Predictably, he is being hit in the "comments" section of the article on-line for his vote to repeal Obamacare because, for some, the idea of another federal entitlement is just fine. However, the whole point of last November's election result was the fact that the majority of voters do not approve of more government involvement in their lives and the out-of-control spending that Obamacare would bring. Voting for Republicans was the only way for many voters to voice their displeasure with their government's direction . . . not that the voters actually supported the things that many Republicans were proposing to do.
What we cannot do is tax, borrow, and spend our way into prosperity. Government spending is a drain on real consumption and investment. Your money is best left in your hands; the government is not entitled to your money simply because the government makes poor decisions and its costs go up.The congressman's view that money is best left in private hands -- that more money going to the government winds up being lost in poor decisions -- is right on the mark.
He is correct when he says . . .
" . . . I also believe we are at a tipping point in this country . . ."However, he also says . . .
"We are deluding ourselves if we believe that we are somehow entitled to a higher standard of living than the rest of the world. We must make better choices and aggressively prepare our children to compete in the new global economy. We can do that through putting an increased emphasis on education."
Are "we" delusional? Do "we" believe we are entitled to a higher standard of living than the rest of the world? Have "we" made poor choices? Do "we" need to be more aggressive? Do "we" need the federal government to educate us?
Just whom is this "we"?
While there will always be those in our society, rich and poor alike, who have a sense of "entitlement," that is not the traditional American view. This country was founded by "rugged individualists." Our society expected "self-reliance," not government reliance . . . and certainly not government being used to further private interests. We expected our government to protect us, but to otherwise leave us alone. Our society's value of the individual was crystalized in our Constitution's acknowledgement that we have individual freedoms which come from God, that we are the source of the government's power, and that the power we gave to government was limited to certain enumerated things that individuals cannot do for themselves, but which are necessary to protect our individual freedoms -- such as provide for the national defense and regulate commerce.
If we developed a higher standard of living than most of the rest of the world, it is because we, as individuals, had the ability to earn it. How? We had the freedom to do it! Our freedoms allowed and encouraged us to work harder, be more productive, and be more innovative. Our government did not mollycoddle us with a lot of entitlements which reduce productivity in other countries (e.g, the short work weeks, early retirements, and month long vacation shut-downs common in Europe). Our government did its part, however, by protecting our freedoms from those who would destroy them, whether they be foreign or domestic, and whether by force or by economic means.
If our national standard of living seems threatened, perhaps it is because the national government has failed to do the limited job we gave it to do. Perhaps it has failed to properly regulate interstate commerce by allowing some companies to become "to big to fail" . . . or to become so large that their economic power rivals that of government with the capability of crushing individual efforts. Perhaps it has failed to properly regulate foreign commerce, placing economic theory and a "global" perspective above preserving an environment where individual citizens can find productive activities to engage themselves in. Perhaps it has spent too much and become too indebted to foreign interests which do not share our value of individual freedoms, thereby placing our freedoms at risk through economic means. Perhaps the federal government has become too involved in things it was never intended to be involved in . . . such as education, using federal tax money to turn our schools into social service centers, create student "rights" that undermine parental rights, control large blocks of voters with grant-funded jobs, and promote a national "agenda" above the individual.
The "we" that brought our nation to its "tipping point" are those who have been designated as our policy makers, whether they are in the legislative, executive or judicial branches of government. . . . "We the People" just need to remind them of that.