The Independent Voice for Conservative Values
and the Conscience of the Conservative Movement
Less Government is the Best Government
What is the Proper Role of the Federal Government?
by Scott Rohter, October 2011
What is the proper role of the Federal Government? Is it their job to fix all of the ills in society? Where do some people get the idea that the Federal Government is just a big sugar daddy who is supposed to fix everything in life and make everything right? That is not the role of the Federal Government. The notion that Washington is supposed to correct all of the ills in society comes from the monumental failure of our educational system to teach the true nature of freedom and the meaning of personal responsibility. The lingering consequences of America's legacy of slavery which is still felt more than one hundred and fifty years after it was abolished has given rise to an entitlement mentality like no where else in the world.
Freeing African Americans without teaching them about their new rights and responsibilities as citizens did not facilitate their assimilation into society. After slavery was abolished America had only itself to blame for not helping the millions of new citizens to adjust to their new lives. We have only ourselves to point our finger at. Americans were rather naive to assume that after 200 years of enslaving African Americans, that the children of four generations of slaves would instinctively know how to conduct themselves as free men and women. Later we made matters worse by overcompensating for our earlier shortsightedness. Instead of fixing the problem all of our efforts have only exacerbated the original sin of slavery and produced some profound side effects. The most glaring side effect is the demonstrable feeling of entitlement that the African-American Community has today. I guess many Black Americans feel that turn-around is fair play.
We are all victims of our past, and the chains of slavery are still dangling around our ankles and over our heads. You can hear those chains every time that Al Sharpton opens his resentful mouth to tell us that we need a stronger Federal Government, or when Congresswoman Maxine Waters points a finger at us again and tells us that the Federal Government should do this or that which is not theirs to do under the Constitution, or whenever Jessie Jackson shakes down another American corporation for money. There are only a few leaders of significance who question the increasing role of the Federal government in our lives. They are almost never given a national podium from which to educate the American people about the danger of expanding the role of the Federal Government. The entitlement mentality is just one of the factors that is responsible for bankrupting our country financially and morally. Some of the other factors that are also contributing to America's accelerating decline are:
Where does the idea come from, that the Federal Government is supposed to fix everything and make everything right?when the Federal Government use to declare some place was a Disaster Area, that used to mean it really was a disaster area. Now federal disaster relief is as common as rain and as frequent as a river that overflows its banks every year. Requests for Federal disaster assistance are as frequent as a big gust of wind or a strong ocean surf. It's not just Washington politicians who are pandering for votes that are to blame. State Governors are also fueling the problem with a myriad of requests for federal assistance. Everyone has lost perspective. The qualifications for Federal Disaster Assistance have been downgraded to be almost meaningless and everybody acts like Federal money just grows on trees like ripe fruit for the taking.
Here are just two examples of government largesse in my home state of Oregon. The big earthquake and the tsunami that struck Japan back in March, 2011 was truly a national disaster of epic proportions for Japan, but there was no tsunami on the west coast of North America. Slightly higher than normal waves did pound the small coastal town of Brookings, Oregon and they wiped out a small dock and a little fishing pier. What happened in Brookings was not a national disaster on anybody's sizemometer, nevertheless Oregon's Democrat Governor blew it all out of proportion and he requested Federal Disaster Relief Assistance from Washington. To my surprise the little town of Brookings, Oregon was officially declared to be a Federal Disaster Area by President Obama, and then it qualified for taxpayer subsidized Federal Disaster Relief Assistance.
In my own County there was another example of the ever expanding role of Washington in our lives. Lane County is known for its covered bridges. Oregon's early pioneers built these wooden wonders, and they are still one of our State's favorite tourist attractions, but because they are made out of wood, they need to have regular maintenance and repairs from time to time. Oregonians built these bridges without any help from the Federal government, and we have maintained them for over sixty years without Washington's assistance, but apparently we just can't do it by ourselves anymore.
One of our historic covered bridges recently needed a new roof and a fresh coat of paint. It also had a slight little sag in the middle caused by years of heavy logging trucks going over it. So the Lane County Board of Commissioners petitioned the Obama Administration for federal assistance to perform the necessary repairs to the bridge. Through a Federal Highway Grant and other federal funding sources, the money to perform the repairs was secured, and the work to the bridge was completed,bit none of our Lane County Commissioners are the descendants of slaves so they should all understand the proper role of the Federal government. They know the rights and responsibilities of free people. In addition they are aware that Washington is almost 17 trillion dollars in debt. What is their excuse for having an entitlement mentality?
"The truth, the political truth, and nothing but the political truth.
A journalist has no better friend than the truth." - Scott Rohter