More of the Same

April 18, 2016

By: Bobby Casey, Managing Director GWP

more of the sameOver the course of just these past couple years, we’ve been pointing out events which indicate an escalating desperation in government. They are grasping at control and money, and clutching so tightly, that full economies are slipping through their fingers.

Can the United States afford more of the same? She already lost a good number of pharmaceutical companies to offshore inversions. Oreo left and people were angry. Now Ford is moving its engine and transmission plants to Mexico. This was decided before the presidential campaigns, although due to its timing it is more highly politicized.

“Today’s announcement…is a disappointment and very troubling,” UAW President Dennis Williams said in a statement. “For every investment in Mexico it means jobs that could have and should have been available right here in the USA.”

The bottom line is the bottom line. Ford wants to make more profitable and affordable cars. Who can make that happen? UAW employees averaging about $60/hour in wages and benefits? Or Mexican employees averaging at about $8/hour? UAW President must be struggling with the math a little. It’s not job for job.

It’s one thing to read about companies leaving the US. It’s another when companies KEEP leaving the US. People can point and scream at those corporations, calling them unpatriotic, but at the end of the day the United States has proven to be inhospitable to businesses. For that matter, given the growing rate of expatriation and citizenship renunciation year over year, it would appear that the United States is likewise proving to be inhospitable to the individual.

But what has politicians and Americans so upset over them leaving? Isn’t the standard advice: “If you don’t like it leave”? When people leave, they take their wealth and jobs with them. Therein lies the problem. Losing subjects to control, and a tax base from which to steal.

Government theft has many manifestations. Taxation is one, but civil forfeiture is another. It was reported that the more wealth was stolen through government forfeiture than by actual private sector thieves!

It’s one thing to read about criminals getting their assets seized. People generally expect it: you commit a crime, you do the time. What people don’t understand is, the assets aren’t seized once the person is convicted of a crime. It’s seized because it is suspected of being part of criminal activity, even if the owner is innocent. This constitutes approximately 20% or more of local law enforcement budgets.

In January of this year (i.e. just four months ago), I told you about the Department of Justice’s plans to put an indefinite moratorium on “equitable sharing” by the federal government of seized assets (“A ‘Shift’ in Asset Forfeiture”). Here we are in April and I’m writing to tell you that the DoJ has already made a full about-face on that policy.

As Jason Snead of the Heritage Foundation puts it: “Law enforcement agencies’ favorite method of bypassing restrictive state forfeiture laws is back in business.”

Snead goes on to say:

Thanks to equitable sharing, a state or local agency can seize property under state law, transfer it to federal authorities for forfeiture under federal law, and then get up to 80 percent of the resulting proceeds—even if the police department or sheriff’s office is banned under state law from retaining forfeiture proceeds. Since 2000, more than $5 billion has been paid out to law enforcement entities all over the country, every cent of which is beyond the control of local or state legislators.”

In order to fight crime and stop illicit acts, local governments engage in what bears an uncanny resemblance to money laundering. I can’t help but laugh at how America bombs for peace and fights crime with more crime.

The profit incentive behind policy and practice – with the transparency of a steal wall – leads to numerous counts of totally innocent individuals being caught up in its net. How do we know they are innocent? Because we presume innocence until proven guilty, and there is no logical way of proving a negative. That’s why the burden is on the prosecution to prove GUILT, not the defense to prove innocence. And this is largely still true for people… just not for their things.

Innocent people are constantly being caught up in the dragnet of public policy. Obamacare has its fair of damages. Premiums have gone up across the board on average of about 7.5%. That means some only went up a little while others went up a LOT. People lost the coverage they liked and had to take up with coverage that was either comparable or less than what they had due to the higher premiums.

But for all the success touted by the Obama Administration for the ACA in achieving greater health insurance coverage, the real rub is in the quality of care these newly insured are likely to receive. Having insurance only ensures you can pay for the care on some level. It doesn’t mean you’re getting the care. If you’re in the market for something, there are two reasons why you wouldn’t get them: 1. You don’t have the means to pay for them; 2. You have the means to pay for them, but they are on back order. Obama pushed the US into the second scenario.

As if general practice physicians weren’t already in low supply, it is forecasted that we will fall short by up to 90,000 of them by 2025. That’s just under 10 years from now. Between population growth and rapid expansion of coverage, the supply simply cannot meet the demand.

The money in primary care isn’t nearly as much as it is in specialty medicine, so only about 1 in 4 medical school grads are even heading into the primary care field. But the worst bit is that medical care is concentrated in cities, leaving 65 million people in what is called a “primary care desert”. This will only be exacerbated by the downward doctor trend. Will this result in a new “crisis” warranting a full nationalization of healthcare? That way, government can allocate which doctors go where, right?

How long will the United States tolerate this? Does she have to really hit rock bottom like Venezuela or Argentina? Maybe. But more of the same taxing and regulating; more of the same forfeiture practices; more of the same failed welfare programs is going to take the United States to disaster. It is rather obvious that more failed policy will lead to a more failed country. Economies have proven time and again, they cannot handle being plundered forever. At some point, they will collapse under the weight of such a burden.

You can protect yourself from all, most or even some of these policies by redirecting yourself or your assets offshore… or at the very least into a corporate structure to protect some of your privacy. Let’s up an appointment to discuss this. Click here to schedule a consultation.

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