Yes, Deficits Do Matter…Under a Republican President

In 2003, during the Bush Administration’s efforts to pass a second round of tax cuts, Vice-President Dick Cheney famously said that “Reagan proved that deficits don’t matter.” Cheney was arguing that tax cuts would generate enough additional economic activity to offset any increase in the debt incurred by tax reduction, making the deficits manageable in the short term. I agree with his point…to a point. Tax cuts do generate additional government revenue because lower taxes increase economic growth, but that growth alone is not sufficient to offset massive deficits and debt without spending cuts as well.

For decades, America’s fiscal policy has flirted with disaster. Washington has continued to expand entitlement programs to the point that over $6 in $10 the government takes-in goes to pay entitlements like Medicare, Medicaid, and Social Security. In the next 15-20 years these programs will eat-up 100% of all annual federal revenues. All the while, successive presidents and congresses, both Republican and Democrat, have continued to expand government programs and grow government spending. As a result, the nation is now over $20 trillion in debt and is further running-up the tab by more than $500 billion per year.

I support tax cuts as a critical key to economic growth and expansion, but they, alone, cannot make America’s economy great again. Republicans have an awful history of ignoring deficits when we obtain power, arguing that rebuilding our military and national infrastructure necessitates such spending, only to turn the tables and decry the imminent economic destruction being wrought by the party of big government when a Democrat occupies the Oval Office. We can’t warn that the country is careening down the road to becoming Greece under a liberal democrat, and then blow a hole in the deficit under a republican.

I applaud Trump’s tax proposals that would lower our business tax rates to be competitive with the rest of the world, and provide tax relief to working families. I also support rebuilding our nation’s infrastructure, much of which is dilapidated or inadequate to current needs. I do not support doing so, however, without coupling such spending proposals with a plausible plan to reduce our annual deficits and to lower our national debt. Conservatives cannot make the same mistake we made under President Bush, which was to preside over the growth of government spending after reducing taxes to stimulate economic growth.

President Trump and the 115th Congress must tackle our national debt crisis, which former Chairman of the Joint Chiefs, Admiral Mike Mullen, said in 2010 is “the most significant threat to our national security.” In 2010 the debt was over $3 trillion less than it is today, so one can only assume that the situation has gotten worse. I support President Trump’s call to rebuild America’s military, but this cannot be done without money, and it shouldn’t be done with borrowed money.

Republicans must now make the hard choices with the people’s money that we, the people, make with our own. They must prioritize and learn to manage limited resources like everyone else. Cutting taxes is a good thing for our country and our economy, but tax cuts alone cannot correct our collision course with economic disaster. We must seek to cut federal spending, limit federal spending as a percentage of our national economy, and balance the budget in less than ten years. Absent these reforms, the same economic trends that we decried under Obama will continue to overwhelm us under Trump.

We can never truly make America Great Again until we make her books balance again. This should be a cornerstone of any conservative government.

Next Year in Jerusalem-Restoring the U.S.-Israel Alliance

I wonder how American liberals would react if the United Nations condemned foreign countries for placing their embassies in Washington, D.C.? Or if they would applaud if the U.N. zoned which areas of Alexandria, Virginia or Bethesda, Maryland could contain housing and commercial developments around our national capital? In spite of all the griping the Left is doing about the Trump Administration’s plan to move the U.S. Embassy in Israel to Jerusalem, and their rants about Israeli settlements in and around that ancient city, I cannot imagine that they would take too kindly to outside influence over our choice of capital or how we develop it.

Or take liberal hysteria over Russia’s alleged hacking of DNC computer servers, which is being treated by the Left as the only reason Trump occupies the Oval Office today. While election results were not ultimately affected, Liberals recognize the mere attempt as a violation of our national sovereignty. This is the same Left that applauded when now-former President Barack Obama tried to directly intervene in Israeli elections- using taxpayer dollars- to oust Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu in 2015. Liberal hypocrisy knows no bounds, and is nowhere more evident than in their treatment of Israel.

The U.S.-Israel alliance – a great force for good in the world- reached a low point under President Obama and his team of diplomats who continually undermined Israel and emboldened its adversaries. From their shameful effort to reprimand and embarrass Israel for infrastructure development in its own capital city at the United Nations, to the Kerry State Department’s decision to release $221 million in foreign aide funding to the Palestinian Authority (which will almost certainly end-up funding Hamas rocket attacks against Israel) on the day Donald Trump was inaugurated, the Obama Administration sought to weaken our ally at every turn.

Now that Donald Trump is in the White House, it is time for America to right our recent wrongs with regard to Israel. In spite of liberal objections, the Administration should follow-through with Mr. Trump’s campaign pledge to move the American Embassy to Jerusalem. By being the first major power to relocate our embassy to the eternal capital of the Jewish people, we will reaffirm our strong commitment to our enduring alliance. At the same time, it is also fitting for newly-installed Ambassador Nikki Haley to work to undo the damage done by the Obama Administration’s parting U.N. Resolution against Israel’s development in their own territory in East Jerusalem.

Liberals are going to scream and howl at both of these efforts, but that should not slow either measure. The Left’s anti-Semitism ought not to be an excuse for America’s foreign policy to continue to be steered off-course by compromising our alliance with Israel. By taking bold and decisive action with regard to Israel, the Trump Administration can recalibrate America’s foreign policy to a position of strength and resolve instead of one of appeasement and surrender. By firmly standing by the only democracy in the Middle East, America will again become a beacon of freedom and hope in the world.

The American Brexit is Official: Perspective on the Inauguration of Donald Trump

Donald Trump was destined to become the 45th President of the United States last June when Britons voted to exit the European Union. Progressive global elites were stunned that voters would reject their utopian vision for the global future. Yet, British voters chose the nation-state over international integration that erases national identity and autonomy. What the British voted for in June is what Americans voted for in November.

The 58th Presidential Inauguration in Washington was the American equivalent of implementing the Brexit vote in old England. Americans want their government to fight for their interests and represent their identity first. Americans voted to re-invoke the charter of our founding, that in this country the people rule. This Inauguration, like the Trump movement, was bigger than Donald Trump himself; it was about the forgotten citizens of this country who have long felt that their voice no longer mattered. 

The aura of the inaugural was one of pride in America more than it was pride in a president. Trump tapped into the desire of the American people to regain American autonomy and identity. Instead of pushing an agenda that is globalist-centric, the people want our government to make our national policy America-centric. 

When the Mormon Tabernacle Choir fired-up their inaugural rendition of America The Beautiful between the oaths of office, the people responded powerfully. The individual voices of hundreds of thousands came together in one resounding refrain of patriotic fervor. For eight years we have endured a president who apologized for America and lectured Americans; today our president praised our country’s culture and values, while encouraging Americans to achieve new heights of American greatness. 

The real work of the new Administration begins tomorrow, but today was a thawing of the American spirit. While Donald Trump is an imperfect vessel, his message of American pride is something a weary nation needed to hear after a decade and a half of war, eight years of economic stagnation, and government overreach that has stifled American ingenuity. Today’s inaugural ceremony was succinct, respectful, and full of promise for the future. 

The people have given a mandate to the new President and Republican government to return power to the states and to the people, instead of continuing the policy of concentrated power in the capital. The most powerful, and well-received, line of the President’s Inaugural Address came near the end when he declared January 20th, 2017, “the day the people became the rulers of this nation again.” 

Americans want their country back. We want to feel that our government is working on behalf of the people of this nation, not for powerful global elites who have long set national policy by controlling politicians in Washington. Trump will succeed only if he keeps his core promise of divesting power from Washington and giving it back to its rightful owners: We the People of the United States.

Nikki Haley Asks If United Nations is Worth America’s Money

If there is any remaining doubt that the U.S.-Israel alliance will improve under the incoming Trump Administration, the testimony provided to the Senate Foreign Relations committee yesterday by Governor Nikki Haley should remove all doubt. Governor Haley, currently serving her second term as Governor of South Carolina, has been tapped by Donald Trump to be the next U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations and she is is ready to mix things up in the world’s biggest bureaucracy. Her testimony was the clearest sign yet that the incoming administration will take-on the status quo in New York. 

Drawing a stark contrast to outgoing Ambassador Samantha Powers, who aided John Kerry in orchestrating the international betrayal of Israel, Governor Haley told senators “I will not go to New York and abstain when the U.N. seeks to create an international environment that encourages boycotts of Israel. I will never abstain when the United Nations takes any action that comes in direct conflict with the interests and values of the United States.” These words were a shot across the bow of liberal international elites who have been given free-reign under the Obama Administration. 

Once confirmed, Ambassador Haley will face a myriad of international threats to America’s national security unparalleled since Ambassador Jeane Kirkpatrick stood-down Soviet communism under Reagan in the 1980s. From international collusion against the safety and security of our closest ally Israel, to the prospect of a nuclear Iran and a resurgent Russian aggression, international stability is increasingly threatened and America’s interests are caught in the cross-fire. Having Nikki Haley at the U.N. will send a strong signal that the Trump Administration will not be business as usual at the United Nations.

For decades, the U.N. has been heavily funded by the United States even while it has worked to undermine our interests. As Governor Haley told the Foreign Relations Committee, “We contribute 22 percent of the U.N.’s budget, far more than any other country. We are a generous nation. But we must ask ourselves what good is being accomplished by this disproportionate contribution.”  The answer is that America has, in effect, funded opposition to its own interests for years. 

As a native South Carolinian who is deeply involved in the politics of my state, I am encouraged by the nomination of Governor Haley to be  U.N. Ambassador. I have watched my friend fight against special interests and entrenched bureaucracies in our state for six years. From taking on unions to the education establishment, Nikki Haley has not been afraid of a principled fight. I am confident she will carry this style to the United Nations and will upend the apple cart. She will fight to reverse these international schemes against our ally Israel, stand-down extremism around the world, and ensure that the United Nations is no longer a tool of international liberal elites hell-bent on undermining western civilization with funding from the United States government. 

Having Nikki Haley at the United Nations, with the backing of an America-First Secretary of State and a President who isn’t inclined to issue perpetual apologies for America, is a recipe for reforming foreign policy. Governor Haley will ask the same question of the United Nations she’s consistently asked of every bureaucracy in South Carolina for the past six years “are we getting what we pay for?”