Obama Creating a New Culture of Dependency - FoxNews.com
By Thomas J. Basile for FoxNews.com
Racing toward the 100-day mark President Obama, together with the Democratic leadership are bringing us the change we were promised. Certainly America wanted something different after last year's campaign. However, change for the sake of change is a dangerous thing in the complex world we live in, and Americans should be wary of the direction we are heading. Recent poll numbers suggest that Americans, in particular Independent voters, are realizing that despite the centrist rhetoric the President is a devoted apostle of the Left. Those independents and even Republicans who had hoped Barack Obama would make good on his pledge to drive a middle course, have spent the last two months watching the President sign the largest special interest giveaway, discretionary spending increase and expansion of government in US history.
Using this deep and biting recession as a blank check, our government has created dozens of new programs, approved increases in the federal workforce and is poised to give a hand-out to millions of Americans. In January, then President-elect Obama pledged that there would be no pork in the stimulus bill yet he singed a spending package that was like Christmas in February for Pelosi, Reid and dozens of pet projects and interest groups. To be sure, both Democrats and Republicans are to blame for the size of the stimulus bill.
Yes, the era of big government is back, but there is more at work here than just increasing the welfare rolls. There is more at work here than offering a handout to the 40% of Americans who don't pay Federal income taxes. This expansion of government power and influence is potentially much larger and more calculated than we've seen before.
What we are seeing is a new culture of dependency. This effort by Obama is intended to create or reestablish new and larger constituencies for the Democratic Party using an expansion of government power. Last year it was "Yes We Can!" This year it's "No you can't - but government will do it for you." People from all walks of life across the country will owe their increased services and perhaps their very livelihoods to government, or more appropriately the Democratic Party.
There is perhaps no more egregious an example of this alarming trend than the first salvo by the Obama Administration toward reducing the charitable deduction. The top 1% of American households by adjusted gross income contributes up to 40% of all charitable donations each year. Why would Obama begin lowering the deduction, especially during a recession? - Dependency. The Democrats could care less about any drop in philanthropic giving. After all, government will pick up the slack. The demise of charities large and small will only provide fertile ground for more government programs, a larger bureaucracy, and increases in government jobs, grants and spending.
More services and programs mean more Democratic voters. The New Deal was perverted into a permanent expansion of government, intensified with the Great Society programs that nearly bankrupted the country. They maintained an underclass of sorts that served as reliable Democratic votes for decades. After eight years of Bush and several before of Clinton, who adopted much of the Republican legislative agenda when it came to entitlements, the Democrats are now drunk with power.
It's time Americans realized that this train is barreling down the tracks. To paraphrase Jefferson – the government that can give you everything will also have the power to take everything from you. After criticizing the Bush Administration for years about spending and some supposed massive power grab, the Obama-Pelosi-Reid troika has hit a new low on the hypocrisy meter.
The President and his allies in the Congress are capitalizing on the fear and uncertainty that exists in too many American households. They know people are tending to more important issues like job security, mortgage payments, foreclosure or even putting enough food on the table. What Americans don't realize is that the Democrats are mortgaging our future and tilting us toward socialism for the sake of fortifying their stronghold on Washington. We are seeing just the beginning. Hefty tax increases are yet to come along with the government-administered national healthcare program that Americans still don't want.
America rose to the pinnacle of civilization because sensible leaders believed it was the power of the individual that should celebrated. It was that individual's ability to achieve through their own passion and ingenuity that made this nation "the last best hope of earth." What we face in these times is not merely a deep recession, but the creation of a new culture of dependency that threatens the very foundation of our greatness.