The Way Forward Is Clear

A plausible argument can be made that the problems of American culture and society today are simply the inevitable outcomes of decisions and non-decisions during decades gone by.  What ails us now might just be, when you drill down beneath the screechy surface of much of what passes for thoughtful analysis and commentary, the inevitable blowback of shortsightedness and stupidity born in academia, broadcast by our mass media, and burnished by Hollywoodbefore finally blowing up in our faces today.

A half century of anything goesbehaviors features the following:

The skyrocketing numbers of divorces and single parents
The mainstreaming of pornography,
The crass sexualization of children and adolescents
The daily celebration of drug use
The crazed growth of mindless financial speculation and damaging public and private debt
The  dumbing down of our educational systems
The ascendancy of idiocracyover meritocracy
The encouragement of rude and derogatory discourse
The violence and sadism of our popular entertainment
The banishment of religion from our public and private lives
The abandonment of civic culture and personal responsibility
The denigration of patriotism
The politicization of our courts and law enforcement
The lack of both professional and personal responsibility
The erosion of parental rights
The loss of our privacy
The inability of many to hear or say the truth

 

What is truly amazing about this list is that so many look to government and its long arm, which in many cases is either the root cause or facilitator of these problems, for solutions and salvation.  No course of action could be more wrongheaded than this.

However, the impulse to look to our elected officials to save us is perfectly understandable.  We are constantly told by the liberal media and politicians that wise government, run by experts and funded by our tax dollars, will now provide the protections that have been stripped away from usoften by actively damaging public laws and policies of the past.  The bizarre circularity of this logic is breathtaking.  

Government excels at one task above all other: creating problems that it can later tax us in order to pretend to fix.  Pick a problemany problemand you will often find government helpin the past ether started or accelerated it.  Expecting that today elected officials and bureaucrats will provide the security we crave is only marginally more sensible than asking the jerk who just punched out your front teeth to protect you from further harm.  Abusers will keep right on abusing you as long as you let them, and much of what government does today can rightly be classified as abuse.  Its sad, but its true

Why is it that government help typically causes harm?  The core problem is that most solutionsthat government offers continue to admit the most important components of a happy and productive lives: personal responsibility, individual initiative, and self-discipline.  Almost inevitably government enables those behaviors most likely to further ruin lives because to do otherwise would apparently lack compassionand be judgmental.  To try to understand why policies that promote stupidity are compassionateand noting choices that are apt to damage your life or the lives of others is judgmentalis to attempt to explain that which lacks all logic and reason.

As a result, we pay for schools that dont educate, healthcare that is ruinously expensive, bureaucracies that serve no discernible purpose,  government agencies that apparently hate those whom they govern, and armies of experts whose only apparent expertise is grifting for government grants.  Those functions of government that should comprise its core missionspublic health and safety, effective and accountable public schools, creating conditions for economic growth through private sector investment, financially sustainable retirement programs for seniors, and avoiding any unwarranted impingement on personal freedomsseem to many times be the opposite of what actually occurs.  We are instead burdened by taxes, blitzed by regulations, and battered by someone elses ideas about how we are supposed to live our own lives.  Many Americans have already figured out the truth: This just ain’t right.

The smartest strategy for citizens today is to vote against anyone who claims they can solve our problems.  Politicians and their promises typically fail because government interventions by their very nature promote passivity and reduce independent thoughtsomeone else is suddenly in charge of your basic life decisions and direction.  All that is required of the individual being helpedis dull obedience to a set of rules designed to keep them dumb and dependent, which clearly will damage their lives even further.

We should instead insist local government limit itself to paving roads and painting the park benches while pursuing those functions critical to maintaining public health and safety.  State government must keep taxes low, business regulation light, and promote accountability at all levels of government while rooting out corruption and theft by public officials.  The federal government can provide overall coordination of state and local governments while keeping our nation strong and secure by pursuing military, economic, and foreign policies that put Americas interests first and foremost.  This is not a complete list, but these broad guidelines suggest that a lot of government workers could be eligible to be outsourced if we can find the will to force the changes that are desperately needed to get our nation back on track.

As we have already repeatedly seen, cutting the size of government is like trying to saw through an oak tree with a butter knife.  The massive effort involved to make the least progress is designed to dishearten and discourage us.  However, cutting government, which both wastes our money and creates its own purpose for being by encouraging behaviors that destroy individuals, families, and communities is the only way out of the mess we are in today.  

It is best that we control our own lives and solve our problems for ourselves; big government is the God that failedand needs to be reduced to a subordinate role in our lives.

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