Michael Tennant

In the 111th Congress Rep. Ron Paul (R-Texas) introduced legislation to perform a wide-ranging audit of the Federal Reserve. That bill was, in Paul’s words, “gutted” before it came to the floor for a vote. Ultimately only a few very weak provisions of Paul’s original bill became law.

Members of Congress may be spendthrifts when it comes to taxpayers’ money; but when it comes to their own, they suddenly develop a sense of responsibility.

Monday, 05 July 2010 00:00

A Taxing Proposal for Online Retailers

online buyingThere are many positive features about shopping online, including convenience, selection, and speed. There is also the fact that a customer doesn’t have to pay sales tax on items purchased from retailers who don’t have a presence in the customer’s state — a significant savings on big-ticket items. Technically, the customer is still required to pay the tax come next April 15, but in practice hardly anyone does.

The National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP) is drowning in red ink — $19 billion in red ink, to be exact, according to Fox News. The reason is simple: The federal government charges below-market premiums to people who choose to live in flood-prone areas. This encourages people to build in such areas; and the more people who live there, the greater the liability for taxpayers. When a major disaster occurs, as in 2005 with Hurricanes Katrina and Rita, the outlays far outstrip the premiums, and the program goes into debt.

Internet controlThe Internet is a wonderful invention that has allowed for the dissemination of a wide variety of ideas. Not surprisingly, politicians, never ones to brook dissent cheerfully, are not terribly fond of it. In 1998, then-First Lady Hillary Clinton said, “We’re all going to have to rethink how we deal with the Internet. As exciting as these new developments are, there are a number of serious issues without any kind of editing function or gatekeeping function.”

Saturday, 22 May 2010 00:00

Consumer Protection or Consumer Prying?

money investigationIt seems that every day we learn of some new horror in the financial reform bill currently before Congress. This is not surprising given that the Senate version of the bill, for example, is 1,566 pages long. Those who voted on it probably have no clue as to most of its contents, as was the case with such monstrosities as ObamaCare and the Patriot Act.

Friday, 21 May 2010 00:00

Have a DNA Sample on the House

DNA“Millions of Americans arrested for but not convicted of crimes will likely have their DNA forcibly extracted and added to a national database, according to a bill approved by the U.S. House of Representatives on Tuesday,” reports CNET.

Supreme CourtOn Monday the U.S. Supreme Court will begin hearing oral arguments in the states’ lawsuit against ObamaCare. If the court, as it should, strikes down the entire law, friends of the Constitution will have reason to celebrate.

“If you like your healthcare plan, you can keep your healthcare plan,” President Barack Obama said repeatedly during the debate over his healthcare reform bill, hoping to allay fears that the bill, if passed, would force individuals into different health insurance plans or force those plans to change.

Former Massachusetts Governor Mitt Romney has lately been arguing strenuously against the Obama administration’s decision to force all employers, regardless of their religious convictions, to provide insurance coverage for contraception, including contraceptives that can cause abortions. The government's decision has been widely denounced by officials of the Roman Catholic and Orthodox churches because they are opposed to both birth control (except in certain limited circumstances) and abortion.