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July 6, 2021
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There are a lot of things people like to believe that are patently absurd if you think about it. Much of the Obama Administration was based on making confident declarations – we can’t just drill our way out of an energy shortage, it would take a magic wand to bring back manufacturing jobs, 2 percent growth is the “new normal,” etc. – all delivered in a somber, imperious tone that made them sound like unassailable truth, when in fact, all of them were patently false.

One of the most common pieces of false conventional wisdom is that “the government can’t legislate morality!” But of course, they do it all the time. We have millions of laws, just to enforce society’s consensus of what’s morally right or wrong. Liberals used to protest this, and now they’re the chief generators of morality laws, usually bans on everything they find morally offensive, including smoking, using racist words or an unpreferred pronoun, giving someone an unrequested plastic straw, attending a protest for a cause they personally disagree with, etc. etc. etc. Each law comes with loopholes, so government adds more laws to close them. Plus we’ll need police, courts and jails, because some people will always insist on doing the wrong thing anyway. All to legislate morality.

(I know, today’s liberals want to do away with police and jails, but that’s just for actual criminals. They still want to arrest and jail law-abiding citizens who exercise rights they disapprove of, like reopening their gyms, salons and barber shops.)

Self-government requires self-discipline, self-respect, and respect for others. When people don’t follow an accepted standard moral code, government keeps passing new laws to try to force them to, which creates bigger government and more expense and less freedom for everybody. Maybe the national debt wouldn’t be sky high now if our behavior standards hadn’t sunk so low.

How much do people’s bad personal choices end up costing all the rest of us? You might be surprised at the size of the bill. When I left the governor’s office in Arkansas, we had more than 13,000 inmates in the Department of Corrections. Just keeping them locked up cost taxpayers more than $220 million a year. That’s more than it would have cost to send 13,000 kids to any college in the state, all expenses paid. If every prison inmate had just lived a moral life and stayed out of trouble, the taxpayers could have enjoyed a $220 million tax cut. Or the money might have been used to improve roads and services that benefit everyone.

From the left, I’d always hear that we should spend more money on prisoners or else turn more of them loose. From the right, I’d hear that we should lock up more people and eliminate parole while cutting the prison budget. Both were unrealistic. But hardly anyone wanted to talk about the real problem: the lack of morality that led to all those people being locked up in the first place.

And what about juvenile offenders? Every kid placed into our Division of Youth Services cost taxpayers up to $80,000 a year. If they’d all had stable, nurturing homes and been taught to be obedient, responsible and moral, it would’ve saved the taxpayers of just that one state $80 million a year. Imagine how many parks we could have built for all kids to enjoy, or how many books we could’ve bought for school libraries, if we could’ve freed up $80 million a year in the state budget.

A lot of kids get into trouble because of peer pressure, which social media and Twitter mob shaming have made even more oppressive. They think breaking the rules makes them look cool and that they will never face any consequences for it. So kids, when someone you know starts acting up, instead of rewarding them with your admiration or covering for them with your silence, please have the courage to stand up and say, “That’s not cool! Thanks for costing us our parks and turning our generation into tax slaves, jerk!”

Hey, as long as kids are going to be vulnerable to peer pressure, why not use its power for good?

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Comments 1-16 of 16

  • John Klay

    07/24/2021 12:00 PM

    Mike, coming from a 70+ lifelong law abiding citizen who's never seen the inside of a prison, part of the problem is prisoners have too many rights, privileges, & niceties! When a person commits a felony, they give up some rights & privileges. Prison for felons should be a place they NEVER, EVER want to see again! Hard core felons should do HARD TIME! Take a look at the Federal Prison in Florence, Colorado, & their cells! No TV! No books except a Bible. 1 hour of sunlight/exercise per day, basic solitary! No Visitors. No great food, basic healthy, subsistence diet! If you make it bad enough, so BAD they would rather die than ever come back, their sentences could be significantly shortened, i.e. instead of 'warehousing' them for 30 yrs, maybe 5 to 10 yrs would be sufficient to get their attention! Further, Capital Crimes should be expanded! 1st Degree Murder, Rape, Sexual Assault on a Child, 3 Strikes(Felons) considered Capital Crimes & times for Trials, Appeals, & Imposition of Sentence MUST be greatly shortened. NO MORE than 1 YR from beginning to Penalty! No More Lethal Injection! Bring back States Right to pick, i.e. Firing Squad, Hanging, Electric Chair, Gas Chamber,etc! This business of 20-30 yrs thru Appeal after Appeal, then a Hospital Setting for a Lethal Injection, by then it has lost ALL its' deterrent value & most people have completely forgotten the heinous nature of the crime! Progressive Liberals ruin everything they touch, & Lawyers make a fortune of off stretching the process out as long as possible, they don't care, they're getting wealthy! Time to get back to the basics!

  • Liz Rome

    07/08/2021 05:41 PM

    Yes -- As you said: Self-government requires self-discipline, self-respect, and respect for others----
    In other words "responsibility"? This grandmother believes this strength and these values begins at home. And have a much better chance when home is a two-parent family. Time to go back to basics.

  • Larry W. Perkins

    07/06/2021 10:51 PM

    One of my first classes in Basic Training in the USAF in 1970 was about Rumors and Propaganda. The Captain that taught the class made a very lasting impression on me when he stated, "to have self discipline you must first have imposed discipline." He went on to discuss the importance of discipline and I found it to be a good class. However, he told me nothing that my loving and patriotic parents had not already taught me as a kid growing up. One of our greatest challenges in America today is that there is no discipline in the home or any place else in the formative years of the kids in America. If you discipline your child in today's America there will be a social worker knocking at your door to investigate your actions. AND, we wonder what is wrong in America today! It does not take a village to raise a child, it takes loving parents.

  • Michelle McCown

    07/06/2021 10:36 PM

    Very eloquently stated, and oh what we could have done with all the funds that were used to prosecute and "reform" the offenders! Need to remember that God, through the Bible dictates morality. Don't need to spend money so the Democrats can elaborate on or revise God's Word. It is free to all of us.

  • Margaret Johnson

    07/06/2021 07:14 PM

    Self-discipline is a word that has been completely omitted by the ‘all knowing’ Left.
    Our prayer for them should be that they’ll wake up before they completely destroy this great country.
    Please Pastor Mike...continue to keep these hard fought for ideals alive! May God continue to richly Bless you!

  • betty willette

    07/06/2021 05:00 PM

    GOV,

    I am a nationally certified psychiatric RN, working full time in an adult psych facility in north central Arkansas. The doctor I work with and most of my co-workers refer to the clients as "the kids," because their emotional maturity seems to have peaked at about age 14, and their life choices since that age have been stuck in that mind-set. Bad choices, teaching their children bad choices and being the result of their parents bad choices.

    Your assessment is spot on, unfortunately. I'm frightened for our country, praying as hard as I know how for people to wake up and demand a return to sanity.

  • Larry H. Burrows

    07/06/2021 05:00 PM

    I sent a message via your FB page regarding fraudulently obtained monies going via PayPal directly to Democracy Alliance. It appears that anything purchased on the clone webpage below go to that liberal cause.

    https://www.birkenstockzsandals.com/arizona-oiled-leather-tobacco-brown-p-1023.html?zenid=ttm4um7ng6091vhp5cpsq0rou1

    I was duped into thinking I was buying from Birkenstock until I saw that the PayPal payment went to Democracy Alliance. Looks like fraud to me, and I would love knowing that someone with adequate resources could investigate. Best wishes and God bless.

  • David A Cron

    07/06/2021 04:41 PM

    I used to hear that tired trope about legislating morality. My response has always been that EVERY law is a form of legislated morality. Murder is illegal because it immoral, so what kind of morality do you not want to have? Seems pretty clear to me that the argument was a straw man from the beginning.

  • EDNA ELIZABETH MOORE

    07/06/2021 03:57 PM

    Just letting you know that Facebook called the last report spam.

  • Janice Saccomanno

    07/06/2021 02:14 PM

    This is why a businessman named Donald J Trump was so successful running our country!

  • Robert E. Christensen

    07/06/2021 02:13 PM

    When fathers went from the straight blade in shaving to electric, caused the problem of no razor strap to show the naughty teen the reason not be be naughty! I buried a razor strap once out in the woods, but to my surprise dad bought another one and when he needed to use it for some infraction, l think it used a little more force as he must have realized that l caused the other razor strap to disappear.

  • Donna K Weimer

    07/06/2021 01:48 PM

    Are you coming back on Monday, July 12th or Sunday, July 11th? Newsletter says Monday July 11th

  • Bobby james Jarreau

    07/06/2021 01:47 PM

    I hope come next election we can do away with as many RINO's as possible in the house and senate.

    Thanks,
    Bobby
    Louisiana Cajun

  • Judy Inman

    07/06/2021 01:34 PM

    Again, every high school student needs to read or hear this!

  • Gary Hale

    07/06/2021 12:24 PM

    Actually a question. Where can I find honest information about the Jan 6 “riot” and the BLM riots in DC before that?

  • Arthur Huey

    07/06/2021 11:54 AM

    Mike - thank you for articulating what I firmly believe, that any society to survive must have self-discipline derived from a solid system of morals. Thank you also for your bible quotes. They convince me you would find the internet site, http://christianscience.com/ of interest. The first article you should read under the dropdown menu "what is Christian Science" is the article entitled "Mary Baker Eddy".. If you have questions, I would be glad to address them. Art Huey