Tag Archives: write in campaign

“What Being A Republican Means To Me!” by Steve Rathje

“What Being A Republican Means To Me!”
by Steve Rathje on Thursday, May 5, 2011 at 10:34pm
Republicans; it’s not what we are that separates us from politics as usual, it’s who we are. And once we compromise who we are, the vary foundation on which we stand begins to crumble. Remaining forever vigilant to our values and principles regardless of opinion, defines us as those that live for the future, and learn from the past.

We as true Republicans, Conservatives, Constitutional Patriots, believe that less government, a strong military and strong family values are the three core constitutionally based principles by which our Republic was founded, and should therefore be governed and represented accordingly. Any compromise to these key principles reflects nothing more than an exercise in mediocrity, a lack of integrity, and an unwillingness to stand up for what we truly believe.

Integrity says it all, it means adhering to a firm code of ethical standards, to rise above the fray and maintain a strong moral character, regardless of opinion. It’s about honesty and truth, and the willingness to stand up for both, but most of all it’s about you, the heart that beats within you, the conscience that guides you, and the soul that will one day leave you. Freedom and liberty are not determined by politicians, political parties or governments, but rather guaranteed by natures God, and within that guarantee fall certain responsibilities to all mankind, to protect and preserve that which is most sacred to life as we believe it to be.

Being a true Republican isn’t about being a member of an organization. It’s about a way of life. It’s about God and natures law. It’s about Freedom and Liberty and the opportunities they bring. It’s about free markets and capitalism, and the ability to earn and live the American dream, and it’s about humanity and the right to personally choose how to support those less fortunate. Republicans are made up of those that empower rather than enable. They take personal responsibility and accountability for who and what they are, and they are unafraid to stand on the principles instilled in them by the One that placed them upon this earth. I’m proud to be a Republican, and I’m honored to be your friend!


“A Touch of Reality!” by Steve Rathje on Wednesday, July 13, 2011 at 4:28pm

In November and December of 2010 steel prices shot up a whopping 33%. In January of this year, industry analysts projected steel prices could increase by as much as 66% more. If this turns out to be correct, the rise in steel prices during 2011 will be the second-biggest jump since modern records began in the 1940s. Are steel prices, like oil, pegged to the dollar? You bet they are! As the dollar continues its decline, oil and steel prices rise to compensate. Our indebtedness caused by out of control spending and our inability to address it, affects everything we do from the top down, and globally. Businesses will continue to seek remedies elsewhere and American workers will progressively go from being productive manufacturing specialists to members of a service only society.

We’re now paying for generations of weakness and the inability to say, “NO.” Our folly has finally caught up with us and the consequences are going to cause strife in our lives, but not the kind of strife we’ll see by listening to pundits and politicians alike making cheap promises based upon meaningless cuts and a willingness to raise the debt ceiling based on fear and trepidation.

The invisible hand of the free market is the only remedy for what ails us and those that claim to have another remedy are obviously doing nothing more than testing the direction of the political winds. This Country always has been and always will be the greatest Country on earth. American exceptionalism isn’t dead, it’s being restrained. Let’s loose the chains and shackles of debt and despair. Let’s hold everyone regardless of political party responsible for the misguided decisions they’ve made. Let’s pull ourselves up by the bootstraps and once and for all take back what men and women have given so much for since this country began more than 235 years ago. Let’s finally do what we all know needs to be done…VOTE!

“Freezing spending does nothing!” by Steve Rathje

“Freezing spending does nothing!”

by Steve Rathje on Friday, May 4, 2012 at 8:02am

Below is a piece I wrote as a Guest Column for the Cedar Rapids Gazette dated December 5, 2010. I’m reposting it due to its relevance after hearing comments made toward Gov. Romney and his role in doing what was necessary to ‘save’ companies while being employed by Bain Capital. After you read this piece, I think you’ll be asking yourself why some choose to belittle capitalism (however unintended), rather than explain as I have what really needs to be done. Gov. Romney did for Bain Capital exactly what my consulting firm does for some of it’s customers. When companies are going under and find themselves no longer able to compete in the ‘Free Market’ there are but a few choices to make, of which ‘no one’ wants to. I hope you’ll take a moment to read this and afterwards please drop a comment as I’d really like to know what you think.

On November 29th, President Obama announced that he was imposing a two-year freeze in the wages of federal employees, with the intention of saving $60 billion over the next 10 years.

Question; How does freezing wages at their current level actually provide a savings?

Answer; It doesn’t! To actually provide a ‘physical savings’ cuts not freezing, need to take place. Otherwise, what is being described as savings is merely, in all reality, preventative spending, two very separate things. This freeze as they call it is nothing more than a shell game to get taxpayers to believe that the government is serious about saving money and reducing spending.

Let’s look at this from a common sense point of view. Let’s say you own a company, and that company spends a million dollars a year on payroll, payroll that it can no longer afford. Do you freeze future wage increases to save or reduce capital expenditures? No! Rather, you cut current wages and benefits immediately while analyzing the necessity of the current labor force. All departments have to participate with unnecessary personnel from each department receiving a furlough. Duties are combined wherever possible. Feasibility studies are made to determine internal costs vs. subcontracted ones. Budgets are brought inline with revisions being made, and prices are cut to stimulate sales in order to boost profits and become economically solvent again.

Keep this in mind. The average wage of a federal employee is right at $100K p/year, that in and of itself is a recipe for disaster. Why, because federal employees produce nothing that can be sold at a profit. They are what we in business call indirect labor, that is labor that cannot pay for itself. This type of labor is what companies try to eliminate altogether or at the very least, keep to a bare minimum. Indirect labor merely adds to government overhead, which increases costs/taxes and doesn’t add anything to the GDP in the process.

Using 2009 numbers, which are more than likely, due to historical fact, the most accurate numbers we have that can be trusted, there are, as of January 2009, 2,748,978 civilian federal employees in the United States government. This is according to the Federal Employment Statistics published by the U.S. Office of Personnel Management. Employees with security agencies (CIA, NSA, etc) as well as the Military and National Imagery and Mapping Agency are not included in this number.

During this time, 97.6% of civilian federal employees worked in the executive branch of federal government with a total payroll that exceeded $275 billion per year.

So what should we do? First of all, let’s cut all federal employee wages, with the exception of the CIA, NSA, etc., as well as the Military, National Imagery and Mapping Agencies by 15% immediately. That in and of itself will save $41.235 Billion per year or $412.346 Billion over 10 years even if no reduction in federal employees ever takes place. In addition, all government pensions and benefits (except the aforementioned) must be reviewed and reduced to levels commensurate with industry standards. I would also strongly suggest a 25% reduction in federal employees once feasibility studies are completed by an independent agency or agencies, and a determination made as to how many federal jobs can actually be provided by private sector companies. Based once again on 2009 numbers, a 25% cut in personnel would reduce the number of federal employees by 687,244, with an income averaging $100K p/yr, reflects an annual savings of $68.724 Billion or $687.245 Billion over 10 years.

So to sum it up, reducing federal employees by 25% or 687,244, and immediately cutting the average wage by 15%, saves the American taxpayer $120.268 Billion p/yr or $1.203 Trillion over a 10 year period. Imagine the message that would send to friend and foe alike.

How many folks reading this article, have been laid off? How many of you have gone to work one day, only to find yourself being called into the office to receive a pink slip? No one, especially your employer, likes to be placed in this situation. But in order to remain in business and continue to produce a viable product to the public, drastic measures like these are unfortunately necessary.

We all know too well how the size of government directly affects the economic wellbeing of America. Government must be reduced wherever possible, spending must be reigned in and waste a thing of the past. The shell game that’s being played by our elected representatives must come to an end, because if it doesn’t, America as we know it will become nothing more than a pawn in a game of cat and mouse where there are no winners, only losers.