| Opinion/The Review

Larger text Larger text Smaller text Smaller text | Order Photo Reprints

Will we ever reject statism?

Email Newsletters

Click here to sign up for one of our email newsletters.

Letters home ...

Traveling abroad for personal, educational or professional reasons?

Why not share your impressions — and those of residents of foreign countries about the United States — with Trib readers in 150 words?

The world's a big place. Bring it home with Letters Home.

Contact Colin McNickle (412-320-7836 or

Daily Photo Galleries

By Jacob G. Hornberger
Saturday, Jan. 5, 2013

The fiscal-cliff deal shouldn't surprise anyone. A sufficient number of Republicans caved, enabling President Obama to bask in the glory of causing Republicans to vote for a massive tax increase.

What did the Republicans get in return with respect to federal spending?

Not one thing.

On the contrary, they agreed that the “cuts” in federal spending that were going to go into effect as part of the fiscal cliff would be suspended for at least the next two months.

Do remember that under the so-called fiscal cliff, there really isn't any reduction in federal spending at all. The fiscal-cliff “cut” is actually an increase in federal spending.

Why do they call it a “cut”? Because the increase in federal spending is not as much as federal officials had hoped for and planned for. That's what a “cut” in federal spending means in Washington.

That's what Republicans got for their cave-in. And whom did Republicans levy their massive tax increase on? Republicans joined with Democrats to plunder and loot “the rich.”

Feeling his oats, Obama has announced he has no intention of negotiating any spending decreases as part of the upcoming debt-ceiling deadline. What this demonstrates, of course, is the real battle for the direction of this country is between libertarians and statists, with the latter group consisting of conservatives and liberals.

Statists want to have the government continue spending ever-increasing amounts of money, no matter how much the government must tax, borrow and inflate. Statists say that's the key to economic prosperity.

Libertarians, on the other hand, say that ever-increasing spending, taxes and inflation are the key to economic bankruptcy.

In the next two months, as the debt ceiling is reached and that scary fiscal cliff is reached again, the statists will again be harping on the horrors of the “deficit” — the amount of money being spent in excess of tax revenues. It's one of their favorite sleights of hand, which they'll use to call for more tax increases to “close the deficit.”

But the “deficit” isn't the problem. The problem is that the government is spending too much.

It's time to embrace economic liberty and reject statism. That's the solution to the statist cancer that is destroying our nation's body politic.

Jacob G. Hornberger is founder and president of The Future of Freedom Foundation (

Subscribe today! Click here for our subscription offers.



Show commenting policy

Most-Read Stories

  1. Penguins see Stars, blanked by Dallas in opening game
  2. A field day on social media as Pirates’ Rodriguez attacks Gatorade cooler
  3. Starkey: Pirates gaining bad big-game rep
  4. Steelers quarterback Vick getting more acquainted with offense
  5. Pirates notebook: Fastball command issues hurt Cole against Cubs
  6. Steelers hoping to establish run early against San Diego
  7. Kennametal HQ relocation rankles Westmoreland County business leadership
  8. Pennsylvania hardliners mum on GOP House leadership
  9. Upper St. Clair lifeguard ordered to stand trial for rape of female lifeguard
  10. Clerical error blamed as Armstrong inmate is released
  11. Environmental watchdog sues world’s largest steelmaker over Pennsylvania pollution