Why We Can Never Completely Trust Government
President Reagan once said that “government is not the solution to our problem. Government IS the problem.” We need government, for sure. When operating properly as a democratic Republic, government is limited and beneficial. It can be the foundation for our liberties and our desire for “life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness.” But it can also be the oppressor.
Like fire, when contained to its limited beneficial uses, it is a good thing. But when it rages out of control it is destructive, oppressive and life-threatening. The Founders understood that. That is why they drafted our Constitution for the sole purpose of restraining government. The Constitution gives us a few rules-of-the-road – such as how to elect Presidents and how the balance-of-powers work – but it is mostly about what government may not do – like take away our religious rights, free speech, owning guns and making us testify against ourselves.
Today, the political left is rising in praise of a powerful regulatory central government that controls our rights rather than protecting them. The very thing our Founders warned us against.
Over five decades of laboring in the fields of public policy and politics, I have developed 12 practical reasons why we should keep our government limited in its power over we the people. They describe the inviolate nature of government.
1. Cost of government programs will far exceed initial estimates.
2. Revenues projected to pay for programs will fall far below initial estimates.
3. Promised results will take longer than expected and may never be achieved at all.
4. All programs will be plagued by enormous waste.
5. All programs will be subjected to enormous corruption.
6. Temporary taxes will never end.
7. Spending cuts and tax cuts will not reduce either.
8. More bureaucrats will be hired than is necessary to do the job.
9. Temporary programs will never end.
10. Bureaucrats will never be held accountable for mistakes or misdeeds.
11. There will be no supervision or accountability for money spent by government.
12. For all the aforementioned reasons, the cost and quality of services provided government will be far below those provided by the private sector.
We should also keep in mind that it is government – and only government – that can take away our democracy and suppress our personal freedoms. Too little government is always better than too much. And today, we have too much – and trending toward more.
So, there ‘tis.