Several weeks ago I looked on with disgust as children clad in adorable costumes trick-or-treated throughout the quiet streets of Claremont. They rang the doorbells of everyday God-fearing Americans and held out their bags expectantly, their bright eyes and wide smiles masking a horrible injustice. After feasting on millions of dollars of taxpayer-financed candy, they fell asleep, ready to repeat the parasitic process next year.
Halloween, of course, is portrayed by the lamestream media as a cornerstone of quintessential American culture. News shows hype up the hottest new trends and anchors talk about things no one really cares about, like what costumes their kids will be wearing or how Twix tastes better than Snickers. Folks spend a lot of money preparing for Halloween night, buying decorations and costumes that can only be worn 0.27 percent of the year. As an American, such rampant consumerism warms my heart, but what chills my bones is the knowledge that none of these simple-minded patriots realize the irreparable damage they and their eight-year-olds in dinosaur costumes are doing to the American way of life.
Every year, millions of children descend upon the respectable households of America and demand sugar bailouts. They intrude upon the private lives of ordinary citizens and threaten the American public with “tricks” unless they pay up, out of their own pockets, in Tootsie Pops and Mr. Goodbars. Such a practice instills in our nation’s future an abysmal work ethic and a fondness for government handouts. Politicians, in their tacit encouragement of this behavior, only further rot the values of our youth.
Really, it should come as no surprise. Halloween originated, after all, in the fiery, socialist pits of Europe, known for similarly despicable actions like providing everyone with health care. Ugh. How this disease migrated to America will always be a matter of some debate, but over the decades the infection has only spread. As a child, Ben Bernanke roamed the streets of Dillon, S.C. on All Hollows’ Eve, preying on the goodwill of his neighbors. As an adult, he pushed hundreds of billions of dollars through Congress. Perhaps this is mere coincidence, but Bernanke may have seen all those bills as mere candy corns.
Even my most conservative colleagues, whose ability to stand up for their beliefs in the face of overwhelming logic continually inspires me, have succumbed to this delusion. Republicans in Congress speak of cutting spending (though not tampering, of course, with their $174,000 salaries and lifelong medical benefits), but they remain too afraid to tackle the problem at its chilhood and adolescent roots, passing that duty on to concerned citizens. To do my part, I institute a work-for-candy program at my house for Halloween. The first few years, when I opened the door to find fairies and pirates and the like staring up at me greedily, I’d give them a list of honorable ways to earn their treat. They could wash my dishes, mow the lawn or, in the case of one six-year-old, install a solar panel on my roof. They got their Baby Ruths alright, but they had to prove that they were Sultans of Swat-ting flies first. Sadly, as my neighbors were decidedly less enthusiastic about my tactics, trick-or-treaters soon avoided my house in favor of the welfare states next door.
Conservatives have the right idea; from opposing the financial and automotive bailouts (despite the thousands of potentially lost jobs) to repealing Obamacare (regardless of the effects on American competitiveness and the studies predicting the unsustainable rise in health costs if the industry remains in private hands), they’ve got smart public policy in spades. Such steps, of course, are only a bandage over the real issue: the prevalence of freebies received as a child. We might be just a few weeks past Halloween, but already stores have raced past that one obscure holiday in late November in giddy preparation for the Holy Grail of handouts. In less than two months’ time, a morbidly obese man in a Bolshevik-red coat will take leave of his communist kingdom and elvish proletariat. Somehow, he will squirm his way down chimney after chimney, delivering presents to children whether or not they deserve them. While America rejoices in the bounty left behind by the jolly fat man, few will notice the continuing corruption he spreads. Well played, Comrade Claus.