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01.20.2012 0

Are we over the edge?

By Rick Manning — I wonder if we have lost our nation.

I don’t come to the conclusion lightly.  But, If those Americans who take more in benefits from the government than they produce have not already overwhelmed the system to form an effective majority, they are perilously close.

As early as elementary school, I wondered how the Roman Empire fell and could not understand it.  I learned something of the dole system that was established to help make the poor dependent upon the Imperial government, but did not fully understand the correlations.

Now, America is on the verge of putting itself on auto-pilot to insignificance, crushed under the weight of debt to support those who have the political numbers to protect themselves from the necessary spending cuts that would save our country.

The government itself has grown so large that too many Americans look at it as the founder of their feast rather than a necessary evil.

So, while the people will rise up on issues that affect their entertainment like the Wikipedia led outrage over the Internet piracy bill, they are sanguine on real issues that cut to the heart of our nation’s survival.

Since October 1, 2008, our nation has spent $5.2 trillion more than we have taken in, and the size and scope of government continues to expand.  To put the total national debt into perspective, 15.2 trillion dollars is the equivalent of 15,251 billion dollars or one million dollars multiplied 15.251 million times.  And we keep adding more than one million dollars multiplied by a million to it every year.

To make matters worse, the U.S. Congress’ Joint Committee on Taxation found that in 2009, 51 percent of all households, which includes filers and non-filers, paid no income tax for tax year 2009.  In the same year, the Committee also found that 30 percent of households that filed taxes received more money back from the government than they paid into it throughout the year.

In addition, the Wall Street Journal quotes just released U.S. Census Bureau data which shows that 48.6 percent of Americans live in a household receiving some form of taxpayer funded assistance.

That’s right.  Almost one half of Americans are at least partial beneficiaries of some kind of government dole, and according to USA Today only 54 percent of the people who file tax returns end up paying any taxes at all.

Just sixteen years ago, three out of four tax filers paid some taxes, making the lower taxes argument a clear political winner.  But today, with almost half of tax filers not paying any taxes and many of those actually getting more back from the government than they paid in, the political advantage enjoyed by those who pay taxes over those who demand services has been lost.

The political advantage lies with the 49 percent of the people who are in households getting taxpayer assistance instead of those who make the money and pay the freight.

The very best case scenario is that America is at the tipping point where the balance between those who demand government services and those who pay for them is teetering, and the parasites are about to overwhelm the host.

Incredibly, in the end, the parasites are likely to not only demand that the producers provide for them, but also that their hosts apologize for providing goods or services of sufficient value to create an income that puts them in the taxed rather than beneficiary category.

This upcoming election will determine if the beneficiaries of government control the ballot box.  If they do and Obama is re-elected, the producers of wealth in America can only hope to fight an ever more futile rear guard action as even the politicians who pretend to support them are truly only milking them for their personal gain.

Obama’s new normal will be established with ever lower expectations for individual wealth from an increasingly diminished economy, and the President will have kept his 2008 campaign promise to transform America.

There is no other issue facing our nation that is more important than this battle between those who are government wards and those who pay the freight.

America has a choice of who she wants to be in the future.  I pray that the voters choose wisely.

Rick Manning is the Director of Communications for Americans for Limited Government.  The views expressed herein are his alone and should not be construed as official positions of any organization.

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