What's been happening the past decade or so in Washington -- not just since the election -- is the slow-paced screening of a disaster flick, "The Government That Ate America," in which demands that Congress and the president do a bit of everything finally overload the machinery of government. The machinery sputters, fizzles, gasps. Orange and red lights start to flicker. YOU CAN'T HAVE EVERYTHING YOU WANT! is the message the control system flashes.
A national government -- leave aside a multiplicity of state and local governments -- that absorbs a quarter of Gross National Product, as ours does, is the kind of government that ... well, look around Washington today, next week, next month. No short-term deal can get the job done. A government grown too large for its old-fashioned purposes ---"to provide for the common defense, to promote the general welfare, and to secure the blessings of liberty to ourselves and our posterity" -- can safely be pronounced in drastic need of reform.
Both political parties in some measure escorted us to the "fiscal cliff." The party now in general charge, led by the biggest big-government lover ever to inhabit the White House, bears presently the heavier responsibility. But back to guns. Wait till Joe Biden is done rebalancing the economy. He can go on from there to replacing rifles with clubs, plus anything else he may have in mind. With big government, it seems, there's no rest, no recess.
William Murchison, author and commentator, writes from Dallas. To find out more about William Murchison, and to see features by other Creators Syndicate writers and cartoonists, visit the Creators Syndicate website at www.creators.com.
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