Government / American Legion speech

In the 18th century, William Blake wrote, "For Every Pleasure, money is useless". Alas, in today's society, money is sought as the cure-all for any problem. Not only is government money being pumped into required services like defense, education, and road-building, but it is also being siphoned off into needless pork-barrel projects, and oftentimes ends up being used to support such unnecessary things as pornographic artwork. Who is paying for all this? Not the people of today. Instead, astronomical sums of money are being borrowed, thus putting the burden of today's living standard on tomorrow's people. The money borrowed is so excessive that debt interest has become one of the largest areas of government spending. Today, our greatest challenge is to ensure a society for our posterity that can enjoy similar a standard of living similarly to our own. To do this many changes need to be made in our basic view of society.

In our country's history, many lives have been sacrificed to halt the aggression of tyrannical mercenaries. Hundreds of thousands of soldiers were killed during World War II to prevent Germany and Japan from gaining military control of the world. However, today, Germany and Japan are gradually taking over the world economically, and nobody seems to notice. Have all the soldiers died in vain? Well, not exactly. Japan and Germany are our friends today. But, do we want to start using the Yen instead of the dollar? Soon the American dream will be controlled by the Japanese bosses.

Who let the other countries in? We all did. America has long been the dominant player in world affairs. It has also been an economic leader, and the standard by which other nations are judged. Americans were just plain better than everybody else. And, due to their superiority, they gained a greater amount of time to sit back and relax. This, alas, has resulted in the gradual destruction of our society. Since most people have never seen a war fought on United States soil, they begin to forget the importance of a strong military in ensuring their safety. They would rather let someone else do the fighting for them. They also have begun to lose their patriotic spirit, and sought extraneous rights. The right to say what's on their mind is not enough. They also want the right to burn the very symbol of their rights and liberty - the flag. The very rights that millions have died to preserve are being used to subvert the power of the country.

What can be done to steer the country back on the right course? The easiest would be a stripping away of a few individual rights, or a reduction of the standard of living. Unfortunately, these solutions would result in immense negative repercussions. Instead, we need to begin with reforms at the top. By carefully scrutinizing and eliminating the fat from government contracts billions could be cut from the budget. This would lead to a balanced budget that would in turn save millions in interest payments. Finally, a rebirth in American pride and patriotism would provide the greatest positive impact. With the newfound patriotic pride, people would be more inclined to buy American, and thus reduce our trade deficit. They would also stop seeking the excessive 'rights', like flag burning, and gradually lead the nation back on the trail of greatness once enjoyed in the earlier half of this century.