Under our current statist political system, the individual is doubly injured economically. First, he is taxed in such a way and to such an extent that he can keep only very little of any surplus income he might have left over after meeting his financial obligations. Secondly, the economy has been so badly crippled via statist policies that the individual has a difficult time generating any substantial amount of income in the first place.
These phenomena are intentional. I do not mean that they are the result of some type of conspiracy—i.e., the plan of some hidden or behind-the-scenes group. The only sense in which one could ascribe the attribute of secrecy is that those who advocate these destructive ends could never openly admit to it. The actual collection of individuals who do this, however, is not some hidden or behind-the-scenes group. Rather, it is in fact the actual people who occupy our public offices.
The phenomenon of shackling of the individual via these destructive statist policies is explained by the fundamental ideas of the holders of public office who enact them. They do not want the individual to “get ahead.” In their view, the individual belongs to the collective—the group—and each individual is bound and chained to every other. If some must be sacrificed to others, so be it. If the result is a lower standard of living for everyone, so be it. Whatever wreckage or decreased prospects for human happiness and prosperity may or must result from such ideas, our current politicians are at root okay with it, because they believe that their ideas and their ends are correct—i.e., are moral. (Observe the fact that they are willing to shove these ideas and policies down our throat, as recently witnessed with the “passage” of the healthcare bill.) They do not believe in individual rights. They believe that the individual belongs to the group and therefore anything may be imposed upon him if in their view it serves the group. Furthermore, they believe that they are the group’s master.
These phenomena are intentional, but they are not part of a conspiracy. One need look no further than the actual occupants of government and the ideas implicit in their policies. Nothing less explains the phenomena and nothing more is needed. And so long as these basic ideas go unrecognized and unchallenged—and so long as incorrect causes and explanations are sought—we will continue to slide further and further into statism.