One Small Voice

Tyler Durden's picture

Via Mark J. Grant, author of Out of the Box,

"I think we have more machinery of government than is necessary, too many parasites living on the labor of the industrious."
 
                  -Thomas Jefferson
 
The drums roll. The cadence quickens. We are a scant three weeks away from the fiscal cliff. The markets react to each breath taken by people on both sides of the aisle. Rumor fuels rumor and the media is abuzz with the testosterone levels of each key player. Swords and shields are brandished with equal repartee and, to date, we are nowhere close to any resolution. “Tax the rich,” the mantra of the moment of the Democrats, is but a trill sung for the townsfolk as the differential here is one week’s worth of government. One week, maybe eight days, and this has been the focal point of public concentration. I have seen no serious proposal to date to deal with the real issues and not the fantasy enlarged for public consumption by a Democratic leadership still engaged in running for re-election. The Republicans have been somewhat better, not a lot better it must be said with honesty, but at least there have been proposals that are directed at reducing the entitlements that the country cannot and I say again CANNOT afford.
 
"If Congress can do whatever in their discretion can be done by money, the Government is no longer a limited one, possessing enumerated powers, but an indefinite one, subject to particular exceptions. If Congress can employ money indefinitely to the general welfare, and are the sole and supreme judges of the general welfare, they may take the care of religion into their own hands; they may appoint teachers in every State, county and parish and pay them out of their public treasury; they may take into their own hands the education of children, establishing in like manner schools throughout the Union; they may assume the provision of the poor; they may undertake the regulation of all roads other than post-roads; in short, everything, from the highest object of state legislation down to the most minute object of police, would be thrown under the power of Congress. ... Were the power of Congress to be established in the latitude contended for, it would subvert the very foundations, and transmute the very nature of the limited Government established by the people of America."
 
                            -James Madison
 
I prefer simplicity to complexity. You may wave the flag as you wish but the bottom-line, basic truth is that we have passed social programs and welfare plans that can no longer be paid for by the people who are paying. The capacity has been exceeded and the spending must stop. America now has 47.5 million Americans on food stamps which is 14.4% of the people in this country. This, in my mind, is a travesty because I just do not believe that this many people in America are entitled to this hand-out and these kinds of programs should be examined and curtailed which is not something underway or considered at all by the present administration. The United States is not Europe and the socialization of this country must end before the price to be paid by this generation and future generations sinks the country into a quicksand from which no extraction is possible. The Fed prints, the Fed buys back bonds, probably some $90 billion a month by the end of the day, and that which is created from thin air is all that supports the nation’s economy and the markets now as the sleight of hand is effective for a time but not for all time and woe to those citizens that discover what happens when the time runs out.
 
“Freedom is lost gradually from an uninterested, uninformed, and uninvolved people.”
 
                 -Thomas Jefferson
 
As an American, as one person with a small semblance of a public voice, I find it depressing to watch our nation’s leaders squander their time and my money and yours. We have somehow lost not just any leadership in our country but we have lost our common sense. The way ahead is not that complicated either as some would propose. The process is begun with the amount of money that the country can afford and still pay our bills. Then you take the military spending, the cost of running the government and you arrive at a figure that is agreed upon as what the country can pay and you divvy it out to the various social programs and a conclusion is reached that is within the boundary of a self-sufficient and a self-sustaining America. To date I have seen no discussion, nothing resembling what takes place in every household in America, where the income is paired up with the bills and what can be afforded is a known and agreed upon figure. On the left side of the sheet of paper is the income of the nation and on the right side is the bills we absolutely must pay and what is left is all that we have and that is it.
 
"But with respect to future debt; would it not be wise and just for that nation to declare in the constitution they are forming that neither the legislature, nor the nation itself can validly contract more debt, than they may pay within their own age, or within the term of 19 years."
 
                    -Thomas Jefferson
 
I say to both the Democrats and to the Republicans; where is this number? Bring the American people this figure and then we can work backwards from there to fill in the blanks.  We only have what we have and the creation of money and then the handing out of it to people that could be functional but are not either as their own poor choice or the choice of those in Washington D.C. to use social programs as bribes for votes must stop. Elections have come and gone and now is the time, now must be the time, to bring common sense back to our President and back to our Congress as I remind everyone in Washington that one plus one still equals two and that the bastardization of that principle is no longer acceptable. It is just me, it is just my own small voice in a large wilderness but I will stand and say, “Bring the American people the number and then let’s get down to work before you destroy the very fabric of our country.”
 
“There is not a more important and fundamental principle in legislation, than that the ways and means ought always to face the public engagements; that our appropriations should ever go hand in hand with our promises. To say that the United States should be answerable for twenty-five millions of dollars without knowing whether the ways and means can be provided, and without knowing whether those who are to succeed us will think with us on the subject, would be rash and unjustifiable. Sir, in my opinion, it would be hazarding the public faith in a manner contrary to every idea of prudence.”
 
                                  -James Madison