WHEN GOVERNMENT GOES INSANE
By Alan Caruba
The U.S. presidential and congressional elections of 2008 constitute a splendid example of this. The majority of America's voters elected a man with the thinnest possible resume for the job of President of the U.S.A. Indeed, the man has refused to release his birth records to reassure voters he met the minimum, constitutional standards for the job. The man, however, was a skilled orator, able to give voice to the TelePrompter speeches written for him by master manipulators.
Promising “change,” promising a government free of “lobbyists,” promising “transparency,” and generally promising a new dawn of enlightened government, Barack Hussein Obama and his majority in Congress arrived on January 20, 2009, and promptly began to bankrupt the nation, deprive Americans of access to its vast energy resources, and seek to impose an insane law predicated on the belief that carbon dioxide, vital to all life on Earth, was a “pollutant” that had to be reduced and, of course, heavily taxed.
Capping all this madness was a naïve effort to establish improved relations with the spawning ground for terrorism around the world, the Middle East. He is determined to change the Islamic fanaticism that has spawned Osama bin Laden and al Qa'ida, the Taliban, and decades of Islamist, or Islamofascist, terrorism from Bali to London, Manhattan andMadrid, to Mumbai.
And it has taken barely four months to get to this point.
In the President’s own words during a C-Span interview, “We’re out of money.”
A recent Cato Institute Tax & Budget Bulletin by Chris Edwards, the Cato Institute's Director of Tax Policy Studies, spells it out.
“Federal spending is growing by leaps and bounds,” wrote Edwards.
“The government is also increasing the scope of its activities, intervening in many areas that used to be left to state and local governments, businesses, charities, and individuals.”
To clarify what is occurring, it is necessary to know that the United States Constitution forbids the U.S. national government from financially bailing out individuals or private industries. Such bailouts violate the Due Process Clause of the Fifth Amendment, the federal constitutional provision that prohibits the national government from depriving persons of their property without due process of law and denying them the equal protectiion of the laws -- for example, deciding which U.S. industries or segments of the American population shall survive economically and which shall not, determining who shall receive and benefit from taxpayer-funded bailouts and who shall not.
Moreover, the bailouts violate the General Welfare provision of the Tax Clause of the U.S. Constitution -- Article I, Section 8, Clause 1 -- because the federal taxes levied to finance such bailouts benefit a small group, not the general public. They benefit special interests, rather than the general interest -- narrowly-focused particular interests, rather than the broadly-focused national public interest.
In short, the bailouts have turned the U.S. public treasury into a public trough for organized interest groups.
The Obama administration has given the United Auto Workers virtual ownership of Chrysler and is likely to do the same with General Motors, if the courts do not intervene. The winners are the labor union bosses. The losers are those who lent money to Chrysler and GM under contractual terms that put them first in line to be compensated, but who have been left out in the cold, along with their fiduciary responsibilities to their investors. This arrangement is a violation of the Takings Clause of the Fifth Amendment, which provides federal constitutional protection for private property rights, denying the national government the power, without just compensation, to take private property for government purposes.
“In recent years,” wrote Edwards, “the range of federal control over society has widened as politicians of both parties have supported nationalizing many formerly state, local, and private activities.” This has led states, in particular, to spend well beyond the taxes they collected because they counted on the federal redistribution of funds to make up the difference. In the process, they gave up control over their education, healthcare, and transportation systems, to name a few.
Edwards cited the Catalog of Federal Domestic Assistance, a 2,205-page official compilation of all federal aid or subsidy programs, including grants, loans, insurance, scholarships, and other types of benefits.
The Founding Fathers fashioned a central, or national, government with specific constitutional limitations on what it could or could not do. Most of these limitations have been violated since the last century’s increasing governmental intrusion and acquisition of centralized power.
“It is very sad that a nation founded on individualism and limited government,” wrote Edwards, “has more people than ever suckling at the federal subsidy teat.”
We should not be living in an America where the labor unions own the industrial corporations, where the banks are not free to determine their own prudent loan principles, where local schools are governed from Washington, D.C., where the kind and size of the automobile you drive is decided upon by politicians and bureaucrats, and where we are denied the energy we need, a policy based on false accusations about “dirty” fuels that are, in fact, the life’s blood of the economy.
Much of what the government is doing and proposing to do is patently insane. It is most surely unconstitutional.
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Alan Caruba is a veteran business, science and political writer, a Public Relations Counselor, and Founder of the National Anxiety Center, a clearinghouse for information about media-driven scare campaigns. Caruba writes a weekly commentary, "Warning Signs," posted on the Internet website of the National Anxiety Center, which is located at www.anxietycenter.com.
Caruba has a daily blog at http://factsnotfantasy.blogspot.com.
Caruba’s most recent book, Right Answers: Separating Fact from Fantasy, has been published by Merril Press. Books previously authored by Caruba include A Pocket Guide to Militant Islam, The United Nations Versus the United States: The UN's Plan to Control Planet Earth, and America: A Nation Without Borders -- A Pocket Guide to Immigration Issues.
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