Purpose of Blog
As you read through the
There are various answers to these questions hinted at in the Leftist LUNCs, themselves. I will briefly discuss each in this blog.
Thursday, July 11, 2013
However, what strikes me as incredibly odd is that leftist causes are typically matters of deep compassion and love, and yet those loving causes are being turned over to one of the most cold, unloving, faceless entities on the planet--i.e. the government. Big-hearted issues are being shifted to relatively heartless and faceless bureaucracies.
Metaphorically, it is like attempting to nurture and love using machines.
The movement to embrace the cold nanny of government has spiked of late in response to the increasingly popular notion of "nudge," which Mark Tapson described as: "a seemingly innocuous form of social engineering designed to steer us lazy, infantile Americans subtly toward making the 'correct' choices in our personal and social lives. He [David Brooks] calls it 'social paternalism'; think of it as a kinder, gentler totalitarianism." (See HERE)
Mark goes on to say: "Brooks looks to saviors he calls 'public spirited people' to design ways to rescue us from our incompetence and sloth. These betters of ours are designing 'choice architectures' that guide us, like cattle, in the direction of what the left deems to be the proper moral and societal choices." (ibid.)
This underscores what I said about the Left in my post on Elitism and Specialization.
Mark continues: "In the one paragraph in his piece that will resonate with everyone who isn’t a utopian academic, Brooks then plays devil’s advocate. 'Do we want government stepping in to protect us from our own mistakes?… This kind of soft paternalism will inevitably slide into a hard paternalism, with government elites manipulating us into doing the sorts of things they want us to do.' (Of course, that is precisely what nudging is.) And Brooks acknowledges that policy makers are human too, and could 'design imperfect interventions even if they mean well.' And there you have it: for all the well-meaning intentions of the left to perfect human nature and design an earthly paradise, they live in denial that their supposedly benign experiments constrain freedom and end in totalitarianism." (See HERE)
Is it any wonder, then, that leftist causes often fail and turn out just the opposite from what was intended? (See the Leftist LUNCs on Obamacare, Environmentalism, and Government Welfare. More examples will be listed once they are posted.)
In short, governments are good tools for some things, but bad tools for worthy big-hearted liberal projects.
Wednesday, July 10, 2013
Again, this makes some sense, but cuts both ways. It is not uncommon for the best and the brightest and the most experienced to come up with some of the more profoundly asinine ideas and the most colossal failures known to man. It seems as though there is a fine line between genius and idiocy, where much of the time the line is crossed in the direction of idiocy--Leftist LUNCs being a case in point.
Besides, the governments that liberals are so fond of aren't necessarily filled with the best and the brightest and elite experts. In fact, it is not uncommon for people to seek employment in the public sector because they failed to make it in the private sector. As mentioned in the Obamacare LUNCs, Obamacare "greatly expands federal and state governments, increases taxes (contrary to what was promised), and it puts life-and-death health care decisions in the hands of the entity that can't rightly fix potholes or deliver the mail on time. And, with the recent scandals, it is unsettling to know that the IRS will be the go-to collection agency." Steven Horwitz says: "Obamacare’s approach to fixing the very real problems of U.S. medical care is exactly backward. It undermines the market-driven parts that are working, and expands government control that is not." (See HERE)
Tuesday, July 9, 2013
This appears to make sense, and for some things it actually does. However, the principle of "safety in numbers" cuts two ways. Metaphorically, while it is easier for many people to raise the walls and roof of a barn, yet when there are too many people in the loft, the barn may collapse. So, not always is there strength in numbers. Sometimes, too much of a good thing is bad. Each of us have likely witnessed how poorly certain corporations run when they get "too big." The same is true for governments, if not more so. (See HERE)
Furthermore, financial and other burdens can be made light when many are carrying a few, but it is just the opposite when a few are carrying the many. For a number of liberal causes, the later tends to be the rule
For example, in relation to my article on Welfare LUNCs, entitlement spending has skyrocketed, and to make matters worse, in recent times there have been proportionately less and less tax payers shouldering the burden of those skyrocketing costs. I am not just talking about the progressive tax rate where, according to Kipplinger, the top 10 percent of income earners covered 70 percent of income taxes. And, I am also not just talking about birth rates, where in 2002 they began to decline and reached a 90-year low in 2012, coming precariously close to European rates that portend to population decline--particularly among white non-Hispanics. (See HERE) What I have in mind is the U.S. labor force that has been shrinking since 2000, where today there are proportionately less people on the job and paying taxes than in 1979. (See HERE) The labor force participation rate peaked in 2000 at 67.3 percent, and as of May 2013, it was down to only 63.4 percent. (See HERE and HERE)
In other words, fewer people are supporting more people. Yet, more disturbing, as of May, 2013, in the U.S. there were about 155 million people employed in the private sector, and about 107 million people receiving government assistance. (ibid, see also HERE) And, nearly 50 percent of households in the U.S. were receiving some type of government help. (See HERE) When you factor in government employees (about 23 percent of the population) whose wages are paid by private sector taxes, this means that only about 40 percent of the country is supporting themselves and the rest of the country. According to Forbes Magazine, there are now eleven states where the number of people dependent to varying degrees upon the government exceeds the number of people with private sector jobs. These states have been dubbed, "Death Spiral States."
This is critical because the models upon which many liberal government programs were built and sold to the American public (like entitlements) assumed continuing growth in population and labor force. So, the decline in both makes those programs unsustainable even were the projected costs at the time they were enacted to have remained constant and not skyrocketed. This is why, in part, many of those leftist programs end up on the verge of bankruptcy, and why we have a mounting national debt, presumably to be shouldered by future generations.
It may be of interest to also note that other leftest causes (like abortion, birth/population control, same-sex marriage, unemployment and disability insurance, Social Security, etc.) may have contributed to the decline in population and labor force, thus inadvertently working at cross purposes with funding of other liberal causes like welfare and entitlement programs.
Again, for many leftist causes, there is weakness rather than strength in numbers (fewer people supporting many). Hence, the Leftist LUNCs
Monday, July 8, 2013
Each of the Leftist LUNCs that have and will be explored in my other blog have at least one thing in common--i.e. "costly and deleterious expansion of government." Liberals tend to look to governments, particularly centralized governments, as the means to their worthy ends.
This is not to say that governments are completely worthless. They are good and perhaps even the best means for certain ends (particularly those things listed in the Constitution), but not so good for others. It is just that Liberals tend to champion causes for which governments are terrible, and shy away from or challenge causes for which governments work best. (See below)
See also Gov: Wrong Tool for the Right Job:
- Strength in Numbers -For many leftist causes, there is weakness rather than strength in numbers because the many are being supported by the few.
- Elitism and Specialization -Most of government isn't peopled with the best and brightest.
- Cold Nanny -It doesn't make sense to turn big-hearted projects over to an entity with no heart.
Monday, July 1, 2013
You may also ask: Why do Leftist LUNCs continue to happen, seemingly repeatedly and on such a grand scale? Given the fallibility and gullibility, though progressive tendency of human nature, one may reasonably expect Leftist LUNCs to have occurred a couple of times early in liberal history and maybe rarely thereafter, though not persistently
You may also be puzzled that even with all the scandals and depressing economic news and authoritative reports faulting liberals in general, and the Obama administration in particular, for a host of domestic and foreign problems, and no matter how many statements from the President and other Democrats run demonstrably counter to the facts, and given people's heightened concerns and disappointment over a number of prominent political issues, nevertheless there is poll after poll giving President Obama high marks for the job he has been doing, and liberals continue to be elected and re-elected.
"Three years ago today, a freshly-inaugurated President Obama said of his plan to fix the financial crisis that 'if I don’t have this done in three years, then there’s going to be a one-term proposition.'” (See HERE) Yet, the economy wasn't fixed. In fact, in many respects the economy has gotten worse. (See Obamanomics--Trickle-up Poverty) Still, Obama has become a two-term proposition, leaving many of us puzzling why?
As intimated in the Limbaugh Theorem, "Rush noted of what he calls 'low information voters' that 'they think that what’s happening in the country has nothing to do with Obama…..He’s not seen as responsible for any of this.' So often has Rush explained The Limbaugh Theorem (as here) that it has, in the way of the modern world, long since entered the political vernacular. As here over at Commentary, for example. Or here at WND." (See HERE) (See also HERE and HERE and HERE)
While Rush explains this disconnect as, "Obama’s popularity lies in his remaining in campaign mode, instead of getting down to the business of governance" (See HERE). I have my own theories as to why this happens as well as answers to the questions I pose above. I will address each of the answers in this blog.