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Every Thanksgiving I sympathize with lobbyists: can you imagine sharing their obligation to feel grateful for Congress? Amidst the vast, un-American growth of the administrative state, the world’s greatest deliberative body continues to do what it does best: taxing our children and passing the savings onto us.
The distinction progressives make between public and private is a false one. Many Americans know what it’s like to struggle beneath the weight of debt: not a day that goes by when my mailbox isn’t stuffed with offers from Visa or MasterCard informing me that I have been pre-declined.
Recall the heyday of the Tea Party, which relentlessly pointed out that every penny of the stimulus would have to be paid for by our children and grandchildren. Frankly, that’s the only thing I like about it. Even the New Deal wasn’t able to extend the Great Depression beyond a decade. Today, nearly one decade after the orgy of spending instituted during the George W. Bush administration, crony capitalists can say it was worth it. With each passing year, it seems government assumes more and more responsibility for our lives. Take solar subsidies — please! As Republicans and Democrats debate how much taxpayers should fund solar energy, let’s take a step back and realize that politicians have figured out a way to charge us for the sun.
The family I grew up in is typically American, represented by people on both sides of the political aisle: conservatives and Tea Party nutters. I was raised to believe that the sole role of government is to defend the shores and deliver the mail. But after a recent trip to the post office I realize that even this is asking too much. True, one can’t help but be impressed by the fact that going postal no longer means “murdering your colleagues” and now means “drunkenly steering a drone onto the south lawn of the White House.” As virtually all of the progress made in shipping parcels are made by private couriers like UPS and FedEx, the post office is increasingly seen for what it is: the DMV with stamps.
The GOP fancies itself as the party of limited government. Amidst all this growth in debt, spending and regulations, Republican leaders like Mitch McConnell and Paul Ryan should stop desperately deflecting criticism for government shutdowns and started taking credit for them.