Personal liberty – who wouldn’t vote for that? It’s one of the chief come-ons for voting Republican.

But what do Republicans and others of the right mean by liberty? They mean freedom from government interference and regulations (except, apparently, for abortion). Capitalism should rule and capitalists should be in charge – maximizing profit in the short term. Forget the long-term effects of their short-term goals. Government should provide military, courts and help for policing and not much else.

With Republicans in charge, how will they strive to achieve this? First, the Senate filibuster will be gone. Although it benefits them now, as it essentially allows minority rule by veto, when they’re in charge, they won’t want to let the Democrats have a minority veto.

The Republicans don’t have much in the way of policy right now, except to be against whatever the Democrats want. So how do they win? They make it harder to vote – voter roll purges, fewer or no drop boxes, limits on helping disabled voters once at the polls. Causing long lines to discourage voters. Prohibiting the provision of water or food to people in voting lines. Gerrymandering. In some states, voters must drive hours to vote, to get a required ID, to get their mail. In essence this becomes a poll tax, as each time they have to make that trip, it could cost a tank of gas ($40-$60 per tank).

They are passing state laws that allow the state legislatures to replace election officials they don’t care for.

Other things they want gone? The Environmental Protection Agency (those costly regulations), Social Security, retirement accounts, Medicare, Medicaid, any kind of assistance with health care or insurance, supplemental benefits, SNAP, etc. Too bad – you should have saved. Public education? Nope – whatever private and unregulated institution you can afford, or home school, which makes it hard to work to afford any of the things you need to live.


Unions? No way! Occupational Safety and Health Administration regulations? No way! Want clean air, water, untrammeled wild areas to restore your sanity or to allow endangered environments to survive? Sorry. Actually, there won’t be anything “endangered,” as the Endangered Species Act would likely be overturned. Child care tax credit, gone. Fair elections? LOL.

So, back to personal liberty. What will “we the people” be at liberty to do? Work for the capitalists at whatever wage they choose, with as little in the way of benefits as possible. We will be free to do whatever we want as long as we can pay for it ourselves. Rent an apartment? Subsidized job training? No more subsidies. Buy a house – no more government-supported mortgages – mortgage deduction gone. Food stamps – gone. Medical care – sure, as long as you pay for it yourself. Nursing home for an elderly parent – sure, as long as you pay for it yourself. Day care – ditto.

Don’t want a dump, highway, pig farm, meat processing plant or power plant in your neighborhood? Sorry, the capitalists will be at liberty to do what they want, when and where they want. Guess what? You’re “at liberty” to move somewhere else, if you can afford it.

Voting is the primary way we the people get to have a say in how we are governed. When you get around to voting, remember that the election campaigns rarely tell you what any candidate really stands for, only that they stand with their party. There is big money put into elections by capitalists who expect to profit. If you want to continue to have a say in how you are governed, think carefully about who you vote for. Someday you may not be allowed to vote.

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