December 1993 - Volume 11, Issue 12

Reflections - - - 30 years after Camelot!

Last month the media had a field day with the 30th anniversary of the assassination of John Fitzgerald Kennedy. Conveniently forgotten was that JFK - - -

It is my opinion that JFK's place in history is not assured despite the "Camelot" syndrome. In time, JFK may become more known for the deep divisions which his decisions created in this country by the Vietnam war, the imposition by force of school busing which started the decline of the public schools and began white flight to the suburbs thus hastening the decline of the inner city cores, and the beginning of the Big Brother movement as computer and centralized databases were introduced to monitor all manner of activity.

Things are not always what they seem. Public opinion polls, sound bites, and photo opportunity sessions do not provide us with the hard answers to perplexing problems. But what else can you expect from most of today's journalists.

The Brady bill is a great example of a lot of wasted energy by politicians and the media. Almost all law enforcement personnel agree that it will not do anything to stem criminal violence except in a very few cases. What is frightening about the Brady bill is that the proponents want to ban all weapons . . . period.

I would like to propose a bill that would really stop violence in our streets. It is very simple.

If an individual commits a felony with a firearm or explosive device and is convicted in a court of law, the punishment is execution by a device of similar construction within 180 days of sentencing in a public venue. No pleas of temporary insanity will be allowed.

It is my opinion that violence on the streets would be reduced significantly within six months after passage of this act. In addition, we won't have to continue building jails to hold felons and to house and feed them.

It is past time that we require citizens to take responsibility for their individual actions and accept the consequences!

For if we don't, our fall from being the leading nation in the world will continue.

The citizens who participated in the Boston Tea Party were tired of taxation without representation. They took a small action that led to a major upheaval in the history of the so-called "New World."

Today, we are facing significant challenges both here and abroad. While the former Soviet Union has thrown off the yoke of socialist or communist rulers, the current leadership in the U.S. continues to move left and spend more than it takes in while largely ignoring the foreign policy arena which continues to boil and bubble.

The U.S. Government is going to have to begin to make spending choices as the money has run out!

Our national debt is over $4 trillion and the deficit this year despite Clinton's massive tax hike may well top $300 billion. The mandated costs imposed upon citizens by governments are beyond calculation. For instance, on four days during 1992-93, the ozone levels in the Dallas Ft. Worth metroplex were above the mandated levels. To come into compliance, the government has imposed strict new conditions on automobile pollution measurement and increased the inspection costs in the metroplex by an estimated $300 - $400 million per year. Ah, clean air . . . but at what cost!

And now comes the push for national health care. Who knows how much that will cost. But if experience is any guide, national health care will be very expensive and another layer of bureaucracy will be placed on the current health care delivery system. Moreover, the approach advocated by Dr. Kerkorian to terminate suffering when quality of life is gone is seen by many as a moral and economic issue for families. With over 50% of all medical costs spent in the last six months of life, this debate over quality of life will also divide the country as has the abortion issue.

In the middle ages, the serfs paid 15% of their income to the lord of the manor. Today, the total tax collected by federal, state, and local governments account for about 45% of our collective income.

And for that massive tax burden, what are we getting?

In the early part of this century, the function of government was to provide for the national defense, public schools, police and fire protection, a civil and criminal court system, clean drinking water, garbage collection and sewage services, and regulation of certain monopolies such as the light and power companies. Moreover, our currency was backed by gold and could be redeemed for the metal.

Today the list is almost endless. The politicians state that the public has demanded this or that. But let me ask a rhetorical question . . . When was the last time you heard an ordinary citizen demand something a politician had not already suggested? Let's face it. Government is out of control. Want proof. Last week, at a CPA seminar in Texas, an IRS examiner stated that by the year 2000 the IRS wanted all babies to be tattooed at birth with their Social Security number. If that doesn't give you a chill, I don't know what would!

Another tidbit out of the CPA seminar. Scanners have been developed which can detect if you have more than $500 on your person in airports.

Moreover, by 1996 the IRS is proposing that all citizens (and not just taxpayers) be required to file a 1099 form and withhold 20% from any payment made to an entity other than a corporation or partnership. Think of the paperwork involved. What about the kid buying an ice-cream cone or popsicle from the street vendor ... I can see it now.

"Please, sir, I need your social security number, and I will have to deduct 20% for taxes." Just what is the paper currency worth in your pocket . . . not very much as inflation has robbed us of real value.

The IRS is also studying along with the Treasury the issuance of a national money card by the year 2000. The national money card will keep tract of all our income and expenses automatically on the new IRS computers. NO MORE TAX RETURNS . . . everything will be figured automatically by the government.

Now that's what I call being a slave!

Customs, DEA and law enforcement agencies can seize your property on the mere suspicion of your being a drug user and/or dealer . . . The prima facie evidence is that you have cash! Now, the burden of proof is upon you to prove the negative. Perhaps, I forgot my classes in government. Are we not presumed innocent in this country until convicted in a court of law! Apparently not, if you have cash in your possession or if they believe that you are a drug user and/or dealer. The anti-racketeering, or so-called RICO, laws should be immediately repealed if only to give our citizens back the due process rights guaranteed by our Constitution and Bill of Rights.

Moreover, any funds seized, or stolen, can be spent by these same agencies without being held accountable. Wonder what George Orwell would have said about this!

Is it surprising that the government wants to know which law abiding citizens have guns? And don't think the justice system will be there to save us! Remember they are political appointees with an agenda!

But until we as a nation decide to change things drastically and return government to providing those services which government did in the early part of the century, the shape of our nation in the 21st century will be significantly worse than today!

For many forget that Camelot was really only a work of fiction and not reality!

But then - - 'Tis Only My Opinion!

Fred Richards
December 1993

This issue of 'Tis Only My Opinion was copyrighted by Adrich Corporation in December 1993.

It is intended to provoke thinking, then dialogue among its readers. Quotation with attribution is encouraged.

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