Sunday, October 2, 2011

The Hall Platform: Change that would give you vertigo

The Hall Platform: Change that would give you vertigo
Robert A. Hall
(Feel freeto forward and to repost)

Readers of my blog sometimes, with more enthusiasm than practical political sense, urge me to run for president. Ha. Given that I’m over 65, that I have an eventually-terminal illness, Pulmonary Fibrosis (which means I have a frequent cough and need O2 to get around), that I have no money, no connections and no power base and that I’m basically pretty obscure despite my books and my blog, the odds seem somewhat against me.

Just to be sure that there is no danger of my being nominated or elected, below is the platform I’d run on. These are mostly in the order I thought to write them down, not of importance.

And, no, before some leftist creates a straw man to attack, I’m not proposing that I or anyone else be made dictator, just laying out what I think should be done. I understand that little of this could get by the Congress, much of it would be blocked by the courts, everyone in the media would stroke out, and if it was enacted, howling mobs would hunt me down and rip me to shreds. But it would save America.

Fiscal and Economic Policy

Eliminate all government funding at all levels for entertainment: the arts, sports and stadiums, public radio and public TV.

Eliminate the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms and turn any needed functions over to the FBI or the states.

Repeal ObamaCare.

Eliminate all funding for the UN, and withdraw from this body which has been captured by countries opposed to freedom and civilization. Expel the UN from the US. Found a “Council of Free Nations,” open only to those that guarantee freedom of speech, freedom of the press, freedom of religion and equality before the law (recognizing that no one is perfect, but you have to really try to get in).

Eliminate the National Labor Relations Board, transfer any enforcement powers necessary to the FBI or courts. While we are on a roll, eliminate the Labor Department and turn its functions over to the states.

Bar for life participation in Medicare or any other tax funded program of any individual or company convicted of fraud. Establish long prison terms for defrauding the taxpayers. (I’d be cool with shooting the big fish.)

Implement the CEI's Ten-Point Plan to Create Jobs

Pass the Ryan Budget. Minus money for anything eliminated in this platform.

Pass a balanced budget amendment. Pass an amendment limiting Federal spending to no more than 20% of  GDP, being reduced 1% a year until we hit that target. This is going to mean cutting, rather than increasing entitlements. And, yes, there will be cuts I won’t like either, given that I’m by law on Medicare and close to Social Security. But the country must survive. (Yes, there should be an exemption for a declared war, but not for a kinetic military action.)

Offer a tax holiday for companies to bring home the $1.2T in cash they have overseas, without taxes, if they invest it in job creation in the US.

Sign all pending free trade agreements. Don’t give me that anti-NAFTA-pro-union BS. After NAFTA the number of jobs in BOTH the US & Mexico increased, according to Thomas Sowell. Free trade pushes economic development. Trade barriers kill jobs. See Smoot-Hawley and the Great Depression.

Speaking of Dr. Thomas Sowell, make him head of the Council of Economic Advisors, with Dr. Walter Williams as his number 2.

Fast track domestic energy development, including nuke plants, oil drilling offshore and in ANWR, fracking for gas and oil and the development of new gasoline refining plants.

Eliminate all business subsidies, especially green ones. Get the government out of business. Businessmen make business decisions. Politicians make political decisions.

Reduce the corporate tax rate to zero, but make the Capital Gains Tax rate the same as for other income. That way, investors wouldn’t be taxed twice.

Then phase in elimination the income tax in favor of the Fair Tax on consumption. (Slowly because of the impact of eliminating deductions on the Fanny-wrecked housing market.) Repeal the CRA. Eliminate Fannie and Freddie.

Outlaw public employee unions, which are conspiracies against our children’s future. First step; stop the government from forcing employees to join and from collecting union dues.

Cut way back on foreign aid, especially to countries that hate us. Nothing to Mexico until they secure their borders.

Establish a new Debt Super Committee: say a couple of Vietnam vets, housewife, farmer, plumber, small business owner, retired accountant, convenience store manager, short order cook, and a waitress. Pay them a decent salary, say $50k each with benefits. They spend their days going through the federal budget. Anything that didn’t get 6 votes is out. And anything that did, I’d review and eliminate more.

Establish a similar committee, but with more business types to review every federal regulation and eliminate those that hold back the economy and jobs.

And another to review every federal agency, department and program to recommend eliminating as many as possible.

Eliminate the Department of Education and turn education completely over to the states.

Reduce the number of non-combat federal employees 2% a year for ten years.

A first conviction of a recipient for welfare, Social Security or disability fraud would bar you from receiving benefits for a year. A second conviction for life.

The President would be given a line item veto on budgets. No more could he or she avoid responsibility for earmarks, pork projects and excessive spending by claiming a need to sign the budget as a whole, even with rotten things in it.

A list of all earmarks for individual House and Senate members would be circulated to every member, and each member would be required to sign off supporting or opposing each earmark and that signoff list would be public record. An earmark that doesn’t get 50% approval in the process could not be included in the budget except by a roll call vote in both branches. No longer would a member in New York be able to duck responsibility for a pork project in California. The same process would be required for each line item which increased spending over the previous year by a percentage greater than the CPI increase for the year. If a politician agrees to let a colleague buy votes through spending, the constituents should know it. (Then I’d veto most earmarks through the line item budget.)

Eliminate pennies. A nickel doesn’t buy what a penny did when I was a kid and we didn’t need 1/5 cent coins. Eliminate dollar bills for dollar coins. A dollar doesn’t buy what a quarter did when I was a kid and we didn’t need 25 cent bills. Both would produce grumbling and tax savings.

Go to two-a-week residential mail delivery and three a week business mail delivery. Really important stuff moves electronically, and we need the huge savings, but not huge postage hikes. Eliminate postal unions.

Reduce unemployment benefits, forcing people to take less desirable jobs, thus starting the economic rebuilding. Painful, but not as painful as permanent high unemployment and a new dependent class.

No work, no welfare, even if it was picking up trash in the street.

Criminal Policy

Seal the borders with troops. Enforce the immigration laws, deporting as many illegals as we could catch. Illegal means they are breaking the law—duh. Deny any federal funds to “sanctuary cities” or states and cities that don’t cooperate with ICE or Secure Cities.

Eliminate any benefits, licenses or public support for illegals. Enforce e-verify and fine any business, organization of government unit that hires illegals. Eliminate the practice of making babies of illegals citizens.

Legalize drug usage, have all currently illegal drugs sold under government license by pharmacies. Use the funds to treat drug addiction, reduce the deficit and fund prisons where anyone selling drugs illegally would be incarcerated for life, no parole. Execute any dealer whose customer dies from drugs he/she sold.

Execute murderers. Every murder is a hate crime. The life of a decent black person murdered by a black thug is as valuable as that of a black person murdered by a Klan member.

Make concealed carry by citizens without criminal backgrounds or mental health problems legal under the second amendment everywhere. Make shooting a person in the process of committing a felony a justifiable act in every jurisdiction.

Establish “shoot to kill” orders to deal with riots. (And there would be riots with this platform—but entitlement riots are coming anyway.)

Defense Policy

Make Rep. Allen West Secretary of Defense.

Acts or attempted acts of terrorism would be followed by immediate trial by military tribunal and immediate execution by firing squad. Unless the terrorist had high value intelligence and talked fast and quickly.

Get some tough combat vets, senior enlisted and officers below flag rank, to reform the military, eliminate waste and political spending, and put more combat troops in the fight. Reduce the number of Flag Officers to close to WWII levels. Eliminate political defense spending.

I’d inform all terror-sponsoring states that the restraint on using nukes was gone, and we would respond to terror attacks and destroy them. And I’d mean it.

Establish three months of military training for all 18-year-olds. Low pay, hearty, bland food and physical training. Those over-weight would have to stay until they were in shape to pass a military physical.

Every American over 18, with no criminal record, who showed up once a year with his/her own rifle and qualified from 200 yards would get a tax credit.

Require marksmanship training to graduate from high school.

Cultural Policy

Eliminate racial discrimination in the form of affirmative action, as well as other forms of discrimination. I don’t believe blacks are inferior, as Democrats do. I believe competent, intelligent blacks like Sowell, Williams and West—all smarter than me—can compete successful against whites without the demeaning efforts of government to put a thumb on the scale for them.

Restore the teaching of American history and civics as required subjects, taught by people who believe in America.

Enforce separation of religion and state by outlawing the imposition of Shari’a Religious Law in any part of US territory. (Funny how those screaming about “separation of church and state” are ready to bow to Shari’a.)

Reform the schools and establish strong discipline and strong basic education. Throw out the bums—they aren’t learning anyway and are holding back the decent kids who want to learn. Make a High School education mean something again.

Federal student loans would be only for training in science, engineering, medicine, nursing and practical subjects. No federal support for colleges except through military programs like ROTC.

Do whatever possible to restrict abortion and birth control. This is not a social issue, it’s a survival issue. The birth rate among natural born US citizens is below the replacement rate of 2.1 live births per woman. Without more American kids, we will follow Europe into demographic disaster. There is no problem with foreign-born citizens, Hispanics and others, who want to be Americans with American values. But we are being over-whelmed by an invasion of citizens from corrupt, anti-democratic, anti-freedom cultures who wish to establish those cultures here, destroying our culture, civilization and economy while living off the dying fruits of it. Anyone who tells you the monstrous lie that, “all cultures are equally valid” should be shipped to Waziristan to find out. Or forced to live in Germany in 1943, when two college students, Hans and Sophie Scholl, where guillotined for handing out leaflets. Our challenge is not race, it is culture. (Yes, I don’t have any children. I believed my leftist professors when they gave me The Population Bomb as settled science.)

Put strict controls on Islamic immigration to allow in only Muslims we are sure are not committed to the imposition of the Islamists desired anti-freedom, anti-woman, theocracy in America. If you can’t be sure, better to be safe.

Political Reform

Make the House and Senate each four year terms, with half elected every two years, and with no more than three consecutive terms in either body. Make the presidency one 6-year term.

Since elections for President are national, and elections for the House and Senate are for a national body that impacts every American, the rules for getting elected should be uniform across all states, by constitutional amendment, to guarantee equal protection of the law.

Establish the Graduated Random Presidential Primary System, or The American Plan, which is designed to begin with contests in small-population states, where candidates do not need tens of millions of dollars in order to compete.

Only members of a party will be allowed to vote in that party’s primary. I don’t believe that Democrats or Republicans should be allowed to vote in the other’s primary, where they are likely to make mischief by voting for “poison pill” candidates. Independents could vote in a Party Primary by registering as a member of that party—but they couldn’t vote in the other party’s primary for at least four years.

Require voter ID in all elections, to prevent fraud, but make it easy to get a free ID if you don’t drive, etc. You need an ID to get on a plane, buy a beer, but not to ruin the country?

Convention Delegates would be elected by Congressional District, rather than winner take all in each state. This gives unknown candidates or local favorites a change to garner delegates and get national attention. Delegates would be required to be residents of the congressional district. Delegates would be legally bound to the candidate on the first vote at the party’s convention. After the first vote, if no candidate received a majority of the votes and was nominated, they would be released to vote for any candidate they chose.

Any party which received 5% of the national popular vote in the last presidential election would automatically be included on the ballot in the Primary System, unless they failed to run delegates in 75% of the Congressional Districts.

I would make two changes to the Electoral College. First, I’d do away with electors. A state’s electoral vote would be certified by its Secretary of State or chief elections officer just like any other vote. This eliminates the specter of a rogue or corrupt elector changing the outcome. Secondly, I would award two electoral votes to the candidate who won the state (for each senator), and I would award one to the winner of each Congressional District, as Maine and Nebraska do now. (And Pennsylvania is considering.) This would put every state in play and mean that the parties couldn’t write off any state. Republicans could win votes in California, Democrats in Texas. Campaigns would be much more national.

All voting would be done on computers, and every election should require a candidate to receive 50% plus 1 of the vote in order to win. This can be done by what’s known as the “Hare” system, so it won’t matter how many candidates there are. You vote with a number one for your first choice, number two for your second choice and so on. If no candidate is the first choice of 50% of the voters, the candidate with the fewest number of first place votes is eliminated, and those votes are automatically apportioned to the other candidates based on who received the number two vote. And so on, until one candidate has a majority. This ensures that a candidate despised by a majority does not get elected with 30% of the vote. It stops the political game of one candidate putting in straw candidates of the same race, ethnicity or gender of the main opponent to split the vote. It allows voters to vote first for their preferred candidate, even if she or he is behind in the polls, because doing so doesn’t help a candidate you really dislike. Thus it allows third parties to get established.

Every state would have to set congressional districts by an independent commission, using a computer model which does not take party registration or voting history into account. Compact and contiguous would rank high in the model.

Any person or organization, including a union or corporation, would be allowed to give as much money as they want to any candidate to spend on the campaign. BUT before the money could be deposited in the account, the amount and source must be entered online into a database accessible by anyone, so we can see where a candidate’s funding comes from. The same rule should apply to all groups attacking or supporting candidates. If the money goes to the candidate, it makes the candidate responsible, not some attack group like or a conservative 527 group. Hiding the source of a campaign contribution would be a corrupt practice with stringent penalties. No more non-English speaking Chinese immigrants reported as “giving” 20% of their annual income in some bundled contribution.

Bills would be required to be published on the Internet, with full public access, three days before they are voted on or amendments offered. Once the amendment process is completed, they should be on the Internet three days before final passage. No more “vapor bills.”

Congress would not be allowed to exempt itself from laws it passes that apply to the country or citizens at large.

Require that amendments must be germane to the legislation. That is, they should not be able to attach an amendment on abortion or guns to a bill on National Parks, avoiding the process. Nor should they be able to use a bill as a “shell,” wiping out everything in it and substituting a completely bill that has not gone through the legislative process with hearings.

Let’s have real transparency. No excluding the press, the public or members of the other party from meetings between legislators or legislators and executive branch officials about the contents or details of legislation.

Establish loser pays in civil actions to reduce frivolous legislation. Suspend the licenses of attorneys who bring frivolous suits.

Strictly enforce the limitation of powers section of the constitution.

Then in my second month in office….if I survive that long…I’ll have more.

Robert A. Hall is the author of The Coming Collapse of the American Republic. He blogs at


  1. If you ran on these, I think you would win.

    I was trying to decide which idea I liked best (so I could mention it here) but there were too many. However, I could see terrorism drying up real fast with the active-nuke approach. But on top of that we should publicly announce our cooperation with the best ally we could ever find for this war on terror: India.

    My only gripe with your list was this: birth control. My wife and I have two kids (we wanted more), and in both cases the pregnancy nearly killed her. Our options would have been: 1 - have more children and take a chance on her death (according to the doctor, a 3rd pregnancy very likely would have accomplished this), or 2 - use birth control and be able to maintain a complete traditional family with a loving mom, dad, and two lucky children. As you pointed out though, this is a survival issue. And in a case like ours, the mothers survival would surely have been taken into account. (If I'm wrong in my assumption, please clarify your position and explain why)

    Anyhow, keep up the great posts.

  2. I like it, I like it, especially the part making abortion a survival issue.
    That's a novel argument, and a good one.

    Next month, consider "No Worky, No Votey". Wards of The State should not be allowed to hold the country and economy hostage to their greed for gimmes. They don't PAY for government, why should they have a say in how it's run?

  3. I'd like to be considered for National Security Advisor or Supreme Court.