Tempus Fugit



In the eons of time, it’s hard to appreciate just how recently a decent standard of living has been available to such a wide range of people.   One hundred years ago, few beyond the 1% lived as well the poorest 20% of Americans today.  The rising tide of prosperity has seen to this, with the advance in medicine, food quality and availability, educational opportunities, and technology that gets cheaper as it gets better.   Personal credit, previously only available to the few is widespread allowing families to make choices that adds productivity.

So, take a step back and recognize the progress we’ve made and look at our problems from this perspective.   The vast majority of what ails us- as individuals and as government- is self-inflicted through inefficiency, waste, misguided policy, dishonest policy, entrenched bureaucracies, dysfunctional families, lower standards and poor personal choices.

For all this progress, and it’s clear we’ve made some, we have surrendered plenty.  Privacy is the main victim, and the slippery slope to losses of freedom.  The simpler, unharried lifestyle is gone for all but a few of the lucky or the well prepared.   New generations will live exclusively in the fast lane-and online- if for no other reason than self-preservation.    

Our Duty is to leave this world in better shape than we found it.    Part of that is speaking out on issues that affect us all.

My views are predominantly Libertarian.  For the most part, we should be free to do whatever we want that does not harm others.  With both major parties, we face a production of laws that each year bury us in more government rules.    We waste vast amounts of public funds either by inefficient taxation, unnecessary political spending or inept government.   We seem to accept a political system that rewards near monopoly of power by incumbents.   We fail to hold accountable a civil service bureaucracy that is impervious to reform.  We are asked to trust security services with a history of deceiving the public or failing catastrophically at their jobs.  The quality of citizenship rests on how we face these issues.

Citizens’ Rights exist in the political body like Matter exists in Nature: they cannot be created or destroyed, only  transferred.   When a right is granted to one group, it is at the expense of another.   It is proper, of course, to curb an array of individual rights for the benefit of the whole.     Certain individual rights, however, should be immutable, such as Free Speech, a Right to Privacy (with apologizes to Bork), and Equality of Economic Opportunity-which includes access to education and information resources.   While much progress has been made, we cannot hide from our failures.   Our task is to honestly assess where government has placed this role to our success or detriment.   The real advances have come from the private sector and include medicine and technology (marvel at what is now ‘free’ on our smartphones).

America is clearly rich enough to take care of its truly needy.   All sides can agree on this.   We are not, however, rich enough for all that seek to secure public entitlement.   Here is the great divide in government.  What do we spend for what is needed vs. what do we spend to make us ‘feel good’ about helping the less fortunate.  Where along the entitlement trough does public assistance ‘dull the edge of husbandry’?  The common enemy is Waste and Theft but also self-aggrandizement of politicians who wish to go down in history as someone great.  

If Americans came to trust that only those in need are receiving public aid, they would be doubly generous in seeing to that need.   One only need look at the Obama free-phone program, or the fraud from the Katrina claims to know human nature makes that trust all but impossible without better verification.  The fraudsters,  politicians and talking heads that trade in this theft of the public purse at the expense of those truly in need are nothing short of contemptible.   

The Inalienable Rights gifted to us all by our Creator are not something the Government can take from us, nor can other citizens forfeit for us.   One generation cannot bargain away the Liberty of the next.

So, politically, that puts me in the Libertarian camp, or as best I understand it.  That means personal liberty to make the widest range of choices, and laws that encumber that freedom with personal responsibility.   I want politicians to reduce the sheer number of laws and especially rid us of those that limit personal choice.   I want politicians to rid us of government policies that unjustly pick winners and losers with our tax dollars at risk.    Lastly, I want to explore new ways to bring Justice to more Americans, rather than it remain the purview of the Rich and Powerful.   Our courts are a disgrace as is the prison system.

Part of the purpose of this blog is to define and refine those views.    It is also seeks to influence public policy and broaden citizen participation in the process.  So all views are welcome.   The only request being that my grandchildren will read this on occasion and I want to keep the discourse appropriate for those perfect sweeties.

If you want to add a new subject or issue, feel free to make a suggestion, followed by a viewpoint.

Tempus Fugit.


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *