I Want To Be A One Hit Wonder

Thursday, October 2, 2014

If I Were King Part 10: Health Care Reform

     Before I get too far into this one I want to do a quick review. First of all insurance will be done away with. Second everyone in the country is being paid the same amount for their work. This will include, Doctors nurses and orderlies. Finally, everyone now works a 32 hour week and overtime is forbidden. 
     Now we need more doctors, and we need them fast, but at the same time, I've just put limits on how much the doctors can work, and made being a doctor less appealing, to a lot of people. So the first thing to do is require that all doctors, regardless of specialization, spend one day, each week, working as a general practitioner, or emergency room doctor.
      Also remember that while the lower pay might make some people loose interest in being a doctor, the lower pay will also make it easier to hire doctors, and the better working conditions (32 hour weeks) will make it more attractive to a lot of people. 
      Also I'd like to point out the obvious here: If you want to be a doctor for the money and prestige, You Shouldn't Be A Doctor! 

Saturday, September 13, 2014

If I were King Part 9 : Insurance Reform

    All insurance companies closed down permanently, their assets seized and sold off to pay down the national debt, and their employees told to get a freaking job. All of their debts would be canceled, and non-transferable. All policies canceled.
   
  Whenever I mention this plan, I'm always confronted by people who ask "Then what will people do, when something terrible happens, that no one can afford to pay for themselves?" My answer has 2 parts:

      1) The fact that you even ask this question, shows the damage insurance has done to our society. When you need help, you're supposed to go to your family, your friends, your neighbors, and your church, in that order. In a serious disaster even the government can be called on for help, but a corporation trying to make a profit is not there to help you, and relying on them is just wrong.

     2) People will find it a lot easier to recover from disasters, because costs will be lower. Not only would they not be paying for insurance but the cost of goods and services, that are often paid for with insurance, will drop because they will have to.Companies deliberately overcharge for such things, knowing that their customers don't pay for them, themselves. Of course this screws over people who don't have insurance, but the people making the money never care about them. (This includes doctors, medicine, car repair, home repair and probably some other stuff I can't think of) And many employers will be able to pay higher wages, or assist employees with medical costs when they don't have to pay for insurance. (the lower taxes and elimination of rent already discussed will help a lot too)
    

Friday, August 29, 2014

If I Were King Part 8: Human Rights & Limited Government

      A lot of people get the wrong idea about me. They think that I want an absolute monarch, with no limits. Nothing could be further from the truth. Human beings are fallible, and subject to temptation. All human authority need limits, and all people need to be protected from abuse of power. If the law exists to protect us, then above all it should protect us from the most powerful.

   First lets talk about how we remove and punish abusive rulers.

  • Public officials can be removed from office for incompetence, over reaching authority, abuse of subordinates, or civilians, abuse of authority, (for personal gain, or to benefit friends or family) Dereliction of duty, serious crimes, numerous or repeated minor crimes, or for shameful behavior that brings scandal on the community. 
  • A public official who is Formally Accused of an offense will be immediately but temporarily removed from office, and standard procedures will be followed to appoint a temporary replacement. 
  • If the accused is found guilty, or confesses, his removal, and replacement will become permanent.
  • The Pope can remove the King. That's right the Pope, the Bishop of Rome, who isn't part of this country and whom the King has no authority over. He has the authority to remove the King and there is no appeal.
  • The King can remove any public official or military leader.
  • Dukes can remove any official under their Jurisdiction. 
     Notice that a public rumor or news story is not a Formal Accusation, and people who create public discord with such stories can be punished. Formal Accusations are protected, rumors and press are NOT.

        Now, lets talk about what the government can never do. The government can never be allowed to: 
  • Appoint anyone who is not a confessing and practicing Christian or Jew to hold any position of authority in the Government.  (This must be a Christian Nation)
  • Force people to follow a particular religion
  • Appoint or remove Church leaders.
  • Prohibit free & peaceful expressions of faith including public displays, by private citizens or public servants.
  • Grant any special status or exemptions to anyone based on religion. (including Tax exempt status) Except as noted above.
  • Make Any distinctions among people based on race.
  • Use torture (a clear definition of torture will be needed)
  • Make any tax other than the 20% sales tax already spelled out.
  • Punish anyone using fines
  • Dissolve a valid marriage. That means it can't grant divorces.
  • Force anyone to marry against their will.
  • Give charity to anyone, except during recovery from a Disasters like earthquakes, hurricanes, war or terror attack. (Private citizens & organizations can give to charity the Government can't)
All of this is off the top of my head and written in less than an hour. A more serious examination of these issues would be required if there were any hope of my words effecting public policy. Remember I'm doing this mainly for fun. Yes, I have a weird idea of fun.

If I Were King Part 7: Imigration & Border Security

     A free nation must have open borders. All are welcome. Remember that with the sales tax only system even foreigners will be paying their share of taxes and with no welfare system, they won't be a drain on our resources. 
      There is one important rule: Everyone gets stopped at the border (Dock or airport) and checked for contraband. If you try to bring weapons or drugs you get arrested right there. If you're clean you're welcome. If you resist the search you get arrested, and your stuff gets searched while you're locked up, then you're treated like everyone else. That means if you're clean and had no sensable reason for resisting the search you still get let go. 
     Everyone would be treated the same at the border, Citizen or foreigner, Diplomat or head of state. Including the king himself. 
Strong defenses would be built along the border with military patroles in remote areas.      Frankly, with the open borders rule, the only reason anyone would be sneaking across the border is if they were smuggling something or just didn't know that they didn't have to hide.

Sunday, January 26, 2014

If I were King Part 6: Energy Independance

       The manufacture and sale of gasoline and diesel engines would be phased out quickly. Everything would be switched over to Hydrogen.
       Look the guys who created the hydrogen fuel cell made a big mistake by putting it in that dumb-ass scooter. Hardly anyone could look past the scooter and see that the engine and fuel cells were the real invention, but if we get behind this thing it can change everything. Put it in cars, trucks, generators that power cities. I don't know if can work in airplanes, but if it can, then put it in them too. It's freekin insane not to.
        Then most of the middle east can go back to being useless desert.

Saturday, January 25, 2014

If I Were King Part 5: Justice For All

      First thing we do is kill all the lawyers. No not really, I just love that line, and I will be doing away with lawyers so it kinda worked. Don't worry, too much, because the good lawyers will be able to get jobs as judges. I would also do away with juries and have all cases decided by 3 judges. The judges would examine the evidence and question the witnesses themselves, then render a verdict, by voting. This way we can be certain (well, more certain than before) that the people, making the decisions, understand the rules of evidence, and common people can stop living in fear of jury duty.
       If a guilty verdict is not unanimous, then the dissenting judge can delay punishment for up to week while he decides if he's going to appeal. Yes, the dissenting judge is the one who decides if a case is going to be appealed, and unanimous verdicts are final (Though bringing new evidence might convince a judge to reverse his decision, at any time).
       There will be only one set of  courts in the nation and it will hear all cases, both criminal and civil. Any case that could be brought in multiple jurisdiction will automatically go to a higher court. I wont tolerate judges giving different rulings on the same case in different locations. 
       Judges will be required to dismiss frivolous lawsuits and if a plaintiff is awarded a settlement in a frivolous lawsuit not only will the duke or king reverse the ruling but he will remove the judge from the bench.

      Long prison sentences are a monstrous offense that for the most part would be done away with. Nobody needs to be punished in a way that insures they will never be able to become useful members of society. Yes some people will still be put in prison but for much shorter times. Months instead of years. In fact one of the first things I would do upon taking over is reduce the sentence of every prisoner currently held to 1/12 of  what they were originally given. Let me make it clear there would never be any kind of early release under this system. parole boards, and work release would be things of the past. A prisoner who is told he's going to serve 17 years and gets out in 7 will always feel in some way that the system isn't to be taken seriously. A prisoner who's told he'll serve 17 months and serves every minute of it will know we mean what we say.
      Most minor offenses would be punished without any jail time. But NOT with fines either. Fines, and any kind of court costs would be absolutely forbidden. And charging prisoners money to pay for their imprisonment would also be abolished. So would privately run prisons. The system is going to run on a 20% sales tax and absolutely nothing else ever. See Part 3. If we can't balance the budget on that we need to cut costs. Fines are a way of granting rich people license to commit crimes while turning poor people into serious criminals because they can't pay. And adjusting fines based on income is wrong because it gives the government an incentive to harass rich people with abusive fines. 
       Most minor offenders would be punished by being beaten and released. The beating would consist of 20 hard lashes with a rubber hose. That way it wouldn't leave permanent marks. More serious offenders would be imprisoned for a number of months but the worst offenders would be executed, in 3 days. (Notice the appeal process mentioned above) Sentences for violations would be spelled out according to law and not subject to the judge's discretion. There would be no need for a sentencing hearing. 

        Prisoners would be kept in isolation from each other for the duration of their stay. To protect them from each other, and to prevent them from developing any kind of prison culture. Prisons would be open to the public, to protect prisoners from abuse by guards.  
       Crimes committed, while in prison, would automatically be treated more seriously. Prisoners are supposed to be focused on getting out and not coming back. If you're going to commit a crime while being punished, you've hardened yourself and need to be treated more seriously. That means if you do drugs while in prison you die.

Monday, January 20, 2014

If I were King Part 4: Full Employment & Labor Reform

 To achieve full employment the first thing to do is cut the work week to 32 hours, put a stop to all overtime, and outlaw anyone having more than one job. This will mean that employers will need a lot more workers to fill up those hours their old workers used to do. Yes a lot of workers will make less money as a result, but since they don't have to pay rent anymore (See Part 1) they'll be fine. 
         By the way, if you own a business, you can run it as a second job, or if it's your only job, you can work as many hours as you want. With the extra free time this will give us, more people might look into starting a small business. If you make something and sell it, yourself, without employees, it would be tax free. (See part 3)

      I would like to add, that I believe people should work 6 days a week and rest on the Sabbath, but I also believe that there is a lot more work to be done than just what we do at our place of employment. Giving people more free time will allow them to clean up their homes, take care of their kids, go shopping, pay bills, go to church, and do volunteer work to help others. These are things a civilized society should encourage.

       Next, we need to require employers to hire unskilled laborers and train them to do whatever job they need done. That means if a hospital wants to hire a doctor, then they're required to recruit a high school student and pay his way through college and medical school to get one. (This will cause businesses to put pressure on schools to streamline and focus the education process) They days of people having to pay for their own school would be over. That also means if you learn how to do a job then quit, you wont be able to find another job, in the same field, because the employers are required to hire unskilled workers.

      Finally, all workers, no matter what job they do, would be paid the same: $100.00/day. That means the new guy at McDonald's would get the same paycheck as the king, or the CEO of Microsoft. However companies would be required to divide a percentage of their annual profits equally among their workers, so if you work for a profitable company, you'll make more money.

       This would solve a lot of problems in our society, but one of the biggest is the problem of teachers in public schools. Everyone knows a teacher can make better money teaching at a college than a public school, so most good teachers go where the money is, and public schools take what's left. If colleges paid the same as public schools, more people might try the public school option. Also the public school would get first crack at recruiting potential teachers, while they're still in high school.
      
       

Wednesday, January 15, 2014

If I Were King Part 3: Unified Code of Laws & Taxes

 I would Not rule over a loose confederation or a federal union, but a single united kingdom, with one set of laws for the whole nation.The Dukes and Counts, would exist to enforce the law, collect taxes and provide services, none of them would have law making authority. Furthermore if they were ever caught getting into jurisdictional disputes with one another they might be relieved of duty. 
     There would be just one tax: A 20% sales tax charged at the retail level. This would also be charged on services performed by anyone who isn't your full time employee. Buying wholesale would be absolutely forbidden, unless the items were being purchased for resale. That means your office supplies would be taxed also and Sam's club would be out of business. The only exemptions would be people selling used items or items they made or grew themselves (personally). 
     This means everyone in the nation would be taxed at the same rate, including foreigners, and even illegals (more on that later).  
      it also means that a huge number of taxes would be done away with, the tax system would be greatly simplified, and the majority of people would pay a lot less in taxes. Without all those legislators and their staffs and elections the government would be a lot cheaper to run.

Tuesday, January 14, 2014

If I Were King Part 2: Structure of the Government

 I would divide the country into Duchies, and appoint a Duke to Govern Each one. There would also be several Dukes whom I would appoint to specific tasks like running the military. These would not also govern a Duchy. The Dukes that did govern Duchies, would divide their own lands into counties and appoint a count to govern each. No positions would be inherited, all would be by appointment. 
     Upon the death of a king the Dukes would assemble to select one of themselves to be the next king.
     Yes, it's based on the structure of the Catholic Church. But since the Catholic Church has worked this way for 2000 years, I figure it's a good model.

Sunday, January 12, 2014

If I Were King Part 1: Redistribution of Wealth

    If I were King, I would put an end to rent. I would outlaw long term renting of real estate (you could still rent out hotel rooms dorm rooms and single occupant boarding rooms) people who living in rented homes or doing business from rented stores would become the owners of the property. The landlords would be told, "Get a job you worthless leach".
      This wouldn't be the first thing I would did but I'm starting with it here, because it's a really big change in the whole economy and it needs to be done, in the interest of justice.

Saturday, January 11, 2014

Coming Atractions

      Staring tomorrow I'm going to do a series of posts titled "If I Were King". 
      Before I get started, I'll tell you that I do believe we would be much better off with a king, than with our current government. I have no love for democracy and I've often joked that a kid who doesn't love democracy, isn't paying attention in school, but a grown up who still loves democracy isn't paying attention to the world. But I don't harbor any delusions of grandeur or plans for treason. Actually  bringing a kingdom into power isn't my place. I cut meat for a living. I'm writing these words in hopes that someday there will be a king and maybe he'll be inspired by the words I've written. And hopefully by writing this I'll help others to see that we really do need a king and that might make it more likely to happen.
     Even if no one listens or agrees, it's certain that one day we Will have a king and he will rule in righteousness.
      

Tuesday, December 31, 2013

Is it even Possible for Democracy To Work ?

       The short answer is: yes, but why bother? A more satisfying answer would be: yes, but it would have to be very different from what we have in America. 
       Before I start let me explain that there are some things about America's government that have made America great. These are the concepts of Limited Government and Human Rights. I would never want to live in a country without these concepts. However that's about all we got right. I'd say making it a democracy in the first place was a big mistake, and in a later post I'll talk about what would have been better, but today my subject is how to make a democracy that could work so we'll stick to that.
       The first problem with this country is that the government is too freaking complicated. Even if you're committed to the concept of democracy, we would have to start with a new and much simpler constitution. 
        Keep all legislative power in the hands of a One House congress. When I say all legislative power I mean that states and local governments would not be allowed to make laws. There would be one uniform code of laws for the whole nation. 
       Next there are too many small governments. Jefferson county Alabama has 28 incorporated towns, each with it's own budget, and jurisdictional disputes. Screw that crap. Nothing smaller than a county should exist. and since local governments shouldn't be able to make laws, even those would be a lot simpler.
      That's enough for now. I could say more (and will eventually) but I wont put it in this context because frankly I'm not committed to Democracy so the next time I talk about government I'll tell you what kind of government I would like. 
      

Tuesday, December 24, 2013

Democracy Is A Drain On Humanity

   Think about how freaking expensive it is to run a a country like ours, with different legislatures at local, state and national level, each with their own staff and elections. And the people running for office don't usually use their own money, they depend on "contributions" and volunteers.
   If you can't think of a better use for that much money, you're not really trying. And it's not just the money, Think about the volunteers. If instead of being absorbed by a monstrous political process people gave and volunteered for charity then they might make the world much better.

    Republicans in particular are always saying we don't need government caring for the poor, we need private individuals,  churches, and NGOs that are closer to the people. I agree but we'd have a lot more of that to start with if the government didn't drain the resources.

   I'll post something new tomorrow.
Copyright 20013 by Lee Walser. All rights reserved.