Power & Market

The Most Dangerous Legislation of the Year

We’ve seen this before; when they (referring to the State, central planners, bankers working in concert with government) pass some of the most significant pieces of legislation while everyone else is distracted with the holiday season. On December 23, 1913 The Federal Reserve Act became law. And while that may have been one of the most destructive pieces of legislation to ever have been passed, it did not mark the last time this Christmas legislation tactic was to be used.

On Friday, December 23, 2022, NBC announced:

House passes $1.7 trillion spending bill that rewrites U.S. election law, sending it to Biden to sign

The Republicans take the House next year; so this was the last chance for the Democrats to include as much as they could on this year's Christmas Wish List.

It’s astounding by any measure that the public remains numb when being told that $1.7 trillion will be spent on their behalf. But also, who knows what other changes have been included in the bill, especially when so few people read it.

The disregard for the public is palpable. Consider how NBC explains the details:

It overhauls federal election law by revising the Electoral Count Act of 1887 to try to prevent another Jan. 6. The bill funds a swath of domestic programs as well, averting a shutdown and keeping the government funded through next fall.

To claim this bill will “prevent another Jan. 6” is dishonest and quite the non-sequitur. To follow with the idea that the bill will include a “swath of domestic programs” also provides nothing meaningful.

However, there are some things we can rely on:

The package contains a major boost to military spending and nearly $45 billion in assistance to Ukraine. 

Christmas came early to Ukraine’s President and TIME Magazine’s Person of the Year; $45 billion dollars goes a long way! It would have been better if this money was never spent in the first place. And if it did have to be spent, rather than giving it to foreign enemies, practically anything else would have been preferable to funding a government sponsored multi-billion-dollar war machine overseas.

As for who voted, we find that nine Republicans voted in favor, and it was basically just another vote along party lines, with a notable exception:

…. Democratic Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez of New York voted against it…

Whether Ocasio-Cortez thought the $1.7 trillion bill was too much money, or not enough, is unclear. But what is clear is that this $1.7 trillion Christmas spending bill was passed with a Democratic controlled house. However, we must be honest: if it was a Republican controlled house, how different would this bill have been? We are now in the era where trillion-dollar spending bills are the norm, not the exception.

2023 may prove no different. The Dem/Rep battle will rage on, and trillion-dollar bills will continue to be written. While it is the holidays, and most people just want a break from the news, let’s not forget that it was Christmas in 1913 the Federal Reserve was created. Few people seemed to have noticed it then, and many still seem to not notice it now. But what is more important than who controls the house? The answer: Whoever controls the money.

Note: The views expressed on Mises.org are not necessarily those of the Mises Institute.
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