Are we paying attention?

Sept. 14, 2009
I guess the question should be, “Are you paying attention? Are you really seeing what is going on in Washington? In the last few months I’ve tried to inform everyone what kind of danger we are in. In the last seven months the people ...

I guess the question should be, “Are you paying attention? Are you really seeing what is going on in Washington? In the last few months I’ve tried to inform everyone what kind of danger we are in. In the last seven months the people now in charge of our government have been moving our country to another form of government. They believe that government actions are the answer to every problem. How long can taxpayers afford to pay for the ever-increasing scale of government without the generation of wealth that manufacturing has always brought to this country?

Our government has given millions of dollars of taxpayers’ money to financial institutions and insurance companies that continue to spend money as they have always done. At the same time, government officials blame banks for making loans that do not get paid, and direct banks to give loans to people that don’t qualify for them. The institutions aren’t blameless, but they have federal bureaucrats watching to make sure they made loans for the wrong reasons.

Our government now owns a majority share of one of the largest automakers in the world, and dictated the terms of the bankruptcy reorganization for that company and one of its competitors. So, the government “owns” banks and controls the fate of two major manufacturers and all their suppliers.

Taxpayers are footing the bill in order to provide money for people to buy new cars. A regulator has been authorized to “set” pay levels for executives of private companies.

The latest development is a plan for the government to establish a new “health care” system. The proponents say their plan won’t affect private insurance, but how can private plans compete with a government program that has no requirement to remain profitable? It will bankrupt private plans, leading uninsured masses to demand government health care for all.

The proponents say we need to “fix” health care in America. The truth is that health care in America is the best in the world. Do you see people traveling to Canada, Britain, Russia or anywhere else for treatment? No. They come here.

It’s true that health-care costs need to be managed better, but we shouldn’t destroy the system only to hand control to a new group of bureaucrats. Maybe we should ask why doctors must perform so many tests before making a diagnosis, or why drug companies pay such high liability costs, even when a government agency asserts that the available drugs are safe for the public.

Of course, some people have suffered under the current system. However, these cases are exaggerated because we have a litigious society that allows plaintiffs and their lawyers to take advantage of the injuries. Is it a coincidence that many of the government officials writing laws that protect lawyers and what they do are lawyers themselves?

Perhaps we need an overhaul of our own government? Maybe our leaders should learn to live within their means? Maybe more of our lawmakers should be people that have had to meet a payroll, or had to live with all the government rules and regulations?

There are people now in charge of our government whose strategy is to pass legislation before anyone can mount opposition. Are they afraid to defend their position? The Cap and Trade bill to address global climate change has over 1,200 pages. The U.S. House version of the health care bill had so many last-minute amendments that there was no way for anyone to know what they voted for: none of them read the bill’s 1,000+ pages.

During their recess, many Congressmen facing their constituents have found angry voters waiting for them. These citizens have been brushed off as some sort of conspiracy, but from the news footage I’ve seen they are ordinary people who are paying attention, and trying to avoid being crushed by a government moving too fast.

“Socialism” is defined as the stage that follows capitalism in the transition of a society to communism, characterized by the imperfect implementation of collectivist principles. It is a theory or system of social organization that advocates vesting the ownership and control of the means of production and distribution, of capital, land, etc., in the community as a whole.

Does this sound familiar? Are we seeing a trend? Pay attention, or soon you may find your freedom gone and nobody to help you get it back.

Contact James R. Grosmann at the National Tooling & Machining Assn., [email protected].

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