“Detroit has not had a republican mayor since 1961…the definition of insanity is doing something over and over and expecting different results.” Unknown.
This essay will argue that the insanity of trying to be ‘fair’ is a losing proposition and should be shelved. The President’s Memorial Day speech ended with him saying that ‘Americans have given their lives for fairness…’. I wonder if he believes what his speeches espouse. I thought American’s gave the Ultimate Sacrifice for Freedom. But like most campaigners, Obama has mixed his metaphors again.
Legislating ‘fair behavior’ hasn’t worked, yet we continue government spending and hoping the outcome will change. Compare two cities: Detroit and Huston. The differences are night and day. A casual observer would notice it in their management, cleanliness, growth/shrinkage, tax structure, objectives, and the lives that their residents enjoy (or not). I used to judge a factory by observing the activity on the floor. A busy atmosphere meant they were productive, making money. Drive down random streets in Detroit and Houston and see the difference.
Life isn’t fair and government has never succeeded in legislating that it be that way. It’s the people, not the government, that determine if a community succeeds or not. It’s their involvement, not the amount of tax or spending the government does. It’s the people’s investment of themselves and their assets, not the regulation and bureaucracies of government that makes a successful city.
The evidence began piling up as far back as the 17th century. In 1688, England went through the Glorious Revolution with the lower class taking the power from the aristocracy and transferring it to a new organization called Parliament. And all without spilling any blood. Their economy grew because the people demanded the leadership govern conservatively, meaning their debt was lowered. By contrast, the French Revolution in 1789 was bloody and racked with upheaval and severed heads. The succeeding government spent its taxes on the favored few with special loans, subsequently putting country into bankruptcy. The non-debtor nation, England, compared to a debtor nation, France, brought the poor up into the next class, helped the middle class expand, and made the rich richer. A win, win, win outcome.
Extractive governments purport to take from the rich and redistribute to the poor, but, it doesn’t seem to work. The US began its War on Poverty during a LBJ’s reign and the outcome of that war is a huge bureaucratic monolith that can’t move out of its own way. It has large edifices, billions to distribute; it buys marketing time to sell its products, and its rolls are climbing with able-bodied citizens who can make more from the government than the free market place. And don’t let anyone tell you there aren’t jobs out there. There are.
Does government ever step back and ask itself ‘is this program working? Should we reevaluate the outcomes or just spend more in hopes it’ll get better?’ When people are motivated to not work and still collect a ‘living’ salary, which direction do you think they’ll take? Has the President confused the definition of ‘fair’ for ‘opportunity’? The safety net has grown since 1965. Is this the land of hammocks or the land of opportunity? What’s your opinion? Is more spending the answer? Is increasing the welfare rolls the answer? What say you?