When I look at the standard of living in this country (for all people rich and poor) I see a direct causal relationship between all the government waste and the vastly diminished standard of living for all honest hard-working Americans. By the time payday rolls around, people only get about half of what they earned. The other half is lost to a profligate government. Most people see that as normal, I see it as a national disgrace.
People shouldn’t have to spend so much of their productivity just meeting their basic needs. By virtue of only getting paid half of what they earned, they have to work most of the week just to get by. There is very little money left over for non-essential items. It’s no wonder that many people are trying to make up the difference with credit cards. Intuitively, they feel like they work hard enough to enjoy a better lifestyle, but the money just isn’t there (because it’s lost to government). Now people are using credit cards just to buy food and pay their utility bills. What’s next?
Speaking only for myself, I would like to have responsible limited government, a much higher standard of living and the freedom to enjoy it. I would like to enjoy millionaire wealth and live in a free country with free and open markets. Let the buyer beware. The goal of writing this book is to sway the reader to come to the same points of view. Let’s all shoot for millionaire wealth. Let’s all shoot for keeping this country the land of the free and the home of the brave. Let’s all act like intelligent and responsible sovereign Citizens and relieve government of its burdens. Let’s leave government free to secure our borders and our ports. Let’s get government out of welfare, health care, education, religion, business and industry, insurance, banking, farming, mining, energy, the media and all other areas outside of its lawful purview.
Let’s put the genie back in the bottle, before we are reduced to living as economic slaves in a totalitarian police state. That is the writing on the wall. The trend is well established and gaining momentum. We’re so close to being there as it is, all that remains is to acknowledge and admit the reality of it. Let’s be honest with ourselves and call it what it is. If we’re living like slaves then that’s what it is. If we can’t function without the government’s permission (tax ID numbers, licenses & permits) then we are no longer the Master. The government has become Master, and if we do not comply, they well send their police and haul us off to jail and bring us before their judges. We will be held to their unjust powers and unconstitutional laws; stripped of our rights, robbed of our property, denied our freedom and locked up as an example to anyone else who would dare to defy the government.
What Can We All Agree On?
Before we get any deeper into this discussion, let’s see if there are any points that we can all agree on and carry forward. Although we can make a theoretical distinction between liberal and conservative ideas, I think our points need to transcend party politics and divisive issues. If there are points that everyone can agree on, then we can say they are universally true. It won’t be easy to get three hundred million people to agree on anything, but let’s give it a shot.
1. We all want to enjoy a higher standard of living (the higher the better).
2. We all want to enjoy vigorous good health and long life (the longer the better).
3. We all want to live in a free country and enjoy the blessings of liberty.
4. We all want to enjoy our own individual freedom to live our lives as we please.
5. We all want to enjoy the benefits of our natural and legal rights.
6. We’d all like to have a place to call home, and raise a family if we so choose.
7. We’d all like to enjoy security and peace of mind in our homes and communities.
8. None of us wants to be the victim of a crime or violent attack.
9. To whatever extent we are free to enjoy our rights and property, we equally have a duty and responsibility to protect and defend them from harm.
10. Freedom is not free.
11. We should not expect to get something for nothing (nothing worth having).
12. We all deserve to get whatever we are willing to work for and earn.
13. If given the choice, we would prefer to pay as little in taxes as possible (if any).
14. If given the choice, we’d rather not have anyone telling us what to do and what not to do.
15. We’d like the peace of mind to know that the money we invest or save will still be just as valuable at any point in the future.
16. To whatever extent we agree to have limited representative government, it needs to be bound by the rule of law and the chains of the Constitution.
Barring a few odd exceptions, I think we can all agree on these points. We have to start from somewhere. Let’s focus on the points we agree on before we get too divided over the points we disagree on. It would be unrealistic of me to write a book and expect everyone in the country to agree with my points of view, theories or conclusions. But, if we can all agree on these few points, then we will probably be forced to accept the conclusion that we must dismantle the big government machine and restore the power of government to its constitutionally limited size and scope.
For people like me, who neither want nor expect to get much from government, that is not a problem. Alas, for the tens of millions of Americans who depend directly on the government for their livelihood, that will most likely be a major problem. Who wants to give up the gravy train? No one. If you’re on the receiving end of the government’s largess, you will not have any problem figuring out a way to rationalize your continued acceptance of the loot. It could be unemployment, disability, welfare, grant money, borrowed money or a straight paycheck. If you’re getting a share of the loot, it doesn’t matter what you call it. It comes in many different forms and guises.
We can theorize that everyone in America is in one of two groups. Either they are receiving and accepting a cut of the loot, or they are not. Until recently, I had long wondered if this division could be reduced to a numbers problem. How many people are in each group and how many would have to be converted to effect a change? This problem had me stymied for years. Besides the shear magnitude of the quantification, the real problem lies in the fact that the people who depend on getting their share of the loot are much more proactive and involved in government than the people in the other group. They get very involved with lobbying, fund-raising, campaigning, voting, forming unions, legislating and budgeting. These are the people who are in favor of big government. They like having lots of police. They like big government controlled redistribution of the wealth schemes and entitlement programs, such as welfare, food stamps, Medicare, Social Security, and the Federal Income Tax. They are in favor of things like helmet laws, government crash test ratings and mandatory health insurance. They have a strong sense of morality and they want everyone else to abide by it. To facilitate discussion, let’s give this group a name. Let’s call them Socialists.