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A Public Service Message from the American Income Life. Insurance Co.Waco, TexasBernard Rapoport, Chairman of the Board and Chief Executive Officer Less Benefits or More Taxes By Bernard Rapoport It has become a respectable subject of conversation in Texas to inquire of a Texan that accepts the nomenclature of Democrat as to whether he or she is considering switching parties. On this question, I take a positive stand. My enthusiasm for the Democratic party remains undiminished. Now, of course, I am neither a very good prognosticator nor am I one whose endorsement a local candidate would seek if they listened to some of my good friends here in the Waco area. The advice that my very good friend, Pat Beard, gives all of our mutual friends who are considering running for office is that the best thing that can happen to you is if “B” will endorse your opponent. This notwithstanding, I heartily endorse the Democratic Party. The foremost reason is that ideologically, the Democrats reject the social Darwinist theory as explained by Paul Starr in his magnificent book, The Social Transformation of American Medicine. Social Darwinists, following the English social theorist Herbert Spencer, thought all such regulation unwise. “Very many of the poorer classes are injured by druggists’ prescriptions and quack medicines, Spencer willingly conceded. But there was nothing wrong in that; it was the penalty nature attached to ignorance. If the poor died of their own foolishness, the species would improve.” It is in the rejection of social Darwinism that the Democratic Party establishes its commitment to social responsibility. The lesson it needed to learn is that the ends do not justify any means. Further the means of yesteryears may or may not be appropriate in today’s dynamically changing times. For example, it would be wise for the Democratic Party to reject indexing or cost of living adjustments. We now know that these are capricious approaches to hiding the pernicious effects of inflation. While we know that there is no such thing as a universal truth so far as economics is concerned, the axiom that would come very close is that there is nothing for nothing. There is always a cost. Indexing and colas, in effect, are escape routes for politicians and especially presidents who talk about a constitutional amendment for balanced budgets and then break all records for unbalancing the budget. While no one wants to pay more taxes, it is inconceivable, indeed unconscionable, for any Party to categorically state that they will not increase taxes. Society has to establish its objectives and once having ,done this, then step up to the counter to pay the bill and that is done through taxes. One of our very serious problems is that neither party has reckoned with the advice given by Henry Fairlie: Societies that tolerate and even encourage so destructive a force within their own bodies must at some point have taken a wrong turning. We have given Wrath its license by elevating a flagrantly misleading concept of individual and human rights. Any felt need or desire or longing, for anything which one lacks and someone else has, is today conceived to be a right which, when demanded, must be conceded without challenge; and if it is not at once conceded, the claimants are entitled to be angry. The truth is that you can’t have lower taxes and increased spending and balance the budget. It certainly would seem that with all the high powered people they have in Washington, they ought to be able to figure that out. I am sure the foreign investors that have been subsidizing our deficit are beginning to figure that out and when they consider the folly of our policies and stop buying our government bonds, interest rates will skyrocket and catapult us into a depression like we have never experienced. Yes, the Democratic Party I think has learned that when you want a benefit, you have to pay for it. It may have taken it too long, but it appears to me that the other party is egregious in its insensitivity to these needs. Higher taxes the two words have an unsettling effect on the ears. I submit, however, that there are other words that are even more unsettling such as depression, unemployment, inflation, dispossessed farmers. Wouldn’t thinking Americans pay a little more in taxes to preclude the tragedy that these conditions cause. It isn’t higher taxes that Americans object to; it is that they are really not getting very much for the taxes that they are paying. Americans hate waste. We want to help the poor, the aged, the young, the handicapped. Two things, however we don’t want to help those who don’t need help and we don’t want our tax dollars wasted on them and ditto for when it comes to spending more on administrators than we do for deserving recipients, something that has occurred much too often. Succinctly, Americans want an honest count. The differences between the two parties is that the Republican Party takes pride in being the Party of Business and the Democratic Party is becoming the Party for America. No Party should represent any specific group or even groups. The Party that leads this nation should be one that has an organic approach and I believe that the Democratic Party understands this. Americans want government to be businesslike in discharging its responsibilities, but sensitive to the needs of its people. Concommitantly, a government should not be wasteful. Those who administer the affairs of government have to understand that the monies that they expend should be as if it were their own. The Democratic Pary must be totally committed to this concept, and I believe that though it has taken too long, it has learned this lesson very well. Isn’t it ironical that the so-called liberal spending Democratic Party is now the one emphasizing big budget deficits and it’s the Party in power that proposes record breaking deficit budgets? Alld American Income Life Insurance Company EXECUTIVE OFFICES: P.O. BOX 208, WACO, TEXAS 78703, 817.772-3050 BERNARD RAPOPORT Chairman of the Board and Chief Executive Officer THE TEXAS OBSERVER 17