December 2, 2011 10:51

If America is to remain great, a bastion of freedom and prosperity, it must remain capable of the unprecedented wealth creation that made it great in the first place. It must remain capable of defending itself (guns cost money). It must remain free.

By Brad Lyles, M.D.

Consider the Grimm Brothers’ Fairy Tale, The Goose That Laid the Golden Eggs. This Fairy Tale describes what happens when an impatient farmer wants more Golden Eggs more rapidly and consequently splits open his Goose to find them. Of course, none are to be found. So, after eating the Goose, he is left, as expected, with nothing to chew on but his pride and imprudence.

We’re living that very same Fairy Tale in the United States today. We are dangerously close to killing our Golden Geese and carelessly impoverishing ourselves for decades to come.

Comparing America’s fiscal policy with the Golden Goose Fairy Tale highlights the ridiculous and shameful thinking (if one were to go so far as to call it “thinking”) about the issues of wealth and poverty in the United States. Ever since the heady days of the Great Depression, when FDR gave birth to his Perfect Storm of Big Government Programs, (which, all told, extended the Depression by 7 years), one group of Congresspersons after another has allowed itself to believe that Government intervention into the economy is a good idea. FDR went so far as to call such schemes the “Second Bill of Rights.”

One wonders whether the Left could have so easily infested and overrun our country were Americans not distracted, at the time, by a two-front War with Germany and Japan. Moreover, one wonders if it could be true (likely not, but one wonders) that Roosevelt was cunning enough, even before the days of Bill Clinton, to act upon the tactic Rahm Emanuel has so cleverly described as “Never let a crisis go to waste.” In particular one wonders whether there was a political calculation involved in Roosevelt’s alleged decision to ignore reports of Japan’s naval presence near Hawaii, at least long enough to permit the bombing of Pearl Harbor.

Certainly, that particular crisis, in addition to the multiple crises of the War that followed, served FDR handsomely in his relentless efforts to mutate the United States from its Constitutionally mandated federal structure to the All-Powerful Central Government structure the Founders clearly intended it NOT be.

Regardless of any initial volition on his part, however, World War II nevertheless permitted FDR to pull and tear at the Constitution so effectively that the United States of 1945 was scarcely related in any way to the United States the Greatest Generation had left behind in 1940 when they marched off to war. “Look ma, no hands!” FDR’s palace coup succeeded almost effortlessly. Who could oppose him?

A close reading of American history reveals FDR as a President obsessed with destroying everything America ever promised – free markets, free individuals, balance of powers. Worse, his illicit designs are even still indelibly stamped upon nearly every word of modern American political rhetoric and the bulwark of assumption sets upon which such rhetoric is built.

For example, our Declaration of Independence famously declares that “All Men Are Created Equal.” Through a sophistry pungent with malodorous perfidy, FDR transmogriphied the guarantee of equal rights for everyone into a universal right to equal outcomes for everyone. In his own 1944 “Second Bill of Rights,” FDR declared that the equal rights guaranteed by the Constitution had “proved inadequate to assure us equality in the pursuit of happiness.” Instead, Roosevelt declared that Americans should each be guaranteed, among other things, the right to a job, with a “living wage,” the right to housing, and the right to medical care.

Curiously, Roosevelt never explained how such rights were to be enforced without depriving others of the rights to their own private property. For example, how could such rights be procured without presuming person A is granted a controlling right to person B’s labor? And if we are all to agree that there should exist among us persons who hold controlling rights to our own private property (which the Second Bill of Rights intended to guarantee) who among us shall be deemed worthy to decide who gets what and how much? There are none such.

Failing to understand the Golden Goose Predicament, Roosevelt ignored the fact that life is always about trade-offs: If you want more of this you have to settle for less of that – the principle economists call TANSTFL – “there ain’t no such thing as a free lunch.” FDR’s most glittering heir, Obama, believes, as did his ancestor, that both money and rights can be woven from whole cloth. Consequently, if the Goose isn’t laying Golden Eggs fast enough, we can borrow against the presumption that the Goose will at some point in the future lay more and faster tomorrow. Worse, Roosevelt failed, as do his offspring, to understand the ultimate moral of the Golden Goose Predicament: Killing the Golden Goose precludes the laying of any more Golden Eggs.

History has proven, repeatedly, in every case, that when Society pampers and protects its Golden Geese, it gets more Golden Eggs more rapidly, and most everyone benefits. This “Eggs for All” phenomenon, to mix metaphors, is similar to the 1980’s insight that “a rising tide lifts all boats.” To understand this, one has to flip from perceiving the rich as lazy jerks who don’t deserve their riches, or who stole their riches, or who just got lucky, to perceiving the rich as unwitting producers of wealth for us all.

It is not too hard to do this if we merely consider the world as it is. The rich (or at least their advisers) are NOT stupid. Assuming this, then, it is not hard to understand that the rich will work to protect their wealth and they will usually have enough wealth to protect it very well – in purchasing the services of accountants, lawyers, bankers, politicians, “favors,” off-shore banks, etc., etc.

Our nation’s penurious tax policy with its progressive income tax punishes the rich at the very outset. If they invest in our businesses, their “capital gains” are taxed. If they are silly enough to invest in their own businesses or to stride upon the foolhardy path of starting a new business, they are penalized with corporate taxes and more, along with overzealous regulations and regulators (can you say, “NLRB?”).

Isn’t it as easy as pie, then, to see that any rich person not entirely insane would choose to place his or her money in “safe” investments such as Treasury Bills (which produce zero economic gain)? Consider, the rich will earn safe interest on the money they invest in U.S. T-Bills, with no more effort than putting on their sunscreen on the beaches of Grand Cayman. And why shouldn’t they drop their money into T-Bills and focus on sunning themselves? In present-day America how can we expect them to do otherwise? They are not stupid – they know too well that if they exert themselves to invest (unsafely) in wealth-creating American business, they RISK EVERYTHING AND they will have to work hard. Only an idiot would do such a thing and the rich are not idiots.

Because we live in ObamaWorld, investments in American business and American dreams evaporate or are never made in the first place. The aspirations of the American proletariat, of the alleged beneficiaries of Obama’s largesse, go begging, remaining unfulfilled, withering on the vine, morphing into fantasies of what might have been if only its leaders had a clue.

America’s greatest gift to Mankind – proof that individual freedom and free markets are required for prosperity – is squandered, derided, trampled beneath the prancing banners of false prophets.

If America is to remain great, a bastion of freedom and prosperity, it must remain capable of the unprecedented wealth creation that made it great in the first place. It must remain capable of defending itself (guns cost money). It must remain free. It must liberate its markets. Its leaders must once again act with prudence.

This can be accomplished ONLY if we understand the true nature of the rich. The rich are always our unwitting accomplices in our own creation of wealth – providing capital for our business start-ups, funding innovations (Apple, Ipod, cell-phone, laptop), buying our stuff, and creating “demand.” They are our Geese that lay the Golden Eggs, even if they don’t deserve to be, even if it galls us that they are and even if they act like slatternly libertines on TV.

There are only two options available to us if we are able to recognize the true nature – the GOLDEN GOOSE nature – of the rich, and if we want more wealth ourselves. We can either support our Geese in laying more Golden Eggs – creating more wealth for us all – or we can starve our Geese, punish our Geese, impoverish our Geese and consequently impoverish ourselves.

It must be emphasized, again, that the rich are NOT stupid – or at least their advisers are NOT stupid. The rich place their money where it will provide the most gain, for them. History limns this fact with countless examples – recall the 1980’s, when the “rich got richer,” when we allowed the rich to keep more of their money. This so-called decade of greed was the self-same American decade of unprecedented growth and prosperity for EVERYONE – who cares if the rich got richer?!

The evil, greedy, undeserving rich are a national treasure. They are our Golden Geese. They are unintentionally our unwitting accomplices in the creation of wealth for all of us. We should care for them, treasure them, support them – we should certainly not harm them.

The rich possess the capacity to make us all rich. We merely have to stop punishing them for doing so. We must stop eating the rich.


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