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Progressive Politicians are Exploiting the Jackpot Mentality

by
Posted on January 31 2011 3:00 pm
Jeff Jefferson is a carpenter who lives with his family in rural Illinois. He is a Tea Party participant and blogs at his site: www.Jeffersonicus.com

By now, everyone that lives within a mile of a computer has seen the viral video on YouTube of the “fountain lady.” The recording is from a mall security camera that shows a woman walking and texting. The woman falls head first into the mall’s fountain. At first, the woman’s identity was unknown, but in order to cash in on her fifteen minutes of fame, Cathy Marrero quickly came forward to express her embarrassment on a number of news programs.

After finding outlets within the mainstream media sympathetic to her story, it turns out that fifteen minutes of fame was not the only thing that Marrero intended to exploit. She has hired a lawyer to investigate the incident and “hold the responsible parties accountable.” Despite the fact that Marrero has a criminal record and has been involved in a number of questionable financial situations, her lawyer claims that her past has no bearing on her current case. It is apparent that Marrero and her lawyer are taking advantage of a dubious form of legalized gambling: the frivolous lawsuit.

Lawsuits, frivolous or otherwise, are rampant in this country. What was at one time an unpopular, scandalous action of last resort, litigation has become the first response to an unfavorable situation. This predatory attitude points to a larger cultural problem. We are becoming a jackpot society.

The jackpot mentality does not just manifest itself within the tort system. The popularity of casinos and lotteries are an indication of the apathy that has infected society’s work ethic. This irresponsible mindset has even been adopted as government policy. Many states use lotteries to fund basic budget necessities, and given the current bankrupt status of numerous states, it is well demonstrated that the Protestant work ethic is a fading attitude among our nation’s leaders.

Amidst the decay, there are also unscrupulous leaders willing to exploit the jackpot mentality. Progressive politicians work to appeal to peoples’ lower impulses as a means to achieve power. To do this, they forgo the policy of providing opportunity to the underprivileged and move straight to the promise of effortless gain.

Last Saturday, the Reverend Jesse Jackson was the keynote speaker for the Pennsylvania Progressive Summit. A video segment of his speech has surfaced showing Jackson openly declaring the goals of the progressive movement. He is talking about conservative criticisms of the Obama administration, but then he segues into a defense of Michelle Obama’s crusade against obesity. He starts out speaking calmly but finishes on a fiery note to a standing ovation:

“So much for the foolishness and the code words that [Obama] is not part of us. The First Lady asked us to have a diet to sustain our lives. It is a Federal take-over, but it’s a good take-over. See, some things should be taken over. See, good healthcare should be taken over. Good education should be taken over. Transportation should be taken over. The need for jobs should be taken over. The need for peace should be taken over! This land is our land!”

It is fitting that Jackson starts his rant by mentioning code words. By taken over Jackson means government control, and government control would ultimately lead to government guarantees. He and his progressive allies are calling for the state to provide food, healthcare, transportation, and jobs. Taken over is code for wealth redistribution.

This is how the Left empowers itself: by dangling the carrot of easy gain before the masses. They are exploiting the jackpot mentality that has woven itself into the fabric of our culture. There is no need to work and save for a house or car if the government will provide housing and transportation. Why should one employ diligence and hard work to achieve professional goals when the government can provide an upper level job and call it social justice? The Left promotes a rejection of the Protestant work ethic and encourages the idea of stepping over adversity into effortless security.

What does this say about our current group of leaders? Truly great leaders inspire mankind. They call upon the better aspects of our nature and encourage us to rise above adversity. The progressive left does not do this. Instead, they encourage people to succumb to their baser instincts. They encourage lawsuits, fiscal irresponsibility, and legalized plunder: the jackpot mentality.

Sell-outs like Jackson proclaim that the only path to success is through wealth redistribution. They tell people that with out leftist intervention one cannot overcome disadvantages or achieve success. Jesse Jackson once stood with the man that said, “I have a dream.” Now, Jackson preaches that there is no dream to be had.

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