The number of articles on The Nerve exposing the sophistry of economic development initiatives and incentives promulgated by the S.C. Legislature is simply astounding. Reading these articles, I couldn’t help but see a parallel to recent comments by presidential candidate Mitt Romney.
Romney took some so-called “heat” for having the audacity to utter statements about the number of Americans dependent on governmental assistance, or in the language of South Carolina politicians, incentives. Many took umbrage at his remarks.
Obviously Romney’s comments were directed toward high-profile, politically charged issues such as welfare and income taxes. However, for those desirous of less governmental intrusion into our everyday lives, his premise deserves a more deliberate introspection.
In computer language, an “If-Then” statement is called a conditional statement. Most generally, the “If-Then” statement determines that “If” a condition is met, “Then” a result occurs.
Applying this to the world of politics, some examples of “If-Then” statements could include, “If you are unemployed, then you receive unemployment payments”; or “If you need food, then you receive food stamps.”
Voila! Input provided; results produced. At least for those folks, anyway.
Most people used to take pride in being self sufficient, quietly chaffing at the federal and, consequently, our state government’s redistribution campaigns. Many still cling to this false-pride notion, believing they are insulated from this issue and play no part in its promotion.
In light of populist politicians, including far too many so-called “conservatives,” it is worthy to pose to yourself as well as others, “In what part of my life does the federal government not have a direct role?”
Consider the following, using the “If-Then” statement:
Want to drive a car;
Want to buy gasoline;
Pay a phone bill of any type;
Connect to the Internet;
Have a child in any public school, at any level;
Pack a lunch for your child to take to school;
Want to build or modify existing property;
Want to start a new business;
Pay a utility bill;
Want to vote;
Apply for public assistance of any type;
Want to be a truck driver;
Want to learn to fly aircraft;
Fly on an airplane;
Want to work on aircraft;
Want to dispose of trash or refuse;
Ever flush a toilet;
Use tap water;
Want to buy firearm ammunition;
Do business with a bank;
Ever change a light bulb;
THEN the federal government plays a direct role in your life.
However, the most pertinent question in all of this has to be, “Is this a complete list?”
Jim Wilkie is a lifelong resident of the Upstate, currently residing in Easley. He holds a bachelor’s degree in economics from Wofford College, and has over 30 years of industrial, manufacturing and sales experience. He currently owns a small business in Easley.
Wilkie is a husband of 27 years, a father, and an especially doting grandfather to his 4-year-old grandson. He is serving his second term as chairman of the Pickens County Planning Commission.