Thursday, April 11, 2013

Why you don't want to trust government

In light of today's cloture vote allowing the Senate to pass its version of a bill requiring nearly universal background checks for firearm purchases, I thought it might be useful to offer a few examples why we want to limit government databases of the kind that the BATF created back in 1994 when the original Brady chec was passed.  (h/t SayAnythingBlog)

First, apparently the Missouri Highway Patrol has released the personal information of all 163,000 carry permit holders to the Social Security Administration, sans warrant, to determine if the mentally disabled were getting carry permits.  Most likely, they perpetrators at the SSA were trying to get around prohibitions of sharing their information with the DOJ.   But you can trust government with a database; really you can!

Next, the District of Columbia, California, and Connecticut have apparently decided (giant suck-up to the Smoker-in-Chief?) that smoking--probably the most voluntary of all health hazards known--is a "pre-existing condition" , and therefore insurance companies can't charge extra for a habit that increases the risk of lung cancer by a factor of 40.  

Third, the Obama budget (only nine weeks late while he was out campaigning again!) has a number of insane provisions, and one notable example is a limit of the value of IRA/401k accounts to about three million dollars.  Now regrettably this does not impact me at present, but it's hard to overstate how bad an idea this is. 

For starters, those individuals affected were promised a delay in taxation until retirement, and so this is a breach of contract by the government that at least comes close to violating the prohibitions on ex post facto laws.  Next, in forcing people to divest funds to pay taxes on them during work years, it generates financial instability--just what we need right now, of course.

Probably most importantly, though, it's yet another place where government means-testing is discouraging savings, and it's worth remembering that an excess of borrowing is what led to the current malaise. 

Finally, we have here (H/T Doug Powers on Michelle Malkin's site) a cancelled order for bagpipes from the Department of Homeland SecurityHeimatssicherheitsdienst.  So not content with using expensive hollowpoint ammunition for target practice (we hope), they're "investing" in instruments not relevant to their role. 

Now if you still think the government can have a beneficial role in preventing mass killings, I submit to you a list of all of the recent perpetrators who would have been stopped by a background check at a gun show:

In reality, most of the recent killers had passed the checks, and the others stole their weapons, just like the NRA has been telling us.  Hopefully the bill dies a quick, painful death in the House of Representatives.

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