Oh great! Now my water heater is an environmental pollution device
and needs new federal regulations to “strengthen” existing ones
regulating the amount of pollution my water heater is permitted
to emit.

I didn’t know my water heater even created pollution. But, then
again, I’m not a federal bureaucrat working for some agency that ran out
of useful things to do about three decades ago.

When I think of “pollution,” I think of smoking car exhausts,
industrial complexes with smokestacks several stories high belching
waste into the air, factories spewing contaminated filth into a nearby
river or aqueduct or the neighbor’s dog getting into my trash cans
before the “waste engineers” pick it up on Tuesdays.

I don’t, however, consider water heaters as a threat to our
ozone layer, our health and well being and our planet’s ultimate
survival. But the folks at the Energy Department do.

Say, aren’t they the clowns partially responsible for the “alleged”
Chinese theft of all of our nuclear weapons secrets? Don’t tell me
Beijing is now after my morning shower too!

On Wednesday,
I wrote a column about another idiotic government attempt to bestow more
regulatory burdens on our local water districts. That initiative, along
with this new Energy Department water heater measure, is supported by
Mr. Environment himself, Vice President Al Gore.

The point is, as days pass into years and years into decades in this
country, historically — if you were to take an honest, “non-partisan”
look at the growth of the federal government since 1776 — there could
be no convincing argument that life here in the “most free nation on
earth” has become, well, much less than the experiment in freedom our
Founders first envisioned.

Come on! I mean, it’s come to this: we’re paying bureaucrats
tens of thousands of dollars a year apiece to “study” the issue of
whether or not our water heaters are causing pollution. What are these
new regs going to cost us after, of course, the manufacturer gets his
new and vast list of building “requirements” for all these new
pollution-free water heaters?

Who thought of this? And haven’t these people got anything else
better to do? No, they don’t. And that’s the point. But why, then,
are they still there, sucking-up a combined total of hundreds of
billions of our tax dollars annually? What’s next — will some
government agency fruitcake tell us bad breath is pollution and that
certain people can’t legally breathe anymore without being mandated to
take breath mints?

Did I just give some bureaucrat another idea?

What’s worse is that the larger these agencies grow, the more
expensive they get. If you doubt that, then please explain why the
federal budget always grows and why taxes always increase rather than

There is also little left of our original system of checks and
balances to all of this unrestrained federal government growth. And, as
the federal bureaucracy gets larger, it also gets more dangerous,
intrusive and less accountable.

Just ask the boobs who fried 85 Branch Davidians at Waco; five
Davidians are currently serving 40-year jail sentences just for
defending themselves against idiots from the ATF who just couldn’t
resist “gearin’-up” and “bustin’-down the door” to Koresh’s “compound,”
rather than arrest him quietly in town (that is, if they even had
anything to arrest him for in the first place). Meanwhile, Justice
Department officials, ATF agents, FBI agents and some military team
members walk around free,
above the responsibility a callous “justice” system imposed on innocent

In my Wednesday column, I referred to earlier, a key message for the
current crop of presidential wannabes was this: what do you
believe — that the federal government should be the end-all, supreme-o
power in this country or that locals and states ought to be left to take
care of their own problems?

If you’re a candidate who supports the latter then you’re in good
company — the Founders of this nation felt that way.

If, however, if you’re a big government supporter, you’re in the
company of tyrants and dictators throughout history who were also
unhappy with the notion that “ordinary” citizens were better-off
deciding things for themselves.

Our Republic was built upon the premise that people, acting as their
own local and state leaders, could make better decisions about what was
and wasn’t necessary on the governmental level. We’ve lost sight of
that visionary promise in these “modern” times, but, much to our

If our next president truly wants to be remembered as a great leader
— maybe even a Mt. Rushmore-type of leader — then he or she ought to
spend four (and hopefully eight) years cleaning out federal government
office buildings and eliminating wasteful government regulators (and
regulations) enacted by bored little Napoleons who have no congressional
oversight and nothing productive to do with their time. Congress should
help; they’re equally responsible for this mess (if not more so).

Leaders like that could probably serve forever if we let them. And,
we ought to think about letting them if they stick to the “mission” and
get the job done.

But, we’d better start soon.

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