September 27, 2013 – Iowa Democratic Sen. Tom Harkin, in a speech about raising the debt ceiling, said, “We are at one of the most dangerous points in our history right now. Every bit as dangerous as the break-up of the Union before the Civil War.”

On this point, he is absolutely right! But it is Harkin and his ilk, led by President Obama, who are tearing apart the Republic.

Harkin aimed his remarks at Texas Republican Sen. Ted Cruz, who filibustered against the implementation of Obamacare, and against Cruz’s Tea Party allies.

Harkin complained about “a small group of willful men and women who have a certain ideology.” He continued, “Since they can't get their way, they're going to create this confusion and discourse and hope that the public will be so mixed up in who is to blame for this, that they'll blame both sides.”

But there is no confusion. Pandering power-hungry paternalist politicians like Harkin are to blame!

I have been writing for some years that “America is drifting toward civil war … the conflict is between producers, those who work to earn their own way and prosper through their own efforts, and expropriators, those who survive by taking from others with governments as their agents.”

Today, the contradictions of the welfare state—exacerbated by Obamacare, which gives the feds control over one-sixth of the economy—have reached crisis levels. As government entitlements and spending grow, deficits grow and governments seek more revenues from already over-taxed and over-regulated wealth-creators, further stifling wealth creation and creating yet more demands for government assistance.

Right now the federal government borrows 40 cents for every dollar it spends. The national debt under Obama has gone from $10 trillion to $18.2 trillion, equal to the country’s GDP.  And yet Obama, Harkin, and their cronies seek an increase in the debt ceiling so they can further bankrupt the country.

Worse, such politicians, in their lust to loot, have spent their political lives fanning the flames of envy, damning prosperous individuals for the “sin” of prospering through their own efforts, and then demanding that they produce even more for the politicians to expropriate. And, too often, producers have been guilt-tripped into apologizing for being productive and prosperous, for their virtues.

It is the paternalist politicians who have rebelled against the principles of individual liberty—“a certain ideology”—on which this country was founded: that we each have the right to life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness, and that government should be limited to protecting those rights. It is these politicians who seek to make us all servile, to keep us dependent on their largess as they feed off a shrinking number of victims.

But now the producers are waking up and standing up against the likes of Obama and Harking. Atlas is shrugging. And a civil war will only be avoided if productive individuals and those who have been made dependent on government by such politicians reclaim their liberty and dignity.
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Hudgins is director of advocacy and a senior scholar at The Atlas Society.

For further information:

“Edward Hudgins, " Producers vs. Expropriators: America's Coming Civil War. ” April 13, 2010. 

*Edward Hudgins, “ America's ‘Civil War’ Debt Battle. ” August 3, 2011.

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Edward Hudgins

About The Author:

Edward Hudgins is the former director of advocacy for The Atlas Society, the author of numerous Atlas Society commentaries, and the editor of several books on politics and government policy. He is now research director for the Heartland Institute. He has also worked at the Heritage Foundation, Cato Institute, and Joint Economic Committee of Congress.

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