PotUS: Issues & Challenges

What i expect from my president, in order.

A. Protect the US from outside threats. I view this as the primary responsibility of the executive because this is the essential and historical role of any community leader from a family patriarch, the tribal chieftain, to a people’s King. The constitution sets foreign diplomacy and commander in chief as the responsibility of the President. Performing these responsibilities well is the most important function for the PotUS in a world that remains full of dangerous challenges. Ultimately, regardless of how generous and responsible the US is as a member of the international community, some out there will want to hurt and harm us. Once they believe this is in their best interest, we will not be able to talk them out of it. I want a president willing to make war before we are attacked as well as one willing to talk so we won’t be attacked. It certainly won’t sound fair but I rather have foreign blood spilt than ours, foreign lands bombed than ours. I do not want war all and I want wars prevented within reasons. But I recognize that there will be times when undesirable war is preferable to hoped for peace. But once a war I want us resolved and determined to win. Once won I want to see the US as magnanimous in victory in order to jointly build a new future with our former foes. In short I want our foreign policy predicated on the simple idea of “There is no better friend and no worse enemy than the US of A”.

B. The second responsibility for the executive branch is to maintain a secure environment for Americans to pursue happiness. Here the president will need to lead, direct and set the agenda for Congress to formulate legislations further secure the American pursuit of happiness. Factors essential for a secure American environment are sound fiscal policies, fair resource management, and secure individual liberties.

B1. Sound fiscal policies have three aspects: first is a fair taxation plan that would stimulate economic growth, second would be appropriate federal spending to grow the essential governmental function, and to reduce the federal deficit.

B1a. Regarding taxation, it may seem tempting to tax the rich and give it to the poor, but in practice this just does not work. Firstly, who has the most money? Large businesses. But if for every penny they are taxed, they certainly pass it down to the consumer in terms of higher product cost. Sadly, it is the poor consumer that pays more as a percentage of their income on buying essential products for living than do the rich. If not big businesses then what about medium size businesses? Some of the tax they will certainly pass along to us, the consumer voter. But what tax they cannot pass along will eat into their bottom line and reduce available capital. Less capital means less growth in terms of hiring as well as building a better business. Either way, the community loses. Alternatively the rich individual can be taxed. From the Tax Foundation the fact is that this is already happening, with the top 10% (those making about $109,000) earners paying 70% of the federal income tax revenue. The bottom 50% earners (making less than $32,000) currently pay less than 3% of the federal income tax revenue. Squeezing the rich individual is harmful in three ways. Firstly it makes the rich even more involved in politics to reduce their tax, and once tax issue resolved, they will try to influence the governments in other ways. We cannot afford a plutocracy. Secondly like with small businesses less disposable income due to higher taxes mean less money to spend on personal services, from assistants to maids, cooks, and gardeners. Again the working voters get cut. Thirdly taxing the more financially fortunate is just counter intuitive to the American dream to become more financial fortunate. While my personal bias currently is for a federal flat tax along with a federal sales tax instead of the federal income tax (less tax bureaucracy too!) this is currently not likely. In lieu of this, I am and think we all ought to be opposed to raising taxes on any segment of the public.

B1b. Appropriate federal spending to grow the essential governmental functions covers firstly maintaining an active and competitive military, secondarily a national security program, and a functional transportation infrastructure for internal commerce. Maintaining the military is the primary function of any national government to defend its people and existence. The military must be well trained and well supplied in terms of men and equipment. Naturally we must care for our military personnel as they are serving and once they have served. I support a well-funded program to support the family of soldiers on active service; the families of those who love ones have died in service, and for our veterans after they have served our country. I also believe the best defense is a strong offence and this requires a technologically advanced military. To go on the offense you need accurate and reliable intelligence service. A similarly effective intelligence capability needs to be applied to protect against foreign terrorist acts within the US. There can be no freedom or prosperity without security. And prosperity will also require a well-maintained infrastructure for communication and transportation, especially as the US is structured as a federal union of states.

B1c. The president proposes the federal budget to Congress. If the US government is not in deficit, then it might be alright for the government to spend liberally, but given the size of the federal government, there needs to be limits on non-essential federal spending to reduce the federal deficit. The deficit needs to be reduced because these credits are especially sorely needed elsewhere right now. The first way to reduce the deficit would be to cease the expansion of government services except as above (B1b). The second way to cut the deficit is to increase revenue. This will occur if governmental policy stimulates economic growth. Increasing taxation usually inhibits economic growth. Thirdly, there needs to be a serious discussion with the American voters about reducing welfare.

B2. For fair resource management, the essential resources to focus on firstly is human labor, secondly promotion of trade, and finally energy independence, and promotion of trade. Human labor isn’t just about fair wages, human labor development is about having the opportunity to work and earn a living as well as opportunity for both personal and professional growth through work. The opportunity of work can only come about through a growing economy. And once employed, we need to provide circumstances for the American worker to be both productive and opportunities for advancement. I believe essential to productivity and advancement is a sound education, from grade school through high school (to provide the basic understanding of how life and our country works) as well as appropriate trade and vocational education. As the American voters progress, by necessity we will have others to do the more menial and more labor intensive jobs to others. But by doing so more people will have opportunity for employment and grow the market for goods. This is true whether these lower paying jobs will remain here in the US or is sent across our borders. And if sent across our borders, we need to establish trade agreements with these other nations to make it easier to both allow them to accept our needs for basic labors as well as open their markets for our goods. These trade agreements should be both free and mutually beneficial. But one thing we cannot depend on oversea for is our energy needs. The US needs to become less dependent, or even independent, for our energy resources. Energy is to our economy what food is to our body. The US cannot perpetuate the energy import as we have been. The PotUS needs to take leadership to promote expansion of our traditional energy sources as well as build up more energy resources, both green and nuclear.

B3. Secure individual liberties by preserving the bills of rights and protecting against act of crime or terrorisms. The most important bill of rights are the first protecting freedom of speech, to essentially speak against the government, and the second to keep and bear arms, also to personally defend oneself. But regardless of how the Bill of Rights is interpreted, it becomes meaningless if America is entrenched in fear due to crime or terrorist acts. I do not believe our liberties need to be sacrificed in order to obtain personal security. I believe we can navigate through and preserve both liberty and security. A president needs to understand the significance of both and take consideration of both.

C. Everything thus far discussed, to protect the US against foreign threat and to maintain a secure environment for Americans to be happy, are all practical and earthly responsibilities but won’t be enough without something for the soul and spirit for America. In my opinion the most important them for America to move forward with is the concept of “individual and personal responsibility.” No nation can ever be great if its people do not have the initiative to act or to act without personal accountability or responsibility. Without personal responsibility, then the state becomes responsible for everything. This can only lead to failure. Accepting personal responsibility means accepting that an individual can change the future. I believe this is cause for optimism, for through actions from each and every individual America can be made better and greater. This is what I would like to see for America.

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