Posts Tagged ‘welfare’

Corrosive nature of making secondary impulses top priority

January 8, 2008

And another (from America Alone) by Mark Steyn:

To understand why the West seems so weak in the face of a laughably primitive enemy it’s necessary to examine the wholesale transformation undergone by almost every advanced nation since World War Two.  Today, in your typical election campaign, the political platforms of at least one party in the United States and pretty much every party in the rest of the West are exclusively about those secondary impulses: government healthcare (which America is slouching toward, incrementally but remorselessly), government day care (which was supposedly the most important issue in the 2006 Canadian election), government paternity leave (which Britain has introduced).  We’ve elevated the secondary impulses over the primary ones: national defense, self-reliance, family, and, most basic of all, reproductive activity. 

 A government big enough to give you everything you want is big enough to take away everything you have, starting with your sense of self-reliance.


Military Welfare

January 8, 2008

Here’s another gem from Mark Steyn’s book America Alone:

The United States has the most powerful armed forces on the planet.  The fact that Washington’s responsible for 40 percent of the planet’s military spending pales in comparison to the really critical statistic: it’s responsible for almost 80 percent of military research-and-development spending, which means the capability gap between it and everyone else widens every day.

As for America’s “friends,” there’s another paradox of the non-imperial hyperpower: the United States garrisons…its wealthiest allies, thereby freeing them to spend their tax revenues on luxuriant welfare programs rather than on tanks and aircraft carriers…  Like any other welfare, defense welfare is a hard habit to break and damaging to the recipient.  The peculiarly obnoxious character of modern Europe is a logical consequence of America’s willingness to absolve it of responsibility for its own security.

Who’s selfish?

December 26, 2007

From the book America Alone by Mark Steyn:

This is the paradox of “social democracy.” When you demand lower taxes and less government, you’re damned by the Left as “selfish.” And, to be honest, in my case that’s true. I’m glad to find a town road at the bottom of my driveway in the morning and I’m happy to pay for the Army and new fire truck for a volunteer fire department every now and then, but other than that, I’d like to keep everything I earn and spend it on my priorities.

The Left, for its part, offers an appeal of moral virtue: it’s better to pay more in taxes and to share the burdens as a community. It’s kindler, gentler, more compassionate, more equitable. Unfortunately, as recent European election results demonstrate, nothing makes a citizen more selfish than socially equitable communitarianism: once a fellow’s enjoying the fruits of government health care and all the rest, he couldn’t give a hoot about general societal interest; he’s got his, and if it’s going to bankrupt the state a generation hence, well, as long as they can keep the checks coming till he’s dead, it’s fine by him.  “Social democracy” is, it turns out, explicitly anti-social.

That last fellow sounds like a Social Security recipient at the mere mention of alteration to SS to ensure that future generations get theirs’.