David Strom

There's normal life, then there's government.

In normal life, things change. Our fortunes go up, they go down. Our lives are in constant flux. One day we fall in love and move across the country, another we have a child or change jobs and our lives are magically altered.

Life as a consumer is much the same. A few years ago, few of us had cell phones. Today, people will stand in line for hours to buy a cool new iPhone because it is the one thing that will complete our lives that moment.

In real life, we break bones, change jobs, meet new people-our lives are chaotic. Generally things are getting better every year as we gain experience and the economy grows, but we all face lean years and flat. The primary task of ordinary life is to bring order out of chaos, each of us doing so within the small platoon of our family and friends.

Then there's the world of government.

In government, chaos is the enemy. Individuality is a problem. The change that we all inevitably deal with cannot be handled by a bureaucracy or by laws. Choice is the essence of freedom. The opportunity to improve our lives or start a new business or have children or do just about anything are variables that mess up their attempt to regulate and stabilize daily life into something they control.

This is why advocates of big government are always looking for ways to tame the inevitable chaos of life. Instead of people moving all over the place in individual cars, they want a centralized transportation that moves masses of people all to the same places.

Instead of a health care system with millions of individuals choosing personalised health care options and thousands of doctors practicing numerous approaches to medicine, they want a centralized and regulated universal health care system. Instead of the seeming chaos and uncontrollability of free markets, they prefer socialized or centrally controlled systems. Instead of the "creative destruction" of capitalism they prefer socialism or "third way" policies that undermine freedoms to choose and the chaos that involves.

It's pretty clear to see who stands on what side of the dividing line between the reality-based freedom and inevitable chaos of life and the ever expanding role of government and regulation and stasis in life. Republicans have until recently been on the side of freedom. Democrats have stood for stasis and the increasing regulation of daily life.

David Strom

David Strom is the President of the Minnesota Free Market Institute. He hosts a weekly radio show on AM-1280 "The Patriot" in Minneapolis-St. Paul, available on podcast at Townhall.com.

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