It's tax protest day as I write this column, and people are out in force. Unfortunately, when this column is published Thursday – hardly anyone will remember. Today's outrage will be a historical footnote. In its place will be a new outrage or human tragedy splashed across computer and television screens by the nation's mindless media. The world will have "moved on."
It's easy to become a ping-pong ball in the mindless media game of, "She's my viewer!" "No, she's my viewer!" "No! He's my Google website statistic!" Yes, it's oh, so easy to join in the game. But it's fatal to the quality of your life and future.
"Moving on" is a favorite invention of the political left. It precludes serious thinking about the issues facing our lives, our nation and our world. By playing the "outrage of the day" pinball game, and then "moving on," we allow the left to set and control the agenda.
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What is the left's agenda? It's the same as it's always been: To use your money, your time and your effort to amass ever more power over your life, and to drag you further and further into the bottomless pit of dependency on government.
- Government housing: Ask those living in Chicago's public housing projects what a joy it is to live in "free" housing; it frequently costs the recipients their lives.
- Government education: This has to meet the ever-lower standards of disruptive and violent children, while it preaches the accepted leftist dogma that man is an animal evolved from pond scum and is therefore free to act without moral restraint. Dissenting voices are silenced, using threats and intimidation (both OK if the government does it).
- Government-run business: Most businesses today are effectively run by the government through administratively manufactured regulations that artificially raise costs to consumers, and whose primary purpose is to provide continued government growth and employment for bureaucrats. Government-run banking brought about the current economic turmoil, by regulating lenders into loaning money to people with neither the intent nor ability to repay it. Since they couldn't pay; you are.
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- Government-run national forests: Every summer, millions of acres of timber go up in smoke. Not only are those resources most egregiously destroyed, but higher taxes are required from you and I to pay the bill for forest fire fighting to protect life and property in surrounding communities. Our parents and grandparents wisely cut down the trees, sold them to mills, gave the money earned to schools and replanted the trees. They called them renewable resources.
- Stay tuned for government-run health care. Without private insurance and cash-pay patients to subsidize what Congress is willing to pay for Medicare patients, the services of doctors and hospitals will be much harder to come by. Waiting lines, exclusion due to age and infirmity, and attrition by death will become the backbone of controlling costs here – as it has in the UK, Canada and every other government-run health care state. And check the new line item on your payroll withholding taxes to see what "free" means in government-speak.
The left's agenda of absolute power and control over each and every person on this planet has only one real enemy. That enemy is human freedom. Whether it is the freedom to worship the God of our choosing, to raise our children in our image as they grow up, the economic freedom to start a new business, the freedom to travel from place to place in this great nation without presenting our papers to the Gestapo – the human spirit withers and dies without freedom.
"Free" and "freedom" are not the same; one precludes the other. And freedom has never been – and never will be – free.