Every time I see talking heads question the positions of politicians on various issues, I have to laugh at their widespread blind belief that policy is based on principle. Citizens must be vigilant when it comes to judging their nominal representatives. The first question in evaluating a politician’s stance on an issue that must be asked is not, “What does the politician feel is the right thing to do?” but rather, “What constituents does the politician intend to appease or bribe with this piece of legislation?” This is the nature of politics. If a politician held views on principle averse to the interests of those he served, he likely would never have made it into office.
Thus, when the public and the media make a big deal about legislation being not only massive but mind-numbingly cryptic, they are missing the point that this is all intended to deceive the people from understanding the true nature of the bills. The sad fact is that most legislation is about political plunder, in which certain interests benefit at the expense of others. I have harped on this fact before, that government as it is currently constituted is merely an instrument for systematically carrying out the redistribution of wealth and/or power.
By believing that politicians care one way or another about policy (with certain limited exceptions), the public and the media delude themselves. They miss the fact that the question every politician asks before crafting or voting on a piece of legislation is, “Will this help me get re-elected?” To believe otherwise is incredibly naive, idealistic and dangerous in a democratic system. Cynicism is healthy. After all, politicians have no incentive to be long-term oriented or principled. Politicians meet the demands of consumers, their constituency, and the profit-and-loss mechanism with which they measure their performance is the ballot box. Unlike those who compete in a free marketplace, the means by which they achieve success is through stealing from some and giving to others at the point of a gun.
Until lovers of liberty can articulate to the American people that NO political largess should be extended to ANY particular group – that ALL will be made better off in a system in which people freely compete on a level playing field, we will continue to have a shrinking economic pie and devolving civilization.