Posts Tagged ‘Snopes’

“545 People” Cause U. S. Problems

May 4, 2016


  • “545 People” Cause U.S. Problems

    The following article was written by Charley Reese, a writer for the Orlando Sentinel. It has been authenticated by Snopes.

    The following is quoted from Snopes.

    Claim:   Charley Reese penned an editorial about 545 people being “responsible for the domestic problems that plague” the U.S.


    Example:   [Reese, 1995]

    Politicians, as I have often said, are the only people in the world who create problems and then campaign against them.

    Everything on the Republican contract is a problem created by Congress. Too much bureaucracy? Blame Congress. Too many rules?

    Blame Congress. Unjust tax laws? Congress wrote them.

    Out-of-control bureaucracy? Congress authorizes everything bureaucracies do. Americans dying in Third World rat holes on stupid U.N. missions? Congress allows it. The annual deficits?

    Congress votes for them. The $4 trillion plus debt? Congress created it.

    To put it into perspective just remember that 100 percent of the power of the federal government comes from the U.S. Constitution. If it’s not in the Constitution, it’s not authorized.

    Then read your Constitution. All 100 percent of the power of the federal government is invested solely in 545 individual human beings. That’s all. Of 260 million Americans, only 545 of them wield 100 percent of the power of the federal government.

    That’s 435 members of the U.S. House, 100 senators, one president and nine Supreme Court justices. Anything involving government that is wrong is 100 percent their fault.

    I exclude the vice president because constitutionally he has no power except to preside over the Senate and to vote only in the case of a tie. I exclude the Federal Reserve because Congress created it and all its power is power Congress delegated to it and could withdraw anytime it chooses to do so. In fact, all the power exercised by the 3 million or so other federal employees is power delegated from the 545.

    All bureaucracies are created by Congress or by executive order of the president. All are financed and staffed by Congress. All enforce laws passed by Congress.

    All operate under procedures authorized by Congress. That’s why all complaints and protests should be properly directed at Congress, not at the individual agencies.

    You don’t like the IRS? Go see Congress. You think the Alcohol Tobacco and Firearms agency is running amok? Go see Congress.

    Congress is the originator of all government problems and is also the only remedy available. That’s why, of course, politicians go to such extraordinary lengths and employ world-class sophistry to make you think they are not responsible. Anytime a congressman pretends to be outraged by something a federal bureaucrat does, he is in fact engaging in one big massive con job. No federal employee can act at all except to enforce laws passed by Congress and to employ procedures authorized by Congress either explicitly or implicitly.

    Partisans on both sides like to blame presidents for deficits, but all deficits are congressional deficits. The president may, by custom, recommend a budget, but it carries no legal weight. Only Congress is authorized by the Constitution to authorize and appropriate and to levy taxes. That’s what the federal budget consists of: expenditures authorized, funds appropriated and taxes levied.

    Both Democrats and Republicans mislead the public. For 40 years Democrats had majorities and could have at any time balanced the budget if they had chosen to do so. Republicans now have majorities and could, if they choose, pass a balanced budget this year. Every president, Democrat or Republican, could have vetoed appropriations bills that did not make up a balanced budget. Every president could have recommended a balanced budget. None has done either.

    We have annual deficits and a huge federal debt because that’s what majorities in Congress and presidents in the White House wanted. We have troops in various Third World rat holes because Congress and the president want them there.

    Don’t be conned. Don’t let them escape responsibility. We simply have to sort through 260 million people until we find 545 who will act responsibly.


     Origins:   Journalist Charley Reese (now retired) was part of the Orlando Sentinel‘s staff for three decades between 1971-2001, during which time he (among other duties) penned a thrice-weekly column which was distributed to other newspapers nationwide by King Features Syndicate. During the 1980s Reese wrote the first version of an editorial opining that 545 people (i.e., the President of the United States, plus all the members of Congress and the Supreme Court) “are directly, legally, morally and individually responsible for the domestic problems that plague this country,” and he has amended, updated, and republished that piece several times since then. The version cited above is taken from the 7 March 1995 edition of the Orlando Sentinel, where it ran under the title “Looking for Someone to Blame? Congress Is a Good Place to Start.”

    By way of comparison, here is another version of Reese’s piece, as it appeared in 1985:


    Politicians are the only people in the world who create problems and then campaign against them.

    Have you ever wondered why, if both the Democrats and Republicans are against deficits, we have deficits? Have you ever wondered why if all politicians are against inflation and high taxes, we have inflation and high taxes?

    You and I don’t propose a federal budget. The president does. You and I don’t have Constitutional authority to vote on appropriations. The House of Representatives does. You and I don’t write the tax code. Congress does. You and I don’t set fiscal policy. Congress does. You and I don’t control monetary policy. The Federal Reserve Bank does.

    One hundred senators, 435 congressmen, one president and nine Supreme Court justices — 545 human beings out of 235 million — are directly, legally, morally and individually responsible for the domestic problems that plague this country.

    I excused the members of the Federal Reserve Board because that problem was created by the Congress. In 1913, Congress delegated its Constitutional duty to provide a sound currency to a federally chartered by private central bank.

    I exclude all of the special interests and lobbyists for a sound reason. They have no legal authority. They have no ability to coerce a senator, a congressman or a president to do one cotton-picking thing. I don’t care if they offer a politician $1 million in cash. The politician has the power to accept or reject it.

    No matter what the lobbyist promises, it is the legislators’ responsibility to determine how he votes.

    Don’t you see the con game that is played on the people by the politicians? Those 545 human beings spend much of their energy convincing you that what they did is not their fault. They cooperate in this common con regardless of party.

    What separates a politician from a normal human being is an excessive amount of gall. No normal human being would have the gall of Tip O’Neill, who stood up and criticized Ronald Reagan for creating deficits.

    The president can only propose a budget. He cannot force the Congress to accept it. The Constitution, which is the supreme law of the land, gives sole responsibility to the House of Representatives for originating appropriations and taxes.

    Those 545 people and they alone are responsible. They and they alone should be held accountable by the people who are their bosses — provided they have the gumption to manage their own employees.

    In 2008, Reese’s editorial was updated with some topical political references (e.g., Nancy Pelosi’s name in place of Tip O’Neill’s; the Army and Marines listed as being in Iraq rather than on “U.N. Missions”) and circulated via e-mail under the title “The 545 People Responsible for America’s Woes” (or just “545 People), often with additional material not written by Reese himself tacked onto the beginning or end of the article.

    Last updated:   13 January 2013


        Reese, Charley.   “Looking for Someone to Blame? Congress Is a Good Place to Start.”
        Orlando Sentinel.   7 March 1995   (p. A8).
        The Stonewall County Courier.   “545 People Responsible for Country’s Problems.”
        19 September 1985   (p. 1).

    End of Snopes Quotes:


    What now follows are some things that have been appended to iterations of these articles by an unknown author in cyberspace.  This is also interesting and appears to be correct to my eye. What do you think?

    Tax his land,
    Tax his bed,
    Tax the table,
    At which he’s fed.

    Tax his tractor,
    Tax his mule,
    Teach him taxes
    Are the rule.

    Tax his work,
    Tax his pay,
    He works for
    peanuts anyway!

    Tax his cow,
    Tax his goat,
    Tax his pants,
    Tax his coat.

    Tax his ties,
    Tax his shirt,
    Tax his work,
    Tax his dirt.

    Tax his tobacco,
    Tax his drink,
    Tax him if he
    Tries to think.

    Tax his cigars,
    Tax his beers,
    If he cries
    Tax his tears.

    Tax his car,
    Tax his gas,
    Find other ways
    Taxes to pass

    Tax all he has
    Then let him know
    That you won’t be done
    Till he has no dough.

    When he screams and hollers;
    Then tax him some more,
    Tax him till
    He’s good and sore.

    Then tax his coffin,
    Tax his grave,
    Tax the sod in
    Which he’s laid…

    Put these words
    Upon his tomb,
    ‘Taxes drove me
    to my doom…’

    When he’s gone,
    Do not relax,
    Its time to apply
    The inheritance tax.

    Accounts Receivable Tax
    Building Permit Tax
    CDL license Tax
    Cigarette Tax
    Corporate Income Tax
    Dog License Tax
    Excise Taxes
    Federal Income Tax
    Federal Unemployment Tax (FUTA)
    Fishing License Tax
    Food License Tax
    Fuel Permit Tax
    Gasoline Tax (currently 44.75 cents per gallon)
    Gross Receipts Tax
    Hunting License Tax
    Inheritance Tax
    Inventory Tax
    IRS Interest Charges IRS Penalties (tax on top of tax)
    Liquor Tax
    Luxury Taxes
    Marriage License Tax
    Medicare Tax
    Personal Property Tax
    Property Tax
    Real Estate Tax
    Service Charge Tax
    Social Security Tax
    Road Usage Tax
    Recreational Vehicle Tax
    Sales Tax
    School Tax
    State Income Tax
    State Unemployment Tax (SUTA)
    Telephone Federal Excise Tax
    Telephone Federal Universal Service Fee Tax
    Telephone Federal, State and Local Surcharge Taxes
    Telephone Minimum Usage Surcharge Tax
    Telephone Recurring and Nonrecurring Charges Tax
    Telephone State and Local Tax
    Telephone Usage Charge Tax
    Utility Taxes
    Vehicle License Registration Tax
    Vehicle Sales Tax
    Watercraft Registration Tax
    Well Permit Tax
    Workers Compensation Tax


    It is now do, or die for America. Vote the traitorous politicians out-of-office and impose term-limits on Congress!

    V. Thomas Mawhinney, 5/4/16

    P.S. Thanks to Joe Grunert for bringing this article to my attention.

    Obama: “Architect of Destruction”

    September 11, 2015

    Obama: “Architect of Destruction”

    I am presenting the following article with little commentary and I endorse its full message.

    The author is Maureen Scott has described America’s epic and historical Presidential disaster more clearly than anyone I have ever read.

    Interestingly, she wrote this article in 2013. Her assessment of Obama was perfectly predictive of his behavior to this day, and I will wager, to the very last day of his Presidency.

    Please read Maureen’s article and do your part to make sure America never again suffers a national catastrophe such as that embodied by Obama and his progressive/socialist Administration.

    Please also note that this catastrophe has nothing to do with race: It is strictly a behavioral assessment. America elected a pathologically deceptive socialist, progressive, America-hating, Marxist-revolutionary, with strong Islamic ties and sentiments.

    I would love to now see the strong American patriot and true conservative, Dr. Ben Carson’s Presidential performance. It would be significantly reparative of Obama’s damage to America, it would also restore honor and integrity to the White House and perhaps to our entire Nation.

    V. Thomas Mawhinney,   9/11/15

    P.S. Thanks to John Plume for sending me this article. Also, see evidence of its authenticity:

    America’s Black Dilemma: The Falsely Attributed Truth

    September 2, 2015

    The following article is real. However it has been falsely attributed to the author Ian Duncan and said to appear in a Baltimore Sun Editorial.

    I searched the Baltimore Sun’s editorials and was unable to find this article. As best I can tell, this story about a hard-hitting essay portraying the reality of America’s Black Dilemma is misattributed. The following is from Snopes. The complete citation is available at the end of today’s blog.

    “The American Renaissance posting was originally attributed to Anthony Bryan; but his name was stripped from versions shared via Internet forums, craigslist postings, and comments sections of several race-related articles. Several different authorial names have been attached to the piece, including ‘John S. Mosby’ (a Confederate cavalry officer) and ‘Edmund Hughes,’ but the article didn’t truly go viral until after the Baltimore Sun attribution was tacked on.”

    I now provide the article in its entirety.


    The Black Dilemma

    “For almost 150 years the United States has been conducting an interesting experiment. The subjects of the experiment: black people and working-class whites.

    The hypothesis to be tested: Can a people taken from the jungles of Africa and forced into slavery be fully integrated as citizens in a majority white population?

    The whites were descendants of Europeans who had created a majestic civilization. The former slaves had been tribal peoples with no written language and virtually no intellectual achievements. Acting on a policy that was not fair to either group, the government released newly freed black people into a white society that saw them as inferiors. America has struggled with racial discord ever since.

    Decade after decade the problems persisted but the experimenters never gave up. They insisted that if they could find the right formula the experiment would work, and concocted program after program to get the result they wanted. They created the Freedmans Bureau, passed civil rights laws, tried to build the Great Society, declared War on Poverty, ordered race preferences, built housing projects, and tried midnight basketball.

    Their new laws intruded into peoples lives in ways that would have been otherwise unthinkable. They called in National Guard troops to enforce school integration. They outlawed freedom of association. Over the protests of parents, they put white children on buses and sent them to black schools and vice-versa. They tried with money, special programs, relaxed standards, and endless hand wringing to close the achievement gap. To keep white backlash in check they began punishing public and even private statements on race. They hung up Orwellian public banners that commanded whites to Celebrate Diversity! and Say No to Racism. Nothing was off limits if it might salvage the experiment.

    Some thought that what W.E.B. DuBois called the Talented Tenth would lead the way for black people. A group of elite, educated blacks would knock down doors of opportunity and show the world what blacks were capable of. There is a Talented Tenth. They are the black Americans who have become entrepreneurs, lawyers, doctors and scientists. But ten percent is not enough. For the experiment to work, the ten percent has to be followed by a critical mass of people who can hold middle-class jobs and promote social stability. That is what is missing.

    Through the years, too many black people continue to show an inability to function and prosper in a culture unsuited to them. Detroit is bankrupt, the south side of Chicago is a war zone, and the vast majority of black cities all over America are beset by degeneracy and violence. And blacks never take responsibility for their failures. Instead, they lash out in anger and resentment.

    Across the generations and across the country, as we have seen in Detroit, Watts, Newark, Los Angeles, Cincinnati, and now Ferguson, rioting and looting are just one racial incident away. The white elite would tell us that this doesn’t mean the experiment has failed. We just have to try harder. We need more money, more time, more understanding, more programs, and more opportunities.

    But nothing changes no matter how much money is spent, no matter how many laws are passed, no matter how many black geniuses are portrayed on TV, and no matter who is president. Some argue its a problem of culture, as if culture creates peoples behavior instead of the other way around. Others blame white privilege.

    But since 1965, when the elites opened Americas doors to the Third World, immigrants from Asia and India people who are not white, not rich, and not connected have quietly succeeded. While the children of these people are winning spelling bees and getting top scores on the SAT, black youths are committing half the country’s violent crime, which includes viciously punching random white people on the street for the thrill of it that has nothing to do with poverty.

    The experiment has failed. Not because of white culture, or white privilege, or white racism. The fundamental problem is that American black culture has evolved into an un-fixable and crime ridden mess.

    They do not want to change their culture or society, and expect others to tolerate their violence and amoral behavior. They have become socially incompatible with other races by their own design, not because of the racism of others – but by their own hatred of non-blacks.

    Our leaders don’t seem to understand just how tired their white subjects are with this experiment. They don’t understand that white people aren’t out to get black people; they are just exhausted with them. They are exhausted by the social pathologies, the violence, the endless complaints, and the blind racial solidarity, the bottomless pit of grievances, the excuses, and the reflexive animosity. The elites explain everything with racism, and refuse to believe that white frustration could soon reach the boiling point.

    You can’t legislate the poor into freedom by legislating the wealthy out of freedom. What one person receives without working for, another person must work for without receiving. The government can’t give to anybody anything that the government doesn’t first take from somebody else. When half of the people get the idea that they don’t have to work because the other half is going to take care of them, and when the other half gets the idea that it does no good to work because somebody else is going to get what they work for, that my dear friend, is about the end of any nation.

    You cannot multiply wealth by dividing it.


    Although the author of this article has been falsely attributed. It is, never-the-less, the sad and foreboding truth.


    V. Thomas Mawhinney, 9/2/15

    America: Founded by Geniuses..Run By Idiots!

    March 20, 2015

    America: Founded by Geniuses…Run By Idiots!

    A friend sent the following to me, purported to be written by comedian Jeff Foxworthy. However, it appears to have been written by Fritz Edmunds and originally posted to a blog in 2013.

    Like so many things floating through cyberspace, this document has been falsely attributed (see the bottom of the page for the Snopes analysis of authorship).

    Never-the-less, this is a well-written smorgasbord of  life in the United States that supports my own assertion that America is Nuts. I hope you will locate my past blogs on the “America Is Nuts” theme.  Simply enter that title in my search box on the upper right side of this page).

    The following list of American Idiocies further substantiates my position. It also goes to illustrate the age-old observation that tragedy and humor are closely related.


    A Country Founded by Geniuses but Run by Idiots
    NOT BY Jeff Foxworthy

    If you can get arrested
    For hunting or fishing without a
    License, but not for entering
    And remaining in the country illegally, you might live in a nation
    That was founded by geniuses, but is
    Run by idiots.

    If you have to get your
    Parents permission to go on a
    Field trip or to take an aspirin
    In school, but not to get an abortion,
    You might live in a
    Nation that was founded by geniuses, but is run by idiots.

    If you MUST show your
    Identification to board an
    Airplane, cash a check, buy liquor,
    Or check out a library book and rent a video, but not to vote for
    Who runs the government, you might live in a nation that was
    Founded by geniuses, but is run by idiots.

    If the government wants to
    Prevent stable, law-abiding
    Citizens from owning gun magazines
    That hold more than ten rounds,
    But gives twenty F-16 fighter jets
    To the crazy new leaders in Egypt,
    You might live in a nation
    That was founded by geniuses, but is
    Run by idiots.

    If, in the nation’s largest
    City, you can buy two 16-ounce sodas,
    But not one 24-ounce soda,
    Because 24-ounces of a sugary
    Drink might make you fat,
    You might live in a nation
    That was founded by geniuses, but is
    Run by idiots.

    If an 80-year-old woman or a
    Three-year-old girl who is
    Confined to a wheelchair can be
    Strip-searched by the TSA at the airport,
    But a woman in a burka or a hijab
    Is only subject to having her neck and head searched,
    You might live in a nation
    That was founded by geniuses, but is
    Run by idiots.

    If your government believes
    That the best way to eradicate trillions of dollars of debt is to
    Spend trillions more,
    You might live in a nation
    That was founded by geniuses, but is
    Run by idiots.

    If hard work and success are
    Met with higher taxes and
    More government regulation and intrusion,
    While not working is rewarded with Food Stamps, WIC
    Checks, Medicaid benefits, subsidized housing, and free cell phones,
    You might live in a nation
    That was founded by geniuses, but is
    Run by idiots.

    If being stripped of your
    Constitutional right to defend
    Yourself makes you more safe
    According to the government,
    You might live in a nation that was founded by geniuses but is run by idiots.

    What a country!


    V. Thomas Mawhinney, 3/20/15

    See who the likely author of the preceding blog really is:

    Flim-Flam Man Obama on U.S. Debt: 2006

    October 9, 2013

    Flim-Flam Man Obama on U.S. Debt: 2006

    Thanks go to Joe Grunert for sending me this short quote.

     The whole of the quote it to be found in the snopes article below. In the end, he tries to weasel out of his 2006 statement by saying that he did not understand the problem from his perspective of a senator, as he more clearly understands it now as the President.

    The logic may fool a child, or perhaps his ignorant or America-hating traitor constituents.

    His absurd logic dictates the destruction of the United States of America…Which is exactly his goal.

    As a senator he did not understand the necessity to bankrupt America, but as the President he now does understand the necessity to bankrupt America?!

    Please read his remarks to see what you think.


    “The fact that we are here today to debate raising America’s debt limit is a sign of leadership failure.  It is a sign that the US Government cannot pay its own bills.  It is a sign that we now depend on ongoing financial assistance from foreign countries to finance our Government’s reckless fiscal policies.  ; Increasing America’s debt weakens us domestically and internationally.  Leadership means that, ‘the buck stops here.’  Instead, Washington is shifting the burden of bad choices today onto the backs of our children and grandchildren.  America has a debt problem and a failure of leadership.  Americans deserve better.”

    ~ Senator Barack H.  Obama, March 2006


    Obama’s quote is authentic. Check it out for yourself.

    VTM, 10/9/13

    Mitt Romney Is Not a “Namby-Pamby” Dork!

    March 31, 2012

    Mitt Romney is not the “namby-pamby” dork that the liberals and some conservatives say he is!

    His strong  take-charge problem solving skills, courage, tenacity and perseverance saved a teenage girls life!

    See the true story below:

    VTM, 3/31/12

    Thanks to Carrie Neller for sending this to me.

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