need money, they need a father at home.  Anyone going hungry obviously needs food in the short-term, but the parents need at least a high school education, a job where they can work hard, and a desire to make something of themselves.  Without those three key ingredients, we’ll never break the food stamp cycle and we do everyone, especially their children, a huge disservice.

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Written by floridaconservative

August 17, 2012 at 6:00 PM

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