Government’s ‘bare fraudulence’

Government’s ‘bare fraudulence’

In light of Wednesday’s unveiling by President Joe Biden of a massive, multitrillion-dollar expansion of the tax-and-spend state, we thought it appropriate to recount the words of late great 19th– and 20th-century social commentator H.L. Mencken:

“(The State) has taken on a vast mass of new duties and responsibilities; it has spread out its powers until they penetrate to every act of the citizen, however secret; it has begun to throw around its operations the high dignity and impeccability of a State religion; its agents become a separate and superior caste, with authority to bind and loose, and their thumbs in every pot. But it still remains, as it was in the beginning, the common enemy of all well-disposed, industrious and decent men.”

“The most dangerous man to any government is the man who is able to think things out … without regard to the prevailing superstitions and taboos. Almost inevitably he comes to the conclusion that the government he lives under is dishonest, insane (and) intolerable.”

“The ideal government of all reflective men, from Aristotle onward, is one which lets the individual alone – one which barely escapes being no government at all.”

“For every complex problem there is an answer that is clear, simple and wrong.”

“Democracy is the theory that the common people know what they want — and deserve to get it good and hard.”

“Unquestionably, there is progress. The average American now pays out twice as much in taxes as he formerly got in wages.”

“Of government, at least in democratic states, it may be said briefly that it is an agency engaged wholesale, and as a matter of solemn duty, in the performance of acts which all self-respecting individuals refrain from as a matter of common decency.”

“(Government’s) great contribution to human wisdom … is the discovery that the taxpayer has more than one pocket.”

“The natural tendency of every government is to grow steadily worse –that is, to grow more satisfactory to those who constitute it and less satisfactory to those who support it.”

Remember these remarkably contemporary quotes as the Law of Unintended Consequences of the Biden plan — eagerly approved of by Greater Pittsburgh’s local “progressive” leaders and their furiously nodding sheeple — sets in and the nation finds, as Mencken also once said, “The extortions and oppressions of government will go on so long as such bare fraudulence deceives and disarms the victims … .”

Colin McNickle is communications and marketing director at the Allegheny Institute for Public Policy (