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Snake blights

December 15, 2012

[J.P.'s Moment of Common Sense on Broad View, KBZZ 1270 AM and 96.1 FM in Reno. Listen live Saturdays at 2:00 PM Pacific Time.]

From God’s lofty perspective, it must be discouraging to watch humanity make the same mistakes generation after generation. As a species, we seem unable to learn a lesson. Even in the beginning, when Adam and Eve were kicked out of the Garden of Eden for listening to a snake, that should have been the end of it, right? Lesson learned: listen to God, don’t listen to the snake.

Easy peasy.

But we’re still listening to the snakes. We seem drawn to the blights on our existence even when we know how bad they are, even when we know the harm they will cause. Maybe God isn’t discouraged but I’m certainly discouraged.

This past week here in Michigan I watched with fascination as union thugs tried to subvert the democratic process in Lansing. Lawmakers were discussing right-to-work legislation, which outlaws the requiremnt that employees join a union and pay union dues to hold a job. Inside the capitol, union members banged hardhats on metal railings trying to drown out the debate, while outside they slugged their opponents in the face and tore down tents, all to support a union structure that spent decades stealing their money and leaving them destitute in their retirement years.

Unions served a worthwhile purpose a century ago, but they’re blights on our existence now, ruining the companies they organize and bleeding their members dry while enriching the insiders who manage to become union officials. The Teamsters union is one of the worst. The Hoffa family has been stealing Teamster pension funds for over half a century now, but there was Jimmy Hoffa, Jr., earlier this week blasting the unfairness of right-to-work laws, probably hoping the hullabaloo in Lansing would distract people from his latest corruption scandal, which came to light two weeks ago.

What makes union members ignore union thievery and acquiesce in destroying the companies paying their wages? What makes Muslims become suicide bombers? What makes global warming fanatics demand higher energy prices? And what makes Democrats be Democrats? What makes people clamor for the stuff that destroys them? I don’t know but it keeps happening.

Look at the 20th century. The 20th century was defined by cataclysmic worldwide wars, three of them if you count the Cold War, all of them pitting nations that glorified the individual against nations that glorified the state – i.e., nations that glorified God’s creation pitted against nations that glorified man’s creation. We saw with our own eyes that raising the state above the individual was unworkable and horrifying. Hundreds of millions of human beings were massacred, executed, tortured, and starved in the name of communism, socialism, fascism, and those crazy deity-states in Japan and North Korea.

The lessons learned from those horrors were obvious, yet here we are in the 21st century listening to the same snakes telling us the same lies about how government control can solve problems. Watching it happen all over again is like watching a heroin addict line up a needle or an alcoholic open another bottle of vodka. If you know your history, if you believe in God and individual rights, you are filled with despair watching American citizens asking for bureaucrats to take over their land, their healthcare, their businesses, their retirement savings, and even their homes.

Three current news stories exemplify the blight that is government. In Florida, a mother took care of her cerebral-palsy-afflicted daughter for fourteen years until a bureaucrat from the Florida Department of Children and Families decided it was too much work for the mother and obtained a court order removing the daughter to a nursing home three hundred miles away. She died twelve hours after getting there... and they won’t even bring the body home. In New Mexico, a couple who bought 20 acres of desert land were told they can’t pick up the trash because a federal bureaucrat declared their land a waterway... even though there’s no water, not a drop. And in Queens, New York, victims of Hurricane Sandy with city-owned trees that fell on their houses have received citations from the city for “failing to maintain their property...” even though they can’t fix their houses until the city removes the trees.

The blight of government permeates every aspect of our lives, to the point where calling ourselves free Americans is a mockery of what that used to mean. Maybe the most damaging tentacle of the government octopus is where it has a suck-hold on our children. Public education is a blight that’s destroying us, but we keep listening to snakes who want more money and more federal control.

It’s discouraging because the growth of the state seems to have all the momentum. The bureaucrats are so happy and confident they’re even trying to add another layer. The United Nations is trying to get involved in educating our children, regulating our guns, controlling our Internet, and limiting free speech. Just what we need, international busy-bodies even less accessible than the busy-bodies already running our lives.

The trouble with snakes is they lay a lot of eggs which end up hatching new snakes.

That's... today’s dose of common sense.

"A blight never does good to a tree, and if a blight kill not a tree but it still bear fruit, let none say that the fruit was in consequence of the blight." – William Blake

"Or it needs only to look back over past centuries and the iniquities alike of populace, nobles, kings, and popes to perceive an almost incomprehensible futility of the beliefs everywhere held and perpetually insisted upon." – Herbert Spencer

From Grand Rapids, Michigan, USA       

December 15, 2012 - If you live out west you know the feds are getting worse and worse and their new weapon is declaring everything a "wetland" so they can use the Clean Water Act to control private property. There's no eminent domain hearing, no payment for losing your property rights, you're just screwed. That's what happened to the couple in New Mexico. 80% of the west is desert, but suddenly the feds are calling it all wetland. – Doug, Reno

December 15, 2012 - I was happy to see that Michigan passed the "right to work" legislation. I hope that we see a continued decline of unions across the country. I have believed for a long time that unions started being part of the problem and not part of the solution. Although those that currently belong to unions would disagree. They drank the Kool aid and believed that their unions were acting in the employees best interest. When in reality the unions are acting in their own best interest and if the employees get some good deals out of it, well that's a fringe benefit. Take for example, in Buffalo, NJ. A city that is in financial ruin, the teachers union actually negiotiated a clause that all teachers can have plastic surgery at no cost to the recipient of such services. The city is paying out millions of dollars that they can't afford and doesn't have. The city can't afford to renegotiate the contract either because they have no money. Recently Chrysler employees got caught drinking beer and smoking pot on their lunch hours. The unions went to bat for these individuals and they still have jobs. In Chicago teachers decided to strike just before school started and a contract was renegotiated at the expense of the city which is also deeply in the red. In Michigan the lack of attendance by teachers closed several schools. Because the teachers were in Lansing protesting the right to work legislation. Yet it's the same teachers that will tell you it's about the kids. (No its not or you'd have been in class) The same teachers unions protect teachers that shouldn't be teachers. All the parents pray your kid doesn't end up in their class. If you ever had the opportunity to watch waiting for superman it is truly enlightening regarding our teachers unions. It will be interesting to see over the next several years how things will play out for unions. Maybe these employees will figure out that no one can protect their own interest as well as they can do it themselves. – Pam T., Virginia

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