When a president or group of legislators proudly announce plans to right something they perceive as a grave social problem, it usually involves someone else paying the bill. It may well be a monetary cost that will be paid by some large and unidentified group of taxpayers, or it may be a price paid by a future generation of Americans who will have to live in a slightly less benign world. Meanwhile, the benefited parties can be brought to the White House lawn for a public relations photo opportunity. The president tells the world about his compassion and concern for these unfortunate people. He waves the new legislation aloft and proudly declares the end of some injustice. Everyone smiles for the cameras. Everyone, that is, except those invisible people who are left holding the bag.
Why does the future become less important, and immediate gratification more important, as societies slide toward oblivion?
Rabbi Daniel Lapin, "America's Real War," pg.244-245