by Steve Frank
NFRA founding President
April 11, 2007
Government controls our lives in two ways. First by policy, and second by taxation.
The first we should call “The Nanny State”, the second is the taking away the freedom to create your own quality of life. Here in California Democrats have bills to change your light bulbs, limit the age you may spank your child, mandate the neutering of non-pedigree dogs and cats, AB 1634. There is even a bill to mandate that elephants in California must be walked a minimum of five hours per day (Levine–AB 777) seriously.
In San Francisco they have, starting July 1, 2007, a universal health care rule. If employers don’t provide the basic government mandated health care coverage, you pay a fee to the City of San Francisco, so they provide the minimum care. Already, restaurants in the city are closing. Many more will close when their leases run out.
Name an aspect of your life that is not under the control of government. Every car or home you own is built with government standards. The TV you watch is allowed by the FCC.
Drive to work and in most places you see HOV lanes, for the special people. In California you can get a “permit” to drive in an HOV lane if you drive a hybrid car. Even though a Connecticut University study proves the Prius is more harmful to the environment than a Hummer, it still gets preferential treatment. Of course your gas taxes pay for all the roads but only the special people get to use all lanes of a freeway.
Then you have the “diversity” policy. It is really the use of the force of the State to hire people by quota, allow them university seats by race or national origin. Diversity means you can discriminate with the permission, nay the encouragement, of government.
But it is the little things that drive me up a wall. Telling me that we must change the clocks to add more daylight during the day, makes government feel like it is doing something. That is scientifically impossible. The Sun will rise and set on its time, not based on congressional fiat.
Then you have government, by use of the tax laws, keeping people too poor to be able to send their children to better schools. We know that most government schools are failures. Just look at the results. Today, a Rutgers female student, a senior, went on national TV to denounce Don Imus, “because he hates us because of our genders”.
Can a college senior speak so poorly? Yes, when they are in government schools for their whole academic lives. Listen to young people on TV or radio. You will be shocked at the lack of ability to communicate. “Duh”, for example. Or the catchall, “whatever”.
Then you have the use of taxation as the means of controlling people. The more government taxes you, the less freedom you have. Every dollar of taxation is one dollar less of freedom. Every dollar taken means one less dollar for you to decide how to protect and give your family what you want. Government believes it can use tax dollars to provide for your family. To do so promotes the theory of government that people are too stupid to take care of themselves. Yet, we are smart enough to elect them to office, but not smart enough to control our own lives.
We know that if you were to invest the same money government takes for Social Security, you would have a larger retirement fund. And, if you die, instead of getting $250 for burial, the remaining principal, usually tens of thousands of dollars, would go to your heirs, rather than pay for a government sponsored Ponzi scheme. You can control your money. Your invested fund would finance new jobs, not old government debt.
The AMT allows Congress to raise taxes without a vote. It was intended to punish the rich (a bad idea in the first place). Now, it punishes Americans who can save money. The intent of the combination of Social Security taxation and the AMT is to assure the need of retirees to be dependent on government.
Between tax policy and the Nanny State legislation, there is little for us to do as citizens, except follow the rules, even as they change. As voters and families, we have little time to understand the macro of government policy. We hear about government denying us the right to spank our two year olds and laugh at that. The government takes our retirement money and we complain, but do nothing about it.
We, not government, are at fault for the Nanny State and the confiscatory tax schemes. We vote for candidates that tell us they will grow government. Then when they do we acted surprised. Many of us have given up on voting altogether. Why vote, government grows under Republicans as well as Democrats.
But when silly laws, mandating our every action directly affects us, we get angry.
The Nanny State and bad tax policy hurts our families, our jobs the quality of our lives. If we don’t get involved, if we don’t stand up and speak out, we are getting the government we deserve. Just stop hurting my family, please.