For the good of the people

A wise and frugal government, which shall leave men free to regulate their own pursuits of industry and improvement, and shall not take from the mouth of labor the bread it has earned – this is the sum of good government.
Thomas Jefferson

In the past, the intent of most House and Senate bills fell pretty much into one of four categories. They addressed routine funding for critical services, they echoed the will of the people, they fixed recently discovered problems, or they were for the greater good. The intent of most bills pushed through during the Obama administration is so fuzzy, it is hard to tell what they were designed to do. Because many of the bills proposed under his watch would, and have, radically changed the entire direction of the government, they have come under more scrutiny that those of pervious administrations. The more one looks at them, the less obvious their intent.

I have always been skeptical of almost everything the government does, but since the election of President Obama, my “huh?” meter has been pegging out almost daily. Any time I hear about a new bill, especially any that are so convoluted that no one can read them, four things pop into my mind. #1: What is the intent of the bill? #2: Who stands to gain financially from the bill? #3: What are the unintended consequences of the bill? #4: Can this thing possible be constitutional?

Take the healthcare bill. It was possible the most convoluted, impossible to read bill ever written. It was rushed through congress, without being read (“we have to pass it to know what is in it,” according to House Speaker Nancy Pelosi), all so that most of it can be implemented in 2014, after President Obama is out of office. Why is that?

What was its intent? Was it written to gain control of one sixth of the economy, to control rising health costs, to lower insurance rates, to make sure every person in the Unites States has insurance, to control student loans (yeah, that is in there too), to strengthen Medicare and Medicaid, to assist hospitals or to assist doctors? Perhaps it was all of the above.

Who stands to gain financially from it? Well, trial attorneys and that little bank that is now the sole student loan outlet jumps to mind. There are some perks for unions and some pharmaceutical companies. The IRS certainly gets a boost in employees. New bureaucracies are established. They have to be staffed with powerful new appointed supervisors and personnel. All of those gain, and they are just the obvious ones.

What are the unintended consequences? There are too many to list here. I recommend a list maintained by The Foundry called Side Effects . They started it right after the bill was signed into law and updated it constantly as more flaws are found.

Can this thing possible be constitutional? To be truthful, I never asked this question prior to the Obama administration. I never saw the need. Now it must be considered with every new bill. If the Supreme Court, in reviewing this bill, finds that the government can force individuals to buy insurance as a requirement to be a citizen, then they can control what and where individuals can get anything. The first indication is contained in the same bill.

As indicated above, nestled in the huge bill is a section on student loans. Now, thanks to the foresight of our ever-diligent congress and President, anyone looking for a student loan has had their life simplified. There is no longer the drudgery of searching for the loan that best meets a student’s needs. The student is limited to one bank and one interest rate – – presumably controlled by the government. Why doesn’t that give me a warm and fuzzy feeling? Thank God, we longer have to worry about marketplace competition.

What might be the next government edict on what individuals must buy? I would say trash hauling services, but here in St. Louis County the government as already forced me to give up an inexpensive trash service that I liked and forced me to buy a more expensive service, with mandatory embellishments, I do not use and extra charges for things I used to get free. Once again, confusion from marketplace competition has been eliminated.

In the last couple of years, any of our homes have been outfitted with smart meters. I am sure I paid for mine; however, I do not recall placing the order for the one installed on my house. Smart meters are wonderful little gadgets that allow the electric company to not only check on a homeowner’s electric usage whenever they want, but to control the usage. In the future, when the coal-powered generators are shut down because of their CO2 emissions, the brown outs can be controlled from a central location to try to offset wind and solar power deficiencies.

Part of the stimulus package was for the installation of insulation and weather-stripping on houses. Homeowners could get a tax rebate for having the work done. This was usually done for a cost of a few hundred dollars to a few thousand dollars, but the cost in stimulus money was about $78,000 per insulated house. Whether you insulated your house or not, you are paying for those who did – – and at a price you never would have paid yourself.

Europe has phased out incandescent light bulbs to force everyone to buy the compact fluorescent light bulbs – – they are more ecologically responsible; even though they constitute a hazardous material if they are broken, they flicker and alter the appearance of everything and are generally hated. With Obama pushing the U.S. toward the European system, how long before that happens here. Presumably, all it will take is to place the requirement deep in the next unreadable bill. We will learn about it after it is passed. Either that or Obama can simply nationalize all the companies that make light bulbs.

The American electorate has allowed the first steps to be taken on a very slippery slope. Only the present makeup of the Supreme Court and an upcoming election can pull us back to the top. November 2nd is a serious date. Every household should have it marked on every calendar. And until 2012, we need to pray Obama does not get to name any more Supreme Court Judges. The Constitution cannot stand any more justices who think the Constitution is just another scrap of paper; even if Obama thinks it is for the good of the people.

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Published in: on August 20, 2010 at 1:30 pm  Leave a Comment  
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