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The Impact of a Big Government

Updated on April 14, 2014

The reach of our federal government seems to be never ending with the thousands of legislative actions and the rules/regulations to support those actions. Our government seems to be growing larger and larger in reference to impacting our daily lives. The reach of government and its impact on the rights we have been given as identified in our Constitution is undeniable to say the least. One wise quote from President Gerald Ford says it all. It states:

"A government big enough to give you everything you want is a government big enough to take from you everything you have."

The long reach of government both at the federal level and state as it is today in many cases has changed our daily lives and the lives of our family and friends. This not only affects us as individuals but as owners of businesses. In some cases the rules/regulations and laws are necessary to protect the consumer in such areas as safety, national security and food but even these areas has seen the long arm of government.

It was recently reported that there are changes coming regarding junk food and school campuses. Under the new regulations and potentially laws companies will not be allowed to advertise what is considered to be junk food at sporting events and even on school campuses. While I understand the objective of reducing child obesity it is not up to government to decide what foods companies can advertise. This goes on the heels of requirements for healthier foods in school lunch programs which is not a bad idea

It is true that schools will have some options but overall the restriction of what foods can be advertised can or will affect the bottom line of products that companies produce. Government is not the place to dictate what kids eat and the fact is some kids do not like the healthier foods and should not be forced to eat them or go hungry. It is not certain if this is the case under the current program but no one should be forced to have limited choices.

One strange fact about this latest invasion of our right to choose what we eat is that concessions at after school events would be exempt from these new rules. It appears to be a double standard in allowing junk type foods to be available after school but not during school. There may be other exceptions as the rules/regulations have not been formally generated.

Other examples of the overreach of government can be seen in the regulations and rules generated by departments and agencies. There are now over 300 departments/agencies generating their own rules and regulations. Many of these agencies overlap in their responsibilities and some may not even be needed or be constitutionally legal. Many of these entities may have the support of legislative actions but those legislative actions may not necessarily have any basis in the Constitution.

It is difficult in these economic times for businesses and in some cases individuals to keep up with all the laws, rules and regulations across the board. In addition new rules/regulations and revisions to them create a dictatorial atmosphere when the strong arm of an agency or department comes down on unsuspecting individuals trying to make a living. Common sense seems to be lacking in some of the decisions being made by government entities. One example recently in Nevada ended with the department retreating from their actions but it is not known what the real reason was for the retreat. In this case the public won a victory over a decision by a government agency but the issue may not be settled. It remains to be seen if further action will be taken.

Many government entities make good decisions and act with common sense but when any agency makes decisions which have a negative perception from the public it hurts the reputation of the remaining departments and agencies. As previously mentioned there are over 300 departments/agencies and it is not known how many rules or regulations they have issued. We may not even know the real impact of government on society unless it is reported in the media or we are impacted by their actions. It is also unknown how many thousands of regulations have been generated associated with laws passed by Congress and the more that are issued the more reach of government will exist. We need fewer regulations/rules but getting rid of the right ones will be the hardest part. It is hoped that with the new Congress after the election that a hard look at these departments/agencies to create a more slim government and an efficient one if ever that can happen. We must elect the right individuals or reelect the right individuals who will instill common sense in how government operates and honor the Constitution in the process. The more laws/rules and regulations that are generated the larger government becomes. This can apply to state governments in addition to the federal government but the impact would be within a state not across the country.

Some of us have become accustomed to having government provide many benefits but it can become so large that it can also take away the things we have. This can involve our rights and liberties for which many attempts have been tried in such areas as the right to own firearms and the right to freedom of religion and freedom of the press. Decisions made by our judicial system and elected officials involved with enforcing the laws make decisions which are sometimes overturned at higher levels of our judicial system including the Supreme Court.


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