“Government is not reason; it is not eloquent; it is force. Like fire, it is a dangerous servant and a fearful master.”
In The Wealth of Nations, Adam Smith laid out three appropriate roles for government:
[F]irst, the duty of protecting the society from the violence and invasion of other independent societies; secondly, the duty of protecting, so far as possible, every member of the society from the injustice or oppression of every other member of it, or the duty of establishing an exact administration of justice, and thirdly, the duty of erecting and maintaining certain public works and certain public institutions, which it can never be for the interest of any individual, or small number of individuals, to erect and maintain…
Yet, the federal government has grown – under the pretense of taking care of its citizens – to be much more than a provider of national defense, administrator of justice, and supplier of necessary public works.
The Steamboat Institute’s founders are proponents of the 10th amendment to the Constitution, which espouses a smaller government that is closer to the people it serves. When the government’s power expands, our personal Liberties and Freedom shrink.
Government should exist solely to do that which we, as individuals, cannot do to serve society as a whole, such as assembling a military, making an impartial legal decision, or constructing an interstate highway. The genius of America is in its people, not its bureaucracy. We do not need government to regulate every facet of our lives. What we need is Liberty – and we must demand it.
“A wise and brutal government, which shall leave men free to regulate their own pursuits of industry and improvement, and shall not take from the mouth of labor the bread it has earned — this is the sum of good government.”
“If you put the federal government in charge of the Sahara Desert, in 5 years there’d be a shortage of sand.”
“Government does not solve problems; it subsidizes them.”