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L. Neil Smith's
Number 507, February 22, 2009

"Things are crazy and getting crazier all the time."

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The Private Sector
by Sean Gangol
RGangol -+at+-

Special to The Libertarian Enterprise

About a year ago Congress investigated the accusations of steroid abuse among Major League Baseball players. Whether steroid use is rampant in professional baseball is irrelevant to me. Since I have never been much of a baseball fan, I could hardly care less if Roger Clemens or Mark McGwire ever used steroids. What concerns me the most about the congressional hearings on steroids abuse is that no one seemed to question what authority the government had in conducting the hearings.

It seems like the MLB could have easily solved this problem by proposing mandatory steroid testing of all the players. The problem could have easily been solved without government intervention. Those who defend the government's meddling say that athletes are role models and shouldn't be taking steroids. As true as that may be, what business does the government have with issues that should only concern the private sector?

Another response that I get from the clueless defenders of government intervention is the notion that baseball is an American symbol and the steroids scandal tarnishes it. Once again that may be true. That still doesn't change the fact that the MLB is a privately owned organization made up of privately owned teams. Publicly badgering the players into confessing their use of steroids is unnecessary and a waste of tax dollars. The congressional hearings are direct testaments to how much time government officials have on their hands. Instead of wasting time and tax dollars on self-serving hearings on steroids, congress could have done more productive things like repealing The Patriot Act or getting our troops out of Iraq, like the Democrats promised us when they regained control of congress. Apparently that was just too much to ask for.

Unfortunately the government has shown no sign of butting out of the private sector. When the government decided to bailout Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, I knew it was only a matter of time before other companies would beg for government handouts. Sure enough, the auto industry decided that they needed a bailout too. I also predicted that once these companies got their precious bailouts, they take would advantage of the situation. I was proven right, once again, when it was reported that the fat cats in the auto industry awarded themselves with hefty bonuses. Another one of my predictions was that the bailouts would create a form of corporate welfare that would shield companies from any liability, which would keep them from learning from their financial mistakes. We will probably see more of this in the near future.

Despite all these short comings, there are people who still believe that the government should continue its interference into the private sector. Never mind that the government has failed us every step of the way. The American people bought into the promise of government financed education. Now our education system is the laughing stock of the world. The public expected government to help during the time of disaster. All one has to do is take a look at New Orleans. It has been over three years since Katrina hit, but if you saw the conditions of some the houses in that city today, you would think the hurricane hit yesterday. It's amazing how Brad Pitt and Harry Connick Jr. can have entire communities built within a matter of months, while government stooges spend years dragging their feet. The government can't even do tasks as simple as delivering mail or fixing roads in a timely matter. That could be the reason why the government wastes time and money on petty issue such as steroid abuse in MLB. They probably know that they don't have the ability to solve any real issues. The congressional hearings are just their way of pretending to be busy. We now have a president that can't learn from the past mistakes of our government. His solution is more government spending and more interference into the private sector. They say those who don't learn from history are doomed to repeat it. Unfortunately, our government has a severe learning disability.


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