Tuesday, November 6, 2012

Government Plunder

Today is the day to vote. If you don't, you have no right to complain about the government, for you did nothing to invoke change. Change is badly needed. A change in direction from our greedy tendencies. A need to stand on our own as a nation but first as individuals. For we collectively define a nation. If our national government is corrupt, then most likely our local government is too. What does that say for our families? A nation is a collective group of individuals and families. 
That said, you can probably surmise that I have some pretty strong ideas about the proper role of government. I am naturally of an independent nature, just ask my mother who was it that made the arrangements for her own piano lessons when she was four or five even though she had never met the teacher before?
We were once an independent nation of men and women who gave their time, talents, and wealth to the betterment of generations to come. These patriots didn't enjoy the benefits of their sacrifice. Their efforts were that we might have a better life. How many can you say work that their posterity will have a better life? Yes, we have grown to a nation of people who think they are entitled simply because they exist. 
After study of history, I believe the national government has the sole object and only legitimate end to protect the citizens in the enjoyment of life, liberty an property, and when the government assumes other functions it usurpates and oppresses. The national government should leave the details of all other services to state and local government where the people have more intimate say and control. 
Though our national government originally was set up with the idea to protect the citizens in the enjoyment of life, liberty and property. Remember, we have the right to the pursuit of happiness, NOT the guarantee of it. Somehow in our greed the government has become an agency that's almost sole job is the re-distribution of wealth because of  the natural nature of man's tendency to satisfy his wants with the least possible effort. Just visit the grocery store if you doubt where we are on this. Pre-made peanut butter and jelly sandwiches, pre-made almost everything including apples already sliced and peeled. Is this not the lengths to which Americans will avoid labor? This poises a fundamental flaw.
How do I know this?  I'm am a fan of history believing that you either learn from someone else's mistakes or make them yourself. I highly value quotes by great men of the past who are wiser than I. They forge the foundation for my beliefs and actions. 
 John of Salisbury said in 1159 of those that study history. "We are like dwarfs sitting on the shoulders of giants. We see more, and things that are more distant, than they did, not because our sight is superior or because we are taller than they, but because they raise us up, and by their great stature add to ours." 
We can stand a little taller because of the wisdom of those who have gone before and because we can choose to watch something and see where that leads. So those who study the past more clearly see the future and the present. This study curbs the weak tendencies in my natural nature as I see the fruit of behaviors years in the future. I've read and re-read the pamphlet, The Law, first published in 1850 by Fredrick Bastiat. Wow, it spells out the misguided direction our nation is headed  because of our tendency to do as little for as much as possible. 
"Man can live and satisfy his wants only by ceaseless labor; by the ceaseless application of his faculties to natural resources. This process is the origin of property.
But it is also true that man may live and satisfy his wants by seizing and consuming the products of the labor of others. This process is the origin of plunder.
Now since man is naturally inclined to avoid pain--- and since labor is pain in itself--- it follows that men will resort to plunder whenever plunder is easier than work.
When, then, does plunder stop? It stops when it becomes more painful and more dangerous than labor. It is evident, then, that the proper purpose of law is to use the power of its collective force to stop this fatal tendency to plunder instead of work. All measures of the law should protect property and punish plunder"
Heard of pork bellies in laws passed by congress? Simply put, they are plunder. 
This being said, one of my most passionate areas is about this re-distribution of wealth by our national government. Though I am  independent by nature, I'm dependent upon my husband for my livelihood due to my health and Autism. Though he brings home the bacon, so to speak, I'm the one who cooks it.  We have established a division of labor. He makes the money and I do my best to stretch the dollars. The division of labor between us is not defined in stone as we do what needs done. An old ranching rule that means who's ever available does whatever they can of what needs done, which is not limited to outside or inside chores.
Could I have qualified years ago for government assistance, yes, I've no doubt. Could some of our children of qualified also because of their Autism, sure. Would our lives have been easier because of this re-distribution of wealth -- probably. But I was kept in check by George Washington's words, " Never trouble another for what you can do yourself."
Margaret Thatcher puts it, "The problem with socialism is that eventually you run out of other people's money." 

Our children could go on and on about the things they have learned from work. They began raising livestock when they were five, a bum lamb to be bottle fed and later sold. Then came a group of ewes and their lambs for 4-H when they were eight. They divided their income between expenses, savings, tithing to the church, and pleasures. Thus at an early age they learned to handle money. At thirteen they all also had another income from a regular babysitting job or a paper route. Did we over work our kids, they wouldn't say so. We built tremendous fond memories, confidence, talents, and spend a great deal of time together. My not working allowed me to help devote my time to teaching our children and home-school of course. 
Oh yes, we had our Tom Sawyer of the bunch. LOL She was good at talking her siblings into doing her chores. Her motto being, "If I can get someone else to do it, why should I do it myself?" Now she is a frugal consumer and a HARD worker.  
And even though you might have feelings of, "Everyone else is getting some, I want my share." which I heard my dear mother say about a government hand out one time -- resist. Think first, have I done all I can? Have I toned my imperfections in my personality, am I an asset to my employer or am I just a pain in the butt because of my self serving laziness and temper? Do I give my employer at the very least a hard honest days work for the pay? Have I honed and expanded my work skill? Am I humble? All labor that is necessary to sustain life is worthy of our and efforts and doing well.  
Am I saying that no one needs government assistance? No, there are those that need  help. But I believe in a hand up, not a hand out is in order. Helping the person to better be able to help themsleves rather than a removal of responsibilities. Give a boy a fish and he's fed for the day. Teach a boy to fish and you feed him for life time kind of thing.  And hand ups should be shifted to the local level where the needs can be better monitored. It is proven that people give more generously locally than through forced charities such as government welfare so they would be better funded without force. "Government is not reason, it is not eloquence - it is force! ( Fedrick Bastiat) Just think what happens when you don't pay the government.
Our government doesn't know what a hand up is. If the help motivates the person to do less for themselves, you haven't helped. you've done damage. For instance, if you have a baby with government welfare insurance, you pay nothing. If you have personal insurance, you pay a percentage. How come not having personal insurance benefits more?
I know of many who choose a lower paying job without insurance  and expect the government to bail them out or assist in their living expenses, school lunches, medical needs etc. I have no... problem with someone who honestly needs help by no fault of their own. We've been in circumstances where we had to come up with $12,000 one year for medical costs and another year $10, 000. Kirk is a welder and doesn't make that much money. We have insurance and through great sacrifice, we came up with the money and stood on our own. We are stronger because of it. Life was never meant to be easy.
I know many who choose not to better themselves and instead choose the easy route. "The fact, combined with the fatal tendency that exists in the heart of man to satisfy his wants with the least possible effort, explains the almost universal perversion of the law."(Federic Bastiats Law) May I also add needs, though many people are completely confused about wants versus needs.
I know a gal that works at the grocery store as a clerk at the cash register and she has arthritis so.... bad she can barely stand and walking is very difficult but she is at work five days a week doing her part to support herself. Does she have insurance, no. Does she need a helping hand on occasion, yes. But she is as self-sufficient and frugal with her means as she can be.  What would happen if everyone was motivated to take care of themselves as much as possible, not help themselves to as much as possible?

"Government is not a solution to our problem, government is the problem." - Ronald Reagan

Where are the patriots that gave their time, talents, fortunes, and many even their lives? Are they all gone or can they be raised up once more? Maybe we need to stand a little taller by studying the past so that we know where we stand in history and where we are headed. The Greatest Generation is the name given to a group of people living during WWII. What I have never heard said though is that these are those who sacrificed and sufferend through the Depression. That is what made them great not easy living. What will it take to turn this nation around in another direction?
My mother recently said in a resentful tone, " Well I never did any of those things because my mother never taught me."

I gently took her by the shoulder, looked directly into her eyes and smiled, " My mother mother never taught me either but that never stopped me."

Remember to vote. Set an example. A nation in it's most basic form is a collective group of individuals and families. Change the moral health of ourselves and our families and you change a nation. Fellow American, we have work to do.

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