Symposium 2011: What is your outlook for the 2012 presidential election? Any frontrunners in the Republican party?

Sydney:  Mitt Romney looks like the standout Republican at the moment, judging by his wins in the most recent primaries. I think he is likely to win the Republican nomination over Newt Gingrich and Rick Santorum. He will need to pick a well credentialed running mate because Obama will be difficult to beat, especially if jobs growth continues. Continue reading

Symposium 2011: What is your outlook for the economy and interest rates? What do you perceive to be the biggest threat to the U.S. economy—inflation, interest rates, oil prices, etc.?

Sydney:  The Fed recently said that interest rates will be frozen for two years so there is no real threat there. The two big threats are oil prices and the economic situation in Europe. If Iran blocks the Straits of Hormuz, our oil supply will be massively reduced and the oil price will obviously skyrocket. Continue reading

Symposium 2011: Many South and Central American countries have either exhibited hostility towards the U.S. or opened alliances with our enemies in the Middle East, most notably, Iran. How does the U.S. deal with this?

RMC:  Don’t do business with them and make it clear that if they aid or abet the terrorists, we will hold them responsible.  That’s a pretty hard line approach, but money talks.  If they can’t get stuff from us in terms of trade, they may think twice about throwing in with the enemy.  Each and every one of these countries wants or needs something from the United States, whether they will admit it or not.  We need to identify what that is and use that as the carrot on the stick.  Continue reading

Symposium 2011: Should the Congress pass a federal ballot access law which eases the requirements for placing a minor party and/or independent candidate on the ballot for Congress and President? If so, what is the ideal ballot access requirement?

Sydney:  I totally agree with this. The system now is a joke. There are so many different rules across the different States that sometimes even Republican and Democrat candidates can’t get on the ballot. Continue reading

Symposium 2011: should we repeal the federal income tax? If we were to do so, how would we fund the federal government?

Sydney:  No. This is a stupid idea. The nation is massively in debt as it is and I can’t see how there is any we that we could make enough changes, or introduce enough new taxes to rescue a Government that is massively in debt as it is. If anything rich people should be paying more in income tax. Continue reading

Symposium 2011: Should the U.S. have a continued presence of military around the world?

Sydney:  I think the U.S definitely needs to have a continued military presence around the world in order to protect its interests and support its allies. The more important question is, where should that presence be? By establishing a greater presence in Australia’s north the U.S is responding to the growing military power of China. On the other hand our attempts to establish democraticic governments and peace in Afghanistan and Iraq are proving to be dismal failures. Perhaps the military needs to be smarter in where it sends its troops. Continue reading

Symposium 2011: We are currently over $15 trillion in debt as a nation. What changes should be made to restore fiscal responsibility and direct the country towards a balanced budget?

Sydney:  It seems that Government is way too big. There are plenty of Departments that could either improve their efficiency, or be removed altogether. Alternatively, there are clearly some Departments that should be administered by the States. There is also duplication at the moment, such as in the welfare system where both States and the Federal Government seem to be doing the same thing. Either the States need to be responsible, or the Federal Government should be. Continue reading

Symposium 2011: Should Puerto Rico be required to make English its only official language if it becomes the 51st state?

Michigan:  We have enough states with problems now.  Why would we want another one?

Sydney:  Of course it should, if English is the official language of the United States as well. In reality I don’t think it would make a lot of difference to Puerto Ricans if they became the 51st State. It seems they are pretty much a defacto State anyway. I’m sure that if English was made the only official language life would go on as normal. It’s not as if the U.S military is going to force everyone to speak English. Continue reading

Symposium 2011: Should the U.S. grant amnesty to illegal aliens without requiring specific steps for them to learn English as a prerequisite for legalization?

Michigan:  I don’t think we can grant a mass amnesty to all illegal aliens in the U.S.  We may consider amnesty to aliens who have been here for a certain amount of time, own property, are employed, and speak English.  We actually need these people in some of our businesses.  We are all concerned that they are not being taxed and that they are a burden on our health and school systems.  Give them work visas, get them on the tax train, and make them buy insurance. Continue reading