April 12, 2011
Last week, Congress and the administration refused to seriously consider the problem of government spending. Despite the fear-mongering, a government shutdown would not have been as bad as claimed.
It is encouraging that some in Washington seem to be insisting on reduced spending, which is definitely a step in the right direction, but only one step. We have miles to go before we can even come close to a solution, and it will involve completely redefining the role of government in our lives and on the world stage. A compromise was struck at the last minute, but until Democrats agree to rein in entitlement spending, and Republicans back off the blank checks to the military industrial complex, it all amounts to political gamesmanship.
A d v e r t i s e m e n t
Unfortunately, the compromises always seem to be just the opposite. Instead of the left agreeing to cut social spending and the right agreeing to cut military spending, the right agrees to more welfare and the left agrees to more warfare. In spite of all the rhetoric, we will go deeper in debt, the Fed will print more money, and the value of the dollar will continue to plummet. How long will it be before foreigners stop buying our debt, and hyperinflation arrives? Throughout history, empires have always overextended themselves through conquests and wealth transfers leading to eventual collapse, from the Roman Empire to the Soviet Union. We are headed in the same direction and it seems only the chaos of the collapse of the dollar will stop the spending spree. Arguing over funding for Planned Parenthood and NPR, though important, only shows that leadership in Washington either won’t face reality, or don’t understand how serious the problem is.
Of course, an actual government collapse would create serious problems for many people who have come to depend on government payments for healthcare, retirement income, their children’s education, and even food and housing. However, these so-called entitlement programs are unconstitutional to begin with and have engendered a culture of dependence on wealth transfer payments that is out of control. It concerns me greatly that instead of dealing seriously with our situation, so many in Washington would rather allow the chaos that will ensue when all of the dependent people are suddenly cut off. Better to look reality squarely in the face and tell people the difficult truth that government is simply not capable of managing people’s lives from cradle to grave as was foolishly promised. We face trillions in deficits with any of the budgets under consideration. Keeping those promises is, sadly, just not one of our options in the long run. Better to admit the nanny state is coming to an end and we are no longer working on “compromises” but a transition – to a sustainable way of life, one that respects the constitution, the rule of law and property rights.
Ron Paul’s article first appeared on his House website.