Tuesday, July 26, 2011

The OPM of the Masses

America, it is time for an intervention!

Karl Marx, in 1843, wrote a phrase concerning religion being the “opium of the masses” (translated from German). Today, we have a new opium for the masses in America. The government’s drug of choice for the people is OPM – other people’s money.
The apparent goal is to have a majority of the population, especially those of voting age, receiving financial benefits from the federal government. That monthly check in the mail, from the United States Treasury, is very addictive. Once dependent upon a regular check for normal subsistence; the recipient, in the financial area, tends to become more of a single-issue voter. “Don’t mess with my benefits!”
To make this point: how many people that you know voluntarily quit a government program where they are receiving financial help; or, how many government programs can you name that have been scaled back or eliminated after there is a large group of the public receiving regular financial benefits? It just does not happen and when anyone proposes to do something that will affect those checks, they can expect rioting in the streets; or as recently witnessed in Wisconsin, in the capitol building.
Politicians have been using OPM to addict voters for generations. During some periods of our political history, it has been a race by both major parties to see which one could cause the most to be addicted.
This is not an issue that has to do with race, religion, ethnicity, or any preference one may have. It crosses just about every line in our society. From the rich to the poor, the east to the west; we have a society dependent upon regular financial help from government. We have been tempted and we have succumbed. We may tell ourselves that just one check will not make us addicted. To some, that is true; but with many, the lure is too great to ever want to go back to a life of independent, self-responsibility. Why do all the hard stuff when government will just give me OPM?
Here are some current statistics: the number of people currently receiving unemployment benefits is 14,100,000; there are over 43,000,000 on the food stamp program; etc. Then there are these programs: pell grants for college, medicare, medicaid, subsidized housing, rental assistance, help with utilities, school lunch program, free milk for mothers, free cheese to the needy, farm subsidy program, disability, government sponsored retirement benefits, federal grants to states and cities, federal highway money; and the list goes on and on. This does not include the millions who are in government employment or the financial bailouts to banks, insurance companies, etc. 
In some form or another, most of us receive some form of financial benefit from the government. To many, it may be something we do not even notice. To others, it is their livelihood.
All of this has one thing in common; probably none of these programs are Constitutional. For decades we the people have been the enablers to permit this growing addiction to continue. Now, without a serious intervention and treatment, the system will surely die. We cannot continue on this same path and expect to be healthy – ever!
To the co-dependent politicians, we are arranging help for each of you. We are going to send you back home and make you face the reality of your disease. To the addicts, the path is unsustainable that you are currently following. The crops of OPM must be shut down and you must take the steps necessary to recover. 

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