Forum Right, 5/26/12

The Price of Policy

By Mark Luedtke

Because nearly all of us were brainwashed in government schools, we have a dangerously warped view about economics and the nature of government. The reality is, because the state is a coercive institution funded by theft, it attracts the worst people to work for it. The worst of those rise to the top. Further, it corrupts even the most well intentioned employees. In addition, the laws of economics tell us that every government program, because all are funded by theft and enforced by coercion, produces worse problems than the problem each was intended to solve.

To keep adults from realizing the true nature of government and policy, government creates a never-ending series of phony bogeymen to keep us scared. The Soviets were the great bogeymen of the second half of the 20th century. Now the terrorists are the new bogeymen.

But a more insidious bogeyman is the issue of public safety. Every day you can read a new article from one of government’s cartelized media propagandists advocating some new policy which will cost more of our tax dollars and reduce our freedom. It always sounds good because the advocate never discusses the costs of the proposal, and we tend not to think about those costs on our own.

For example, a hundred years ago the government seized control of the medical establishment by dictating licensing requirements for doctors. During WWII it began cartelizing medical insurance by issuing tax breaks to employers who offered medical insurance to employees. After that it used FDA regulations to cartelize the pharmaceutical industry. And of course it seized control of hospitals through both outright ownership and extensive regulations. All these socialist advances were done under the auspice of improving public safety. “If it saves just one life…”

But government doesn’t save lives. Government kills. Accordingtoa 2003 reportbytheNutritionalInstituteofAmerica, the US medical system is the leading cause of death and injury in America. “According to the NIA’s report, over 784,000 people die annually due to medical mistakes. Comparatively, the 2001 annual death rate for heart disease was 699,697 and the annual death rate for cancer was 553,251.” Furthermore, “Over 2.2 million people are injured every year by prescription drugs alone and over 20 million unnecessary prescriptions for antibiotics are prescribed annually for viral infections. The report also shows that 7.5 million unnecessary medical and surgical procedures are performed every year and 8.9 million people are needlessly hospitalized annually.”

So it is with every government policy. In 1997, 41,967 diedonUSgovernmentroads. Because government controls our food supply through cartelization of its corporate agents, Americans suffer terrible rates of heart disease, obesity, diabetes, cancer, asthma and innumerable additional chronic diseases that didn’t exist a century ago.

So when politicians say that banning texting while driving will save lives, don’t believe them. This is just another mechanism for the government to loot and prey on safe, peaceful people. As with all bogeymen, our rulers are using a hint of truth to exploit us. Recently a driver distracted by texting killedtwoteensinMilford, but surrendering more freedom and wealth to the government won’t solve this problem. Holding people accountable for their actions will solve this problem.

It’s easy to chronicle the deadly consequences of allowing government to seize control of our medical and food production industries, but it’s harder to quantify the far greater cost we pay for every government intervention in our lives: the stupefying of Americans. The reason people are so stupid that they text while driving is that generations of government intervention in our economy and lives, especially government schools, have undermined personal responsibility and made Americans stupid. The solution to this problem is to get government completely out of our lives and to hold people accountable for the consequences of their actions.

Mark Luedtke is an electrical engineer with a degree from the University of Cincinnati and currently works for a Dayton attorney. He can be reached at

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