The most pervasive argument on the left, and the most dishonest, is that if someone does not want government to provide something, they do not want that thing provided. If for example, I say that Social Security should be privatized, people immediately say I am against the elderly. This is in spite of the fact that Chile has a privatized Social Security system, and it pays five times the return on investment our system does. Chile is in the midst of a recession, and their privatized system still – in the throes of everything socialists say can go wrong with a privatized system – pays three times the return on investment our system does. The people of Chile are literally protesting in the streets about the ‘failure’ of a system that, if we had it, would pay our elderly three times what we give them, even when it ‘fails’.
I’ll take that kind of ‘failure’ every day! How is it ‘anti-elderly’ to want our elderly to receive more money?
What I want to know is why those who favor our current Social Security system are happy seeing people ‘invest’ 13% of everything they make, for their entire working lives, only to get less than enough back to survive on. If you support our current system, the poverty of our elderly is your fault.
I am told I am against the poor because I want to replace the minimum wage and all versions of welfare with a simple wealth redistribution system that gives the working poor the thing they need most: money. Under the system I prefer, which Milton Friedman developed decades ago, we would draw a line at some income level (I suggest $40,000 a year), and give each full-time, adult worker in the country half the difference between what they make, with no minimum wage, and that level. If, for example, someone makes $20,000 in the private economy, they would also get $10,000 from the government for a total of $30,000. Someone making $30,000 would get $5,000, for a total of $35,000. Everyone making less than $40,000 per year (who works full time) would get something, encouraging people to work, and ensuring that everyone who works gets a piece of the American dream.
The great thing about this replacement for the minimum wage and welfare is that, by shifting the burden of paying charity wages away from businesses and on to the tax payer, the disincentive for businesses to hire the disadvantaged is removed. Contrast this with the current system, in which the most disadvantaged among us – those who would be hired last in a true free market – are priced entirely out of the workforce, never to find a job for their entire lives.
People who work see their lives improve, over time. People who do not work do not. It is as simple as that.
I am told I am anti-poor because I want to make the poor as independent as possible, while giving them money to pull them out of poverty. Contrast this with the current system that prices people out of the workforce, and then locks them into a life of government dependency. Also consider that the current system pays more to a single parent than to a family with two parents, forcing the father out of the home, whereas Milton Friedman’s system would incentivize keeping families intact.
What I want to know is how those who favor the current minimum wage / welfare system can justify keeping a large segment of our population on government dependency, when we have within us the means to pull them out of poverty while allowing them to live constructive lives? If you support the current system, the plight of the poor is your fault.
I am told I am anti-sick because I favor free market healthcare. This is in spite of the fact that in Oklahoma City there is a free market healthcare clinic (with similar clinics starting to pop up in other parts of the country) that accepts no insurance and no money from government – all costs are out of pocket as services are rendered – and that operates higher quality care than most hospitals, at on average 1/10th the cost. Their website lists their costs. You can learn more about this movement at the following website:
Now – I don’t know about your insurance, but with mine, I pay a deductible, and then my insurance covers 80% of my cost. The 20% I still pay out of pocket is twice what I would pay – in total – under a free market system. And the quality of the free market centers is heads and shoulders above a typical hospital. And I pay twice what I would pay in a free market AFTER paying ridiculous amounts of money for insurance! Whose idea was that?!?
I am told I am anti-sick because I want people to have the highest quality of healthcare at the lowest possible price. To those who say, “What about those who cannot afford it,” I point them to my previous point about how to solve poverty – if they are working, give them money so that they can afford it, and then let them make their own decisions about how they want to live their lives. For those who say that the European system is ‘free,’ I point to European tax rates. A family that has ‘free’ healthcare but that pays so much in taxes that they cannot afford other things is just as bankrupt as any other bankrupt family, except that when you are bankrupt because of your tax rates, there is no way out. If you support our current system, or a European-style single-payer system, the high cost of healthcare that bankrupts families is your fault.
Free market healthcare is the fight of our time. We must fight for it, and we must keep fighting for it until our government delivers it. The reason is simple: healthcare is less necessary to survive than food, clothing, and housing. There is a reason socialists want to fight to make healthcare a ‘human right’, but not food, clothing, or housing, and that is because if they can convince us to socialize healthcare, then there is no good argument not to also socialize food, clothing, and housing. Healthcare is the ‘gateway drug’ for a communist state, and if you support socialized healthcare, then you are voting for communism.
This country was founded on certain ideals, and socialized healthcare was not one of them. The primary ideal our country was founded on is that you can live your life however you want as long as you do not interfere with the right of others to do the same. Nowhere in the Constitution does the government have the power to take 40% of your income to give things to those who do not work, and yet here we are, doing exactly that (according to a UCLA study). Half the population is convinced that we would be better off if only we paid more.
You tell me if you would be better off living on 20% of your income, or on 80% of your income.
And the thing is that the Constitution says that the people have no say on the matter. Now matter how many of us vote to take more of your income – or to take the current amount – we are supposed to have a limited government that lacks the authority to do so. This is not a democracy for a reason, expressed very clearly by Milton Friedman, who said, “Democracy may be the best way to run a government, but government is the very worst way to run a country.”
Free people freely interacting in free markets is how you run a country, with just enough government to keep us all honest. Do we have to pay for that government? Of course we do. But we do not have to pay it 40% of our income, and when people say we should pay more, we should say, “No.”
For those who are willing to help fight for a better future, I tell you this: not only would your life be better if you could keep more of your income, if you had fewer laws and regulations preventing you from living your life however you wish, and if we had free markets controlling everything that is not clearly a role of government, but you would have better healthcare at a lower cost, better jobs with higher pay, and far more income to live on in your retirement. Your life would be better, and so would be the lives of everyone around you.
Unfortunately, our public schools and colleges indoctrinate our youth to want socialism such that more than half of the people under 30 believe socialism to be superior to free markets. As these younger Americans get older, they will demand, and eventually get, a fully socialist country, unless we can turn the tide of public opinion back in favor of liberty.
‘Liberty’, and not ‘Democracy’, is our watchword. To those who want democracy, I say that one tyrant a thousand miles away is preferable to thousands of tyrants a mile away. Liberty is what preserves rights, and liberty means limiting the power of the democratic system.
Some believe that socialism and freedom can co-exist, but I want you to think about all the decisions you make in your life. How many are not economic? How can you be free if you have no economic freedom? And don’t think that socialists will stop with economics. Bill Nye recently said that government – not families – should decide who can have children, and that we should forcibly reduce the world population by one third. You don’t have to take my word for Bill Nye saying that either – you can hear it in his own words, here:
Do you want to live in the kind of world where you have to give everything you earn to government, where you cannot decide what kinds of things you can own, where you have to rely on others for the basic necessities of life (and have to hope that government has enough left to take care of you after spending whatever it wants on itself first), and in which you cannot even decide whether or not you want to have children? Does that sound like ‘freedom’ to you? It sure as hell does not sound like ‘freedom’ to me. But that is what our youth want, and given time, that is what they will vote for.
Socialists are militant. They march in the streets. They riot to prevent those who oppose them from speaking. They use violence to forward their agenda. They boycott businesses who hire conservatives, and demand that conservatives be fired from their jobs. In the meantime, what do we do? We post on Facebook, and back down from speaking in public, lest there be a riot, or lest we be the ones that lose our jobs. Where are our riots? Where are our boycotts? Why don’t we walk out when Bernie Sanders speaks, after using force to try to prevent him from showing up?
The answer, of course, is that we are adults. But we must do something.
We are on the right side of this fight. The left is pushing for the same kind of tyranny that we fought in World War Two, and that Khrushchev stood for when he said, to the United States, “We will bury you”. Did we win the Cold War only to succumb voluntarily to the very oppression we so long opposed? Did we bury Khrushchev’s Soviet Union only so that we could then bury ourselves? Khrushchev was evil. So is Bernie Sanders. Everything Bernie Sanders stands for will bring pain and misery to our country. It is damned well time that we call him out on that, along with Elizabeth Warren, and the whole leftist movement.
We must draw a line in the sand and prevent socialism from crossing it. We must demand a return to free market capitalism – an end to cronyism, and an end to the ever growing encroachment of an ever larger state. We need to call our congress people and senators, to write our President, to protest in the streets ourselves, to protect the right of conservatives to have a voice, even on college campuses (and then to speak), and to use every other means at our disposal to say that we have had enough. Roll back the state!
Write, call, and speak. Do that over and over again until people hear us. Do not let the left have the only voice.
When you speak, remember what Reagan said about persuasion: “If you are explaining, you are losing.” Note that the left does not explain anything; everything with the left is a moral fight. So too it must be for us, and particularly since morality is on our side. Socialism isn’t just something that does not work – it would be evil even if it did, for it denies the human experience and treats us all like drones. We are not a bee colony, and I do not want to be in one. Under socialism, only the collective matters. Any sense of individualism must be stamped out, usually under an iron heel. Socialism is evil. Liberty is good.
One more thought… When someone calls healthcare a ‘right’, or anything else for that matter, ask if it is a positive right or a negative right. Negative rights give you the right to be left alone. Positive rights infer the right to demand goods and services be supplied by, or at the expense of, someone else. Positive rights are not compatible with negative rights, as any positive right given to one person must involve taking away negative rights from someone else. You have no right to the efforts of others, for others have the right to provide you with things, or not to, at their discretion. Positive rights are evil.
The fight starts with healthcare. Call your congressperson. Call your senator. Write the President. Protest. Tell them that we do not just want Obamacare repealed – we want government repealed. And tell them we want it now.
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