Who’s Really to Blame for the Mess We Are in?

Mark Skousen

Named one of the "Top 20 Living Economists," Dr. Skousen is a professional economist, investment expert, university professor, and author of more than 25 books.

“A virtuous and industrious people may be cheaply governed.” — Ben Franklin

I have to laugh when I read about the fight over the budget and the “fiscal cliff” coming our way, and the decision by both President Obama (a Democrat) and John Boehner (a Republican) that taxes must go up to pay for the deficit.

What a joke!

First of all, there is no evidence whatsoever that raising more taxes (either through higher rates or limiting deductions) will do anything to cut spending. In fact, tax hikes just encourage them to spend more money. Government is out of control — and you are being hoodwinked if you think that raising taxes on anyone will make Death Star (Washington, D.C.) any more responsible.

I just reviewed the budgets of Obama and President George W. Bush since 2001 and guess what? Spending ballooned, skyrocketing 74%, or 6.2% a year!

Former President Bush never did run a budget surplus during his eight years in office, even though we generally were enjoying full employment. Even Keynesian economists believe you should run a surplus during times of prosperity.

Earlier this year, I met with ex-President Bush at a conference he was holding in New York. The title was “The 4% Growth Project.” I said to the organizer, “Do you mean economic growth or government growth?” The fact is that the economy never grew more than 4% in any one year of Bush’s administration. But government spending sure did. In fact, the rate of spending rose more than 7% in six out of his eight years of office. The only exceptions were 6.1% growth in federal spending in 2004 and 2.8% in 2007.

Government spending grew an astronomical 17.5% in 2009 alone, during the financial crisis.

Exclusive  Be Afraid. Be Very Afraid. Biden’s #1 Threat to Your Wealth and Liberty

So, who’s to blame for the fiscal crisis we are in? George W. Bush.

And President Obama has only made matters worse. Don’t get me started.

It shouldn’t come as a surprise to learn that politicians are ranked the lowest in the most recent Gallup poll on professions you can trust:

LAST CHANCE: Two-for-One Special Book Offer for the Holidays

My new 2nd edition of “Maxims of Wall Street” is out! It is the only collection of all of the great sayings on Wall Street, plus poems, stories, and parables about investing. Warren Buffett, Jack Bogle, Dennis Gartman, and Alex Green all love the book — a “classic” gift in dark green leather and gold lettering. The book is the perfect gift for anyone interested in investing. The price is only $20 for the first copy, and all additional copies are $10 each! Buy a box of 32 books and pay only $300. I pay postage and autograph each copy. To order, call Eagle Publishing at 1-800/211-7661. If you want to order a box of books, mention priority code MARKB. If you prefer to order individual books, mention priority code MAXIMS. Books are mailed out within 48 hours, to make sure you have them in time for the holidays.

To read my e-letter from last week, please click here.

You Blew It! Are We in a Common Era or a Christian Era?

Last week on TV, Christine Hayes, a professor of religious studies at Yale University, referred to the Christian Era as the Common Era. It’s one of my pet peeves. Here’s why.

For the past 20 years, scholars, especially Jewish historians, have started to replace the traditional abbreviation AD with CE. Anno Domini (AD) means “in the year of our Lord,” and non-Christians started using CE to avoid acknowledgement of Christ as Lord. Okay, I can understand that — Professor Hayes specializes in Hebrew studies. As a believer, I will continue to use the traditional AD and BC (Before Christ) designations.

Exclusive  Five Fertilizer Investments to Buy After Agreement for Russia to Halt Blockade

If Jewish and secular scholars want to be objective and intellectually honest, they should still refer to CE as “Christian Era.” After all, it was the Christians who invented our current calendar that is used worldwide, even in non-Christian Asia. Historically, there are dozens of calendars out there, such as the Mayan, Julian, Byzantine, Buddhist, Chinese, Japanese and Hebrew. But the calendar adopted by all major countries, East and West, is the Gregorian or Christian calendar. Since they dominate, CE should stand for the Christian Era, not the Common Era, if you are going to give credit to the originators.

To call CE the “Common Era” would be like calling the Arabic numerals “common” numerals. It’s intellectually dishonest to refuse to give credit to an inventor, even if he or she is of another religion.

The next thing you know, “Yalees” will be saying “Merry Commons.”

Yours for peace, prosperity and liberty, AEIOU,

Mark Skousen

Mark Skousen
Newsletter and trading services
Personal website


share on:

Like This Article?
Now Get Mark's FREE Special Report:
3 Dividend Plays with Sky-High Returns

This newly-released report by a top-20 living economist details three investments that are your best bets for income and appreciation for the rest of the year and beyond.

Get Access to the Report, 100% FREE

share on:


Dr. Mark Skousen

Named one of the "Top 20 Living Economists," Dr. Skousen is a professional economist, investment expert, university professor, and author of more than 25 books.

Product Details

  • Forecasts & Strategies
  • Home Run Trader
  • Fast Money Alert
  • Five Star Trader
  • TNT Trader

Bryan Perry

A former Wall Street financial advisor with three decades' experience, Bryan Perry focuses his efforts on high-yield income investing and quick-hitting options plays.

Product Details

  • Cash Machine
  • Premium Income PRO (exclusively for subscribers of Cash Machine)
  • Quick Income Trader
  • Breakout Options Alert
  • Hi-Tech Trader

Jim Woods

Jim Woods has over 20 years of experience in the markets from working as a stockbroker,
financial journalist, and money manager. As well as a book author and regular contributor to
numerous investment websites, Jim is the editor of:

Product Details

  • Successful Investing
  • High Velocity Options
  • Intelligence Report
  • Bullseye Stock Trader
  • Eagle Eye Opener

Bob Carlson

Bob Carlson provides independent, objective research covering all the financial issues of retirement and retirement planning. In addition, Bob serves as Chairman of the Board of Trustees of the Fairfax County (VA) Employees’ Retirement System, which has over $2.8 billion in assets.

Product Details

  • Retirement Watch
  • Retirement Watch Spotlight Series
  • Lifetime Retirement Protection Program

Jon Johnson

Jon Johnson's philosophy in investing and trading is to take what the market gives you regardless if that is to the upside or downside. For the past 21 years, Jon has helped thousands of clients gain success in the financial markets through his newsletters and education services:

Product Details

  • Investment House Daily
  • Stock of the Week
  • Technical Traders Alert
  • Rapid Profits Stock Trader


Used by financial advisors and individual investors all over the world, DividendInvestor.com is the premier provider and one-stop shop for dividend information and research.

Product Details

Popular tools include our proprietary Dividend Calendar, Dividend Calculator, Dividend Score Card, and many more.

  • Dividend Investor