Tonight at 7:00 p.m. (EDT), our inaugural American Solutions Day workshops on the Internet at AmericanSolutions.com, on the Dish Network (channel 219) and on DirecTV (channel 577) will begin.
Saturday, September 29, at 1:00 p.m. (EDT) there will be a series of 35 workshops available at AmericanSolutions.com. Selected workshops will also be available on the Dish Network (channel 219) and on DirecTV (channel 577).
These workshops are so important that I wanted to send you this special edition of our “Winning the Future” newsletter.
What Is Happening Is the Beginning of Real Change.
What is happening is the beginning of a process that has the potential to take our schools back from the bureaucrats, to safeguard our country by protecting our borders, to have a government under which levies don’t break and bridges don’t fall.
And much, much more.
The Anniversary of the Contract with America
Today is the 13th anniversary of the Contract with America.
It’s hard to believe that 13 years ago today on the steps of the West Front of the Capitol hundred of candidates for Congress signed the Contract with America. The Contract was the beginning of real change in welfare, which resulted in 65% of the people on welfare either going to school or going to work.
The Contract was the beginning of real change in the budget, producing four consecutive balanced budgets that included the first tax cut in 16 years, real control of federal spending and the first new defense and intelligence investments since Reagan.
Those were real changes. Now it is time for real change again.
Tonight, I will be broadcasting and web casting from the Cobb Galleria Centre in Atlanta. It brings back a lot of memories, because it was the election night headquarters in 1994 when we learned we had elected the first Republican majority in 40 years.
Americans voted for real change then, and we need real change again.
A lot of people pretend to be for change, but they offer only the same tired old excuses.
Albert Einstein once said, “Insanity is when you think that by doing more of what you are already doing you can get a different outcome.” An awful lot of our politics and government is insane by Einstein’s standards.
Let’s look at what real change might look like.
Here are 10 examples of real change:
- Levees shouldn’t break, and the Corps of Engineers should be changed until it is reliable.
- Bridges shouldn’t fall, and our federal and state highway programs should be changed until we have reliable inspection and repair.
- Students should learn, and the bureaucrats and bureaucracies that dominate failing educational systems should be changed every day until the students are learning.
- The border should be protected for national security reasons, and it should be protected now.
- English should be the official language of government, and first-generation Americans should be offered intensive English education.
- Congress should control spending and spend within its budget, so we can get back to the balanced budgets we had when I left the speakership.
- The death tax should be abolished permanently.
- The capital gains tax should be abolished to increase the money in our retirement accounts and to help create jobs in America.
- An energy strategy should be implemented to meet national security, environmental and economic goals and to eliminate the danger of foreign dictators who are manipulating us through our energy needs.
- Americans should not be bogged down in long, indecisive campaigns: We need a strategy for defeating our enemies, defending our friends, winning the campaign in Iraq and bringing our troops home. (Watch my speech at the American Enterprise Institute on September 10 for how to do this.)
These are the kinds of real changes you don’t get in Washington today or in most of our state capitals.
More Principles for Real Change
Consider some of the following principles for real change:
- There ought to be an optional single-rate tax simple enough to be filled out in one page. The optional single-rate tax ought to have a 17% rate for both individuals and corporations, so we can create more jobs in America instead of seeing them go overseas.
- We need a strategy to reindustrialize America and bring jobs back to America.
- There should be tax incentives for companies that make their headquarters in the United States and want to bring jobs to America.
- We need a decisive series of reforms to keep New York City the financial capital of the world. There must be changes in litigation, regulation, taxation and the visa system if New York is to remain the best place for investment in the world. Every American has a stake in keeping investment activity in the United States, and we need this change quickly or London may replace New York by the end of the decade.
- Social Security today is not facing up to the reality of people living longer, and it should be reformed to ensure it is stable and reliable and taken away from the politicians so the younger generation can rely on it. People should have the option to have a personal account in Social Security that they can invest to get a bigger retirement income. Any money left over in their personal Social Security account should belong to them, and they should be able to leave it to their family — something they cannot do today.
- Since we have an obligation to be good stewards of God’s creation for future generations, we need a new program of scientific and technological change and entrepreneurial leadership to meet the environmental and energy challenges.
- We should dramatically increase our investment in math and science learning and keep reforming and innovating until the failing bureaucracies in education are replaced by systems in which young Americans learn better than their foreign competitors.
- There should be a prize for breakthroughs in the environment and for highly fuel-efficient vehicles.
- Companies that invest in cutting emissions ought to get a tax credit to accelerate lowering carbon in the atmosphere.
- Homeowners should get tax credits for modernizing their homes and reducing energy use.
- The United States could reduce the carbon going into the atmosphere by 2,200,000,000 tons a year and be 15% better than the Kyoto standard if we simply produced the same percentage of electricity from nuclear power as France does today. There should be a strong effort to develop safe, reliable, 21st-Century models of nuclear plants which could be built quickly and reliably.
- Schools should be encouraged to open each day with a moment of silent prayer so those students who want to have a chance to be reverent at the beginning of each school day can do so.
- American history should be reemphasized in both K-12 and in college, and being able to pass a basic test in American history should be a part of both high school and all publicly funded college graduation requirements.
- We should reassert and reemphasize what is written in our Declaration of Independence, that our rights come from our Creator and are unalienable, and we should insist on the constitutionality of saying “One Nation under God” in our Pledge of Allegiance.
- The McCain-Feingold Censorship Act is unconstitutional and is a big part of why we now have destructive two-year long campaigns, and it should be repealed and replaced with a simple system of reporting all contributions every night on the Internet so everyone can see where every candidate’s support comes from.
Real Change Is Possible
The above list is just the tip of the iceberg.
America needs a continuing process of innovation and reform if we are to continue to be the most successful society in history.
Americans can insist on real change, and we have done it before. The politicians, interest groups, elite media and bureaucrats can be forced to reform by the sheer weight of the American people.
Real Change Is a Lot More Than Just Washington
There are 513,000 elected officials in America.
Real change is a lot more than the White House or the Congress.
Real change has to occur all across America.
Here’s the schedule for Solutions Day, as we work together to demand real change.
SOLUTIONS DAY OPENING PRESENTATION
Thursday, September 27
Radio Talk Show host Neal Boortz will be broadcasting his show LIVE from the Cobb Galleria Centre in Atlanta. So, too, will Sean Hannity.
7:00-8:30 p.m. (EDT): I will give the opening presentation at the Cobb Galleria in Atlanta. Joining me for the opening presentation will be Georgia Gov. Sonny Purdue, former Colorado Gov. Roy Romer, Atlanta Mayor Shirley Franklin and Kelly Anne Conway of the Polling Company.
Saturday, September 29
I will host the inaugural “Solutions Day” workshops LIVE from the University of West Georgia in Carrollton, Ga., on Saturday, September 29. I taught at the University of West Georgia from 1970 to 1978.
The workshops begin at 1:00 p.m. (EDT) with opening remarks from me. The workshops will be broadcast nationwide live on the DISH Network (Channel 219), DirecTV (Channel 577), and webcast at AmericanSolutions.com.
The workshops will be divided into three one-hour segments. During each hour, there will be at least six workshops participants can choose from. Workshop topics include: immigration, education, health care, green conservatism and more. Americans in more than 2,000 locations in all 50 states will participate in the Solutions Day workshops.
1:00 p.m. (EDT):
1:30 p.m. (EDT):
2:45 p.m. (EDT):
4:00 p.m. (EDT):
JOIN US TO HELP LAUNCH A MOVEMENT FOR REAL CHANGE