"If we can prevent the government from wasting the labors of the people, under the pretense of taking care of them, they must become happy. ... I think we have more machinery of government than is necessary, too many parasites living on the labor of the industrious." --Thomas Jefferson
I know that Mr. Jefferson and I would have had a never-ending debate about religion. Still, I often find myself in political agreement with the Sage of Monticello. I agree with what is stated above. It is amazingly current in its application.
And yet, I do not blame the ‘parasites’ entirely. All the unnecessary ‘machinery of government’ under which we now suffer came about because voters consented to it.
Were we lied to, tricked, and manipulated in the process? Of course. But part of the job of free citizens in a republic is to detect and overcome deception. When we allow structures to be created and propagated which squander the ‘labors of the people’ it should not surprise us when many of the people put themselves in a position to receive these plundered goods.
So don’t just blame the parasites. Most of us, in some way or other, ARE the parasites. And all the possibilities for plunder by government happened because we consented. Perhaps we will now withdraw that consent.