E-Newsletter No. 16
If not us, who?________If not now, when?
As we noted last month, in February 2014 the US House of Representatives and US Senate passed legislation to suspend the country’s debt ceiling until March 15, 2015. Unfortunately, our elected officials chose to not deal with this new deadline. Treasury Secretary Jacob Lew wrote a letter to Congress, asking for an increase to the country’s debt ceiling, however, because the country’s legislators have not acted to raise the limit, the Treasury Department is implementing “extraordinary measures” to keep the federal government from defaulting on its debt. Some of these measures include putting a stop to contributions into certain federal employees’ pension funds, drawing down on other funds, and imposing moratoriums on payments to state and local governments. It is anticipated that these measures will enable the US government to push the problem off until September or October. Our Editorial Board has been disappointed (yet again) by our elected officials. President Obama’s fiscal 2016 budget proposal shows continued (growing) annual deficits out through the year 2025. There does not appear to be any serious discussions about fixing the country’s growing debt problem.
Last month, we began a discussion of Don Watkins’ book entitled RooseveltCare (How Social Security is Sabotaging the Land of Self-Reliance). In this month’s newsletter, we share some excerpts about the creation of Social Security and the beginnings of the Entitlement State – –
It is time to put the myths about Social Security to rest, and replace them with the truth: Social Security is an un-American program.
America was much freer before the Entitlement State. Americans took the Declaration of Independence seriously. The government played the important role of protecting us from criminals and foreign threats, but otherwise left us pretty much alone.
Government welfare “is an un-American thing” said the wife of an unemployed worker during the Great Depression. “It is a dole. No real person with a sense of responsibility wants welfare”. ….being on the dole is bad for the recipient, economically and spiritually.
One of our first “Progressive” presidents, Woodrow Wilson, was open in his contempt for America’s founding principles – – “It was (Thomas) Jefferson who said that the best government is that which does as little governing as possible… but that time is passed.”
Subsequently, FDR got his way with the passage of the Social Security Act of 1935. The 1935 act was funded by a 2 percent tax on wages up to a $3,000 cap. A pamphlet the government created to promote Social Security assured the public, “That is the most you will ever pay.” It was a particularly egregious lie in a campaign built on lies.
The proponents of welfare benefit rights needed to change people’s longstanding view that going on the dole was shameful. “Everybody is entitled.” They wanted to end the stigma of dependency. The goal was to “make dependency legitimate.”
It’s no mystery why we’ve seen this disintegration of personal responsibility. Responsibility flourishes in a society that preaches the virtue of responsibility, that rewards responsibility, and punishes irresponsibility.
The Entitlement State fosters a growing entitlement mentality, where unwary Americans support “free” health care, or where fast food workers demand a “living wage” far in excess of the federal minimum wage and/or what their skills can justify.
Now is the time, not to save Social Security and the Entitlement State, but to dismantle it.
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In next month’s newsletter, we will share some additional excerpts on how we can transform Social Security and begin to re-establish a Self-Reliant Society.
US Debt Clock – – March 1st – $56,615 per citizen / April 1st – $56,674