The Politics of “Rights”

In the coming election year we are going to be bombarded with promises of free stuff. It’s inevitable. Phrases like, “basic human right” are going to be bandied about like candy on Halloween. Let’s take a look at the most common things that are described as human rights, or natural rights to see if they would truly fit that description.

Before we begin, let’s talk a little about human rights. Not all rights are created equal. Rights fall into two camps, positive and negative. I know what you are thinking, “positive” sounds like a good word and “negative” sounds like a bad word, so positive rights must be better! Right? Well no, not exactly. Positive rights are things that, when exorcised, would require action from a 3rd party, whereas negative rights can be exercised in the absence of action from a 3rd party. To illustrate the difference, let’s say “I have a positive right to food”. If this were true and I could not feed myself for whatever reason, another person would be obligated or required to feed me. If I say “I have a negative right to food”, and for some reason I could not feed myself, no one would be required to work in order to feed me.

Hopefully, it is clear that rights that need no approval from anyone else to enjoy are superior to rights that require others in order to be enjoyed. This point is fairly well acknowledged by most philosophers and political scientists. Therefore, negative rights are the only true set of natural or human rights we have. Positive rights, in my opinion, are not rights at all. Positive rights are, however, very important aspects of living with each other, in communities, as human beings.

I should also point out that it is a much different thing when private companies use “rights” in their marketing campaigns than when governments do it. When you hear a commercial airline use the phrase, “passenger’s bill of rights”, they are marketing their services and not using the term literally. When advertisers tell you that you have a right to fast, friendly service, they are trying to get your business by insinuating that their competition does not give fast, friendly service. It’s a marketing ploy that I despise because it dilutes not only the word “rights”, but also the concept.

So what are the politicians going to tell you that you have a basic right to? Off the top of my head, I can remember hearing that I have a basic right to:

  • Food
  • Clothing
  • Shelter
  • Healthcare
  • employment
  • Living wage
  • Speech
  • Bear arms
  • Privacy
  • Life
  • Liberty
  • Property

The list is truly endless, so I’ll stop here. So are all these things rights? Which are positive and which are negative? Conveniently, I put the positive rights in the top half and negative rights at the bottom half.

  • If I have a right to food and cannot feed myself, you must feed me. Therefore you are my slave. You have no choice, it is my right.
  • If I have a right to clothing and cannot make my own clothes, you must cloth me. Therefore you are my slave. You have no choice, it is my right.
  • If I have a right to shelter and cannot build it myself, you must build it for me. Therefore you are my slave. You have no choice, it is my right.
  • If I have a right to healthcare and I am not a doctor, you must treat me. Therefore you are my slave. You have no choice, it is my right.
  • If I have a right to a job, you must hire me. Therefore you do not own your business. You have no choice, it is my right.
  • If I have a right to a living wage, you must give me that wage. Therefore you do not own the money your business makes. You have no choice, it is my right.

Let’s contrast these 6 rights with the next 6 rights on the list:

  • If I have a right to free speech, I may speak, but you have no obligation to listen to me. We are both free.
  • If I have a right to bear arms, I may purchase a gun, but you have no obligation to sell me one. We are both free.
  • If I have a right to privacy, I can protect that privacy, but you have no obligation to protect that privacy. We are both free.
  • If I have a right to life, I can defend my life, but you are not obligated to help me. We are both free.
  • If I have a right to liberty, I can defend my liberty, but you are not obligated to help me. We are both free.
  • If I have a right to property, I can buy whatever I want with the money I make, but you are not obligated to sell it to me. We are both free.

The dangers of empowering governments over positive rights are apparent. Positive rights are the main reason we are in $20 trillion in debt. The majority of the federal budget does not go to the military industrial complex or infrastructure (muh roads!). The majority of the federal budget goes to entitlements. Proving food, shelter, healthcare and a living wage to people who cannot or will not endeavor to provide it for themselves. The problem with this that government becomes the middle man between the people who endeavor to take care of themselves and the people who cannot or will not. Taking from one group and giving to the other, all the while telling them that they are “entitled” to what other people have earned through hard work.

In my opinion, only negative rights should be protected by the government. I say this because it costs nothing to exercise these rights. The proper role of government is to protect me if someone infringes on one of my negative rights. Positive rights are best left to the private sector, enforced through contract. Too much power has been taken away from private individuals and groups, and too much has just been given away freely. Churches and other social groups have given away almost all of the moral authority they once had to the government. Deciding what is moral and immoral used to be up to social groups and churches, now the government makes those decisions. The churches freely gave away that authority by lobbying for such things as marriage licenses and sin taxes. Charities used to be the ultimate decision makers as to who received their charity and who did not. Now the government decides who gets what. Charities don’t mind as long as they get their cut. Even charities with the best of intentions get government funding, but what hoops did they have to jump through to get it? Now that we have a government that has taken the power of moral authority and ultimate decider of what we need, we are all a slaves to the state. The recipient of the benefits because they need it to live and the citizen who gets their money taken because they no longer own what they produce.

As more and more people get into a situation where they are living paycheck to paycheck, the temptation to just let the government take care of certain things that they may not be able to afford gets stronger and stronger. Beware when a politician makes a positive right sound like a negative one. Beware when they demonize those who make more than you, stoking your envy. More than likely outside your own decisions in life, the politician is much more responsible for your financial situation than that rich person is. When you use the government to punish the wealthy, you do so at the risk of ceding your freedom. No matter what that politician tells you, you will not get richer by making a rich person poorer. But they will. I implore you to think about your own long term freedom over any short term comfort they might be promising you.


Bernie Sanders and Economics Don’t Mix

I have to apologize. I haven’t blogged in a while. The truth is that the current political climate is so disheartening that it makes it hard for me to want to write about it. With Donald Trump leading the Republican field and Bernie Sanders leading the Democratic field, there’s not much to want to write about. I don’t think I’ll ever waste another blog on Donald Trump because in my mind he is a joke, and in the end is unelectable (hopefully). Bernie Sanders seem like a much more viable candidate. He is honest, forthright and I get the feeling that he truly believes what he says. Best of all, all his solutions involve giving away “free” stuff! What’s not to like about that?

Bernie Sanders seems, to a rational, thinking person to be unelectable. His economic plans, even to a guy like me with only basic college level economics under my belt, seem to be coming from a virtual land of unicorn fairies, farting rainbows and pixie dust. He is constantly pining for the socialist systems used in the Scandinavian countries. He seems to not understand the American system or the different Scandinavian systems. The problem is that both systems are mostly socialist, just in different areas.

The American economy is socialist from the viewpoint of heavy governmental taxation and inefficient regulations in virtually every aspect of business. There is literally nothing that you buy or use that is not regulated by the government. The fastest growing costs to business are costs associated with compliance to governmental regulations. We are also a highly militarized society, with troops around the world protecting our freedom by trying to force people who don’t think like we do to think like we do. That in itself is a very socialist notion. Even though we have comparatively low personal income taxes compared to Denmark, over half our government spending is on entitlement programs. Because of those low taxes, we are not considered socialist in the area of personal freedom. We have a lot of say in what we do with our own money. Money that we earn.

If you look at places like Denmark or Sweden, the socialism mostly stems from the opposite side of the equation compared to the US. They have very high personal income taxes which allow the government to redistribute the wealth. What this means is that the income inequality is less pronounced, but the chance to become very wealthy is almost impossible. The rich in Denmark theoretically only make about $50,000 more a year than the poor. This means a rich person in Denmark would be considered solidly middle class in America. This is made up for with the vast number of social programs afforded to every citizen. When it comes to the relationship between government and business, these countries by and large are more capitalist than the US. The markets and trade systems are generally freer than the American system.

I think Bernie Sanders is right that we could learn things from Denmark and Sweden, just not the things he wants us to learn. I would love to adopt a more Scandinavian attitude towards efficient regulation, transparency and taxes on business. If we did that, America would be able to go past #12 on the freest economies list. What he actually wants us to learn is the other side of the equation, the side that relies on wealth redistribution. What he doesn’t realize is that it is the free markets that support the social programs in those countries. Bernie Sanders is unwaveringly against free markets. He wants the American socialism and Scandinavian socialism, with none of the capitalism from either. I have news for you, it’s the capitalism that pays for everything.

The other thing Bernie doesn’t realize is that in order for that type of system to work, the people need to buy into the idea that individual freedoms no longer exist, or at least don’t matter nearly as much as the needs of the many. That flies in the face of the American culture. We are a country made up of the most diverse group of people in the world. We are almost every ethnic group, almost every religion, color, creed, and whatever else I can’t think of. But one thing almost all of us have in common is our inherent drive to be individuals. Even those among us who would vote for all the “free” stuff are steadfast individuals. They would not readily accept the fact that the majority of what they earn would need to go to the government, because some government bureaucrat knows what to do with their money better than they do. Most Americans would not accept that, even with the “free” stuff.

Everything that I’ve seen and read regarding places like Norway, Sweden or Denmark tells me that the people there buy into their system. They all for the most part conform to the system and very few people step out of line. I am no saying that it’s negative in any way, to the contrary. If a group of people find a way that works, more power to them. What I am saying is that it won’t work in America any more than the American way of life would work there.

I am honored to know that a few people from Norway, Sweden and Denmark have read my obscure little blog. They seem like wonderful places and are definitely on my bucket lists for places to visit before I die. I would love to hear from anyone living there to see if what I am saying makes any sense. I would also to ask what part of your system that you would like to see exported to the US, as well as what you would import from the American way of life.

Where Money Comes From, Part 3

This is the third and final blog in the series regarding where money comes from. I will be talking about the possible futures of the Federal Reserve, money, and our entire monetary system. In the previous blogs, I talked about where money is created and how, a brief history of the Federal reserve (the Fed), what the Fed does and how it has not fulfilled its mission. I also teased the best and worst case scenario’s for dealing with the Fed in the future.

There are very few people who think that the Fed is going away anytime soon. So what can we do with the Fed to ensure that does a better job of fulfilling its goals of stabilizing the economy, maximum employment rates and stabilize prices? While I believe we would be better off without it, there can be a world with the Fed still in it. It would have to begin with a massive audit to root out corruption and identify just how monetary policy is set. From there create hard and fast, publicly available rules governing what the Fed can do based on how the economy is doing. For instance, if the economy changes by x amount in a particular sector, there is a preset action that the fed must take that anyone with an interest can read about beforehand in the rules of monetary policy. No surprises, no whims of fancy that may benefit friends while hurting everyone else. Having predictable rules would reduce some of the panic for investors.

Another action that could be taken without getting rid of the Fed entirely would be to untie the world’s currency to the US dollar. This would create competing currency throughout the world. When currencies are not tied to each other, there could be several different types of currency to choose from when doing business. Many countries might tie their currency to what they produce like sugar or wheat, or oil. Some might be backed by gold and silver, other could be “fiat” currency, meaning not backed by anything at all, (which is what we have now). Some countries might elect to keep their national banks and others may go to a private banking system. The beauty of this system would be that competition would keep each system honest. If someone doesn’t like one countries monetary system, they could easily move their money to another. This makes bad monetary decisions more painful and therefore less abundant. This type of system could work with or without the Fed, so in my opinion, which is worth exactly what you are paying for it, is the most likely option for the future.

What would it be like if a miracle happened and the Fed gets abolished? Looting? Anarchy in the streets? Mass murder over the price of Twinkies? No. We might be inconvenienced by having more currency options, but we are already used to this, kind of, in the form of gift cards. When you get a Wal-Mart gift card, what you essentially have is currency that can only be used at Wal-Mart, basically Wal-Mart bucks. That gift card is exchanged for US dollars at the cash register. Each bank might be able to issue its own currency. So maybe instead of that gift card being backed by Federal Reserve Notes, it’s now backed by Bank of ‘Murica bucks, or Citibucks. An exchange rate system would probably be set up privately to see how the value of each currency compares to the other. You would still use your debit card and the store would decide which currency it takes. Your bank would automatically account for the exchange rates behind the scenes. This is not a new system, we actually had something like this before the Fed was put in place. This is not as convenient as having only one type of money, but it would make it much harder for the government to accumulate massive amounts of debt.

In the olden days, you could bring your dollar to any bank and exchange it for the corresponding amount of gold stated on the front of the bill. From the consumer’s perspective the only difference in non-Fed money would be what backs that dollar. Wal-Mart bucks would be backed by ill-fitting jeans and bicycles, McDonalds bucks would be backed by hamburgers. The business would then decide how to exchange the money we give them into currency to buy more stuff to sell. May the best money win. I can’t imagine that Visa or MasterCard would make our lives that much more difficult by only being good in one currency. They would probably want to stay in just as many retail outlets as they are now so would work it out with whatever currency becomes available. The world would keep on truckin’, normal people would keep on buyin’.

This series was in no way meant to be an in depth look at our money system. It was meant to be a very shallow overview of how things work, and what could be done to make them work better for us and our future generations. This is true partly because very few people have an actual in depth knowledge of how things work, I definitely don’t, and also it would just take way too long to write. I recommend using this information as a jumping off point to learn more about our money and banking system. I know it’s boring, but you might just be doing yourself a favor in the end. Happy New Year everyone!

Where Money Comes From, part 2

Last week, I talked about where money comes from (thin air), and a little about how our money is a physical representation of our debt. This week I want to talk about why and how this came to be. I will go over a brief history of the Federal Reserve (the Fed), with a few highlights. I will try to show how having a national banking system might influence monetary decisions made by congress and some of the advantages and disadvantages of having the Fed.

The Fed was signed into law today 100 years ago, December 23, 1913 by President Franklin Roosevelt. It was not the first attempt at a national bank, there were a few before it, never lasting long. People were afraid to put that much power in the hands of bankers. The currency back then was loosely backed by gold and silver, at one point before central banking local banks used to issue their own currency representing the gold in its reserves. During bad years there would be times where everyone would want to take their money out causing widespread panic and recession. The reasoning behind the Fed was to standardize the banking industry and try to make the economy smoother and more predictable.

What actually happened was that no one really had a good idea of the policies needed to effectively run an economy. Congress was given a blank check do whatever they wanted. The central bank made it much easier for the world to do things like go to war because of the blank check given to it by the Fed. By sheer coincidence, it was decided that an income tax was needed to support this new governmental power of the checkbook, so also in 1913 the 16th amendment was passed. This is the amendment giving congress the power to collect income taxes on individuals and corporations.

After WW1, the Fed basically stopped using gold as the standard for monetary policy and started selling the debt from the government called government bonds to banks on the open market. This was called “open market operations”, and was used all during the 1920’s to keep the economy rolling, until it crashed in 1929. The great depression was cause directly from the fiscal policies of the Fed, not by crazy unregulated Wall Street and banking industry like they teach you at school. The policies of Fed caused the great depression, and made it worse, and the policies of the government made it much worse. Probably what happened is that the people running the Fed did not really have a good idea of how to fix things, so what they did compounded the problems.

The first major reform as a result of the great depression was the Glass-Steagall act. This separated commercial banks and investment banks. It also created the FDIC, and made the Fed in charge of making sure that open market holding companies were adhering to the standards set by the act. Also President Roosevelt made it illegal to own gold and silver and banks getting loans from the Fed had to use government securities as collateral. This action was the second time that we were taken off the gold standard and was designed to be temporary. In 1933 congress passed the gold reserve act, fixing the price of gold and making it attractive for foreign countries to trade gold for American dollars so they could use dollars to pay off their war debt. America amassed a massive amount of gold because of this and most of our money was being kept overseas.

After WWII, the Fed’s monetary policy was creating a problem for the rest of the world so the old monetary system was scrapped and a new monetary system was created called Bretton Woods system. This basically made the US dollar the standard currency that every other countries currency was based on. The US dollar was still indirectly based on the gold standard, but the rest of the world was on the US dollar standard. This didn’t last long, and less than 30 years later they were scrambling for the 3rd monetary system for the world.

In 1971 under President Nixon, we went off the gold standard officially and completely. The US dollar was now called a “fiat currency”. This means it is not backed by anything other than the power of the government. It also means the Fed could start expanding the money supply at their leisure. Up to that point the money supply grew at an overall even way, but now all bets were off. In 1959 there was 300 billion dollars in circulation, by 2006 it had climbed to almost 12 trillion. In the 100 years since the Fed was instituted, the dollar has lost 95% of its value.

Eventually, like all fiat currencies, the dollar will fail. We are starting to see the signs all over the world. Russia’s currency is on the verge of collapse, many European countries are close to collapse and the American dollar is close to collapse. In short, there is very little or no evidence that having the Fed has improved our economic situation at all. At the same time, no one can say we would be better without ever starting the Fed, but in comparing the goals of the Fed to the outcomes in those areas, they have failed to live up the their promise. At best we need to have the power to do a full audit on the Fed at scheduled intervals, at worst we should scrap the whole system and start over. It probably wouldn’t be as scary as it sounds.

Where Money Comes From, Part 1

I decided to use the holiday season while news is slow and people are out spending money to write a little bit about our money and where it comes from. I will be talking mainly about the Federal Reserve, what it does, how it interacts with the government and why it is important for people to know something about it. This is not a fun topic. I do my best to write in a way that people who don’t really pay attention to politics can understand and enjoy. This is going to be a stiff test, so I ask that if you are one of those people to try and stick it out. I am not an expert in any way on anything I talk about, (so far). I am not an economist or a political scientist but I do, however, enjoy learning things and understanding how the world we live in works, so I write this blog as a way to organize my thoughts. This topic is going to take more than one blog, so I think I will break it up into a few parts.

Where does money come from? It’s not something most people think about much. Money comes from the government right? They print the money we use. Well actually, not really. There are a few main players in this game, so let’s meet them. First you have the congress, it’s their job to spend the money that our government uses to pay for stuff. There is the treasury department, which is in charge of printing the physical money, and you have the Federal Reserve, which is like our national bank.

The congress votes to spend money on stuff like roads, war or whatever. The only problem is that they don’t have any money in the government, they have to get some from somewhere else. What they do is have the treasury department print a piece of paper called a treasury bond, which is basically an IOU that says if you give me money so I can buy stuff, I’ll pay you back later with interest. Banks buy these bonds and take them to sell to the Federal Reserve, who writes them a check to buy the bonds. The checking account that they write this check from has no money in it. They give this check to the bank that bought the Treasury bond and presto, money is created. To recap the government traded an IOU from the Treasury department for an IOU from the Federal Reserve and money is created out of thin air.

This money is deposited into a bank where it is spent on whatever the congress voted to spend it on. It is used to pay government employee salaries, contractors doing work for the government and other people. These workers in turn deposit the money into their personal banks. Let’s follow government employee “Joe” for a minute. He gets his paycheck of $1000 deposited into his bank account. What he is actually doing is loaning his paycheck to the bank. The bank then puts $100 of that paycheck aside for Joe and lends the other $900 out to other people. This doesn’t mean that Joe only has $100 in the bank. What happens is that the bank just creates $900 more dollars out of thin air to make sure Joe doesn’t freak out while they give his original $900 away to people who need a loan. This is called fractional reserve banking. It means that the bank only has to keep a fraction of the deposited cash on hand at any given time. The percentage can vary, but 10% is normal. Joe’s $1000 deposit immediately becomes $1900. When the person that took out the loan for the $900 puts the money into their bank, the bank deposits $900, keeps $90 safe and lends out the remaining $810. Now Joe’s $1000 has been increased to $2710. This goes on and on until the original $1000 becomes $10,000. Fun fact: 97% of all money is virtual. Just numbers on a computer screen. To recap, congress trades an IOU for an IOU from the Federal Reserve and money is created, People deposit that money into banks where they just magically add 90% more money into the system.

People who have jobs work for money. This money generally comes from someone who got a loan from a bank who gave them someone else’s money, then replaced that money with new money. The guy who got a loan to start a business uses some of that money to pay an employee. This is where our money comes from. We then, in turn, pay taxes to send some of that money back to congress so they can pay for more stuff. Congress then has to use some of the tax money to pay interest on the IOU that got sold to the Federal Reserve. This all happens on a massive scale. To recap, congress trades an IOU created out of thin air for an IOU from the Federal Reserve created out of thin air, to give to people to put into banks where 90% more money is created out of thin air and lives on a computer screen in a bank. This money is lent out so people can start businesses and pay people with this money created out of thin air in order to collect taxes to pay interest on money created out of thin air by the Federal Reserve. Clear? Good.

What this really means is that every single dollar in existence is debt. If you had to borrow the first dollar, how do you pay that back? You have to borrow more dollars to pay back the first one. And so on, and so on. Every dollar in your bank account is owed to someone else, by someone else. If there was no debt, there would be no money. This is how money is created in virtually every country on earth, throughout history. Of course it is not sustainable and will eventually crash, just like every other time in history. This seems like a good place to stop. I will continue to explore this topic further next week. Don’t forget to buy that thing for that person you forgot about.

PS. Look at a dollar bill, or the one in the picture above. What does it say at the very top? It’s not money, it’s a Federal Reserve Note.

The Toilet Paper Theory

I thought I might use this week’s blog to put into words what I call the “Toilet Paper Theory”. I can’t say that I have ever really put this down in print before. This is just something I made up a few years ago to explain to liberals why any government program that obscures who is paying for what is bad. Originally I developed this theory for Obamacare, but it holds true for any situation where the person consuming the goods or service is not the one directly paying for those goods or services.

Let’s picture a scenario. It’s Sunday and you just went shopping for your weekly groceries. You spent your whole grocery budget and were able to get enough to last you and your family including two adults and 2 children for the week. You know that you will not be able to get more groceries until next Sunday. As part of the contents of those groceries was a 12 pack of toilet paper, which we will follow for the week.

Monday: There are 12 rolls of toilet paper. Life is good! You stride into the bathroom like the king or queen that you are, wiping with wild abandon. You have 12 rolls after all. You might even contemplate going to Taco Bell later.

Tuesday: There are 9 rolls left. Still feeling pretty good. You have no worries about the future of your toilet paper. The toilet paper is not being used with such wild abandon as yesterday, but still no particular caution is being taken. If a spill happens and the toilet paper is closer in reach than paper towels, you might use them.

Wednesday: There are 7 rolls left. At this point, while you don’t modify the use of your toilet paper in the bathroom, you will start to notice the supply is dwindling. You will actively look for paper towels for those spills. At this point the level of toilet paper is merely on your radar.

Thursday: There are 5 rolls left. One of your kids gets a 12 hour stomach bug. Food is running right through him. You are going through a lot of toilet paper. Now the number of rolls becomes an ever increasing worry in your mind. You might, at this point, mention to the family that they need to watch how much toilet paper they use while in the bathroom.

Friday: There are 3 rolls left. At this point you are getting anxious every time you see one of your kids go into the bathroom. “You better not be going crazy with the toilet paper!” you might yell. You see your spouse go into the bathroom and your stomach drops.

Saturday: There is 1.5 rolls left. At this point you are in survival mode. You ration out squares as your children and spouse walk into the bathroom. “Do you think I’m running a hotel here!” you say when your oldest child asks for a few more squares. They do their best eye roll and sneak some while you’re not looking.

Sunday: There is a half roll of toilet paper left as you go to the store and get your new 12 pack. The cycle starts again.

Now let’s run through this scenario again but with a small difference. You recently won a contest from your favorite local radio station and the prize was a month’s supply of toilet paper. All you have to do is call a number and a 12 pack of your favorite toilet paper will be overnighted to your home. That first week you spend the $8 that would have purchased toilet paper on other groceries. You decide to start the month with 48 rolls, your average monthly usage. You start giving rolls to your friends and neighbors and treat every day like it is Monday. You find after the first week you only have 24 rolls left and order 48 more, just to be on the safe side. As the end of the month approaches and you have doubled your weekly average, you decide to get another 48 rolls to keep you stocked up for a while after the contest promotion is over. In total the toilet paper company delivered 144 rolls of toilet paper.

The example used in this analogy was purposefully comical in nature, but illustrates a very basic concept. If you are not using your own money in the purchasing of things two things become true, you don’t care as much for the things you have and you tend to use more things. If you put yourself in the position of this family you will certainly have to admit you would have acted in a similar manner, I know I would have. It’s human nature. When you go to an all you can eat buffet you tend to eat more than if you had to pay for each plate.

When our governmental officials spend money, it is not their money. This fact insulates them from any repercussions in the event that what they spend money on is not good. They feel no personal attachment to the money they spend and neither do we. We hear these crazy numbers like trillion dollar debt and billion dollar budget for this program or that and don’t blink an eye. It’s “government” money after all. It’s “government debt not mine. When government programs like Obamacare, welfare, farmer welfare, corporate welfare, etc… are used to supplement incomes of people and businesses, those two things are still true.

On a small scale like in my example above, it’s not a huge deal. On the national level it is devastating. People buying stuff they don’t normally buy drives supply down and the price up for everyone. This is one of the main reasons healthcare is so expensive. You pay your copay which is usually a percentage of the bill and your insurance carrier pays the rest. If you knew that the over the counter pain medicine they gave you in the hospital was $100 a pill, you would have had someone go to the grocery store and pick up a whole bottle for $5. Healthcare costs, and everything else the government touches, is driven up because the person using it doesn’t pay for it directly. If you did, you wouldn’t be able to afford it and the price would have to come down or the doctor would go out of business. This whole process creates a vicious circle of subsidy. The higher the price goes, the more subsidy is needed by the government, causing ever higher prices, etc…

If you want to solve the problem of soaring prices in any area, simply remove the never ending wallet that hides the true price. Think of the money that your government spends as your money, because it is. Government does not generate its own money. The money it prints only goes to the government after it is taken from your wallet. Remember that.

You will believe my theory when you go to the grocery store and your child asks you for a 12 oz. bottle of designer water that costs more than the gallon of regular spring water sitting right beneath it.