Thursday, July 30, 2009

Individuals or Government Bureaucrats?

When you think about the decisions you make in your daily life, are you more comfortable making your own decisions or would you rather have someone else make decisions for you? There are many decisions we make on a daily basis like the car we drive, the food we eat, where we shop, the clothes we wear, the house we live in, to rent or own, the doctor we see, the people we associate with, or don’t, our career choice, save more or spend more, to name just a few of the millions of decisions we make. I believe I make some really good decisions, and for the businesses and people I choose to deal with I think they get benefits as well. This is the basis of freedom. The bases of freedom is to allow individuals the right to associate with who they want and to engage in commerce with who they want which results in both good and bad outcomes.

Our constitution is one that respects, encourages, and protects individual freedom from group pressure and extortion. It is a concept we live every day and it works well for everyone including the greater society so why are we so easily convinced to give up those choices to government bureaucrats? Who are these government bureaucrats? And why will they make a better decision than the ones we will make?

I am amazed and one day may do a study on why we as Americans have a propensity to believe it is better to allow government to do something rather than private citizens or private business. My gut instinct is this concept of transposing our good onto others we don’t know. Also, years of demonizing private business, profits, and corporate executives has taken hold. Our media has done a horrible job of balancing coverage in this area.

Here are the beliefs our media has instilled:

• Profits encourage bad behavior
• Corporate executives are mostly greedy and will do anything for a buck
• Non profits are in it for the feel good outcome
• Government is benevolent and has the citizens best interest at the fore front

All of these premises are false and have only anecdotal evidence to the contrary. I have to believe that if we as individuals were to look at what government decisions have done to us over the years we would think twice about giving it more decision making power. I only ask you to remember the VA hospital expose showing the complete disregard for our veterans. They decided not to put money into the facilities which created despicable conditions. The federal government thought it was a good idea to give loans to people without verifying income because that was somehow discriminatory toward the poor. We have seen the results of that decision. The government’s lack of decisions to address the solvency of our Social Security program which will go bankrupt. The government’s decision to create a welfare system that incentivized woman to keep husbands out of the house. The result has been generations of fatherless children terrorizing our cities. I could go on and on…

The most recent effort to take away more freedom is the Healthcare debate. Healthcare is currently a mess because individuals have been taken out of the payment for healthcare services. The current system has Insurance people making decisions on how much a doctor’s services are worth. And the government pricing controls on Medicare and Medicaid have falsified the true cost of services having a negative effect on the entire market. A completely government run program will be worse. Just think about it for a moment; the results are predictable; higher costs, lower quality, government rationing, less doctor’s willing to practice, underground markets, earlier death rates for our grandparents, greater intrusion into our personal choices under the guise that our choice to eat Twinkies or drink beer will cost the government healthcare system more therefore the government will punish you for consuming them, and a finally giving government a role in healthcare will be a complete hand over of our God given right to life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness.

But the simple question really is why would we let any decision that impacts us as individuals be made by anyone but ourselves? Why would we give up our freedom to choose anything in life to a government bureaucrat? The results are clear and documented. Government decisions end in failure. Freedom is a precious commodity, a God given right, but so easily given away under a promise of making life easier. Life is not easy, freedom is not easy, but both are worth the time it takes each individual to make choices.

Do you choose your destiny in life or do you hand it over to some government bureaucrat to make the right choices? Based on the evidence I think the answer is easy…

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