What Would the Founding Fathers Say about Free Community College?

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By: Renee Nal
New Zeal

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“When the people find that they can vote themselves money, that will herald the end of the republic” – Benjamin Franklin

For those paying attention, President Obama’s plan to “invest” $60 billion taxpayer dollars into community colleges, along with an additional 25 percent funded by “participating states,” is a clear political ploy to gain the allegiance of the low info crowd.

Under the hashtag, #FreeCommunityCollege the White House tweeted:

According to the White House “Blog:”

Federal funding will cover three-quarters of the average cost of community college. Participating states will be expected to contribute the remaining funds necessary to eliminate the tuition for eligible students.

Even more troubling, perhaps, is the administration’s proposal to “expand access to mortgage credit” for low-income families under HUD chief Julian Castro, doubling down on failed polices that led to the 2008 economic crisis.

While it should be common knowledge that a president has absolutely no power to make such decisions, as Congress has the “power of the purse;” this unconstitutional breach is barely noticed by those who applaud the idea of free stuff.

In the federal government of the United States, the power of the purse is vested in the Congress as laid down in the Constitution of the United States, Article I, Section 9, Clause 7 (the Appropriations Clause) and Article I, Section 8, Clause 1 (the Taxing and Spending Clause).

But as it turns out, Congress has allowed this breach by giving up it’s own power. Consider a quote from a little-seen video posted by Regulations.gov:

Most people think of laws as being created by Congress or maybe through interpretations of the Constitution by the U.S. Supreme Court; but actually by volume and significance, regulations adopted by administrative agencies dwarf the decisions passed by Congress.

While speaking of the size of government, James Madison wrote in Federalist 48,

It will not be denied that power is of an encroaching nature and that it ought to be effectually restrained from passing the limits assigned to it

President Obama does not need to worry about backlash from the mainstream media, academia or the GOP establishment, unfortunately. In fact, the watchdog institutions praise these taxpayer funded “investments.” That leaves those who care about the future of America to educate others.

“It is the responsibility of the patriot to protect his country from its government.” – Thomas Paine

“It does not take a majority to prevail…but rather an irate, tireless minority, keen on setting brushfires of freedom in the minds of men.” – Samuel Adams

What would the founding fathers say about such taxpayer-funded “investments?”

Consider these quotes (found here, and here):

“Congress has not unlimited powers to provide for the general welfare, but only those specifically enumerated.” – Thomas Jefferson

“A wise and frugal government, shall restrain men from injuring one another, shall leave them otherwise free to regulate their own pursuits of industry and improvement, and shall not take from the mouth of labor the bread it has earned. This is the sum of good government.” – Thomas Jefferson

“If Congress can do whatever in their discretion can be done by money, and will promote the general welfare, the government is no longer a limited one possessing enumerated powers, but an indefinite one subject to particular exceptions.” – James Madison

“To take from one, because it is thought his own industry and that of his fathers has acquired too much, in order to spare to others, who, or whose fathers, have not exercised equal industry and skill, is to violate arbitrarily the first principle of association, the guarantee to everyone the free exercise of his industry and the fruits acquired by it.”- Thomas Jefferson

“The government of the United States is a definite government, confined to specified objects. It is not like the state governments, whose powers are more general. Charity is no part of the legislative duty of the government.” – James Madison

“Nip the shoots of arbitrary power in the bud, is the only maxim which can ever preserve the liberties of any people. When the people give way, their deceivers, betrayers, and destroyers press upon them so fast, that there is no resisting afterwards. The nature of the encroachment upon the American constitution is such, as to grow every day more and more encroaching. Like a cancer, it eats faster and faster every hour. The revenue creates pensioners, and the pensioners urge for more revenue. The people grow less steady, spirited, and virtuous, the seekers more numerous and more corrupt, and every day increases the circles of their dependents and expectants, until virtue, integrity, public spirit, simplicity, and frugality, become the objects of ridicule and scorn, and vanity, luxury, foppery, selfishness, meanness, and downright venality swallow up the whole society.” – John Adams

“I am a mortal enemy to arbitrary government and unlimited power. I am naturally very jealous for the rights and liberties of my country, and the least encroachment of those invaluable privileges is apt to make my blood boil.” – Benjamin Franklin

“I consider the foundation of the [Federal] Constitution as laid on this ground: That “all powers not delegated to the United States, by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the States, are reserved to the States or to the people.” [10th Amendment] To take a single step beyond the boundaries thus specifically drawn around the powers of Congress is to take possession of a boundless field of power, no longer susceptible of any definition.” – Thomas Jefferson

“A Constitution of Government once changed from Freedom, can never be restored. Liberty, once lost, is lost forever.” – John Adams

As a reminder, President Obama once called the national debt under President Bush “irresponsible” and “unpatriotic.” The national debt has increased by 70% on his watch.

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Comments

  1. What a terrific post! Keep up the terrific work!

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