There Is No Free Lunch

My father handed me a copy of the News-Register paper from McMinnville today.  On Friday the 22nd there was a fluff piece on Suzanne Bonamici, the incumbent for District 1.  The Congresswoman I am challenging.   

The title says, “Suzanne Bonamici touts healthy meals for all students.”  My first thought after reading the title was, “Does anyone want to have children go hungry?”  I don’t think so. Politics is usually not about disagreement on outcomes, the argument is how we get to those outcomes.  And that is where Suzanne Bonamici and I disagree.  She believes in a big Federal Government to provide the services we, as Americans, should be providing for ourselves.  I, on the other hand, believe we need to correct the system, so that all Americans can achieve success.   Ronald Reagan once said, “I believe the best social program is a job!”  I couldn’t agree more.  

Take the article for example, the Federal Government takes money from taxpayers in the state of Oregon only to give a portion of it back (there is always overhead to pay for) to organizations in Oregon.  Of course the money comes with contingencies (i.e. strings attached), so the government can dictate processes.  This redistribution of our tax dollars allows people like Suzanne Bonamici to take credit for feeding children healthy meals with the money we paid.  As if somehow she was the one providing those lunches.   To paraphrase from a President Obama speech, “She did not pay for those lunches, you did!!”   And this redistribution has other Federal benefits, such as paying for government administrations and securing future votes for Suzanne and similar Congressional Representatives when they run for office again.  It is amazing how giving out “free stuff” improves your chances for reelection.    

While I do not want to see any child go hungry, I don’t believe our money needs to take a trip to Washington DC first.  I would simply reduce taxes. That means more money in local communities to increase economic growth.  That leads to higher wages, more jobs, and increased household incomes.  That right there will reduce poverty and reduce the number of families who need assistance.  For those who still have need, local charities, religious institutions, and similar organizations could assist.  If still a need persisted, then a local fee could be levied to help.  The overall cost would still be less than the cost of any Federal Program and the money would be spent more wisely as well as stay local.  So how would this help my reelection efforts since I can’t take credit for the work of others?  Well, if I chose to run again, I would like to think I would earn your vote by how little of your money I spent, and how much more you got to keep.

I would like to make one more comment on this news article.  It is about campaigning.  Understand, Suzanne is being paid a federal wage while running full time for office.  This gives incumbents an incredible advantage over any challenger who still has to work a regular job to pay for their personal expenses while running for office.  (Not even including the cost of a self funded campaign, as is my case).  She also has the benefit of easy access to the press.  Meaning her office can make a phone call, and on a slow news day the press is more than happy to write a piece on her activity.  Whether this be a tax payer paid town hall or a local event she chooses to attend.  Unless you’re Donald Trump, a challenger does not have nearly as much access to this free publicity.  These advantages keep incumbents as incumbents.  To make matters worse, these same Representatives have put in campaign finance laws to make sure they limit the challenger’s ability to raise funds to compete.  To be clear, this is not a partisan issue, this is an establishment issue.  Many Bernie Sanders fans and Trump fans have said, “The system is rigged.”  Well, I would not go that far, but there are advantages put in place that keep people who have power in power.  My name is Brian Heinrich and I am going to be your next Congressional Representative for US Congress in Oregon’s First District.   

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