You’re either a libertarian or a fascist

By Steven Schnarr

With all this talk of a stimulus plan uniting the country, it is easy to lose focus of ideals, even for someone as idealistic as me.

But when it comes down to it, not one major politician in the public eye has said anything that makes sense.

The U.S. Congress couldn’t seem to reach a bipartisan agreement over the current proposal on the bill. Even though President Barack Obama stands able to unite the nation, and is trying, it seems as if we are as divided as ever. But there is a simple way to solve this problem-have each individual state fund its own bailout program.

There are some problems with this idea, considering the federal government is already excessively in control of the U.S. power structure. But it shouldn’t be that way; it wasn’t designed to be that way at the founding of our nation.

In 1776, the population of the United States was less than 2.5 million, according to the U.S. Census Bureau, and they had stricter states’ rights than we have now.

Presently, Illinois alone has more than five times that population. With such an increase in population, local governments should be gaining more independent power, but just the opposite is happening.

An easy way to solve this is with states’ rights. Rather than having a polarized debate in Washington about the fate of the nation, politicians could make a difference in their own states, be it Republicans or Democrats, Greens or Independents.

If the religious Right wants to live in a state where they only teach abstinence and outlaw abortion, they should have the right. They can even outlaw pre-marital sex if they want. Just don’t expect me to be stopping by these states anytime soon.

If the near-socialists want to live in a state with free healthcare and massive welfare payouts, they should have the right. They can even have the government pay for housing, too. Just don’t count on me paying that 80 percent income tax.

If there was that much diversity, I’m sure I could find at least one out of 50 states that I fit into.

The problem is that we live in a society where we think everyone should be doing relatively the same thing. In other words, since the federal government is biggest, it knows best.

This is tragic and utterly false.

What makes America a great nation is that we can agree to disagree. But when someone from Alaska, more than 3,000 miles away from me, in Illinois, votes for a presidential candidate with so much power over my liberties, I can’t say I’m proud to live in a democratic nation-a nation deteriorating into democratic fascism.

If liberty and states’ rights were the common models, the global financial crisis wouldn’t even be half as bad. The major contributing factor to the crisis was deregulation of housing loans. People failed to pay off these loans, and credit began to collapse.

A simple enough way to prevent this would be by having states monitor their own loan regulations. Then the states that had better policies wouldn’t have had to deal with such massive amounts of foreclosures. Better yet, if a state had been able to deregulate loans 50 years ago, then they would have faced a mini-crisis decades ago, gotten out of it by now and other states would have learned from that state’s mistakes.

But the way we have it, the U.S. president and Congress have enough control of the nation to single-handedly determine the outcome of the global economy. No one should ever have that much power.

But when we cast our ballots and submit to the idea that we want to choose who has control of the nation, we also consent to the idea that no one else in the country should have that control over their own lives.

But we don’t need to submit to this. We can encourage our president and our congressional representatives to give back the power to smaller governments. If they don’t, we can vote for politicians who will.