RUSH: I mentioned in the last hour — and I think this is crucial — all of this debt that people are piling up has resulted in the inflation of the real value of things and their real price. For example, if you had to have the money in toto to buy something — and I’m not suggesting this, this is just an illustration — it’s really nothing more than common sense — if you had to have the money, prices would have to come down because the people that make products, provide services, want to sell them. But if you don’t have to have the money — for example, everybody who has a mortgage thinks they own their house. You don’t. The bank or whoever the bank sold it to, Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac, whoever the hell owns your mortgage owns your house. You don’t own the house ’til you make the final payment 30 years from now or 20 or 25 or whatever is left on your mortgage. You don’t own diddly-squat.
What you have is the right to make a monthly payment that lets you live in the house. Now, as I said, we as a society made that decision that this was going to be one of the definitions of the American dream, fine and dandy, do not misunderstand, I’m not suggesting that we eliminate debt. We couldn’t do a lot of what we do without it, but there’s irresponsible debt, and the irresponsible debt has led to the inflation of the real price and value of things, and it’s also led to a sense of entitlement by people that is going to destroy a lot of things that are then going to have to be rebuilt. I mentioned $300 for a Band-Aid in a hospital or whatever the real price is. I mean, $600 for a toilet seat in a military jet. All of this results because the illusion is that somebody else is paying for it. In the real world, if you went to your nearest drugstore and a single Band-Aid cost you $300 bucks, you wouldn’t buy it. In the hospital, you’ve got no choice. But you can’t afford that. Medical care is one of these things where prices have no relationship to the customer, the patient’s ability to pay for it, and that just can’t be maintained.
Now, why are Band-Aids $300 in the hospital? Is it because hospital people are inherently greedy? Because at the end of the day we hear how they’re losing money, do we not? With $600 a bed overnight, $300 Band-Aids, doctors doing every conceivable test on you because they’re worried you’re going to sue them if they miss something when you go in for a sore throat, the cost of getting sick here when you have to go to the hospital is ridiculous, it’s absurd. And yet the people charging all this and being paid for it themselves are losing money. They gotta go out to rich people and ask for endowments and donations to build wings in the hospital or certain rooms in the hospital in order to keep going. They have to run around with their hands out. They’ve become charities. Universities have become charities. Harvard, with an endowment in the double-figure billions still runs around with its hands out. University presidents these days don’t know diddly-squat about education. They are fundraisers. So $300 for a Band-Aid because hospitals are trying to cover the uncovered costs imposed on them by government. They have to, as a matter of law, provide care for people who can’t pay, such as illegal aliens. That’s just one example.
They have to cover insurance against lawsuits, just as doctors do, with medical malpractice. These lawsuits, by the way, are filed by another liberal group, tort lawyers, trial lawyers. It is liberals who are out there trying to get coverage for all of the illegal people in the country, people that are not genuine American citizens. There is no free lunch. There’s a house of cards out there. Now, consider this. If Americans did not have to give around 40% of their income to government at all levels each and every year, they wouldn’t necessarily have to go into debt to the extent they do for homes and cars and colleges. Why in the world, when you start talking about college, liberals, when they start raising hell about the cost of things, be it oil, or what have you, they never target tuition, they never target Big Education and say, ‘You greedy SOBs, lower tuition costs.’ No, what they do is come up with even more ridiculous student loan programs, more debt, while creating the illusion that you have no chance in this country unless you go to college. You have to go to college.
So we’re farming all these people into college, but then lower education levels, high school, half the people that get out of there it seems can’t read the diploma that they are given. So when they get to college they’re not prepared for it. So we’ve got all of these illusions, you have to do this to succeed, you have to do that, you have to do this, you gotta have a car, you gotta have a house, you gotta have this, gotta have that. And at every level here, you will find liberals in government who have created all of these things. Stop and think. There’s a Texas congressman named Gohmert who has the most sensible idea in the midst of all of this that anybody has ever come up with. (interruption) He was on yesterday with Jason? Okay, good. A tax holiday. No FICA, no income tax, what is it, for two months? If you want to stimulate this economy, you give people two months of paying no income tax and no Social Security tax, instead of all this printing money and borrowing money at the government level. The government, it’s a wash for them, but the money that is left over in people’s back pockets is gonna stimulate this economy. Not money that is transferred or redistributed. There’s no new money there in the economy. It’s just being shifted.
You look at Wall Street every day. It’s a crapshoot! We don’t know what it’s going to do each and every day. You know why? Because the markets are being forced to look at what government is doing in order to make investments and that ought not be where the market looks. The market ought to be looking what’s happening in the country, on Main Street. But instead, the government has become so damned dominant and feared that the so-called private sector markets are quaking in their boots every day looking at what the Treasury secretary’s going to say, what Bernanke is going to say or do, what the president is gonna say or do, what the president-select is going to say or do, and I guarantee you, if you want stability in the markets, you’re never going to get it if the markets are forced to look at the most unstable entity in our lives today, the US government, for their daily indication of where we’re headed. It scares the hell out of me that each and every day the future of the country, in a lot of people’s minds, depends on what government’s going to do. We’re sunk. Everybody ought to be focusing on what Americans do. The American people are the ones that make this country work, not the government.
This level of taxation that we have, it creates havoc in the economy. It influences behavior. A lot of people who lose their homes lose ’em because they can’t afford the property taxes. It’s not because all of a sudden they can’t afford the monthly payment. It’s ’cause they can’t afford the property taxes. Local government, local school districts are spending like never before, we’re getting nothing for it. I know people whose property taxes have gone up a hundred percent in the last few years, because it’s a government entity, and of course it’s the schools, and what are the schools? Well, the schools are the children. And, of course, when the cities, these little communities large and small, start caterwauling and whining and moaning, they then say we’re going to have to cut essential services. Fire department, police, may have to cut some school programs. No, no, no, they say. They never cut the worthless stuff like funding an art exhibit at the zoo. Who gives a rat’s rear end about an art exhibit at the zoo? We’re funding some loco weed artist coming into town to show his wares. It’s silly stuff. There’s so much redundancy and waste in local, state governments. We’re not outta money in that regard. The degree to which we’re being taxed — I don’t care who they are, I don’t care what party, when they become city, state, federal government officials, they can’t do with a dime less, ever. They can’t cut; they can’t reorganize; they can’t restructure. All they can do is find ways to get more of our money.
The fact is, if we could keep more of our money, we could better afford our homes, our rent, our cars, college tuition. You get to the point where half of what you earn is taken from you, half of it, people forget the impact of this, because they never see half of it. They see their net, and they think that’s what they’re being paid. Now, ladies and gentlemen, let me be blunt here. The first bailout bill created this run on the Treasury. When we authorized the $700 billion and when Congress gave the Treasury secretary the sole authority — it’s in the legislation — to ensure the economic welfare of the American people, that opened the door for anybody else to start asking for money. I’ve alluded to this over the course of the program today. The University of Missouri — I just saw the story, got it somewhere here in the stack — they have written the Lord Messiah Barack Obama asking for $377 million from the bailout money or $400 million because they need that money to teach their students the value of hard work and commerce, because they need to teach their students, and they won’t be able to teach their students if they don’t get the money. Why? Well, because they won’t be able to build that annex or this Medical Center or complete this project that’s already underway. And, for some reason, that story just sent me over the edge.
My reaction to it was, if you don’t have it, don’t build it. If you don’t have it, go earn it. And I started thinking, how much talent does it take to run around with your hand out and guilt people into donating to some supposed highbrow cause? If you don’t have it, don’t build it. ‘Well, but we gotta compete with other universities.’ Well, it’s called the real world. If you don’t have it, ya don’t have it. And the real world is not structured so that if you don’t have it, you go ask somebody to give it to you. You might ask somebody to loan it to you or you might go ask for some series of alums to step up once again, but to go out and ask for it, something a person individually wouldn’t do. How many of us would go down the street and ask somebody to give us money? Other than the professional homeless crowd and so forth, the former squeegee guys, but we wouldn’t do it, but also we run the institutions and companies, and somehow we think we can go out and start asking people for money. If you don’t have it, don’t buy it. If you don’t have it, don’t spend it. If you don’t have it, it’s too bad! We don’t get everything we want. Every little student ought not have everything the precious little student wants.
Then there was the football team that asked for $25 million. Football teams are worth anywhere from $800 million to $1.2 billion. The run on the Treasury was started, all of this was started with one $700 billion bailout. This is my point. It was all started with this notion that we could not wait 24 hours or our country was finished. And the thing that I really want to warn you about here, this has opened the door to Obama using the economy as an excuse to advance his agenda. We have to save the US economy. We have to do it with a trillion-dollar stimulus package. Remember when the first $600 stimulus package passed out? Michelle Obama, I am told, because back in the campaign, you oppose Bush, whatever Bush does, and Michelle Obama, (paraphrasing) ‘Six-hundred, that won’t even buy a decent pair of earrings.’ It didn’t get reported much because it was the same day that the Reverend Jackson said that he wanted to deball Barack Obama. Obviously that story got more coverage than 600 bucks wouldn’t buy a decent pair of earrings.
So now everything’s on the table, everything, to save America, to save the economy, everybody from autoworkers to college presidents now believe they have a right to public money. You know the United Auto Workers owns a huge golf course? Yeah, I’ve got it here in the stack. The UAW owns a huge and really, really nice golf course that naturally loses money. Why couldn’t they sell it instead of asking for a bailout? Everybody now believes they have a right to free health care, correct? They have a right to it. Everybody believes they have a right to some of the income of everybody else. They have been told that businesses are bad, mean, evil, cruel, and so now they’re viewed as bad, mean, evil, and cruel. Businesses are populated by thieves, and the thieves are in Washington. They’ve also been told profit’s bad now. Profit is bad. Profit’s evil. They’ve been told that all successful people are crooks. So every time a real crook is found, he’s said to represent the evil of profit.