Santa Cruz Indymedia :
Santa Cruz Indymedia

Are you really surprised?

This government can tax your usage of electricity, water, and gas to pay for parks and swimming pools. It can put your kids on Ritalin. It can make you pay a several hundred percent tax on cigarettes so that localities can enjoy windfall slush funds to balance their books. It can force your kids to hear about sex -- even exotic sex -- before they are ready or willing to know. It can send young adults who are barely more than children into wars that kill plenty of real children among the thousands dead -- and make you pay to equip and provide for the army! It can seize the apparatus of a pirate radio broadcaster and put that person in jail, ostensibly to protect the right of the conglomerate broadcaster that bought out your hometown radio station to run the same syndicated program it broadcasts from similar outlets up and down the state. It can force your children to attend a failing school where crime threatens their well-being even their lives. It can remove your right to choose your electricity provider so you'll have no choice but to pay high rates to annointed providers who are trying to get out of financial disaster encountered during faux-deregulation that was also overwhelmingly approved by the government. It can force you to drink fluoridated water as a medical treatment for your teeth, even though patients of sound mind (or their guardians) usually have the right to refuse any and all treatment. It can, through weapons control laws, prevent you from defending yourself properly against criminals who do not obey those same laws.

I could go on and on. But why bother? The State already has the power, and clearly they don't have a problem with abusing it.

What are you going to do about that? Unfortunately, your options as a voter and citizen are limited and fairly blunt. Maybe you should quit voting for taxes and bonds except in the most urgent and necessary cases. Maybe you should enforce term limits on elected officials by voting them out of office after a couple of terms, maximum. Maybe you should never approve a law that passes decision making power from individuals to the State, unless the result of one's decisions causes real harm to another. Maybe you should quit voting for candidates that don't agree with this approach.

For the most part, the State gets its power little by little, dollar by dollar. The first and most important thing to do is quit feeding into it. This does not mean that you should quit voting. Rather, you must vote consistently to halt the growth and influence of a government that already has too much power and commands too many resources. If you get a chance to approve an actual ROLLBACK, jump on it! But don't keep voting for taxes, bonds, feel good candidates, career-politician incumbents, and restrictive laws, and then act surprised when government takes kids away from a breast-feeder.

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