Freedom of Choice Slowly Slipping Away
Perhaps it is the result of being a first-born child, but I’ve always considered myself to be fairly independent. I like making my own decisions. I always have. That’s what is so great about this country – freedom of choice.
But lately I’ve begun to wonder if some of our choices, and ultimately our freedoms, are being taken away. I suppose it’s all the mandate talk in the news lately that got me to start thinking about this.
I’ve also been wondering about the direction of our country. Where are we really headed? I had some musings as I pondered this.
I am quickly approaching the age of Medicare. However, I am still working and hope to continue to work for a while, so I do not need nor really want Medicare at this time. For the past four months though, I have received letters in the mail every day telling me that I must sign up.
My doctor’s office also sent me a letter stating that I could no longer be a patient unless I signed up for a particular part of Medicare. I realize that it’s not my doctor’s real desire to do this, but rather the system that is responsible. Knowing this, I was still surprised since I had been a patient there for thirty years.
There is a mandate that states all employees must pay a tax to finance Medicare. It appears right on our W-2 form, line 6, “Medicare tax withheld.” I have been paying this tax for years but thought I could save the government some money by using my private insurance and not take part in this government program. Apparently the government is not interested in my savings.
Wouldn’t it be great if many older citizens actually didn’t take part in Medicare or waited a few years past their sixty-fifth birthday and helped reduce our overwhelming debt? Even Timothy Geithner, our Treasury Secretary, recently stated that Medicare, going forward, is going to be a huge tax burden.
Lunch Box Guardians
I also started thinking about my grandchildren and how freedom of choice will affect them. I wondered what would happen to them if my daughter would be questioned about her nutritional judgment. Remember the preschooler whose homemade lunch was taken away from her – a lunch that consisted of a turkey and cheese sandwich, banana, potato chips and apple juice. Apparently this lunch did not meet the U.S. Department of Agriculture guidelines. Instead, her parent was charged $1.25 and she was forced to eat another lunch that consisted of chicken nuggets. I think the questions we have to ask ourselves are:
* Why is the government taking the place of parental judgment?
* Why are we paying people to inspect our children’s lunches?
Freedom to Choose
I also recently came across an article about banning bottled water in Concord, NH. It struck me as quite ironic since Concord has been considered by many to be the birthplace of freedom. However, some persistent residents have tried for three years to rid the city of what they consider unnecessary waste and harm to the environment. I, myself, am not a big proponent of drinking water in plastic bottles. However, I am a fan of the free-market system. Let people choose what they think is a good product for them.
By the way, bottled water does serve a purpose! Has anyone taken a long road trip lately? But that’s not really the point. The more important question is whether government should be controlling commerce. Should retailers be put at a competitive disadvantage? If I live in Concord and really have a desire or need for bottled water, should I have to travel to another town to obtain this product? Is this really a battle between the tap and the bottle or is this a battle between the government and us? What will they decide to ban next? Will the proposed ban on large sodas in New York be implemented?
What You Can Do
It’s time to get out of our chairs and take action. Not only are our freedoms slowly being taken away, but excessive regulation causes a burden on our economy due to the extra bureaucracy involved and the negative effect that has on commerce.
Get informed about what is going on in our country, and inform others. Know what is happening with proposals that affect your community and your country. Attend rallies. Knock on doors. Volunteer. Take this Fall’s election seriously. A great deal is at stake. Be part of taking America back to what our Founding Fathers always intended.
Freedom. It is not a word to be taken lightly.
 Obama’s Insurance Requirement Not the Only Mandate – http://www.cbsnews.com/8301-501705_162-57407697/obamas-insurance-requirement-not-the-only-mandate/
 An Economy Built to Crash – http://freebeacon.com/geithner-admits-obamas-budget-unsustainable/
 Preschooler’s Homemade Lunch Taken Away – http://townhall.com/tipsheet/helenwhalencohen/2012/02/15/preschoolers
 Concord Bottled Water Ban – http://www.boston.com/yourtown/news/concord/2012/04/opinion_concord_bottled_water.html
 Big-Soda Ban in New York? – http://www.latimes.com/news/nation/nationnow/la-na-nn-mike-bloombergs-soda-ban-20120604,0,3569889.story