A very astute, knowledgeable political insider recently stated in a meeting, “The government is like kudzu.” I would like to take credit for the statement, but I am a political outsider and can only surmise and speculate on what goes on in the closed-door, smoke-filled rooms where the political schemes, calculations, compromises, and deals are made.
I am thankful for the good and godly men and women in the political arena whose convictions are not up for sale, who will not crumble under pressure, who had rather be marked by honesty and integrity than climb the political ladder, and who represent their constituents with pure hearts. They are the tall stately trees in the forest of civic affairs.
But then there is the kudzu. Kudzu is not native to Georgia or the Southern portion of the United States. The creeping, climbing perennial vine is native to Japan and southeast China.
Kudzu was first introduced to America during the Philadelphia Centennial Exposition in 1876. According to The Nature Conservancy those attending the Exposition “marveled at the sweet-smelling blooms, large leaves and sturdy vines of what was touted as a great forage plant and ornamental for the backyard.”
The Soil Conservation Service considered kudzu a great tool for soil erosion and by 1950 it was planted in abundance all over the south. The Nature Conservancy reported, “Once established, kudzu grows at a rate of one foot per day with mature vines as long as 100 feet.
“Known as ‘mile-a-minute and ‘the vine that ate the South,’ kudzu can easily overtake trees, abandoned homes, cars, and telephone poles.”
Kudzu is invasive. It encroaches. It threatens native ecosystems. It has wreaked havoc on farmlands, destroying entire fields of crops. It has been known to cause trains to derail and fell high voltage transformers causing power outages.
Kudzu can invade gardens, infiltrate both abandoned houses and inhabited ones, and has been known to contaminate groundwater.
Kudzu cannot officially be considered a parasite, but it functions like one. It is an alien species that competes with plants and trees for nutrients, soil, and sunlight, strangling the life out of them.
I am not sure exactly what the political insider meant when he said the government is “like kudzu,” but Mike Adams, writing for Natural News, stated, “Government is nothing more than a grand scam that deliberately creates huge problems in society to convince the sheeple (a word combining sheep and people) that they need government to solve those problems.
“In fact, the primary role of government today is to create large-scale crises in order to keep the population in a constant state of emergency or dependence. Nearly all the big problems now ravaging modern society – debt bubbles, racial animosity, failed health care, and the risk of international war – wouldn’t exist at all if it weren’t for government.”
Think of some of the ways in which the government is like kudzu with its encroachment, its invasion, and its overreach into our lives.
First, in Georgia the state government threatens to foist casino gambling and horse racing upon the populous, knowing full well that gambling does nothing to contribute to a healthy society. Gambling ultimately increases dependence upon government programs to care for those persons and families whose financial wellbeing is sapped by the kudzu of an industry calculated to make itself rich and its victims poor.
Second, the governor’s veto of the religious liberty legislation last year was a clear illustration of the unrelenting kudzu of a state government attempting to marginalize and strangle the faith community in favor of the irreligious. Incidentally, the Georgia General Assembly deserves kudos, not kudzu, for passing the religious liberty legislation and sending it to the governor for his stamp of approval. His veto ranks as one of the great disappointments of my lifetime.
Third, the federal – and perhaps state government as well – spies on us. The government knows everything about us. It is my understanding the government can listen to our telephone conversations, watch us through our computers, and by using smart meters can control the amount of power we are using and spy on our activities. They may very well use drones to monitor our activities and have the capacity to turn on our smartphone cameras and microphones even when the phone is off. We can no longer trust the government to respect our privacy and George Orwell’s 1984 no longer sounds like prophecy, but reality.
Fourth, the government wants to manipulate our educational system and use it as a propaganda tool for their purposes. This has been happening on college and university campuses for a long time, but with the common core standard and curriculum they want to get an earlier start with their indoctrination so they can control every part of our lives from our birth to the day we die.
Fifth, The Affordable Care Act was designed to strip powers reserved for the states and infringe upon the freedom of individuals. It is unconstitutional despite the ruling of the Supreme Court. The ACA expressly exceeds the enumerated and carefully limited powers of the federal government, and that’s why it should have been declared unconstitutional – not in part, but in whole.
By attempting to validate the ACA, Congress attempted not only to mandate the purchase of certain services American citizens may or may not have chosen to buy; it actually attempted to create commerce. While the Constitution provides Congress with the authority to “regulate commerce,” it has no authority to create it or mandate it on individual citizens or states.
Sixth, the government wants to control the media, because that is the most powerful way to control the public. The United States mainstream media is predominately owned by six corporations with close ties to the government. In his article “Economic Collapse” Michael Snyder says, “The average American watches 153 hours of television a month and we also spend countless hours watching movies, playing video games, listening to music, reading books, and surfing the Internet.
“If someone could control the production of all that media, that would make them immensely powerful. They would literally be in a position to tell people what to think …. The big news networks have developed an almost incestuous relationship with the federal government in recent years.” Is it any wonder that President Donald J. Trump has resorted to Twitter to communicate his messages to the public?
Seventh, the government wants to encroach upon our bank accounts. It appears the government always wants more money either through taxing the citizens, attracting businesses that will pay more taxes, instituting more regulations on business, or establishing lotteries and gambling venues to pay for government programs.
If I want to purchase an automobile for my wife or an appliance for the kitchen I establishing a savings plan, re-allocate funds, or tighten the budget in order to purchase the appliance or automobile needed.
On the other hand, the government never reduces its size. It rarely eliminates a program or department. It only grows. It creates more programs and employs more people.
The reason the government will always be like kudzu is because it always wants more for those who are “unequal.” To justify having those people around, it invents “moral” reasons for its existence: foreign aid, human rights, animal rights, women’s rights, LGBTQ rights, immigrants’ rights, economic rights cultural rights, social rights, environmental rights, the rights of indigenous people, rights of the disabled, employees rights – the list is endless.
The government is good at making people victims and then creating programs and employing people to help those groups of people that are doing less well than other people. The government makes these groups what one website has called pity-objects.
If a family is poor because of a profligate father who buys liquor and lottery tickets instead of shoes and food for his children, the government uses that to justify more taxes, more jobs, more laws, and more powers for the government.
Should those families, those children, be pitied? Yes! Should the church do more to alleviate those conditions? Yes! Should Christians be more sympathetic to those in need? Absolutely! We need to be far more involved in the lives of those who are underprivileged and less fortunate.
However, when the government gets involved, it creates elaborate welfare programs that are expensive with much of the money going to feed the government bureaucracy.
Obviously, there are other examples to equate the government with kudzu, but this is a start. The government doesn’t need to make its citizens victims of its overreach and power, but needs to empower its citizens to achieve “life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness.”
However, the truth is that I am not just concerned about draining the swamp in Washington. I’m concerned about eliminating the kudzu in Georgia.