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Could This Happen Here?

Because of the large amounts of government revenue flowing into New Mexico, our state has always been insulated from extreme economic fluctuations. But, you’ve got to wonder with the federal government taking an ever increasing share of ownership in business and industry across the nation, from Wall Street to Main Street, if that might not all change.

Think about it. If banks, automobile companies, insurance conglomerates and healthcare providers are all federally owned, doesn’t that change the whole dynamic? In the new U.S. economy, one which we are moving towards at an alarming pace, the government owns most major industries. Everything becomes a government job.

I know there are some of you reading this blog that thinks that’s a good thing. But, I wonder if you’ve really thought about what that transition is going to look like. Of course, you don’t have to imagine, you just have to look around the country at places where it’s occurring:

Mercy James thought she had lost her rental property here to foreclosure. A date for a sheriff’s sale had been set, and notices about the foreclosure process were piling up in her mailbox.

Ms. James had the tenants move out, and soon her white house at the corner of Thomas and Maple Streets fell into the hands of looters and vandals, and then, into disrepair. Dejected and broke, Ms. James said she salvaged but a lesson from her loss.

So imagine her surprise when the City of South Bend contacted her recently, demanding that she resume maintenance on the property. The sheriff’s sale had been canceled at the last minute, leaving the property title — and a world of trouble — in her name.

And, this is just the tip of the iceberg. There are whole cities that are now being abandoned. I can’t help but think back to my days backpacking through Europe in the Summer of 1991. The Berlin Wall had fallen just two years earlier, and I was able to travel freely between East and West Berlin. The contrast was startling. I really hope we’re not headed down that road.