The great chronicler of early America, Alexis de Tocqueville speculated, “The American Republic will endure until the day Congress discovers that it can bribe the public with the public’s money.”
Alexander Hamilton (an infantryman and economist I greatly admire) called debt a “natural disease of all governments.” Given the long observation of these problems, it would be surprising if we could not today identify a good many folks who rely on government largesse in lieu of hard work. Mitt Romney even went so far as to claim this as a source of electoral defeat.
I am no political strategist, so I don’t know if making these sorts of statements is wise politics, but I am afraid that the folks getting the “gifts” he spoke of are not really who he thinks they are. There is adequate data on the matter, which is in need of parsing on these pages.
In mentioning “Scooby Snacks” last week, I was referring to people or groups who get something from the government for nothing. There may be plenty of people who get too much for what they do for government, but that is for another column.