The great problem that underlies the truths expressed in this column is tragic in the extreme: The federal government **cannot be trusted.** It has proved many times to be utterly uninterested in the actual national interest, while viciously jealous of its prerogatives and relentless about using its mechanisms to expand its powers and perquisites. This is the consequence of a government in which 540 persons are elected but many millions of faceless others hold the real power. Those others cannot be ejected from their thrones by any measure available to us. They are absolutely immune to our displeasure or correction -- and they do exactly as they please.
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