America was founded by colonial peoples, defended with the blood of citizen soldiers, fueled with bountiful natural resources, and nurtured by frontier values and industriousness with parts played by visionary leaders and labor.
But it wasn’t made great by government. Government was one of many tools and in the eyes of the Founding Fathers never meant to be a master. But our modern eyes have failed us in our Republic’s old age, and we are retro-actively rewriting history by attributing the success of our nation on taxation, expenditure, and political policy.
It makes me want to vomit.
We have the brains and gall to argue that government built the infrastructure and rules necessary to allow for economic strength and prosperity, somehow “making” a society where people can thrive collectively and individually become successful. But we lack historical knowledge and common sense. We brag about the triumphs of things like safe drinking water, safe cars, and safe medicine as if a capitalist did not invent nearly every means or handle nearly every production of such things. Pollution laws don’t give us electricity, coal does. FDA labels don’t feed our children, farmers and packaging companies do. The legislator who madated shin guards didn’t invent skateboarding or make it a sport.
Government doesn’t even build infrastructure, construction companies do, with taxes paid mostly by the companies that use them. In fact, we wouldn’t even need roads to many towns that otherwise wouldn’t exist if it hadn’t been for a company building a manufacturing plant or similar enterprise. The Internet, you say? What DAPRPA created was neolithic in comparison to what is at your fingertips today, the product of countless entrepreneurs, inventors, and companies NOT on the taxpayer’s dole. Porn had far more influence on the digital and social prosperity of the Web than the Pentagon.
The fact this is becoming less true is not a testament to the power of government, but the lessening of economic freedom and its equivocal prosperity. And not a single lapse in recent times — be it the housing bubble or banking or health care — cannot be attributed to governmental instigation instead of the lack of safeguards. We’ve been lied to and duped by the elitists who want a class war against them. Why? Because once people are under the delusion the government is somehow separate from the elite, they will be freely given more and more control, under the guise of being the solution to the problems they themselves have created.
So what is the great lie?
Defending the borders and protecting rights (rather than allocating them) was the governmental means to create a bubble in which people could live free and pursue happiness, including economically. That enabled corporations to grow and develop. It created both the need for and development of a railroad system, bringing manufactured goods to the masses like never before in history. All the while, anyone and everyone could participate as they would as a vendor, tradesman, salesman, clerk, or any other number of vocations. So long as they weren’t under the weight of countless legal tomes, that is.
And yet we give government credit for everything that happens within it. Tsk. Tsk. That is like the owner of a sports stadium taking credit for their home team winning the championship. It does not matter if government makes it possible or even tries to play the role of actor in such things. ANY government (except for the most socialist or communist variants) “allows” for such things, and the more it regulates and commands them, the less credit it can take for even that.
This is beyond Marxism. Whereas we used to be indoctrinated into notions that “labor” made an economy great — not altogether a lie though hardly the whole truth — now we are being told government is what gives us prosperity and keeps us safe. And the lie that the people ARE the government — a statement that would make the signers of the Constitution roll in their graves — seals the deal on blindly subservient collectivist thinking.
The background role of government as a servant and not a master is very foundation of our society. THAT is what made us great. Big Government made our nation imperialistic and it’s people dependent. Limited government was the means by which we could avoid even the masses ruling the nation rather than keeping our leaders in check. We stopped looking for presidents to manage affairs long ago. Now we desire to choose a king who will have whatever power they need to give us what we want, and make everything safe and sound at any cost.
It used to be our responsibility as citizens to better our communities and ourselves. Now we delegate and defer nearly all means and methods to bureaucrats. We settle for hoping the ones who convince us their policies are best are the ones that can take control and get their (our?) way. We will support any candidate that (we think) will better our lot in life, ie. pay our heating bill or medical prescriptions or mortgage, even at the detriment to so many others. We gave up believing such things were OUR rights and responsibilities, and the powerful were eager to convince us the game was rigged to where we don’t even try to do anything ourselves. We NEED government to make life fair, and call it “social justice”. Those who don’t accept these convenient facts of life are either deluded or “elitist”.
Yes, we have been utterly shammed.
If we must see our times as a juncture of American historical importance (and we always do), then I can only leave the reader with this:
America’s past was made by explorers, businessmen, laborers, inventors, even slaves and “robber barons”; if America’s future is actually going to be made by others — politicians, activists, economists, journalists, HMOs, banks, union leaders, party bosses — we can expect not only to lose our prosperity down to the last remaining middle-class family, but the fading memory of a beloved republic that once sheltered our personal and economic freedoms and made us great.