I don't know if you've noticed it or not, but I sense there is an escalating sense of frustration toward the government system of providing to the poor. That frustration is bordering on repulsion which will someday turn to rebellion. And it will be the middle-class working stiffs who will lead this rebellion. Let's just hope it's fought in the halls of Congress and not the streets of America.
I firmly believe the frustration grows around tax time each year. Here's what happens. You work all year long and come April 15, the feds and the state want just a few more dollars from your well-worn wallets. But all too often, those who do not work receive your share of those tax dollars. And it's not in the form of services, it's hard, cold cash.
Gov. Bob Holden voiced concern in a governors' meeting this week that Medicaid costs were virtually crippling the state government budget. Baby after baby are born to unwed mothers with no insurance and no resources to pay for their child. A compassionate society pays the expenses for the birth and then the living expenses to raise that child. Another child soon follows and the pattern is repeated.
Those on government-paid medical programs know they have no out-of-pocket expenses so they often overburden the health care community which looks to taxpayers to fund the shortfall. I'll give you but one example. I know of an individual who has been helped by our Christmas Campaign. This individual - with no exaggeration - visits a physician on a weekly basis for an on-going back problem. Operations are scheduled. Consultations are held. Operations are canceled. More medication. More therapy. More office visits. No help locally so trips to Cape Girardeau are scheduled. Then St. Louis. And then the process starts all over again. Months turn into years. And the costs are beyond the imagination.
We must always provide essential services to those in need. That topic is not open for debate. But the definition of those in need is what creates the problems of class conflict. And believe me, there are many who live off the system with no plans to change. Therein lies the problem.
These thoughts are not an indictment against the poor. Not by any measure nor definition. But we do have some elements of society who work the system to their favor. Maybe it's the prospect of paying those taxes that brings this to the forefront each year.