In past years of writing for a state-based, free-market think tank, I have suggested New Year’s resolutions aimed at Missouri policymakers. This year, my New Year’s resolutions are more personal and they go out to all Americans who are deeply worried about the future of our country. Is there no stopping the drift toward more spending and higher taxes, along with ever-increasing debt, heavier regulation, stunted growth, and greater and greater dependence on government? Are we about to barrel-roll over a Niagara-like “cliff” into a financial panic and a hard recession?
These are my resolutions for 2013:
1. Ask not what government can do for you; ask what you can do for yourself — without being a burden to others. Recognize, and encourage others to recognize, the grave danger that is posed by a supposedly “caring” government which is in the habit of making promises it cannot keep.
2. Do not go quietly into the dark night of buying into arguments about “fairness” and “social justice” as an excuse for the limitless expansion of government. You will be accused of being heartless, cruel, just plain stupid, or worse. But do not let others define you, or dismiss you — when they are the ones who press ahead in ignoring the lessons of history, common sense, and genuine humanity.
3. Always keep in mind that our history and form of government (unlike many other hopeful but fleeting “democracies”) were not built on the proposition of One Man, One Vote, One Time. The great debate in the U.S.A. about the size and scope of government did not end with the 2012 elections. But the proponents of big government are seeking cloture — attempting to discredit and marginalize those who continue to believe in liberty, limited government, and individual responsibility as the essential pillars of democratic self-rule and human progress.