Below is an email from Every Child Matters - an email newsletter I signed up for because I do think that "every child matters." While I'm sure the group has good intentions, their efforts are a prime example of how "the road to hell is paved with good intentions." At the recent Udall/Bennett budget forum, Sen. Alan Simpson effectively answered such demands from liberal do-gooders.He rightly pointed out that failure of the Federal government to get on a fiscally sustainable path will cause much more hardship for children than cutting the budget by a few billion dollars (a miniscule amount of the trillions dollar budget)
When did this country come to the conclusion that every problem can only be solved by the Federal government? To hear Nancy Pelosi and Harry Reid talk, the Federal government is a Superman, serving meals to needy seniors and providing cancer screening for women. Is anyone else outraged that not only does the Federal government stick its nose in places never enumerated by the Constitution, but then, does not do its appointed job of keeping this country safe from intruders?
Americans have been asleep at the wheel for decades. We've been lulled into a false sense of security by the great history of our country. A broader look at history shows that every great nation has declined. The U.S. can go bankrupt and the forces who have been working for decades to take away our freedom by instituting a slow slide into government control of our lives by creating dependence on the government, have met many of their goals.
Civilizations have life cycles, as defined below: (accessed April 10, 2011 http://tgace.wordpress.com/2009/04/01/the-cycle-of-civilization/)
The Cycle of Civilization
Man begins his existence in bondage, and rises:
from bondage through spiritual faith,
from spiritual faith to courage,
from courage to liberty,
from liberty to abundance,
from abundance to selfishness,
from selfishness to complacency,
from complacency to apathy,
from apathy to dependency,
from dependency back into bondage.
I firmly believe a revolution (which takes courage) is brewing, and is now near the boiling point. My hope is that if we can get enough people to wake up to what is going on, we can bring about the needed changes to the Federal government, peacefully this time.
A quote in 1787 by Alexander Tytler seems relevant today. Tytler, a Scottish history professor at the University of Edinburgh, had this to say about the fall of the Athenian Republic some 2,000 years earlier:
“A democracy will continue to exist up until the time that voters discover they can vote themselves generous gifts from the public treasury. From that moment on, the majority always vote for the candidates who promise the most benefits from the public treasury, with the result that every democracy will finally collapse due to loose fiscal policy, which is always followed by a dictatorship.”
A recent seminar I attended noted that every dicatator who has come to power in the last few centuries has done so on the promise of "change." They have also used class and race warfare to divide the people. Quite concerning to me during the 2008 election period was a letter from a Cuban Émigré effectively comparing Obama to Castro. The only reason I'm not more worried about Obama is I think he is just the puppet. It's the puppet masters I worry about.
But I believe the American civilization can be different - better. Other civilizations have not had what we have - a Constitution which is the culmination of thousands of years of political wisdom. Sept. 17th - Constitution Day, should be a day of honor and thanksgiving. But the fight for freedom is ongoing and there is work to be done now. Lucky for us, all we have to do to change the future course of history is to exercise our rights of free speech (which I believe also includes a responsibility to listen and learn) and to vote.
We also need to be discerning in what we listen to and hear. Before I started on my extensive self education (NOT obtained from Fox News, Rush or Glenn Beck but from reading books such as the "History of Western Civilization" and "The Great Debate - the origins of the U.S. Constitution"), I would have swallowed, hook, line and sinker, the propaganda of groups such as Every Child Matters. After all, I am compassionate and want what is best for all people, as do many Americans. I hate to admit I've traditionally been a very bad conservative by voting for almost every tax increase - they always sound like they are for a good purpose. But I've got to realize to look beyond the superficial. I have to be smarter.
Smarter in this case, is to advocate for the three things the Tea Party stands for, fiscal responsibility, limited government (especially much more limited Federal government) and a return to following the constraints of the U.S. Constitution. Fiscal responsibility right now means pushing for a budget that is at least as "radical" as Paul Ryan's. (It was my impression upon first hearing about it, that it does not go far enough.) I've recently read some things that indicate others concur.
To return to a more Constitutional basis, we need to devolve power (i.e. money) back to the States (The People, per the Constitution) from the Federal government so if there are to be any tax increases, they certainly should not go to the Federal government. Isn't it ridiculous that we shuttle money to the Federal government (from the People), then let them dole it back out to the People, the States? While I'm not necessarily opposed to tax money for programs such as Head Start, it's a program that should be handled at the state level.
This has been a busy week in Washington DC. The Congress continues to fight over the budget for 2011, and House Budget Committee Chairman Paul Ryan from Wisconsin offered a proposal for 2012. We find the Ryan Budget to be extreme; it will threaten every program designed to promote the health, education, and safety of all children in the name of even more tax breaks for millionaires. Here is a brief overview of what is going on and what you can do to make your voice heard for children.
2011 Budget – Government Shutdown
The White House and Congress are going down to the wire on a deal on the budget for the rest of this year. If they do not reach a deal by midnight tonight, the federal government will shut down. Many federal employees will not go to work and programs like Head Start will have to operate without a guarantee of funding. As we have reported before, the House of Representatives passed a budget last month that includes over $7 billion dollars in cuts to children’s programs. These include reductions in, Head Start, community health centers, school-based health clinics, heating assistance to low-income families, K-12 education for low-income students, special education, afterschool programs, nutrition programs, the Maternal and Child Health Block Grant, Pell Grants for college students, child care assistance, and many other children’s programs. As of this writing, the Democrats and the White House have agreed to about $37 billion in overall cuts to the federal budget as opposed to the $61 billion in what the House of Representatives passed. It is uncertain which, if any, children’s programs would be cut in any deal, and we will reserve judgment about whether we support final passage until we see what is in the final agreement.
The 2012 Ryan Budget
The Every Child Matters Education Fund will not reserve judgment, however, on the proposal put forward this week by House Budget Committee Chairman Paul Ryan and passed out of the Budget Committee. The Ryan Budget will harm children now and in the years to come. The full House of Representatives will vote on this next week, even though the federal government could still be shut down over the budget for 2011. We urge you to call 1-888-245-0215 to reach the U.S. Capitol Switchboard toll-free and tell your Representative to Vote NO on the 2012 budget resolution.
Here are some basic facts about it and why it is so bad for our children:
The Ryan Budget adds trillions of dollars (at least $4.7 trillion) to the national debt over the next 10 years at a minimum. The added debt could be even greater because it uses faulty assumptions about the true cost of tax breaks given to millionaires and corporations. His plan would cut the top tax rate for individuals and corporations from 35% to 25%. He assumes this will lead to the government collecting more in revenue even though this has not happened with previous tax cuts passed by the George W. Bush Administration. They have led to the large deficits we have now. While Ryan decries debt throughout his budget, he does not propose balancing the budget before the year 2040, and the massive debt he would pile up would never be paid back.
The Ryan Budget would take away the comprehensive health coverage that millions of children currently receive. Nearly one in three children, more than 25 million, total receive c... a partnership between the federal and state government, are required to be enrolled and receive comprehensive care. The Ryan Budget would end this guarantee and jeopardize coverage by ending the federal guarantee of coverage for eligible children and replacing it with a “block grant.” When the government block grants a program, it gives each state a certain amount of money and does not require the state to guarantee coverage. The amount the government gives will not increase over time. This will allow states to deny coverage to children who have it and reduce the benefits they currently receive. Millions of additional children are slated to enter Medicaid or the State Children’s Health Insurance Program as a result of the health care reform passed last year. As many as 45 million children could be covered by the federal fund...
The Ryan Budget would impose deep cuts to every children’s program to pay for further tax breaks for millionaires. The Ryan budget lowers the top tax rate that millionaires and corporations pay to 25%. To pay for this, he would cut every children’s program back to the level of funding they had three years ago, before the recession began, and hold it there for the next five years. We would spend significantly less on child care, preschool education, K-12 education, child health care, child abuse prevention, and everything else the government does to educate and protect children. At a time where one in four children lives in poverty, one in three fourth graders does not read at a basic level, and where millions of young children are shut out from Head Start, these cuts would make preparing children to succeed in the 21st century all the more difficult.
A budget is more than a collection of numbers, it is a statement of our values as a nation. A country that does not prioritize its children jeopardizes its status as a leading economic power. Click here, here, and here to read in-depth about what the Ryan Budget would mean for you and your family.
It doesn’t have to be this way. We need your help.
Please call your Representative - call 1-888-245-0215 to reach the U.S. Capitol Switchboard toll-free. Call any time between now and when the vote occurs (we don't yet know when next week).Ask to be directed to your Rep's office and deliver a message like this*:
I am a constituent and I strongly urge you to vote NO on the House Budget Committee's Budget Resolution. It would slash Medicaid, Medicare, food stamps, education... in fact, all the investments that put American children on a pathway to success. It denies vital help for low-income and middle class families while giving trillions of dollars in tax cuts to millionaires and big corporations. Please reject these extreme proposals - they would weaken federal protections in a recession and stall economic growth for us all.
Click here to tell us what they say.
We will give you much more information over the next few weeks about what Congress is plotting next and what you can do to stop it.
Every Child Matters Education Fund