Terry Jeffrey

From 1776, when the Declaration of Independence was signed, until 1940, when the first Social Security checks were paid out, Americans did not receive income from the federal government unless they were pensioned veterans or employees of the government itself. For 164 years, Americans took care of themselves and their own families. With the Social Security Act, they began to slide into government dependency.

Today, thanks to Social Security, a majority of Americans over 65 rely on the federal government for a majority of their income. Thanks to Medicare, enacted in 1965, American seniors now rely on the federal government for their health care, too. If Congress does not repeal Obamacare, virtually all Americans will soon depend on government for their health care.

We will no longer be a free and self-reliant people -- we will be a government-dependent people.

Using data from the U.S. Treasury Department, the Peter G. Peterson Foundation determined that as of the end of fiscal 2009 -- before Obamacare was enacted -- the U.S. government faced $61.9 trillion in unfunded liabilities. That amount equaled the national debt plus what the government is expected to owe in entitlements -- primarily Social Security and Medicare benefits -- to people now alive that will not be covered by the tax revenue expected from the current tax structure. At that rate, the government would need to find an additional $200,000 in revenue for every man, women and child in the country just to sustain our pre-Obamacare welfare state.

History will show that President Franklin Roosevelt and the Democratic Congress that enacted Social Security in the 1930s started America on the road to an unsustainable welfare state and national bankruptcy. It may also show whether the next few Congresses and the next president drove America over the brink or finally put us back on the road to self-reliance and individual liberty.

Terry Jeffrey

Terence P. Jeffrey is the editor-in-chief of CNSNews

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