Guest Commentary: How Much For Your Vote?

October 18, 2012

OVERBECK: The current administration is passing out perks like goodie bags at a kid’s birthday party

Not that some cigar-puffing, back-slapping politician will be slipping you a few greasy bills. Vote bribery has gotten way more sophisticated than that these days.

According to the 2010 U.S. Census, over 100 million Americans or about one in three of us are now enrolled in a federal government welfare program – whether housing assistance, food stamps or whatever. And that’s not including Medicare or Social Security. All those billions amount to a form of soft-core bribery, not to mention those free ObamaPhones.

Though citizens increasing dependency can be partly blamed on the failing Obama economy, it’s also due to deliberate government enticement. For example, the number of Americans on food stamps has ballooned from about 32 million when Obama took office, to 46.4 million today, partly because the administration is spending millions of our tax money for ads urging more of us to join food stamp nation. Obama’s elimination of Clinton-era welfare-to-work rules is also exploding the dependency rolls.

Added to this economic “incentive” that influences the vote are the executive orders and perks the current administration is passing out like goodie bags at a kid’s birthday party.

If you’re a woman they’re betting the “free” birth control and other girly giveaways tucked into Obamacare will buy your loyalty.

If you’re a college student, they think you’ll vote for them because they favor lowering college loan interest rates. That’s why college campuses are Obama’s favorite rallying target. Some even predict that for their October Surprise, the administration will forgive those loans altogether as a last-ditch valentine to score young peoples’ votes.

To romance the gays, the president has proclaimed he’s with you and your fight for “equal rights.” And even though he wasn’t with you until last May, since before that he was for traditional marriage, I bet you’re now with him.

For Hispanics, the carrot is the almost-get-out-of-the-shadows-free card he handed out along with worker’s permits to a million or so illegal young people who will benefit from the semi-amnesty he proclaimed a couple of months ago. Step right up, ladies and gents, everybody gets a prize! Except African-Americans; Obama figures, why bother? They’ll vote for him anyhow, even though their jobless rate is way above the national average.

With Americans having lost about 40% of their wealth from 2007 to 2010 according to the Federal Reserve, this administration apparently figures that any giveaway looks to us like Publisher’s Clearing House showing up on the lawn with a big check and a brass band.

But as our parents drummed into us, there’s no free lunch. If you’re getting it for free, you can be sure that somewhere along the line, someone is paying for it. And that someone is likely to be you.

We’re so excited our benevolent government is going to give us free birth control – now we won’t have to fork out an outrageous $10 a month! And we can stay on our parents’ insurance until the ripe old age of 26! And there’s no lifetime cap on what we can take from the system! And we can keep our own doctors!

Well, probably not. If you’re among the 90 percent of workers who get their health insurance through their employer, the U.S. House Ways and Means Committee has bad news for you. They recently surveyed the top 100 companies on the Fortune 100 list and found that 71% or more will likely drop their employee coverage when and if Obamacare goes full-blown.

It’s simple economics. Rather than suffer the financial bloodletting of the freebie-packed coverage mandated by the law, companies will chose to just pay the fine. That way, the average Fortune 100 firm will save about $5.9 billion over a 10-year period. Obama has made it financial suicide for them to cover your employee insurance. Unlike the government, private companies aren’t in the business of spending themselves to death. That free birth control? Very costly in the long run.

Also, in the aftermath of the “affordable” health care law cutting over $700 billion from Medicare to pay for Obamacare , about half of doctors now say they will no longer accept Medicare patients. So our seniors are in trouble too.

And who will be paying for the president’s executive order that handed young Hispanic illegals a temporary free pass and a work permit? The legal Hispanic-American youth whose unemployment rate is over 31%. Now these young people will have to compete with a million or so more semi-legal job seekers like them in a jobless economy. Another Obama freebie for which hapless Americans are paying dearly.

All this free stuff is just so much cotton candy – as soon as you bite down, it dissolves.

Just like Obama’s much-trumpeted “payroll tax cut” that gave you a few more bucks every paycheck. That money was simply robbed from what you should have paid into Social Security so that now the whole decrepit government Ponzi scheme you’re depending on for retirement will go bankrupt sooner. It was an I.O.U, not a tax cut.

Ladling out perks to different interest groups incites division and animosity as well as the Democratic objective of ever-increasing government dependence.  Increasing independency drains the self-reliance and individual energy that made this nation’s citizens the most prosperous in the world. This administration’s reliance on such voter “incentives” is bad for our country and terrible for our economy. As Margaret Thatcher said, the problem with socialism is you eventually run out of other peoples’ money.

Joy Overbeck is a journalist and author who also writes at , and her quirky God website, Her column originally appeared here.  Read her magazine articles at and follow her on Twitter @joyoverbeck1

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