Here's Hoping the New Republicans Will Finally Reject Government Interventionism

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Are Republicans
capable of learning and heeding the lessons of history, economics
and common sense, and the lessons of past Republicans' abandonment
of the Founders' principles of limited
government
? Well, they had better learn quickly, and realize
that repealing every policy of government interventionism is the
only way to reverse the moral decline and economic impoverishment
into which our politicians have brought us for the past century.

So far, the
Republicans and conservatives seem to have the same kind of reluctance
to reduce government's intrusions as do the left.

For instance,
after his 1980 election as president, Ronald Reagan promised to
eliminate the Department of Education and Department of Energy because
he recognized that socialism and federal intrusions into education
and energy increase bureaucracy, and reduce the quality of education
and create misallocation of energy resources, and he was exactly
right. But did Reagan fulfill his promise? No.

Reagan cut
taxes, but he also raised taxes, on business and capital
gains, and through higher Social Security taxes, higher fees, plugging
loopholes, and other methods, according to economists Murray
Rothbard
and Sheldon
Richman
.

And after the
1994 Republican Revolution, the Republicans,
rushed into Washington to reverse the Clinton Big Government partying,
caved and kowtowed
to Democrats and special interests in a new race
to outspend
the Clinton Democrats. After 2000, the Bush "compassionate
conservatives" continued the trend of ever-increasing socialism
and government spending, waste
and debts.

There are two
aspects to the root of problem: human nature, and the system of
centralism.

With so many
of our politicians, as soon as they get to Washington and get absorbed
into a system of such huge centralized power and control, they can't
seem to control themselves with such power — even the most noble
amongst us. The power just mesmerizes them, unfortunately.

And systemically,
for the past century the U.S. government has become a Leviathan
socialist regime, particularly with such regressive institutions
as President Wilson's income tax and Federal Reserve, and the welfare-state
interventionist schemes of FDR's Social Security and LBJ's Medicare.
And the policies of Wilson-Progressive foreign interventionism continue
to this day.

Not unexpectedly,
we have already seen the Republicans' lack of understanding from
their House Pledge
to America, which promises
to repeal ObamaCare but replace it with a little less socialism
(but enough to get reelected). Alas, if only they could recognize
the main causes of the American medical system's high costs and
dysfunctions — the government intrusions, mandates, bureaucracy,
taxes, licensure and regulations already in place — then
they might see the light of the real solution: repealing
all those initial intrusions, cutting those chains of government-imposed
bondage and letting the people be free to control their own medical
associations and contracts. Then the costs will come down, way down,
and private individuals and organizations will then additionally
be able to afford to help those in need, like it used to be before
FDR arrived and usurped that freedom away.

President Franklin
D. Roosevelt's usurpations were through his taking advantage of
the utter despair and vulnerability that many Americans suffered
following the Stock Market Crash of 1929, even though he campaigned
on a platform of reducing the burdens that the Hoover Administration
had placed on Americans and their businesses that were Hoover's
quick, short-term fixes for the damage that occurred following the
Crash. FDR's grandiose interventions laid the groundwork for the
further destruction we are now suffering.

The Truth
about Social Security

The truth is,
Social Security
is not the "retirement account" that many Americans think
it is. It is a real-time redistribution of wealth scheme, in which
the younger workers' paychecks are siphoned by the federal government
and redistributed to retired people (and others). FDR manipulated
the panic and vulnerability of many Americans and literally removed
actual independence and prosperity from Americans' retirements in
this deceptive scheme. FDR's other transgressions included new intrusive
bureaus and mandates, and higher confiscations of the fruits of
Americans' labor.

These socialist
programs helped FDR to get reelected, and help our current politicians
get reelected, as they promise the voters, "I won't touch Social
Security." But while short-term fixes really help the politicians'
self-interests, government-mandated and administered socialist programs
are immoral and have disastrous long-term consequences.

Now, if Americans
were to finally accept the truth about Social Security and end that
program, then that would probably terrify many Americans with the
thought of losing their only means of sustenance. That is why the
income tax would also have to end. The removal of income and Social
Security taxes will enable people who are still working to care
for their elderly family members. These actions, though initially
difficult, would be the moral
and practical
way of saving Americans' ability to plan their retirement years.

Unfortunately,
people whose paychecks were siphoned by the central planners in
Washington for many decades may just have to accept those losses.
The Social
Security system
is inherently flawed, and we need to deal with
that reality now, because kicking the can will only make things
even more difficult for future generations, whereas dealing with
it now will free future generations and their ability to care for
themselves and their families.

The Federal
Reserve

In 1913,
the Federal Reserve was created, turning America from a mainly laissez-faire
economy into one of "centralized statism," as Rothbard
explained. The Fed was
a product of President Wilson and the Progressive movement. Progressives
over the past century have shown a love for government and for State
control over private economic matters, including money, one of our
most important commodities.

Unfortunately,
the mainstream pundits and economists blamed laissez-faire economic
freedom for the Crash of u201829, as well as the downturn of 2008, even
though both crashes were actually caused by the government intrusions
into private economic matters that Congress and presidents installed
prior to those points. In fact, the Federal Reserve itself was created
by interventionists in 1913 as a solution for the business cycles
— the booms and busts — and the panics
and depressions that were actually caused
by previous government interventions.

With the 2008-2010
bailouts and stimulus, the passage of medical care usurpations and
the Dodd financial regulatory bill, and with the Federal Reserve's
obsessive authoritarian top-down micromanaging of the economy and
distorting the markets, we have seen up close how literally delirious
our government bureaucrats really are.

A good example
of the pathology of centralized statism is Federal Reserve Chairman
Ben Bernanke's hinting at further interventionism. Bernanke, referred
to by economist Robert Wenzel as a "mad
scientist
," may be printing more money, with the hope that
it will decrease the unemployment rate. Wenzel describes this as
"going
nuclear
," and says that Bernanke is
using new "tools"
to attempt to manipulate monetary
and economic matters, while ignoring the old tools used by most
other Fed chairmen. Bernanke's first new tool, interest on excess
reserves, has resulted in a trillion dollars in excess reserves
and is out of control, according to Wenzel. And Bernanke has more
new tools, such as selling Treasury securities to money market funds,
to fix the first out-of-control tool, and Wenzel predicts that any
new flood of money printing will lead to further instability and
the "dagger" of hyperinflation.

Rothbard noted
that the Fed's money printing not only causes the devaluing of the
currency and thus effects in inflation, the rise in prices of everyday
goods, but is a system whereby the money printers and early receivers
of the newly printed money (the big banks) are expropriating assets
from the later receivers (particularly those on fixed incomes),
a "massive scheme of hidden redistribution."

The new Congress
needs to take a serious look at the entire authoritarian centralized
Federal Reserve system, and needs to consider competitive
alternatives in banking and currency. Like Social Security and all
other forms of centralized government interventionism, the Federal
Reserve is inherently flawed. Only free markets under the Rule of
Law can adequately adjust to the changes in economic activities,
while bureaucratic monetary
central planners
and government-protected bank cartels stifle
those factors. Socialist central planning intrusions of government
interventionism in money and banking in fact undermines
the Rule of Law, and thus it should be no wonder that such a system
has led to so much fraud
and corruption at this time.

Foreign
Interventionism

For decades,
the U.S. government has been engaged in many acts of interventionism
in other countries' affairs, and has expanded its various government
apparatus in foreign territories.

Unlike entrepreneurs
in the private sector, who must compete through the structure of
profit and loss in the free market and based on the private producer's
ability to allocate scarce resources, the government bureaucrat
lacks the incentive of profit and loss and instead relies on central
planning committees and agencies and whose main goal, stated or
not, is the survival and expansion
of the bureaucracy. Unlike private businesses that must follow the
Rule of Law and must respect the property rights of others and may
not trespass, governments do not seem bound by the same rules. And
because the government bureaucrat is given a monopoly that the citizenry
are compelled to patronize without any alternative choices, the
expansion of government, its bureaus and the bureaucrats' power
become the main incentives of the government bureaucrat. And this
is the case in foreign policy as well as domestic policy.

For the past
decade, the federal defense bureaucrats have given us more
government, more bureaucracy and more intrusions at home and abroad.
Iraq is now under Sharia Law, and Afghanistan is a mess. And Americans
are becoming increasingly uneasy with the additional intrusions
— not just inconveniences, but intrusions, groping pat-downs
and virtual strip searches — at American airports.

Meanwhile,
some people have raised the point that the hundreds of U.S. military
bases and other government apparatus on foreign territories since
World War II have been serious provocations, particularly in Middle
Eastern countries.

Likewise, Americans
probably would react negatively if President Obama were to sign
an agreement with China to install Chinese military bases in Texas
or Montana.

That hypothetical
is a fair comparison, because the idea of national sovereignty is
important. The U.S. government is not the Government of the World,
and its various apparatus on other countries' territories are intrusions,
and clearly go against the Founders' original intent.

Conclusion

The Founding
Fathers would never have approved of any redistribution schemes
that involved the taking of any individual's wealth or property.
They would have recognized that as theft, pure and simple. Most
of the Founders were against fiat paper
money
and centralized
banking
, and they certainly would not have approved of hundreds
of U.S. military bases and other U.S. government apparatus on other
countries
' territories or the U.S. government involving itself
in other countries' affairs. The Founders believed that governments
must not violate the liberty or property of its own citizens or
of those in foreign countries, and believed that governments must
behave
under the Rule of Law.

With their
regained control in Washington, Republicans had better get back
to the Founders' principles of Liberty and limited government.
If the politicians' recklessness and utter violations of the Rule
of Law continue too much longer, then secession of states might
have to be the next alternative.

Scott
Lazarowitz [send him mail]
is a commentator and cartoonist at Reasonandjest.com.

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Best of Scott Lazarowitz

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