April 21, 2010
War on Poverty
-- The Cause of Poverty --
How a Rich and Proud Nation Went Broke
Jacob G. Hornberger
Classical Liberalism in Argentina: A Lesson for the World
Our revolutionary wars sought
to establish liberty from outside oppression
What we now need is liberty within
-- The James Madison of Argentina, circa 1852.
Before the government of LBJ enacted America's "War on Poverty", America's poor had cars, television and phones, at a time where many middle class in many other countries had few of these conveniences. Even today, the poor can go to a garage sale and pick up items for a steal, that people in other countries just dream about. Instead of America's economy being a failure, our poor people were a smashing success.
If whites in Appalachia were poor, so were whites all over Russia -- who even at one time were serfs. If blacks were poor in America, blacks were starving by the millions in Africa. If Hispanics were poor in America, they didn't know it, because they thought poor was what you were in Central America with no running water, no electricity and no health care.
But poor is a relative word. Compared to the rich in America, or anywhere, our poor were "exploited". -- Or so the Jewish media-Scribes told us.
Whenever you hear a government official declare a "War on Poverty", and that official's comments gets a sympathetic amplification by the Jewish media-Scribe elites, you can rest assured that it is really a "War on Capitalism", for if the poor are not getting what some government bureaucrat believes is "their fair share of the pie", then the government solution is for the government to arbitrarily take as much as they like from the non-poor, so as to "generously" help the poor.
And this has been shown time-after-time to be the killer of a prosperous country.
Right now, Steven Jobs is being celebrated as an innovative genius for the well-functioning, well-designed and well-marketed products Apple releases. Just today, his stock jumped 6% as iPhone quarterly sales greatly exceeded expectations, but very soon, he and/or his company will be decried as having excessive or obscene profits while engaging in price gouging.
OK, I know, Steven Jobs is a West Coast liberal icon, so he may very well be spared being cast as a greedy evil industrialist, but that does not stop essential companies like Exxon or Haliburton from being characterized as such.
Argentina's James Madison
Juan Bautista Alberdi
Argentina had declared its independence from Spain on May 25, 1810, but was not the better off for it, having substituted dictators from Spain with home-grown dictators. By 1852, Argentina had had enough of ther exceptionally brutal dictator Juan Manuel de Rosas.
The man who inspired "the masses" to revolt was Juan Bautista Alberdi.
And what inspired Alberdi was the United States. With America's Independence in 1776, America had accomplished far more in its first 50 years of freedom, than Argentina did in its first 50 years. And he attributed America's success to her Constitution.
"Today we must strive for free immigration, liberty of commerce, railroads, the navigation of our rivers, the tilling of our soil, free enterprise, not instead of our initial principles of independence and democracy, but as essential means of assuring ourselves that these will cease being mere words and will become realities. . . . Our revolutionary wars sought to establish liberty from outside oppression . . . what we now need is liberty within. . . . Our leaders want both glory and liberty, and the two are contradictory. . . . As South America has contributed nothing to world civilization except its wars and the victory in its struggle for independence, the only glory which exists among us is martial glory, and our great men are all military heroes. Not a single invention like that of Franklin, like that of Fulton, like the telegraph, and many others which the civilized world owes to North America, has been contributed by our America of the south."
-- Alberdi quotes "Classical Liberalism in Argentina: A Lesson for the World" by Jacob G. Hornberger
Read the quote above AGAIN!
A politician is attributing a bevy of private inventions as being a result of government action -- or to be correct, A LACK OF GOVERNMENT ACTION!
He modeled the Argentinian Constitution upon the United States Constitution.
After going nowhere in it first 40 years of existence of "freedom", what then happened in Argentina after its first 80 years with the Alberdi Constitution?
Answer: Argentina became the miracle of South America.
Following the 1853 Argentine Constitution, foreign trade expanded in terms of total foreign trade in imports and exports:
- 1861 : 37 million gold pesos
- 1880 : 104 million
- 1889 : 250 million
-- Argentina: 1516-1987 by David Rock
By the time of the start of World War 1, Argentina's per capita income equaled that in Germany and the Low Countries, and was higher than in Spain, Italy, Sweden, and Switzerland.
Having grown at an average annual rate of 6.5 percent since 1869, Buenos Aires had become the second richest city of the Atlantic seaboard, after New York, and by far the largest city in Latin America.
Except for trading post entrepôts like Holland and Belgium, no country in the world imported more goods per capita than Argentina.
By 1911, Argentina's foreign trade was larger than Canada's and a quarter of that of the United States."
However, it was not to continue.
In the 1930s, a military coup ousted the popularly elected government. Unfortunately, the new Argentine rulers rejected the Smith-Jefferson-Madison-Alberdi philosophy of economic freedom; instead, they turned to the socialist, fascist economic philosophy of people such as John Maynard Keynes, Benito Mussolini, and Franklin D. Roosevelt.
- Income taxation was instituted
- A central bank was created
- The gold standard was ended.
- Exchange controls and trade restrictions were imposed.
- Price supports and controls were instituted
- Regulatory boards were put into place.
Economic prosperity in Argentina came to an end.
The nation was plunged into a series of financial and economic crises.
The culmination was the election of Juan Perón in the 1940s. Perón, together with his wife Evita, carried the welfare-state philosophy followed by Franklin Roosevelt (and his wife Eleanor) to the extreme: they gave "bread to the masses" by using the state to plunder the wealthy.
The military agreed to hold presidential elections on February 24, 1946, and Perón won with 52 percent of the vote. His battle cry was economic nationalism.
The military was bought off as it nationalized all weapons manufacturing.
Perón introduced a Soviet-style five-year plan.
He established a government monopoly of the export trade: farmers had to sell their commodities to the government and accept below-market prices, and the government then sold the commodities overseas at higher, market prices.
Perón used the profits to subsidize favored industries.
He took control of the central bank, the vaults of which were loaded with gold bars.
He went on to nationalize the insurance industry and grabbed assets in its portfolios. He nationalized aircraft-construction companies, oil companies, and commercial shipping companies. He nationalized the British-owned railroads and telephone system.
Perón maintained the support of labor union bosses by making sure their members received benefits regardless of their productivity.
He ordered employers to pay one month's wages as a Christmas bonus. He decreed more national holidays.
He launched a government-run retirement program like Social Security.
He subsidized summer camps and rest homes.
At the same time, he insisted on controlling union decisions about strikes and other labor policies.
Perón's administration lasted from 1946 to 1955. Like Roosevelt's New Deal, his governmental attempts to wage war on poverty only made a bad situation worse. By the time he was ousted in 1955, the glory days of Argentine liberty and prosperity were gone.
A "War on Poverty for some" is
a "War on Prosperity for all"
Throughout the world, people are still suffering the privation, misery, and destitution that have resulted from the age-old belief that government should wage war on poverty.
The term "War on Poverty" is apt because wars destroy people, their homes, and their livihood. Wars cause punishing taxes and loss of freedom.
Today, public officials everywhere — supported by their citizenry — continue traveling the same road to "ending poverty"
- public housing
- price controls
- and thousands of other forms of socialism and fascism.
-- Classical Liberalism in Argentina: A Lesson for the World, by Jacob G. Hornberger
Did Argentina ever learn her lessons? -- Nope.
Argentina is currently broke, and last year President Cristina Fernandez de Kirchner seized private pension funds in a desperate effort to cover government budget deficits.
-- How a Rich and Proud Nation Went Broke, by Jim Powell
You can read further at
You can read further at
Guide to "Checks and Balances".
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