By Chic Hollis – Philosophical Musings
Such is the attitude of law enforcement agencies, the courts, and the lawyers who work the legal system. There are absolutely no objections accepted once a law is on the books. Anyone who breaks a law should be punished. (When caught!) The only people who possess the authority to change the law are the duly elected members of the state legislature or Congress. No avoidance of the law will be tolerated! No one is above the law except those who bake, shake, and make the law and the various active judges who supposedly rake the law with a fine tooth comb. Once a law is passed, there’s a long tedious process involved for anyone who wants to alter or void a law.
In a complicated democracy like ours, elected representatives have little incentive to admit their errors and initiate timely changes. Only the emergency issues are approached with alacrity. The cries of the obviously harmed citizens are ignored unless the media is willing to put aside their party affiliations to remedy the outrageous and costly results of bad legislation. Most modern representatives are looking for ways to put their hands in your pockets to grab some extra money to cover the entitlements that they plan to expand to buy votes in the next election.
Whose interests are our representatives looking out for? Constituents who will vote for them because they believe that their party actually knows what it is doing. Which is running up a tab for future generations to deal with. Don’t kid yourselves, Government is essentially looking for excuses to redistribute the economic pie for their individual advantage. They spend the most of their time with lobbyists and lawyers looking for where they can take money from the economic system for their pet projects or earmarks.
Exploiting the system is paramount. Representatives pass laws that are supposedly “justified” if uneconomical and counterproductive like the new healthcare law. They form agencies that don’t regulate much as was proven in the Great Recession. And they promote favoritism to certain groups of vocal citizens like unions and business associations. Who cares about individual citizens? Don’t ask, because no representative will admit that anyone is favored!
Can anyone explain the action of adult legislators in Sacramento, CA who delayed passing a “balanced budget” for 100 days, only to discover a few days later that they had overlooked an additional $6 billion of the deficit? A balanced budget is supposed to be available in this state by July 1st of the new fiscal year, but representatives don’t have to obey that rule. No one is being indicted or imprisoned for his or her political delinquency.
Is there any rationale that justifies extending the Bush tax reductions of federal income taxes beyond 2010 when the federal government has run deficits for years and faces an estimated $1.3+ trillion deficit for the present fiscal year and an estimated $1.4 trillion deficit for the coming fiscal year? Only those citizens above the law can act so imprudently and arrogantly. (Thanks to the foreigner investors who are buying U.S. IOUs.)
The 18 member Bowles/Simpson commission dedicated to proposing a solution for the unsustainable profligacy of the federal government can’t agree about how to proceed. The proposal approved by 11 members suggests curtailing military expenditures for “big weapons systems,” increasing the retirement age for Social Security recipients, and reducing income tax loop holes like the deduction for home mortgage interest. The irony in the committee’s solution is their proposal to reduce income taxes further just when the revenue from income taxes has diminished due to the economic collapse of 2008.
So far the elite representatives in the District of Corruption have refused to address the deficit issue. Taxes must increase and spending programs must be curtailed. The bad news is that their reluctance to take meaningful action is based on the theory that the economy will improve and the deficit problem will go away eventually. Any adult person who must work within a family budget learns that creditors get antsy, increase interest, and finally cut off credit. Increasing revenue or reducing spending are the only tools a family or an organization has to balance a budget.
Those who have let these deficits endure have not broken any law. They have not kept this nation financially healthy, nor have they been concerned about the generations to come who will be saddled with the unsustainable federal government largesse. Individuals must obey the law, pay taxes, fees, duties, and expensive permits. Citizens are expected to adhere to the tax and building codes. In the past two weeks, I have witnessed three examples of businessmen asking for cash in payment for services which, if not properly accounted for, reduces their tax liability.
The attitude of public servants isn’t to aid citizens, but to instruct them about the laws in force that a citizen has no power to avoid. Who determines what fines, permits, property taxes, sales taxes, and income taxes should be? Not John Q. Public! Some dictatorial oligopoly somewhere!
The authority to make laws, rules, regulations, and codes is not in the hands of private citizens. Democracy may look good in Political Science text books, however, in reality taxpayers have no recourse to what is done in municipal governments, state capitols, and Washington, D.C. Yes, we can vote legislators out of office sometimes, but we can’t cause their replacements to act responsibly. Spending only what revenue is forthcoming is common sense – something that the legislators who make the rules seem to lack.
Scofflaws must proceed at their own risk. Now 49% of the population in this state must do what the representatives of 51% dictates. Taxation with representation is equally repulsive and subject to the decisions of a handful of irresponsible Americans.
Intelligent law-abiding citizens are nauseated by the mumble jumble rhetoric coming from their elected representatives who refuse to be responsible for balancing spending with revenue! When are the corrupt representatives like Charles Rangel who pretend that they are above the law ever going to get their act together in this failing American economy?