Monday, December 04, 2006

Is government a thief?

Walter E. Williams' latest column, "Why we love government," says the following:

"Today's Americans hold a different vision of government. It's one that says Congress has the right to do just about anything upon which it can secure a majority vote. Most of what Congress does fits the description of forcing one American to serve the purposes of another American. That description differs only in degree, but not in kind, from slavery.

At least two-thirds of the federal budget represents forcing one American to serve the purposes of another. Younger workers are forced to pay for the prescriptions of older Americans; people who are not farmers are forced to serve those who are; nonpoor people are forced to serve poor people; and the general public is forced to serve corporations, college students and other special interests who have the ear of Congress.

The supreme tragedy that will lead to our undoing is that so far as personal economic self-interests are concerned, it is perfectly rational for every American to seek to live at the expense of another American. Why? Not doing so doesn't mean he'll pay lower federal taxes. All it means is that there will be more money for somebody else.

In other words, once Congress establishes that one person can live at the expense of another, it pays for everyone to try to do so. You say, "Williams, don't you believe in helping your fellow man?" Yes, I do. I believe that reaching into one's own pockets to help his fellow man is both laudable and praiseworthy. Reaching into another's pockets to help his fellow man is despicable and worthy of comdmnation.

The bottom line: We love government because it enables us to accomplish things that if done privately would lead to arrest and imprisonment. For example, if I saw a person in need, and I took your money to help him, I'd be arrested and convicted of theft. If I get Congress to do the same thing, I am seen as compassionate. "

Your thoughts?


Lisa Renee said...

This topic is one where the more "libertarian" side of me battles with the "liberal" side. It's almost a what came first the chicken or the egg scenario, did private individuals stop helping more of their own voliation before or after the Government made it their job? If the Government cuts back will private citizens step up? How do we manage this without hurting those who can least afford to be hurt?

Those are the questions I always ask myself. Yet I do believe there are ways to help reduce most of what is being controlled by the government. I also believe that most of the power of these decisions should be on a local basis and not a federal one. It would also make the federal government smaller which would be a good thing.

I look at places like the Dental Clinic of NWO, and I know if a community takes it upon themselves to say "We can do this" it can happen but where to start...I've heard some say "I don't have to donate that's what my tax dollars are for" because they do believe and are right that taking more upon themselves does not reduce their taxes it does just create a situation where that money just goes to another place.

For this to change we would need very different leadership in not just our State but the Federal government and sad to say I don't think that will happen, that the best we can hope for at this point is a serious look at reduction...

Maggie Thurber said...

Lisa - thanks for your thoughtful and well-worded comment (as always).

I agree with you about local control, the Dental Clinic of NWO, and the perception some have that they don't have to give because the government does it for them.

However, I don't think it's just a change in the thinking of the political leaders that's needed. We need to change our thinking. Afterall, though some seem to have forgotten, those political leaders work for us, not the other way around.

If we tell them we want such things to stop we need to do two things: hold them accountable to stop such things AND step up to the plate to do them ourselves.

Lisa Renee said...

Maggie, that's very true, and those who have been saying it haven't had much luck in getting others to join in.

Hooda Thunkit said...

"For example, if I saw a person in need, and I took your money to help him, I'd be arrested and convicted of theft. If I get Congress to do the same thing, I am seen as compassionate."

And that's wrong with our country these days, most people can't/don't understand the difference.

To most Americans, BIG GOVERNMENT is the answer. I say, let us do this ourselves because we can be more effective doing more with less.

Big Government only comes with BIG OVERHEAD and BIG WASTE.

And then, there's that whole "Let's tax the rich more, because they have more" thought process that just grates me; not that I'm rich, but I'm trying to be, only to see Bid Gov. thwarting my efforts at every turn. . .

Hey, maybe I should be poor! I could get a check or several, every month, I'd have all of that free time, free clothes, free meals, free. . .

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