Tuesday, August 22, 2017

Ret. Marine Col. Jeffery Powers wrote to the NFL commissioners

Ret. Marine Col. Jeffery Powers wrote to the NFL commissioners the following:

Commissioners,
I’ve been a season pass holder at Yankee Stadium, Yale Bowl and the Giants Stadium.
I missed the ’90-’91 season because I was with a battalion of Marines in Desert Storm. 14 of my wonderful Marines returned home with the American Flag draped across their lifeless bodies. My last conversation with one of them, Sgt. Garrett Mongrella, was about how our Giants were going to the Super Bowl. He never got to see it.
Many friends, Marines, and Special Forces Soldiers who worked with or for me through the years returned home with the American Flag draped over their coffins.
Now I watch multi-millionaire athletes who never did anything in their lives but play a game, disrespect what brave Americans fought and died for. They are essentially spitting in the faces and on the graves of real men, men who have actually done something for this country beside playing with a ball and believing they’re something special! They’re not! My Marines and Soldiers were!
You are complicit in this! You’ll fine players for large and small infractions but you lack the moral courage and respect for our nation and the fallen to put an immediate stop to this. Yes, I know, it’s their 1st Amendment right to behave in such a despicable manner.

What would happen if they came out and disrespected you or the refs publicly?

I observed a player getting a personal foul for twerking in the end zone after scoring. I guess that’s much worse than disrespecting the flag and our National Anthem. Hmmmmm, isn’t it his 1st Amendment right to express himself like an idiot in the end zone?

Why is taunting not allowed yet taunting America is OK? You fine players for wearing 9-11 commemorative shoes yet you allow scum on the sidelines to sit, kneel or pump their pathetic fist in the air. They are so deprived with their multi-million dollar contracts for playing a freaking game!

You condone it all by your refusal to act. You’re just as bad and disgusting as they are. I hope Americans boycott any sponsor who supports that rabble you call the NFL. I hope they turn off the TV when any team that allowed this disrespect to occur, without consequence, on the sidelines. I applaud those who have not.
Legends and heroes do NOT wear shoulder pads. They wear body armor and carry rifles.
They make minimum wage and spend months and years away from their families. They don’t do it for an hour on Sunday. They do it 24/7 often with lead, not footballs, coming in their direction. They watch their brothers carted off in pieces not on a gurney to get their knee iced. They don’t even have ice! Many don’t have legs or arms.
Some wear blue and risk their lives daily on the streets of America. They wear fire helmets and go upstairs into the fire rather than down to safety. On 9-11, hundreds vanished. They are the heroes.
I hope that your high paid protesting pretty boys and you look in that mirror when you shave tomorrow and see what you really are, legends in your own minds. You need to hit the road and take those worms with you!

Time to change the channel.

Sunday, August 20, 2017

Donald Trump is winning...bigly

Donald Trump is winning...bigly

Donald Trump is winning...bigly

If you get your political updates through ordinary channels – MSM; local news; the major newspapers; and popular website newsies such as Yahoo, Facebook, and more recently Drudge – you most likely feel that America is imploding, all due to the chaos of the Trump administration.
The goal is to wear you down, if not wear you out, until you agree that Trump must go.
The stakes rise with each new Trump achievement, commensurate with the rising decibel level of those who express outrage at whatever he says.  That's what happens when your cherished assumptions are disproven day after day.  It's comical and also understandable.  No one likes to admit that he is wrong.  Or that they are wrong on a regular basis.  It's embarrassing and humiliating – especially if you are touted as an expert journalist or commentator, at least by virtue of being on TV.
That's why you hear little or nothing about:
  • the current NAFTA negotiations 
  • Kim Jong-un blinking
  • China threatening a trade war and then blinking
  • the U.S. becoming a net energy exporter
  • our diminishing trade imbalance
  • the amazing rise to nearly 4% GDP growth in the 2017 third quarter
  • forecasters suggesting that GDP could grow to 5 or 6% annualized
  • a rise in manufacturing investments in the U.S.
  • more full-time jobs among the middle class
  • the Syrian crisis
  • the continuing fall of ISIS in the Middle East
  • Wall Street's record highs as they turn to embrace Main Street
  • the public's opposition to the destruction of historic statues and memorials
  • an abhorrence of radical and violent activists on all sides, most all of whom abide on the left fringe
  • Russian collusion
  • the Awan brothers
  • Debbie Wasserman Schultz
  • Hillary and the Clinton Foundation entities
  • the wall
  • immigration
  • et cetera, et cetera, et cetera.
Trump is winning – BIGLY.  It's almost too easy.  He's focused on results, period.  The rest is just distraction, much of it orchestrated by anti-Trumpers who insist that you really can get a different result if you repeat the same experiment enough times.  They still don't get it because they don't want to get it.  They have dug in their heels.  That's why I find it funny.  Trump is playing them every step of the way. 
The people who get it are the American workers – the ones who watch Dirty Jobs, follow Mike Rowe on Facebook, and are happy to find an extra two hundred dollars at the end of the month.  Soon enough, others will, too.  It just takes time.  Trump is making it happen before our very eyes.

The Failure of the Communist God

Articles: The Failure of the Communist God

The Failure of the Communist God

In a recent friendly telephone conversation, Russian president Vladimir Putin may well have exclaimed to U.S. President Donald Trump, "Darn that dream I dream each night, but it haunts me and it won't come true."  It would be a timely commentary on present-day Russia.  On this 100th anniversary of the October 1917 Russian Revolution, it is  useful to assess the existence and the failure of the dreams of 20th-century Russian Bolsheviks with their aspirations for a new society and a world communist revolution, and the consequent disillusionment of the faithful, and their sad fate, resulting from the disastrous reality of the Soviet regime led by Josef Stalin.
Compelling narratives have been related concerning the drama and tragedy of the Old Bolsheviks in the Soviet Union in powerful and compelling works by Arthur Koestler, George Orwell, Alexander Solzhenitsyn, and Victor Kravchenko, among others.  Now the narrative is recounted in a massive 1,100-page, brilliant, and extraordinary new book, The House of Government, recently published by Princeton University Press, written by Yuri Slezkine, a Russian-born American professor of history at Berkeley. 
The House of Government (HoG) was the home for a decade, 1931-1941, of some members of the Russian Bolshevik elite, whose chronicle of their life and interactions is told, partly in their own words, from their youth through their conversion to communist radicalism to their fate.  Residents in the HoG experienced painful sacrifices; actions of loyalty and betrayal; the turmoil as people were arrested and executed; carefully scripted fake confessions of guilt; erasing of photos, documents, and letters of those declared "enemies"; communication in countless shades of gray; inner torments; ritual silence at times; the apostasy of the children of the Revolution; and the end of Bolshevism as a millenarian faith.
The author had written a previous book, The Jewish Century, making striking comparisons of different cultures by using Greek mythology. Calling Jews a Mercurian people who created concepts and artifacts, as opposed to an Apollonian people, he sees Jews as the embodiment of modernity. They adhere to law and have a penchant for abstract thought.
Slezkine asked an interesting question: how to explain the puzzle that Jews, people of ideas, trade, and movement, who were prominent in the development of capitalism, were also prominent in anti-capitalist movements, especially the Russian Bolshevik Revolution of 1917?
Part of the explanation appears in the new book, which indicates that Jewish poets, prophets, and propagandists dominated the cultural contingent in the House of Government, and that Jews were disproportionally prominent in delegates to the First All-Russian Congress, in members of the Bolshevik Central Committee, and in officials in the Red Army.
The new book, subtitled "A Saga of the Russian Revolution," a historical epic with hundreds of characters, emerges from diaries; letters; books read; memoirs of the hopes, fears, and confessions of the inhabitants of the House of Government, a unique apartment house built in a low-lying area, what was a reclaimed swamp in the center of Moscow on the banks of the Moskva river and opposite the Kremlin.  
It housed some of the chief builders of the "new world," powerful members of the Soviet Union elite, people eminent in politics, military, intelligentsia, and even officials of Gulags and the executioner Lyova Fedotov.  It tells the sad, poignant story of the personal life of residents, often one of pathos, and provides detailed information on the inhabitants and on the shifting personal relations among them.
But the story of the House also epitomizes the rise, decline, and fall of optimistic expectations of a new ideal society, a better life, and paradise on Earth, and depicts the venomous Stalinist terror in the decade from 1931 through the Great Purge beginning in 1936-7 until 1941, during which 680,000 were murdered by the regime.  About a third of the residents of the House disappeared or were killed by the rulers during the ongoing purges.  The House in its original form virtually came to the end with the German invasion of Moscow in October 1941.  The House was no longer a home for Old Bolsheviks.
The 2,700 residents of the House lived in a privileged place, which differed from the normal Russian life, in which families lived in one-room apartments and shared bathroom, toilet, and kitchen.  In contrast, in the HoG, a family got a whole furnished apartment to itself.  The House, since renamed the House on the Embankment, contained 505 furnished apartments with facilities for the privileged families in what was then the largest residential building in Europe. 
Highly luxurious for its time, indeed, the complex is compared by Slezkine to the Dakota in New York City.  It had its own public spaces including a library, tennis court, bank, laundry, gyms, department store, clinic, shooting range, and theaters.  It was a fortress and a dormitory.  It was a place where revolutionaries came home and the revolution came to die.
Among the diverse group of inhabitants in the House were members of the government – Red Army military leaders, writers, business executives, Stakhanovites, film producers, and foreign communists.  Among the more well known personalities were Nikolai Bukharin, Nikita Khrushchev, Yuri Trifonov, Karl Radek, and Mikhail Koltsov, who became a prototype for a character in Ernest Hemingway's For Whom the Bell Tolls.  Among the intellectuals there, by far the largest group were Jews.  Many residents became victims of the terror, but some, such as Andrei Sverdlov, and members of the secret police, the NKVD, were among the perpetrators of that terror.
Slezkine is an erudite intellectual historian and points out that for the Bolsheviks, reading the treasures of world literature was a crucial part of their experience, and that of their children.  Themes from that literature, which he discusses, are part of the story of the House.  In particular, one work, Goethe's Faust, was repeatedly invoked.  Slezkine therefore draws on literature, especially that used by the Bolsheviks themselves, to understand the behavior and thoughts of the residents of the House.
The crux of the book is Slezkine's evaluation of the Bolshevik faith in the context of a discussion of the nature of religion and the religious groups and millenarian movements associated with them.  Slezkine asserts that Karl Marx, like Jesus, succeeded in translating a tribal prophecy (meaning Judaism) into a language of universalism, one of anti-capitalism and aspiration for the resurrection of humankind.
Slezkine sees Bolshevism as a religion that, like other religions, experienced failed prophecies; disappointment; postponements; and, at the end, sacrifices.  In spite of the anticipated "reign of the saints," Bolsheviks could not transform the country; rather, their belief was transformed by the rulers into a regime conspicuous by the great purges and high-profile victims of Stalin as shown by the unhappy experience of many of the residents of the House of Government.
It is interesting to compare Slezkine's view of Bolshevism and the Soviet regime with that of President Putin, expressed in speeches and an interview in April 2016.  In June 2012, Putin said Bolshevism in 1917 betrayed Russian national interest and wished to see Russia defeated in World War I, the war with Germany.  In the interview, Putin confesses that he is fond of communist ideas but is critical of Lenin and admits that the Soviet Union began with repression.  Putin is more a Russian nationalist, celebrating patriotism, not ideology.
For Putin, once a believer, the official story of the Soviet Union is little more than a beautiful and harmful fairy tale, the implementation of which or the attempt to put it in practice caused great damage to his country.  Like Slezkine, Putin appears to believe that the basic views of communist ideology were taken from major religious groups.  Building the communism codex is "the same as looking into the Bible or Quran."
Why did Bolshevism die?  The House of Government never became a Russian national home and Soviet communism became homeless, eventually becoming a ghost.  Ideological single-mindedness could not compete with the humanism of postwar culture.  The Bolshevik Reformation – confessions, denunciations, excommunications, self-criticism – was not popular.
Moreover, it could not reproduce itself at home.  Slezkine argues that revolutions, like all millenarian experiments, are devoured by the children.  Bolshevism is not at all different.  It failed to transform the family or transmit the true faith.  Russian children venerated the memory of their dead parents, yet, though loyal to the country, they had no millenarian faith, as had their parents.
Like other millenarian movements, Christianity and Islam, Bolshevism started out as a men's movement.  Women represented a small proportion of the original sect members and of the House.  But unlike those other movements, Bolshevism was a one-generation phenomenon.  Children venerated the memory of their fathers but no longer shared their faith.
The prophets vanished, the desired revolution never came, and life in the Swamp resumed. 

ANTIFA MANUAL FOUND On Evergreen College Campus: Shut Down Their Rallies...Force The Media To Show Our Side As The Righteous One

ANTIFA MANUAL FOUND On Evergreen College Campus: Shut Down Their Rallies...Force The Media To Show Our Side As The Righteous One 

ANTIFA MANUAL FOUND On Evergreen College Campus: Shut Down Their Rallies…Force The Media To Show Our Side As The Righteous One

This copy of the Antifa Manual, that is used by the George Soros funded, violent, anti-American, anti free-speech radical group, was allegedly found on the Evergreen College campus. The content of this manual is disturbing and should be read by every American, so we understand what we are up against. It helps to explain why these groups call our President and his supporters “Hitler” or “racists” or “homophobes.” It’s not that Trump or his supporters are any of these things, it’s just part of a campaign to humiliate and shut down any opposition to radicals whose ultimate goal is a one world order and the destruction of capitalism in America. 

This manual gives every day Americans a look into the mind of a leftist radical who hates America and everything Americans stand for. They clearly have no regard for free-speech and are willing to use any means necessary, including deceit, outright lies and of course, violence to achieve their ultimate goals of a New World Order.

This page explains how Antifa members are to use name-calling as a means to create a culture of tolerance. “When all else fails, compare someone to Hitler.” Next they discuss how to use ones minority status, and to remember that you are “Black first” and “American second.” or “Gay/Lesbian first” and “American third” and so on.

It’s important to gain control of the media through any means necessary.
Some major media conglomerates are swinging to our side, but they have not gone far enough.
It’s no coincidence that CNN just published a fluff piece on Antifa today: Unmasking the leftist Antifa movement
The CNN piece was clearly written to shed a sympathetic light on the violent group that’s been caught attacking and harming so many innocent Americans, many of them were harmed by Antifa for defending free speech and/or our President Donald J. Trump.
Look for the leftist media to kick it into high gear when it comes to defending the violence perpetrated on innocent Americans by the violent Antifa group. More of these soft pieces on the radical Antifa group are sure to be popping up over the next several months.
If you are seeking positions of power in the media, be sure to obfuscate and hide your true intentions on the various social media platforms.
Use social media as a baton to slap down anyone who hold fascist viewpoints. Call them racist, homophobic, misogynistic. Create an echo chamber around you.

The next step is to threaten the livelihood of anyone who dares speak out against our agenda.

The pro-abortion page: This page talks about how white people are able to afford to have their “fetuses” aborted, while “people of color” have little choice but to keep a baby to term.

And finally, the ultimate goal is a New World Order and a New World Government where hatred and bigotry no longer exist. Imagine, if Antifa could figure out a way through George Soros funded activity, to shut down the rights of every American using violence and hatred at tools, their dream might just be possible…until they wake up and realize of course, that most Americans don’t hate this country and aren’t interested in Antifa’s special brand of violence and chaos.


Saturday, August 19, 2017

The New Civil War

Articles: The New Civil War

The New Civil War

The first “shots” in our new civil war were fired after Charlottesville when many Democratic leaders claimed that they had the right to use physical force against anyone they didn’t like.
While cowardly leftist leaders are trying to portray themselves as fighting Hitler they are really fighting anyone they don’t agree with. Remember that some Democrats said that Rep. Steve Scalise had it coming since he opposed gun control and that Democrats have been silent when left-wing violence was used to prevent Republicans marching in a parade in Portland.
Facing a continued loss of power because their radical agenda is toxic to most Americans, the Democrat leadership -- which includes the MSM -- have decided that they have the right to physically attack anyone who stands in their way.
Like their Nazi and Communist forefathers, today’s Democrat leaders are comfortable sending swarms of Brownshirts out to beat into submission anyone who stands between them and power.
Under Obama, Democrats renounced the rule of law by declaring that they could choose to not enforce laws they didn’t like and make up laws that Congress never passed. Now they’re saying that they have the right to attack anyone who dares speak out in disagreement.  Rep. Scalise wasn’t a Nazi or white nationalist, nor were the Republicans in Portland, or the speakers that Democrats forcibly prevented from speaking in Berkeley. Yet the Democratic leadership’s condemnation of all of those events has been muted at best.
While the first American Civil War was fought to protect that particularly Democrat institution slavery, the new civil war Democrat elites are starting to wage is about transferring power from the people to the rich white oligarchs, judges, and government bureaucrats.
As then, Republicans stand for freedom and Democrats stand for slavery.
The Democratic elite has issued a call to war by supporting and endorsing violence against people who don’t agree with them.
The left has gone from endorsing Nazis marching in a neighborhood full of Holocaust survivors to endorsing attacks on Nazis wherever they might appear. We all hate Nazis, but as Americans, Republicans believe in freedom of even odious speech, which is why we’re not tearing down the statues of that mass murderer Lenin that exist in America or the statues of Democrat Robert Byrd, who was a senior official in the KKK.
Republicans have uniformly, including President Trump, condemned Nazis and white nationalists. Yet Democrats are attacking us for not being sufficiently "woke."
The time for pretending that Democrat leadership is patriotic is over.  It’s time to shout from the rooftops that the Democratic leadership is a fascist cabal intent on overthrowing democracy.
It’s unclear how many of those who voted for Hillary support the clear fascist policies of the Democratic party.  We know that those people tend to be low-information voters who get their “news” from the MSM. Hence, they live in a bubble of lies which make Democrat policies look semi-reasonable.
Even intelligent people fall victim to the Democrat Big Lies. A liberal physicist, for example, was shocked to learn that Osama greenlighted 9/11 because Clinton’s fleeing from Somalia taught Osama that Americans were cowards. He’d never heard that.
Similarly, today many Americans believe that Trump was defending Nazis because the MSM is lying about what he really said.
That’s why we need to be careful and not condemn all Democrats; many of them are honestly unaware of the facts just as the citizens of Nazi Germany didn’t have a clue about how WWII was actually progressing or how the citizens of North Korea thought for decades that though they were starving, they had it better than those poor capitalist South Koreans.
It’s clear that not all of those who voted for Hillary were actually voting for her agenda of taking power from the people and giving it to the elites.
Unlike the average Hillary voter who never heard most of the negative news about her, the Democratic leadership has sinister motives. For decades, they’ve been waging war against America. It started with FDR, a big fan of fascist dictator Mussolini, who began moving this country down the path to socialism with his failed big government policies. Few people remember that those policies didn’t work; it took WWII for the U.S. to recover economically from the Depression.
The next big step was disempowering Americans by giving near absolute power to the unelected Supreme Court. That court overthrew the laws of all 50 states by legalizing abortion for any reason at any time in pregnancy based on a “right to privacy” which is nowhere in the Constitution.
The Supreme Court also created numerous rights for criminals and redefined marriage over the votes of 55,000,000 Americans.
In parallel, the Democrats increased the power of unelected government bureaucrats to the point that they felt empowered to demand that Catholic nuns pay for abortions. To Democrats the 1st Amendment only applies to causes they, the Democrats, support.
Trump’s election was a visceral scream from America saying that we want our power back. That we don’t want to be ruled by pretentious, stupid, elitist fascists like Pelosi and the Clintons, or by RINOs whose first loyalty is to the state, not the people.
The Democratic leadership is now following Mao, who said that political power grows from the barrel of a gun, while Americans are being forced to defend the core American belief that power flows from the people.
Just as the original Democrats repudiated Lincoln for opposing slavery, modern Democratic leaders are repudiating his belief that the government is of the people, for the people, by the people.
The elite bicoastal ruling class is nearly all white and racist to the core, but they use lies about Republicans, spread by the fawning liberal media, to justify violence.
Today Democrats have crossed the Rubicon.  By saying that it’s okay for Antifa to shut down speakers they don’t like and physically assault anyone they don’t happen to agree with Democrats have renounced the rule of law and summoned the whirlwind of civil war.
Why have Democrats once again started a civil war to achieve their ends?
They thought they had everything sewed up. When Hillary won she’d pack the Supreme Court with fascists who believed that they could make up whatever laws they liked. Hillary would, like Obama, ignore the Constitution and further strengthen the administrative state while waging a war against non-Democratic whites and Asians and ensuring that Blacks stayed uneducated so they couldn’t see how Democrats were exploiting them.
But contrary to their expectations, the American people said no. We don’t want to be ruled, we want to be represented -- which is why the Republican failure to get rid of ObamaCare is so offensive.
Even with the lying media spreading Democratic talking points 24/7 the majority of Americans want to be free, not enslaved -- not told how much soda they can drink or what type of entertainment they can like -- Democrats support violent misogynistic rap music while condemning Americans for liking NASCAR. The Democratic message calling on Americans to accept slavery because, according to Democrats, Americans can’t manage their own lives -- the same line Democrats used to justify slavery-- can’t win elections because American’s aren’t that stupid. As a result, the Democrat leadership has decided that their only way to power is violence.
If they can’t win in the battlefield of ideas, they’ve decided that they need to silence, by the use of force, any voices they don’t like.
The Democrat leaders have turned to the communists they so admire -- remember Obama wishing he could rule like the dictator of China does? -- and decided that what they can’t win by the ballot they can win with the baseball bat.
Unless we all take a stand now, this spiral of violence initiated by Democrats will lead to a truly horrible future, just as the Democrat’s violent defense of slavery was the cause of the greatest tragedy in American history. If Democrats had voluntarily abandoned slavery, we could have avoided America’s most costly war. Instead we had to fight to end the scourge of slavery.
Contact the Republican leadership and make it clear that instead of condemning Trump for his stand against all violence, they need to attack the Democrat’s support of violence.
There is still time to avoid a massive escalation of violence but if we fail to take a stand against the Democrat’s use of force we will see our streets running with blood.  We know Democrats don’t care about that, because they don’t care about the thousands of Blacks shot in Chicago each year, but we do because we care about all Americans.
Take action and pray that we are not forced to relive the Civil War in order to prevent Democrats from destroying our democracy.

Friday, August 18, 2017

NEW REPORT ON REPLACEMENT MIGRATION ISSUED BY UN POPULATION DIVISION | Meetings Coverage and Press Releases

NEW REPORT ON REPLACEMENT MIGRATION ISSUED BY UN POPULATION DIVISION 

NEW REPORT ON REPLACEMENT MIGRATION ISSUED BY UN POPULATION DIVISION


Press Release
DEV/2234
POP/735


NEW REPORT ON REPLACEMENT MIGRATION ISSUED BY UN POPULATION DIVISION

20000317
NEW YORK, 17 March (DESA) -- The Population Division of the Department of Economic and Social Affairs (DESA) has released a new report titled “Replacement Migration: Is it a Solution to Declining and Ageing Populations?”. Replacement migration refers to the international migration that a country would need to prevent population decline and population ageing resulting from low fertility and mortality rates.
United Nations projections indicate that between 1995 and 2050, the population of Japan and virtually all countries of Europe will most likely decline. In a number of cases, including Estonia, Bulgaria and Italy, countries would lose between one quarter and one third of their population. Population ageing will be pervasive, bringing the median age of population to historically unprecedented high levels. For instance, in Italy, the median age will rise from 41 years in 2000 to 53 years in 2050. The potential support ratio -- i.e., the number of persons of working age (15-64 years) per older person -- will often be halved, from 4 or 5 to 2.
Focusing on these two striking and critical trends, the report examines in detail the case of eight low-fertility countries (France, Germany, Italy, Japan, Republic of Korea, Russian Federation, United Kingdom and United States) and two regions (Europe and the European Union). In each case, alternative scenarios for the period 1995-2050 are considered, highlighting the impact that various levels of immigration would have on population size and population ageing.
Major findings of this report include:
-- In the next 50 years, the populations of most developed countries are projected to become smaller and older as a result of low fertility and increased longevity. In contrast, the population of the United States is projected to increase by almost a quarter. Among the countries studied in the report, Italy is projected to register the largest population decline in relative terms, losing 28 per cent of its population between 1995 and 2050, according to the United Nations medium variant projections. The population of the European Union, which in 1995 was larger than that of the United States by 105 million, in 2050, will become smaller by 18 million.
-- Population decline is inevitable in the absence of replacement migration. Fertility may rebound in the coming decades, but few believe that it will recover sufficiently in most countries to reach replacement level in the foreseeable future.
- 2 - Press Release DEV/2234 POP/735 17 March 2000
-- Some immigration is needed to prevent population decline in all countries and regions examined in the report. However, the level of immigration in relation to past experience varies greatly. For the European Union, a continuation of the immigration levels observed in the 1990s would roughly suffice to prevent total population from declining, while for Europe as a whole, immigration would need to double. The Republic of Korea would need a relatively modest net inflow of migrants -- a major change, however, for a country which has been a net sender until now. Italy and Japan would need to register notable increases in net immigration. In contrast, France, the United Kingdom and the United States would be able to maintain their total population with fewer immigrants than observed in recent years.
-- The numbers of immigrants needed to prevent the decline of the total population are considerably larger than those envisioned by the United Nations projections. The only exception is the United States.
-- The numbers of immigrants needed to prevent declines in the working- age population are larger than those needed to prevent declines in total population. In some cases, such as the Republic of Korea, France, the United Kingdom or the United States, they are several times larger. If such flows were to occur, post-1995 immigrants and their descendants would represent a strikingly large share of the total population in 2050 -- between 30 and 39 per cent in the case of Japan, Germany and Italy.
-- Relative to their population size, Italy and Germany would need the largest number of migrants to maintain the size of their working-age populations. Italy would require 6,500 migrants per million inhabitants annually and Germany, 6,000. The United States would require the smallest number -- 1,300 migrants per million inhabitants per year.
-- The levels of migration needed to prevent population ageing are many times larger than the migration streams needed to prevent population decline. Maintaining potential support ratios would in all cases entail volumes of immigration entirely out of line with both past experience and reasonable expectations.
-- In the absence of immigration, the potential support ratios could be maintained at current levels by increasing the upper limit of the working-age population to roughly 75 years of age.
-- The new challenges of declining and ageing populations will require a comprehensive reassessment of many established policies and programmes, with a long-term perspective. Critical issues that need to be addressed include: (a) the appropriate ages for retirement; (b) the levels, types and nature of retirement and health care benefits for the elderly; (c) labour force participation; (d) the assessed amounts of contributions from workers and employers to support retirement and health care benefits for the elderly population; and (e) policies and programmes relating to international migration,
- 3 - Press Release DEV/2234 POP/735 17 March 2000
in particular, replacement migration and the integration of large numbers of recent migrants and their descendants.
The report may be accessed on the internet site of the Population Division (http://www.un.org/esa/population/unpop.htm). Further information may be obtained from the office of Joseph Chamie, Director, Population Division, United Nations, New York, NY, 10017, USA; tel. 1-212-963-3179; fax 1-212-963-2147.

Thursday, August 17, 2017

State Fiscal Rankings | Mercatus Center

State Fiscal Rankings 

State Fiscal Rankings

Ranking the States by Fiscal Condition 2017 Edition

All States

DC

The fiscal health of America’s states affects all its citizens. Indicators of fiscal health come in a variety of forms—from a state’s ability to attract businesses and how much it taxes to what services it provides and how well it keeps its promises to public-sector employees. To get a sense of a particular state’s fiscal outlook requires consulting a state’s comprehensive annual financial report (CAFR), which, at hundreds of pages, is unwieldy for even the most dedicated analyst. But in the Mercatus Center at George Mason University’s “Ranking the States by Fiscal Condition,” now in its fourth year, Eileen Norcross and Olivia Gonzalez calculate indicators of fiscal health for all 50 states. Based on states’ 2015 financial statements, Florida ranks first as the most fiscally healthy state, while New Jersey ranks the lowest.
The study ranks each US state’s financial health based on short- and long-term debt and other key fiscal obligations, such as unfunded pensions and healthcare benefits. With refinements in its methodology, the 2017 edition updates the version that the Mercatus Center published in 2016. It presents information from each state’s audited financial report in an easily accessible format and is the most comprehensive snapshot of state financial health to date.
Providing the fourth year of data, this edition develops trend lines that help identify structural strengths and weaknesses for each state. Growing long-term obligations for pensions and healthcare benefits continue to strain the finances of many state governments, and revenue drawn from volatile sources like oil production continues to threaten the fiscal health of top-performing states. Both trends highlight the fact that state policymakers must be vigilant to consider both the short-term and the long-term consequences of their decisions.
The study also highlights how recent changes in accounting standards affect what states reveal on their financial statements and what we know about the states’ financial health as a result. Due to the implementation of new government accounting standards, states are now reporting more of their pension liabilities on the balance sheet, which increases the average long-term liability metrics for the states. States have not applied these standards consistently, however, revealing that there is still room for improvement in the reporting of state financial information.

Summary and Key Findings 

The financial health of each state can be analyzed through the states’ own audited financial reports. By looking at states’ basic financial statistics on revenues, expenditures, cash, assets, liabilities, and debt, states may be ranked according to how easily they will be able to cover short-term and long-term bills, including pension obligations.
This ranking of the 50 states, reproduced from page 29 of the study, is based on their fiscal solvency in five separate categories:
  • Cash solvency.  Does a state have enough cash on hand to cover its short-term bills?
  • Budget solvency. Can a state cover its fiscal year spending with current revenues, or does it have a budget shortfall?
  • Long-run solvency. Can a state meet its long-term spending commitments? Will there be enough money to cushion it from economic shocks or other long-term fiscal risks?
  • Service-level solvency. How much “fiscal slack” does a state have to increase spending if citizens demand more services?
  • Trust fund solvency. How large are each state’s unfunded pension and healthcare liabilities?
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Top Five States

Florida, North Dakota, South Dakota, Utah, and Wyoming rank in the top five states. Top-performing states tend to have higher levels of cash, low unfunded pensions, and strong operating positions.
  • Low debt and a strong cash position help maintain fiscal discipline. Keeping debt levels low, saving cash to pay bills, and maintaining solvent budgets reflect a culture of fiscal discipline. The first-place position of Florida in particular demonstrates that this is possible even with a relatively larger population and and the fiscal pressures that arise from an aging population.
  • Oil and gas revenues play a role in short-term fiscal health. The top-performing states owe some of their success to unpredictable revenue sources. As oil prices have been declining, however, we see this detrimentally affecting their budgets. Alaska has moved out of the top five, and Wyoming has moved from third to fifth as a result. North Dakota’s revenues also declined and have the potential to impact their future rankings.
  • Pensions and health care still pose long-term challenges to top-performing states. While these top five states are considered fiscally healthy relative to other states because they have significant amounts of cash on hand and relatively low short-term debt obligations, each state, especially Wyoming, faces substantial long-term challenges related to its pension and healthcare benefits systems.
  • The top five states have changed since last year. Alaska and Nebraska dropped out of the top five, allowing Florida and Utah to join. North Dakota and South Dakota improved from fourth and fifth to second and third, respectively, pushing Wyoming down two spots to fifth place.

Bottom Five States

Maryland, Kentucky, Massachusetts, Illinois, and New Jersey rank in the bottom five states, largely a result of the low amounts of cash they have on hand and their large debt obligations. States that fail to address long-term drivers of debt and are not prepared for recessions will continue to rank poorly.
  • Each state has massive debt obligations. Each of the bottom five states exhibits serious signs of fiscal distress. Their large liabilities and low cash on hand raise serious concerns about their ability to pay bills.
  • Unfunded liabilities continue to be a problem. High deficits and debt obligations in the forms of unfunded pensions and healthcare benefits continue to drive each state into fiscal peril. Each holds tens, if not hundreds, of billions of dollars in unfunded liabilities—constituting a significant risk to taxpayers in both the short and the long term.
  • The bottom five states have changed since last year. Kentucky’s position has declined, placing it in the bottom five this year. New York is no longer in the bottom five due to improvements in budget solvency. Illinois and New Jersey improved slightly but remain in the bottom five. Massachusetts also remains in the bottom five, in slightly worse positions than last year.

Big Movers

To be considered a “big mover,” a state must have shifted position by more than five spots between the 2016 and 2017 editions. The major drivers of fiscal performance for states this year were the implementation of new accounting standards that require the reporting of pension liabilities on the balance sheet, a steep drop in the price of oil, changes in tax policy, and budget cuts.
There were many more fluctuations in overall fiscal performance this year, compared to last year’s edition. Alaska, Colorado, Louisiana, New Mexico, Pennsylvania, and Texas all dropped significantly in the overall ranking of fiscal condition, while Arkansas, Connecticut, Delaware, Hawaii, Maine, North Carolina, and Oregon improved significantly.
There were also big movers in each of the five categories that make up the overall ranking:
  • Cash solvency. Hawaii, North Carolina, and Oregon improved their cash solvency ranking.
  • Budget solvency. Arkansas, California, Connecticut, Hawaii, Indiana, Kentucky, Maine, Maryland, Missouri, New York, Oklahoma, Rhode Island, Tennessee, and Vermont all improved their budget position significantly. Alabama, Alaska, Colorado, Iowa, Kansas, Mississippi, Nebraska, New Mexico, Ohio, South Carolina, Texas, Washington, and Wisconsin worsened in the budget solvency ranking.
  • Long-run solvency. Florida, North Carolina, Oregon, Virginia, and Wisconsin each improved their long-run sol­vency ranking. Colorado, Maine, Indiana, Vermont, and West Virginia dropped in this area.
  • Service-level solvency. Alaska and Wisconsin improved significantly in the service-level solvency ranking, while Arizona and Iowa worsened.
  • Trust fund solvency. Only North Dakota improved significantly, while Oregon, Vermont, and Wyoming each dropped in the trust fund solvency ranking.

Conclusion

Updating the fiscal condition of the states with another year of data shows that drivers of strong fiscal performance remain the same. Top-performing states tend to exhibit fiscal discipline in the form of having high levels of cash, maintaining revenues that exceed expenses, and keeping debt levels low relative to resident income. These factors can easily be threatened if a state relies too heavily on narrow tax bases and volatile revenue sources or if pension plans are not adequately funded, leading to persistently large and growing liabilities.
The lessons from this year’s study demonstrate that policymakers should take stock of both their short- and longtermfiscal health before making public policy decisions. The quality of financial reporting also plays a large role in what is known about the states’ fiscal health. This report attempts to make available financial information more accessible while also stressing the importance of improved reporting. These metrics, when used alongside other information, are intended to help policymakers identify trends in state finances and respond with policies to ensure short-run solvency and long-run fiscal stability.