Originally posted by EastCoastKid
Originally posted by The Vagabond
Considering that the government is educating these children, couldn't the logically argue (regardless of your personal disagreement) that they have
effectively bought the rights to the information gained by the education sytem?
Yes. That would be the logical progression. But if it was MY kid I wouldn't roll over for that.
But as I mentioned previously, that's an illogical reaction born of indignation. The only answer that would stand up to logical scrutiny, say in a
court for example, would be that you shouldn't have accepted the benefits if you couldn't handle the riders, and of course in a government rife with
non-optional social programs, that means leave the country. I'm obviously not suggesting that we leave the country though. I am suggesting that for
every bit of power which we are unwilling to ceede the the government we have an obligation to vote away the corresponding government benefits and
seek private sollutions which we can either provide on our own or obtain through commerce where the only tradeoff is dollars. Hence if somebody is
absolutely non-negotiably opposed to giving student records to the military, they have an obligation to favor privatizing the education system.
This all comes back to my point about the dangers of big government, and in my opinion, illustrates the subtle moral reasons (in
addition to the staggeringly obvious economic ones) why we need to slowly and responsibly phase out programs such as welfare and social security so
that the next generation will be less dependent on them and the generation after that will be completely free of them.
We can't do that. Poverty will always exist. We can do everything in our own individual power, everyday of our lives, working towards ending it.
It's like Kudzu. It will never go away. Call it a condition of humanity. That's why we always have to keep working on it. We have to ensure that the
lowest among us are in some way taken care of.
That is a choice that it is within our power to make. I'm not saying that there is absolutely no other way than to get rid of these programs- I'm
saying that the alternative is to keep the programs and accept the fact that the government can pass laws to attatch any kind of strings it likes to
those programs. What if the government passed a law enabling them to relocate welfare families to communities where there is a labor shortange and
assign them jobs in whatever industry the government saw fit? Would that be OK with you? Because if you're not comfortable with the possibility of
that being done to "the lowest among us" then it would be wise to look at ways of minimizing the poverty rate and picking up the slack through
At what cost to their liberty and ours shoudl we be willing to care for them? It might be OK now because it isn't being abused (thats when you set
safeguards- whenits not too late yet), but as a general principle is it really the best way, or would a way that prevents the attatchment of strings
I hope that you can see my statements in the context of encouraging societal and personal independence from government authority, and not just as a
cold-hearted expression of a desire to pay less in taxes. The fact of the matter is that if the government affected a 10% tax cut but eliminating
those programs, I'd take that 10% and start tithing it to the church I used to attend (which is in a rough neighborhood and does an excellent job of
offering clothes, shoes, food, etc to those in need, with absolutely no strings attatched).
My concern isn't the money so much as the personal freedom, both for me and the recipient. From my perspective, suppose that I am essentially
impovrished, but I'm 1,000 dollars above the line because I took the initiative to get a second job. Should the government then mandate a fixed
percentage of my income which I have to give to my unemployed neighbor? So there's the aspect of my personal freedom (setting aside the tangent
points about it creating an incentive NOT to make extra money if you are near the poverty line, etc)
Then there is the recipient's personal freedom. Since the draft has been a topic of considerable discussion and concern since 9/11, and although it
has been vehemently denied it is becoming readily apparent that if there are to be additional theaters opened in the WoT (such as Iran and Syria) that
a draft will be needed, we need to consider the possibility that our attempt to be charitable to the lowest among us through our lamentably large and
powerful government will result in them being drafted- copied and pasted straight from the dole sheets to the draft notices.
I think it's very important to remember that America was born of small unintrusive government which left social programs in the hands of society.
America ascended to prominence under a system where you took stock of you options and pursued the one you liked, which is exactly what you get with
the private options. When the government did need to intervene it was optional- take the TVA. They started public projects so that if you wanted
honest work you could come and get it no strings attatched. Then of course there is WWII, from which America emerged as a superpower. The wartime
economy did that for us- plenty of honest jobs open for the taking because the government had something good to spend its money on and the
trickle-down of wages and recirculation to the top in the form of consumption worked for our economy.
All of a sudden though, we start moving more and more into these socialized programs and it didn't do us any favors at all, because the consumers who
weren't earning all of their money in the form of wages weren't seeing an increase in their finances as a result of the work generated by
production, and therefore they couldn't consume more and there was a section of the population which was not contributing to growth because
production did not generate more disposable income for consumers.
So again, I think we need to go the private route for helping the least fortunate, and if the problem is so severe that we need the powerful influence
of government we need to use the government to create jobs through endeavors such as the space program, increased spending on infrastructure,
increased spending on new educational materials, buying American (instead of wasting our military budget on buying French hats from the Chinese so
that everyone in the army can look like a Ranger), because those expenditures create production which creates jobs which is far more effective than
putting people on the dole, and it doesn't carry near the threat to liberty with it.
God I said a mouthful. I hope I'm not hammering the point to hard or going on tangents too much. I'm just trying to illustrate how compelled I am by
this developing understanding of how authoritarian systems derive their "rights" over the citizenry. I think that considering the concerns that
exist at this time (in the light of the patriot act and such) that we would want to find the least infringing ways possible of providing for our