Alexis de Tocqueville, a Frenchman who toured the United States in the early 1830's, observed this about democracies:
A democracy cannot exist as a permanent form of government. It can only exist until the voters discover that they can vote themselves largess from the public treasury with the result that a democracy always collapses over loose fiscal policy, always followed by dictatorship. The average age of the world's greatest civilizations has been 200 years.
Nearly every state in the United States prohibits felons who are serving prison sentences from voting. Only after they have completed their sentence (in most cases) are their voting rights restored. In a similar manner, should the right to vote be taken away from someone whose income comes predominantly from the government, only to be restored after they get back on their feet economically? Such a measure sounds harsh, but it might help us avoid the economic tipping point that is upon us.
People who receive handouts from the government are much more likely to vote for someone who will continue to ensure that those handouts keep coming. Radio talk show host Jason Lewis calls our governmental leaders--those who proffer the handouts--the economic equivalent of "a nation governed by adolescents, willing to hand out candy" to just about anyone in order to perpetuate their power. Based on the number of people who receive largess out of the United States treasury, our democracy is on the verge of collapse.
In an interview with Jason Lewis on March 18, 2010, Representative Paul Ryan cited the following statistics:
- 20% of Americans get at least 75% of their income from the federal government
- Another 20% of Americans get at least 40% of their income the federal government
- 60% of Americans get more benefits from the government than they pay in taxes
- These statistics will get much worse if the health care plan passes that is currently before the Congress
- The Medicare program has current liabilities of $38 TRILLION dollars, which equates to a debt burden of almost $120,000 for every single person in the United States.
- The current health care plan steals half a trillion dollars from Medicare in order to give the lie to how much the plan will really cost
- Similarly, monies required to pay out Social Security benefits have been raided in order to hide the costs of the proposed national health care plan
The federal government already devotes 22 percent of its budget to two programs--Medicare and Medicaid, and that percentage is growing. The greatest economic mental mistake being made today is to compare the cost of U.S. health care with "socialized medicine" from other countries. The real comparison should be between their socialized programs and that portion of our health care system that has been socialized--the Medicare/Medicaid portion. When you make that comparison, it becomes clear that we've got to come up with a different plan, and that plan must involve austere debt reduction.
A debt crisis is on the horizon. The U.S. government, with you and I as proxy, is on the hook for about one hundred trillion dollars in entitlements and other obligations that it does not have. Perhaps unsurprisingly, loons and goons in the federal government think that it is safe to add to this monstrous burden of debt. If a corporation acted as irresponsibly as the federal government does (and if that corporation were not in bed with the federal government, as some are) all the major players in that corporation would be throw in prison for a very long time.
Collectively, America has become an addict, hooked on the mirage of free and easy money. It is unsustainable. Forget about the climate dragon. It's not real. It's the economy, stupid!
At some point, China, India, and other countries that hold mountains of American debt will think it no longer profitable to do so. When those chickens come home to roost, there will be nearly instantaneous economic cataclysm. We can't just sit here and pretend this isn't happening.