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November 7, 2008

Whither Goes America?

Joe Charlebois

What does it mean to be a patriotic American? Recently that question was brought up by some politicians and pounced on by many pundits. Well, if you don't jump to conclusions, like so many have, this subject can be looked at as a way to follow up on the true transformation of our society since its founding 232 years ago.


The president-elect suggests that it is only fair that those individuals and small business owners who produce $200,000 or $250,000 in income should pay an ever increasing level of taxes to be spread to the other 95% of the citizenry. Barack Obama was confronted by his opponents who said these are the defining characteristics of socialism. He chided his critics for calling this plan what it is, socialistic.


"John McCain and Sarah Palin, they call this socialistic. You know, I don't know when, when they decided to make a virtue out of selfishness?"


Since when is it selfish to want to be rewarded for one's own hard-work and keep the fruits of one's own labor?


This is the epitome of condescension. Simply stated President-elect Obama knows better what to do with your income than you do.


The current vice-president-elect suggests that it is your patriotic duty to pay more in taxes. Does he mean that the wealthiest Americans are the most patriotic?


Does he suggest that the bottom 40% of wage earners, who pay no federal income tax, are unpatriotic?


I don't think the senator from Delaware does, but it suggests that income redistribution is on its way. It also shows the left's true intention of full scale redistribution is to punish the "wealthy."


Mr. Obama, Joe Biden, why is it unfair to propose a flat tax, so that no matter what station in life someone is in, there is no disincentive to strive to become wealthier? Why should someone punish effort and industry?


Why should the squirrel, that spent all autumn collecting nuts, be forced by the other squirrels to share the nuts during tough times, especially when the other squirrels squandered their opportunity to collect nuts of their own? This is the system that the left is proposing. It is unfair, and it is an economic model that has failed time and time again.


Our Founders believed that through man's own industry he could succeed and prosper without the influence of government taxes and regulations. By definition "spreading the wealth," or the taking from those with greater wealth or means and giving to those of lesser means, is socialism. Even though many on the left may take exception to the use of the term, I ask, what definition would you give? What do those in Europe, who hold these beliefs, call themselves?


Our current system of government more reflects what European socialism is than what Adam Smith envisioned more than 200 years ago when he wrote of laissez-faire capitalism. With this new administration, it will become even more so.


We can't afford to implement these types of measures and still stand tall as the beacon of freedom and opportunity. We will be just another example of what governmental redistribution has done to the once prosperous country called America.


Everyone has a right in this country to fight for what they believe. But if you're looking for an America where socialism is the dominant political practice, I can guarantee that is not what the Founders would have called America or American.


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