You walk past it every day as you start your commute. When you come home, there it is. Depending upon your diligence, maybe you address the issue once a month. I’m talking about that patch of grass that has grown out of the seam in your concrete driveway. If you let it go for too long it threatens to grow out over the entire slab! Why, the nerve!
So, as time and motivation allows, you get out your weed whacker or hoe and you trim it down. Afterward, you break out the leaf blower, hose or broom if you have the energy, and tidy up the massacre’s aftermath; finally leaning on your broom to admire your handiwork.
In a month, that grass has done it again! It tricked you. It escaped your notice by lying low, but then a seed head burst forth in defiance as if to say, "You can’t win, I refuse to go down without a fight! FREEEEEEDOOOMM!"
Incensed, you realize what you have to do. You have to kill it, utterly and completely.
What you may or may not know is that you are doomed to a cycle of killing and frustration because that grass wants to live. The driveway, put there to obliterate all plant life and keep your world "tidy," was constructed with seams, a wonderful place for trapping grass seeds and soil. The seam was put there to allow for expansion, preventing cracks. The seeds can’t help it. Man’s designs have unintended consequences, "blowback" if you will pardon a lately overused term.
But you are the government. Your job, as dictated by the city’s central planners is to keep your lawn tidy and within the dictates of the bureaucrats. Your only tool, be it exercised through the hoe, weed whacker or chemical weapon of grass destruction (WGD), is force.
Contrary to what some claim, trickle-down economics is a fact. Your bureaucratic work trickles down to you from the city council. You must kill the grass because if you don’t you’ll be forced to repeat this routine every month. Worse, if you defy the dictates, somebody might dispatch a policeman. You could be killed yourself. All over a tuft of grass which recognizes its inherent right to live, even though it is absent opposable thumbs or a brain with which to ponder its rights
This is a very real example of the self-evident truths that many seem to have forgotten. Central planning is itself a make-work program for those whom the planners seek to enslave. They do this by making laws.
(d) Homeowners must keep lawns watered and premises tidy.
What should be obvious is that the central planners believe they own you. Your home is allegedly your property, but if you don’t keep it tidy and kill that defiant tuft of grass, they can deal with you whichever way the law dictates. Your resistance can end in death. After all, if you resist, you are a defective person. The government must employ the force required which causes you to comply. Its agents will continue to escalate up until the event of your death if necessary.
This is just one way the planners generate work for you. The number of laws on the books continues to increase with each passing legislative session and each of these requires you to expend some effort in order to comply. This is before we factor in taxes, which further increase your bureaucratic workload. Don’t worry too much about this. You can rest assured that these bureaucrats and planners have special knowledge that you do not.
If it weren’t for them, chaos and anarchy would ensue. Before you know it, the grass will have won. Sure, there might be a lot less chemicals and a lack of noise generated by the neighbor — who spends 20 minutes burning up his leaf blower’s motor and raising the decibel level to ear-shattering levels — defiantly refusing to bend over and pick up the cigarette butt caught in the crack of the sidewalk closest to your bedroom window at 6:30 AM on Saturday. However, there are other considerations. The aesthetic of our fine city is at stake here. That has to be more important than your rights. You don’t have the right to ruin the property values of your neighbor.
Isn’t that the argument for most of these aesthetic laws? Where is the proof that property values are diminished? Well, there is no proof. Aesthetic (all?) laws are based on two things: fear and ownership. Because they own both you and your property, they can make any law they wish. They sell it to the public by spreading fear about lowered property values. But drive into the "bad" part of town and then think about who benefits from low property values. Why aren’t aesthetic laws enforced there?
Why wouldn’t self-interest be a good enough reason to make a property aesthetically pleasing to potential buyers? Well, it would, but the central planners do not want to acknowledge this self-evident truth. According to the claptrap they peddle, humans tend to make decisions harmful to themselves and their neighbors. That is why we need central planners: to rescue humans from their own folly.
You know what else this means? It means that central planners cannot be human. Otherwise they would be flawed just like us. Because they are free of flaws, they are qualified to redistribute our wealth and manage our affairs; forcing us to do their bidding. How does the public recognize an inhuman(e) person qualified to run their lives? Why, they look on the ballot at election time. Just pick one.
So, please, get out there and kill that grass. Just give me some time to sleep OK? Otherwise I’ll have to call the police and report you as a disturber of the peace.
Rick Fisk [send him mail] is a 44-year-old software developer and entrepreneur. He is married, has 3 children and resides in Austin, TX.