Wednesday, May 15, 2013

What's Wrong with Big Government

Liberals tend to think that men are by nature good and that a government of men would be naturally inclined toward benevolence. Conservatives believe that men are inherently flawed, even corrupt, and that it's very dangerous to put power into their hands. Men are as likely, or more likely, to use that power for nefarious purposes as not.

The recent shenanigans in Washington are causing distress among many liberals because it's confirming what conservatives have been saying for decades about the dangers of big government, and, even more maddening for some liberals, it's the behavior of liberals that's proving conservatives right. Because men are corrupt, a government of men is not to be trusted, and the bigger, more expansive the government the greater the threat and the stronger the grounds for mistrust.

The President in his recent commencement address at Ohio State advised graduates to reject the voices that warn of government tyranny, but creeping tyranny permeates his tenure in office.

The President and his supporters scoff at concerns about the IRS policing Obamacare, but in light of revelations about how the IRS has been punishing opponents of the Obama administration those concerns seem particularly well-founded.

The President and his supporters scoff at concerns that background checks for gun buyers will be used to create a national registry of gun owners, but a Department of Justice that treats the First Amendment with contempt by secretly seizing phone records of journalists will suffer little compunction from meting out equally contemptuous treatment to the Second Amendment.

The legitimacy of a government is based on trust. Barack Obama himself said so in a speech as Senator in 2006. He correctly observed that, "if the people cannot trust their government to do the job for which it exists—to protect them and to promote their common welfare—all else is lost."

The reason he told the OSU grads to reject the voices that warn of government tyranny is "Because what they suggest is that our brave, and creative, and unique experiment in self-rule is somehow just a sham with which we can't be trusted."

Yet how can a citizenry trust a government that patently lies to them in the wake of the Benghazi tragedy, which secretly monitors reporters' phone calls, and which uses the IRS to harass, intimidate, and put out of business individuals and organizations which oppose the policies of this administration? It now appears that the IRS actually targeted over 500 conservative organizations and individuals, illegally releasing confidential information about them to Obama allies in the government and media, and it's not just the IRS that was engaged in this third-world type behavior. The EPA is now coming under scrutiny for making it more difficult for conservatives to obtain information under the Freedom of Information Act than it is for liberal groups. How can anyone trust such people?

The bigger the government the harder it is to monitor the bureaucrats who might abuse their power. Indeed, this was David Axelrod's argument exculpating the President in these scandals: The government is just too big for him to know what was going on, Axelrod averred. Even accepting the veracity of Axelrod's claim that Mr. Obama didn't know what was going on he inadvertently put his finger on exactly why government should be kept small, and why most power should devolve to the states, close to where the people live, not to unaccountable, anonymous, Kafkaesque characters in opaque bureaucracies in far-away Washington.


This will make your day:
Internal cost estimates from 17 of the nation's largest insurance companies indicate that health insurance premiums will grow an average of 100 percent under Obamacare, and that some will soar more than 400 percent, crushing the administration's goal of affordability.
Weren't we assured that the Affordable Care Act (whoever came up with that name has a very perverse sense of humor) would lower insurance costs? Is there no promise made in the last eight years that this administration can be counted upon to keep?
New regulations, policies, taxes, fees and mandates are the reason for the unexpected "rate shock," according to the House Energy and Commerce Committee, which released a report Monday based on internal documents provided by the insurance companies. The 17 companies include Aetna, Blue Cross Blue Shield and Kaiser Foundation.
I don't know why the article calls this "rate shock" unexpected. People have been predicting this ever since before the act was rammed through Congress by the you-know-which party in 2009.
The report found that individuals will face "premium increases of nearly 100 percent on average, with potential highs eclipsing 400 percent. Meanwhile, small businesses can expect average premium increases in the small group market of up to 50 percent, with potential highs over 100 percent."

One company said that new participants in the individual market could see a premium increase of 413 percent when new requirements on age rating and required benefits are taken into account, said the report. "The average yearly cost for a new customer in the individual market grows from $1,896 to $3,708 -- a $1,812 cost increase," it added.(emphasis mine)
Who are these wretched people in the individual market? They're mostly young or self-employed folks, many of who live paycheck to paycheck as it is. Now they're going to see their monthly insurance premiums almost double. No wonder one of the architects of the law, Senator Max Baucus, has declared the legislation a "train-wreck" and has decided not to run for re-election.
The key reasons for the surge in premiums include providing wider services than people are now paying for and adding less healthy people to the roles of insured, said the report.

It concluded: "Despite promises that the law will lower costs, [Obamacare] will in fact cause the premiums of many Americans to spike substantially. The broken promises are numerous, and the empirical data reveal that many Americans, from recent college graduates to older adults, will not be able to afford the law's higher costs."
When the high costs hit and your insurance premiums double please have the courtesy and good sense not to complain out loud if in either of the last two elections your good sense abandoned you and you voted for Mr. Obama.