James Kerian: Subsidized Preschool And The Ever-Rising Price Of Freedom

In this country you are free to buy an electric car or a more conventional car fueled by gasoline.  The choice is yours and you can make it freely.  Except, of course, that if you choose to buy a conventional automobile you can only do so with the money you have left over after paying (through income taxes) some of the subsidy for those who choose to buy electrical cars.

In this country you and your spouse are free to choose whether or not you will use prophylactics to avoid conceiving children.  It is assumed that only totalitarian regimes would deny people this sort of freedom.  Under Obamacare, however, you are required to pay (through the mandates and taxes of the Affordable Care Act) for the prophylactics that others are choosing to use.

[mks_pullquote align=”right” width=”300″ size=”24″ bg_color=”#000000″ txt_color=”#ffffff”]”With the introduction of SB 2151 several North Dakota legislators have joined President Obama’s crusade for subsidized preschool.”[/mks_pullquote]

If you have children you are free to enroll them in a private school, or to homeschool them, or to enroll them in the local public school.  The choice is yours and you can make it freely.  Except, of course, if you choose to homeschool your children or enroll them in a private school you have to pay for this out of the money you have left over after you have paid (through property taxes) for the public school.

You are free to save for your own retirement or to depend on social security and medicare to take care of you in your later years.  If you choose to save for your own retirement you even have a few options for doing so that come with partial tax benefits and, unlike the programs above, you receive some benefit from social security and medicare even if you saved for your own retirement.  You are, however, still only allowed to save for your own retirement with the money you have left over after you have paid (through payroll taxes) for social security and medicare.

[mks_pullquote align=”left” width=”300″ size=”24″ bg_color=”#000000″ txt_color=”#ffffff”]”The cumulative result of these various government programs is that freedom becomes evermore a luxury reserved to those who can afford it. “[/mks_pullquote]

With the introduction of SB 2151 several North Dakota legislators have joined President Obama’s crusade for subsidized preschool.  They insist, of course, that parents will remain free to arrange for one parent to stay home with their child, or to arrange for a grandparent or some other family member to care for the child.  As in the examples above that is sort of correct, no one will be forced to enroll their child in a subsidized preschool.  It’s just that those who choose to arrange for childcare on their own will have to do so after having paid (through taxes) for subsidized preschool.

Normally when we talk about the cost of freedom we are talking about the vigilance of activists and the courage of soldiers that we need in order to maintain our Republic.  Each of the programs above, however, has the perverse effect of increasing the price of freedom, the amount of dollars that one has to be able to earn in this country to be able to afford to make one’s own choices.

The cumulative result of these various government programs is that freedom becomes evermore a luxury reserved to those who can afford it.  To be truly free you must not only earn enough to pay for your own choice but also enough to pay the required subsidy for those who took the path more favored by the government.  Isn’t freedom already expensive enough?

Rob Port is the editor of SayAnythingBlog.com, a columnist for the Forum News Service, and host of the Plain Talk Podcast which you can subscribe to by clicking here.

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