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It is NOT Washington’s primary job

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It is NOT Washington’s primary job

It is NOT Washington’s primary job
April 16
13:07 2020

The authoritarians are at the gate … again.

America’s Founders carefully crafted a constitution to create a bottom-up federal system in which most responsibilities and powers would rest with the people.  They recognized that the greatest threat to the personal freedoms of an individual was a strong authoritarian central government.  If you study our Constitution carefully, you will notice that the number one thing that it warns us against is the evolutionarily increasing power of the most distant government – Washington.

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That is why they strongly emphasized states’ rights and gave us the much ignored Tenth Amendment – stating that ALL rights not EXPRESSLY granted to the federal government in the Constitution are to be reserved by the states and the people.  They repeatedly expressed their concern that the danger of authoritarianism was ever present in the body politic.

The spirit of America was described in what was called “rugged individualism.”  We commonly discouraged other such civic clichés as, “Don’t make a federal case about it.”  In addressing the nature of the new American government, Benjamin Franklin said it was “a Republic IF YOU CAN KEEP IT.”

In empowering we the people, the Founders gave us the ability to make their creation “a more perfect union”  — which we did with the abolition of slavery, extending the right to vote to women and 18-year-olds and in so many other ways.

But we always had within the civic breast the malignancy of authoritarianism.  Shifting decision-making away from the influence of the public in favor of autocratic (bureaucratic) rule – to be governed over by a self-privileged elite.  The philosophy that solutions can only come from the most distant government is the snake oil of progressivism.

True to the Democrats manta to never let a crisis go to waste, the civic cancer of authoritarianism is again spreading.  It seeks hosts among those who live in a state of perma-fear and are susceptible to the fearmongering of the left – the impossible promise to save them from any and all strife.

Central government authoritarianism is all the rage among the left-wing intelligentsia and the millionaire left-wingers who give us our news (their views) every day.  You hear their voices when they claim that Washington, the President or the Congress is not doing enough – not doing the things that several states and our local communities bear the primary responsibility if we are truly a federalized Republic.

The COVID-19 outbreak has given the authoritarians yet another opportunity to put their snake oil on the market.  In an overarching manner, they claim that the federal government (Trump) is not doing the job of providing millions of ventilators and billions of gloves and gowns to local hospitals.  The claim is based on the false assumption that it IS the federal government’s job to be the national warehouse.

In a federal system, it is the job of the local hospitals and local governments to anticipate future and emergency needs and provide for their communities accordingly.  It is the role of Washington to support those efforts in times of crisis, but not to supplant local primary responsibility.

The issue of ventilators is a good example of progressivism.  This exposes two of the authoritarian’s tactics.  By blaming Washington for not anticipating and providing the needs of local hospitals, autocratic Democrats – like New York Governor Andrew Cuomo and Big Apple Mayor Bill de Blasio –avoid responsibility for what was their own misjudgments and errors.  If there was any primary burden of responsibility it rested on their shoulders.  Their pleas to the federal government were just evidence of their own failure.

The ventilator issue also exposes another tactic of authoritarians — spreading fear through rumors and false statements.

You will recall how we were warned over and over and over about the “shortage” of ventilators.  Every six days, Cuomo would say he would be out of ventilators in … six days. He requested 30,000 from Washington.  When Trump said New York would not likely need 30,000, the elitist press jumped all over him like vultures on roadkill. Trump was correct – and Cuomo never got his 30,000 ventilators and never ran out of ventilators.

For weeks, horrible stories about people dying – or about to die — for a lack of a ventilator dominated the authoritarian news.  “We are running out! We are running out!”  But we not only never ran out, we never even used all those available.  California sent 1000 that they did not need to New York.  Florida sent another 100. But New York never needed 30,000 more – not even close.

House speaker Nancy Pelosi’s contribution to the federal stimulus and relief legislation is to tuck in a number of provision that have virtually nothing to do with the crisis – economic or health-wise – but are designed to grab more authority for the bureaucrats in Washington over Grassroot rights and responsibilities – taking control over our government further away from we the people.

In many ways, we are like the fabled frog.  If you drop him in a pan of hot water, he will jump out immediately.  But if you put him in cool water and heat it gradually, he will die there.

For generations, we have shifted more and more power to the elitists in Washington – the establishment, as it is called.  At some point, the power of Washington – and those self-appointed to rule over us – will end America’s great experiment as a democratic republic.   Our states and cities will no longer be the base of the people’s power, but merely departments of a massive central government.  You can see examples of that in other authoritarian governments, such as China, Russia and Iran.  We are not there yet, but we are moving in that direction.

When capitalism was on the rise in China – before Xi Jinping – I was asked by a government official, “Why is America moving in the direction that we are running from?

We are not there yet, but the water is getting pretty warm.

So, there ‘tis.


About Author

Larry Horist

Larry Horist

Larry Horist is a conservative activist with an extensive background in economics, public policy and politics. Clients of his consulting firm have included such conservative icons as Steve Forbes and Milton Friedman, as well as the White House. He has testified as an expert witness before legislative bodies, including the U. S. Congress, and lectured at major colleges and universities. An award-winning debater, his insightful and sometimes controversial commentaries appear frequently on the editorial pages of newspapers across the nation. He can be reached at lph@thomasandjoyce.com.

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