economics free market freedom politics

Two sides to everything (pt. 2)

I don’t want anyone to think these are the only reasons that people would be for or against the stimulus bill. There is always the possibility of stupid partizanship. I’m ignoring the possibility that people are for it/against it simply because of who proposed it. There are also an infinite number of variations on what Ihave written, but I’m trying to paint with large strokes in order to simplify. I’ll admit to having a little trouble with characterizing the group that is in favor of this “stimulus” bill, but I will try anyway. Please correct me if I’m way off…

At their best, the people that are in favor of this bill are worried about the general public’s welfare and believe that the government has the power to make sure that everyone is cared for. There is a deep belief in the power of the government to work for what is right and true. Underneath this belief, there seems to be the usually unsaid understanding that all things economically flow through and come from the government. If the government doesn’t do it, it won’t happen. They believe that morality should be the basis of government and that no “good” person could really be against a government made this way.

At their worst, the people that are in favor of not only stimulating the economy but in all of the other things that are in the bill are technocrats. They believe that they know what is best for everyone in this country. Underneath this belief is the understanding that people at large can’t be entrusted to take care of themselves. Not only are people stupid, but they should be actively discouraged from doing what they think is best. Somehow, even though they are stupid, they are still the technocrats burden and must be cared for…

Once again, the more extreme view is pretty out there, but they do exist. How often have we heard the phrase, “They should be sterilized?” I know, that is usually said in jest, but it points to a deeper feeling of “We are in the right and they are insignificant.”

Don’t jump on me, I know there’s a wider spread, but these seem like they are the two extremes of the people that favor this bill.

I do have some big problems with even the best case scenario I’ve outlined above (the worst case I won’t even dignify with a critique). First, I don’t see any evidence that the government has “our” best interest at heart. That is tied up in my second issue in that the government keeps changing. Even if we were to elect a government that is pure in word and deed and had perfect foresight, that government would change. I think it is telling that the people that have the above belief only have it when the “right” people are in office. No one ever seems to connect the dots in the fact that if a government has the power to do good, it also has the power to do evil. I worry about the power, if they don’t have sweeping power, it matters much less who is in charge.

The third thing that I don’t like is that there have been governments based on the principles outlined above. They have been formed with the stated goals of equality and justice and have all been nothing but evil. The Soviet Union, Red China, North Korea, etc. What needs to be emphasized is not that the wrong people were in charge, but that people like that will always be drawn to lead governments like that. While I don’t think that our government is in danger of becoming like those, I am very worried about those types of people being drawn into the government because of all of the power they can wield.

This isn’t a left/right or republican/democrat thing. This is all about what people believe when it comes to the government’s role in our lives. I’m willing to bet a lot of people don’t give it much thought and I’m also willing to believe that the majority of people in this country believe in what I have described above. I’m just hoping to make my point and tell people why I am against this and not be seen as an uncaring person or a partisan hack…

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