In Part 1 of Government Spending Cuts, we exposed the tricky techniques government uses to increase spending while claiming it is cutting.
First, we exposed the fallacy of fewer bananas and more oranges. Government buys fewer bananas, but more oranges; and issues a press release saying it cut spending on bananas.
In the second example, we demonstrated the fallacy of a reduced wish list. Government creates budget that are designed to increase each year. When the actual increase is slightly less than planned, officials announce they've cut spending.
Are you angry yet?
Taxpayer's failure to understand these concepts is one of the reasons why governments at all levels continue to expand, because governments' so-called cuts are not real cuts.
Government uses the power of the press; the power of having access to citizens' home and email addresses; and the power to release biased information to further its own self-serving spending agendas. These powers are used to manipulate public opinion in favor of policies and officials that have a statist mentality. They seek to grow government at the expense of taxpayers.
Growing government is the biggest threat to our constitutional freedoms. On the other hand, less government money means fewer bureaucrats to regulate, monitor, control, and harass the private sector.
Federal and state governments also use increased spending to engage in a process I refer to as "grant coercion." Grants are employed to extend their control beyond constitutional boundaries. Simply stated, it bribes cash-strapped local governments to sell-out their local citizens' freedoms and autonomy in exchange for bribes, otherwise known as grants. Do what the fed wants, and you get a check. If you refuse to play, the feds don't pay.
In order to restore our constitutional freedoms, and revive the separation of powers, most government grants should be eliminated. Federal and state governments could lower taxes, and local government would keep more of their own revenues. Of course, there would be one BIG difference. Local governments could either use these monies absent federal and state coercion, or alternatively, simply refund the savings to its taxpayers.
The national debacle related to Common-Core Education standards is a perfect example. The federal government has no authority to tell local jurisdictions how to run their local school systems. The Feds circumvented the law by bribing state boards of education and legislatures to sell-out their local autonomy. That's why I call it grant coercion. Government overtaxes us, and then returns the money to us via grants… but only if we sign on the dotted line and sell away your freedoms.
Food for thought:
A shortage of money in Washington D.C. is not the problem… it is the solution.
A smaller government that lives within its means will not have the resources to erect a multitude of New Offices, and send hither swarms of Officers to harass our people, and eat out their substance.
The next time any government official tells you he or she has cut spending you should ask them to show you their total spending figures, before and after. And you should also ask them to show you the amount spent per taxpayer. Then… decide for yourself. Is it fiction or fact?
Additionally, when your state government tells you to be happy, think again. The money they return to your local jurisdiction usually has strings attached. A better solution is fewer grants and lower taxes.
The following short but humorous story will make you smile. And surprise… it relates to government and budgets
An elderly king laid on his deathbed. He was very ill, but wanted to die as the wisest man in the world. So, he called his advisors to his bedside and instructed them to go out and bring back all of the wisdom in the world for him to read before his death.
His advisors returned a few days later with 1,000 books. The king was dismayed. "I don't have time to read all of these, I won't live that long." So, he sent his advisors back into the world to gather condensed wisdom.
They returned a week later. This time they had only 100 books. Again, the king was dismayed. "I'm very ill, and do not have the strength to read even 100 books." Again, he sent them into the world.
They returned a week later and were exuberant. "Your majesty," they proclaimed, "we have reduced all of the wisdom in the world into one simple sentence."
"Quickly." said the king, "Tell me."
His chief advisor approached the bed, leaned toward the king and whispered, "Your majesty, there's no free lunch."
The moral of the story is self-evident. As each of us looks within ourselves to decide what we expect from our government, we need to remember this pearl of wisdom.
Every spending decision has consequences. Every short-term increase in spending must be offset by an equivalent cut elsewhere. Otherwise, taxes will need to be raised.
Most importantly, bigger government means fewer freedoms.
You know the answer…Because there's no free lunch.
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