When Cynicism is a Virtue

C.G. Hill is weary of the overuse of the political call to arms, pointing especially to ‘Jimmy Carter’s unfortunate phrase, “the moral equivalent of war”‘, and goes further:

But this sort of malfeasance predates Jimmy Carter. Consider Lyndon Johnson’s “War on Poverty.” Forty-odd years later, we have a permanent underclass that’s overfed, surrounded by the latest conveniences, and condemned to remain forever defined as “poor” — mostly because the permanent overclass created to oversee the War has no interest in an exit strategy that might cost them their phoney-baloney jobs. Lest you think this phenomenon is confined to Democrats, consider that it was Richard Nixon who first floated the idea of a War on Drugs as such. We’ve had almost forty years of that, with exactly three tangible results: gang warfare here and there, the disappearance of proper cold remedies, and the appearance of another permanent bureaucracy.

C.G., or “Chaz” as he is known at his excellent blog Dustbury, has been around a while, and so have I, and we have seen lots of people and ideas come and go, including silliness like declaring wars on things. It usually makes things worse, not better.

Politicians and others who want our money have been scaring us with phony crises for decades, and after awhile, you learn to shrug your shoulders and say “whatever, pal”. But sadly, lots of people still buy this b.s., and so they help grow our government bureaucracy and increase our taxes. Thanks for that.

And speaking of which, I believe he would concur with another point that I like to hit, a very important point I think, that too many of us miss because we focus too much on blue states vs. red states, Democrat vs. Republican, conservative vs. liberal, etc. And that is this:   too many people implicitly trust government — and therefore, politicians — to fix society’s problems.

Which means, of course, that this sweet, sweet naivete informs our debates about  health care, poverty, education, etc.

It’s time to put a stop to this foolishness. While government can always offer a solution, it is rarely the best solution.

Private enterprise is cheaper, more efficient, and provides better goods and services at lower prices, along with jobs. Private enterprise grows the economy. Good things happen in growing economies.

For social welfare needs, churches and religious organizations like the Salvation Army provide for the less fortunate, and do great work and donate lots of time and money but get almost no credit for any of it. The idea of taking care of your neighbor has been outsourced to government instead. This is not an improvement.

Government will just about always do an inferior job compared to private enterprise or religious organizations, at any task you could care to name.  Because government is always one or more of: inefficient, corrupt, inept, or clueless. And we all know this, deep down. We all laugh at the jokes:  “we’re from the government, and we’re here to help you”, or the DMV, or the post office, or dealing with any bureaucratic office where it takes 8 weeks to get a response.

Another thing to remember: whose interests are best served when people trust government to fix society’s ills? Think about it.

It should be pretty obvious by now that, when all is said and done, politicians play up the “D” or the “R” when it suits their purposes, to gain or solidify their power base.  But then, when they get behind closed doors, they remember who they actually represent:  lobbyists for unions, corporations, advocacy groups like Greenpeace, foreign countries like China, etc.

And, as we should expect, they turn that advocacy into bi-partisan back-room deals to create and protect their “revenue streams” — i.e., our tax dollars — and then they lie about it to keep us as complacent and uninformed as possible.

Yes, Democrats and Republicans team up to make deals in the dead of night to enrich themselves and their connected pals, and to make you poorer.

Taxpayers are just the pawns in their corrupt chess game.  We feed the trough – they dip into it. With impunity.

This is just how it works. It is a non-partisan, fact-based view of our Federal government.

So here’s an idea: let’s not enable that any more.

Let’s not drink the kool-ade any more. Remember this common sentiment around the time of the health care debate?  “That wonderful new government policy is going to save us money, you say? Awesome!”

Please. Every new law adds new layers of bureaucracy and regulation. Ignore the particulars here; a bill that is 2000+ pages long and that is neither understood nor even read by the Congress is just not going to save anybody any money. The very idea is laughable.

When government wants to take more of your money and restrict your choices in order to “help” you, this should trigger your bullshit detector. Because that’s what it is. And anybody over 35 probably ought to know that already.

Here’s another one we all hear:  “I don’t have time to keep up with politics, and besides, they all lie and steal anyway.”

Most of them do lie and steal, that is true. But we enable them with our — let’s face it — laziness and ignorance.  Remember: our capital, and our kids’ future, are being plundered by a largely corrupt Washington establishment that will nail the taxpayer to the wall as often as necessary. And in some states, like Illinois where I live, this is true of our state government too.

So, you might want to break yourself away from the TV once in a while, or start reading your news from some more varied sources, and open your eyes a little bit.

It’s well-past time to move into a post-partisan world, and accept the fact that the real class warfare we taxpayers face today is against rent-seekers, i.e., anybody who seeks a place in line at the tax revenue trough. Politicians, obviously, but also lobbyists and their clients, of all kinds, especially corporate and union interests and shady outfits that represent foreign interests like Saudi oil.

The appeal of being naive is that it is precious and simple. But one downside, among many, is that it enables our own government to screw us. I suggest that we stop enabling them.