Tags: Government | The | Great | Enabler

Government - The Great Enabler

Monday, 02 June 2003 12:00 AM

Liberal politicians are screaming bloody murder and liberal media outlets are running story after horror story about how the sky is falling for poor Americans because of budget constraints.

The truth is that this is good news. It's about time people started taking care of themselves.

Now, before you get the impression that this column is going to be cold and uncaring about those who are down on their luck, consider this: It's perfectly acceptable for government to have a role in helping the deserving poor; in fact, government must shoulder that responsibility.

The problem in today's society is that the definition of "deserving poor" has broadened to the point that it also includes those who are guilty of poor planning, irresponsible behavior, and downright manipulation of the government's social services.

The view from the Left doesn't leave room for the asking of tough questions.

For example, is it not reasonable to ask senior Americans why they failed to plan for their own retirement? Is it reasonable to ask the young couple with four children why they continued to reproduce, knowing that they didn’t have the wherewithal to provide healthcare and insurance for that many children?

Are we allowed to question the welfare queen who has children out of wedlock, expecting the government to take care of them? And what about the men who get these women pregnant? Doesn't society have the right to demand that they foot the bill to care for the kids that they create?

The view from the Left considers those questions to be insensitive and judgmental. Lord knows that we wouldn't want to offend anyone - especially some young, unmarried woman who strolls into a convenience store with a toddler, an infant, and one on the way, to use her government-issued welfare card.

It's time to consider a few questions that the "non-judgmental" crowd would rather avoid. For example, isn’t it true that government, through its compassionate social services programs, has become the "great enabler," allowing the breakdown of basic morality? Doesn't government, by stepping in to help people who've made terrible decisions, make it easier for people to keep making those decisions?

Facts are facts. When government provides free childcare for single mothers, it is encouraging more single mothers. When government provides CHIP insurance for low-income families, it is saying that it's all right to have more babies than a family can afford. When government conspires to provide a pharmaceutical benefit, it is telling seniors that that government will take the place of their failure to plan for their old age.

The fact is that this attitude now permeates government almost from cradle to grave. In school, the free and reduced lunch program reaches out to children with the message that, yes, there is a free lunch.

Counselors in high school take it a step further by helping kids find someone else to pay for their college tuition. The message in our society from schools and government at all levels is like a trumpet blaring: Don’t worry! Someone else will take care of you! You don't have to be responsible for yourself!

We're mad at the French, while at the same time, we're becoming more like them every day.

So here in this bastion of socialism known as the United States of America, let's ask just a few more questions. Suppose that we passed a few laws (that would take effect gradually so as not to cause any immediate upheaval) that were designed to reverse this trend?

Let's say that we abolished CHIP insurance on the grounds that it's wrong to require some taxpayers to pay for the care of other people's children.

Suppose we outlaw government prescription benefits and instead, urge middle-aged people to look for private-sector policies or open medical saving accounts?

Suppose we tell welfare mothers that they will have to put the finger on the men who impregnated them? Why not go after those guys before taxpayers are asked to pony up?

The fact is that the very availability of social services to irresponsible people is the enabling factor that makes more people demand those services.

If we'd just stop it, then government could do a much better and more efficient job of helping those who are needy through no fault of their own.

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Liberal politicians are screaming bloody murder and liberal media outlets are running story after horror story about how the sky is falling for poor Americans because of budget constraints. The truth is that this is good news. It's about time people started taking care of...
Government,The,Great,Enabler
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2003-00-02
Monday, 02 June 2003 12:00 AM
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