I know a former PTA President who had parents lobbying to have their kids declared special needs, because such a child (a) got more resources and (b) had a better chance of getting into the better schools. This suddenly came back to my mind here on our Glorious Fourth – the day we celebrate the independence of our nation. In a nutshell, this is what is wrong with the United States. People are demanding more and more special treatment and Big Government has set itself up as the dispenser of special treatment…and you’re a fool not to grab as much special treatment as you can. Of course, this makes you entirely dependent upon government (and your ability to whine until someone in government gives you something unearned). This, I suspect, it not what the Founders had in mind.
If you want to see where we’re heading, don’t pay too much attention to what the Democrats are up to – they still, to maintain electoral viability, pretend to hold to some of the old, American ideals. If you want to see the future, check out the Green Party plan. Here’s a sample:
Abolish student debt to free a generation of Americans from debt servitude. Guarantee tuition-free, world-class public education from pre-school through university. End high stakes testing and public school privatization.
You know me, I’ve advocated abolishing student debt for a long time – coupled with abolishing the student loan program because all that program does is allow colleges to charge ever higher tuition while incentivizing colleges to dumb-down the curriculum because the easier you make college, the more tuition-paying students you get, the more money you have to over-pay professors and administrators (and donate to Progressive causes, of course). The Green Party takes whats wrong about student loans and just puts it on steroids. Now there won’t even be the slight discipline of having to eventually pay back the money…its all “free”, and you can bet your last dollar (if you had one, after paying the taxes for all this) that curricula would become even more vapid as more and more kids are shoveled into the schools so they can sit there until they are 30 providing massive funding for the colleges (and Progressive politics).
If you look over the whole plan, you can see that it’s a litany of proposals to massively increase the power of government. It is absurdly titled the “Power to the People” plan, as if the people will have any power under a system where, among other things, we’ll be forced to transition to “renewable” energy by 2030. But that is how our Progressives view the world – we can’t be free unless we are all forced to live the way Progressives think best for us. Everything is to be owned by the “people”, but of course all the people can’t simultaneously turn the crank of government – just a select (self-selected, naturally) few will be able to do that. You and I will just have to wait and see what comes out – for those most juiced in, a great life; for the rest of us, our potato rations and permission to have electricity 6 hours a day. And while this is the far-out, kook Green Party plan of 2016, you can rest assured it will be standard Democrat party boilerplate by 2024 or so.
Will the people rebel against this, or will they – like those parents shouting at the PTA – merely demand a cut of the government swag?
The whole system is a mess – and it just keeps getting worse. And the answer to Progressive failure is always to apply more Progressivism. I don’t know how we break the cycle. How, that is, we get people to understand that the reason things are lousy is because of the programs allegedly designed to help. It is massively difficult to get someone who is receiving SNAP to understand that they are forced to used SNAP because SNAP exists…and that if SNAP didn’t exist, they wouldn’t starve but would, instead, live in a free society where hard work would raise them up to the point where SNAP isn’t needed. It is hard to get people to understand that the reason they are being harassed (at least in their view) by the police is because the Progressives (who say they are anti-police) are making law after law after law which essentially forces the police to harass the people. It is hard to get people to understand that the fat cat CEO is making all that money because Progressives set tax and regulatory policy just so the CEO can make all that money, even as he ships jobs overseas.
But we have to figure out how to do it before such a large majority is dependent upon government (either for their crumbs from the table, or their position high on the table) that they won’t dare to rock the boat. 2016 is turning out to be a wasted trip for Conservatism – even if Trump manages to win, it won’t help us and may, indeed, harm us as Trump gets identified with Conservatism and starts to screw up. But for 2020 and beyond, we’d better think anew and act anew. Time is running out for the freedoms we declared on July 4th, 1776.