Redefining Humankind

By Lowell Ponte

As God cast Adam and Eve out of the Garden of Eden, He told Adam that henceforth “through painful toil….[and] the sweat of your brow you will eat your food.”

Socialists and scientists now declare that a new Eden, a Heaven on Earth, is arriving. All of us can soon live sweat-free on easy fruit from the welfare-state tree at the center of the government’s garden.

Vermont’s self-described socialist U.S. Senator Bernie Sanders would guarantee a government job paying at least $12-15 an hour plus health benefits to anyone in America who “needs or wants one.”

This would do more than cost taxpayers hundreds of billions of dollars annually. It could devastate consumers by prompting millions of minimum wage employees to quit and work instead for the government, which might send the cost of hamburgers and thousands of other items skyrocketing.

Minimum wage employers would be forced to automate, further shrinking the private sector and the traditional ladder to work and achievement. Even more will become dependent on government make-work jobs, and they will vote for the political party of ever-expanding government.

 

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In Europe, 156 experts in robotics and Artificial Intelligence have just written a letter to the European Union arguing against EU plans to redefine robots as “electronic persons.”

Their objection, say these experts, is the EU effort to hold robots individually responsible for any harm they do. This would require a costly individual insurance policy for each robot employed, which would greatly increase the cost of replacing human workers with robots.

Unmentioned, as both sides know, is what giving robots the status of “electronic persons” implies. This could give robots a theoretical array of heretofore-human rights. Only days ago, a Japanese robot won 4,000 human votes in the race for mayor in a Tokyo suburb.

The real aim of the European Union, as Craig R. Smith and I explained in our book Money, Morality & The Machine, is to declare robots persons so that they may be individually taxed. This will make it more costly for companies to replace humans; but robots still have the advantages of never getting sick, needing sleep or vacations, going on strike, or loafing.

If robots can do our work by the sweat of their brow, and if something like welfare is available, then, as Rep. Nancy Pelosi says, humans will have the leisure to “become artists,” in the new statist Garden of Eden.

By taxing robots, socialists believe, government would acquire the means to give a free ride to humans displaced in their jobs by robots. We can either enjoy Senator Sanders’ easy-job income, or we can get the Progressive dream of a “Guaranteed Basic Income,” money for nothing. Even some libertarians such as Charles Murray of the American Enterprise Institute, Smith and I wrote, recognize that up to 81 cents of every dollar spent to help the poor in government programs never gets to the poor. A “Guaranteed Basic Income” could cost much less than welfare by eliminating all the government middlemen who make fat livings off social programs.

What happens to human beings in such a New Eden? This lifelong “retirement” turns them into perpetual government dependents, permanent children who never need – nor are allowed – to grow up, become self-sufficient and mature. Imagine a future where all people are self-absorbed, infantile Millennials still living at age 35 in their parents’ basement, watching MSNBC, becoming increasingly narrow-minded in their myopic confirmation bias, and throwing fits when anyone disagrees with them.

This “New Eden” with its socialist and scientific substitutes for God, is not heaven but a serpent-run hell. If you wonder what the future of humanity is worth here, consider how Britain’s National Health Service snuffed out the life of baby Alfie Evans. Robots will have “rights,” but you will not.

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For an amazing interview with veteran think tank futurist Lowell Ponte, contact Sandy Frazier at 1-516-735-5468. For a media copy of Craig R. Smith and Lowell Ponte’s latest book, Money, Morality & The Machine: Smith’s Law in an Unethical, Over-Governed Age, contact David Bradshaw at 1-602-918-3296.

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Welcome to the Class War

by Lowell Ponte

In the Great Class War between the “rich” and the government, whose side are you on?

This week MarketWatch reported that by 2030, “the richest 1%” are on track to “control nearly 66% of the world’s money.” This is approximately $305 Trillion, it reported, based on data from the hard-left British newspaper The Guardian, best-selling French Marxist economist Thomas Piketty, and other sources with comradely views. The activist group Oxfam warns that “just eight billionaires have as much wealth as 3.6 billion people – the poorest half of the world.”

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Such words are intended to stoke jealousy and envy behind a mask of compassion and fairness. It is unjust, we are to think, that a utopia of pure equality is being thwarted because wealth is redistributed by capitalists instead of socialists.

In the United States the top 1% pays 45.7% — 2.7 times their “fair share” — of individual income taxes. Under the even-more-Progressive income tax of the new tax law, the top 20% will pay 87% of the total. The bottom 40% will not only pay nothing but also get money from the Earned Income Tax Credit and other special provisions that turn our tax system into a welfare system.

Income taxes account for roughly 37% of U.S. Government revenues, compared with only about 24% in Europe where consumption taxes distribute the burden more broadly. In Sweden they even tax welfare checks, so that everyone helps bear society’s costs.

Does Class Warfare produce a healthy society? No, it produces an attitude that those richer than you deserve to have their money taken away and given to you. Democrats such as Nancy Pelosi – net worth reportedly $40 Million – offer to rob the rich via taxes. But those they polarize increasingly want to rob the hated rich directly, without any self-serving middleman.

(Have you noticed that Democrats favor Hate Crime laws based on race, sex, gender, and almost every other difference between people – except class. Democrats would go out of business overnight if preaching class hatred against the rich became a crime.)

“Wealth” in the world comes in at least two currencies – the coin of money, and the coin of power. Real wealth comes from power, not money. You may own a stack of $100 bills, but the government owns the printing press and can conjure as much money as it wishes out of thin air. Doing so, of course, would destroy the value of your money in an inferno of inflation.

The rich own a fortune in land and fancy homes, say socialist Class Warriors. But do the rich really “own” what they pay others for? Stop paying the de facto rent of whatever property tax the government demands, and their land will soon be taken by the state. Government can also use its eminent domain powers to confiscate property.

Government ultimately “owns” all the land, and “controls” all the money. So who is the real enemy of the people in the Great Class War? Even directly, Uncle Sam owns 47% of all the United States west of Denver – including 89.5% of Nevada, 69.1% of Alaska, 57.4% of Utah, 48.1% of Arizona, and 45.3% of California.

Could Uncle Sam sell some of his almost-limitless property to help the poor? No, socialists will say, because what belongs to Uncle Sam is government’s forever – but what has been earned by the private rich is negotiable. Government is all of us, leftists say. Remember that the next time they charge you $20 to visit one of “your” National Parks.

As President Donald Trump’s clash with the unelected “Deep State” has proven, government is just another selfish special interest. Mr. Trump shows why we need some independent rich people who can afford to fight against gigantic government’s never-ending greed for power. That, of course, is the real reason why socialists hate and make war against the rich.

——————————————————————————————————————————————-For an amazing interview with veteran think tank futurist Lowell Ponte, contact Sandy Frazier at 1-516-735-5468.

For a media copy of Craig R. Smith and Lowell Ponte’s latest book, Money, Morality & The Machine: Smith’s Law in an Unethical, Over-Governed Age, contact David Bradshaw at 1-602-918-3296.

Cuba After the Castros

By Lowell Ponte

Cuba was once the third most prosperous nation in the Western Hemisphere, before Fidel Castro replaced capitalism with a communist dictatorship that turned it into one of the poorest, with an average monthly salary of $31. Fidel died in 2016 at age 90.

CyWUBsOW8AApy37The Castro dynasty ends this week when Fidel’s younger brother, former head of the secret police Raul Castro, retires after 10 years as Cuban President. (He will remain head of the Communist Party.) His hand-picked successor is said to be Miguel Diaz-Canel, who turns 58 this week, a committed Communist whose past is almost unknown to the press.

This is the way most revolutionary dictatorships slide into the dustbin of history. The charismatic founder holds his new government together by invoking what they shared during the revolution. When this leader passes, sometimes a family relative with his last name takes over, but it eventually devolves to a battle to the death between top lieutenants – such as Stalin versus Trotsky – fighting to seize power. Competitors for the love of the people such as Che Guevara are killed or sent abroad to die. After them, only the uncharismatic Yes-Men such as Nikita Khrushchev and Diaz-Canel survive and are left to take charge.

The new Cuban dictator faces difficult challenges. His island survives mostly by free oil from the Communist dictatorship of Venezuela, also a sinking economy kept in power by more than 14,000 Cuban secret police.

An American embargo of sorts remains in place, but Cuba has always been able to trade with Canada, Mexico, and Europe. Its problem is that it has repeatedly failed to pay for goods and thus has terrible credit with many nations. Castro also bet his slave island’s future on becoming a colony of the Communist Soviet empire, which failed and died before he did.

I remember being in Cuba in 1977, doing a piece for the Los Angeles Times. Cuba was Spain’s administrative center in the New World, populated mostly by business-savvy Spaniards from Barcelona. Cuba’s population is white and black, from African slaves imported to do the labor. But it is not brown; Spain exterminated the Native Americans who lived there.

I remember being taken to a showplace school where children studied half a day and burned their hands working at assembling batteries at an adjacent factory the other half – a throwback to child labor that liberal reporters never questioned. The school’s principal was Black, the only non-white I met in any position of power. The liberal media also ignored that white Fidel Castro overthrew a mulatto socialist Cuban President, Fulgencio Batista.

Then as now, ordinary Cubans could not enter resort hotels. I remember the panic on the face of a Communist Bloc apparatchik who began chatting with me in the hotel pool; then when he realized I was American tried frantically to get away from me before anyone noticed.

“We used to watch ‘I Love Lucy’ too,” said my Communist Party guide, “but we saw it differently.” How many Americans knew that when Desi sang “Babalu” he was invoking a deity from African Santeria voodoo religion? I loved embarrassing my guide by asking why he always locked his car in this Workers’ Paradise, or why cigarettes for Cuban domestic consumption carried health warnings…but not cigarettes made for export.

How many Democrats helped the Castros? John F. Kennedy withdrew promised air support, leaving Cuban freedom fighters to be killed or captured at the Bay of Pigs (Playa Giron). Bill and Hillary Clinton violated the U.N. Convention on the Rights of the Child by sending commandos to snatch Elian Gonzalez so the boy could be returned to Castro as a trophy after his mother died bringing him across shark-filled waters to the United States.

Barack Obama ended wet-foot/dry-foot asylum for Cubans reaching the U.S. as refugees from Communism. Cubans understand the evils of Communism and tend to vote Republican, unlike the millions of other Democrat-voting Latinos Obama allowed to flood illegally into the U.S. We need to learn why so many Cubans were willing to risk their lives by fleeing from the Castros to find economic and personal freedom.
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For an amazing interview with veteran think tank futurist Lowell Ponte, contact Sandy Frazier at 1-516-735-5468.

For a media copy of Craig R. Smith and Lowell Ponte’s latest book, Money, Morality & The Machine: Smith’s Law in an Unethical, Over-Governed Age, contact David Bradshaw at 1-602-918-3296.

A “Cashless” America Could Soon Be “Gunless”

By Lowell Ponte

The United States is quickly turning “cashless,” buying most things from automobiles to hamburgers via bank loans and credit cards. Americans carry more than a trillion dollars on what should be called “debt cards.” Banks love cashlessness, in which more and more of what we need is not earned or saved, but borrowed for high interest.

Government is even happier with the fast-arriving cashless society. Cash can be hidden, despite your bank being required to spy on you and report any odd financial activity. Government wants every transaction you make to be taxable, trackable, hackable, blockable, and used to empower Big Brother.

cash-gun-450Cashlessness in surprising ways gives vast power to government. Days ago, for example, liberal Democrat New York State Comptroller Thomas J. DiNapoli, who controls where the state invests its $209.1 Billion pension fund, sent out a letter. It went to institutions behind our credit cards – Visa, MasterCard, JPMorgan Chase, Bank of America, Wells Fargo, American Express, Discover Financial Services, and others.

DiNapoli’s message was about as subtle as a guy wearing a pinstripe suit, black shirt and white tie saying: “You gotta nice place here. Too bad if anything happened to it. But maybe I can provide you some protection.”

DiNapoli suggested that these companies should consider whether gun transactions should be classified with restricted high-risk purchases like pornography, illicit drugs, and cryptocurrencies. “If gun violence continues unabated in society,” he wrote, “public outcry…may grow and create significant financial risk for the company.”

DiNapoli suggested that these companies look into implementing ways to block credit card purchases of firearms, ammunition, and gun accessories. The implied threat was clear: stop extending credit to gun and ammo buyers, or risk having New York State investment money taken away from your bank or credit company because the left wants to ban guns.

The Federal Government has already tried such intimidation, as Craig R. Smith and I explained in our 2014 book Don’t Bank On It! The Unsafe World of 21st Century Banking. President Barack Obama implemented “Operation Choke Point,” which threatened regulatory problems for financial institutions that did not withhold banking and credit services from firearms and ammunition sellers, among others. Such sellers were to be cut off even if they had never been found guilty of any criminal wrongdoing.

This was the naked weaponization of regulatory power to injure or kill ideological targets. Consumer Research analyst Beau Brunson noted that Operation Choke Point “used reputational risk as a tool for bank coercion.” Now so does DiNapoli. With “cashlessness,” when customers have no other way to buy, such nuclear warfare can crush businesses and products.

In August 2017 President Donald Trump stopped Operation Choke Point, but as The Hill wrote, “a program terminated unilaterally can be resumed unilaterally.” On the day Progressive Democrats regain power, this is one of ten thousand kinds of authoritarian force they immediately will reinstall.

Sweden had been enthusiastic about becoming the world’s first “cashless” society. Now they are frightened at the power this gives government – not only their own, but Russia’s should it launch an invasion by hacking, scrambling, or shutting off Sweden’s computer networks as it did Ukraine’s, leaving Swedes helpless, without access to either cash or credit.

If a “cashless” government becomes authoritarian, it can not only monitor and tax everything you buy, but also ban purchases – ranging from foods it deems unhealthful to guns it deems dangerous. Without approval of the beast, you will be denied the ability to buy what you want and need. Purchasing or repairing once-legal firearms can instantly be made impossible.

This authoritarian step-by-step plan makes people depend on credit cards, and on renting things instead of owning them. Then it outlaws cash as something only outlaws use. Then government can control what people are permitted to buy by regulating and intimidating banks and credit card companies. The future will eventually rediscover the Framers’ Constitutional money. We will return to the 5,000-year tradition of precious metal that needs no government or computer to give it value. We will learn again that gold and free are not “four-letter words,” but two words that go together.

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For an amazing interview with veteran think tank futurist Lowell Ponte, contact Sandy Frazier at 1-516-735-5468.

For a media copy of Craig R. Smith and Lowell Ponte’s latest book, Money, Morality & The Machine: Smith’s Law in an Unethical, Over-Governed Age, contact David Bradshaw at 1-602-918-3296.

California’s Illegal Alien Voting Law IS Secession

By Lowell Ponte

On April 12, 1861, the Confederacy opened fire on Fort Sumter, igniting a Civil War that before its end killed more than 620,000 Americans.

Mark the date April 1, 2018, April Fool’s Day, as the day Civil War 2.0 began. On that day the State of California began to automatically register illegal aliens to vote who have driver licenses. This new law immunizes illegals against any state criminal penalty for registering and voting.

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Leftist scholars say that our states control their voting criteria and can legally register non-citizens to vote in state, county, and local elections. States, including California, however, may not register illegals to vote in federal elections – for Members of Congress, U.S. Senators, or President.

Allowing citizens of other countries vote in California would illegally “dilute” the votes not only of Californians but those of all American citizens by giving foreigners political power in selecting American lawmakers and Presidents. Democrats who collude in such theft of citizen voting rights – letting your vote be cancelled out by a foreigner – should face criminal prosecution under the Conspiracy Against Rights Act (18 USC § 241).

California has one-quarter or more of America’s illegal aliens – as well as one-third of the entire nation’s welfare recipients. With a population more than 40 percent Latino, it has become Mexifornia. The new California motor-voter registration law that took effect April 1st transparently is intended to enfranchise illegals, who vote 2-1 for the ruling Democratic Party, in order to dissolve the American nation into a borderless, bankrupt, bilingual backwater ruled as a colony by a global Progressive government.

Progressive President Franklin Delano Roosevelt’s slogan was “Tax and tax, spend and spend, elect and elect.” In California’s lavish vote-buying welfare state, the top 1 percent of taxpayers earn 24% of the income, but reportedly pay at least 48% of all income taxes. The highest-earning 5,700 Californians reportedly pay upwards of 37% of all state income taxes. This dangerously narrow tax base in the economic near-crash of 2008 caused state tax revenue to plummet by 23%. California cannot yet print its own money.

The greed of California Democrats is without limit. When President Donald Trump passed his tax cut, leading leftist politicians swore that they would increase already-crushing California taxes to “recapture” what the rich saved. Successful people are fleeing with their money from the once-golden state in a “reverse gold rush,” while millions more illegals are flooding in to get welfare checks in what now calls itself a “sanctuary state?”

President Trump is trying to fight his way through a thicket of Democrat-appointed left-wing judges to defund or abolish sanctuary cities and illegal invaders, like the thousands of mostly-Hondurans calling themselves Migrantes en la Lucha, “migrants in the fight,” mobilized to be the next wave to overwhelm the border patrol on Easter weekend, much as the radicals wearing Guy Fawkes masks swept over the British police in the movie V for Vendetta. These are classic radical tactics: either the invaders win, or the police who stop them are accused of anti-human brutality.

Imagine a better alternative. Suppose that President Trump announces today that the new California law has made all future elections unconstitutional and illegal, because foreigners are now allowed to tilt the outcome. Neither he nor the Republican House and Senate will accept the credentials of anyone elected by California (one of 8 states, incidentally, that have more registered voters than voting-age citizens).

Imagine after November’s vote that California’s two Democratic Senators and 53 Congress members (39 of whom are Democrats) are not seated until a new California election purges all illegal aliens and other foreigners from the voter rolls in federal elections. No California presidential votes will be counted in 2020. Imagine the federal government requiring voter I.D.s and declaring it a felony punishable by permanent forfeiture of future U.S. citizenship if a non-citizen votes illegally in any federal election.

California Democrats defied federal law and colluded to let foreigners take control of the U.S. government in Washington, D.C. They started Civil War 2.0 by seceding from the United States and its laws. Now they should lose all political power outside California, which would end any hope that Progressives will ever again rule the United States. Bye Bye, California.
—————————————————————————————————————————————To schedule an interview with Lowell Ponte, a veteran think tank futurist who lives in California, contact: Sandy Frazier at 516-735-5468 or email sandy@mystic-art.com.

For a free copy of Craig R. Smith and Lowell Ponte’s latest book, Money, Morality & The Machine, contact: David Bradshaw at 602-918-3296 or email him at ideaman@myideafactory.net