Former Texas congressman turned right-wing activist, lobbyist and now through his “FreedomWorks” organization, major funder of the insurgent Tea Party movement, Dick Armey whips up a crowd of disenfranchised rubes at CPAC with an antagonistic speech railing against President Obama.
To all of these people that vehemently resent so-called “big government” I have a simple proposal: immediately stop utilizing any and all government programs.
Quit driving on our public highways and roads for starters. Turn off your municipal water supply and drill your own well to obtain water. Turn off all the power to your house because that likely comes from a crown corporation or has financial linkages to the nefarious government. Cease and desist from using the Internet, because that was developed by the government. Oh, and stop watching TV because we own the airwaves and simply lease them to private broadcasters. If you need medical treatment, go to a private clinic or fly to the USA (although that might be difficult as the airports themselves are run by quasi-private agencies). If your home is broken into, call Brinks or some private security firm to come to the rescue. Likewise, if your house catches on fire or better yet, grab a hose and put it out yourself. Oh wait… you can’t do that because the water is supplied by the government.
I’m being facetious, of course, but you get the idea. Hey, I’m not a fan of “big government” or bureaucracy either, but the fact of the matter is that despite all of its flaws, it provides the infrastructure that enables our quality of life to exist. Simply calling for an end to government “interference” is ridiculous unless such demands are backed up with solid, comprehensive and practical proposals for alternative methods of public service delivery.
As for the nub of Armey’s grievance about “income redistribution” — well, what’s so wrong with that? In countries such as the USA, Canada and the UK where the economic divide between the rich and the poor is now so abject as to be completely ludicrous and the “middle-class” is rapidly becoming an endangered species, is it really such an abhorrent idea to “spread the wealth”? And think about that for a bit… substitute the expression “spread the wealth” for “income redistribution” and see if the arguments maintain the same validity.