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How To Find Just The Facts Ma'am

Updated on April 11, 2013
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I am not a political commentator. Although I am a fiscal conservative, I hold many liberal views when it comes to some of the more sensitive social issues. I state this fact about myself so that the reader will not assume a point of view based on political ideology. As a matter of fact, I have little respect for the Republican and Democratic parties. I have no respect at all for those people in either party who have driven our country into the state we now find ourselves.

As much as I would like, this article is not about the very important financial mess we are in. My article is to address the absolute stupidity of our state department and some of our international business leaders.

It is important for this country and its political and business leaders to have a clear understanding of the nature of the people and cultures in which we find ourselves today. We cannot judge other societies and cultures by our norms or standards. Much as some would like to pretend, the world is not just like us.

We live in a world where logic and reason are the logic and reason of the illogical and unreasonable. A world where life is not valued, but death is. Corruption is an everyday, everywhere occurrence and integrity, honestly, mercy and compassion are considered weakness.

Our foreign policies for business and politics must reflect the reality and not the desire of how we would like the world to work. As someone who has seen the elephant, only a strong and intelligent policy of engagement with both our friends and enemies will serve this county.

I am a 59 year old, rough diamond gemologist by trade. I have worked in the diamond business for 38 years. I work or have worked in China, India, Brazil, Canada, Switzerland, Germany, Belgium, Portugal, Italy, Israel, Sierra Leone, DRC, Angola, Namibia, Kenya, South Africa, Thailand and Guinea. I have worked with royalty, high level politicians, ministers, generals and others who would have slit my throat had I let the opportunity arise.

I have worked with miners in the mud to top hedge fund managers and diamond men with outrageous wealth. I tell you this so you will know my knowledge and experience is not the arm chair variety. Today, the world is covered in scabs and filth and people are suffering unlike any other time in history. The Chinese are buying up all of Africa and every other place with raw materials. The Middle East is a very sad joke and we are prancing around the world with outdated, idiotic policies and practices which are drip by drip, stripping our country and our children of its and their future.

I am not an important person. I am just a small businessman trying to earn a living. However, I have eyes to see and I can smell the crap. Anyone who travels the world for business will verify my statements. America is becoming the Roman Empire as it was in the 15th century. If you do not know what that means, you are part of the problem. Let us face the reality of the world as it is. The wise have always spoken softly with hesitation and careful deliberation. However, the wise had better have the biggest stick and the smartest business people playing on our team if they want the bad guys, bullies and idiots to leave us alone and respect our interests and our friends.

I don’t expect change I can believe in. I am too old to be fooled by insincere politicians. I do however, believe in change we don’t expect.

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    • LouisPearlGG profile image
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      Louis Pearl G.G. 4 years ago from Northern California

      Your welcome. But one thing I want to make clear. It does not have to be the future. People like you and me can help. Sure, we can only help in a small way, but we can make a difference one American at a time.

    • Ericdierker profile image

      Eric Dierker 4 years ago from Spring Valley, CA. U.S.A.

      Fantastic. I like it. From this perspective I really appreciate your position. Somehow your hard work and statistics are inspiring. Mano-o-Mano I sure learned something here. Muchas Gracias

    • LouisPearlGG profile image
      Author

      Louis Pearl G.G. 4 years ago from Northern California

      Consider this article in support of my posistion:

      Everywhere from FoxNews.com to CNBC.com, I suddenly see commentators warning of pending doom, economic collapse, and a new Great Depression. Welcome to my club. Perhaps America's politicians and economists should have paid attention to an entrepreneur and small businessman that has been warning of economic collapse and a new Great Depression publicly for over two years.

      More importantly, none of the current commentaries mention the "why's" of this slow motion economic collapse...beyond the obvious -- mountains of deficit and debt. None of them mention the dysfunctional structure of the current U.S. economy and the massive changes in the work ethic and mindset of the average American.

      I am a successful small businessman and a patriot who loves America and always sees its greatness. I am also an optimistic, positive thinker who always sees the glass half full.

      But not this time.

      This time we are in such deep trouble, the only solution is a radical restructuring of the politicians, the economy, and the way we view personal responsibility versus government handouts. If those changes don't come then we are facing a long decline and the eventual end of America.

      The economy is crumbling. The situation is turning more hopeless by the hour. The more government gets involved, the worse it gets. Coincidence?

      -

      This time the results are going to be dramatically worse than 1929. This time we are facing The Greatest Depression ever.

      Why? Because The Great Depression had NONE of the structural, economic, and social problems, nor the massive obligations we are now facing. Read the facts:

      In 1929 America was not $16 trillion in debt, plus facing over $100 trillion in unfunded liabilities. That’s over $360,000 in debt per citizen.

      In 1929, most of our states were not bankrupt, insolvent and dependent on federal government handouts to survive. One county (Cook County which includes Chicago, Illinois) now owes over $108 billion in debt (the biggest part of it in unfunded government employee pensions).

      In 1929, we did not have 21 million government employees with bloated salaries, obscene pensions, and free health care for life. Today 1 out of 5 federal employees earn over $100,000.

      Today, 77,000 federal employees earn more than the governors of their states.

      Staggering numbers of federal government employees retire at a young age with $100,000 pensions for life.

      Unfortunately on the state and local levels it’s even worse. There is now nearly $4 trillion in unfunded pension liabilities for state government employees.

      Protected by their unions and the politicians they elect, government employees are bankrupting America. In Illinois there are retired government employees making over $425,000 per year.

      No one could have imagined any of this in 1929. There is no possible way to pay these bills moving forward.

      In 1929, Social Security, Medicare, and Medicaid didn’t exist. The federal government had no such obligations threatening to consume the entire federal budget within a few years.

      In 1929, there was no such thing as welfare, food stamps, aid to dependent children, or English as a second language programs. American’s didn’t consider it the responsibility of government to pay for breakfast and lunch for school students -- let alone for illegal immigrants at school.

      Who could have imagined back in 1929 that one seventh of America's population would be on food stamps…and the federal government would ADVERTISE to encourage even more Americans to sign up for food stamps and welfare.

      Who could imagine back then that the federal government would team up with the President of Mexico to encourage Mexicans living illegally in America to sign up for food stamps?

      Who could have imagined back then that the president would offer not just welfare, but waivers to allow any state to opt out of requiring work to receive welfare?

      Back in 1929, who could have imagined 86 pregnant teenage girls all in one Memphis high school?

      In 1929 we had families, moral codes, and churches to prevent this kind of tragedy. Do you actually believe this is just one abnormal high school? There must be record numbers of pregnant teens all over America. They have figured out that the choice is to either work a drab, depressing job paying minimum wage, or pump out babies and have government pay your bills for decades to come. But where will the money come from? This will overwhelm the system with generations of massive debt. This is a nightmare.

      In 1929, legal immigrants wanted only to work. My grandparents, who came to this country from Russia and Germany, received no government benefits. They worked day and night to provide for their family and become American citizens. It was sink or swim. My grandmother Anna Root never took a penny in welfare, even when my grandfather died and left her with no job, no money, and 7 young children. So back in 1929 immigrants cost us very little.

      Today we have millions of illegal immigrants and their children collecting billions of dollars in entitlements from U.S. taxpayers.

      In one state (California) illegal aliens cost taxpayers over $10.5 billion annually just for education, health care and incarceration. Do you now understand why California is bankrupt and insolvent? This is spreading across the country.

      More dysfunction? Today new studies show that almost 20% of American children under age 18 are obese and therefore prone to suffer pre-diabetes, diabetes, or cardiovascular disease.

      Even worse, by 2020 experts predict that 52% of the adult population of America will have either pre-diabetes or diabetes.

      Do you understand the cost of diabetes? This alone will overwhelm and bankrupt America's health care system.

      In 1929 we had no federal disability program. Today almost 11 million Americans are on disability. There are more citizens on the disabled rolls than the population of 39 of our 50 states. This is far worse than the welfare or unemployment rolls- which have time limits. Disability is forever. The ratio of able-bodied workers to disabled in 1967 was 41 to 1. As of June 2012 it is now 16 to 1. It is impossible to pay this bill long term.

      But wait...it gets worse. Now soldiers are in on the act. Are you aware 45% of returning vets are claiming "disability" -- a number that dwarfs all prior records in the history of warfare. No nation can afford this.

      In 1929, we had an education system that was the envy of the world. Today our public schools are in shambles. We spend the most money in the world, and get among the worst results. The difference today? Teachers unions are in charge, instead of parents. Our students graduate with few skills, are qualified only for low paying manufacturing jobs that no longer exist -- they've been shipped to China and India. What will this workforce do for the rest of their lives? Live off the government dole? Who will pay for it?

      In 1929 taxes were much lower. Forget the tax rates -- they were meaningless. In those days we had a cash economy, so most businesses paid little or no taxes. Sales and FICA taxes didn’t exist. Today the combined local, state, property, gas, sales, FICA and federal taxes are the highest burden in history.

      Unconvinced?

      When income taxes started in 1913, the average American was untouched. Only the richest 350,000 Americans paid a 2% income tax. Today the average American works until April 12th just to pay his or her taxes.

      This stifles entrepreneurship and hinders the financial risk-taking necessary to create jobs and get out of a Great Depression.

      New numbers just out for July back up my contention that disaster looms. Sales tax revenues plunged an alarming $539 million below expectations in California last month. The jobless rate rose in July in 9 out of 10 battleground states -- Iowa, Florida, Michigan, Nevada, New Hampshire, Pennsylvania, Virginia, Colorado and North Carolina all had higher unemployment (while Ohio held steady). They say bad news comes in threes. Well here's the worst news of all- the American Petroleum Institute reports that demand for oil in July was at the lowest level since 1995. These figures are alarmin

    • LouisPearlGG profile image
      Author

      Louis Pearl G.G. 4 years ago from Northern California

      Regardless of our positions. I appreciate your comments. They are thoughtful and well written and I thank you for taking time and effort to help me bring these issues forward.

    • Ericdierker profile image

      Eric Dierker 4 years ago from Spring Valley, CA. U.S.A.

      You are aware of the book "Ugly American", which was written in 1958. That would be over 50 years ago. I just do not think the sky is falling yet, or likely to in the next 50.

    • LouisPearlGG profile image
      Author

      Louis Pearl G.G. 4 years ago from Northern California

      In my humble opinion, we are declining both within and outside our country. I have traveled the world. I have seen the change in attitudes towards our great country and I have spoken directly with high government officials in China, India and many African countries. As an example, do you really think Putin would have embarrassed our country and banned Americans from adopting Russian children if we were held in high esteem?

      Come to Africa sometime and see the influence of the Chinese. Go to the Middle East and listen to the opinions of the people. I go there routinely and I endure the changes you so welcome.

    • Ericdierker profile image

      Eric Dierker 4 years ago from Spring Valley, CA. U.S.A.

      That is kind of what I figured. Drop the analogy it serves you poorly. Romans declined from within and without. We are not in a period of ideological decline. The very countries you name are increasingly independent because of us and our model. Internationally China is more following our lead than blazing socialist stuff.

      We need the competition or people like you become less competitive.

    • LouisPearlGG profile image
      Author

      Louis Pearl G.G. 4 years ago from Northern California

      In a sense. What I am saying is America is in serious decline around the world and most Americans are not in the position to see it. I love this country and I am watching it go down the tubes for the same reasons as the Roman Empire. The future is about who controls natural resources. It was also true in the past. By letting China and others who do not share our values dominant the world, we will forfeit our place in the world and will have to follow the dictates of those who do not have our best wishes at heart.

      When politicians and business leaders fail to lead, then it means they follow. As an example, in 1960 Eisenhower said if you promised every colonel a general's star if he would cut 10% out of his budget, then the defense spending would drop on every American base in the world. What he was saying is the motivation for change must be based in reality, not on hope.

    • Ericdierker profile image

      Eric Dierker 4 years ago from Spring Valley, CA. U.S.A.

      so you are saying there is no America today?

    • LouisPearlGG profile image
      Author

      Louis Pearl G.G. 4 years ago from Northern California

      There was no Roman Empire in the 15th century.

    • Ericdierker profile image

      Eric Dierker 4 years ago from Spring Valley, CA. U.S.A.

      I must be part of the problem. I do not understand what is meant by the Roman Empire of the 15th century.