When looking at someone in need, many questions arise. What need do I see? What is the real need? What can I do? What should I do? How will what I do help? Does it really help the person, or just me? Here appears the conflict of mind and heart. I want to help, but what really is of help? Do I give of my wallet or do I give of my time and experience, or both? Giving of my wallet appeases my guilt but may in effect do very little to change the person’s situation. I would suggest that most of us realize that small handouts alone do little to better any serious situation that people sometimes find themselves in. What does work usually requires that someone focus on the person’s life, listens to their story, becomes available and helps him or her assess their resources. This kind of helping requires real commitment. Here again appears the conflict of mind and heart. Few of us are willing or can’t make this kind of commitment, so we rely on churches and other organizations to take our financial support and add the commitment part.
Committed people are the key to this kind of change. So what happens when the government and politicians get involved? Are the governmental bureaucrats the kind of committed individuals that can encourage positive change? The answer unfortunately is probably not, and definitely not in terms of being effective with our financial contributions (taxes) towards helping those in need. This is especially true regarding the federal level of government. I would guess that every dollar that is collected by the state or federal government goes half as far for each level of government that you get away from the local level. (County, State, Federal) And I know of no government program that is as efficient as a well organized church, business or Not-for-Profit run endeavor.[i] Government is not as responsive. Most bureaucrats are just doing a job, crunching numbers, covering their butts and after a while they begin to see the people in need as numbers or problems.
So why do we have so much effort and desire being put forth to get the federal government involved in areas that it is ill-suited? For the taxpayer, one reason might be appeasement of personal guilt -the guilt that comes from not being able to do more to solve the problems. If the government is primarily responsible, then we are not responsible and our guilt is lessened. If one is suspect of organized religion or private organizations, then government offers such a person the option of not giving support to such groups. Even though government is the least effective, it still appeases some amount of guilt.[ii] [iii]
All decent politicians, of all parties, go through the same questions the individual asks when they see people in need; they have the same desire to help, and compassion. The conflict of mind and heart is fully present. But laid upon this conflict is a bigger conflict, the conflict that arises by courting voters.
It is my belief that most politicians fully realize that the federal government is ill-suited to deal effectively with most matters of personal need. It can be done, but to be truly helpful the assistance must be a hand up, at the same time encouraging the person to become more responsible and self reliant. One only needs to remember how dysfunctional and subject to fraud the old welfare system was. The system did not offer a hand-up; instead it relied primarily on giving out checks. There was little or no incentive for the person to better his or her situation by taking steps to find work – and this in turn led to fraud.[iv] Unfortunately, many politicians have seen the voters’ appeasement needs relating to solving such problems and the desires of those who are in need (wanting relief immediately) as opportunities to build a strong dependence on the politician. If those in need are dependent upon the politician, then the politician can count on their votes.
Therefore, we should all be suspect of the motivations for big government federal programs.[v] We should not turn this power over lightly to politicians, who more and more seem to be primarily interested in their own self-interests. Local problems are many times unique, possibly involving cultural issues, and as such lend themselves to unique local solutions. We need people committed to real solutions, solutions we can believe in.
Politicians today have been promoting government as the answer to all of our problems.[vi] It is not and should not be. Whatever your beliefs about global warming, what the politicians are talking about as solutions will not work. They will most likely collapse our economy, cost millions of jobs, increase prices across the board and we will lose any global competitive advantage that we may have. The answer to CO2 in the atmosphere will come from technologies that will remove it, possibly converting it into carbon fiber products, or something else like that. Carbon credits, cap and trade, taxes, etc. all go back to that notion of appeasing our guilt, creating dependence and giving the illusion of being in charge.
Once again, what it will take is people with real commitment to solutions, not commitment to regulations and their own power. If we give up our duties and responsibilities – and elect politicians who see themselves as our saviors, elite, our Shepard, all knowing – we will be left with a Nanny State that will control every aspect of our lives. If that is what we want, we should vote for Senator Obama.
To date, Senator Obama has not exhibited commitment to solutions that are thoughtful, innovative, realistic and sustainable. He has exploited, enhanced, manipulated our concerns and raised them to the level of fear. What he is offering the masses is to alleviate our guilt and inherited blame for not doing enough- and millions of young voters have fallen for it hook, line and sinker. He has done this with the help of the media who have been swooning over him. Sen. Obama’s supporters are increasing becoming a cult that does not tolerate opposition.[vii] It appears that the radical left is rising and adopting a fascist/elitist view for the rest of us.
Please America. Remember that one’s character IS reflected in those whose company he or she keeps. Who has been sought out to be in Sen. Obama’s company? In his circle are Rev. Wright, pentagon bomber William Ayers, Rezko, and many others.[viii] There are those in Senator Obama’s circle who are terrorists, a convicted criminal, racists, hateful, anti-Semitic, socialists. It also appears clear that most of these people hate America and its military; and/or blame America and Americans for all of the world’s problems. For this you can again thank the media.
With the help of the Democratic leadership, Sen. Obama has repeatedly engaged in the vilification of companies (oil companies in particular), business, President Bush, Sen. McCain (who he refers to as Bush’s third term) as scapegoats for their own shortsightedness and lack of resolve to solve problems in a realistic, compassionate manner. They have become so beholding to the extreme left wing of the party and its investment in defeat in Iraq and their hatred for the President that it shapes all of their words and actions.[ix] It’s easier to make everyone else the cause, the villain. Had we been drilling, encouraging the building of refineries, and jump starting our nuclear energy production, while at the same time encouraging investment in alternatives, we would not be in this mess with $4 a gallon gas.
The energy problems have not been solved to date because politicians are more concerned about preserving their own power or acquiring more power. They want to keep us (the voters) dependent, misled and fearful so that we will be too scared and ignorant to make them do what is right and responsible for America.
Please America, overcome your guilt and/or media influence and vote responsibly.
[i] The Senate passed legislation this week that will allow the Senate restaurant to become privatized because it is losing so much money.
[ii] There was a recent report that of self identified conservatives and self identified liberals, conservatives gave much more to charities.
[iii] Other reasons might be fear that I might be in that situation and one else would help me. So something is better than nothing.
[iv] President Clinton and the Republican led Congress make major improvements to the welfare system (tougher and more responsible love).
[v] Let’s not forget the Ethanol disaster. Food prices are rising worldwide because of this ill conceived solution to a problem that has been of the politicians own making.
[vi] Thomas Jefferson definitely favored a limited federal government.
[vii] Larry Sinclair has alleged that he did crack and had repeated gay sex with the Senator in 1999 and other issues. Mr. Sinclair, his family, and supporters have been threatened, intimidated, and abused for daring to raise a legitimate issue which reflects upon his lack of good character. See http://larrysinclair0926.wordpress.com/ See http://citizenwells.wordpress.com/
[ix] I have not even touched on the possibility that Israel’s existence will be in greater jeopardy if Sen. Obama is elected, given his policies of appeasing people that are always looking to kill us.