Reconciling Fiscal Conservatism...
I've wanted to do this post for a long time, though it is not of any immediate relevance. And, perhaps, that's the trouble. Something always came up. Anyway, here it is:
Fiscal conservatism, in layman's terms, is basically taking away the government's credit cards. Without it, the government cranks up the national debt and then we are forced to pay for it. Bush, of course, has taken it one step further by cranking up the national debt, and letting our children or their children worry about paying it off...somehow...someday. With fiscal conservatism, that's a no-no. You tax light and you spend light.
Oh! But what about the people?
And that's where the Constitution comes in:
"WE THE PEOPLE of the United States, in Order to form a more perfect Union, establish Justice, insure domestic Tranquility, provide for the common defence, promote the general Welfare, and secure the Blessings of Liberty to ourselves and our Posterity, do ordain and establish this CONSTITUTION for the United States of America."
You see, our federal budget is all right there, believe it or not. We only have to work out the minutiae.
- establish Justice
- insure domestic Tranquility
- provide for the common defence
- promote the general Welfare
- secure the Blessings of Liberty to ourselves and our Posterity
And there you have it.
1) The federal government should fund that which is necessary to maintain justice, i.e. the federal court and law enforcement system.
2) The federal government should fund that which is necessary to insure domestic tranquility (use the find tool to search for "tranquility," interesting stuff if you don't know what this phrase originally references), but I would personally consider this to cover things like federal roads (because not funding the interstates would make for some very un-tranquil people), corporate controls (which might fall under justice anyway), and maintaining federal buildings, federal memorials and federal parks -- which are not only a part of our national heritage and therefore could also fall under securing the blessings of liberty, but also not funding these would make for some very un-tranquil people so here it is -- not to mention, securing our borders, which is definitely something that fits squarely with the description in the link above.
3) The federal government should fund that which is necessary to provide for the common defense, i.e. the military and their weapons.
4) The federal government should fund that which is necessary to promote the general welfare, i.e. those people who cannot provide for themselves should be provided for.
5) And, finally, the federal government should fund that which is necessary to secure the blessings of liberty, and liberty cannot be maintained by an ignorant citizenry, thus education must be funded.
Now, how hard is that?!? While I'm sure our "representatives" could find a way to make covering only these priorities break the budget, they should NOT be allowed to say they cannot fund all of these things because they already broke it.
They raise our debt to pay for sports stadiums, yet they cannot fund education. They raise our debt to pay for fancy weapons that are NOT currently useful to our military, yet our soldiers who are currently at war with our enemies are under-supplied. They raise our debt by pouring money into the multitude of research projects that hold their interest (at least long enough to sign the budget), but they cannot provide basic healthcare to those who cannot access it. In short, our government is NOT living up to their Constitutionally required expeditures, yet they're still spending our money faster than we can make it!
Does anybody who frequents this blog doubt that these guys just gotta go!?!
The government could, if it wished, afford all the things this country actually requires from our federal government. But, instead, they rack up debt we can't pay for things we don't need that they shouldn't be focused on anyway.
Don't get me wrong. I don't mind social programs -- by which I'm referencing the money the federal government pours into things like museums, art endowments and the like -- it's just that I think society should pay for such things the way society used to pay for such things, i.e. a bunch of people get together, promote their cause and raise the necessary money from other people, not from the federal government. Unless it's a federally-owned, federally-operated, American history museum, then it's not something the federal government should be involved in. If it's not art that is going to be used in a federal memorial or at a federal park as a monument, then the federal government should have nothing to do with it. It's that simple.
All the those things which truly lie within the proper grasp of the federal government could be funded affordably, if they tried (yes, I do realize that would require critical thinking, which they're not so good at, which is why they need to go!). Our taxes could be decreased and we, the American people, could actually get more for our money! What could be better than that!?!
Ah, but then the politicians couldn't pay back all those "supporters" who funded their way into office. And that's what this comes down to. Special interests, those who divert our federal funds from their proper purpose, make for some pretty big money...and big money donors to boot.
I guess, my point is two-fold (the second time I'm using that today, what's up with that!):
1) I'm a fiscal conservative, yet I'm also a -- dare I say it! -- bleeding hearted liberal when it comes to people and the social programs that directly benefits them. These are NOT mutually exclusive, no matter how many Dems and Reps want to tell you otherwise. Basically, we, the American people, can afford our cake, and the poor amongst us can eat it too.
2) Our current batch of "representatives" suck when it comes to fiscal conservatism. They suck when it comes to federally funding that which is, imo, required by the Constitution. And they especially suck when it comes to understanding what the poor actually needs to help them, and funding the welfare that will actually provide that help. And, frankly, I'm sick of it.
I'm sick of the Dems taxing us raw, raising our debt, and buying votes with hand-outs. I'm sick of the Reps taxing us raw, raising our debt, and buying votes with hand-outs. That's not fiscal conservatism and it's NOT a democratic republic.
No, you did NOT read that wrong. The only difference between the Dems and the Reps is who they tax worse and who they buy votes from. That's it. They both have got to go!
I don't know about you, but, as a one of those pesky "Posterity" people, I'm telling you I want my government BACK!!!