Midnight Rantings

Tired rantings in a tired world.

Wednesday, September 29, 2004

Slippery Slope

Of all of the problems facing our country, I think the biggest is the loss of private ownership. This article by Walter Williams puts into words a great problem facing our country.
The question is are we a socialistic country? In this context I use socialism to mean the rights of the government trump the rights of the individual. With a little more time I probably could come up with hundreds of instances of "land grab" by a government. A government that promises the moon and stars has to find a way to pay for those programs. Instead of raising property taxes, a government can buy land and develop it thereby receiving more money than it collected before. There is no problem with a government doing all it can to foster economic growth in an area. However, the problem arises when the government tries an "end around" tactic to get the land. By using the power of condemnation, the government can condemn an area and then buy it for pennies on the dollar. This is used whenever a landowner decides the land is worth more to him than any amount of money.

Also, the government can tell us what we can and cannot do with the land we bought and paid for. How does this square with the sovereignty of the individual? The founders thought that government that governed best, also governed least. By telling someone that he cannot clear cut his land, fill in marshy areas, etc., the government is overstepping its bounds.

With loss of property rights, the slippery slope to socialism will be complete. Socialists never will understand that the power of the individual is what has made this country great in so many ways. Individualism is the spark for the entrepreneurial spirit and our military is built on the ability of flexible leadership. Self-reliance is a wonderful thing. It also comes with responsibilities. Unfortunately our executive branch with the aid of our judiciary has decided they know what is best for us. When will Americans wake up?