Sunday, July 5, 2015

The Time is Right to Free Puerto Rico from the United State's Colonial Past

A quick look at Puerto Rico is needed first. What is Puerto Rico ?

Puerto Rico isn't quite a state and there are other nuances to their situation. The time has come to correct our mistake from 1898, when Puerto Rico was made a territory after the Spanish American War
The power of Congress over territories is exclusive and complete, as described under Article IV of the Constitution: 
The Congress shall have the power to dispose of and make all needful rules and regulations respecting the territory or other property belonging to the United States. 
A piece of land belonging to the United States can be only a territory or a state under U.S. law.
Americans have a chance to correct history and liberate a people from the 'grasp of American Imperialism' These residents of Puerto Rico are burdened with low tax rates and the additional suffering of collecting unearned and undeserved benefits from its 'colonial masters' in the United States. Puerto Rico doesn't want to be a State and the United States doesn't want them as one, either. The time is come to Free Puerto Rico from their Imperialist Masters.   I expect all freedom loving Americans on both sides of the aisle to cheer.  FREE Puerto Rico !!

Puerto Ricans who can’t speak English qualify as disabled for Social Security 
According to the latest U.S. Census Bureau data, 95 percent of Puerto Rico residents above age 5 speak Spanish at home, and about 84 percent say they do not speak English “very well.”

The inspector general noted that a nurse in Puerto Rico who speaks only Spanish could be considered “unskilled” under current Social Security standards. 
“A claimant’s inability to communicate in English can lessen the relevance of work experience and education, potentially making it more likely the claimant will receive disability benefits,” the report said.

Individuals born in Puerto Rico are U.S. citizens, making them eligible to apply for Social Security benefits. However, they do not automatically qualify for disability payments.
The horror of not being able to speak English in a Spanish speaking country. After all, this really isn't America, but these  U.S. citizens don't have to pay federal income taxes. Imagine that burden alone for these oppressed people ?  Of course, Puerto Rico does require that you pay a 4%  income  tax rate.  (Compare that to your combined federal and state income tax burden you may pay now! Legally avoid the 39.6% federal rate and the 13.3% California (or other state) rate?) This hefty 4 percent income tax rate is quite a burden, now add in the ZERO percent tax rate on dividends. If you are receiving distributions of company profits or have investments yielding dividends, they are tax-free. There’s also no capital gain tax in Puerto Rico. If you sell your company, sell real estate, sell shares in public companies, you name it, no capital gain tax. These burdens of their imperialist masters know no bounds.

Puerto Rico always rejects a move to statehood for some unknown reason.  Of course, The Popular Democratic Party (PPD) Partido Popular Democratico followers are known as "los populares", identified by color red and supports an enhanced commonwealth status.  Their current governor is a popular Democrat and has led them into debt and poverty, just like the Democrats in Detroit.  His background in 'academia and public service', with a short stint as an attorney was no real surprise.

After a few years in office, what are the results ? Let's just say they made the NYTimes  headlines.....
Puerto Rico’s governor, saying he needs to pull the island out of a “death spiral,” has concluded that the commonwealth cannot pay its roughly $72 billion in debts, an admission that will probably have wide-reaching financial repercussions.
The governor, Alejandro García Padilla, and senior members of his staff said in an interview last week that they would probably seek significant concessions from as many as all of the island’s creditors, which could include deferring some debt payments for as long as five years or extending the timetable for repayment.
“The debt is not payable,” Mr. García Padilla said. “There is no other option. I would love to have an easier option. This is not politics, this is math.”
It is a startling admission from the governor of an island of 3.6 million people, which has piled on more municipal bond debt per capita than any American state.
Not politics but math ?  Really?  These math whizkids racked up more debt than any American state and that is not a simple task.  So now we know this is really politics coming from this math challenged island paradise. This sly Democrat politician heading Puerto Rico thinks the beneficiaries of this spending shouldn't be burdened with paying it back. What kind of debt are we talking about ? The NYTimes mentions that the 'public corporations' are responsible for about a third. So the citizens don't want to pay their fair share of their water and electric bills either?
In Washington, the García Padilla administration has been pushing for a bill that would allow the island’s public corporations, like its electrical power authority and water agency, to declare bankruptcy. Of Puerto Rico’s $72 billion in bonds, roughly $25 billion were issued by the public corporations
Add in the other $50 billion in pension obligations. Sure why should the recipients of these services have to pay for the pension obligations of the workers that provide these services too?

There is no better time than now to cut the apron strings and set the Spanish speaking island free and let it make its way in the real world. Do it in the name of Freedom !!