My wife lived in Hollywood years ago. She worked in the movie business and is no stranger to those who are well off by the worlds standard. The funny thing is, living that lifestyle did not impress her or influence her in a negative way. Oddly enough, when we fly into Los Angeles to visit family, I am the one who is impacted by the “way-more-than-enough” lifestyle that is so prevalent in that area.
Let me make something very clear, I am not one to bash those who have tapped into a more financially abundant life. Those who are in the upper income bracket have talent, ability or giftings that put them there. No one should be criticized or attacked because they have been able to maximize their earning potential. That is the wonderful part of how our financial system works in America. Those who correctly position themselves to take advantage of the gifts and talents they have, and work harder, will always prosper. This is the beauty of capitalism, and historically it has worked quite well in establishing a higher standard of living for Americans.
Until recently, we have been a shining example for those who desired to come up from poverty and join us in becoming more than what they are. There is no other country in the world but ours where this is possible, and I am proud of that fact. However, as the political climate has grown divisive over the past 6 years, and we have begun to free fall into a welfare mentality, there has also been an unbridled hostility towards those who have the finer things in life. Strange as it sounds, none seem to be considering why these finer things are available to those who have them. Stranger still is the fact that what we hear in the media is the cry of those who want these finer things but don’t have them. What is disturbing to me is that people want these things at the expense of those who have actually earned and deserved them.
What we are witnessing in Obama’s America is the birth of a new kind of society. This is one where politicians, and the causes they decide to champion, rule unimpeded by the stroke of a pen. It is one that see’s people who have more-than-enough as bad, and those who want what others have as underprivileged victims. For the first time we have a political climate that is hostile to individuality, wants no accountability and desires to control those who walk in self-governance. It embraces and rewards anyone who looks to the government for provision, and applauds those who willingly surrender their personal freedoms in order to freely get what they have not worked for and do not deserve or appreciate.
Welcome to the realities of an entitlement society! This is a new brand of socialism that has been slowly creeping into the American culture. It has ridden into our lives on the back of a failing educational system. It has grown stronger with every new bill that has been passed to provide more handouts to those who find excuses not to work. It has gained support through the regulations and statutes that have been systematically put in place to make us a safer and more tolerant society. It has taken root and been promoted through a welfare system where morality is absent. Where meeting every need and want of those who think they deserve the best in life is the goal, even though they have done nothing to qualify them for that life.
What has been the outcome? Working Americans no longer trust any government agency and they despise politics in general. Adding to this is the fact that the government has attempted to make it so we no longer trust each another. This should bring to mind another time in history. I taught world history and it reminds me that during World War II the common people in Germany were the target of the state and they were actually rewarded for turning each other in. It sent a chill down my spine when I bought my hunting/fishing license and there were numerous questions unrelated to that activity. Then, on the wall I saw posters that boldly proclaim it was our civic duty to turn in poachers or anyone else we suspected of illegal activity. Does that sound like a police state to you???
What else do we see happening in Obama’s America? Well, prayer has been banned while “safe sex” is taught and condoms are handed out like candy on Halloween night. The result of this invasion of “planned parenthood” into our schools is that the number of unwed mothers has skyrocketed. This in turn has placed a massive financial burden on taxpayers and many schools must now provide daycare services or abortion counseling. The suicide rate among teens is at an all time high and the US has more people incarcerated than any other country in the world. Divorce rates are through the roof and more people are opting to just live together.
The above is an open attack on the biblical nuclear family, which further impacts the stability of the nation. Delinquency among children is at an all time high and the drop out rate from school of these at-risk kids is at its highest rate ever. The outcome of all this is unsettling to say the least. The number of people who have a lower education and who are on welfare has exploded. For many, government assistance has now become a generational way of life. In the minds of millions, their monthly welfare check is now viewed as a paycheck, and they seek to discover new ways to work the system in order to “get a raise”.
The solution we heard from our president was frightening, He concluded that the problems were caused by selfish rich people and that their wealth must be spread around. This may shock you but I absolutely agree. However, that wealth redistribution should happen weekly in the form of a real paycheck that is handed out because someone has gotten a job and they have earned a salary. We don’t need more rules or a higher minimum wage to make sure things are fair. We need more people who are willing to work and earn an honest living. There is no better way to spread the wealth around, and no faster way I know of for anyone to get their dignity and self-worth back than to get a job.
Do you want to see this nation return to it’s real vision and release it’s people so they can prosper? Then what follows are a few suggestions I have for those of you who may be listening.
#1. Tax everyone, rich and poor, individual and corporation, at the same percentage rate. No loop holes , no overtaxing the rich or under taxing those with a lower income. Everyone pays the same percentage on whatever their actual income may be. And yes.. tax those who receive a welfare check because that is still income. Those on welfare can contribute back into the system they are depending on. Also place a cap on how much welfare income can be, no matter how many kids people have.Welfare is supposed to help but it should never be the only income. Most of all provide job training for people on welfare so they can get off it.This will serve to help them find a job, limit family growth they can’t afford, and it will make them feel good about being productive members of society.
#2. No welfare for those who drop out or are thrown out of school because of bad behavior. No welfare for those who refuse to work, who are addicted to drugs or alcohol, or have a continually repeating criminal record. Welfare should be a short term privilege for those who have worked and lost their job. If someone was fired because of illegal activity or poor work habits then no welfare is deserved and it’s time to pay the price and be responsible for bad behavior.
#3. Welfare should be earned just like unemployment. No work invested means you have not earned any financial support from the taxpayers. If there is ever any fraud or illegal use of welfare money, that person is permanently cut off.
#4. A welfare check should be based on the actual receipts for correct spending. The initial check should be issued with instructions on how it must be used. All subsequent checks will be written as a reimbursement for the exact amount of receipts that the person brings back for legitimate expenses. Squander your welfare money on drugs, gambling, alcohol, tobacco, pornography or other wrong things and you’re all done!
#5. Provide income incentives for men and women who are a married couple. Give them tax breaks, give them reduced interest rates when they purchase a house or a car. Give them additional tax credits when they have children or adopt. Anything that strengthens the nuclear family strengthens the nation and our laws should reflect that.
#6. Eliminate the standard deduction when filing income taxes. Give direct, dollar for dollar credit to those who have legitimately contributed financially to recognized non-profit organizations. Why should anyone have to meet a certain giving level before all that they give counts? And why should those who gave nothing get any deduction at all?
#7. Abolish the IRS completely. Have all tax payments made directly to banks that are federally run and privately monitored. This money would then be placed directly back into the governments accounts and could be redistributed for immediate use where needed.
#8. Set up a separate agency apart from congress that reviews all grants, spending and subsidies where the government is currently giving away money. Those who make the laws should NEVER be the same people who give the money out. This agency should be made up of CPA’s, financial experts and those who are knowledgeable when it comes to the proper spending and distribution of large sums of money. This independent agency would be there to review and approve or reject requests, and distribute the funds on a defined distribution schedule through out the year, not in a lump sum. It should monitor all proof of spending and then have the power to immediately suspend funds from those who do not comply with the spending standard, or who mismanage the funds they got.
#9. End the ability of politicians to become lifetime political figures. Limit every elected politician to one ten year term, and a second five year term, if re-elected. This gives them plenty of time to develop a strategy and implement it for the common good. It also allows fresh blood to come into the political process. If at any time it is determined that the person has lost their political base, or that the people are dissatisfied with their performance, then a vote of confidence could be taken by a public vote the first Thursday of November. If the vote goes against the person, they vacate their office by January 1st and the individual who came in second in the original race takes office in their place. Provide a salary and a basic operating budget but eliminate all freebies to politicians. No free car, free plane rides, free health benefits, free postage or advertising and no massive retirement packages. Serving the public should be a short term honor not a lifetime all expenses paid membership to the Hilton.
#10. Give every existing business in America, and every new business, a 5 year break from taxes so they can build their company, hire people and plow that money back into business development. Give a reduced tax rate to any business that allows employees to take part in profit sharing. As the business profitability goes up it will be directly reflected back as a financial increase to the employees. In this way both the store and the employees are happy and both have a strong incentive to continue to do better.
#11. Provide trade schools to enhance the skills of those who are not academically oriented. This nation was and still is built on skilled, honest laborers and we desperately need more.
#12. Give incentives for people to own land and restart small sustainable farms or a family garden to feed their own family rather get food stamps.
#13. Expand the hunting and fishing seasons so people who hunt and fish can better provide for their families and depend less on the government.
#14. Leave small Independent contractors alone. Don”t regulate small business to death. allow small businesses to earn up to $50,000 without massive regulations and with some tax incentives.. This promotes small business and independent financial growth for the everyday American.
Can we change this nation? I say we can! But it will take specific adjustments in those areas that have promoted the problems we are now facing. Unless there is a clear and decisive break from the direction we are going, my concern is that the nation we knew, and loved, will permanently be no more. If that should happen, ask yourself one question, who will fill the vacuum that is left? Can you think of any other nation but the United States that can bring hope and vision to a world that has become increasingly hostile and unsettled? I can’t and if you are honest, neither can you! The bottom line is simple, if we don’t change we will not survive, and if we don’t vote well we will not change. The future of America is in our hands!