Two items in the news have me asking this question: Do we Americans understand the great gift we've been given?
The other day MY president, George W. Bush announced that he would spend hundreds of billions of tax dollars to rebuild a city that was decayed, corrupt, and existing only because of government largesse. New Orleans is one of the poster children for everything that's wrong with our country: entitlement mentality, poverty conditioned by and nurtured by welfare, corrupt race-based politics, diversity based decision-making and poor political choices. The best thing for New Orleans to do in the wake of Katrina, many have argued, is to cease to exist. Rather than move the population to a place better suited for empowerment and growth, such as Houston, the federal government is going to rebuild it on federal funds, nourishing the very wrong-headed ideas that ruined it in the first place. The local Democratic politicians have made the city a place where meaningful and worthwhile employment is a thing of rarity. Now Bush and the Republican congress want to make things even worse, removing any "I told you so" epithets they would have been rightly been able to hurl. Already calls have been made to begin WPA-like programs, in an effort to create make-work positions funded by federal largesse! This will be lauded by both sides of the aisle in a short while, mark my words!
Meanwhile on the other side of the Atlantic, Germany just held an election where a socialist incumbent was narrowly bested by a "conservative" who, as one of her platform issues, proposed a flat tax! Germany, as most of Europe, is in the throws of a disease called socialism. Their productivity is being sapped by an entitlement mentality the likes of which we in America can't even begin to imagine. That's why a guy like Kerry was so intent on modeling his government platform on a European basis. Taxes are eating their society away, and entitlement sucking laggards are the base of the population, destroying the once great productivity of the country. In an effort to move the country to the right and change the course of this juggernaut, Angela Merkel and the Christian Democratic Alliance, hitched their campaign to the gimmick of a flat tax. Unfortunately, she did not hold tight enough to the idea to make people believe that she was truly behind the concept. When Schroeder claimed that a flat tax would impoverish the country, leaving women and children starving in the streets, instead of standing up and telling the truth, she waffled. This little bit of indecision on her part, caused the people to blink, and the strength of a true concensus was lost.
I guess it's enough to see that people are starting to see the light in old Europe. At least these ideas are being spoken about aloud, rather than whispered behind closed doors. Now if only we would realize that it is we who have it right, and not them, maybe there will be hope for us all.